I could hardly believe Alice Cox’s Sept. 11 letter, “Bush did a good job after 9/11.” She was grateful for the actions of George W. Bush. None of that catastrophe should have happened if his administration had paid any attention to the teletype sent out to the CIA, FAA, Customs, the State Department, INS, and the Secret Service on Sept. 4, 2001. This message summarized the information gathered by FBI agent Ken Williams from the Phoenix office that detailed, in a message dated from the previous July, that 19 students (mainly Saudis) were attending a flight school and their only intent was to fly an airliner, not to takeoff or land. Because this information contained only soft theories, nobody attached much urgency to it, least of all President Bush.
In 2004, Bush, along with Vice President Dick Cheney, barred the National Commission of Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, appointed by Congress, from studying the full text of the Aug. 6, 2001, president’s daily brief entitled “Bin Laden determined to attack inside the United States,” by releasing a redacted copy. This would indicate how indifferently warnings were taken. If only Bush had listened.
John R. Silliman