Democrats & Liberals Archives

Blame Clinton!

If at first you don’t succeed- do something completely contrary to published facts like Ashcroft and blame the previous Administration for your intelligence failures!

Not that anyone is blameless in what happened. All sorts of ‘could-haves/should haves’ exist on both sides. However, it is well documented terrorism was one of the primary targets of the Clinton Administration, especially by the time the torch was being passed.

Over 20 Al Qaeda cells were identified and dismantled by 2000. Bin Laden was targeted as a threat and steps were being taken to bring him to justice. You can argue here after the first attack on the World Trade Center, we could have gone to war- but we captured the known key players at the time. The attack on the Cole is likely where more strident action may have been appropriate. Again, no Administration of the last 12 years is without blame.

Except Bush's, of course, to hear the Attorney General speak on it. The same man who, just the day before the attacks, requested over 68 budget increases, none of those related to counter-terrorism. Who suggested trimming 65 million from state and local grants, money slated for improving defenses against terrorism. Who did not back a 58 million budget request for 'counterterrorism field agents, translators and intelligence analysts'. Janet Reno- terrorism listed as top priority. Ashcroft? Didn't make the top 7 ( seven) strategic goals.
[source: American Progress]

Let's not forget one of the most glaring breakdowns (from the Hamster):

F.B.I failed to connect several signs – Phoenix memo and al Qaeda in the U.S. “Those signs included a July 2001 memorandum from an F.B.I. agent in Phoenix warning that Al Qaeda appeared to be training terrorists in American flight schools; the arrest the next month of Zacarias Moussaoui, a flight school student who was later connected to the German terrorist cell that carried out the attacks; and the discovery in late August that two Qaeda operatives had entered the United States.” [Source: New York Times, 4/6/04]

F.B.I never passed threat information to the field. “Despite a sudden burst of intelligence in the summer of 2001 pointing to an imminent Al Qaeda attack, including indications of a major event within the United States, the FBI never passed that threat information to its thousands of field agents across the country.” [Source: LA Times, 4/10/04]

President Clinton wasn't even in office at this time.

We haven't even gotten into the FAA disregarding protocol on 9/11, 140 Saudis allowed to leave (when no one else could fly) the country without interrogation (even though most of the hijackers were- you guessed it- Saudi), taking time to read to school children after knowledge of the 1st plane striking the Towers...you get the picture.

Strange...I thought perjury was a crime.

Posted by tamsen at April 14, 2004 3:18 AM