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"What effect must it have on a nation if it learns no foreign languages? Probably much the same as that which a total withdrawal from society has upon an individual."
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Tuesday, March 30, 2004
 
Rice to Testify

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- After days of intense pressure, the White House on Tuesday agreed to allow national security adviser Condoleezza Rice to testify publicly and under oath before the commission investigating the September 11 attacks.

In a letter to the commission, White House counsel Alberto Gonzales said the commission must agree in writing that Rice's appearance would not set a precedent for testimony by White House staff -- and that the commission "will not request additional public testimony from any White House official, including Dr. Rice."

Commissioners said they accepted those terms and would work to schedule a session "promptly."
Bush has been saying from Minute One that he wants to get to the Truth behind what allowed the 9/11 attacks to take place. Are we to conclude that he, in his infinite wisdom, just somehow knows that there is no additional useful information to be gleaned from his staff beyond what Rice will provide? How is he so sure the commission members will ask all of the right questions? What if Rice's testimony points in the direction of another White House official?

Do these restrictions indicate even the tiniest shred of respect, let alone reverence, for the truth?

If (god forbid) there is another attack on U.S. soil that takes advantage of security failure, a good case could be made for direct White House culpability for it over and above the failure to provide the security. Should such a disaster take place, the Bush administration will have actively and willfully impeded efforts to improve it.