Created on Friday, 19 January 2007 11:13
Written by Walter C. Uhler
by Walter C. Uhler
Incredibly, on January 18, 2007, the Lost Angeles Times
(no typo) published Dinesh D'Souza's thoroughly biased Op-Ed, "How The
Left Led Us Into 9/11."
Mr. D'Souza's article is riddled with errors
and all-too-convenient omissions, suggesting both ignorance and fraud.
Although a fellow at the Hoover Institution, D'Souza writes history
(judging by his opinion piece), as if he studied under the tutelage of
that historian-imbecile, Ann Coulter.
Consider that D'Souza expects Americans to believe that "the
Clinton and Carter administrations made the U.S. look like a weak,
attractive target for terrorists." Well, perhaps some Americans will -
especially if they've never read a newspaper or history book devoted to
the issue, if they've just returned from a thirty-year visit to Mars,
or if they're the incompetents at the LA Times
who published D'Souza's Op-Ed.
You see, D'Souza gets it wrong virtually every possible way it can be
gotten wrong. Thus, when he blames President Carter for pulling "the
rug out from under [Iran's] shah," thereby allowing the Ayatollah
Khomeini and his forces to seize power, you will not find D'Souza
acknowledging the conclusion reached, for example, by Kenneth Pollock:
"The shah brought the Iranian Revolution on himself. At the strategic
level, his many mistaken policies created tremendous animosity against
the regime across the breadth of Iranian society." [Pollock, The Persian Puzzle
p. 137] According to Pollock, America's real "policy failure in Iran
was to tie ourselves so tightly to the shah's regime." [Ibid]
More... Videos and Text after the Flip.
D'Souza also conveniently ignores the role that the Eisenhower
administration played in engineering the coup d'etat in 1953 that
overthrew Iran's democratically elected government of Prime Minister
Muhammad Mussadiq. So traumatic was the coup and the subsequent
twenty-five years of dictatorial rule under the shah, "that when the
shah finally departed in 1979, many Iranians feared a repetition of
1953, which was one of the motives for the student seizure of the U.S.
embassy." [Ibid, p. 68]
D'Souza gets eaten alive by Stephen Colbert Part I
D'Souza omits mentioning the 1953 coup, because he already has
dismissed "blowback" and "American colonialism" as factors that might
explain why the Ayatollah Khomeini called America the "Great Satan."
High school students should already know these facts, but not if the
ideologue D'Souza is telling the story.
Equally erroneous and dishonest is D'Souza's claim that, thanks
to Carter's role in producing Khomeini's regime of Islamic radicalism,
the way was "paved" for Osama bin Laden and 9/11. Once again, D'Souza
conveniently overlooks the fact that it was bin Laden's success (and
the success of Islamic forces) in Afghanistan against the Soviet
military - thanks to weapons supplied by the Reagan administration! -
that inspired him to believe that the sole remaining imperialist power,
the United States, could be defeated as well.
Finally, although D'Souza is correct to criticize the Clinton
administration for its failure to kill bin Laden when it had the
opportunity, he fails to note that President Clinton, unlike the Bush
administration prior to 9/11, was almost obsessed with nailing bin
Laden, notwithstanding the failures of his administration. The person
to read on this subject is Richard A. Clarke (Against All Enemies
), who served in both administrations -- not biased D'Souza.
D'Souza gets eaten alive by Stephen Colbert Part II
Moreover, it's a matter of record that in January 2001, Clinton's CIA
director, George Tenet, briefed President-elect Bush about the threats
facing America and told him that the number one threat was Osama bin
Laden and his al Qaeda terrorists. Yet, notwithstanding Tenet's
warning, the Bush administration spent the nine months between its
inauguration and the 9/11 attacks obsessively making plans to build a
national missile defense (which still doesn't work) and to remove
Saddam Hussein from power. Simply recall that the 9/11 attacks forced
National Security Adviser, Condoleezza Rice, to cancel her speech
addressing the need to build a national missile defense.
Bush's people blew off the warnings about al Qaeda; so much so, that
when the National Security Council (NSC) principals finally met to
address al Qaeda, the attack was just one week away. Keep in mind that
numerous meetings of the NSC principals were held before 9/11 and many
of them focused on Iraq.
Finally, simply recall Bush's words to Bob Woodward after 9/11: "The
was a significant difference in my attitude after September 11. I was
not on point, but I knew he [bin Laden] was a menace, and I knew he was
a problemâ€¦But I didn't feel that sense of urgency, and my blood was not
nearly as boiling." [Bush at War
, p. 39] But, of course! Not when you are obsessed with missile defense and Iraq.
So much then for Dinesh D'Souza's biased and infantile assertions about "How the Left Led Us Into 9/11."
Walter C. Uhler is an independent scholar and freelance writer
whose work has been published in numerous publications, including The
Nation, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the Journal of Military
History, the Moscow Times and the San Francisco Chronicle. He also is
President of the Russian-American International Studies Association