After tonight's final debate, which is likely the last opportunity America's corporate media will afford John Kerry to be spotlighted as the better of two Bonesman, I have a suspicion - dread, really - that things are going to unravel rather quickly.
Recently we discussed the rare conference call between John Ashcroft and all 93 US Attorneys in late September, in which he apparently left no room for doubt that a 9/11 scale attack on American soil was coming before the election. In the past few days, we've seen several more reports that suggest the militants who seized power in 2000 are preparing to play their doomsday card.
Perhaps most worrisome is yesterday's announcement by Senator Mark Dayton that he is "closing his Washington office because of a classified intelligence report which made him fear for the safety of his staff."
"I take this step out of extreme, but necessary, precaution to protect the lives and safety of my Senate staff and my Minnesota constituents, who might otherwise be visiting my Senate office in the next three weeks," he said.
Dayton said he could not give details of the intelligence report, which he said Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., presented to senators at a briefing two weeks ago.
Dayton is the Democratic Senator of Minnesota who told a Governmental Affairs Committee hearing last July that NORAD's accounting for 9/11 was grossly missleading. Its chronology claimed the FAA notified the military's emergency air command of three hijackings while the planes were still airborne, but Dayton corrected it with the 9/11 Commission's own findings that the FAA had failed to inform NORAD until after all three had crashed. Dayton also raised the awkward fact that a squadron of NORAD interceptors was directed out over the Atlantic Ocean, and was 150 miles from the capitol when Flight 77 struck the Pentagon ("farther than they were before they took off"). He alleged NORAD "lied to the American people, they lied to Congress and they lied to your 9/11 commission to create a false impression of competence, communication and protection of the American people."
That Dayton went so far as to say NORAD lied about 9/11 suggests he's more sensitized than most Senators to the dark games being played, though his sensitivity may not yet have broken through into conscious thought. (It would be interesting to know his private thoughts regarding the fate of his late colleague and fellow Minnesotan, Paul Wellstone.)
Though I still don't know what to make of the provenance of the "Voice of the White House" (reputedly a reporter assigned to the White House press corps), and I find the fact he posts on the revisionist "TBR News" almost wholly discrediting, many of his posts do have the ring of truth. Unfortunately, so does his latest, in which he claims knowledge of an imminent US-Israeli strike upon Iran. I suppose we'll know soon enough the value of his words:
The U.S. has no troops available for an Iranian adventure and the Israelis would rather not lose any warm bodies so…it has been firmly decided that both Israel and the U.S. will launch a surprise attack against 1., Iranian missile sites, 2. Iranian nuclear facilities and 3. the leadership of Iran located in and around Tehran. How will this be done? By aircraft attack using U.S. developed “smart bombs” and the so-called “bunker-buster” bombs designed to destroy underground reinforced concrete facilities .We just sent these to Israel. Because of the political ramifications, the Israelis will conduct the main strikes, supported by U.S. aircraft as needed. The aim will be to wipe out any vestige of nuclear weaponry, its delivery system and all the Iranian leaders capable of starting any attacks on Israel (mostly Tel Aviv…too many fellow Muslims in Jerusalem.) Since it would be a problem for Israeli Air Force units to fly round trip from Israel, the solution will be to launch these attacks from U.S. aircraft carriers located in the Persian Gulf area. As I write, the super carrier USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67) is now in the Persian Gulf along with the so-called Essex Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) [31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) (SOC)] which consists of:: USS Essex (LHD 2) USS Juneau (LPD 10) USS Harpers Ferry (LSD 49) USS Mobile Bay (CG 53USS Hopper (DDG 70) USS Preble (DDG 88) The initial attacks will be an early-morning surprise attack launched to coincide with religious services in Tehran’s Muslim mosques with the idea of catching not only the leading Mullahs inside but a large number of their congregations as well. One attack will concentrate on these religious centers and the other will hit both the underground nuclear facilities and identified (courtesy of U.S. satellite shots) missile launching sites. The U.S. will supply observation and radio surveillance aircraft with radar-jamming capacities operating out of Turkey and Italy. The entire attack is scheduled to last no more than one hour with at least three waves of Israeli aircraft utilized. No warning will be given to the Iranians and no declaration of war. The possible deaths of foreign diplomats in the attacks has been discussed and accepted as part of the price. This attack has the full support of the President who wants it launched before the elections. He can then make a speech to the American people stating that the evil Iranian nuclear weaponry has been destroyed by the Israelis with the full cooperation of his government as part of his heroic war against terrorists. Believe me, that speech has already been written and I have seen a copy of it.
Suddenly, Donald Rumsfeld's unexpected visit Saturday to the USS Kennedy, "currently deployed to the Arabian Gulf in support of the global war on terrorism," looks like more than a courtesy call.
Then there's the recent revelation - it would have been news, if anyone had thought to report it - that FEMA's "Community Emergency Response Teams" are now receiving 35-days of training, scheduled to end on Election Day with a simulated terrorist attack. Since Election Day is the most high value target date on the US calendar, why would CERT not conduct its simulation well in advance? But as 9/11 demonstrated several times over, simulations provide excellent cover for genuine events.
It remains quite possible that Iran, or the suitcase, may not explode just yet. But that's not to say democracy will prevail. All the Cheney/Bush cabal may need is good ol' fashioned, and new fashioned, voter fraud.
Some headlines from just the past 24 hours:
Nevada Move to Purge Some Dem Voters Fails (Associated Press): "Elections officials have rebuffed an attempt by a former GOP operative to purge about 17,000 Democrats from the voter rolls in the battleground state of Nevada, where the two presidential candidates are in a dead heat."
Voter Registrations Trashed - RNC Funded Firm Destroys Dem Registrations (KLAS-TV, Las Vegas): "Employees of a private voter registration company allege that hundreds, perhaps thousands of voters who may think they are registered will be rudely surprised on election day.... The I-Team has obtained information about an alleged widespread pattern of potential registration fraud aimed at Democrats.... Two former workers say they personally witnessed company supervisors rip up and trash registration forms signed by Democrats."
Pushing to Be Counted in Florida (Washington Post): "Nearly a dozen African American ministers and civil rights leaders walked into the Duval County election office here, television cameras in tow, with a list of questions: How come there were not more early voting sites closer to black neighborhoods? How come so many blacks were not being allowed to redo incomplete voter registrations? Who was deciding all this? Standing across the office counter under a banner that read 'Partners in Democracy' was the man who made those decisions, election chief Dick Carlberg. Visibly angry, the Republican explained why he decided the way he had: 'We call it the law.'"
City, County Spar over Ballot Supply (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel): Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker, citing vote-fraud concerns, is publicly balking at a City of Milwaukee request for almost 260,000 additional ballots in anticipation of high turnout for the Nov. 2 presidential election. Mayor Tom Barrett blasted Walker's stance, and Common Council President Willie Hines Jr. immediately joined in, saying it was an attempt to suppress the central-city vote.... Walker, a Republican, is a state co-chair of President Bush's campaign....
Will Terror Alert Level Show its True Colors? (Washington Post): "A Cornell sociologist says he has found scientific evidence that, whenever the government issues a terrorism alert, President Bush's approval ratings go up.... on average, each warning prompted a 2.75 point increase in the president's approval rating the following week."
Since his four years in office have been an unmatched tragic farce, even should Bush win fairly it would have to be regarded a failure of democracy. But I think that must be the least likely of outcomes.