March 22, 2004

The Bush administration has failed in its most critical role: to reduce the terrorist threat to the American people.

Another US soldier has died in Iraq. For what?
White House press secretary Scott McSullen didn't look very comfortable or believable this morning, did he? (Ari Fleischer got out of town just in time.)The CBS 60 Minutes interview with Richard Clarke was a powerful condemnation, a powerful blow to the feigned CREDIBILITY, COMPETENCE and CHARACTER of the _resident...It was a moment of TRUTH rare in these troubled times...Clarke proved himself a brave, bright, strong, eloquent and angry man...Not even Ariel Sharon's missiles could save the Bush Cabal from a bad day...Immediately, Sen. Bob Graham (D-Fraudida)--one of the LNS favorites, along with Wesley Clark (D-NATO), on the very short list of Kerry VP choices, issued an articulate, authorative statement underscoring the _resident's failure in leadership: "The facts are that within six months of the first bombs falling on Afghanistan, this administration was diverting military and intelligence resources to its planned war in Iraq, which allowed Al Qaeda to regenerate," said Mr. Graham, who was one of the first lawmakers to label the war with Iraq a distraction from the fight against terror. "As the people of Indonesia, Morocco, Saudi Arabia and most recently Spain have learned painfully well, this president failed to execute the real war on terrorism."
Now, Wes Clark, Hillary Clinton (D-NY), the International Firefighters Association and the 9/11 Families and others have to stand up, just as Bob Graham has, and keep heated attention on Richard Clarke's stunning insights...Yes, there is a lot of other news today...But stay disciplined, stay on message...Here are the talking points provided by John Podesta's Center for American Progress...

Center for American Progress: The Bush administration has failed in its most critical role: to reduce the terrorist threat to the American people. That's the message from former White House counterrorism expert Richard Clarke whose new memoir says the administration "failed to act prior to September 11 on the threat from al Qaeda despite repeated warnings." The administration's singular focus on Saddam Hussein led to "an unnecessary and costly war in Iraq that strengthened the fundamentalist, radical Islamic terrorist movement worldwide," according to Clarke, who served under four presidents.

Repudiate the 9/11 Cover-Up and the Iraq War Lies, Show Up for Democracy in 2004: Defeat Bush (again!)


http://www.americanprogress.org/site/pp.asp?c=biJRJ8OVF&b=39254

Administration Ignored Real Terrorist Threat

March 22, 2004

The Bush administration has failed in its most critical role: to reduce the terrorist threat to the American people. That's the message from former White House counterrorism expert Richard Clarke whose new memoir says the administration "failed to act prior to September 11 on the threat from al Qaeda despite repeated warnings." The administration's singular focus on Saddam Hussein led to "an unnecessary and costly war in Iraq that strengthened the fundamentalist, radical Islamic terrorist movement worldwide," according to Clarke, who served under four presidents.

The Bush administration downgraded multiple warnings about al Qaeda prior to 9/11. White House officials neglected strong warnings from former National Security Adviser Sandy Berger about the critical threat from al Qaeda, choosing instead to focus on things like missile defense and deposing Saddam Hussein. While the cabinet-rank "principals" were meeting at least weekly on terrorism during the Clinton administration, the first cabinet-level meeting on al Qaeda occurred nine months after the Bush administration came to office and one week before the attacks on New York and Washington.
After Sept. 11, 2001, the administration used the terrorist attacks for political and ideological gain. Clarke reveals that on Sept. 12, 2001 President Bush ordered him to, "Look into Iraq, Saddam," despite clear evidence that al Qaeda was behind the attacks and despite the lack of any credible link between Saddam and Osama bin Laden. The administration immediately used the tragedy and outpouring of public support to shift attention to its decades-long agenda of ousting Saddam Hussein a critical lapse in judgment that did nothing to stop the ongoing threat from al Qaeda.
The administration's misguided war against Iraq diverted critical focus from al Qaeda. The administration's disingenuous and inept handling of Iraq is now fully exposed. Instead of focusing on bin Laden and al Qaeda, key Bush administration officials chose to follow up on their long-term dream to overthrow Saddam. And the administration deceived the American people by promoting a war in Iraq that has failed to address the real terrorist threat.
Daily Talking Points is a product of the Center for American Progress, a non-partisan research and educational institute committed to progressive principles for a strong, just and free America.



Posted by richard at March 22, 2004 04:10 PM