RED ALERT….Via Eschaton, former Homeland Security chief Tom Ridge says Bush administration officials frequently pressed him to raise the terror alert level even when the evidence for doing so was weak:
Ridge, who resigned Feb. 1, said Tuesday that he often disagreed with administration officials who wanted to elevate the threat level to orange, or “high” risk of terrorist attack, but was overruled.
….”More often than not we were the least inclined to raise it,” Ridge told reporters. “Sometimes we disagreed with the intelligence assessment. Sometimes we thought even if the intelligence was good, you don’t necessarily put the country on (alert). … There were times when some people were really aggressive about raising it, and we said, ‘For that?’ “
On the Daily Show last week, Ridge was adamant that politics was never, ever involved in raising the alert level. But if it wasn’t politics, what was it? Do we have a crew of nervous nellies running the country?