ABC Deceivingly Paints Bush Haters as Average Military Families --12/20/2004
2. Tim Robbins Urges a "Good, Old-Fashioned Impeachment" of Bush
In a Sunday night ABC story, the brother and mother of soldiers killed in Iraq denounced Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld for having an auto-pen machine sign his letters of condolence. The brother charged that Rumsfeld doesn't "care about the troops." The mother claimed "it personally shows me how callous and unfeeling he is and our government is." But while World News Tonight/Sunday anchor Terry Moran portrayed the two as representative of how "some military families" are "upset" with Rumsfeld, the two are dedicated Bush and Rumsfeld haters with a political axe to grind.
Ivan Medina, the brother of the late Irving Medina, spoke in June at a pro-Fahrenheit 9/11 publicity event and in May took part in an anti-Rumsfeld protest outside of West Point where he charged: "This government lied to the military soldiers. Bush went to war to settle a family vendetta." Sue Niederer, the mother of the late Seth Dvorin, sported a "President Bush: You Killed My Son" T-shirt when she was arrested for disrupting a September speech by First Lady Laura Bush. Earlier, in a May interview with the far-left Counterpunch Web site, she urged harm to President Bush. Asked her reaction to how the war was based on "misinformation," she replied: "I wanted to rip the President's head off. Curse him, yell at him, call him a self-righteous bastard and a lot of other words. I think if I had him in front of me I would shoot him in the groined area."
[Web Update: Monday's Good Morning America also featured Sue Niederer, but not Ivan Medina. Reporter Jessica Yellin reported that Rumsfeld's use of the auto-pen is "outraging the families of some soldiers." Viewers then heard from only one family member with a relative killed in Iraq, Niederer: "Why even bother to send us a letter that you can't even be bothered signing? You're saying to a person who has a deceased child, husband, or wife, it really doesn't matter, that I have no feelings." Yellin later noted: "The White House is standing by Secretary Rumsfeld. That's not good news to Sue Niederer." Niederer got a second soundbite: "To not even have the courtesy to sign it personally shows me how callous and unfeeling he is and our government is."]
Moran introduced the December 19 story prompted by the revelation in the Stars & Stripes newspaper: "Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is under fire from some military families and members of the Congress. They're upset that he has used a machine to attach his signature to some letters of condolence. More than a thousand of those letters have been sent to families who've lost sons and daughters in the global war on terror."
John Yang began: "After Ivan Medina's twin brother Irving, an Army Specialist, was killed in Baghdad last year, Ivan got a letter of condolence from Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. Today Medina, himself a veteran if Iraq, said he was angered to learn that Rumsfeld never actually signed the or even saw it."
A simple, quick check with Google documented the political activism of the two:
-- A photo caption on the left-wing Common Dreams Web site: "Ivan Medina (R) makes a point during a news conference in New York June 30, 2004 held to support the film 'Fahrenheit 9/11.' Medina, a Marine who served in Iraq, talked about his twin brother Irving who was also a Marine and was killed in Iraq. Media's parents Jorge (C) and Ana also attended the news conference where military families urged President George W. Bush and his cabinet to see the film 'Fahrenheit 9/11.'" See: www.commondreams.org
-- "Protesters gather outside West Point," read the headline over a May 30 story in the Journal News of Rockland, New York. Reporter Jennifer Weil began:
Ivan Medina knows that war can be brutal because he experienced it firsthand.
Last year the 22-year-old Middletown, N.Y., man and his twin brother, Irving, spent about six months in Iraq as Army specialists.
Yesterday, Ivan Medina and his parents, Ana and Jorge, were among the 200 people near the gates of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point protesting the war in Iraq and the visit by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, who gave the commencement address.
Ivan Medina returned from Iraq in August 2003. He said his brother died on the streets of Baghdad three months later.
"I'm here to show support to my troops and tell the people that this person that's coming to speak to the cadets is a liar and a war criminal," Medina said. "What better way than someone who served and lost a loved one.
"This government lied to the military soldiers. Bush went to war to settle a family vendetta. He wanted to put back the Bush name after what happened in the Gulf War."
The rally organized by the Democratic Alliance of Orange County began about 12:15 p.m. at Memorial Park in Highland Falls, a short walk from the academy. Among the participants were the Rockland Coalition for Peace and Justice, Veterans for Peace, Drama Dragons, the Saugerties Peace and Social Justice Committee, and a group calling itself Billionaires for Bush....
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For the article in full: www.thejournalnews.com
A woman wearing a T-shirt with the words "President Bush You Killed My Son" and a picture of a soldier killed in Iraq was detained Thursday after she interrupted a campaign speech by first lady Laura Bush.
Police escorted Sue Niederer of Hopewell, N.J., from a rally at a firehouse after she demanded to know why her son, Army 1st Lt. Seth Dvorin, 24, was killed in Iraq. Dvorin died in February while trying to disarm a bomb.
As shouts of "Four More Years" subsided, Niederer, standing in the middle of a crowd of some 700, continued to shout about the killing of her son.
When Bush mentioned the troops abroad, Niederer shouted, "When are yours going to serve?" referring to Bush's 22-year-old twin daughters, who aren't in the armed services.
Last week, in an interview with CBS News National Security Correspondent David Martin, Niederer said she sees her son's death as a waste.
Local police escorted Niederer out of the event, handcuffed her and placed her in the back of a police van.
Outside the hall, she said she had a ticket and asked why she was being arrested. She was told by police she had entered a private event and had refused to leave, the Trenton Times reported.
Niederer was later charged with defiant trespass and released. The charge could lead to a fine and a jail term of up to 60 days but jail time rarely results from such offenses, said a police spokesman....
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For the AP/CBS item in full: www.cbsnews.com
A Sympathetic Hearing for an Extreme Bush Hater
More anti-Bush activism is featured in Wednesday's edition of the Times' liberally (scroll to bottom) tilted "Public Lives" feature, this one written by notorious anti-war reporter Chris Hedges.
"Mourning the Warrior, and Questioning the War" looks at Sue Niederer, a New Jersey woman who lost her son in Iraq and was recently arrested for disrupting a Laura Bush speech: "But Mrs. Niederer, 55, had no intention of chanting praise for Mrs. Bush or her husband. Clutching an Army cap and a rolled-up T-shirt, she had come on another mission, one that has defined her life since her only son, Second Lt. Seth J. Dvorin, 24, was killed. He died in February when a roadside bomb exploded in an Iraqi town she says she cannot pronounce."
Hedges portrays her as an average suburban housewife: "Mrs. Niederer is an unlikely firebrand, a woman who grew up in a Conservative Jewish household in Brooklyn and has spent her adult life substitute teaching, working in real estate and raising two children in Hopewell, a suburb near Princeton. She said she had never been arrested before or even been politically active. Now she frequently joins protests against the war and is active in Military Families Speak Out, a nationwide antiwar group."
This "unlikely firebrand" threatened Bush in an interview last May with the far-left Counterpunch Web site: "I wanted to rip the president's head off. Curse him, yell at him, call him a self-righteous bastard and a lot of other words. I think if I had him in front of me I would shoot him in the groined area. Let him suffer. And just continue shooting him there. Put him through misery, like he's doing to everyone else. He doesn't deserve any better....We are allowing him to get away with anything he wants to do. He flat out lied to us, killing our troops. He doesn't face the fallen family. If this is what we reelect, we deserve everything we get."...
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That's posted at: www.timeswatch.org
For the Counterpunch interview: www.counterpunch.org
Actor Tim Robbins has called for the impeachment of President George W. Bush. His long-time companion, Susan Sarandon, hosted CBS's Late Late Show on Friday night and when guest Gore Vidal, a far-left author, recommended that Bush "resign," Robbins, who appeared as Sarandon's sidekick who made martinis for Sarandon, himself and the guests, suggested: "How about a good, old-fashioned impeachment?" Robbins recalled how Clinton was impeached "for lying about oral sex" and asked rhetorically: "So it's more of a high crime and misdemeanor to lie about oral sex than it is to lie about intelligence that forces a country into war?"
That exchange followed a fairly lame comedy bit by Sarandon in which she showed fake Christmas cards she and Robbins received from politicians. Arnold Schwarzenegger's card read: "Season's Gropings." The greeting of the card from Rush Limbaugh, whose name she mispronounced as "Limbow," as in the bow of a boat: "I'm Dreaming of a Really, Really, Really White Christmas"
And from George and Laura Bush: "Enjoy the Audit."
Gore Vidal came aboard the December 17 program, taped in Los Angeles, to plug his book, Imperial America. He earlier penned, Dreaming War: Blood for Oil and the Cheney-Bush Junta.
In the midst of Vidal's trashing of Bush and the situation he got us into in Iraq, Sarandon asked, in reference to Iraq: "How can they get out of this?"
The Internet Movie Database's page for Susan Sarandon: www.imdb.com
For Tim Robbins: www.imdb.com
CBS's page for the Late Late Show: www.cbs.com