On the morning of the 9/11, just moments after the World Trade Center collapsed from the terrorist strikes, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) went on television and immediately began focusing the nation’s attention on Iraq. In an interview with CBS’ Dan Rather on 9/11, McCain said:
To be honest with you, Dan, I never thought that an operation of this sophistication and size would take place. I just never did. But I don’t think there’s any doubt that there are countries — Iraq, Iran, Libya, North Korea and others — who we know engage in proliferation of — of capabilities and, from time to time, involve themselves in state-sponsored terrorism. But never did we imagine on a scale such as this.
The next day, on 9/12, McCain reiterated the point in an interview with Chris Matthews. “It isn’t just Afghanistan,” he said, “we’re talking about Syria, Iraq, Iran, perhaps North Korea, Libya and others.”
Just a few weeks later — on Oct. 9, 2001 — McCain narrowed his focus, arguing that Iraq was “obviously” next:On Oct. 18, 2001, McCain told David Letterman, “the second phase is Iraq” while linking Iraq to the anthrax attacks.
PAULA ZAHN: And as you know, Senator, the U.S. and Great Britain notified the U.N. Security Council yesterday that they reserve the right to strike against other countries in this campaign. What countries are we looking at?
MCCAIN: Well, I think very obviously Iraq is the first country, but there are others — Syria, Iran, the Sudan, who have continued to harbor terrorist organizations and actually assist them.
I'll remember the dead and their surviving family and friends in a quiet and respectful manner that they deserve. I'll never forget the Middle Eastern Terrorists that did this, neither will I forget the foreign policy failures that created the hate in those countries. Policies like pimping illegal invasions and occupations. And I will NEVER EVER forget the kind of people, people like John McCain and other Bush administration neonconservative minions, that are still pushing for more of this kind of foreign policy failure.
As a tribute to some of the real heroes on 911, the policemen and firemen that risked or gave up their lives on 911, you won't see pictures of the twin towers here. No pictures of the death and destruction of that day. Nor will you see any of the flag waving testimonies to faux patriotism. I would rather point you to a local program that the fire department runs as a service to the youth of the community. A testimony to the fact that these men and women are every day heroes, not just when faced with the adversity of a tragic accident or dangerous rescues.