A remarkable detail to be published in former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge's soon-to-be-released book asserts that the Bush Administration attempted to wield the color-coded terror alert system for political gain -- a charge often leveled by Democrats but not previously confirmed by a high-ranking Bush Administration official.
Ridge's publisher is pushing details from his book in advance of its release. Notable among them:
...Tom Ridge, the first head of the 9/11-inspired Department of Homeland Security, wasn't keen on writing a tell-all. But in The Test of Our Times: America Under Siege...and How We Can Be Safe Again, out September 1, Ridge says he wants to shake "public complacency" over security.
And to do that, well, he needs to tell all. Especially about the infighting he saw that frustrated his attempts to build a smooth-running department. Among the headlines promoted by publisher Thomas Dunne Books: Ridge was never invited to sit in on National Security Council meetings; was "blindsided" by the FBI in morning Oval Office meetings because the agency withheld critical information from him; found his urgings to block Michael Brown from being named head of the emergency agency blamed for the Hurricane Katrina disaster ignored; and was pushed to raise the security alert on the eve of President Bush's re-election, something he saw as politically motivated and worth resigning over.
...Ridge has broken with the Bush Administration before. In a May interview with CNN's "State of the Union," Ridge said he could not support the former Vice President Dick Cheney's charge that Obama had undermined US national security.
Asked if he believed the country was now less safe as a result of Obama's policies, Ridge said: "I do not."
The Raw Story