Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Grassley grouses about stalled anthrax probe

Sen. Charles Grassley is frustrated. After five years he wonders about what happened with that anthrax investigation that seems to have faded into the mists of history. MSNBC has the story about Grassley’s letter to U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez on that topic.

“Late Monday, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, sent a damning six-page letter to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales requesting a briefing on the FBI investigation, now five years old. The letter faults the agency for its handling of the case, saying ‘the FBI has little in the way of results to show for its work.’ Meanwhile, in an unusual move, the FBI's top lobbyist has informed members of Congress that the bureau will no longer brief them on the case.”

OK, I’m not saying I know what really went down in the anthrax-in-the-mail episodes in 2001, or that I know the reasons why the truth is being withheld from the American people. What I am saying is that the Bush administration’s justice department is not telling us the truth -- it surely knows a lot more about who did it, and why, than it has been saying. Now, according to the MSNBC story, it won’t even tell Congress what’s up.


Coming on the heels of the 9/11's terrifying hijackings/explosions, as it did, the spooky anthrax scare did much to exacerbate the months of national depression that followed. Which allowed the aggressive Bush administration to gobble up power in ways that have proven to be a nightmare since.

Yes, the numb panic following 9/11, plus the anthrax scare, gave us the handy color-coded fear alert and the Patriot Act. It paved the way for the Homeland Security Department and a war in Iraq. Oh yeah, I almost forgot -- huge tax cuts for the wealthy, too. But if you take away that perfectly timed anthrax scare and it may not have played out the same way.

Maybe more questions would have been asked. As it happened, nobody opposed President Bush on much of anything for a couple of years. It was generally considered to be unpatriotic. Now, three-and-a-half years into the Iraqi quagmire, not to mention Hurricane Katrina, the bumbling Bush/Cheney team has lost its grip on the opinion polls. The Republican Party is looking at losing control of Congress.

Want to know the truth about that massive anthrax scare? If the Democrats win control of either the House or the Senate, stand by for an investigation that will put the squeeze on what has the appearance of yet another cover-up.

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