- www.counterpunch.org - https://www.counterpunch.org -

Sometimes Even the President of the United States Has to Stand Naked

 

July 13, 1973. This was the day that the US public found out about the audiotapes then President Nixon was making in the White House. Alexander Butterfield, the White House appointments secretary, revealed under questioning by the Senate Watergate Committee that Tricky Dick recorded every single conversation and telephone that occurred in his office.

This began an intense legal battle between the White House, Congress, and the special prosecutor as the latter two fought to gain access to the recordings. Eventually, over the next year and only because of legal pressure from Judge John Sirica, Nixon released bits and pieces of the tape collection, minus an unexplained 18 minutes.

Every day the American public was treated to a new lie in regard to the tapes and their contents. Finally, on July 24, 1974, the Supreme Court voted 8-0 (with Rehnquist abstaining) and ordered Nixon to hand over the entire collection.

In August 1974, Nixon left the White House in disgrace. He didn’t go easily. Indeed, it was only after he was essentially forced to give up the final tape-the smoking gun that proved he was involved in the cover-up from the beginning-that his downfall began. Despite the expressed opinions of the media talking heads, this series of events did not revive American democracy, which was a dying fish long before that, but it did give the system a chance to get back in the water.

Unfortunately, it continues to flap around in a near-death state. The Supreme Court helped its death throes immensely when they handed George Bush the stolen goods known as the 2000 election.

July 9, 2003. Almost thirty years later, the press reports that Bush knew he was presenting fabricated evidence to the American Congress and people to justify an attack on Iraq. This evidence was a false document that “proved” that the government of Iraq was trying to buy nuclear grade uranium. This document was a complete forgery. A COMPLETE LIE! Yet, Bush brazenly appeared before the public and challenged the people in this false democracy to do something about it. I wonder if we will.

This forgery and the continued failure to find any kind of weapon of mass destruction in Iraq is an indication of something much more sinister than a government lying to its people so they will send their children to war. That is sinister enough and should be reason to send Dubya back to his ranch.

This forgery is evidence of a conspiracy by individuals known and unknown to attack a sovereign nation, offer up our sons and daughters, kill innocent civilians, destroy a country and its infrastructure, and steal billions from the US treasury in the name of defense.

It is not merely a miscommunication between government agencies or a mix-up in terminologies.

It is not something that one government agency can blame on another and hope that we forget about it.

It was not an oversight or a mistake.

It is not an omission that we should get over and move past.

It is evidence of a conspiracy to deceive the people of this country that is evolving into a cover-up designed to maintain that deception.

Tricky Dick went down for something similar. Just as in the wake of Watergate, the American public is being treated to a new lie every day regarding the “evidence” we were provided regarding Iraq’s weaponry and connections to international terrorism. In short, there is no evidence, only the wishful thinking of a group of power-hungry men and women who have the combined morals of Adolf Eichmann and Wayne Gacy. They do not see human beings, only numbers, with most of those numbers having to do with profits.

The more cynical among us might ask–so what, doesn’t every president lie? Of course they do, but why should we accept that as okay? Why should we continue to excuse behavior in our officials that we would consider inappropriate for a five year old child? It is time that this administration is called to task for its deception, theft, and murder.

RON JACOBS is author of The Way the Wind Blew: a history of the Weather Underground.

He can be reached at: rjacobs@zoo.uvm.edu