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Bush anti-terrorism adviser: Iraq targeted immediately after 9/11

by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / March 20, 2004 2:07 AM PST
Adviser: Rumsfeld wanted Iraq attack after 9/11.
>> Clarke, who is expected to testify Tuesday before a federal panel reviewing the attacks, said Rumsfeld complained in the meeting that "there aren't any good targets in Afghanistan and there are lots of good targets in Iraq."

"Rumsfeld was saying we needed to bomb Iraq," Clarke said. "We all said, 'But no, no, al-Qaida is in Afghanistan'."<<

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The opinions expressed above are my own,
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Notice the difference, Gang....
by J. Vega / March 20, 2004 4:48 AM PST

Gang, notice the difference in the same story that was posted yesterday? That one used the Reuters story, which started off:
"NEW YORK (Reuters) - A former White House anti-terrorism advisor says the Bush administration considered bombing Iraq in retaliation after Sept. 11, 2001 even though it was clear al Qaeda had carried out the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon."
Then a few lines later (they quoted the program a CBS one to run on Sunday) as saying, "They were talking about Iraq on 9/11. They were talking about it on 9/12," Clarke says...".
See the problem? If you don't remember, look at something like the front page of the NY Times on 9/12. The next day after the attack, 9/12, they still didn't know who was responsible for it and used the term "terrorists". But the leadin to the Reuters story has him appear to claim that in the meetings "it was clear al Qaeda had carried out the attacks".
I assume that Dave's newspaper of choice caught that one and made sure that it was not in their account.

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LOL J. How many other permutations will Dave find for the same story
by SteveGargini / March 20, 2004 6:24 AM PST

Dave will accomplish what Osama has failed to do -
He'll bore us to death Sad

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Hey now, DK can't help it if everyone who quits the Bush White House tells the same story!
Wink
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Nor that just about all had worked in the Clinton administration previously...(NT)
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Re: Notice the difference, Gang.... -- Apparently I missed a thread; sorry! (NT)
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / March 20, 2004 12:42 PM PST

.

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Re:Bush anti-terrorism adviser -- Who else watched 60 Minutes tonight

(Side note: Why couldn't BC, my alma mater, have hit the last second shot instead of UAB? Sad )

Here's the link: Did Bush Press For Iraq-9/11 Link?
>>The administration maintains that it cannot find any evidence that the conversation about an Iraq-9/11 tie-in ever took place.... When told by [Correspondent Leslie] Stahl that 60 Minutesi has two sources who tell us independently of Clarke that the encounter happened, including "an actual witness," Hadley responded, "Look, I stand on what I said." <<(Clarke indicates Hadley was the one who told him "wrong answer -- do it again" when he presented a report in mid-Seprember indicating that there was no connection between Iraq and Al Qaeda)

Video is available at the CBS site -- and the indictment of Bush et al in being fixated on iraq is quite compelling. One criticism was particularly interesting -- Clarke says "I blame the entire Bush leadership for continuing to work on Cold War issues when they came back into power in 2001. It was as though they were preserved in amber from when they left office eight years earlier. They came back. They wanted to work on the same issues right away: Iraq, Star Wars. Not new issues, the new threats that had developed over the preceding eight years."

Asked about an Iraqi-terrorist link in a portion not in the transcript, Clarke said the last document support for terrorist (other than the much-publicized money for the families of suicide bombers in Israel) was in 1993, when Iraq sought to kill GHWB in Kuwait. In retaliation, we took out the iraqi intelligence HQ with cruise missiles, and passed word that if there was a next time, the whole government would be targeted. Said Clarke, "it must have worked, as there were no Iraqi terrorist attacks against us until after we invaded them."

If you're serious about this election, don't just listen to the Bush/White House apologists -- watch the video for yourself! Again, the link is HERE, and the javascript link to the video is in the upper left-hand corner.

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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Re: 60 Minutes tonight -- DRAT! They don't have the whole video...

They have about five excerpts of 2-3 minutes each; the others are halfway down the page on the right.

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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If you're serious about this election ...
by Evie / March 21, 2004 10:15 PM PST

... damn straight I am! And I know a partisan hack when I see one.

Clarke is acting like asking if Saddam was linked to 9-11 immediately afterward is something sinister. Gee, last I heard there were ties to Iraq for the first WTC bombing! BTW, who said this?

So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real, but it is not new. It has been with us since the end of the Persian Gulf War. Regrettably the current Administration failed to take the opportunity to bring this issue to the United Nations two years ago or immediately after September 11th, when we had such unity of spirit with our allies.

None other than John Kerry. Of course now Bush is being slammed for not acting fast enough on Iraq and being predisposed to look for any excuse to act on Iraq all at the same time!

It would be informative to all to point out that Clarke is a close friend and former close associate of Rand Beers -- Kerry's Homeland Security advisor. Wonder why Ms. Stahl didn't bother to ask if this might factor into his new outlook? Fishing for a cabinet position in a Kerry administration or something??

Evie Happy

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Re:If you're serious about this election ...
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 12:06 AM PST

"Asking" whether Saddam was linked to 9/11?

Richard A. Clarke, the White House counterterrorism coordinator at the time, recounts in a forthcoming book details of a meeting the day after the terrorist attacks during which top officials considered the U.S. response. Even then, he said, they were certain that al-Qaida was to blame and there was no hint of Iraqi involvement.

"Rumsfeld was saying we needed to bomb Iraq," Clarke said. "We all said, 'But no, no, al-Qaida is in Afghanistan."

Clarke, who is expected to testify Tuesday before a federal panel reviewing the attacks, said Rumsfeld complained in the meeting that "there aren't any good targets in Afghanistan and there are lots of good targets in Iraq."


Doesn't sound to me like he's saying anyone was "asking" whether Iraq might be tied to 9/11.

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As has been pointed out to you before Josh ...
by Evie / March 22, 2004 12:48 AM PST

... the key phrase is details of a meeting the day after the terrorist attacks.

There was NO certainty that it was Al Quaeda at that point. Nor was there any certainty whether or not Saddam was tied to any terrorist groups or Al Quaeda itself. Remember that lead about some Iraqis meeting in Germany with Al Quaeda members? I think it turned out to be inconsequential, but it was a theory in place and being investigated for months following the attacks.

Careful Josh, even your guy Kerry says the Bush administration should have gone to the UN to go after Iraq immediately after 9-11. He said so in his Foreign Policy Speech at Georgetown University on January 23, 2003

So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real, but it is not new. It has been with us since the end of the Persian Gulf War. Regrettably the current Administration failed to take the opportunity to bring this issue to the United Nations two years ago or immediately after September 11th, when we had such unity of spirit with our allies.


The man is trying to sell books and put himself in good favor for a position in a (God forbid!) Kerry administration.

Evie Happy

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Re:As has been pointed out to you before Josh ...
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 1:55 AM PST
There was NO certainty that it was Al Quaeda at that point. Nor was there any certainty whether or not Saddam was tied to any terrorist groups or Al Quaeda itself.

This book claims otherwise. That's what this thread is about.
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Re:Re:As has been pointed out to you before Josh ...
by Evie / March 22, 2004 2:01 AM PST

Not as I read it Josh, Clarke is all over TV claiming that Bush pulled him into this meeting and tried to get him to find a link to Saddam. He puts that meeting at 9/12/01. He claims it was certainty it was Al Quaeda at that point? I find that very hard to believe. I can believe he thought so with legitimate certainty based on his own hunches, but it would have been irresponsible to not look at all possibilities before dismissing some and accepting others. Look what just happened to Spain and the ETA for example.

Evie Happy

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Re:Re:Re:As has been pointed out to you before Josh ...
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 2:30 AM PST

Neither of us really knows what the White House knew or didn't know on 9/12/01. You're going on your own hunches here. I haven't read enough about this book to know whether the author can back up his claims with documentary proof.

Obviously I can't link to it, but I remember the threads in the old forum that began on 9/11. The talk of bin Laden was almost immediate -- within an hour or so of the beginning of the attacks. I don't remember anyone mentioning Saddam.

On a parallel note, I recall an interview with Bill Clinton in which he was asked what his immediate reaction to 9/11 was. He said his first thoughts were of bin Laden and the Iranians, and he quickly dismissed the latter, figuring the Iranians weren't crazy enough to attack the US on its own soil.

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When he was on 60 Minutes, Josh ...
by J. Vega / March 22, 2004 3:45 AM PST

Josh, in the very start of that 60 minutes interview, he said, "Well I kept thinking of the words from Apocalypse Now, the whispered words of Marlin Brando when he thought about Vietnam, 'tbe horror!, the horror!', because we knew what was going on in New York. We knew about the bodies flying out of the windows, people falling thru the air, we knew that Osama bin Laden had succeeded in bringing horror to the streets of America.".
Think about the time and situation. The Twin towers in New York were hit, and the White House had been evacuated as a possible target. He was one of the small handfull who stayed in the White house. The above quote was what he said was in his mind in the evacuated White House.
The Pesident was being flown to "The Hole", all commercial flights were in the process being grounded, and the damage to New York and the Pentagon were being dealt with.
And he would have us believe that in the opening moments of this situation he was sitting there in that beehive of activity thinking the above rather than thinking about and dealing with the boiling crisis at hand and on the table in the meeting where he was present.

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I didn't see the interview, but....
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 3:55 AM PST

....I can tell you from my own experience that day that all kinds of thoughts can run through a person's head, some more logical and appropriate to the situation at hand than others.

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Re:Re:As has been pointed out to you before Josh ...
by Roger NC / March 22, 2004 4:14 AM PST

My largest cause for skepticism is the timing of the book and it's promotion. It's timing this spring, not last year, not next year, is a bit fortunate isn't it?

What a promotion for his book, getting free national news coverage over arguing about what was and won't said in meetings after 9/11.

For now, I'll leave it at his timing seems unusually benificient for both his bank account and Kerry's campaign.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Timing
by Dan McC / March 22, 2004 4:27 AM PST

You make it sound like people are wondering about the timing. Of course they timed it like this on purpose. Why shouldn't they. The publishers want to take advantage of all the hubbub of the elections and the one year anniversary of the war to conquer Iraq. This is no accident. Anyone who doesn't see it is too naive to be posting in this forum. Anyone who denies the timing was intentional is just being coy.

Of course, the timing in no way affects the accuracy or inaccuracy of the material.

Dan

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Re:Timing
by Roger NC / March 22, 2004 4:29 AM PST
In reply to: Timing
Of course, the timing in no way affects the accuracy or inaccuracy of the material.

Maybe, but it sure affects the appearance of the author's purpose doesn't it.

And that affects my opinion of his veracity.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com
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Re:Re:Timing
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 4:36 AM PST
In reply to: Re:Timing

In most cases the publisher, not the author, chooses the timing for the release of a new book. Whether this author was told what the expected release date would be in advance of writing the book I don't know.

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Re:Re:Timing
by Dan McC / March 22, 2004 4:46 AM PST
In reply to: Re:Timing

Unless he had a super special deal with the publisher, his control over when the book would be released would have been pretty close to zero. Maybe they let him choose what picture of his to put on the jacket, but that's not guaranteed.

You don't have to wonder at the publisher's motive. They want to make money.

Dan

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Re: Timing
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / March 22, 2004 1:10 PM PST
In reply to: Re:Timing

Hi, Roger.

Clarke's words speak for himself -- he thinks Bush has done a horrible job in fighting terrorism, and doesn't deserve another term. Y'all assume that's merely partisan, but through his career Clarke has not been partisan -- he's served the best interests of the country, regardless of which party was in power at the time. Methinks he has the same motivation still.

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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Re:Re: Timing
by Roger NC / March 23, 2004 8:07 AM PST
In reply to: Re: Timing
. Y'all assume that's merely partisan,

Why is My largest cause for skepticism is the timing of the book and it's promotion. equal to assuming his book and criticism is merely partisan. I do think it may indicate a wanting to hurt Bush, yes.

However, I said my skepticism, not that his book was all lies. Perceptions and purposes may inflence presentation of even hard facts. How much they can influence someones interpretation of those same facts is obvious.

I would be less skeptical a year ago, much less a year from now, even if Bush is still in office.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com
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Re: Timing -- Shees, Roger!
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / March 23, 2004 12:32 PM PST
In reply to: Re:Re: Timing

Basically what you're saying is that anyone who thinks Bush has done a horrible job must believe that for purely partisan reasons. Pardon me for seeing that as a "heads Bush wins, tails Kerry loses" approach towards the election! If you think a change is needed, you call for it when something can be done about it, not months or years too late!

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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Not quite, but close...
by Edward ODaniel / March 24, 2004 3:58 AM PST

it is more like he is saying that anyone who blindly believes and ignores readily available evidence to the contrary (such as you ultra left libs) is purely partisan.

IF he HONESTLY thought "a change was needed" why did he not speak up sooner? Book wasn't ready yet?

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I guess if that's the way you see what I said, that's it.
by Roger NC / March 24, 2004 4:27 AM PST

Ok, I do sound skeptical of anyone critisizing Bush. And I admit I tend to wonder if former members of the administration quit because they couldn't stomach it or can't stomach the admin because they were dropped. Hopefully if the more serious accusations are true, there will be more collaborating and less someone's opinion evidence coming forth.

I'm not dismissing his book completely, I haven't read it. I guess I'm just suspicious of anything that comes out after Jan 1 of an election year.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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The author denies any political motivation on his part
by Josh K / March 22, 2004 5:45 AM PST
Bush administration rejects Clarke charges

Clarke has denied being politically motivated. He is a registered Republican, and told ABC, "I'm an independent. I've spent 30 years in the government. ... I will never work in any Kerry administration because I'm not going to work in the government again."
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Re:The author denies any political motivation on his part
by Roger NC / March 22, 2004 9:37 AM PST

I grant you point in the other post that the publisher more than the author controls the release date, at least after the author turns over his final revision of the manuscript and the editor approves it.

I'll even grant that he having worked for administrations both Republican and Democratic is a point in his favor of doing his job well. He also must keep his personal view on politics low key considering how much both parties dislike having anyone around they preceive as disagreeing with the head man, at least publically.

But so far what he has said in the news, while worth investigating, has made me wonder. At least, what little I've heard and read. I admit to not being well up to day on his claims.

Heck, I probably get more exposure to both sides claims and counterclaims through discussion, links, and mudslinging here in Speakeasy than I do elsewhere.

There are some on all viewpoints willing to provide links and keep an eye on breaking news and tell us all about it, so as long as I remember everyone has an agenda (in general, not in negative connotation), I get a fair amout of exposure to both sides here.

RogerNC

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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'Sorry, wrong answer; do it again' re 'Iraq not involved'...
by Dave Konkel [Moderator] / March 23, 2004 12:27 PM PST

doesn't sound much like just trying to cover all the possibilities, Evie. You should have seen Hadley turn pale Sunday night when Leslie Sathl told him on camera that CBS had two independent corroborations of that part of Clarke's story, including an eyemwitness to that conversation -- between Clarke and Hadley himself! No one who watched that interview with even close to an open mind could have though Clarke wasn't telling the truth about that.

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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Sorry Dave, that has been proven to be a lie
by Evie / March 23, 2004 8:07 PM PST

He was told to resubmit with updated information.

Meanwhile, since Clarke is your hero, you might be interested in a few other things he says in the book -- of course of no interest to the Bush-haters at CBS -- where he connects Al Quaeda with Iraq and WMD.

To me this guy has lost all credibility, which is sad because it hurts our country in the long run in not being able to trust anything he says about the past 10 years Sad

Evie Happy

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