Cover up

March is officially not going out like a lamb. A squall just came through here with high winds and hard rain. Snow is in the forecast tomorrow (April Fools’ Day) morning. My ham radio gets weather channels and so I fired it up. A subsequent (yes, too late, now) severe thunderstorm warning warns of gusts up to 60 miles per hour.


Donald Trump

Coup attempt


Fig. 1. Rose Mary Woods demonstrates the “Rose Mary Stretch.” By Unknown author – From Gerald R. Ford Library and Museum. "Images on our web site which are in the public domain may be used without permission. If you use images from our web site, we ask that you credit us as the source." Uploaded from Wikipedia in english w:en:File:Rosemary woods.jpg, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7278996

Some might remember the “Rose Mary stretch” (figure 1), in which Richard Nixon’s secretary, Rose Mary Woods, attempted to take the blame for that 18½ minute gap in White House telephone recordings by ludicrously reaching for a phone at the opposite end of her desk while keeping a foot on the pedal that controlled the recorder after having, she claimed, put it on ‘record’ by mistake.[1] It wasn’t credible and no one believed it, even at the time, and this story is not one that has since moved in the direction of exoneration: “Whoever erased the tape pressed Record, stopped the tape, and hit Record again, between five and nine times – hardly an accidental erasure.”[2] But as far as I have been able to determine, she and Nixon both went to their graves insisting this was the case.[3]

That 18½ minute gap helped to eviscerate what little was left of Nixon’s credibility, leading to his resignation—still the only one ever by a U.S. president—in the face of an all-but-certain impeachment trial.[4] The record will show, however, that Nixon at least had some shame—he did resign, after all—certainly relative to a more recent occupant of the White House.

Now we have the matter of a phone call from Donald Trump, placed on a White House telephone, to a representative in Congress, with a White House caller ID,[5] that happened within that seven hour gap in the White House call logs during the coup attempt.[6]

It seems that the only way such a call from a White House phone should be omitted from the call log is if it is classified, unlikely in this case.[7] So we’re increasingly clear that a decision may have been made to expunge the record[8] of calls made during the time of the coup attempt.

Katelyn Polantz, “Judge: ‘More likely than not’ that Trump ‘corruptly attempted’ to block Congress from counting votes on January 6,” CNN, March 28, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/28/politics/john-eastman-memo/index.html

Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, “Jan. 6 White House logs given to House show 7-hour gap in Trump calls,” Washington Post, March 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/03/29/trump-white-house-logs/

Hugo Lowell, “Revealed: Trump used White House phone for call on January 6 that was not on official log,” Guardian, March 30, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/30/trump-used-white-house-phone-call-capitol-attack-jan-6-not-official-log


Ukraine

Alex Gangitano, “Biden has sharp response to reporter: ‘You’re playing a game with me,’ Hill, March 24, 2022, https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/599641-biden-has-sharp-response-to-reporter-youre-playing-a-game-with-me

Ashley Parker, Tyler Pager, and Emily Rauhala, “Leaders add sanctions on Russia, warn against chemical weapons,” Washington Post, March 24, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/24/biden-nato-europe-russia-ukraine-war/

Tarini Parti, Robert Wall, and Catherine Lucey, “Biden Calls for Russia to Be Expelled From G-20,” Wall Street Journal, March 24, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/biden-meets-allies-in-brussels-seeking-to-end-war-in-ukraine-and-punish-putin-11648112332

Christoph Hasselbach, “Ukraine: Could neutrality really be an option?” Deutschewelle, March 25, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/ukraine-could-neutrality-really-be-an-option/a-61261793

Matthew Luxmoore, “Russia Refocuses on Ukraine’s East After Month of Heavy Losses,” Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-refocuses-on-ukraines-east-after-month-of-heavy-losses-11648243627

Lisa McIntosh Sundstrom, “Will Russians Toss Their Leader?” Tyee, March 25, 2022, https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2022/03/25/Will-Russians-Toss-Their-Leader/

Daniel Boffey, “Russia reasserts right to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine,” Guardian, March 26, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/26/russia-reasserts-right-to-use-nuclear-weapons-in-ukraine-putin

William Booth, Robyn Dixon, and David L. Stern, “Russian generals are getting killed at an extraordinary rate,” Washington Post, March 26, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/26/ukraine-russan-generals-dead/

James Kilner, “Russian MP accuses Poland of planning to take Kaliningrad back from Moscow,” Telegraph, March 26, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/03/26/russian-mp-accuses-poland-planning-take-kaliningrad-back-moscow/

Claire Parker, Robyn Dixon, and Erin Cunningham, “Where was Sergei Shoigu? Russia’s missing defense minister resurfaces,” Washington Post, March 26, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/26/sergei-shoigu-russia-disappearance/

Tarini Parti and and Drew Hinshaw, “Biden Says Russian President Vladimir Putin ‘Cannot Remain in Power,’” Wall Street Journal, March 26, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/biden-and-polands-leader-look-to-boost-support-for-ukraine-11648304117

Nebi Qena and Yuras Karmanau, “Russia shifts focus to try to grind Ukraine’s army in east,” Associated Press, March 28, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-putin-kyiv-business-europe-7386a5893a3b43bad7e438cfe45468c2

Robin Wright, “Biden’s Fate Is Now Inextricably Linked to Putin’s War in Ukraine,” New Yorker, March 28, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/bidens-fate-is-now-inextricably-linked-to-putins-war-in-ukraine

Jon Henley, Pjotr Sauer, and Shaun Walker, “‘Ukrainians are not naive’: Zelenskiy voices doubt on Russian military withdrawals,” Guardian, March 29, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/29/ukraine-russia-peace-talks-istanbul-war-kyiv

Samantha Lock and Léonie Chao-Fong, “Russia-Ukraine war: what we know on day 35 of the Russian invasion,” Guardian, March 29, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/30/russia-ukraine-war-what-we-know-on-day-35-of-the-russian-invasion

Adam Taylor and William Neff, “Why the world is so worried about Russia’s ‘tactical’ nuclear weapons,” Washington Post, March 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/29/why-world-is-so-worried-about-russias-tactical-nuclear-weapons/

Joshua Yaffa, “Why Do So Many Russians Say They Support the War in Ukraine?” New Yorker, March 29, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/why-do-so-many-russians-say-they-support-the-war-in-ukraine

Michael Birnbaum et al., “U.S. says Putin being misled, as Ukraine refugee tally hits 4 million,” Washington Post, March 30, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/03/30/ukraine-putin-misled-russia/

Nebi Qena and Yuras Karmanau, “Russia shells areas in Ukraine where it vowed to scale back,” Associated Press, March 30, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-zelenskyy-roman-abramovich-kyiv-europe-ef9c28c44f94b34262fe6b7c296d58a6

  1. [1]Alison Lynn and Lauren Effron, “The Watergate tapes’ infamous 18.5-minute gap and Nixon’s secretary’s unusual explanation for it,” ABC News, June 14, 2017, https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/watergate-tapes-infamous-185-minute-gap-nixons-secretarys/story?id=47926329; Tom McNichol, “Richard Nixon’s Last Secret,” Wired, July 1, 2002, https://www.wired.com/2002/07/nixon/
  2. [2]Tom McNichol, “Richard Nixon’s Last Secret,” Wired, July 1, 2002, https://www.wired.com/2002/07/nixon/
  3. [3]Tom McNichol, “Richard Nixon’s Last Secret,” Wired, July 1, 2002, https://www.wired.com/2002/07/nixon/; New York Times, “Rose Mary Woods, Nixon’s Secretary, Dies,” January 23, 2005, https://www.nytimes.com/2005/01/23/politics/rose-mary-woods-nixons-secretary-dies.html
  4. [4]Alison Lynn and Lauren Effron, “The Watergate tapes’ infamous 18.5-minute gap and Nixon’s secretary’s unusual explanation for it,” ABC News, June 14, 2017, https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/watergate-tapes-infamous-185-minute-gap-nixons-secretarys/story?id=47926329; Tom McNichol, “Richard Nixon’s Last Secret,” Wired, July 1, 2002, https://www.wired.com/2002/07/nixon/; New York Times, “Rose Mary Woods, Nixon’s Secretary, Dies,” January 23, 2005, https://www.nytimes.com/2005/01/23/politics/rose-mary-woods-nixons-secretary-dies.html
  5. [5]Hugo Lowell, “Revealed: Trump used White House phone for call on January 6 that was not on official log,” Guardian, March 30, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/30/trump-used-white-house-phone-call-capitol-attack-jan-6-not-official-log
  6. [6]Bob Woodward and Robert Costa, “Jan. 6 White House logs given to House show 7-hour gap in Trump calls,” Washington Post, March 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/03/29/trump-white-house-logs/
  7. [7]Hugo Lowell, “Revealed: Trump used White House phone for call on January 6 that was not on official log,” Guardian, March 30, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/30/trump-used-white-house-phone-call-capitol-attack-jan-6-not-official-log
  8. [8]Hugo Lowell, “Revealed: Trump used White House phone for call on January 6 that was not on official log,” Guardian, March 30, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/30/trump-used-white-house-phone-call-capitol-attack-jan-6-not-official-log

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