Former Florida Senator Bob Graham, who chaired the joint House-Senate committee that investigated the 9/11, attacks says he believes that President Obama will release 28 pages of classified information, mostly dealing with the role of Saudi Arabia in financing the hijackers, by June.
The White House will likely make a decision by June on whether it will release some classified material withheld from the public 9/11 Commission Report, a former U.S. senator who co-chaired the congressional inquiry into the attacks said on Sunday.
The withheld section of the official report on the 2001 attacks is central to a dispute over whether Americans should be able to sue the Saudi Arabian government for damages. The Office of the U.S. Director of National Intelligence is reviewing the material to see whether it can be declassified.
Former Sen. Bob Graham, a Florida Democrat, has been pressing for the release of the information and said that it may shed light on the financial backers for 19 hijackers who killed nearly 3,000 people on Sept 11, 2001.
Graham told NBC’s Meet the Press that he believed that some of the withheld classified material could soon be released.
“The president’s staff at least has said that they will make a decision by June, and I hope that decision is to honor the American people and make it available,” Graham said.
Representative Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee, said last week that he also supported releasing the material.
“The release of these pages will not end debate over the issue, but it will quiet rumors over their contents,” Representative Adam Schiff said in a statement. “As is often the case, the reality is less damaging than the uncertainty.”
Welcome news, indeed. But I worry that all the publicity surrounding the release of these documents may have given people false expectations as to the bombshell nature of the information.
Actually, the 9/11 Commission published quite a bit of information that dealt with the role of Saudi Arabia. It is reported by some who read the congressional investigation report that some of the names also appear in the commission’s report as well.
Even if we’re not as surprised at the information, the documents will no doubt fill in some holes in the narrative and give us a deeper understanding of the complicated relationship we have with the Saudis.