We would all like to think that America has changed since September 11, 2001. As a nation, we believed we were invincible before the attack on 9/11. America has changed since that attack. Some Americans are standing up against the evil that is islamofascism. Unfortunately, other Americans have come to believe that our nation was to blame for those attacks and are condemning our citizens for the fact that they happened (e.g., Ward Churchill as noted in the previous commentary).
So, just how has America changed since September 11, 2001?
America before September 11, 2001
America’s ability to gain intelligence concerning terrorists had been decimated.
President Clinton’s administration had weakened the ability of intelligence organizations
to talk with one another. That administration had also made it impossible for intelligence
operatives to even talk to “bad guys” in order to gain information. The wall between the
CIA and the FBI was raised and enforced. CIA staffing was reduced.
And it was even worse than that. According to Minneapolis Special FBI Agent Harry Samit in questioning at the Zacarias Moussaoui sentencing trial, red flags were ignored by the FBI, even after French intelligence advised the FBI twelve days before 9/11 that Moussaoui was “very dangerous” and that he had been indoctrinated by Muslim extremists (Greg Gordon, Minneapolis StarTribune, 3/21/06). According to Samit, a request for a warrant “to search Moussaoui’s belongings–like earlier ones–was shot down by headquarters supervisor Michael Maltbie and his boss, David Frasca. Samit said Maltbie had voiced concerns that an “inadequately documented warrant request would hurt his career.”
In pre-9/11 America, intelligence had been turned over to the bureaucrats who, like President Clinton, were only concerned about their reputations and their careers.
This was the “intelligence community” that President Bush inherited. This was the intelligence community that cared more about careers and the rights of the bad guys than about the safety of Americans. This is the intelligence community that did not provide the information needed for President Bush’s administration to prevent 9/11. While those on the left blamed President Bush for the disaster, the fault lays firmly in the laps of Clinton era bureaucrats. However, President Bush did not act swiftly enough to remove those bureaucrats and for that he shares some of the responsibility.
America after September 11, 2001
The leftists continued to blame President Bush for 9/11 and mock his behavior immediately following the attack. They said that President Bush just didn’t do enough. They continue to say that. But, in actuality, he did everything he had to do and much more. He broke down the wall between the FBI and the CIA. He implemented the Patriot Act. He attacked the terrorists in the Middle East where they live. He conducted limited telephone surveillance of suspected Al Qaida terrorists and those they called.
President Bush did more than his predecessor or any other Democrat to try to keep America safe. Still, the leftists condemned the man and continue to do so. President Obama has continued most of the strategies against terrorism that President Bush put in play, yet very few leftists openly criticize President Obama for those actions.
Condemnation of the right is easy for those who live a life guided by leftist ideology. Even they must realize that much of what they say is not true. But, they know that if they say it enough, others may believe it.