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AdLib On September - 1 - 2011

As the 10th anniversary of Al Qaeda’s 9/11/2001 attack on the U.S. nears, I must confess to a feeling of unease…not about more terrorist attacks but about how the anniversary of this heinous act will be treated.

The first of two unappetizing appetizers to the banquet that’s to come is Dick Cheney’s release of a book that proudly touts the torture, deaths and destruction that he and the Bush administrations wrought in the aftermath of 9/11. He’s appeared to hype the book and brag about his crimes against international law on every cable channel except Animal Planet (which might have been the most appropriate).

The second run up to this anniversary was the National Geographic Channel’s infomercial-like presentation of George W. Bush’s historical revisions of his first reaction to the 9/11 attacks, his eventual responses to it and his surprise that it even happened (how was he supposed to know that a daily briefing titled, “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US” and described the hijacking of planes wasn’t about Bin Laden collaborating with Unions for better pay?).

Many stations on cable and network tv have one or more 9/11 specials planned. No doubt, many will take viewers back through that horrible day and many of the most tragic and traumatic events that occured.

I am a lover of history and there can be no question about the historic importance of that day and how it changed the course of America. However, there can be a thin line between exploring those events and exploiting the horror of that day just for ratings or other less than altruistic agendas.

The question for each of these alleged tributes is, are they reflecting genuine remembrance and insights or are they just terror porn?

Will they honor the lives of the innocent that were brutally taken that day and those who loved them or will the real focus be the planes crashing into the towers repeatedly, people jumping and those on the streets running in terror from the debris clouds of the collapsing towers?

Do we gain something worthwhile from seeing those disturbing images repeatedly? Is it important that they be refreshed in our minds periodically? For me they seem drug-like, working on parts of the brain such as the fear center. Those images communicate a sense of fear, sorrow, helplessness and vulnerability which the majority in this nation has had more than enough of over the last 10 years.

I’m not for censorship, networks absolutely should be free to show them but I personally have no wish to be immersed in them again, to witness mass murder over and over. The irony is, at the time, I was like many who were glued to the news and watched repeatedly, the planes crashing into the towers and their later collapse. It was surreal, so hard to grasp, bigger than reality had seemed before.

However, now that we have seen these images for 10 years and know the details very well, now that Bin Laden has been killed and Al Qaeda’s on the ropes, it would seem most appropriate that the focus is on the human aspect of that day and moving forward. Reliving or going back to those days is in itself, terrifying (it was amusing how Bush and his Admin kept saying years later how he wished we could go back to those days right after 9/11 when Americans were united…what he clearly was saying was, it was so much easier to get what he wanted passed into law and critics silenced when Americans were all together in being scared shitless and gave him a 90% approval rating just for being President when we were attacked) .

Instead of the spectacle of fear and horror that day provided, I wonder if any of these specials will focus on the firefighters and workers who have contracted cancer and other terrible illnesses…but ten years later still can’t get the government to treat them as the heroes they proclaimed them to be and pay all of their health costs and help their families cope financially? Will we see tributes to those who were lost and will it be thoughtful instead of exploitative?

Will they document how the Bush Administration used the attacks to shove through violations of our Constitutional rights and freedoms, used the multicolor Terrorism Threat Level politically, raising the threat level periodically to whip up support for Bush when it waned (especially before the 2004 election) or how at a press conference, in response to Bill Maher making an irreverent statement about the terrorists, President Bush’s Press Secretary, Ari Fleischer shot a warning to  “all Americans that they need to watch what they say, watch what they do.”?

I wonder if they’ll document the chill on free speech and speaking out against Bush, describe the journalists, teachers, entertainers and others who were fired or had their careers damaged just for speaking out against Bush. Will they address how the Anthrax Terrorist struck right after the Al Qaeda attack, targeting only Dem lawmakers and the Bush Administration never convincingly identified the party responsible.

How about the duct tape and plastic sheeting we were all feverishly urged by our government to buy, to somehow make our homes chemical and biological weapon proof (even though having an absolutely airtight house would end up suffocating everyone to death instead).

Will there be mention of the aborted TIPS program that would have legally authorized and required any service person entering your home to spy on you (mail carriers, UPS and Fedex, power and telephone companies, cable installers,  even neighbors).  How we were terrorized on almost a daily basis by the Bush Admin that remote controlled model planes, crop dusters and dirty bombs in common suitcases may be used to destroy us? How our airports, stadiums, malls, bridges, reservoirs and trains were all at risk targets?

Will these specials describe how, in response to 9/11, Bush used what he has admitted was already a plan in hand to invade Iraq? How about the 200,000 to 1 million or more Iraqis who were killed by our liberating them? Or all of our servicemen unnecessarily killed and those permanently disabled because of that war of choice that 9/11 was used to justify?

Maybe they’ll cover the witch hunt against people who could be perceived to be Middle Eastern or Muslim, how they were required to turn themselves in for questioning and in some cases, detained for long periods without any rights or lawyer…meanwhile, the Bin Laden family members in the U.S. were allowed to fly out of the country while all the rest of America was grounded?

Will they cover how Halliburton, KBR and others war profiteered off Iraq with the help of Cheney and Bush and even electrocuted our own soldiers to death in faulty showers? How Blackwater/XE killed scores of innocent civilians and were immune to any prosecution for it?

What about how Americans were told by President Bush that the only way for them to patriotically respond to being attacked on 9/11 was to mindlessly go shopping? Or Freedom Fries, anyone? Or how 10 years later we’re just now starting to rebuild in earnest at the site of the World Trade Center?

And all those American flags people had on their cars…what the hell happened to all of them???

Unfortunately, out of laziness, greed for ratings or propagandizing to manipulate the public, it seems likely that the attacks themselves and their immediate aftermath will be what’s most focused on by many in the MSM.

The fallacy is that 9/11 ended. We are still living through 9/11, the fear of Muslims, Middle Eastern people and the rest of the scary world out there (Muslims were demonized for wanting to build a community center in Manhattan, GOP Presidential hopeful Herman Cain announced he would never hire a Muslim in his cabinet and that states should be free to prevent mosques from being built).

We are surrounded by the economic destruction and continued military and civilian deaths Bush began in the wake of 9/11. We continue the practices of rendition and there are scores of people locked up at Guantanamo for 10 years with no charges and few trials being held. The Republican party still strongly supports Islamophobia and boasts an appetite for torture and other violations of international and Constitutional law that 9/11 inspired.

Only if we were to see 9/11 holistically, beginning with the attacks but continuing through the government sponsored hysteria and oppression that followed, the launching and continuance of two wars, the massive economic collapse, the rise of the intolerant and prejudiced Tea Party with their Presidential candidate Rick Perry as a potential nominee of the GOP,  can we grasp the full scope of 9/11 and its impact on the American psyche.  Hopefully, in doing so, we can finally move past it so it truly is history.

9/11 was more than the horrific events that took place that day. It instigated more horrific acts on the part of the U.S. which helped undermine our moral authority in the world and decimated our sense of shared values with our fellow Americans.

We should remember 9/11 for the good people who were lost, the heroic acts of our fellow Americans and how we can come together to help and to heal each other. That day could and should be taken back from Al Qaeda by Americans, as a cause for coming together, however we differ in our opinions on politics.

If we can use the memory of 9/11 for  something constructive instead of re-living horror, fear and helplessness, that is, when we can truly overcome terror, then the terrorists have indeed lost.

Written by AdLib

My motto is, "It is better to have blogged and lost hours of your day, than never to have blogged at all."

76 Responses so far.

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  1. SueInCa says:

    Adlib
    The more I thought about it, the more disturbed I got about Rocklin’s patriot day. I sent a letter to the mayor……………..

    Mayor Magnuson

    I am more than a little disturbed by the display the city of Rocklin is putting on with their “Patriot’s Day Celebration”. I understand it is in rememberance of 9/11 but I don’t remember kids gaming area, food booths or vendors and crafts people selling their wares at ground zero, either then or today. And to celebrate in such a manner is a gross display of disrespect for those who lost their lives that day, including our troops, and any other people who have lost their lives as an extension of that horrifying day.

    Who ever thought of this idea needs to sit back and think what this day is really about and it should not be about commercialism. Cashing in on such a day of remembrance is, in fact, wrong. I am sure the victims families would be horrified that people are participating in such a crass display.

    This is a day of reflection and solitude, not a carnival in the parking lot celebration. I am sure you have many opportunities to sponsor this kind of “Patriot’s Day” any other day of the year, it would be much more appropriate than the 10th anniversary of 9/11.

    Sincerely,

    Susan

    • AdLib says:

      Excellent letter, Sue! Very pleased that you sent this to them and your words should have caused any of those who were capable of it, to feel shame at their insensitivity and disrespect for so many people. Well done!

  2. Chernynkaya says:

    AdLib, this brings up so many conflicting emotions in me. I guess my overarching feeling is that I want to forget the whole episode, even though we are still at war and still subject to most of the same legislation that was put in place because of 9/11.

    Here’s why: I am focused (heh--laser-like!) on re-electing Obama. Nothing about 9/11 will help him, except for killing OBL and the other terrorists.

    Remembering 9/11 reminds us that we are still at war and still in Iraq--costing trillions and enriching KBR, corrupt military contractors, and mercenaries of the most evil kind. It reminds us that there is no justice for the criminals who got us into this war. It reminds us that the Patriot Act, renditions, Gitmo etc are still in place. (Never mind why--I understand all of that completely.) My point is, all of these things demoralize us and suppress voter turnout to some degree. On the other hand, it might serve to remind some voters who dropped the ball on 9/11 and who got us into this quagmire, but I doubt that. So I know that it is unrealistic of me, but I wish the entire 9/11 orgy of emotions would just go away. Anything that hurts this (flawed) administration from winning 2012 will only make all the ensuing problems from 9/11 worse.

    • AdLib says:

      Cher, I think the main thing about 9/11 that would help Obama is his helping America to get over it. As I mention above, I see the nation as still suffering from the decisions and PTSD in the aftermath of 9/11.

      By killing Bin Laden, he has made a meaningful step towards putting 9/11 behind us. His raising the standing and respect of the US globally has made a difference too as well as his support for Arabs in their pursuit of democracy and freedom.

      So much destructiveness has flowed from 9/11 due to America’s response and reactions, I would suggest that the more he can do to reverse that damage, the more he will be appreciated on each anniversary of 9/11 (counting on him being re-elected of course).

      Yep, as you say, the one thing that we should be focused on, for the sake of our nation’s future and as a tribute to those who perished or sacrificed to help others on 9/11, is to make sure America’s future is protected from those who would harm it, from within and without.

      Rick Perry and the GOP present a clear and present danger to America’s future, where the poor and the elderly are left to struggle for survival, where democracy is just another corporate holding and the Middle Class becomes just a quaint memory.

      Obama’s re-election is what we do indeed need to be laser focused on, right with you my friend!

    • bito says:

      Nothing about 9/11 will help him, except for killing OBL and the other terrorists.

      Eugene Robinson took the opposite view on this yesterday (linked in TO/OT.) He feels the more Bush/Cheney are out there it wii bring more notice that President Obama is dealing with monumental problems not of his doing and will show the ineptness on the previous administration.

  3. chasethis says:

    AdLib, many of the meatier questions you ask here may be answered by the Maddow/Engel “Day of Something/Decade of War” presentation that began last evening. The rest of it airs tonight. I had to watch last night’s show in fits and starts. Several pacing on the patio breaks. It was alternately heart-breaking and blood boiling. One of the biggest blood boilers for me is (are? See last sentence.) the fear-mongering cottage industries that have sprung up over the last decade. Another is the billions and billions that have been spent taking revenge on 19 or so assholes with box cutters. I know that’s simplistic, but it’s hot outside and I’m out of energy.

    • bito says:

      Chase, I also thought the program was quite good and the, as you say “the fear-mongering cottage industries” segment ticked me off too. Let’s package ‘fear’ and sell it. That jerk selling the line, and books, about 3-5 schools being attacked and 200-300 children being killed per school fear-mongering-to-make-a-buck was sick. How much money did/does NYC mayor Guiliana (sp) make of selling his fear-mongering? Millions!

    • AdLib says:

      I haven’t seen it but it would be encouraging if this special does provide a broader perspective then what it looks like many of the other specials are offering.

      The aspects you mentioned above are meaningful. Personally, I would like to see a real connect-the-dots though, zooming out a bit from the abuses that outrage and seeing the pattern and shape of what all of these events form.

      There is a big picture here that I don’t see being explored. A mirror needs to be held up to America so we can see who we have been and who we are in the aftermath of 9/11.

      I see it like dealing with an alcoholic. It is important to recognize the incidents that have occurred because of the abuse but it doesn’t help the alcoholic recuperate simply to inundate him with all the bad things he’s done and all the bad things that have flowed from them.

      I think what we need to do is make our society face up to what it became because of those incidents and what it has become due to denial in dealing with all of that.

      What is the character, what are the principles and values and personality of America today? Can we look in the mirror honestly and see ourselves for who we are? If we can, we can change for the better. If we merely focus on wrongs that have occurred and just think, “That’s a damn shame,” nothing changes.

      This is why I am bothered by the idea of using this anniversary to feel great about America or revive fear and hatred of Muslims, revere dictatorial leadership, whitewash it all by just focusing on the heroes, there are so many facets to 9/11 and how it has thrown our nation way off course and I don’t think it’s enough to say, “Look at all the bumps we’re hitting because we’re off course.”

      I think what we need is to zoom out and see where we are on a sociological GPS map, understand the turns we took that took us off our path and come to a consensus on what we need to do to get back on track.

  4. SueInCa says:

    Adlib
    You are gonna love this. The city of Rocklin(where i live)is having a Patriot Day event for 9/11. Vendors and Crafts People will be there to sell their goods.

    Rocklin Patriot Day

    Sunday, Sep 11 11:00a to 4:00p

    atBlue Oaks Towne Center,Rocklin,CA

    Recognizing our community servants on the 10th Anniversary of 9/11.

    11:00AM- 4:00PM

    Ceremony Tribute to 9/11 to begin at 3pm.

    * Police Helicopter
    * S.W.A.T. Team Vehicle
    * Hook and Ladder Fire Truck
    * Food Booths
    * Police Motorcycles
    * Jaws of Life
    * Huge Kids Gaming Area
    * Vendor & Crafts Booths
    * Whitney High School Marching Band
    * Police K9 Unit
    * Rocklin High School Jazz Band

    Sponsor & Vendor Opportunities still available
    Info: http://placercountyheroes. read more

    Read more: http://events.sacbee.com/rocklin-ca/events/show/204935405-rocklin-patriot-day#ixzz1WoliIiRD

    • AdLib says:

      “Woo hoo! Come on down to the 9/11 Barbecue and Hoe Down!

      Pilot a foot long right into your mouth!

      Bring the house down with a concert by the Twin Towers!

      Invade the Our-Rock Village of local crafts and artwork!

      Experience Shock and Awe as you watch the sky light up in our fireworks spectacular!

      And don’t forget to do some collateral damage at our Dessert Row!

      Celebrate the tastiest tasteless anniversary of 9/11 with us next weekend!

      Let’s Roll!!!”

  5. funksands says:

    Ad, this was a thought-provoking article. I wrote several responses only to erase them and think some more. At this point I’m not sure how to respond to the titular question.

    I guess it would depend if we had learned something from this tragedy and then applied that new knowledge to do things differently.

    I’m not really sure we have.

    • AdLib says:

      Appreciate that, Funk, it is not a black and white answer. I think we have learned a lot on the terrorism prevention side, from a strategic POV yet at the same time, we still seem not to recognize that giving up freedom for security is not a good bargain.

      For example, the BS of treating all Americans as potential terrorists in the way airport security is handled has undermined our principles, IMO.

      The same goes for the continued spying on Americans.

      As for sociologically, little has been learned about WHY we were attacked and why there was sympathy in the ME for Al Qaeda for doing so. Instead, we see GOP Presidential candidates proudly declaring their bigotry against Muslims and outrage over Muslims, who had nothing to do with 9/11, building a community center in Manhattan.

      The racism, prejudice and superiority reflected by too many Americans against fellow human beings simply because they have a different religion or nationality has not seemingly been affected, just the reverse.

      And the danger of blind allegiance and nationalism, especially when feeling the most vulnerable, that lesson doesn’t seem to have been learned.

      Let alone, the big picture I described in my article, how those attacks set a fire which Bush & Co. poured gasoline on and is still burning today.

      That fire needs to be put out, humanity and conscience need to once again be a hallmark of America, between ourselves and projected around the world. Then, things can really get better.

  6. SueInCa says:

    This might be appropriate for this article:

    Dear Susan:

    Yesterday, the Commission on Wartime Contracting released its final report.

    The Commission reported that between $31 billion and $62 billion of the tax money spent on contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan has been wasted. It also said that between $10 billion and $19 billion of what contractors billed and received was fraudulent. In fact, $360 million of our tax dollars went straight to . . . the Taliban.

    Wow. Who could have imagined that?

    Well . . . me.

    When I saw that the Bush Administration was doing nothing about fraud in Iraq, I revived a law going back to the Civil War that allowed whistleblowers to bring lawsuits in the name of the U.S. Government. I filed case after case, which were promptly greeted by the Bush Administration with gag orders – gag orders that they kept in place for years. They didn’t want any more bad news coming out of Iraq.

    So I went on CNN, spoke to the New York Times and the Washington Post, and told America whatever I could say without violating those gag orders. And when the Bush Administration finally let one case out from under those gag orders – and declined to prosecute it – I took that case to trial, and won a $14 million judgment. It was the third-largest judgment for whistleblowers in the 143-year history of that law.

    Those contractors built bases without hooking up the plumbing. A general testified that when he went there, he felt like throwing up.

    The Wall Street Journal reported in a front-page article that I was “waging a one-man war against contractor fraud in Iraq.” The national organization Taxpayers Against Fraud named me “Lawyer of the Year.” And people started to think, “what is going on over there?”

    In Congress, I spoke out against the wars, and I voted against the wars. I wrote and introduced The War is Making You Poor Act, HR 5353. My bill pointed out that you could:

    Require the Pentagon to fund the wars from its own budget of over $500 billion, not supplemental appropriations;
    Take all the money that would save and eliminate taxes on everyone’s first $35,000 of income, $70,000 for married couples; and
    Still have over $10 billion a year left over, to cut the federal deficit.
    OpenCongress’s unscientific poll showed 91% in favor of HR 5353.

    After I left Congress in January, I took up the work against contractor fraud in Iraq again. And I won an $8.7 million settlement from DynCorp and the Sandi Group. The defendants paid our attorney’s fees last Friday.

    Here’s some simple arithmetic. We’ve budgeted $159.3 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan this year, through next month. (The true cost is much more, but let’s leave that aside.) That’s:

    $159,300,000,000.00.

    You could take all that money and create 5,310,000 jobs here in America paying $30,000 a year, rebuilding our bridges, our roads, our schools, instead of the ones in Iraq and Afghanistan. That would immediately lower the unemployment rate from 9 percent to 5.5 percent, and get money flowing in our communities again.

    Now, that’s a job program. I’ll put that up against whatever President Obama proposes next week.

    The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have killed more than 8,000 Americans, and who-knows-how-many Iraqis and Afghans. War has destroyed our economy, just as the war in Afghanistan destroyed the Soviet economy. According to the calculations of Nobel Prize-winner Professor Joseph Stiglitz, the war in Iraq alone has cost us around 8% of our $50 trillion national net worth, all of the wealth that America built up over two centuries. Over $13,000 for every single American, young and old.

    We’ve taken our inheritance, and dumped it into a wood chipper.

    My father served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He told me once that one of the most common questions that men of his generation heard was, “what did you do in the war?” Maybe our children will ask us, “what did you do against the war?”

    That’s a question I can answer.

    Courage,

    Alan Grayson

    • AdLib says:

      Wow, thanks for this Sue!

      I do hope he donated some of what he got to help people who are in difficult situations.

      And I wonder how Obama’s admin has treated such cases, hopefully the Bush cover ups have been done away with.

  7. escribacat says:

    From your mouth to the ear of MSM, Adlib. What exactly have we learned from 9/11? Before he got eaten by the fishes, bin Laden gleefully stated that his intent was to bankrupt the west. We walked right into that one and haven’t figured it out yet.

    • AdLib says:

      So true, the very obvious connect the dots on this is purposely ignored in the MSM, Bush clearly fell right into Bin Laden’s trap and dragged America and its future right down with him.

      And yet Repubs are trying to rehab Bush’s image now. To whom? Just themselves I suppose, no one but a mindless Repub would override what they have lived through with blatant propaganda.

  8. SueInCa says:

    Everyone
    There is a really good book written by Vincent Bugliosi called The Prosecution of George Bush for Murder. I highly recommend reading it. It gives some real insight showing just how insensitive Bush was about the terror he caused and lays out a plan for prosecuting him. Too bad no one who can do something about it, did anything. I think it has to do with the Miliary Commissions Act of 2006 although if challenged in court it could probably be overturned. Bush basically wrote his own pardon.

    http://www.prosecutionofbush.com/

    • Emerald1943 says:

      Sue, there is a copy on my coffee table where it has been for quite some time!

      I urge everyone to read it!

      Also, there is a group with the website, http://www.indictbushnow.org

      They are keeping up the drum beat for ALL the war criminals to stand trial for their crimes!

    • AdLib says:

      There is no one to prosecute Bush though, Obama and the Dems in Congress said impeachment was off the table and proved it. If they can’t impeach someone with such blatant Constitutional violations, they’d never criminally prosecute.

      However, Cheney better not ever go to Europe or he may find himself on trial.

      • SueInCa says:

        Adlib
        Personally I think they were afraid. I wrote to Nancy Pelosi at that time to urge impeachment. She wrote back to me saying “It would not be productive at this time”. This was in early 2007.

        • AdLib says:

          I’ve heard that Nancy was worried about impeaching Bush because Dem members of the House and Senate had been briefed on some of the Constitutional violations and did nothing to stop them.

          So, bringing down Bush would lead Bush to bring down many Dems.

          It does make a lot of sense, she was so quick to throw that away before the 2006 election, maybe it was to pander to indies who don’t want partisan fighting but it sure seems logical that the Dems, including Nancy may not have been able to claim ignorance of torture and spying on Americans.

  9. ADONAI says:

    If they’re gonna show the footage, show it all. Show the people jumping from the Towers to their death rather than burn alive. Show the deformed corpses lining the street. Show the people horribly maimed by FIRE FALLING FROM THE SKY!

    Show every goddamn bit of it. The soldiers cut in half by I.E.Ds, hung like criminals and set on fire, beheaded, and every other terrible thing they’ve had to endure. Had to take cause America got a murder boner.

    See how long people have a stomach for what actually fucking happened. What is still going on. Everybody so goddamn happy to go to war. And GOD less the thousands who went to the streets to protest this BS. But it didn’t matter. This country wanted war SO BAD. Ready to put a fucking sticker on their SUVs and be so goddamn proud of themselves. They contributed their $2.50 to the cause.

    Republicans didn’t drag us kicking and screaming into this. It’s not like Democrats haven’t had chances to end this. Choosing instead to talk about their “just war”. And I can’t blame them. I wanted shit to burn after 9/11. Wanted to see the Middle East crumble.

    But, being a reasonable person, I got over that. I supported Bush all the way up to the day he started lying about Iraq. Most of the country did. We wanted war. A vocal minority spoke up on the wrongs of invading this country. I listened. I believed them. I thought that surely the American people wouldn’t go for this.

    So when I first ventured into politics it was with a cynical point of view. It was the first major event of my adult life. My introduction to “how things work”. It still influences every aspect of my political thoughts today. Robert Byrd gave a speech to an empty room. No one bothered to show up. No one had one bad thing to say about invading Iraq except him.

    I just look back and think, “What the fuck happened? What were we thinking? We’re suppose to be better than that.”

    • SueInCa says:

      Adonai
      Another thing that helped me decide is I have a friend from Iraq and he was just here at that time a little over two years. He provided some insight into the Iraqi thinking during that time and what he knew to be true about Iraq from experience

    • SueInCa says:

      Adonai
      I don’t know about anyone else but my main thought when Iraq was brought up was: hey wait a minute, no Iraqis were involved in 9/11-WMDs is not a reason to invade a sovereign nation. I am not a supporter of war anyway and I used that analogy to form my opinion. People did not agree with me that is for sure.

      It was like the country went mad for awhile but targeting people who were not involved did not make a bit of sense to me. Later I read PNAC and knew I was right all along. 9/11 was their Pearl Harbor

    • AdLib says:

      There’s a reason why unlike Vietnam, we don’t see daily footage of our soldiers and locals being killed and wounded.

      That footage is exactly what rallied people to insist that we get out of Vietnam. Bush and his cronies knew that and unfortunately, Obama knows that too.

      With respect, as to another expression of equivalence, I would suggest that there is a big difference between Bush and the Repubs who drove this nation into two wars and Obama and Dems who are trying to pull us back out of the muck without doing severe damage on the way out.

      These situations have become quite complex, many factors are now intertwined in both countries which makes simply saying, “We’re outta here!” more problematic than it may seem.

      Don’t forget, our evacuation of Afghanistan after the Soviets were repulsed led to the creation of Al Qaeda and all that’s flowed from them.

      Blowback is the most invisible and dangerous aspect of going to war and pulling out, it is invisible and uncertain but a rash decision or wrong call could bring far more destruction and hell down the line.

      We are pulling out of Iraq and Afghanistan, we’ll be out of Iraq by the beginning of next year, Afghanistan will take longer but the draw down has in fact begun.

      You’re wrong about the Dems not standing up against going to war in Iraq, a majority of Dems in the Senate and House voted against the authorization.

      Many Americans were opposed to going to war in Iraq, there were huge marches in the hundreds of thousands…which the MSM wouldn’t cover. They wanted the war and they wanted to curry favor with the Bush Admin for favorable treatment in a Communications Act.

      Americans and Dems opposed Iraq but in a pseudo-fascist state, where corporations owning the MSM beat the drum for war (including the NYT!), the people were overridden.

      • choicelady says:

        I have to disagree -- I’m seeing the caskets now, seeing the President go to honor many of them coming home. It has changed us seeing that. It is good because now we HAVE to remember that these are not plastic ribbons with “I Support the Troops” -- they are somebody’s loved one for whom there now is nothing but emptiness and grief. Our papers do show the photos. It does matter.

        Last week on NPR author Laurie Garrett talked about her book, “I Heard the Sirens Scream” that reflects first on that day and then, so soon thereafter, the deep and profound divisions that arose as this nation got its excuse to march into war with Iraq. This was a war that Secretary of the Treasury Paul O’Neill (2001-02) said was declared on inauguration day of 2001 by newly-elected Bush. He was already planning it. He just needed an excuse.

        Garrett said that every step we took just weeks after 9/11 was designed to provoke division, fear, governmental control -- everything that was wrong and counterproductive. We became a nation not unified in support and recovery but torn apart by the policies and practices of the Bush administration.

        We have a chance to make this right -- even with the drumbeat of Islamophobia, with the constant march of the theocrats trying to take over in the aftermath, with racial and religious animus as high as it’s been since the days of civil rights. WE have a chance to do this well, to come together, to remember the pain and loss but also the ability to recover -- together.

        It’s always a choice. We get to make it -- if only we will.

        • AdLib says:

          Hey CL!

          Personally, I haven’t seen any footage of coffins of soldiers on cable or network news and definitely not any war zone footage showing civilians who have been killed.

          Yes, PNAC had already planned on war with Iraq before Bush was even elected. Found this overview:

          A SECRET blueprint for US global domination reveals that President Bush and his cabinet were planning a premeditated attack on Iraq to secure ‘regime change’ even before he took power in January 2001.

          The blueprint, uncovered by the Sunday Herald, for the creation of a ‘global Pax Americana’ was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now vice- president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld’s deputy), George W Bush’s younger brother Jeb and Lewis Libby (Cheney’s chief of staff). The document, entitled Rebuilding America’s Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, was written in September 2000 by the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC).

          The plan shows Bush’s cabinet intended to take military control of the Gulf region whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power. It says: ‘The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.’

          The PNAC document supports a ‘blueprint for maintaining global US pre-eminence, precluding the rise of a great power rival, and shaping the international security order in line with American principles and interests’.

          This ‘American grand strategy’ must be advanced for ‘as far into the future as possible’, the report says. It also calls for the US to ‘fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theatre wars’ as a ‘core mission’.

          The report describes American armed forces abroad as ‘the cavalry on the new American frontier’. The PNAC blueprint supports an earlier document written by Wolfowitz and Libby that said the US must ‘discourage advanced industrial nations from challenging our leadership or even aspiring to a larger regional or global role’.

          The PNAC report also:

          refers to key allies such as the UK as ‘the most effective and efficient means of exercising American global leadership’;

          describes peace-keeping missions as ‘demanding American political leadership rather than that of the United Nations’;

          reveals worries in the administration that Europe could rival the USA;

          says ‘even should Saddam pass from the scene’ bases in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait will remain permanently — despite domestic opposition in the Gulf regimes to the stationing of US troops — as ‘Iran may well prove as large a threat to US interests as Iraq has’;

          spotlights China for ‘regime change’ saying ‘it is time to increase the presence of American forces in southeast Asia’. This, it says, may lead to ‘American and allied power providing the spur to the process of democratisation in China’;

          calls for the creation of ‘US Space Forces’, to dominate space, and the total control of cyberspace to prevent ‘enemies’ using the internet against the US;

          hints that, despite threatening war against Iraq for developing weapons of mass destruction, the US may consider developing biological weapons — which the nation has banned — in decades to come. It says: ‘New methods of attack — electronic, ‘non-lethal’, biological — will be more widely available … combat likely will take place in new dimensions, in space, cyberspace, and perhaps the world of microbes … advanced forms of biological warfare that can ‘target’ specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool’;

          and pinpoints North Korea, Libya, Syria and Iran as dangerous regimes and says their existence justifies the creation of a ‘world-wide command-and-control system’.

          Tam Dalyell, the Labour MP, father of the House of Commons and one of the leading rebel voices against war with Iraq, said: ‘This is garbage from right-wing think-tanks stuffed with chicken-hawks — men who have never seen the horror of war but are in love with the idea of war. Men like Cheney, who were draft-dodgers in the Vietnam war.

          ‘This is a blueprint for US world domination — a new world order of their making. These are the thought processes of fantasist Americans who want to control the world. I am appalled that a British Labour Prime Minister should have got into bed with a crew which has this moral standing.’

          http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article1221.htm

          • AlphaBitch says:

            AdLib: I just read the scariest article EVER in Vanity Fair in the April 2011 issue called “A Declaration of Cyber-War” by Michael Joseph Gross. We have had so many problems with our computer -- now I think we might have the StuxNet virus (after reading all the symptoms). My many calls to Afghanistan, my contacts with foreign nationals, all made me realize that it would not come without scrutiny; but since I have absolutely nothing to hide -- go ahead. Waste time and money looking. This is something much, much more nefarious and dangerous in my mind. It kept me up until 3AM.

            Hopefully it is available on line; if not, get thee to a library and read it. The future looks bad.

          • Pre-emptive military strikes, especially in the Middle East, were a big part of neo-con philosophy. Military action that cannot be justified. It’s like arresting a person because you THINK he is going to commit a crime.
            I think one reason the neo-cons wanted to invade and occupy Iraq, was to use Iraq as a staging area for military strikes against Iran. Several neo-cons were just itching to attack Iran. McCain’s famous “Bomb, bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran,” to the music of a Beach Boy’s tune really said it all.

          • Emerald1943 says:

            Adlib, chilling! I read this twice last night…and could not sleep. Random pieces of information in the back of my gray matter come to the forefront, things I have read or heard over the years.

            This calls for more thought. Thanks for posting.

            • AdLib says:

              This is what the blind followers of the GOP are wholly blind to, there are secret agendas crafted by the elite in the GOP, to acquire power and wealth.

              And they use their resources to test and figure out the best propaganda for getting their “peasants” to support that hidden agenda.

              Most of the rest of us know the Corporate GOP party has sought to disassemble the Middle Class for decades and transfer their assets to themselves.

              They have been succeeding and the economic crash only accelerated this plot.

              Meanwhile, the hapless ignorant, those slipping deeper into poverty and lower class status, keep marching behind the GOP, deluded into thinking they’re supporting something “principled” while being laughed at by the GOP elite.

              The good thing is that the election of Obama proved that they can be defeated by the American People. But they won’t stop fighting so neither can we.

          • SueInCa says:

            Adlib, that was it. Reading it again now I forgot KQ was involved in the conversation as well. It all started because K7 made the statement that law enforcement does not lie and were not corrupt. I still think it was close to being a treasonous act.

            • AdLib says:

              Saying that someone doesn’t lie because they are part of any group is naive.

              Most law enforcement folks are honest and sincere in their work but we’ve seen cases of people in law enforcement who have been dishonest and corrupt.

              Police corruption, CIA agents selling secrets, etc.

              I agree that it’s treasonous but no one will ever prosecute Bush or Cheney for their treason.

              At least, the U.S. won’t but wouldn’t it be ironic if in the future, the Iraqi government pursues them for war crimes with the International Court or internally? Not that they’d ever be extradited but having them tried and likely convicted would be a fitting epilog to their criminal reign.

          • SueInCa says:

            It was a comment I would say right around end of December 2009. Pnac- Wolfowitz, Bush, Clinton all may have been words in the comment. I tried to go back and put random page numbers to find it but it took me back to the most recent page of comments.

          • SueInCa says:

            Adlib
            Javaz and I had long coversation with K7 about this a few years ago. I wrote a post to him showing just how insidious this whole thing was. In fact only three people on the PNAC committee did not end up with jobs in the Bush adminisraion. I am sure my comment has been cached by now though.

          • SueInCa says:

            good find AL. I am going to keep this one.

          • bito says:

            AdLib, YGM!

      • ADONAI says:

        Al, That’s not really what I remember. Almost half the Dems in the House voted for it. A majority in the Senate approved it.

        I remember empty chambers. No debates. I did acknowledge the thousands who poured out to protest. Didn’t matter. Yes every network on TV was selling war but the American people were ready for it.

        Many commentators and social critics spoke out harshly against it. But they were just drowned out by the drumbeat to war. And Democrats have had chances to end this. Several bills to extend funding passed almost unanimously.

        We love war. It sells.

        • AdLib says:

          You’re mistaken and so was I.

          126 Dems in the House voted against it.(61% of Dems)
          21 Dems in the Senate voted against it (42% of Dems).

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraq_Resolution#Passage

          That is hardly equivalent with:

          6 Repubs in the House voted against it. (3% of Repubs)
          1 Repub in the Senate voted against it (2% of Repubs -- Lincoln Chafee).

          As for the drumbeat for war, CNN, MSNBC and Fox were all on the same page then, all pounding that we had to go to war…the bastards.

        • SueInCa says:

          Adonai
          Those bills to extend funding were rote as the sunset dates for both wars are already set.

    • Adonai, the Iraq war was sold to the American people like a used car salesman sells lemons. We were lied to over and over again. They told us that the military action would last “six days, maybe six weeks and absolutely no longer than 6 months. We were told that Iraqi oil would pay for the whole shebang! We were told that Saddam had chemical and biological weapons and that he was attempting to build a nuclear weapon/s. We were told that al Qaida was hiding out in Iraq. Lie after lie and the majority of the American people fell for it. Hook, line and sinker.
      There is a really good book about it called “The Greatest Story Ever Sold,” by Frank Rich.

    • Emerald1943 says:

      Hey Adonai, I can tell you exactly what happened. The Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld/republican machine went into operation immediately! They scared the sh*t out of all of us! Then, to top it off, they sent the most trusted man in America, General Colin Powell to the United Nations with “data”, charts, satellite pictures, and a script to chill you to the bone. WMD’s, chemical weapons, and delivery systems for all of them were on everyone’s lips from the Idiot-in-Chief on down. They had us believing that it could happen at any moment!

      I remember Colin Powell’s speech, having watched it live that day. I thought at the time that Powell certainly would not lie to us…so I believed along with most of the people in this country. Sad that I was so gullible, but who woulda’ thunk it?? I really think that many people just could not fathom the fact that our President would lie about going to war. Even the media did not ask the “hard” questions.

      • coveark says:

        That is strange how we often see things differently……

        I watched Powell speak at the UN, “WMD,WMD, WMD,WMd…etc WMD,WMD,ETC…WMD”…….and thought….not true, too hard sell, BS.

        Is this a family payback for daddy, George you smarmy weasel?

        I am anti war in most cases………..this was one. There was no reason for us to go there.

        America was up in arms and justly angry but knee jerk war ……not right……so many civilians maimed and killed………so many of us going into hell and being told that it was righteous. GD Toby Keith and his message to help keep everyone blindly riled.

        I, as many, had hoped that the lessons of Viet Nam had been absorbed into the fabric of our nations consciousness.

        Yes, they did scare the shit out of many. People would say, well what if they invade us? I would reply…”we would fight, fight for our families and our people. We would kick ass with a vengance.” They would say well if you are anti war, how can you say that?? “Well, think about it …….it is a whole different scene.”

        It was like an out of body experience watching from above the total chaos, lies, fakery,etc. Watching it all and being unable to have any power to change it. I am sorry that no one could comprehend, believe, or listen.

  10. coveark says:

    Both you and Emerald are very elloquent in telling the truth and it is a pitiful truth.

    During those years it was simply crazy to watch what was happening and realize what WAS happening.

    I know that 9/11 was a horror and that the passing of that date should be mentioned………but I personally am sick of it……I do not want to see or think about it.

    For those who were simply witnesses via media, their lives have gone on and the aftermath of the Village Idiot and Darth’s handeling of it is what we need to be working with.

    I despise everything that came of that and that we have been wounded more by our stupidity than anything else. It was evident what was happening…..I could see very much of it …but no one that I know wanted to hear it….Oh well, Thank you both for shining the light.

    • Emerald1943 says:

      Thank you, coveark, for your kind words.

      You are right…nobody wanted to hear it at the time. If you made the mistake of speaking out, you were immediately labeled as a “traitor”, “not supporting the troops”, or “un-American”. With the passage of the Patriot Act, many of my friends were actually afraid of speaking out, knowing that people could be simply “disappeared”. It was but a small step down the slippery slope of totalitarianism!

      Things are definitely better now…witness our being able to come to PPOV and voice our concerns in a completely open environment without fear. Let us hope and work toward the day when we no longer have to be afraid of our country slipping back to where we were just after 9/11.

      Thanks again for your nice comment! :-)

    • AdLib says:

      Thanks coveark!

      I will say we sure had a focused sense of purpose back then, when the government was in the hands of men with the minds of cruel, schoolyard bullies.

      I used the phrase “terror porn” because that’s how those videos feel to me. They no longer serve a purpose IMO except to stimulate fear, sadness and helplessness.

      We really do need a kind of “re-awakening” as a nation to snap out of this stubborn nightmare, a call to unity and compassion for each other.

      Who knows, maybe Obama in a second term would be willing to work for something more than “the possible” and rally people towards “what should be”.

      • coveark says:

        The videos need to be accessed via the library or somewhere on the net if anyone feels the need for them.
        I do not want to see , hear ,or have anything to do with them now. For me it is done. History channel might be the place.

        If people are now controlled with the fear,sadness or helplessness…they need to heal and get on with life. That is not cold. That is fact and mental health.

        I swear to God, our media will ride every event that we live through into the ground and go over and over and over it Ad Nauseum. For me it just goes on until….”just shut the F— Up !!!” ENOUGH. Every Horrible event, or Royal Wedding whatever.

        That rant being over, Yes, we do need an awakening, not a right wing evangelistic revival , but one that lets peoples eyes and hearts be opened to the truth that we are all brothers….together in our country with the need for common decency, compassion and unity.

        Religion is wonderful for those who find solice and love in a place of worship.

        It is the enemy of peace and our nation when it teaches hate, bigotry, separation,’big me,little you’, we are right and everyone else is wrong. We do not need this division of our people, we need unity to prosper.

        Bush and minions found they key to Unity by evil dirty tricks…….We need a better way , with strength of purpose and clarity of vision.

        And we need to get rid of those Obstructionists.

        • AdLib says:

          Very well said, Coveark!

          The challenge is that the GOP is a minority party serving a minority (the wealthy) and can only win by pitting Americans against each other and disrupting the unity that would otherwise defeat them.

          So, we have to win over folks on the right despite their party’s laser focus on keeping us divided and weaker.

          A good start would be having a Dem Congress and President for a longer continuous period, beginning with 2012 and continuing for at least another 12 years. In the process, we’d probably replace one of the 5 conservatives in the SCOTUS and the damage they’ve wreaked on our nation could start to be reversed.

          There is hope and there are ways to get there from here but we can’t allow the majority of Americans to be divided and put at each other’s throats by the wealthy, the GOP and their party news channel, Fox.

  11. SueInCa says:

    Adlib, I know how it feels to be treated as less than a “real american” by not supporting the war in Iraq. I also felt it from some during the 1991 invasion. I know as well as anyone else that Saddam was a monster but so was Suharto and the US had a hand in placing him in power so how is that any different? Iraqis did not ask us for help at any time and in return for help in Saddam’s invasion of Kuwait, the Kuwaitis agreed to establish a democratic government within a year after the battle was over. They never did and no one enforced that promise. Another worthless Bush.

    I have watched some of the NatGeo on this past week and you are right none of the points you mentioned were covered. The Bush interview was so ridiculous I almost laughed. One point, he knew before he walked into that school a plane had hit the WTC. HE KNEW AND WENT IN ANYWAY. Then he used those kids as an excuse for his lame response to the second plane.

    There were so many around the country who were targeted by the Bush cabal but most Americans are too dumbed down to reach out and read those stories. One person who I thought had a good handle on the path Bush was taking was Naomi Wolf. Some say she is a fear monger but I find most of what she wrote pretty accurate. The only thing I did not see was what could happen to the US if Palin had been elected along with McCain. If you want to read the aricle she wrote, here it is:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/naomi-wolf/the-battle-plan-ii-sarah_b_128393.html

    She missed the dominionist connection but she sensed pretty much the same thing with her. I read this late one Saturday night just a few weeks before the election and it chilled me to the core. I called my girlfriend and got her out of bed to talk me down. LOL

    • AdLib says:

      Sue, I’m right with you. I remember being in conversations back then and expressing my disdain for Bush and…complete silence…like the National Police were listening and going to crash in to take away whoever agreed.

      I remember Dan Rather in those days, then anchor at CBS News, saying in a newspaper interview that he was not and did not feel free to speak or broadcast freely when it came to Bush and his Admin.

      I’ve never experienced such a chilling of free speech, such a projection of dictatorial power over the nation as there was back then. It made me understand how some nations fell into dictatorships and how fragile our democracy and society truly is when enough people are fearful and feel threatened. They are willing to empower a “Daddy” to take over everything and protect them. It was a scary time.

      Bush is lying, he had no idea about the attacks before he went in that classroom. Hey Georgie, remember these images?

      [img][/img]

      [img]?w=567&h=461[/img]

      You really look like you already knew, Georgie!

      I agree about Naomi Wolf, she was one of a handful like Jeremy Scahill, Michael Isikoff, Seymour Hirsh and Naomi Klein who were speaking truth to power despite the threat back then.

      Well, we defeated Sarah and the Dominionists in 2008, we’ll do it again in 2012…as long as we understand what the stakes are and get out there and work it.

      • bito says:

        I would add Scott Ritter to your list. He was quite vocal about there not being any WMD’s or potential of Iraq building them especially when the UN inspectors were in country. He knew, he was one of the lead inspectors and was ignored.

        • choicelady says:

          And Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame. They told the truth on the absence of “yellow cake” -- and she got outed as a result of Wilson’s careful assessments.

          Truth did not pay in that administration. Not ever.

        • AdLib says:

          Yes, Scott Ritter took a massive amount of attacks from Bush and his admin for daring to speak the truth.

          And I’d add Richard Clarke, who came out after he was dismissed.

          Remember how it was, a drip-drip of people coming out here and there to expose the lies of the Bush Admin and then they’d be mercilessly attacked and slandered by the Admin and Fox News and other media, parroting the attacks.

          Despite knowing that character destruction would be launched at them, these brave people stepped up to criticize the Little Caesar and expose him.

          Now that’s what being brave is all about, not starting wars and killing our soldiers out of ideology and greed.

          • SueInCa says:

            Paul O’Neil did so as well. I can’t remember what show he went on I think it was Letterman? Maybe something else but he criticized the Bush cabal too.

            • choicelady says:

              As noted above -- he revealed that Bush intended to go into Iraq at the very first Cabinet meeting on inauguration day, 2001. Bush needed an excuse, and in the absence of one, he made one up. Despicable.

            • AdLib says:

              Yes, I remember and like the others, the Bush/Rove slime machine turned on him to destroy him.

              And let’s not forget the outing of Valerie Plame after Joe Wilson wouldn’t lie and agree the yellow cake uranium story was true.

      • SueInCa says:

        Adlib
        In that interview he admitted he knew about the first plane prior to going into that school. I sat up and thought what the hell? Then I thought oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to decieve. LOL

        • AdLib says:

          Yes, I was addressing that, I say he was lying. The photos I posted don’t show the face of someone who already knew what was going on, it looks like someone who just found out and doesn’t know how to deal with it.

          The BS is necessary for Bush to support his lie that he sat in the classroom to project calm, in order for that BS to work, he’s claiming it was all premeditated.

          Flat out lie.

          If he was told before he went in the classroom, he would have just left and never gone in. And what would any capable president have done if suddenly told “America is under attack”?

          Would they sit there like the ignorant Bush? Can you imagine Obama doing that? I think he and even Bush Sr. would have excused themselves, said goodbye politely then hopped on board AF1.

          Bush froze, he was terrified and his fear is palpable in those images, he didn’t rise to the occasion, he shrunk from it. He was a coward, not a leader.

          And to cover up, this weasel who NEVER admitted he made mistakes or did anything wrong, just put a “Mission Accomplished” banner over “My Pet Goat”.

          He’s a liar, we know that and I’m convinced he’s just lying again to pervert history and come off looking like he was something other than the worthless coward he was at that point in time.

    • Emerald1943 says:

      Sue, great comment! I too am a fan of Naomi Wolf! She is so spot on in her writings. As a matter of fact, only today an new article of hers was posted on HP. It was a comparison of the conditions of Victorian England and the new and repressive laws being pushed by Prime Minister Cameron. In fact, some of the issues in our country were mentioned in her article. Apparently, the more liberal in their society are fighting the same things that we are here in the US..loss of the social safety net, increased surveillance of the population, and voter suppression.

      I liked her book “The End of America: Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot”. If you have not read it, I would recommend it! :-)

      • SueInCa says:

        Em
        I have read it. When I discovered her, I gobbled up every book I could find to read. Some say she is an extremist but she backs up her statements with credible info most of the time. I will go look for her story from today, thanks for the heads up.

  12. Emerald1943 says:

    Bravo, Adlib! Incredibly well done!

    These are all good points that we would do well to remember in looking back at the tragedy.

    I remember making note of the fact that the terror alerts used by the Bush administration were timed to elicit the fear of the American people, just at the time when Bush’s poll numbers were sinking. This was prior to the 2004 election as you noted. But just as soon as Bush “won” the second term, we NEVER saw another raise in the threat level. How convenient! But of course, there were never any “credible or substantial” threats…only “chatter” as they described it.

    Osama Bin Laden was always portrayed in the media as a fanatic living a rather bizarre life in a cave, needing kidney dialysis, and putting out his propaganda through operatives that took his tapes to Al Jazeera. But OBL was never portrayed as stupid. We were told that he had an excellent education and enough money to back up his plans.

    Apparently, OBL knew his opponent well! He knew enough about the ignorant Village Idiot that sat in the Oval Office to realize that Bush would immediately give the call to arms. OBL got the fight he wanted. His end result was to cripple the US economically…and he succeeded beyond his wildest dreams. The attack on the World Trade Center was symbolic, but the long-term goal was to financially ruin this country. And of course, the Village Idiot played the game.

    Now, ten years after, we are left in shambles with trillions of dollars wasted, not to mention the horrible loss of life and the loss of any respect from the rest of the civilized world for our invasion of Iraq. Any person who would blame anyone for our present difficulties except Bush and Cheney is living in an alternate universe. Now we are faced with a decline in our standard of living, our educational system, and our business leadership around the world. The blame can be laid squarely at their feet.

    Are we any more safe from terrorist attacks in the future? Well, perhaps to a point. But we have been forced to surrender many of our personal liberties and submit to invasive searches at airports for instance, something that I don’t feel makes us any more safe. Who was it that said “People who surrender their liberties for security deserve neither”…or something like that?

    We hope to see Al Qaeda completely dismantled and scattered to the four winds. It will take us a long time to undo all the harm that BOTH Osama Bin Laden and Bush did to this country. This is what we should remember on 9/11…then we should re-double our efforts to support our President in his attempts to do so.

    • AdLib says:

      Emerald, very thoughtful and insightful.

      You did add an aspect I missed which was very telling, how the Threat Level was never raised again once Bush won re-election. And you hit a key word that the Bush Admin used repeatedly to terrorize the public, “chatter” that indicated elevated chances of attack…such as at the Times Square New Year’s Eve celebration, for bridges, sporting events like the Superbowl and World Series…I even remember movie studios had intense security because, supposedly, they were a major target. Movie studios???

      And think about how enormous and powerful the Bush Admin built up Al Qaeda into being! We were fighting in Afghanistan to get the hundreds or so that were there. Yes, there are loosely affiliated cells elsewhere but it wasn’t and isn’t huge and yet the behemoth America was convinced to be terrified of the Al Qaeda mouse.

      How much power and how big of an organization was needed to blow up the Oklahoma Federal building? Two psychos?

      That is what a responsible President could have and should have said after the attack, shown some spine and said, “It doesn’t take power or a big organization to destroy, it only takes the decision of a handful of fanatics.”

      Instead, Al Qaeda was puffed up into this global monster capable of destroying America. As you point out, the idiot Bush played right into Bin Laden’s hands on damaging our economy by launching wars with conventional forces against a small guerrilla organization, though it was also part of his pre-9/11 agenda to liberate the oil from Iraq for the US oil companies.

      And the 9/11 link to the destruction of our economy is not only war spending but the power that Bush was handed by the nation rallyi8ng around him and how he used it to pass the Bush Tax Cuts, the trillion dollar, unfunded prescription medicine plan and other destructive initiatives that Bush, who had a low approval rating before 9/11, would not likely have gotten passed had it not happened.

      9/11 gave Bush massive power which he abused fully, absolutely the worst President in modern times to have been given that much power (can you imagine if Gore or Obama was President at the time and had all that power to get things done, how different things would be today?).

      We have traded away our dignity and privacy for the facade of safety. How many bombers have been caught despite the body searches and removed shoes of hundreds of millions of airline passengers over the past 10 years? I’m not aware of one. Instead, we have underwear bombers with one way tickets NOT stopped and attempting to blow up a plane…so thanks to the institutional incompetence, now we have to be viewed in a Naked Scanner and/or have our bodies groped. Welcome to Bush’s America, he may not be president anymore but what he set in motion continues.

      Indeed, we should look at the anniversary of 9/11 as a time to redouble our efforts to reverse the damage and disunity that those in power foisted upon America through their exploitation of it.

      • choicelady says:

        Yeah -- “chatter”. Chatter included private email communications among my board members. Chatter led to a mysterious call from someone identifying herself as a reporter who was no such thing and demanding my board list with addresses. Chatter that could NOT have been revealed any other way than warrantless hacking. And chatter that was simply concerning civil rights.

        I was involved three times from 2003-05 in being surveilled by the FBI and who knows who else over our support for Muslims. That never happens now. I am glad. But I also never shut up during the harassment, and they finally figured I wasn’t either a danger or going to shut up. But I KNOW what that administration was capable of -- we stood on the brink of real totalitarianism. Let’s keep it far, far away now and in the future.

        • AdLib says:

          You’re a CourageousLady as well as a ChoiceLady!

          Glad the harassment and spying has subsided. I must admit, though I won’t give into intimidation, when I write certain things in emails or here, I do wonder if they end up sent to and flagged for some Homeland Security person to review.

          Yes, they uncovered that ATT had devoted a bottleneck of internet traffic in Northern CA for Bush’s criminal spying on ALL Americans emails. And all the telecoms allowed spying on our calls as well.

          One bone I have to pick with Obama is his allowing immunity to them and burying this story.

          I strongly support his re-election but there are times where his seeking to simply resolve things and put them to rest has a great cost to the nation.

          This outrage should have been blown wide open. Yet…Obama is using the same tools, if less oppressively and that is a problem for me because those tools to spy on all of us siot ready and available to an extremist Repub President who may follow sometime in the future.

      • Emerald1943 says:

        Thank you, Adlib!

        I believe the President Obama has done all in his power to at least reverse the opinion of the United States by other countries, particularly the Muslim countries. But until we are no longer occupying their lands will we be seen in a more favorable light. This, after all, was one of their major “beefs” with us. They resent our soldiers and our bases on what they consider to be their “holy” land. It is way past time for us to pull our troops out, something I hope the President will continue to do.

        George W. Bush was a “C” student, a fact that he bragged about, thinking it comical. His effects on the government of the United States will take years to undo, from the invasion of another sovereign country and the resulting lives cost that can never be undone, to the invasion of our private lives by the Patriot Act. It will take a long time for me to get over my personal paranoia when I talk on the phone. There are still certain words and phrases that I am afraid to utter, even now. Who knows who is listening?

        We fought an intelligent man, OBL, who had the charisma to lead his followers and the ability to convince them to give their lives for their cause. He knew enough about the Bush family, with ties between the two families in the oil business, to know that GWB would pull the trigger in vengeance! But Bush fulfilled his threat of bringing us down economically by invading Iraq, something that not even OBL could have planned.

        This fit right into Dick Cheney’s playbook. Cheney basically ran the White House for at least the Shrub’s first term. Cheney, the hawk and warmonger, supported Bush all the way…and profited greatly from his efforts. Halliburton was given carte blanche to contract with the US government to gouge the taxpayers out of billions! And all the while, Cheney continued to rake in the money from his post behind the curtains in the Oval Office, stoking fear of that terrorist attack that was always about to happen! Nice work if you can get it!

        One of the most damning effects of all this was the mistrust by the American people of their government. People who did not accept the “pat” answers of Bush and Cheney about WMD’s, spreading democracy, and all the other flimsy excuses for the invasion of Iraq, came to distrust many agencies of the government from the White House on down. Many of us KNEW we were being lied to! George Bush’s appointments to the SCOTUS certainly did not help. The corporatist supporters that now sit on the bench did/do nothing to inspire trust in justice and fairness for the American PEOPLE! But that subject is one for another article.

        When President Obama came into office, he faced more than I believe even he had been told in advance. An economy in free-fall, an astronomical debt, two wars and a jobless rate going through the roof. But I don’t know if he realized how much even he would be distrusted to fix all that was/is wrong in our country. Our republican “friends” as they say in Washington have done NOTHING to inspire trust either, especially in the House of Representatives. They have consistently blocked every single initiative put forth by this President to undo the damage done by Bush and Cheney. The polarization is like nothing I’ve ever seen in my many years.

        I am certainly no “deep” thinker, sometimes operating more on gut feelings. The older I get, the more I trust my gut…and it tells me that the United States is in extreme danger of becoming a third-world country in very short order. We have slipped so far and relinquished our leadership in many fields, all in the name of “free market principles”, designed to benefit the few at the expense of the many. We have homeless and hungry people sleeping on our streets, uneducated young people who cannot read, write, or find work, older people who are losing their safety net, and the rest of us losing our ability to support our families as the repubs go on their merry way to dismantle our government…to drown it in a bathtub! And the distrust by the populace grows…distrust and a pessimism that our leaders cannot fix what’s wrong.

        How could a President of these United States face a bigger challenge? It will take all his strength and perseverance to make a dent in the damage done and to restore the faith of the people. He deserves all our support and faith in his abilities. If there is a bright light in our future, President Obama would be that! He has my complete trust and support, and I hope that all other people will give him the same. After all, we are all in this TOGETHER!

        • AdLib says:

          So many great points you make and raise, Emerald!

          Do people remember how disliked and outright hated America was by most of the rest of the world under a 9/11 empowered Bush? And how Obama’s election and presidency has greatly reversed that in many countries?

          Bin Laden couldn’t have had a better accomplice than Bush and Cheney to bring America and its economy to its knees. The thing about 9/11 is that it unlocked the door for Bush and Co. to harm America in a severity Al Qaeda never could have done. When your President is more of a terrorist than the terrorists he supposedly responding to, you’re in bad shape.

          All that you describe underline how critical the 2012 election will be, IMO, the most important election in our lifetime.

          Our nation is delicate balanced above a Depression and corporate dominance over a majority of lower class Americans. Should Romney or Perry win, America faces a long and deep descent.

          The good thing is that all other winds aside from economic are at Obama’s back and some are pretty powerful. Killing Medicare and SS, enshrining tax cuts for the wealthy and burdening 99% of Americans to pay for that, poisoning our water and air, killing the minimum wage, unions, unemployment insurance…that’s a lot helping Obama’s side of the scale.

          And most Americans may not approve of Obama’s handling of the economy but Congress gets a far lower rating, Repubs and the Tea Party lower than that and most people don’t blame Obama for our economic trouble, they blame Bush, the Repub.

          It will be a tight race, we need to work harder than we ever have to re-elect Obama but I am confident that we will prevail.


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