Skip to comments.U.S. Spy Chief: 9/11 'Could Have Been Prevented'
Posted on 09/18/2007 10:14:11 PM PDT by ZacandPook
click here to read article
Ah! It was a trick. It isn't really an article by anyone at PostalMag.com. YOU wrote the article --- which seems more like a book than an article. Since you wrote it, that makes it an opinion piece, not a true article. It has no place on my site. But if I can think of something worthwhile to say about it, I may put a link to it on my site.
The Washington Post has said that the FBI Amerithrax Task Force has posited that, when a Gitmo detainee (which turns out to be the Kabul military commander) told them that there was a storage of anthrax in Kabul, that it was made in the US and transported there. (Which is consistent with the travel of many operatives there during this timeframe).
For Ed not to include the story about what the USG has charged the Gitmo detainee with (possession of anthrax) renders readers unable to connect the dots and understand the Washington Posts summary of the Amerithrax matter. For starters, a reader misses the identity and position of the person the Amerithrax Task Force was getting its information from. A reader also miss the allegation that the detainee has been charged with possession of weaponized anthrax.
Clearly, this military commander captured upon the Fall of Kabul, who agreed to turn over the weapons etc. and who stood accused of having possessed anthrax, is alleged to have been in the thick of things. Yet, Ed omits all these articles while including dozens of articles about anthrax from African drums, shield laws, biological weapons convention etc. — creating a vacuum of relevant information that then lets people with a radical political analysis — like the one law professor on terror watch lists — to create conspiracy theories that anthrax was used to permit increased spending.
Ed, as best as I can tell, even failed to link Muellers video when he said to think 9/11, think Oklahoma City — even though he is the single most authoritative speaker on the subject.
If in the summer of 2001, someone discussing the threat failed to include possibly relevant information and make it available to those who wanted to analyze the threat, I would hope that someone would say: hey, wait a minute, didn’t you see that memo about the flight school students? Hey, wait a minute, didn’t you know that Ibn Khattab worked with Bin Laden and so if Moussaoui is linked to Ibn Khattab, access to his computer is warranted under FISA under any interpretation? Hey, wait a minute, this guy in the phone book was at the January 2000 meeting in Kuala Lumpur with the other Al Qaeda operatives etc.
Here the articles he refuses to post:
September 10, 2007 — SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -
Sometimes the allegations alarmed even the panels of military officers charged with determining whether a detainee should be freed.
Rahmatullah Sangaryar stood accused of “planning biological and poison attacks on United States and coalition forces in Kandahar, Afghanistan,” and of possessing anthrax powder and a liquid poison.
The Afghan detainee said he was captured only with muddy clothes, possessed no anthrax and never planned such an attack. The officer in charge of the panel seemed to grope for a response.
“Do you know of anyone who would accuse you of such an act? This is so serious,” the unidentified officer exclaimed. “I am trying to understand why it is here in front of me, this allegation against you.”
The military has released a greater number of detainees from Guantanamo Bay than the roughly 340 men who are there today.
As of Sept. 6, the United States had transferred or released about 435 prisoners from Guantanamo to more than two dozen nations since the detention center opened in January 2002.
But the Administrative Review Board panels determined last year that 83 percent of the detainees whose cases they’d deliberated were too dangerous to be sent away.
Afghan agents say they arrested Muhammad Hanif in the eastern province of Nangarhar near the border with Pakistan on Monday.
Two others travelling with him were also apprehended.
Nangarhar Governor Gul Aghar Sherzai said he had been picked up in a house which also contained what he described as packets of anthrax powder.
He did not say if the powder found was the deadly anthrax bacteria, or how much of it there was. Local intelligence officials and police would not confirm any discovery of anthrax.
And no, he won’t post the article from Postal Mag.
This is the new position created last year.
Mike is one of us and was an Admiral in the Navy.
The following dots existed on Sept 12, 2001.
Dot 1. Al Qaeda successfully attacked the United States of America on US soil and killed 3000 civilians.
Dot 2. Al Qaeda, if in possession of WMD on 911 would have killed 10 or 100 times that amount.
Dot 3. Saddam Hussein had WMD, USED WMD and paid suicide bomber's families to conduct terrorism.
Dot 4. Al Qaeda was in the market for WMD.
George Bush connected these DOTS, but the DOTS were WRONG [supposedly] and has been demonized like no other president in history during war time.
So much for dot connecting!!
Thank you for raising a very important issue to consider.
After the public relations of Luxor, these considerations you raise were all hotly debated by the IG and EIJ senior leaders in telephone conference calls intercepted by the FBI. Thus, there is no need to make assumptions. The transcripts were made exhibits in the trial of the post office worker. Respectively, the transcripts show you are mistaken — there was great concern about the wisest approach, one calculated to win public support while gaining the release of thousands imprisoned in Egypt.
Apart from that, there was a requirement under the hadiths to provide warning before the use of nonconventional weapons. At the time there was no fatwa authorizing the use of a biological weapons against civilians. The islamic jurisprudence was of the utmost importance to the militants as their very souls were at stake.
Moreover, there was the small matter that they were well-integrated US-based operatives. They certainly would not want to drop it on their head or kill people they knew.
Finally, they were capable only of small scale production. As it was, they caused $6 billion in damage with a few grams.
As for WMD in Iraq, proper analysis at the time would have led to the conclusion the Salafists being responsible, not Saddam. VP Cheney pointed to Al Qaeda in a PBS interview with Lehrer. See CHENEY, at 356-359 (2007) His analysis was sound from the start.
Under your logic, the militants were not responsible for the 1997 al Hayat letter bombs to DC and NYC newspapers and people in symbolic positions because they could have instead blown up the buildings.
The specifics of the true crime or intelligence analysis are provided in outline form at:
“U.S. Didn’t Connect Available Information”
When was the last time Government connected available information?
Pisano, as an example of strict adherence to hadiths revealed in the transcripts, Post office employee and blind sheik spokesman Abdel Sattar, explained in his 2004 trial testimony that in an interview, Mustafa Hamza, who took over from Taha as Islamic Group leader after the Luxor debacle in which in 58 tourists were murdered, was asked how can you explain killing tourists, raiding jewelry stores in such operations. Mustafa Hamza answered in every moment and action, the group starts off by consulting with the righteous Olama. No action is initiated without fatwas from our trusted Olama — meaning scholars in the plural In other words, before carrying out an operation, they get a fatwa. He confirmed that fatwas are important because they are authoritative statements by religious leaders declaring what is and is not Islamically permissible. Sattar had a copy of the book written by former Islamic Group leader Taha justifying the attacks that had been committeed, to include Luxor that was uploaded at the website maintained by London-based Vanguards of Conquest publicist Al-Sirri.
The Koran and hadiths provide extensive guidance on the honorable conduct of warfare. One of the leading non-muslim expert on the subject was Princeton’s Bernard Lewis. For years, Princeton University Middle Eastern history Professor Emeritus Bernard Lewis’ writing on the clash between islam and the west would be translated by the Muslim brotherhood and handed out as pamphlets outside of mosques. After the 1998 “Crusaders” statement by Bin Laden and Zawahiri, Lewis wrote an article “License to Kill, Usama Bin Ladin’s Declaration of Jihad,” in Foreign Affairs: “Obviously, the West must defend itself by whatever means will be effective. But in devising strategies to fight the terrorists, it would surely be useful to understand the forces that drive them.” After 9/11, Lewis, a professor emeritus at Princeton University, admonished the Pentagon Defence Policy Board to consider how much worse the devastation could have been on Sept. 11 if the terrorists had used a weapon of mass destruction such as Iraq was said to possess.
In a September 27, 2001, in an Op Ed in the Wall Street Journal, the 87 year-old historian explained the use of biochemical weapons by Al Qaeda: “the laws of jihad categorically preclude wanton and indiscriminate slaughter. The warriors in the holy war are urged not to harm noncombatants, women and children, ‘unless they attack you first.’ Even such questions as missile and chemical warfare are addressed, the first in relation to mangonels and catapults, the other to the use of poison-tipped arrows and poisoning enemy water supplies. Here the jurists differ— some permit, some restrict, some forbid these forms of warfare. A point on which they insist is the need for a clear declaration of war before beginning hostilities, and for proper warning before resuming hostilities after a truce. As Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman once said in the context of criticizing Sadat’s peace with Israel: “Believers govern according to God’s laws and do not change or replace a single letter or word of them.”
In an essay Islam and Terrorism, Bilal Philips, a key religious mentor of GMUs microbiology grad Ali Al-Timimi, explained the principles of islamic jurisprudence of islamic warfare:
Islam opposes any form of indiscriminate violence. The Quran states: Anyone who has killed another except in retaliation, it is as if he has killed the whole of humankind. [Quran Surah #32 Verse #5] There are strict rules regulating how war may be conducted. Prophet Muhammad forbade the killing of women, children, and old people and the destruction of Churches and Synagogues or farms. Of course, if women, children or the elderly bear arms they may be killed in self-defense.”
“Defending Islam and the Muslim community is a primary aspect of the physical jihad which involves taking up arms against an enemy. God states in the Quran Permission to fight has been given to those who have been attacked because they are wronged. And indeed, Allah is Most Powerful. [Quran Surah #22 Verse #39] and Fight in the cause of Allah against those who fight against you, but do not transgress the limits. Indeed Allah does not love transgressors. [Quran Surah #2 Verse #190]. Muslims are also enjoined to fight against tyranny. The Quran states, Why shouldnt you fight in the cause of Allah and for those oppressed because they are weak. Men, women and children who cry out, Our Lord! Rescue us from this town of oppressors [Quran Surah #4 Verse #75]
As Ali Al Timimi once explained: “Modern warfare did not exist during those times when they wrote those classical books of fiqh.” The old principles therefore must be relied upon to guide the issue in new times.
Spokesman al-Kuwaiti was giving a plain warning in the Fall 2001 letter claimed — not disclosed until 2006 — that the green light had been given for US -bio attack (1) from folks that were US-based, (2) above suspicion, and (3) with access to US and UK government and intelligence information. “The Truth about the New Crusade: A Ruling on the Killing of Women and Children of the Non-Believers,” by Ramzi bin al-Shibh, argues that “the sanctity of women, children, and the elderly is not absolute” and concludes that “in killing Americans who are ordinarily off limits, Muslims should not exceed four million noncombatants, or render more than ten million of them homeless.” Spokesman Abu Ghaith used the same figure in June 2002 in arguing in favor of the moral right to use biological or chemical weapons.
A book commemorating the September 11 “raid” was published by Majallat al-Ansar and consisted of four essays. It addresses the importance that any attack comply with the laws of Sharia. “Some people see fit to raise the issue of Islamic principles of warfare. They claim that the raid does not observe those principles and that Sharia errors occurred. Some ‘modern’ legal scholars see the raid as a violation of the Sharia. ..Everyone knows that the groups in the traditionalist mujahid movement are more committed than anyone else to Sharia in their actions. After all, their actions can cost them their dearest possession after their faith — their souls.” While purporting not to want to get entangled in a discussion of the legal technicalities, the author then addressed at length why the attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon was justified under the laws of sharia.
Vince Cannistraro, a former chief of CIA counter-terrorist operations, discussed the requirement of warning under the laws of jihad on NPR in connection with the Al Qaeda audiotape by Bin Laden that aired shortly before the November 2004 election. In the case of anthrax, Ayman Zawahiri likely considers that the warning required under the laws of jihad has been given.
Zawahiri is the grandson of and quite proud of the well-known Pious Ambassador, who was President of Cairo University. Dr. Zawahiri is reserving himself a spot in a bad place by reason of his botched analysis of the hadiths and teachings of Mohammed governing warfare (no women, children, noncombatants etc.) The same principles prohibit attacking livestock, crops or wells. Judging by the interpretive texts, it would seem that Al Qaeda and the anthrax mailer has violated the Quran and hadiths by killing noncombatant women and children, and even the aged. It cannot be persuasively argued that those noncombatant women and children and the aged attacked the jihadists first. An infant visiting ABC was infected by the anthrax. Before the military tribunal, KSM says the koran forbids killing children. He noted that warfare is guided by the koran and hadiths. Thus, the harshest judgment may await true believers in another world.
The head of Egyptian Islamic Group, who approved of Sadat’s assassination and was released after a quarter-century in prison, said of 9/11:
“The killing of businessmen is forbidden by Islamic law and the World Trade Center was all businessmen. The killing of women and children and old people is forbidden by Islamic law and many of those were killed in the building. The killing of Muslims is prohibited by Islamic law and there were more than 600 Muslim men and women in the Trade Center among those killed.
These are innocent and intelligent spirits and Bin Laden and those with him will have to account for them...and God knows.”
What disturbs me are the threats the government knows about but does little or nothing about because of politics or whatnot.
For example, several years ago I happened in to a training session that was being given by DHS to law enforcement. The session was part of a convention of statewide law enforcement in a large state that borders Mexico. It was being taught by DHS and attended by military officials in uniform.
The purpose of the session was to educate law enforcment about MANPADS. What they were and what they looked like. Where they were built around the world, how the black market for them worked, what parts of MANPADS looked like when the weapon was broken down, etc.
DHS indicated that is was likely that Al Qaeda along with Mexican and South American gangs had been smuggling MANPADS in to the US. Since the "kill zone" for these things is 25-40 miles around any airport if one day a bunch of these things were pulled out of the trunks of cars around airports and shot at commercial airliners things would not be too keen for us.
If something like that ever happens we can say we could have prevented it but that would have involved shutting down the Mexican border and that's something the government won't do. So in the meantime they roll the dice just like they did before 9/11.
Pisano, note also that Al Qaeda is most often associated with a “big bang,” a more precise understanding is that a key modus operandi of the EIJ/Vanguards of Conquest was targeted assassination. The Egyptian Islamic Jihad group specializes in armed attacks against high-level Egyptian government officials, including Cabinet ministers. The group had a “hit list” that included tens of Egyptians to be killed by the group, including journalists. Targeted assassination of people in symbolic position was the modus operandi of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad — not the “big bangs” characteristic of Al Qaeda. Al-Jihad has had a role in most foreign terrorist attacks against the United States and its allies over the past 20 years. The group is most well known for its first, the 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat.
In 1992, Islamic Jihad activists murdered an author, Faraj Fodah, who had openly supported Israeli-Egyptian peace. The secular columnist in his last article had suggested that the militants were motivated by sexual frustration more than politics. In 1993, al-Jihad carried out two assassination attempts, one on Egyptian Interior Minister Hassan Al-Alfi and the other against Prime Minister Atef Sedky. In 1994 al-Jihad militants were linked to two unsuccessful attempts to bomb the Israeli and U.S. embassies in Manila. In 1995, al-Jihad agents made an unsuccessful attempt to kill Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. 15 people were also killed in a November 1995 suicide truck bomb attack on the Egyptian Embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan. In 1998, Al-Jihad was responsible for the U.S. embassy bombings in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. That year, the group also planned an unsuccessful attack on the U.S. Embassy in Albania. The group was involved in October 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in Aden, Yemen, and then in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The group is estimated to have several hundred hard-core members with perhaps as many as several thousand sympathizers.
Indeed, the fact that targeted assassination was the modus operandi of the US-based islamists was established by the first of a series of terrorist attacks in the US — the assassination of radical rabbi Meir Kahane by Egyptian Nosair, who had emigrated from Egypt in 1981. In his address book, Nosair had written the names of some Jewish officials, to include two judges who recently had extradited an Arab terrorist. Some of his staunchest supporters at his trial were later convicted of the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. Nosair’s job had been to protect the blind sheikh in the US. He was a friend of Ali Mohammed who stayed with him when he came to New York. In the nine-month 1995 “day of terror” trial, the blind
In contrast to the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the Egyptian Islamic Group, mainly targets mid- and lower-level security personnel, Coptic Christians, and Western tourists. Thus, as between the Egyptian Islamic Jihad/Vanguards of Conquest and Egyptian Islamic Group, the Fall 2001 letters is more the modus operandi of the Vanguards of Conquest. The commentators who argued that Al Qaeda just goes for the “big bang” were overlooking the modus operandi of the Vanguards and what was known about Ayman’s biological program through “open source” materials.
In his March 2007 confession to a military tribunal, KSM admitted to having been involved in a plot to assassinate a number of former American presidents (including Jimmy Carter), Pope John Paul II and Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf.
On the subject of MANPADS, there was an interesting revelation recently in the case involving an Albany, NY imam and an undercover sting operation involving a stinger missile that was part of a fictitious plot to kill a visiting Pakistani official. The imam according to a USG CI alleged received a message from Bin Laden shortly after 9/11 asking about flight schools and asking how close he could get to an [redacted] aircraft. Now I don’t know what was redacted. Israeli? (for the purpose of shooting down with a MANPAD)? Ultralight? UAV? I don’t know.
As to your broader comment, I agree. Whatever one’s political persuasion, and whatever disagreements about individual issues relating to due process and civil liberties, the FBI and CIA deserve our support on this issue of the anthrax investigation. We are, after all, facing this threat together. First, the nature of such an investigation is that we lack sufficient information to second-guess (or even know) what the FBI and Postal Inspectors on the Amerithrax Task Force are doing. Media reports are a poor approximation of reality because of the lack of good sources. Indeed, there has been compartmentalization and divergent views even within the Task Force. Second, as a number of posters have said, hindsight is 20/20. Third, now that the leaks relating to US scientist Dr. Steve Hatfill seem to have long since been plugged, it is not likely we could do better in striking the appropriate balance between due process and national security. The FBI’s profile includes a US-based supporter of the militant islamists. Attorney General Ashcroft once explained that an “either-or” approach is not useful. The media has tended to overlook the fact that when the FBI uses the word “domestic” the word includes a US-based, highly-educated supporter of the militant islamists.
"It would be best to remind all (including myself) of the time line from the delays in the transition of the executive, the delays in appointments to the Cabinet and the obfuscation of intel that occurred during the first 8 months of the Bush administration, that's the Clinton time bomb that led to 9/11."
The 14 UN anti-terrorism treaties should have been enough.