Gore Vidal claims "Bush junta" complicit in 9/11
  by Sunder Katwala
Sunday October 27, 2002


Gore Vidal has thrown down the gauntlet in a piece published in the 
Guardian's OBSERVER, according to a story in the Guardian:

> Vidal's highly controversial 7000 word polemic titled 'The 
> Enemy Within' - published in the print edition of The Observer 
>  today --  argues that what he calls a 'Bush junta' used the 
> terrorist attacks as a pretext to enact a pre-existing agenda 
> to invade Afghanistan and crack down on civil liberties at 
> home.

That much has been apparent for some time, ever since we learned that U.S.
plans to invade Afghanistan were revealed in the British press before 
September 11. But the explosive stuff is this:

> At the heart of the essay are questions about the events of 
> 9/11 itself and the two hours after the planes were hijacked. 
> Vidal writes that 'astonished military experts cannot fathom 
> why the government's "automatic standard order of procedure in 
> the event of a hijacking" was not followed'.
> These procedures, says Vidal, determine that fighter planes 
> should automatically be sent aloft as soon as a plane has 
> deviated from its flight plan. Presidential authority is not 
> required until a plane is to be shot down. But, on 
> 11 September, no decision to start launching planes was taken 
> until 9.40am, eighty minutes after air controllers first knew 
> that Flight 11 had been hijacked and fifty minutes after the 
> first plane had struck the North Tower.
> 'By law, the fighters should have been up at around 8.15. If 
> they had, all the hijacked planes might have been diverted and 
> shot down.'

I have already noted the delay in launching those fighters, but did not 
know that there was an "automatic standard order of procedure." I have 
brought the delay up in discussions, only to have an ex-military type try 
to shout me down, saying I was demeaning the reputations of those gallant 
people who are willing to risk their lives, blah, blah, blah. I just 
thought I was demeaning politicians, but if you insist ...

> Vidal asks why Bush, as Commander-in-Chief, stayed in a Florida 
> classroom as news of the attacks broke: 'The behaviour of 
> President Bush on 11 September certainly gives rise to not 
> unnatural suspicions.' He also attacks the 'nonchalance' of 
> General Richard B Myers, acting Joint Chief of Staff, in 
> failing to respond until the planes had crashed into the twin 
> towers.

"Nonchalance" also describes the way General George Marshall responded on 
the morning of December 7, 1941, when told that the Japanese were going to 
attack Pearl Harbor. He went for a horseback ride, making himself hard to 
contact, and later refused to use the telephone hotline to warn Pearl, 
using instead Western Union, by which the message arrived too late. This 
is all documented in the dynamite book, DAY OF DECEIT: THE TRUTH ABOUT FDR 
AND PEARL HARBOR, by Robert B. Stinnett.

It's a horrifying thought, and the mind rebels against the idea that our 
Chimp President (it's taken me a while to realize that his habitually 
petulant expression reminds me of the one typically worn by vervet 
monkeys*) might have done such a thing. However, it's easier to believe 
something like this after one gets some distance on it. Who doubts the 
story of the murder of the little princes, Edward V and his younger 
brother Richard, Duke of York, in the Tower of London, by Richard III or 
Henry VII (it's not clear which)? History is, of course, full of evil 
conspiracies, so there's no reason to believe that the current era is free 
of them. Certainly, there's no shortage of power-hungry, unscrupulous 
schemers -- remember the "Decade of Greed," in the 1980s? Or how about 
another favorite of the leftists: the current Enron scandal, in which 
executives and accounting firms conspired to hide losses?

*This is bad. Now every time I see the Prez on TV, I'm going to be half 
expecting him to start scratching himself and shouting "Hoo, hoo, hoo!"

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