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September 11 Panel: US Leaders 'Distracted' in Efforts to Protect the Country


The independent commission that investigated the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against the United States says U.S. leaders have been "distracted" in their efforts to protect the country from future attacks.

The bipartisan September 11 Public Discourse project held its final news conference Monday, issuing a "report card" on the government's progress in implementing its recommendations.

Project Chairman Thomas Kean said the United States is safer than it was four years ago - but not as safe as it should be.

He called it a scandal that police and firefighters still cannot talk to each other during a disaster because no law has been passed to set aside radio airwaves for emergency responders.

Panel member Richard Ben-Veniste said the Bush administration did not follow the panel's advice to adhere to international standards for the treatment of detainees, and that the country now needs to "reclaim the moral authority it has squandered."

Some information for this report provided by Reuters.

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