Those questions about airline security are critical to the investigation. But, now comes a serious allegation: that the Sept. 11 commission is stacked with members tied directly to the airline industry.
"Here we've got the most important event in America in the past 50 years, the most horrible thing that's happened to Americans, and yet we pick a bunch of people who are connected to the very people who are at the center of the question of who's at fault," says Terry Brunner, a former federal prosecutor who now runs the Aviation Integrity Project in Chicago. "It's ridiculous."
The idea that Hussein views a WMD strike via terrorist intermediaries as a viable strategy is rank speculation, contradicted by his past behavior. Hussein's hostility toward Israel predates his struggle with the United States. He's had longstanding ties with anti-Israeli terror groupsand he's had chemical weapons for over 20 years. Yet there has never been a nerve gas attack in Israel. Why? Because Israel has nuclear weapons and conventional superiority, and Hussein wants to live. If he's ever considered passing off chemical weapons to Palestinian terrorists, he decided that he wouldn't get away with it. He has even less reason to trust Al Qaeda with a potentially regime-ending secret.
Of course, if regime change is coming anyway by force of American arms, Saddam Hussein "probably would become much less constrained in adopting terrorist action." That's what CIA director George Tenet told the House and Senate intelligence committees last October, to the embarrassment of the Bush administration. Is Tenet right? We're about to find out.
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