State Of Emergency, Part II

Burning Flag We noted in State of Emergency the desperation Obama’s campaign finds itself in as it sinks in the polls.

We further noted in State of Emergency that the Obama campaign worked for weeks on a major foreign policy speech which blew up in their faces. The speech was a mess. As the speech unraveled and American flags were burned in Pakistan, martial law almost declared in Pakistan at least in part because of Obama’s statements and Obama supporters abandoned him for the experienced Hillary, Obama, once again, began to lie.

All Americans must know that the political situation in Pakistan is precarious. Pakistan is a necessary ally in the region and the current tensions inflamed by Obama’s inexperienced fumbling in foreign policy do not help and have already hurt us.

On Wednesday, General Musharraf canceled a long-planned trip to Kabul to serve as a co-chair of a three-day assembly of tribal elders and political leaders with Afghanistan’s president, Hamid Karzai. The news fueled speculation that an emergency decree was imminent.

President Musharraf seized power in 1999. He is not the ideal ally. However, at the very least, Musharraf is not an American enemy with a nuclear arsenal at his disposal in a pivotal area of the world.

Following the 9/11 attacks, Musharraf opted to pledge his allegiance to the U.S.-led war on terror, committing his troops to root out terrorists in the mountainous shared border with Afghanistan. Since then, Washington has doled out about $1 billion a year to his military, the New York Times reported in the spring. The results have not been impressive.

Politically, Musharraf is a secular moderate, which Washington would clearly prefer over an Islamist. The bulk of the Pakistani electorate agrees, except they want Musharraf out too, after several broken pledges to disentangle himself from the military and a rather desperate plan to keep himself in power for another term.

On the other side of the embattled general are the Islamists who want Pakistan to be run according to Sharia law. The last few months have been bloody, as the president-general fends off attacks from all sides.

So, having delivered a bomb of a speech with dangerous ramifications and bad immediate consequences and confronted by other Democratic candidates at the AFL-CIO debate, Obama lied, repeatedly.

Here is the relevant transcript:

SEN. CLINTON: Well, you know, Keith, this is George Bush’s war. He rushed us to war, he has mismanaged the war. But these are our sons and daughters who are serving in this war, and I had to think very long and hard because clearly I do not want to do anything that undercuts our support for them. But finally I just concluded that the only way to get a message to the Republicans and to George Bush was to vote against the supplemental funding. And it isn’t an easy vote, and you could actually argue it either way. Those of us who were in the Senate, I think all acted sincerely and out of good faith trying to figure out what was best for our country.

But at the end of the day, I have concluded, we’ve got to force George Bush to begin to end the war that he took America into and save our young men and women and bring them home. (Cheers, applause.)

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator Clinton, thank you.

Senator Dodd, last week you have said that Senator Obama, quoting you, “His assertions about foreign and military affairs have been, frankly, confusing and confused”; you added, “He should not be making unwise categorical statements about military options.” What, in your opinion has been confusing?

SEN. DODD: Well, let me say on these matters here, I’ve spent 26 years on the Foreign Relations Committee dealing with these matters here on almost every major foreign policy debate; words mean things. We’ve got to be very careful about language that’s used in terms of the danger and harm it can do to our nation.

My view was when you raise — issues are being raised about Pakistan, understand that while General Musharraf is no Thomas Jefferson, he may be the only thing that stands between us and having an Islamic fundamentalist state in that country. And so what I’d like to see him change — the reality is if we lose him, then what we face is an alternative that could be a lot worse for our country.

I think it’s highly responsible — or irresponsible for people who are running for the presidency and seek that office to suggest we may be willing unilaterally to invade a nation here who we’re trying to get to be more cooperative with us in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

So my views — and I say this respectfully to my friend from Illinois here — I think it was wrong to say what he did in that matter. I think it’s important for us to be very careful about the language we use, make it clear that if this United States is going to build the relationships around the world, we’re going to have to do so with allies, in some cases allies that we may not particularly like.

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator Dodd, thank you.

SEN. OBAMA: First —

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator Obama — yes, you’ve taken some hits here from us, so yours is the last word on this subject.

SEN. OBAMA: Well, look, I find it amusing that those who helped to authorize and engineer the biggest foreign policy disaster in our generation are now criticizing me for making sure that we are on the right battlefield and not the wrong battlefield in the war against terrorism. (Cheers, applause.)

And, Chris, respectfully — and you and I are close friends — but the fact is you obviously didn’t read my speech. Because what I said was that we have to refocus, get out of Iraq, make certain that we are helping Pakistan deal with the problem of al Qaeda in the hills between Afghanistan and Pakistan. But, Chris, if we have actionable intelligence on al Qaeda operatives, including bin Laden, and President Musharraf cannot act, then we should. Now, I think that’s just common sense. I don’t know about you, but for us to authorize — (cheers, applause) — (inaudible) —

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator —

SEN. OBAMA: — where the people who attacked 3,000 Americans were not present — which you authorized — and then to suggest that somehow we should not focus on the folks that did attack 3,000 Americans —

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator Obama, we’re well over — we’re well over time. (Cheers, applause.)

Senator Clinton, I must ask for your — Senator Clinton — Senator Clinton, give me your response to this. We’re going to — I’m going to give you both a chance here, but, Senator Clinton, please give me your response to what we’re hearing tonight.

SEN. CLINTON: Well, I do not believe people running for president should engage in hypotheticals. And it may well be that the strategy we have to pursue on the basis of actionable intelligence — but remember, we’ve had some real difficult experiences with actionable intelligence — might lead to a certain action.

But I think it is a very big mistake to telegraph that and to destabilize the Musharraf regime, which is fighting for its life against the Islamic extremists who are in bed with al Qaeda and Taliban. And remember, Pakistan has nuclear weapons. The last thing we want is to have al Qaeda-like followers in charge of Pakistan and having access to nuclear weapons.

So you can think big, but remember, you shouldn’t always say everything you think if you’re running for president, because it has consequences across the world. And we don’t need that right now. (Chorus of boos.)

MR. OLBERMANN: Senator Dodd — I owe Senator Dodd a response. Your name was invoked in several of these answers. Please take 30 seconds here.

SEN. DODD: Well, I just want to say, look — and Barack, you know, I’ve certainly said, look, I made a mistake in that vote in 2002. I don’t deny that. But when you make a mistake, as you run on something like this, I think if I had the courage, I made a mistake on the vote in 2002; if you’re making a mistake today, you ought to stand up and say so.

It was a mistake, in my view, to suggest somehow that going in unilaterally here into Pakistan was somehow in our interest. That, I think, is dangerous. And I don’t retreat from that at all.

SEN. OBAMA: Keith, I’m sorry, but —

MR. OLBERMANN: Go ahead.

SEN. OBAMA: — this came to me, and so let me just be clear about this.

MR. OLBERMANN: All right, Senator Obama, 30 seconds, and then I have to stop this.

SEN. OBAMA: I did not say that we would immediately go in unilaterally. What I said was that we have to work with Musharraf, because the biggest threat to American security right now are in the northwest provinces of Pakistan and that we should continue to give him military aid contingent on him doing something about that.

But the fact of the matter is that when we don’t talk to the American people — we’re debating the most important foreign policy issues that we face, and the American people have a right to know. It is not just Washington insiders that — (cheers, applause) — are part of the debate that has to take place with respect to how we’re going to shift our foreign policy. This is a seminal question.

MR. OLBERMANN: Gentlemen, I have to end this segment here because we are —

SEN. OBAMA: It’s a fundamental question.

MR. OLBERMANN: Please, everyone. We have standing by — and in this case it is meant literally — the questions from the AFL-CIO audience, who are stepping to the microphone. And they will be giving you their questions when we rejoin you from Soldier Field after this.

(Announcements.)

First of all Obama changed the words of his speech while accusing Senator Dodd of not having read the speech. In his speech Obama threatened Pakistan by saying if Musharraf “won’t act” we will. This was the Bush equivalent of ‘you are either with us or against us.’  Obama then, changed his words from “won’t act” to “cannot act” (see the transcript above) and has the audacity to insult Senator Dodd and accuse Dodd of either not having read Obama’s bomb of a speech or of mistating what Obama was saying. In other words, Obama the liar, was calling Senator Dodd a liar.

Obama then accused Senator Clinton of trying to somehow silence a discussion with the American people when what she was actually saying was that Obama should watch his mouth because as a presidential candidate his words can harm the United States. The American flag burnings in Pakistan and the threats of martial law in Pakistan are ample proof that Senator Clinton was correct.

Senator Clinton is not suggesting Obama should not discuss issues. Frankly, the more Obama opens his mouth on issues the more he hurts himself and his chances to win the nomination. The problem is that when, as a presidential candidate, Obama opens his mouth he hurts the United States people too. Us.

The collapsing Obama campaign in a DefCom 5 State of Emergency is putting us all in a state of danger.

Share

26 thoughts on “State Of Emergency, Part II

  1. I went into hysterics when I read this

    “The right-wing has set expectations of her personality so low, that all Hillary has to do to change perceptions is just to show up at an event without, say, her eyes glowing red or killing people in the crowd.”

    How funny!!

  2. I just reas that AP story. What cracked me up was when the reporter, Ron Fournier, said nominees’ negatives always go up during the campaign. Well, duh, everybody else starts with low negatives because they’re relatively unknown; HRC’s are only going to go down once people see she’s not the caricature the RW media and MSM have created.

  3. It appears Sen Obama has coaching by the Bush team, Colin Powell, would be my guess, as to who is doing the coaching.

    We can finger point all day long, but the fact of the matter is Obama shows no genuine remorse for causing a dangerous situation w/Mushareff. Obama seems hell bent on two tasks, confusing the public and his supporters of his deliberate intent on instigating instability in Palestine by denying he ever said it, and secondly using this opportunity as a forum for calling Dodd and Clinton liars.

    Obama is trackinh back and forth laterally, keeping the conversation going, using the opportunity to attack democrats…So, we need a change of dialog, something he”s done to regain control of the conversation..

    This may be the time to play the Rezko card..He’s dreading this upcoming scandal, so call him on it.! Ask him why he refuses to answer any questions about his association w/Tony Rezko?

  4. While I think that the fallout from the Obama speech is important, it doesn’t seem like the topic has much traction in the media. It may come front and center tomorrow or during the inevitable next debate, but my guess is that this week’s news cycle will be more concerned with, polls, Murdoch and Edwards( their book deal and John’s sinking campaign ship), and the new Obama book;

    “Obama, From Promise to Power” by David Mendell.

    http://www.amazon.com/Obama-Promise-Power-David-Mendell/dp/0060858206/ref=pd_bxgy_b_img_a/102-0072267-3340129
    This book deals with the overarching ambition and other personality flaws mostly overlooked in the media’s love affair with Obama.
    Finally! A book about him that he didn’t write HIMSELF! I ordered mine. It should be required reading for the board. It comes out this week and is sure to get a lot of ink.

  5. BTW, I wanted to make another point about that AP article on Dems worrying about Hillary’s negatives. This just shows how well her campaign is doing; in other words, people are already thinking ahead to her getting the nomination and what the impact of that will be.

  6. To All, Obama’s Pakistan blunder and General
    Lute’s musing of a draft will hit home as
    vacations end, back to school starts and all
    of the summer distractions end. I have a
    feeling next sunday mornings debate on ABC
    will be intense of foreign policy, iraq and
    the use and abuse of military power. Of all
    of the pundits in tv, Stephonopolus knows
    the working of the White House, personally.
    He should be able to ask the tought of
    questions. We will see.

  7. I have been trolling the web this evening
    found a very interesting endorsement for
    Hillary. It is from the religious writer
    Anne Rice. I normally don’t pause to to view
    most religious commentary, but Hillary was
    the topic. I recommend it because it
    comes from a very knowledgeable and
    infuencial writer.

    http://annerice.com/

  8. Admin and others, How is the record going to be set straight on this he said, she said business about Hillary speaking up about Bush, Iran, and nuclear weapons which is so categorically different from what BO did that it’s not even funny? What can we do to get the word out about the contexts of the two entirely different statements? Thanks for the excellent information above. –mollyj

  9. Realist: Yes, Mendell’s book. It definately will be interesting to see how much play the book garners from the media. I believe that will be a good indicator of the amount of repuke protection providing cover for Obama’s damage control. If it’s all over and done with in a week never to be a topic of discussion again…well! Or if the media caps on Mendell…we’ll see!

    Kegs: I don’t believe it was a blunder. It was deliberate act. The draft is the distracting element that should take everyone’s mind off Obama/book/Mendell..wait and see..

    MTP will be all over the “Draft” and the BOOk will be 2nd rate news…pg 13 nyt.

    just mho..:)

    Mrs. S

  10. Anne Rice is the author of many books, most notably, “Interview With The Vampire”. I did not know, that in the aftermath of her husband, poet Stan Rice’s death, that she had turned her energies towards, “Writing books for Jesus”.

    Mrs. Smith:
    Mendell was on MTP LAST week (8/3), with Doris Kearns Goodwin, and Carl Bernstein, so there is little chance of him being on again soon. I haven’t seen that the book is being excerpted anywhere, nor have I seen a single review. The book is out Tuesday, so the reviews etc. should be appearing this week.

  11. From Staff to MollyJrichards et al:

    Regarding your questions about how to set the record straight, that is happening. This site has a good influential reader base. Big Media types read it regularly and the information gets out. As is also clear there are plenty of readers who post here and even more who do not post, but read daily, that are regular posters at other web sites that are hostile to Hillary. More and more Hillary supporters become aware of this site and read the articles and the comments and thereby are prepared to respond when Hillary is attacked. Information provided here is a valuable shield for Hillary.

    Big Media and PINOs and Naderites are pushing their anti-Hillary narrative. We need to counter that narrative with a counter-narrative. That is happening. We recall the online situation before this site went up. Then the nastiest attacks against Hillary were either not challenged on the Big Blogs or challenged by a courageous few who probably felt alone. We have noticed that now Hillary supporters are proud in the defense of Hillary and know that there are many of us who support her. Even in the demographically challenged Big Blogs Hillary support is growing.

    The Hillary campaign has done a great job as has Hillary herself. Obama and Edwards are spending money on paid media while Hillary has yet to begin a media campaign other than some few internet ads. The Hillary campaign cannot be expected to do everything, we need to step up too. It takes a village to elect a president.

    Come September we will step things up a notch. One step will be to begin posting Big Media email addresses to correct mistatements. We are considering a Hillary Is 44 offline component such as meet up groups. What are your thoughts on what else needs to be done?

    As we stated in our initial post the danger to Democrats and Hillary comes from those who pretend to be allies such as the Big Blogs (i.e. Markos on Meet the Press this Sunday as quoted on the show from an Op-ed on the Washington Post) and from the Chris Matthews and Arriana Huffington types. Wolves.

  12. When I put myself in the shoes of the AVERAGE AMERICAN VOTER, and not a HILLARY enthusiast, it seems impossible that OBAMA could win anybody over at this point.

    Most Americans, rightly or wrongly, don’t care about PAKISTAN or the complexities of their government, and certainly dont care about the necessary steps to ensure appropriate foreign policy with them. THATS WHAT AMERICANS ELECT A PRESIDENT FOR…..The President is elected to be the EXPERT on such topics.

    And when a candidate makes such a huge blunder that demonstrates he is not capable of handling this type of situation for us, he loses our confidence and he makes us feel vulnerable.

    We need a PRESIDENT we can trust on foreign policy, so that we dont have to worry about it ourselves. When someone loses our confidence (like Bush has, and NOW like OBAMA has) its hard to remain confident in ANYTHING they say or do.

  13. What are we to make of the fact that in his policy manifesto Obama said he would attack al Qaida in Pakistan based on credible intelligence if Musharraf would not act, whereas in the debate he said he would do so if Musharraf could not act? The first statement tells Musharraf to act or else. The motive for this statement was to show domestic constituencies that he was tough. The adverse reaction was predicable to anyone with foreign policy experience. The second statement is a partial retraction. It implies that we would cooperate with Musharraf and act only if he was unable to do so. This statement was made in response to foreign policy reaction to the first statement. To imply as he did to Dodd that the two statements are the same is clever but disingenuous, especially from someone who wants to usher in a new kind of politics. I am glad you picked up on this verbal slight of hand admin. Mainstream media types missed it so far as I could see.

  14. What we can make of it wbboei is that Obama cannot trust his incompetent staff nor his weak policy advisors. The ultimate responsibility rests with Obama who must have approved the speech and who read the speech. Obama has stated that the speech was in the works for weeks. Obama said this because many reporters were writing that his Pakistan speech was a reaction to his blunder on the rogue leader question. Obama denied the Pakistan speech was in response to that blunder and repeated that the speech had been in the works and in draft for weeks.

    It’s blame the staff time again.

    The Pakistan speech was a product of many drafts and the best his team could produce. It bombed. This tells us a great deal. Obama’s team can’t get a major speech written properly. Who vetted the speech? Who allowed the phraseology in the speech to be approved? It’s very much like Bush’s 16 words UN speech. In Bush’s case it was clear that the 16 words were in the speech as an attempt to deceive the UN. With Obama, it appears to be a tough guy gone wrong speech. Obama’s advisors have been defending the speech. Samantha Powers and Greg Craig have both defended the speech. But the question remains, who wrote that mess of a speech?

    This is a major clue. We know Obama is incapable of thinking on his feet. He made off the cuff remarks on the nuclear option which became a problem for him and he made off the cuff remarks in the interview with the Miami Herald on meeting with Chavez with preconditions, which became a major problem for him. The major clue in this Pakistan mishap is that his staff and campaign cannot get a product of weeks of work right.

    Imagine if a major Hillary speech contained this type of blunder on wording. Big Media and Obama supporters would be attacking without relent.

    What we can make of his policy manifesto blunder is that neither Obama nor his team are ready for prime time.

  15. Ripublican News Items:

    Tommy Thompson is out of the presidential race after his bad showing in the Ames Iowa straw poll.

    Karl Rove is resigning effective the end of this month.

  16. Hey all, I just finished watching the AFL-CIO debate on youtube.(I know, I’m late) And an interesting moment caught my eye.
    It was during Chris Dodd and Obamas exchange (and somewhat Hillary) regarding Obamas speech. Now what Senator Dodd said is really quite similar, at least as a stance, as to what Hillary has been saying.

    And after Dodd had attacked Obama, we see a short clip of Hillary, and I swear it looks as if Hillary winks at Dodd. As if to thank him for going after Obama. Now nothing wrong with that if they agree, but I found it odd (IF of course she did, could have been my eyes). Could have just been personally, or maybe just maybe, they’ve had a talk?. (though I never in a million years think Hillary will pick Dodd as a vp)

    It’s at 2.46 in this cut, she closes both eyes a little, but her left eye just a tad more. Could just be me reading to much into it though. (in that case, my bad!)

    What do you think?

    youtube.com/watch?v=mn6ZneR2ias

  17. Oh Lordy!!

    What is that Karl Rove running from now??!!

    I saw posted at DU.com about an interview Biden did, I liked it a lot, a response regarding impeachment, he isn’t in favor of it now, but is open for something at a later time: “I think we should be acquiring and accumulating all the data that is appropriate for possibly bringing criminal charges against members of this administration at a later date.”
    I would love to see bush and co. impeached, but I’m afraid we’re running out of time. maybe this is the solution.

    democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=132×3443246

  18. i agree admin. the word is getting out plus the misinformation and garbage is getting refutted. thank goodness for a blog like this. come this fall and winter it will become fever pitch. hillaryclinton.com blog is ok but it has a very slow screening process and not as free flowing discussions we have here. bless ya admin. GO HILLARY GO!!!!!

  19. Well, now- Karl Rove has been assigned to the Obama campaign. Obama is their man. You can bet the farm on that one!

    It’s a full frontal attack on Hillary by Obama supporters on DU today. The assault has begun.

    Mrs. S.

  20. Ras today… Hillary is back to a TWENTY point lead!

    Monday, August 13, 2007

    The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows New York Senator Hillary Clinton attracts support from 43% of Likely Democratic Primary Voters in the race for the Democratic Presidential nomination. Illinois Senator Barack Obama is the top choice for 23% and former North Carolina Senator John Edwards is the only other Democrat in double digits with 12% support. New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson tops the second tier of candidates at 4

  21. Two articles:

    Dodd has some qualms about Hillary and healthcare but really takes aim at Obama:
    http://www.nysun.com/article/60351?page_no=2

    “When you’re reading off a teleprompter at a speech, in front of a distinguished audience, and you pose a hypothetical problem and propose a hypothetical solution to it, which suggests the unilateral action into another country that is a nuclear power, the alternative of which is a jihadist, fundamentalist state with nuclear weapons, that’s irresponsible,” Mr. Dodd said. “Who’s advising him, first of all? But you ought to have enough sense, beyond a briefing book knowledge of this thing, you don’t say those kind of things.”

    And either we are confused or the guys at ABCNews need more sleep or maybe they just linked to the wrong page. In today’s The Note [http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/TheNote/Story?id=3105288&page=3] ABC says that Ryan Lizza has a cover story on Obama in GQ. There is an old Ryan Lizza related article about McCain at their link. Whatever. ABC has this quote on Obama “ambitious, prickly, and occasionally ruthless”. There is also this prescient quote from Axelrod:

    “If we go out headhunting, if we go out and become a gratuitous, blood-sucking, run-of-the-mill, garden-variety politician, then we’ll have taken what is best about him and we’ll have destroyed it.”

    Also on the ABC link we did find an old article on Obama with these quotes:

    http://men.style.com/gq/features/landing?id=content_5365
    “His liabilities?” Republican strategist Whit Ayres asks. “You mean, other than his almost total lack of qualifications that a commander in chief of the armed forces and leader of the Free World in a time of war requires?” So there’s that. Your Senate term is only slightly older than Grey’s Anatomy, and while you were an Illinois state senator for the eight years previous, that doesn’t offer much more comfort than if you’d been, say, a border coyote. If there’s one negative trope that’ll bring you down, this is it. Hillary’s camp sure seems to think so.”

    How about this quote:

    “After years of public officials lying so consistently and, really, with so little art, your openness about your past accounts for a huge chunk of your popularity. You smoked reefer and ripped yay? That’s cool. You were involved in a fishy real estate deal with a well-known sleaze? At least you admitted to the mistake of associating with the guy after the fact. But The Washington Post once hinted at “a wealth” of juicy opposition research against you. Even if that’s an exaggeration, it’s trouble: The second you’re perceived as having sanitized your past, all the goodwill your candor has accumulated will be erased. “In politics,” says Dunn, “a speck of dirt shows up much more starkly on a white suit than on a gray one.”

    After the AP story from yesterday against Hillary there’s this:
    “Obama’s name on the ticket will almost certainly boost the number of African-Americans at the polls, so Democrats finally have a chance to pick off a state or two in the South, right? Wrong. According to Thomas F. Schaller, author of Whistling Past Dixie, an uptick of black votes in the South is usually offset by retaliatory voting from whites. And while Obama is not positioning himself as a Sharpton or a Jackson, postracial campaign themes won’t matter much in places where GOP voting is still wedded to racial hostility. Schaller doesn’t call it a “blacklash” for nothing.”

    Ask Harold Ford.

  22. Gorto,

    I believe Hillary respects Senator Dodd’s experience, especially in the realm of foreign affairs. I thought I saw a “wink” too and my immediate impression at the time was “you go, girl.” I interpreted it as one true professional supporting and encouraging another true professional in the middle of a heated exchange. Hillary not only knows how to build bridges, she knows when…

    FWIW, I don’t think we can say absolutely that she did wink because of the angle but she was smiling at Senator Dodd which adds to the impression that it may have been a wink.

  23. Mrs. Smith, You’re so brave to go on DU. My blood pressure just can’t handle it anymore, lol. As for the assault, I’m not surprised it’s coming, and neither is her campaign.

    BTW, in his press conference today, Rove said HRC will win the nomination but that she is fatally flawed candidate. He wishes, lol.

  24. Yeah I agree, I don’t mean to really imply anything one way or another.
    Just thought it was a rare moment of …..something! hehe

  25. Dodd, Biden and Hillary are buds. I’ve watched the body language and the pats on the back etc…after the debates. Dodd is still playing it as though he’s in it to win. lol Biden on the other hand is in it for Hillary to win at this point. He has tossed her several bones throughout these debates, and he’s hoping for Secretary of State. Also i think that Dodd and Biden pretty much can’t stand Edwards or Obama – good reason.

  26. Yeah, I agree with everything you said, Biden more than anyone seen to have Hillarys back, which is nice to see. Except I read an interview where he stated that he has no interest in being Secretary of State, but who knows.

Comments are closed.