Against All Enemies: Inside America's War on Terror - Richard A. Clarke

This book comes on the heels of former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill's tell-all about the Bush White House and all the dysfunctional family therein, though from where I stand it has received considerably less press. Clarke probably knows more about terrorism, al Qaeda, and USA homeland security than anyone else in the nation. He worked directly for the last seven presidents and inside the White House itself for the last three. He became the nation's "Terrorism Czar" under Bill Clinton and retained that position until he resigned a short time after 9/11. While the rest of us were watching "news" about blue dresses and berets, he was trying to figure out how to keep us all from getting killed in the way so many Americans already had been - Marines in Beirut, passengers on Pan Am 103, soldiers in Somalia and Bosnia, people at the World Trade Center in 1993... the list goes on and on. What I'm saying is, this guy is not Michael Moore. He's not even Paul O'Neill. He is THE guy that our nation's chief executives have relied on for terrorist information since Reagan. His words on this subject should not be taken lightly.

It must be stated from the outset that this book, although "intended to be factual, not polemical," has a clear bias. The author has had the closest front-row seat to our nation's dealings with terrorists for decades, but he still is one man, and this book still reflects the viewpoints of that man only. Though never betraying his own political party alignment directly, Clarke attributes almost no wrong to Clinton's administration and almost no right to W's. That said, however, I believe his recounting of things can by and large be trusted, and any American who trusts the word of Richard Clarke and reads this book should be very, very, very afraid.

This is not the place to recount the history that Clarke tells of terrorism and the U.S. Suffice it to say that al Qaeda considered themselves at war with America long before 2001, that they still do, and that they are in it for the long haul. Their leadership does not rotate on a 4-year cycle; they expect their battle for a multi-national Caliphate to take generations before it is won. Thanks to our failure to eliminate their cells back when they were discovered in the early 19

Fed to robyn's brain | October 19, 2004 | Comments (0)


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