Sen. Clinton backs husband's efforts to fight terrorism
NEW YORK (CNN) -- Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton Tuesday defended her husband in an ongoing war of words with conservatives over whether the administration did enough to fight terrorism.
The exchange started during a Sunday TV interview in which President Clinton defended his efforts to track down and kill al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.
"I think my husband did a great job in demonstrating that Democrats are not going to take these attacks," Sen. Clinton said. (Watch Clinton vs. Rice on terrorism -- 2:11)
"You know, and I'm certain that if my husband and his national security team had been shown a classified report entitled 'Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States' he would have taken it more seriously than history suggests it was taken by our current president and his national security team."
During his interview with Chris Wallace on "Fox News Sunday," President Clinton also said he came the closest to killing bin Laden and suggested that his administration took the threat of terrorism more seriously than the Bush administration did before the September 11, 2001, attacks. (Watch as Clinton says he tried to kill bin Laden -- 1:18)
Clinton also lashed out against "the right-wingers who are attacking me now," saying the same people had accused him of being "obsessed" with bin Laden.
"They ridiculed me for trying. They had eight months to try. They did not try. I tried. So I tried and failed," he told Wallace.
He added that he "left a comprehensive anti-terror strategy" for the Bush administration. (Watch as analysts debate Clinton's effectiveness -- 2:36)
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has taken on former President Clinton, strongly rejecting that notion. (Your e-mail: The Clinton-Rice war of words)
"What we did in the eight months [between Bush's inauguration and 9/11] was at least as aggressive as what the Clinton administration did in the preceding years," Rice told the New York Post in comments published Tuesday.
"The notion that somehow for eight months the Bush administration sat there and didn't do that is just flatly false."
But Rice told the Post that "we were not left a comprehensive strategy to fight al Qaeda."
Both Rice and Clinton pointed to the bipartisan commission that investigated the September 11 attacks, which also traced the steps the two administrations had taken before the attacks. In a 2004 report, the 9/11 commission criticized both for not having done enough.
In December, the commission slammed the Bush administration for failing to implement many critical recommendations from that report.
President Bush sidestepped the controversy Tuesday when asked about it at a news conference with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who came to power after the U.S.-led coalition ousted the Taliban following 9/11.
"I've watched all this finger-pointing and namings of names and all that stuff," Bush said. "Our objective is to secure the country.
"And we've had investigations, we had the 9/11 commission, we had the look-back this, we had the look-back that. American people need to know that we spend all our time doing everything we can to protect them. I'm not going to comment on other comments."
The left-right pendulum is merely the focal point used to hypnotize the masses. This debate is a charade. Osama bin Laden had nothing to do with 9/11. The fact that these people are carrying on with the charade indicates that they are party to the crimes. We do not contend that the administration merely had foreknowledge of the attacks. It is an irrefutable fact that they had information which they deny they had. But, in our assessment, the alleged foreknowledge consists of psyops plants intended to give the illusion that al Qeada were planning an attack. Seeding the information pipeline with false information is nothing new.
The stonewalling of the investigations being conducted by such people as Sibel Edmonds and John O'Neil shows that the administration did not want anyone to have a clear picture of what these alleged terrorists were doing. That way the administration could use the existing sketchy information to fabricate their accusations.