Downing Street Memo: Deception and Cover-Up

Institute for Public Accuracy

Interviews Available

On Thursday June 16, 2005, from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Room HC-9 of the U.S. Capitol, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, and other members of Congress will hold a hearing on the Downing Street Minutes and related evidence of White House efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence.


By Paul Loeb, member of the coalition

It's bad enough that the Bush administration had so little international support for the Iraqi war that their 'coalition of the willing' meant the U.S., Britain, and the equivalent of a child's imaginary friends.

It's even worse that, as the Downing Street memo confirms, they had so little evidence of real threats that they knew from the start that they were going to have manufacture excuses to go to war. What's more damning still is that they effectively began this war even before the congressional vote.

Silence in the Face of Truth: The Downing Street Memo
Dante Zappala
June 15, 2005
Dante Zappala is a contributor to Foreign Policy In Focus (online and a member of Gold Star Families for Peace, and Military Families Speak Out He lives in Philadelphia.

For the first 30 years of my brother Sherwood Baker

Bush is not above the law

Scholars missed the point of the essay I wrote with Ralph Nader about the case for impeachment.
By Kevin Zeese

June 15, 2005 | The fundamental question is whether Congress and the American people were misled into an unnecessary, illegal war that has turned into a quagmire. Are the indications of false statements and misrepresentations sufficient to justify a pursuit of the truth?

The evidence includes a series of exaggerated and false claims by President Bush, Vice President Cheney and officials in their administration over many months as the drumbeat for war grew louder. Statements were made in contradiction to the evidence included in intelligence documents from a wide range of U.S. and international agencies. As weapons inspectors were unable to find weapons of mass destruction, President Bush's rhetoric increased to the point of warning of a potential mushroom cloud over the United States generated by a nuclear attack by Saddam Hussein.

Democracy Now: John Conyers on Downing Street Minutes


* The Downing Street Memo Comes To Washington, Conyers Blasts "Deafening Sound of Silence" *

We speak with Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) who is convening a public hearing tomorrow in Washington on the so-called Downing Street Memo and other newly released documents that he says show the Bush administration's "efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence." We also speak with former CIA analyst Ray McGovern.


Where's W?

Check his schedule. Stage a peaceful, nonviolent protest.

Barbara Lee Drafting Resolution of Inquiry

Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D., Calif.), Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus, is circulating a letter to other Congress Members asking them to sign onto a Resolution of Inquiry.

While Lee's Resolution is unlikely to refer to the possibility of impeachment, it raises the same issues that has been raising.

Her letter includes this request:

"Join me in cosponsoring a 'Resolution of Inquiry' to learn -- as the Downing Street memo indicates -- whether steps were being taken by the Bush administration to 'fix' intelligence and facts between the two countries around a decision to go to war."

In The American Bunker

by David Michael Green
Published on, 6/14/05

I saw a movie last night that was excellent. It was also awful.

The film was The Downfall, the reputedly historically accurate depiction of the end of the
Third Reich, showing Hitler and his crew holed up in their Berlin bunker, awaiting their
appointment with the Russian Army.

It was excellent in that it portrayed this scene so vividly, and it was awful because of the
scene it so vividly portrayed.

In the film, we see what happened when Germany allowed an emotionally ravenous


Important Speakers Added to Line-Up at Rally

Citizens urged to lobby Congress Members and Senators and to meet at DNC, which is serving as overflow room.

On Thursday June 16, 2005, from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Room HC-9 of the U.S. Capitol, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, and other Congress Members will hold a hearing on the Downing Street Minutes and related evidence of efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence.

Blair�s Big Lie

More on Blair's Big Lie
By David Morrison

'The Prime Minister said that it would make a big difference politically and legally if Saddam refused to allow in the UN inspectors.'

The Prime Minister said this at a high-powered meeting on Iraq on 23 July 2002: he didn't want UN inspectors to enter Iraq again.

Could there be more conclusive proof that the peaceful disarmament of Iraq by inspection, as prescribed in Security Council resolutions, was the last thing on his mind?

* * * *

Damning evidence can't be ignored

The Baltimore Sun
June 15, 2005
By David Swanson and Jonathan Schwarz

SINCE ITS publication May 1 by The Sunday Times of London, the so-called Downing Street memo has dominated the media in Britain and on the Internet in the United States. The memo is the official minutes from a secret meeting about Iraq held by British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his inner circle July 23, 2002.

The significance of the memo - and additional leaked British documents now surfacing in public view - can hardly be overstated. They conceivably could lead to impeachment proceedings against President Bush.

New Memos Detail Early Plans for Invading Iraq

British officials believed the U.S. favored military force a year before the war, documents show.
By John Daniszewski, LA Times
June 15, 2005

LONDON -- In March 2002, the Bush administration had just begun to publicly raise the possibility of confronting Iraq. But behind the scenes, officials already were deeply engaged in seeking ways to justify an invasion, newly revealed British memos indicate.

Foreshadowing developments in the year before the war started, British officials emphasized the importance of U.N. diplomacy, which they said might force Saddam Hussein into a misstep. They also suggested that confronting the Iraqi leader be cast as an effort to prevent him from using weapons of mass destruction or giving them to terrorists.

Steve Berg: Why are we in Iraq? It begs for an answer

Steve Berg, Star Tribune
June 15, 2005 BERG0615

As a former Washington reporter I've got a question that gnaws at me night and day, and, were I still occasionally hanging around the White House press room, I'd be eager to ask it. It's quite a simple question, really, but no one seems to be asking it and no one's quite sure what the answer might be. So, here goes:

Why are we in Iraq?

It kind of hangs in the air, doesn't it? But every time another American kid gets killed or another 20 Iraqis get shredded into bloody pieces, the question returns with a bit more urgency.

Minneapolis Star-Tribune Editorial

Fig leaf for war/Paper indicates U.N. was misled
June 15, 2005

Let's go back to 2002 and think about what the American people hoped for in Iraq. Such a review provides context to the latest British document leaked to the press and leads inevitably to the conclusion that both the British and American people were grossly misled.

The attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, were still fresh in American minds. The war in Afghanistan was underway. President Bush started early in the year talking about the need to eliminate Iraq's biological and chemical weapons, and end its efforts to rebuild its nuclear weapons program. The possible need for an invasion was openly discussed, and drew harsh opposition from Europe and the Arab world.

Downing Street Minutes Momentum Growing Exponentially

We're now 540,000 and counting
By Congressman John Conyers

The DSM story is growing bigger and bigger every day.

How Much Proof Needed Before the Truth Comes Out?

Kevin Zeese
Tuesday, 14 June 2005

Now Seven Leaked British Documents Raise Iraq War Questions

The Downing Street Memo - minutes of a meeting with Prime Minister Tony Blair and his advisors that said the U.S. was "fixing" the intelligence to support the Iraq War - was not enough to get the mainstream U.S. media or members of Congress to take the issue seriously. Now there is Downing II, III, IV, V, VI and VII!

As the evidence mounts ( ), the failure of the media to seriously investigate the issues is baffling. Why aren't they interviewing current and former U.S. military intelligence officials about these reports from highest levels of British government? Isn't the media supposed to investigate and get the truth for their readers and viewers?

Bonifaz on New England Cable News

Boston lawyer calls on Congress to probe Bush

(6/14/05 5:16 p.m.) A Boston attorney is calling on Congress for a "resolution of inquiry" into whether or not President Bush committed impeachable offenses in connection with the Iraq war. NECN's Alison King has more.

Fallout of British memo

June 14, 2005
San Francisco Chronicle

Editor -- Your article on the Downing Street memo ("British memo shows
pre-invasion doubts," June 12) failed to mention the rising public outcry as word gets out that the Bush administration "fixed" the intelligence to
justify an invasion of Iraq.

Kerry confidantes say senator is seeking others to cosign letter on Downing minutes, Steve Bagley

Two confidants of Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) told RAW STORY Tuesday that he is privately seeking other senators to cosign a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee on the Downing Street minutes.

�Kerry has been enlisting other senators to sign onto a letter to the intelligence committee seeking answers to the Downing Street memo,� said one, �so Americans can trust that security decisions are driven by facts and responsible intelligence, not by political calculation.�

This statement comes after nearly two weeks of silence from the senator, who previously promised to �raise the issue� of the Downing Street minutes in the Senate chamber.


CONTACT: David Swanson, 202-329-7847

Congressional Hearing Thursday, June 16 on Iraq War Smoking Gun Memo

Backstory: Confirming the Downing Street documents

By Larisa Alexandrovna

New documents from across the Atlantic paint a picture of a President bent on war and administration officials determined to deliver war in Iraq at any cost.

Against the backdrop of the Bush Administration�s public statements, the documents raise questions about whether the Blair and Bush administrations covered up earlier actions after the invasion.

The original Downing Street Memo, initially reported by Sunday Times Online , includes the transcribed official minutes of a 2002 meeting between British Prime Minister Tony Blair, members of British intelligence, MI-6 and various Bush officials.

White House Press Secretary Clears Everything Up

Any doubts as to what the President thought he was supposed to be saying last week about what he believed he was doing two years ago should be cleared right up by this explanation.

Downing Street Memo Activists "Wing Nuts," "Paranoid"

Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting
Media analysis, critiques and activism


Congressman Hinchey Supports Resolution of Inquiry

Congressman Maurice Hinchey believes it is time for a Resolution of Inquiry.

Congressman Maurice Hinchey (D-NY) spoke to the media yesterday.

Here's a quote from the Times Herald-Record article: "If the president intentionally twisted the facts about the Sept. 11 attacks and the Iraq war, and lied to Congress about it, and then elicited authorization from Congress to launch a war that's caused the deaths of 1,700 U.S. men and women along with tens of thousands of others, that is definitely an impeachable offense."

More British memos on pre-Iraq war concerns

Officials deny intelligence that facts were fixed to invade Iraq
By Andrea Mitchell
NBC News
Updated: 6:34 p.m. ET June 13, 2005

WASHINGTON � It started during British Prime Minister Tony Blair's re-election campaign last month, when details leaked about a top-secret memo, written in July 2002 � eight months before the Iraq war.

In the memo, British officials just back from Washington reported that prewar "intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy" to invade Iraq.

Just last week, President Bush and Blair vigorously denied that war was inevitable.


Hearings to be held at DNC because Republicans Denying Democrats Use of Rooms on Hill

On Thursday June 16, 2005, from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Wasserman Room at 430 S Capitol St. SE, Washington, D.C., Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, and other Congress Members will hold a hearing on the Downing Street Minutes and related evidence of efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence.

Bad Times In Deed -- Installment #3: Hopelessly Lost in New York City


By David Michael Green

A June 8 (and things are now breaking so fast that specific dates really matter) interview
with the former Public Editor of the NY Times, Daniel Okrent, might give hope to those of
us who still believe in such bizarre and quaint concepts like government transparency,
public trust, news media fairness, and peace.

In an interview with PBS Newshour�s Terence Smith, Okrent is asked: �Do you have a

Democrats Looking for a Road Map to Downing Street

By Terry M. Neal Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 14, 2005; 10:26 AM

Democrats this week are escalating their efforts to highlight the so-called "Downing Street Memo."

Rep. John Conyers Jr. (Mich.), the senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a public forum for Thursday on the subject. And 104 House Democrats have signed a letter written by Conyers to President Bush asking him for a detailed response to the memo.

After struggling during his failed presidential bid last year to stake out a clear and compelling position on the nation's most pressing issue -- Iraq -- Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) has come out swinging. A senior aide close to Kerry said this week that a Kerry is circulating a letter about the memo among Democratic senators before sending it to Bush. The aide predicted that Kerry would make the letter public in the next few days.

Deep Throat of Downing Street

Deep Throat of Downing Street
By Jefferson Morley Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 14, 2005; 10:18 AM

Deep Throat now has an English accent.

Reporter Michael Smith of The Sunday Times of London scored an international scoop this weekend with a story about a sensational Iraq war document provided by an anonymous high-level official source who, like W. Mark Felt of Watergate fame, seems to have taken up a mission of helping an investigative reporter probe allegations of misconduct and cover-up.

The document, a British government briefing paper from July 21, 2002, informed Prime Minister Tony Blair's cabinet ministers eight months before the invasion of Iraq that Blair had already committed Britain to supporting an American-led attack and that " they had no choice but to find a way of making it legal ."

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