Exclusively in the new print issue of CounterPunch
FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
The 9/11 Whitewash

Blaming No One

by MIKE WHITNEY

It takes a lot of whitewash to cover over the murder of 3,000 Americans, but that’s what you get when you appoint a “hand-picked” panel to investigate a tragedy like 9-11.

The great virtue of selecting each member on an investigative team, (like the Bush Administration did) is that the results are assured before the first bit of evidence is examined. No embarrassing allegations or blame, just a “shrug of the shoulders” and “let’s move on”.

In Bush-world the “buck never stops”, it just keeps circulating until the public loses interest.

This is the reality of the “500 plus” page 9-11 report, that dismisses the incompetence (or treachery) of the people at the top, as a “failure of imagination.”

There was no failure of imagination. According to the report the President received “at least 12 warnings from the CIA that an attack was imminent”. Either, Bush and his cronies were asleep at the switch or they made damn sure the switch was in the right position for their “Pearl Harbor-like event”. (Alluded to in the Project for the New American Century)
 
The extent of the “whitewash” was painfully apparent last night on PBS’s Jim Lehrer News Hour. In a Margaret Warner interview with Condoleezza Rice, Warner (who always asks the “tough” questions) asked Rice, “Do you think it was a failure of imagination?”

Rice, who has been at the center of the 9-11 storm from the very onset, broke into a wide, Cheshire cat smile, unable to contain her glee. She knew (along with everyone else in the Bush Administration) that the report put to rest any implication of responsibility or, heaven forbid, culpability on the part of those in charge. Instead, it drew the broadest of conclusions, suggesting that even the “American people shared the blame for 9-11 for underestimating the terrorist threat”. (I’m not making this up)

Both commissioners of the 9-11 team appeared on The News Hour on Thursday, passing “o so softly” over the details, instead, opting to stick to their “talking points”. Those talking points could have been predicted before they went “on air”.

Both Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton emphasized that “When everyone is to blame…no one is to blame” (Again, I am not making this up)

Democratic hack, Hamilton went so far as to admit that, “We decided early on that we weren’t going to play the blame game.”

Say what?

The Administration convenes a panel to investigate the greatest act of mass murder in the country’s history and Hamilton doesn’t want to find out who is responsible?

This is pure gold.

Kean’s admissions weren’t much better. He took the approach that we were simply “caught napping” and so “we should focus on the future, not the past.”

Astonishing….an investigation that “focuses on the future”. This is a script worthy of Orwell.
  
At least now we know that the expressed intention of the commission leaders was to “never lay a glove” on Bush or his cronies.

They succeeded admirably.

As for the “Independent” Commission’s recommendations; the greatest emphasis was put on the need for a “National Intelligence Director”, who will have authority over the many disparate intelligence organizations and Congressional committees.

As Tom Kean said, “He should serve at the pleasure of the President”, assuring that the position  will be filled by a political operative capable of maligning the facts in the same way the Pentagon’s OSP (Office of Special Plans ) did prior to the war in Iraq.

I expect this position to be “fine-tuned” by the Bush Administration to become the foundation of an American Secret Police…the Bush KGB.

It’s only a matter of time.