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.
In the anthrax attack of 2001, some of the material was believed to be in a fluidized form (defined here as having fumed silica added).
The people who did that study had no access to the actual anthrax used in the attacks. They merely believed that what was reported in the media was correct.
I consider that to be a load of total garbage.
So Seikaly was leaking Hatfill’s name to the media for years - and he knew some other guy’s name all along? Right!
Lambert gave judge Walton a briefing 3 years ago - with super secret information (presumably including this imaginary other persons name) - and Walton laughed him out of court. Right!
The congress are holding the FBI’s feet to the fire - Mueller may lose his job - but they have this other guy’s name - it’s not Hatfill, it’s not Berry - but for some reason they did NOT go public with this name. Right!
At least try to make your theory sound feasible.
In a filing unsealed last month, Dr. Ali Al-Timimi’s lawyer wrote: Al-Timimi “was considered an anthrax weapons suspect.” You fellows should realize how significant it is that the leading anthrax scientist — cited numerous times in every biosecurity book in the field — was, according to Ali’s lawyer:
* interviewed in 1994 by the FBI and Secret Service regarding his ties to the perpetrators of the first World Trade Center bombing;
* referenced in the August 6, 2001 Presidential Daily Briefing (”Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”) as one of seventy individuals regarding whom the FBI is conducting full field investigations on a national basis;
* described to his brother by the FBI within days of the 9-11 attacks as an immediate suspect in the Al Qaeda conspiracy;
* contacted by the FBI only nine days after 9-11 and asked about the attacks and its perpetrators;
* considered an anthrax weapons suspect;
* described during his trial by FBI agent John Wyman as having “extensive ties” with the “broader al-Qaeda network”;
* described in the indictment and superseding indictment as being associated with terrorists seeking harm to the United States;
* was a participant in dozens of international overseas calls to individuals known to have been under suspicion of Al-Qaeda ties like Al-Hawali; and
* was associated with the long investigation of the Virginia Jihad Group.
Ali’s lawyer says the conversation with Al-Hawali on September 19, 2001 was central to the indictment and raised at trial. Al-Timimi called Dr. Hawali after the dinner with Kwon on September 16, 2001 and just two hours before he met with Kwon and Hassan for the last time on September 19, 2001. The anthrax was mailed on or about September 18.
The lawyers says “]911 imam] Anwar Al-Aulaqi goes directly to Dr. Al-Timimi’s state of mind and his role in the alleged conspiracy. The 9-11 Report indicates that Special Agent Ammerman interviewed Al-Aulaqi just before or shortly after his October 2002 visit to Dr. Al-Timimi’s home to discuss the attacks and his efforts to reach out to the U.S. government.”
[IANA head] Bassem Khafagi was questioned about Dr. Al-Timimi before 9-11 in Jordan, purportedly at the behest of American intelligence. [redacted ] He was specifically asked about Dr. Al-Timimi’s connection to Bin Laden prior to Dr. Al-Timimi’s arrest. He was later interviewed by the FBI about Dr. Al-Timimi. Clearly, such early investigations go directly to the allegations of Dr. Al-Timimi’s connections to terrorists and Bin Laden — [redacted]”
The letter by Al-Timimi’s counsel attached as an exhibit is equally meaty. An example of an additional detail is that in March 2002, Dr. Al-Timimi spoke with Dr. Al-Hawali (Bin Laden’s sheik who was the subject of OBL’s “Declaration of War”) about assisting Moussaoui in his defense. Moussaoui was the one with cropdusting documents on his laptop.
The filing and the letter exhibit each copy the daughter of the lead prosecutor in Amerithrax. That prosecutor has pled the Fifth Amendment concerning all the leaks hyping a “POI” of the other Amerithrax squad, Dr. Steve Hatfill.
In an e-mail obtained by FOX News, scientists at Fort Detrick openly discussed how the anthrax powder they were asked to analyze after the attacks was nearly identical to that made by one of their colleagues.
“Then he said he had to look at a lot of samples that the FBI had prepared ... to duplicate the letter material.” “Then the bombshell. He said that the best duplication of the material was the stuff made by [name redacted]. He said that it was almost exactly the same — his knees got shaky and he sputtered, ‘But I told the General we didn’t make spore powder!’”
FOX News reports:
“The FBI has narrowed its focus to “about four” suspects in the 6 1/2-year investigation of the deadly anthrax attacks of 2001, and at least three of those suspects are linked to the Armys bioweapons research facility at Fort Detrick in Maryland, FOX News has learned.
Among the pool of suspects are three scientists a former deputy commander, a leading anthrax scientist and a microbiologist linked to the research facility, known as USAMRIID.”
It was more than a happy coincidence for Ayman Zawahiri and Mohammed Islambouli that an active supporter of the Taliban and supporter of jihad was a US biodefense insider. Microbiologist Al-Timimi worked in the same building as famed Russian bioweapons scientist Ken Alibek and former USAMRIID Deputy Commander and Acting Commander Charles Bailey, who would come to publish a lot of research with the Ames strain of anthrax. Al-Timimi was a current associate and former student of Bin Ladens spiritual advisor, dissident Saudi Sheik al-Hawali. He would speak along with the blind sheiks son at charity conferences the blind sheiks son served on Al Qaedas WMD committee. Al-Timimis mentor Bilal Philips was known for recruiting members of the military to jihad. The first week after 9/11, FBI agents questioned Ali Al-Timimi, a microbiology graduate student in a program jointly run by George Mason University and the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC). Ali, according to his lawyer, had been questioned by an FBI agent and Secret Service agent in 1994 after the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. He had a high security clearance for work for the Navy in he late 1990s and in 1996 for two months had worked for the White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card when he was Secretary of Transportation. As time off from his university studies permitted, Ali was an active speaker with a charity Islamic Assembly of North America the spin-off of which is located here where I am. My interest dates to 2001. You two are very blind not to see that the FBI and CIA have been kicking butt. I first told the CIA that Ayman was a devious fellow who would rely on infiltration.
“You fellows should realize how significant it is that THE GUY 15 FEET FROM the leading anthrax scientist cited numerous times in every biosecurity book in the field was, according to Alis lawyer...”
I mistakenly omitted “the guy 15 feet from”
The trashing of Ali’s charity here and electronic surveillance dates way, way back before the 2/2003 raid — to 2001, I believe. They had numerous agents from numerous agencies. I think, offhand, for example, there were 30 extensions of a warrant on one target prior to the raid. They were trashing. They had someone undercover. You assume, TrebleRebel, that because the FBI doesn’t issue a press release there isn’t a lot going on. That’s silly. As an example of how such an investigation would be conducted, see the book by a journalist PRIORITY MAIL, involving the federal mailbombing of a federal judge.
Let me describe one of the FBI’s Masons that worked in building a case.
Michael Mason was in the Syracuse, New York office, when 2:15 a.m. one night, a 115,000-volt transmission tower came crashing down not far down the street from me. Mason investigated when the tower on the nearby Onondaga Indian reservation came 50 feet from landing on a cigarette shop, near where the local residents buy their smokes.
“This is a serious felony. It is more than just criminal mischief,” Mason said. The Niagara Mohawk spokesperson declined to comment on what caused the tower to fall. But a local Onondaga businessman Oliver Hill said he knew. The tower missed crushing his cigarette shop by about 50 feet, which had been opened without the permission of the local Onondaga tribal leaders. “There has been sabotage on that tower because on each leg there are 20 to 30 bolts,” said Hill. “All the bolts were taken out on all four legs. So when the bolts are taken out, there’s nothing to hold it up so it fell over. Yes, it was sabotage.” I didn’t call the local FBI office about the tower incident. After all, smoking kills 400,000 people a year.
Instead, I contacted the FBI office to tell them that a Ronald Reagan mask had been found along with a bank bag where the man lay in wait with a semi-automatic — first for my brother, and then the next week my father. A Ronald Reagan mask was the signature of a very dangerous bank robber known as the “Closing Time Bandit.” The FBI agent in the small local office, who did not identify himself, said something to the effect: “We killed the Closing Time Bandit who used a Ronald Reagan mask in robbing banks. So this guy can’t be responsible for those robberies.”
Before moving on to Washington, D.C., Mason said his most memorable case was this “Closing Time Bandit” case. Not long before he was shot dead as 40 FBI agents surrounded him at Henrietta, New York, the robber had decorated his yard with balloons on his daughter’s birthday.
Ronald Petersen had been killed Aug. 15, 1996 by FBI agents in the Rochester suburb of Henrietta while plotting another heist. The rightist, who had been tracked by a miniature television camera on a telephone pole outside his home, died in a hail of bullets. When police searched his house in Liverpool, a Syracuse suburb, they recovered 20 guns, including two Uzis, 20,000 rounds of ammunition and a cache of explosives.
“I know. “ I told the agent, “This guy’s parole officer says his apartment in Watertown is covered with newspaper articles glorifying famous New York State criminals. He’s trying to make you fellows look foolish. By being a copycat and making it look like you killed the wrong guy.”
The ex-convict and three-time loser who tried to take my Dad away at gunpoint that night before Christmas got 20+ years to life. Robbery was the apparent motive. That night, the police siren had come on within seconds of the 9/11 call coming in. The gunman spent the night holed up in a nearby garage and was captured after a psychiatrist/hostage negotiator came from Syracuse and talked him out of the garage. He asked that they kneel and pray together. (I never said the gunman, a former altar boy, was very bright). So why, as a liberal, am I such a booster of the FBI and local law enforcement?
Of [former] Agent Michael Mason in particular? Why had TrebelRebel better straighten up and fly right? Because it is their job to protect and serve when some among us, overcome by anger and not being properly socialized, resort to hurting innocents, such as the elderly Mrs. Lundgren or the infant at ABC. It’s time to stop second-guessing them based on inadequate information and be supportive even if we might disagree with them.
Mason was a friend in Syracuse, anti-war activist Kathleen Rumpf, who calls herself a “felon for peace” and is a staunch IANA supporter. She had been a personal hero of mine long before I met her based on positive comments I had heard. She spent several months in prison for trespassing during a demonstration against the School for the Americas at Fort Benning, Ga. She has worked for years fighting for prisoner rights and other issues. When Mason showed up there one of the first things he did was meet with her. “He’s quite wonderful,” Rumpf told the Sacramento Bee in an interview from the Syracuse offices of the American Civil Liberties Union. “He was incredibly responsible and treated me with great respect.” Mason says: “I’m not complicated enough to be political. It’s too hard.”
As part of canvassing as part of a local political campaign, I was walking up a street in Syracuse in front of Kathleen Rumpf’s home on October 15, 2003 when my wife drove up, pointing out that the very short street had both Rumpf and the Berrigans (related to the late famed Catholic anti-nuclear pacifist). My time would be wasted urging them to vote for The Candidate. They were long-time family friends. I had been at a charity fundraiser when she ran merrily around the crowd — at the egging of one of the performers on stage — when the elder Berrigan spoke eloquently against the war in Iraq.
This is how this liberal could be not as concerned about the privacy rights, for example, associated with what people do when they use a computer at the library or use the Wayback Machine at the Internet Archive. I once crusaded against (in a suit against AT&T) against what I argued was widespread illegal wiretapping by the local law enforcement authorities in some states such as Vermont. With the advent of digital wiretapping, the potential for abuse by a rogue wiretapper is huge and can be done by the person at his desk using a laptop). The week before, on a crisp October morning, I had bought a bumper sticker from Barrie Gewanter, the local ACLU activist, at the Syracuse Festival of Races, who likely was advocating at the time on the IANA matter (I don’t recall specifically). I told her that I greatly admired her work and that reasonable people can disagree. The key, I said, to achieve the best balancing of interests was to have an informed debate. But when I know that people like Michael Mason are advising Director Mueller, I feel both secure and confident that authorities will always continue to strive to strike an appropriate balance. Although he was a little stiff before the Press Club, Mueller’s solid values came across and any shyness reminds one of the shyness of movie character, lawyer Atticus Finch.
Mason once gave a speech to 250 high school students gathered at the Syracuse University campus in 1998 for High School Press Day in which he explained to the students that it was important for both the FBI and the media not to rush to judgment. He drew parallels between the two professions, explaining that the most important characteristic in either profession is integrity. On another occasion, he spoke bluntly to young inmates and told them there were consequences to their actions. Another time he and the DA spoke to kids about violence at the request of area educators. One of his most baffling cases was a rash of thefts of two-way radios throughout the area.
Mason realized the importance of catching a lucky break in a case. Once, in 1998, he had been working for 4 months trying to track down the 2 year old daughter who had been taken by a divorced father from the mother. He fruitlessly tracked leads that seemed to lead to Australia and London. Then one Saturday he went to work to collect his thoughts and plot a new strategy, when someone called from Montreal to describe the drunken boasting of the father in a bar in Montreal.
Mason investigated teenage Animal Defense League members in connection with an attempted bombing incident at a local meat plant noting that the FBI was not targeting their beliefs, but their actions when those beliefs turned to violence. During his stay in Syracuse, his only apparent involvement in matters relating to radical islamists was to read of goings-on at the kitchen table in the morning. “Bomb focuses on radical cleric: Imprisoned sheik’s followers might have sent letter bombs,” investigators say,” Syracuse Herald-Journal, Jan. 4, 1997.
Mason once described how a bank robbery was solved by discovering that the bank note had been written by a second grader. The bank robber, Michael Davis, handed a teller at the Marine Midland Bank a note demanding money on January 5, 1990. On the bottom half, police found part of a letter to a child signed by “Santa’s Helper.” Agents traced the letter to a second grade class at Franklin Elementary School, where the bank robber’s stepson attended. The FBI then was able to match the robber’s palm print to the note. Let’s hope Mason, while he was working Amerithrax, was working Saturdays — and has a SWAT Team at the ready (and a camera on the telephone pole outside) — and not hoping that a kid wrote the anthrax letters.
How many does it take to monitor one person who needs to be closely surveilled according to Mason? As many as eight agents per shift if he is mobile. Another half-dozen to listen in on his calls. Others perhaps to file wiretap reports or handle aerial surveillance. A couple supervisory agents to oversee the case. $55 an hour for an agent. $150 for a plane. A lot more for electronic surveillance.
In March 2004, Michael Mason explained to students gathered at his alma mater: “Our No. 1 job is disruption today. Now you have 100,000 pieces to a puzzle. Somebody has carted off all the box tops, and embedded inside those 100,000 pieces is a 20-piece picture of an event that you have to get out in front of and prevent before it happens while at the same time trying to preserve all the freedoms and liberties that we have come to embrace in this country.” He continued: “But we still have to do the job the right way. My job is to make sure that we do it the right way that, in our zeal, we do not do anything that takes away from what defines us.” “If we lose confidence in our institutions, then we tear away at the very fabric that defines democracy. When you no longer trust the courts, the police, congressmen, senators, thats the beginning of the end. Thats some of the most important work that we do.”
Consider the example of a 35 year-old fellow named Mubarak, who was a friend of Murad, a key player in Bojinka. Mubarak lived with Murad before Murad had gone to the Philippines and plotted to blow up a bunch of airliners simultaneously. And, yes, Mubarak went to flight school. Agent Michael Mason, who headed the FBI’s Sacramento Office and then came to head Amerithrax, said “there were sufficient connections that necessitated his removal to another country.” “If he were a U.S. citizen, he might be walking around the [Sacramento] area today,” Mason said. “But .. inasmuch as his residency in this country was an issue, that just became another arrow in my quiver to neutralize the threat.” The same article also provides interesting examples of associates of the likes of 9/11 hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi, Almidhar, and Hani Hanjour, the hijackers who followed the 911 imam Aulaqi to Falls Church. “What we have over the U.S. is a net,” Mason has said. “At best, what we’re doing is shrinking the mesh in the net. We’re trying to kick down the door of the person who’s going to drive the truck loaded with explosives. But can we do it in time?” When I told Agent Mason that I thought Zawahiri was behind the anthrax mailings, he responded by email that the FBI had not reached any conclusion but was leaving no stone unturned. Whenever the all-too-familiar refrain was invoked, some needed convincing. Bill Walter, retired microbiologist and former scientist in the U.S. bioweapon program who had not been contacted, once commented: I read where they havent left a stone unturned. Theres about eight of us stones that are still unturned. Its a joke.
Numerous illustrious legal beagles have been hard at work developing an entire new field of science that would stand up to a withering OJ-worthy scrutiny. The book MICROBIAL FORENSICS “describes the new and growing field of Microbial Forensics-the science that will help bring to justice criminals and terrorists who use biological material to cause harm. This book describes the foundation of the field of microbial forensics and will serve as a basic primer to initiate those scientists and officials that have an interest in the topic. It covers a variety of areas from forensic science, to microbiology, to epidemiology, to bioinformatics, and to legal issues.”
Authors of the lead chapter “Microbial Forensics” include Bruce Budowie of the FBI Lab and James P. Burans. Burans, as honored by the Federal Bureau of Investigation at a Washington, D.C. ceremony in 2002 for his help during the anthrax attacks. He was a scientific consultant to the FBI on the analysis of the mailed anthrax. The Federal Law Enforcement Officer’s Association also named Burans Civilian of the Year for his assistance.
Names familiar to many who have followed Amerithrax closely include the author of “Bacterial Pathogens” Paul Keim, who has been part of FBI investigation working on the DNA sequencing of Ames and John Ezzell, author of the section on “Forensic handling of biological threat samples in the lab .”
The most interesting chapter is “Non-DNA methods for biological signatures” with a raft of authors.
“Population genetics of bacteria in a forensic context” may not pinpoint the lab, without more, but Paul Keim stands ready with co-author Richard E. Lenski to explain how it can narrow the field.
And to balance the pessimistic comments TrebleRebel above in this thread, about whether the science could prove the Amerithrax case, rounding out the text are articles reminiscent of OJ. Joseph M. Campos offers “Quality management in forensics laboratories.” Rock Harmon writes on “Admissibility standards for scientific evidence.” A former long-time Assistant District Attorney from California, Harmon helped develop the protocol to assist law enforcement agencies in solving previously unsolved cases through the use of DNA typing.
Working for the Homeland Security Department (”HSD”), the Biosecurity and Nanosciences Laboratory has built a computer database of biological signatures, an approach that in Amerithrax is complementary to Keim’s PCR technique, which focuses on DNA signatures. (PCR means polymerase chain reaction.) A detector using PCR amplifies a short stretch of a pathogens DNA to determine its characteristics. Dr Yoreo’s lab characterize, for example, single spores of anthrax with high sensitivity.
Internal newsletters indicate that the Lawrence Livermore was first enlisted to combat the Bin Laden anthrax threat in 1998 by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. And so although former FBI Lab Director Murch, who once played a key role in charting direction of DTRA research in 2001 and 2002 was quoted in a press account saying there is no “smoking gun” in Amerithrax, these young and talented folks at Lawrence Livermore keep looking.
Life continues to be a grand mystery. Answers are seldom going to be found in a book or on a webpage.
University Professor and Tennessee Company Indicted For Arms Export Control Act Violations, May 20, 2008
The indictment, in part, involves disclosure of technology re UAV technology to a graduate student. The Arms Export Control Act, discussed in the thesis supervised by the GMU Professor re the vulnerability of universities, is reason enough not to be discussing how best to weaponize anthax. That GMU PhD thesis found that no one at GMU was qualified to interpret and ensure that Arms Export Control prohibitions were followed. In December 2004, Ed interviewed a leading anthrax scientist at GMU. If more had been disclosed, and Ed as a fellow lay person did not have the expected tendency of confusing scientific matters, query whether there might have been an Arms Export Control violation. TrebleRebel criticizes Alibek for being fuzzy on details — or even misleading. That is not a particularly sound basis for criticism. If he had provided clear instruction on how best to weaponize anthrax to anyone prohibited under the Arms Export Control Act to receive such information, then he might be alleged to have violated the Arms Export Control Act.
Retired University of Tennessee professor charged with passing secrets, TimesFreePress, May 21, 2008
Ali was a US Citizen and so the same logic under the Arms Export Control Act does not apply (if in fact he was allowed access to sensitive materials and know-how which the University’s PR person denies).
Rauf Ahmad, in contrast, wrote Ayman Zawahiri that he had learned some anthrax weaponization tricks from REDACTED. Who did he consult on how to weaponize anthrax? And why are TrebleRebel and Ed so willfully blind to the documentary evidence establishing that even by 1999 a scientist working for Zawahiri was consulting with UK or US (apparently) scientists on how best to consult anthrax? Why don’t they follow the evidence rather than their preconceptions? (Both formed their opinion of the matter before this documentary evidence was revealed). Ed doesn’t disclose such documentary evidence on his webpage let alone address it.
On your personal assurances you are no longer loyal to your Mother Country, I am going to reveal to you what Dr. Jahrling saw in the black spiral bound notebook inside the vault that day. At the beginning of the notebook was the class cheer of the third graduating class of Camp Detrick:
Pee! You! Bah!
Rah! Rah! Rah!”
The next page, in fancy writing, was the class motto:
“We seek something which cannot be seen, smelt or felt, discovered by means which we do not have, and to be cured by something we make from nothing, not later than yesterday.”
Condoleeza Rice addressed these bioterrorism issues in 1999 in “Introductory Remarks” in THE NEW TERROR: FACING THET THREAT OF BIOLOCIAL AND CHEMICAL WARFARE (1999):
“One Sunday in November 1998, ‘Meet the Press’ viewers watched as Secretary of Defense William Cohen told that Iraq’s Saddam Hussein was trying to develop a massive biological and chemical weapons (BCW) capability. Cohen set a familiar yellow bag of Domino sugar in front of him, and noted that just that amount of anthrax could effectively poison the water supply of the City of New York.
[Shame on KSM for implying it was his idea].
Cohen wanted to garner public support for air strikes against Hussein in retaliaton for his refusal to permit UN inspections of suspected production sites for BCW. Cohen did something else, entirely, however — he reminded the people of their vulnerability to biological and chemical attacks, a vulnerability that today seems absolute.”
“To date, there has been more heat than light on the subject of the BCW threat. It is all too early to let one’s imagination run so far and so fast that the standard problems of security appear insurmountable.”
She noted: “The human assets likely to be involved in BCW intelligence may be even more unsavory. Can we stomach those associations?”
If you have to distort the facts to make an argument, it just proves that you don't have a valid argument.
1. Seikaly wasn't leaking Hatfill's name for years. Hatfill became a public name in early July of 2002. The Newsweek article that used Seikaly's leak was printed in mid-August of 2002. So, Seikaly was leaking information about Hatfill for less than two months.
2. There's no reason to believe that Seikaly EVER knew the name of any other suspect or possible suspect in the Amerithrax investigation.
Lambert gave judge Walton a briefing 3 years ago - with super secret information (presumably including this imaginary other persons name) - and Walton laughed him out of court.
Lambert evidently told Judge Walton about what evidence they expected to obtain via the new science of microbial forensics. Judge Walton evidently (rightly) believed that it would take YEARS for microbial forensics to be validated for use in court. There's no reason to presume that Judge Walton was ever given any suspect's name.
The congress are holding the FBIs feet to the fire - Mueller may lose his job - but they have this other guys name - its not Hatfill, its not Berry - but for some reason they did NOT go public with this name. Right!
Right! They've stated many times that they were investigating 10 to 20 different people. The only names which you mention are Hatfill and Berry, but that was NOT because the FBI named them, it was because the media named them when public searches were done. MANY other searches were done. The FBI has not identified whose homes or labs were searched, but the media has mentioned a few. The media just hasn't focused on the others they knew about.
The FBI doesn't identify potential suspects unless those suspects are wanted for questioning, are fleeing arrest or have been arrested.
It would be totally irresponsible (AND PROBABLY ILLEGAL) for the FBI to name a suspect in the Amerithrax investigation if they don't have enough solid evidence to make an arrest. (That's the basis for Dr. Hatfill's lawsuit!) NEITHER Hatfill nor Berry was offically identified as a "suspect" by the FBI. The FBI officially stated MANY times that Hatfill was NOT a suspect, and they stated that Berry was being investigated to clear him, presumably because the same conspiracy theorists who pointed the finger at Hatfill were also pointing the finger at Berry.
You should at least TRY to get your facts straight.
Condi Rice explained in 1999:
“In a democracy such as ours, there is no substitute for open and honest dialog about the impact of what we do on our laws and our values. Without that, no leader can pursue a coherent strategy confident of the support of the people.”
“No one would suggest the US become ‘Fortress America’ in order diminish the BCW threat, no matter how grave... Yet, improved intelligence in countering the threat does raise uncomfortable questions.” (p. 400)
There was a conference on countering biological terrorism in 1999 sponsored by the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies, reported in
COUNTERING BIOLOGICAL TERRORISM IN THE U.S.: AN UNDERSTANDING OF ISSUES AND STATUS.
Dr. Alibek was introduced thusly:
“Dr. Llewellyn: This is rather strange because I just met Dr. Alibek today. He was introduced to me by Dr. Charlie Bailey, who now works for SRA. But Charlie and I were associated with the Army Medical Research and Development Command Defense Program for over 20 years.
Dr. Alibek: Thank you very much for your attention.” (at p. 311).
I have one of those uncomfortable questions Dr. Rice mentioned. Is that a typo? Isn’t SRA who Al-Timimi worked for 1999 where he had a high security clearance for work for the Navy? See Milton Viorst’s article “The Education of Ali Al-Timimi. Did Dr. Bailey also work there at SRA in 1999? Did they work together? When I emailed Dr. Bailey in December 2007 to confirm Ali had the room right near his at Discovery Hall he politely referred me to counsel and took no questions. Dr. Alibek and Dr. Popov have told me that Ali is not known to have worked on any biodefense project. Dr. Popova told me I should direct any such questions to Dr. Bailey. Dr. Bailey told me I should direct any questions to University counsel. University counsel declined to answer any questions.
Factoid: Dr. Al-Timimi’s father worked at the Iraqi embassy.
“[T]he anthrax spore preparations in the last two of the mailings, out of probably five letters total, were of extraordinary high quality. [citing Matsumoto] ... [T]he preparation may have been treated with silica to present electrostatic clumping. This is a highly sophisticated method of spore preparation, widely thought to be beyond the capability of anyone not specifically trained to prepare it. Very few people in the world have such training; most of them are current or past Ph.D-level employees of the US or Soviet BW program or biodefense programs.”
The quote is in a chapter by Wheelis and Sugishima in Wheelis et al, DEADLY CULTURES: BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS SINCE 1945 (2006)
“Militant groups are wary of becoming alienated from the people... Since their strategy is premised on target specificity, it is unlikely that they would resort to the use of any weapon that would result in indiscriminate deaths. For this reason, it is unlikely that they would use biological weapons or agents.”
“Non-State actors in South Asia: Who Will Use Bio-Weapons and Against Whom,” by Suba Chandran, in “BIO-TERRORISM AND BIODEFENSE,” (2005)
“There is no way to sugar coat it: Ali Mohamed is a window on breathtaking government incompetence. I raised holy hell ... that I strongly suspected Mohamed was a terrorist, that the FBI should be investigating him rather than allowing him to infiltrate as a source ... Because, you know what they say IMAGINE THE LIABILITY.
Andrew McCarthy, WILFUL BLINDNESS (2008)
Elvis has left the building.
In December 2001, the CIA obtained the record of a request by Ayman Zawahiri to Al Qaeda’s military commander, Egyptian Mohammed Atef, for a book that extensively featured Dr. Ken Alibek and discussed the method of microencapsulation, the method used to weaponize the Daschle and Leahy anthrax.
As Professor Turley at GWU, who represents “anthrax weapons suspect” Al-Timimi infers, the FBI and CIA very likely were enthused at the prospect of continuing a FISA warrant on Ali Al-Timimi’s phone and email to pursue this lead.
According to Ali’s lawyer, he was in contact with folks associated with Al Qaeda’s network including Bin Laden’s sheik (the subject of Bin Laden’s 1996 declaration of war) immediately before and after the first anthrax mailing. According to his lawyer, Ali even met with the “911 imam” to discuss a planned hand delivery of a warning to every member of Congress on the first anniversary of the anthrax letters to the Senators.
Now when Ali would go to London to lecture at JIMAS (such as in the Summer of 2001), was he also in touch with Abu Musab al-Suri? Al-Suri, now captured, was in touch with Zawahiri and reportedly worked with Midhat Mursi on poisons. The red headed al-Suri had located his London front not from Ayman’s friends who led the London cell and then were detained in 1998 after they faxed claim of responsibility for the 1998 embassy bombings in which a couple hundred died. (Abdel-Bari is subject to extradition as is Al-Sirri, who was working closely with the blind sheik’s liasion, Postal employee Abdel Sattar. The London-based redheaded Al-Suri posted instructions purporting to explain how to weaponize plague. Although he was a propagandist, not a microbiologist, didn’t he know fellow propagandist, microbiologist Ali Al-Timimi, who came to London to lecture about ideological differences that divided the salafi-jihadis there?
The book that Ayman asked Atef to get (and it is sold by Amazon) explains:
“This coating process - called microencapsulation - is also considered evidence of possible Soviet assistance, since only the Soviets and Americans (before 1969) managed to coat...” (p. 330)
The authors interviewed both Dr. Alibek and Dr. Bailey (and specifically acknowledged their help). They explained:
“Dr. Malcolm Dando, the distinguished biologist and Professor of International Security at the Department of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford, Englad, talks of microencapsulation, a process by which BW agents can be coated and protected against a variety of harmful outside factors... This process also allows agents to survive longer and to be inhaled more easily, which increases the likeihood of infection and death. Currently, the detection and identification of microencapsulated BW agents is more difficult than for non-encapsulated materials. The Soviets crossed this scientific threshold years ago and were able to ‘spray’ their bacterial and viral agents that were resistant to the sun’s rays.)”
The authors continued:
“In fact, microencapsulation can already be tailored for the mission. For example, you can apply one coating for added protection from heat, and then another one for the effects of sunlight. A germ would need both coatings if it were packed inside a missile warhead and then had to survive explosive decompression at its target, together with sudden exposure to sunlight.”
Thus, when Ken Alibek described the usefulness of a coating to FreeRepublic poster Ed where packed in a missile head, he was only telling half the story (either Ken was only telling half the story or Ed has selectively quoted him out of context). A coating also serves to allow it to be inhaled more easily and increases the likelihood of infection and death and makes it better able to survive its environment. It is used in pharmaceuticals and functional animal feedstuffs, for example, to avoid the destruction by enzymes before reaching the target organ.
A thesis written by Dr. Alibek’s assistant — who the directory from 2002 shows was a couple doors away from Ali Al-Timimi — says if silica was detected it would have been used for this purpose of encapsulation. The author, Dr. Crockett, also acknowledges the help of FBI’s Amerithrax consultant, William Patrick. There was more than one bioweapons thesis by an assistant to Dr. Alibek at GMU’s Center for Biodefense that thanked Dr. Patrick.
Dr. Treble Rebel, who has posted in this thread above and long festering debate with Ed is expert in coating with silica to include the method used by DARPA in coating phosphors (for which I’ve provided a link previously). He is not a microbiologist but Treble knows silica coatings. Rebel knew of this other reason of coating and has tried to explain it to Ed. But Ed has been distracted by arcane lay discussion of the basic science. Even life scientists, from their different perspective, view the purpose of the coating as relating to the hydrophobocity of the water and are not troubled by distinctions TrebleRebel, who is not a microbiologist but is a chemical engineer, draws between electrostatic charges and Vander Waals forces. That just is a difference in perspective, not in substance. The details don’t matter as nearly as much as the identity of the devil provably behind the anthrax.
Ed Lake’s misconceived vitriolic attack on Gary Matsumoto’s SCIENCE article that made these points led to a half-decade dispute with TrebleRebel that has shed far more heat than light because of Ed’s totally unnecessary confusion that such coatings were not used in this manner and for this specific purpose. The CIA and FBI knew as early as December 2001 about the use of microencapsulation. The forensic finding set the respective squads off in alternative investigative directions. One squad focused on, for example, Hatfill, friend of William Patrick who might have learned a trick or two. Another squad focused on Al-Timimi, who also might have learned a trick or two from the same fount of knowledge — given he shared the same water fountain with Dr. Alibek and Dr. Bailey. In fact, curiously, it now appears that both Al-Timimi and Dr. Bailey worked at SRA International before GMU. Al-Timimi had a high security clearance for work with the Navy at SRA. See Milton Viorst, “The Education of Ali Al-Timimi.” I spoke to Ali’s wife, who is wonderful, but until and unless cleared by counsel, she is not able to discuss why Ali had a high security clearance for mathematical support work for the Navy while at SRA.
Ayman’s requests to Atef had included publications not only on anthrax, but botulinum and plague. There is every reason to think that Abu Musab al-Suri’s web discussion of biological weapons stemmed from the work Zawahiri and Midhat Mursi were doing. See Architect of Global Jihad: The Life of Al Qaeda Strategist Abu Musab al-Suri by Brynjar Lia. The section at Weapons of Mass Destruction is at 169-176. See also Steve Coll and Susan B. Glasser “Terrorists Turn to the Web as Base of Operations,” Washington Post Staff Writers, Sunday, August 7, 2005; Page A01
(”Biological Weapons” was the stark title of a 15-page Arabic language document posted two months ago on the Web site of al Qaeda fugitive leader Mustafa Setmariam Nasar, one of the jihadist movement’s most important propagandists, often referred to by the nom de guerre Abu Musab Suri. His document described “how the pneumonic plague could be made into a biological weapon,” if a small supply of the virus could be acquired, according to a translation by Rebecca Givner-Forbes, an analyst at the Terrorism Research Center, an Arlington firm with U.S. government clients. Nasar’s guide drew on U.S. and Japanese biological weapons programs from the World War II era and showed “how to inject carrier animals, like rats, with the virus and how to extract microbes from infected blood . . . and how to dry them so that they can be used with an aerosol delivery system.”)
Here are some of the publications Ayman sought:
Adams, James, The New Spies: Exploring the Frontiers of Espionage (1994)
Darlow, HM, and Pride, NB. (1969). Serological diagnosis of anthrax. Lancet
Doi, H, et al. (1996). Hepatitis C virus (HCV) subtype prevalence in Chiang Mai,
Thailand, and identification of novel subtypes of HCV major type 6. J. Clin. Microbiol.
Green, DM, and Jamieson, WM. (1958). Anthrax and bone-meal fertilizer. Lancet ii:153-
Hobbs, G, Roberts, TA, and Walker, PD. (1965). Some observations on OS variants of
Clostridium botulinum type E. J. Appl. Bacteriol. 28(1):147-152.
Mangold, T, and Goldberg, J. (1999). Plague Wars: The Terrifying Reality of Biological
Warfare. MacMillan, Great Britain.
Morris, EJ. (1955). A selective medium for Bacillus anthracis. J. Gen. Microbiol.
Pearce, TW, and Powell, EO. (1951). A selective medium for Bacillus anthracis. J. Gen.
Roberts, TA. (1965). Sporulation of Clostridium botulinum type E in different culture
media. J. Appl. Bacteriol 28(1):142-146.
Roberts, TA, and Ingram, M. (1965). The resistance of spores of Clostridium botulinum
type E to heat and radiation. J. Appl. Bacteriol. 28:125.
Semple, AB, and Hobday, TL. (1959). Control of anthrax: Suggestions based on survey
of imported hides. Lancet ii (3 October): 507-508
Stanley, JL, and Smith H (1961). Purification of factor I and recognition of a third factor
of the anthrax toxin. J. Gen. Microbiol. 26:49-66.
Thorne, CB, and Belton, FC. (1957). An agar-diffusion method for titrating Bacillus
anthracis immunizing antigen and its application to a study of antigen production. J. Gen.
Wang, CH, et al. (1996). Immune response to hepatitis A virus capsid proteins after
infection. J. Clin. Microbiol. 34(3):707-713.
Some of the supplementary references from handwritten notes recovered in Afghanistan included:
Ajl, SJ, Kadis, S, and Montie, TC. (1970) Microbial Toxins. Academic Press, New York.
Anderson, RM, and May, RM. (1991). Infectious Diseases of Humans: Dynamics and
Control. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Batty, I and Walker, PD. (1965). Colonial morphology and fluorescent labelled antibody
staining in the identification of species of the genus Clostridium. J. Appl. Bacteriol.
Brachman, PS, Plotkin, SA, Bumford, FH, and Atchison, MM. (1960). An epidemic of
inhalation anthrax: The first in the twentieth century. II. Epidemiology. Am. J. Hyg. 72:6-
Clarke, R. (1968). We All Fall Down: The Prospects of Biological and Chemical
Warfare. Penguin Books, London.
Hodgkiss, W, and Ordal, ZJ. (1966). The morphology of the spore of some strains of
Clostridium botulinum type E. J. Bacteriol. 91:2031-2036.
Keppie, J, Cocking, EC, Witt, K, and Smith, H. (1960). The chemical basis of the
virulence of Pasteurella pestis. III. An immunogenic product obtained from Past. pestis
that protects both guinea pigs and mice. Br. J. Exp. Pathol. 41:577-585.
Knisley, RF. (1966). Selective medium for Bacillus anthracis. J. Gen. Microbiol. 13:456.
Knisely, RF, Swaney, LM, and Friedlander, H. (1964). Selective media for the isolation
of Pasteurella pestis. J. Bacteriol. 88:491-496.
Miller, JK. Human anthrax in New York state. N.Z. Med. J. 61:2046-2053.
Murphy, S, Hay, A, and Rose, S. (1986). No Fire, No Thunder: The Threat of Chemical
and Biological Weapons. Pluto Press, London.
Proceedings of the Conference on Airborne Infection. (1961). Bacteriol. Rev. 25:173-
Riemann, H. (1969). Botulism Types A, B, and F in Foodborne Infections and
Intoxications. Edited by H Rieman. Academic Press, New York.
Roberts, B. (1993). Biological Weapons: Weapons of the Future. Significant Issues
Series XV(1). Center for Strategic and International Studies. Washington, DC.
Rothschild, JH. (1964). Tomorrows Weapons. McGraw-Hill, New York.
Science Supporting Online Material
Smith, H (1988). The development of studies on the determinants of bacterial
pathogenicity. J. Comp. Pathol. 98:253-73.
Walgate, R. (1990). Miracle of Menace? Biotechnology and the Third World. The Panas
William, P, and Wallace, D. (1989). Unit 731: The Japanese Armys Secret of Secrets.
Hodder and Stoughton, London.
World Health Organization (1970) Expert Committee on Plague, 4th Report. World
Health Org. Tech. Rep. Ser. (no. 447).
Adams, James, The New Spies: Exploring the Frontiers of Espionage (1994) was cited in PLAGUE WARS, not in Ayman’s memo to Atef requesting books.
Ayman himself wrote the book(let) on espionage — titled “Covert Operations.”
The list of publications above, as corrected, is downloadable (for free) at
J.B. Petro, and D.A Relman, “Understanding Threats to Scientific Openness, SCIENCE, December 12, 2003
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