The Wounded Presidency, Part Two

The Untold Story of U.S. Foreign Policy During the Clinton Impeachment Crisis

Photo Illustration by Ricky Ferrer / Foreign Affairs

Just after 10:30 AM on August 7, 1998, two truck bombs exploded within minutes of each other outside the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing 224 people—12 of them Americans—and wounding more than 5,000 others. In the days that followed, the FBI and the CIA briefed U.S. President Bill Clinton on those they believed were responsible. “This one is a slam dunk, Mr. President,” said the CIA’s basketball-loving director, George Tenet. “There is no doubt that this was an al Qaeda operation.” 15.jpg Impeachment_a_wounded_presidency The remains of the U.S. embassy in Nairobi, August 1998 The remains of the U.S. embassy in Nairobi, August 1998 Franco Pagetti / VII / Redux The CIA had been tracking Osama bin Laden, the fanatical son of a Saudi construction magnate, since 1996. His global …