Tuesday, October 03, 2006

We Will Do Our Utmost To Protect Americans Against...Oh Look, A Sale!

You have to feel a little sorry for Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice. I mean here the poor woman is running all over the world looking for shoe bargains...er...seeking world peace, and now she's expected to remember a meeting she had like, even before 9/11. Come on. Before 9/11 who knew meetings would be important?

Anyway, first she said she didn't blow the CIA Director George (Slam Dunk) Tennet off.

Secretary Rice disputed a report that she brushed off the head of the CIA when he warned of a possible attack on the United States before September 11, 2001. "Look, guys don't talk to me that much at all," Rice told reporters. "I'm not in a position to be blowing any guy off."

Well, we can certainly understand that, but then later she said she didn't remember the meeting.

"It kind of doesn't ring true that you have to shock me into something I was very involved in," Rice said. "I mean my apartment was being redecorated at the time and, oh my, there were so many decisions to make. I eventually went with the Ivory Berber in the living room, complimented by the...ah...what was the question again?"

Sean McCormack, an aide to Secretary Rice confirmed a meeting — on July 10, 2001 — that his boss had said repeatedly she could not specifically recall. "You've got to get to Connie in the morning," McCormack said. "Once the Chardonnay comes out, forget it."

Rice said she did not recall then CIA chief George Tenet warning her of an impending al-Qaida attack in the United States, as a new book claims he did two months before the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. "It was always an afternoon meeting with the CIA. We'd have a few drinks. The cheese tray was usually fantastic, and George would wear this really cute tie that lit up and played the Star Spangled Banner," Rice said. "Well, I'd have a couple of Chardonnays and Michael Bolton would be on the stereo. I guess I could have been...um...distracted."

Although spokesmen for the State Department and the National Security Council indicated that such a meeting had taken place, Rice was still saying that she was not sure about it. "Were there Hors d' Oeuvres?" Rice asked. "If you can tell me what was served I might be able to remember. Does anyone recall what I was wearing? Did I have my Louis Vuitton, or my Hermes crocodile skin?"

The meeting is not part of the 9/11 Commission report, but was referred to obliquely in a report by the commission's predecessor, a joint congressional panel that investigated the 9/11 attacks. That report said that "senior U.S. government officials were advised by the intelligence community on June 28 and July 10, 2001, that the attacks were expected, among other things, to 'have dramatic consequences on governments or cause major casualties' and that 'attack preparations have been made. Attack will occur with little or no warning.'"

"Oh, attacks, plans, intel," Rice said. "It was all so dreary. I told Tennet he needed to lighten up. Well, I would have said that if there had been a meeting, I mean."

Meanwhile, former Attorney General John Ashcroft said that he should have been notified of any such report dealing with a pending attack on the United States. "It just occurred to me how disappointing it was that they didn't come to me with this type of information," he said in an interview with The Associated Press. "I would have started arresting brown people all over the place. We might have gotten lucky and caught somebody."

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