Well, that pretty much leaves Daschle and Gephart out of the loop. Considering their comments on the "Shadow Government" and now this, today, they're obviously not very knowledgeable about what goes on in the Intelligence Committees (or other committees, it appears) and they certainly aren't committed to improving the defense of the nation and as for political advantage - any old port in the storm that their greedy little fingers can grasp.
In July 1999, for example, Cohen wrote an op-ed piece in the Washington Post, predicting a terrorist attack on the American mainland. "In the past year, dozens of threats to use chemical or biological weapons in the United States have turned out to be hoaxes. Someday, one will be real." But the warnings did not produce the requisite action by the commander-in-chief. Meanwhile, the nation's media looked the other way. For example, as the president of the Council on Foreign Relations told the New Yorker's Joe Klein, he "watched carefully to see if anyone followed up on [Cohen's speech]. But none of the television networks and none of the elite press even mentioned it. I was astonished."
The following year, "the National Commission on Terrorismchaired by former Reagan counter-terrorism head Paul Bremerissued a report with the eerily foreboding image of the Twin Towers on its cover. A bi-partisan effort led by Jon Kyl and Dianne Feinsteinwas made to attach the recommendations of the panel to an intelligence authorization bill." But Senator Patrick Leahy, who had distinguished himself in the 1980s by opposing the government's efforts to halt the Communist offensive in Central America "said he feared a threat to 'civil liberties' in a campaign against terrorism and torpedoed the effort. After the bombing of the U.S.S. Cole, Kyl and Feinstein tried yet again. This time, Leahy was content with emaciating the proposals instead of defeating them outright. The weakened proposals died as the House realized 'it wasn't worth taking up.'"
After the abortive plot to blow up commercial airliners in the Philippines, Vice President Gore was tasked with improving airline security. A commission was formed, but under his leadership it also "focused on civil liberties" and "profiling," liberal obsessions that diluted any effort to strengthen security measures in the face of a threat in which all of the proven terrorists were Muslims from the Middle East and Asia. The commission concluded that, "no profile [of passengers] should contain or be based on race, religion, or national origin." According to journalist Kevin Cherry, the FAA also decided in 1999 to seal its passenger screening system from law-enforcement databases thus preventing the FBI from notifying airlines that suspected terrorists were on board."
In 1993, the FBI identified three charities connected to the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas that were being used to finance terrorist activities, sending as much as $20 million a year to America's enemies. According to presidential adviser Dick Morris, "At a White House strategy meeting on April 27, 1995two weeks after the Oklahoma City bombingthe President was urged to create a 'President's List' of extremist/terrorist groups, their members and donors 'to warn the public against well-intentioned donations which might foster terrorism.' On April 1, 1996, he was again advised to 'prohibit fund-raising by terrorists and identify terrorist organizations.'" Hamas was specifically mentioned.
Inexplicably Clinton ignored these recommendations. Why? FBI agents have stated that they were prevented from opening either criminal or national-security cases because of a fear that it would be seen as 'profiling' Islamic charities. While Clinton was 'politically correct,' Hamas flourished.
In failing to heed the signs that America was at war with a deadly adversary, overcome the ideological obstacles created by the liberal biases of his administration and arouse an uninformed public to concern, it was the commander-in-chief who bore primary responsibility. As one former administration official told reporter Joe Klein "Clinton spent less concentrated attention on national defense than any another President in recent memory." Clinton's political advisor Dick Morris flatly charged, "Clinton's failure to mobilize America to confront foreign terror after the 1993 attack [on the World Trade Center] led directly to the 9/11 disaster." According to Morris "Clinton was removed, uninvolved, and distant where the war on terror was concerned."
By Clinton's own account, Monica Lewinsky was able to visit him privately more than a dozen times in the Oval Office. But according to a USA Today investigative report, the head of the CIA could not get a single private meeting with the President, despite the Trade Center bombing of February 26, 1993 or the killing of 18 American soldiers in Mogadishu on October 3 of the same year. "James Woolsey, Clinton's first CIA director, says he never met privately with Clinton after their initial interview. When a small plane crashed on the White House grounds in 1994, the joke inside the White House was, 'that must be Woolsey, still trying to get an appointment.'"
In 1996, an American Muslim businessman and Clinton supporter named Mansoor Ijaz opened up an unofficial channel between the government of the Sudan and the Clinton Administration. At the same time, "the State Department was describing bin Laden as 'the greatest single financier of terrorist projects in the world' and was accusing the Sudan of harboring terrorists." According to Mansoor, who met with Clinton and Sandy Berger, "President Omar Hassan Ahmed Bashir, who wanted terrorism sanctions against Sudan lifted, offered the arrest and extradition of bin Laden and detailed intelligence data about the global networks constructed by Egypt's Islamic Jihad, Iran's Hezbollah and the Palestinian Hamas. Among the members of these networks were the two hijackers who piloted commercial airliners into the World Trade Center. The silence of the Clinton administration in responding to these offers was deafening."