It seems that every September 11th some new details about the attacks are released that slightly change the official narrative about what happened that day.
Nothing can compare to the 5th anniversary of 9/11 when the politicization of those terrorists attacks was nearing a desperate zenith. On that day, many networks replayed part if not all of their live coverage from 2001 in what in retrospect seems like a strange and PTSD inducing choice.
But, we have to remember what was going to happen only two short months after the 5th anniversary: the 2006 mid term elections when Republicans would lose control of both houses of congress in a Democratic wave election.
The Republicans were desperate to remind voters that only the Republican party could save America from the terrorist menace and needless to say, many of the mainstream news media 24 hour networks went along with this plan.
This year things seemed subdued in comparison. The 9/11 memorial is finally open at ground zero and Osama Bin Laden has been killed. But a few new and interesting stories did get to see the light of day.
Take this story for example. Former Vice-President Dick Cheney now claims that the United States Air Force disobeyed his direct orders to shoot down the flights that were headed for Washington DC.
Now whether NORAD and the rest of the military command structure might have suspected some kind of Cheney orchestrated coup, we will probably never know. But for those of you who studied the 9/11 Commission Report in detail, you know that this story just doesn’t make any sense. Norman Mineta’s (the only Democrat in Bush’s cabinet and Transportation Secretary) testimony to the commission directly contradicts this claim by Cheney.
Mineta testifies that he was in the command bunker under the White House with Cheney and witnessed an air force officer telling the Vice-President that the plane (the flight that crashed into the Pentagon) “was 50...30...10 miles out... does the order still stand?” after which Mineta testifies that the Vice President whipped his head around and said “of course the order still stands, have you heard anything to the contrary?”
Now I don’t know about you, but when I watch the this video, I don’t think to myself: “yeah the air force was totally disobeying Cheney’s orders, and allowing a clearly highjacked air plane to penetrate the most heavily defended air space in the world more than an hour after New York had been attacked.”
So why would Cheney make such an outlandish claim?
To use the words of Lawrence Wilkerson the former Colin Powell staffer who lashed out at Cheney a few weeks ago after Cheney’s new book criticized Powell, “Cheney is afraid of being prosecuted as a war criminal.”
Lawrence Wilkerson was clearly referring to the illegal Iraq War but maybe his words will come back to haunt Cheney if this country ever decides to have a real investigation of the Bush Administration's response to the 9/11 attacks.