There is a nauseating piece of “Patriot Day” propaganda making its way around cyberspace, and those spreading it should be ashamed of themselves. It’s obviously designed to coincide with memorials to the victims of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
An e-mail I received late last night asks in its subject line, “Do you remember 1987 …” It includes a picture of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and then launches into a story about testimony Oliver North gave that year as part of the congressional investigation into the Iran-Contra scandal.
The story has North testifying that he spent nearly $60,000 on a home security system. North defended the expenditure because a terrorist was after him. The U.S. senator grilling North, Al Gore, asked him the name of the terrorist who wanted to kill him. North replied, “Osama bin Laden.”
According to the story, North told Gore that Bin Laden was “the most evil person I know of.” North added, “I would recommend that an assassin team be formed to eliminate him and his men from the face of the Earth.”
In the middle of the e-mail is a photo of the twin towers engulfed in flames. The e-mail ends with a photo of Ground Zero after the debris was cleared out.
Wow, that’s quite a story. Oliver North saw way back in 1987 that Osama bin Laden was a threat to world peace. If only Al Gore — and everyone else — had listened to North, 9/11 may never have happened.
The only problem with such a compelling tale is that it’s not true.
Osama bin Laden was confronting the Soviet military in Afghanistan as part of the mujahedeen in 1987, backed by the U.S. government. North testified that he had received the security system as a gift, worth $16,000, but said he didn’t know if it was financed by revenue diverted from the arms-for-hostages controversy.
It also turns out that Gore was not one of the U.S. senators pressing North for details about Iran-Contra. Gore was not a member of the Senate committee participating in the hearings. And North claimed that terrorist Abu Nidal was out to kill him, not Osama bin Laden.
So North is not the sage that some political opportunists want us to believe he is regarding 9/11. Rather, North is an unrepentent criminal and pathological liar whose actions put us in more danger, not made us safer.
I would say that were it not for a legal technicality, North would be serving time in prison — but even this may not be true. Had he been convicted, former President George H.W. Bush probably would have pardoned North just like he let six other Iran-Contra criminals off the hook.
So despite trampling all over the U.S. Constitution, North is exalted as a hero by so-called “law and order” conservatives (which doesn’t surprise me, seeing how these people admire fellow criminal and professional psychopath G. Gordon Liddy). North now hosts his own TV program on the Fox News Channel and has authored several books. What a shame that he profits so handsomely from his lawlessness.
A 1994 article by the late David Hackworth, a decorated Vietnam veteran, chronicles North’s numerous lies. Here is the link:
While North’s fans want to skew history to erase the evil he committed, 9/11 shouldn’t be part of their revision of the truth. What happened that day was horrible enough. These propagandists mustn’t be allowed to compound the tragedy by using it for their own benefit.