Skip to comments.Pentagon: Secret unit couldn't stop 9/11 - Able Danger
Posted on 09/21/2006 7:14:42 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON - A Pentagon report rejects the idea that intelligence gathered by a secret military unit could have been used to stop the Sept. 11 hijackings.
The Pentagon inspector general's office said Thursday that a review of records from the unit, known as Able Danger, found no evidence it had identified ringleader Mohamed Atta or any other terrorist who participated in the 2001 attacks.
The report was ordered following the assertion last year that the unit had identified four of the 19 hijackers in 2000. That claim was made by a former intelligence officer who worked on Able Danger, Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, and by Rep. Curt Weldon (news, bio, voting record), vice chairman of the House Armed Services and Homeland Security committees.
Weldon, R-Pa., has said the unit used data-mining to link Atta and three other hijackers to al-Qaida more than a year before the attacks. The 71-page report, blacked out in parts, rejected Weldon's claim that the unit wanted information given to the FBI but that Pentagon lawyers would not allow it.
Weldon questioned the "motives and the content" of the report and rejected its conclusions. "Acting in a sickening bureaucratic manner, the DOD IG cherry-picked testimony from witnesses in an effort to minimize the historical importance of the Able Danger effort," Weldon said in a statement.
"The report trashes the reputations of military officers who had the courage to step forward and put their necks on the line to describe important work they were doing to track al-Qaida prior to 9/11," Weldon said. He said the investigation did little to answer the questions it was supposed to examine.
The report acknowledged that one Able Danger member alleged he was prohibited from providing a chart to the FBI in 2000 by a senior Special Operations commander. But, the report said, "the senior official did not recall the incident and we are persuaded that the chart would have been of minimal value to the FBI."
The Pentagon had said some employees recall seeing an intelligence chart identifying Atta as a terrorist before the attacks. The report said those accounts "varied significantly" and witnesses were inconsistent at times in their statements.
Several lawmakers had asked the Pentagon to investigate whether Defense Department officials mismanaged Able Danger and retaliated against Shaffer. He was a leading proponent of the program who later had his security clearance revoked.
The report said Shaffer was not retaliated against because of his involvement. But the inspector general did find "procedural oversights" in the handling of his office contents and his performance evaluations.
A message left with Shaffer's lawyer was not returned immediately on Thursday.
Last year, the bipartisan commission that investigated the attacks dispensed with the issue by calling it "not historically significant."
Thomas Kean, the commission's co-chairman, said he hoped the report would put an end to discussion about Able Danger. "After this I don't know where it can go," Kean said.
Associated Press writer Pauline Jelinek contributed to this report.
Defense Department Office of Inspector General:
Why do I smell an odor in the air?
Why do I smell an odor in the air?
Hugo Chavez is in town?
The sulphur part IS Chavez...he just blamed it on Bush...you know how guys blame GAS on the DOG...LOL
I don't know...I smell a "dodge"..maybe not a coverup...but at least a "dodge.
I have to say that I do NOT trust the "lifers" at CIA, STATE, OR the Pentagon...none have seemed all that keen to work WITH President Bush these last 6 years.
PINZ....fancy meeting you here....I hope you won't tell the folks at home that I was visiting a different thread..LOL
Gov. Kean seems to agree with you. He hopes this report buries the story....
Which came first? the report or the investigation?
I won't if you won't. ;-)
Last check before bed... 120 pouches cut out and edge finished....
This is the "report" that was released today.
I smell a Coverup!
The people who shut down AD for political reasons are now saying it was not effective. No surprise here.
Same as the Senate "report" last week that could be debunked 100 different ways in 30 seconds or less. Cover-up? Just another 9-11 OMISSION Commission!
Really nice of them to release this so close to Weldon's election.
We should get Lt. Schaeffer to bone up...and be ready to run for office in 2008.
Naturally you won't find any evidence if you refuse to look for it.
WELDON REJECTS DOD REPORT ON ABLE DANGER & HARASSMENT OF MILITARY OFFICER
WASHINGTON, Sep 21 - U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon, vice chairman of the House Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees, today released the following statement about the Department of Defense Inspector General (DOD IG) report on Alleged Misconduct by Senior DoD Officials Concerning the Able Danger Program and Lieutenant Colonel Anthony A. Shaffer, U.S. Army Reserve.
The purpose of the DOD IG investigation was to shed light on the pressures and harassment placed on LTC Shaffer and other Able Danger team members. It was also supposed to investigate why Able Danger was glossed over by the Pentagon and why there was such a fight to get information out of the Department of Defense about Able Danger, its findings and the reasoning behind destroying crucial data about linkages and relationship of al-Qaeda prior to 9/11. The IGs report did little to answer these questions.
The DOD IG failed to brief LTC Shaffers lawyer before releasing the report. The contents and overall tone and scope of the report were leaked to the media before Congress was even briefed of its findings. The DOD IG failed to explain in their briefing to me and my staff how such information got out to the media. They said they would investigate, but I have very little confidence that anything will come of that. Also, the timeliness of this report, just weeks before Congressional elections, also raises serious questions about the IGs motivations.
Acting in a sickening bureaucratic manner, the DOD IG cherry picked testimony from witnesses in an effort to minimize the historical importance of the Able Danger effort. The IG narrowly focused their investigation on the witnesses recollections of the 9/11 hijackers and a chart. The report trashes the reputations of military officers who had the courage to step forward and put their necks on the line to describe important work they were doing to track al-Qaeda prior to 9/11.
To further substantiate the Able Danger effort, within the last three months of the DOD IG investigation, another person who recently retired from the military has come forward and corroborated the work of the Able Danger program. Additionally, another official within DOD has conducted data runs of stored pre-9/11 data that has yielded information about the Brooklyn cell.
They do not explain why LTC Shaffer and other Able Danger principles were harassed by their superiors. Specifically, the report did not address why the Defense Intelligence Agency trumped up phony charges against LTC Shaffer in an effort to revoke his clearance. When the DOD IG briefed me, they could not account for why they failed to interview key witnesses connected to this harassment, except for claiming that these witnesses did not come to us evidence that this was not a proactive investigation.
The FBI agent that was tasked with setting up meetings between Able Danger and FBI officials meetings that were block by DOD lawyers was not interviewed in this report, yet it concluded that Able Danger members were not prohibited from sharing intelligence information with law enforcement authorities.
I am appalled that the DOD IG would expect the American people to actually consider this a full and thorough investigation. I question their motives and the content of this report, and I reject the conclusions they have drawn.
The "report" basically calls Shaefer a liar...more burro-cratic traitors covering for Clinton.
more burro-cratic traitors covering for Clinton.
This was let out to help the Clintonista running against Weldon. Joe Sestak.
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