"I'm certain that if my husband and his national security team had been shown a classified report entitled 'Bin Laden Determined To Attack Inside the United States' he would have taken it more seriously than history suggests it was taken by our current president and his national security team."First of all, to come out and say pretty clearly that if her husband had been president, the terrorists might not have succeeded on 9/11 strikes me as crass, vicious, and just plain nasty. Of all the Democrats, she should know the dangers of saying such things. And the contrast with President Bush refusing to respond to questions about what she and her husband were saying about this demonstrated much more class than. And, of course, there is his father who did not come out publicly and criticize President Clinton throughout Clinton's presidency unlike the way that Presidents Carter and Clinton have been quite open in their criticism of the present President.
However, the other problem is that it is now fair game for people to go back and look more carefully at Clinton's record. And, as Tom Joscelyn shows, he received almost the exact same warning that Hillary was trumpeting that Bush had received. And Clinton heard that warning several times.
In fact, President Clinton signed a similar classified document--which contained an explicit warning from the U.S. Intelligence Community that bin Laden intended to strike inside the United States, more than two years prior to leaving office. And the U.S. intelligence community collected numerous pieces of intelligence concerning bin Laden's determination to strike inside the United States during President Clinton's tenure. In addition to the failed plot against the World Trade Center in 1993 and the failed alRead the rest of Joscelyn's article to see the details of the report that Clinton received in 1998. It's clear that he had the same sort of warning that Bush received.
Qaeda plot against LAX airport in 1999, there were clear indications that bin Laden's terror empire intended to strike targets in the continental United States.
The warning signs collected during the Clinton administration are outlined in the bipartisan "Report of the Joint Inquiry into the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001," which was jointly published by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in December 2002.
The Joint Inquiry outlines a number of U.S. government failures in the years leading up to September 11, 2001. Among the report's findings, the committees concluded that prior to September 11, 2001: The "U.S. Intelligence Community was involved in fighting a 'war' against Bin Laden largely without the benefit of what some would call its most potent weapon in that effort: an alert and committed American public."
The report goes on to list three examples of "information that was shared with senior U.S. Government officials, but was not made available to the American public because of its national security classification." This information was "explicit about the gravity and immediacy of the threat posed by Bin Laden" and included "a classified document" signed by President Clinton in December 1998, which read in part:
"The Intelligence Community has strong indications that Bin Laden intends to conduct or sponsor attacks inside the United States."
As with the August 6, 2001 PDB, "the intelligence that was acquired and shared by the Intelligence Community was not specific as to time and place." Nonetheless, it "should have been sufficient to prompt action to insure a heightened sense of alert and implementation of additional defensive measures."Exactly. Most people were willing to look beyond what presidents had done prior to 9/11 and start over looking at how they responded after the attacks. But, if the Democrats are going to start up with this nonsense attacking Bush for not having doing as much as Clinton had done, they have opened the door for reexamining the Clinton record and that is not a debate that makes the Clintons look good.
That's the real point in all of this. Prior to September 11, 2001, no one in the U.S. Government--Republican or Democrat--did enough to stop the terrorist threat from metastasizing on U.S. soil.
Senator Clinton's attempted whitewash of her husband's record does not change that.