Sunday, July 11, 2004

I don't understand part Two

I caught this information from Daniel Drezner

Here are some emails between two people who feel that they know a lot about a lot of different things.

The emails exchange basically argues the basic premise of that amazing Michael Moore movie that we all love and adore.

Email Exchange One.
Email Exchange Two.
Email Exchange Three.

Craig Unger's (author of House of Bush, House of Saud: The Secret Relationship Between the World's Two Most Powerful Dynasties) theories center on the reason the Saud family were allowed to leave is cause Bush in with the royal family. The person who he is emailing does not state that his arguments are not true, just that he lacks definite proof. They do end up agreeing on a few points, one of which caught my eye.

You'll have to forgive me, but I still don't see how terror has taken a back seat to oil interests. Michael Moore tries to make the point, but he never really connects the dots. What I do see is that Cold War blinders not oil interests prevented this administration from taking terrorism seriously. The administration came to power believing that terrorism was more of a Clinton obsession than a national security threat. We were the big superpower. We had to worry about potential peer competitors like China and a possibly resurgent Russia, not annoying little asymmetric threats like terrorism. Clinton administration officials couldn't get anyone in the incoming Bush administration to focus on terrorism. Because of oil? No, I think because they had all left power during the Reagan and Bush I eras and had their Cold War glasses on, and they weren't prepared for the new threat of the day. They willfully ignored the threat because it was a Clinton-era problem.

So the Bush administration had it's cold war blinders on and did not take terrorism very serious.

Hmm...I seem to remember this

"After President Bush was elected, we were briefed by the Clinton administration on many national security issues during the transition. The president-elect and I were briefed by George Tenet on terrorism and on the Al Qaeda network.

Members of Sandy Berger's NSC staff briefed me, along with other members of the national security team, on counterterrorism and Al Qaeda. This briefing lasted for about an hour, and it reviewed the Clinton administration's counter terrorism approach and the various counter terrorism activities then under way.

Sandy and I personally discussed a variety of other topics, including North Korea, Iraq, the Middle East and the Balkans.

Because of these briefings, and because we had watched the rise of Al Qaeda over many years, we understood that the network posed a serious threat to the United States. We wanted to ensure that there was no respite in the fight against Al Qaeda.

RICE: On an operational level, therefore, we decided immediately to continue to pursue the Clinton administration's covert action authority and other efforts to fight the network. "

"We also moved to develop a new and comprehensive strategy to try and eliminate the Al Qaida network. President Bush understood the threat, and he understood its importance. He made clear to us that he did not want to respond to Al Qaeda one attack at a time. He told me he was tired of swatting flies. "

This new strategy was developed over the spring and summer of 2001 and was approved by the president's senior national security officials on September 4th. It was the very first major national security policy directive of the Bush administration -- not Russia, not missile defense, not Iraq, but the elimination of Al Qaeda.

Blinders...hmm. I wonder who has the blinders on.

Secondly this point will come up in later post.

On the other, we have lost the support of any and all moderate Arabs just when we need them the most, and the instability Bush has brought to the Middle East severely jeopardizes our future relationship with the Saudis to satisfy our oil needs.


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