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Pre-9/11, Bush Deprioritized Counter-terrorism and Targeted It For Cuts
March 9, 2004 3:59 PM   Subscribe

Pre-9/11, Bush Deprioritized Counter-terrorism and Targeted It For Cuts The Bush handlers would try to paint Kerry as weak on defense and intelligence, yet it was the GOP that in fact cut budgets for intelligence.
posted by Postroad (29 comments total)

 
Your email message has been idle and this link has become inactive.
posted by thomcatspike at 4:01 PM on March 9, 2004


Haha!
posted by Witty at 4:03 PM on March 9, 2004


Fixed link, I think.
posted by split atom at 4:04 PM on March 9, 2004


The devil will find work for idle email messages.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 4:04 PM on March 9, 2004


Postroad broke the internet.
posted by dhoyt at 4:07 PM on March 9, 2004


isn't this really really old news? like old enough to have been a chapter in Franken's last book?
posted by badstone at 4:12 PM on March 9, 2004


Mr. Ashcroft did not endorse F.B.I. requests for $58 million for 149 new counterterrorism field agents, 200 intelligence analysts and 54 additional translators.

Wasn't the FBI under some scrutiny during this time period?
posted by thomcatspike at 4:16 PM on March 9, 2004


i always knew there was something wrong about that guy
posted by tsarfan at 4:23 PM on March 9, 2004


Wait, just wait and the ShrubCo spin doctors will figure out some way to make it look like this was a good idea.

I wonder how often Bush has asked his advisors for a Time Machine Delorean so he could go back and fix things so that he looked smart?
posted by fenriq at 4:27 PM on March 9, 2004


"I wonder how often Bush has asked his advisors for a Time Machine Delorean so he could go back and fix things so that he looked smart?"

Dude, time machines are incredible enough. You can't expect miracles, too.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:37 PM on March 9, 2004


Wasn't the FBI under some scrutiny during this time period?

Maybe I was thinking of several similar to: The revelation that the FBI withheld evidence from defense attorneys in the Oklahoma City bombing case is only the latest in a decade of high-profile stumbles by the nation's top law enforcement agency.

I only related the two as it seemed before 9/11 the FBI was under a lot of fire.
posted by thomcatspike at 4:41 PM on March 9, 2004


more on this, from Boston.com, on attempts to blame Clinton for inadequate defense spending: ...Boorstin also said it was actually Bush's father who was first to cut intelligence spending after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.
posted by amberglow at 4:49 PM on March 9, 2004


Badstone is very much correct. However, the Bush campaign, just begun, is putting up the "fact" that Kerry was against spending for Intelligence...the Big Lie, told over and over...I thought it helpful to remind the good folks out there that I remember it and also can fix what Gore invented.
posted by Postroad at 4:51 PM on March 9, 2004


and yet more, from American Progress
posted by amberglow at 4:57 PM on March 9, 2004


Bush's father who was first to cut intelligence spending
Didn't we also have a recent thread that pointed out: Bush ignored Clinton's advice on stopping Al Qaeda when he took office?
posted by thomcatspike at 4:58 PM on March 9, 2004


Ah, a reminder. I'm all for it, but watch out for the MeTa cops. they're liable to throw you in the slammer and double the penalty for not only suggesting there may be something amiss in the Bush administration, but retelling an old story about said issue.
posted by badstone at 5:05 PM on March 9, 2004


That was this Bush, not the father. This Bush totally ignored the warnings from the outgoing Clintons.

There's even a transcript from Letterman floating around from 2000 with Bush talking tough after the bombing of the Cole, and nothing was done, even tho it was learned it was Al Qaeda.
posted by amberglow at 5:05 PM on March 9, 2004


watch out for the MeTa cops. they're liable to throw you in the slammer and double the penalty for not only suggesting there may be something amiss in the Bush administration, but retelling an old story about said issue.

Um... this is Metafilter. The worst anyone who doesn't share a political viewpoint can do is try to piss on your thread and cry "___Filter" and attempt to drag you into MetaTalk and talk about squirrels.

Plus, we're a bunch of lefties, mostly.
posted by namespan at 5:10 PM on March 9, 2004


in a sad attempt to bill Sen. Kerry as weak on terrorism, the media appears to be forgetting a much more relevant story

I'm actually sympathetic to the point here, but someday, someone should write a guide to not sounding like a partisan shill, and rule #1 on my list might well be "Unless I am doing actual commentary on the media itself, I will never segue into a subject by accusing the liberal/conservative/animist/athiest media of not telling a story. I will just tell it." If there were bayesian partisan-filters out there, this would probably have an 80% recognition rate.

Farther down the page, our friend here has interpolated Warren Buffet's shareholder letter into the headline "Warren Buffet calls Bush a Class Warrior", when at best I think that Buffet was saying was that most of the upper class is making out like bandits, especially compared to the assesment that Berkshire Hathaway payed out.

I think the story about the Bush Administration's priorities pre-9/11 is worth telling, especially as he talks about Kerry's flip-flops, and I hope it gets told far and wide so that people can digest the implications. But most of all, I hope it gets told by smoother people than our linked blogging friend.
posted by weston at 5:30 PM on March 9, 2004


They're testing the waters, people. They're gonna push-poll to high hell in November, and every other person on the do-not-call list will be approached...

They need to see which ideas will stick to Kerry. These are not the big guns.
posted by Busithoth at 5:38 PM on March 9, 2004


That's what's funny about all this, Busithoth--everything they throw dredges up more bad stuff about them.
posted by amberglow at 5:45 PM on March 9, 2004


I hope it gets told by smoother people than our linked blogging friend.


Sometimes history is made by the force of arms on battlefields, sometimes by the fall of an exhausted empire. But often when historians set about figuring why a nation took one course rather than another, they are most interested in who said what to whom at a meeting far from the public eye whose true significance may have been missed even by those who took part in it.
One such meeting took place in the White House situation room during the first week of January 2001. The session was part of a program designed by Bill Clinton's National Security Adviser, Sandy Berger, who wanted the transition between the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations to run as smoothly as possible. With some bitterness, Berger remembered how little he and his colleagues had been helped by the first Bush Administration in 1992-93. Eager to avoid a repeat of that experience, he had set up a series of 10 briefings by his team for his successor, Condoleezza Rice, and her deputy, Stephen Hadley.
Berger attended only one of the briefings-the session that dealt with the threat posed to the U.S. by international terrorism, and especially by al-Qaeda. "I'm coming to this briefing," he says he told Rice, "to underscore how important I think this subject is." Later, alone in his office with Rice, Berger says he told her, "I believe that the Bush Administration will spend more time on terrorism generally, and on al-Qaeda specifically, than any other subject." The terrorism briefing was delivered by Richard Clarke, a career bureaucrat who had served in the first Bush Administration and risen during the Clinton years to become the White House's point man on terrorism. As chair of the interagency Counter-Terrorism Security Group (CSG), Clarke was known as a bit of an obsessive-just the sort of person you want in a job of that kind. Since the bombing of the U.S.S. Cole in Yemen on Oct. 12, 2000-an attack that left 17 Americans dead-he had been working on an aggressive plan to take the fight to al-Qaeda. The result was a strategy paper that he had presented to Berger and the other national security "principals" on Dec. 20. But Berger and the principals decided to shelve the plan and let the next Administration take it up. With less than a month left in office, they did not think it appropriate to launch a major initiative against Osama bin Laden. "We would be handing (the Bush Administration) a war when they took office on Jan. 20," says a former senior Clinton aide. "That wasn't going to happen." Now it was up to Rice's team to consider what Clarke had put together.

Berger had left the room by the time Clarke, using a Powerpoint presentation, outlined his thinking to Rice. A senior Bush Administration official denies being handed a formal plan to take the offensive against al-Qaeda, and says Clarke's materials merely dealt with whether the new Administration should take "a more active approach" to the terrorist group. (Rice declined to comment, but through a spokeswoman said she recalled no briefing at which Berger was present.) Other senior officials from both the Clinton and Bush administrations, however, say that Clarke had a set of proposals to "roll back" al-Qaeda. In fact, the heading on Slide 14 of the Powerpoint presentation reads, "Response to al Qaeda: Roll back." Clarke's proposals called for the "breakup" of al-Qaeda cells and the arrest of their personnel. The financial support for its terrorist activities would be systematically attacked, its assets frozen, its funding from fake charities stopped. Nations where al-Qaeda was causing trouble-Uzbekistan, the Philippines, Yemen-would be given aid to fight the terrorists. Most important, Clarke wanted to see a dramatic increase in covert action in Afghanistan to "eliminate the sanctuary" where al-Qaeda had its terrorist training camps and bin Laden was being protected by the radical Islamic Taliban regime. The Taliban had come to power in 1996, bringing a sort of order to a nation that had been riven by bloody feuds between ethnic warlords since the Soviets had pulled out. Clarke supported a substantial increase in American support for the Northern Alliance, the last remaining resistance to the Taliban. That way, terrorists graduating from the training camps would have been forced to stay in Afghanistan, fighting (and dying) for the Taliban on the front lines. At the same time, the U.S. military would start planning for air strikes on the camps and for the introduction of special-operations forces into Afghanistan. The plan was estimated to cost "several hundreds of millions of dollars." In the words of a senior Bush Administration official, the proposals amounted to "everything we've done since 9/11."

link

how's this for smooth?
posted by jbou at 6:54 PM on March 9, 2004


thanks jbou
posted by infowar at 7:29 PM on March 9, 2004


Coming attractions

Any day now...
posted by Fupped Duck at 7:50 PM on March 9, 2004


jbou, that's perfect. Spread the link.
posted by weston at 8:40 PM on March 9, 2004


"...if only the press were to do its duty, or
but a tenth of its duty, this hellish system
could not go on."


Clinton shoves this report in the drawer.

You can't handle a crisis before it becomes a crisis. It scares the hell out of people and they can't do anything. It's like a person with cancer; some people don't want to know. Others want to know everything so they can fight it.' I think they took the ostrich approach

One such meeting took place in the White House situation room during the first week of January 2001.

why did not Sandy set up this important meeting only a week or two before Bush was going to take office. and if this was a series of ten, when did the first begin?

This big-picture approach makes more and more sense in a world that is composed of complex adaptive systems -- whether naturally occurring ones such as a rain forest or your immune system, or ones we have created such as the World Wide Web and our rapidly globalizing economy. Each of these systems evolves over time in relationship to the larger environment in which it operates. Small changes or small inputs of resources at strategic points in these complex systems can be amplified throughout the entire system, bringing about significant overall shifts. This process is popularly known as "the butterfly effect," because it reflects the idea that a butterfly fluttering its wings in Asia could cause a hurricane in the Atlantic. That metaphor helps explain how Osama bin Laden and the al Qaeda network were able to have such an impact on large global economic systems.
posted by clavdivs at 9:34 PM on March 9, 2004


I hate Bush as much as the next guy but this link does not seem FPP worthy.
posted by Slagman at 5:14 AM on March 10, 2004


clavdis, you linked newsmax, you know they write fiction?
posted by jbou at 7:25 AM on March 10, 2004


so does Time but you don't see me henpecking it.

and at least i put quote marks around what i glean (most of the
TIME.)
posted by clavdivs at 8:06 AM on March 10, 2004


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