NSA Condoleeza Rice Briefs Press
Brendan Smialowski  /  Getty Images file

After initial resistance to the idea, the White House agreed last week to allow National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice to testify publicly Thursday before the commission investigating the U.S. government's preparedness and response to the attacks on September 11, 2001.

MSNBC wants to know what you would ask if you were serving on the commission.

Read some of the responses so far...

Name: F. Cordova
Hometown: Denver, Colorado

Would she have testifed if the media hadn't publicized her refusual?

Name: Bob Ramos
Hometown: Corpus Christi

It is now clear that certain federal employees such as the FBI in the Minneapolis/St Paul office and the Phoenix, AZ office had information that, had it been followed up, could have prevented 9/11.  These people were ignored or reprimanded.  Time even ran a story on one lady FBI agent.
The people in D.C. that did not take action were either promoted or reassigned.  None suffered for their awful behavior.  Can something tangible be done to make the D.C. folks pay for their arrogance?  What concrete steps have now been taken to insure that this does not happen again?

Name: Dan Molina
Hometown: Miami, FL

If 9/11 didn't happen, would we have gone to war and invaded Iraq anyway?
Have you recommended to the president the firing of any individuals that were negligent in the intelligence services in detecting the people that carried out the suicide attacks against the U.S. and wrongly analyzed WMD in Iraq?

Name: Nan Burton
Hometown: Belmont, California
Prior to 9/11, what did you perceive as the most dire and imminent threat to the security of the United States of America?

Name: Bob
Hometown: Aurora, IL

Even if the administration had early on identified al Qaida as the primary threat to the country, and subsequently devoted the bulk of your time and resources to combatting it, could we have prevented the 9/11 attacks?

Name: Arnie Miller
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH

My question to Dr. Rice or any member of the Bush Administration would be this one:  "In the run-up to 9/11 did you make ANY mistakes?"  I know this sounds simplistic, but it is worth asking, given that this administration likes to portray itself as infallible and views any admission of even the slightest error as an indication of weakness.

Name: Joan F. Grenzer
Hometown: Baltimore, MD

Would it have been helpful if those in the Clinton administration who had  worked on terrorism (besides Clarke), had been contacted when the threat of terrorism was growing in the late summer of 2001 for any additional input, and would this kind of contact be helpful in the future?

Name: James
Hometown:  Seattle
Why did you go on so many talk shows while still resisting testifying before the commission?

Name: Rick Walther
Hometown: Rochester, NY

Do you feel the same people questioning you should be asked what they could have done better, in the defense of our country, as members of various committees charged with the defense of our country?

Name: Tim
Hometown: Mansfield, TX
Miss Rice,
Did you or did you not review the actions taken by the Clinton Administration to combat terrorism before you prepared your speech on a Missile Defense Program as being the #1 thing the U.S. should be concerned with doing?  The speech was supposed to be given on September 11, 2001.

Name: L. Burleson
Hometown: Iola, KS

Why do you think that all the hype about having you appear under oath has become a circus? Do you feel like a scapegoat for other people that have more to hide?

Name: William Touchstone
Hometown: Hot Springs Village, AR

Why were relatives of Usama bin Laden permitted to fly home to Saudi Arabia the day after the 9/11 attack?

Name: Bruce
Hometown: Monument, CO

I would ask, "Why are you here?  This is political theater, pure and simple.  I for one, do not want to participate in this charade.  I have no further questions or, more importantly, comments.  You have told us in private all that we need to know to make decisions on 9/11 events."  

Name: Don Halverstadt
Hometown: Huntsville, AL
When did President Bush start talking about invading Iraq?

Name: Larry Harrison
Hometown: Gresham, OR

If the CIA didn't have concrete evidence of WMD, why didn't we find out for sure before we sent troops into Iraq?

Name: Sean
Hometown: Manasquan, NJ
Ms. Rice, do you now regret your position that you would be setting precedent by testifying before this commision, when in fact, you are not setting precedent?  Prior to 9/11, there was "chatter" regarding a possible Al Qaeda attack.  In any of these reports, was Iraq linked in any shape or form as a clear and present danger?

Name: Christopher Willard
Hometown: Winston-Salem, NC

I would like you to ask this panel, why you are being questioned?  The obvious question is not what the Bush Administration knew, or didn't know beforehand.  Rather, why didn't his predecessor take a proactive course of action as President Bush has in dealing with terrorism worldwide?  The real problem to me is to deal with the war on terror first, then take care of intel problems second.

Name: Jo-Anna Reilly
Hometown: Pasadena, CA
Why shouldn't you resign?

Name: Susan Baldwin
Hometown: Vista, CA
Why is she speaking at all?  She is an advisor to the President and her counsel is none of our business!

Name: Teresa Lubrani
Hometown: Murrieta

Was our intelligence network crippled by the privacy acts imposed in the last 10 years.  Did you or do you see any signs that the lack of response during the Clinton years gave al Qaida the momentum to finalize their act of war?

Name: C. Conrad
Hometown: Golden, Colorado

On April 2, 2004, the newspaper "The Independent" reported that a translater named Sibel Edmonds testified to the commission that information was circulating within the FBI in the spring and summer of 2001 suggesting that an attack using aircraft was just months away and the terrorists were in place.  As Richard Clarke suggests, Dr. Rice could have convened a meeting that included the heads of the FBI, CIA, and Mr. Clarke.  Dr. Rice could have impressed upon the FBI Director that the possibility of terrorist attack an "urgent priority."  Dr. Rice could have motivated the FBI to look harder and recognize that it already had information about an impending attack. 
Questions: 1) Was not the NSC the only means of linking domestic intelligence obtained by the FBI with those in the CIA and White House working to prevent a foreign terrorist operation?  2) Is the failure of the NSC to detect the 9/11 attack a failure on the part of Dr. Rice, the head of the NSC?  If not Dr. Rice, who in Government is more responsible for the failure to detect the 9/11 attack?

Name: Glenn Reed
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY

Why did you say that no one could have predicted that someone would crash an airliner into a building when there is ample evidence that the US. knew of several plans by terrorists to do just that?

Name: Micah Douglas
Hometown: Houston, Texas

Don't you think you and the Bush admnistration owe the 9/11 family members an apology?

Name: Donae Eckert
Hometown: West New York, NJ

Why were bin Laden's family members allowed to leave the country immediately after the attacks, even while all other craft remained grounded?  Who made this decision, why, and how does it serve our national security interest going forward?

Name: Willester Penn
Hometown: Covington, LA
My question to Dr. Rice would be, as National Security Advisor to the President, who would you advise the President as a bigger threat- Saddam Hussein or Osama bin Laden?  What if the September 11, 2001 attack had never happened?

Name: Ron Nicholson, like Ms. Rice a student of Josep Korbel, Madelline Albright's father.
Hometown: Luray, VA

How has the invasion and occupation of Iraq materially improved the safety and well being of the American people?  How specifically has it aided the war on terrorism?  If you believe the Bush Administration deserves credit for it successes will you also accept the responsibility for its failures?

Name: Monte
Hometown: Fort Worth

How many lost lives are going to be brought back as a result of the findings in this interview? None?  So why is it so important for you to testify?  Oh, it is all a political move since the elections are before us.  Thank you, no further questions.

Name: J. Taylor
Hometown: Sylvania, OH
If you were a family member of someone killed in one of the terrorist attacks, wouldn't you feel entitled to the testimony the 9/11 commission is seeking?

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