Guest blogged by Joseph Cannon
As you probably know, ABC plans to commemorate 9/11 with a lying "docudrama" designed to portray Bill Clinton as soft on terrorism. As a small counter to such assaults on history, AmericaBlog reminds us the the Republicans once had a very different attitude toward terrorism.
In July of 1996, Clinton asked Congress for increased wiretapping authority in order to catch terrorists --- unlike Bush, who simply assumed such powers, consulting his lawyers instead of the legislators. The Republicans smacked down the idea, citing the dangers of increased presidential powers.
They also fired up their base with dark tales of a Clinton power-grab, using terror as a excuse. You can relive this history as I did --- by firing up Google Groups in order to see what Clinton's conservative opponents were saying about terrorism ten years ago.
Below, you will find a hastily-compiled selection of excerpts. Some of these comments were written directly for usenet, others are quotes from web sites or printed sources. In order to convey an impressionistic sense of how conservatives thought at that time, I've decided to forego names and dates; if you want full context, fire up Google for yourself. All the quotes appeared somewhere on usenet during 1996.
Those of you old enough to recall those days will testify that these sentiments were widely shared in conservative circles. The change in attitude is almost as stunning as the attempt to change history itself. As you read, ask yourself if you can imagine any of our modern death-to-Islam types saying such things about Bush or the current world situation: