Bush Team Unaware of Transoceanic Transportation Prior to September 11

We’ve had nothing but trouble since those damn Neanderthals invented the floating log

FARGO, NORTH DAKOTA — Almost nine years after the terrible September 11 tragedy, linguists have pieced together subtle clues that could explain why the Commander-in-Chief opted not to harden U.S. defenses when faced with warnings of an imminent terrorist attack.

Their conclusion: before 9/11, the President, Vice President, National Security Advisor, and others in the White House were under the impression that the oceans — yes, the oceans — primarily the Atlantic and Pacific, but perhaps also the Arctic, would protect the United States from harm. It is not known if the group believed the Gulf of Mexico (in its pre-flammable state) or the Great Lakes had any defensive properties.

“It was just a misunderstanding, that’s all,” said an unnamed former White House official. “It sure made sense to me at the time, you know, how they explained it, but now we know better, so excuuuuse us!”

“Well, that explains a lot,” said a high ranking CIA official, who asked to remain anonymous, due to a fear of getting shot in the face with a scattergun. “Not the pillow fort in the West Wing, but quite a bit. We’ve never had to brief anyone about the oceans before; about their nominal effect as barriers, I mean. I guess we assumed they already knew. Cheney seemed relatively intelligent in the beginning.”

Former Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, refused to personally comment about the ocean theory, but an aide said, “Mr. Rumsfeld has made clear his responsibility regarding 9/11 very clear — he had none — now get the hell off his geraniums.”

Indeed he did. In 2001, Rumsfeld said; “Under our Constitution, under our laws, the United States military’s task is to defend against foreign invasion and foreign threats. The threat we saw recently was from a person in our country in one of our airplanes filled with our citizens. This is a law enforcement job. It is a job for the FBI. It is a job for the police.”

Some of the clues:

Oceans No Longer Keep U.S. Secure
It turns out they are only made up of water — hellava vivid lesson, though!
► On September 30, 2002, President George W. Bush told a luncheon crowd, “The United States is no longer secure because we’ve got oceans. We’re vulnerable to attack, as we learned so vividly.”

Bush: Lesson of the Non-Protecting Oceans Learned by All;
ALL of us — not just me — you understand?
► “Time and distance from the events of September the 11th will not make us safer unless we act on its lessons. America is no longer protected by vast oceans.” — George Bush, State of the Union, January 29, 2002

American Strategic Vision Changes After Unexpected Ocean Letdown
Will need to pay attention now
► At a news conference with Prime Minister Tony Blair of the United Kingdom on January 31, 2003, the President said, “I’ve told you the strategic vision of our country shifted dramatically, and it shifted dramatically [after 9/11] because we now recognize that oceans no longer protect us; that we’re vulnerable to attack.”

President: Attack on American Soil Unimaginable Prior to 9/11
TWO oceans! That should be enough, shouldn’t it?
► On February 9, 2003, Mr. Bush, said, “As a matter of fact, it was very difficult to link any attack on the American soil, because prior to September the 11th, we were confident that two oceans could protect us from harm.”

Lesson Two: U.S Must Now Deal With Gathering Threats
Well, this is going to make being President much more time consuming
► “There’s another lesson involved with September the 11th, and that is when we see a gathering threat, we must deal with it. You see, in the past, oceans protected us, or so we thought. We felt — thought we were invulnerable to attack. So if we saw a gathering threat overseas, we might decide to deal with it or might not.” — George Bush, October 9, 2003

United States Not Immune to Attack Any Longer says VP
Country operating only on plausible assumptions now
► On September 16, 2001, Vice President Dick Cheney told Tim Russert on Meet the Press; “Don’t operate on the assumption that somehow because we live behind two oceans we’re immune to attack. We now know we’re not.”

Cheney: We Can’t Retreat Behind Our Ocean You Silly People —It’s a Lie
Thank goodness 9/11 came along to set us straight
► “It does not make any sense for people to think that somehow we can retreat behind our ocean, leave the Middle East, walk away from Iraq and we’ll be safe and secure here at home. 9/11 put the lie to that.” — Dick Cheney on June 22, 2006

Military Options Diminished Now That the Oceans Have Gone Dry
And the fishing sucks
► Condi Rice tells the 9/11 Commission; “You can have lots of plans but unless — since the United States sits protected by oceans, or no longer protected — the United States sits across oceans — unless you find a way to get regional cooperation from Pakistan, from the Central Asian countries, you’re going to be left with essentially stand-off options, meaning bombers and cruise missiles, because you’re not going to have the full range of military options.”

National Security Advisor Wasn’t Worried About Attack on Homeland
Hence the problem
► “Well, of course, the American view of itself and its own vulnerability changed immediately. We had been protected by shores, by great oceans. We’d not had to worry about an attack on the homeland in a long, long time.” — Condi Rice, to MSNBC on September 11, 2002

U.S. Must Look at the World in Realistic Ways Now Explains Rice
Imaginary scenarios no longer as helpful as they used to be
► “I remember Condoleezza Rice saying to me, ‘Karen, September 11 was an earthquake across the international security environment. If our oceans no longer protect us, it changes the way we have to look at everything.’” — Karen Hughes, White House Advisor

President Tells Russian Ministers About Oceans Secret
Russians unbelievably pleased with meeting
► On September 20, 2002, Press Secretary Ari Fleischer tells the press, “I can also tell you that in the course of the meeting, the President cited what took place on September 11th, and the President reminded the Russian Foreign and Defense Ministers that the oceans that used to divide the United States from the world no longer protect our country the way they used to.”

Ron Schalow is the author of Bullshit Artist: The 9/11 Leadership Myth. He can be reached at: rschalow@cableone.net. Read other articles by Ron.