Thursday, March 25, 2004

Documentation of warning ignored

"(CBS) Two years before the Sept. 11 attacks, an analysis prepared for U.S. intelligence warned that Osama bin Laden's terrorists could hijack an airliner and fly it into government buildings like the Pentagon.

"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," the September 1999 report said.

The Bush administration has asserted that no one in government had envisioned a suicide hijacking before it happened.

"Had I known that the enemy was going to use airplanes to kill on that fateful morning, I would have done everything in my power to protect the American people," Mr. Bush told U.S. Air Force Academy football team members.

"What it shows is that this information that was out there did not raise enough alarm with anybody," Fleischer acknowledged.

Bush, Powell and Rumsfeld have been using carefully crafted "legal" statements this week in which they say that had they known planes were to be hijacked and flown SPECIFICALLY into the World Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon, they would have taken steps to prevent the incidents.
They knew and did nothing. "

... I prefer the less confrontational "They should have known and failed to act."

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