Jon Stewart hosted the New York Times’ Philip Shenon on Monday night to discuss his new book, The Commission: An Uncensored history of the 9/11 Commission. The author described White House obstructionism in the course of the officially-mandated Sept. 11 investigation.
“It is remarkable the efforts that the Bush White House went through to try to prevent the 9/11 Commission from getting the information it needed,” Shenon told Stewart. “The person who was most responsible for that tension was former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales who was then the White House Counsel.”
“Well he’s really matured since then, I don’t know if you’ve seen some of his work recently,” Stewart joked in response.
Stewart also asked Shenon about Commission executive director Philip Zelikow and his relationship with Karl Rove. According to the author, “alarms” went off for the staff when they heard about multiple phone calls Rove had made to Zelikow.
“Then Zelikow calls in his secretary and apparently tells her to stop keeping phone logs of his conversations with the White House,” Shenon explained.
“I’m sure it’s all innocent stuff,” Stewart quipped.
Reached by the Associated Press, Zelikow provided a 131-page statement with information he said was provided for the book. In it, Zelikow acknowledges talking to Rove and Rice during the course of the commission’s work despite a general pledge he made not to. But he said the conversations never dealt with politics.
A video clip from Monday night’s episode of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is presented below:
(with wire reports)