Congressman Jim McDermott has just accused president Bush of wilfully lying to the American people about national security threats from Saddam or Al Qaeda. He said this not on the floor of the House or in his district – but in Baghdad, the capital city of a despot who is on the brink of war with the United States. At a time when the U.S. government is attempting some high-level diplomatic maneuvers in the U.N., when Saddam is desperate for any propaganda ploy he can muster, these useful idiots play his game. I think what we’re seeing now is the hard-core base of the Democratic Party showing its true colors, and those colors, having flirted with irrelevance and then insouciance are now perilously close to treason. Here’s a section of the New York Times story on these people:

Speaking of the administration, Mr. McDermott said, “I believe that sometimes they give out misinformation.” Then he added: “It would not surprise me if they came up with some information that is not provable, and they’ve shifted. First they said it was Al Qaeda, then they said it was weapons of mass destruction. Now they’re going back and saying it’s Al Qaeda again.” When pressed for evidence about whether President Bush had lied, Mr. McDermott said, “I think the president would mislead the American people.”

So at a crucial juncture in American diplomacy, this Democrat is saying that Bush is a liar and a cheat – and in Baghdad! The only word for this is vile. Then there’s David Bonior, formerly second-ranking Democrat in the House, who said the following: “We’ve got to move forward in a way that’s fair and impartial. That means not having the United States or the Iraqis dictate the rules to these inspections.” Let’s be clear here. This guy is saying that we should be neutral between the demands of the United States and Iraq over weapons inspections. Neutral. Between his own country and a vicious military despot with weapons of mass destruction, Bonior cautions neutrality. It seems to me that in the coming elections, this has to be a key issue. Do you want to elect Congressmen who are neutral between Iraq and the U.S. or those who would always put the interests of the U.S. first? Now that the Democrats have upped the ante in this way, I see no reason why the Republicans cannot call them on it.

WHOSE SIDE IS SHE ON?: “But W., who was always the Roman candle and hatchet man in the family, has turned his father’s good manners upside down – consulting sparingly, leaving poor Tony Blair to make the case against his foes for him, and treating policy disagreements as personal slights.” – Maureen Dowd. Jay Nordlinger noticed this astonishing slip. For Dowd, Saddam is not a threat to us or his own people. He’s not our foe, he’s the president’s foe. She has so forgotten, if she ever absorbed, the gravity of this crisis that the only thing she can see is petty personal vendettas. Memo to MoDo: stop projecting.

LEDEEN ANSWERS BACK: “And as for that bet, you’re on. I’ll bet you that we get a good, functioning democracy in Iran at a minimum. And if we play our cards well, we should get a decent Iraq, moving toward democracy, and maybe even a decent Palestine, at peace with its neighbors, and committed to being a normal little country, and quite a good Lebanon. Maybe Beirut can regain its nickname, the Paris of the Middle East. And without the more unpleasant aspects of French civilization…” – Michael Ledeen, answering Book Club questioners one after another, in the Book Club today.

UNHITCHED FROM THE LEFT: “As Hitchens looked around him, even in the days after the atrocity, he found something rather different. He found that a deep and lingering hatred of America over-powered some leftists’ objection to mass murder. He found excuses for totalitarian hatred. He saw exactly what Orwell had seen in the leftist intelligentsia of his own time: not simply a passivity in the face of evil, but almost an admiration for it. And he was disgusted. Since those first days of shock, the hard Left has merely redoubled its assault on a free society’s right to self-defense. The endless series of rationalizations, the opposition to any war to fight terror, now the sad and pathetic moral abdication of those who see president Bush as more of a threat to world order and peace than Saddam Hussein – all these responses, under-written by a simpering, barely concealed anti-Semitism, would be enough to turn anyone’s stomach, let alone a good liberal’s. At some point, when you look around and see that this is the quality of one’s ideological allies, you have to break ranks, if only for the sake of personal moral hygiene.” – from my latest column, posted opposite.

GIVE BLAIR THE ISRAEL DOSSIER: Why not make Tony Blair the mediator for a post-Iraq-war attempt to come up with a settlement between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs? For once in my life, I agree with something in the Guardian.

SONTAG AWARD NOMINEE: The anti-war movement is not only misguided, in some of its manifestations, it’s simply obscene.

WHY YOU CAN’T CONTAIN SADDAM: A useful broadside against the latest argument for appeasement.

KRUGMAN WATCH: Interesting dialogue between Robert Novak and Paul Begala on Crossfire last Friday:

NOVAK: Last week, Paul Begala’s “Political Alert” cited Paul Krugman’s “New York Times” column suggesting former Enron executive Thomas White should be fired as secretary of the Army. Krugman’s whole case: an alleged Enron e-mail by White saying, “Close the bigger deal. Hide the loss before the first quarter.” One problem: White says he never wrote that e-mail or even saw it. Krugman’s source was California writer Jason Leopold, who never contacted White. I asked Leopold for a copy of the e-mail. Guess what? No response to my fax or phone call.
BEGALA: Well, you ask me to judge the credibility between Paul Krugman, a professor of economics at Princeton and a distinguished columnist for “The New York Times,” and Thomas White, an executive for disgraced Enron, I know who I’m going with.

How about between Paul Krugman, former advisory board member for disgraced Enron, versus Thomas White?

“FROM HIS OWN LIPS”You can get some truly weird information from the New York Times <a href = website.

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