Thursday, April 08, 2004

Ben-Veniste is going after her hard, pointing out that he has limited time and telling her to just answer his questions -- which are, specifically, about the August 6 memo about al Qaeda cells in the States.

Rice is now acknowledging that the FBI was pursuing the case, and that she doesn't remember discussing it with the President.

Hee! Ben-Veniste is being a hard-ass, and got her to admit that the title of that PDB was "Bin Laden Plans Attacks Within US."

Now he's talking about the Millenium Plots, and tying that to her knowledge of the cells, and whether the FBI had in fact told her that the cells were acting in preparation for hijackings.

He's killing her, just pointing out that the memo isn't declassified in full. Wow.

And the crowd is applauding every hit he scores. Double wow.

He won't let her claim that the memo is simply full of historical info, and challenging her to declassify the whole thing so people can make up their own minds about its contents.

And NOW he's going after Bush, asking Rice if he was alarmed or took any action upon seeing the PDB -- in Crawford, by the way, as it was during his vacation.

Rice's defense on the whole: there was nothing actionable in the PDB, and no specifics, so what were we supposed to do? While Ben-Veniste's questions have all been designed to point out that just maybe they should have taken the initiative based on it, rather than sitting back and waiting for the FBI to finish its investigations.

I don't think Rice even realized how badly she's hanging herself with this "The FBI and CIA were doing everything they could" stuff, when she's being asked about the White House's own initiatives.

"We had a structural problem". I'll say, and its name was Dr. Condoleeza Rice.

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