Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Why Question the Official 9/11 Story: Part Two

The respected correspondent Robert Fisk has stated his doubts and misgivings:
It's not just the obvious non sequiturs: where are the aircraft parts (engines, etc) from the attack on the Pentagon? Why have the officials involved in the United 93 flight (which crashed in Pennsylvania) been muzzled? Why did flight 93's debris spread over miles when it was supposed to have crashed in one piece in a field? Again, I'm not talking about the crazed "research" of David Icke's Alice in I am increasingly troubled at the inconsistencies in the official narrative of 9/11. Wonderland and the World Trade Center Disaster – which should send any sane man back to reading the telephone directory.

Even before the last of the hijacked planes crashed, the FBI told Richard Clarke in the NSC that it had a list of the likely terrorists. Pictures of some of them were running on CNN that night. There was no explanation how they obtained these names or why the agency had not rounded them up. Only two of their names did not appear on the four flight manifests.

A fifth plane may have been targeted for hijacking, United Airlines 23, JFK-Los Angeles. It was is line on the runway at JFK at 9:00 AM. They received a warning from the United Dispatcher and instructions to secure the cockpit and secure the doors. After the orders were carried out the pilot called the senior attendant to say no one should try to open the cockpit door. She told him there were four Arab young men in first class. All planes were called b ack and the four young men were not detained. However, Al Qaeda literature and box cutters were found in their luggage. There is no evidence the hijackers on the four other planes had box cutters.

The most maddening thing about 9/11 is that the government did so little to produce evidence to prove its case. The most obvious failure was that it provided almost no aircraft parts from the four hijacked planes. What happened to them. Airplane parts are carefully marked as are replacement parts so that disaster investigators can determine why crashes occurred. There is no record of any previous airplane crashes in which no parts were preserved. Private investigators were kept away from where United Flight 93 crashed. Not even evidence showing the tail number or part of it was made available. Some kind of equipment was removed from the Twin Trade Towers, but the public was not told what it was and private investigators were kept away. A few airplane parts were found in the Pentagon, but some experts claim they were part of a Global Hawk’s engine. The diameter of the engine that was found is said to be half that of the engine used in the 757. Why did someone not produce something to definitively make the case for the official explanation? That airplane had two 9 foot Rolls Royce engines. Some parts of them must have survived.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Why Question the Official 9/11 Story: Part One

If we set aside the official explanation of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, we are left with many facts that clearly contradict the story, but not enough evidence to piece together an explanation of what happened.

The deathly precision of the attacks and the magnitude of planning would have required years of planning. Such a sophisticated operation would require the fixed frame of a state intelligence organization; something not found in a loose group, like the one led by the student Mohammed Atta in Hamburg.

- Eckehardt Werthebach, former president of Germany's Verfassungsschutz intelligence service

No one in his right mind wants to believe that out government had anything to do with 9/11. Conpiracy theories emerge when there are too many fact that are not analyzed by official bodies.

Several things are clear about 9/11. (1) The Bush administration moved heaven and earth to try to prevent a Congressional inquiry and then to restrict what the 9/11 commission knew. (2) The official story neglects so much and is often so implausible that the numbr of people who believe it diminishes each month. ( 3) Defenders of the official story have now fallen back to claiming that the Islamic terrorists were marvelously efficient while nothging in the US government seemed capable of working then, or before the tragic event. (4) An examination of FBI records make it clear that two hijackers , Al-Mihdhar and Hazmi, were in San Diego , when the Commission timeline has them elsewhere. (5) For some reason, the press has shown little interest in digging into the nitty gritty of what is known, and it denounces doubters as nut cases and conspiracy theorists.

In a recent address ( 2008) Attorney General Michael Mukasey said that there were Al Qaeda telephone calls from Afghanistan, routed through Yemmen to the US that involved preparations for the attack. He was attacking the FISA law as it then existed, claiming that the calls were not recorded. The fact is that NSA could intercept foreign calls and did so in that instance. It apparently did not share the calls with the FBI, as the AG claimed. The 9/11 Commission report does not mention the calls, and the commissioners refuse to comment on this. It would also be interesting to know if the surveillance was tied to the pending attack on Afghanistan .

The 9/11 Commission was co-chaired by former New Jersey Governor Thomas Kean and former Congressman Lee Hamilton. Hamilton had, over the years, conducted a number the hearings on the so-called October, 1980 Surprise and gave the Repubnlicans every benefit of the doubt. At another point, he played a role is suppressing evidence about CIAQ involvement in the Contra drug trade. Kean, through Hess Oil, had business dealings with Khaloid bin Mahfouz, Osama’s brother-in-law and bagman. But of course, George W. Bush also had business dealings with bin Mahfouz.

Ray McGovern, a respected CIA veteran, pronounced the 9/11 report “a joke,” noting there were many unanswered questions.

In 2004, former German intelligence minister Andreas von Bulow was interviewed on the Canadian TV show, “Cloak and Dagger.” Von Bulow did not buy the official assessment of what happened on September 11. He thought the hijacking of the four airliners and the three coordinated strikes required the orchestration of the apparatus of’state and industry.” He noted that none of the names of the alleged terrorists were on the passenger lists. However, he must have been referring to victim lists as the government did not release the passenger list for years, and their names did appear when the documents were made public. He added that leaving flight manuals in rented cars seemed too amateurish. That “Cloak and Dagger” broadcast had high ratings but was cancelled soon after the Von Bulow interview.

Bulow might have been wrong. We will probably never have a very full picture of what happened on September 11. The event is similar to the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Official explanations pass over important matter and advance improbably hypotheses. New information, probably including some disinformation, continually appear.

General Leonid Ivashov, former chief of staff for the Russian military, insisted it was an inside job. Like Bullow, he said that only the secret services have the ability to organize something like this. He doubted that Al Qaeda had the necessary resources, leadership, or expertise.

Former Italian president ( 1985-1992) and prime minister Francesco Cossiga told C Corriere della Serra in late 2007 that 9/11 was the work of Mossad and the CIA. The reason for the attack was the desire to attack Afghanistan and Iraq. He added that Italian intelligence had discovered that a recent Osama bin Laden tape attacking Silvio Berlusconi , a former prime minister, had been made in Bertusconi’s film studio in Milan. He earlier said about 9/11

The mastermind of the attack must have been a’sophisticated mind, provided with ample means not only to recruit fanatic kamikazes, but also highly specialized personnel. I add one thing: it could not be accomplished without infiltrations in the radar and flight security personnel.

In his last statement, he said it is now common knowledge among intelligence agencies that 9/11 was an inside job. Cossiga has kept good relations with Vladimir Putin and Putin may have given him some information.
Cossiga is known for his close ties to Italian and Western intelligence people. He helped establish Operation Gladio, an underground network of former fascists who were to engage in guerilla warfare if there were a Soviet invasion. There was no invasion, so the underground operatives went about creating violent incidents and blaming them on the Red Brigades. Cossiga had to resign rather than face impeachment when former Prime Minister Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti revealed the false flag operations of Operation Gladio. There were other CIA backed stay-behind forces elsewhere in Europe, and they too engaged in false flag terrorism. In 1978, he was interior minister when Prime Minister Aldo Moro was kidnapped and assassinated. Some thought this was the work of Gladio men because Moro was trying to seek a modus vivendi between the Christian Democrats and the Communists. In March, 2001, a former Gladio agent said:

You had to attack civilians, the people, women, children, innocent people, unknown people far removed from any political game. The reason was quite simple: to force ... the public to turn to the state to ask for greater security

Monday, April 26, 2010

“Republicans are Betting on Continued Hard Times” Revisited

While cleaning out computer files, I found a piece that was submitted last year. It was entitled “Republicans are Betting on Continued Hard Times.” It was clear then that the GOP would do whatever was necessary to block recovery efforts because there was a great political advantage in doing so. At the time, it as hard to imagine how badly the Democrats would fritter away their political advantages or how inept their Congressional leadership would prove to be. On the other hand, it was recognized then that the GOP remained strong and possessed far superior communications and strategic skills.

In three important respects, the piece needs to be amended and improved.

1. “This recession promises to last a number of years and will certainly extend well beyond 2012, in part because the problems of repairing a collapsed financial system are nothing short of enormous. Everyone in Washington must grasp this, and it offers the GOP a good shot of regaining power in 2012.”

Sherm is happy to have been partly wrong here. The Obama administration did a phenomenal job of pulling the country away from the brink of depression and out of a recession. The financial system has been repaired with bailing wire and duct tape and it is possible that the Dodd Bill is being excessively weakened. Yes, there are too many carve outs for some classes of derivatives, and the majority leader has insisted on a provision that weakens it still more to save some banking jobs in Nevada. Still, the measure is better than nothing, and one must remember Dick Durbin’s comment that the banks own the Congress.

In the sense that the jobs will not come back anytime soon, the earlier article was all too accurate.

2. “ Limbaugh was probably wrong in seeing 2010 as the comeback year, but it could be if the party is successful in delaying and trimming stimulus and bailout legislation.”

Clearly 2010 will be a big comeback year for the Republicans. They intimidated the Democrats into offering a weak stimulus bill with too much in tax cuts—to appeal to conservatives—and too little in New Deal—Great Society style stimulus. Then, during the legislative process, they weakened it still more in return for a few Senate votes.

“ Some savvy Republicans may realize that recessions are good for their wealthiest and most powerful constituents. When unemployment is low, labor expenses are high. Hard times present excuses to cut hours, vacations, sick days and other benefits.”

The accuracy of this is reflected in declining union membership in the public sector, improved earnings statements, and the willingness of unions to provide give-backs in return for jobs.

What I missed was that a deep recession gave big manufacturing firms the cover to plow vast amounts of cash into the derivatives and hedge fund casinos. That is why so many lobbyists attending the hearings on derivatives were representing manufacturers.

I year ago, this writer had no idea that the manufacturers were gambling in that casino nor was the size of the derivatives market known. Now many estimate it at between $250 and $650 trillion, and one respected sources places it at twice the latter figure. now I know it could be twice the former figure.

3. “Over the course of the New Deal, FDR invested about 25% of the GDP in stimulus and was not able to completely rescue the economy. The present stimulus package is a little less that 6% of the GDP. It is only the first installment of many similar steps if we are to escape a “lost decade” similar to that experienced in Japan.

It terms of restoring jobs, it will be a tough decade. It has proven politically impossible for the Democrats to muster enough support to pass significant follow-on stimulus packages. Republicans have convinced increasing numbers of voters that somehow President Barack Obama and free-spending Democrats are responsible the lost jobs and the fact that the jobs are not coming back very quickly. Obama and the Democrats get no credit for ending the recession or finally stemming job.

Over the last three decades, beginning with Ronald Reagan, Republicans have moved the nation to the right. Now the nation is paying the price because it is impossible to do the things needed to partially restore the manufacturing sector, which would include high speed rails, stimulation of much more R and D, improved education, especially in the technical sector, repeal of legislation rewarding the exporting of jobs, and making it harder to hide money abroad.

Another reason for the Democrats’ problems is the matter of race. We forgot how many Reagan Democrats left their party because they thought too much was being done for blacks. The fact that, during the primaries, Obama did not spend or campaign in West Virginia was recognition of the problem, and the 41 point spread between Clinton and Obama there confirmed it. After the North Carolina and Indiana primaries, the polls showed that Obama was not popular among what Mrs. Clinton called “hard working whites.” Now recent polling evidence confirms that racial antagonism is a major motivating factor for the Republicans and independents who joined the Tea Bagger movement. The November election result itself may have been a fluke— with the recession prompting many independents to select the Democrat rather than trust Mc Cain with the economy. The independents, ever impatient and usually not well informed, soon turned against Obama when the worst of the crisis passed.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


Barack Obama and progressives were correct to say that the war in Afghanistan was a necessary war because Al Qaeda’s headquarters are there or in nearby northwest Pakistan. The problem is that it was the necessary war in 2003, but the situation has since spun out of control. It is no longer the necessary war. It has spun too far out of control. President Obama's "surge" has tripled the number of US troops there, but it is accompl;ishing little.

The surge was to buy time to establish honest, effective government in urban areas and to recruit and train militia. Neither effort has been successful. President Karzai is still complaining because the US wants him to root out corruption. If the corruption does not end and the regime cannot win over the populace by providing a multiplicity of services, nothing the US attempts will work.

People in the urban areas want the US forced to do the policing. There are no signs that the Afghan police are reformed or reformable.

An unspoken oblective was to buy time so that the Pakistanis could begin to deal with those Taliban forces in Pakistan who also enter Afghanistan. So far the Pakis have only dealt with the Taliban foces that are giving them trouble. There are many reports that the Pakis are unhappy with stepped-up intelligence efforts there.

The time has come for the administration to gradually educate the public on the grim situation we face there and to point out the davantages of the Biden strategy, which was rejected last year. Americans need an open and full discussion of the unpromising situation in Afghanistan, and the Obama administration needs to set very limited objectives. The public needs to know that the situation in Afghanistan is far worse and complicated than that in Iraq.

The regime we installed in Kabul is a vast kleptocracy, that is despised by the people. There was so much talk about helping the country on to the path of democracy and modernity. Now they execute people for converting to Christianity, and the role of women has only improved slightly. War lords regained power in the provinces, and narcofarmers and others restored the poppy crop that the Taliban outlawed. A reinvigorated Taliban now taxes the crop. Forget about nation-building there.

There has been a revival of the Taliban, and the new Taliban are not just seminarians; they are rebels of all sorts, bandits, and ethnic rebels. They effectively employ roadside bombs, suicide bombers and other Iraqi tactics. Once seemingly revived by the ISI, the Pakistani Intelligence agency, or by rogue elements within it, the Afghan Taliban recently have begun working in concert with Taliban from the tribal areas of northwest Pakistan. These elements now take on Pakistani forces and Afghan forces in small formations of 500 or 600. President Hamid Karzai has offered to open talks with Mullah Omar, but the Taliban leader did not respond affirmatively.

Now there are tribal insurgencies in the south that the Karzai regime cannot contain. In all, there are fourteen important insurgent organizations in Afghanistan. The country is a little over half Pashtuns ( which includes the Taliban), and other large groups re the Uzbeks, Hazaras, and Tajiks. Warlords are the traditional leaders, and they are now fighting over control of the drug trade.

The situation there now has so deteriorated that it cannot be greatly improved by the application of American military might. We have shown that the application of masssive force can inspire the Taliban to evacuate an area. But it is also clear that they will return as soon as we leave.
Afghanistan has all the ingredients of a major military disaster. There is no silver bullet military solution; the rugged terrain is a guerilla’s paradise. Remember the British experience there in the late 19th century and the Russian military’s meltdown there in the 1980s. There are multiple factions, unbelievable geographical obstacles, and very tough logistical hurdles. American abuse of detainees and bombings has turned much of the population against us. Obama correctly noted the counterproductive effects of the bombings.

Our NATO allies are becoming discouraged and impatient, and their continued presence cannot be expected. We need to persuade NATO to remain longer and to consider introducing troops from Muslim nations, such as Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, and Algeria. There are ominous signs of discontent among the German troops.

Long-term pacification would take between 200,000 and 400,000 troops over a ten year period. The allies will not remain there that long. It is almost impossible to imagine how this option could carried out.

Our goal cannot extend much beyond buying enough time to do some more damage to Aq Qaeda in Pakistan and the Afghan Taliban. The best approach would be address it as part of a regional diplomatic effort that would bring greatly improve relations between India and Pakistan, give Afghanistan a coalition government, and to quietly continue efforts to mend our relations with Iran, who is in a position to see that our withdrawal from Afghanistan would be very painful.

Twice we missed the opportunity to get rid of President Karzai. Now he is calling us the occupiers and has even threatened to join the Taliban. Peter Galbraith, who exposed the recently stolen election there, is now saying it is possible that the Afghan prewsident is on drugs. This is the man we are betting on!

If the US plans to remain much longer, it must find a way to replace Hamid Karzai with someone more acceptable to Pakistan, who almost inevitably will plan a major role in Afghan affairs. This optimum solution would require some help from Russia, China, and the “stans.”

The ideal regional solution may well not be possible, and the US may have to settle for simply weakening the insurgencies enough to allow what passes for a central government to keep security manageable. Warlords must be bought off and not be rearmed. Far more Afghan troops must be recruited and trained. on to Kabul.

While we are there in reinforced numbers, American special forces can use the secret base the US is building in Pakistan to launch multiple operations against Al Qaeda. It should not be used for attacks by Americans against Taliban forces in northwestern Pakistan. It is paramount that we avoid creating supporters for AL Qaeda. Clearly, it would benefit if the US prolonged its presence in Iraq and Afghanistan. Continuing the level of bombings that injure civilians is also a way of creating more Al Qaeda recruits. We are now seeing signs of closer ties between Al Qaeda and the Taliban—something experts thought could not happen. The US must find ways to avoid bringing them together.

It also must be kept in mind that Pakistan is an even greater problem—prone to violence and instability. We must do nothing to destabilize her more. Pakistan faces a radical Islamic insurgency and there is the remote possibility that nuclear weapons and/or the technology of A.Q. Khan could fall into the hands of Wahabi radicals. Pakistan has a strategic reason to gain the upper hand in Afghanistan, as it needs influence in that country as part of its regional strategy of counterbalancing India. For that reason we have to assume that the ISI, or elements within it, are assisting the Taliban. There will be no increase in stability until Pakistan gets what it wants there.

Some European writers complain that the Afghan national forces are rarely used in the south, where most of the Taliban is. It is also said that there is very little coordination between allied forces and Pakistani forces on the other side of the border. Brits complain that the US might want them out of their old sphere of influence in Pashtun country. They suggest that the US wants to continue the instability there so it can use Afghanistan as a base for continuing US influence in Central Asia. It is probably more likely that the Afghan national army is simply not ready. As for dreams of being a Central Asian power— we should look at our finances, manpower problems, and the logistical difficulties of keeping a large force there over an extended period.

Dreams of greatly expanding US power in Central Asia are unrealistic. To obtain assistance from Russia and China in bringing a settlement to Afghanistan, the US must reconsider its plans to disrupt the Collective Security Treat Organization (CSTO), led by Russia, and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Given our present economic circumstances, there are strong reasons to work out an amicable arrangement with the China-led SCO. The price for Russia’s help might be pulling back on NATO membership for Georgia, a move many of our allies would applaud. In both cases, there should be ways to see that the US gets its share of Caspian energy.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A Natural Gas Pipeline, 9/11, and the Afghan War

The terrorist attack on the United States that occurred on September 11, 2001 was successful in part because of flaws in this nation’s counterinsurgency efforts. There was a deliberate policy of avoiding careful scrutiny of what Saudis were doing in the United States. Saudi ties to Al Qaeda were not examined closely. Friendship with Saudi Arabia was considered crucial for a number of reasons. One important priority was obtaining Saudi help in advancing an American controlled pipeline to bring Caspian natural gas to Pakistan and India.
Al Qaeda & the Trans Afghanistan Pipeline
The US had obtained a report written by Mohammed Atef, head of military operations for Al Qaeda. It stated that the terrorist organization was alarmed by secret Taliban negotiations with the American oil companies who wanted to build the Trans Afghanistan Pipeline , fearing it increase US influence in Afghanistan. The August, 1998 bombing of the two embassies in Africa were most probably an effort to end the Taliban-US talks about the pipeline. It was clear that Al Qaeda had great influence within the Taliban and that it was working against an American-controlled pipeline.

This made it essential that the US obtain the help of the Saudis, who were pumping money into Afghanistan. Saudi Arabia was in a position to help the United States bring about the Trans Afghanistan Pipeline, The Saudis had a standing interest in moving oil across Afghanistan going back to their funding of the Taliban in the 1970s and 1980s. They were doing this even before the US. Later, the American companies used the Saudi intelligence people to begin talks with the Taliban. Enron served as a consultant for Unocal. Price Turki, head of Saudi intelligence, made several trips to Afghanistan on behalf of the energy firms. He was close to the Bin Laden family and it is said that he promised them the construction contract in return for a kickback for the Saudi royal family. Some link his firing to the breakdown of pipeline talks in August, 2001.

Red Herring magazine reported that George W. Bush and his father were not in agreement on the importance of keeping close ties to Saudi Arabia and that they argued about this at Kennebunkport. After this, the Boston Herald, prompted by friends of the young president ran an expose of the ties of some White House officials to Saudi Arabia and called it an “obscene conflict of interest.” The expose was part of a debate going on at the highest levels of government. There were also leaks from the White House about Saudi ties to terrorism.

Cheney succeeded in changing the president’s view of the Saudis perhaps by pointing out all his family’s ties to the Saudi royal house. King Abdullah’s visit to the Bushes demonstrates that a shift had occurred. The angered Israelis started leaking information on Saudi ties to terrorism.
“Hands-Off” Investigating the Saudis
Since the administration of George H.W. Bush, there had been a policy of not looking closely into the activities of Saudis in the United States. In 1998, Clinton backed away from that policy; he permitted the FBI to examine the activities of Saudis in the US and Saudi ties to Al Qaeda. The Bush administration reverted to the “hands off” policy and strengthened it. An American intelligence source told the Guardian that the “hands off” order was necessary to prevent it from becoming public that some Saudis were paying protection money to bin Laden. According to Greg Palast, an American journalist working in London, “A group of well-placed sources -- not-all-too-savory-spooks and arms dealers --told my BBC team that before September 11 the U.S. government had turned away evidence of Saudi billionaires funding Osama bin Laden’s network. ” He continued, “we got our hands on documents that backed up the story that FBI and CIA investigations had been slowed by the Clinton administration, then killed by Bush Jr. when those inquiries might upset Saudi interests.” Another reason was allegedly “Arbusto” and ”Carlyle,” terms that refer to the Bush’s business ties with Saudis.

John Loftus, a former federal prosecutor who claims to have sources within the intelligence community, claimed that Vice President Cheney ordered the FBI and intelligence agencies not to investigate Al Qaeda from January to August because these probes might endanger efforts to negotiate a pipeline deal with Afghanistan. Loftus also reported that Enron was involved in these investigations. Unfortunately, we only have the former prosecutor’s word for all this. We do know that after the brief US War in Afghanistan that the pipeline project was again live and well and slated to terminate at a Pakistan city not too far from an Enron power plant in India that was in desperate need of cheap fuel.

The Guardian obtained FBI documents that indicated there were restrictions on investigating possible terrorist plots. Shown on the BBC television program NewsNight, the file was coded “199,” which was a designation for national security cases. The material indicated the FBI could not investigate two of bin Laden=s relatives who lived in Falls Church, Virginia. Abdullah and Omar bin Laden were associated with a suspected terrorist organization, the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) which had an office there. Abdullah was the director of the US branch of WAMY. Two of the September 11 hijackers used a false address several blocks away from the office. The public statements of two Chicago-based FBI men indicate that from the late 1990s on there was a policy of not opening criminal investigations of potential Islamic terrorists or the financial networks that supported them. It seems clear that the White House had put counterterrorism planning on the back burner.

John P. O’Neill’s Frustrations
The late John P. O’Neill was the most active FBI agent in investigating Al Qaeda. He eventually rose to the rank of assistant director. Earlier than almost anyone else, he saw Osama bin Laden for what he was—a great threat to the security of the United States. He was obsessed with Bin Laden and told anyone who would listen about the terrorist and his vile network. In 1997, O’Neill was special agent in charge of national security programs in the New York office. Working around the clock, he coordinated the effort to catch Ramzi Yousef. When ABC News interviewed Osama bin Laden, the producer formulated questions based on discussions with O’Neill. His messy personal life and tendency to bend the rules slowed his advancement. O’Neill could be brutally honest and his direct ways alienated people. When returning from an unsuccessful trip to Saudi Arabia with Director Louis Freeh, he said , “ They didn’t give us anything. They were just shining sunshine up your ass.”’ The director had said it was a successful operation, and did not speak to O’Neill for the next twelve hours of flight.

O’ Neill was aware of the Mohammed Atef document, which made it clear that Al Qaeda did not want a US-dominated dual pipeline crossing Afghanistan. He thought concerns about oil led the administration to prevent investigations of Saudi activities in the US. John O’Neill resigned shortly after an article criticizing him appeared in the New York Times. He had already been removed from the fast career advancement track, and he thought that interim director Tom Pickard planted the article because incoming director Robert Mueller wanted to replace O’Neill with a minion of the Bushes. O’Neill became director of security at the World Trade Center and died trying to save lives on September 11. The truth of O’Neill’s claims about the Bush administration’s quashing of anti-terrorist activities may have gone to the grave with him.

John O’Neill’s knowledge of the Mohammed Atef document would have led him to see the connection between oil and terrorism and to focus on the Saudi-Taliban-Al Qaeda connection. He later confided to French investigators that concern for oil was behind the Bush Administration’s reluctance to do much about possible terrorism. His investigations were continually shut down, and he began seeking information from French intelligence by using two reporters, Jean-Charles Brisard and Guillaume Dasquie. Both journalist cut-outs were experts on oil and terrorism and were consultants for French intelligence. They later wrote The Forbidden Truth. Perhaps the French government permitted O’Neill to learn more because it had been cut out of the Caspian oil deals. O’Neill and another dissenter Robert Baer of the CIA would be forced into retirement in part due to their efforts to probe Saudi ties to terrorists. Much relevant information in Baer’s book, See No Evil, was blacked out by t he CIA.

Since 1995, the FBI and CIA operated a computer program called “Alex” that tracked Al Qaeda communications. O’Neill was the chief CIA link to the program and Michael Scheuer, was the key CIA figure in “Station Alex” at Langley. They soon learned that Al Qaeda was involved in the diamond trade, drug and arms smuggling, and teen sex businesses. Scheuer and his CIA people, in the words of an O’Neill associate “ despised the FBI and they despised John O’Neill.” A CIA officer added that the working relationship with the flashy O’Neill was often very poor. When O’Neill began to learn too much about Al Qaeda, his access to Alex information was lifted. O’Neill took to asking French intelligence to monitor Al Qaeda telephone calls. Scheuer resigned when he decided that the Bush administration was not doing enough about Al Qaeda. Soon the Bush Administration shut down Alex, just as it closed its military counterpart, “Able Danger.”

O’Neill had learned that his own agency continually stymied his investigative leads and he had taken to relying on the DEA and French intelligence for help. His frustrations began to mount when he was sent to Aden in 2000 to investigate the attack on the USS Cole. He received little cooperation there from local authorities and was ordered out of Yemen by the US Ambassador Barbara Bodine, who gave him the cold shoulder from the outset. Bodine wanted him to dismiss his bodyguard even though O’Neill thought Mossad might move against him because he was open to the possibility that Israel was behind the Cole incident. O’Neill foolishly spoke openly about Abu Nidal, leader of Black September, probably being a Mossad operative. She did not back him when the Yemeni authorities refused to let him interview the people who saw the explosion, to see the hat of one of the alleged attackers, or to sample sludge in the area. He wanted an explosives analysis done on the mud beneath the ship and a DNA study of hat of one of the two alleged bombers. One former FBI agent believes O’Neill was removed out of fear that he would discover that the ship had been hit by an Israeli missile. In 2001, he wanted to return to Yemen but Bodine would give him a clearance. In February, 2001, the Yemeni Minister of the Interior announced that he had found no evidence linking the attack to Al Qaeda.
It was natural for O’Neill to rely upon the French because they had the best information in the West on Arab terrorists. They had concluded that an Arab team of 10 under a Yemeni was trained to assault a ship in 1999 at Al Qaeda’s Darounta, Afghanistan base. However, the team did not use its training and was not responsible for the Cole bombing. O’Neill probably learned this from them. The French looked into two of their nationals who were at the Darouta training camp and found that these people worked with Muslim rebels in Bosnia. The insurgency was largely supported by western intelligence agencies and many of the funds came from the Riggs Bank account of the Bosnian Defense Fund, which was operated by American Neo-Conservatives. Much of their money came from the Middle East, including the Saudi and Egyptian governments. Some of these funds spilled over to Al Qaeda, which had operative in Bosnia working with the Islamic insurgency. Secretary of the Treasury Paul O’Neill took steps to dry up Al Qaeda funds and was putting pressure on Middle Eastern governments to provide information on how money from that region reached Al Qaeda. It is likely that these investigative activities generated enough opposition to result in his ouster. David D. Aufhauser, Treasury’s General Counsel, soon followed O’Neill into the private sector. He has spearheaded the effort to look into Al Qaeda financing.

In 2000, John O’Neill joined 150 other FBI agents in attending a retirement seminar in Orlando. His briefcase was stolen there, and it contained classified e-mail and a report on anti-terrorist activities. Ninety minutes after he missed the briefcase, it turned up in another hotel. A cigar cutter, a lighter and pen were missing, but the sensitive material was there. It had to be assumed that this information could have been copied. The bureau investigated the matter and cleared O’Neill of all charges of negligence. It also said the documents had not bee touched, but it is hard to imagine how that could have been established. Still, his reputation had been badly tarnished. The loss of the briefcase was used to force him to go through with retirement, and the story was later leaked when there was a chance that he would replace Richard Clarke as the new Bush administration’s chief anti-terrorism advisor. Clarke and O’Neill were friends and allies, and Clarke wanted O’Neill to be his replacement. The FBI refused to investigate the leak, despite a request to do so from the bureau chief in New York City. As it turned out, Clarke remained at the NSC but with a less important title.

The briefcase also had information that showed that O’Neill knew about Michael Dick’s investigation of Israeli agents, working for a moving company in New York and New Jersey. Dick was also aware of the Israeli agents who came to the United States under the cover of marketing art. They were shriveling all sorts of federal facilities, especially those of the DEA. They were also spying on DEA agents and FBI agents. The “Israeli artists” also followed Arabs who would later be accused of involvement in the 9/11 plot.

By 2000, he was busy trying to find Al Qaeda sleeper cells in the United States, but he was soon taken out of action and assigned to deskwork. Janet Parker, a Seattle veterinarian and O’Neill friend, said that O’ Neill’s superior, Tom Picard, prevented O’Neill from getting a wire tap on Shadrack Manyathella, who was tied to probably double agent Ali Mohammed and Mohammed Atta, possible ring leader of 9/11. Parker and O’Neill were keeping track of one cell through her foster-daughter, who had previous ties with the terrorists.

John O’Neill resigned soon after the second Bush took power. O’Neill told two respected French investigators “All of the answers, all of the clues allowing us to dismantle Osama bin Laden’s organization, can be found in Saudi Arabia..” O’Neill was extremely frustrated by the Bush administration’s approach to terrorism , claiming the administration had also made it more difficult to investigate Saudis.

O’Neill retired on August 22, after thirty years of service. He immediately took up his duties as head of security at the World Trade Center on behalf of Kroll Associates and occupied his office on the 34th floor of the North Tower. While trying to rescue people in the South Tire, he lost his life. In November 2001, weapons inspector Richard Butler told TV investigator Paula Zahn, “The most explosive charge, Paula, is that the Bush administration -- the present one, just shortly after assuming office slowed down FBI investigations of al Qaeda and terrorism in Afghanistan in order to do a deal with the Taliban on oil -- an oil pipeline across Afghanistan."


Friday, April 23, 2010

The TAPI Pipeline and US Policy Toward Afghanistan

In November, 2009, President Barack Obama honored eighteen fallen American soldiers at a midnight ceremony at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. Let us home that none of these heroes died in order to pave the way for the Trans Afghanistan Pipeline. Advocates of the TAP— sometimes known as TAPI--see it has a modern-day extension of the ancient Silk Road. Congress has passed two Silk Road Strategy Acts ( 1999-2006) that essentially voice strong support for projecting US military and economic power into the Eurasian Corridor in Central Asia. Talk about moving natural gas on the TAP does not pass the lips of our politicians or pundits, but has been a big factor in our dealings with Afghanistan since the 1990s. Operation Enduring Freedom was about terrorism, but much more was involved. Noam Chomsky has reminded us that the pipeline would sharply reduce the region’s dependency upon Iran for energy. There is also the matter of competition with Russia. In September, Zamir Kabulov Russian ambassador to Afghanistan, said that the “ U.S. and its allies are competing with Russia for influence in the energy-rich region….Afghanistan remains a strategic prize because of its location.”

The Clinton and Bush administrations both sought stability in Afghanistan to permit California-based construction of a planned twin pipelines--- Caspian natural gas and oil-- to take Caspian fuels through Afghanistan into Pakistan and India. TAP only briefly involved oil as well as gas; it is now a natural gas venture. For a time, it appeared that the ide3a of bringing Caspian oil through Afghanistan had been abandoned. Now, there is again talk of an oil pipeline, but it would follow a different rout. It would not be part of a twin pipeline.

A major benefit of TAP is that it would provide Caspian fuel not controlled by Russia’s Gazprom. It would begin in the Daulatabad gas field and bring gas to Pakistan and India. The line would also outflank a proposed Iran- Pakistan-India ( IPI) line, that would probably benefit China and its China National Petroleum Corporation. India has been hedging its bets by disc using the second line with Iran and China, and there were some break-troughs in the negotiations with Iran in 2008. The United States, of course, has been actively opposing the Chinese project, in part because it would hasten economic development in Iran. The US is pressuring India to withdraw from discussions of the IPI and not to agree to buy natural gas from the IPI. Iran is pressing India for a definite commitment and is threatening to go it alone, with the help of China. Recent reverses in the Afghan War have given new life to prospects for the IPI. Though it would appear that China and the US are working at cross purposes in Afghanistan, that is not quite the case. Since 2008, China, with the help of British engineers and geologists, has begun exploiting the woprld’s largest copper deposits thirty miles south of Kabuil in the Aynak Valley. The deposits are estimated to be worth $88 billion. This project will greatly improve the economy in an area marked by continued warfare. It could serve to reduce the power of the insurgency in the long run.
An even murkier economic factor that could relate to the Afghan War is the poppy trade. Beginning in the late 1970s, the CIA encouraged the mujahedeen to finance its war against the Soviets with opium. The Taliban, under Mullah Omar, shut down the opium trade in 2000 as a way of putting pressure on the West. After the US/NATO occupation , poppy cultivation has skyrocketed and Afghanistan now supplies almost all the world’s opium. The U.S. has largely turned a blind eye to the opium trade even though troops must move through poppy fields in their search for the Taliban. There are token US/UN efforts to halt the trade, but it is clear that the Afghan government itself, as well as its security forces, thrive on opium money. There are also reports that the infusion of vast amounts of opium money into world financial markets after the collapse of 2008 greatly facilitated the restoration the woprld financial infrastgructure. What all this has to do with U.S. continued involvement in Afghanistan cannot be demonstrated.

There is no way of knowing how important the gas pipeline is as a motive for the Afghan War? All we can do is review the facts.
Bridas vs. US Oil
The 1040 mile pipeline was the idea of Carlos A. Budgheroni of Bridas, an Argentine firm. In 1995, he thought he had a secure agreement with Afghanistan and Turkmenistan to develop the project. He invited California-based Unocal to join his consortium, but the American firm soon elbowed out Bridas and launched its own consortium. In March, 1995, the governments of Turkmenistan and Pakistan signed a memorandum of agreement to co-operate on the pipeline. Unocal created the Central Asian Gas and Pipeline Consortium in August, 1996, with Unocal holding 46.5 %. The government of Turkmenistan had some involvement, and by 2000, Halliburton was in Turkmenistan to provide “integrated drilling services with an estimated value of $30 million for the total package." There were firms from Russia, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Japan, Pakistan, and South Korea.

Unocal, which was to be purchased by Chevron, soon began courting the Taliban faction and brought some of its leaders to its headquarters in Sugarland, Texas in 1997. The delegation , led by Mullah Mohammed Ghaus, visited Unocal headquarters in Sugarland, toured NASA Space Center facilities, and visited the Houston Zoo. The corporation sponsored the training of Afghans in oil technology at the University of Nebraska, but soon backed off and gave the impression it was no longer interested in the Afghan venture It seemed that the desired deal was about to be signed, but the Taliban seemed to lose interest in dealing with the U.S .

The Taliban, which had been created with the help of the US and Pakistan, was seen as a vehicle for providing stability in Afghanistan. It had a bad record on its treatment of women and on human rights, but the US and Unocal still supported it. In 1996, the Taliban gained the upper hand in the civil war when it occupied Kabul. At that time, it invited Osama bin Laden to Afghanistan as a guest.

The Taliban’s honored guest supported Bridas. His engineers had taken the trouble to sip tea with Afghan leaders, and some of the Taliban agreed with Bin Laden that the contract should go to Bridas. He also offered to let Afghanistan tap some of the gas from the line, while t6he Americans were not promising that. The French newspaper Le Figaro reported that U.S. intelligence people maintained contacts with Bin Laden in hopes that he could find a way to renew his ties with the United States. An agent met with him in July, 2001 but could not restore ties. Bin Laden remained angry that there were U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia, which he considered holy soil.
Unocal employed two influential Pashtuns-- Taliban backer Kalmay Khalizad, a Chicago Ph.D. and Hamid Karzai, leader of the Pashtun Durrani tribe who also had ties to the royal family. Khalizad was to be on the Bush National Security Council, and Karzai would preside over the regime the that US would install in Afghanistan. Patrick Martin has written, “If history had skipped over September 11 and the events of that day had never happened, it is very likely that the United States would have gone to war in Afghanistan anyway, and on much the same schedule.”

In January, 1998, the Taliban selected CentGas over the Argentine firm to build the pipelines. The Russians pulled out of the deal in June. Due to Al Qaeda’s bombing of two African embassies, the Clinton administration, in 1998, banned further negotiations with Afghanistan.
Enron and the Line
Unocal suspended activities in pursuit of the pipeline, in December, 1998, but Enron quietly began to take a leadership role. Enron was facing a financial crisis, and the pipeline would make Enron lands in the Caspian Basin very valuable. Enron had just purchased enormous tracts of land in Turkmenistan and gambled that the pipeline would make the acquisitions very profitable. Construction of the TAP would also make it possible to get cheap natural gas to the Dabhol, India power plant, which was then a huge financial liability for Enron and General Electric.
Bush Policy Toward Afghanistan

The Bush administration, in early 2001, lifted the Clinton ban, probably to give Enron one last change to negotiate a successful pipeline deal and possibly reverse its fortunes. Secretary of State Colin Powell quickly gave the Taliban $43 million for “humanitarian purposes.” It is possible that the younger Bush knew nothing about the pipeline deal. Condoleezza Rice was a former member of the Chevron board, but it should be recalled that she did not see the Phoenix memo on terrorism before 9/11. It was thought essential that relations with Saudi Arabia improve if the pipeline negotiations were to be successful.

The effort to force the Taliban to accept U.S. demands was probably related to attempts to assist Enron Corporation avoids financial shipwreck. If a coalition government emerged quickly in Afghanistan, it was believed conditions would be right for the construction of gas and oil pipelines across that country, a venture in which Enron was heavily involved. The gas [pipeline would also place Enron’s three billion power plant in Dabhol, India on a profitable basis. In an unprecedented effort to assist a private concern, the National Security Council was they coordinating a government-wide drive to force India to make payments to the Enron power plant in Dabhol. To assist Enron and other energy wholesalers make the most of the energy crisis in California, the administration resisted calls to reinstate price caps on interstate energy sales. Enron and Ken Lay were permitted to exert great influence in fashioning the Bush energy plan.

The Bush administration sharply reversed U.S. policy with respect to Afghanistan. Whether the new approach to diplomacy with the Taliban was related to the administration’s somewhat relaxed approach to counterterrorism cannot be known. Contacts with the Taliban were reopened and a vigorous carrot and stick approach was pursued in an effort to have Bin Laden turned over and set in motion a coalition government there. A coalition government, which would open the door to the proposed twin pipeline across Afghanistan. The Afghan government would benefit from fees paid for construction rights and later for sending oil and natural gas through the lines.

Laili Helms, niece by marriage to former CIA director Richard Helms and a relative of King Zahir Shah, quickly arranged for Sayed Rahmatullah Hashami, an envoy of Mullah Omar, to visit Washington. Helms, whose two grandfathers had been Afghan officials, was working as a public relations consultant for the Taliban. Hashami brought a carpet for George W. Bush, a gift from his one-eyed leader. According to the Village Voice, he offered to detain Osama bin Laden long enough for US agents to seize the terrorist, but for some reason the US did not accept the offer. Not long after that, bin Laden announced in a written statement that he and Omar has sworn baya or blood brotherhood. At this time, the Voice of America’s Pashtun service broadcasted so much favorable information about Mullah Omar and the Taliban that wags called the woman heading that division “Kandahar Rose.”

Dr. Christiana Rocca, who had been a CIA operative in Afghanistan from 1982 to 1997, began working on the Afghanistan problem for the State Department in May, 2001. At the same time, State maintained constant contact with the Taliban diplomatic mission in Queens and remained hostile to the Northern Alliance’s Islamic State of Afghanistan, which was recognized by the United Nations. As late as July, the CIA welcomed Qazi Hussein Ahmed , head of the pro-Bin Laden Jamiaat-i-Islami Party, at the George H.W. Bush Intelligence Center in Langley, Virginia. The policy was clearly to work out an gas deal with the Taliban.
Diplomacy Rarely Discussed in US Press
State Department representatives met with counterparts from Iran, Italy, Germany, and in Geneva to devise ways to force the Taliban to enter an oil/gas deal with the United States. The 6+2 negotiating process was also in motion with Francesc Vendrell, personal representative of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, making five trips to Kandahar and Kabul between April 19 and August 17, 2001. There also a stormy UN sponsored meeting in Brussels on May 15 which the Taliban foreign minister refused to attend because Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, the Northern Alliance representative was there. Twenty-one nations had representatives at Weston Park in England in July, where a coalition government under the oversight of former King Zahir Shah was tentatively agreed.

There was a March meeting of the UN-sponsored A group of 6 + 2" in Berlin. The 6+2 meetings were “level-2” discussions because they were attended by former government officials. These former officials tried to reflect the policies of their governments, but their lack of official positions gave their governments a large measure of desirability if something went wrong. Nevertheless, they were useful forums for exchanging ideas that clearly represented the positions of the governments involved. The small US delegation included Tom Simons, former ambassador to Pakistan, and Robert Oakley, a Unocal lobbyist and former ambassador. In a May meeting in Geneva, the US unveiled plans to attack Afghanistan. Representatives of Iran, Germany, and Italy were present. In July, war with Afghanistan was again discussed at the Group of 8 meeting in Genoa. An Indian observer was also present for these discussions and even contributed plans. The US was busy acquiring base rights in Pakistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan.

Another Berlin meeting was held in July. The Taliban was expected to send a spokesman, but he did not appear, probably because the Northern Alliance was represented there. It was later reported in Europe that the US spokesman said that the Taliban could either “ accept our offer of a carpet of gold, or we bury you under a carpet of bombs.'' Simons denied that a direct threat was made in these words but conceded that the subject of force may have come up in connection with a discussion of the investigation of the attack on the USS Cole. He also said that “It is possible that an American participant, acting mischievously, after some glasses, evoked the gold carpets and the carpet bombs.” Whatever Simons’ exact words were, people came away convinced that the US was determined employ force in Afghanistan if it did not get its way.

A British newspaper later reported that it was said that the bombing could begin as early as October. Niaz Naik, Pakistan’s former foreign minister, in mid-July, reported back to his government that he was US would resort to force if Pakistan could not persuade the Taliban to come into line. Pakistan passed this information on to the Taliban. It was later reported on French television, “Islamabad and Pakistani military circles were buzzing with rumors of war.” The Indian press reported in October that "Tajikistan and Uzbekistan will lead the ground attack with a strong military back up of the U.S. and Russia. Vital Taliban installations and military assets will be targeted. “ MSNBC reported that the plan to invade Afghanistan was on Bush’s desk before 9/11 and included giving a red light to the Northern Alliance to mount a major campaign against the Taliban. On the afternoon of September 11, General Richard Myers reported at a teleconferenced NSC meeting that the Pentagon had 42 major Taliban bombing targets. After the 9/11 attacks, the Bush administration immediately attributed it to Osama Bin Laden, but he repeatedly denied any involvement for several weeks. Later, a videotape turned up in Afghanistan in which Bin Laden supposedly took credit for the attack; however, some translators deny that is what he said.

Dr. Christina Rocca, represented the US at its last meeting with the Taliban, which occurred five weeks (August 2) before September 11 in Islamabad. The Taliban, at this point, was in the process of awarding the twin pipeline deal to an Argentine-led consortium. At that meeting she demanded that the Taliban turn over bin Laden. In an interview, Brisard commented on the Islamabad meeting:
We believe that when [Rocca] went to Pakistan in [August] 2001 she was there to speak about oil, and unfortunately the Osama bin Laden case was just a technical part of the negotiations. He said “ I'm not sure about the pipeline specifically, but we make it clear she was there to speak about oil. There are witnesses, including the Pakistani foreign minister.”

Journalists outside the United States have discussed these events in detail and raise the possibility that the threat of military action may have had a direct effect on the timing of Al Qaeda’s attack on America. The last US-Taliban meeting occurred five days before 9/11. The Taliban continued to grant hospitality to Osama bin Laden and refused to turn him over until the US promised him a fair trial and submitted the proper extradition papers. Those papers were not submitted.
After the successful US attack on Afghanistan, the US installed a government led by a former employee of Unocal/Chevron, Hamid Karzai. His regime, on February 8, 2002, agreed with Pakistan to enter into a long-term agreement with a US-led consortium to build a twin pipeline that would bring gas and oil from the Caspian Basin down through Afghanistan and to the coast of Pakistan and to India. Kevin Phillips, a Republican writer, was to note that US troops in Afghanistan were to become “pipeline protection troops.” The value of Caspian oil and gas has been placed at $4 trillion. However, little progressed has been made on the pipeline, and Unocal, since 1998, has claimed that it is no longer involved in the consortium.
Recent Developments

In December, 2002, the leaders of Turkmenistan, Pakistan, and Afghanistan signed a new agreement to move ahead with the pipelines. Six years later, the governments of India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan agreed to purchase gas coming through the pipeline. The Asian Development Bank will finance the $7.6 billion venture. In 2006, the United States assured India that the project would go ahead. In 2008, Afghanistan assured India that landmines would be cleared, making construction possible. Technical experts met in Ashgabat to deal with transit agreements and other details. It appears that the project will be financed through the Asia Development Bank, whose largest share holders are the U.S. and Japan. . The Indian Gas authority has suggested that Russia’s Gazprom be brought in as a consultant and maybe even the eventually operator of the line. However, the project cannot move forward because southern Afghanistan is controlled by the Taliban. If the TAP is ever built, the Afghan government will receive 8% of the revenue. It may well be that the Afghans, in their failure to resolve their problems, have frittered away the prospect of this windfall There is growing doubt in the region that stability will be restored in Afghanistan, and there is now talk of using the proposed IPI line that would not involve Afghanistan. Two problems are that using this line would benefit Iran and China, not the U.S.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Oklahoma City Bombing Puzzle

On April 19, 1995, the Alfred E. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City was bombed. The generally accepted account of the Oklahoma City bombing is that one man, with some assistance from an accomplice pulled it off. It was such a horrible event—costing 168 lives—that none of us at the time could bear to think that there could have been something wrong with official account. The evidence that we have about this terrible incident lends itself to several interpretations, none of which can be proven. Some have even connected some strands to suggest that it was some sort of false flag operation gone-wrong that was intended to pin the blame on Saddah Hussein or Muslims. But there is not enough evidence to make that case.
Basic Information
Timothy McVeigh was quickly apprehended and labeled the main bomber. There was a brief search for the second man who was seen with McVeigh just before the explosion—John Doe #2. While still claiming to search for him, the head of the investigations ordered other agents to cease looking for him.

McVeigh’s Army buddy Terry Nichols, who was far away in Herington, Kansas at the time was arrested as an accomplice. Nichols admitted to helping to construct a bomb on April 18.

The prosecution’s supporting testimony came from Michael Fortier and his wife Lori after months of badgering and intimidation. It is also compromised by the effects of drug use on their memories. Lori Fortier was rehearsed her testimony with the FBI for 4 days before she went o the stand. She was granted immunity for here testimony, and Michael was to serve less than 11 years for not warning authorities about a crime he knew was about to be committed.

Some of the witnesses described a man who did not look like McVeigh renting the Ryder truck. McVeigh’s fingerprints did not turn up on the truck or the counter of the body shop where he allegedly rented it. Some of the workers say that two men came in to rent the truck, and that one of looked a lot like Tod Bunting, who was with McVeigh at Fort Riley. Bunting later said he rented a truck at the same place a day later, but this was never pursued. Some experts think Bunting looked a lot like the John Doe- 2 composite. Some who believe there were two trucks, aside from the one Bunting said he rented, note that a second truck was rented a week before McVeigh allegedly rented one.

Some Doubts About the Official Story
Stephen Jones, attorney for Timothy Mc Veigh and a former Nixon aide, was certain that McVeigh exaggerated his own role in the bombing to protect others. The bomber repeatedly said he alone should suffer so that the “revolution” could go on. Sixteen times the prosecution told the court it was not withholding any evidence from the defense. Then three weeks before McVay’s execution, it turned over some additional material. Jones was ultimately able to prove that the FBI withheld hundreds of pages of documents from the defense. Eventually the bureau admitted to withholding over 4,000 pages. The Associated Press reported that 75% of the files used in the McVeigh trial were at least partially sealed.

Jones suspected that McVeigh got some assistance from white supremacists and thought it possible that Nichols could have had a tie to Islamic extremists in the Philippines. Norm Olson, a Baptist preacher and then leader of the Michigan Militia, revealed that McVeigh attended one of his meetings. A number of witnesses saw McVeigh with men who looked like they came from the Middle East. Jayna Davis, a former KFOR- TV reporter has amassed much evidence along these lines. Davis and her partner turned up the fact that McVeigh associated with a number of men from the Middle East. It cannot be established if John Doe #2 existed or if he was from the Middle East.
Some experts thought it would take from 4 to 8 men to pull off the Oklahoma City bombing. Immediately after the event, police circulated composites of two men seen together 15 minutes before the blast. The people who saw more than one suspect were never called before the grand jury.

Craig Roberts wrote that a federal law enforcement official told him that the bombing was about the records of Mountain Aviation, which had operated at the Mena, Arkansas Airport, and allegedly moved drugs. He has a fireman witness to support the report that records were removed from the building the next day. He had another law enforcement source that claimed money for the operation was provided by a Mexican national with previous CIA ties, who might have been working then for the Columbian drug cartel. He, like this writer, found all of the pieces of the story difficult to fit together,
How Much Help?
McVeigh said he alone mixed all that fertilizer. And fuel oil. It is hard to believe one man could have done that. Charles Farley testified to seeing 4 men with McVeigh near Geary State Lake the day before the explosion. The accounts of the explosion raise a question about whether there was a second bomb in the building, and explosives experts, including Brigadier Benton Partin, are on record that the fertilizer bomb was not powerful enough to do the damage attributed to it. It could not have been the only source of damage. It would have been impossible to destroy a large concrete pillar deep in the building. The general thought that demolition charges on some pillars would be necessary. The general is a self-described Christian who hates Communism. For four years, he was chairman of the Republican Party of Fairfax County, Virginia. The FBI interviewed him but ignored his carefully framed comments.
Dr. Roger Raubach, a physical chemist who worked at Stanford, agreed with Partin and said he didn’t care if there were a semi-trailer with 20 tons of ammonium nitrate,” it wouldn't do the damage we saw there." Testimony of people who were inside the building when the explosions occurred has recollections that seemed to support the general’s view. Films of the explosion showed two smoke plumes, one outside the building and one inside. Allegedly two tons of ammonium nitrate was used in the McVeigh bomb, but the smell of ammonia was not present at the scene. The truck was 30 or 40 feet away from the building. Witnesses testified to a tremendous flash and feeling great amounts of static electricity, all characteristics of nuclear and sub nuclear blasts. The Feds demolished the building on May 23. Mc Veigh had military training and would have known that ANFO was not effective in destroying steel and concrete.

Terrance Yeakey, an Oklahoma Police Sergeant, was the first officer to get to the Murrah Building at the time of the explosion. He was certain he saw a flash within and that windows were blown out. He called his former wife to say, it’s not what they are saying it was.” He also over heard ATF agents reveal something else that convinced him the official view of the explosion was very wrong. Three days before he was to receive the department’s Medal of Valor in 1996 his body was found in a field, half a mile from his car. His arms and wrists were slit as well as both jugular veins. There was a downward gunshot wound in the head. When the car door was opened, blood ran out. The death was declared a suicide. No autopsy was done, and the car was not dusted for prints. There was no investigation. But the Medical Examiner did not that there were no’stellat” wounds, meaning a silencer prevented the head from being marked by escaping gas. The mortician found multiple rope burns. His notes on the bombing were never found.

The media reported that two unexplained bombs were removed from the building. There is also a FEMA memo on this subject. CNN reporter Suzanne Sealy told viewers that one bomb was found on the east side of the building and that the FBI sent people a few blocks away.

Yeakey’s former wife revealed that the sergeant shared a safe deposit box with Dr. Charles Chumley, with whom he worked during the rescue effort. After that they conferred several times about what had happened. Chumley and Yeakey had refused to turn in false reports as requested by federal officers. Chumley, a pilot, went down in a crash in August.
Far Right White ExtremistsThere is a dispute about the security tapes at the Murrah building. The FBI says the tapes show nothing, but a Secret Service memo claims the tapes could have had accomplices. There were four security cameras in the area. Eventually footage was released, but there was nothing for the minutes before the explosion. It was said that the tapes were being changed or the camera had run out of tape.
The “major,” one of the men at the enclave, contacted McVeigh at Fort Bragg before he left the army. McVeigh was being recruited to gather intelligence on right-wing groups like the Klan and the Aryan Nation. McVeigh was deeply disappointed at the time that he had not been taken into Special Forces.
David Paul Hammer, a death row inmate, has a manuscript allegedly containing things McVeigh told him. The FBI tried to interview him before he was executed, but the interviews did not take place due to disagreements about who could be present. It claims that McVeigh and Nichols were helped by people connected to Elohim City, Christian enclave in northeastern Oklahoma where Strassmeir was in charge of security. Mc Veigh and Nichols drove from Fayette, Arkansas to Elohim City, on October 12, 1993.

The enclave was run by a Reverend Robert Millar, 71, a Christian Identity minister. His church believes that white Anglo-Saxons are the chosen people and the descendants of the lost tribes of Israel. Three of the men there had ties to the military. Two of those men, Richard Guthrie and Pete Langan, and McVeigh robbed banks to raise money for the community and to arm it. ( The FBI probably thought Guthrie and Kenney Trentadue were the same person.) Apparently the men McVeigh met at Elohim City went only by code names. One of them was “the major” who contacted him at Fort Bragg. Mc Veigh called Andreas Strassmeir “Andy the Kraut.” Strassmeir was a former panzer officer who had worked for the German Bundesnachrichtendienst ( equivalent to the FBI) and was known to be a Mossad asset. His wife was an Israeli. It is believed that he was somehow tied to McVay through Kirk Lyons, who had been a Klan lawyer. In 2004, the FBI released a memo that indicated that the Southern Poverty Law Center had an informer planted in that small community. Elohim City constituted 1,000 acres and was home to racists, Neo-Nazis, right-wingers, and just plain criminals.

Danny Coulson, director of the FBI’s Anti-Terrorism Task Force checked into an Oklahoma City hotel on April 19, hours before the attack. Attorney General Janet Reno in 1994 established VAAPCON, an operation to learn if right-wing Christian groups and militias were capable of violence, and Coulson was part of that operation. However, the FBI said it had no prior knowledge the Murrah Building would be attacked. .There is an Embassy Hotel receipt, but Coulson wrote 4 years later that he and his wife were house-hunting in Fort Worth that day.
Testimony of AFT Plant Ignored
Transcripts on a December 8, 1997 “in chambers” conference between Judge Richard P. Matsch, Nichols’ attorneys, and Justice Department lawyers reveals that the judge never read the file on what ATF informant Carol Howe, once a Tulsa debutante, told here FBI handler, Angela Finley. She said that the Elohim City ( City of God in Hebrew) community were plotting against the US government. She described its inhabitants as racists and added that Strassmier had threatened to blow up federal buildings.. Two days after the attack she talked to Finley about their plans to blow something up and mentioned Dennis Mahon, a member of White Aryan Resistance, as her source, and added that he talked about Andreas Strassmeir having made three trips to scout out the Murrah Building. She had also travelled with Reverend Millar. Howe was reinterviewed and confirmed that Finley’s written report.

Howe was arrested for making a bomb threat when the prosecutors learned that Stephen Jones, Nichols’ attorney, was going to call her as a witness. She was acquitted, Judge Matsch issued a ruling that prevented the defense from using her file.

Agent Peter Rickel admitted in open court that Millar was a paid informant since 1994. When he spilled the beans, a senior agent bolted the room for some reason. This means there were 3 informants within the compound, including Howe and Strassmeir.

Not long after the bombing, the FBI arrested the “Midwestern Bank Robbers,” men associated with the bank robberies—in all 22 heists. They were part of the Aryan Republican Army. Its headquarters was a safe house in eastern Kansas, and Elohim City was one of many outposts.

Richard Wayne Snell, a neo Nazi leader was executed on the day the Murral Building was attacked in 1995. He had been involved in an earlier plot to attack the building and told guards that Murrah would be attacked on the day of his execution. There were people at Elohim City who were sympathetic to Snell and knew about his prediction.

There are several leads that could point to the involvement of Islamic forces, particularly the mujahedeen in Afghanistan, with the bombing of the Murrah Building. Should this be revealed, it would be clear that people we helped in Afghanistan repaid our support with this terrible deed. That was reason enough to ignore these leads.

Just as the far right militant organizations are filled with government informers, it is likely that there are also informers within the Islamic groups. Gene Wheaton, a former CIA agent, noted “Every major Middle-Eastern terrorist organization is under surveillance and control of the intelligence agencies in the U.S. None of these guys move around as freely as they'd like you to think." To explore the involvement of the white supremacists, Neo-Nazis, and Islamists would eventually turn up information that federal agents knew about the planned attack and somehow failed to prevent it.

It should be noted that federal moles are not informed of one another’s presence. So they do not compare notes. It is possible that Hussain al-Hussaini of Oklahoma City was a federal mole and even now sees the tragedy simply as a sting gone wrong and something to keep quiet about so that other informants and operations can be protected. In the last analysis, these people probably had very little grasp of the big picture. People above them must digest their reports and make intelligent decisions. What they were thinking, we will never know. We do know that days before the explosion, William Colby told a friend that the right wing militias must be discredited. He wrote: "I watched as the Anti-War Movement rendered it impossible for this country to conduct or win the Vietnam War. I tell you, dear friend, that this Militia and Patriot movement in which, as an attorney, you have become one of the centerpieces, is far more significant and far more dangerous for America than the Anti-War Movement ever was, if it is not intelligently dealt with. And I really mean this.” He must have realized that the bumbling and bloody assault at Waco strengthened the militias and their allies.

Two days after the event, FBI director Louis Freeh told the Senate Judiciary Committee, "Most of the militia organizations around the country are not, in our view, threatening or dangerous." Go figure!

On July 16, 2005, the McCurtain Daily Gazette reported that the Elohim City Christian fundamentalists were involved in the bombing. Mike German, a 17 year FBI man who led the investigation, resigned when he learned that the Bush Justice Department would not follow this lead.

Nichols and Al Qaeda
The travels of Nichols have received too little attention. Usually accompanied by his second wife, Nichols travelled to the Philippines about 16 times. FBI 302 reports and investigators hired by Jones learned that Nichols met with Abu Sayyaf people, Philippine Muslim extremists, in late1993 or early 1994.Nichols is known to have made telephone calls to Cebu city when his wife was not there. The Nichols lived in Cebu City for a time in 1993. Also present were Ramzi Yousef, Abdul Hakim Murad, and Wali Khan Amin Shah. In 1996, Edwin Angeles, military strategist for Abu Sayyaf, surrendered to the Philippine government and said that the Oklahoma City bombing was discussed at that meeting. He was subsequently killed. According to his widow, Elmina -- his third Muslim wife—Nichols was a deep penetration agent for the Philippine government. She said the meeting took place every day for a week in a warehouse in 1994 and that there were two Americans present, Terry the Farmer and another unnamed person. They discussed blowing up buildings. The dying woman said the money came from Yousef. She claimed to here Edwin discussing the role of Yousef as a representative of the Iraqis with a Philippine soldier.

In March, 2008, Republican Representative Dana Rohrabacher became interested in the tie between Terry Nichols and Ramsay Yousef and complained that the Bush administration has obstructed his efforts. Richard Clarke, former NSC counterterrorism director, has said the feds have not been able to disprove the Yousef-Nichols connection. Both Yousef and Nichols are now in federal prisons.

In late 1994, Nichols’ first wife discovered that he had $20,000 in stash and precious metals worth at least $60,000. Like McVeigh, Nichols came out of the army with a deep hatred of the U.S. government. Mc Veigh wanted to become an arms dealer but he told people his trips to the Philippines were to bring back little paper butterflies to sell in the US.
The late Sherman Skolnick maintained that two Muslim men were often with Mc Veigh The late Chicago investigator believed they could have been among the hundreds of Iraqi army officers George H.W. Bush relocated in the united States after the First Gulf War. Most of them were settled in Nebraska and Oklahoma.

Cary Gagan, a government informant, attended a meeting at the Western Motel in Los Vegas on May, 1994 attended by 5 from the Middle East, two Columbians, and Terry Nichols. At the time he was moving drugs from Mexico to Denver for two Arabs, Omar and Ahmed, who were at the meeting. The men took some cocaine and then moved to the Players Club, an apartment complex, in Henderson, where they discussed drug dealing. They also discussed blowing up a federal building in Denver with a truck painted to look like a mail truck. On January 14, 1995, Gagan picked up the truck in Golden. It had about thirty duffel bags with ammonium nitrate. He took the truck to the location he was given and informed the FBI where it was and asked for instructions. The FBI did not recontact him, and he went home via bus. At a March 17, 1995 meeting with his employers in Greenwood Colorado, and saw architectural drawings of the Alfred Murrah Building. There was a new figure at the meeting, whom Gagan suspected was an agent. He warned the FBI about what he learned, and the Bureau seemed disinterested. On March 27 and 28 he called the US Marshall’s office in Denver, but his calls were not returned. Then he sent a short letter to Tina Rowe, the head of that office. After the bombing, Rowe told KFOR-TV (Oklahoma City) that the letter had not been received. The feds said he had a history of mental illness, even though he had a letter of immunity on Justice Department letterhead. The effort to discredit him was led by Lawrence Myers, a journalist with likely ties to the government. He had previously succeeded in discrediting a federal grand juror who was view as a problem and played a major role in the conviction of a former CIA agent for allegedly looking for someone to shoot his son.
A Loose End

Prisoner Kenney Trentadue was found dead in his federal prison cell in Oklahoma City in August, 1995. He had been pulled over on June 10, 1995 and was held for a parole violation. The body was covered with bruises and blood. The Burfeau of Prisons and FBI prevented Medical Examiner Fred Jordan from conducting a complete examination and pressured him to drop the matter. Trentadue’s death was ruled a suicide, but his brother Jesse, an attorney, said he was beaten to death by the FBI. He claims they considered Kenney John Doe #2 in the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building because he had a tattoo on his left forearm. In 1997, Oklahoma Republican Senator Don Nikles said prison guards told him they were ordered not to talk about the death of Kenney Trebtadue. In the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Orin Hatch said it looked like Kenny was murdered.

Jesse thought McVeigh’s contact was Andreas Strassmeir. In 1992, he was arrested for driving without a license, but all sorts of pressure was brought to bear to get the charges dropped. He appears to have infiltrated a number of right-wing militias. Terry Nichols said McVeigh had been promised protection in a safe house. Strassmeir, from his home in Berlin, said he met McVeigh once and denied any connections with intelligence operations. FBI teletypes verify that Timothy had connections with Strassmeir and Elohim City, where the German carried out military training for white supremacists.

McVeigh failed a psychological examination to get into Special Forces, but many thought he was the ideal soldier and was leadership material. After he left the Army, something seemed to have happened to him, he was cold and emotionally spent. Yet he was considered a good guard. While visiting a friend in Michigan, he said something strange. McVeigh said the Army implanted miniature subcutaneous transmitter on him to keep track of him. He said it hurt him when he sat down. . It is known that the military had been experimenting with telemet6rics from at least 1968.Dr. Carl Sanders, who has developed military biochips, claims they were used in the first Iraq War. Caspan Advanced Technology Center was working on artificial intelligence and was engaged in microscopic electronic engineering. The sad fact is that the military has a history of using soldiers for experiment of this sort. After his arrest, Mc Veigh presented himself, according to an Oklahoma Assistant Attorney General, as “a polite young man who gave polite, cooperative answers to every question. It was like the dutiful soldier," Gibson said. "Emotions don't come into play, right and wrong don't come into play. What happens next doesn't come into play… his mood was so level, it was unnatural. I looked at him and realized I felt no repulsion or fear. It was like there was an absence of feeling. He exuded nothing.

In a February 9, 2007 affidavit, Nichols said Mc Veigh was “apparently” being directed by Larry Potts, a ranking FBI official. Nichols said Potts manipulated McVeigh to change the bomb target someone in the FBI. Documents to support his claims have been sealed. Nichols said he wrote, offering to help John Ashcroft, but received no reply. Nichols also claims that the bomb used was very different and much more sophisticated than the device he and McVeigh built.

The claim that McVeigh was somehow connected to the government might have some merit. It is known that McVeigh claimed that he had done some special black missions for the Army, and there is much evidence that people like him are often recruited for intelligence work as soon as they leave the military. Before leaving Fort Bragg, McVeigh said a major contacted him about doing intelligence work for the government by infiltrating right-wing militias. Instead, he worked for Burns Security, guarding a facility where government sponsored mind-control experiments probably were conducted. Then he robbed a gun shop operated by a man who had been a CIA contractor. Its probably all coincidental.

There may be a parallel to the bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993. It is now clear that the FBI was using an Egyptian double agent to teach followers of the Blind Shaik’s men how to make bombs. The agency actually provided the materials. When its agent warned that arrests should be made immediately, the FBI hesitated, wanting to gather more information. Perhaps Oklahoma City is another example of bad timing—a sting gone terribly wrong. "