Dear San Francisco Chronicle,
In your lead front-page story, (Sept.19 “Spy agencies ignored many ominous signs…”) and in the following day’s lead editorial, “Our pathetic spy game,” you fail to lay the blame where it truly belongs, not on an agency or agencies, but on the political party, and all its allies, who for nearly a half century, have held it axiomatic that our intelligence industry must be held in check and monitored with suspicion. Through Church Committee resolutions of the 70s and a thousand other cuts leading up to the present day, they rendered the CIA and FBI so impotent that a rag tag band of murderers were able to take down the Trade Towers and kill 3,000 Americans.
Before assigning blame, consider some introspection and imagine the conclusions the Chronicle editors would have appended to this story if Richard Nixon, or Howard Baker, or Ronald Reagan, had vowed to “…dismantle every intelligence agency in the country, piece by piece, brick by brick.” If your archives search doesn’t turn up any stories containing these remarks, they are those of Ron Dellums, former Democrat congressman from Oakland, who issued this vow shortly after the Clinton inauguration in 1993, upon being elected Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee!
No doubt history will record that the American left and its sympathizers, from Church to Dellums to Clinton were responsible for the intelligence failure of 9-11, not simply the agencies they successfully impugned.
NOTE: Letter to the San Francisco Chronicle