the rule of law…

Posted on Wednesday 30 January 2008

Philip Zelikow…a Philip Shenon book coming out in February will reveal that Rove carried on back-channel discussions with Philip Zelikow, the Commission’s Executive Director (h/t SA), for some time after the Commission told him to stop speaking with Senior Administration Officials.

In a revelation bound to cast a pall over the 9/11 Commission, Philip Shenon will report in a forthcoming book that the panel’s executive director, Philip Zelikow, engaged in “surreptitious” communications with presidential adviser Karl Rove and other Bush administration officials during the commission’s 20-month investigation into the 9/11 attacks.
Karl RoveKaren Heitkotter, the commission’s executive secretary, was taken aback on June 23, 2003 when she answered the telephone for Zelikow at 4:40 PM and heard a voice intone, “This is Karl Rove. I’m looking for Philip.” Heitkotter knew that Zelikow had promised the commissioners he would cut off all contact with senior officials in the Bush administration. Nonetheless, she gave Zelikow’s cell phone number to Rove. The next day there was another call from Rove at 11:35 AM.
In late 2003, around the time his involuntary recusal was imposed, Zelikow called executive secretary Karen Heitkotter into his office and ordered her to stop creating records of his incoming telephone calls. Concerned that the order was improper, a nervous Heitkotter soon told general counsel Marcus. He advised her to ignore Zelikow’s order and continue to keep a log of his telephone calls, insofar as she knew about them…

Although Shenon could not obtain from the GAO an unredacted record of Zelikow’s cell phone use—and Zelikow used his cell phone for most of his outgoing calls—the Times reporter was able to establish that Zelikow made numerous calls to “456” numbers in the 202 area code, which is the exclusive prefix of the White House. [my empahsis]…

… did they learn they would have to turn over emails through formal–or back-channel–means? And then Zelikow was trying to cover up the evidence of his ongoing communications with the 9/11 Commission at the same time that a bunch of emails started not showing up in the CIA Leak investigation….
Sometimes, when I realize that I’m still obsessed with the abuse of government by Bush, Rove, Cheney, et al, I wonder if I’ve let them drive me insane. I hear the Presidential contenders sparring with each other over what seems to me to be trivia, and no one is talking about the fact that our government was taken over by an unscrupulous group of people who started a fallacious war and have manipulated every act of government for their seven years to try to create a fascist country under the control of the rich, the religious, and the reactionary among us. It’s not something to "put behind us." It’s something to dissect until the full extent of their betrayal has been exposed.

emptywheel has been particularly dilligent in keeping us appraised of the pieces of the puzzle as they become available. In this piece, Karl Rove is obviously manipulating the 911 Commission through its Executive Director, Phillip Zelikow. It was a time before we really knew the extent of the Administration’s back channel dealings and dirty tricks. The 911 Commission was tasked to look into a number of things, but one of those things was how we got into a war with Iraq. Over the subsequent years, we’ve learned how they failed at that task. Even the clear exposure of one of the Administration’s crimes [outing Valerie Plame] didn’t bring them to justice. The censure of architect of many of the prewar lies, Douglas Feith, came to no real resolution.

And we’re still in this ridiculous war. Our Presidential hopefuls are chattering on about each other’s records, but they’re giving the worst Administration in history a pass.  I personally think that the most important issue on the table is full disclosure of the duplicity and deceit of the Bush Administration. I don’t see how we can move on as if it didn’t happen. If what this article implies actually occured, these two need to be indicted – Karl Rove and Philip Zelikow. It’s not to get revenge. It’s to re-establish the rule of law in America…

    January 31, 2008 | 7:43 AM

    According to the Wikipedia the 911 Family Steering Committee and the911 Citizens Watch demanded his resignation but the C0-Chairs Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton shrugged it off and he remained. I would like to be a fly on the wall when Kean and Hamilton find out about all the collusion with Rove and other WH officials. Two of the so-called Jersey girls of the 911 group live in my town and I hope someone talks to them on the air somewhere, we know it won’t be on Fox Noise. Enough already, we have to stop the most corrupt administration in history.

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