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Wow, Fred Kaplan sure knows how to twist facts into lies.

In effect, Edelman was telling her three things. First, you're practically a traitor for even asking these questions.

Lie. He said nor implied any such thing. He said that information could be used to harm us, which is not even remotely similar to calling her a traitor.

Second, maybe we do have contingency plans for withdrawal, but we're not going to tell you about them.

Yes, he said that.

Third, run along now, little lady, I've got work to do.

Nope. He never said or implied any such thing.

She asked only whether the military now has a blueprint for when the time to leave comes.

Total lie. She asked WHAT that blueprint is. If all she wanted to know was "whether" there was one, then what's the problem? He essentially answered that question, if you read between the lines. "I assure you, however, that as with other plans, we are always evaluating and planning for possible contingencies," he said. If this is a possible contingency, then they are planning for it, according to Edelman. She didn't want to know that, she wanted to know the details, and he said no, and told her why he was saying no.

There's nothing heretical or traitorous about this line of inquiry, either.

Nice straw man: no one ever said otherwise, of course.

Even President Bush acknowledges that U.S. troops will leave Iraq at some point.

Exactly, which undermines Kaplan's own argument that Clinton just wanted to know if there WAS a plan.

Senators put up with a lot of evasion and deceit from the executive branch, but one thing they will not tolerate is being explicitly left out of the loop.

Damned Constitution!!!!

... he all but accused of her treason for asking to be let in.

Of course, in fact, no, he did not.

Eric Edelman wasn't yelling at Clinton, but he was patronizing her ("I appreciate your interest in our mission in Iraq. ..."), shooing her away from serious men's business ...

Utter nonsense. Does anyone honestly think the response to a male Senator would have been different?

I don't think I've ever had any respect for Fred Kaplan, but if I did, I no longer do. The guy takes a perfectly innocuous letter explaining clear and standard policy, and it's taken as an insult? Is this how thin-skinned people have become, that facts are insults? (Don't answer that ... the answer is too depressing.)

Even worse, of course, is that opinions -- mere chracterizations that clearly do not actually represent what was said -- are facts, just because they reinforce what people already believe. It doesn't matter what I say about Kaplan's dishonesty: people agree with him just because he is pro-Democrat, anti-war, and anti-Bush administration. That is all that matters. Screw the truth. Forget the facts. Just emote enough, and in the right direction, and you're golden. slashdot.org

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