The revelation instantly created a politically charged atmosphere in which every White House statement about pre-Sept. 11 threats was subjected to new scrutiny. Fleischer, for example, was asked by reporters hours after the attacks whether "there had been any warnings that the president knew of."
He replied, "No warnings."
"I don't think this should come as any surprise to anybody," he said of the warning given to Bush. "But the president did not not receive information about the use of airplanes as missiles by suicide bombers. This was a new type of attack that was not foreseen."
It was well known in the counterintelligence community that the Al Qaeda were looking at car bombs, truck bombs,
boat bombs. It's no surprise they would have wanted to use aviation as well.
"The idea of a suicide attack against a metropolitan area was first coined in 1994, when Algerian GIA allegedly during a hijack tried to command the [airplane] to fly over metropolitan Paris and then crash it on the city itself," Ransdorp said.
That attempt failed; French troops stormed the plane before it could take off and head for Paris and the Eiffel Tower.
Comment: Guess what happened next? Terrorists started learning to fly. And we knew all about it. The FBI agent in Phoenix connected the dots... but no one listened. He should be promoted. His bosses should be fired.
Jury selection began in New York Monday in the federal trial of three men accused of plotting to bomb 11 planes headed for the United States on a single day in 1995. The alleged plot involved leaving bombs on flights that would take off from Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Singapore.
Vince Cannistraro, former director of the CIA's Counter terrorism Division calls it, "Extraordinarily ambitious, very complicated to bring off, and probably unparalleled by other terrorist operations that we know of."
The report, entitled the "Sociology and Psychology of Terrorism: Who Becomes a Terrorist and Why?," described the
Al Qaeda's expected retaliation for the U.S. cruise missile attack against Al Qaeda's training facilities in Afghanistan on August 20, 1998, could take several forms of terrorist attack in the nation's capital. Al Qaeda could detonate a Chechen-type building-buster bomb at a federal building. Suicide bomber(s) belonging to Al Qaeda's Martyrdom Battalion could crash-land an aircraft packed with high explosives (C-4 and semtex) into the Pentagon, the headquarters of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), or the White House.
In mid-August Minneapolis agents arrested a French-Moroccan flight student, Zacarias Moussaoui, and worked themselves into a frenzy over the possibility that he was planning a terrorist act involving a large aircraft, one official said. One agent even speculated in his notes that Moussaoui, whom some authorities now believe was supposed to have been the 20th hijacker, might be planning to crash a plane into the World Trade Center.
I'm not completely convinced we could have stopped 9-11 from occurring. We surely could have beefed up security. That may have been enough. Airport security experts have long been openly critical. But, we are a free nation, and because of that we will remain attackable. I don't believe President Bush was complicit in designing 9-11 (but God knows a lot of you out there sure do - I will grant the evidence does seem to show Afghanistan was targeted for attack well before 9-11... but that's another topic).
In fact, the recent spin is that President didn't even get the memo. John Ashcroft got it and didn't give it to him. But can we believe it? Before our eyes we are watching this administration lose credibility to even mainstream Americans.
THIS IS WHAT BOTHERS ME. THE SPIN MACHINE.
If you are incapable of seeing the Clinton-esque parsing of words and flat out lying at this point... well, complimentary tickets to the 2004 Republican National Convention are in the mail.
Ari Fleischer says in essence "Well, we knew about the hijacking, but not the whole planes as missile idea. Sheesh, we would have done something then!"
Think about that for a second. (keep thinking, it gets funnier as you reprocess it) So let me get this straight... the White House somehow believed hijacking US commercial aircraft was no big deal really? But if they thought a hijacked plane might crash, well then they would have gotten top personnel right on it?!
Condoleeza Rice stood there, after all the above information was out, and STILL said to the press - "No one could have conceived of planes as a weapon." This is just pure stupidity to say. What she, Ari and the President should have said is... "None of the White House staff nor the President had any idea this kind of threat existed. In retrospect, we now see that our intelligence community was well aware of the possibility."
And they should have said it in September 2001.
Since WWII's Kamikaze pilots we have been aware that any country with people willing to die for a cause might use airplanes as weapons. Tom Clancy used an airliner to crash into the White House in a book of his over 10 years ago. Suicide bombers recently have used nearly every vehicle at their disposal to commit murder. One of my points on this website all along has been that the intelligence community must have thought of this as a reasonable threat.
You'd have to be a literal idiot to have a job in anti-terrorism and not consider that a group with suicidal members might use airplanes as a weapon. I think the news clips above are good evidence that we knew about it and thought about it.
What's really missing from this whole nightmare is NO ONE is getting fired. NO ONE is accountable! In private business if you lose a big customer you're fired. The intelligence and defense community lost the World Trade Towers. It doesn't get much worse than that.... and Bush was congratulating them on a job well done weeks after 9-11.
"The buck seems to be stopping nowhere. If I were an average citizen, Id be pissed at the whole American government, says a senior official who has worked on counterterrorism."
It should be clear to all observers now. It was not a job well done.
And now, the administration is parsing words in a way that must be leaving Bill Clinton and George Stephanopoulos impressed, relieved (now they're not alone) and probably a bit giddy. This administration is squirming, and it shows.
This time things are different. The press is in feeding frenzy mode. As well they should be. I've seen nearly every main stream reporter taking the administration to task. Even John McLaughlin of the McLaughlin Group said "C'mon, we've known since WWII's Kamikaze pilots that planes could be weapons."
The 1993 WTC Bomber trial evidence that revealed violence on or using commercial airlines as a real possibility has been quoted in the main stream press. Only conspiracy "kooks" were exposing that evidence a few months ago. It was being laughed off by the skeptics. I wonder, are they still laughing it off? The press is connecting the U.S.S. Cole suicide bombing, the truck suicide bombings, the evidence from thwarted hijackings and even government reports to show that "Hey wait, this was very conceivable. We've been led on by this administration. And they are STILL sticking to the story."
There's chum in the water. The sharks are circling.
Finally, as I've said all along regarding the Flight 93 misinformation, if they are lying about this, what else are they lying about?
It's worth visiting http://www.buzzflash.comto read a plethora of information and commentary on this and related topics. Buzzflash is largely derided by right wing publications, but facts are facts and Buzzflash offers many not available elsewhere.
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