Sunday, July 18, 2004

The 9/11 commission report: the interesting parts and the assault on Iran

9/11 Panel Calls for Major Changes (
The commission staff has already absolved Saudi Arabia's government of direct support for al Qaeda and debunked widespread reports that Osama bin Laden inherited $300 million. (He received a $1 million annual allowance for about two decades, the commission found.) Panel members also have knocked down questions raised by last year's congressional investigation into Sept. 11 intelligence failures involving possible help for the hijackers by the Saudi Embassy in Washington....

... The report will expand on the commission's earlier findings that al Qaeda's contacts with Iran were far more advanced than previously believed, and that the two may have developed a relationship of convenience that included cooperation in attacks such as the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia. Time magazine reported that the commission has found that eight to 10 of the Sept. 11 hijackers may have passed through Iran before joining the hijacking plot.

I suspect most of the interesting parts of the report aren't going to get much press attention. If not for the spur of the professional journalist bloggers (eg. not hobbyists like myself) I think journalism would have died in the US last year.

On a related tack, a plot of co-occurences of "Iran", "al Qaeda" and "9/11" would show a steep rise in the past few months. It looks like Bush is preparing to go after Iran next. Of course since he has no credibility left outside of a core group of supporters, the question of Iran's true guilt or innocence is almost irrelevant. Bush's deception and incompetence has made it impossible for him to make any kind of case at all.

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