Found this commentary over on Table Talk (www.salon.com).
Comment: I wouldn’t be surprised if al Quaeda waited till after Clinton left office
Answer: They did, but not for the reasons you speculate. Clinton severed all dipomatic relations with the Taliban and levied harsh sanctions. Bush turned around and gave them foreign aid. Clinton had a fleet of the navy with all guns trained on Osama bin Laden’s last known location (the “Wag the Dog” incident was in fact an attack on one of bin Laden’s camps – it supposedly missed the man himself by less than 24 hours.) Bush ordered that fleet to sail away. Bush (by which I mean Cheney) also changed to rules to make it harder for the Air Force to respond in the event of a hijacking – previously, NORAD or Air Traffic Control could order fighters to force a hijacked plane to land or shoot it down. They changed the rules so only the Pres, VP, and SecDef could.
Whether through incompetence or by design, Bush took the heat off of Al Qaeda. He practically laid out the welcome mat for an attack.
We’re nice here and have extra cookies. :-)