by Ed Haas
June 11, 2007 — How many times has the now infamous Osama bin Laden “confession video” played in the corporate media after its release on December 13, 2001? How many newspapers carried the story of Osama bin Laden, confessing to his prior knowledge of the 9/11 attacks, in their December 14, 2001 editions? How about worldwide? Combined, how many television stations, radio broadcasts, and newspapers do you think ran segments and stories about the content of this video?
Considering the number of television and radio news media outlets globally, coupled with the fact that many of the television news stations in the United States played portions of this video every 15 minutes for weeks after its release, and it can be safely estimated that this “confession video” has played millions of times since its release nearly six years ago. It can also be accepted as fact that the story of the “confession tape” was deemed fit for print repeatedly in every newspaper and news magazine in the United States and nearly every other similar type of publication worldwide.
Without a doubt, exposure to the “confession video” has reached every civilized corner of the earth in which a press can be found. Millions of times hundreds of millions of people saw, heard, or read about the video. On December 13, 2001 the video was not a secret anymore. With its sheer volume of exposure, there should be no secrets about it. Yet, to this day, documentation related to the discovery of the video and its authenticity is being guarded by elements of the U.S. government under the veil of in the interest of national defense or foreign policy. The U.S. government claims that the documentation surrounding the videotape is a matter of national security — and therefore secret. What could possibly be the secret surrounding the videotape?
Almost unanimously, the western corporate media has accepted the “confession video” as the Department of Defense described it in its December 13, 2001 press release — that the videotape of Osama bin Laden was obtained by U.S. forces in Jalalabad, Afghanistan in late November 2001 — without question.
How is it that virtually nobody within the corporate media became curious about exactly how the video was obtained by U.S. forces? Which U.S. forces? What unit? The U.S. government claimed that the “confession video” was found in a destroyed building once used by al-Qaeda fighters. How? I’m trying to imagine the scene. U.S. forces are searching abandoned buildings in Jalalabad and surrounding areas. They’re trying to smoke out al-Qaeda. Fire teams are entering each building, many in ruins, trying to locate al-Qaeda fighters. There, inside a bombed out building complete with the accustomed war torn debris is a videotape…It captures the attention of a soldier? He picks it up…and then what?
What was the name of the soldier[s]? We know the names of the soldiers that found Saddam Hussein hiding in a spider hole. Why not tell us the name of the soldier that discovered this most important videotape? What made him pick up the video? What made the videotape stand out? Where was it among the rubble? Was it on a shelf, on a table, or in a box? Who did he give the video to after he retrieved it? Where did the video go next? And who watched the video for the first time and why? What prompted somebody to even bother to watch it? How did it arrive in the United States? From beginning to end, what was the chain of custody of the video from the time it was physically discovered until it swept the world on December 13, 2001? And why would this information be secret if there is not an attempt by government[s] to deceive the public worldwide about something related to the “confession video” — a video that has played such a critical role in the Bush Administration to first justify its invasion of Afghanistan and then follow an unlikely continuum into Iraq?
It is important to remember that the FBI does not consider the “confession video” as hard evidence against Osama bin Laden because the FBI says that it has “no hard evidence connecting Osama bin Laden to 9/11”. This is not hearsay. The FBI actually provided the quotes to the Muckraker Report – quotes that were independently validated by Claire Brown formerly with I.N.N. World Report. How could this video not be considered hard evidence? The only plausible explanation is that there is something damning about the video that the FBI seeks to keep from the public record. Yet it played millions of times to a worldwide audience as if it wasn’t corrupted.
The truth is this video is a ticking time bomb just waiting to go off! People that seek the truth and government accountability should set aside what they think they know about it and investigate it with a clear and open mind.
To the FBI, Department of Defense, CENTCOM, and CIA, the Muckraker Report has requested the following documentation via Freedom of Information Act requests.
1. Documents related to the discovery of the December 13, 2001 Osama bin Laden video
2. Documents that demonstrate chain of custody of the December 13, 2001 Osama bin Laden video from the time it was discovered in Afghanistan until it was released for media consumption
3. Documents that reflect the purchase order and contract made by the U.S. government with George Michael, Diplomatic Language Services, and Dr. Kassem M. Wahba, Arabic language program coordinator, School of Advanced International Studies, John Hopkins University – Michael and Wahba are reported in DoD Press Release 630-01 to have been responsible for the translation of the December 13, 2001 Osama bin Laden video.
4. Documents that demonstrate the authenticity process that the U.S. government undertook to authenticate the December 13, 2001 Osama bin Laden video.
5. Documents that demonstrate the outcome of the U.S. government’s authenticity process. What the Muckraker Report is seeking is a copy of an original U.S. government document that reflects the U.S. government declaring the December 13, 2001 Osama bin Laden video as authentic, not authentic, or suspect of authenticity
For over 18 months the Muckraker Report has been attempting to secure any of this type of documentation from the government relevant to the discovery and authenticity of this video. The FBI claims that the material I requested is located in an investigative file which is exempt from disclosure pursuant to Title 5, United States Code, Section 552, subsection (b)(7)(A). Title 5, United States Code, Section 552, subsection (b)(7)(A) states: Records or information compiled for law enforcement purposes, but only to the extent that the production of such law enforcement records or information (A) could be reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings.
To this day I am still trying to decode exactly what Title 5, United States Code, Section 552, subsection (b)(7)(A) has to do with the OBL videotape released on December 13, 2001.
I contested this FBI decision and won my appeal. The FBI then sent a letter saying that it could find no records responsive to my request.
The Department of Defense responded to my FOIA request by stating that it too could find no records responsive to my request. The DoD suggested that I contact CENTCOM. My FOIA with CENTCOM remains outstanding with no response yet received.
Many 9/11 truth seekers have long ago concluded that the issue surrounding the “confession video” is that it is a fake video — that the Osama bin Laden in the video is not Osama bin Laden at all. As I have previously admitted in earlier articles, I once held the fat bin Laden belief. However, thanks to the fine work of Muckraker Report contributing writer Maher Osseiran (http://www.muckrakerreport.com/id406.html) and my further investigation into the videotape, I am now convinced that the video is indeed authentic. See Article – Taking the fat out of the fat bin Laden confession video http://muckrakerreport.com/id372.html
However, the translation of the “confession video” that the U.S. government provided the corporate media is significantly flawed, and the dates and circumstances related to the discovery of the video cannot possibly be accurate. Furthermore, the DoD claimed in its December 13, 2001 press release that the “video was filmed by unknown persons”. While the DoD may not have known who filmed the video at the time it issued its press release, I am now certain that the CIA did. The corporate media does not consider this type of information newsworthy. Why?
In a letter from the CIA to the Muckraker Report, the CIA responded to the aforementioned FOIA request questions as follows:
In accordance with section 3.6(a) of Executive Order 12958, as amended, the CIA can neither confirm nor deny the existence or nonexistence of records responsive to your request. The fact of the existence or nonexistence of requested records is properly classified and is intelligence sources and methods information that is protected from disclosure by section 6 of the CIA Act of 1949, as amended. Therefore, the Agency has denied your request pursuant to FOIA exemptions (b)(1) and (b)(3).
(B)(1) applies to material which is properly classified pursuant to an Executive order in the interest of national defense or foreign policy.
(B)(3) applies to information pertaining to the CIA Director’s statutory obligations to protect from disclosure intelligence sources and methods, as well as the organization, functions, names, official titles, salaries, or numbers of personnel employed by the Agency, in accordance with the National Security Act of 1947 and/or the CIA Act of 1949.
By referencing (b)(1) and (b)(3) as its exemption the CIA has admitted to a level of previously undisclosed involvement in and with the “confession video” while maintaining its all to familiar plausible deniability.
Earlier I mentioned that almost unanimously, the western corporate media has accepted the “confession video” as the Department of Defense described it in its December 13, 2001 press release — without question — except for one!
On December 16, 2001, three days after its release, Ed Vulliamy and Jason Burke of London newspaper The Observer reported that the bin Laden videotape was the result of a CIA sting operation. Vulliamy and Burke reported:
This weekend, as the debate the tape has provoked continued across the Islamic world, several intelligence sources have suggested to The Observer that the tape, although absolutely genuine, is the result of a sophisticated sting operation run by the CIA through a second intelligence service, possibly Saudi or Pakistani.
Consider this. If U.S. forces, as the Department of Defense claims, discovered the videotape, why wouldn’t the CIA simply respond to my FOIA request by stating that it found no records responsive to my request? If the videotape was randomly discovered, why would the CIA be involved?
The Department of Defense is most likely being forthcoming in its response to my FOIA request. The documents I seek related to the physical discovery of the video and its chain of command, if the video was not the result of a CIA sting operation, would indeed be located at CENTCOM.
The FBI most likely now has full knowledge of the CIA sting as indicated by its claim that it is exempt from releasing the documents because they were secured for law enforcement purposes. What law enforcement purposes? The video played millions of times. There should be no law enforcement purposes remaining whatsoever. Once introduced into the public domain by the U.S. government there should be nothing but full disclosure.
Clearly, the FBI is concealing what it knows about the CIA and the sting operation that unfolded most likely on September 26, 2001. The mistake the FBI made was to not simply respond to my FOIA request initially by stating that it could locate no records responsive to my request. By providing the first exemption, and then after appeal, claim it can find no records responsive to my request, is highly suspicious. It is my belief that the first response reveals that the FBI knows something about the videotape that should not exist if what the U.S. government has told the public about the discovery of the video was true.
Many in the controlled and censored corporate news media continue to reference this video as proof and evidence against Osama bin Laden. What they have failed to investigate or admit is that it is also an indictment of treason against the Bush Administration and other elements of the federal government because the videotape was filmed prior to the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan as the result of a CIA sting operation. The CIA had Osama bin Laden in its sights, camera and rifle, on or about September 26, 2001 and failed to capture or kill him in favor of gaining a videotape confession of sorts to support the Bush Administration’s invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq. If Osama bin Laden had been captured or killed on or about September 26, 2001 — there would have been no international support for the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan.
As for documentation of the authenticity process — none exists. If it did, the government would have provided it. It would serve the government’s purpose to provide such documentation. However, the reason documentation of the authenticity process does not exist is not because the video is fake as some contend, but because there was no need to authentic what the CIA arranged. The CIA knew the videotape was authentic because they arranged the taping of it.
This is treason. All the evidence is in clear view. The writing is on the wall. Read it.