In the days after the release of the 9/11 Commission Report, the 28 redacted pages that deal with Saudi Arabian involvement in the 9/11 terrorist attacks received a fair amount of attention in the press and public discourse. Though the issue was for the most part quickly forgotten, the issue briefly resurfaced around the tenth year anniversary last year. Now that we're more than ten years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, are there any plans to declassify the 28 pages?
As a bit of history, President Bush repeatedly denied calls to declassify the pages, claiming that doing so would compromise U.S. intelligence operations. In 2003, then Saudi foreign minister Prince Faisal “hastily” arranged a meeting with the Bush White House to publicly demand that President Bush do so. (Bonus video of Jon Stewart examining Faisal’s press conference available here).
That same year, Senator Dorgan from North Dakota proposed a formal amendment to a bill in the Senate to declassify the 28 pages. Many other government officials, including Senator Bob Graham, have called for the 28 Pages to be declassified. None of their efforts were successful.
Senator Barack Obama, while campaigning for president in 2008, promised to declassify the 28 Pages. Since assuming office, President Obama has not publicly addressed the topic.
Revealing the contents of the 28 pages remains an important goal so that the public has a full understanding of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The United States' close relationship with the Saudis makes the declassification of those 28 pages all the more important.
Note: This is the second in a series of topics that will comprise a running list of FAQs from readers about my political thriller 28 Pages.