Featuring new fiction from Ken Brosky and author authors, as well as occasional political commentary whenever something really important happens. But mostly fiction.
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What's the connection between the two, you ask? Well, for starters, they're both extremely incompetent. Make no mistake about it, Osama bin Laden is an egomaniac with relatively low intelligence when it comes to terrorism (he was NOT the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks. He funded them and gave his "blessing," and little else). To learn more about just how fallible al-Qaeda truly is, I suggest you pick up a copy of The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright. The book outlines al-Qaeda's history and the history of modern Islamic extremism as well as the tactics that have been used by multiple intelligence agencies in attempting to track it and/or put a stop to it. A great book, to be sure.
But what does this have to do with Secretary of State Condi Rice? Turns out quite a lot. Because when Rice was the national security adviser, it was her job to brief the president on emails like "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S." According to a new book coming out by New York Times Reporter Philip Shenon, Rice was more interested in playing the role of supportive wife to President Bush rather than actually attempt to do her job in a responsible manner. If this sounds slightly malicious, you're right--when our national security adviser receives DAILY reports of al-Qaeda's attempts to carry out a terrorist strike against U.S. civilian targets, it should at the VERY least be taken moderately seriously.
Here are a few other emails Rice received that were subsequently ignored, according to Shenon. Read through them and ask yourself whether you would take this threat seriously.
“Bin Ladin Public Profile May Presage Attack” (May 3)
“Terrorist Groups Said Co-operating on US Hostage Plot” (May 23)
“Bin Ladin’s Networks’ Plans Advancing” (May 26)
“Bin Ladin Attacks May Be Imminent” (June 23)
“Bin Ladin and Associates Making Near-Term Threats” (June 25)
“Bin Ladin Planning High-Profile Attacks” (June 30)“Planning for Bin Ladin Attacks Continues, Despite Delays” (July 2)
Is that enough for you? Click here to read the full article.
The reason I'm posting this is because there are a lot of right-wing fantasies running around regarding Condi Rice and a run for the presidency. Not only was Rice a completely incompetent national security adviser, she is currently an extremely incompetent Secretary of State, incompetent to the point that journalists have absolutely no interest in following her around the world.
Our own diplomats think she's doing an awful job.
David Kay, former weapons inspector in Iraq, says she was the worst national security adviser in U.S. history.
Now let's get to something related but much more important: the 9/11 Commission. Exactly how incompetent was this Republican-led investigation? Quite incompetent, it turns out. And that shouldn't come as any surprise, given that the Republican Party has argued since Reagan that government just doesn't work, which is why Republicans seem to go so far out of their way to prove it. Not only were Repubilcans defending Rice and others in the Bush administration, there is evidence now that they were attempting to discredit Richard Clarke. From ThinkProgress:
"But 9/11 Commission staff director Philip Zelikow was not interested in pursuing criticisms against Rice. Zelikow — who had worked closely with Rice on the Bush transition team in 2000 and 2001 — “made it clear to the team’s investigators that Clarke should not be believed, that his testimony would be suspect.” "
I think one of the reasons there are so many 9/11 conspiracy theories is primarily because the 9/11 commission simply didn't answer enough questions. There are so, so many questions still unanswered, and as long as our government doesn't pursue the truth, those questions will be answered by the fringe theorists and outrage will continue to grow. But make no mistake: the incompetencies of the Bush administration--especially those of Condi Rice--helped ensure 9/11 happened.