March 21, 2004

Bush Knew

I’ll probably have something to say about this later, but don’t miss this tonight:

“I find it outrageous that the President is running for re-election on the grounds that he’s done such great things about terrorism. He ignored it.” -Richard Clarke, former Bush terrorism advisor.

Found at It’s a Crock.

[ Update: My reaction to the interview is posted here ]

Posted by James at March 21, 2004 6:02 PM
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I watched it. It was shocking.

I wept.

I'll probably read the book.

It won't convince a single Bush supporter, though. The nation is too polarized. People are too willing to "look the other way" as long as their boy is in power.

Posted by: Chuck S. at March 21, 2004 8:52 PM

For the first time since 9/11, I felt physically ill again.

Posted by: James (DrM) at March 21, 2004 9:10 PM

Richard Clarke, was the Terrorism "Czar" for the Clinton Administration not a "Bush terrorism advisor". He's also on record as telling reporter Richard Miniter, author of the book "Losing bin Laden," that it was the Clinton administration - not Bush - that dropped the ball. Also, I think it's safe to say that the fact that he has a new book out has something to do with the fact that he's now "breaking his silence".
Of course, if you and your readers would rather buy the party line that "Bush is an evil incompetent" I guess that's up to you.
-Jim.

Posted by: JD Mays at March 21, 2004 10:11 PM

I'd like to make a quick clarification on my above comment. Richard Clarke did serve for about a year under Bush but he was appointed by Clinton. You think he might be covering himself a little since he was the person responsible for making sure things like 9/11 didn't happen?
-jim.

Posted by: JD Mays at March 21, 2004 10:24 PM

He worked for Reagan and Bush I, but was held over and then elevated by Clinton when the terrorism threat became more dire.

He worked for Bush II for 2 years. Advising on terrorism. Thus, "terrorism advisor."

If you want to prove your assertions that he first worked for Clinton and that he did not advise Bush on terrorism, I'm all ears.

I don't think Bush is evil, but it looks as though his administraiton is dangerous in its narrowminded focus. As Bush has pointed out on numerous occasions, he likes to get his information from very filtered sources. I like to call this tendency to stick to such sources "mental inbreeding." Those of us who like ot be a little better informed read lots of sources, liberal and conservative sources alike. I bet you do it, too. Not our president.

As Clarke put it, this administration wanted to ignore what had been learned about terrorism over the last 8 years and return to an older, cold war approach to the threats against this country. They were "frozen in amber."

Is that incompetent? Bush has presided over a horrible economy and the worst domestic attack in our history. Perhaps you think he deserves a pass on that. I don't. He's diverted resources and lost American lives over the Iraq war when no proof existed to link Iraq to the perps of 9/11, or active terrorism. The lynchpin or WMDs was also smoke--Saddam had destroyed tons of weapons, just as the inspectors were discovering. Again, that was the wrong answer for Bush.

Clinton did fail to get Osama, though he tried, and he did ignore Clarke's plan to take Osama out. During the Clinton years, al Qaeda threats were averted. The LAX bombing, for example.

If Clinton is a failure in the war on terror then Bush is a miserable failure.

Posted by: James (DrM) at March 21, 2004 11:12 PM

Come on JD Mays, Clarke is a NEOCONSERVATIVE. Stop trying to paint him like he's a Clinton liberal. He's also a hawk. He hardly sounds like the kind of guy who would ruin a neocon hawk president just to make a buck.

Of course, if you would rather buy the party line that "Clarke is a lying liberal" I guess that's up to you.

Posted by: Chuck S. at March 22, 2004 1:50 AM

I'm not trying to paint Clarke as a liberal. I don't know and don't care what he is in that regard. I do know that he's made contradictory statements about this and that the Bush Administration kept him on for quite a while after Bush took office. That doesn't sound like a dramatic shift to me.
I think Clarke is an opportunist who's trying to sell books and that we he says needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
-Jim.

Posted by: JD Mays at March 22, 2004 2:10 PM

Sorry, all the salt in the world doesn't make Bush's miserable failure any easier on my palate.

But perhaps the truckloads of salt that neocons religiously consume daily in the face of mounting Bush criticism explains the blood pressure problem facing the nation.

It's a theory.

Posted by: James at March 22, 2004 3:47 PM

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