But first, Jon Stewart’s laser-sharp spotting of another telltale slip of the tongue, from Fox Network’s recent one-hour Rumsfeld biopic special. While giving a Jackie-Kennedyesque tour of his Pentagon office, Rumsfeld points out a mounted sculptural piece on a coffee table, composed of a broken bit of fiberglass from the American Airlines Flight 77 jet, which supposedly melted into the Pentagon on 9-11. Rumsfeld describes it as a “wonderful reminder” of that important day. Stewart questions Rumsfeld’s use of the adjective, offering up “stark” or “vivid” as more appropriate. Unless, of course, you've got something to hide, or prove, or gloat over, in which case, vocabulary isn’t the only give away.
Finally, I found the source for one of my favorite thumbnail pictures--the one I thought I'd let get away! I’m not quite sure of the legality of my use of it here. Lord knows, UPI made me jump through hoops to get it posted. Converting Bitmaps into JPEG’s by emailing myself and then PayPaling a hosting service $8.95 a month for the duration, about taxes my full computer skill package.
Bush Visits Pentagon Victims in Washington Hospital Center- 13 SEPTEMBER 2001 - WASHINGTON, DC, USA: President George W. Bush and First Lady Laura Bush comfort a family member of a victim of the Pentagon terrorist attack during a visit to Washington Hospital Center, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2001. RLW/WHITE HOUSE/ERIC DRAPER UPI
To me this picture says it all through silence. The photographer, Eric Draper, works for the White House, whether technically, or not. Like the rest of his corps, he has been co-opted and manipulated through nearness to the seats of power—positioned just so, as an ass-kisser—telling lies at a thousand words a clip. Another government worker dreaming of an 80% retirement, with benefits.Who exactly is this lady being addressed by George and Laura Bush? Isn't she, her reality, personhood, dignity, maybe her name, her relationship to the wounded victim, the most important aspect of the image, the whole point? Not in Falseville Virgina at Ground Nothing it isn't! Here the anonymous BACKS OF HEADS are truthtellers. Allowed to be disseminated while being comforted her only reality, with the noxious hen Karen Hughes looking on. I wish someone would research this woman's identity. It wouldn't be hard. Only about 60 injuries occurred at the Pentagon on 9-11, with only seven serious burn victims taken to hospital, and everybody taken out in the first hour or so.
(National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, states, “One hundred six people were seriously injured and transported to area hospitals,” but they get an awful lot wrong.
Some died at the Pentagon that day too. Like the budget analysts trying to trace missing trillions in defense-budget spending, announced just a day earlier. Heavy losses also in the Navy Command Center, where underway that morning—well, hush my mouth!—were drills of mock attacks on the Pentagon by jetliners! "They were savages, all of them, who knew no law but the law of club and fang." The Call of the Wild by London, Jack.
Long missing from the internet but making a blessed reappearance in Scott Walsh’s Patriot Video #1, a tribute to The Twin Towers disaster, is a little snippet of uncredited cable news video footage showing Rumsfeld showing off in an awkward moment, as one of a seven-man wounded-litter-bearer team. Rumsfeld’s behavior that morning is fully documented in multiple written sources, but this visual brings home the utter incomprehensibility of his actions that morning. Just a few seconds long, it can be found at the 2:32 point, here.
Rumsfeld’s little stroll outside in the first 30 minutes after the “attack” is a pendent to Bush’s aimless sticking around in the schoolhouse, which was a venue announced on his official itinerary six days in advance and therefore highly vulnerable to ongoing terrorist attacks, and both prove the men had foreknowledge of the attacks, knew what to expect, and what not to expect. Rumsfeld’s grandstanding was a misguided attempt at heroic mythmaking, but one that proves villainy instead. Bush needed a tug on the ring in his nose.
Assistant Secretary of Defense Victoria Clarke gave an interview with Jim Mitchell of radio station WBZ in Boston on Saturday, September 15, 2001
“We were in these rooms maybe 200 feet away where we felt the concussion. We immediately knew it was something bad. We weren't sure what. When it first happened, we didn’t know what it was. But again, all the wheels were in motion. “Everybody was doing what they were supposed to be doing. The secretary [Rumsfeld] was in his office, really not that far away from the side of the building that got hit by the plane. He and another person immediately ran down the hallway and went outside and helped some of the people, some of the casualties getting off the stretchers, etc. When he came back in the building about half an hour later, he was the first one that told us he was quite sure it was a plane. Based on the wreckage and based on the thousands and thousands of pieces of metal. He was the one that told us, the staff that was in the room. So he was really the first one who told us that it was most likely a plane.”
In President Dwight D. Eisenhower's famous 1961 farewell speech to the nation, he warns us about the Military-Industrial Complex,
Text, Video with French subtitles
"A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction." (Emphasis mine.)
Public Papers of the Presidents, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1960, p. 1035- 1040
Sen. Orrin Hatch, Republican of Utah, said on September 11, 2001:
"I think most authorities agree this is something we doubt Iran, Iraq or Libya would try and do, because they know of the massive response we would have to bring down on them."
So what exactly was Osama bin Laden hoping to accomplish that day?
Let's get real folks.
Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961
Public Papers of the Presidents, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1960, p. 1035- 1040
My fellow Americans:
Three days from now, after half a century in the service of our country, I shall lay down the responsibilities of office as, in traditional and solemn ceremony, the authority of the Presidency is vested in my successor.
This evening I come to you with a message of leave-taking and farewell, and to share a few final thoughts with you, my countrymen.
Like every other citizen, I wish the new President, and all who will labor with him, Godspeed. I pray that the coming years will be blessed with peace and prosperity for all.
Our people expect their President and the Congress to find essential agreement on issues of great moment, the wise resolution of which will better shape the future of the Nation.
My own relations with the Congress, which began on a remote and tenuous basis when, long ago, a member of the Senate appointed me to West Point, have since ranged to the intimate during the war and immediate post-war period, and, finally, to the mutually interdependent during these past eight years.
In this final relationship, the Congress and the Administration have, on most vital issues, cooperated well, to serve the national good rather than mere partisanship, and so have assured that the business of the Nation should go forward. So, my official relationship with the Congress ends in a feeling, on my part, of gratitude that we have been able to do so much together.
We now stand ten years past the midpoint of a century that has witnessed four major wars among great nations. Three of these involved our own country. Despite these holocausts America is today the strongest, the most influential and most productive nation in the world. Understandably proud of this pre-eminence, we yet realize that America's leadership and prestige depend, not merely upon our unmatched material progress, riches and military strength, but on how we use our power in the interests of world peace and human betterment.
Throughout America's adventure in free government, our basic purposes have been to keep the peace; to foster progress in human achievement, and to enhance liberty, dignity and integrity among people and among nations. To strive for less would be unworthy of a free and religious people. Any failure traceable to arrogance, or our lack of comprehension or readiness to sacrifice would inflict upon us grievous hurt both at home and abroad.
Progress toward these noble goals is persistently threatened by the conflict now engulfing the world. It commands our whole attention, absorbs our very beings. We face a hostile ideology -- global in scope, atheistic in character, ruthless in purpose, and insidious in method. Unhappily the danger is poses promises to be of indefinite duration. To meet it successfully, there is called for, not so much the emotional and transitory sacrifices of crisis, but rather those which enable us to carry forward steadily, surely, and without complaint the burdens of a prolonged and complex struggle -- with liberty the stake. Only thus shall we remain, despite every provocation, on our charted course toward permanent peace and human betterment.
Crises there will continue to be. In meeting them, whether foreign or domestic, great or small, there is a recurring temptation to feel that some spectacular and costly action could become the miraculous solution to all current difficulties. A huge increase in newer elements of our defense; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic expansion in basic and applied research -- these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel.
But each proposal must be weighed in the light of a broader consideration: the need to maintain balance in and among national programs -- balance between the private and the public economy, balance between cost and hoped for advantage -- balance between the clearly necessary and the comfortably desirable; balance between our essential requirements as a nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual; balance between actions of the moment and the national welfare of the future. Good judgment seeks balance and progress; lack of it eventually finds imbalance and frustration.
The record of many decades stands as proof that our people and their government have, in the main, understood these truths and have responded to them well, in the face of stress and threat. But threats, new in kind or degree, constantly arise. I mention two only.
A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction.
Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea.
Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.
This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.
In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.
Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.
In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.
Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.
The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present
- and is gravely to be regarded.
It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system -- ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.
Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society's future, we -- you and I, and our government -- must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without risking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.
Down the long lane of the history yet to be written America knows that this world of ours, ever growing smaller, must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.
Such a confederation must be one of equals. The weakest must come to the conference table with the same confidence as do we, protected as we are by our moral, economic, and military strength. That table, though scarred by many past frustrations, cannot be abandoned for the certain agony of the battlefield.
Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose. Because this need is so sharp and apparent I confess that I lay down my official responsibilities in this field with a definite sense of disappointment. As one who has witnessed the horror and the lingering sadness of war -- as one who knows that another war could utterly destroy this civilization which has been so slowly and painfully built over thousands of years -- I wish I could say tonight that a lasting peace is in sight.
Happily, I can say that war has been avoided. Steady progress toward our ultimate goal has been made. But, so much remains to be done. As a private citizen, I shall never cease to do what little I can to help the world advance along that road.
So -- in this my last good night to you as your President -- I thank you for the many opportunities you have given me for public service in war and peace. I trust that in that service you find some things worthy; as for the rest of it, I know you will find ways to improve performance in the future.
You and I -- my fellow citizens -- need to be strong in our faith that all nations, under God, will reach the goal of peace with justice. May we be ever unswerving in devotion to principle, confident but humble with power, diligent in pursuit of the Nation's great goals.
To all the peoples of the world, I once more give expression to America's prayerful and continuing aspiration:
We pray that peoples of all faiths, all races, all nations, may have their great human needs satisfied; that those now denied opportunity shall come to enjoy it to the full; that all who yearn for freedom may experience its spiritual blessings; that those who have freedom will understand, also, its heavy responsibilities; that all who are insensitive to the needs of others will learn charity; that the scourges of poverty, disease and ignorance will be made to disappear from the earth, and that, in the goodness of time, all peoples will come to live together in a peace guaranteed by the binding force of mutual respect and love.
In the earliest reporting out of Washington by the intrepid USAToday, September 11, 2001 (updated 07:05 PM ET,) credited only to staff and wire reports, with the headline, "I fear for my daughter," was this little tidbit:
"Before the plane hit, the scene at the Pentagon was already chaotic.
Sheriff's deputies were screaming at people to move along quickly. "There's a hijacked plane two minutes away. We don't know where it's
going to hit. Keep moving," they shouted."