Debra Burlingame, whose brother was the pilot of Flight 77, writes on the 9/11 Commission.
Today, the great hopes I had for an independent, bipartisan investigation into the events of 9/11 have given way to great sadness. After the Senate and House Joint Inquiry into intelligence activities leading up to 9/11 was published in 2002, I had a different perspective about who was responsible for the attacks. It was everyone, and no one. It was the systemic and institutional problems in the information-gathering, analysis and reporting structures of our dozen or more intelligence agencies. It was the legal barriers that prevented law enforcement and intelligence services from talking to each other. It was Cold War modalities that no longer applied to very evil men with apocalyptic delusions operating in adaptive networks with cell phones and laptops, and supported by millions and millions of dollars. It was our own fat complacency, refusing to see what was happening around us as American soldiers, sailors and civilians were being blown up abroad. It was the airline lobbyists who looked after their well-heeled clients as we fashioned airline security measures that called upon ACLU lawyers rather than law enforcement experts for advice about passenger screening.
Added to the Beltway Traffic Jam on Outside the Beltway.