The Last Word
updated 6/7/2013 1:17:06 AM ET 2013-06-07T05:17:06

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani cited his terrorism experience in criticizing security failures in the Benghazi attack. In his Rewrite segment, MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell pointed out what Giuliani did-- and did not do-- before 9/11.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani cited his terrorism experience in criticizing security failures in the Benghazi attack. In his Rewrite segment, MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell pointed out what Giuliani did–and did not do– before 9/11.

Video: Rudy Giuliani's rewrite of history

  1. Closed captioning of: Rudy Giuliani's rewrite of history

    >>> here is urban legend , rudy guiliani pretending last night back in his days as mayor of new york he was a successful terrorism fighter.

    >> i truly believe that if competent decisions were made, the four people in benghazi who are now dead would now be alive, and i'm not just talking about that night. i'm talking about in the six months before that. i believe that political necessities trumped sensible security decisions. there is no possible way, if i had found out for six months that one of my police precinctses was being attacked i would deprive of it security. and if i did, there is no possible way the new york press corps would let me get away with it.

    >> no possible way. no. no. you know, the fact that rudy guiliani was an unwitting accomplice of al qaeda 's has mostly escaped attention outside of new york which is why guiliani was in boston today campaigning with republican senate candidate gabriel gomez at the location of the boston marathon bombing. for the moment, never mind the depravy of guiliani and gomez using the boston marathon location as a political campaign stop. let's tonight focus on the decisions rudy guiliani made that killed firefighters on 9/11. here's what happened when guiliani tried to play his super hero role while testifying to the 9/11 commission in new york city .

    >> murdered!

    >> that was the mother of a new york city firefighter who was telling guiliani that her son was murdered because of guiliani 's incomp. tense. the world trade center was attacked in 1993 . the bombing killed six people and injured more than a thousand. a report issued later showed that the firefighters' radios did not work when they responded to that first attack on the world trade center eight years would have 9/11. guiliani took seven years to replace those radios. and he did it through a sweetheart deal with a no-bid contract. six months before 9/11, guiliani replaced the defective radios with a new set of radios that also did not work.

    >> at 9:32 a.m . on september 11th , chief california lan ordered all fdny members in the north tower to the lobby. he repeated the command, but not a single company answered. at 9:59, the south tower collapsed.

    >> mayday, trapped in the rubble!

    >> fdny 's chief phifer repeated the order for all units to evacuate the north tower . firefighters had 56 minutes after the first call, and 29 minutes after the second order to get out. while all police officers left the building, 129 firefighters never made it out.

    >> that day my son was working. and they didn't hear the call. 121 guys didn't hear the call in the north tower to get out. and they -- and the police officers heard it, because their radios worked. and ours diplomat. didn't.

    >> the 9/11 commission which included politician friends of rudy guiliani concluded a technical failure of fdny radios was a contributing factor to many of the firefighter fatalities in the north tower . now, there is an official finding that rudy guiliani 's gross incompetencies and possible corruption in awarding a no-bid contract cost firefighters their lives. guiliani has never apologized. and he has more to apologize for than just that. he made more contributions to the chaos of 9/11. he violated every professional recommendation about where to locate the emergency command and control center, the professionals wanted to locate it in brooklyn, out of the way of potential terrorism targets. guiliani , against everyone recommendation, decided to actually locate it in the world trade center , because he wanted it to be within walking distance of city hall , both for him and for the media, he hoped, would follow him there in any situation so he could be on camera as much as he loved being on camera. he was warned by his police commissioner not to locate the world trade center , which -- in that -- not to locate the emergency command center at the world trade center , because the commissioner already was calling that ground zero . because of the prior attack by al qaeda on the world trade center . but rudy guiliani ignored him.

    >> i was down there on 9/11 that day. i've seen police detectives yelling in the streets we told him not to put it here. you know? because that was -- the target of the terrorists.

    >> mayor guiliani was running on the street, and he was talking to the media instead of being in a controlled environment.

    >> and today rudy guiliani was walking on the street where the boston marathon bombing occurred. talking to the media. there was probably no one on that street who knew what guiliani did to add to the death toll on 9/11. but new york firefighters and their families will never forget.

    >> the things that we needed to do our job even better, we didn't have. because of his administration.

    >> so ultimately, the mayor of new york at the time, mr. guiliani , he has to bear these responsibilities.

    >> and i blame guiliani . he was the leader that day and he was the leader for eight years leading up to that.

    >> i wish i could put him on the stand where he would have to put his hand on the bible and swear to tell the


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