The 10th anniversary of the terror attacks on September 11, 2001 brings back many aweful memories for all of us. I remember sitting in a bar that night with a friend in utter bewilderment - why would these "terrorists" want to blow up the World Trade Center? Why would they fly a plane into the Pentagon? What is America going to do about it? Then I remember the phone call I received from my brother no more than 2 weeks after telling me he was being deployed to Afghanistan. It was at that moment that I began to pay very close attention to what was going on with this new "War on Terror". What I discovered made me question everything about that fateful day, including who the culprits were, their motives, and our reaction. For this post I would like to focus on the military response.
I have tried to tell many people that the "War on Terror" was prosecuted by the Bush administration not in response to the attacks, but as an aggressive campaign to wage war for global dominance. Now obviously these are lofty charges, and understandably, folks ask me how I know this. Well, according to this BBC report dated September 18, 2001:
A former Pakistani diplomat has told the BBC that the US was planning military action against Osama Bin Laden and the Taleban even before last week's attacks.
Niaz Naik, a former Pakistani Foreign Secretary, was told by senior American officials in mid-July that military action against Afghanistan would go ahead by the middle of October.
And he said it was doubtful that Washington would drop its plan even if Bin Laden were to be surrendered immediately by the Taleban.
Now some may dismiss this report as being nothing more than anti-American sentiment from the former Pakistani official, but this is not the only report. MSNBC reported 9 months after 9/11 that Bush had the plans to wage an aggressive war in Afghanistan two days BEFORE the attacks:
President Bush was expected to sign detailed plans for a worldwide war against al-Qaida two days before Sept. 11 but did not have the chance before the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, U.S. and foreign sources told NBC News.
The document, a formal National Security Presidential Directive, amounted to a “game plan to remove al-Qaida from the face of the earth,” one of the sources told NBC News’ Jim Miklaszewski.
The plan dealt with all aspects of a war against al-Qaida, ranging from diplomatic initiatives to military operations in Afghanistan, the sources said on condition of anonymity.
In 2003, former British environmental minister Michael Meacher wrote an article for the London Guardian entitled "This war on terrorism is bogus", where he outlines the plans laid in the now infamous Project for a New American Century (PNAC) document entitled "Rebuilding America's Defences":
We now know that a blueprint for the creation of a global Pax Americana was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now vice-president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's deputy), Jeb Bush (George Bush's younger brother) and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff). The document, entitled Rebuilding America's Defences, was written in September 2000 by the neoconservative think tank, Project for the New American Century (PNAC).
The plan shows Bush's cabinet intended to take military control of the Gulf region whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power. It says "while the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein."
The PNAC blueprint supports an earlier document attributed to Wolfowitz and Libby which said the US must "discourage advanced industrial nations from challenging our leadership or even aspiring to a larger regional or global role"...It says "even should Saddam pass from the scene", US bases in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait will remain permanently... as "Iran may well prove as large a threat to US interests as Iraq has". It spotlights China for "regime change", saying "it is time to increase the presence of American forces in SE Asia".
Meacher also details how the CIA was issuing visas to known extremists:
Fifteen of the 9/11 hijackers obtained their visas in Saudi Arabia. Michael Springman, the former head of the American visa bureau in Jeddah, has stated that since 1987 the CIA had been illicitly issuing visas to unqualified applicants from the Middle East and bringing them to the US for training in terrorism for the Afghan war in collaboration with Bin Laden (BBC, November 6 2001). It seems this operation continued after the Afghan war for other purposes. It is also reported that five of the hijackers received training at secure US military installations in the 1990s (Newsweek, September 15 2001).
Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer was part of a pre-9/11 operation named Able Danger. Its purpose was to identify Al quaeda cells and their operations, as well as to disrupt their activities. Shaffer says the lead hijacker, Mohamed Atta, was indentified in the report. He then went to the exectuive director of the 9/11 commission Philip Zelikow in 2003, but was ignored. When Shaffer wrote a book detailing Able Danger entitled Operation Dark Heart, the Defense Department bought up and destroyed the enitre first printing of the book at a taxpayer cost of $46,000. Could the DoD, DIA, and/or CIA have known about the hijackers and their intent to attack, yet did nothing so they could have an excuse to go to Afghanistan?:
It is important to keep in mind what the US mainstream media endlessly repeats when talking about 9/11. They say the Bush administration acted in reponse to attaks. The articles above state otherwise. The media never questions how nobody could have known who these hijackers were or what they were planning. Mr. Meacher and Mr. Springman tell another story. The media reports on plans of troop withdrawls as if our government actually wants these wars to end. The PNAC document tells a different story. The media echoes the Bush administration's claim that the intelligence agencies were unable to communicate with each other prior to 9/11, allowing the hijackers and their plans to remain unknown. Lt. Col. Shaffer disagrees.
As far as 9/11 is concerned, I call "Bullshit".