George W. Bush: Waiting for Pearl Harbor

“Further, the transformation (of America into a force exercising global hegemony), even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event–like a new Pearl Harbor.” (See RAD, p.63/90, upper left)

The plan for America was a corporate-run world with the United States as the one superpower (constable) exerting power on earth and in space. It was the product of neocons who influenced George W. Bush while in office. They included Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Dick Cheney, and Bill Kristol. Their vision was PNAC, Project for the new American Century. Much of the plan can be found in the 2002 National Security Strategy of the United States. See PNAC’s Statement of Principles.

That initial quote above comes from PNAC’s Rebuilding America’s Defenses. The neocons said that it will take a long time to make it happen if nothing intervenes. But a new Pearl Harbor for America would mean smooth sailing. It also meant that Bush could tighten up on our freedoms as the price of security.

Bush waited until one week before 9/11 to have a security council meeting on Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. But from his first day in office, he wanted nothing to do with this imminent threat to America. And all requests by his counterterrorism adviser, Richard A. Clarke, for an urgent National Security Council meeting were denied by Condoleezza Rice, National Security Adviser, and members of the administration.

Mickey Herskowitz, Bush’s first biographer, relates the plan that candidate Bush would follow if he were elected president:

“One of the keys to being seen as a great president is to be seen as a commander-in-chief. My father had all this capital built up when he drove the Iraqis out of Kuwait and he wasted it…If I had a chance to invade…If I had that much capital, I’m not going to waste it. I’m going to get everything passed that I want passed and I’m going to have a successful presidency.” (Translation: I will manipulate events, build up my resume and go down in history as a great world leader.”)

On January 25, 2001, one week in office, Clarke asked for an urgent meeting of the National Security Council in a memo to Condoleezza Rice, National Security Adviser, concerning the threat from Al-Qaeda and programs needed to meet the threat. This can be found on a Declassified National Security Council memo from Richard Clarke to Condoleezza Rice:

From Richard A, Clarke


“Steve asked today that we propose major Presidential policy reviews or initiatives. We URGENTLY need such a Principals level review on the al qida (Qaeda) network.”

See the rest of the memo. Rice refused the urgent meeting. In fact, the Bush administration dragged along, doing nothing about the threat until after 9/11.

Timothy J. Roemer, a member of the 9/11 Commission, interviewed Richard Clarke:

“You wrote a memo on September 4th (2001) to Dr. Rice expressing some of these frustrations several months later, if you say the time frame is May or June when you decided to resign. A memo comes out that we have seen on September the 4th. You are blunt in blasting the DOD for not willingly using the force and the power. You blast the CIA  for blocking Predator. You urge policy-makers to imagine a day after hundreds of Americans lay dead at home or abroad after a terriorist attack and ask themselves what else they could have done. You write this on September the 4th, seven days before September 11th.

Clark: “That’s right.”

Roemer: “What else could have been done, Mr. Clarke?”

Clarke: “Well, all of the things that we recommended in the plan or strategy–there’s a lot of debate about whether its  a plan or a strategy or a series of options–but all of the things we recommended back in January were those things on the table in September. They were done. They were done on the table in September. They were done after September 11th. They were all done. I didn’t really understand why they couldn’t have  been done in February (2001).

George Bush and his administration were not interested in Al-Qaeda. Bush had already chosen a target in Iraq. It was the only target he wanted from the beginning of his presidency. Now all he needed was a reason to invade.

Former Treasury Secretary Paul O’ Neill, under George Bush said: “From the very beginning, there was a conviction, that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he needed to go.”  That was the number one topic “10 days after the inauguration-eight months before Sept. 11.”

O’ Neill, a member of the National Security Council, said the meetings were “…all about finding a way to do it. That was the tone of it. The President saying, Go find me a way to do this.”

“One of the classified memos at a meeting included a ‘Plan for post-Saddam Iraq.’  David Suskind, author of “The Price of Loyalty” with O’Neill, said, “…they discussed an occupation of Iraq in January and February of 2001.”

(Sept. 11, 2001) After George Bush, visiting the Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida, was told by Andrew Card  that a second airliner had hit the other World Trade Center tower and that we were  under attack, he remained seated for up to seven minutes, with a fixed stare. I could see the shock, or maybe something else, that had hit him unexpectedly.

Remember, Bush, Rumsfeld and others talked among themselves and, according to the quote above,  the topic was about needing another Pearl Harbor to be able to implement their program of world domination by initiating wars with those who oppose this new American Century. Bush was hoping for another attack of some kind but he had to be shocked at the unexpected brutality, the tremendous damage and loss of life. But he had nothing to do with it. He had deniability.  Hadn’t he refused to deal with the imminent danger. They can’t blame him. He can say that he doesn’t remember any problems brought to him on the topic of Al-Qaeda.

Bush returned to the White House and, being told that Al-Qaeda was responsible, immediately sought to implicate Iraq. He didn’t want to attack Afghanistan. Neither did Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz.

Richard Clarke told Lesley Stahl on 60 minutes (March 19, 2004) that Bush ignored Al-Qaeda before 9/11 and wanted to attack Iraq after Al-Qaeda hit the United States.

He said that, “…White House officials were tepid in their response when he urged them months before Sept. 11, to meet to discuss what he saw as a severe threat from Al-Qaeda. Bush ignored terrorism for months, when maybe we could have done something to stop 9/11. Maybe. We’ll never know.”

When Bush returned to the White House, he and others met to discuss what actions to take. Clarke thought that would be strikes against Al-Qaeda but the focus was on Iraq.

“Rumsfeld was saying that we needed to bomb Iraq. And we all said…no, no. Al-Qaeda is in Afghanistan. We need to bomb Afghanistan. And Rumsfeld said there aren’t any good targets in Afghanistan. And there are lots of targets in Iraq”

“I said, Well, there are lots of good targets in lots of places, but Iraq had nothing to do with it.”

“I think they wanted to believe there was a connection, but the CIA was sitting there, the FBI was sitting there, I was sitting there saying we’ve looked at the issue for years. For years we’ve looked and there’s just no connection.”

Clarke: “The President dragged me into a room with a couple of other people, shut the door and said, ‘I want you to find whether Iraq did this.’ Now he never said, ‘Make it up.’  But the entire conversation left me in absolutely no doubt that George Bush wanted me to come back with a report that said Iraq did this.” (09/12/01)

I said, Mr. President. We’ve done this before. We’ve been looking at this. We looked at it with an open mind. There’s no connection.

“He came back at me and said, ‘Iraq! Saddam! Find out if there’s a connection.’ And in a very intimidating way. I mean that we should come back with that answer. We wrote a report.”

“We sent it up to the president and it got bounced back by the National Security Advisor or deputy. It got bounced and sent back saying, ‘Wrong answer…do it again.'”

rumsfeld7Bush didn’t get the report he wanted and he attacked Afghanistan on October 7, 2001. By December of 2001, bin Laden and several hundred of his men were cornered in caves in the mountains of Tora Bora. American commanders on the ground asked for reinforcements to block Al-Qaeda’s escape to Pakistan. But they were refused and bin Laden and his men walked into Pakistan without any resistance.

“The decision not to deploy American forces to go after bin Laden or block his escape was made by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and his top commander, General Tommy Franks…”

So they let them get away. Just like that, when we could have captured or killed the whole crew, wrapped things up and gone home. Remember that Rumsfeld never wanted to go into Afghanistan. Neither did George Bush. And Bush made it clear at a press conference a few months later.

Bush: “As I say, we hadn’t heard much from him (Osama bin Laden). And I wouldn’t necessarily say he’s at the center of any command structure. And, you know, again, I don’t know where he is.

“I’ll repeat what I said: I am truly not concerned about him…” March 13, 2002. (And he never was, even when his administration was repeatedly warned about an impending attack on America. But 9/11 did allow Bush that Pearl Harbor moment which gave him the support of Americans for the invasion of Iraq.)

When Bush flew back to the White House and later, after the meetings had ended, made an entry in his daily diary:

“The Pearl Harbor of the 21st century took place today.”

“We cannot allow a terrorist thug to hold us hostage. My hope is that this will provide an opportunity for us to rally the world against terrorism.”

Strange days indeed.

Note: When I look at the eyes of Bush as he sits there and children read a story, I see a man in deep distress, someone self-conscious. He knows something evil and needs to calm himself. He finally gets up and leaves. Next stop, Iraq.

Read- The Project for the New American Century




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