PHONE CALL FROM ROVE
(In this one, Karl Rove appears to be talking with David S. Addington, a key legal architect of the Bush Administration's war/torture policies, now Dick Cheney's chief of staff. Here are excerpts from the phone conversation, as transcribed by the NSA.)
Rove: Of course, it'll look funny, but I don't care. Just arrange it.
Rove: That's exactly the reason we should do it, why we have to do it. Look, it's always worked before. We shift the focus away from us and our policies, and find something else, somewhere else, someone else, for the public's attention to go to. Do you think we really care whether protecting the American Flag is part of the Constitution? Why do you think we announced the arrest of those poor bastards in Miami for planning to blow up the Sears Tower? Didn't have to be true, did it? It was a win-win: The story grabbed the headlines, and it re-started the fear engine again in the public mind. I regard that as a major success. Our base is being re-energized.
Addington: But frontally attacking the New York Times? Going after Murtha I can understand: He's too close to the truth of what the heavies in the military are thinking, and he needs to be shot down, swiftboated up the wazzu river. But the Times almost always has been in our corner when we needed them -- they held the goddamn NSA story for a year when we asked them to. And now we're calling them "traitors" for running a story about tracking down al-Qaida's money-moving schemes that is old news anyway, and that was run also by the Wall Street Journal? By the way, folks are starting to notice that we haven't expressed any anger at the Journal for its running of the "treasonous" story.
Addington: Karl, again I agree with your sentiments and have no good reason not to blast the Times. All I'm saying is that we're risking everything on one roll of the dice here. It either works or we all look obvious, clumsy and extremist in our actions. Look at all the heat Coulter is taking for her comments suggesting Times Editor Keller should be "executed" -- is that who we really want representing our side?
Rove: She's honey to many of our bees, David. Let her have her fun; her sickness aids our health. She infuriates the pinko liberals, and at the same time helps us solidify our, shall we say, more out-there base. By sliming Murtha, we get the message to military and retired military to rein themselves in. With the Sears Tower story, we stoke the embers of 9/11 once again. And with our leveling verbal and legal howitzers at the Times, the media starts pulling in their horns. Maybe they see the handwriting on the wall: We're floating the idea of instituting a Wartime Censorship Board...
MEMO FROM THE ISRAELI P.M.
(A memorandum from the Israeli Prime Minister, intercepted and translated by the CIA/NSA.)
Memo from Ehud Olmert to the Cabinet,
For Your Eyes Only
There was some grumbling in our last Cabinet meeting, so I just want to make sure we're all on the same page here. If not and you still have objections to our Gaza/Hamas policy, now's the time to submit your resignation. We must have a unified face as we receive all this hostile international pressure to back off in Gaza.
We take our behavioral cue from the Bush Administration: Strike massively while the enemy is weak, make them see who is boss in the neighborhood, show their citizens that if they follow the wrong leaders they will pay a huge penalty.