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Washington Post Taps Kerry Confidant For Bush-Bashing

Here's the first paragraph from a front page article on Wednesday's Washington Post titled "Aid Grows Amid Remarks About President's Absence":

The Bush administration more than doubled its financial commitment yesterday to provide relief to nations suffering from the Indian Ocean tsunami, amid complaints that the vacationing President Bush has been insensitive to a humanitarian catastrophe of epic proportions.
The problem with the article is that they do an amazingly poor job of detailing the complaints. Other than an a throw away "It's freaky" line attributed to some nameless and faceless government worker, only one other person will go on record with criticism of the Bush administration - "foreign policy specialist" Leslie H. Gelb:
Some foreign policy specialists said Bush's actions and words both communicated a lack of urgency to an event that will loom as large in the collective memories of several countries as the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks do in the United States. "When that many human beings die -- at the hands of terrorists or nature -- you've got to show that this matters to you, that you care," said Leslie Gelb, emeritus president of the Council on Foreign Relations.
So who is Leslie H. Gelb?

He's president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to that a he was a columnist, a correspondent, and an editor at The New York Times. The Washington Post reporters clearly stumble by not revealing that the same Leslie H. Gelb they quote extensively was also a senior member of the Kerry Foreign relations team. Gelb was most likely in line for a senior policy position in a Kerry administration, yet somehow the Post didn't think that bit of information was relevant in an article criticizing Bush's handling of foreign affairs.

Gelb was identified as a senior Kerry adviser in an interview with Rand Beers, John Kerry's top national security adviser:

Clearly, thanks to his membership on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the Intelligence Committee, John Kerry has a background in foreign affairs. What kind of national security advisory group have you put together for his campaign?

We have within the campaign an increasing number of people who were among the lower rungs of the upper levels of the Clinton administration and an advisory group of senior-level types that goes beyond the Clinton administration. Then we have another circle of people who are on what we call our "policy teams," who are experts on specific areas. They are either preparing papers on issues or are available for rapid reaction or are available to go out and speak to the press about issues at appropriate times.

...In the period before the primaries were settled, John Kerry and I both talked to a number of people. But at that time they were generally advising all of the candidates--with two exceptions: William J. Perry, former defense secretary in the Clinton administration, who signed on with Kerry last summer, and former Senator Gary Hart, who signed on in the early fall. Those are the two longest-standing senior people.

After the primaries were settled, Albright, Sandy Berger--who was [President Clinton's] last national security adviser, but has since withdrawn from the campaign because of [the investigation of his removal of documents from] the National Archives--Richard N. Holbrooke, former ambassador to the United Nations for Clinton, and General John Shalikashvili, a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, all came aboard, as did, more recently, Leslie H. Gelb, the president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations.

With that little bit of information the article reads like petty campaign sniping.

Update: Gelb's less publicized history involves Richard Clarke, the Pentagon Papers, and meetings with the John Kerry's VVAW organization.


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Comments (6)

Great article, Kevin!... (Below threshold)
julie:

Great article, Kevin!

Where's the admonishment of... (Below threshold)

Where's the admonishment of Kofi Annan for announcing that he's going to wait until January 6th to hold a meeting to call for donations to the emergency effort while the emergency part of the disaster IS GOING ON RIGHT NOW!

What? And not give them tim... (Below threshold)
OneDrummer:

What? And not give them time to hide more of the Oil for Food money they've stolen? The UN needs those 10 days to obfuscate.... (sp?)

It would be petty campaign ... (Below threshold)

It would be petty campaign sniping if there was a campaign. Isn't it over?

Why does every critical evaluation of the President's actions result in a cry of "bias"? The President's actions should be scrutinized in detail every day and criticized when necessary. If he was a Democrat, you do just that.

I notice that you don't complain when partisan conservatives gain prominent spots in the media. Tucker Carlson is suddenly everywhere and yet there are NO anti-war voices anywhere in the SCLM.

It's the old anti-US/anti-V... (Below threshold)
BR:

It's the old anti-US/anti-Vietnam War/Pentagon Papers/Watergate crowd at it again - Mort Halperin, Leslie Gelb, Ellsberg, John Dean, Joseph Califano, Hillary Clinton, Lenzner, Jane Fonda with new names Soros, Peter Lewis, Steven Kirsch, Dan Rather, etc. (like 2nd generation, son of Mort Halperin: Mark Halperin of ABC Bush-bias-memo infamy).

Links here and here.

Excerpt from 3-part series ... (Below threshold)
BR:

Excerpt from 3-part series by David Horowitz and Richard Poe at Frontpagemag.com, Oct 6-11, 2004:

****
"The Southampton Meeting

To the extent that the Shadow Party can be said to have an official launch date, July 17, 2003 probably fits the bill. On that day, a team of political strategists, wealthy donors, leftwing labor leaders and other Democrat activists gathered at Soros’ Southampton beach house on Long Island. Aside from Soros, the most noteworthy attendee was Morton H. Halperin. Soros had hired Halperin in February 2002, to head the Washington office of his tax-exempt Open Society Institute – part of Soros’ global network of Open Society institutes and foundations located in more than 50 countries around the world. Given Halperin’s history, the appointment revealed much about Soros’ political goals.

Halperin has a long and controversial track record in the world of Washington intrigue, dating back to the Johnson Administration. Journalists sympathetic to Halperin’s leftwing sentiments give him high marks for blowing the whistle on the Vietnam War, but his activism helped undermine America’s war effort and contributed to the Communist victory.

The Johnson Defense Department placed Halperin in charge of compiling a secret history of U.S. involvement in Vietnam, based on classified documents. This secret history later emerged into public view as the so-called “Pentagon Papers.” Halperin and his deputy Leslie Gelb assigned much of the writing to leftwing opponents of the war, such as Daniel Ellsberg who, despite his background as a former Marine and a military analyst for the Rand Corporation, was already evolving into a New Left radical. In his memoir, Secrets, Ellsberg admits to concluding, as early as 1967, that, “we were not fighting on the wrong side; we were the wrong side” in the Vietnam War. Evidently Ellsberg had come to view Ho Chi Minh’s Communist regime as the wave of the future.

With Halperin’s tacit encouragement – and perhaps active collusion – Ellsberg stole the secret history and released  it to The New York Times, which published the documents as “The Pentagon Papers” in June 1971. This was a violation of the Espionage Act, which forbids the removal of classified documents from government buildings. Not surprisingly, “The Pentagon Papers” echoed Halperin’s long-standing position that the Vietnam War was unwinnable, and ridiculed Presidents Kennedy and Johnson for stubbornly refusing to heed those of their advisors who shared this opinion. It marked a turning point in America’s failed effort to keep Indo-China from falling to the Communists. The government dropped its case against Ellsberg as Nixon’s power collapsed during the Watergate intrigues.

Halperin went on to become the director of the American Civil Liberties Union from 1984 to 1992 and head of its "National Security Archives." From this position, he waged open war against U.S. intelligence services, through the courts and the press, seeking to strip the government of virtually any power to investigate, monitor or obstruct subversive elements and their activities. It did not take long for Halperin to go the next logical step and argue for abolishing America’s intelligence  services altogether. “Using secret intelligence agencies to defend a constitutional republic is akin to the ancient medical practice of  employing leeches to take blood from feverish patients. The intent is therapeutic, but in the long run the cure is  more deadly than the disease,” Halperin wrote in his 1976 book, The Lawless State: The Crimes of the U.S. Intelligence  Agencies...."

***


 




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