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For the story behind the story...

Wednesday, May 29, 2002 12:15 a.m. EDT

Condoleezza Rice Warned Sept. 6 About Imminent Terror Attack

Five days before Sept. 11, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice was warned that a terrorist attack inside the United States was imminent, a former U.S. senator who headed up a blue-ribbon commission on terrorism revealed late Tuesday.

"I've known the national security advisor, Professor Rice, for about 20 some years," former Colorado Sen. Gary Hart told WABC Radio's John Batchelor and Paul Alexander. "She was a supporter of mine in my first presidential campaign as a graduate student in Denver."

After giving a speech on the terrorist threat in Montreal on Sept. 5, Hart said he requested an urgent meeting with Dr. Rice in Washington.

"I said to her, 'You must move more quickly on homeland security. An attack is going to happen.'

"That was Sept. 6, 2001," Hart told WABC, without characterizing Dr. Rice's reaction.

The night before, Hart said, he issued the same warning to an air transportation group in Canada.

Three years ago Hart and former New Hampshire Sen. Warren Rudman co-chaired the U.S. Commission on National Security for the 21st Century, which warned specifically of a domestic terrorist attack.

In a Sept. 15, 1999 report, the Hart-Rudman Commission concluded, "America will be attacked by terrorists using weapons of mass destruction and Americans will lose their lives on American soil, possibly in large numbers."

Read more on this subject in related Hot Topics:
Al-Qaeda
Bush Administration
War on Terrorism

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