Open Thread - Lyin' To The People Edition
According to a piece in Truthout.org and posted on RawStory by Jason Leopold Friday, Bush authorized the NSA to spy on Americans shortly after he took office, months before 9/11. This is signficant because since the NSA spying scandal broke last month, Bush has been claiming that he took the steps he did in response to 9/11, and believed that the September 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force resolution gave him such authority inside our borders, when it clearly does not.
Now it turns out that Bush secretly authorized domestic spying by the NSA in the days after taking office, which was:
-Right after Condi ignored Sandy Berger's warnings about Al Qaeda;
-Months before George Tenet had his "hair on fire" about an imminent attack;
-Months before the ignored August 6, 2001 PDB; and
-Months before 9/11.
Meaning that these guys came into office with their minds made up to spy on Americans, detached from any specific threat they had acknowledged (or ignored) from Al Qaeda. Yet according to reports, after months of gathering non-redacted data on Americans during 2001, rather than share this information with the FBI and CIA, who were kept out the loop by a Cheney cabal that never trusted the CIA, the NSA destroyed the information, some say out of fear that it was gathered patently illegally. Then the attack comes, Bush gets his war resolution which he erroneously claims now authorizes such domestic spying, and the NSA is off to the races, gathering data on millions of Americans (according to NSA whistleblower Russell Tice) without Congress or apparently the FBI and CIA knowing a thing about it.
One last thought before I turn this thread over to you: piece together the two known facts that 1) Cheney came into office distrustful and dismissive of anything the CIA said; and 2) Richard Clarke and others said that George Tenet was on hyper-alert ("hair on fire") during the summer of 2001 about an imminent Al Qaeda strike here in the country.
And with that sobering backdrop, it's now your turn.