GAO: Major Security Flaws at Federal Buildings
by Ed O’Keefe
Column: Federal Eye: Keeping Tabs on the Government at Washingtonpost.com
The police agency in charge of protecting thousands of federal buildings nationwide has failed to keep bomb-making materials out of several high-security facilities in the past year, according to Congressional testimony provided by Senate aides. In the past year, investigators successfully smuggled bomb-making materials into ten high-security federal buildings, constructed bombs and walked around the buildings undetected, exposing weaknesses in security provided by the Federal Protective Service.
More than one million government employees work in 9,000 facilities guarded by FPS around the country, including at least 350,000 in the Washington region. The revelations come as the Obama administration prepares to reorganize the agency in the coming weeks.
Investigators carried liquid explosives and low-yield detonators — materials investigators note are not normally carried into federal buildings. The GAO said security concerns prevent it from revealing the exact locations or cities of the affected facilities, but that eight of them were government owned, while two were leased. They included offices of a U.S. senator and House member, as well as offices for the departments of Homeland Security, Justice and State, the GAO reported. In one instance, the GAO obtained a building security tape showing an investigator walking through a security checkpoint with bomb making materials.
In the past, security experts have criticized some GAO investigators for publicizing sensational findings or “sting” operations that are not based on intelligence-driven risk assessments.…Continue reading
06 July 2009
On the eve of the four year anniversary of the brutal bombings that took place on 7 July 2005 taking the lives of 52 innocent Londoners, the capital is silent, its media are neutered, the radio waves are quiet. Did this atrocity even take place? Why are we not talking about the biggest attack on London’s security in recent memory?
The BBC ran a documentary on the "conspiracy" behind 7/7 trying to discredit the many theories that are being advocated that the British government may have been involved in the attacks, that Mossad was aware and therefore was able to move Netanyahu and other dignitaries away to safe areas at the time in London.
What is being forgotten here is the crux of the entire build up to the terrorist attacks and the aftermath.
Firstly why did 4 British born Muslims believe it justified to carry bombs on trains, buses and the underground and attack the very citizens of the country they were born in?
Why did the intelligence apparatus of this country not monitor, as we have been made aware, known individuals with the potential and knowledge to carry out these attacks? The argument that no one and no system can ever stop someone who is determined to cause murder is valid, but the collating of the right knowledge and training for these types of attacks had been monitored.
The aftermath? We have a muzzled response to the 7/7 attacks, the conspiracy is the way in which London is either afraid or knows too well the consequences of speaking out on these attacks.…Continue reading
By John Byrne
July 6, 2009
British weapons inspector Dr. David Kelly was writing an expose about his work with anthrax and his warnings that Iraq possessed no weapons of mass destruction at the time of his death in July 2003, according to a report published in a British newspaper.
Kelly’s death — said to have been a suicide — has stirred controversy, as it came on the heels of testimony to the House of Commons about a memo which purported that Britain had “sexed up” a dossier on Iraq’s alleged weapons of mass destruction. A Parliamentary inquiry ruled that the death had been suicide, though it also included testimony from a former British ambassador who quotes Kelly as having said, “I will probably be found dead in the woods” if Iraq were invaded.
The new report says Kelly had spoken with an Oxford publisher several times about a book.
“He had several discussions with a publisher in Oxford and was seeking advice on how far he could go without breaking the law on secrets,” the UK Daily Express alleged.
Kelly’s computers were seized in the wake of his death. He was a signatory to Britain’s Official Secrets Act, which allows for the prosecution of those who talk to the press about state secrets and prescribes a more stringent framework for secrecy than in the United States.
According to the paper, “he was intending to reveal that he warned Prime Minister Tony Blair there were no weapons of… Continue reading
“War on Terror” advocates want civilians to die to justify “War
The Corbett Report
6 July, 2009
CIA analyst Michael Scheuer’s recent call for bin Laden to kill more Americans
would be shocking if we hadn’t already heard it dozens of times before from
other “War on Terror” advocates. “It’s an absurd situation,”
FOX News personality Glenn Beck on his program last week. “Only Osama
can execute an attack that will force Americans to demand that their government
protect them effectively, consistently, and with as much violence as necessary.”
The comments have provoked much shock and outrage among pundits and websites like Jon Stewart and NewsHounds who may have considered him to be on their side. After all, he seemed to be a vociferous and effective critic of the neocons, having authored books like Imperial Hubris and having supported Ron Paul during the 2008 Presidential debates by asserting that 9/11 was merely blowback for American interventionism in the Middle East. With his latest comments, Scheuer is now relegated to the ignoble company of neocon shills like Stu Bykofsky of the Philadelphia Inquirer, who dreamed of another terrorist attack back in 2007 to rally people around the flag (and, presumably, George W. Bush) once again; Donald Rumsfeld, who complained in 2006 that the Bush regime was a victim of its own success in the “War on Terror” and that another terrorist attack was needed to remind people that the war was still necessary; and… Continue reading
From DemocracyNow.org: Listen/Watch links here. Fmr. Congressmember Cynthia McKinney Back in U.S. After Being Detained and Deported from Israel – Former Congressmember Cynthia McKinney arrived back in the United States Tuesday following her deportation from Israel. McKinney was one of 21 activists seized by the Israeli military in international waters last week as they tried to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza. We speak with McKiney and with filmmaker Adam Shapiro who was detained and deported as well.
Former Congressmember Cynthia McKinney arrived back in the United States Tuesday following her deportation from Israel. McKinney was one of 21 activists seized by the Israeli military in international waters last week as they tried to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Also aboard the Free Gaza boat was Nobel Peace Prize winner Mairead Maguire. Last week’s trip was the Free Gaza movement’s first since it aborted an attempt in January after the Israeli navy threatened to shoot the civilian passengers on board. That sailing had come just weeks after an Israeli navy vessel deliberately rammed another of its boats, almost forcing it to sink.
Cynthia McKinney joins us now in Washington D.C. We are also joined here at the Firehouse by Adam Shapiro. He was filming the Free Gaza trip last week. He is a Palestinian rights activist and co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement. Both Cynthia and Adam were detained for the past week in an Israeli jail.
Cynthia McKinney, former U.S. Congresswoman and the 2008 Green Party presidential candidate.
Adam Shapiro, documentary filmmaker, human rights activist and Palestinian rights activist.…Continue reading
Global Research brings to the attention of its readers key articles on the
London July 7, 2005 bombings
Terror Drill: What Relationship to the Real Time Terror Attacks?
– by Michel Chossudovsky – 2005-08-08
A fictional “scenario” of multiple bomb attacks on London’s underground took
place at exactly the same time as the real bomb attack on July 7, 2005. There
have been several documented cases of mock terror drills in the US and the UK,
held prior or on the same day as the actual terror event.
Terror Suspect Linked to British Intelligence?
– by Michel Chossudovsky – 2005-08-01
“This is the guy, and what’s really embarrassing is that the entire British
police are out chasing him, and one wing of the British government, MI6 or the
British Secret Service, has been hiding him”
Police’s Mossad-style Execution of a ‘Suspect’
– by Professor John Gardner – 2005-07-27
There is no special police licence to injure or kill. If they injure or kill,
the police need to rely on the same law as the rest of us. It is no defence
in law that the killing was authorised by a superior officer. A superior officer
who authorises an unlawful killing is an accomplice.
Cops trained in Israel
– by Michel Chossudovsky – 2005-07-24
The shoot to kill policy was undertaken under the auspices of “Operation Kratos”.
It was carried out by the London Metropolitan’s elite SO19 firearms unit often
referred to as the Blue… Continue reading
Update July 2, 2009, at MediaMatters.org:
CNN’s Roberts says Scheuer’s “major weapon” comment is “out there”
(From the July 2 edition of CNN’s Campbell Brown):
Original story, from 911blogger.com
July 1, 2009
Just another day for Glenn Beck:
From the June 30th, 2009 Glenn Beck on Fox News:
Scheuer: “The only chance we have as a country right now is for Osama bin Laden to deploy and detonate a major weapon in the United States. Only Osama can execute an attack which will force Americans to demand that their government protect them effectively, consistently, with as much violence as necessary.”
“Last night Glenn Beck’s guest was ex-CIA person Michael Scheuer, who stated that the only hope for the country was for Osama Bin Laden to ‘deploy and detonate a major weapon in the United States.’ Seriously.”
YouTube viddy cribbed from: http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/200906300039…Continue reading
Posted at GreenPartyWatch.org
This breaking news comes via David Josue, a close associate and supporter of Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney: Editor
Update 7/5/09: BREAKING NEWS: Israeli authorities deporting Cynthia McKinney
Update 7/2/09: Phone call from Cynthia, still imprisoned in Israel.
Below: 7/1/09 Update on kidnapped passengers, impounded boat, and the right for EVERYONE to see an attorney
Enver Masud: 9/11, Waterboarding, a Confession and the Iraq War
Enver Masud was one of the speakers at a “Demand Accountability for Torture” rally, on June 25, 2009, in John Marshall Park, in Washington, D.C. He questioned how Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was” waterboarded 183 times by the CIA,” and then confessed to being the “mastermind of 9/11,” can get a “fair trial”in this country. Mr. Masud connected the dots between 9/11, the waterboarding of a detainee, a so-called “confession,” and the Iraq War. Mr. Masud is the founder and CEO of “The Wisdom Fund” and the author of “The War on Islam.” See, http://twf.org/ For more on waterboarding, go to:
“Waterboarding: The Psychological Damage is Indescribable,” http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news… and http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news… Closer to home, U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman (IND-CT) has condoned waterboarding. Check out: http://thinkprogress.org/2009/04/22/l… For background on the rally, see: http://tortureaccountability.webs.com/ and http://www.afterdowningstreet.org/ For a brief overview of the Law concerning the subject matter of Torture, go to: http://www.humanrightsfirst.org/us_law/detainees/prohibits_torture.htm
Court won’t hear Sept. 11 claims vs. Saudi Arabia
June 29, 2009
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has refused to allow victims of the Sept.
11 attacks to pursue lawsuits against Saudi Arabia and four of its princes over
charitable donations that were allegedly funneled to al-Qaida.
The court, in an order Monday, is leaving in place the ruling of a federal
appeals court that the country and the princes are protected by sovereign immunity,
which generally means that foreign countries can’t be sued in American courts.
The Obama administration had angered some victims and families by urging the
justices to pass up the case.
In their appeal, the more than 6,000 plaintiffs said the government’s court
brief filed in early June was an “apparent effort to appease a sometime
ally” just before President Barack Obama’s visit to Saudi Arabia.
At issue were obstacles in American law to suing foreign governments and their
officials as well as the extent to which people can be held financially responsible
for acts of terrorism committed by others.
The appeal was filed by relatives of victims killed in the attacks and thousands
of people who were injured, as well as businesses and governments that sustained
property damage and other losses.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York previously upheld a federal
judge’s ruling throwing out the lawsuits. The appeals court said the defendants
were protected by sovereign immunity and the plaintiffs would need to prove
that the princes engaged in intentional actions aimed at U.S.…
On June 27th, 2009, Mark from Truth Action Ottawa interviewed Cosmos, founder of the international 11th Of Every Month Campaign and the truthaction.org website. The hour-long conversation covers a wide range of topics relating to 9/11 activism and celebrates the upcoming July 11th actions, which will be the 30th since the campaign began.
To hear the full interview, click here:
Many thanks to Cosmos for his insight and inspirational words. Mark from Truth Action Ottawa has proudly participated in the 11th of Every Month Campaign since shortly after its inception. We hope to see you out on the 11th (visit our site for more info), and if you’re not from Ottawa, we hope to see pictures of your event on the truthaction.org website!
On Wednesday, June 24, 2009, the New York City Coalition for Accountability Now
filed a petition containing 52,000 signatures calling for a referendum on the
creation of a New York City independent commission to investigate the events of
September 11, 2001.
9/11 Family Members Maureen Hunt and Manny Badillo, and First Responders Charlie
Giles of the Feal Good Foundation and Bill Gleason of the World Trade Center
Rescuers Foundation arrived at the City Clerk’s office to deliver the
petition and speak on behalf of all the proud and concerned citizens who deserve
an unbiased, nonpolitical investigation of the tragedy that has affected us
Thank you for getting us this far! City Council now has until August 24 to
approve the placement of the referendum on the November 3 ballot. As hundreds
more 9/11 family members, first responders and survivors join NYC CAN’s
campaign for a new investigation, lobbying their council members to support
the petition, our chances grow.
In the unlikely event City Council does not approve the placement of the referendum
on the ballot, NYC CAN is prepared to deliver an additional 30,000 signatures
on August 24, which should be enough to eclipse the 15,000 valid signatures needed by law to override City Council and guarantee it gets on the ballot.
Now more than ever is the moment to stand with the families, first responders
and survivors of September 11 and stand up for what we have worked so long for.
This is how you can help… Continue reading
by Glenn Greenwald
Saturday, June 27, 2009
When Obama first unveiled his “preventive detention” policy, many defenders praised him (and claimed he was different than Bush) because of his vow that — as he put it — “my Administration will work with Congress to develop an appropriate legal regime.” But now, relying exclusively on three Obama officials speaking behind a veil of anonymity, Peter Finn and Dafner Linza of The Washington Post and ProPublica report that the White House is “crafting language for an executive order that would reassert presidential authority to incarcerate terrorism suspects indefinitely.” TPM calls this “the latest installment in the Obama administration’s tendency to mimic the Bushies on war on terror tactics.” And the article itself points out the obvious: “Such an order would embrace claims by former president George W. Bush that certain people can be detained without trial for long periods under the laws of war.” Revealingly, the article quotes two Bush national security officials justifying the need for detention without charges.
Anonymous trial balloon articles like this one are difficult to comment on because it’s obviously designed to announce that a certain policy is being considered before it’s actually written, and so none of the key details is known. Would Obama’s new detention powers apply only to current “War on Terror” prisoners at places like Guantánamo and Bagram, or would they also apply to future, not-yet-abducted detainees as well? Would these powers apply to detainees picked up anywhere in the… Continue reading
by Prof. Peter Dale Scott
June 10, 2009
In his remarkable speech at Cairo University on June 4, President Obama promised
“a new beginning.” In the words of the Israeli commentator Uri Avnery,
the speech offered “the map of a new world, a different world, whose values
and laws he spelled out in simple and clear language — a mixture of idealism
and practical politics, vision and pragmatism.”1
Much of what Obama had to say was new, and warmed the hearts of observers like
myself, who had become increasingly concerned about the new president’s
fidelity to the financial and military policies of the previous Bush-Cheney
administration. But while Obama broke new ground on Israel-Palestine issues,
he glossed over troubling issues pertaining to the US presence in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He also glossed over one of the fundamental issues alienating the Muslim world:
America’s relentless efforts to preserve its threatened financial status
by moves to dominate the region’s oil resources. Here his careful ambiguity
was ominously reminiscent of the Bush era.
The speech reaffirmed a complete withdrawal of US forces from Iraq by 2012,
as the U.S. committed itself to do in a signed agreement last December. In addition
Obama asserted that “we do not want to keep our troops in Afghanistan…
We would gladly bring every single one of our troops home if we could be confident
that there were not violent extremists in Afghanistan and now Pakistan.”
But Obama’s remarks did not address the statement on May… Continue reading
‘If I didn’t confess to 7/7 bombings MI5 officers would rape my wife,’
claims torture victim
By Matthew Hickley
Last updated at 10:25 PM on 25th June 2009
A British man spoke publicly for the first time yesterday to accuse MI5 officers
of forcing him to confess to masterminding the July 7 bombings.
Jamil Rahman claims UK security officers were behind his arrest in 2005 in
He says he was beaten repeatedly by local officials who also threatened to
rape him and his wife.
Mr Rahman, who is suing the Home Office, said a pair of MI5 officers who attended
his torture and interrogation would leave the room while he was beaten.
He claims when he told the pair he had been tortured they merely answered:
‘They haven’t done a very good job on you.’
Mr Rahman told the BBC: ‘They were questioning me on the July 7 bombings, showing
me pictures of the bombers.
‘They showed me maps, terrains … they asked me to draw things out and write
names next to pictures.
‘They threatened my family. They go to me, “In the UK, gas leaks happen,
if your family house had a gas leak and everyone got burnt, there’s no problems,
we can do that easily”.’
He says he eventually made a false confession of involvement in the July 7
Jamil Rahman claims security officers in Bangladesh, under the direction of
MI5, made threats to rape his wife if he did not confess to… Continue reading
Friday, June 26, 2009
By Dafna Linzer and Peter Finn
ProPublica and Washington Post Staff Writer
The Obama administration, fearing a battle with Congress that could stall plans
to close Guantánamo, has drafted an executive order that would reassert presidential
authority to incarcerate terrorism suspects indefinitely, according to three
senior government officials with knowledge of White House deliberations.
Such an order would embrace claims by former president George W. Bush that
certain people can be detained without trial for long periods under the laws
of war. Obama advisers are concerned that bypassing Congress could place the
president on weaker footing before the courts and anger key supporters, the
After months of internal debate over how to close the U.S. military prison
at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, White House officials are growing increasingly worried
that reaching quick agreement with Congress on a new detention system may prove
impossible. Several officials said there is concern in the White House that
the administration may not be able to close the facility by the president’s
White House spokesman Ben LaBolt did not directly respond to questions about
an executive order but said the administration would address the cases of Guantánamo
detainees in a manner “consistent with the national security interests
of the United States and the interests of justice.”
One administration official suggested the White House was already trying to
build support for an executive order.
“Civil liberties groups have encouraged the administration, that if a
prolonged detention system were to be sought, to do it through executive order,”
the official said.…
June 25, 2009
The highest officials in our government have trampled on our traditional ideals of making America a nation of laws, not of men, by illegally narrowing the scope of torture and authorizing waterboarding, walling and other inhumane interrogation
techniques. In doing so, they violated the Anti-Torture Act, the War Crimes Act, the Geneva Conventions, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment.
In order to enforce our laws and restore the free society that our forefathers envisioned, citizens must demand accountability for abuses of the laws pertaining to torture. In the tradition of the Civil Rights movement, change will not occur unless citizens stand up for their rights under the law.
On June 25th join us for an international day of demonstration demanding accountability for torture
in and across the country, to prosecute those responsible for torture. In Washington D.C. we have tabling starting at 9, speakers and a rally from 11 to 12 in , then a march to the Department of Justice. (Find other events across the US here. (Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Pasadena, CA, Boston, MA, Salt Lake City, UT, Tampa Bay, FL, Portland, OR, Bryn Mawr, PA, Seattle, WA, Las Vegas, NV, Honolulu, HI, Anchorage, AK)
Torture Accountability Action Day, sponsored by:
by Jon Gold
On 1/8/2008, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that “a huge lawsuit against the government of Saudi Arabia and key members of its royal family was put to a crucial test today as lawyers for victims of the 9/11 attacks urged a federal appeals court to reinstate the government of Saudi Arabia as a defendant.” The Cozen O’Connor law firm in Philadelphia “was the first to file suit against the government of Saudi Arabia in 2003, charging that the desert kingdom bears responsibility for the attacks because it permitted Islamic charities under its control to bankroll Osama bin Laden and his global terror movement.” The lawsuit “suffered a setback in 2005 when New York federal district court judge Richard Conway Casey ruled that the federal foreign sovereign immunity act barred lawsuits against Saudi Arabia and members of the royal family.”
On… Continue reading