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US officials knew Al-Qaeda planned plane attacks, claims whistleblower
AFP | 4/02/04

Posted on 04/02/2004 1:56:10 AM PST by kattracks

LONDON (AFP) - US officials knew months before September 11, 2001, that the Al-Qaeda network planned to use aircraft to commit a terrorist attack, according to a former FBI (news - web sites) translator interviewed in a British newspaper.

Sibel Edmonds told the Independent daily that a claim by US President George W. Bush (news - web sites)'s national security advisor Condoleezza Rice (news - web sites) that there had been no such warnings was "an outrageous lie".

The former translator with the Federal Bureau of Investigation said that she has provided information about her claims to a US commission investigating the September 11 attacks.

Edmonds told the Independent: "There was general information about the timeframe, about methods to be used -- but not specifically about how they would be used -- and about people being in place and who was ordering these sorts of terror attacks.

"There were other cities that were mentioned. Major cities -- with skyscrapers."

The 33-year-old Turkish-American translator said that based on documents she had seen during her time with the FBI, after September 11, it was "impossible" that US intelligence officials had no forewarning of the attacks.

Bush's administration is currently under investigation for its anti-terrorism policies before and after the strikes on New York and Washington that claimed some 3,000 lives.

The Independent reported that the administration had sought to silence Edmonds and had obtained a gagging order from a court.

Edmonds was one of many language experts who answered appeals for translators in the days following the attacks using hijacked airliners.

She was tasked with translating documents and recordings from FBI wire taps.

From the documents, she said, it was clear that there was sufficient information in spring and summer 2001 to indicate that an attack was being planned.

"President Bush said they had no specific information about 11 September and that is accurate but only because he said 11 September," Edmonds told the Independent.

There was, however, general information about the use of airplanes and that an attack was just months away.

A White House official said Thursday that Rice would testify under oath on April 8 before the commission investigating September 11.

Bush's administration was last week accused by former White House anti-terrorism czar Richard Clarke of not giving the al-Qaeda threat enough priority.

Clarke, who left the White House last year, testified in public before the September 11 commission last week, just after the publication of his book which was highly critical of the Bush administration for its counter-terrorist efforts.



TOPICS: Extended News; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; bush43; sibeledmonds
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
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US officials knew months before September 11, 2001, that the Al-Qaeda network planned to use aircraft to commit a terrorist attack, according to a former FBI (news - web sites) translator interviewed in a British newspaper.

There was, however, general information about the use of airplanes and that an attack was just months away.

Sibel Edmonds told the Independent daily that a claim by US President George W. Bush (news - web sites)'s national security advisor Condoleezza Rice (news - web sites) that there had been no such warnings was "an outrageous lie".

IIRC Rice was speaking about attacks in the US.

The 33-year-old Turkish-American translator said that based on documents she had seen during her time with the FBI, after September 11, it was "impossible" that US intelligence officials had no forewarning of the attacks.

US Attacks? She does not say this was the case.

The Independent reported that the administration had sought to silence Edmonds and had obtained a gagging order from a court.

Which would be the correct thing to do as far as anyone leaking this information, in order to protect national security.

Edmonds was one of many language experts who answered appeals for translators in the days following the attacks using hijacked airliners.

And none of these many language experts has backed up Edmonds claims.

From the documents, she said, it was clear that there was sufficient information in spring and summer 2001 to indicate that an attack was being planned.

Which is why President bush had a plan to counter this by 9/04/01.

Sibel seems like another "Clarke" looking for her 15 minutes.

1 posted on 04/02/2004 1:56:10 AM PST by kattracks
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2 posted on 04/02/2004 1:58:01 AM PST by Support Free Republic (I'd rather be sleeping. Let's get this over with so I can go back to sleep!)
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To: Support Free Republic
Pure bullsh!t.
3 posted on 04/02/2004 2:03:40 AM PST by noutopia (Home of the brave,not the spineless.)
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To: kattracks
Sibel seems like another "Clarke" looking for her 15 minutes.

Curious timing. She's known these 'facts' since 2001 and is just now, in an election year, bringing them to light?

4 posted on 04/02/2004 2:05:31 AM PST by tbpiper
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To: kattracks
[Edmonds] said that based on documents she had seen during her time with the FBI, after September 11, it was "impossible" that US intelligence officials had no forewarning of the attacks. Edmonds was one of many language experts who answered appeals for translators in the days following the attacks using hijacked airliners. She was tasked with translating documents and recordings from FBI wire taps.

There is a difference between having possession of evidence and having knowledge of the contents of the evidence.

I do not doubt that the intelligence agencies had collected enough wire taps and other raw material to uncover some of the details of the pending attacks. However, the intelligence information buried in those materials had not been translated, analyzed, or disseminated prior to September 11, as Edmonds even admits.

And why weren't those wire taps and documents translated and analyzed in time to thwart the attacks? Because Bill Clinton had systematically dismembered the intelligence community over the previous eight years. Plus, the Democrats blocked and stalled many of Bush's new appointments during the seven short months of his Presidency prior to September 11.

September 11 is Bill Clinton's legacy. And all the finger pointing at Bush won't change that fact.

5 posted on 04/02/2004 2:17:17 AM PST by SpyGuy
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To: tbpiper
Clark has no credibility. But Edmunds is an unknown. And when your best witness is an unknown jack-in-the-box, confirming discredited clowns, it makes a person suspicious. I think it is logical to on the one hand take what Edmunds says seriously, but whenever I criticize Bush the first day something comes out, I regret it two weeks later. If Edmunds is credible two weeks from now, and that's a big if, let the chips fall where they may. Condi Rice, Rumsfeld, GW, and Cheney seem to be good and smart people. So while I believe them to be innocent of countless, vicious slanders, who says I and others are perfect judges of character? If only the other party were such a bunch of saps. FReegards....
6 posted on 04/02/2004 2:25:49 AM PST by Arthur Wildfire! March (Backhoe's latest links: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1104239/posts)
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To: SpyGuy
Actually article says,

"She was hired as a translator for the FBI's Washington field office on 13 September 2001, just two days after the al-Qa'ida attacks. Her job was to translate documents and recordings from FBI wire-taps." (From Andrew Buncombe's article, pulled up on Drudge)

This puts her viewpoint in totally different light.


7 posted on 04/02/2004 2:28:45 AM PST by plumcrazy
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To: SpyGuy
"...translators in the days following the attacks..."

Oh. So Edmunds isn't telling Kerry Tales, but the paper buried that little bit of info. Hehe. A post-April Fools' joke.
8 posted on 04/02/2004 2:29:12 AM PST by Arthur Wildfire! March (Backhoe's latest links: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1104239/posts)
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To: kattracks
Anyone could have predicted it. This don't mean nuthin'

But, the dems will run it up the flag pole in an attempt to show a conspiracy.
9 posted on 04/02/2004 2:35:38 AM PST by leadpenny
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To: kattracks
katt, back in the early 1980's, a friend of mine co-authored a paper outlining various terror threats, and one of the lines I recall from it was "why would terrorists bother making bombs when we have all these nice, fuel-laden jets sitting around on aprons?" For whatever it's worth, this screed was circulated around DC at the time. It's nothing new.
10 posted on 04/02/2004 2:42:14 AM PST by backhoe
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To: plumcrazy
This has to be an April Fools Joke.
Hired 2 days after 9/11
Then wants to say she found evidence that we knew in advance?
PPPPLLEEAZE
11 posted on 04/02/2004 2:45:59 AM PST by DeaconRed (I'll soon be Voter #538, Nah it won't even be close . . . . . .)
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To: kattracks
Translators and field agents do not know what 'officials' are aware of.

A lot of critical and sincere people, working with specific documents, specific areas, or specific sources, contribute to but do not review or have access to the compiled data available to the NSC and executive office.

The flow of information into the total intelligence base is vast. There are indicators of everything from the sublime to the rediculous. It is not possible - it is certain - that at least one translator handled data that, standing alone, convinced he or she that an attack using aircraft, somewhere, was impending.

And the weight of evidence or current drift of analysis said otherwise.

That is precisely why individual translators or field agents do not brief the President - someone else briefs the president based on what is compiled from the input of thousands of translators, field agents, news papers, and finally. analysts who are paid to analyse and interpret a multitude of inputs.

Analysts can be just as wrong as anyone else but interpretation and and presenting conclusions is the bulk of their job description - accuracy is implied (hoped for) based on the selection process or the enrails of goats.

On the other hand, it is terribly frustrating to contribute to the larger data base and to "know" the y answers [because you have faith in the one puzzle piece that you personally experienced, developed, or tripped over] and see that it is not the center piece of US policy [because there was a ton of evidence that you were wrong or because politics, right or wrong, for better or for worse, disallowed your conclucions.
12 posted on 04/02/2004 2:46:44 AM PST by norton (been there)
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To: plumcrazy
That's what I quoted and highlighted from the original article: she was hired after the attacks to translate the BACKLOG of intelligence information that was collected prior to the attacks.

The point being that the intelligence agencies had the information in their hands, but they did not have enough translators and analysts available to learn the contents of that information. And, for that, we can thank Clinton and his Democrat accomplices.

13 posted on 04/02/2004 3:04:15 AM PST by SpyGuy
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To: SpyGuy
It is much easier to find a needle in the haystack, once you know that you're searching for a needle.
14 posted on 04/02/2004 3:19:57 AM PST by InfraRed
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To: kattracks
Don't these people working in the intelligence field ever sign some type of confidentiality agreements? Especially when dealing with information as sensitive as this? How is this hindsight oracle permitted to give these press interviews about what she translated?
15 posted on 04/02/2004 3:24:56 AM PST by laredo44 (liberty is not the problem)
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To: SpyGuy
"And, for that, we can thank Clinton and his Democrat accomplices.

It has been said many times.
We will NEVER know the full amount of the damage done to this country by the Clinton administration.

This entire thing (9/11 commission, Clarke saying Clinton did a good job etc etc) is starting to smell really bad.

16 posted on 04/02/2004 3:32:25 AM PST by DeaconRed (I'll soon be Voter #538, Nah it won't even be close . . . . . .)
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To: kattracks
Before 9/11, when was the last time that commercial airliners were hijacked and crashed into buildings? AQ came up with a tactical surprise that was beyond the imagination of the intelligence community. Only Tom Clancy conceived of such a thing. It is easy to figure it all out after the fact. Besides, I am sure there were thousands of possible attack scenarios that were floating around after the embassy bombings and the USS Cole. How do you defend against all of them with finite resources?
17 posted on 04/02/2004 3:35:58 AM PST by kabar
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To: Support Free Republic
I second the: UN GO TO HELL

V537

18 posted on 04/02/2004 3:36:01 AM PST by DeaconRed (I'll soon be Voter #538, Nah it won't even be close . . . . . .)
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To: tbpiper
"Curious timing. She's known these 'facts' since 2001 and is just now, in an election year, bringing them to light?"

No -- SHE WORKED AFTER 2001 -- She learned all of this translating the back-log of intelligence that we had been gathering (every e-mail sent from pak/afg + probably every fax sent out and 1/2 the phone calls...).

If you read the article carefully -- "Should have had" etc... This woman wants Kerry in office..
19 posted on 04/02/2004 4:08:50 AM PST by max_rpf
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To: tbpiper
Curious timing. She's known these 'facts' since 2001 and is just now, in an election year, bringing them to light?

I was just thinking the same thing. Where was her story on 9-12-01? I guess it took 3 years for her synapses to click in.

But, I have little doubt more of these 'sudden memory' people will come out of the woodwork.

Speaking of 'wood', Woodward's book is supposed to be out soon and it is rumored to be even more scathing than Clarke's book.

The Dems have a whole program that will be revealed over the coming months. Expect more of the same; piled deeper. It is still a long way to November.
20 posted on 04/02/2004 4:37:25 AM PST by TomGuy (Clintonites have such good hind-sight because they had their heads up their hind-ends 8 years.)
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To: TomGuy
"Bush's administration is currently under investigation for its anti-terrorism policies before and after the strikes on New York and Washington that claimed some 3,000 lives. "

I'm sorry. When did this become an investigation into the Bush presidency? I thought the commission was convened to look into both administrations policies and how we can circumvent any terrorist activity in the future.

Apparently McAuliffe got to this one also.



21 posted on 04/02/2004 6:41:57 AM PST by EQAndyBuzz
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To: SpyGuy
"...the intelligence information buried in those materials had not been translated, analyzed, or disseminated prior to September 11, as Edmonds even admits."

She actually is confessing that SHE failed to translate the materials in a timely manner!

22 posted on 04/02/2004 7:27:47 AM PST by TommyDale
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To: InfraRed
or grab a straw and claim it's a needle....
23 posted on 04/02/2004 7:30:43 AM PST by bwteim (Begin With The End In Mind)
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To: kattracks
here she is


24 posted on 04/02/2004 7:32:04 AM PST by petercooper (It's obvious, common sense is not prerequisite to voting rights.)
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To: kattracks
It is easy to go back over the traffic and chatter and find clues to 9-11 AFTER THE FACT. So what?

Let's give her a test. We'll let her translate documents for the next month, then she will be required to predict what will happen in the next 6 months. If she is wrong, we'll fly her into a building. ARRRGGH!

25 posted on 04/02/2004 7:35:06 AM PST by TankerKC (Clogged Arteries and Still Smilin'!)
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To: kabar
AQ came up with a tactical surprise that was beyond the imagination of the intelligence community. Only Tom Clancy conceived of such a thing.

Nonsense. Nixon knew in 1969 that domestic anti-war terrorists had talked of crashing passenger jets into targets. One such plan attempted by a crazy man out of the Baltimore airport was thwarted in the early 70's. It was in the news, but people forget I guess.

26 posted on 04/02/2004 7:48:01 AM PST by Poincare
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To: Poincare
The operative word is a crazy man. I am sure that there are thousands of scenarios of how terrorists could and may attack us. You don't have the resources to protect against all threats. The car and truck bomb have been used repeatedly throughout the 70s, 80s, etc. Perhaps, we become victims of fighting the last war, but you tend to defend against what has already been used successfully against you than one which has never been used before.

I do recall an economic conference in Bologna that Bush attended, which included air defense measures. I would have to check to see if that was before or after 9/11.

27 posted on 04/02/2004 7:57:33 AM PST by kabar
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To: Poincare
The threat has been known and talked about in certain circles for decades. Remember a fellow who crashed his light plane on the White House lawn several years, damaging one of the Magnolias that Andy Jackson planted (the bastard, the pilot, not Andy Jackson)

I'd also discussed this kind of threat with people who knew about such things. The White House security responded then by deploying agents with Stinger type anti-aircraft missiles.

No, it wasn't a new or surprise threat. Preventing such atrocities is another matter entirely.

What needs to be hammered home - the types of preventive strategies necessary to thwart suicidal maniacs are EXACTLY the kinds of things that so-called "liberals" would never have contemplated in the first place. 9/11 could not have been prevented with the current crop of politicians and assorted kool-aid drinkers.
28 posted on 04/02/2004 7:57:51 AM PST by Freedom4US
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To: kabar
The operative word is a crazy man.

Of course he was deemed crazy by the media--no surprize given the "unthinkable" horror of his intention using a fully loaded airliner. But the fact remains that he acted on an idea that was in circulation as early as 1967.

29 posted on 04/02/2004 8:12:04 AM PST by Poincare
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To: Freedom4US
Defending the White House against piper cubs with stinger missiles is different from defending Washington against hijacked US civilian airlines with suicidal pilots crashing them into buildings and monuments.

It was the Genoa Summit (not Bologna) in July 2001, which Bush attended. The Italians went to extraordinary lengths to protect against an air attack including anti-aircraft missiles and cordoning off the air space over the conference meeting site. I think it would be worthwhile to look into the threat assessment for that event and why those measures were taken.

30 posted on 04/02/2004 8:19:15 AM PST by kabar
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To: kattracks
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1107644/posts

The above link goes to the Senate report that says there were a number of non-specific hints that terrorists might use an airplane or hijack an airplane.

Condi Rice was not referring to that, and this "whistleblower" isn't nearly as smart as she thinks she is.

Condi refers to specific warnings that airliners would be hijacked and flown into the WTC.
31 posted on 04/02/2004 8:20:20 AM PST by xzins (Retired Army and Proud of It!)
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To: xzins
Hosni Mubarak said his government provided information to the United States about possible attacks on the Genoa summit by Saudi-born terrorist Osama bin Laden. ...
www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/ nation/la-092701genoa.story -
32 posted on 04/02/2004 8:28:47 AM PST by kabar
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To: xzins
The Italian authorities' security measures also include the positioning of surface-to-air missiles at Genoa's Christopher Columbus airport. Dubbed the SPADA, the land-based system consists of missiles capable of a range of 15 kilometres (9.3 miles).

The ministry said the decision to install the missiles is not excessive.

"There's no excessive precaution," military spokesman Colonel Alberto Battaglini told Reuters. "The measure, which was planned by the previous government, may seem open to criticism, but in reality it is merely to act as a deterrent against any aerial incursion during the summit."

33 posted on 04/02/2004 8:32:26 AM PST by kabar
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To: kabar
Which is further proof that Osama was a problem....something that wasn't in dispute.

Clinton just didn't do anything about it.
34 posted on 04/02/2004 8:33:12 AM PST by xzins (Retired Army and Proud of It!)
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To: kabar
Error
There was an error processing your request. The most likely cause is the URL is not valid.


I keep getting the above when I try your link. Can you fix it?

In any case, when I was in the Army, they ALWAYS set up Air Defense Artillery near the locations of general-level meetings. Not because they expected the aircraft to crash into the facility, but because they expected attacks of ANY variety.

But...to protect the president and other world leaders does not lead to the conclusion that the WTC will be hit by airliners flown by suicidal islamo-fascists.
35 posted on 04/02/2004 8:38:58 AM PST by xzins (Retired Army and Proud of It!)
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To: kattracks
This translator did not even start working for the FBI until AFTER 9-11. She claims that on her first day on the job all the middle eastern translators in the FBI were celebrating the attack on the WTC.

Celebrating 9/11 at the FBI

By Paul Sperry
FrontPageMagazine.com | February 11, 2004

When linguist Sibel Dinez Edmonds showed up for her first day of work at the FBI, a week after the 9-11 attacks, she expected to find a somber atmosphere. Instead, she was offered cookies filled with dates from party bowls set out in the room where other Middle Eastern linguists with top-secret security clearance translate terror-related communications.

She knew the dessert is customarily served in the Middle East at weddings, births and other celebrations, and asked what the happy occasion was. To her shock, she was told the Arab linguists were celebrating the terrorist attacks on America, as if they were some joyous event. Right in front of her supervisor, one translator cheered:

"It's about time they got a taste of what they've been giving the Middle East."

She found out later that it was her supervisor's wife who helped organize the office party there at the bureau's Washington field office, just four blocks from the J. Edgar Hoover Building.

"This guy's wife brought the date-filled cookies for the celebration," Edmonds, 33, recalled.

At the time, the supervisor, Mike Feghali, a naturalized
U.S. citizen from Beirut, was in charge of the FBI's Turkish and Farsi desks.

But he's been promoted since then, and now also runs the all-important Arabic desk, which is key to intercepting the next al-Qaida plot.

It gets worse.

The language service squad is the front line in the FBI's war on terrorism, collecting all foreign language tips, information and terrorist threats to homeland security. Agents act on what the squad translates and reports. The sooner they get the information, the sooner they can thwart terrorist attacks. Investigators had missed clues to both the 2001 and 1993 World Trade Center attacks because they were buried in a backlog of untranslated wiretaps and documents in Arabic.

Despite the backlog, Feghali told Edmonds and other translators to just let the work pile higher, according to Edmonds. Why? Money. She says Feghali, who has recruited family and friends to work with him at the high-paying language unit, argued that Congress would approve an even bigger budget for it if they could continue to show big backlogs.

"We were told to take long breaks, to slow down translations, and to simply say 'no' to those field agents calling us to beg for speedy translations so that they could go on with their investigations and interrogations of those they had detained," said Edmonds, who was fired without specified cause by the FBI after she reported breaches in security, mistranslations and potential espionage by Middle Eastern colleagues.

She claims Feghali actually tampered with her work to slow her down.

"My supervisor went as far as getting into my work computer and deleting almost completed work so that I had to go back and start all over again," she said.

Edmonds, a Turkish-American who is not a practicing Muslim, made the allegations last month in a 9-page letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

She also claims that Feghali threatened to sue the bureau for racial discrimination, but dropped the suit once the bureau promoted him, says Edmonds and other sources. The FBI, which like the army suffers from a severe shortage of Arabic translators, instated a bureau-wide Muslim-sensitivity training program after 9-11.

Reached by phone at his Maryland home, Feghali was brusque and refused to talk about the allegations.

"I'm not at liberty to discuss this thing, OK?" he said before abruptly hanging up.

The spokesperson for the FBI's Washington field office, Debbie Weierman, did not return repeated phone calls.

Feghali, who holds several foreign language degrees, has been an FBI language specialist for several years. He was a key translator in the government's case against al-Qaida operatives charged in the U.S. embassy bombing in Kenya, and even testified in court.

Sources say he is planning to move back to Lebanon
.

A key player in the 9-11 plot and the likely pilot of United Airlines Flight 93, the suicide plane that crashed apparently en route to the U.S. Capitol, was Ziad Samir Jarrah, a Lebanese.

Edmonds has also complained about Feghali and other Middle Eastern translators to the Justice Department inspector general.

And on Wednesday, she is scheduled to give a detailed briefing to members of the 9-11 commission in a secure room here.

She claims terrorist "investigations are being compromised," and has demanded an independent probe of the FBI's language department.

"If there were, and are, persons within the language department that either intentionally prevented translation because of their agendas, or persons who were, and are, not qualified to properly translate, it is likely that terrorist communications prior to 9-11 were missed; and it is likely that current and future terrorist communications will likewise be missed," Edmonds wrote Justice's Inspector General Glenn A. Fine in a Jan. 5 letter. "I have alleged, and the FBI has confirmed (to Senate investigators), that there are in fact such persons in the language department."

Fine still has not released the findings of his internal probe, even though Edmonds first filed her complaint with his office almost two years ago. Speaking for Fine, Justice official Carol Ochoa said the investigation is "still ongoing."

"We are working hard to complete it expeditiously," she said in a Jan. 6 letter to Edmonds.
Now if you believe that the FBI translators were all celbrating the attack on the US, then I suppose you can believe her when she says she had information that the US knew about 9-11 before it happened.

.

.

She was fired in March of 2002. Probably for good reason. She's a certified whack job.

36 posted on 04/02/2004 8:48:58 AM PST by P-Marlowe (Let your light so shine before men....)
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To: TommyDale
She actually is confessing that SHE failed to translate the materials in a timely manner!

It would have been impossible for her to translate the materials in a timely matter to prevent the attacks: she was hired by the FBI for the translation job AFTER September 11.

37 posted on 04/02/2004 9:15:14 AM PST by SpyGuy
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To: TommyDale
How is that, she was not hired until after the attacks happened.
38 posted on 04/02/2004 9:25:05 AM PST by looscnnn ("Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils" Gen. John Stark 1809)
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To: P-Marlowe
"She was fired in March of 2002. Probably for good reason. She's a certified whack job."

How do you get that, from her claims that the other translators were celebrating, working slow on purpose, etc.? Sounds pretty bad to me, plus the fact that the supervisor was promoted. If she is telling the truth, then something needs to be done internally at the FBI. Yes, it is kinda suspicious about what she is saying and when, but let's not just dismiss her as a whack job or whatever. Also, I don't know how she can say that the administration had this info, considering the fact that they had a backlog of stuff and that they took their sweet time translating it. Maybe the supervisor/translators was not interested in letting the administration know that it was going to happen.
39 posted on 04/02/2004 9:40:02 AM PST by looscnnn ("Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils" Gen. John Stark 1809)
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To: looscnnn
Still, the documents were not translated until AFTER September 11th. There was such a shortage in the intelligence community since Jimmy Carter's days that nothing could be done about it anyway. So whose fault is it?
40 posted on 04/02/2004 9:42:28 AM PST by TommyDale
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To: TommyDale
Look, I am not blaming Bush on this. The translators and the supervisor supposedly intentionally took their time on the job, it that is true they are to blame as much as Clinton and those before him.
41 posted on 04/02/2004 10:00:23 AM PST by looscnnn ("Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils" Gen. John Stark 1809)
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To: kattracks; Marine Inspector
Let's assume for a moment that what she (and Clark) says is true. We have vague, non-specific reference to terrorists using airplanes. Well, they (the terrorist, starting with Arafat), been high-jacking them since the 70s, so that's not much of a revelation.

In the case of traditional high-jackings, where the perps simply took people hostage till their demands were met, the American public had already weighed in that it was not going to let itself be inconvenienced at airports by having security greatly increased, even after the Lockerbie and flight 800 bombings.

Prior to 9/11, implementing the kinds of security measures that would have been required to prevent it from happening would have resulted in howls of public outrage from all quarters. Even now, we have groups from all around the political spectrum that feel that the measures taken since then have gone too far.

So what was any administration supposed to do with such "new" but oh so vague and "non-specific" information? Suddenly demand new security measures at airports? Start profiling for potential high-jackers? Run-around the country kicking over stones in the hopes that some new evidence would present itself?

If Bush had tried to do any of these things on the basis of the available evidence he would have been excoriated in the press and by every political opponent and conspiracy theorist.

What he and his administration did do is take a look at the intelligence community and the way it operated and recognize the fact that it had broken down to a large degree (thanks to the many poundings it has taken by Democrats going all the back to the Church Commission). They then set about trying to figure out how best to fix it and bring it back to the point where it could be effective once again. All the while having to maintain a certain continuity so they could deal with the daily turn of events (don't forget that we had a major international incident with China that ate up several months of the adminstrations attention).

To expect them to accomplish this in a mere 8 months and make perfect sense out of the mess they had inherited is silly in the extreme. That's the kind of job that usually takes years.

It is easy, with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight, to say that we could have, should have, would have, been able to predict a likely event. Hey, when I read Clancy's book (back when Clinon was still pres.), where the whacko pilot fly's his jumbo jet into the White House, I predicted that some terrorist would try it some day. Does that mean that Bush should have known, and that if it happened and he was not able to prevent it, it was his fault?

No. And to state otherwise would be absurd.

And yet, that is what is happening with the 9/11 commission. And many people are beginning to realize it. So now they have to come up with another canard:

"There's plenty of blame to go around!"

8 years vs. 8 months. Let's do the math. 8 years equals 96 months. 96 months divided by 8 months equals 12. So, that means, if we're to absolutely fair, only 1/12th of the blame can possibly rest with the Bush administration while his predecessor, Clinton (and his sidekick Dick Clark), pick up the remainder.

But, using the "New Math" favored by the democrats and their fellow travelling leftist supporters, the blame falls equally on Bush and Clinton. 50/50. Now, I'm no math wiz, but even I can see that this doesn't add up. But it explains a lot. From now on, whenever I hear a democrat talk numbers on the economy, jobs, taxes, or anything else, I'll know to properly inflate the figures in their favor.

As for Clark, it was right for him to apologize. After all, much of what happened occured on his watch. It was his job to "counter" the terrorists, and he failed, for 96 months, prior to Bush's Arrival.

But then, how can you trust the analytical ability of anyone who thought he could tell bald face lies in public, and not know that the people he was attempting to smear could simply use his own previous statements to "counter" his brand of political "terrorism"?

They say you shouldn't lie unless you have a good memory. Clark's has failed him completely, just as he failed us, and continues to so.

As for preventing and countering acts of terror, no system of security, regardless of how draconian or totalitarian, will be able to stop the terrorist who is willing to sell his life to complete the mission.

Terrorism has to stopped long before the terrorist slips into a plane, train, or auomobile filled with explosives. Random piece of signals intell warning of a possible event is all well and good, but of little practical use. What is needed is an intelligence network of people, spread around the globe, who can keep their ears to the ground and their eyes on potential terrorists. People who can pick up the phones and give us real details to work with (names, dates, places). People who help us take the bad guys out before they ever reach a security check-point.

Until we have that (and we did at one time, Senator Kerry), any reccomendations made by the 9/11 commission are moot.
42 posted on 04/02/2004 11:00:15 AM PST by PsyOp (Without an accurate conception of danger we cannot understand war. - Clauswitz, On War, 1832.)
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To: kattracks
A real Turkey!
43 posted on 04/02/2004 11:01:42 AM PST by Cold Heat (Notice! Looking for a replacement lawyer with only one hand! (who can't say "on the other hand")
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To: PsyOp
Agreed.
44 posted on 04/02/2004 11:31:50 AM PST by Marine Inspector (Either we will defeat terrorism, or terrorism will defeat us.)
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To: kattracks
It's amazing how many nutcases will come out of the woodwork after something happens that they "knew" about.

Unless this wacko can produce documentation of what she warned anyone about before it happened, I will just file her remarks in the "whackjob" folder.

45 posted on 04/02/2004 11:39:29 AM PST by Publius6961 (50.3% of Californians are as dumb as a sack of rocks (subject to a final count).)
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To: looscnnn
I agree that there is plenty of blame for everyone. I am just sick and tired of all the weasels coming out of the woodwork to make it look like it was all Bush's fault, like this woman and Richard Clarke.

I'll say this: If the Democrats keep shoving, sooner or later there will be some very hard shoving back. Many people are getting so fed up with the dirty crap that there may actually be some need for armed guards during the November elections.

46 posted on 04/02/2004 1:12:36 PM PST by TommyDale
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To: kattracks
There were other cities that were mentioned. Major cities -- with skyscrapers."

I suppose this narrows it down to under 100. But remember the dems opposed any of the actions required to do anything about it.

While they blocked action they held up Bush's appointments. The IRS and FDA heads were just confirmed last year.

47 posted on 04/02/2004 1:27:43 PM PST by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: TommyDale
From rereading the article, it does not appear that she is implicating Bush, etc. I determined the following:

"US officials knew months before September 11, 2001, that the Al-Qaeda network planned to use aircraft to commit a terrorist attack,"

What officials? Her supervisor? Head of FBI? How could they know if it was in the backlog that she was hired after the attacks to translate?

" that there was no such information was "an outrageous lie"."

A little off the mark, there was information but it was in backlog.

"based on documents she had seen during her time with the FBI, after September 11, it was "impossible" that US intelligence officials had no forewarning of the attacks."

Again, if she saw them, they were in the backlog of things to be translated. How could they see it if it was not yet translated?

"There was, however, general information about the use of airplanes and that an attack was just months away"

Again, how could they know if the information had not yet been translated.

It does not seem that she blames Bush, but seems to forget that if she was involved in translating the information then it was too little too late. Yes we had the information, it just was not available for anyone to do anything about it before 9/11 happened.
48 posted on 04/02/2004 1:30:44 PM PST by looscnnn ("Live free or die; death is not the worst of evils" Gen. John Stark 1809)
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To: kattracks
PUH...LEEZE. This is OLD OLD news and nothing more than SPINNING of the facts with half-truths and mistaken assumptions.
49 posted on 04/02/2004 1:30:53 PM PST by PISANO (Our troops...... will NOT tire...will NOT falter.....and WILL NOT FAIL!!!)
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To: looscnnn
Agreed! But the liberals (including the press) will do everything they can to make it appear that the Bush Administration "withheld information". If they can, they will keep this going for several months, then after the election they will say, "Oh, we didn't think Bush did anything wrong".
50 posted on 04/02/2004 1:34:06 PM PST by TommyDale
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