by David Edwards and Muriel Kane
December 19, 2008
As the departing Bush administration frantically attempts to shore up its place in history, MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann stands ready to kick the props out from under it again. A renewed claim that “no one could have anticipated” the attacks of 9/11 attracted his scorn in particular on Thursday’s Countdown.
“This is a White House talking point still, even though your average three-year-old could disprove it using an etch-a-sketch.” Olbermann sneered on Thursday, over the heading, “Insult the Dead-gate.”
Olbermann’s specific target was White House press spokesman Tony Fratto, who responded to a Fox News interviewer’s suggestion on Wednesday that before 9/11, “nobody was thinking that there’d be terrorists flying 767s into buildings” by agreeing, “No one could have anticipated that kind of attack — or very few people.”
“Yeah, well, it ain’t true,” Olbermann remarked, with open contempt dripping from his words, “and out of respect for the people who died that day you damn well better stop saying it.”
Olbermann then ran through a list of pre-9/11 warnings of potential al Qaeda hijackings, noting, “A president’s daily brief as far back as December 1998 said bin Laden was ‘preparing to hijack US aircraft in hopes of trading hostages for jailed radicals.’ … The August 6, 2001 brief, of course, told President Bush — if he read it — that there were ‘patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings.'”
Olbermann did not mention either the use of airplanes as weapons by the Japanese kamikaze suicide pilots during World War II or the abortive al Qaeda plot of the 1990’s known as Project Bojinka, which would have involved both blowing up airliners and crashing a plane into CIA headquarters in Virginia and which may have been the inspiration for 9/11.
“That Mr. Fratto’s employers might not have been expected to know the exact hour of these attacks,” concluded Olbermann, “does not give him or anybody else the right to perpetuate the lie that 9/11 was impossible to conceive. Clearly, many inside this nation’s government anticipated it. It was Mr. Bush and his gang who chose to ignore them.”
Video from MSNBC’s Countdown, broadcast Dec. 18, 2008:
Download video via RawReplay.com