Petraeus report will actually be written by the White House

This story from the LA Times focuses on expectations that General Petraeus, in his long-awaited September report on the success of the “Surge,” will recommend withdrawal of U.S. forces from some regions of Iraq; but buried on the second page is this astonishing statement:

:confused: Then what’s the point? Weren’t we supposed to be getting an independent (not unbiased, certainly, but independent) assessment from the commanding officer on the ground?!

I’m not surprised. If Bush Commissars can rewrite scientific reports to match the party line, you think they’d take the chance that something as important as this would reflect reality? Even if they don’t write it, they’d sure as hell edit it.

Looks like **BG **read another news article…

For crying out loud, that article clearly states (in the section you quoted) that Petraeus and Crocker will present the report to Congress. The Dems will have adequate opportunity to quiz them and ask them any questions they want. Did Bush ever say that Petraeus was going to present Congress with a written report directly? All your article says is that Bush repeatedly said the report would “reflect” the views of Petreaus and Crocker.

BTW, isn’t this the result of legislation that the Dems passed saying the WH (not a specific general) had to report progress to Congress every 3 months?

Do you seriously believe that the Dems in Congress will whitewash the report because the White House does?? What would be their rationale? Will it gain them votes to be in lock step with Bush??

Serious question…were you going to listen to the WH’s spin on the report anyway?? Why would anyone do that at this point?


If we are not inclined to believe them then their attempt to deceive us becomes innocent?

This bothers me:

Does that mean that Congress left itself with no authority to evaluate the data itself? Does the President’s “interpretation” trump Congress? If the President’s “interpretation” of the report is all that matters, doesn’t that make the actual facts of the report irrelevant?

According to the Bushivik theory of governance, that issue is long settled. The Universal Executive is entitled to make any and all decisions of a military nature, the Congressional role is either a)applaud and write checks or b) backstab our brave heroes with carping.

So I wouldn’t worry to much about that word, its a skirmish in the struggle between the Legislative branch and the Imperium.

Yes I do, their rationale will be a terror of being accused of not supporting the troops, and no it’ll lose them votes.

I’ve found it, I think. This is from Public Law 110-28

But there’s also supposed to be independent reports by the Comptroller General and also by an independent private sector entity named by the Department of Defense.

Greg Sargent at TPM has collated a number of statements along those lines (bolding mine, btw):

I think it’s a bit late in the day to claim that the White House wasn’t saying this report would be the handiwork of Petraeus and Crocker. As Cheney said, “We’re all waiting to see what” it will say.

Yeah. In about the same manner that I’m waiting to see what the rest of this post will say.


OK, so they did sort of promise an entirely independent report, with autonomy of authorship. Well, doesn’t “reflect the views” mean pretty much the same thing, if you kinda squint and hit yourself between the eyes with a hammer?

Look, John Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath. And all experts agree that it accurately reflects his views. He had, of course, sole and autonomous authorship of the book! So, then, it is perfectly reasonable to say that “reflects the view” means exactly the same thing as they were saying! * Quod erat duh monstrum.*

Will the report be required to mention George W. Bush at least three times on every page?

Well I guess this resolves the question of why Karl Rove needed to take some time off. He’s got a lot of writing to do.

Hiding the horse’s mouth:

For months Bush has been using General Petreaus as a human shield to keep himself from having to answer for the Iraq clusterfuck. And now when it comes time for us to hear from him, the public doesn’t get to hear it.

How completely and utterly full of shit can a person be? :smack:

Look, General Petraeus is a very important guy in the fighting of this war. But his authority doesn’t trump that of Cabinet officials or elected constitutional officers.

Much as Eisenhower was a national hero during WWII, his authority during it did not trump that of Roosevelt, Truman, Stimson, Knox, Forrestal, Hull or Stettinius. And if a joint report were to be written, any of these men would have had a chop.

Truth has nothing to do with authority. P was touted as the ‘straight shooter’ after all the lies and incompetence. Now (and I’m in no danger of being knocked down by a feather at this juncture) here you are telling us it’s no biggie if the same lying, incompetent politicians ‘mediate’ his supposed trusted ‘truth’.

I guess it figures.

Then the Administration should have originally said, “We will be receiving a report from General Patraeus by [insert date]. The Administration will consider that report and the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of State will report the Administration’s analysis and recommendations to Congress.” I find it hard to believe the Administration hasn’t been planning on taking this position from the beginning.

This isn’t a surprise, though. I mean, that’s what the law says, and the law was passed at the end of May. So, it’s not a secret that this report would be authored by the President. It’s been Public Law and available for anybody to read for the past 3 months. So why raise objections to it now…why didn’t you raise objections in May when the report law came out?

Because as was shown in Post #10, the Administration has been taking the tack that the report will be prepared and presented by the General and the Ambassador (presumably without substantive cleanup and redacting by the WH).