Friday, October 07, 2005

Bush's "Foiled Terror Plots" Claim Makes No Sense

By MARC MCDONALD

If you stop and think about it, Bush's claim that the U.S. and its allies foiled 10 plots by Al-Qaeda in the past four years, doesn't make sense.

First of all, there's the question of why the American people are only now hearing about all this. The timing is suspicious, to say the least. The fact is, the embattled Bush White House is at its lowest ebb ever. Bush's approval ratings are in the toilet. And most Americans now say the disastrous Iraq war wasn't worth it.

Details about the alleged terror plots have been pretty skimpy, to say the least. But the White House has referred to a murky series of alleged attacks that were set to occur from 2002 to 2004.

Here's what doesn't make any sense to me. If the U.S. did indeed foil terror plots during that time frame, don't you think we might have heard about it during the bitterly-fought, take-no-prisoners 2004 election campaign?

After all, Bush was desperately trying to convince the American people that his war on terror was a big success and that he could protect America better than John Kerry could. It seems to me that the Bush team would have been shouting from the highest rooftops that the U.S. had already foiled numerous Al-Qaeda attacks.

I've heard Republicans argue that Bush was unable to mention the foiled attacks previously, out of concerns for national security.

Of course, this makes no sense either.

I could see the need to maintain secrecy before a terror attack is foiled. But there is no reason to keep news of a foiled attack secret AFTER the fact.

And bear in mind, that although the Bush team has mentioned the foiled attacks now, the White House hasn't exactly offered many details about the alleged plots. Indeed, details about the "foiled plots" are extremely vague.

However, from what few details are known about the "foiled plots," it seem that Bush is once again misleading the nation. In only two of the cases are any details known---and the evidence in both cases is mighty thin:

In first case, involving Jose Padilla, it's important to note that Padilla has not yet even been charged with a crime.

As Britain's The Telegraph newspaper pointed out, Paul Wolfowitz "stressed that 'there was not an actual plan' to set off a radioactive device in America and Padilla had not begun trying to acquire materials. Intelligence officials said his research had not gone beyond surfing the internet."

The second case, involving Ohio truck driver Iyman Faris, is unlikely to be dramatized in a Tom Clancy-style thriller appearing at your local cinema any time soon. As Think Progress pointed out:

"(Iyman Faris) ... pleaded guilty in June 2003 to two felony charges of supporting a foreign terrorist organization. He was charged with plotting to destroy the Brooklyn Bridge, but U.S. officials admitted that Faris had abandoned the plot because he deemed it unlikely to succeed. "After scouting the bridge and deciding its security and structure meant the plot was unlikely to succeed, he passed along a message to al Qaeda in early 2003 that said ‘the weather is too hot.’" [CNN, 6/19/03]"

Of course, outside of the meager details known about the aforementioned two cases, next to nothing is known about the other eight alleged foiled terror plots.

It's commendable that Bush avoided any mention of these "foiled plots" during the 2004 election campaign. Otherwise, he might have been accused of politicizing the "war on terror" to his own benefit. Yeah, right.

In any case, for Bush to trot out this tale of foiled plots now, when his political fortunes are at their lowest ebb, is only the latest contemptible attempt by the White House to shamelessly use 9/11 to bolster its political fortunes.

12 comments:

bowncr1212 said...

Here ! Here! ... great piece. I was thinking the exact same thing.. so, if you were thinking it, and I was thinking it, you know millions more are thinking the same thing. The facts you site need to be pointed out repeatedly loud and clear to the rest of Americans that don't think at all, or claim they don't have time to think or pay any attention beyond dead missing white girls.

Anonymous said...

I too have personally foiled seven terrorist plot since 2002, but it's so secret if I told you about them, I'd have to kill you.

Anonymous said...

On the other hand, if we take bush at his word, it prove the lie of fighting them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here.

Anonymous said...

I think it makes eminent good sense for Bush to make a "Foiled Terror Plots" claim now because:
A Filipino spy named Leandro Aragoncillo who worked as an FBI intelligence analyst in Dick Cheney's office prior to and during the 911 attack has been charged. He was assigned there in 1999 just as the presidential run of Al Gore was getting underway. I wonder who assigned him and why Cheney didn't replace him with a Bush crony after taking office in Jan 2001? Recall that an al-Qaeda cell from the Philippines was responsible for the first bombing of the WTC and for the so-called "Bojinka" plot to simultaneously blow up several international flights and fly an airplane into CIA headquarters.

"The FBI is looking at whether Aragoncillo, a former Marine, took classified information about the Philippines from the White House when he worked for Vice Presidents Al Gore and Cheney from 1999 to 2002.

The type of information has not been disclosed. Though Aragoncillo had top-secret clearance, that status would not have made him privy to highly sensitive intelligence."

Does anyone seriously believe that that the 911 terrorists randomly planned their attack for that particular day without inside intelligence re: military exercises? Does anyone seriously believe that Bush administration is not covering up something concerning 911?

Anonymous said...

Doesn't this look like Joe McCarthy telling us that there are two hundred Commies in the State Department? Joseph Welsh got it right at the Army hearings- "Have you no shame, sir? Have you no shame?"

Clearly, this executive has no shame.

muddmike said...

Thanks for pointing this out! It is clear to me that the government is becoming "Big Brother". The Padilla and bridge cases are clearly "thought crimes". We need to remove the "Patriot" Act, after all of the neocons are declared enemy combatabts and "rendered" to Uzbekistan!

chris said...

well... there is a reason not to mention these plots, even after they are foiled... if they are trying to work backwards through a network they need to keep each node of the network unaware in order to roll it up...

I don't believe the Bushies about ANYTHING AT ALL, but technically there could be reasons to keep their mouths shut.

Anyway, good site, I read it a lot.

Anonymous said...

u know I heard That they also went after the hamburgular but he slipped the net and there is supose to be an on going investigation into all those suposed A.C.M.E packages the cyote is getting to get that dammed roadrunner

Anonymous said...

Remmeber the context. Bush is stating that he need's the secret spy programme to protect us. What the secret spy programme is admittedly doing is intercepting communications between "known" Al Quaeda abroad and persons within the US. If there was a conspiracy with persons within the US to commit a crime, that is a Federal offense by the person living within the US. So, why were not people within the US arrested? Interesting. More spin?

Rockjaw said...

Come on guys, EVERYONE already knows all about Bush, his current administration as well as the administration of his father. It's really no secret.

The only mystery is this....how the bloody heck long is it going to you yanks to kick the idiotic prick out or charge him with something? Whatever you do, just hurry up because it looks like you Americans are not going to make it for much longer and if you don't make it, most of us other peaceful democracies are going to have a shitty time of it keeping the world intact!

Just hurry up and get the word out to those other idiots who vote for him, please!

Vampyreknight said...

XD..i agree with Rockjaw. The fact that no one has come up with ANYTHING to charge Bush with for an impeachment is jus....well...unbelivable. >.>

Anonymous said...

your a moron