Questions Over the Downing Street Memo

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Remember the Downing Street Memo? That recent-leaked note from early 2002 which showed that, at the time, the head of British intelligence thought that the intelligence for war against Iraq was “being fixed around policy”? “The case was thin,” the memo said. Right, that one. Well, the major newspapers are starting to ask questions about it—as opposed to merely writing stories about how befuddled they are that the memo, somehow, isn’t garnering more attention—and yesterday reporters confronted both Bush and Tony Blair on the subject. Freiheit und Wissen has a roundup of reports. See also ThinkProgress.

The main question here: why is this all important? Also known as: Do we really need to wade into this debate again? Well, yes. It’s true that the memo likely won’t change anyone’s mind about the war in Iraq—in some ways the validity or invalidity of the war is independent of the sinister motives behind it, and that’s doubly true today, now that Bush has convinced us that the war was fought all along to spread democracy rather than to disarm Saddam Hussein—but nevertheless, this is still very much the sort of thing worth investigating. I’m not holding my breath for Bush to be impeached, but ideally in the future I’d prefer if presidents refrained from going to war on false pretenses and skewed intelligence. And an exploration of exactly how and why it happened this time around is crucial towards preventing it from happening again.

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Fact:

In-depth journalism that investigates the powerful takes real money and is so damn important right now.But it doesn’t take a Mother Jones investigation to know that billionaires and corporations will never fund the type of reporting (like they do politicians) we do that exists to help bring about change. Instead, our mission-driven journalism is made possible by people power, and has been for 46 years now since our founding as a non-profit.

In “TITLE TK” Monica Bauerlein writes about the perilous moment we’re in, and why it’s so important that we raise $325,000 by the time November’s midterms are decided so we can be ready to throw everything we have at the big issues facing the nation no matter what happens. Please help MoJo’s people-powered journalism with a donation today.

$400,000 to go!

payment methods

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