6,045. 7/22/2004

Lee Hamilton, Co-chair of the 9/11 Commission, said on July 22, 2004: ” ‘There is no silver bullet or decisive blow that can defeat Islamist terrorism.’ Instead, it would take every tool of counterterrorism that the government possessed.” These included the ability to “prevent terrorist sanctuaries; work with Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia; sustain a broad counterterrorism coalition; extend an ‘agenda of opportunity’ to the Arab and Islamic world; protect infrastructure at home; secure borders; and respond to the attacks that might come. He stressed, as well, the need to engage in the ‘battle of ideas within the Islamic world’ so that the United States offered ‘progress in place of persecution, life instead of death.’ …In answering the question: ‘Who is in charge?’…Too often the answer is: ‘No one.’ Lee then briefly described our [the 9/11 Commission’s] recommendations to correct this and other systemic flaws: a National Counterterrorism Center, a national intelligence director, reformed congressional oversight of national security, reform in the FBI, more robust information sharing in the government, and smoother transitions between presidential administrations. Lee concluded, ‘…these measures need to be accompanied by a commitment to our open society and the principle of review–safeguards that are built into the process, and vigorous oversight. We must, after all is said and done, preserve the liberties we are fighting for.’ ”

 – Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton, Without Precedent, Pages 303-304

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