The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Thursday, May 06, 2004  

Together With Miscellany
May 6, 2004

Lawmakers Call for Rumsfeld to Resign
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) today called for the resignation of Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld, according to a report in the New York Times (“Criticism of Rumsfeld Mounts Amid Fallout of Prison Scandal,” by David Stout).

St. Louis Post-Dispatch the First Major Paper to Have His Head
In a devastating indictment of Secretary Rumsfeld’s entire tenure, complete with references to Robert McNamara, the editors of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch today called for a thorough cleaning of the Augean Stables of the Pentagon: the resignations of Secretary Rumsfeld, Deputy Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Undersecretary Douglas Feith.

Passing the Buck
The Los Angeles Times (“Critics Pressure Rumsfeld to Resign,” by Edwin Chen, John Hendren, and Janet Hook) reports the Pentagon is trying to pass the buck, denying claims the White House was uninformed: “Pentagon officials contended that Rumsfeld and defense officials moved swiftly to make the seriousness of the charges known within the administration and at news briefings. They said a senior Pentagon official confirmed to a reporter in January the possibility of graphic photographs.”

Prisoner Abuse
The Washington Post publishes more photographs from Iraq. (See the sidebar to “New Prison Images Emerge,” by Christian Davenport.)

“Stress and Duress,” by Tim Grieve, “Kenneth Roth [executive director of Human Rights Watch] and other human rights activists see a pattern here, and they say it’s not an accidental one. Roth says the abuses in Iraq are part of a ‘systemic problem’ that arises from the U.S. government’s approval of ‘stress and duress’ interrogation techniques and its failure to crack down on soldiers and intelligence officers who go too far. ‘This is not simply a few rotten apples at the bottom of the barrel,’ Roth says. Rather, he says, what happened in Iraq is the inevitable result of a ‘culture of permissiveness’ that started in the highest offices in Washington and has now spread to the jail cells at Abu Ghraib.”

How Much More?
How much more money will the U.S. spend fighting battles in Iraq and Afghanistan? Who knows? All we know now is that the Bush administration is asking for another $25 billion. Cough it up, folks. Dig deep. Sacrifices must be made. Plant that Victory Garden. Aw, the hell with all that, the deficit’s out of control anyway, just shove it in there.

Tina Brown Thursday
Shorter Tina Brown in today’s Washington Post: “I didn’t get invited to any of the really good parties in New York this week, so here’s something I dashed off about the greater meaning of the series finale of ‘Friends.’”

What’s the Deal with Disney?
Craig Unger, author of House of Bush, House of Saud, writes in (“The Mouse that Censored”): “The reasons behind Disney’s decision are not hard to fathom -- they have to do with politics and money. In ‘Fahrenheit 911,’ Moore takes a critical look at President Bush’s actions before and after 9/11 and examines the president’s ties to prominent Saudis, including both the royal family and the bin Ladens. According to Moore’s agent, Ari Emanuel, Disney fears that if it distributes the anti-Bush movie, Jeb Bush, the Florida governor and the president’s brother, might withdraw tax breaks that Disney gets in Florida for its theme park and hotels. Disney CEO Michael Eisner ‘definitely indicated there were tax incentives he was getting for the Disney corporation,’ Emanuel told the New York Times. ‘He didn’t want a Disney company involved.’”

The Rittenhouse Review | Copyright 2002-2006 | PERMALINK |