David Horowitz ‘Declares’ Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week for October 22-26

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“This October 22-26, I am declaring Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week,” declared David Horowitz Tuesday in a friendly interview on FrontpageMag.com, one of Horowitz’s many front groups. “I will hold demonstrations and protests, teach-ins and sit-ins on more than 100 college campuses. Our theme will be the Oppression of Women in Islam and the threat posed by the Islamic crusade [????] against the West.”

Horowitz, who, along with Frank Gaffney, James Woolsey, and Rick Santorum has played a truly vanguard role in the “Islamo-Fascism” movement, apparently has few doubts about his impact. “During the week of October 22-26, 2007, the nation will be rocked by the biggest conservative campus protest ever – Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, a wake-up call for Americans on 200 university and college campuses.” The event will confront the two “Big Lies of the political left:” that “George Bush created the war on terror and that Global Warming is a greater danger to Americans than the terrorist threat.” In fact, according to Horowitz, Islamo-fascism constitutes “the greatest danger Americans have ever confronted.”

Horowitz, president of the David Horowitz Freedom Center (previously the Center for the Study of Popular Culture) editor-in-chief of FrontPageMag.com, and founder of Students for Academic Freedom, is, of course, a former leading New Leftist who has found fame and fortune – he made $352,647 in 2005, according to tax records – on the extreme right and has done particularly well since 9/11 when he got in on the “Islamo-fascist” ground floor.

“Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week,” according to Horowitz will be a “national effort …to rally American students to defend their country” and will feature “memorial services for the victims of Islamic terror both in America and around the globe” (the guide suggests putting up crosses to commemorate victims presumably regardless of their religion); sit-ins (Horowitz suggests the office of the Women’s Studies Department or the campus Women’s Centers “to protest their silence about the oppression of women in Islam”) teach-ins on ‘’The Oppression of Women in Islam;” “a student petition denouncing Islamo-Fascist violence against women, gays, Christians, Jews and non-religious people” (and press releases at the ready if Muslim student groups, campus administrators, or student government officers fail to sign); and prominent speakers, such as the American Enterprise Institute’s (AEI) Ayan Hirsi Ali, columnist Mark Steyn, Frank Gaffney, Daniel Pipes, Rick Santorum, as well as Horowitz himself.

In addition, participants will distribute pamphlets on Islamo-Fascism, including “The Islamic Mein Kampf,” “Why Israel is the Victim,” “Jimmy Carter’s War Against the Jews,” “And What Every American Needs to Know About Jihad.” Films to be shown include “Suicide Killers,” “Obsession” (about which my colleague, Khody Akhavi, wrote earlier this year), or “Islam: What the West Needs to Know.” For the films, Horowitz advises campus organizers to invite a “local radio host or other local figure to introduce the film and possibly moderate a discussion on it afterwards.” Organizers are encouraged to request funding from the student government. If is not forthcoming, according to the Guide, “it will prove the hypocrisy of your university’s claim to be committed to intellectual diversity and academic freedom.” Other possible funders and sponsors include Young Americans Foundation, the Leadership Institute, the campus College Republican club and Hillel,

The program clearly models itself after strategies employed by left-wing radicals in the 1960s and 1970s but is careful to protect the campus rules and local laws that Horowitz’s ideological enemies on the left would blatantly disregard. Organizers of the sit-ins are explicitly warned not to obstruct university operations or violate university rules. As my colleague, Eli Clifton noted, it combines some of the hardware of the 1960s student movement with the software of Horowitz’s hard-right – dare one say it? Islamophobic — ideology.

According to tax records obtained through the Foundation Center, Horowitz has been the beneficiary in recent years of a number of far-right foundations, including the Allegheny ($575,000 since 2001), Carthage ($125,000) and Sarah Scaife Foundations ($800,000) – all three are part of Richard Scaife’s empire and the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation (nearly $1.3 million). The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation ($475,000) also contributed nearly $500,000 to Horowitz’s enterprises over the same period.

Why Do They Hate Us? Start With John Bolton

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Does former UN Amb. John Bolton – now with the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI) — still speak for Dick Cheney?

The new British government of Prime Minister Gordon Brown must be scratching its collective head over that question given the truly unbelievably arrogant and threatening op-ed Bolton, a Cheney protege, published in Wednesday’s Financial Times.

The column’s title, “Britain Cannot Have Two Best Friends,” refers to what Bolton calls “a clear decision point” for Britain — to choose between the United States and the European Union or, as he refers to it, the “European porridge” of which he so clearly disapproves. For Bolton, it is a zero-sum game, and, in his view, it is now up to Brown to make the choice. “[W]hether the ‘special relationship’ grows stronger or weaker lies entirely in British hands,” he states.

The catalyst for Bolton’s outburst appears to have been Brown’s statement during his visit with Bush last week that Britain’s “single most important bilateral relationship” is with the U.S. The only U.S. ambassador to the UN never to have been confirmed by the U.S. Senate – despite repeated attempts – calls that characterization a “clever but meaningless dodge.

“Drop the word ‘bilateral’. What is Britain’s most important ‘relationship’? Does Mr. Brown regard the EU as a ‘state under construction’, as some EU supporters proclaim, or not?

The answers to these questions are what Washington really needs to know. What London needs to know is that its answer will have consequences.”[Emphasis added]

For example, Bolton goes on, Britain’s absorption into the European porridge raises questions about whether it (as well as Sarkozy’s France) should still be entitled to a permanent seat in the UN Security Council. “Of course the Security Council permanent seat is not the real issue – it is the question of whether Britain still has sovereignty over its foreign policy or whether it has simply taken its assigned place in the EU food chain.”

“Consider also the US-UK intelligence relationship. Fundamental to that relationship is that pooled intelligence is not shared with others without mutual consent. Tension immediately arises in EU circles, however, when Britain advocates policies based on intelligence [such as Saddam’s uranium purchases from Niger, for example?] that other EU members do not have. How tempting it must already be to British diplomats to ‘very privately’ reveal what they know to European colleagues. How does Mr. Brown feel about sharing US intelligence with other Europeans?”

“Finally there is Iran’s nuclear weapons programme, which will prove in the long run more important for both countries than the current turmoil in Iraq. Here the US has followed the EU lead in a failed diplomatic effort to dissuade Iran from pursuing nuclear weapons. If Mr. Bush decides that the only way to stop Iran is to use military force, where will Mr Brown come down? Supporting the US or allowing Iran to goose-step towards nuclear weapons?”[Emphasis added]

Bolton’s coda displays the kind of diplomacy for which he became widely despised throughout the UN during his ruinous tenure there. “I will wait for answers to these and other questions before I draw conclusions about ‘the special relationship’ under Mr. Brown,” he harrumphs. “But not forever.” At least, he didn’t use the royal “We.”

Still, one must positively wonder at the tone, content, and not least the intent of Bolton’s utterly offensive bloviation. Is he trying to provoke Brown into proving his independence from Washington? Is he trying to drive the new prime minister closer to his former UN nemesis, Mark Malloch Brown, as part of some bizarre masochistic compulsion? Is he trying to create even more anti-American feeling in Britain and “Eurabia,” as some of his Anglo-chauvinist friends refer to Western Europe these days? Is he trying to split the West? Does he actually work for bin Laden? (Is AEI an al-Qaeda sleeper cell?) And does Bolton still speak for Cheney?

Tenet v. Perle II

In his latest blast at George Tenet published in Friday’s Washington Post, “How the CIA Failed America,” Richard Perle demonstrates once again why much of what he says or writes should be tested not only against a fact-based (as opposed to, perhaps, a Feith-based) reality that may sometimes approximate truth, but also against his own previous statements and writings.

You will recall that the latest argument began when Perle’s protégé, Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol reported April 29 that Tenet had made a “stunning error” in the very first pages of his new book, At the Center of the Storm, by citing an alleged September 12 encounter with Perle at the White House in which Perle told him, “Iraq has to pay a price for what happened yesterday. They bear responsibility.”

The problem with that account, wrote Kristol with barely disguised glee, was that Perle was in France on September 12 and didn’t return until the 15th. “Perle in any case categorically denies to The Weekly Standard ever having said any such thing to Tenet, while coming out of the White House or anywhere else,’’ he added.

Tenet has since conceded that the encounter may have taken place later that week. “…I may have gotten the days wrong, but I know I got the substance of that conversation correct,” he said on NBC’s Today show April 30.

Asked by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer last Friday, however, Perle against insisted that he “never said the things that [Tenet] attributes to me.” Asked specifically about whether he may have said, “Iraq has to pay the price for what happened yesterday,” however, Perle, after repeating his denial, qualified it by noting that he ‘’would not have said ‘yesterday’” – an obvious point since Tenet had already admitted that the encounter may indeed not have taken place on Sep 12.

At that point in the interview, Blitzer played a video clip from the September 16, 2001, “Crossfire” in which Perle called for action against Iraq and asserted, “We do know …that Saddam Hussein has ties to Osama bin Laden.”

As this blog tried to show in the first “Tenet v. Perle,” his “Crossfire” appearance was one of a number of similar public exhortations by Perle in the days that followed 9/11, culminating in his signature on the September 20 open letter from Kristol’s Project for the New American Century that called for “a determined effort to remove Saddam Hussein from power… even if evidence does not link Iraq directly to the (9/11) attack…”

Faced with the published record, Perle now appears to have retreated from his initial blanket denials of what Tenet quoted him as saying. In his op-ed in the Post Friday, he carefully distinguishes between the two sentences that Tenet originally quoted him as saying. ‘’(The) two statements,” he writes, “are not at all the same: that Iraq was responsible for Sept 11 – which I never said – and that removing Saddam Hussein before he could share chemical, biological or nuclear weapons with terrorists had become an urgent matter, which I did say.”

So, having admitted that he may indeed have declared Iraq should be a target (Perle also insisted to Wolf Blitzer that he never had any conversation with Tenet outside the White House, but, for the first time, he failed to explicitly rule out such an encounter in Friday’s op-ed), Perle now takes issue only with the three words in the second sentence. “I did not tell Tenet that Iraq was responsible for the Sept 11 attacks, not then [Sept 12], not ever,” he wrote Friday.

A review of the record reveals that, on this point, Perle may be literally correct. I know of no declarative statement by Perle that Iraq was indeed responsible for the 9/11 attacks.

But Perle’s serial use of innuendo – particularly in repeatedly pushing the story that 9/11’s operational mastermind, Mohamed Atta, met a senior Iraqi intelligence official, Ahmad Samir al-Ani, at a Prague café in April, 2001 — to suggest Iraqi responsibility for the attacks was a major feature of his statements and writings within weeks of 9/11 itself.

(Of course, his friend and fellow-member of the Defense Policy Board, James Woolsey, was even more outspoken about both the alleged Prague meeting and Iraqi responsibility for 9/11. See “And Then There Was Woolsey.” Indeed, Woolsey’s constant public assertions of Iraq’s alleged links for 9/11 – presumably made in DPB meetings chaired by Perle, as well as in the media – give the lie to Perle’s video-taped declaration in response to an anti-war activist on his own “The Case for War” production that aired last month on PBS: “I didn’t hear statements to the effect that Iraq was responsible for 9/11.”)

He first raised the Prague meeting in an interview published by the Chicago Sun-Times on October 21, 2001, when he was asked by Linda Frum (the sister of Perle’s American Enterprise Institute (AEI) colleague and co-author, David Frum) what Washington should do if alleged state sponsors of terrorism could not be persuaded to change their ways.

“It may be necessary to destroy two of these regimes before the others understand that we’re serious,” he replied. “I have my own candidate for who’s next [after Afghanistan]. Iraq is working assiduously on weapons of mass destruction, and we know, for example, that Iraqi intelligence officers met with Mohamed Atta in Prague.”

In a November 21, 2001, article run by the Gannett New Service, he and Woolsey were identified as “among those in the federal intelligentsia who suspect Saddam had something to do with Sept. 11 and perhaps the anthrax postal assault that followed.

“Perle noted that ‘enough of a linkage has been established’ between Iraq and al-Qaida, bin Laden’s base group,” Gannett reported. “He pointed to recent statements by Czech leaders that a high-ranking Iraqi intelligence agent, Ahmed Khalil Ibrahim Samir al-Ani, was expelled from Prague following an April meeting with Mohamed Atta – the suicide pilot the FBI has tagged as the field captain of the Sept. 11 hijackings.

“…Woolsey also noted the meeting. “Maybe Iraqi intelligence and the chief bomber of Sept. 11 like Prague’s beautiful architecture,” he said sarcastically. “But at some point, it seems to me, we begin to get to at least a strong likelihood Iraq has been involved in some way.”

In an op-ed published by the New York Times December 28, 2001, Perle argued that Saddam Hussein “…operates a terrorist training facility at Salman Pak complete with a passenger aircraft cabin for training in hijacking.

“His collaboration with terrorists is well documented. Evidence of a meeting in Prague between a senior Iraqi intelligence agent and Mohamed Atta, the Sept. 11 ringleader, is convincing.”

(Perle, incidentally, also charged Saddam with running a vast, secret nuclear programme in this op-ed, a charge Vice President Dick Cheney would echo for the first time three months later, in March, not, as is commonly believed, in August, 2002.

On May 1, 2002, Perle appeared on Chris Matthews’ “Hardball” program in which he challenged at length Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff recent report that the Atta-in-Prague story had been thoroughly debunked by the intelligence community.

“… I think Mike Isikoff’s information on this is wrong. I’m quite confident the meeting took place. We know a great deal about the circumstances of the meeting, although we don’t know what was said in the meeting. There was a pretty positive identification made of Mr. Atta after his pictures appeared in the press following 9/11. I don’t know why there are people discouraging the view…”

“…[T]hat meeting was observed by the Czech intelligence agent who was following the Iraqi intelligence agent. Subsequent to September 11, when Mohamed Atta’s photograph appeared around the world, that Czech intelligence agent said: “The man that I couldn’t identify at the time was Mohamed Atta.”

“That’s good enough for me.”

Having planted the suggestion of an Iraqi relationship with Atta, however, Perle was careful to deny that he was saying Iraq was involved in 9/11: “I did not say tha the decision to go after Saddam Hussein turns on whether Saddam was involved in September 11. I don’t believe that. I’ve never said that.”

On May 10, 2002, however, he again stressed his certainty that the meeting took place, telling the Chicago Tribune on that date, “The evidence – for the meeting – is overwhelming, as convincing now as it was then,” Perle is quoted as saying. “People who are raising questions now are just slinking about, not doing so openly. Why? They have their own policy agenda, which is to limit the president’s options.”

On October 7, 2002, just as Congress was debating the pending war resolution, Perle went beyond his previous assertions on CNN’s “Crossfire,” asserting not only that the intelligence community was “wrong” about their conclusion that the Prague meeting did not take place, but also that,

“…[T]there are other indications of other meetings with other members of al Qaeda including hijackers and intelligence officials from Iraq.

“…What I said is that there is evidence that I find compelling that there were meetings between Czech intelligence, Mohammed Atta, and other hijackers. Now whether that constitutes a role in 9/11, that’s a matter of judgment.

“And I can’t tell you it is because I don’t know. But how would we know if he did?”

Perle was still at it the following July, after U.S. forces captured al-Ani, the Iraqi official who allegedly met with Atta in Prague. The July 9, 2003, edition of the Washington Post descirbes Perle as “hopeful al-Ani’s capture will lead to a corroboration of his stance.”

“If he chose to, he could confirm the meeting with Atta,” Perle said. “It would be nice to see that laid to rest. There’s a lot he could tell us.”

“Of course, a lot depends on who is doing the interrogating,” said Perle, adding he fears that if it were the CIA, it could skew the interrogation so as to play down the evidence that the alleged meeting with Atta occurred.”

Apparently, that was precisely what happened.

Jim Lobe wrote this for Inter Press Service’s new blog.

And Then There Was Woolsey…

Apropos yesterday’s “Tenet v. Perle” post, it might be useful to note that James Woolsey, Perle’s colleague on the Defense Policy Board (DPB) and fellow-board member of any number of neoconservative groups, was virtually ubiquitous on television and in the print media in the week that followed the 9/11 attacks, suggesting to anyone who would listen that Saddam was not only linked to al Qaeda, but may very well have played a role in the attacks themselves.

Given close and multiple associations with Perle, Woolsey’s remarks in the immediate wake of the 9/11 attacks make completely implausible Perle’s statement in his recent and controversial “The Case for War” production on PBS that, “I didn’t hear statements to the effect that Iraq was responsible for 9/11.”

In any event, here are some examples of Woolsey’s wisdom on the subject of Iraq’s possible complicity in the 9/11 attacks over the ensuing couple of day. I suspect he repeated that wisdom in the DPB meetings chaired by Perle a few days later.

September 11th, The Newshour with Jim Lehrer: “Day of Terror”:

“But I think the key thing is what David said earlier about nation states — because Iraq has a lot of incentives to damage the United States heavily. There was an FBI agent in charge of the early investigation of the World Trade Center bombing in 1993, Jim Fox, who had the view that there may well have been Iraqi government involvement in that. The Clinton administration, Justice Department, brushed that aside after the time but some of the information that came out at trial that had been under grand jury secrecy during the investigation looks as if there may well have been Iraqi government involvement. And this time this administration, I hope and trust, will not brush aside the idea that there might be state involvement. We may well find that Osama bin Laden or some other terrorist group in the MidEast or elsewhere, probably the MidEast, is behind this. But they may well be a subcontractor or a junior partner. There conceivably could be a state behind this.”

September 11th, ABC News Special Report: “America Under Attack”:

“But there is at least a plausible case that there was Iraqi government involvement in the World Trade Center bombing back in 1993. This all has to do with the identity, the true identity of Ramsey Yousef, who was the mastermind, who’s in prison out in Colorado now. At his sentencing the judge said, ‘We still don’t really know who you are.’ And if there was a chance that there was Iraqi government involvement in that, since Yousef was the mastermind of the World Trade Center and of a bombing plot in the Pacific which he was working on when he was caught, to have a lot of American Airlines in the Pacific blown up, what happened today is a sort of amalgam of the earlier two Ramsey Yousef plots. It’s at least, I think, interesting that that’s the case. And–and if some of the observers, Laurie Mylroie and others, are correct that there’s a reasonable chance that he was, in fact, involved with the Iraqi government, there could also be a chance the Iraqi government is involved here, even if bin Laden or other terrorist groups are as well.”

“But it’s not impossible that terrorist groups could work together with the government, that–the Iraqi government has been quite closely involved with a number of Sunni terrorist groups and–and on some matters has had contact with bin Laden.”

September 12th, NBC News, “Attack on America”:

“And one thing, again, coming back to Iraq, you need to realize is that a number of these fundamentalist groups and individuals, have increasingly close relationships with Iraq. The Bath Party, Saddam’s party, historically was like the Communist Party, was an anti-religious party. But a decade or so ago, that began to change, and Saddam has gone out of his way to make common cause with some of these fundamentalist terrorist groups, and they with him. It’s a–it’s a very unhappy alliance.

“And one final point here, Tom, we may not in this case be dealing solely with autonomous terrorist organizations. There are a number of indications that bin Laden’s group was involved–that may well turn out to be true, indeed they may have been the central operators, but that doesn’t mean that there can’t be some state sponsorship or guidance or assistance behind them. And one candidate for that, one possible candidate, is the government of Iraq.”

September 12th, CNN “America Under Attack“:

“It may be all over these attacks. And I think that might make us a bit suspicious that is something else might be up. Certainly bin Laden may well have been deeply involved and may have been the operational figure and his people in this, but that doesn’t mean that he acted alone.

“When I see Bin Laden issuing fatwahs, religious edicts, putting out videotapes, issuing poems, having his subordinates talk about how they’re taking part in terrorism against the United States, I begin to think that maybe we’re supposed to focus solely on Bin Laden. And there might be something else in train.

“My suspicion – it’s no more than that at this point – is that there could be some government action involved together with Bin Laden or a major terrorist group. And one strong suspect there I think would be the government of Iraq.

“But he (Bush) used a word, ‘harbor,’ which he used last night. A harbor for terrorists might be, say, the Taliban regime in Afghanistan. But there may be more involved than harbors here, there may be a government other than a harbor, such as the Iraqi government, that is orchestrating this to some extent, funding it, working closely on it behind bin Laden or some other terrorist group. I very much hope the Bush administration, unlike Clinton administration, will not set aside this possibility and assume that everything is just a terrorist group, even a terrorist group as major as bin Laden’s. It really need to look carefully at the possibility there may be state sponsorship here, and I think the most likely, certainly not the only possibility is Iraq.”

September 12th, Los Angeles Times, “Revenge is a Dish Best Served Cold” (op-ed coauthored by Woolsey and Mansoor Ijaz):

“The planning, coordination and access to information required to carry out the virtually simultaneous attacks in New York and Washington point significantly to the involvement of state sponsorship. The diplomatic cover, intelligence data and financial resources needed to conduct this war against the United States can only be offered by a regime whose track record against U.S. interests is proven, and Iraq comes immediately to mind.”

Tenet v Perle

Jim Lobe reports for IPS News

Since the publication of Michiko Kakutani’s review of George Tenet’s new book, At the Center of the Storm, in Saturday’s New York Times, neoconservatives have been jumping all over the book’s account of the author’s alleged encounter with Richard Perle on September 12, 2001, as a way to discredit the former CIA chief. Perle, who was then coming out of the White House, according to the book, turned to Tenet at that moment, and said, “Iraq has to pay a price for what happened yesterday. They bear responsibility.”

“Here’s the problem [with Tenet’s account],” wrote Perle protégé Bill Kristol gleefully in Sunday’s Weekly Standard. “Richard Perle was in France that day, unable to fly back after September 11. In fact Perle did not return to the United State [sic] until September 15,” Kristol noted, concluding his article by asking “How many other facts has George Tenet invented?”

Kristol’s observation has been seized on by a number of prominent neoconservatives as evidence that the book – and presumably its overall thesis that Vice President Dick Cheney, Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld, and the neoconservatives, such as then-Defense Policy Board chairman Perle, who served as their chief aides and advisers, were determined to use 9/11 to take the U.S. to war with Iraq – is deeply flawed and can thus be disregarded. In addition to Kristol’s editorial, the Weekly Standard has published a lengthy article by Thomas Joscelyn debunking Tenet, while the National Review Online has run one editorial, as well as articles by Perle’s colleague at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), Michael Ledeen, and Andrew McCarthy of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD) devoted to the same purpose. The Washington Times also published an editorial, as did an unsigned news item posted at the Fox News website. All have cited the alleged Tenet-Perle encounter as evidence that the book is not to be trusted.

Tenet has since conceded that he may have made a chronological error, telling NBC’s ‘Today’ show on Monday, “…I may have gotten the days wrong, but I know I got the substance of that conversation correct. The encounter occurred.”

A review of the record suggests that Tenet’s recollection of the substance – if not the timing – may indeed be correct. In fact, even while the dust from the Twin Towers was still settling in lower Manhattan – thousands of miles from Perle’s summer home in the south of France – he was apparently offering his opinions in a variety of media about Iraq’s possible responsibility and the desirability of striking against it.

Nor was it only he: in the week that followed the attacks, Kristol himself repeatedly made the same case, although no one was more active outside the administration (we know from many accounts that then-Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz was hyper-active on the subject inside the administration) in arguing for going after Saddam than Perle’s neoconservative confrere, James Woolsey. (I cited a few of these in a lengthy July 15, 2003 IPS article on how a relatively small network of hawks in and outside the administration used 9/11 as a pretext for war.)

We can begin on September 12, 2001, the day Tenet apparently mistakenly wrote that the encounter took place. On that date, the Washington Post quoted Perle, who had presumably been interviewed by telephone the previous day, as follows:

“‘I believe this will now be the catalyst that causes a significant change in our policy toward terrorism and that change should be to hold responsible governments that support terrorism,’ said Richard N. Perle, a Reagan Pentagon official and currently chairman of the Defense Policy Board that advises Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld. ‘It’s been our policy to hold individual terrorists accountable rather than the governments who support them and that policy has failed.’

“‘…This could not have been done without help of one or more governments,” Perle said, citing the need for passports, communications, intelligence and training for pilots for yesterday’s attacks. ‘Someone taught these suicide bombers how to fly large airplanes. I don’t think that can be done without the assistance of large governments. You don’t walk in off the street and learn how to fly a Boeing 767.’ Perle added, ‘We have to make the cost to the governments that support terrorism so high that they stop supporting them.'”

On the same day, the International Herald Tribune, in an article titled “For Washington, a Modern Pearl Harbor; Like the Attack in 1941, Air Terrorism Could Provoke Severe Repercussions,”
quoted Perle as saying:

“We have got to put certain governments on notice that if they’re harboring terrorists they will be held responsible by U.S. power even if Washington does not have the sort of detailed evidence that would be needed to get a conviction in a normal court.”

Three days later, when Perle was back in Washington, he was interviewed by Robert Novak on CNN, saying:

“Even if we cannot prove to the standards that we enjoy in our own civil society that they were involved. We do know, for example, that Saddam Hussein has ties to Osama bin Laden. That can be documented. So, on the theory, which seems to be a valid one, that if you support terrorists and they then commit atrocities against Americans, you are responsible. Unless we hold those countries responsible, we will be chasing terrorists without significant effect.”

Perle, who was taken up with two days’ of highly classified meetings of his Defense Policy Board (DPB) to which he invited Iraqi National Congress (INC) leader Ahmad Chalabi, next appears in a September 18th article by Knight-Ridder’s Warren Strobel, who was already ahead of the rest of the mainstream media. In a widely published article, he wrote that Bush’s advisers were divided on how far their new “war on terror” would take them:

“‘This is just an added reason for making life as difficult as we can for Saddam,’ said Richard Perle, an adviser to the Pentagon and leading proponent of vastly increased aid to the opposition Iraqi National Congress. ‘If all we do is go after bin Laden, it’ll make a mockery of all the president had to say about waging a war on terrorism,’ Perle said.”

Meanwhile, Kristol himself was pushing very much the same line. Thus, on a special a special, early-afternoon edition of National Public Radio’s “All Things Considered” September 12, Kristol opined as follows:

“And then, of course, there needs to be a serious strategy that goes after the terrorist organizations and those states that have either harbored them or assisted them. I think Iraq is, actually, the big, unspoken sort of elephant in the room today. There’s a fair amount of evidence that Iraq has had very close associations with Osama bin Laden in the past, a lot of evidence that it had associations with the previous effort to destroy the World Trade Center. And the real question that the president and his administration need to face is: Are we willing to go back to war with Saddam Hussein and finish the job his father started in 1990? We may well have to do that.”

On Fox News Sunday September 16, he was at it again:

“If Tuesday was a watershed, and I’m afraid it was, the debates that we were having on Monday will look just ludicrous. Should the defense budget be $328 billion or $326 billion? I think we’ll have a defense budget next year over $400 billion.” Kristol added, “We will increase the size of the armed forces.” Kristol also said, “I think we have to get rid of Osama. I don’t care how difficult the terrain in Afghanistan is. I don’t care whether it takes 200,000 ground troops. You cannot win this war in terrorism without getting rid of the man who, more than any other man, with the possible exception of Saddam, has organized it. And I think Osama and Saddam will be the focus of our efforts.”

On Sep 20, Kristol published a letter signed by Perle and 37 other mainly neo-conservative figures, including Kristol himself, in both the Weekly Standard and the Washington Times in the name of the Project for the New American Century, which made clear that Iraq was in their sites.

“It may be that the Iraqi government provided assistance in some form to the recent attack on the United States. But even if evidence does not link Iraq directly to the attack, any strategy aiming at the eradication of terrorism and its sponsors must include a determined effort to remove Saddam Hussein from power. Failure to undertake such an effort will constitute an early and perhaps decisive surrender in the war on international terrorism.”

It sounds like Tenet’s account is pretty plausible, even if he got the date wrong.