"Let's roll" was the last thing heard over a air-to-ground phone connection, said by one passenger to another, before the passengers attempted to retake the fourth hijacked aircraft on 9-11. Instead of gaining control of the aircraft and thwarting the hijackers, they succeeded in crashing the plane into the ground and killing everyone aboard, including themselves. A fitting motto if there ever was one. -- Baron Earl (referring to George W. Bush's new national motto)
Ooof. Man, I've been off the keys too long. There's been several attractive fruits out there, ripe for the picking and consumption, but realtime demands have kept me away from the farmer's market. Until now. Great to be back. So nice to see all of you lovely Gonzos.
Now, to the business at hand. Like so many of you other hounds, I was tickled shitless when the Bushmeister decided to launch into his spiel about the alleged foiled terrorist attack on a bank building in Los Angeles. This story first peeked out in October, around the time that Herr Bush began sinking into the dismal poll ratings of his own morass. Once again struggling to regain mushy middle ground, the Bush crew rang the Ol' Faithful 9/11 bell to stroke the religious reactive fear keys in the American lemmings. Titillating generalities about our vigilant heroics in preventing another plane-to-building massacre left us feeling vaguely relieved, even if we didn't really know about what.
Well, far be it from Georgie-boy to avoid coloring the details with flimsy facts, or outright lies. Looking at the story offered about the alleged Los Angeles strike, one can easily see right through key elements of it to the solid background of BULLSHIT that probably leads back to Karl Rove's rotten axons and dendrites. I've no problem believing that Al Qaida wanted to do more damage than they did on September 11th, and that the West Coast was an attractive target. However, in the Bush version of the events, two brand-new recruits from Malaysia were suddenly whisked of to Afghanistan in October 2001 to personally meet with Osama bin Laden to get his blessing for the attack.
Excuse me? Two raw recruits taken to meet THE MAN? In October 2001? What's wrong with this picture? By that time, Osama bin Laden was the most wanted man the world. Beginning on October 7th, 2001, U.S. and British forces began bombing targets and unleashing in-country special forces soldiers to do what they do best. It's safe to say that from that point on, Osama would not have wanted to attract an undue attention to himself, including meeting with a couple of newbies from Malaysia. As a rule, newbies to a terror organization who are looking to make an initial big splash with some flashy op are regarded as cops or spies. Al Qaida didn't get this successful by making sophomoric errors like this. The alleged Malaysian operatives were purportedly captured within months of this meeting. Their arrest and detainment in a foreign country virtually guarantees that they were tortured and abused by at least two different agencies from the U.S., thus causing them to offer up fresh and relevant information about Osama and his whereabouts. Inasmuch, they would have revealed the location of bin Laden and we would have sent our assassins to kill him. But no. Bin Laden is alive and well despite out best efforts to the contrary, and the info offered up by the captured Malaysian agents.
Another glaring problem with the Bush version of this terror plot is the use of shoe bombs to blow the armored and locked cockpit door, thus giving control access to the terrorists. According to the indictment against Richard Reid, the alleged shoe bomber in Britain, his shoe bombs were supposed to blow out the side of the airliner, dooming all aboard. Shoe bombs, by their design, are crude weapons. If constructed or used improperly, they would have both blown the door open ripped a hole in the side of the plane, causing said plane to prematurely crash. Remember: it's about five feet (or less) from the cockpit door to the side of the aircraft. That's precious little space to fucking around with explosives. Even when they are precision weapons in the hands of highly experienced and trained professionals. Good as they are, Al Qaida operatives seldom meet the standards of that description.
Did someone in Al Qaida consider an attack on the West Coast using Oceanic operatives? Probably. Could it still happen? Definitely. This is what makes Bush's fallacy seem so plausible. Kind of like a Tom Clancy book. A little fiction, a little fact, and WHAM, you've got a heckuva story there, Georgie! However, Clancy's stuff is still easier to believe. Even when Alec Baldwin is in it.
The latest Bush bullshit has all the fingerprints of the Karl Rove in desperation mode. Karl's been having a rough year, what with the failed policy maneuvers, the Katrina debacle, Jack Abramoff, the Plame hearings, and Tom Delay running for his life. Now the NSA revelations are threatening to further marginalize the Wizard of Id from his Ivory Tower position in the Cabinet. I might have overlooked this story as just one more juicy fruit on a rotten tree but for the Capitol panic and lockdown the night before the Los Angeles terror story was release.
Initial reports of the Capitol scare had a "mysterious powder in the Capitol attic" causing the panic. I looked forward to "Mildew Evacuates Capitol" screaming from the following day's sub-headlines. Curiously, and predictably, the story morphed within an hour. By then, a bioweapons sensor is purported to have show a false positive for some toxin or another. Curiously, that morning the Republican Congresswoman Heather Wilson, who chairs the House Subcommittee on Technical and Tactical Intelligence, said she wasn't buying into the White House rationale for the NSA's domestic spying program and wanted a more detailed accounting on the who-what-when of the NSA program. Nothing like some classic 9/11 fear to silence the little bitch. Or so the modus operandi of the current administration goes, anyway.
Taken together with the Los Angeles fiction the following morning, it was just one more Disneyland day in America. Or maybe it was Dreamworks. Or something. Whatever it was, the truth was nowhere near it. Captain Willard, the no-bullshit assassin of Coppola's "Apocalypse Now," said, "In Vietnam, the bullshit piled up so fast you needed wings to stay above it." Well, that was thirty years ago. And in that time, the bullshit has found even faster ways to pile up. Which is why wings are so damned important for contemporary survival. Order some today. Hell, get a backup set while you're at it.