Gary Hart Warned Condi Rice Just Before 9/11
This should be big news: Gary Hart says he met with Condolezza Rice on 9/6/01 to talk about the imminent threat of terrorism.
Hart was co-chair (with former Sen. Warren Rudman) of the U.S. Commission on National Security, a bipartisan panel that conducted the most thorough investigation of U.S. security challenges since World War II. After completing the report, which warned that a devastating terrorist attack on America was imminent and called for the immediate creation of a Cabinet-level national security agency, and delivering it to President Bush on January 31, 2001, Hart and Rudman personally briefed Rice, Rumseld and Secretary of State Colin Powell. But, according to Hart, the Bush administration never followed up on the commission's urgent recommendations, even after he repeated them in a private White House meeting with Rice just days before 9/11.
Hart, who is now advising the Kerry campaign on national security issues, spoke with Salon this week about the Bush administration's failures to heed his warnings and why he feels the country is still at grave risk. Even at this late date, says Hart, Bush has failed to sufficiently coordinate federal, state, local and private sector security efforts, leaving open American ports as possible entry points for weapons of mass destruction and exposing such prime targets as petrochemical facilities located near major urban areas. ....The Bush White House, he charges, is locked in a strange and delicate dance with intelligence officials, maneuvering to place blame on the CIA but fearing if it does so too blatantly, the Bush team's own failings will be exposed.
In Hart's own words:
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