Newsweek has mined what - under any other circumstance under any other administration - appears to be an explosive revelation about what happened while Bush was enjoying "My Pet Goat." Cheney took over the controls of our country, and actually urged Bush to stay at bay. That might be the very call our brave and strong president is taking when this picture was snapped at Emma E. Booker Elementary School.
This is just head-spinning. It puts to bed once and for all the myth of how strong George W. Bush was on that day. He was weaker than a sick kitten.
Who Was Really In Charge?If that's not bad enough - this so-called independent 9/11 commission was (as many weaker Americans have been in the last three years) bullied into changing the wording of the severity of Cheney's account. Look up the word "lie" if you miss the subtlety.
America was under attack, and somebody had to make a decision. Dick Cheney, huddled in the Presidential Emergency Operations Center under the White House, had just urged the traveling George W. Bush not to return to Washington. The president had left Florida aboard Air Force One at 9:55 a.m. on 9/11 "with no destination at take-off," as last week's 9-11 Commission report noted. Nor had Bush given any known instructions on how to respond to the attacks. Now Cheney faced another huge decision on a morning in which every minute seemed monumental. The two airliners had already crashed into the Twin Towers, another into the Pentagon. Combat air patrols were aloft, and a military aide was asking for shoot-down authority, telling Cheney that a fourth plane was "80 miles out" from Washington. Cheney didn't flinch, the report said. "In about the time it takes a batter to decide to swing," he gave the order to shoot it down, telling others the president had "signed off on the concept" during a brief phone chat. When the plane was 60 miles out, Cheney was again informed and again he ordered: take it out.
Then Joshua Bolten, after what he described in testimony as "a quiet moment," spoke up. Bolten, the White House deputy chief of staff, asked the veep to get back in touch with the president to "confirm the engage order." Bolten was clearly subordinate to Cheney, but "he had not heard any prior conversation on the subject with the president," the 9/11 report notes. Nor did the real-time notes taken by two others in the room, Cheney's chief of staff, "Scooter" Libby - who is known for his meticulous record-keeping - or Cheney's wife, Lynne, reflect that such a phone call between Bush and Cheney occurred or that such a major decision as shooting down a U.S. airliner was discussed. Bush and Cheney later testified the president gave the order. And national-security adviser Condoleezza Rice and a military aide said they remembered a call, but gave few specifics. The report concluded "there is no documentary evidence for this call."
...NEWSWEEK has learned that some on the commission staff were, in fact, highly skeptical of the vice president's account and made their views clearer in an earlier draft of their staff report. According to one knowledgeable source, some staffers "flat out didn't believe the call ever took place." When the early draft conveying that skepticism was circulated to the administration, it provoked an angry reaction. In a letter from White House lawyers last Tuesday and a series of phone calls, the White House vigorously lobbied the commission to change the language in its report. "We didn't think it was written in a way that clearly reflected the accounting the president and vice president had given to the commission," White House spokesman Dan Bartlett told NEWSWEEK. Ultimately the chairman and vice chair of the commission, former New Jersey governor Thomas Kean and former representative Lee Hamilton - both of whom have sought mightily to appear nonpartisan - agreed to remove some of the offending language. The report "was watered down," groused one staffer.One question jumps out here: Why in God's name was the 9/11 commission report pre-screened by the White House anyway? Did anyone - ONE SINGLE SOUL - allow the salacious Starr Report to be edited and rewritten by anyone in the Clinton White House? HELL, NO, folks. That Republican- and public-funded witch hunt had to show all of America how bad it is to have a girlfriend on the side. FAR FAR more important and more deadly than a majority opinion by the 9/11 commission that Dick Cheney flat-out lied about what happened while New York and Washington were being attacked from the skies.
GOD. DAMN. Give me the strength to do whatever I can to have Kerry win by at least 25% this November, because anything less will be challenged and overturned by these lousy, stinking, heartless, lying, deceiving, treacherous, dangerous criminals.
Pull the steering wheel out of their hands NOW - before they send us all over a cliff.