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Lessons We Didn’t Learn from What We Were Forbidden to Say

Twenty years after the jihadist terrorist attacks that redefined our country and triggered a global techno-security system with endless mission creep, we hand our security to the Taliban and China?

America has not learned the lessons of 9/11. The lessons were lost as they were being learned.

Foreign pressure on political leaders in Washington, intellectual laziness or dishonesty in the intelligence community, and political correctness-turned-wokeness made it so.

American society repeated those unlearned lessons as the global pandemic spread from China.

The unlearned lesson goes like this: Trust your instincts about who was responsible for crimes perpetrated against you. Ask tough questions to find out who was behind them, and ruthlessly hold those top enablers accountable. Suspect those who deny the obvious and who discourage honest inquiry. Resist those who abuse their authority and erode constitutional rights in a misguided quest for “security” and “safety.” If you see something, say something loudly and ceaselessly.

In both man-made cataclysms, powerful foreign interests imposed extraordinary pressure to prevent the American public from demanding that the obvious funders and state sponsors be held accountable.

Those “America Last” interests imposed forms of censorship and self-censorship. They did it to prevent the people from asking unwelcome questions and discussing inconvenient truths.

The Trump Administration showed uncommon courage in stomping the establishmentarianism of both political parties by holding the Chinese Communist Party responsible for the pandemic. But it was stomped on in return—not by the Chinese regime as much as the president’s political opponents at home. Within months (and sometimes within days, as a chronology of the narratives proves), American leaders in journalism, politics, health, and science began echoing the Chinese party line.

This was very much like the 9/11 aftermath, when paid agents and others with business interests in Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere actively squelched talk of holding anybody but the individual al-Qaeda terrorists themselves, and their caveman Taliban hosts in Afghanistan, responsible for killing thousands of us at home.

President George W. Bush, for all his superb rallying of the country after 9/11, never held state sponsors of al Qaeda accountable, apart from the Taliban. Many members of the Trump Administration, and practically all of his critics, recoiled in horror at the idea of blaming the Chinese regime for the virus from Wuhan.

In both cases, the conflict-of-interest industrial complex—former officials, lobbyists, lawmakers, journalists, think tanks, professors, businessmen, entertainment figures, and Big Data oligopolists—used their influence to distort and silence discussion of the obvious.

What they could not prevent, they worked to discredit or channel to as benign and useless a conclusion as possible.

This is not a partisan issue.

The George W. Bush Administration actively discouraged its political allies at home from asking questions about the then-Saudi regime’s state and family-sponsorship of jihadist movements. It refused to entertain questions about involvement of the jihadist regime of Qatar.

Indeed, the Bush 43 Administration reached out to the Qatar-sponsored Muslim Brotherhood to set what would become the Republican party line that there was no theological basis to al-Qaeda.

For certain, al-Qaeda did not represent the beliefs of many of the world’s Muslims and Islamic clerics and scholars.

But it absolutely reflected the beliefs of elements of the Saudi regime of the time, and the entire Qatar regime then as now, to say nothing of the international Muslim Brotherhood that they funded.

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