August 6, 2001, President's Daily Briefing Memo (External Links)

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The following are external articles related to the August 6, 2001, President's Daily Briefing Memo.



  • "What Happened? Bush Was Warned of Hijackings Before 9/11; Lawmakers Want Public Inquiry,", ABC News, May 16, 2002: "White House officials acknowledged that U.S. intelligence officials informed President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that bin Laden's terrorist network might try to hijack American planes, and that information prompted administration officials to issue a private warning to transportation officials and national security agencies. ... In a press briefing, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said the threats were very general and did not mention a specific time, place or mode of terrorist attack."
  • Dan Balz, "Bush and GOP Defend White House Response. Democrats on Hill Are Accused of Playing Politics," Washington Post, May 18, 2002: "The president's comments, however, did little to quell a growing political fight over the revelation this week that Bush had been told during his Aug. 6 intelligence briefing that members of the al Qaeda terrorist network not only might be planning new attacks but also might resort to hijacking airplanes."
  • Dan Eggen and Bill Miller, "Bush Was Told of Hijacking Dangers. Aug. Report Had No Details on Sept. Plot," Washington Post, May 18, 2002: "The information, given to Bush as part of his daily intelligence report, lacked specific details about how the terrorist plans would be carried out, the sources said. The White House said last night that law enforcement agencies were quietly placed on alert as a result of the intelligence. ... White House spokesman Ari Fleischer confirmed that Bush had been told about the possibility of hijackings but he declined to say what had been revealed during his intelligence briefings."
  • Bob Woodward and Dan Eggen, "Aug. Memo Focused On Attacks in U.S. Lack of Fresh Information Frustrated Bush," Washington Post, May 19, 2002.
  • Jason Burke and Ed Vulliamy, "Bush knew of terrorist plot to hijack US planes," Guardian (UK), May 19, 2002: "In a top-secret intelligence memo headlined Bin Laden determined to strike in the US, the President was told on 6 August that the Saudi-born terrorist hoped to 'bring the fight to America' in retaliation for missile strikes on al-Qaeda camps in Afghanistan in 1998."
  • Jean-Guy Allard, "CIA Report Announced a 'September 11'. What else did the White House know?," Granma International (Cuba), May 21, 2002: "According to Fleischer, the document presented to the president in August 2001, was entitled 'Bin Laden Determined to Strike the U.S.' In its Saturday, May 18 edition, The Washington Post corrected the official: the real title was 'Bin Laden Determined to Strike in the United States.' Did the nuance escape the spokesperson's attention? ... U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice had stated that the report primarily described threats directed at U.S. targets abroad. But sources from The Washington Post noted that, on the contrary, the CIA information pointed to danger within U.S. territory."
  • Michael Getler, "The 'First Rough Draft'," Washington Post (, May 26, 2002: "What we know now, first from a scoop in U.S. News & World Report and then from a May 3 AP story, is that last July, an alert FBI agent in Phoenix informed FBI headquarters that several Middle Eastern men were training at an Arizona flight school. He speculated that this could be part of an al Qaeda plot and recommended this be discussed within the U.S. intelligence community. It wasn't. On May 15 CBS News reported that early in August President Bush had been briefed by the CIA that terrorists associated with Osama bin Laden had discussed the possibility of hijacking U.S. airliners. Three days later The Post reported that the top-secret CIA memo for that Aug. 6 briefing carried the headline "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S." and said that he and his followers hoped to "bring the fight to America." The New York Times reported on May 21 that both Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III were told a few days after the Sept. 11 attacks about the earlier memo from the FBI agent in Phoenix but that they had not told George W. Bush and his staff about it until recently.
  • Raymond McGovern, "Signs of attacks well-known," (, June 3, 2002.
  • "Report cites warnings before 9/11,", CNN, September 12, 2002: "Another alert came just a month before the attacks, the report said, when the CIA sent a message to the FAA warning of a possible hijacking 'or an act of sabotage against a commercial airliner.' The information was linked to a group of Pakistanis based in South America."


"Some sources who have read the still-secret congressional report say some sections would not play quite so neatly into White House plans. One portion deals extensively with the stream of U.S. intelligence-agency reports in the summer of 2001 suggesting that Al Qaeda was planning an upcoming attack against the United States--and implicitly raises questions about how Bush and his top aides responded.
"One such CIA briefing, in July 2001, was particularly chilling and prophetic. It predicted that Osama bin Laden was about to launch a terrorist strike 'in the coming weeks,' the congressional investigators found. The intelligence briefing went on to say: 'The attack will be spectacular and designed to inflict mass casualties against U.S. facilities or interests. Attack preparations have been made. Attack will occur with little or no warning.'"
  • Political Animal Kevin Drum comments on April 12, 2004: "Granted, it still doesn't say airplanes, box cutters, World Trade Center, and 9/11, but it does seem like the kind of thing that ought to have grabbed President Bush's attention, doesn't it?"


Post-release of the memo