• CIA Report: Bill Clinton Bankrupted War On Terror Ahead of 9/11

    The CIA released a nearly 500-page inspector general report from 2005 on Friday that outlines multiple “systemic problems” in the nation’s spy agencies leading up to the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

    Former CIA Director George J. Tenet said in the decade-old declassified document that the Clinton administration spread the CIA too thin in the days ahead 9/11 by bankrupting the intelligence community and refusing to let the CIA prioritize anti-terrorism over other major priorities in the late 1990s.

    The document was a response to an inspector general’s draft report that claims Tenet “recognized the need for an integrated, interagency plan” to combat al Qaeda and “bears ultimate responsibility for the fact that no such strategic plan was ever created, despite his specific direction that this should be done.”

    But Tenet said he took the threat of Osama bin Laden very seriously and that he put major effort into trying to penetrate al Qaeda beginning as far back as 1998, amid all the other work CIA was also required to do.

    Those efforts, he claims, thwarted an earlier “major attack” planned by al-Qaeda for some time in 1999 or 2000.

    Tenet lists the number of times he asked for more money for counter-terrorism in the report and details the nine occasions he sent memos to senior officials in both the executive branch and Congress warning of terrorist plots.

    “Even though senior policy makers were intimately familiar with the threat posed by terrorism, particularly those in the previous administration who had responded to major attacks, they never provided us the luxury of either downgrading other high priority requirements we were expected to perform against, or the resource base to build counter-terrorism programs with the consistency that we needed before September 11,” Tenet wrote.

    “Your report does not adequately address the context of an intelligence community that had to respond to wars in Bosnia and Kosovo, the prospect of war between India and Pakistan, China’s military buildup and threat to Taiwan, the requirements of policy makers, particularly in Congress, to pursue narco-traffickers in Central and South America, and numerous other such requirements,” Tenet wrote. “Despite all of these stresses, despite the fact that we had effectively been in Chapter 11 as an intelligence community, we continued on a path to methodically increase both CIA and intelligence community resources and our personnel base devoted to terrorism.”

    None of the documents focus directly on how President George W. Bush and his White House dealt with the al Qaeda threat after taking office in January 2001. Some former officials, including Bush counter-terrorism czar Richard Clarke, have said Bush did not initially make al-Qaeda a priority.

    Alicia Powe

    Staff Writer

    Alicia Powe is a staff writer for Daily Surge. She worked in the War Room of the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Committee and served as a White House Intern during the George W. Bush administration. Alicia has written for numerous outlets, including Human Events, Media Research Center and Townhall.com.

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