Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Wise Men A-Leaping

The Wise Men.... James Baker's commission formed in March of this year by the GOP-majority Congress and charged with recommending a solution for the Iraq war debacle.... or more plainly put, to save Georgie's bacon.

As Michael Kinsley points out in "Get Jim in Here, Pronto," Baker is "duly bouncing around and staffing up and holding hearings and all the things that prestigious commissions do." Baker is the Bush family point man for sticky wickets, a political operative who famously in Florida's 2000 presidential "recount" ruthlessly secured the presidency for Junior.

So, who is on this "ten lords a-leaping" Baker Iraq commission?

Two turtle doves..... moderate conservative Reagan-appointed former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, and former moderate Republican senator from Wyoming, Alan K. Simpson.

Five calling birds..... Lawrence Eagleburger, former Daddy Bush Secretary of Defense, (replacing James Baker when he became Chief of Staff). Eagleburger fills the vacated seat left by original commission member CIA Director Robert Gates who resigned after being named to replace Rummy at Defense.

On Iraq, Eagleburger had this to say in August of 2002... "I am not at all convinced now that this is something we have to do this very moment," and did not believe the administration was fully prepared for such a conflict. Even warning that if Georgie started something in Syria or Iran, "even I would feel he should be impeached." Whoa! The "I' word.

Other birds a-calling.... former Clinton Defense Secretary William Perry; former Democratic Senator and Vietnam warrior, Chuck Robb of Virginia; former Clinton advisor and D.C. "power broker" Vernon Jordan; and, former Clinton Chief of Staff, "Balanced Budget" Leon Panetta, who also served in the U.S. Army as Second Lieutenant.

One goose a-laying....Ed Meese. Yes, President Reagan's "counselor" on the Iran-Contra Affair, even though Meese was then supposed to be serving as Attorney General for us all. The Iran-Contra Independent Counsel's Final Report details how Meese "ignored" the involvement of Reagan and Sec. of State Shultz in the criminal affair. As the newly Liberated Limbaugh might say, Meese "carries the water" for his political bosses.

The commission, or the Iraq Study Group, is co-chaired by Baker and Lee Hamilton, the partridge and his drummer drumming. Hamilton, a Democrat, was U.S. Representative from Indiana from 1965 to 1999, and is often Baker's "balance" choice for such endeavors. Hamilton served as vice chair for the 9/11 commission and on the Select Committee on Intelligence for Iran.

But unfortunately, Iraq isn't a pear tree. It's a 10-story cactus.

We'll soon know if this commission has been appointed for action.... to recommend policies that would be political suicide if proposed by the White House. Or, for inaction.... to appear to want to do something and thus "take it off the table," in effect to give cover for "staying the course."

It would seem a consensus report from this mixed group would be difficult to achieve. We'll soon know, hopefully for our over-extended brave troops, before the twelfth day of Christmas.

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