...it's the cover-up.
By Brad Friedman on 4/9/2004, 7:38pm PT  

You'd think these guys would have learned by now. The cover-up did in Nixon, almost did in Clinton and here we are all these years later, and they seem to be doing it again.

Condi did just fine yesterday. Handled herself very smartly. Passed a curious number of bucks, but held it together. In the process however, she exposed some FACTS that - unless the Bushies come clean and quickly - could well end up doing these guys in as well. And all perhaps for no good reason.

FACTS we learned from Condi (straight from the transcripts):

Let me read you some of the actual chatter that we picked up that spring and summer: "Unbelievable news coming in weeks," "Big event ... there will be a very, very, very, very big uproar," "There will be attacks in the near future."

Dick Clarke had told me...that there were al Qaeda cells in the United States.

...the president was aware that there were issues inside the United States... But I don't remember the al Qaeda cells as being something that we were told we needed to do something about.

The title [of the Aug. 6 Presidential Daily Briefing] was, "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States."

The president was told [the PDB was] historical information...there was nothing actionable in this...there was no new threat information in this document to pursue.

I hope she's right. It looks like the August 6 PDB may be declassified tomorrow - on the Saturday before Easter, of course.

Given that the Whitehouse was initially against the creation of the Homeland Security Dept, fought against the impanelling of the 9/11 Commission entirely, has withheld documents and testimony from them, much of it released only by threat of subpeona and/or public and political humiliation, has yet to declassify Condi's Public Speech on National Security Sept. 11th, has fought to keep that Aug 6 PDB from being declassified and will only agree to a "visit" by Bush and Cheney in front of the Commission if they are allowed to do so together, it certainly gives the appearance that they are hiding something. Don't it? And that's all their doing.

On a personal note, I'll add that I'd prefer the Report from the 9/11 Commission didn't come out at all until after the Elections. The information from the Report is far too important to be torn apart by the partisanship that it will undoubtedly be met with (and in the process, disregarded because of) in the wake of such a hotly contested Presidential Election.

On the other hand, given this Administration's obstructive behavior, dubious public posturing, penchant for misleading information and out and out despicable character assassination, perhaps a Report which offers information into how the folks running for re-election have handled things would be helpful to the American Public in making a more informed decision. One way or the other.

Of course, had the Bush Whitehouse not taken so long in getting the Commission set up and then spent months stonewalling them, perhaps this all would have been done by now. They have only themselves to blame, but it's the Country that may pay the price.