Skip to comments.Senate Panel Plans Hearing Into Reports on Terrorist (Able Danger)
Posted on 08/31/2005 11:48:59 PM PDT by neverdem
WASHINGTON, Aug. 31 - The Senate Judiciary Committee announced Wednesday that it was investigating reports from two military officers that a highly classified Pentagon intelligence program identified the Sept. 11 ringleader as a potential terrorist more than a year before the attacks.
The committee's chairman, Senator Arlen Specter, Republican of Pennsylvania, said in an interview that he was scheduling a public hearing on Sept. 14 "to get to the bottom of this" and that the military officers "appear to have credibility."
The senator said his staff had confirmed reports from the two officers that employees of the intelligence program tried to contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2000 to discuss the work of the program, known as Able Danger.
The officers, Capt. Scott J. Phillpott of the Navy and Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer of the Army, have said the intelligence program identified the terrorist ringleader, Mohamed Atta, by early 2000. Colonel Shaffer, a reservist, has said three meetings with F.B.I. agents in 2000 to discuss Able Danger were canceled on the order of military lawyers.
Senator Specter's announcement came as the Pentagon said again on Wednesday that while it was not disputing the officers' reports, it could find no documentation to back up what they were saying.
"Not only can we not find documentation, we can't find documents to lead us to the documentation," said Maj. Paul Swiergosz, a Pentagon spokesman.
Other Pentagon officials have suggested that the memories of Captain Phillpott and Colonel Shaffer are flawed and that Mr. Atta could not have been identified before the attacks, a view shared by members of the independent commission that investigated the Sept. 11 attacks.
But Colonel Shaffer and military officials involved in the intelligence program say it may not be surprising that documents were destroyed, since the project became...
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Arlen, Arlen, he's our man,
If he can't do it....
GretchenM and vadkins are asking for one on this thread.http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1474635/posts?page=21 Thanks! ;)
Notice that when you link to the excerpt, you are led to believe that the story has been given some status because it's listed on a webpage as "Next Article in Washington (3 of 3) >". It's not unreasonable to think that you would find it on their running homepage as the third story in the "Washington" section, but it wasn't the last time that I looked. It's below the fold on the "Washington" section webpage.
No. Look under Atta as a keyword. That's how vadkins post was categorized by the mods. Atta (Able Danger)
Okay, so Sep. 14 is the date set for Specter to try to derail Able Danger. (yes, I'm cynical.) And Weldon is supposed to drop more info next week. This should get fun.
Hopefully, NO will be under control by then, and the hour-to-hour crisis will be over.
I must say, this is terribly convenient. I can just post a copy of my response to an older (10-15 minutes ago) post.
"With Arlen Specter calling these hearings,however,forgive me for being a bit skeptical."
I think I can feel a "pristine bullet" coming on. This could be very reminiscent of the 9-11 Commission Hearings or the U.N. self-investigation concerning Oil-For-Food (where one lamb has already been sacrificed).
I'm calendaring Sept. 14 so I don't make plans that day. Thanks!
I'm glad there will be a hearing, even just a one day hearing, which probably won't be shown live even on C-span 3. But you know what? I have the feeling some schmuck IG officer, or mid-level muckety muck in the Pentagon's General Counsel office, will fall on his sword for making the decision to kill Able Danger and destroy all it's documentation. And that will be that.
I don't think Spector will push to find out why the 9-ll Commission omitted Able Danger information from it's Report.
Oh, that's discouraging. Is there NO good news out there :-)
You ask a very difficult question, and here's the best I can do for you. I'm grasping for anything here:
"Zodiaction Points for Today
ARIES (March 21-April 19): Your desire to be kind to everyone tends to make you disregard purely personal ties. There can be competition for your affection, so you`re challenged to let everyone feel personally touched.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): You can make an effort to make the workplace more harmonious and agreeable. You can improve your health, but are very tempted to indulge in the very things you know are bad for you.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): This is a good day for expressing your better nature, but there is also the temptation to please yourself alone. It`s important to share for the benefit of all; this ensures everyone gets what they need.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): You are concerned about security and comfort today. You can extend good wishes to others, as well as wanting a carefree day yourself. Don`t let sensitivity make you turn a blind eye to suffering.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Travel and communication are effective ways to promote a personal cause. You`re able to rally support, but mostly in your local neighborhood or among those in your special interest group.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): It`s important to share your advantages, not hoard them selfishly. You probably can find something of yours that you can give to someone more needy, something desirable but not essential to keep.
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): You want to make a positive difference, but may try to do too much or take on tasks that are beyond you. You must find strength in numbers and in cooperation, to make effective use of your generosity.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Don`t let compassion leave you vulnerable to scams. Beware of price-gouging tactics. You have a chance to put faith into action to make a real difference in people`s lives.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): You feel fulfilled and satisfied helping others now. You feel connected to your personal purpose in life, not distracted from it, through generosity and charity.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): You can use your popularity and influence to assist others today. Your example inspires others to follow your lead. It`s important to build trust and bring people together peacefully.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Exercise empathy and compassion today. You can connect to higher principles of giving and compassion. Don`t let yourself be locked into helpless and ineffective sentimentality.
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): Tend to legal matters pertaining to inheritance and insurance. Joint accounts are important issues to resolve on a sound, amicable basis. Don`t let greed get the better of you.
These Interpretations Are Based on the Aspects and Positions of the Planets in Relation to Each Sun-Sign. They Indicate the General Mood and Issues of the Day As You Experience Them. Be Creative in Applying Your Forecast to the Actual Circumstances of Your Life."
Sadly I have to agree with you that Specter cannot be counted on to do anything but harm to Weldon's cause. I am curious why this is being handled by the Judiciary Committee when it is a national security issue. My cynical mind says that Specter offered up the help Weldon needs in the Senate in order to get control and to kill it. I hope I'm wrong.
Perpetual cynics seem to forget that one of the main reasons Justice Thomas has his seat is because of the work of Arlen Specter. Not one of my favorite Senators but I have no doubt he will do good work here for the right thing.
14 applies to you.
Not only will "that" not be "that" but there will likely be multiple hearings held on this in both the House and the Senate. See 14
Thanks for the ping!
The Freepers have been on this story for weeks, and we still don't know what happened. What will they find out in a one day hearing?
"As Washington braces for the battle over the likely confirmation of John Roberts to the Supreme Court, it is not surprising that the punch line to the running joke in the offices of Judiciary Committee Chair Arlen Specter has been, "What August recess?" What is surprising, though, is that all the extra work is not just about the Roberts confirmation, because Specter, unlike much of Washington, is looking beyond that.
"We've got a ferocious agenda when we finish Roberts," promises Specter, who has already scheduled hearings on the contentious issue of foreign prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and domestic prisoners returning to U.S. communities. "You ain't seen nothin' yet."
He wants to see a stem cell bill come to the floor of the Senate, and in the midst of all this, the Congressional Budget Office last week issued its report on the costs of the huge asbestos liability legislation that Specter has cobbled together and passed out of his committee in mid-June with the hope that it will pass the full Senate this year."
Did you notice USNews (with ample direct quotes from Specter), didn't even mention the Able Danger Hearing? We can hope Specter isn't pulling Weldon's leg about a serious hearing, but frankly "hoping" on Specter isn't something Robert Bork would advise.
These hearings will continue past this fall and maybe even until next Nov. Preferably the report will be released in time to disembowel the Evil One prior to the fall elections.
I do not want this to be done rapidly.
Nor am I a "strenuous defender" of Specter. However, I do not doubt he will do the right thing here. Nor does the chairman have to be present for the hearings to continue.
Floods, natural disasters, Specter apparently doing a serious investigation, and the New York Times doing real journalism. Must be the end of the world.
I so can't wait to see what else Weldon has.
I might be a little starry-eyed here... but does anyone else think that Weldon should run for the Presidency in '08? I love the way he's just throwing himself underneath the Washington machine to make sure the truth gets out. I'm not that familiar with his track record, but I'm liking the man's integrity.
BUMP for exposure
Latest on Able Danger on Levin's Show Now.
How about some more information on Able Danger's chain of command? I don't think Arlen can pull the equivalent of another "magic bullet" explanation, and if he tries, Congressman Weldon probably won't allow it.
J.D. Smith, a defense contractor who claims he worked on the technical side of the unit, code-named "Able Danger", has pay records that should be traceable.
He said the team had been established by the Special Operations Command in 1999, under a classified directive issued by Gen. Hugh Shelton, then the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to assemble information about Al Qaeda networks around the world.
Gen. Hugh Shelton should testify.
From time to time, Ill ping on noteworthy articles about politics, foreign and military affairs. FReepmail me if you want on or off my list.
Perhaps the missing documentation was in the section of the Pentagon that was destroyed on 9/11.
Thanks for the ping!
Specter is called the undertaker for a reason...he buries evidence.