Bush Doubted on 9/11 Panel
October 15, 2002 3:15 AM   Subscribe

Bush Doubted on 9/11 Panel Angry lawmakers accused the White House yesterday of secretly trying to derail creation of an independent commission to investigate the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks while professing to support the idea. The White House responded by renewing its pledge of support for the proposal and suggesting an agreement was near.
posted by tranceformer (38 comments total)

 
It seems to me the commission wouldn't be so much investigating 9/11 then they would be dealing with concerns "about the nation's readiness to deal with terrorism, including aviation, border security and immigration as well as intelligence capabilities currently under investigation by the House and Senate intelligence committees."

I think the motives, methods and perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks are pretty much already well investigated already. What would a new commission (made up of 10 private citizens) uncover?
posted by PenDevil at 3:36 AM on October 15, 2002


Clearly, the commision is not just about " the nation's readiness to deal with terrorism, including aviation, border security and immigration as well as intelligence capabilities currently under investigation by the House and Senate intelligence committees." If it were, they wouldn't be arguing about it's power to "investigate Congress as well as executive branch agencies", nor "to issue subpoenas" (whether by 5 or more members). Don't forget that the 'lawmakers', as they are termed - I guess that makes it bi-partisan and bi-cameral - have the support of "a spokesman for a group representing about 1,300 survivors of Sept. 11 attack."

Now, why does Bush put obstacles in the way of the groups establishment again? Clearly, the political embarassment at the failings of his administration - if discovered - prior to 9/11 could do him great harm, in the run-up to his war, and to his re-election chances (let's face it, the Commission is gonna take some time to report).
posted by dash_slot- at 4:12 AM on October 15, 2002


"I think the motives, methods and perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks are pretty much already well investigated already. What would a new commission (made up of 10 private citizens) uncover?" ......Is this a troll, or what?

How about MASSIVE unexplained pre-9-11 insider trading (with apparent foreknowledge of coming attacks) in the days before 9-11? Or the meetings in the week before 9-11 between US Senators, Congressmen, CIA top officials and Bush adm. officials with the head of the Pakistani ISI -who was later fired in the scandal that erupted when it was revealed that he had ordered $100,000 wired to Mohammed Atta in the US? How about the complete breakdown of US air defense protocol? Or the breakdown in chain-of-command? Or the inability of US intelligence to pay attention to the pre-9-11 blizzard of warnings of a 9-11 type attack, some highly specific (as in, the impending use of planes as suicide weapons, probably against targets in NY and DC)? Or the claims of a number of FBI field agents that their investigations of Al-Qaeda members were blocked by bureaucrats in DC?

I could go on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on with questions, but there is a site where these get posted at UnansweredQuestions.org and if the questioner needs to brush up a bit on the whole wretched mass of 9-11 anomalies, he/she can go to the The complete 9-11 Timeline. This link - to an extensive compilation derived from "reputable" sources (mainstream media and US gov. statements) has been posted before (several times, I think), but apparently some people missed it and so here it is again.
posted by troutfishing at 5:01 AM on October 15, 2002


If I were Bush I wouldn't want them investigating either. Who knows what they might find.....
posted by Degaz at 5:06 AM on October 15, 2002


Also, oddly enough, the Bush adminstration may be setting the stage for a recrudescence of 9-11 during the 2004 election! They can only block an investigation for so long. That is, unless a crisis arises which requires the full implemetation of the nascent police state. But, barring that, 9-11 will continue to haunt the Bushies. It's only one of many currently festering Bush scandals. Will it be their Watergate? Who knows....
posted by troutfishing at 5:13 AM on October 15, 2002


Clearly, the political embarassment at the failings of his administration - if discovered - prior to 9/11 could do him great harm

All 9 months of his admistration? I would think that 9 months in office hardly had any great failings that led up to the succesful attacks on Sept 11th. Failings of that magnitude would take years. Hint hint.
posted by a3matrix at 5:15 AM on October 15, 2002


troutfishing: That's quite a few questions you bring up there but I don't see any evidence to back it up.

And that timeline has been discussed (and dismissed) already as a (although well researched) piece of looney conspiracy.
posted by PenDevil at 5:18 AM on October 15, 2002


Given that Newsweek is talking about Cheney's role in this, I wonder how long it will take to come back around to the energy taskforce meetings. We were talking up war with the Taliban with other countries as early as July 2001, and one suspicion is that Cheney is guarding the subject of those meetings so closely because they involved discussions of the oil pipeline they were fighting to get into Afghanistan.
posted by troybob at 5:48 AM on October 15, 2002


PenDevil,
Operation Northwoods was once relegated to the dark halls of "looney conspiracy" theories too. So that kind of dismissal is no longer credible.

I think the problem with 9/11 probes is that it would reveal a decades long history of blowback from spook involvenment in foreign policy, galling arrogance with regard to denying the validity of Hart/Rudman findings and recommendations (because it was commissioned by Clinton), extraordinary bureaucratic failures across the board, and blatant lies by current administration officials in the wake of the slaughter on our own soil.
I absolutely do not trust that these people had no indication of the planned attacks on U.S. soil. I do trust that they might have been bolder if it had been both cost effective and politically advantageous.
Regardless of what they find or what they don't find; it is our absolute right and duty to understand the toality of preparedness and willingness to use available stateside defenses--lest we be faced with the same pathetic performance another time 'round.
posted by Tiger_Lily at 7:01 AM on October 15, 2002


Tiger_Lily: Operation Northwoods was never a conpiracy theory as it was never known about before it's "unearthing". And the person who unearthed it, James Bamford, has a bit of a problem taking quotes out of context and other sloppy researching for his book, Body Of Secrets, where the accusations are made.
posted by PenDevil at 7:18 AM on October 15, 2002


And even if you count Northwoods, I really love the argument that "hey, one nutty conspiracy theory was true, therefore, others very well may be as well."

And eight months of Bush, vs. 8 years of Clinton. Hmmm... Clearly Bush's failure.
posted by chris24 at 7:49 AM on October 15, 2002


you can't ask for a bigger defense budget, they shoot it down. ...but then its your fault that terrorists crash planes into buildings. ... and we know that the former admistration did everything they could. pot, black (me and them).
posted by tomplus2 at 7:53 AM on October 15, 2002


What I want the committee to find out is how Bush saw footage of the first plane hitting the WTC. None of us saw that footage.
posted by Degaz at 7:58 AM on October 15, 2002


How dare anyone question our great and fearless leader!!!
Repeat after me: Dubya can do no wrong! Must I send the thought police to your address?

Remember folks, only members of that other political party are capable of evil wrongdoing.
posted by nofundy at 8:02 AM on October 15, 2002


nofundy: and you would like to believe only Bush naysayers and the ultra left are capable of critical thought.
posted by PenDevil at 8:22 AM on October 15, 2002


I've been reading your comments and discussions here at Metafilter for well over a year. Whenever I find an interesting news story, I always come here to see if someone has posted it and what you all have to say about it. I guess you could say I value your different and articulate opinions. I'm wondering if you might take a little time and read something over for me and give me your take on it. It's an edited version of a book that is an analysis of 9/11 at mediamonitors.net. To explain the book better than I can it would be helpful to read a few reviews at amazon.
posted by tami3_3 at 8:55 AM on October 15, 2002


The Northwoods document is here
posted by tranceformer at 8:57 AM on October 15, 2002


Hey I'm not arguing here that the intelligence community was not completely bamboozled (which they were) or that the American governmnet were warned about impending attacks (which they were). But that is very different from saying Bush had knowledge of the exact date and time and location of the attack and he witheld it causing the deaths of 3000+ people.

It's like me saying "I know I will die someday" and someone else saying that I knew the exact time and cause of death.

If Bush had specific knowledge and acted on it beforehand (say by invading Afghanistan to get to Bin Laden) the ultra-left would no doubt be opening up multitudes of threads screaming about the lack of evidence of an impending attack (and yes, this is speculation, but hey, so are most of the claims in this thread.).
posted by PenDevil at 9:18 AM on October 15, 2002


nofundy: and you would like to believe only Bush naysayers and the ultra left are capable of critical thought.

I see we have a mind reader in our midst. Do I owe you for the service or is the first one free? Have you considered teaming with Jonathan Edwards? It would make entertaining television and Fox would pay big bucks. Perhaps we can convince Rush and Falwell to join in occasionally since they also claim supernatural powers among us mortals.
posted by nofundy at 9:22 AM on October 15, 2002


What I want the committee to find out is how Bush saw footage of the first plane hitting the WTC. None of us saw that footage.

I could be mistaken, but I seem to recall having seen video footage of the first plane as well. Didn't some guy with a camcorder happened to see the plane and pan with it as it went into the building? I've got a pretty vivid memory of the footage, and I remember that it was the first plane and not the second one.
posted by oissubke at 9:36 AM on October 15, 2002


Remember folks, only members of that other political party are capable of evil wrongdoing

Pot. Kettle. Black.
posted by PenDevil at 9:36 AM on October 15, 2002


I've got a pretty vivid memory of the footage, and I remember that it was the first plane and not the second one.
posted by oissubke at 9:36 AM PST on October 15

Thats right - but we saw it much later that day - in fact maybe even the next day. Certainly not at 9 or 9.30 am

[BTW: - tami3_3 - nice post (",)]
posted by dash_slot- at 10:15 AM on October 15, 2002


Thanks for the Newsweek link, troybob.
Cheney strongly opposes the idea of any independent body’s poking into the White House’s conduct. He has repeatedly objected to efforts by a separate joint-intelligence-committee inquiry to obtain documents and interview key witnesses, including an FBI informant who lived with two of the 9-11 hijackers. Bush officials insist the VP’s stand is based on “principle,” not fear of embarrassments. Even some congressional critics tend to agree. “There’s just this general philosophical orientation that the less the world knows, the better,” says one GOP staffer.
What is especially sad is how many citizens seem to agree. Pathetic.
posted by homunculus at 11:06 AM on October 15, 2002


PenDevil,

Ever hear of irony? Besides, I only use a microwave and quit making racist remarks about my blackness! Is it OK to doubt Bush or would that be unpatriotic?
posted by nofundy at 11:08 AM on October 15, 2002


Bush officials insist the VP's stand is based on "principle,"
as was the magnificent stand on executive privelege taken by that hero of the republic, nixon.
posted by quonsar at 11:18 AM on October 15, 2002


Prediction: Bush Jr. retains the presidency by putting the country under lockdown just as election time rolls 'round...

I, for one, welcome our new monkey-boy overlords.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:02 PM on October 15, 2002


Erm, that "Unanswered Questions" (dot org) link certainly has some interesting bits.

Like, what happened to the investigations into insider trading on the days just before 9/11? There were news stories about billions of dollars being made on news of the disaster, by people shorting stocks. There's never been adequate investigation or follow-up, AFAIK.

What happened to the investigation into the hijackings? There's been bugger all done there, at least as far as has been revealed to the public. Why isn't there any news? There's *always* been lots of news for other hijackings.

How about the anthrax investigations? It's been freakin' ages, and there's been no news released about it. This can't be a real tough assignment: there are only a couple potential sources for it. Surely the feds know whodunnit!

It all really does smell of cover-up.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:09 PM on October 15, 2002


Doesn't it just?
And there is so much to cover up:
Congressional officials said the account by the school, the Pan Am International Flight Academy in Eagan, outside Minneapolis, raised new questions about why the FBI and other agencies did not prevent the hijackings… [The flight instructor] was a former military pilot who grew suspicious after encounters in which Moussaoui was belligerent and evasive about his background and because he was so adamant about learning to fly a 747 jumbo jet despite his clear incompetence as a pilot. Moussaoui, 33, was arrested in August on immigration charges. But despite the urging of the school and federal agents in Minnesota and despite a warning from the French that Moussaoui was linked to Muslim extremists, FBI headquarters resisted opening a broader investigation until after Sept. 11.” [35]

Indeed, the U.S. government actively prevented a further investigation from being conducted. Local FBI investigators in Minneapolis had immediately viewed Zacarias as a terrorist suspect and sought authorisation for a special counterintelligence surveillance warrant in order to search the hard drive of his home computer. The government’s Justice Department plus top FBI officials blocked an FBI request for a national security warrant to search Zacarias’ computer, claiming that FBI agents lacked sufficient information to meet the legal requirements to justify the warrant. The block remained in place even after the notification from French intelligence that Zacarias was linked to bin Laden.[36]

posted by dash_slot- at 12:22 PM on October 15, 2002


[Excerpt from an interview between Michael Springmann - former head of the Visa Bureau at the U.S. Consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, between 1987 and 1989 - & CBC]:

“CBC: If the CIA had a relationship with the people responsible for September 11th, are you suggesting therein that they are somehow complicit?

“SPRINGMANN: Yes, either through omission or through failure to act… By the attempts to cover me up and shut me down, this convinced me more and more that this was not a pipedream, this was not imagination. [Reference]
posted by dash_slot- at 2:04 PM on October 15, 2002


"According to Schippers, these agents knew, months before the 11th September attacks, the names of the hijackers, the targets of their attacks, the proposed dates, and the sources of their funding, along with other information. At least two weeks prior to 11th September, the FBI agents again confirmed that an attack on lower Manhattan, orchestrated by Osama bin Laden, was imminent. However, the FBI command cut short their investigations into the impending terrorist attacks and those involved, threatening the agents with prosecution under the National Security Act if they publicised information pertaining to their investigations. " [Reference]

It's weird. You guys weren't interested then, and you're not now.
posted by dash_slot- at 3:08 PM on October 15, 2002


PenDevil,
There was no real failure to "connect the dots" as it were. Agents in both the FBI and the CIA were pretty well on the ball. The failure was a bureaucratic one. People like Louis Freeh and that damned ambassador to Yemen, Rice, Cheney, and even Bush himself--they're all guilty of being to full of themselves to take the incoming the intelligence seriously.
Fortunately for Director Tenet, he's rumored to have been beside himself, losing sleep over bin Laden's threat to the U.S. The FBI's former Deputy Dierctor O'Neill was also trying desperately to persuade his superiors of Al Queda's threat.
There must be room for error, of course, no one or one agency should be expected to be infallible. But if we're to avoid similar handling in future we need full disclosure. I don't think this is one administration's problem--but it is damning that this administration blew off Hart-Rudman--absolutely. I still can't believe the collasal arrogance of that bullshit.
posted by Tiger_Lily at 3:26 PM on October 15, 2002


It's weird. You guys weren't interested then, and you're not now.


dash, at least half of us in America are interested--it's just that we can't on our own get to the bottom of it, or do anything about it...all we can do is vote to change the leadership....
posted by amberglow at 3:34 PM on October 15, 2002


ok ok, this is not aimed at those who are concerned, but: $70 million spent on investigating a blowjob, and currently the US govt. can't even agree how to investigate 9/11.

When all the evidence is right before the eyes.
posted by dash_slot- at 3:49 PM on October 15, 2002


All in all, it sure looks like a scheme to remove power from the general population. Reduced personal rights, increased police powers, increased military action against citizens, more laws making it even easier to toss someone in jail...

There won't be elections in 2004. There will be a crisis that requires the elections be postponed. I don't think they'll be postponed indefinitely. It'll be a dry run, to test the limits and to get people used to accepting such abuse of power...
posted by five fresh fish at 6:50 PM on October 15, 2002


Question: How come the Kettle always has to be Black, HUH?

Amberglow -all we can do is vote to change the leadership-

th way it's going even voting isn't goint to change it, May be another revolution, But I tempt the though police even saying that, don't I?
posted by Elim at 8:57 PM on October 15, 2002


There won't be elections in 2004. There will be a crisis that requires the elections be postponed.

Are you taking wagers on that?
posted by kindall at 9:09 PM on October 15, 2002


Dash_slot:
Quote: ...$70 million spent on investigating a blowjob, and currently the US govt. can't even agree how to investigate 9/11.

Isn't that the truth though! Jebus, this nation's priorities have become a mockery.

Five Fresh Fish,
Quote: There will be a crisis that requires the elections be postponed.

Expect a violent outbreak if something like that happens. My patience dried up with the last "election". I'll not stand for any more foolishness from these motherfuckers. I kid you not; there'll be hell to pay for it if our democratic mechanism is tampered with again.
posted by Tiger_Lily at 10:49 PM on October 15, 2002


kindall: I'll bet your freedom...
posted by five fresh fish at 9:26 AM on October 16, 2002


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