Re "Bush Defends His Stance Before 9/11," March 26: As a result of the 9/11 commission hearings, President Bush has been forced to address charges that he did not grasp the danger posed by Al Qaeda terrorists before 9/11. But his statement that he would have "used every resource, every asset, every power of this government to protect the American people" if only he had known about the specific attack reveals all that he still does not grasp.
Even Bush's most ardent critics do not believe he would not have acted to protect Americans. The question is why he and his advisors did not know about or appreciate the risk of such attacks.
Lee K. Crawford
Regardless of then-White House counterterrorism chief Richard Clarke's criticism of preparation against terrorism, it is a time-tested and bipartisan fact of life that stop signs are placed at dangerous intersections only after the accident.
Robert L. Sharp
During two days of public hearings regarding 9/11, I heard many witnesses testify about failed efforts to disable Al Qaeda by way of military options. I don't believe I heard a single person suggest that it might have also been wise to examine some of the ways in which this nation's international comportment actually spurred the rise of Islamic extremism and how it continues to do so even now.