August 16, 2011
By Ray McGovern
(Thanks to Mr. McGovern for permission to reprint)
Bulletin for those of you who get your information only from the New York Times, the Washington Post and other outlets of the Fawning Corporate Media (FCM): Former White House counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke has accused ex-CIA Director George Tenet of denying him and others access to intelligence that could have thwarted the attack on the Pentagon on 9/11.
Deliberately withholding critical intelligence from those who need it, and can act on it, is — at the least — gross dereliction of duty.
The more so if keeping the White House promptly and fully informed is at the top of your job jar, as it was for Director of Central Intelligence Tenet. And yet that is precisely the charge Clarke has leveled at the former DCI.
In an interview aired on Aug. 11 on a local PBS affiliate in Colorado, Clarke charges that Tenet and two other senior CIA officials, Cofer Black and Richard Blee, deliberately withheld information about two of the hijackers of American Airlines Flight 77 — al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar. The two had entered the United States more than a year before the 9/11 attacks.
Clarke adds that the CIA then covered it all up by keeping relevant information away from Congress and the 9/11 Commission.
Lying by senior officials is bad enough, and there is now plenty of evidence that former CIA Director George Tenet and his closest agency associates are serial offenders. Think for a minute about the falsehoods spread regarding Iraq’s non-existent WMD stockpiles.
But withholding intelligence on two of the 9/11 hijackers would have been particularly unconscionable — the epitome of malfeasance, not just misfeasance.
That’s why Richard Clarke’s conclusion that he should have received information from CIA about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar, “unless somebody intervened to stop the normal automatic distribution” amounts, in my view, to a criminal charge, given the eventual role of the two in hijacking on 9/11 of AA-77, the plane that struck the Pentagon.
Tenet has denied that the information on the two hijackers was “intentionally withheld” from Clarke, and he has enlisted the other two former CIA operatives, Cofer Black (more recently a senior official of Blackwater) and Richard Blee (an even more shadowy figure), to concur in saying, Not us; we didn’t withhold.
Whom to believe? To me, it’s a no-brainer. One would have to have been born yesterday to regard the “George is right” testimony from Black and Blee as corroborative.
Tenet’s Dubious Credibility
Tenet is the same fellow who provided the “slam dunk” on the existence of “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq, as well as the “artist renderings” of equally non-existent mobile laboratories for developing biological warfare agents, based on unconfirmed information from the impostor code-named (appropriately) “Curveball.”
It was Tenet who, under orders from President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney, ordered up and disseminated a fraudulent National Intelligence Estimate on WMD in Iraq, the purpose of which was to deceive our elected representatives out of their constitutional prerogative to authorize war. No small lies.
After a five-year investigation by the Senate Intelligence Committee, Chairman Jay Rockefeller described the intelligence adduced under Tenet to “justify” attacking Iraq as “uncorroborated, contradicted, and non-existent.”
Good enough to win Tenet the Presidential Medal of Freedom, though. The corruption of intelligence worked just fine for the purposes of Bush and Cheney, thank you very much.
It is a actually a matter of record that Tenet lies a lot — on occasion, demonstrating what I would call chutzpah on steroids. Recall, for example, Tenet in April 2007 snarling at Scott Pelley on “60 Minutes” — five times, in five consecutive sentences — “We do not torture people.”
Tenet has lied about 9/11, too. The joint statement from Tenet, Black and Blee – orchestrated by former CIA spokesman Bill Harlow – concludes: “We testified under oath about what we did, what we knew and what we didn’t know. We stand by that testimony.”
Almost made me laugh … almost.
In his sworn testimony to the 9/11 Commission on April 14, 2004, Tenet said he had not spoken to Bush — even on the telephone — during the entire month of August 2001.
But Tenet did fly down to see the President in Crawford — not once, but twice during August 2001, and briefed Bush again in Washington on the 31st.
After the TV cameras at the 9/11 Commission hearing were shut off, Bill Harlow phoned the commission staff to say, Oops, sorry, Tenet misspoke. Even then, Harlow admitted only to Tenet’s Aug. 17 visit to Crawford (and to the briefing on the 31st).
How do we know Tenet was again in Crawford, on Aug. 24? From a White House press release quoting President Bush to that effect — information somehow completely missed by our vigilant Fawning Corporate Media.
Funny, too, how Tenet could have forgotten his first visit to Crawford on Aug. 17. In his memoir, At the Center of the Storm, Tenet waxes eloquent about the “president graciously driving me around the spread in his pickup and me trying to make small talk about the flora and the fauna.” But the visit was not limited to small talk.
In his book Tenet writes: “A few weeks after the August 6 PDB was delivered, I followed it to Crawford to make sure the president stayed current on events.” The Aug. 6, 2001, President’s Daily Brief contained the article “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in the US.”
According to Ron Suskind’s The One-Percent Doctrine, the president reacted by telling the CIA briefer, “All right, you’ve covered your ass now.”
If, as Tenet says in his memoir, it was the Aug. 6, 2001, PDB that prompted his visit on Aug. 17, what might have brought him back on Aug. 24? I believe the answer can be found in court documents released at the trial of Zacarias Moussaoui, the fledgling pilot in Minnesota interested in learning to steer a plane but indifferent as to how to land it.
Those documents show that on Aug. 23, 2001, Tenet was given an alarming briefing focusing on Moussaoui, titled “Islamic Extremist Learns to Fly.” Tenet was told that Moussaoui was training to fly a 747 and, among other suspicion-arousing data, had paid for the training in cash.
It is an open question — if a key one — whether Tenet told Bush about the two hijackers, al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar, while keeping that key information from the person who most needed it — White House counter-terrorist czar Richard Clarke. Clarke finds the only plausible explanation in his surmise that Tenet was personally responsible.
Clarke says: “For me to this day, it is inexplicable, when I had every other detail about everything related to terrorism, that the director didn’t tell me, that the director of the counterterrorism center didn’t tell me, that the other 48 people inside CIA that knew about it never mentioned it to me or anyone in my staff in a period of over 12 months.”
But Tenet’s aide-de-camp Bill Harlow has branded Clarke’s statements “absurd and patently false.” The statement Harlow shepherded for Tenet, Black and Blee adds “reckless and profoundly wrong … baseless … belied by the record … unworthy of serious consideration.”
And Harlow never lies? Right.
I’m reminded of Harlow’s reaction to Newsweek’s publication on Feb. 24, 2003, of the intelligence information provided by Saddam Hussein’s son-in-law, Hussein Kamel when he defected to Jordan in 1995. Kamel brought with him a treasure trove of documents and unique knowledge of Iraq’s putative “weapons of mass destruction.”
Most significantly, he told his U.S. debriefers there were no WMD in Iraq. He knew, since he was in charge of the chemical, biological, nuclear and missile programs for almost a decade, and he ordered what weapons existed destroyed before the U.N. inspectors could discover them after the war in 1991.
In his words: “I ordered the destruction of all chemical weapons. All weapons — biological, chemical, missile, nuclear were destroyed.”
He told the U.S. much more, and the information that could be checked out was confirmed. But Kamel’s information didn’t fit with the Bush administration’s propaganda regarding its certainty that Iraq did have WMD stockpiles and was defying United Nations demands that the WMD be destroyed.
Those pushing the Iraq War juggernaut in early 2003 almost had a conniption when Newsweek acquired a transcript of Kamel’s debriefing and published this potentially explosive story barely three weeks before the invasion.
Newsweek noted gingerly that this information “raises questions about whether the WMD stockpiles attributed to Iraq still exist.” It was the kind of impeccably sourced documentary evidence after which intelligence analysts and lawyers lust.
But this was not at all what Bush, Cheney, and — by sycophantic extension — Tenet wanted Newsweekreaders, or the rest of us, to learn less than a month before the U.S./U.K. attack on Iraq ostensibly to find and destroy those non-existent weapons.
Bill Harlow to the rescue: he told the FCM in no uncertain terms that the Newsweek story was, “incorrect, bogus, wrong, untrue.” And the media cheerleaders for war breathed a sigh of relief, saying, Gosh, thanks for telling us, and then dropped the story like a hot potato.
By all indications, Harlow is still able to work his fraudulent magic on the FCM, which has virtually ignored this major Clarke v. Tenet story since it broke several days ago.
If Harlow says it’s not true … and hurls still more pejorative adjectives in a crude attempt to discredit the very serious charge Clarke has made … well, I guess we’ll have to leave it there, as the FCM is so fond of saying.
No matter Clarke’s well-deserved reputation for honesty and professionalism — and Tenet’s for the opposite. And so it goes.
Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, a publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. As a CIA analyst, he served under seven presidents and nine CIA directors; he is co-founder of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago has rendered a ruling in Rumsfeld’s attempt to dismiss the case based on immunity. The court has rejected the argument and nobody should be surprised that torture apologist David Rivkin is firing back by insulting the judges themselves. “Having judges second-guess the decisions made by the armed forces halfway around the world is no way to wage a war. It saps the effectiveness of the military, puts American soldiers at risk, and shackles federal officials who have a constitutional duty to protect America.”
U.S. Circuit Judge David Hamilton wrote the opinion.
Second, we agree with the district court that Secretary Rumsfeld is not entitled to qualified immunity on the pleadings. The law was clearly established in 2006 that the treatment plaintiffs have alleged was unconstitutional. No reasonable public official could have believed otherwise.
The plaintiff in this case is filed as John Doe. John Doe was sent to Iraq in as an Arabic-English interpreter with a marine corp’s intel unit in December 2004. In less than a year he was arrested without charge and thrown in solitary confinement blindfolded and handcuffed. He was in solitary for 72 hours then transported to Camp Cropper before being tortured some more. He was released 9 months later. He filed suit in 2008.
The court decision comes on the heels of a ruling by Federal Court in the case of Donald Vance and Nathan Ertel. Vance and Ertel are suing for torture committed upon them when they worked for Shield Group Security, U.S. hired contractor.
A report from RussiaToday
Another report worth watching
Rumsfeld is accused of approving torture methods that included sleep deprivation, walling, extended standing, and other violations of Army Field Manual, domestic law, and foreign treaties regarding the treatment of prisoners. The expressed outrage by officials days into the Iraq war about the treatment of captured chopper pilots shows they had a low bar for tolerance in abuse of American prisoners of war but no compunction for the abuses we know happened. Repeatedly, they’ve used the ‘bad apples’ spin.
These suits work to destroy the bad apples narrative. Attorney Mike Kanovitz said, the court had to choose between “protecting the most fundamental rights of American citizens in the difficult context of a war or leaving those rights solely in the hands of politicians and the military. It was not an easy choice for the Court to make, but it was the brave and right choice.”
The state department hasn’t responded but torture apologist and broken message maker David Rivkin resumed his same old attacks and claimed the decision would be overturned.
We’ll keep you posted on Donald Rumsfeld and his torture apologist attorney, David Rivkin.
Thursday 11 August 2011
by: Jason Leopold, Truthout |
(Note from CheneyWatch.org: Support Truthout today with a financial contribution. Great journalism deserves your support)
With the tenth anniversary of 9/11 just a month away, the intelligence failures leading up to the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon have started to attract fresh scrutiny from former counterterrorism officials, who have called into question the veracity of the official government narrative that concluded who knew what and when.
Indeed, recently Truthout published an exclusive report based on documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and an interview with a former high-ranking counterterrorism official that showed how a little-known military intelligence unit, unbeknownst to the various investigative bodies probing the terrorist attacks, was ordered by senior government officials to stop tracking Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda’s movements prior to 9/11.
And now, in a stunning new interview made available to Truthout that is scheduled to air on a local PBS affiliate in Colorado tonight, former counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke, for the first time, levels explosive allegations against three former top CIA officials – George Tenet, Cofer Black and Richard Blee – accusing them of knowingly withholding intelligence from the Bush and Clinton White House, the FBI, Immigration and the State and Defense Departments about two of the 9/11 hijackers who had entered the United States more than a year before the attacks. Moreover, Clarke says the former CIA officials likely engaged in a cover-up by withholding key details about two of the hijackers from the 9/11 Commission.
“They’ve been able to get through a joint House investigation committee and get through the 9/11 Commission and this has never come out,” Clarke said about Blee, Tenet and Black. “They got away with it.”
Clarke, who now runs the security firm Good Harbor Consulting, was the chief counterterrorism adviser for the Clinton and Bush administrations, who famously testified before the 9/11 Commission probing the terrorist attacks that “your government failed you.”
In October 2009, he spoke to John Duffy and Ray Nowosielski, who have been working on a documentary about Blee and the secrecy surrounding his role in the intelligence failures leading up to 9/11, which is set to air on the tenth anniversary of the attacks. Duffy and Nowosielski, whose previous film, “Press For Truth,” followed four 9/11 widows as they lobbied the Bush White House to convene an independent commission to probe the attacks, have also launched a new transparency web site,SecrecyKills.com, set to go live this evening with a campaign aimed at further unmasking Blee.
Clarke did not respond to questions about whether he still stood behind the comments he made about Tenet, Black, Blee nearly two years ago, which he admits he doesn’t have evidence to back up. But Nowosielski told Truthout he spoke to Clarke last week to inform him that Tenet, Black and Blee had issued a joint statement that was highly critical of his charges, and Clarke told Nowosielski he has not changed his position.
Clarke asserts in the 13-minute interview that Tenet, the former CIA director; Black, who headed the agency’s Counterterrorist Center; and Blee, a top aide to Tenet who led the CIA’s Bin Laden Issues Station, also known as Alec Station, whose true identity was revealed for the first time two years ago, are to blame for the government’s failure to capture Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar, who hijacked American Airlines Flight 77 with three other terrorists and flew the jetliner directly into the Pentagon killing 189 people.
“George Tenet followed all of the information about al-Qaeda in microscopic detail,” Clarke told Duffy and Nowosielski. “He read raw intelligence reports before analysts in the counterterrorism center did and he would pick up the phone and call me at 7:30 in the morning and talk about them.”
But Tenet, who was awarded the Medal of Freedom by George W. Bush in 2004, did not share what Clarke says he knew about the al-Hazmi and the al-Mihdhar case.
In early January 2000, CIA analysts were informed by the National Security Agency that al-Hamzi and al-Mihdhar were heading to a meeting of other al-Qaeda associates in Malaysia, their travel arranged by Osama bin Laden’s Yemen operations center. The CIA surveilled the meeting and took photographs of the men.
From Malaysia, al-Hazmi, al-Mihdhar and Walid bin Attash, the alleged mastermind behind the USS Cole bombing, traveled to Thailand, which the CIA reported to Alec Station in a cable. Al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar then boarded a flight bound for Los Angeles, arriving in the city on January 15, 2000.
The CIA had claimed, according to the 9/11 Commission report, that they lost track of all three men in Thailand. Despite being aware that the terrorists had already obtained tourist visas, the agency still failed to notify the FBI and State Department for inclusion on the latter’s terrorist watch list. Remarkably, Mihdhar left Southern California for Yemen in June 2000 and, using a new passport, returned to the US undetected on July 4, 2001.
Clarke suggests that if the CIA had shared intelligence about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar with him, the FBI, and others, then perhaps the attack on the Pentagon could have been thwarted. As he noted in his book, “Your Government Failed You: Breaking the Cycle of National Security Disasters,” the 9/11 Commission never fleshed out the rationale behind the CIA’s failure to share crucial intelligence information about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar with other officials and government agencies.
“As jaded and cynical as I am about government failures, I still find this one mind-boggling and inexplicable,” Clarke wrote. “The 9/11 Commission report does not tell us very much about how or why it happened and their explanations, while they could be correct, strain credulity and leave many questions unanswered.”
“Failure to Communicate”
One of the CIA officials who had been monitoring the Malaysia meeting was a young al-Qaeda analyst named Jennifer Matthews, who had been working with the Bin Laden Issues Station since its inception in 1996. Another analyst, who worked closely with Matthews, was a red-headed woman who, in recent years, has been at the center of a scandal involving the torture and wrongful rendition of at least one detainee. She has since been promoted and continues to work for the CIA on al-Qaeda-related issues. An agency spokesman requested that Truthout not print her name because her identity is classified.
In his recently published book, “Triple Agent,” Washington Post reporter Joby Warrick wrote that former CIA Inspector General John Helgerson probed “CIA missteps that had allowed” al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar “to enter the United States undetected.”
“Helgerson concluded that the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center had failed to respond to a series of cabled warnings in 2000 about” al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar “who later became part of the September 11 plot …,” Warrick wrote. “The cables were seen by as many as sixty CIA employees, yet the two operatives’ names were never passed along to the FBI, which might have assigned agents to track them down or shared with the State Department, which could have flagged their named on its watch list. In theory, the arrest of the either man could have led investigators to the other hijackers and the eventual unraveling of the 9/11 plot.
“Helgerson’s report named individual managers who it said bore the greatest responsibility for failing to ensure that vital information was passed to the FBI. The report, never released in full, also recommended that some of the managers be reviewed for possible disciplinary action … Jennifer Matthews was on that list.”
Matthews, who Warrick also says led the agency’s search for the first high-value detainee, Abu Zubaydah, and who was also present at the CIA black site prison in Thailand when Zubaydah was waterboarded after he was captured in March 2002, was among seven CIA officers killed in Khost, Afghanistan, in a December 2009 suicide bombing at Forward Operating Base Chapman in Afghanistan, which Matthews was chief of.
“A High-Level Decision”
Although Helgerson’s report recommended Matthews be disciplined, Clarke does not believe she or the dozens of other CIA analysts bear the ultimate responsibility for failing to inform the US government for 18 months that al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar were in the US.
“It’s not as I originally thought, which was that one lonely CIA analyst got this information and didn’t somehow recognize the significance of it,” Clarke said during the interview. “No, fifty, 5-0, CIA personnel knew about this. Among the fifty people in CIA who knew these guys were in the country was the CIA director.”
Still, Clarke said his position as National Coordinator for Security and Information meant he should have received a briefing from CIA about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar, explaining “unless somebody intervened to stop the normal automatic distribution I would automatically get it.”
“For me to this day, it is inexplicable why when I had every other detail about everything related to terrorism that the director didn’t tell me, that the director of the counterterrorism center didn’t tell me, that the other 48 people inside CIA that knew about it never mentioned it to me or anyone in my staff in a period of over 12 months … We therefore conclude that there was a high-level decision inside CIA ordering people not to share that information,” Clarke said.
How high level?
“I would think it would have to be made by the director,” Clarke said. “You gotta understand my relationship with [Tenet], we were close friends, he called me several times a day, we shared the most trivial of information with each other, there was not a lack of information sharing, [CIA] told us everything except this.”
So, what happened? Why did the CIA fail to share its intelligence about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar with Clarke and other government officials? Clarke believes the CIA may have attempted to “flip” al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar, but ultimately failed.
That’s an allegation that surfaced in Lawrence Wright’s groundbreaking book, “The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and The Road to 9/11.” Wright, who interviewed Clarke for his book, said a team of FBI investigators and federal prosecutors known asSquad I-49 came to believe that the CIA “was shielding Mihdhar and Hazmi because it hoped to recruit them”
“The CIA was desperate for a source inside al-Qaeda; it had completely failed to penetrate the inner circle or even to place a willing partner in the training camps, which were largely open to anyone who showed up,” Wright wrote. “Mihdhar and Hazmi must have seemed like attractive opportunities however, once they entered the United States they were the province of the FBI. The CIA had no legal authority to operate inside the country … It is also possible, as some FBI investigators suspect, the CIA was running a joint venture with Saudi intelligence in order to get around that restriction … These are only theories about the CIA’s failures to communicate vital information to the bureau … Perhaps the agency decided that Saudi intelligence would have a better chance of recruiting these men than the Americans. That would leave no CIA fingerprints on the operation as well.
“This is the view of some very bitter FBI investigators, who wonder why they were never informed of the existence of al-Qaeda operatives inside America. Mihdhar and Hazmi arrived nineteen months before 9/11. The FBI had all the authority it needed to investigate these men and learn what they were up to, but because the CIA had failed to divulge the presence of two active members of al-Qaeda, the hijackers were free to develop their plot until it was too late to stop them.”
The 9/11 Commission was unable to substantiate claims that the CIA tried to recruit al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar and Clarke never disclosed this theory to the panel during his testimony as it was a conclusion he said he reached years later.
“Reckless and Profoundly Wrong”
In response to Clarke’s charges, Tenet, Black and Blee issued a joint statement to Duffy and Nowosielski last week upon learning their interview with Clarke would soon air publicly. The former CIA officials admonished their former colleague, stating his comments were “reckless and profoundly wrong.” Blee’s inclusion in the joint statement marks the first time he has spoken publicly about the events leading up to 9/11.
“Clarke starts with the presumption that important information on the travel of future hijackers to the United States was intentionally withheld from him in early 2000,” the former CIA officials said. “It was not. He wildly speculates that it must have been the CIA Director who could have ordered the information withheld. There was no such order. In fact, the record shows that the Director and other senior CIA officials were unaware of the information until after 9/11.”
“In early 2000, a number of more junior personnel (including FBI agents on detail to CIA) did see travel information on individuals who later became hijackers but the significance of the data was not adequately recognized at the time … Building on his false notion that information was intentionally withheld, Mr. Clarke went on to speculate – which he admits is based on nothing other than his imagination – that the CIA might have been trying to recruit these two future hijackers as agents. This, like much of what Mr. Clarke said in his interview, is utterly without foundation. We testified under oath about what we did, what we knew and what we didn’t know. We stand by that testimony.”
“We Would Have Found Those Assholes”
But Clarke says even as early as July 2001 – two months before the terrorist attacks – when Tenet and Blee called an urgent meeting with President Bush at the White House, they had an opportunity to disclose the fact that al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar were somewhere in the US, but failed to disclose what they knew.
The CIA waited until late August to inform lower-level FBI agents that al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar were in the US and were likely planning an attack inside the US. Yet, the CIA continued to conceal the intelligence from senior FBI and Bush administration officials a week prior to the attacks.
Clarke said there’s a “very obvious answer” as to why the CIA continued, as early as September 4, 2001, in a meeting attended by Clarke and other senior Bush administration officials, to withhold intelligence about the two hijackers: to protect the agency from scrutiny.
“I know how all this stuff works I’ve been working it for 30 years,” Clarke said. “You can’t snowball me on this stuff. If they announce on September 4 in the Principals meeting that these guys are in the United States and they told the FBI a few weeks ago I’m going to say ‘wait, time out. How long have you known this? Why haven’t you reported it at the daily threat meetings? Why isn’t it in the daily threat matrix?’ We would have begun an investigation that day into CIA malfeasance and misfeasance that’s why we’re not informed.”
Clarke added that even if the CIA had disclosed what it knew about al-Hazmi and al-Mihdhar as late as September 4, 2001, he believes the FBI could have captured the men and dismantled their plans to attack the Pentagon.
“We would have conducted a massive sweep,” Clarke said. “We would have conducted publicly. We would have found those assholes. There’s no doubt in my mind. Even with only a week left.”
Truthout contributor Jeffrey Kaye contributed to this report.
The Daily Beast is a bit more mainstream than your average news blog sites. Today they are reporting that former Counterterrorism official, Richard Clarke, is accusing the CIA and George Tenet of a cover-up in recruiting the 9/11 hijackers. George Tenet of course has denied these accusations.
“former CIA Director George Tenet and two former top aides are fighting back hard against allegations that they engaged in a massive cover-up in 2000 and 2001 to hide intelligence from the White House and the FBI that might have prevented the attacks.”
The source of the explosive, unproved allegations is a man who once considered Tenet a close friend: former White House counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke, who makes the charges against Tenet and the CIA in an interview for a radio documentary timed to the 10th anniversary next month. “
Clarke would be the highest ranking official to ever level such an accusation. He has already accused, successfully I’d say, that the former Administration didn’t take threats seriously. But this accusation ups the stakes.
“In the interview for the documentary, Clarke offers an incendiary theory that, if true, would rewrite the history of the 9/11 attacks, suggesting that the CIA intentionally withheld information from the White House and FBI in 2000 and 2001 that two Saudi-born terrorists were on U.S. soil – terrorists who went on to become suicide hijackers on 9/11.
Clarke speculates – and readily admits he cannot prove — that the CIA withheld the information because the agency had been trying to recruit the terrorists, while they were living in southern California under their own names, to work as CIA agents inside Al Qaeda. After the recruitment effort went sour, senior CIA officers continued to withhold the information from the White House for fear they would be accused of “malfeasance and misfeasance,” Clarke suggests.”
Without any clue as to the actuality of these charges, I’ll still postulate the following: If you were going to work to legitimately bust a terror network…what better way to do so than to infiltrate and co-opt them. This is how we’ve been told that officials have busted other plots. We’ve been told that agents infiltrated the groups or cozies up to individuals who espoused a violent plan and then set them up with dud bombs or other operational support until we busted them. So Clarke’s story doesn’t seem far fetched.
Clarke says it is fair to conclude “there was a high-level decision in the CIA ordering people not to share information.” Asked who would have made the order, Clarke replies, “I would think it would have been made by the director,” referring to Tenet.
Clarke said that if his theory is correct, Tenet and others would never admit to the truth today “even if you waterboarded them.”
Who knows how big such a decision circle would need to be? If Tenet made the call, he should be investigated and put under oath. Best to try than do nothing. Then use the pecking order to find out who would have reported to him.
Clarke’s theory addresses a central, enduring mystery about the 9/11 attacks – why the CIA failed for so long to tell the White House and senior officials at the FBI that the agency was aware that two Al Qaeda terrorists had arrived in the United States in January 2000, just days after attending a terrorist summit meeting in Malaysia that the CIA had secretly monitored.
Now, we always know that people like George Tenet will simply fire back with the same denials as we always get…Lets see if this will be any different:
In a written response prepared last week in advance of the broadcast, Tenet says that Clarke, who famously went public in 2004 to blow the whistle on the Bush White House over intelligence failures before 9/11, has “suddenly invented baseless allegations which are belied by the record and unworthy of serious consideration.”
“suddenly invented basless allegations which are belied by the”: record which was created by the 9/11 commission with many dubious claims also not substantiated by facts. Clarke is not someone who had no basis of talking..he was in these offices at the time. He was in the program responsible. This “baseless” charge doesn’t come from someone who doesn’t know who is who in the NCTC.
The CIA insisted to the 9/11 Commission and other government investigations that the agency never knew the exact whereabouts of the two hijackers, Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar, inside the U.S.—let alone try to recruit them as spies.
Again an ‘appeal to authority’ fallacy on the part of the CIA. The 9/11 Commission’s investigation is compromised in its reliability. It found several important areas where the Administration was informed and did nothing. Clarke’s testimony before the commission doesn’t differ or contradict this new charge. If anything, it provides more context.
Agency officials said the CIA’s delay in sharing information about the two terrorists was a grave failure, but maintained there was no suggestion of deception by CIA brass. Tenet has said he was not informed before 9/11 about Hazmi and Mihdhar’s travel to the U.S., although the intelligence was widely shared at lower levels of the CIA.
“If anything, it provides more context.”…So the CIA claims that Clarke’s comments are baseless and yet…admits to the delay in sharing information. How can something be both baseless and based on something. We have admission to a delay in information. We have admission of the failure and excuse being, what? That higher ups didn’t listen to lower level analysts? Coleen Rowley testified to information the FBI received and didn’t act upon. She also called out Mueller on his testimony.
The 9/11 Commission investigated widespread rumors in the intelligence community that the CIA tried to recruit the two terrorists—Clarke was not the first to suggest it—but the investigation revealed no evidence to support the rumors. The commission said in its final report that “it appears that no one informed higher levels of management in either the FBI or CIA” about the two terrorists.
They did? I have all the hearings on tape, attended 2 of them…when did they “investigate widespread rumors”? Where are the results of these supposed investigations? And how can the author at Daily Beast say that the “investigation revealed no evidence to support”. This seems unexplained. The conclusion might still be correct that no one informed higher levels, but it doesn’t not establish why. This has still been left to some vague bureaucracy glitch. It makes no sense that lower level analysts would be tasked to find terror threats then be ignored. Again, the foundation of Clarke’s claim hasn’t been debunked.
But in his interview, Clarke said his seemingly unlikely, even wild scenario – a bungled CIA terrorist-recruitment effort and a subsequent cover-up – was “the only conceivable reason that I’ve been able to come up with” to explain why he and others at the White House were told nothing about the two terrorists until the day of the attacks.
Why is it seemingly unlikely? I’m not one who wants to throw out false flag very often. I think its been abused to the point of blaming everything on false flag. But it isn’t at all a wild scenario. We can see clear history of these types of operations in the past for very similar reasons: the people don’t want wars. While I may never find a smoking gun in the 9/11 drama…We have clear evidence of motive. We have clear stated goals from Dick Cheney and his energy friendly buddies, his ideologue buddies, and his colleagues…that indicate a desire to redraw the power map in the areas we are now bogged down in, Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan (aka ….Baku pipeline territory.)
“I’ve thought a lot about this,” Clarke says in the interview, which was conducted in October 2009. He said it was fair to conclude “there was a high-level decision in the CIA ordering people not to share information.” Asked who would have made the order, Clarke replies, “I would think it would have been made by the director,” referring to Tenet.
I have read Mr. Clarke’s books. If there is one area that causes me to trust his read is that he easily excepts what I find abhorrent. It is sort of called the “science of embarrassments”…meaning, you can likely believe the part of the story the person wouldn’t easily admit to if they understood embarrassments. I learned it in hermeneutic studies. He frequently explains positions in the role of the bought in. It doesn’t mean he is right, but it helps me, the reader, determine what is true and what is his view, spin, or blindness.
In finishing the radio documentary, they recently supplied a copy of Clarke’s comments to Tenet, who joined with two of former top CIA deputies — Cofer Black, who was head of the agency’s counterterrorism center, and Richard Blee, former head of the agency’s Osama Bin Laden unit — in a statement denouncing Clarke.
“Richard Clarke was an able public servant who served his country well for many years,” the statement says. “But his recently released comments about the run-up to 9/11 are reckless and profoundly wrong.”
“Clarke starts with the presumption that important information on the travel of future hijackers to the United States was intentionally withheld from him in early 2000. It was not.”
The statement continued. “Building on his false notion that information was intentionally withheld, Mr. Clarke went on to speculate – which he admits is based on nothing other than his imagination – that the CIA might have been trying to recruit these two future hijackers as agents. This, like much of what Mr. Clarke said in his interview, is utterly without foundation.”
It doesn’t surprise me that the club would come out and defend themselves. This means little to me. If I were to go to the police union after a cop beat a citizen..I’d expect, “law officers do their job every day without thanks and this isolated incident..blah blah blah…” Same sort of comments come from Panetta, Gates, Hayden, Goss, etc. why would we expect a different response from these highly unaccountable chiefs?
But in examining the words, they are boilerplate in scope. The last phrase still doesn’t work…utterly without foundation. Nonsense. What is utterly without foundation is why didn’t agents with information get heard? Clarke is being treated as some bystander who didn’t have first hand experience here. Clearly he was in the middle of decision making. It is illogical for the CIA directors to forget that Clarke had a very key role in the decision chain. Perhaps they want us to ignore this fact.
Clarke concludes that had the names come up, we’d have sent a team out to “sweep” up the bad guys….wild leap? Clarke sounds like a detective who didn’t get the bad guy in time and is angry that those who could have done something didn’t. It doesn’t take much of a leap to get to, “didn’t want to tell” when already know that they were informed and didn’t.
“To this day, it is inexplicable why, when I had every other detail about everything related to terrorism, that the director didn’t tell me, that the director of the counterterrorism center didn’t tell me,” Clarke said in the interview for the documentary, referring to Tenet and Cofer Black. “They told us everything – except this.”
“We would have conducted a massive sweep,” he said. “We would have conducted it publicly. We would have found those assholes. There’s no doubt in my mind, even with only a week left. They were using credit cards in their own names. They were staying in the Charles Hotel in Harvard Square, for heaven’s sake.” He said that “those guys would have been arrested within 24 hours.”
Apparently Canadians haven’t forgotten George W Bush’s crimes.
Surrey BC Mayor Diane Watts forewarned of torture issues with George W Bush Invite in October by Peace Activists
Surrey BC Canada May 2 2011: WeAreChangeVancouver has just released new video of Surrey BC Mayor Diane Watts’s Office being notified by Peace Activists of her impending complicity in harboring/inviting a credibly accused and self admitted torturer and war criminal to Surrey BC this October.
Darcus Howe is a West Indian writer and broadcast who was asked to share his thoughts on BBC about the London riots. Not being a fool’s tool, Howe immediately tied the chaos to the ignorance of British leaders and the anchor wasn’t going to have any of that without a fight. She had to jump in and Fog the issue with vague morality chat.
This form of ignorance in the news media is rampant as they hug up to their corporate bosses. One need simply close their eyes and imagine Anderson Cooper doing the same sort of false equivalence games.
Laurel Sweet of the Boston Herald has just published a report on the DOJ’s use of state secrets arguments in prosecuting Tarek Mehanna.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. is beseeching a federal judge in Boston not to release to an accused Sudbury terrorist’s lawyers the evidence prosecutors that have amassed against him under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, warning the disclosure of “top secret” materials could “cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security of the United States.”
Such lawyers are able to examine evidence without divulging contents to the accused. This argument has become typical of the DOJ for the past several years.
Holder asserted in a sworn claim of executive privilege filed with U.S. District Court Judge George O’Toole Jr. in the case of Tarek Mehanna, “The FISA materials contain sensitive and classified information concerning United States intelligence sources and methods and other information related to efforts of the United States to conduct counterterrorism investigations.”
This argument has been used back since the civil war as spies for the North couldn’t get recognized for compensation while the government simply turned a blind eye to them. It is a specious argument.
“We don’t even know what the (FISA) evidence is,” Mehanna’s attorney Janice Bassil said yesterday, adding Holder’s attempt to withhold the government’s evidence from electronic surveillance and physical searches was not unexpected.
“In these cases, where there are accusations of terrorism, civil liberties and constitutional rights kind of go out the window,” she said. “They are not clearly recognized and are often ignored.”
Aug 9, 2011 Libya
Gadhafi Officials: NATO Bombs Kill 85 Civilians
Posted By Jeremy Sapienza On August 9, 2011 @ 7:37 am
Read Anti-War.com Article
In what could be the single deadliest NATO attack since the Western war on Libya’s Gadhafi regime began in May, 85 civilians were killed in a cluster of farmhouses in Majar, according to Libyan officials. The village is about 90 miles east of the capital, Tripoli.
A Gadhafi spokesman said 33 children, 32 women, and 20 men were killed in the attack.
NATO says its planes bombed a “military staging area,” and if there were any casualties, they are likely military personnel or “mercenaries.” Colonel Roland Lavoie, the alliance’s spokesperson in Brussels, said the strikes aim to protect Libya’s civilians from attack by Gadhafi’s forces. The Gadhafi regime denies attacking civilians, though during the initial uprising it undeniably did kill many protesting civilians.
A Reuters reporter saw 30 bodies at a hospital in nearby Zlitan, some of which contained the remains of children. “They (NATO) do not differentiate between soldiers, children and old people,” said medical student Abdulkader Al-Hawali, in residency at the hospital.
NATO has admitted to killing civilians in the recent past. Just last week, in Zlitan, NATO bombs killed a physics teacher and his family. Some two weeks ago, NATO bombed a Zlitan hospital, killing seven. And on June 21, just two days after admitting to killing nine civilians in an “accidental” strike in central Tripoli, NATO denied and then admitted an attack that Gadhafi officials say killed 15 civilians.
NATO also bombed a Libyan frigate in Tripoli harbor this morning after weapons were observed being unloaded, the alliance said.
Human Rights Watch has stated its position on the Obama Administration’s lack of justice in the cases of Richard Bruce Cheney and George Walker Bush for war crimes and authorizing war crimes
Aug 6, 2011 Torture
Friday 5 August 2011
by: Jeffrey Kaye, Truthout | Report
Former United States Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld speaking at CPAC 2011 in Washington, DC. Rumsfeld has recently denied knowledge of any waterboarding by US military personnel taking place at Guantanamo Bay. (Photo: Gage Skidmore)
In the controversy over whether torture, especially waterboarding, was used to gather information leading to the capture of Osama bin Laden, former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld told Fox News’ Sean Hannity recently that “no one was waterboarded at Guantanamo by the US military. In fact, no one was waterboarded at Guantanamo, period.”
In his memoir, “Known and Unknown,” Rumsfeld maintained, “To my knowledge, no US military personnel involved in interrogations waterboarded any detainees,not at Guantanamo or anywhere else in the world.” But as we shall see, Rumsfeld was either lying outright, or artfully twisting the truth.
Others have insisted as well that the military never waterboarded anyone. Law and national security writer Benjamin Wittes wrote in The New Republic last year that “the military, unlike the CIA, never waterboarded anybody.” Harper’s columnist Scott Horton also noted last year, “There is no documentation yet of waterboarding at Gitmo, but the case book is far from closed on that score, too.”
Yet, though not widely reported and scattered among various articles and reports on detainee treatment by the military, including first-person accounts, there are a number of stories of forced water choking or drowning, both at Guantanamo and other US military sites.
In little-known testimony in May 2008 before Congress, former Guantanamo detainee Murat Kurnaz testified he endured a form of simulated drowning. In his testimony before a subcommittee of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Kurnaz said that under US military captivity at Khadahar, Afghanistan, prior to his transfer to Guantanamo, his head was “dunked under water to simulate drowning.”
Asked by Republican Congressman Rohrabacher if he hadn’t then been waterboarded, Kurnaz responded, “No, it’s not waterboarding. It’s called ‘water treatment.’ There was a bucket of water.”
ROHRABACHER: Was a cloth put over your face and you were put on a board?
KURNAZ: There was a bucket of water. And they stick my head in it and at the same time, punch me into my stomach.
Rohrabacher reportedly commented, “The CIA is claiming that only three people have been waterboarded. And this may be a loophole that they’re suggesting that’s not ‘waterboarding.’”
According to a report on Kurnaz’s testimony at the time by The Christian Science Monitor, Pentagon spokesman Cmdr. Jeffrey Gordon replied to the torture charges: “The abuses Mr. Kurnaz alleges are not only unsubstantiated and implausible, they are simply outlandish.”
Whether implausible or not, waterboarding was one of a number of “counter-resistance techniques” requested for use at Guantanamo by Maj. Gen. Mike Dunleavy, commander of Task Force 170. In an October 2002 memo from Dunleavy’s intelligence chief requesting use of a number of techniques, including sensory deprivation, isolation, stress positions, forced nudity and death threats, there was also a proposal for “Use of a wet towel and dripping water to induce the misperception of suffocation.”
In a follow-up memo approving most, but not all of the requested techniques, Department of Defense (DoD) general counsel William J. Haynes II said of the “wet towel” and other so-called “aggressive” “Category III” techniques, “While all Category III techniques may be legally available, we believe that, as a matter of policy, a blanket approval of Category III techniques is not warranted at this time.” (Emphasis added.)
Water Torture at Guantanamo
Evidence regarding waterboarding or other forms of water torture by suffocation or choking at Guantanamo has been reported, but this article is the first collection of the various reports in one place.
Last April, a report by two doctors who were allowed to examine “medical records and relevant case files … of nine individuals for evidence of torture and ill treatment,” found at least one case of “near asphyxiation from water (i.e., hose forced into the detainee’s mouth)” and another case where a detainee’s head was forced into a toilet.
The report, by doctors Vincent Iacopino and Stephen N. Xenakis, was published at PLoS Medicine. Dr. Xenakis is also a retired brigadier general in the Army, who has worked as a medical consultant on a number of Guantanamo legal cases.
Additionally, accusations of military waterboarding turned up in a Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General (IG) report on “FBI Involvement in and Observations of Detainee Interrogations” that was released at almost the same time as Kurnaz’s testimony (May 2008). The IG noted that the chief of the FBI’s Military Liaison and Detainee Unit at Guantanamo told DoD Assistant Attorney General Dave Nahmias, “one of the planned or actual techniques used on [purported 9/11 would-be hijacker, Mohammed] Al Qahtani was simulated drowning.”
In fact, the military admits the use of pouring water over al Qahtani’s head, as is discussed below.
At another point in the report, the IG describes one FBI agent who “once heard a discussion at GTMO when someone mentioned using water as an interrogation tool and someone else in the group said, ‘Yeah, I’ve seen that.’” According to the IG report, no FBI agent actually reported seeing waterboarding or water torture him or herself.
Whether or not waterboarding was observed by FBI agents at Guantanamo, we know from the minutes of a “Counter-resistance Strategy meeting” at Guantanamo on October 22, 2002, that waterboarding (called the “wet towel” technique) was discussed (see Tab 7 at link). The meeting included legal officials from the CIA, DIA, the Guantanamo intelligence chief, as well as members of the Guantanamo Behavioral Science Consulting Team (BSCT).
At one point, Lt. Col. Diane Beaver, the Staff Judge Advocate at Guantanamo asked whether SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape) employed “the ‘wet towel’ technique.” Jonathan Fredman, then chief counsel to the CIA’s counter-terrorism center, replied:
“If a well-trained individual is used to perform [sic] this technique it can feel like you’re drowning. The lymphatic system will react as if you’re suffocating, but your body will not cease to function. It is very effective to identify phobias and use them (ie, insects, snakes, claustrophobia). The level of resistance is directly related to person’s experience.”
At this point, a BSCT psychiatrist noted, “Whether or not significant stress occurs lies in the eye of the beholder. The burden of proof is the big issue.” Fredman replied, “These techniques need involvement from interrogators, psych, medical, legal, etc.”
Fredman continued “The CIA makes the call internally on most of the types of techniques found in the BSCT paper and this discussion.” In a reference to the approvals for waterboarding and other techniques given the CIA by Office of Legal Counsel memos a few months before, he added, “Significantly harsh techniques are approved through the DOJ.” There was no indication in the minutes from the meeting that waterboarding was not allowed for Defense Department use.
Waterboarding of Mohammed al Qahtani
Mohammed al Qahtani was a Saudi Arabian citizen brought to Guantanamo in early 2002. Ostensibly believed to be a part of the 9/11 plot, when interrogators became frustrated at their inability to get information out of him, or force his compliance, they turned to methods of interrogation that the Guantanamo Convening Authority Susan Crawford would later herself conclude amounted to torture.
By November 2002, al Qahtani had become the “first subject of a Special Interrogation Plan,” which relied heavily on the military’s SERE torture school techniques, including isolation, stress positions, sexual humiliation and apparently, a form of waterboarding. SERE was created to provide US military personnel with training to resist torture.
Even years before Crawford’s admission, DoD’s Schmidt-Furlow report, looking at early allegations of detainee abuse, concluded that “the creative, aggressive and persistent interrogation of the subject of the first Special Interrogation Plan [al Qahtani] resulted in the cumulative effect being degrading and abusive treatment.” No one has ever been charged for such crimes committed against this or any other Guantanamo detainee.
The Schmidt-Furlow report details the use of water torture on al Qahtani, an aspect of his torture that has been little reported:
On seventeen occasions, between 13 Dec 02 and 14 Jan 03, interrogators, during interrogations, poured water over the subject of the first Special Interrogation Plan head….
There is evidence that the subject of the first Special Interrogation Plan regularly had water poured on his head. The interrogation logs indicate that this was done as a control measure only.
Time Magazine published al Qahtani’s interrogation logs in 2005. The use of water to drench al Qahtani’s head does not appear to be a “control measure” when it is discussed in the logs themselves.
On December 23, 2002, a log selection describes how interrogators hung pictures of swimsuit models around al Qahtani’s neck. Then the lead interrogator “pulled pictures of swimsuit models off detainee and told him the test of his ability to answer questions would begin. Detainee refused to answer and finally stated that he would after [the] lead [interrogator] poured water over detainees [sic] head and was told he would be subjected to this treatment day after day. Detainee was told to think about his decision to answer questions.”
The day before, when al Qahtani had refused to look at “fitness photos,” saying it was against his religion, interrogators had “poured a 24 oz bottle of water over detainee’s head.” The log notes dryly, “Detainee then began to look at photos.”
In their investigation of detainee abuse, the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) noted in a 2008 report that the Navy limited waterboard demonstrations to two pints (32 oz.) of water. A January 13, 2003, memo, described in the SASC report, underreported how much water was poured over Qahtani, saying that “up to eight ounces of water” was poured over Qahtani’s head as a “method of asserting control” when Khatani exhibited ”undesired behavior.”
The SASC report also said that the interrogation plan for another Guantanamo detainee, Mohamadou Walid Slahi, included the practice of pouring water over Slahi’s head to “enforce control” and “keep [him] awake.”
Three More Guantanamo Detainees Report Suffocation by Drowning
Besides Kurnaz and al Qahtani, at least three other detainees have reported being tortured at Guantanamo by application of water meant to cause suffocation, choking or the sensation of drowning.
A 2009 article by Jeremy Scahill outlined the torture and abuse endured by former Guantanamo detainee and British resident Omar Deghayes. Scahill mentions two incidents where the Immediate Reaction Force (IRF, sometimes called the Emergency Reaction Force, or ERF) used forms of water torture on Deghayes. In one case, the detainee was shackled, his head put into a toilet. The IRF team “pressed his face into the water. They repeatedly flushed it.”
The IRF or ERF team also came into Deghayes cell on another occasion and conducted a simulated or partial drowning.
The ERF team came into the cell with a water hose under very high pressure. [Deghayes] was totally shackled and they would hold his head fixed still. They would force water up his nose until he was suffocating and would scream for them to stop. This was done with medical staff present and they would join in.
According to Scahill, the IRF team conducted this form of waterboarding three times on Deghayes. Note that the presence of medical staff is consistent with the use of medical personnel under CIA descriptions of how they conducted waterboarding.
Another example of water torture involving Guantanamo guards appears in a document related to the case of Djamel Ameziane, an Algerian Berber who has been held at Guantanamo for over eight years, despite the fact he never received military or terrorist training, nor fought against the US. According to 2008 legal filing for Ameziane by the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR):
In another violent incident, guards entered his cell and forced him to the floor, kneeing him in the back and ribs and slamming his head against the floor, turning it left and right. The bashing dislocated Mr. Ameziane’s jaw, from which he still suffers. In the same episode, guards sprayed cayenne pepper all over his body and then hosed him down with water to accentuate the effect of the pepper spray and make his skin burn. They then held his head back and placed a water hose between his nose and mouth, running it for several minutes over his face and suffocating him, an operation they repeated several times. Mr. Ameziane writes, “I had the impression that my head was sinking in water. I still have psychological injuries, up to this day. Simply thinking of it gives me the chills.” [Emphasis added.]
In March 2008, six Guantanamo detainees filed suit against Bosnia and Herzegovina in the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg for failure “for many years to take any steps to negotiate and secure the men’s release from Guantanamo.” One of the men, Mustafa Ait Idr, who had been rendered to Guantanamo and “taken from his pregnant wife in violation of a Bosnian court order to free him,” also reported use of water torture in a manner remarkably similar to that of Ameziane.
A CCR report on “Torture, Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment of Prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba” said that on one occasion prison guards demanded to search Idr’s cell. Idr cooperated, but they came in, sprayed him in the face with a chemical irritant and put him into restraints.
According to the CCR report, “Guards then slammed him head first into the cell floor, lowered him, face-first into the toilet and flushed the toilet – submerging his head. He was then carried outside and thrown onto the crushed stones that surround the cells. While he was down on the ground, his assailants stuffed a hose in his mouth and forced water down his throat.” As a result, Idr’s face was paralyzed for several months.
Other threats to use waterboarding on DoD prisoners, or to rendition detainees for water torture, are also on record. According to journalist Robert Windrem in a 2009 story at The Daily Beast, then Vice President Dick Cheney requested the waterboarding of Muhammed Khudayr al-Dulaymi, the head of the M-14 section of Mukhabarat. According to the article, the official in charge of interrogations of Iraqi officials at the time, Charles Duelfer, declined the request.
According to the SASC detainee report, the lead agency for SERE, Joint Forces Personnel Agency, constructed a CONOP (Concept of Operations) plan for use at a Special Mission Unit Task Force interrogation center in Iraq. The CONOP recommended use of the “water board.” Military legal figures reportedly objected to that and other techniques, but it is not known whether Special Forces in Iraq used waterboarding or other water torture techniques and the SASC report does not enlighten us on that point.
In another case, former Italian resident and Guantanamo detainee, Tunisian-born Saleh Sassi, reported that in late 2002, Tunisian agents came to Guantanamo and interrogated him. They “left no doubt about what awaited ex-Guantanamo inmates back in Tunisia: ‘water torture in the barrel’ and other horrors.” Sassi was released and sent to Albania in 2010.
Finally, the DOJ IG report on FBI interrogations referenced earlier describes how an Abu Ghraib prisoner, Saleh Muklef Saleh, was restrained and had cold water poured over him on more than one occasion. One time, according to Saleh’s own testimony, “They gave me one or two bottles of water and they asked me to drink it while I was hungry and they forced me to drink it and I did and I felt vomiting, then they ordered me to drink again and they were looking at me and laughing” (pp. 279-280).
Back in 2008, during the Congressional meeting where Murat Kurnaz testified to the use of water torture upon him, Democratic Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee commented, “It seems that we have a new definition … If you were wedded to the language of waterboarding, now we have new language called ‘water treatment,’ which may bear on being torture as well.”
To date, there has been no investigation that specifically has looked at the use of types of water torture, including waterboarding or water treatment, on detainees. The military’s current Army Field Manual on interrogation forbids the use of “waterboarding.” It is the only “prohibited action” term that is described with quotation marks around it.
A Human Rights Watch report issued on July 12 called for President Barack Obama “to order a criminal investigation into allegations of detainee abuse authorized by former President George W. Bush and other senior officials.”
Aug 5, 2011 Corruption
Koch Industry Gasoline:
Koch Industry/Georgia-Pacific Products:
Angel Soft toilet paper
Brawny paper towels
Dixie plates, bowls, napkins and cups
Mardi Gras napkins and towels
Quilted Northern toilet paper
Soft ‘n Gentle toilet paper
Vanity fair napkins
Koch Industry/Invista Products:
SOMERELLE® bedding products
TACTESSE® carpet fiber
TERATHANE® polyether glycol
POLARGUARD® fiber and
Georgia Pacific Building products
Dense Armor Drywall and Decking
ToughArmor Gypsum board
Georgia pacific Plytanium Plywood
G/P Industrial plasters (some products used by a lot of crafters)-
Arts & Crafts Plaster
General Purpose Plaster
Glass-reinforced Gypsum (GRG)
Industrial Tooling Plaster
Investment Casting Plaster
Metal Casting Plaster
FibreStrong Rim board
G/P Lam board
Blue Ribbon OSB Rated Sheathing
Blue Ribbon Sub-floor
DryGuard Enhanced OSB
Nautilus Wall Sheathing
Thermostat OSB Radiant Barrier Sheathing
Broadspan Engineered Wood Products
XJ 85 I-Joists
FireDefender Banded Cores
FireDefender Mineral Core
Hardboard and Thin MDF including Auto Hardboard,
Perforated Hardboard and Thin MDF
Wood Fiberboard –
Commercial Roof Fiberboard
Hushboard Sound Deadening Board
Regular Fiberboard Sheathing
Structural Fiberboard Sheathing
Aug 5, 2011 Corruption
LIST OF FOXNEWS ADVERTISERS-CURRENT
AARP Medicare Supplemental Insurance
“Anything Goes” CD
Baron & Budd P.C.
Binder & Binder
Bush’s Baked Beans
Celadrin (joint health)
Chef Michael’s Canine Creations
Dove Deep Moisturizer
Easy Water (water softener)
HSBC Life Insurance
Lear Capital (gold)
Loan Modification Help Line
NFL Sunday Ticket
Slap Chop (kitchen device)
USPS Priority Mail Flat-Rate Box
ZeroWater (water tester)
Aug 5, 2011 Corruption
The Enemies Within: The 20 Most Dangerous Conservatives And Their OrganizationsBy Stephen D. Foster Jr.America has enemies. Not just abroad, but within our shores as well. And our domestic enemies, as it turns out, are MORE dangerous and destructive than the terrorists could ever hope to be. Because while the terrorists want to destroy us, the following people and their organizations are doing far more damage.
1. Roger Ailes: The President of Fox News keeps the right-wing mouth piece biased and unbalanced. He literally proposed a right-wing news network as a propaganda tool to use during the Nixon Administration. And now, Fox News makes every effort to slander Democrats, lie to the public, and support conservative groups, activists and politicians at all costs.
Want to tell Ailes what you think of him? Feel free to contact Fox News Channel by mail, phone, or email.
FOX News Channel
1211 Avenue of the Americas, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10036
2. The Koch Brothers: Yes, there is more than one Koch brother, but rather than jotting down the same paragraph twice, it makes more sense to combine the two. Charles and David Koch are the owners of Koch Industries, a private oil and chemicals company. They have spent big money in elections and have pretty much bought and paid for all of Republicans that sit on the energy committee. They also have ties to The John Birch Society, of which their father was a founding member, and several other conservative think tanks and organizations including, Americans For Prosperity which David Koch leads as chairman, the Heritage Foundation, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), and the Cato Institute. They helped create and fund the Tea Party and have been very influential in the watering down of environmental laws and the destruction of unions. If you really want to see the scope of their influence look at what is happening in Wisconsin and in the U.S. House of Representatives.
I know you must be dying to contact Koch Industries to give them your opinion, so here’s how you can do that.
Koch Industries, Inc.
P.O. Box 2256
Wichita, KS 67201-2256
3. Dick Armey: His FreedomWorks organization helped to create the Tea Party and he has worked closely with the Koch brothers. Armey’s organization seeks to deregulate and tear down reform. He opposed health care reform and is largely responsible for hatred, paranoia and anti-government sentiments displayed at town halls during the health care debate.
400 North Capitol Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
Toll Free Phone: 1-888-564-6273
Local Phone: 202-783-3870
4. Tom Donohue: The US Chamber Of Commerce President gained a hell of a lot more power in the wake of the Citizens United ruling. The Chamber is the largest conservative lobbying group in the country. Representing big corporations more than small businesses, the Chamber opposed health care reform and Wall Street reform. The group is in favor of tearing down any and every law designed to protect the American worker. Donohue once stated that “there are legitimate values in outsourcing — not only jobs, but work….” and once told unemployed people in Ohio to “stop whining”. So, not only is he for deregulation, he supports job killing policies. That is a double dose of dangerous.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce
1615 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20062-2000
Main Number: 202-659-6000
5. Tony Perkins: Perkins is the President of the Family Research Council, a hate group according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. The Council opposes abortion for any reason, believes homosexuality should be against the law, believes in teaching “intelligent design” in schools, and believes global warming is a hoax. FRC was listed as a hate group after it falsely linked gay males to pedophilia. It basically lobbies the government to make laws that govern our personal and private lives. The Council is a Christian Right-wing organization that has a heavy influence on the Republican Party, hence all the abortion laws being proposed by them.
Family Research Council
801 G Street, NW
Washington DC 20001
6. Pat Robertson: Robertson founded the Christian Coalition in 1989 and claims to be non-partisan. The problem with this claim is that it’s a bunch of crap. The Christian Coalition passes out “voter guides” in churches and yet is granted tax exempt status. It clearly supports a conservative agenda and is associated with Christian fundamentalism. It is yet another group that believes that America should be a Christian state. They are a threat to the Constitution.
Christian Coalition of America
PO Box 37030
Washington, DC 20013-7030
7. Edwin Feulner, Jr.: Feulner is the President of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank that took a leading role in the conservative movement during the 1980′s and continues to push conservative ideals today. The Foundation has strong ties to many Republican politicians, and many Heritage personnel members have gone on to serve in senior governmental roles. Not only does it stand by supply side economics and tax cuts for the rich and corporations which led to the current economic crisis, it also believes in a strong defense which has become more and more expensive. Heritage Foundation is also a part of the Koch Foundation Associate Program and is perhaps the most powerful public policy think tank on this list. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has taken money from the organization. It has far too much influence on American policy and that influence must be brought to an end.
The Heritage Foundation
214 Massachusetts Ave NE
Washington DC 20002-4999
8. Arthur Thompson: Thompson leads the radical right-wing John Birch Society, which is yet another organization that has Koch family connections. Founded in 1958 by Robert Welch, Jr., the John Birch Society is an anti-communism group that has pretty much denounced every liberal person and policy as socialist. It opposes the Civil Rights Act, the United Nations, and believes in immigration reduction. It aims to dismantle the Federal Reserve System and wants to return to the gold standard. The group is a sponsor of CPAC and is no longer exiled from the mainstream. Another interesting fact is that Fred Koch, father of the aforementioned Koch brothers, was a founding member.
John Birch Society
770 N. Westhill Blvd
Appleton, Wisconsin 54914
9. Rupert Murdoch: Known as “the man who owns the news”, Murdoch controls a vast media empire around the world including Fox News, The New York Post, and the Wall Street Journal here in America. Advertising his media outlets as “fair and balanced” Murdoch and his News Corporation relentlessly push conservative talking points and provide campaign donations to many Republicans running for various positions. News Corporation now has to answer for hacking cell phones and impeding investigations. Long the mouthpiece for Republican propaganda, Murdoch is a threat to Freedom of the Press and the foundations that keep America free.
If you want to contact News Corporation and tell them what you think of them, here is their contact information.
1211 Avenue of Americas
New York, New York 10036
10. Grover Norquist: Norquist is an especially dangerous individual. In fact, at the moment, he has the most influence on Republican congressmen. Republicans in the House and Senate refuse to raise taxes on corporations and the wealthy and Norquist and his group, Americans For Tax Reform, have made sure Republicans continue to do so. 235 members of the House and 41 Senators signed the Norquist pledge to not raise taxes and now our economic future hangs in the balance. Norquist is basically calling the shots and holding America hostage on behalf of the rich. And he isn’t even an elected official.
Americans for Tax Reform
722 12th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20005
11. David Bossie: Citizens United isn’t just a bad Supreme Court ruling. Citizens United is the conservative organization that the conservative majority of the Supreme Court ruled in favor of in 2008. Founded in 1988, located near Capitol Hill, and led by President and Chairman David Bossie, Citizens United’s goals include withdrawal from the United Nations, and defeat of campaign finance laws, among others. They also produce “documentaries” that serve the conservative agenda. The group is mostly a threat because of their fight to allow corporate ownership of elections. The Koch brothers, and many conservative think tanks and organizations have flooded elections with cash since the ruling. The Supreme Court decision alone is enough to put this dangerous organization and Bossie on the list.
1006 Pennsylvania Ave SE
Washington, DC 20003
Office: (202) 547-5420
Fax: (202) 547-5421
12. Tim LaHaye and Kenneth Cribb: Once again, you’ll notice that two people occupy this spot. After some thought, I decided this was necessary to avoid repetition. Tim Lahaye founded, and Kenneth Cribb is the current President of, the Council for National Policy. The CNP is a conservative organization for social conservative activists. Described by The New York Times as a “little-known group of a few hundred of the most powerful conservatives in the country,” the organization is perhaps the most powerful group on this list. Members include many who are already on this list such as James Dobson, Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, Phyllis Schlafly, and Edwin Feulner Jr. What makes this group particularly dangerous is that they support theocracy and Dominionism as national policy. They are also incredibly secretive and that’s scary all by itself.
CNP is apparently so secret that no address or phone number is available, so you’ll have to email them.
13. Steven J. Law: Law is President and CEO of American Crossroads, a conservative organization that has raised and spent tens of millions of dollars to defend and elect Republican candidates to federal office, and was very active in the 2010 U.S. midterm elections. Basically, Law and his group are listed because they have taken advantage of the Citizens United Supreme Court decision the most since the ruling. The Kochs and Karl Rove have connections with the group and are a major reason why the House is under GOP control.
P.O. Box 34413
Washington, DC 20043
Phone: ( 202) 559-6428. firstname.lastname@example.org
14. James Dobson: Dobson is the Family Talk radio personality and Family Research Council founder that contributes greatly to all the hate we see from conservatives. A frequent guest on Fox News, he is perhaps the most influential religious leader on the Christian-Right even though he has never been ordained. Dobson believes that women should only focus on mothering (and probably cooking too) and is totally against gay rights. He supports private schools and special tax privileges for religious schools. He opposes sex education and only supports abstinence as the only technique for pregnancy prevention. Dobson is on this list because he is the one that began all of the anti-gay, anti-women, and anti-education speeches that are now commonplace in the Republican Party.
Family Talk Radio
540 Elkton Drive
Colorado Springs, CO 80907
15. Phyllis Schlafly: She is the only woman on this list. Undoubtedly, you may have thought that Michele Bachmann or Sarah Palin would be, but they are not. I consider Palin and Bachmann mere pawns compared to Schlafly. As founder and President of the Eagle Forum, Schlafly opposes feminism and equal rights for women. Eagle Forum promotes a pro-life, anti-gay, anti-sex education, and anti-vaccination agenda that has contributed to the current wave of social conservative extremism in the Republican Party. She believes women should remain in the home and that there is no such things as marital rape. She is certainly the most influential woman in right-wing activism and as such, the most dangerous one too.
PO Box 618
Alton, IL 62002
Fax: 618-462-8909 email@example.com
16. David Keene: Up to now David Keene led the American Conservative Union, which is the oldest operating conservative lobbying organization in the country. The ACU runs the event known as CPAC and spends money on lobbying and political campaigns. Keene is still the current President of the National Rifle Association. Which is also a strong lobbying group that is virtually an arm of the Republican Party that glorifies guns and believes that people should be able to carry guns anywhere they go, even near the President of the United States. Keene is mostly on this list because of the NRA. The NRA used to actually serve a valid purpose but has since become a pro-Republican political organization that has mixed guns and politics. It makes them a danger to the political process.
The American Conservative Union
1007 Cameron Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
National Rifle Association of America
11250 Waples Mill Road
Fairfax, VA 22030
17. Tim Wildmon: Classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the American Family Association is headed by Tim Wildmon. AFA is just like every other conservative Christian group. It opposes abortion and gay rights, as well as other public policy goals such as deregulation of the oil industry and lobbying against the Employee Free Choice Act. The group has actively boycotted just about any business that disagrees with them. In the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings, the AFA released a video in which “God” tells a student that students were killed in schools because God isn’t allowed in schools anymore and blamed the shootings on abortion and lack of prayer in schools. AFA is against all other religions and has an obsession with Christmas, often boycotting companies that do not mention Christmas in their advertising. AFA is here on this list because they represent one of the biggest threats to intellectual and personal freedom in America.
Want to boycott AFA? Send them a “friendly” letter.
American Family Association
P.O. Box 3206
Tupelo, MS 38803
18. David Barton: Despite not having any history or law credentials David Barton passes himself off as an expert in early American history. Most of his claims have been disputed and written off as false by real historians. Barton’s organization is Wallbuilders, which seeks to destroy one the basic foundations of American life: the separation of church and state. Barton’s mission is to revise history in an effort to turn America into a Christian state with Biblical law instituted as the law of the land. He has also created false quotes to justify his claims. Barton is a danger to the history of America, the Constitution, and education.
PO Box 397
Aledo, TX 76008
19. Noble Ellington: American Legislative Exchange Council, also known as ALEC. The Council is basically a pay to play organization that carries the corporate agenda into state legislatures across the country. They work to end unions, end environmental and labor regulations, and end consumer protection laws. ALEC has been funded by the Koch brothers for two decades. The price for corporate participation is an ALEC membership fee of as much as $25,000. For that price, corporations are basically writing the legislation that you are currently seeing being proposed and implemented in Republican controlled states across the country.
American Legislative Exchange Council
1101 Vermont Ave. N.W., 11th Floor
Washington, D.C. 20005
20. Edward H. Crane: Crane is the founder and current leader of the Cato Institute. While they have supported some liberal policies and claim to abhor neo-conservatives, the Cato Institute does push many objectives that should make everyone cringe. Among the various policies that Cato supports, privatizing Social Security, abolishing the minimum wage, abolishing affirmative action, and some environmental regulations, are among them. Of course, it’s understandable why Cato holds these positions considering Charles Koch is chairman of the board and a major funding source. Even Rupert Murdoch had a place on the board at one point which connects the Kochs and the right-wing media.
1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W. Washington D.C. 20001-5403
And there you have it. All of these people and their organizations pose a serious threat to the American people. They target women, senior citizens, minorities, homosexuals, non-Christians, and American workers. So which person or organization is the most dangerous to democracy? The common thread throughout the list is the Koch brothers. They have ties to many of the people and organizations on the list and share many of the same goals. If one were to remove the Koch brothers from the equation an important source of funding and leadership would be eliminated from the conservative sphere. The Koch brothers are by far the biggest threat to American values and institutions. The truly evil thing about this group is that NONE of these monsters are elected by the people. Yet they have more power and influence over our elected officials and system of law and government, than we do.
Edited By: Alexis Atherton
It has been ten years since a group of people took over key parts of the United States. First, in December of 2000, the Supreme Court handed the office of the Presidency to George W. Bush. The verdict came down in Dec 2000. The consequences continue to this day.
By this time 10 years ago, Cheney’s Energy Task Force was in full swing. Bechtel, Chevron, American Coal Company, Small Refiners Association, the Coal Council, CSX, Kerr-McGee, Nuclear Energy Institute, the National Mining Association, General Motors, the National Petroleum Council, and the energy lobbying firm of Barbour, Griffith & Rogers. As we went on about our lives, we had little idea of what was to come. However, there were warnings in D.C. according to some information that is in the public sphere. On August 6th, Geore W Bush was handed his Presidential Daily Brief . “Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States.” This is a compelling title doesn’t alone capture the detailed information in the document and for whatever we have been able to see from the drops of information in the public sphere, there was ample warning of over 30 days to take any dangers seriously. Instead, Bush was on vacation.