Former Senators Graham and Kerrey Say Saudi Gov Likely Linked to 9/11

For more than a decade now anyone who questioned the official story behind the September 11th attacks was a labeled a crazy conspiracy theorist. Now sworn statements from two former senators with access to top secret information about the role played, by a so called U.S. ally, in the 9/11 terrorist attacks is sure to reignite the debate about who was ultimately behind it.

“I am convinced that there was a direct line between at least some of the terrorists who carried out the September 11th attacks and the government of Saudi Arabia,” former Senator Bob Graham, Democrat of Florida, said in an affidavit filed as part of a lawsuit brought by the families of the victims of the attacks against the Saudi government. Mr. Graham led a joint 2002 Congressional inquiry into the attacks.

Former Senator, Bob Kerrey of Nebraska, a Democrat who served on the 9/11 Commission, said in a sworn affidavit that “significant questions remain unanswered” about the role of Saudi institutions. “Evidence relating to the plausible involvement of possible Saudi government agents in the September 11th attacks has never been fully pursued,”.

Lawyers for the Saudis, who have already moved to have the affidavits thrown out of court, declined to comment on the assertions by Mr. Graham and Mr. Kerrey. “The case is in active litigation, and I can’t say anything,” said Michael K. Kellogg, a Washington lawyer for the Saudis.

The Obama administration is standing firmly in the Saudi’s corner, with the Justice Department attempting to have the lawsuits thrown out of court on the grounds that the Saudis are protected by international immunity.

The Saudis also say the case should be thrown out because American inquiries have exonerated them. A recent court filing by the Saudis prominently cited the 9/11 Commission’s “exhaustive” final report, which “found no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or senior Saudi individuals funded” Al Qaeda.

Mr. Kerrey and Mr. Graham said that the findings should not be seen as an exoneration and that many important questions about the Saudis’ role had never been fully examined, partly because their panels simply did not have the time or resources given their wider scope.

Unanswered questions include the work of a number of Saudi-sponsored charities with financial links to Al Qaeda, as well as the role of a Saudi citizen living in San Diego at the time of the attacks, Omar al-Bayoumi, who had ties to two of the hijackers and to Saudi officials.


Obama Administration Helps Pay for NYPD Muslim Surveillance

Millions of dollars have been given to the New York City Police Department, from the White House, that was used to put entire American Muslim neighborhoods under surveillance.

The federal grants were intended to help law enforcement fight drug crimes. Since 9/11 the Bush and Obama administrations have provided $135 million to New York and New Jersey law enforcement authorities through the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program, known as HIDTA.

Some of that money, how much is unknown, paid for the vehicles that plainclothes NYPD officers used to conduct surveillance on Muslim neighborhoods. It also paid for computers that store information about Muslim college students, mosque sermons and social events.

The AP confirmed the use of White House money through secret police documents and interviews with current and former city and federal officials. The AP also obtained electronic documents with digital signatures indicating they were created and saved on HIDTA computers. The HIDTA grant program is overseen by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

The White House last week declined to comment on its grant payments and refused to either endorse or condemn the NYPD programs it helps pay for.

New Jersey’s governor and the mayor of its largest city have complained about the NYPD’s widespread surveillance there, outside New York’s police jurisdiction.

“I am shocked to hear that federal dollars may have helped finance the NYPD’s misguided efforts to spy on Muslims in America,” said Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif., one of 34 members of Congress who have asked the Justice Department and House Judiciary Committee to investigate the NYPD.

The connection between NYPD and the White House anti-drug grant program surfaced years ago, during a long-running civil rights lawsuit against police. Civil rights attorneys asked in court about a “demonstration debriefing form” that police used whenever they arrested people for civil disobedience. The form carried the seal of both the NYPD Intelligence Division and HIDTA.

After the revelation of an extensive program to monitor Muslims in Newark, N.J., police there denied knowing about it. The Newark police director at the time, Garry McCarthy, has since moved on to lead Chicago’s police department where President Barack Obama’s first chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, is now the mayor.

“We don’t do that in Chicago and we’re not going to do that,” Emanuel said last week.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said the NYPD surveillance in his state was “disturbing” and has asked the attorney general to investigate. Christie was New Jersey’s top federal prosecutor and sat on the HIDTA executive board during 2006 and 2007 when the NYPD was conducting surveillance in New Jersey cities. Christie said he didn’t know that, in 2007, the NYPD tracked every mosque and Muslim business in Newark, the state’s largest city.

“I kind of think I would have remembered that,” he said on Fox Business News last week.




9/11 verdict against Iran is ‘US propaganda for waging war’

Director of the Center for Research on Globalization, Michel Chossudovsky, told RT in an interview that finding Iran’s officials guilty of helping the 9/11 attackers is nothing but “a ploy.”

Families of victims of the 9/11 attacks won a default judgment against Iran, the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and Lebanon-based Hezbollah. According to the lawsuit, people in Iran, including Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, provided support to the terrorists who carried out the terror strikes on US soil. Mr. Chossudovsky says it’s nothing but a cover-up, with Iran as a convenient fall guy.

“There is absolutely no evidence that Iran aided the 9/11 attacks. There is ample evidence after collection that there was conspiracy and the complicity of the US government…There is absolutely no evidence that Al Qaeda or the Taliban were involved in the 9/11 attacks. In fact, if there is anyone behind Al Qaeda, it was the Central Intelligence Agency, going back to the Soviet Afghan war”, Chossudovsky said.

This latest court ruling is part of the plan, according to Chossudovsky.

“We are dealing with fabrications whereby a war agenda, which has been on the Pentagon’s drawing board for many years, is now seeking justification to go live – and we’ve seen the drone attacks, we’ve seen the sanctions.”

The reasoning behind such a plot is rather simple in Chossudovsky eyes, oil.

“Because Iran has 10 per cent of the world’s oil reserves – four or five times the amount of the United States; it’s in a crucial region, it doesn’t accept US hegemony and it’s an ally of Russia and China.”  said Chossudovsky.

Chossudovsky also said he believes the consequences of a conflict with Iran could be disastrous. “It could unleash a war which extends from the eastern Mediterranean right through to Central Asia to the Chinese border – and then we are in a World War III scenario.”

Jamal Abdi from the National Iranian American Council says there is a campaign going on “to ratchet up pressure for yet another US attack on a Middle Eastern country.”

What we are seeing now is this strange self-fulfilling prophecy process. This is exactly what we saw with Iraq. This is a campaign to go to war,” he told RT.

Abdi says he does not see any evidence that is particularly compelling that Iran had a direct role in 9/11.

Immediately afterwards Iran condemned the attacks. There were candlelit vigils on the streets of Tehran in solidarity with the Americans who lost their lives,” he explained.

You saw Iran cooperating with the United States in helping to topple the Taliban, the enemy of Iran.”

The verdict might be a part of a plan to invade Iran, believes Sabah Al-Mukhtar, the president of the Arab Lawyers Association. However, he doubts that the US has enough resources to do that at the moment.

“I don’t think [the US] has the force to do that or the economy to do that,” Al-Mukhtar said. “I think the USA is trying to extricate itself from Iraq and Afghanistan. I don’t think it is in a position to go into another country, and Iran is three times as big as Iraq.”

California State University professor Paul Sheldon Foote told RT that the verdict is actually part of a campaign to demonize Iran. “This is what we call a kangaroo court here in America. This is outrageous. Iran has no involvement in this whatsoever ”, Foote said.

FBI found ties between 9/11 hijackers and Saudi family living in Florida; Congress not informed

Two weeks before the 9/11 hijackers crashed into the Pentagon and World Trade Center, members of a Saudi family abruptly left their luxury home near Sarasota, leaving a brand new car in the driveway, a refrigerator full of food, fruit on the counter and an open safe in the master bedroom.

In the weeks following the attacks, law enforcement agents discovered that the home was visited by vehicles used by the hijackers and phone calls were made between the home and those who carried out the death flights, including leader Mohamed Atta. The investigation into the ties between the hijackers and the Saudi residents of the  upscale community wasn’t reported to Congress or mentioned in the 9/11 Commission Report.

Former U.S. Sen. Bob Graham, the Florida Democrat who cochaired the bipartisan congressional Joint Inquiry into the attacks, said he should have been told about the findings, saying it “opens the door to a new chapter of investigation as to the depth of the Saudi role in 9/11. … No information relative to the named people in Sarasota was disclosed.”

The U.S. Justice Department, the lead agency that investigated the attacks, refused to comment, saying it will discuss only information already released.

The Saudi residents then living at the stylish home, Abdulazzi al-Hiijjii and his wife Anoud, could not be reached, nor could the then owner of the house, Esam Ghazzawi, who is Anoud’s father. The house was sold in 2003, records show.

The FBI investigation began the month after 9/11 when Larry Berberich, senior administrator and security officer of the gated community known as Prestancia, reported  that two weeks before the hijackings the Saudi couple, living with their small children in a three-bedroom home at 4224 Escondito Circle, left in a hurry in a white van.

They abandoned three recently registered vehicles, including a brand-new Chrysler PT Cruiser, in the garage and driveway.

After 9/11, Berberich said he had “a gut feeling” the people at the home may have had something to do with the attacks, prompting the FBI’s probe that would eventually link the hijackers to the house.

As an advisor to the Sarasota County sheriff, Berberich was with the group that received President Bush during his visit to a Sarasota school on the morning of 9/11. He alerted sheriff’s deputies.

Patrick Gallagher, one of the Saudis’ neighbors, had become suspicious even earlier, and had sent an email to the FBI on the day of the attacks. Gallagher said law enforcement officers arrived and began an investigation, with agents swarming “all over the place, in their blue jackets,” he recalled.

Jone Weist, president of the group that managed Prestancia, confirmed the arrival of the FBI, which requested copies of the Saudis’ financial transactions involving the house.

Berberich and a senior counterterrorism agent said they were able to get into the abandoned house, ultimately finding “there was mail on the table, dirty diapers in one of the bathrooms … all the toiletries still in place … all their clothes hanging in the closet … TVs … opulent furniture, equal or greater in value than the house … the pool running, with toys in it. The beds were made … fruit on the counter … the refrigerator full of food. … It was like they went grocery shopping. Like they went out to a movie … [But] the safe was open in the master bedroom, with nothing in it, not a paper clip. … A computer was still there. A computer plug in another room, and the line still there. Looked like they’d taken [another] computer and left the cord.”

During an interview, Graham said he was surprised he wasn’t told about the probe when he was co-chair of Congress’ Joint Inquiry into 9/11 even though he was especially alert to terrorist information relating to Florida.

“At the beginning of the investigation,” he said, “each of the intelligence agencies, including the FBI, was asked to provide all information that agency possessed in relation to 9/11.”

The FBI not informing the Inquiry about the Florida discoveries, Graham says, is similar to the agency’s failure to provide information linking members of the 9/11 terrorist team to other Saudis in California until congressional investigators discovered it themselves.

The Inquiry did nevertheless accumulate a “very large” file on the hijackers in the United States, and later turned it over to the 9/11 Commission. “They did very little with it,” Graham said, “and their reference to Saudi Arabia is almost cryptic sometimes. … I never got a good answer as to why they did not pursue that.”

The final 28-page section of the Inquiry’s report, which deals with “sources of foreign support for some of the Sept. 11 hijackers,” was entirely blanked out. It was kept secret from the public on the orders of former President George W. Bush and is still withheld to this day, Graham said.

The grounds for suppressing the material, Graham believes, were “protection of the Saudis from embarrassment, protection of the administration from political embarrassment … some of the unknowns, some of the secrets of 9/11.”



Muslims angry over 9/11 children’s coloring book…

We Shall Never Forget 9/11: The Kids’ Book of Freedom has been published by Missouri-based “Really Big Coloring Books”. The coloring book according to them is “designed to be a tool that parents can use to help teach children about the facts surrounding 9/11”. Depicting scenes from 9/11 for children to color in and telling the story of the attacks and the hunt for Osama bin Laden, “the book was created with honesty, integrity, reverence, respect and does not shy away from the truth”, according to the publisher, which says that it has sold out of its first print run of 10,000 copies.

Obviously The Council on American-Islamic Relations has condemned the book as “disgusting”, that it characterises all Muslims as linked to extremism, terrorism and radicalism, which could lead children reading the book to believe that all Muslims are responsible for 9/11, and that followers of the Islamic faith are their enemies.

Publisher Wayne Bell told American television that the book does not portray Muslims “in a negative light at all. That is incorrect. This is about 19 terrorist hijackers that came over here under the leadership of a devil worshipper, Osama bin Laden, to murder our people,” Bell said. “He [Dawud Walid, executive director of CAIR] calls the book disgusting … but he should call the people in the book, the 19 terrorists, Osama bin Laden, he should call him disgusting. This is history. It is absolutely factual.”

But Walid said that “given the fact that this is a very emotional and sensitive topic and that there were Muslims who were victims in 9/11 [and] who were first responders, we think it would have been more responsible if the language would not have been such that every time Muslim was used it’s radical, extremist, terrorist … All these characters are painted to the mind of a young person that perhaps all Muslims may be somewhat responsible for 9/11 or that Muslims are an enemy.”

Really Big Coloring Books, which also published a colouring book teaching children about the Tea Party last year, has said that it will donate a portion of its proceeds from sales of the book to Bridges for Peace, “a Jerusalem-based, Bible-believing Christian organisation supporting Israel and building relationships between Christians and Jews worldwide through education and practical deeds expressing God’s love and mercy”.

One page of the $6.99 book, which has been given a PG rating, shows Bin Laden hiding behind a hijab-wearing woman as he is shot by a Navy SEAL. “Being the elusive character that he was, and after hiding out with his terrorist buddies in Pakistan and Afghanistan, American soldiers finally locate the terrorist leader Osama bin Laden,” runs the text accompanying the picture. “Children, the truth is, these terrorist acts were done by freedom-hating radical Islamic Muslim extremists. These crazy people hate the American way of life because we are FREE and our society is FREE.”


Adding insult to our hero’s injury…

The James Zadroga 9/11 Health And Compensation Law passed last year providing the hero’s, who stood on the front line and confronted the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history, much needed aid in combating health related issues from the tragic event. After having to fight just to get the bill passed through Congress these brave individuals will now have to face another slap to the face. Any and all recipients of benefits will have to have their names, places of birth, addresses, government ID numbers and other personal data run through the FBI’s terrorism watch list. Yes, we are actually going to check to make sure that the cops, firefighters, construction workers and first responders who we place up on the mantel of “Hero” are not actually terrorists, because terrorists usually hang around after they blow up buildings to help clean up.

The provision was an added amendment by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) during the debate over the bill in the House Energy and Commerce Committee last May. GOP members of the House were against the bill calling it a new entitlement like medicare and that it could pose a risk to the country’s economy. The cost to guarantee that 9/11 first responders have health care is estimated at $11 billion over three decades.

“This is absurd,” said Glen Kline, a former NYPD emergency services officer. “It’s silly. It’s stupid. It’s asinine. I mean, who are we even talking about, the undocumented workers who cleaned the office buildings?” he asked. “We know who all the cops, firefighters and construction workers were. They’re all documented.”

“It’s comical at best, and I think it’s an insult to everyone who worked on The Pile and is sick and suffering from 9/11,” said John Feal, a former construction worker who lost half a foot at Ground Zero and runs the advocacy group Fealgood Foundation.