Tuesday, September 11, 2012

9/11 — A Date To Remember

ELEVEN YEARS LATER, HAVE WE ABSORBED THE LESSONS of the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks? To hear the chickenhawk bellicosity of Mitt Romney, to see the stubborn ascendancy of America's fascist ruling class, the neocons, led by Dick Cheney and his PNAC cohorts, like John Bolton, Paula Dobriansky (a PNAC founder), Eliot Cohen, Robert Kagan, and Dan Senor, to name a few, all members of Romney's "war cabinet," the answer is a resounding and frightening NO.

At the same time, most Democrats capitulated to the Bush regime's national security state 2.0 — the first version was the establishment of the CIA during the Cold War years, as the secret arm of American empire, the tyranny of the domestic surveillance state under J. Edgar Hoover, the illegal spying on prominent Americans such as Martin Luther King, on the civil rights and anti-war movements, and COINTELPRO, only to be codified today under cover of 9/11. Americans have ceded our freedoms to the national security state as a result of the trauma of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Today's New York Times has a devastating Op-Ed detailing the multiple warnings ignored by the Bush administration of the impending attacks, "The Deafness Before The Storm." Ironically, the CIA emerged as the good guys in this tragic debacle:
"And the C.I.A. repeated the warnings in the briefs that followed. Operatives connected to Bin Laden, one reported on June 29, expected the planned near-term attacks to have “dramatic consequences,” including major casualties. On July 1, the brief stated that the operation had been delayed, but “will occur soon.” Some of the briefs again reminded Mr. Bush that the attack timing was flexible, and that, despite any perceived delay, the planned assault was on track.

Yet, the White House failed to take significant action. Officials at the Counterterrorism Center of the C.I.A. grew apoplectic. On July 9, at a meeting of the counterterrorism group, one official suggested that the staff put in for a transfer so that somebody else would be responsible when the attack took place, two people who were there told me in interviews. The suggestion was batted down, they said, because there would be no time to train anyone else."
But today is a day for remembrance and reflection; a day to honor the victims and give thanks for we, the living; a day to rededicate ourselves to a world without war, strife, and terrorism. And a day to understand the lessons of 9/11/2001, that ultimately security comes not in trading our freedoms and democracy for Fortress America but in striving for a world in which terrorism and war are finally obsolete.

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