Sunday, April 18, 2004

Media, Dems running amok like Woody

Peter Bronson

What is a Gorelick, and why do Cincinnati's congressmen want it removed? Maybe Woody Hayes can explain.

Most of the time, the media stay on the sidelines, trying not to root out loud for Democrats. But when a presidential campaign rolls around, they totally lose it and run onto the field like Woody, throwing punches to stop the "wrong'' team from scoring.

Maybe that's why they asked President Bush to apologize - but forgot to tell us about Jamie Gorelick's hidden conflict of interest and the testimony by Attorney General John Ashcroft that solved the 9-11 Commission case like the last five minutes of CSI.

"The fact that most of the press has paid little attention to this conflict of interest is shocking,'' said Rep. John Boehner, R-West Chester. "But then again, maybe it isn't.''

If you missed the table scraps buried on Page 2, here's the story:

Ashcroft revealed that the Clinton administration had a plan to capture Osama and put him on trial, but said it "was crippled by a snarled web of requirements, restrictions and regulations that prevented decisive action by our men and women in the field.''

"When they most needed clear, understandable guidance, our agents and operatives were given the language of lawyers.''

He said, "The single greatest structural cause for September 11 was the wall that segregated criminal investigators and intelligence agents. Government erected this wall. Government buttressed this wall. And before September 11, government was blinded by this wall.''

An FBI agent complained in a memo: "Someday someone will die - and wall or not - the public will not understand why we were not more effective and throwing every resource we had at certain 'problems.' ''

At the 9-11 Commission, Ashcroft said the person who built the wall between the FBI and CIA was in the room - sitting on the 9-11 Commission: former deputy attorney general Gorelick.

Ashcroft produced a memo by Gorelick that put handcuffs on the FBI and CIA to protect the "rights" of terrorists. It was a dramatic Perry Mason moment. And most of the media buried it.

"Nothing short of her resignation and her taking a seat as a witness could restore her credibility,'' Boehner said.

Rep. Steve Chabot, R-Cincinnati, agreed.

Washington politics usually seems as far from Cincinnati as Baghdad - until we stop and remember: The bodies that plunged from the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, could be our loved ones if we don't fix the holes in the barn where the rats got in.

Sending lawyers to stop terrorists was like sending a debating team to stop Hitler.

The fools who gave Osama more slack than the Branch Davidians have some explaining to do. They fatally misjudged evil in the world. They crippled our intelligence - and we can't let it happen again.

"Some Democrats on the Commission seem more interested in how to pin the blame on Bush (than in coming) up with solutions to prevent another 9-11,'' said Rep. Rob Portman, R-Terrace Park.

The failures of the Clinton administration should be exposed, but I see only headlines blaming Bush, who got the ball late in the fourth quarter. "What Bush did in eight months was more aggressive than what Clinton did in eight years,'' Portman said.

Gorelick's memo should be the topic of a national discussion.

This story concerns all of us - but the parts that make Democrats look bad in an election year were "left out.''

On second thought, comparing that to Woody Hayes is not fair - to Woody.

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