Twenty Things We've Learned Nearly A Year After 911 By Bernard Weiner 8-2-2 http://www.rense.com/general27/911.htm Dave Letterman and his LIST OF TEN writers would be in awe. The list of ten yields to the list of TWENTY. CURIOUS GEORGE has been BUSY! As we approach the first anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, it might be useful to see how far an ordinary citizen's knowledge has progressed one year on. So here, in the way of a summing-up, based on journalistic documentation, is a list of things we Americans have learned since last September -- some of which might prove useful in the run-up to the November elections. 1. We've learned that Bush & Co.'s "war on terrorism" has morphed from finding and destroying those responsible for the 9/11 mass-murders (15 SAUDIS) to a worldwide campaign to install a Pax Americana, by force if necessary. In other words, neo-imperialism, reminiscent in many ways of the old Roman Empire or, closer to our own time, the British Empire. 2. We've learned that Bush & Co. has no desire to rethink any of its policies abroad, the same policies that isolate it and that generate hatred, suspicion and terrorism in so many regions of the globe. Rather than reconsider its policies, or try to accomplish its ends through diplomacy and alliances and cultural/economic initiatives, in its arrogance it continues to bully and threaten others, insult its European and other allies, disregard international treaties and courts, engage in unilateral actions without regard to the national interests of others, and, in general, simply throw its massive weight around. The prevailing attitude seems to be: We are the one Superpower, get used to bending to our will. 3. We've learned that Bush's national-security leadership was alerted months ahead of 9/11 (and, it has admitted, no later than August 6) that a major air attack from al-Qaida was in the works, along with the likely targets, but did nothing to try to prevent those attacks or warn anyone about them. Caught in their own lies, they blame "the system," especially elements in the FBI, for "not connecting the dots." More than 3000 Americans died as a result of this malfeasance. 4. We've learned that plans already were in the works prior to 9/11 for the evisceration of Constitutional guarantees of due process of law. The White House hustled the so-called USA PATRIOT Act through a frightened Congress in a patriotic blur, just a few days after the attacks, with few, if any, of the legislators having had time to read the final version. 5. We've learned that prior to September 11, the Bush Administration was negotiating with the Taliban about a pipeline desired by a U.S.-led energy consortium that would cross through Afghanistan. When the Taliban balked, the U.S. negotiators told them they either could accept a "carpet of gold" or face a "carpet of bombs." The Taliban backed away from the deal and refused to hand over Osama bin Laden; shortly after the terror attacks of 9/11, the U.S. began bombing in Afghanistan. The devotion of BUSH to OIL/GAS/ENERGY/ENRON type agendas are not laudible. 6. We've learned that now with the Taliban having been overthrown, and a U.S.-friendly regime installed in Kabul, the pipeline project is back on track, designed to carry energy supplies across Afghanistan from the Caspian Sea area to near India. Hamid Karzai, the new leader of Afghanistan, formerly was a consultant on the payroll of the pipeline folks; likewise, the new U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan. 7. We've learned that Bush & Co.'s Homeland Security Act includes programs that bear an amazing resemblance to totalitarian programs from the fascis/communist end of the spectrum: getting the military (restricted heretofore to activity outside the U.S.) involved in domestic policing, signing up neighborhood and block snoops to work for the central government, investigating what books citizens are checking out and buying, denouncing those deemed insufficiently patriotic or suspicious because of their views, etc. Remind you of Stalin's Russia, Castro's Cuba, Hitler's Third Reich, the Stasi of East Germany? (There also are prototypes of patriotic youth leagues being tried out in cities, which could become a national program.) A kind of martial-law coming to a neighborhood near you. (Not odd as The Gehlen Org spawned Bush way back when, in his early OSS days, that is NAZI spies brought here to work in CIA) Once a Nazi always a Nazi, I guess. 8. We've learned that Ashcroft/Bush are shredding Constitutional due-process guarantees in their move toward total control: already they have compromised attorney-client privilege, removed habeus corpus protections, locked up folks with no charges, secreted citizens at military installations which puts them out of reach of the judicial system, violated privacy in rifling through personal telephone and email communications, etc. etc. When the ambiguously-worded PATRIOT Act was first brought up, Ashcroft and Bush told us not to worry, promising that these rules would affect only non-citizens. Since that time, American citizens have been handled in similar fashion. Coming to a neighborhood near you. 9. We've learned much about the dangers of religious fundamentalism in Islam, but we've also learned about dangers posed by our own religious fundamentalists -- eager for a Christian theocratic society, symbolized most recently by a Secret Service agent scrawling on a Muslim suspect's refrigerator "Islam Is Evil, Christ Is King" -- and the extraordinary power they wield within the Bush Administration, represented most openly by John Ashcroft, who in frame-of-mind resembles a Taliban mullah. 10. We've learned that the FBI, focusing now on foreign terrorists, doesn't seem energized with the same zeal to catch domestic terrorists, such as abortion-clinic arsonists -- and especially the anthrax-dispenser. Though the FBI seems to know that the anthrax villain probably worked at a government bio-lab, nobody has been arrested, or even targeted as a prime suspect. (THEY TELL US that after going thru his trash bin, no powder was found, So all bets AND THE GUY...are off the hook,) It may not be likely, but the unsaid is finally being asked: Could this dangerous terrorist actually be working for the government? HUH? OUR GOV kill a Nat'l Enquirer reporter who'd written up the BUSH gals as doped up trash? NAHHHHHHHHHHHHH. The White house Used as a personal vendetta? C'mon! 11. We've learned that the HardRight of the Republican Party has taken control -- of the House leadership, of the Supreme Court, of the White House, of much of the conglomerate-owned media -- and has demonstrated its willingness to do nearly anything to maintain that power. (Only the courageous defection of Sen. Jim Jeffords from GOP ranks is standing in the way of HardRight total control of all three branches of government.) More and more truly objectionable HardRight judges are being nominated by Bush in an e ffort to stack the judiciary for decades to come. This by a man who lost the election by more than half-a-million votes, coming into his White House residency, with no popular mandate, only because his supporters on the Supreme Court installed him there. 12. We've learned that to break the momentum of the HardRight, all energy for the upcoming November elections (less than 90 days away, let us not forget) must be expended in electing Democrat candidates and defeating Republican ones. The objective conditions are just not ripe yet for anything more than trying to move the country back toward the middle of the political spectrum. We progressives more in tune with the Greens (Green candidates are being supported secretly in many states by the Republicans, to try to defeat Democrats) will have to wait. The difference between Democrats and Republicans may seem small to Greens and others, but, as we've learned in a painful way under Bush&Co., that difference is immense when it comes to foreign and domestic policy and its actual effects on real people, here and abroad.