Thursday, July 01, 2004


"'Mr. President, Iraq is sovereign.'

With a simple handwritten note, national security advisor Condoleezza Rice made her bid to author one of the biggest and most brazen lies of our lifetimes. No, Iraq is not sovereign, far from it."

These are the openning sentences of a column by Marc Ash, who isn't a big fan of G. Bush, as you can see. You can read his column here. I will probably do that as soon as I finish with this. I just wanted to remark on the theatricality of this "exchange," which I haven't heard anyone note yet.

(1) Why should so august a personage as C. Rice be required for the delivery of a little piece of paper? When the second plane hit the WTC, it was just some staffer that delivered the message. Now, though, we need the National Security Advisor.

(2) Why would a person start a little note with "Mr. President" in (I think) the vocative mood? Who does that? If you're leaving a note for someone--leaving it behind as you go somewhere else--you might open with the name of the intended recipient, but I don't think Condi was planning to leave the note on the kitched table if she couldn't find George. So the rhetoric must have been planned out to last historically, in a way that notes usually don't do.

(3) I don't recall what George was up to at the time this note was delivered, but presumably the supposed End of the occupation of a foreign country, and probably the single most contraversial and divisive issue on his plate, would warrant a five minute break--more than the "Let freedom reign!" which he scrawled on the note and returned. Does George talk like this? Maybe. Was it planned out in advance that he should write just these words? I have no doubt.

(4) A photgraph of the actual note itself was published in several newspapers. Um... what? They'll go to the mat, balls out, over any and every request for documents or transcripts, but they'll publish even the principals handwriting in this case?

So this mini-event was staged, if not meticulously staged. I don't think I understand why they would want to instill the impression that, while it touched his heart, the Iraq thing was not at the top of the President's agenda today. This is some weird shit, man. I am formally requesting explanations.