October Surprise: The First Stolen Election
Hostages to the Election
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee also conducted a small-scale investigation. Theyd imposed travel restrictions on checking out leads in Europe, denied subpoena power and claimed a shortage of funds. The Secret Service wouldnt allow any questioning of agents who might have gone with Bush to Paris. The Senates report, issued on November 19, 1992, said the vast weight of all available evidence was that Bush never made that trip to cut a deal with Iran.
William Casey was dead by now, and his family decided not to supply any of his records. Donald Gregg, a member of Bushs NSC staff after working more than 30 years for the CIA, failed a lie-detector test on the matter, but the Senate committee would only say that Greggs response was lacking in candor. The House found credible French intelligence sources about the Paris meetings, but still concluded somehow that it was all baseless.
As for that report by the Russians, which ended up in Hamiltons hands two days before he was to announce the Task Forces conclusions, he instead took at face value a cable from an American Embassy official in Moscow that the report might be based largely on material that has previously appeared in the Western media. (Not the Times or the Post, Ill bet!) The Russians continued to insist that the intel was their own and reliable; they considered the report a bomb and couldnt believe it was ignored.
And so the precedent-setter for one political party to steal a presidential election from another happened with Ronald Reagan, a man some would like to see join our greatest presidents on Mount Rushmore.
[ Jesse Ventura's Take ]
Reagan's people had cut a deal with Iran to keep the hostages beyond the presidential election to ensure that President Carter's negotiations with Iran failed and that he lost to Reagan. Like the political assassinations earlier, this was a continuation of an ends-justify-the-means mentality that will ultimately destroy our democracy altogether if we allow this attitude to continue. Also, let's consider how our "friends" so quickly become our "enemies." Is it all about what suits certain people in power? Who's really benefiting from the overthrow of Saddam Hussein and the demonization of Iran?