Obama slipped past a real doozy Tuesday night when he said the Taliban refused to hand over bin Laden. It just ain't so. They tried three times to open negotiations for this, but Bush refused each time. He wanted to bomb people so bad it hurt.
A senior Taliban minister has offered a last-minute deal to hand over Osama bin Laden during a secret visit to Islamabad, senior sources in Pakistan told the Guardian last night...
For the first time, the Taliban offered to hand over Bin Laden for trial in a country other than the US without asking to see evidence first in return for a halt to the bombing, a source close to Pakistan's military leadership said.
The Taliban have offered to hand over Bin Laden before but only if sufficient evidence was presented. Bin Laden is wanted both for the September 11 attacks and for masterminding the bombings of two US embassies in East Africa in 1998 in which 224 people were killed. He is also suspected of involvement in other terrorist attacks, including the suicide bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen last year.
But until now the Taliban regime has consistently said it has not seen any convincing evidence to implicate the Saudi dissident in any crime.
"Now they have agreed to hand him over to a third country without the evidence being presented in advance," the source close to the military said."
Combined with so unhesitatingly waving the Al Qaeda boogey-man to make his case, in a fashion Bush would have been proud of, (Al Qaeda isn't in Afghanistan) it all makes me mighty suspicious. The Taliban wasn't declared an enemy until after 9/11, even as we had evidence that bin Laden was behind the bombing of the USS Cole. That's because Bush's buddies were still hoping to get the contract for the oil pipeline, which the Taliban government was refusing to give them. These are just facts, I'm not even trying to make an argument here. But someone has to call them on these things.
The history is at the classic essay by Richard Behan which went viral on the internet soon after it was published (re-printed at Afterdowningstreet.org ):
From its first days in office in January of 2001 the Administration of George W. Bush meant to launch military attacks against both Afghanistan and Iraq. The reasons had nothing to do with terrorism.
This is beyond dispute. The mainstream press has either ignored the story or missed it completely, but the Administration's congenital belligerence is fully documented elsewhere.
Attacking a sovereign nation unprovoked, however, directly violates the charter of the United Nations. It is an international crime. The Bush Administration would need credible justification to proceed with its plans.
The terrorist violence of September 11, 2001 provided a spectacular opportunity. In the cacophony of outrage and confusion, the Administration could conceal its intentions, disguise the true nature of its premeditated wars, and launch them. The opportunity was exploited in a heartbeat.
Within hours of the attacks, President Bush declared the U.S. "...would take the fight directly to the terrorists," and "...he announced to the world the United States would make no distinction between the terrorists and the states that harbor them."  Thus the "War on Terror" was born.
The "War on Terror" is patently fraudulent, but the essence of successful propaganda is repetition, and the Bush Administration has repeated its mantra endlessly:
The War on Terror was launched in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. It is intended to enhance our national security at home, and to spread democracy in the Middle East.
This is the struggle of our lifetime; we are defending our way of life from an enemy intent on destroying our freedoms. We must fight the enemy in the Middle East, or we will fight him in our cities.
The Administration's campaign of propaganda has been a notable success. The characterization of today's war as a "fight against terrorists and states that support them" is generally accepted, rarely scrutinized, and virtually unchallenged, even by opponents of the war.
The fraudulence of the "War on Terror," however, is clearly revealed in the pattern of subsequent facts:
- In Afghanistan the state was overthrown instead of apprehending the terrorist: Osama bin Laden remains at large.
- In Iraq, when the U.S. invaded, there were no terrorists at all.
- Both states have been supplied with puppet governments, and both are dotted with permanent U.S. military bases in strategic proximity to their hydrocarbon assets.
- The U.S. embassy nearing completion in Baghdad is comprised of 21 multistory buildings on 104 acres of land. It will house 5,500 diplomats, staff, and families. It is ten times larger than any other U.S. embassy in the world, but we have yet to be told why.
- A 2006 National Intelligence Estimate shows the war in Iraq has exacerbated, not diminished, the threat of terrorism since 9/11. If the "War on Terror" is not a deception, it is a disastrously counterproductive failure.
- Today two American and two British oil companies are poised to claim immense profits from 81% of Iraq's undeveloped crude oil reserves. They cannot proceed, however, until the Iraqi Parliament enacts a statute known as the "hydrocarbon law."
- The features of postwar oil policy so heavily favoring the oil companies were crafted by the Bush Administration State Department in 2002, a year before the invasion.
- Drafting of the law itself was begun during Paul Bremer's Coalition Provisional Authority, with the invited participation of the oil companies. The law was written in English and translated into Arabic only when it was due for Iraqi approval.
- President Bush made passage of the hydrocarbon law a mandatory "benchmark" when he announced the troop surge in January of 2007...