Wednesday, July 04, 2007


Cancel the celebration; Iraq oil plan doesn't include sharing

I was premature in my rejoicing yesterday. I've learned that the Iraqi cabinet still has not come up with a plan to share oil revenues among the three competing populations in Iraq--Kurdish, Sunni and Shiite.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


Hallelulia! Plan to share oil revenue in Iraq!

Iraq Cabinet OKs legislation on how to divide nation's oil wealth
By Tina Susman, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
July 3, 2007

BAGHDAD -- Iraq's Cabinet today approved legislation to oversee the distribution of the country's oil wealth and sent it to parliament for ratification, but it was unclear whether the measure could overcome the political hurdles that have stalled it for months.

Washington considers it the most important piece of legislation facing the parliament and has been pushing for its passage as a way of showing political progress in Iraq. With lawmakers scheduled to take a monthlong break starting Aug. 1, and with U.S. officials set to present an Iraq progress report to Congress in September, time is running short for passage...

Monday, July 02, 2007


Bush is looking for someone to tell him what he wants to hear

Bush, Grasping for Answers and Fixated on Iraq, Remains Resolute
By Peter Baker
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, July 2, 2007

At the nadir of his presidency, George W. Bush is looking for answers. One at a time or in small groups, he summons leading authors, historians, philosophers and theologians to the White House to join him in the search.

Bush is fixated on Iraq, according to friends and advisers. One former aide went to see him recently to discuss various matters, only to find Bush turning the conversation back to Iraq again and again. He recognizes that his presidency hinges on whether Iraq can be turned around in 18 months. "Nothing matters except the war," said one person close to Bush. "That's all that matters. The whole thing rides on that."
And yet Bush does not come across like a man lamenting his plight. In public and in private, according to intimates, he exhibits an inexorable upbeat energy that defies the political storms. Even when he convenes philosophical discussions with scholars, he avoids second-guessing his actions. He still acts as if he were master of the universe, even if the rest of Washington no longer sees him that way.

"You don't get any feeling of somebody crouching down in the bunker," said Irwin M. Stelzer, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute who was part of one group of scholars who met with Bush. "This is either extraordinary self-confidence or out of touch with reality. I can't tell you which."

Sunday, July 01, 2007


Patrick Leahy ready to fight White House

The American public has indicated in polls that it is fed up with George Bush, but even more fed up with Congress. How to interpret that statistic? Patrick Leahy thinks he knows what the public wants: a showdown between Congress and the President.

Patrick Leahy ready to fight White House
By HOPE YEN Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON—The Senate Judiciary Committee chairman said Sunday he was ready to go to court if the White House resisted congressional subpoenas for information on the firing of federal prosecutors.

"If they don't cooperate, yes I'd go that far," said Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt. He was asked in a broadcast interview whether he would seek a congressional vote on contempt citations if President Bush did not comply. That move would push the matter to court.

"They've chosen confrontation rather than compromise or cooperation," Leahy said. "The bottom line on this U.S. attorneys' investigation is that we have people manipulating law enforcement. Law enforcement can't be partisan."

At issue is whether the White House exerted undue political influence in the Justice Department's firing of prosecutors. Leahy's hardening stance is pushing the Democratic-led investigation ever closer to a constitutional showdown over executive power and Congress' right to oversight...

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