ACTION ALERT: GOP Blocks Downing Memo Hearing on Hill

June 15th, 2005 - by admin

After Downing True – 2005-06-15 08:56:13


Important Speakers Added to Line-Up at Rally. Citizens urged to lobby Congress Members and Senators, and to meet at DNC, which is serving as overflow room.

On Thursday June 16, 2005, from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Room HC-9 of the U.S. Capitol, Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, and other Congress Members will hold a hearing on the Downing Street Minutes and related evidence of efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence.

The hearings had been planned for the Democratic National Committee offices because the Republicans controlling the House Judiciary Committee had refused to permit the ranking Democratic Member to use a large room on the Hill.

However, the Democrats did have access to a small room in the Capitol, and Congressman Conyers has decided to move the hearings there. This does not indicate any change in position from the Republicans.

Members of the media will be welcome, but citizens in town for the 5 p.m. rally at the White House will have difficulty getting into the 2:30 hearings.

The DNC will serve as an overflow room, so people can still go there: the Wasserman Room at 430 S Capitol St. SE. encourages people, instead, to spend the afternoon lobbying their Congress Member and two Senators, and paying special visits to the offices of Congressmen John Conyers and Maurice Hinchey, Congresswomen Barbara Lee and Lynn Woolsey, and Senators John Kerry and Ted Kennedy to thank them for their leadership. Recommended talking points can be found in a one-page document at the top of

We All Thought Bush Was Lying; Now We Have Proof
Help Rep. Conyers Find Out What Really Happened
Andrew Greenblatt / True Majority

(June 14, 2005) — We all thought that Bush was lying when he said that we had to invade Iraq because of 9/11 and Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). Well, now we have proof.

A British journalist uncovered a memo to Tony Blair from his chief of foreign intelligence written after a series of high-level meetings in Washington back in July of 2002 — months before Colin Powell’s famous presentation to the United Nations.

Basically, the memo states that the Bush administration was set on ousting Saddam Hussein despite the circumstances. However, since that would violate international law, the administration planned on using terrorism and WMDs as the pretext, even if the facts didn’t support it. You can read the entire memo here, but these are a few of my favorite lines:

“It seemed clear that Bush had made up his mind to take military action…but the case was thin. Saddam was not threatening his neighbors, and his WMD capability was less than that of Libya, North Korea or Iran.” In another section, the intelligence advisor writes: “But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.”

That’s a smoking gun if I’ve ever smelled one. While administration officials filled the airwaves talking about the need to remove Saddam because of his WMDs and his being an imminent threat, they were confiding to their closest ally that that really wasn’t true. Apparently Tony Blair deserved the truth but the American people didn’t.

Rep. John Conyers and 88 other members of Congress sent a letter to the president asking five straightforward questions about the memo (see them below). Their request has been met with stony silence. Rep. Conyers is asking the American people to join him as he tries to get some answers, by signing the letter yourselves.

If you are a member of TrueMajority, you can sign the letter by simply hitting “Reply” and “Send,” and we’ll add your name. If you would like to read the full text of the letter, simply click here:

Rep. Conyers is holding a hearing on this issue on Thursday, June 16th, so please take action and urge your friends to do the same before then.

You can read the entire Downing Street Memo click here.

Here are the five questions in the letter:

• 1) Do you or anyone in your administration dispute the accuracy of the leaked document?

• 2) Were arrangements being made, including the recruitment of allies, before you sought Congressional authorization to go to war? Did you or anyone in your Administration obtain Britain’s commitment to invade prior to this time?

• 3) Was there an effort to create an ultimatum about weapons inspectors in order to help with the justification for the war as the minutes indicate?

• 4) At what point in time did you and Prime Minister Blair first agree it was necessary to invade Iraq?

• 5) Was there a coordinated effort with the U.S. intelligence community and/or British officials to “fix” the intelligence and facts around the policy as the leaked document states?

Andrew Greenblatt is the Online Organizer for True Majority.

GOP Denys Democrats Use of Rooms on Hill
Downing Street Hearings Moved to DNC

On Thursday June 16, 2005, at 1:00 p.m. in the Wasserman Room at 430 S Capitol St. SE, Washington, D.C., Rep. John Conyers, Jr., Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, and other Congress Members will hold a hearing on the Downing Street Minutes and related evidence of efforts to cook the books on pre-war intelligence.

The hearings are being held at the Democratic National Committee because the Republicans controlling the House Judiciary Committee refused to permit the ranking Democratic Member to use a room on the Hill. Nonetheless, Republicans are welcome to attend.

Later on the same day at 5:00 p.m. ET in Lafayette Square Park, in front of the White House, a large rally will support Congressman Conyers who plans to deliver to the White House a letter addressed to President Bush and signed by over 500,000 Americans and at least 94 Congress Members. The letter asks the President to respond to questions raised by the Downing Street Minutes.

Among those speaking at the hearings will be: Joe Wilson, Former Ambassador and WMD Expert; Ray McGovern, 27-year CIA analyst who prepared regular Presidential briefings during the Reagan administration; Cindy Sheehan, mother of fallen American soldier; John Bonifaz, renowned constitutional lawyer and co-founder of

Among those speaking at the rally will be: Congressman Conyers and various other Congress Members, Cindy Sheehan of Gold Star Families for Peace, John Bonifaz of, Ray McGovern former CIA analyst, Medea Benjamin of Global Exchange, Rev. Lennox Yearwood of Progressive Democrats of America, Stephen Cleghorn of Military Families Speak Out, Kevin Zeese, Director of Democracy Rising. More information, and flyers promoting the rally, are available at

• Flyers to print, copy, and distribute widely:

Supporters of this campaign are independently organizing rallies on Thursday at locations around the country. is a rapidly growing coalition of veterans’ groups, peace groups, and political activist groups, which launched on May 26, 2005, a campaign to urge the U.S. Congress to begin a formal investigation into whether President Bush has committed impeachable offenses in connection with the Iraq war.

• David Swanson 202-329-7847
•Jonathan Schwarz 773-296-0838