The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks, predominantly known as the 9/11 Commission, was brought into effect in 2002. It was tasked with the duty of assessing the 9/11 attack and submit a report with recommendations on how future terrorist attacks can be averted. The report was expected to contain information that addressed US’ preparedness for a terrorist attack and the responses initiated after such an attack. The 9/11 commission hearings began in 2003 and ended in 2004. At the end of the hearings, the 9/11 with key findings was availed to the public. [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
To begin with, the report indicated that the attack had been masterminded by Usama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda network. The Al Qaeda organization, according to the report, had been in the making for ten years prior to the attack. The report showed that the strategies that had been used to halt the progression of the terrorist outfit had not succeeded. These strategies were the same as those that had been employed during the cold war but were ineffective against a highly organized and radical group such as Al Qaeda (Fox News, 2006). Alternatively, the report prevailed that the American leadership structure had underestimated the risk portended by terrorist activities. Essentially, the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations had failed to integrate and address the gravity of the danger posed by Usama bin Laden (Fox News, 2006).
The report further determined that the American government had not the resources and frameworks that allowed for the pooling of intelligence. Pooled intelligence would have served to guide the planning and assignment of duties to the different security departments in the US. These include the CIA, The State Department, the military, The FBI and the agencies that fell under the wings of Homeland Security. The 9/11 Commission findings indicated that there was a lack of succinct military response option to counter the proliferation of the Al Qaeda outfit. Before the attack, the protection of the borders had not been a priority option. This allowed for the entry of the terrorists into America. Essentially, the immigration and naturalization service had not been integrated into the national counterterrorism initiatives (Fox News, 2006). The fact that they were operating independently impeded the collection and transmission of intelligence.
Lastly, the report prevailed that the aviation security before the 9/11 attack was ill equipped and trained to confront hijackers in the case of a hijacking. The attackers on the plane met little resistance when they boarded the plane (CNN, 2004). The emergency responses that had been initiated in response to the attack met challenges in command and control. The internal communication was further impeded. On administration, the report indicated that Congress and the executive body of the government had failed to respond quickly to the threat portended by a terrorist attack. The 9/11 Commission failed to find the link between Usama bin Laden and the former president of Iraq, Saddam Hussein (CNN, 2004). Conclusively, the report documented that terrorism would not end with the killing or incarceration of Usama bin Laden. This is because his doctrines, which promoted terrorist tendencies, would be passed on to the oncoming generations.
I agree with the findings of the 9/11 commission. Before the 9/11 attack, media coverage on the threat portended by terrorism was limited (Fox News, 2006). This was an extension of the lethargy projected by the administration towards terrorism. However, since the attack, the media, together with government agencies have explored and reinforced public awareness of terrorism. Furthermore, whereas in the past, there were no clear frameworks which prevailed on the relationship between the different departments in the US. Presently, the CIA, the FBI, and Homeland Security work hand in hand through the sharing of intelligence (BBC News, 2004). This allows for the pre-empting of an attack to the national security. It is also true that the attacks had been masterminded by Usama bin Laden. Furthermore, just as had been predicted by the 9/11 report, even after the death of Usama bin Laden in 2011, the Al Qaeda group’s doctrines comprise the guiding frameworks engaged by terrorist outfits such as the ISIS in Syria.
Conclusively, I believe that the State has improved on the errors which led to the 9/11 attacks. Firstly, national security comprises one of the major priorities in the country. This was not the case during the Clinton and Bush administration prior to the attacks. Presently, the State has developed legal and counteractive policies which are intended to address the occurrences of terrorist attacks in the US. In addition, the attack inspired the creation of a much more active and organized homeland security agency. The agency is empowered to share intelligence with the CIA, the FBI, and the State Department. Sharing of intelligence allows for the evaluation and succinct planning of counter-terrorist responses. In recent times, the State has engaged a more active and military response to terrorist threats. Before the 9/11 attacks, the responses initiated by the state were relatively docile. These could not successfully curtail the progress of Al Qaeda. The absence of a terrorist attack in the magnitude of the 9/11 attacks attests to the successes of the State in mitigating terrorism.
CNN. (2004, July 22). 9/11 Commission full report. Retrieved September 30, 2016, from CNN
Fox News. (2006, September 08). Fox Facts: Key Findings of 9/11 Commission Report.
BBC News. (2004, December 8). US Congress reforms intelligence. Retrieved September 30, 2016, from BBC News: