Saturday, February 12, 2005

Clarke '08

As much as I like Wesley Clark, I think Richard Clarke would make an awesome presidential canididate. When he came out with his book and testified before the 9/11 commission, he blew everyone away with his story and the honesty of it all.

The Republican Noise Machine tried to drown him out and question his knowledge and motives, but they came off looking despirate and disjointed. Rice and Hadley (her deputy) had their hats handed to them on 60 minutes and in other forums where they were seriously questioned. The lies and incompetency of Rice and Hadley showed through, despite their denials.

It is too bad that Clarke foreswore working in another White House or running himself. Maybe we could draft him. Even though he is more like a old-fashioned George H.W. Bush-style Republican, I think those are the type of people Democrats need to win these days to recapture the presidency.

Remember his claim that he sent Condi a memo in January 2001 saying the terrorist are a real threat and this is what we need to do about them? And Condi claimed she got no such memo? Well the Times has the scoop on the now-declassified memo:

The 13-page proposal presented to Dr. Rice by her top counterterrorism adviser, Richard A. Clarke, laid out ways to step up the fight against Al Qaeda, focusing on Osama bin Laden's headquarters in Afghanistan. The ideas included giving "massive support" to anti-Taliban groups "to keep Islamic extremist fighters tied down"; destroying terrorist training camps "while classes are in session" and then sending in teams to gather intelligence on terrorist cells; deploying armed drone aircraft against known terrorists; more aggressively tracking Qaeda money; and accelerating the F.B.I.'s translation and analysis of material from surveillance of terrorism suspects in American cities.

Exactly like told us in his book and testimony, and exactly opposite of Rice's claims, not even close:

"the months before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal aviation officials reviewed dozens of intelligence reports that warned about Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda, some of which specifically discussed airline hijackings and suicide operations." The article explained that the Federal Aviation Administration "received 52 intelligence reports" that mentioned Osama bin Laden or Al Qaeda prior to September 11, 2001, and that the FAA warned airports that if "the intent of the hijacker is not to exchange hostages for prisoners, but to commit suicide in a spectacular explosion, a domestic hijacking would probably be preferable."

Fifty-two? What was she doing when Clarke was banging down her door, Tenent's "hair was on fire" and the FAA had sent her 52 warnings, which included a method and other reports which said SOON in the summer of 2001...clearing brush with Dubya in Crawford? She did call him "my husband" once. Did she not want to hurt his feelings, interupt his runs, naps or solitare games? (he used to play the windows version as governor)

At least some of the blood from those 3,000 people who died on September 11 is on her hands (and Clarke's hands as he will admit). At the very least, GOPers have to admit that it is oftly coincidential that all these damaging things were blocked by the Bush administration until after the inauguration.

If only the American people had had all the facts in front of them, the entire senate intelligence committe report, the entire 9/11 report, all of Clarke's memos...I wonder if voters would have still felt that George W. Bush had/would keep them more safe than John Kerry.

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