Friday, August 11, 2006

a recent read

Today I polished off Al Franken's The Truth with Jokes. Franken's writing somehow combines partisan mean-spiritedness with warm humour. If you enjoyed either of Franken's earlier political books (Rush Limbaugh is a Big, Fat Idiot and Lies and Lying Liars Who Tell Them) then you'll probably get a kick out of this one as well. The politically conservative probably will not enjoy this book as much as the lefties. (And at least one site seems to make a case for Franken himself being full of crap.) Probably the most important thing I learned from The Truth was that the Presidential Daily Briefing for 8/6/01 had been declassified and released to the public. That's the little document entitled "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US". You can check it out yourself here. Here's the money shot, from the second page of this 2-page memo:
FBI information since that time indicates patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks
I don't know about you, but that doesn't look to me like an "historical memo", as Condoleeza Rice described it to the 9/11 Commission. Most of the memo spells out previous Bin Ladin activity but it also notes that he plans his attacks years in advance.