WRKO>Audio & Video on Demand>>Tom DeFrank on President Bush not Going to Ground Zero with President Obama

Tom DeFrank on President Bush not Going to Ground Zero with President Obama

May 5, 2011|

New York Daily News Washington Bureau Chief Tom DeFrank joined Michele to talk about why former President George W. Bush didn't join President Obama today when he layed a wreath at the site of the Twin Towers. Should have Bush attended with Obama?

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My good friend one of the best. Reporters I have ever had the great honor and privilege of working alongside. Tom de frank in New York Daily News. Washington bureau tree as he acted join us right now because he broke the story today. Talking a little bit about how George W. Bush feels like. Barack Obama is taking a little too much credit and spoke started frank welcome to the Michelle -- show here in Boston. Happy that the chatting with you mission hill it's been wait too long but let's talk. Let's talk well first let's listen to the president in in their little. Little collection -- I I I -- need from his speech on Sunday night we were all celebrating this with a fist pumping moment to say the least. Was not have been mine is dead. Every one. Who was affected by 9/11 which I would argue is everyone in the country felt such a great sense of a triumph in release in relief but. Didn't make -- winds just a little bit. And so shortly after taking office. -- director Leon Panetta the director of the CIA. I can report to the American people and to the world then last August after years of painstaking work by our intelligence community. I was briefed on a possible lead to -- I met repeatedly with my national security team as we develop more information about the possibility that we have located bin Laden and finally last week. I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action today in my direction. The United States launched a targeted operation against that compound in the bottom about Pakistan I've made clear. Just as President Bush did shortly after nine elevenths. -- our war is not against Islam this over the years I've repeatedly made clear that we would take action within Pakistan if we knew where bin Laden -- Tonight I called presents our dart in my team has also spoken with -- there Pakistani counterparts. So you. I narcissistic moments in the speech. We rob very grateful. But Honda -- as a -- today's New York Daily News talking about how there is some people in the Bush Administration. Whose side his visit to ground zero as a victory laps and Tom de Frank -- story today as per usual my friend. Thank you. So tell us a little bit about and obviously we're not asking about -- sourcing but what is the feeling. In. This circles at a very close to George W. Bush. Who has I think we -- agree acted in behaved like a complete gentleman that in the face of what has happened. In recent days. Last in the last two years he's he's decided to go low profile -- not to pop all -- Obama the two of them. Obviously have profound political differences bush doesn't like the Health Care Reform bill he does not like obviously president Obama's effort to. To repeal roll back the bush tax cuts for. Wealthiest Americans there's -- just. For Obama on the prism like -- give him a public pass on the -- I think that's. -- only appropriate I think it's smart on Bush's part on this on I think he's just a wannabe. Part of the spectacle part of that is. He really wants. The out of one -- -- oldest friends said that many months ago you have no idea how to lead he has. The out of the game is one lightning game and that's part of it is. Reticence. To be a public figure in the war that's part of that but in this case. I think he understood. To paraphrase a Tip -- lot of losses -- sounds like say all politics is local shall I think. All present all government is political to a certain extent and all presidential. Actions have some sort of political component of my saying that Obama as a went to ground zero today at a political reasons no but doesn't have an impact it was the political impact. Obvious to the president's political -- -- of course the president has a big. Victory in the war against terror weapon in the the Pulitzer political victory it makes sense for him to exploited I don't think. I don't think it's inappropriate for him to be in New York. Is we've both you were there. Mrs. misses the worst. You know the worst atrocity against America. Since. Pearl Harbor and the biggest attack. Hopefully. History of our country so it's very appropriate. Is there but obviously. Yeah and his aides hope that there'll be -- active fires so around President Bush closed there -- others. -- one of these. That I don't I don't question Obama's motives and inviting President Bush invited former mayor Giuliani I think that was to leave -- to. But. I mean you'd you know better of course not a question being naive about this as a political component of that is gone. These opening. It's some political benefit and I bet he doubts. Well of course I mean as a texture at 68680. Just pointed out okay Obama bows his head at ground zero. Shaky hands an a couple of soldiers just down with a -- -- -- with photographers in tow the entire way. In contrast. When Malik could sign. From the the army psychologist when he opened fire at Fort Hood Texas. Cool comforted the families of -- those dead soldiers that a single camera inside as a matter of fact I don't think the American public. Ever truly found out the extent to which. George W. Bush -- met with those families very quietly. And out of the spotlight in my right -- to frank at Washington bureau chief. Yes he's dead he did go down there but I also present Obama went to work as well. -- and met with met with families without cameras as well and I also should point out today President Obama. His meeting with families and there's no coverage. Meetings with him no cameras no. Press pool reporters no takers that's private that's usually what he does meet and -- Fallen and fallen soldiers in this case. And ways. -- under frank you've been a very good journalists for very long time and why am I think I am so befuddled. By president Barack Obama's decision a decision that he disclosed to a sixty minutes reporter -- not to a prime time news conference. -- and national address. The decision not to release these photos you pointed to the great victory that -- -- that was marked this week this defining moment in American history. Has brought on return that political victory we're talking about from a political standpoint alone. Into a failure by infuriating so many families with this refusal to release the photos. Well I don't know I'd like to see more or data on this show I think most. I think now I think a lot of Americans. Like pictures might have been -- -- In the newspaper until. As a journalist is this night and as simple as a Freedom of Information Act request you know he's the CEO. And I essentially he has the answer to his constituents to the taxpayers. In if we put in foyer request than any other government official with something that is not classified secret document. Are entitled to it. Well I think the entire operation is classified and of course like all residents. This president is -- his agency classifying portions of the operation. So they can use this. To. Happen I don't know I mean I I think. I think Obama just think that he. This is it was just too gruesome it would look like piling on. Sixty minutes. In the end zone I think is. I think it's everyone I know I've talked to receive the focus and believe. -- I think he's decided that. Most. Reasonable people. Will conclude. That Obama and Osama. Obama on. I over the White House. It was Owens and experts. And do. I think it may have to I think ultimately in my. The little bit more evidence but I know. Most people. -- -- and most Americans. Now believe for -- wise and I think. It. Yeah I don't think that did the question is whether or not Osama bin Laden is dead of course we trust our -- states military and we trust our White House. To tell us the truth on this however a time to frank. Who is from the New York Daily News and it. And colleague of mine in a mentor of mine who I respected admired great deal if you and I had written a story. They came out of the mouth of John Brennan. I'm -- wine I think our editors would have an issue with -- all the factual inaccuracies. Well that is that is a problem -- I mean we all talk about the talk of war spent 22 years in the US. Army active reserves. A lot of military. Corporation. After action reports. And fought -- war really is the case really is that is true but. What should go public in early -- -- have your facts straight and there's a lot of backtracking. First as. Our news on existing and resisting but he was arm that looks like. -- chaos I don't think it undermines. Obama singular. Achievement but it does suggest. They have some internal credibility problems view. Completely agree in the war ordinarily. Refers to -- than men and women on the mission. And doesn't refer to the the desk. I don't -- science. In this case we're talking about the fault of the are created by the contradictory. Post post mission. -- I don't think even any idea that they told that the a forty minute forty minutes of footage and now today Leon Panetta has mounted well. 25 minutes there was of it was a black out. When -- you well know show whatever public officials had to backtrack. It's always. Problem again here I think -- people like most Americans. The choice in his. Eyes that this could have been handled. War -- that is for sure. Obviously. The White House. Wanted. To get this out quickly because they do. Once say. -- members of congress. It would be like to sit on capitol hill's. Wanted to get this. All elements of the story. -- nailed down before they. You know who was never had to backtrack a story to this degree. In in as long as I can remember is police commissioner Ray Kelly from New York City. Edges I think I am so accustomed to very careful press com is what people armed with the facts that -- I just had to wind a little bit. At all of the different ways in which the administration has had to backtrack -- it. When especially we should as a nation be celebrating the photos shouldn't be overtaking the great work of teen -- of the US Navy SEALs. In the in the east factual inaccuracies are are frankly humiliating in the face of the world. It's well it's it's. It's it's difficult for the wide outs it's an internal problem and communications problem chase Jay Carney depressed sectors. -- time. Basically. In certain respects. Spokesman for the prisoner and say things like. Resisting. No weapon. When I heard that. My mind my -- I went back to. Instance Jimmy Carter administration majority now was. The claimed it was not -- meeting and then later. It turned out it wasn't meeting it's to some reporters. Well yes sometimes you -- Out of meetings. Ever leaving your chair that's what went through my mind. And etc. I mean I happen -- think Jake or these very good job. Our only concern about all of our recent. Scoops that time magazine has received though and I know he is covering Washington I'm sure everybody in the white house press corps that includes you Tom -- frank of the New York Daily News. I'm sure everybody's eyebrow goes up when time magazine has olds. Journalistic endeavor Jay Carney that is gets a school that no one else as. Well I think -- is much too smart to to be handing out step to a former employer. I mean Joe Klein and others who work for time. Have some very good sources in this White House. Has said. -- has to know anything it's in times somebody going to be the looking for him respect. Here. So time to frank thank you NI NE ER stories on my FaceBook page which it I'll access at the summit V dot com. So George W. Bush obviously declined the invitation. To attend the ceremony the laying of the wreath at ground zero. And there was some feeling in this is from time to Frank's story. And I quote he doesn't feel personally snubbed and he appreciates the invitation. But Obama's claiming all the credit and a lot of other people deserve some of it so do -- talk a little bit about that sentiment. That you are hearing about from people close to George W. Bush. Right that. He felt like. That was. The form that the intelligence professionals in the Bush Administration laid the ground work. This successful operation push for very. Gracious statement Sunday night actually. Obama should use the word gradually. But I think worship and many of the people around secretary. Small Vice President Cheney others feel like. There's too much. As stories. Shore actually. Well especially considering that the original information that ultimately to an old fashioned gumshoe. Police work it was additional information that led them to the curry or at least the nickname to the carrier that they then began to follow around until he. That carrier led them to the Osama bin Laden compound. There's no question that the Bush Administration sent set this -- they were. Train that it takes so long time I think the the Bush Administration did get us oh god does not suggest they work. On the case I think they were on the -- but. Apparently it took four years. For years for you so I'll took four years before the intelligence community. They've. Made -- real name courier central. I'm. It's -- -- Outskirts. -- Also think it's. The president. Ominous warning and line and it is his remarks Lori talked about. Long time of war. Four he became president I think he's trying. To match it to the senses to -- -- sensitivity. Criticism people. Work. While Tom de Frank Washington bureau chief of the New York Daily News. I'm getting some messages time to frank that we have earned their right despite the ball. I think -- in the right despite the ball I think that some people feel that way I know I certainly do but I am grateful that you could join us today it's really nice to live voice time to frank. Same here Michelle let's talk again. It's really -- -- And we will definitely be catching up thank you so much for joining us and time to frank is a fantastic journalist he is a long time military fracturing and he has covered. More presidents. He he he's been covering the White House -- before I was born so he has been around are very. Long time that -- hear from you 6172666868. President Barack Obama told sixty minutes -- despite his ball into the hands down. One. What we see Lee -- -- right despite the ball into the end zone. India think George W. Bush made the right call when he declined the invitation to stand alongside Barack Obama at ground zero this morning. All that coming up what in the stomach the outrage today 6172666868. That's 6172666868. I and a -- fee and we are WRKO.