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Q&A A videotape that raises more questions real questions
by Bryan Zepp Jamieson
December 18, 2003

The retired judge watched the video with the same professional attentiveness that he had used on thousands of defendants over dozens of years.

"He's lying." The tone, like the words themselves, was unequivocal. All that was missing was the gavel. The judge turned to me. "It's in his body language. He's lying. He knows he's lying.

"He's also afraid of the question. You can see the fear in his posture. When I see a defendant acting in that manner, I can usually make a good guess on what the jury is going to find."

A few hours later, I showed it to a friend of mine who was a retired psychologist. He watched carefully. "Play it again," he demanded, and I played it again.

He shook his head. "I'm amazed. The man seems utterly lost without a script. He simply doesn't have a clue how to answer that question.

"He is also fearful. The question frightens him."

Were we watching a tape of Michael Jackson being interviewed by the Santa Barbara District Attorney's office? A deposition by Kenneth Lay? A scene from an old Perry Mason?

None of the above. We were watching the alleged president of the United States utterly failing to field an alleged question from an alleged journalist at an alleged press conference.

The fawning sycophant in the role of the reporter was identified by a jocular Putsch as "Big Stretch." And his question by itself would have seemed extraordinary in pre-putsch America for the overtly ingratiating nature of it, and the implicit effort to heap scorn on the leading Democratic candidate. No self-respecting reporter would have asked such a question in front of the White House press corps before 2001. But self-respecting reporters in the White House press corps are in short supply these days.

The question: "I know you said there would be a time for politics, but you've also said you wanted to change the tone in Washington. Howard Dean recently seemed to muse aloud whether you had advance knowledge of 9/11. Do you agree or disagree with the RNC that this kind of rhetoric borders on political hate speech?"

Hard hitting question there, right up with Peter Lorre's "Rob the graveyard tonight, master?" They pay "Big Stretch" to pretend to be a White House journalist. You would think he could come up with something that sounded a bit more like something a real reporter might ask. I mean, GOLLUM would have been more convincing in the role.

If the question revealed the pitiable state of journalism in America in 2003, the answer revealed the even more pitiable state of the presidency at this same time.

"Yeah. Uh, there's a time for politics. [pause. Shifts. Looks uncomfortable] And, um, you know [long pause, moves back and forth, looks at floor off to his left, away from the question] There's a time for politics and, uh, and, I [long pause, looks away again, mumbles almost sotto voce] It's an absurd insinuation."

Big Stretch, obviously taken aback that his question had so discombobulated his lord and master, quickly changed the subject, saying he would ask about an unrelated matter. There were gusts of relieved laughter from the White House "press corps."

The tape in question, about 45 seconds long, is available for viewing at http://images.indymedia.org/imc/washingtondc/media/video/6/9_11laugh.mpg . You'll find that I've taken no liberties with the descriptions, and not exaggerated one whit. It's right there, and you can see for yourself.

Of course, it's not political hate speech to ask what Putsch might have known in the hours and days prior to 9/11. There's plenty of evidence to show that the White House received copious warnings prior to the attacks that something big was coming. And Putsch's behavior and comments on that awful day and in the months since have created a raft of questions, surmises, conspiracy theories, and a deep conviction in the American people that the truth about 9/11 has not been revealed, and that our media is complicit in keeping the truth from being revealed.

Try to imagine FDR's response when told of Pearl Harbor. Do you think he would have kept on reading stories to a bunch of kids, even as word came of further attacks on the twin towers, and on the pentagon itself?

Why has Putsch repeatedly claimed to have seen tape, that morning, of the FIRST plane striking the WTC? No videotape of that event was known to exist until several days later, when that fireman's tape emerged.

There's a huge list of questions about 9/11, and a lot of them center around the administration's response to events. For example, why weren't the fighter jets scrambled? When Payne Stewart's small passenger plane went off course, the jets scrambled and intercepted within 23 minutes of ATC first noticing Stewart was off course, and this was a small plane that was out over open prairie, hundreds of miles from any major cities. Four commercial passenger jets all suddenly veer wildly off course and go silent, and radar tracks them heading for the Washington area and lower Manhattan, and the Air Force isn't scrambled?

This latest incident will just raise more questions. I didn't need a judge or a psychologist to tell me that Putsch was frightened, baffled, and at a loss from the powderpuff question that fake reporter lobbed at him. You can view that tape and determine that for yourself.

But the next question is this: did he react the way he did because he was a clueless moron who simply couldn't handle an unscripted question, or did his response reveal the guilty conscience of a traitor?

And is our once free and independent press now a part of that same treason?

"I came to this office to solve problems and not pass them on to future presidents and future generations." -- Putsch, whose trillion dollar deficits apparently slipped his mind.

Topplebush.com
Posted: December 20, 2003

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