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Posts Tagged ‘terrorists’

Courting Another Oklahoma City

Huff Post- Cliff Schecter

Posted: March 30, 2010 01:08 PM

It was almost exactly a year ago at this time that a “controversial” report was released by the Department of Homeland Security. This finding, labeled “Right-wing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment,” explained that the lunatic fringe might use the recession and ascension of the first African-American president to recruit members and then plan violent attacks on the homeland.

Although this effort was initiated under the administration of George W. Bush, the usual bed-wetters on the Right–especially a large Oxycontin-laced, self-indulgent buffoon with the ever-appropriate name Rush–whined and hissed about how it was a political jihad.

Here we are a year later, and it is starting to feel very 1995 out there right now. While the Obama Administration and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle genuflect before the NRA, we are not only doing not nearly enough to keep high-power weaponry out of the hands of, for lack of a better word, “evil-doers,” but the NRA is leading state legislatures around by the nose in attempts to actually weaken gun laws we do have on the books. As it was aptly put in in an editorial in the Charleston, WV Gazette:

Almost any criminal, psycho, drunk, wife-basher, drug addict or other prohibited person can buy a pistol illegally at a gun show – no questions asked. Test after test has found that many gun show dealers, licensed or unlicensed, sell deadly weapons to practically anyone with money, evading federal laws that forbid sales to the unfit.

In fact, once the practices of these gun shows were exposed by undercover investigations, such as those planned by Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York and his organization, Mayors Against Illegal Guns (Disclosure: I consult for MAIG; I am speaking for me, and only me, in this piece, however), the response was not to make it harder for criminals, terrorists and the mentally unstable to get guns at gun shows. It was to try and pass legislation to make such investigations illegal. Brilliant plan! Sweep it under the rug, and it is sure to go away.

It is no matter, that as my friend Brian Rothenberg, Executive Director of Progress Ohio, has said, it is easier to get a gun at a gun show than cold medicine. Or that the recent shooting at the Pentagon, by an anti-government radical and mentally disturbed man named John Patrick Bedell, was able to occur because even after the state of California deemed him mentally unfit to have buy a gun, he just went to Nevada and bought em through the infamous gun show loophole.

No background check. No questions asked. And then off to shoot innocent people at the Pentagon.

But if you think this is bad, it is only going to get worse. Tea baggers are showing up to rallies brandishing signs with Brownings and the obvious implication. You know, the gun founded by the guy who the state of Utah would like to honor instead of Martin Luther King, Jr. Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Michelle Bachmann and the rest of the itsy-bitsy IQ brigade now like to put targets on legislators, encourage their supporters to “reload,” and are using other violence-infused imagery. Meanwhile, Christian Militia groups are putting together videos worthy of Al Qaeda while planning to murder Michigan police officers with guns and IEDS.

Seriously, stop and watch this spooky video for a second (they even got the German music right!).

What has been the response to the crescendo of incidents like these over the past few months? The Obama Administration is missing in action. Meanwhile, Republican legislators, like Senator Tom Coburn, are actively trying to put guns in the hands of the mentally unbalanced. That’s right, Coburn tried to attach an amendment to the health care bill to restore gun rights to veterans declared “mentally incompetent.” Seriously, does the man, and the 45 who voted with him, remember Ft. Hood?

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Keith Olbermann blames Bush, Cheney for 9/11 attacks

Raw Story- By Stephen C. Webster
Saturday, February 13th, 2010 — 3:11 pm

The attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 changed American politics forever. But in spite of the warning signs raised by the U.S. intelligence community, the Bush administration seemed preoccupied with other issues, aloof to the alleged threat until the day both towers fell.

Why then, MSNBC’s liberal host Keith Olbermann asked on Friday night, is it “taboo” to blame the Bush administration for allowing the deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans on their watch?

His conclusion: For their lack of vigilance and because they “did not prioritize,” President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney are to be faulted for the attacks.

RELATED: O’Donnell shouts down ‘enhanced interrogation’ defender

Provoked by former Bush and Rumsfeld speechwriter Marc Thiessen’s allegation that President Obama is “inviting” another attack, Olbermann noted that when President Bush was warned by the CIA that terrorists were targeting the United States and may be planning to use airliners, Bush replied, “All right, you’ve covered your ass now” and proceeded to do nothing about it.

Joining him in the discussion was Lawrence O’Donnell, who had been cut off earlier that day by MSNBC’s resident conservative Joe Scarborough in the midst of a tirade in response to Thiessen’s claims.

O’Donnell, an MSNBC political analyst and former chief of staff to the Senate Finance Committee, held nothing back in his second shot at the former speechwriter’s assessment of Bush-era terror politics.

“Mr. Thiessen also claimed that torture, which, of course, he will not recognize by that word, saved Los Angeles from its own 9/11,” Olbermann began. “Is this that Liberty Tower, Library Tower, Liberia Tower crap again? Is that what he’s talking about? Is this something else they’ve made up?”

“It’s a very wearisome story that they refused to put away,” O’Donnell began. “It has been debunked time and time again. Timothy Noah on Slate, every time it comes up, he very patiently lays it out again as he did today, that the arrest of the ring leader of this so-called plot occurred the year before the waterboarding occurred of Sheikh Mohammed, and which they now claimed we got the information to stop the plot that had already been stopped. And the FBI has said this is ludicrous, that it did not happen. The FBI doesn’t believe the so-called plot even could have been carried out.”

At the time, intelligence officials attributed the claim of a foiled attack on the Library Tower in Los Angeles — which Bush called the “Liberty Tower” — to political posturing, suggesting it had been nothing more than talk.

“The FBI has always thought that this was not a serious threat and whatever it was, was stopped a year before the torture that produced the evidence according to this guy,” O’Donnell said.

“Why is it OK in polite company to say Mr. Obama is inviting attack, but you still can`t say that Mr. Bush not only invited attack but he sent the night watchman home?” Olbermann asked.

“Keith, it’s unconscionable to me,” his guest replied. “You know, I mentioned his oath of office to him because I took an oath of office to work in the Senate. It changes your relationship to the institution and to the government. And there are things after that, the places you don’t go. You don’t go to the spot that says this sitting president of the United States is trying to get this country attacked. You don’t go where Dick Cheney went in the 2004 campaign, saying John Kerry would allow an attack. You don’t go to those places. And it is just unconscionable to see someone do it after taking an oath of office to serve this country.”

This video is from MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann, broadcast Friday, Feb. 12, 2010.

This video is from MSNBC’s Morning Joe, broadcast Friday, Feb. 12, 2010.

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