Five Unanswered Questions About 9/11 (Paperback)
by James Ridgeway
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great admirers of Village Voice journalist James Ridgeway -- and
he puts his talents to use in this excellent analysis of what the
9/11 Commission failed to tell us.
In essence, the 9/11 Commission was a set-up job to protect those
responsible for not making a serious effort to stop 9/11 from happening;
it was not a Commission that was empowered to go wherever the truth
took it. In fact, it set up as one of its primary goals not to "point
fingers at" anyone for the failures that led to 9/11 or hold
anyone responsible. The Commission was very clear about this: "Our
aim has not been to assign individual blame."
So, the Bush Administration
has used the 9/11 Commission as a convenient tool to absolve the
White House of any malfeasance in letting 9/11
happen. But, as BuzzFlash has noted ad nauseam, Bush and Rice were
notified in August of 2001 of imminent likely Al Qaeda hijackings
in the United States. And they did nothing -- we repeat, once again
-- nothing to prevent such hijackings from occurring. If they had
acted (instead of Bush going off on a month-long vacation), then
9/11 might have indeed been prevented from occurring.
Ridgeway's analysis of how the 9/11 Commission was created to insulate
the Washington status quo from blame is astute and damning. The refusal
of Bush or Cheney to testify under oath or in public -- and Bush's
insistence that Cheney and he speak to Commission members together
-- was indicting in and of itself. What kind of president would only
answer softball questions with his vice-president present? One who
had something to hide -- or wasn't capable of lying to a Commission
on his own, we venture.
"The 5 Unanswered Questions About 9/11: What the 9/11 Commission Report
Failed to Tell Us" will not satisfy those who believe that the
attack was "an inside job." That's not at all where Ridgeway
is coming from.
Instead, he sees 9/11 coming about as a result of Bush's incompetence
and disinterest in terrorism prior to the Twin Towers and Pentagon
attacks, as well as chronic institutional failures in D.C. "The
Intelligence Community, in many ways," Ridgeway writes, "took
blame that rightly should have been levied against the Bush Administration." But,
Ridgeway also notes, that doesn't mean that the intelligence community
was without blame. Nor does it mean that they fully cooperated with
the 9/11 Commission (the White House certainly didn't).
his query of the 9/11 Commission's failings with this observation: "Surely
even the most cynical among us believes that a betrayal of such magnitude
must carry consequences. Without
consequences, there is no justice for the dead and no safety for
the living. Why has no one been held accountable?"