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Cheney Says There Was No Iraq Link to 9/11 Attacks

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by SuspectCorner, Jun 1, 2009.

  1. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    Cheney Says There Was No Iraq Link to 9/11 Attacks

    By James Rowley and Jonathan D. Salant / Bloomberg News / Last Updated: June 1, 2009 18:22 EDT

    June 1 (Bloomberg) -- Former Vice President Dick Cheney disavowed intelligence he once cited to suggest that then-Iraq dictator Saddam Hussein collaborated with al-Qaeda to stage the Sept. 11 attacks.

    Cheney said today that information by the Central Intelligence Agency of collaboration between Iraq and al-Qaeda on Sept. 11 “turned out not to be true.” Still, Cheney said a longstanding relationship existed between Hussein and terrorist groups, including al-Qaeda, that justified the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.

    “I thought it was strong at the time and I still feel so today,” Cheney said at a National Press Club lunch in Washington. “There was a relationship between al-Qaeda and Iraq that stretched back 10 years. That’s not something I made up.” Citing 2002 Senate testimony by George Tenet, then the CIA director, he said, “We know for a fact that Saddam Hussein was a state sponsor of terrorism.”

    On whether Hussein helped al-Qaeda carry out the 2001 terrorist attacks, Cheney said, “I do not believe, and I have never seen any evidence, that he was involved in 9/11.”

    Cheney continued his attacks on President Barack Obama’s pledge to close the prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where suspected terrorists are being held. Obama has called the indefinite detention of suspects at Guantanamo a “mistake” and said he will close the camp -- a vow that has been complicated by the refusal of lawmakers, including Democrats, to provide funding.

    Difficult to Close

    “I think it’s going to be very difficult to close Guantanamo,” Cheney said. “It’s a good, well-run facility. If you’re going to be engaged in a world conflict such as we are in terms of global war on terrorism, if you don’t have a place where you can hold these people, your only other option is to kill them. We don’t operate that way.”

    Several months after the Sept. 11 attacks, Cheney said it was “pretty well” confirmed that Mohamed Atta, one of the leaders of the attack, had met with a senior Iraqi intelligence official in Prague in April 2000, according to a Washington Post account. Cheney later said the meeting’s existence couldn’t be proven, the Post said.

    The presidential commission that investigated the Sept. 11 attacks concluded in 2004 that meetings or contacts between al- Qaeda and Iraqi officials didn’t result in collaboration between the terrorist group and Hussein’s regime.

    Defending Policies

    Cheney’s midday speech marked his latest salvo in a personal campaign to defend the Bush administration’s post-9/11 policies while suggesting that Obama’s actions have made the U.S. more vulnerable to terrorist attacks.

    In his press club appearance, Cheney said that foreign governments that have criticized Guantanamo haven’t been willing to take in suspects detained there. And if detainees are admitted to the U.S., they would gain certain rights and protections they do not have in the prison in Cuba.

    “If you bring them here and a judge rules you can’t hold them any longer, you have to release them in the United States,” Cheney said.

    Cheney, 68, has said lives were saved by Bush administration actions, including authorizing the use of harsh interrogation techniques considered to be torture, such as waterboarding, a form of simulated drowning.

    Obama has banned waterboarding, saying such actions betray the country’s “ideals” and aren’t necessary to “wage an aggressive battle against organizations like al-Qaeda.

    ‘Worried’ About GM

    Cheney also said today he was “worried” about General Motors Corp.’s bankruptcy protection that was forced upon the automaker by the Obama administration. The bankruptcy plan calls for taxpayers to own more than 60 percent of General Motors.

    “Once you get into the business of a government running a major corporation like General Motors,” political pressures “come to bear and not economic interests,’” Cheney said.

    In an interview before his speech, Cheney said the U.S. will face “enormous pressure” to manage GM in a way that doesn’t cost jobs.

    Cheney, asked about gay rights at the luncheon, said decisions on whether to legalize same-sex marriages should be made by states, not the federal government.

    Cheney, whose daughter, Mary, is gay, indicated that he supports same-sex marriages. “Freedom means freedom for everyone,” he said. “I think people ought to be free to enter into any kind of union they wish, any kind of arrangement they wish.”

    ****************************

    Really!?! Ya don't say...

    Yeah, it's ALL Tenet's fault. Sure Dick. Sure.

    :rolleyes:
  2. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    I don't care. Saddam had to go. I am pleased.
  3. ShiningStar

    ShiningStar Well-Known Member

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    This is the sentiment around the world. We just had the guts and a president to do it. This guy was a killer to his people, the mass graves are proof enough, he showed them forced rule, he kept them in the dark and he kept them in the stone age.

    Thats the second biggest problem i had with Americans. "OOO we bombed them back to the stone age" No moron, THEY WERE IN THE STONE AGE. Now they are moving forward, are happy, happier with us, happier with themselves.

    The accomplishment our soliders do everyday over there does not make the light of day over here, but still they chug at it, and stil the people are coming over to our side of things.

    I really cant see how people can scream to give everyone who comes to this country, to give them everything, but mad at Bush for handing Iraq everything they wanted but couldnt do.

    That country is taking huge steps everyday and this country is mad at us for handing them map to democracy. Its just insane. At least it got done and people are moving forward.
  4. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    Oh really?

    My well-wishes for ole Dick fall along the lines of - "don't let the trapdoor hit you in the *** on the way down."

    Hey, call me sentimental.
  5. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    The Trauma of 9/11 Is No Excuse

    By Richard A. Clarke (former Counter-Terrorism Chief in the G.W. Bush administration) / The Washington Post / Sunday, May 31, 2009

    Top officials from the Bush administration have hit upon a revealing new theme as they retrospectively justify their national security policies. Call it the White House 9/11 trauma defense.

    Unless you were there, in a position of responsibility after September 11, you cannot possibly imagine the dilemmas that you faced in trying to protect Americans," Condoleezza Rice said last month as she admonished a Stanford University student who questioned the Bush-era interrogation program. And in his May 21 speech on national security, Dick Cheney called the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, a "defining" experience that "caused everyone to take a serious second look" at the threats to America. Critics of the administration have become more intense as memories of the attacks have faded, he argued. "Part of our responsibility, as we saw it," Cheney said, "was not to forget the terrible harm that had been done to America."

    I remember that morning, too. Shortly after the second World Trade Center tower was hit, I burst in on Rice (then the president's national security adviser) and Cheney in the vice president's office and remember glimpsing horror on his face. Once in the bomb shelter, Cheney assembled his team while the crisis managers on the National Security Council staff coordinated the government response by video conference from the Situation Room. Many of us thought that we might not leave the White House alive. I remember the next day, too, when smoke still rose from the Pentagon as I sat in my office in the White House compound, a gas mask on my desk. The streets of Washington were empty, except for the armored vehicles, and the skies were clear, except for the F-15s on patrol. Every scene from those days is seared into my memory. I understand how it was a defining moment for Cheney, as it was for so many Americans.

    Yet listening to Cheney and Rice, it seems that they want to be excused for the measures they authorized after the attacks on the grounds that 9/11 was traumatic. "If you were there in a position of authority and watched Americans drop out of eighty-story buildings because these murderous tyrants went after innocent people," Rice said in her recent comments, "then you were determined to do anything that you could that was legal to prevent that from happening again."

    I have little sympathy for this argument. Yes, we went for days with little sleep, and we all assumed that more attacks were coming. But the decisions that Bush officials made in the following months and years -- on Iraq, on detentions, on interrogations, on wiretapping -- were not appropriate. Careful analysis could have replaced the impulse to break all the rules, even more so because the Sept. 11 attacks, though horrifying, should not have surprised senior officials. Cheney's admission that 9/11 caused him to reassess the threats to the nation only underscores how, for months, top officials had ignored warnings from the CIA and the NSC staff that urgent action was needed to preempt a major al-Qaeda attack.

    Thus, when Bush's inner circle first really came to grips with the threat of terrorism, they did so in a state of shock -- a bad state in which to develop a coherent response. Fearful of new attacks, they authorized the most extreme measures available, without assessing whether they were really a good idea.

    I believe this zeal stemmed in part from concerns about the 2004 presidential election. Many in the White House feared that their inaction prior to the attacks would be publicly detailed before the next vote -- which is why they resisted the 9/11 commission -- and that a second attack would eliminate any chance of a second Bush term. So they decided to leave no doubt that they had done everything imaginable.

    The first response they discussed was invading Iraq. While the Pentagon was still burning, Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld was in the White House suggesting an attack against Baghdad. Somehow the administration's leaders could not believe that al-Qaeda could have mounted such a devastating operation, so Iraqi involvement became the convenient explanation. Despite being told repeatedly that Iraq was not involved in 9/11, some, like Cheney, could not abandon the idea. Charles Duelfer of the CIA's Iraq Survey Group recently revealed in his book, "Hide and Seek: The Search for Truth in Iraq," that high-level U.S. officials urged him to consider waterboarding specific Iraqi prisoners of war so that they could provide evidence of an Iraqi role in the terrorist attacks -- a request Duelfer refused. (A recent report indicates that the suggestion came from the vice president's office.) Nevertheless, the lack of evidence did not deter the administration from eventually invading Iraq -- a move many senior Bush officials had wanted to make before 9/11.

    On detention, the Bush team leaped to the assumption that U.S. courts and prisons would not work. Before the terrorist attacks, the U.S. counterterrorism program of the 1990s had arrested al-Qaeda terrorists and others around the world and had a 100 percent conviction rate in the U.S. justice system. Yet the American system was abandoned, again as part of a pattern of immediately adopting the most extreme response available. Camps were established around the world, notably in Guantanamo Bay, where prisoners were held without being charged or tried. They became symbols of American overreach, held up as proof that al-Qaeda's anti-American propaganda was right.

    Similarly, with regard to interrogation, administration officials conducted no meaningful professional analysis of which techniques worked and which did not. The FBI, which had successfully questioned al-Qaeda terrorists, was effectively excluded from interrogations. Instead, there was the immediate and unwarranted assumption that extreme measures -- such as waterboarding one detainee 183 times -- would be the most effective.

    Finally, on wiretapping, rather than beef up the procedures available under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), the administration again moved to the extreme, listening in on communications here at home without legal process. FISA did need some modification, but it also allowed for the quick issuance of court orders, as when President Clinton took stepped-up defensive measures in late 1999 under the heightened threat of the new millennium.

    Yes, Dick Cheney and Condoleezza Rice may have been surprised by the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 -- but it was because they had not listened. And their surprise led them to adopt extreme counterterrorism techniques -- but it was because they rejected, without analysis, the tactics the Clinton administration had used. The measures they uncritically adopted, which they simply assumed were the best available, were in fact unnecessary and counterproductive.

    "I'll freely admit that watching a coordinated, devastating attack on our country from an underground bunker at the White House can affect how you view your responsibilities," Cheney said in his recent speech. But this defense does not stand up. The Bush administration's response actually undermined the principles and values America has always stood for in the world, values that should have survived this traumatic event. The White House thought that 9/11 changed everything. It may have changed many things, but it did not change the Constitution, which the vice president, the national security adviser and all of us who were in the White House that tragic day had pledged to protect and preserve.
  6. NextGenBoys

    NextGenBoys Well-Known Member

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    9/11 Just doesnt add up. I dont want to say I support all those conspiracies, but the facts just do not add up.

    Thats all I'm going to say.
  7. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    You need to firm up your argument for sacrificing 4000 US lives to the overthrow of a toothless tyrant. 'Cuz, right now, you're not even in the neighborhood.
  8. Nav22

    Nav22 Well-Known Member

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    Not to mention the Iraqi women and children.
  9. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    You know suspect will always find excuses to not criticise Saddam for the 500,000 + people he killed or the millions he tortured. Only Bush. Which just goes to show just how pathetic that is.
  10. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    Those brave men and women gave their lives in the War against terrorism to keep Americans (even ungrateful ones like you) safe.

    The sacrifice our military makes is one that could not be explained to a "person" like you.

    They believe in something that is foreign to your being.
  11. iceberg

    iceberg detoxed Zone Supporter

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    toothless tyrant? man you'll lie and make crap up too - but it's only bush who's the bad guy for doing it.
  12. Hoofbite

    Hoofbite Well-Known Member

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    So he had teeth? :laugh2:
  13. ABQCOWBOY

    ABQCOWBOY Moderator Staff Member

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    Yes. What's more, he bit hard. Folks, regardless of what you believe or don't believe about American Intel and how it effected our plans to go to war with Iraq, you can not dispute that this man was evil. He was a very bad man who did horrible things to anybody he thought he could and get away with it. The world is better of without this man in it.
  14. ShiningStar

    ShiningStar Well-Known Member

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    So you are against the fact that we 1) Protected ourselves when the masses called for it. 2) Against our military going after a terrorist that killed 3 thousand of our own. 3) Against the fact that we gave Iraq their freedom against a tyrant who was killing them by the thousands 4) Against our military freeing these people of terrorism and putting them on a better road. 5) rebuidling their infra structure .
    Makes sense.


    You can hate on our military all you want, but I personally will take any opportunity I can get and thank them as much as i can for what they do not only for my country, but for the world.
  15. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    So show where I bagged on the military there, zrin.

    Keep working on those comprehension skills - your diligence is bound to pay off eventually. :D
  16. JBond

    JBond Well-Known Member

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    Maybe I missed it, but were there a bunch of people on this board claiming a link between 9/11 and Saddam?

    We all know what a piece of garbage he was. NatGeo and the History channel have both done in depth biography's on Saddam. He was a very evil person. Good riddance.
  17. Jarv

    Jarv Loud pipes saves lives. Zone Supporter

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    We didn't "sacrifice" any lives we have an all volunteer army that fought 2 wars against the same guy.

    I'll ask this question, even though you never answer my questions and just spew on and on.

    If someone beat you up and went to jail for it, then got out of jail on probation and saw you in the street. That person could go back to jail for even threatening you...Say they did threaten you and no did anything (United Nations) and ole GW locked him up again, you would probably call the ACLU to get the guy out because GW did it.

    Would you want this guy locked up AGAIN ?

    When Sadam did not follow his truce agreement, from when he invaded, raped and pillaged another nation and threatened others, you think he should have been left alone.

    You must hate women also, because now they have rights in IRAQ, so all in all you juts hate...ok, got it.
  18. iceberg

    iceberg detoxed Zone Supporter

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    no one i know of - but when your hate is boiling over, you gotta make crap up to hate or you're just not happy.
  19. zrinkill

    zrinkill Diamond surrounded by trash

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    Show me where I claimed you did .... I would never expect you to have the guts to admit your true feelings openly. You will just continue to make little remarks filled with contempt about the military. Letting anyone paying attention to your drivel know without a shadow of doubt.

    To bad the same cannot be said about you. You cannot even see that without vcdefector around you have become the forum joke.

    ;)
  20. SuspectCorner

    SuspectCorner Bromo

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    The point would be this is Cheney's first public admission that there was no link between Saddam and 9/11.

    You may recall rumblings within the intelligence community that Dick Cheney was the driving force behind the Bush administration's presentation of bunk intel as reliable when they were making their case for invasion.

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