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.
A new Al Qaeda tape will call for use of WMDs on civilians.
“Al Qaeda Tape to Call for Use of WMDs,” ABCNews, May 27, 2008
For the reasons explained by the former emir of the Egyptian Islamic Group in links posted yesterday, use of WMDs against civilians will send them to eternal damnation.
But it really would behoove the FBI to show it has been successful in thwarting the anthrax threat at least insofar it was manifested in the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings.
Certainly, fear of civil liability should not factor into the equation at all. It’s never the crime as much as the cover-up. GMU’s failure to have anything approaching candor or transparency on these issues does not weigh in its favor. It would not have intruded on the former student’s privacy to say: “Oops. We had inadequate biosecurity protocols in place.”
It’s never too late to do the right thing.
On July 1, 2005, Dr. Alibek testified before the Committee on House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Prevention of Nuclear and Biological Attack:
“Though the threat of terrorist groups developing genetically engineered pathogens may not be immediate, it is important to recognize that it could be a threat in the future. We must diligently monitor the situation and be on the look out for possible changes in the field that could increase the availability of this technology to terrorist groups so that we can be best prepared for possible bioterrorism attacks involving genetically engineered pathogens.”
Sigh. Let’s take care of old business, Ken, before giving Ayman any new ideas.
One of my favorite interviews is Dr. Alibek’s interview on October 19, 2001 on CBS News’ “48 Hours.” It was titled “Deadly intent; how easy it is for the wrong people to get anthrax spores.”
“Dr. ALIBEK: When I was born, it was 1950. The United States was the main enemy of the Soviet Union.
(Footage of Soviet Union-era military parade; vintage photos of Alibek; footage of people placing containers in ground)
MORIARTY: (Voiceover) It was the Cold War. Alibek, then Alibekov, was a young army doctor who turned anthrax and other bacteria and viruses into deadly weapons that were also drug resistant.
Dr. ALIBEK: I did something I should have not done.
(Footage of Alibek talking with man; anthrax letter sent to Tom Brokaw; postmark; Dr. Alibek in his office; World Trade Center site)
MORIARTY: (Voiceover) Today, Dr. Alibek works for the Americans, finding ways to defend against the same weapons. In the case of the letters, while DNA tests will be needed to pinpoint exactly where the anthrax came from, Dr. Alibek suspects they’re connected in some way to the September 11th attacks and the people who planned them.
Dr. ALIBEK: In my opinion, what we see now is the second wave.
Mr. RICHARD SPERTZEL: Clearly, biological weapons was part of the training manual that was used by the Osama bin Laden and the al-Qaida network.
(Footage of Spertzel; airplane; photos of hijackers; footage of crop-dusting planes; apartment building; streets of Prague)
MORIARTY: (Voiceover) According to former UN weapons inspector Richard Spertzel, there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the same men who participated in last month’s attacks had interest in biological weapons as well; reports that key hijacker Mohamed Atta inquired about the purchase of a crop-duster; the biowarfare manuals and booklets found in a New Jersey apartment of suspects in custody ***
Mr. SPERTZEL:*** The initial seed material would be a very, very small quantity of that and could be contained in a vial as small as your little finger.
(Footage of lab setting)
MORIARTY: (Voiceover) But the fact is you don’t need Iraq or other foreign sources to obtain a strain of anthrax. The bacteria can be found in our own labs in the US.
Dr. ALIBEK: The Soviet Union spent billions and billions to develop these techniques, this production. Now this information is available for the cost of a translator.
(Footage of Soviet Union-era military parade; vintage photo of Soviet scientists)”
Comment: Or perhaps the cost of tuition. (Though, note, Ali beginning January 2002 was paid $70,000 a year).
“Dr. ALIBEK: You can imagine if—if somebody comes to you and says ‘OK, OK, let’s have a deal. I’ll give you $10,000 or $20,000, and the only thing for you to do, to write the procedure. Then you forget me and I’ll forget you.’ Temptation.
(Footage of petri dish; organisms under microscope; aerial footage of islands; Moriarty and Dr. Alibek; letter addressed to Senator Daschle; armed guard checking ID at airport)
MORIARTY: (Voiceover) Underemployed rogue scientists, easily available viruses, contaminated weapon burial grounds. These are warnings that Dr. Alibek has been giving Congress for years. What once seemed like just a scientist’s theory has become America’s reality that can no longer be ignored.”
Comment: Yet, the public and media has ignored the reality of the infiltration that was allowed to happen here for 7 years. Even Ken now ignores it. He will claim, if some reporter is able to contact him, that the FBI suspects someone other than Al-Timimi. (But he can’t tell). Wrong. Although the FBI does not suspect Ali of being the processor or mailer, they suspect he accessed (and stole) the biochemistry information. Tell me: what credibility will those GMU Center for Biodefense threat assessment people have to the extent they continue to be clueless about Al-Timimi?
And let’s not forget that one of Al Qaeda’s charity front was known by the FBI to have clipped a news article reporting on Ken’s threats about the country being unprepared for anthrax.
October 24, 2001 Wednesday
SHOW: THE MONEY GANG
Biological Warfare Analysis, CNNfn
GUESTS: Dr. Kenneth Alibek
“ALIBEK: Well, unfortunately, we discussed this issue several years ago and - but at that time, not many people paid attention.”
ALIBEK: In my opinion, it’s not very hard. Again, for many years, it was a great deal of discussion, whether or not it was possible to get portions (ph) and traces as an agent, whether or not it’s difficult to manufacture anthrax biological weapons or substances, whether or not it was difficult to deploy. Unfortunately, now we see it’s not a very big problem. People with some sort of knowledge, some knowledge can do this. ***
KIERNAN: Dr. Kenneth Alibek is president of Advanced Biosystems and he’s joined us from Washington.”
Comment: The FBI, upon regular dumpster diving at a Illinois-based charity found an article by Ken talking about the anthrax threat. So someone was paying attention. Ayman and his supporters were.
April 4, 2002 Thursday
SHOW:World News Tonight (6:30 PM ET) - ABC
Federal investigators fear anthrax letters sent by FBI scientist
BRIAN ROSS reporting:
“Peter, six months into it, federal investigators say they have few clues and no suspects. But what they do have is a fear that the person responsible could be one of the very scientists they have relied on for help and a concern that the US military is not telling them everything they know about secret anthrax research programs.
(VO) The FBI asked for the help of Dr. Ken Alibek almost immediately because no one in the world has made more weapons-grade anthrax than he has. Until he defected 10 years ago, Alibek ran the secret Soviet anthrax program and says he has the expertise to make the material that was sent in the American anthrax letters.
Dr. KEN ALIBEK: Yes, it would be easy for me.
ROSS: (VO) Now, Alibek tells ABC News he and a number of other scientists were told last month they must take lie detector tests if they want to continue to help the FBI.
And you passed the test?
Dr. ALIBEK: Yes, I did.
ROSS: So they’re concerned that whoever is helping them could, in fact, be the person responsible?
Dr. ALIBEK: I think so.
ROSS: (VO) Federal investigators say Alibek is one of at least a dozen individuals, many who worked in the bioweapons research program at Fort Detrick, Maryland, who have been given and passed lie detector tests.”
Comment: Years ago, when I emailed Dr. Alibek, he said the FBI suspected Ali. It was only after the overbroad FoxNews report, that he told me different. Dr. A and Dr. B at GMU would not in any way be suspected of having been complicitous. Only Ali and his Salafist-Jihadi friends.
In mid-October 2001, he was interviewed by John Gibson of FoxNews and touched on this question of intelligence analysis:
ALIBEK: John, as I said before, the probability that they got anthrax from Iraq is high. But in order to say for sure whether or not it was the case, we need to do some additional study. This study would include some intelligence study by some of our intelligence agencies and some I would say scientific technical study. Unfortunately, I have not been involved in the study, but a lot of information could be obtained even from some preliminary or thorough analysis of this samples.
“Interview With Kenneth Alibek,” FoxNews, October 19, 2001
GUESTS:Kenneth Alibek, Catherine Herridge
A couple years later Ken told me he knew Ali was a hardliner but didn’t know any details about his charity work. Why not? Why didn’t he and have his numerous assistants make it a point to learn? The mission of the Center for Biodefense included threat assessment. Entire PhD theses are written on the subject.
The new unofficial tape ends with a code.
“Video Urges Nuclear Jihad Against US,” May 27, 2008
In the movie Andromeda, that aired on A&E in two parts yesterday and today, the code pointed to the US DOD sample.
As in Andromeda, fear of public embarrassment prevented the truth from coming out.
“Al Qaeda Intent on WMD Attack Against Americans,” May 27, 2008
The tape referred to in the report was made by supporters of al-Qaeda and released May 26, titled ``Nuclear Jihad, The Ultimate Terror,’’ IntelCenter, based in Alexandria, Virginia, said in an e-mailed statement today.
``The material in these types of videos does not qualify as an official message from al-Qaeda or any other group,’’ said IntelCenter, which provides counterterrorism intelligence support to the U.S., British, Australian and Canadian armed forces. ``Considering them so would be the equivalent of considering a 10-year-old’s homemade fan video of his favorite sports team to be an official team message.’’
“U.S. Intelligence Group Dismisses Report of Al-Qaeda WMD Tape,
Bloomberg, May 28, 2008
Ben Venzke, chief executive officer of IntelCenter, a group that monitors terrorist communications on the Web, downplayed the importance of such videos.
“Supporter videos are made by fans or supporters who may not have ever had any contact with a real terrorist,” Venzke said.
FBI warns of new al-Qaida threats
Published: May 28, 2008 at 3:51 AM
May 28, 2008 - I've finally completed the first version of a new supplementary web page titled "Van Der Waals Forces & Static Electricity: How They Affect Bacillus Spores".
The page is very detailed, so I may find ways to shorten it. Or I may find that I need to expand upon it -- particularly with additional illustrations. But, for now, I'm putting it out there for comments. I hope that anyone who sees any errors in this new web page will contact me and explain what those errors are so that I can make corrections.
The new web page shows why the article in Science Magazine titled "Anthrax Powder: State Of The Art?" is totally invalid and nothing but a conspiracy theory disguised as a scientific article. It answers the questions posed by other scientific articles, such as the article in Aerosol Science and Technology, and it verifies that any article which claims that anthrax spores must be "weaponized" with a coating of silica before they can cause inhalation anthax or disperse as a deadly aerosol is total nonsense.
Ed, could you list your sources on your webpage in support of the individual statements? Thanks. Your discussion does not square with the literature. (I don’t see the point in your BSing about the science.) If experience is a guide, you haven’t researched the literature.
See, e.g., Chen, Gang; Strevett, Keith A., Microbial Deposition in Porous Media: A Surface Thermodynamic Investigation, Environmental Engineering Science v. 20 no. 3 (May/June 2003) p. 237-48 (A microbial transport study of Bacillus subtilis through a model medium of silica gel demonstrated that bacterial deposition in porous media was determined by interfacial interactions between bacteria and the medium as well as interfacial interactions between deposited and suspended bacterial cells). Jucker, Barbara A.; Zehnder, Alexander J. B.; Harms, Hauke, “Quantification of polymer interactions in bacterial adhesion,” Environmental Science & Technology v. 32 no. 19 (October 1 1998) p. 2909-15 (Adhesion of bacteria to solids is governed by van der Waals, electrostatic, and acid-base (hydrophobic) interactions, which are combined in an extended DLVO model (DLVO-AB) and by interactions of bacterial surface polymers with the solid surfaces) ; Gao, Baoyu; Zhu, Xiaobiao; Xu, Chunhua,”Influence of extracellular polymeric substances on microbial activity and cell hydrophobicity in biofilms,” Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology v. 83 no. 3 (March 2008) p. 227-32
The links are included in the text. Just click on the links. If there is something specific that you do not accept, let me know and I'll provide the link.
What is on my new page is basic science. There's nothing revolutionary in it.
What you cite (without providing any link) doesn't contradict anything.
Adhesion of bacteria to solids is governed by van der Waals, electrostatic, and acid-base (hydrophobic) interactions
If a wet bacteria clings to a surface, that is the result of van der Waals forces. I describe in the page how damp spores will cling to each other due to the van der Waals forces in the water molecules.
But the subject of my new web page is DRY SPORES, not wet bacteria. The spores in the senate letters were DRY.
You do the same thing as TrebelRebel. You take a sentence out of context and try to make it prove your beliefs. All you are proving is that you do not understand what is being said.
My discussion squares with the literature. It many not square with your interpretation of the literature, but I can't do anything about that.
My discussion is about the basic science of how spores are affected by van der Waals forces and by static electricity.
Your and TrebelRebel's arguments are always about how you INTERPRET what you read somewhere.
If you want to discuss my new web page, you have to discuss the science. Discussing YOUR INTERPRETATION of some article you found doesn't solve anything. Taking some sentence out of context doesn't solve anything. Spinning some erroneous statement to make if fit your beliefs doesn't solve anything. That's what you and TrebelRebel have been doing for years and years. It's time to discuss science, not your interpretations of science.
In this month’s “Evaluation of sampling tools for environmental sampling of bacterial endospores from porous and nonporous surfaces,” J Appl Microbiol. 2008 May 20, an ink jet aerosol generator was used at PNNL to apply Bacillus subtilis endospores to five porous and nonporous surfaces.
You haven’t read the literature any more than you’ve read the recent “Electrokinetic properties of [Bt] spores and the peculiarities of bentonite” in the journal Mikrobial Z. It addressed the use of bentonite in the production of granular biopesticide. You probably don’t even read Russian journal articles.
I haven't read "War And Peace" or "Horton Hears a Who," either. They would be just about as relevant.
There's nothing about basic science that's going to be changed by some article in a Russian science journal.
Sometimes your comments are so totally bizarre that they seem .... insane. This one is about as crazy as your suggestion that the person who is the most confident in his beliefs is the one who is right.
Ed, I wasn’t suggesting that the person most confident is most likely to be right. I was just stating factually Ken’s assessment of his Jdey theory and your assessment of your First Grader theory. You said you estimated, as I recall, that there was about a 95% probability that a First Grader wrote the letters. That statistic goes squarely to whether anyone would want to discuss basic science with you. But you do a great job at organizing the docket and making documents available and so keep up the good work.
That was some status hearing today, eh? Email for a copy.
05/29/2008 Minute Entry for proceedings held before Judge Reggie B. Walton: Status Conference held on 5/29/2008. (Court Reporter Phyllis Merana.) (mpt, ) (Entered: 05/29/2008)
While your first grader theory is the silliest I’ve heard, Ken Dillon’s Jdey theory is hard to argue against given that he was part of the 911 planning and in a cell with Adnan El-Shukijumah (apparently) (aka Jafar the Pilot). Personally, it is not the mailer theory I favor and I don’t know what to make of sightings in Turkey (and alternatively Avon, Colorado). But I find it fascinating we know so little about Jdey given his biological training and travel. I wish we knew his past day jobs and other known associates (besides Boussara).
Nothing happened today at the status conference. Judge Walton had intended to take up argument on a motion, but no one was prepared for that because it had been calendared as a status conference. He asked the parties if their position had changed on the need for Stewart’s testimony, and we told him our position was unchanged. That’s really it. A non-event.
The reports on the study on the effectiveness of the mailed anthrax in the Canadian experiment was reported in private briefings in Spring and Summer of 2001. An insider thus was not dependent on the published report later that Fall. (The date on the formal report is September 10, 2001).
Thought question: Dr. Charles Bailey for DIA wrote extensively on the the biothreat posed by other countries (and presumably terrorists). He shared a fax number with Al-Timimi. What came over that fax line in Spring and Summer of 2001? At some point, Dr. Al-Timimi, Dr. Alibek and Dr. Bailey also shared the same maildrop. It certainly would not be surprising that the two directors who headed the DARPA-funded Center for Biodefense — and had received the biggest defense award in history for work with Delta Ames under a contract with USAMRIID — would have been briefed on the threat of mailed anthrax. The 1999 short report by William Patrick to Hatfill at SAIC on the general subject was far less important given that it did not relate to actual experimental findings.
Plus, it is common sense that while someone might use as a model something they had surreptitiously learned of — they would not use as a model something in a memo that they had commissioned. Thus, it was rather misdirected to focus on the 1999 SAIC report commissioned by Dr. Hatfill rather than the 2001 Canadian report. The Canadian report related to the anthrax threat sent regarding the detention of Vanguards of Conquest #2 Mahjoub in Canada. Mahjoub had worked with al-Hawsawi in Sudan (the fellow with anthrax spraydrying documents on his laptop). The anthrax threat in late January prompted the still-classified PDB in early February 2001 to President Bush on the subject.
Source: “Diffuse Security Threats, Information on U.S. Domestic Anthrax Attacks,” Statement for the Record by Keith Rhodes, Chief Technologist, GAO, December 10, 2002, at p. 5 (”DRES officials provided a schedule of briefings that were conducted through the spring and summer of 2001, when the results of the study were discussed.”)
In July 2004, Director Mueller gave the FBI an October 1, 2004 deadline for an indictment in Amerithrax (then Al-Timimi was indicted in late September on charges that were easier to prove and did not raise such problematic national security issues). At the time, authorities were working to arrange the deportation of a GMU security expert in pressuring him to provide information. The FBI is using whatever charges they can to neutralize the perceived threat.
Former USAMRIID Deputy Commander and Acting Commander Ames strain anthrax researcher Charles Bailey, in Rm 156B, was given a Gateway desktop computer in mid-March 2001 (upon his arrival) serial number 0227315480. It was like the one Dr. Alibek would get the next year in 156D. One way to think of proximity analysis a form of true crime analysis is the number of feet or inches between 154B and 156B/156D. Another way is to think of it is in terms of the number of feet or inches to the hard drives. You can judge the distance for yourself from a First Floor plan that is available online, clicking upon 154-156 area to enlarge.
Indeed, the December 2007 biodefense PhD thesis (supervised by a DOD biothreat person) explains:
“Although computers are password protected, anyone can access the computers located throughout the labs. Research results can be recorded on lab computers. Someone wanting to access research results would first have to understand what the numbers meant. Research results are also kept in a lab notebook that is kept in the lab or office. This enables other students to repeat what was already done or to see results.”
The FBI is not unaware of the vulnerability of unauthorized access to computers.
U.S. Investigates Laptop Spying Suspicions,” May 30, 2008
Another example of a computer security expert they sought to deport was in the State of Washington. He was the son of a Bin Laden charity front based in London.
Saudi with notorious father fights deportation
By Maureen O’Hagan and Mike Carter
Seattle Times staff reporters
To his co-workers at the University of Washington School of Nursing, Majid al-Massari was a happy guy who bounced down the halls and seemed like a “big teddy bear.”
What his friends didn’t know about the burly, bearded 34-year-old computer-security specialist was that he had helped set up a Web site for a group linked to al-Qaida, quoted Osama bin Laden in his own Internet postings, lashed out against American policies on his father’s London-based radio show and had landed in the sights of U.S. terrorism investigators.
Now the Saudi national is being targeted for deportation, but immigration officials say it’s not because he’s a terrorist. Instead, they cite a nearly 2-year-old misdemeanor drug conviction that, under immigration law, is considered an “aggravated felony” and the basis for deportation.”
It is a difficult time to be a supporter of the Salafist-Jihadis. For example, an imam helping out at Jaballah’s school recently was so fed up with close scrutiny by investigators that he turned over his laptop only to be charged with having underaged children inappropriatetly pictured on his laptop. (Jaballah was in touch with both Ayman Zawahiri (by satellite phone) and Shehata, head of Egyptian Islamic Jihad special operations, who was his brother-in-law. Jaballah also kept in touch with the EIJ military commander.
‘None of it matches my life, my whole life’
Globe and Mail, Canada - May 22, 2008
“An Islamic preacher long suspected of being one of the world’s top jihadi propagandists and so weary of attention from federal security officials that he handed over his laptop to authorities in a bid to clear his name has ended up facing charges of possessing child pornography.”
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