RealNews

9/11 panel, families differ on cooperation

The 10-member bipartisan commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks issued a progress report Tuesday, saying that government witnesses have been “encouragingly frank” in interviews and that the willingness of federal agencies to turn over documents promptly has “significantly improved” over the summer. The tone of the report was a marked contrast to a panel statement released July 8 in which members complained of official foot-dragging and warned that officials being questioned might be intimidated by the presence of “minders” — escorts from the agencies where they work. Nonetheless, relatives of those killed in the attacks said they worried that the commission was being slow-walked and might not complete its work before the congressionally mandated deadline of next May. “Still got minders, still don’t like ’em,” former New Jersey Gov. Thomas H. Kean, the commission chairman, said at a news briefing to release the progress report. But he quickly added, “Talking to (commission) staff … as they’ve done the interviews, the interviewees are encouragingly frank … They, by and large, have not seemed to be intimidated in anyway in their answers. In fact, it’s the opposite.” Full Story

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