TWN in Iowa: 5th Anniversary of 9/11


It’s taken a bit of doing. I flew into Chicago. Connecting flight to Cedar Rapids was cancelled. Told there were no more flights until tomorrow. Rented the last car they had available for a one-way trip to Iowa City. Drove four hours. Now United Airlines has lost my bags, and I’m pretty scuzzy looking as all my “gels” are packed in a bag that easily could have been carried on the plane.
But hey, it is the fifth anniversary of 9/11 and we must be vigilant against deoderants and toothpaste. That and some cruise missiles will keep us safe. You can probably tell that I’m not thrilled about the lost baggage thing.
In any case, I will be more reflective at noon at the Iowa City Public Library and at 2 p.m. at the Prairie Lights Bookstore.
For other locals, I’ll be at the Java House on Washington Street this morning, hammering out details on an Iran Conference this morning. I’ll be the scuzzy looking guy.
We’ve now been “at war” for longer than we were during World War II and are no closer to pulling the plug on bin Laden’s style of terrorism than we were on September 10, 2001. It’s connecting with the people, stupid. . .connecting with them and their aspirations for a better future.
To get to the reasons why this is the case, remind yourself of the answers implied in Donald Rumsfeld’s “Global War on Terrorism Memo.”
— Steve Clemons


6 comments on “TWN in Iowa: 5th Anniversary of 9/11

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  2. sharon romeo says:

    good to meet you today. I enjoyed your talk at the library.
    (And we dress casual here in Iowa City — you fit right in dress wise!)
    I bet I’m giving this food recommendation too late, but both Venuto’s or Devotay are good places to eat.


  3. Punchy says:

    You’ll love IC. Graduated from Iowa years ago, and the city is awesome. Very liberal, but pragmatic and down-to-earth.
    If you desire some good food, hit the Brown Bottle or Mondos…


  4. Elizabeth says:

    That unkempt “Norwegian Bachelor Farmer” look you’re sporting today gives you just enough street cred. for people to consider your views. Go with it.


  5. David G. Stahl says:

    Dear Steve Clemmons,
    Hope you are enjoying Iowa City – it is a wonderful place. Took my first college courses there, my brother and sister both graduated from U of I. I encourage you to visit the historic State Capitol in the center of campus, and to take a stroll by the river, especially on the western shore of the river with the art school.
    Iowa City always represented the best of thoughtful Democratic Party ideals to me. Intelligent, thoughtful people making their way in the world – reflecting on their history, their place, and the world they live in. It is definitiely an anachronism. In a town full of farmer’s kids, it doesn’t represent the values of small town IA, or even Sioux City, Des Moines, or Quad Cities. In it’s own way it is a mirror of Washington DC, a place that has always been out of character for the demographics and geography that surrounds it.
    David G. Stahl


  6. steve duncan says:

    Try this: Bush doesn’t have to actually capture Bin Laden to salvage the ’06 midterms. He just has to have it announced he’s been captured, oh, say 72 hours before polling. Long enough in advance for a positive wave of voter euphoria and celebration to swing some close races. Not so far ahead though tough questions and a “put up or shut up” movement develops. The administration never really makes the official announcement. A willing (bribed) party with sufficient credibility does the deed, stating Binny is in custody and being transported to an undisclosed prison for questioning and charges. The election takes place, Republicans hold both houses in a squeaker, and only later does someone sheepishly admit they got it all wrong. Mistaken identity, miscommunication, whatever. During the election lead up Bush cautions all to wait on more accurate info (“wink, wink, yeah we got him!”) and post election Tony Snow points out no U.S. government spokesperson ever said Binny was caught and “Hey, Bush told you all not to count your chickens, remember?”. What the hell is anybody going to say after the non-capture comes to light? Point fingers at the administration and whine they’re a bunch of lying, calculating bastards? Well duh! The public knows that already. Republicans get what they wanted and the news cycle rolls over just like it always does and moves on to some kidnapped white girl or debating whether Michael Moore is really the devil incarnate. Tin foil? With this crew there is no tin foil, the most cynical scenario is entirely possible. Desperate times, desperate measures……….


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