Sunday, December 27, 2015

Post 9-11, America jumped from the Middle East frying pan into the fire

In the wake of 9/11, the Bush administration struggled to define the enemy and to decide how to defeat it. Even though 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudis and the Saudis were involved in the planning and financing of the attack, President Bush allowed the Saudis to fly out of the country in the next 24 hours when all other air traffic had been shut down.
No doubt that Bush had decided to maintain good relations with the Arabs, and Saudi Arabia particularly, just as the US had done for half a century. This policy led Bush to say on Sept 17, 2011 to the Islamic world, “The face of terror is not the true faith of Islam. That’s not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace. These terrorists don’t represent peace. They represent evil and war,” in a speech as sycophantic as any President Obama has ever delivered.

On a different policy tack, Bush said on the evening of 9/11, “We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them.”
On Sept 20/11 Bush spoke to the Joint Houses Congress emphasizing both tacks:

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