Threats against George W. Bush on 9/11; An analysis
The following observations by Webster Tarpley are composed of excerpts from his book ?9/11 Synthetic Terrorism”. Some, if not all, of these facts are also listed on Thompson’s timeline regarding George Bush’s movements and actions on 9/11. The subtitles below have been added, for clarity, by the editor (Elias Davidsson),
1. President Bush did not know
“The current tenant of the White House most probably was not familiar in advance with a detailed outline of the 9/11 plot. He was assisted in not knowing and not acting by his cognitive impairment, his contempt for detailed, accurate information, and by his habitual mental lethargy. Whether or not he suspected that something was coming, whether or not he knew this or that detail, are all matters to be determined with the help of open archives and cross-examination of the subject. The guess here is that Bush knew far less than many of his most severe critics might surmise. Bush’s crims was not the crime of knowing everything in advance; it was rather the crime of not knowing what he should have known, and of then compounding that by capitulating, by turning the US government and polity in the direction demanded by the terror plotters. Betten than “Bush knew,” as will see, is “Bush surrendered.” “Bush knew? makes a good political slogan, but it cannot be a guide to understanding the true scope of what actually happened. Students of 9/11 who build their work around the thesis that “Bush knew? are on treacherous ground.” (p.272) […]
2. President Bush as the front man of the oligarchy
?[W]hen Bush was running for office, it was widely conceded by his supporters that their canditate was a moron, but a moron who would hire the best advisers available, who would guide him through the crises of his presidency. In this sense, the Bush 41 presidency was an oligarchical presidency, with the chief magistrate in fact functioning s the front man for a committee.
The events of 9/11 showed the grave danger of such an oligarchical presidency: what happened if the advisors turned out to be traitors, misfits, or absent, as they did on 9/11: the presidency itself was paralyzed and incapable of acting, as occurred during the dark eternity of horror the world experienced as Bush busied himself with reading “My Pet Goat”? (pp. 272-3).
3. Threats to Air Force One
“Soon after [his statement to the nation on 9:30 AM], Bush left the Booker School for the nearby Sarasota Airport. But before he left, the Secret Service was to receive news of another therat to Bush: As the local paper reported a few days later: ?”Sarasota barely skirted its own disaster. As it turns out, terrorists targeted the president and Air Force One on Tuesday, maybe even while they were on the ground in Sarasota and certainly not long after. The Secret Service learned of the threat just minutes after Bush left Booker Elemtary? (Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Sep. 16, 2001).
Another account confirms that the Secret Service learned of a new threat to Bush and Air Force One “just minutes after Bush left Booker Elementary.” Karl Rove, who was travelling with the president, commented: “They also made it clear they wanted to get us up quickly, and they wanted to get us a high altitude, because there had been a specific threat made to Air Force One…A declaration that Air Force One was a target, and said in a way that they called it credible? (New Yorker, Oct. 1 2001).” (p. 278)
“Air Force One took off from Sarasota between 9:55 and ) 9:57 AM, as many news reports confirm. The takeoff was a hurried one, following by a steep climb to higher altitudes. Communications Director Dan Bartlett remembered, “It was like a rocket. For a good ten minutes, the plane was going almost straight up. (CBS, Sep. 11, 2002)….However, despite the pattern of grave threat, Air Force One took off without any military fighter protection. This was about one hour after the impact on the South Tower. There was no lack of nearby air bases which should have been on continuous alert: Homestead Air Station was 185 miles from Sarasota, and Tyndall Air Station was 235 miles away.” (p. 279)
“Shortly after takeoff, Cheney apparently informed Bush of “a credible threat? to Air Force One (AP, Sep. 13, 2001). US Representative Adam Putnam said he “had barely settled into his seat on Air Force One…when he got the news that terrorists apparently had set their sights on the plane.” (Orlando Sentinel, Sep, 14, 2001). The Secret Service had received an anonymous message saying: “Air Force One is next”. The caller spoke in the code words relating to Air Force One procedures. Colonel Mark Tillman, who was piloting Air Force One, was informed of the threat, and an armed guard was stationed at his cockpit door. The Associated Press reported that the threat came “withint the same hour? as the Pentagon crash ? before 10:00 AM, and approximately when the plane took off (AP, Sep. 13, 2001). ? (p. 279)
“Bush wanted to go to Washington, but he was overruled by the White House palace guard. Card told Bush: “We’ve got to let the dust settle before we go back? (St. Petersburg Times, Sep. 8, 2002). The plane apparently stayed over Sarasota until it was decided where Bush should go. Accounts conflict, but through about 10:35 AM (Washington Post, Jan. 27, 2002), Air Force One “appeare to be going nowhere. The journalists on board ? all of whom were barred from communicating with their offices ? sensed that the plane was flying in big, slow circles? (London Daily Telegraph, Dec. 16, 2001). ? (p. 280)
“According to Bob Woodward’s canonical mainstream account: “At about 10:30 AM Cheney reached Bush again on Air Force One, which was still on its way toward Washington. The White House had received a threat saying “Angel is next”. Since Angel was the codeword for Air Force One, it could mean that terrorists had inside information.” Allegedly because of this report, Cheney argued that Bush should not return to Washington. “There’s still a threat,” said Cheney (Woodward, p. 18). Within minutes, the plane changed course and flew to Louisiana instead (Washington Post, Jan. 27, 2002). Was this now a third threat, after the post-Booker threat the “Air Force One is next? threat? Did the terrorist controllers now add the code word “Angel? to further document their insider status, and their possible access to nuclear codes? Or are we dealing with two versions of the same event? ? (p. 280)
“In an interview with Tony Snow on Fox News Sunday, National Security Advisor Condolezza Rice confirmed that the September 11 threat against President Bush’s life included a secret code name.
SNOW: Sept. 11 there was a report that there was a coded message that said, “We’re going to strike Air Force One” that was using specific coded language and made the threat credible. Is that true?
RICE: That is true.
SNOW: So we have a mole somwhere?
RICE: It’s not clear how this coded name was gotten. We’re a very open society and I don’t think it’s any surprise to anyone that leaks happen. So, I don’t know ? it’s possible the code name leaked a long time ago and was just used.
SNOW: How on earth would that happen ?
RICE: I don’t know. I don? know. We’re obviously looking very hard at the situation. But I will tell you that it was plenty of evidence from our point of view to have special measures taken at that moment to make sure the president was safe.
This exchange was reported by Carl Limbacher of NewsMax.com, who added that “US intellegence officials have not ruled out the possibility that a government mole may have given terrorists the top secret code language they used to deliver the threat “Air Force One is next? as the World Trade Center and Pentagon were under attack.” (NewsMax.com, September 23, 2001).” (p. 288)
“The threat to Air Force One was repeated by others in the administration. In the September 12 White House briefing, Ari Fleischer told reporters: “We have specific and credible information that the White House and Air Force One were also intended targets of these attacks,” The next day Fleischer was asked, “?[It was ] yesterday reported that some of the people in the Pentagon were a little skeptical about your comments yesterday that the White House and Air Force One were attacked ? were targets of attack, given that the plane had come from the south. What do you – “Fleischer: Who are these people”? Reporter; “Well, I don’t know. They weren’t my sources,so…” Fleischer: “No, There’s ? I wouldn’t have said it if it wasn’t true.” Reporter: “Can you confirm the substance of that threat that was telephoned in…that Air Force One is next and using code words”? Fleischer:”Yes, I can. That’s correct.” (Sept. 13). p. 289
We will return to “Angel is next”. This represents the single most important clue as to the sponsorship of 9/11, since it was at this point that the sponsors showed their hand. They were not located in a cave in Afghanistan, but were rather a network located high within the US government and military. It was a moment of capital importance, the thread which, if properly pulled, will unravel the entire fabric of 9/11 deceit.
Around 10:55, there was yet another threat to Air Force One. The pilot, Colonel Mark Tillman, said he was warned that a suspect airliner was approaching from dead ahead. “Coming out of Sarasota there was one call that said that there was an airliner off our nose that they did not have contact with,” Tillman related. Tillman took evasive action, pulling his plane even higher above normal traffic (CBS, Sep.11, 2002). Reporters on board noticed the increased elevation (Dallas Morning News, Aug. 28, 2002; Salon, Sep. 12, 2002). It has not been possible to establish exactly what the basis of this threat report was…”(pp.280-1)
4. The “threat to Air Force One? story vanishes
“On Meet the Press of September 16, Cheney began to back away from the story, telling Russert: “The president was on Air Force One. We received a threat to Air Force One ? came through the Secret Service…” Russert: “A credible threat to Air Force One. You?re convinced of that”. Cheney: “I?m convinced of that. Now, you know, it may have been phoned in by a crank, but in the midst of what was going on, there was no way to know that. I think it was a credible threat, enough for the Secret Service to bring it to me.” (Meet the Press, September 16). Notice that the top-secret code words, the really sensitive point, have now disappeared [from this exchange].” (p. 289)
“As Bush gathered momentum with his “war on terrorism” and Afghan invasion, the need to use the “Angel? [Air Force One codeword] story for political cover diminished, and the need to protect the coherence of the official myth became paramount. It was at this time that the threat story [to Air Force One] began to be denied, not by officials speaking on the record, but by mysterious, anonymous leakers. One of these leaks came two weeks after 9/11; “Finally, there is this postscript to the puzzle of how someone presumed to be a terrorist was able to call in a threat against Air Force One using a secret code name for the president’s plane. Well, as it turns out, that simply never happened. Sources say White House staffers apparently misunderstood comments made by the security detail.” (Jim Stewart, CBS Evening News September 25, 2001). An AP wire of the same day, also based on an anonymous lead, read: ?[Administration officials have] been unsuccessful in trying to track down whether there was such a call, though officials still maintain they were told of a telephone threat Sept. 11 and kept Bush away from Washington for hours because of it.” (AP, September 25, 2001).” (pp. 289-90)
“After these leaks, Fleischer also dropped the story. On September 26, a reported asked about the September 11 warning. Fleischer replied: “I?m not going to comment on any particular threats coming toward the White House…it is not an uncommon occurrence for people to threaten the government of the United States, regardless of whether it’s President Bush or any of his predecessors. And that’s why there are security precautions taken at the White House as a matter of routine.”? (Washington Post, Sept. 27, 2001).
[The Commission of Inquiry, in its Final Report, alludes to the threat in the following terms:
After the attacks had occurred, while crisis management were still sorting out a number of unnerving false alarms, Air Force One flew to Barksdale Air Force in Louisiana. One of these alarms was of a reported threat against Air Force One itself, a threat eventually run down to a misunderstood communication in the hectic White House Situation Room that morning. (Chapter 10: Wartime, p. 325)
In a footnote to this paragraph the report adds:
“The Secret Service’s Intelligence Division tracked down the origin of this threat and, during the day, determined that it had originated in a misunderstanding by a watch officer to the White House Situation Room. The director of the White House Situation Room that day disputes this account. But the Intelligence Division had the primary job of running down the story, and we found their witnesses on this point to be credible. During the afternoon of September 11 the leadership of the Secret Service was satisfied that the reported threat to “Angel? was unfounded.
At the White House press briefing on September 12, spokesperson Ari Fleischer described the threat to Air Force One as “real and credible.”…Fleischer told us he cited the information in good faith. Indeed, Fleischer had conferred with Vice President Cheney and Karen Hughes before the briefing, and they had decied to let people know about the threat, all of them believing it was true. According to Fleischer, only weeks later did he learn ? from press reports ” that the threat was unfounded. We have not found any evidence that contradicts his account.” (Notes, p. 554) ? Observations added by Elias Davidsson]