11/19/2005

Northern Star Online | Perspective - When in doubt, don’t blame Clinton

Here’s what former counterterrorism official in the Reagan Administration Robert Oakley told The Washington Post on Dec. 24, 2000, about Clinton’s national security policy: “Overall, I give them very high marks.” He went on: “The only major criticism I have is the obsession with Osama, which made him stronger.”

Only 38 days into Clinton’s presidency in 1993, the World Trade Center was bombed. Did he blame Bush Sr.? No, he oversaw the effort that captured and convicted these terrorists.

Look at what Clinton did to the FBI’s counterterrorism budget: He tripled it. He was the first president to sponsor a crime bill that included antiterrorism legislation including an order to stockpile vaccines for smallpox and anthrax.

Clinton ordered the CIA to assassinate Osama bin Laden in 1996 after the twin embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania. And after the USS Cole bombing, Clinton did nothing ... except formulate a plan to attack and destroy the terrorist training camps in Afghanistan and appoint counterterrorism expert Richard Clarke to head it up.

According to Time magazine on Aug. 12, 2002, the plan also included ways to cut off terrorist funding, support Northern Alliance forces in Afghanistan and give aid to countries facing al-Qaida insurgence. The same Time article quotes a Bush Administration official saying that the plan was “everything we’ve done since 9-11.”

Unfortunately, that plan wasn’t completed until Bush took office, and it was ignored despite carrying Clarke over from the Clinton Administration.

Northern Star Online | Perspective

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