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Rice Falsely Claims Clinton Administration Did Not Leave A ‘Strategy To Fight Al Qaeda’

By ThinkProgress  

"Rice Falsely Claims Clinton Administration Did Not Leave A ‘Strategy To Fight Al Qaeda’"

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In her interview with the New York Post, Condoleezza Rice claims that the Clinton Administration did not develop a strategy to fight al Qaeda:

The secretary of state also sharply disputed Clinton’s claim that he “left a comprehensive anti-terror strategy” for the incoming Bush team during the presidential transition in 2001.

We were not left a comprehensive strategy to fight al Qaeda,” Rice responded during the hourlong session.

Here’s what the 9/11 Commission Report has to say about it:

As the Clinton administration drew to a close, Clarke and his staff developed a policy paper of their own [which] incorporated the CIA’s new ideas from the Blue Sky memo, and posed several near-term policy options. Clarke and his staff proposed a goal to “roll back” al Qaeda over a period of three to five years …[including] covert aid to the Northern Alliance, covert aid to Uzbekistan, and renewed Predator flights in March 2001. A sentence called for military action to destroy al Qaeda command-and control targets and infrastructure and Taliban military and command assets. The paper also expressed concern about the presence of al Qaeda operatives in the United States.” [p. 197]

Clarke, who also worked for the Bush administration, wrote Condoleezza Rice a memo as soon as the Bush administration took office, stating, “[W]e urgently need…a Principals level review of the al Qida network.” His request was denied.

UPDATE: Raw Story has the text of the Clarke memo.

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