Skip to comments.Hatfill v. US - DOJ and FBI Statement of Facts (filed Friday)
Posted on 04/13/2008 8:20:52 AM PDT by ZacandPook
On Friday, the government filed this statement of the facts in its memorandum in support of its motion for summary judgment in a civil rights and Privacy Act lawsuit brought by Dr. Steve Hatfill.
The anthrax attacks occurred in October 2001. Public officials, prominent members of the media, and ordinary citizens were targeted by this first bio-terrorist attack on American soil. Twenty-two persons were infected with anthrax; five died. At least 17 public buildings were contaminated. The attacks wreaked havoc on the U.S. postal system and disrupted government and commerce, resulting in economic losses estimated to exceed one billion dollars. The attacks spread anxiety throughout the nation already in a heightened state of alert in the wake of the attacks of September 11 and left behind a lasting sense of vulnerability to future acts of bioterrorism. Given the unprecedented nature of the attacks, the investigation received intense media attention. Journalists from virtually every news organization pursued the story, sometimes conducting their own worldwide investigation to determine the person or persons responsible for the attacks and the motive behind them.
A. Journalistic Interest In Hatfill That Predates Alleged Disclosures
Testimony has revealed that at least certain members of the media began focusing their attention upon Hatfill in early 2002 because of tips they had received from former colleagues of his who found him to be highly suspicious. Articles about Hatfill thus began to appear in the mainstream press and on internet sites as early as January of 2002, and continued until the first search of his apartment on June 25, 2002, which, in turn, led to even more intense press attention.
Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, a Professor at the State University of New York, for example, complained in January and February 2002 on the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) website of the FBIs apparent lack of progress on the investigation, and described generally the person she believed was the anthrax perpetrator. Analysis of Anthrax Attacks, Possible Portrait of the Anthrax Perpetrator (Section IV.6), Defendants Appendix , Ex. 1. Rosenberg did not identify Hatfill by name, but described him in sufficient detail: a Middle-aged American who [w]orks for a CIA contractor in Washington, DC area and [w]orked in USAMRIID laboratory in the past and [k]nows Bill Patrick and probably learned a thing or two about weaponization from him informally. Id. In his amended complaint, Hatfill states that Professor Rosenbergs Possible Portrait of the Anthrax Perpetrator . . . described [him].
In addition to her postings on the FAS website, Professor Rosenberg also presented a lecture on February 18, 2002 at Princeton Universitys Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, entitled The Anthrax Attacks and the Control of Bioterrorism. Ex. 2. During the course of her lecture, Rosenberg stated that she had draw[n] a likely portrait of the perpetrator as a former Fort Detrick scientist who is now working for a contractor in the Washington, D.C, area[.] Ex. 3. Rosenberg also commented upon Hatfills whereabouts on the date of the attacks, stating that [h]e had reason for travel to Florida, New Jersey and the United Kingdom where the attacks had been and from which the letters had been purportedly sent that [h]e grew [the anthrax], probably on a solid medium, and weaponised it at a private location where he had accumulated the equipment and the material. Id. Rosenberg also stated that the investigation had narrowed to a common suspect[,] and that [t]he FBI has questioned that person more than once[.] Id. Former White House Spokesperson, Ari Fleischer, immediately responded to Rosenbergs comments, stating that there were several suspects and the FBI had not narrowed that list down to one. Ex. 4. The FBI also issued a press release, stating that it had interviewed hundreds of persons, in some instances, more than once. It is not accurate, however, that the FBI has identified a prime suspect in this case. Id. Rosenbergs comments and writings were subsequently pursued by The New York Times (The Times). In a series of Op-Ed articles published from May through July 2002, Nicholas Kristof, a journalist with The Times, accused Hatfill of being responsible for the anthrax attacks. Kristof wrote on May 24, 2002 that the FBI was overlooking the anthrax perpetrator, noting that experts (Professor Rosenberg) point to one middle-aged American who has worked for the United States military bio-defense program and had access to the labs at Fort Detrick, Md. His anthrax vaccinations are up to date, he unquestionably had the ability to make first-rate anthrax, and he was upset at the United States government in the period preceding the anthrax attack. Ex. 5.
Hatfill first noticed the Kristof columns in May 2002. Hatfill Dep. Tran. in Hatfill v. The New York Times, No. 04-807 (E.D.Va.), Ex. 6, at 13: 3-6. According to Hatfill, [w]hen Mr. Kristofs article appeared, it was the first [time] that [he] realized that [his] name [was] in the public domain with connection with an incident of mass murder. Id. at 16:15-18. Hatfill has charged that The Times began the entire conflagration and gave every journalist out there reason to drive this thing beyond any sort of sanity. Mr. Kristof lit the fuse to a barn fire and he repeatedly kept stoking the fire. Id. at 43:19 - 44:1. In July 2004, Hatfill thus filed suit alleging that these articles libeled him by falsely accusing him of being the anthrax mailer. Complaint, Hatfill v. The New York Times, No. 04-807 (E.D.Va.), Ex. 7.
Hatfill alleges in that lawsuit that Kristof wrote his columns in such a way as to impute guilt for the anthrax letters to [him] in the minds of reasonable readers. Id. ¶ 12. The articles, Hatfill claimed, which described his background and work in the field of bio-terrorism, state or imply that [he] was the anthrax mailer. Id. ¶ 14. Hatfill specifically alleged that statements in Kristofs articles were false and defamatory, including those that stated that he: (1) unquestionably had the ability to make first-rate anthrax; (2) had the ability to send the anthrax; (3) had the access required to send the anthrax; (4) had a motive to send the anthrax; (5) was one of a handful of individuals who had the ability, access and motive to send the anthrax; (6) had access to an isolated residence in the fall of 2001, when the anthrax letters were sent; (7) gave CIPRO [an antibiotic famously used in the treatment of anthrax infection] to people who visited [the isolated residence]; (8) his anthrax vaccinations were up to date as of May 24, 2002; (9) he failed 3 successive polygraph examinations between January 2002 and August 13, 2002; (10) he was upset at the United States government in the period preceding the attack; (11) he was once caught with a girlfriend in a biohazard hot suite at Fort Detrick [where Hatfill had concedely worked] surrounded only by blushing germs. Id. ¶ 16 (brackets in original). Hatfill alleges in his lawsuit against The Times that [t]he publication of [Kristofs] repeated defamation of [him] . . .gave rise to severe notoriety gravely injurious to [him]. Id. ¶ 29. The injury, Hatfill alleged, was [made] all the more severe given the status and journalistic clout of The Times. Id. This harm was compounded, Hatfill alleged, by the fact that these articles were thereafter repeatedly published by a host of print and on-line publications and on the television and radio news in the following months. Id., ¶ 30.
The case was initially dismissed by the trial court. Hatfill v. The New York Times, No. 04-807, 2004 WL 3023003 (E.D.Va.). That decision was reversed by the United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, 416 F.3d 320 (4th Cir. 2005). Upon remand, the trial court granted The Times summary judgment, finding that Hatfill was a public figure and public official and had failed to present evidence of malice. Hatfill v. The New York Times, 488 F. Supp. 2d 522 (E.D. Va. 2007). In arriving at that conclusion, the court considered Hatfills repeated media interviews before the attacks; the fact that he had drafted a novel, which he registered with [the] United States Copyright office, describing a scenario in which a terrorist sickens government officials with a biological agent; and had lectured on the medical effects of chemical and biological agents. Id. at 525.
Although not recited by the district court in The New York Times litigation, Hatfill also talked directly to reporters about his suspected involvement in the attacks. Brian Ross of ABC News, and his producer, Victor Walter, for example, talked separately to Hatfill on two to three occasions as early as January and February 2002, Ross Dep. Tran., Ex. 8, at 263:14 - 270:1, and continued talking to Hatfill until May of that year. Id. Ross also spoke to Hatfills friend and mentor, William Patrick, about Hatfill. Id. at 287:9 - 295:12. These meetings were prompted by discussions ABC News had in January 2002 with eight to twelve former colleagues of Hatfill at the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID). Id. at 242:7 - 246:14. Hatfills former colleagues found him to be highly suspicious because of a number of things he had done when he worked at [USAMRIID], and this behavior was strange "and unusual and they felt that he was a likely candidate. Id. at 242: 7-17. These meetings were also prompted by ABC Newss own investigative reporting into Hatfills background; the more ABC News learned the more interested [they] became in Hatfill. Id. at 264: 14-15.
Scott Shane of the Baltimore Sun also spoke to Hatfill in February 2002. Shane also spoke to USAMRIID employees who had worked with Hatfill. Ex. 9. These employees stated that they had been questioned by the FBI and asked about a former Fort Detrick scientist Hatfill who returned a few years ago and took discarded biological safety cabinets, used for work with dangerous pathogens. Id. at 1. These employees claimed that Hatfill ha[d] expertise on weaponizing anthrax and ha[d] been vaccinated against it[.] Id. Shane also called one of Hatfills former classmates, who was plagued by questions from the Baltimore Sun and others within the media regarding Hatfills alleged involvement with the large anthrax outbreak in Zimbabwe[.] Ex. 10. According to Hatfill, this classmate was told by Shane that Hatfill was purportedly responsible for mailing the anthrax letters and also starting the [anthrax] outbreak in Zimbabwe/ Rhodesia twenty years before. Ex. 11, at AGD29SJH00014; see also e-mail to Hatfill fr. DF Andrews, dated Mar. 1, 2002, Ex. 10. Hatfill told Shane in February 2002 that he had been questioned by the FBI and that he considered the questioning to be part of a routine effort to eliminate people with the knowledge to mount [the] attack. Ex. 9. Hatfill also confirmed for Shane that he had taken an FBI polygraph. Ex. 12, at 2. In March 2002, Hatfill left Shane a frantic telephone message reportedly stating how he had been [in the bioterrorism] field for a number of years, working until 3 oclock in the morning, trying to counter this type of weapon of mass destruction and fearing that his career [was] over at [that] time. Ex. 13, at 2. According to Hatfill, Shane later Case 1:03-cv-01793-RBW Document 232-2 Filed 04/11/2008 Page 17 of 73
____ Hatfill did not sue either Shane or Rosenberg, even though Hatfill has stated that Rosenberg caused the focus on him. Ex. 14, at 10. Because Hatfill believed that the portrait Rosenberg painted at the February 2002 Princeton conference and in her website postings was so identifying and incriminating, however, Hatfill advised Rosenberg through his lawyers that before [she] get[s] close to describing him in the future, by name or otherwise, [that she] submit [her] comments for legal vetting before publishing them to anyone. Ex. 15. There is no evidence that the agency defendants bore any responsibility for the media presence. Information about FBI searches is routinely shared with a variety of state and local law enforcement authorities. Roth Dep. Tran., Ex. 16, at 163:5 -165:21; Garrett Dep. Tran. Ex. 17, at 79: 8-18. ______
compounded Hatfills problems by calling his then-employer, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), and accusing Hatfill of being responsible for the anthrax attacks, Ex. 11, at AGD29SJH00014, which, according to Hatfill, cost him his job as a contractor at SAIC. Id. 1
The media frenzy surrounding Hatfill intensified upon the search of his apartment on June 25, 2002, and the search of a refrigerated mini-storage facility in Ocala, Florida on June 26, 2002. Both were witnessed by the media, and the search of his apartment was carried live on national television. In addition to the television coverage, the searches generated a slew of articles about Hatfill throughout the media, one fueling the next. The Associated Press, for example, detailed in an article, dated June 27, 2002, Hatfills (1) work as biodefense researcher, including studies he had conducted at SAIC, and the work he had done at the USAMRIID; (2) his educational background; (3) where he had previously lived; and (4) security clearances he had held and the suspension of those clearances. Ex. 18. The Hartford Courant reported these same details, and additional information regarding Hatfills purported service in the Rhodesian army. Ex. 19. The next day -- June 28, 2002 -- the Hartford Courant reported details about Hatfills background in biological warfare, his vaccinations against anthrax, questioning that purportedly had occurred among Hatfills colleagues, his educational background (including the claim that he had attended medical school in Greendale), and lectures that he had given on the process of turning biological agents into easily inhaled powders. Ex. 20. None of this information is attributed to a government source.
B. Hatfills Public Relations Offensive
In July 2002, after these reports and after the first search of Hatfills apartment on June 25, 2002, Hatfill retained Victor Glasberg as his attorney. Glasberg Dep. Tran., Ex. 21, at 12: 16-19. Glasberg believed that any number of people in the media [had] overstepped their bounds. . . . prior to July of 2002 . Id. at 141:1 - 142:6. To counter this information, Hatfill set out on a public relations offensive of his own to turn [the] tide. Id. at 138: 20-21, 178: 12-13.
Recognizing that Hatfill continue[d] [to] get killed with bad press, national as well as local[,] Hatfill drafted a statement and Glasberg forwarded that statement in July 2002 to Hatfills then-employer at Louisiana State University (LSU). Ex. 11, at 1. The statement detailed Hatfills background, including his medical training and employment history, and provided details about Hatfills involvement in the anthrax investigation, including how he had been interviewed by the FBI and had taken a polygraph examination. Id. at AGD29SJH00002-13. Hatfills statement corroborated the conversations that Hatfill reportedly had with Scott Shane of the Baltimore Sun in February 2002, and how that interaction had purportedly cost Hatfill his job at SAIC in March 2002. Id. at AGD29SJH00014.
In his July statement, Hatfill was careful not to blame DOJ or the FBI for his troubles or for any wrongdoing for the information about him that had made its way into the press. He touted the professionalism of the FBI, noting that [t]he individual FBI agents with whom [he had come] in contact during this entire process are sons and daughters of which America can be justifiably proud. They are fine men and women doing their best to protect this country. Id. at AGD29SJH00016. Hatfills objection lay with the media, whom he labeled as irresponsible[,] for trading in half-truths, innuendo and speculation, making accusations and slanting real world events . . . to gain viewer recognition, sell newspapers, and increase readership and network ratings. Id.
As the investigation proceeded, however, Glasberg publicly criticized investigators on the date of the second search of Hatfills apartment, August 1, 2002, for obtaining a search warrant rather than accepting the offer Glasberg had allegedly made to cooperate. Ex. 22. So angry was Glasberg with investigators that he wrote a letter, dated the same day as the search, to Assistant United States Attorney Kenneth C. Kohl, denouncing the fact that the search had been conducted pursuant to a search warrant. Ex. 23. Glasberg forwarded a copy of this letter to Tom Jackman of the Washington Post, and to the Associated Press, the morning of August 1st. Glasberg, Dep. Tran., Ex. 24, at 265:12 - 266:5; see also Ex. 25 (Glasberg memorandum to file, stating, among other things, that Glasberg showed Jackman Kohl letter on August 1, 2002).
On the day of the search, an FBI spokeswoman at the Bureaus Washington field office, Debra Weierman, confirmed that the search was part of the governments anthrax investigation. Ex. 25. Weierman added, however, that she was unable to confirm that [investigators were acting on a search warrant] or to provide any further information about the search. Id.
The next day August 2, 2002 Glasberg faxed the Kohl letter to members of the media. Ex. 26. In the fax transmittal sheet accompanying the Kohl letter, Glasberg also advised the media that: Dr. Hatfill was first contacted by the FBI earlier this year, as part of the Bureaus survey of several dozen scientists working in fields related to biomedical warfare. He was voluntarily debriefed and polygraphed, and voluntarily agreed to have his home, car and other property subjected to a lengthy and comprehensive search by the FBI. He and his lawyer Tom Carter were told that the results were all favorable and that he was not a suspect in the case. Id. at AGD16SJH03106. Subsequent to the fax transmittal by Glasberg, Weierman confirmed that the search had been conducted pursuant to a search warrant, but only after receiving appropriate authorization from her superiors. Weierman Dep. Tran., Ex. 27, at 93:16 - 94:14.
Hatfill had also accompanied Glasberg for his interview with Jackman the day before to address the media feeding frenzy. Ex. 28. Glasberg provided Jackman with the promise of an [e]xclusive personal statement from Hatfill and the promise of [n]o other press contacts pending publication of the article. Id. Glasberg thus provided Jackman background information about Hatfill, Rosenbergs statements, and other publications. Ex. 25. Hatfill reportedly complained to the Washington Post in the interview about the media feeding frenzy, and about how his friends are bombarded with press inquiries. Ex. 29, at 1. Hatfill also complained about the [p]hone calls at night. Trespassing. Beating on my door. For the sheer purpose of selling newspapers and television. Id.
C. Attorney General Ashcrofts Person of Interest Statements
Following this media frenzy, not to mention the two searches of Hatfills apartment, former Attorney General John Ashcroft was asked on August 6, 2002 (at an event addressing the subject of missing and exploited children) about Hatfills involvement in the investigation. Jane Clayson of CBS News asked General Ashcroft about the searches and whether Hatfill was a suspect in the investigation. Ex. 30, at 2. General Ashcroft responded that Hatfill was a person of interest. General Ashcroft cautioned, however, that he was not prepared to say any more at [that] time other than the fact that he is an individual of interest. Id. At the same media event, Matt Lauer of NBC News also asked General Ashcroft whether Hatfill was a suspect in the investigation. Ex. 31. General Ashcroft responded that Hatfill was a person that that the FBIs been interested in. Id. at 2. General Ashcroft cautioned that he was not prepared to make a . . . comment about whether a person is officially a . . . suspect or not. Id.
General Ashcroft made the same comments at a news conference in Newark, New Jersey on August 22, 2002, stating that Hatfill was a person of interest to the Department of Justice, and we continue the investigation. Ex. 32, at 1. As in his previous statements, General Ashcroft refused to provide further comment. Id. When asked upon deposition why he referred to Hatfill as a person of interest in the anthrax investigation in response to these media inquiries, General Ashcroft testified that he did so in an attempt to correct the record presented by the media that he was a suspect in the investigation, which he believed served a necessary law enforcement purpose. Ashcroft Dep. Tran., Ex. 33, at 81: 5-12; 103:18; 108: 9-13; 138: 5-7; 125: 18-21; 134:22 - 136:8. Prior to making these statements, General Ashcroft did not review or otherwise consult any investigative record, id. at 128:14 - 129:12, much less any record pertaining to Hatfill.
General Ashcrofts initial statements on August 6, 2002 were followed, on August 11, 2002, by the first of Hatfills two nationally televised press conferences. Ex. 34. During his press conference, Hatfill lashed out at Rosenberg and other journalists and columnists who he believed wrote a series of defamatory speculation and innuendo about [him]. Id. at 3. In apparent response to the person of interest statements, by contrast, he stated that he did not object to being considered a subject of interest because of [his] knowledge and background in the field of biological warfare. Id. at 4. This was consistent with Hatfills statement to ABC News earlier in 2002 in which he stated that his background and comments made him a logical subject of the investigation. Ex. 35. As noted, moreover, Glasberg told the media -- almost a week before the first of General Ashcrofts statements -- that Hatfill was first contacted by the FBI [earlier that] year, as part of the Bureaus survey of several dozen scientists working in fields related to biomedical warfare. He was voluntarily debriefed and polygraphed, and voluntarily agreed to have his home, car and other property subjected to a lengthy and comprehensive search by the FBI. Ex. 26.
Hatfills second press conference was held on August 25, 2002. In the flyer publicizing the conference, Hatfill identified himself to the media -- in bold lettering -- as the person of interest at the center of the federal Governments [anthrax] investigation. DA, Exhibit 36.
D. Clawsons Sunshine Policy
Patrick Clawson joined the Hatfill team in early August 2002 as spokesperson and fielded hundreds of inquiries from members of the press worldwide regarding Dr. Hatfill[.] Ex. 12, at 13. Clawson believed it best to employ a media strategy that would, in his words, let it all hang out. Id. at 50:10. Clawson felt that permitting maximum sunshine into . . . Hatfills existence would do both him and the public the best good. Clawson Dep. Tran., Ex. 37, at 50:16-18.
The majority of Clawsons communications with the press regarding this case have been oral and by telephone and he did not keep a press log or any other regular record of such contacts with the press. Ex. 12, at 13. Clawson nonetheless admitted upon deposition that he revealed numerous details about Hatfills personal and professional background to members of the press (Clawson Dep. Tran., Ex. 37, at 101:9 - 105:21), including Hatfills professional expertise (id. at 103:10 - 105:21), use of Cipro (id. at 123:16 - 130:11, 248: 8-13), whereabouts on the days of the attacks (id. at 148:12 - 158:10, 361:15 - 362:3), expertise in working with anthrax (id. at 194:13 - 195:8), former service in the Rhodesian Army (id. at 210:9 - 211:10), and drunk driving arrest (id. at 795: 7-9, 798: 4-6). Clawson also told reporters what had been purportedly removed from Hatfills apartment during the two searches of his apartment on June 25, 2002 and August 1, 2002 (including medical books and a jar of bacillus thuringiensis (BT)) (id. at 121: 6-12, 131:2 - 131:12, 14:8 - 147:3, 313: 3-10). Clawson also freely relayed to the press that bloodhounds had been presented to Hatfill during the investigation (id. at 200: 15-19); that Hatfill had been the subject of surveillance (id. at 123:12-15, 428: 19-21); that Hatfill had taken polygraphs (id. at 135:16 - 137:17); and that he had submitted to blood tests (id. at 137:18-138:5, 347: 6-10).
In furtherance of Clawsons sunshine policy, Hatfill, Clawson, and Glasberg, together, provided countless on-the-record, on-background (i.e., for use, but not for attribution), and off-the-record (i.e., not for attribution or use) interviews to counter misinformation. Although Hatfill repeatedly claimed upon deposition not to remember what he said during these interviews, he acknowledged in his responses to the Agency Defendants interrogatories having such conversations with, in addition to Mr. Jackman, Judith Miller of The New York Times, Jeremy Cherkis of the City Paper, Guy Gugliotta of the Washington Post, David Kestenbaum of National Public Radio, Rick Schmidt of the LA Times, Rob Buchanan of NBC Dateline, Jim Popkin of NBC News, Dee Ann David and Nick Horrock of UPI, Gary Matsumato of Fox TV, Bill Gertz of the Washington Times, and David Tell of the Weekly Standard. Ex. 12, at 3-4. With respect to the Matsumato interview, Glasberg warned Hatfill before the interview that he should not be quoted, nor should Matsumato say or imply that he spoke with him. Ex. 38, at 1. Glasberg warned Hatfill that Matsumato must be willing to go to jail rather than reveal word one of anything [he] says on deep background. Id.
All of these disclosures became too much even for Glasberg, who attempted to put a stop to them. In August, when Jackman aired his exclusive interview with Glasberg and Hatfill, Glasberg heralded the success of his public relations strategy noting that Rosenberg, Shane and Kristof are, [each] of them, in varying stages of sulking, licking their wounds, reacting defensively and changing their tune. Ex. 39. Slowly Glasberg advised both Hatfill and Glasberg to observe the rule of COMPLETE SILENCE regarding anything and everything about the case[.] Ex. 40 (emphasis in original). Ultimately, in September 2002, Glasberg ordered Clawson to stand down, noting [w]hat you know, you know, and you have put virtually all of that into the public record. Fine. That is where we are, and for good or ill we can and will deal with it. But we must put a full stop to any further conveyance of substantive data about ANYTHING from Steve to anyone [but his attorneys]. Ex. 41 (emphasis in original). To no avail. On October 5, 2002, Hatfill and Clawson appeared together at an Accuracy in Media Conference. Hatfill was asked about the reaction of bloodhounds, and stated, Im not supposed to answer things against . . . but let me tell you something. They brought this good-looking dog in. I mean, this was the best-fed dog I have seen in a long time. They brought him in and he walked around the room. By the way, I could have left at anytime but I volunteered while they were raiding my apartment the second time, I volunteered to talk with them. The dog came around and I petted him. And the dog walked out. So animals like me (laughter). Ex. 42, at 2.
Disclosures from the Hatfill camp to the media continued. For example, between late 2002 and May 8, 2003, Hatfills current attorney, Tom Connolly, and CBS News reporter James Stewart had multiple telephone conversations and two lunch meetings. Ex. 43. According to Stewart, Connolly told Stewart that the investigation was focusing on Hatfill, and detailed at great length the FBIs surveillance of Hatfill. In virtually every one of these conversations, Connolly encouraged Stewart to report on these subjects. Id. at 96.
E. Louisiana State Universitys Decision To Terminate Hatfill
At the time of the second search of his apartment in August 2002, Hatfill was working as a contract employee at the Louisiana State University (LSU) on a program to train first responders in the event of a biological attack. This program was funded by the Department of Justices Office of Justice Programs (OJP) as part of a cooperative agreement. Ex. 44. Under the terms of the cooperative agreement, OJP maintain[ed] managerial oversight and control of the program. Id. at 2. Following the second search of Hatfills apartment on August 1, 2002, Timothy Beres, Acting Director of OJPs Office of Domestic Preparedness, directed that LSU cease and desist from utilizing the subject-matter expert and course instructor duties of Steven J. Hatfill on all Department of Justice funded programs. Ex. 45. LSU, meanwhile, had independently hired Hatfill to serve as Associate Director of its Academy of Counter-Terrorist Education. Following the second search, LSU placed Hatfill on administrative leave. Ex. 46. LSU then requested a background check of Hatfill. Ex. 47. During the course of that investigation, the University became concerned that Hatfill had forged a diploma for a Ph.D that he claimed to have received from Rhodes University in South Africa. Hatfill explained to Stephen L. Guillott, Jr., who was the Director of the Academy of Counter-Terrorist Education at LSU, that [h]e assumed the degree had, in fact been awarded since neither his [thesis advisor] nor Rhodes University advised him to the contrary. Ex. 48. LSUs Chancellor, Mark A. Emmert, made an internal decision to terminate [LSUs] relationship with Dr. Hatfill quite independent of [the DOJ e-mail] communication. Ex. 51.
Hatfill has now testified that in fact he created a fraudulent diploma with the assistance of someone he met in a bar who boasted that he could make a fraudulent diploma. Hatfill Dep. Tran., Ex. 49 at 19:20 - 20:12. Glasberg, moreover, has stated under oath that Hatfills earlier attempted explanation was untrue. Glasberg, Dep. Tran., Ex. 21, at 314:10 - 317:2. In a nationally televised 60 Minutes episode that aired in March 2007, Connolly confirmed that Hatfill forged the diploma for the Ph.D from Rhodes University. Ex. 50, at 3.
F. Hatfills Amended Complaint
Hatfill claims lost wages and other emotional damages resulting from General Ashcrofts person of interest statements and other for-attribution statements by DOJ and FBI officials. He also seeks to recover for certain other alleged leaks by DOJ and FBI officials. Hatfill additionally asserts that the defendants violated the Act by purportedly failing to (1) maintain an accurate accounting of such disclosures, which he asserts is required by section 552a(c) of the Act; (2) establish appropriate safeguards to insure the security and confidentiality of the records that were purportedly disclosed, which he asserts is required by section 552a(e)(10); (3) correct information that was disseminated about him that was inaccurate or incomplete, which he asserts is required by section 552a(e)(5); and (4) establish adequate rules of conduct, procedures, and penalties for noncompliance, or to train employees in the requirements of the Act, which he asserts is required by section 552a(e)(9). Defendants are entitled to summary judgment.
Now let’s consider Ed’s argument against my theory. He wrote:
“October 31, 2004 - While the presidental candidates seem unwilling to speculate on the significance of Osama bin Laden’s recent message, at least one person who truly believed al Qaeda was behind the anthrax attacks has decided to give up and remove himself from the Internet debates.”
Ed was mistaken.
“It simply made no sense to him that Osama would take credit for 9-11 but not the anthrax attacks - unless al Qaeda had nothing to do with the anthrax attacks.”
Ed was mistaken. Al Qaeda denied responsibility for the anthrax attacks (until it became impossible to deny). Moreover, the reason to deny the anthrax is because the “anthrax weapons suspect” had just been indicted for sedition the month before. The reason I temporarily took down my website was I knew the FBI suspected Ali of involvement and I always take it down during critical legal moments to allow a defendant to have their day in court.
“And that realization came as a second blow after Judge Walton’s comment on the 21st: “There are some very unique things the government is doing at this time. If ... this were to be known to the perpetrator, it could have an adverse impact on the investigation.” There is just no way the FBI would be concerned about tipping off some al Qaeda member. If some al Qaeda member was a suspect, the FBI would make an arrest first and do the investigation afterward.”
This is because Ed thinks that Al Qaeda supporters are “bogey men” who live in caves in Afghanistan. When, in fact, the man written about in the 911 Commission report and known as the “911 imam” (Ali’s friend Aulaqi) is one of the most well-spoken and well-liked people you’ll meet.
” Of course, others continue to believe al Qaeda did it. To them, the fact that Osama failed to mention the anthrax attacks is part of some sinister plot.”
In addition to denying the anthrax mailings, Zawahiri denied the 1998 embassy bombings. Hint: Ayman thinks deception is part of warfare (and he’s right).
“And they see the fact that the FBI seems to be concentrating on some American scientist as proof that the FBI is incompetent.”
Although Ed did not know it, they were concentrating on an American scientist. Ali Al-Timimi. They had just indicted him. His lawyer has explained that the FBI has long known of his connections to Al Qaeda’s network.
“To them, if the FBI hasn’t found evidence that al Qaeda as behind the anthrax attacks, it just means that the FBI hasn’t been looking hard enough.”
Actually, not. I’ve always said the FBI and CIA was kicking butt. I explained in an article posted on FreeRepublic in 2004 that most of the anthrax plotters had been captured or killed. I had to be circumspect in talking about Ali while he had his day in court and those not yet arrested because, as Director Mueller has said, there is a risk of flight among other things.
But Ed always imagines what those making the opposing argument think rather than addressing their argument on their merits. That’s because he has no argument in reponses — and he’s too lazy and unskilled at analysis to even read the argument supporting the other side.
Here's the spectrum they released:
The image on the left shows particles of silica, NO SPORES. The text under the image says, "Silicon Dioxide (Silica), as it appears through energy dispersive X-ray analysis."
REPEAT: The spectrum they released was NOT a spectrum of the attack anthrax.
The argument you cite is about that spectrum, NOT about a spectrum of the attack anthrax.
What we both see is (1) a drawing of a totally fictional process of gluing silica to spores with "polymerized glass" and (2) a spore covered with bits of crushed fumed silica.
If van der Waals forces were a concern here, those forces would be defeated by the total irregularity of the coated spore. There's simply not enough flat surface area where one such coated spore can significantly touch another such coated spore (the same effect that the evenly spaced bits would accomplish).
The Duway example seems to be irregular bits of crushed fumed silica piled upon other crushed bits. There appears to be silica attached to silica. And the silica bits appear to be fused together. That's VERY different from the evenly spaced, glued-on silica particles in the fantasy drawing.
The Dugway example results from MIXING fumed silica with spores and then pounding them and running them through filters. The silica bits aren't glued on. They could be either stuck to the spore as a result of static electricity or some effect of pounding the silica into the outer coating of the spore.
The co-author who wrote me yesterday suggested that "physical bridging caused by water in the air" [i.e., capillary action] could have had some effect on interparticle bonding. But, he said there was disagreement among the co-authors as to what holds the particles together.
If the "experts" at Dugway can't agree on what is doing the bonding, I don't think we should just ASSUME it's something that fits some belief.
The silica could be fixed to the spores by the pounding action of the ball mill. The bits of silica could be pounded into the latice-like outer coating on the exosporium. Think of it being like sticking a tennis ball into a chain-link fence.
I'm not saying that's the explanation, but it certainly seems to fit VERY well. Water would soften and expand the exosporium, releasing the silica.
The idea of silica sticking to the latice-like exosporium just popped out of the blue because arguments from others didn't make complete scientific sense. Maybe I'm wrong, but bits of silica being pounded into the latice-like exosporium and sticking there seems to make PERFECT sense.
I contacted the co-author of the Aerosol science article to see what he and the other authors think.
You seem to keep forgetting that TrebleRebel is an expert at coating with silica. That’s his day job. He did contract work for DARPA. Your day job is looking at nude celebrity photos.
So as to the reason nanosilica particles bind, and the underlying principles at work, he is the relevant expert.
The life scientists don’t need to know the science between what they observe. Similarly, if on a faked photo, Sandra Bullocks nipples stand erect, you don’t need to understand the science of the capillary action behind that.
Now, TrebelRebel, we need to get you reading something other than SEMs.
Before you and Dany now have us bombing Iran or Syria, start with the new edition of “Terrorist Recognition Handbook: A Practitioner’s Manual for Predicting and Identifying Terrorist Activities.” It is Malcolm Nance. 480 pages. ISBN 978-1420071832. Said to be the definitive text on terrorist recognition. The main theme of the book, says one reviewer, as detailed in chapter 1 is critical awareness. The book notes that criminal investigators spend years studying criminal behavior to better understand and counter crime. Nance writes that the field of terrorism is no different as it is a specialized subject that requires serious study and requires that those in the front line of defense be as knowledge as possible. Those more interested in Sandra’s booty should keep their hands of the keyboard.
In a later chapter, Nance gives the Iraq war as an example of a group of leaders that were not as knowledge as possible and ignored the advice of those that were as knowledgeable as possible. Had the Bush administration consulted Nance, a trillion dollars and thousands of lives could have been saved in the Iraq debacle says the reviewer.
The book is divided into 5 sections comprising 21 heavily-detailed chapters. Each chapter is a progression in detailing, understanding and identifying terrorists. In chapter after chapter, the book details every aspect of terrorism and indentifies all of the various elements. The various aspects of different guns, explosives, and other elements are described and categorized in detail.
In the section on suicide bombers, an important point the book makes is that contrary to popular belief, suicide bombers are rarely insane or the “bogey men” that Ed imagines. They are most often intelligent, rational individuals with beliefs that those in the West finds difficult to comprehend. Nance does not for a second rationalize the actions of such groups and individuals. But notes that it is critical to understand why they do it in order to prevent future attacks. Similarly, you need to walk in their shoes in profiling the motive of the anthrax perp(s).
Chapter 8 is quite valuable in that it provides a comprehensive overview of how terrorist cells operate and are organized. While the cell is the fundamental unit of a terrorist group; cell operations and their members are the least understood part of terrorism. Their operations are always secret and never seen, until they attack. The chapter details the many types of terrorist cells, operative membership pools, and how cells and leadership communicate. The document found on Ali Mohammed’s computer after the 1998 embassy bombings, when FBI agents secretly swarmed his apartment pursuant to a FISA warrant, detail those principles very possibly followed in Amerithrax well.
Chapter 19 is a fascinating primer on al-Qaeda and the global extremist insurgency. The chapter details how al-Qaeda divides its enemies into two categories: Far Enemies and Near Enemies. The terms are taken from the Islamic concept of the community and those who oppose it. While the far enemies of al-Qaeda are the USA, Australia, UK, Europe and Israel, the near enemies are those Moslem’s or nations that al-Qaeda sees as corrupted governments or apostate rules. These include the governments of over 20 countries including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bangladesh, India and many more comprising billions of people. In the anthrax planning, Ayman prevailed in the debate whether to attack the near versus far enemies. The motive was to deter the invasion of Afghanistan.
While the post-9/11 attacks from coalition forces have indeed hurt al-Qaeda and killed many of its top leaders, Nance notes that al-Qaeda now acts a terror strategy consultancy. This transformation of al-Qaeda is in response to the loss of its base of operations in Afghanistan and the displacement of its leadership to the Pakistani border. The most significant changes were a shift of operational responsibility from the regional terror commanders, who executed a long awaited plan for jihad operations, to a more radical and difficult to detect posture: jihadist who were self-starting and worked independently from al-Qaeda.
The most significant changes al-Qaeda’s structure occurred when it was able to co-opt the Jordanian Salafist group Tawhed Wal Jihad and organize the foreign fighters into al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). AQI changed the structure of the military committee’s roles dramatically and Iraq would become the cornerstone of al-Qaeda’s global operations. Much of the invasion of Iraq was premised on a link between Iraq and al-Qaeda. There was never such a link, but the war turned into a self-fulfilling prophecy, as al-Qaeda is now a mainstay in Iraq. Similarly, the Shoham/Jacobsen did a great disservice along these lines perpetuating the myth that Iraq was involved in the anthrax mailings.
The book explains that it is important to note that contrary to popular belief, al-Qaeda is not a single terrorist group, rather a collection of like-minded organizations that cooperate and receive funds, advice and orders from Osama bin Laden and his supporters. Al-Qaeda has transformed itself from a physical chain of terrorist training camps to a virtual network that uses the Internet to create a network centric information and advisory body. Nance therefore notes that al-Qaeda has transformed itself from a global terrorism operation into a terrorism management consultancy. The 6 main aspects of this consultancy are that al-Qaeda: provides inspiration, contributes finances, shares collective knowledge, provides weapons resource and contacts, accepts responsibility and releases video propaganda. So unlike Ed’s simple and uninformed view of Al Qaeda, an “Al Qaeda Theory” was never limited to AQ proper but extended to supporters of the Salafist-Jihadis in the US. Even many in EIJ or IG think Ayman is a fanatic and disagree with his tactics.
The Terrorist Recognition Handbook: A Practitioner’s Manual for Predicting and Identifying Terrorist Activities voids all of the hype, politics and bias that inflects Ed’s thinking. He simply focuses on its task at hand, to be a field guide for anti-terrorist and counter-terrorist professionals to use to prevent attacks.
The Terrorist Recognition Handbook is a must-read for anyone tasked with or interested in profiling the anthrax crimes. One would hope that Ed gets a copy of this, pores over it for every little bit of commentary on Amerithrax.
The author should send a copy to Jim Fitzgerald at Quantico who might then realize it truly was quite irrelevant that Leahy and Daschle were democrats.
Exactly. And Meselon claimed the sepectrum they released showed only a silicon peak. The ONLY sepctrum they released is the one you show. It is the silica reference sample.
You asked me to point out mistakes Meselson made concerning the 2001 anthrax attacks - this claim that they relased a spectrum of only silicon is one of many.
Figure 7a shows a particle potentially containing a single BG spore; since no uncoated single spores were observed, this suggests that virtually all single spores remained coated with silica. The coating apparently solidified from exposure to water in the air over the years of sample storage and use. However, multiple spores or clumps were found frequently and these were often largely uncoated as indicated in Figure 7b. The reason for the difference in coating adherence to different sized particles is unclear.
Pounding silica particles into the exosporium isn't possible without breaking up the clumps into single spores. Either something prevented the clumps from being broken up, or there's something about the larger object that exceeds some kind of threshold for adherence.
Here's Figure 7b:
Looking at the scale on Figure 7b, I notice that the spores in the clump are smaller than the 1 micron by 1.5 micron size of a typical Bacillus spore. The spores seem to be about .5 micron in diameter and 1 micron in length. That could mean they're lighter than other spores and somehow float near the top of the silica/spore mixture and don't get pounded through the mesh until the very last. Or, because they're smaller than other spores, they go through the mesh most easily and get less pounding.
Whatever the explanation, there doesn't seem to be ANY explanation for van der Waals forces binding silica to single spores but NOT to the spores in the clumps.
Or, of course, you could just take the time to read the article I posted yesterday. The one that shows that the silica nanoparticles adhere to large particles of powder by van der Waals forces.
Then you wouldn’t need to go into your own private fantasies about chunks of silica being pounded into spore surfaces.
He may be an expert at coating NON-LIVING objects with silica, but he's shown again and again that he doesn't know his ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to spores.
Experts outside of their specific area of expertise are very often the dumbest of the dumb.
What did you think the link I provided indicating DARPA planned on using the same coating process that TrebleRebel used with phosphors (discussed in that article) with organic material? It was the one that used the pictures that TrebleRebel always posts.
Now the question to ask: who did DARPA fund to coat organic material with silica nanoparticles? And what was the purpose of such work?
The link is here:
The only issues you and TrebleRebel are able to address relate to the exceedingly narrow issue you two have fruitlessly posted on now for a half decade. TrebleRebel might have better spent his time making simulant. And if he thinks it would take him a year, well, I’ve got news for him, the USG already can make the product that looks like the Daschle product and it is not at all beyond AQ’s ability.
1. The device that USAMRIID thought was used to weaponize the anthrax was the bioreactor when actually it was the DOD-funded Microbial Vac.
2. The Microbial Vac can be used to concentrate and sequentially filter the anthrax. It can be used to weaponize anthrax on a small scale.
3. TrebleRebel thinks the silica coating technology that was used was a DARPA/DOD technique.
See silica coating pictures at the URL below.
Microbial-Vac was going to work with the Navy under the SBIR program but then it did not move forward formally.
A top military scientist thinks siliconized solution was used. Who is right? Are both right?
4. Ali had a high security clearance in the late 1990s for work with the Navy.
5. A scientist was arrested the day Alis residence was searched who regularly mixed with silica. He was a food researcher.
6. As I recall, The USAMRIID scientist who collected Ames went to work with Navy in Bethesda and actually that is where the Ames file was retrieved.
7. A prototype of the Microbial Vac was at ISU a professor at the ISU microbiology department had it.
8. The fellow who inherited Al-Timimis telephone number is expert in electrospray and electrostatic, electromagnetic control of anthrax particles.
9. And so the main reason for The Hatfill Theory is just that he was the best candidate for POI from that squad. They acted in good faith. Hatfill continued to lie about material things (e..g, re the PhD even after federal investigation) in applying for a federally-funded job in biodefense.
10. But Al-Timimi and his associates were the best candidate(s) for the other squad.
11. Al-Timimi does not have hands-on skill. Hes a numbers guy. He is neither the processor nor mailer.
12. Vigorously pursuing alternative hypotheses is what we would want from the investigation. Except for not effectively dealing with leaks in 2002 and thereby avoiding the continuing leaks by Seikaly in 2003 the FBI has done very well. It was Seikalys senior position and the fact he was in the US Attorneys Office that prevented the FBI Task Force shutting the leaks down in 2002.
13. The massive press was due in part to Hatfills massive solicitation of press such as by the August 2 fax (which the fax transmittal sheet shows was to every major media outlet), press conference etc. . If he had followed Berrys approach we might not remember Hatfills name. The Hatfill civil litigation, including the libel, civil rights and reporters issues are just an unfortunate distraction from the solution to the Amerithrax crime.
14. But a Hatfill Theory was fueled and greatly exacerbated by the leak of Mr. Seikaly whose daughter now represents Al-Timimi pro bono. Mr. Seikalys leaks likely were just motivated by a personal concern that too often people jump to the conclusion that Arabs are responsible for terrorism. His sister-in-law and brother are active on this issue and spoke and wrote on this issue in 2001/2002. But we all have our biases and political orientation. Its part of being human. The human mind is an imperfect tool.
15. There is an embarrassment to be sure that there is this connection to DARPA-funded projects. Alis defenders have thrown in the fact that Ali worked for 2 months for Andy Card when he was DOT secretary just to confound things and provide material for more conspiracy theories.
16. Ayman Zawahiri thought it was a religious duty to use the weapons of your enemy and thats what his supporters did.
17. But the embarrassment is no greater than that of the US Army, CIA or FBI in being duped by the Al Qaeda operative Ali Mohammed. We all will trust. We all sometimes will have our trust betrayed.
18. Former CIA analyst Stan Bedlingtons point about Greendale, though, was just mistaken he perhaps did not know Ayman was using school as code for EIJ in May 2001 correspondence. He knew Hatfill and so may have been influenced by Dr. Hatfills history of saying things that were not true. Having left the CIA, he may have not have known that Saif Adel used Green Team for the EIJ contingent that went to Somalia etc.
19. The press is in the business of news, not analysis. When presented with the Hatfill legal team extensively promoting these issues and Seikaly whose position made him a great source for any reporter it is not all surprising that the press evolved the way it did.
20. We only have the great work by USG and foreign forces in capturing KSM, Hambali, Sufaat, Ahmad, Barq, Wahdan and others to thank for the information that then inexorably led to abandonment of The Hatfill Theory.
21. Perps never run when they should. For example, Roger Von Bergendorff should have snuck out of the hospital.
You've shown that article to me so many times over the years I sometimes think you are a mindless robot who doesn't even think about what he's doing.
The title of the article says it all: "Dry particle coating for improving the flowability of cohesive powders."
But then there's also the first sentence of the abstract:
Several dry processing techniques are used to coat cohesive cornstarch powder with different size silica particles.
What does this have to do with non-cohesive powders like spore powders?
Or don't you understand the definition of "cohesive?" Here's the definition of cohesion:
Cohesion; the act or condition of cohering; tendency to stick together.
Maybe that definition should include: the way syrup made from corn starch sticks together.
If we're talking about the same article, it was NOT about coating organic materials. In fact, the last step in the process was to heat up the end-results to BURN AWAY all organic material.
If it WAS about coating organic material, what was the organic material and was it alive?
Oh Jeeze. You're not going to try to argue that if something was reported in the media it MUST be true, are you?
Then why not begin with the ABC stories that there was bentonite in the anthrax?
Take up your theory that spores don’t clump with an appropriate science journal and go through the peer reviewed process.
Meantime, the aerosol specialists will continue to coat their spore simulants with silica. And their DPI drugs, and their cornstarch particles.
We all look forward to reading your published work :)))))
American Medical Association:
Spores can also be COATED with an electrostatic powder so that they do not clump easily and fall to the ground quickly; these spores would then be more easily aerosolized (dispersed into the air).
Christopher Grace, MD (Univ of Vermont):
Anthrax spores that have been weaponized are finley milled to <5um diameter and COATED to prevent clumping.
``The amount of energy needed to disperse the spores [by merely opening an envelope] was trivial, which is virtually diagnostic of achieving the appropriate coating.
EDVOTEK (The Biology of Baterial Sporation):
The spores may also be COATED or mixed with silica.................
DuPont presonal prtotection (technical bulletin):
Inhalation exposure is enhanced when anthrax spores are artificially COATED to reduce clumping.
Weaponizing anthrax: Basic approach is to COAT the spores with a fine silica.
Further weaponization can be accomplished by processing of the spores such that the tendency for individual spores to clump together is reduced and penetration deep into the distal airways is facilitated. This process results in a detectable COATING of the spore that was seen in oragnisms recovered during the 2001 attack.
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