“Remember this?” asks a Republican Web site displaying a picture of the still-intact Twin Towers prior to Sept. 11. “It was 1987! At a lecture the other day, they were playing an old news video of Lt. Col. Oliver North testifying at the Iran-Contra hearings during the Reagan administration.  … He was being drilled by a senator; ‘Did you not recently spend close to $60,000 for a home security system?’

“Ollie replied, ‘Yes, I did, sir,’” the site goes on. “The senator continued, trying to get a laugh out of the audience. ‘Isn’t that just a little excessive?’

‘No, sir,’ continued Ollie.

‘No? And why not?’ the senator asked.

‘Because the lives of my family and I were threatened, sir.’

‘Threatened? By whom?’ the senator questioned.

‘By a terrorist, sir,’ Ollie answered.

Terrorist? What terrorist could possibly scare you that much?’

‘His name is Osama bin Laden, sir,’ Ollie replied. … He is the most evil person alive that I know of,’ Ollie answered.

‘And what do you recommend we do about him?’ asked the senator.

‘Well, sir, if it was up to me, I would recommend that an assassin team be formed to eliminate him and his men from the face of the earth.’

The senator disagreed with this approach, and that was all that was shown of the clip.

By the way, that senator was Al Gore!”

We know Al Gore has made some mistakes. But are they talking about the same Oliver North who in 1980, at the behest of then-vice presidential candidate and former CIA chief George H. W. Bush, participated in the secret and illegal sale of weapons and missiles to our enemies the Iranians so they could continue fighting their enemies and our friends the Iraqis in order to finance another secret and illegal US war a half a world away in Nicaragua, the proceeds from which could very well still be fueling cocaine trafficking by former Contras living in LA and other parts of California?

Does anyone remember that?

Considering how much Congress had been lied to in those days, could anyone blame Gore for not knowing all the characters that Ronald Reagan, Old Bush, North, John Poindexter and former Vietnam heroin trafficker Richard Secord created, financed and armed to the teeth?
But the truth is Republicans and far too many Democrats betrayed America at every opportunity in those days, and continue to do so today. Let’s NEVER forget that. But, alas, we apparently already have, if this Web site is any indicator.

And while we are not forgetting things, let’s also remember that war is never the answer. It is most often — if not always — the bloody and predictable result of failed diplomacy, broken promises and corrupt and usually secret intentions that We the People know nothing about until it’s too late.

There’s a once-popular saying that Americans seemed to have forgotten since those halcyon Reagan years: Believe half of what you see and none of what you hear.
Here’s an idea that might help us decide what to think while watching these people on TV: Let’s put a lie detector on each of them — Republicans and Democrats — when they speak in public. We wonder how long it would be before Americans finally demanded the truth from their elected officials.

As for bin Laden, just why haven’t they killed him yet? Hmm. As Michael Corleone said in “The Godfather”: “If history has taught us anything, it is that you can kill anyone.” Was Michael wrong? Considering how many people have died for apparently no good reason over the past seven years, we don’t think so.
The fact is America needs an enemy, so bin Laden continues to live. Even if he doesn’t know it, bin Laden’s survival is essential to continuing the War on Terror at its present breakneck pace.

Borrowing from “The Godfather,” and given how the once-shocking events and people of a few decades back are being regarded by some today, if history has really taught us anything it is that people forget and, unfortunately, probably never will be able to believe half of what they see and almost anything they hear.