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Bush Administration

bin Laden Confession Video Offers Evidence of Criminal Conspiracy And Possible Foreknowledge of the 9/11 Attacks

by Bryan Sacks

“If independent reporters ever want to gain evidence that proves that elements within the U.S. government had prior knowledge of the 9/11 attacks but failed to defend against them, or even anticipated and then enhanced the impact of the events for future effect, then transcripts of bin Laden’s U.S. intercepted communications between January — September 2001 would most likely make the case.”

–Ed Haas, Muckraker Report, September 21, 2006 http://www.muckrakerreport.com/id301.html

Most people will remember the infamous “bin Laden confession video” which was reportedly ‘obtained’ by US forces in Afghanistan after the fall of Jalalabad in November, 2001. The video, which has been offered as proof by the Bush administration that Osama bin Laden ordered the September 11, 2001 attacks, was broadcast in media outlets beginning in December 2001.

But now, a researcher claims that several kinds of evidence related to the video show that the US military’s story of its origin is false.

Drawing on information gleaned directly from translations of the audio, public statements by Tony Blair and mainstream news articles, researcher Maher Osseiran has offered a compelling account of the origin of the video. His shocking conclusion is that the video was not ‘obtained’ by US forces in Jalalabad; rather it was very likely the product of a US-sponsored ‘sting operation’, possibly conducted with the assistance of Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, in late September, 2001.

Osseiran has been researching and publishing articles about the story for more than a year now, but now he has… Continue reading

Kevin Ryan launches lawsuit, website–ULtruth.com

Message from Kevin

By all accounts, the unprecedented events of September 11th, 2001 “changed everything”. It is therefore critical that conscientious Americans, as well as all good people around the world, understand these events in detail. Unfortunately the official reports, including The 9/11 Commission Report and the NIST WTC Report, written by those working under the direction of the Bush Administration, fall far short of providing the explanations needed.

Both the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and my former employer, Underwriters Laboratories (UL), seem to have taken the stance that the public does not have a right to know what fire resistance tests were performed on the steel component assemblies used to build the World Trade Center (WTC) towers. But since NIST’s latest story for collapse of the WTC towers depends on the fire-induced failure of these steel components, there is little information that could be more important at this time.

When I worked there, top management at UL made clear to me that UL performed these required tests. They have since stated that there is “no evidence” that any firm tested the steel. Being tax-exempt, due to their status as a public safety-testing organization, UL should be held accountable for being honest and open with the public about the history of their testing.

To help ensure this accountability, I’ve filed a lawsuit against UL for wrongful termination. My attorneys and I hope to gain more information about UL’s role in the testing of the WTC steel assemblies, and any other involvement UL has had with the WTC towers or the NIST investigation.…

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Manuel Garcia Sees Physics That Don’t Exist

 

Editor’s Note:
In his latest article, Kevin Ryan exposes Manuel Garcia’s Counterpunch trifecta of articles to reality testing. They fail miserably. Garcia’s explanations for the collapse of the Twin Towers rest on unsupported speculation and scientific jargon rather than facts. Ryan rightly points out that first NIST, and then Garcia, rely on evidentiary uncertainty to draw untenable conclusions rather than consider an hypothesis that is abhorrent to them. This is not surprising, perhaps, given that NIST is government-funded and Garcia is a US weapons scientist.

Garcia’s avoidance of the demolition scenario may also explain his resorting to what Ryan calls “creative guesswork” in attempting to explain the collapse of WTC 7. Whatever the best explanation is for the still-unsatisfactorily explained collapse of WTC 7, Garcia does not advance our understanding in his three-part bit of speculation.

 
Another Opportunity to Understand Our Predicament

Over the years we’ve heard from a few educated people who claim to understand and support the latest story given by the US government for the unprecedented destruction of the WTC buildings. Unfortunately, those folks usually turn out to either work for the Bush Administration directly, like FEMA and NIST, or are in some other way profiting from the War on Terror. Some people accept what these Bush scientists say because they have PhDs in scientific fields, or because certain media sources promote the official myths. In a way, the curious behavior of these scientists and media sources allows us to better see the predicament we… Continue reading

Into the Ring with Counterpunch on 9/11: How Alexander Cockburn, Otherwise So Bright, Blanks Out on 9/11 Evidence

by Michael Keefer
December 4, 2006

 

The first thing to say by way of preliminaries (and I’d better get it in quickly before someone suggests that I’ve turned up late or over-weight for a pre-match weighing-in) is that I’m not overjoyed with the pugilistic metaphor of my title.

But some sort of response to the volley of attacks on 9/11 researchers and activists with which the Counterpunch website marked the fifth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 seems called for.

 

Show Editor’s Note: »

Michael Keefer strikes just the right tone in responding to Alexander Cockburn’s attempt to banish “conspiracy nuts” from the kingdom of the left.Keefer accounts for Cockburn’s hostility to conspiracy by locating him in the “class of academics and public intellectuals, for whom a migration of power into military, deep-political, and corporate-media hands may…. be difficult to acknowledge.” We’d add that when those intellectuals are wedded to a brand of analysis that cannot satisfactorily account for what they see transpiring before their eyes, that difficulty is only magnified.

Slowly but surely, the academic left is coming to understand that the deep politics paradigm offers the most promising analytic tools for understanding the dynamics of geopolitical struggle. Don’t be surprised by the discomfort associated with the paradigm shift to continue to produce rhetorically overheated, but substantively lacking, complaints like Cockburn’s for quite some time. But really, that’s his problem.

 
Counterpunch co-editor Alexander Cockburn set the tone of these pieces with an article describing theologian and ethicist David Ray Griffin, the author of The New Pearl Harbor (2004) and of The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions (2005), as a “high priest” of the “conspiracy nuts”"whom Cockburn denounces as cultists who “disdain all answers but their own,” who “seize on coincidences and force them into sequences they deem to be logical and significant,” and who “pounce on imagined clues in documents and photos, [".] contemptuously brush[ing] aside” evidence that contradicts their own “whimsical” treatment of “eyewitness testimony and forensic evidence.”

It’s a characteristically forceful performance, if at times slipshod. One small sign of carelessness may be the manner in which Cockburn slides from calling 9/11 skeptics a “coven” to comparing them, a few sentences later, to “mad Inquisitors” torturing the data (as the old joke goes about economists) until the data confess.” Readers brought up to think that the victims and perpetrators of witch-crazes have not customarily been the same people may find this unintentionally amusing.

Despite the sometimes distinctly nasty tone of this polemic, the idea of exchanging even metaphorical blows with Cockburn and his colleagues is unappealing. The overall quality of the essays that he and Jeffrey St. Clair publish in Counterpunch makes it easy on most days of the week to agree with Out of Bounds Magazine‘s description of it (trumpeted on Counterpunch‘s masthead) as “America’s best political newsletter.” And I’ve admired Cockburn’s own political essays for many years: he’s written movingly, sometimes brilliantly, on a wide range of subjects1 even if his flashes of brilliance sometimes alternate with breathtaking pratfalls: among them his dismissal, as recently as March 2001, of the evidence for global warming; his scoffing, in November 2004, at the rapidly gathering indications that the US presidential election of 2004 had been stolen; and a year later, his mockery of the well-established theory of peak oil and his adherence to the genuinely daft notion that the earth produces limitless quantities of abiotic oil.2 One can forgive a journalist’s slender grasp of the rudiments of scientific understanding. But given his self-appointed role as defender of the progressive left against a horde of fools, It’s dismaying to find him sliding as frequently as he does into positions that seem not just quirky but (dare I say it) unprogressive. Continue reading

Credulity and Its Discontents

If we ever find the time, perhaps we should conduct a group analysis of the hit pieces emanating from the intellectual/academic left against the ’9/11 Truth Movement’. Among other similarities, they each exhibit a noteworthy “dual consciousness.” In a 1997 interview, the great 20th century sociologist Pierre Bourdieu used the phrase to refer to the mindset of media professionals who publicly deny the insidious workings of the invisible structures of corporate broadcasting – masking it even from themselves to an extent; all the while they take advantage of the media tool at their disposal and denounce their critics, claiming they have uncovered nothing which hasn’t been known for ages about the media. . .

Books and articles referred to below:

1. Alexander Cockburn: The 9/11 Conspiracists and the Decline of the Left http://www.counterpunch.org/cockburn11282006.html

2. Christopher Hayes: 9/11: The Roots of Paranoia thenation.com/doc/20061225/hayes

3. Borjesson, Kristina, ed. Into the Buzzsaw: Leading Journalists Expose the Myth of a Free Press. New York: Prometheus Books, 2002.

4. David Ray Griffin: Response to Chip Berlet’s Review of THE NEW PEARL HARBOR publiceye.org/conspire/Post911/Griffin1.html

5. Nicholas Levis: Pod Theory, “Whatzits” and Other Curious Physical-Evidence Claims http://www.911truth.org/article.php?story=20040810075752147

6. Manuel Garcia: We See Conspiracies That Don’t Exist: The Thermodynamics of 9/11 counterpunch.org/thermo11282006.html

7. Kevin Ryan: A Quick Review of Manuel Garcia’s article “We See Conspiracies That Don’t Exist: The Physics of 9/11” 911blogger.com/node/4734

8. Bryan Sacks: Philip Zelikow: The Bush Administration Investigates the Bush Administration911truth.org/article.php?story=20051128144916707

9. Sibel Edmonds: Letter to 9/11 Commission Chairman Thomas Kean,… Continue reading

Public’s Right To Know – Declassification and Release of Documents

Statement Regarding al Qaeda Threats
by Patty Casazza, Monica Gabrielle, Mindy Kleinberg, and Lorie Van Auken

Astonishingly, five years post 9/11 the public is made aware about an urgent July 10, 2001 meeting that took place between former CIA Director George Tenet and then, National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice. This information comes
from Bob Woodward’s newly released book, “State of Denial”.

Despite this Administration’s rhetoric that they had “no warnings” leading up to 9/11, it has become abundantly clear, that key Administration officials were made aware of the vast array of Al Qaeda threats and warnings that existed in years prior, and more importantly, in the weeks leading up to September 11, 2001.
 

Editor’s Note:
Four 9/11 widows, known to the 9/11 truth movement as The Jersey Girls, have posted an online petition demanding release of documents pertaining to the July 10, 2001 meeting between Tenet and Rice, as well as redacted information from the congressional Joint Inquiry and the CIA Inspector General

 

When we add the July 10, 2001 meeting to the plethora of other clear warnings that our government had, a very concise view of the al Qaeda threat emerges. Those other warnings include, but are not limited to:

* Warnings from leaders of other nations and foreign intelligence apparatus’ of terrorist threats

* June 30, 2001 Senior Executive Intelligence Briefing (SEIB) entitled “bin Laden Threats Are Real”

* The threat of President Bush’s assassination at the G-8 Summit by al Qaeda in July of 2001… Continue reading

Kucinich on Preventing Disaster in Iran

Sam Gardiner and David Kay to Testify

Oct 10, 2006

Congressman Kucinich will lead a briefing Wednesday on Iran. Kucinich wants to find out what the Bush Administration plans for Iran, and what actions are already underway.

Testifying will be retired Air Force Colonel Sam Gardiner, author of The End of the Summer of Diplomacy. Gardiner is convinced that the US has been executing military operations inside Iran for at least 18 months. On September 18, Gardiner told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, “The evidence is overwhelming … From both the Iranians, Americans, and from congressional sources.”

Also testifying will be David Kay, former UN nuclear weapons inspector. Kay headed the team searching for WMD in Iraq throughout 2003, but resigned on January 24, saying he did not believe Iraq possessed large stockpiles of chemical or biological weapons.

The hearing will be held October 11 at 10 a.m. in Room 2154 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

Rep. Kucinich: Bush is Preparing For War Against Iran

Watch for more about this briefing on our forum.

Permalink to this article

September 26, 2006 6:56 pm ET

Torture, Murder, Bush, Kissinger and The Mothers of the Disappeared in Argentina: America on the Brink of Horror

A BUZZFLASH EDITORIAL
October 9, 2006

Dateline — Buenos Aires, Argentina

For some 30 years, the Argentine women known as the Madres (Mothers) de La
Plaza de Mayo have marched every Thursday in front of the Presidential Palace
of Argentina. They gather in memory of their children and grandchildren, who
were among the estimated 30,000 people who disappeared during “Operation
Condor.” Another 50,000 people were murdered.

MotherofDisappeared1(image: One of the Madres (Mothers) de la Plaza de Mayo displaying a photo of her son who was one of an estimated 30,000 “disappeared” during “Operation
Condor.” BuzzFlash
photo taken on October 5, 2006)

Operation
Condor
” reached its peak in the 1970s. With assistance from
the United States, and the support and knowledge of Henry Kissinger, five of
the southern cone South American nations conducted a campaign of unspeakable
torture and killing against their own citizens.

When you look at the photos carried by many of the Madres de La Plaza de Mayo,
you see middle class men in suits and ties and nicely dressed women. You see
young children with smiling faces.

What happened during Operation Condor is so horrific — all done in the name of the safety and security of “the nation” — that it is barely speakable. The torture included one of the Bush Administration’s favorite techniques — waterboarding — and many other methods. Families were forced to watch or listen to their love ones being mutilated. Friends were required to conduct torture on those that they knew.…

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Condi’s 9/11 Foreknowledge Denial Follies

Rice Loyalist Headed 9/11 Commission Probes

by 9.11 Blogger
WNY Media Network

Bob Woodward’s State of Denial provides evidence of the politicization of the 9/11 Commission’s investigative process, conclusions, and certain omissions from its report, as well as then national security advisor Condoleezza Rice’s likely role in burying unflattering, damning evidence through the appointment of Bush/Rice loyalist Philip Zelikow as the Commissions’ chief investigator and Zelikow’s reward (perhaps) of a top senior-level position in the State Department, which Rice now heads. First, some background.

One of the burning questions in newspapers, cable TV news, and blogs is why the 9/11 Commission report did not mention the July 10, 2001 meeting called by then-CIA Director George J. Tenet and his counterterrorism chief, J. Cofer Black, with then-national security adviser Condoleezza Rice. Tenet and Black hoped to impress on Rice the compelling need to act immediately against bin Laden because there was “a huge volume of data” suggesting strongly that a major attack was imminent.

“But both men came away from the meeting feeling that Ms. Rice had not taken the warnings seriously,” writes Woodward.

The July 10 meeting between Tenet, Black and Rice went unmentioned in the various reports of investigations into the Sept. 11 attacks, but it stood out in the minds of Tenet and Black as the starkest warning they had given the White House on bin Laden and al-Qaeda. Though the investigators had access to all the paperwork on the meeting, Black felt there were things the commissions wanted to know about and things they didn’t want to know about.…

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9/11 Live or Fabricated: Do the NORAD Tapes Verify The 9/11 Commission Report?

David Ray Griffin
September 4, 2006

A significant stir was created by the publication in Vanity Fair of “9/11 Live: The NORAD Tapes” by Michael Bronner, the first journalist to be given access to these audiotapes–which NORAD had provided, upon demand, to the 9/11 Commission in 2004. The public impact of Bronner’s essay was increased greatly by the availability of snippets from these tapes (which could be accessed from the online version of the article) to be played on TV and radio news reports about the article.1

The stir was caused primarily by Bronner’s report of the charge by members of the 9/11 Commission–which had played excepts from these tapes during hearings in 2004–that the military had made false statements to the Commission, perhaps knowingly. This stir was increased by the publication at the same time–the first week of August 2006–of Without Precedent, a book by Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton–the chairman and vice chairman of the Commission, respectively–in which this charge is also made.2

The charge primarily involves the military’s pre-2004 claims about the responses of NEADS–the Northeast Air Defense Sector of NORAD (the North American Aerospace Defense Command)–to two flights: AA (American Airlines) 77 and UA (United Airlines) 93. (There is also, although Bronner does not deal with it, a serious discrepancy with regard to UA 175.) These claims are contradicted by the tapes, with “tapes” here meaning not only the NORAD tapes, to which Bronner refers in his essay’s subtitle, but also what he calls “the parallel recordings from the F.A.A.,”3which he used in conjunction with the NORAD tapes.…

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The Disbelievers

By Michael Powell

Washington Post

September 8, 2006

He felt no shiver of doubt in those first terrible hours.

He watched the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and assumed al-Qaeda had wreaked terrible vengeance. He listened to anchors and military experts and assumed the facts of Sept. 11, 2001, were as stated on the screen.

It was a year before David Ray Griffin, an eminent liberal theologian and philosopher, began his stroll down the path of disbelief. He wondered why Bush listened to a child’s story while the nation was attacked and how Osama bin Laden, America’s Public Enemy No. 1, escaped in the mountains of Tora Bora.

He wondered why 110-story towers crashed and military jets failed to intercept even one airliner. He read the 9/11 Commission report with a swell of anger. Contradictions were ignored and no military or civilian official was reprimanded, much less cashiered.

“To me, the report read as a cartoon.” White-haired and courtly, Griffin sits on a couch in a hotel lobby in Manhattan, unspooling words in that reasonable Presbyterian minister’s voice. “It’s a much greater stretch to accept the official conspiracy story than to consider the alternatives.”

Such as?

“There was massive complicity in this attack by U.S. government operatives.”

If that feels like a skip off the cliff of established reality, more Americans are in free fall than you might guess. There are few more startling measures of American distrust of leaders than the widespread belief that the Bush administration had a hand in the attacks of Sept.…

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Twenty Things We Now Know Five Years After 9/11

By Bernard Weiner, Co-Editor The Crisis Papers

August 29, 2006

The imminent fifth anniversary of 9/11 provides the proper moment for a good, ol’-fashioned sum-up of the past half-decade under CheneyBush, especially because so much has happened in the past 12-months:

The Bush Administration’s Katrina debacle, Iraq being sucked deeper into the civil-war vortex, Afghanistan turning once again into a major war theater, more and more military leaders speaking out about the disaster that is CheneyBush foreign policy, the defection of so many moderate conservatives from their GOP home, the plummeting of Bush’s popularity to not much more than his fundamentalist base, the revelation that Bush&Co. have been spying on citizens’ phone calls and emails without court warrants, the indictment of CheneyBush’s chief aide Scooter Libby for obstruction of justice in the case of the White House’s outing of a covert CIA agent, the “rendering” of detainees abroad for extreme torturing, etc. etc.

I’ll get to the annual list in a moment. But first let’s step back and take a deeper overview. Buckle your seat belts, here we go.

Editor’s Note: Excellent review of the downstream consequences — intended and otherwise — of the September 11 attacks.

WHAT 9/11 PERMITTED BUSH TO DO

Whatever you may think of 9/11, and the extent of involvement of Bush&Co., it’s crystal-clear that the events of that tragic day were and continue to be used as an excuse for a wide variety of immoral and illegal actions by the CheneyBush Administration. The radical agenda that was barely on the public’s horizon five years ago has since become all too evident, both domestically and in terms of foreign/military policy, which is why so many traditional conservatives are abandoning the extremism of the Republican Party.…

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Coincidence Theory Revisited

The Nexus of Politics and Terror

Keith Olbermann
MSNBC
August 14, 2006

Youtube intro text from poster, Veredictum:

MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann updated his top 10 list of occasions that the Bush Administration has gained political benefits around the same time that the public’s fear of terrorism was at a peak. Olbermann describes it as “The Nexus of Politics and Terror.”

In this video from last night’s broadcast, Olbermann includes the latest foiled terrorist plot in Britain with the newest edition of the “Nexus of Politics and Terror Top 10 List”. Olbermann concludes that if these occasions are more than just coincidences then, he says, “it underscores the need for questions to be asked in this country, questions about what is prudence and what is fear-mongering.”

End

Source article here.


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Buzzflash at the 9/11 Truth Brink?

If You Can’t See That They Are Traitors In The White House, Then You Are Risking Your Own Lives And The Lives Of Your Families.

A Buzzflash Editorial
August 13, 2006


Edgy new barnburning editorial from the normally 9/11 truth-leary Buzzflash.com folks. As the scale and pattern of administration deception continue to penetrate public consciousness, we believe the linchpin lies of 9/11 will finally become too blatant to ignore.

– Ed.

As BuzzFlash has repeatedly editorialized, the Bush Administration is a detriment to America’s national security. Our lives are increasingly at risk every day that they are in office.

They will never seriously battle the sources of terrorism in an effective, strategic fashion. That is because politically they need the terrorists as much as the terrorists need them. And the goals of the Bush Administration are the consolidation of power and the acquisition of natural resources and economic dominance, not the eradication of terror.

Only the naive and the Rush Limbaugh Stepford-Red Staters can possibly draw any other conclusion.

NBC just confirmed [1] — as BuzzFlash editorialized [2] earlier this week about the politics of terrorism [3]– that the White House forced the UK to move up the timing of the alleged terror cell arrests, against the recommendations of the British intelligence agencies. By so doing, the Bush Administration compromised the investigation and kept it from obtaining further evidence and contact names. In short, for purposes of political timing — in order to make partisan points from the election of Ned Lamont — the Bush Administration compromised our national security.…

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Norway Strikes Again

9/11 THEORIES FLOURISH

by Kristin Solberg
www.aftenposten.no 

- All the lies from the Bush administration is the main reason for all the conspiracy theories , says NRK-veteran Jahn Otto Johansen.

One of the most debated; why did WTC 7 collapse?

- This is not something that just could have happened, there are too many incidents. You can’t even conclude that the administration let it happen, you have to conclude they made it happen , says Michael Berger.

Strange. Suspicious. That’s how spokesman for 9/11 Truth feels about September 11th. And he has a lot of supporters, on both sides of the Atlantic. Here in Norway, Le Monde Diplomatique, wrote about the 9/11 conspiracy theories in their last monthly edition.

9/11 Truth is a voluntary organisation which “seeks answer on behalf of the families left behind and the American people, questions which deserve to be answered”. About 5000 people receive their news letters, and last month, 750 showed up at a conference held in Chicago. Due to limited resources, only the general manager gets paid.

- This is an important cause – a turn over for the USA – so we have to do something , says Berger when questioned why he dedicates so much time without pay.

From their point of view, 9/11 Truth and their supporters are fighting for independence, truth and the American Constitution, against corruption and lies served from both the political elite and private industry.

Others see them as lunatics who can’t handle the facts. They are conspiracy theorists.…

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The Legend of United Flight 93

by Ted Rall

On the first anniversary of the crash of United Airlines Flight 93, Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge delivered a speech at the site of the disaster in western Pennsylvania. “Faced with the most frightening circumstances one could possibly imagine,” he told grieving relatives of the passengers and crewmembers aboard the fourth plane hijacked on 9/11, “they met the challenge like citizen soldiers, like Americans.” He recited the now-familiar story of passengers learning by phone about the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, deciding to fight back and breaking into the cockpit–a heroic act that led to their own deaths while sparing countless others in Washington.

“The terrorists were right to fear an uprising,” Ridge rhapsodized. “The passengers and crew did whatever they humanly could–boil water, phone the authorities, and ultimately rush the cockpit to foil the attack.”

Ridge’s boss repeatedly used United 93 to close his standard stump speech. Calling the passenger revolt “the most vivid and sad symbol of them all,” George W. Bush said: “People are flying across the country on an airplane, at least they thought they were. They learned the plane was going to be used as a weapon. They got on their telephones. They were told the true story. Many of them told their loved ones goodbye. They said they loved them. They said a prayer; a prayer was said. One guy said, ‘Let’s roll.’ They took the plane into the ground.”

The legend of Flight 93 had everything a… Continue reading

‘Mystery Woman’ Told Military of Atta Long Before Sept. 11

Despite Pentagon stonewalling and intimidation of whistleblowers, the story that a hardline Republican congressman says is “bigger than Watergate” refuses to go away.

Five former operatives of a US military intelligence project say they identified Mohamed Atta and three other men later alleged to have been the lead 9/11 hijackers as suspected al Qaeda terrorists working in the United States more than a year before September 11, 2001. The five whistleblowers say their superiors at the US Special Operations Command chose to suppress the information and keep it from law enforcement authorities, thus protecting Atta and Co. – at the very least in effect, if not as a matter of intent. They were forced to destroy their data on Atta; and their program, Able Danger, was killed by the Bush administration prior to September 11.

Years after the destruction of the World Trade Center, they told their story to the 9/11 Commission, only to be soundly ignored. When they finally came forward as whistleblowers last year, they were placed under gag orders by the Pentagon. The most prominent of them, Col. Anthony Shaffer, was investigated on charges that he stole pens and overcharged the Defense Department for $67 in phone calls. He claims the investigation of him to date has cost the taxpayers $2 million.

That, at any rate, is the Able Danger saga as we know it so far.

In the latest wrinkle, blog reporter Rory O’Connor (Mar 1, archived below) says a Pentagon inspector general’s investigation has identified… Continue reading

Slicing Away Liberty: 1933 in Germany… 2006 in America?

In America of the 1980s and ’90s, it was extremists on the far-right fringes who believed the country was moving toward “black helicopter” authoritarian rule in Washington, and often blamed big-government liberal Democrats. Now, as a result of just four-plus years of the Bush administration (supposedly anti-big government, conservative Republicans), huge segments of American society, including many in the mainstream middle, wonder what has happened to our democratic republic, our civil liberties, our time-honored system of government.

The Enabling Mantra of 9/11

The Busheviks defend the administration’s harsh, sweeping actions as necessary in a “time of war.” The U.S. was attacked by forces representing fanatical Islam, this reasoning goes, and the old rules and systems simply don’t apply anymore — they are old-fashioned, “quaint.” Instead, we are expected to inculcate the “everything-changed-on-9/11″ mantra, the effect of which is to excuse and justify all. Defense of the fatherland comes first and foremost, trumping all other considerations, including the Constitution, checks-and-balances in the three branches of government, separation of powers, the Geneva Conventions, international law, etc. etc. (The Busheviks refuse to believe that one can be muscular in going after terrorists and do so within the law and with proper respect for the Bill of Rights and Constitutional protections of due process.)

Not only do the Busheviks pay no attention to modern history, but they seem to have forgotten how our very nation came into existence and why: Our Founding Fathers rebelled against a despotic British monarch, a George who ran roughshod… Continue reading