Skip to comments.Navy Officer Affirms Assertions About Pre-9/11 Data on Atta
Posted on 08/22/2005 4:13:55 PM PDT by neverdem
WASHINGTON, Aug. 22 - An active-duty Navy captain has become the second military officer to come forward publicly to say that a secret defense intelligence program tagged the ringleader of the Sept. 11 attacks as a possible terrorist more than a year before the attacks.
The officer, Scott J. Phillpott, said in a statement today that he could not discuss details of the military program, which was called Able Danger, but confirmed that its analysts had identified the Sept. 11 ringleader, Mohamed Atta, by name by early 2000. "My story is consistent," said Captain Phillpott, who managed the program for the Pentagon's Special Operations Command. "Atta was identified by Able Danger by January-February of 2000."
His comments came on the same day that the Pentagon's chief spokesman, Lawrence Di Rita, told reporters that the Defense Department had been unable to validate the assertions made by an Army intelligence veteran, Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, and now backed up by Captain Phillpott, about the early identification of Mr. Atta.
Colonel Shaffer went public with his assertions last week, saying that analysts in the intelligence project had been overruled by military lawyers when they tried to share the program's findings with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2000 in hope of tracking down terror suspects tied to Al Qaeda.
Mr. Di Rita said in an interview that while the department continued to investigate the assertions, there was no evidence so far that the intelligence unit had come up with such specific information about Mr. Atta and any of the other hijackers.
He said that while Colonel Shaffer and Captain Phillpott were respected military officers whose accounts were taken seriously, "thus far we've not been able to uncover what these people said they saw - memory is a complicated thing."
The statement from Captain...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Other than tweaking the CIA & FBI. Do you think Schaffer cleared it with his superiors before going public with his info on Able Danger?
Aside from all the political ramifications, what is striking is that this Brooklyn connection of Atta's appears to have been unknown before. Was he also connected to the Al Farooq Mosque?
And the names of three others of the hijackers.
Totally in character for the NY Slimes. When not bashing Bush, return to bashing the FBI, CIA or military, and Clinton gets a pass. News also makes $$.
Oh, THAT little matter. Surely a coincidental confabulation.
Without even watching I'd bet O'Reilly is egging him on too. His similar treatment of the SwiftVets is the reason I never deliberately watch or listing to him any more.
This stinks to high heaven.
What documents would Sandy Berger take?
Shaeffer, if I heard him right, said that he still has his briefing that he gave to the 9/11 Commission.
well in this case, Gordon deserved that treatment.
Gordon's appearance made me ill. His trashing of the Lt. Col. and protectionism of Jamie Gorelick was sickening.
It has been reported that their are no official transcripts of the 9-11 Omission testimony before the Commission. Likewise, reports state that depositions by staffers etc. produced no recorded transcripts.
So, following the lead of the Omission Commission, So What! that Lt. Col. Shaffer and Capt. Phillpott have no documentation. Neither does the Commission beyond the book sold in the fiction section at Border.
You got that right! The Slimes is reporting a story that has not been proven. I am sure they will come back later with another yarn, complaining about DoD/FBI/CIA incompetence, etc., and of course in the end it is all Bush's fault.
"They don't have a choice. It's either report it or be very late to the party. " I agree that they don't have a choice, but I doubt it is for the reason you give. The NY Times is agenda driven and will not break stories that hurt the cause. Hopefully a certain treasonous criminal organization from Arkansas has already been checkmated. While I doubt Slick would feel remorse, he would probably recognize when the gig was up and that might be reflected by the lack of charisma.
I'm laughing, because the makers of "Inside 9/11" came up with corroboration for Shaffer and Phillpott, without ever talking to them.
The Times noted the "Brooklyn cell" about 2 weeks ago, IIRC.
Was he also connected to the Al Farooq Mosque?
I have no idea.
The question that comes to mind is do the two officers claim they put anything in writing, or know someone else did. I have not comes across myself them saying anything about that.
This is all so....scripted.
What puzzles me is why di Rita is acting like another clintonoid clone. Here's a capsule bio:
Lawrence Di Rita
Lawrence Di Rita is "Acting Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs. In addition, he serves as Special Assistant to the Secretary of Defense. He joined the Department after serving as Legislative Director, then Chief of Staff, for Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) from 1996-2001.
"A former Naval officer, Mr. Di Rita served in several ships and shore assignments before leaving the service in 1994. His final tour was on the Joint Staff.
"After leaving the Navy, Mr. Di Rita joined the Washington-based Heritage Foundation in 1994 as Deputy Director of Foreign Policy and Defense Studies.
"Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Mr. Di Rita is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and Johns Hopkins University."
Source: Department of Defense: Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs (http://www.defenselink.mil/bios/asdpa_bio.html).
GOOD. Hopefully still others are willing to buck the CYA-retribution atmosphere and tell the truth about what was known and when.
I read documentation is missing???
Atta data. Just wanted to type that. Atta data. Atta data. Atta data.
I meant since the emergence of the Able Danger material.
I am hoping that this means there will be new leads pursued to cells within the US which I am sure exist.
This will only be possible if the 9/11 Commission, Commissioner Kean, and the Gorelicks, Bergers and the like stop obfuscating, stalling and questioning the authenticity.
Also Weldon's interest was first stirred by pending legislation to limit data mining. I sure hope that assinine idea gets canned.
I agree a good paper weight or lets see....helps to hold up really important books since the commission report is worthless....COVERUP 101
I'll give him the benefit of the doubt. There's a lot of stuff happening besides Able Danger. He doesn't want to put his foot in his mouth.
And according to "Inside 9-11", Able Danger did identify Atta as a danger having Al-Qaeda connections
The former contractor, James D. Smith, said that Mr. Atta's name and photograph were obtained through a private researcher in California who was paid to gather the information from contacts in the Middle East. Mr. Smith said that he had retained a copy of the chart for some time and that it had been posted on his office wall at Andrews Air Force Base. He said it had become stuck to the wall and was impossible to remove when he switched jobs.
There are ways to corroborate the Abel Danger claims. Hopefully, there are documents and more people will come forward. We need a commission to investigate the commission.
I have to be careful, but I have a relative in intel, who told me the Army knew of the threat posed by some of the 9-11 people in advance. He's young, so I greeted this with skepticism. He was adamant. This was a year ago.
"That is very heavily qualified denial."
Good spot. They're catching up, or hiding. The leakers could be exaggerating, but there's a kernel there.
Could be a problem - was the program legal/authorized in the first place? Might be some tiptoe-ing due to that concern.
I had asked that question on another thread. to do this, they needed pools of hotel records, credit card records, immigration records, a bunch of other stuff to qualify a intersection of data down to a modestly short list of possible hits. where did they get it all from?
" This is incorrect, I can't explain why but it had to do with the difference in a visa, a work permit or something like that."
Atta supposedly had a green card. So based on the moronic thoughts of at the time and driven by the memos (wall) Jamie Gorelick sent out, the DoD lawyers and apparently DIA lawyers told the AD team and liason officer LCT Shaffer they could not talk with the FBI regarding Attas "because he was to be treated with the same rights all Americans had". This is at the heart of this whole matter. Yes the Lawyers in the Defense Department went along with the directives handed down by the DoJ. They are on record as to saying paraphrased. They (DoD/DIA) where breaking any civil laws, therefore the AD team was simply told on three occasions to cool it. And Shaffer was told by his DoD Major General to not approach the FBI, with a similiar warning.
I don't follow your logic.
Improperly, I bet.
Might be related to nascent plans for Total Information Awareness
(((PING))) Navy Captain backs Shaffer's story.
"Originally from Detroit, Michigan"
There is your answer. His mother probably beat the shit out of him while he was a kid and made him sware on a stack of bibles that he would never do anything to harm the democratic party.
Bit extreme but one never knows in these matters.
Yep. Also notice Bill lives outside the U.S. "to be closer" to Webster Hubbles daughter (evil laugh).
As a matter of fact, has Plame made it back from France yet?
Picture Sandy Burger in the national archives stuffing documents down his pants. Does this ring a bell?
Thanks for the ping!
" As a matter of fact, has Plame made it back from France yet?"
Last I heard of that bitch was she was on some old broken down ore freighter loaded with yellow cake uranium, leaving some Nigerian port on it's way to Iran.
Because the NY Times reports it now, three years from now, in 2008, it will be "old news", "so what", "that dog won't hunt".
If memory serves, in the immediate run up to the Presidential election De Rita was point man for the "US lets tons of explosives in Iraq get stolen" story. He did a great job then of controlling the damage and lies.
Maybe Defense Dept is worried about getting hurt by this themselves. Might also explain the NY Times uncharacteristic zeal.
Yeah, this helps alot. Whew ;)
Yep, sure seems that way to me...
Very good question.
I recall Lt. Col. Shaffer saying something about two-and-half terabytes of databases. He mentioned the Internet and commercial pay databases. But I doubt that credit card usage can be had except from Visa, MC, AmEx, etc.
Of course, the pay databases may have records from tens of thousands of businesses and credit card purchases.
Please FReepmail me if you want on or off my miscellaneous ping list.
Thanks nutmeg. This is very interesting.
Is it believable that the information could have been extracted from databases using pattern analysis, yes (former database designer so I know it is possible). And then there is this interesting tidbit from a New York Times article titled C.I.A. Was Given Data on Hijacker Long Before 9/11 by James Risen and Eric Lichtblau ( February 24, 2004)
American investigators were given the first name and telephone number of one of the Sept. 11 hijackers two and a half years before the attacks on New York and Washington, but the United States appears to have failed to pursue the lead aggressively, American and German officials say.