Monday, March 22, 2004

Why Bush is blocking investigation of 9/11

True confession time here folks: I have never bought in to most of the conspiracy theories that surround 9/11. It's not that I don't think this crew is morally incapable of something so dastardly as to plan or even allow something like what happened on that awful day to happen. It's just that I don't think they are competent enough to have pulled it off. I firmly believe in the old maxim that it is better to blame stupidity rather than malice because there is just so much stupidity out there.

But, then, why has the Bush administration done just about everything it could to block a meaningful investigation of what happened before, during and after 9/11? I think it is because they are trying to hide their incompetence. As this Wall Street Journal article suggests:

The Sept. 11 attacks were unprecedented in American history, and few of the country's institutions were prepared for the shock or its aftermath. The day was so chaotic that accounts can be expected to differ in hindsight, making the task of painting an accurate picture all the more difficult. In an interview last November, White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett said, "Based on what we knew, or more importantly, what we didn't know, the proper course was taken." Regarding Mr. Bush's statements that he had ordered troops to a higher alert status himself, Mr. Bartlett said the president provided a "description that the public could understand" and spoke in "broad strokes." Gen. Myers and the Pentagon declined to comment.

Democratic members of the commission have said they are looking at whether some inaccurate accounts, rather than due to confusion, may have reflected administration efforts to make its response seem faster and better coordinated than it was. Richard Ben-Veniste, a Democratic commissioner, said the panel is also examining whether official accounts of that day could have diverted attention "from an overall level of unpreparedness."

The Bushies are very good at manufacturing convenient myths and the myths that they have manufactured about the performance of Bush and his crew before, during and after 9/11 are manifest. The last thing they need is for the truth to come out and reveal that their response was clumsy in some cases, incompetent in others.

It's not that they fear the revelation of some grand plan behind 9/11.

It's that they fear the revelation that they truly were caught off-guard and didn't know what the fuck they were doing.


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