Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Osama bin Laden: Former 9/11 Commissioners Statement on Death of Osama Bin Laden

Source: Bipartisan Policy Center

Former 9/11 Commission Chair and Vice Chair Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton, now co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center's National Security Preparedness Group (NSPG), released the following statement today regarding the death of Osama Bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda, who was responsible for masterminding the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001:

"We commend the brave men and women of both the United States intelligence community and the U.S. military for the successful completion of one of our top national priorities: the elimination of the world's most wanted terrorist, Osama Bin Laden.

"In the wake of the horrific attacks of September 11th, the 9/11 Commission was charged with recommending a set of reforms to improve American counterterrorism intelligence capabilities. As a result of these reforms, there is much closer collaboration between intelligence and military components of the federal government and with state and local law enforcement.

"And while the elimination of Bin Laden is an historic achievement for the intelligence community, the U.S. military and President Obama's administration, we cannot let our guard down, given the increasingly diverse and decentralized terrorist threat that continues to exist around the world. We must continue to be vigilant and ensure the success of U.S. counterterrorism efforts in the ongoing battle against terrorist networks both at home and abroad.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the families who lost loved ones on 9/11, and while we know their sense of loss will never go away, we hope that this event will bring them some comfort in the knowledge that justice has been served."

The NSPG is the successor to the 9/11 Commission and 9/11 Public Discourse Project. Its purpose is to monitor the implementation of the 9/11 Commission recommendations and report on new national security threats. Last year, the NSPG released a report detailing how the terrorist threat has evolved since the attacks in 2001, Assessing the Terrorist Threat.

The NSPG is composed of a distinguished bipartisan group of experts including former U.S. Secretary of Energy and U.S. Senator E. Spencer Abraham, Peter Bergen, Dr. Stephen Flynn, Dr. John Gannon, Dr. Bruce Hoffman, former Congressman Dave McCurdy, former Attorney General Edwin Meese III, former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security and Governor of Pennsylvania Tom Ridge, Frances Townsend, former U.S. Attorney General Richard L. Thornburgh, former Congressman Jim Turner, and former Secretary of Agriculture and BPC Senior Fellow Dan Glickman. Rob Strayer, formerly Deputy Staff Director for Senator Susan Collins on the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, is the Director.