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Terrorist Behind September 11 Strike was Trained by Saddam
The Telegraph ^ | December 14, 2003 | Con Coughlin

Posted on 12/13/2003 4:24:43 PM PST by quidnunc

Iraq's coalition government claims that it has uncovered documentary proof that Mohammed Atta, the al-Qaeda mastermind of the September 11 attacks against the US, was trained in Baghdad by Abu Nidal, the notorious Palestinian terrorist.

Details of Atta's visit to the Iraqi capital in the summer of 2001, just weeks before he launched the most devastating terrorist attack in US history, are contained in a top secret memo written to Saddam Hussein, the then Iraqi president, by Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, the former head of the Iraqi Intelligence Service.

The handwritten memo, a copy of which has been obtained exclusively by the Telegraph, is dated July 1, 2001 and provides a short resume of a three-day "work programme" Atta had undertaken at Abu Nidal's base in Baghdad.

In the memo, Habbush reports that Atta "displayed extraordinary effort" and demonstrated his ability to lead the team that would be "responsible for attacking the targets that we have agreed to destroy".

The second part of the memo, which is headed "Niger Shipment", contains a report about an unspecified shipment — believed to be uranium — that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria.

Although Iraqi officials refused to disclose how and where they had obtained the document, Dr Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man Presidential Committee, said the document was genuine.

"We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with al-Qaeda," he said. "But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with al-Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks."

-snip-

(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Breaking News; News/Current Events; United Kingdom; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 911; 911hijackers; abunidal; alani; allawi; alqaeda; alqaedaandiraq; atta; baghdad; habbush; habbushaltikriti; hussein; husseincapture; iraq; iraqalqaedalink; iraqandalqaeda; libya; mohammedatta; nidal; niger; prague; saddam; saddamhussein; sept11; stoptheexcerpts; syria; terrorism; terrorist; timeline
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To: RaceBannon
Thanks for the heads-up. Didn't Abu Nidal get shot in Iraq after 09/11? If so, the pieces fit.
151 posted on 12/13/2003 6:12:45 PM PST by LibKill (You are not sheeple. Refuse to be clipped.)
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To: quidnunc

Hillary to Troops: Support for War Fading
(Click here or on pic)



152 posted on 12/13/2003 6:13:09 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (Hillary is a TRAITOR !!: http://Richard.Meek.home.comcast.net/HitlerTraitor6.JPG)
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To: MainFrame65
Right, I say lets keep the info but try to back it up with undeniable proof. Maybe Atta and Nidal took some poloroids together at the local terrorist hang out with the label-this is me with Mo before he blew himself up.
153 posted on 12/13/2003 6:13:53 PM PST by LoudRepublicangirl (loudrepublicangirl)
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To: aristeides
Yes, though the Spain note made me remember that Yusuf Galan, the top deputy of Abu Dahdah (the contact between the hijackers and the al-Qaeda C-in-C Mohammed Atef in Afghanistan) was invited to the Iraqi Embassy - under his al-Qaeda codename prior to the attacks.

I'll have to check an Atta timeline to be sure, but I think that he could easily have squeezed in a couple of days to go to Iraq.
154 posted on 12/13/2003 6:14:17 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: quidnunc
The second part of the memo, which is headed "Niger Shipment", contains a report about an unspecified shipment — believed to be uranium — that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria.

This is in reference to the recent yellowcake "scandal" where the Robert Novak was accused of "outing" a CIA agent because the White House was mad that her husband couldn't (wouldn't?) find a Niger-Iraq connection, right?

-PJ

155 posted on 12/13/2003 6:15:08 PM PST by Political Junkie Too (It's not safe yet to vote Democrat.)
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To: quidnunc
Thanks for the link. Here is the article, in full, from your source ...

Terrorist behind September 11 strike was trained by Saddam
By Con Coughlin
(Filed: 14/12/2003)

Iraq's coalition government claims that it has uncovered documentary proof that Mohammed Atta, the al-Qaeda mastermind of the September 11 attacks against the US, was trained in Baghdad by Abu Nidal, the notorious Palestinian terrorist.

Details of Atta's visit to the Iraqi capital in the summer of 2001, just weeks before he launched the most devastating terrorist attack in US history, are contained in a top secret memo written to Saddam Hussein, the then Iraqi president, by Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, the former head of the Iraqi Intelligence Service.

The handwritten memo, a copy of which has been obtained exclusively by the Telegraph, is dated July 1, 2001 and provides a short resume of a three-day "work programme" Atta had undertaken at Abu Nidal's base in Baghdad.

In the memo, Habbush reports that Atta "displayed extraordinary effort" and demonstrated his ability to lead the team that would be "responsible for attacking the targets that we have agreed to destroy".

The second part of the memo, which is headed "Niger Shipment", contains a report about an unspecified shipment - believed to be uranium - that it says has been transported to Iraq via Libya and Syria.

Although Iraqi officials refused to disclose how and where they had obtained the document, Dr Ayad Allawi, a member of Iraq's ruling seven-man Presidential Committee, said the document was genuine.

"We are uncovering evidence all the time of Saddam's involvement with al-Qaeda," he said. "But this is the most compelling piece of evidence that we have found so far. It shows that not only did Saddam have contacts with al-Qaeda, he had contact with those responsible for the September 11 attacks."

Although Atta is believed to have been resident in Florida in the summer of 2001, he is known to have used more than a dozen aliases, and intelligence experts believe he could easily have slipped out of the US to visit Iraq.

Abu Nidal, who was responsible for the failed assassination of the Israeli ambassador to London in 1982, was based in Baghdad for more than two decades.


156 posted on 12/13/2003 6:17:56 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (Hillary is a TRAITOR !!: http://Richard.Meek.home.comcast.net/HitlerTraitor6.JPG)
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To: Mr. Mojo
Not to beat a dead horse but seriously... How sad must it be to go through life (at least right now) hoping that this kind of news turns out false?

I can't even fathom how that feels...

I can't even fathom how a liberals mind works so I should be surprised anyway, but...
157 posted on 12/13/2003 6:18:11 PM PST by nuffsenuff
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To: Political Junkie Too
The same CIA agent who posed for a photo spread in Vanity Fair magazine with her adoring husband who jokingly calls her Jane Bond? LOL
158 posted on 12/13/2003 6:18:46 PM PST by Quilla
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To: Quilla
I couldn't make out the line that looks like it had white out on it but I could somewhat make out the rest of it. My problem is I can read typewritten Arabic better than handwritten. When Arabs hand write they don't always put the vowel accents in and since it is not my native language I can't always make out the words.
159 posted on 12/13/2003 6:20:08 PM PST by LoudRepublicangirl (loudrepublicangirl)
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To: MeeknMing
I do have a problem with this story though...

Muhammed Atta was not the mastermind behind 9-11... he was the "squadron leader"... the mastermind was Khalid Sheikh Muhammed.

Giving Atta the credit diminishes the true impact of what catching KSM means...

160 posted on 12/13/2003 6:21:50 PM PST by nuffsenuff
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To: LoudRepublicangirl; Admin Moderator; Chad Fairbanks; Lead Moderator
I can read enough Arabic to tell if Bin Laden's name is on them.

Boom! Give her a set of mod keys.

161 posted on 12/13/2003 6:23:00 PM PST by txhurl
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To: nuffsenuff; All
What's the status of Tahir Jalil Habbush al-Tikriti, at large, captured or otherwise disposed of (to steal a phrase from our President)?
162 posted on 12/13/2003 6:24:44 PM PST by Quilla
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To: Angelus Errare
Three days spent in Iraq would probably require at least something like five consecutive days otherwise unaccounted for.
163 posted on 12/13/2003 6:24:49 PM PST by aristeides
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To: Quilla
No idea...
164 posted on 12/13/2003 6:25:41 PM PST by nuffsenuff
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To: aristeides
Yes he was in Spain in summer 2001:

The terrorist
The shy, caring, deadly fanatic
Sunday September 23, 2001
The Observer


Although he remained enrolled, no one on campus seems ever to have seen him again. He next reappears this year making an unexplained 10-day visit to Spain. The Observer has seen hotel records which confirm that Atta spent at least one night in the eastern resort town of Salou in mid-July.

The FBI said that Atta flew to Madrid's Barajas airport from Miami on 9 July. His first step on arrival was to pick up a rental car which he had previously reserved over the internet.

Atta spent his last night in the Montsant Hostal in Salou, where he paid with his Visa card and registered under his own name. His Hyundai Accent car was returned to Madrid airport on 18 July with some 1,250 miles on the clock.

On 16 August, back in Florida, he rented a single-engined plane from a company in Palm Beach. He made a test flight to demonstrate his competence and then returned twice more, each time with a different passenger.


165 posted on 12/13/2003 6:25:47 PM PST by Selene
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To: aristeides
Since we were not tracking him, why do you think we could account for where he was for all that time?
166 posted on 12/13/2003 6:26:56 PM PST by Dan(9698)
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To: quidnunc; Normal4me
This raises certain questions. It has recently been written that Saddam Hussein fled the Mansur Villa site twenty minutes before it was bombed by US planes. It was said by an Iraqi official in November that Saddam feared he had been betrayed by al-Habbush al-Tikriti, the intelligence chief, and the same person who ostensibly wrote the letter regarding Atta and Niger. It has also been speculated that al-Habbush al-Tikriti came over to the Americans shortly after the invasion began.

So many questions. So few answers.
167 posted on 12/13/2003 6:27:09 PM PST by gaspar
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To: Selene; Angelus Errare
Thanks. Gap between 18 July and 16 August. I wonder if it's unaccounted for.
168 posted on 12/13/2003 6:27:37 PM PST by aristeides
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To: Dan(9698)
I'm not sure we can (account for all his movements.) But there's been plenty of time now, and plenty of reason, to thoroughly investigate.
169 posted on 12/13/2003 6:28:42 PM PST by aristeides
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To: quidnunc
President Bush vindicated.
170 posted on 12/13/2003 6:30:13 PM PST by xzins (Retired Army and Proud of It!)
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To: aristeides; gaspar
The memo is dated July 1, 2001, so any visit would have to have occurred before that point. Late July won't do, though early June might.

In regards to al-Habbush, he seems to be quite an enigmatic figure given that he was involved in the apparent destruction of at least some amount of VX post-1999 as well as the bogus peace offer with Imad Hage and now a possible al-Qaeda connection. I'm kind of curious as to what exactly his job was at the Mukhabarat given all of his involvement with WMDs, terrorism, and under-the-table diplomacy.
171 posted on 12/13/2003 6:31:05 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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To: aristeides
My point is that he could have had more than 5 days to go do this.

The story is certainly possible.

172 posted on 12/13/2003 6:31:11 PM PST by Dan(9698)
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To: Quilla
See post #167.
173 posted on 12/13/2003 6:31:20 PM PST by gaspar
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To: gaspar
Thank you.
174 posted on 12/13/2003 6:32:53 PM PST by Quilla
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To: nuffsenuff
Not to beat a dead horse but seriously... How sad must it be to go through life (at least right now) hoping that this kind of news turns out false? I can't even fathom how that feels... I can't even fathom how a liberals mind works so I should be surprised anyway, but...

I've occasionally wondered that as well. In attempt to arrive at some sort of understanding I've visited the demo underground nuts and read through there some. It would appear that there are some who are moderately intelligent, but pretty much the whole mob is wrapped up in hatred over various issues as well as a massive dose of emotionalism, also over various issues. So the liberal mindset (and mind isn't necessarily the best term apparently) is one of hatred and emotional imbalance.

175 posted on 12/13/2003 6:33:12 PM PST by highlander_UW
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To: onyx
I think this is just the beginning. More and more information will be linked together until we get the full picture.
176 posted on 12/13/2003 6:33:17 PM PST by arasina (What will YOU do when Howard Dean or Hillary Clinton is president?)
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To: txflake
The first word that is whited out looks like the letter could be an Arabic B. The last word in that part is an Arabic N. It looks like a half circle with a dot in it. That could be Bin Laden but I would have to see a better picture of it to tell since the white out obscures the letters somewhat.
177 posted on 12/13/2003 6:33:51 PM PST by LoudRepublicangirl (loudrepublicangirl)
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To: LibKill
Thanks for the heads-up. Didn't Abu Nidal get shot in Iraq after 09/11? If so, the pieces fit.

Abu Nidal committed "suicide" by shooting himself in the head several times on or about August 21, 2002.

As to why Hussein had him killed, I think the answer has always been obvious. He was given asylum in exchange for his expertise.

178 posted on 12/13/2003 6:35:28 PM PST by jwalsh07
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To: quidnunc
wow I go eat dinner come back and this little tidbit is here! I love Free Republic!
179 posted on 12/13/2003 6:38:04 PM PST by knak (wasknaknowknid)
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To: VeritatisSplendor
"Too good to be true indeed. The tipoff that this is a fake is that the SAME memo vindicating the Atta-Iraq link also vindicates the Niger-Uranium link. Too improbable"

Its genuine alright, a fake memo would also tell how the WMD were divided between Syria and Iran.

180 posted on 12/13/2003 6:38:29 PM PST by lstanle
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To: highlander_UW
No kidding.

I've checked out DU and I swear I can't tell the men from the women...
181 posted on 12/13/2003 6:39:15 PM PST by nuffsenuff
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To: Angelus Errare
The disputed trip to Prague was in April if it occurred, was it not?
182 posted on 12/13/2003 6:39:20 PM PST by aristeides
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To: Angelus Errare
Plus, getting approval to go on to Iraq would be an excellent reason to meet Al-Ani in Prague.
183 posted on 12/13/2003 6:40:12 PM PST by aristeides
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To: lstanle; quidnunc; Shermy; swarthyguy; aristeides
The Telegraph reported on May 18, 2003 that the same Tahir Jalil al-Habbush al-Tikriti may have escaped to Europe following the American invasion; a Syrian employee of a French embassy reported that Habbush was given a French-originated European passport in Mid-April 2003. If Habbush were in U.S. hands it would seem logical that this most recent report would have surfaced long ago.
184 posted on 12/13/2003 6:42:27 PM PST by gaspar
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To: Angelus Errare
Glad you saw this; was going to ping you.
185 posted on 12/13/2003 6:43:21 PM PST by Peach (The Clintons have pardoned more terrorists than they ever captured or killed.)
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To: quidnunc
This does nothing but show more of Iraq's terrorist links. But this should serve for only those leftists who say that going into Iraq was wrong.

I could care less if Iraq had anything to do with 9/11, because the US is fighting a war on ALL TERRORISM not a single war against Al Queda and those who did 9/11. And Iraq was a terrorist state even before 9/11.

But nevertheless, this proves, if true, Iraq had a hand in a big terrorist attack on Americans.

186 posted on 12/13/2003 6:44:08 PM PST by yonif ("If I Forget Thee, O Jerusalem, Let My Right Hand Wither" - Psalms 137:5)
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To: quidnunc
Hmmmm....
It will be VERY interesting to see more information come out on this letter.
187 posted on 12/13/2003 6:44:32 PM PST by PogySailor
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To: Angelus Errare
See post #184.
188 posted on 12/13/2003 6:45:00 PM PST by gaspar
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To: Dan(9698)
Connecting dots.
189 posted on 12/13/2003 6:45:43 PM PST by StriperSniper (The "mainstream" media is a left bank oxbow lake.)
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To: yonif
You hit the nail squarely on the head...

It amazes me to this day that the looney left can't see this simple fact...
190 posted on 12/13/2003 6:45:47 PM PST by nuffsenuff
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To: aristeides
Does what we know of Atta's chronology allow him to spend three weeks in Iraq in the summer of 2001?

I checked my timeline of the hijackers, and there is a period from July 18 (when Atta returned to the USA from Madrid, Spain) to August 6 (when he rented a car in Florida) when Atta's movements are not specifically accounted for. If there was a summer trip to Baghdad, it would have happened at this time.

This story is the bombshell of bombshells if true.

191 posted on 12/13/2003 6:47:15 PM PST by denydenydeny
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To: aristeides
A good resource for Attas timeline
192 posted on 12/13/2003 6:47:25 PM PST by jwalsh07
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To: gaspar
Here's a FR search on Salman Pak.

Two titles out of that search:

9/11 Bombshell: Judge Rules Saddam Trained Hijackers [Salman Pak]
Yellowcake, Forged Documents, and Salman Pak

This better work. Don't think I've ever linked a FR search before.

193 posted on 12/13/2003 6:47:38 PM PST by txhurl
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To: aristeides
I had an e-correspondence going with a Czech reporter in Prague for awhile. From talking to him, it is more than conceivable that Atta was in Prague and did meet with Al Ani. He wasn't 100% but he was leaning toward the meeting occuring.
194 posted on 12/13/2003 6:50:21 PM PST by jwalsh07
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To: denydenydeny; Angelus Errare
Read on in the thread. Angelus errare pointed out to me that Atta's stay in Iraq would have had to be before July 1, 2001 (because of the date of the document). And three weeks was the result of my hasty misreading -- Atta's stay was three days, which, taking travel time into account, I estimate would require five consecutive days unaccounted for.
195 posted on 12/13/2003 6:50:24 PM PST by aristeides
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To: txflake
Limbaugh to WH: What about Salman Pak?

Last Wednesday, Iraq made its own response to the news of the meetings between al-Ani and Atta. Tariq Aziz, Saddam's Deputy Prime Minister, denied Iraq had anything to do with the hijackings, saying: 'Even if that [the meetings] happened, that would mean nothing, for a diplomat could meet many people during his duty, whether he was at a restaurant or elsewhere, and even if he met Mohamed Atta, that would not mean the Iraqi diplomat was involved.'

Yet the striking thing about the meetings is the lengths to which Atta went in order to attend them. In June last year, he flew to Prague from Hamburg, only to be refused entry because he had failed to obtain a visa. Three days later, now equipped with the paperwork, Atta was back for a visit of barely 24 hours. He flew from the Czech Republic to the US, where he began to train as pilot. In early April 2001, when the conspiracy's planning must have been nearing its final stages, Atta was back in Prague for a further brief visit - a journey of considerable inconvenience.

On 17 April, the Czechs expelled al-Ani, who had diplomatic cover, as a hostile spy. Last night, a senior US diplomatic source told The Observer that Atta was not the only suspected al-Qaeda member who met al-Ani and other Iraqi agents in Prague. He said the Czechs monitored at least two further such meetings in the months before 11 September.

196 posted on 12/13/2003 6:53:33 PM PST by txhurl
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To: denydenydeny; Angelus Errare
Your timeline appears to leave Atta unaccounted for between May 13, 2001 and some unspecified date in June. During that period, he missed a court appearance, and a warrant was issued for him because of that failure to appear.
197 posted on 12/13/2003 6:54:14 PM PST by aristeides
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To: jwalsh07
Ping.
198 posted on 12/13/2003 6:55:15 PM PST by aristeides
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To: FreeManWhoCan
So nice, it was posted 4 times!

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/944761/posts
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/944477/posts
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/944407/posts
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/944390/posts
199 posted on 12/13/2003 6:56:53 PM PST by GraniteStateConservative ("Howard Dean is incontrovertible proof that God is on Bush's side in the 2004 election"- Dick Morris)
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To: aristeides
Exactly.

That, combined with some kind of potential cash deal for the plot, would explain the Prague trip and the meeting with al-Ani.
200 posted on 12/13/2003 6:59:41 PM PST by Angelus Errare
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