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Top Story: The Bush Administration and 9/11

THE VIDEO above is old, condensed, too, with the pictures, tale and music I wove together now burned into our history and our memories, so the quick flip from scene to quote and back again seen in a rush simply reminds us of how quickly we lost what we once cherished, when fear replaced all sense.

It brings back the memory of traveling the moment flights continued, no hassles, 5 people in a huge jetliner, everyone still in shock as we puddle jumped cities in a weird route to my destination from Los Angeles. After that it was lines and nonsensical airport “security” that likely makes Israelis laugh.

I had no intention of uploading it, or going back to the interview I did with Kristen Breitweiser or her writings here, until I read the op-ed today by Kurt Eichenwald in the New York Times titled “The Deafness Before the Storm.”

Echenwald brings back the PDB titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.,” and why Condoleezza Rice can never run for political office and she knows it.

That PDB was written on Aug. 6, 2001, but as Eichenwald recounts in his op-ed, other documents just prior to this date that have not been made public, but which he has seen and read excerpts, reveal the leadership malpractice at the very heart of the Bush administration: “the administration’s reaction to what Mr. Bush was told in the weeks before that infamous briefing reflected significantly more negligence than has been disclosed.”

From Eichenwald:

In response, the C.I.A. prepared an analysis that all but pleaded with the White House to accept that the danger from Bin Laden was real.

“The U.S. is not the target of a disinformation campaign by Usama Bin Laden,” the daily brief of June 29 read, using the government’s transliteration of Bin Laden’s first name. Going on for more than a page, the document recited much of the evidence, including an interview that month with a Middle Eastern journalist in which Bin Laden aides warned of a coming attack, as well as competitive pressures that the terrorist leader was feeling, given the number of Islamists being recruited for the separatist Russian region of Chechnya.

And the C.I.A. repeated the warnings in the briefs that followed. Operatives connected to Bin Laden, one reported on June 29, expected the planned near-term attacks to have “dramatic consequences,” including major casualties. On July 1, the brief stated that the operation had been delayed, but “will occur soon.” Some of the briefs again reminded Mr. Bush that the attack timing was flexible, and that, despite any perceived delay, the planned assault was on track.

It’s a reminder of what we learned this past June, when newly released declassified NSA docs on 9/11 attesting to what Eichenwald is writing about today surfaced.

“I don’t think the Bush administration would want to see these released, because they paint a picture of the CIA knowing something would happen before 9/11, but they didn’t get the institutional support they needed,” says Barbara Elias-Sanborn, the NSA fellow who edited the materials. [Salon]

A lot of things are said around 9/11, no matter the year.

One of the most offensive came from infotainment yakker Joe Scaroborough on Monday, who actually suggested that Republicans should have invited George W. Bush to Tampa to honor him, citing him for his particular leadership after 9/11.

Through a cloud of amnesia, rewriting of the historic events of what happened on the eleventh of September in 2001, but especially in the aftermath, is how our country lost its soul after we were hit.

We’ve yet to recover it.

When more PDBs surrounding 9/11 are made public and declassified, what we’re likely to learn will finally put the Bush presidency where it belongs and it will never amount to honoring the man and his vice president for much of anything.

Anyone can stand on rubble and use a bullhorn, but it takes spectacular hubris to take a country to war using the emotions of the citizenry to give lies flight.

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23 Responses to Top Story: The Bush Administration and 9/11

  1. spincitysd September 11, 2012 at 1:57 am #

    Worst President since James Buchanan. Arguably the worst President ever– George W. Bush.

    • ladywalker68 September 11, 2012 at 10:26 am #

      WORD!!!

  2. spincitysd September 11, 2012 at 2:08 am #

    ” One of the most offensive came from infotainment yakker Joe Scaroborough on Monday, who actually suggested that Republicans should have invited George W. Bush to Tampa to honor him, citing him for his particular leadership after 9/11.”

    Sweet Baby Jesus On A Pogo Stick, I just up-chucked into my mouth. Bush’s “leadership” was nothing more than gross malfeasance.

  3. Art Pronin September 11, 2012 at 2:28 am #

    Yep. Bush used emotions of a pained nation to take them into Iraq. With consequences ..sigh

  4. angels81 September 11, 2012 at 8:36 am #

    Interesting article in the NYT today. It seems the Bush administration knew a lot more about the threat of a attack then they have told us. Bush ignored all the warning signs, and then after the attack covered it all up. Worst President this country has ever seen.

    • jjamele September 11, 2012 at 9:47 am #

      “How dare you impugn the memory of 3000 innocent Americans who died that day?”

      –George Pataki

  5. angels81 September 11, 2012 at 8:39 am #

    Another thing we voters need to remember on this day. Romney has hired all of Bushes so called experts who ignored the threats, covered up after the fact and sent us into Iraq.

    • Taylor Marsh September 11, 2012 at 8:51 am #

      Thank you for adding that sentence re: Romney in a comment.

      I didn’t want to put it in my piece, because nothing should distract from what people are learning about the malfeasance of Bush-Cheney and what was known before 9/11.

      • angels81 September 11, 2012 at 8:55 am #

        Glad to do my part.

    • Ga6thDem September 11, 2012 at 10:41 am #

      Absolutely. The biggest negative the GOP has right now is their foreign policy. It’s downright scary that’s for sure.

  6. Jane Austen September 11, 2012 at 9:35 am #

    That picture of George W. Bush always makes me think of a deer caught in the headlights. And I would have to say that after reading everything about 9/11, he was a deer caught in the headlights.

    • Taylor Marsh September 11, 2012 at 9:40 am #

      History has not finished with that man.

      • secularhumanizinevoluter September 11, 2012 at 12:09 pm #

        I certainly hope part of “History has not finished with that man.” will be a trip to the World Court for trial as a War Criminal and launching a war of aggression. You know, the stuff we HANGED people for after WW2.

  7. jjamele September 11, 2012 at 9:46 am #

    George Pataki was his usual simpering, whiny, pathetic self on Morning Joe today, basically wagging his finger at people who would dare investigate the government’s failure to heed warnings leading up to 9/11 as “disrespectful of the victims of that great tragedy.” Pataki was being a good little Fascist, declaring that we really have no business to ever ever ever question the government because the IMPORTANT thing is that we “came together” in the spirit of Nationalism on that day- but of course, he had no problem “helpfully pointing out” that BILL CLINTON had a hand in our lack of preparedness.

    I just wanted to reach into the television and bat him across the face, especially when he cluelessly remarked “imagine if we had investigated FDR for his failure to protect us leading up to Pearl Harbor….” The Congressional Investigation into Pearl Harbor STILL holds the record for the longest continual congressional investigation OF ALL TIME, Governor Moron!

    Pataki is second only to Giuliani when it comes to gall- he feels entitled to lecture us on what we can and cannot talk about, what we can or cannot demand answers to, etc. Like I said, Good Little Fascist. Who needs to go away now, STFU and never ever come back.

    • Jane Austen September 11, 2012 at 9:58 am #

      Boy do I agree with you jjamele. Can you imagine what they would have been screaming for had the Osama bin Laden mission failed? They would have impeached Obama for high crimes and misdemeanors, maybe even thrown in treason for good measure. Since when don’t the people have a right to ask for an investigation into a tragedy the magnitude of 9/11? It’s “disrespectful of the victims of this great tragedy” not to. Had someone been on the ball more than 2,000 people might still be alive today. If I recall the Clinton Administration warned the incoming Bush Administration about bin Laden. This is nothing but “chutzpah” on the part of Pakaki. He was an incompetent governor which is why he’s pretty much disappeared from the political landscape.

      • jjamele September 11, 2012 at 10:04 am #

        I will believe to the day I die that if Al Gore had been President on 9/11, the Republicans in Congress would have screamed for investigation and Impeachment. They would have spent every campaign season waving 9/11 like a bloody shirt,as a “reminder” that Democrats could not be trusted to defend the US. Of course, I am also convinced that if Al Gore had been President on 9/11, it would have been just another day, because heightened security would have convinced Bin Laden to scuttle his plans.

  8. Taylor Marsh September 11, 2012 at 10:23 am #

    Knowing quite a bit about Al Gore, though we can never prognosticate that anyone could have stopped 9/11, because the intelligence failures were massive.

    There is no way I believe he would have ignored the PDB that has been declassified, and he wouldn’t have stayed on vacation after he got it either.

    Gore is what was known as a hawk. He had more deep intelligence knowledge than people realize, especially on weapons systems, because he’s known for climate change today. Read the history of the Clinton presidency & the role Gore played. There is no way I believe he would have taken the information slowly coming out with anything but the greatest alarm.

    • spincitysd September 11, 2012 at 11:49 am #

      “we can never prognosticate that anyone could have stopped 9/11, because the intelligence failures were massive.”

      Sigh,

      The “failures” of the intelligence were failures of leadership. There were more than a few mid-level analysts who were screaming bloody murder, but their voices were not heard. There was no one at the top level of leadership who was giving them wing. There was no coordination of effort.

      The failure began with the demotion of Richard Clark. This demotion spoke volumes as it indicated that the Bushites did not take the problem of terrorism seriously. Terrorism did not fit their ideological world view. It was not big boy stuff.

      Instead, the Neocons were obsessing about other things. They were getting granular on Chinese missiles and other items of Realpolitik. They were concerned with the “Great Game” of great states. In short, they were stuck not merely in the mentality of the Cold War but all the way back to the mentality seen prior to the Great War (WWI).

      Dead Eye Dick Cheney and his gang who could not shoot straight failed because of their ideology. The failure of 9/11 was a failure of ideology. The failure in Afghanistan was a failure of ideology. The failure in Iraq was a failure of ideology. It was the failure of men who were driving to a singular goal damn the facts, damn the opposition, damn common sense, and damn the consequences. They made their facts support their goal. They broke the intelligence apparatus of the US to have their jolly little war in Iraq. And when reality mugged these men and left them for dead they whined that “No one could have seen this coming.”

      Sorry for the rant, but I know that Al Gore would have brought different results. He would of continued the Clintonian focus on terrorism. He would of road shotgun over the competing intelligence organizations. He would of found those mid-level voices warning of an action by OBL. Remember Taylor he was part of the team that squashed the Millennium terrorist plot. There was plenty of low-level chatter about OBL for a man like Gore to prick up his ears. He would have beaten the bushes. He would have shaken the trees. He would have made short-circuiting OBL a priority.

      Contrast that to what Incurious George did to the PDB “You covered your ass…” Those few words spoke volumes about the indifference that Bush and company had to the issue of terrorism. That indifference came from an ideology, a world view that saw the issue of non-state actors as trivial.

      9/11/01 was the result of an Administration that was grossly incompetent and suffered from gross malfeasance. The eight years of Bush / Cheney Neocon misrule will go down as one of the worst self-inflicted wounds the nation ever suffered. Only the four years of the Civil War was worse.

      Remember, 9/11/01 was part of piece. It was part of an Administration that let ideology trump all other concerns. The malfeasance ran deep and wide. The incompetence ran deep and wide. The childishness ran deep and wide. The utter disregard for facts and logic ran deep and wide. For eight long years their was a total lack of adult supervision at the very pinnacle of government power. There is no way on God’s good green earth Al Gore would have acted in the same manner. Gore would have acted on the intelligence, not play-acted on a fake ranch.

      • spincitysd September 11, 2012 at 11:56 am #

        Correction: “For eight long years their was a total lack of adult supervision at the very pinnacle of government power.” should read “For eight long years there was a total lack of adult supervision at the very pinnacle of government power.”

        Dang, I wish the old editing feature still existed.

        • secularhumanizinevoluter September 11, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

          Your post is a thing of beauty and reason. Wonder where the usual repugnantklan/teabagger fluffers are on this subject?

  9. spincitysd September 11, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

    “Whatever Republicans had during the GHW Bush — James Baker era no longer exists.” TM

    It is called pragmatism Taylor. We now call it “being part of the reality-based community.” The Republican Party has let the ideology of Neoconservativism over-rule every other concern. Poppy Bush always took into consideration the facts on the ground. Dead Eye Dick Cheney made up his own facts as he went along. When you live in an ideological fantasy land, reality will come along and take a wrecking ball to the castles you have made in the sand, Democrats now “own” foreign policy and National Security because Republicans left them by the side of the road to chase a will o the wisp that is Neoconservatism.

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