Posts Tagged ‘Iraq’

By Felicity Arbuthnot

“Why should we hear about body bags and deaths … I mean, it’s not relevant, so why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that …” (Former First Lady, Barbara Bush, Good Morning America, 18th March 2003)

In these days of the tenth anniversary of the illegal invasion and near destruction of Iraq, answers are owed not alone for the dead, but to the cancer stricken, the deformed, to their parents, their siblings and all Iraqis. They were left with a land poisoned by depleted uranium in 1991, the burden ever building over twelve more years of (illegal) US and UK bombings, then the enormity of 2003.

Fallujah’s victims have rightly come under medical and media scrutiny since the US military onslaught of April and November 2004, but throughout Iraq, there have been no reports of areas unaffected.

In context, Dahr Jamail writes from Fallujah, “Official Iraqi government statistics show that, prior to the outbreak of the First Gulf War in 1991, the rate of cancer cases in Iraq was 40 out of 100,000 people. By 1995, it had increased to 800 out of 100,000 people, and, by 2005, it had doubled to at least 1,600 out of 100,000 people. Current estimates show the increasing trend continuing.

The Fallujah health crisis represented “the highest rate of genetic damage in any population ever studied.”

There were numerous reports during the 2004 April and November-December US assaults on Fallujah of, in addition to DU – three times unanimously designated a weapon of mass destruction by UN Sub-Committees – illegal, experimental chemical weapons and napalm being used in the decimation of this city of about three hundred thousand people.

After the second assault, Dr. Saleh Hussein Iswawi of the Fallujah General Hospital told the BBC, “About sixty to seventy percent of the homes and buildings are completely crushed and damaged, and not ready to inhabit … Of the thirty percent still left standing, I don’t think there is a single one that has not been exposed to some damage.”

To continue:  “Liberating Iraqis”, Limb by Limb, Life by Life, Home by Home, Gene by Gene.

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9/11 Vancouver Hearings: Expert witness Dennis Cimino testifies on fraudulent flight data recorder (FDR) found at Pentagon — and the impossibility that Flight 175 struck the Pentagon.

WATCH ON YOU TUBE:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmGi5YeQ_Bw


1-9:11.ALFRED.WEBRE.CONNIE.FOGAL
9/11 Vancouver Tribunal Judges Alfred Lambremont Webre & Connie Fogal,  June 17, 2012

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The 9/11 Vancouver Tribunal met  June 15-17, 2012 in Vancouver, B.C.

Alfred Lambremont Webre, one of the Judges on the Tribunal states, “As a duly constituted citizen’s tribunal of conscience, the 9/11 Vancouver Tribunal has jurisdiction under natural law and justice;  such as the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights; international humanitarian law such as the Geneva Conventions; and national  and provincial criminal statues prohibiting murder and conspiracy for any jurisdiction whose citizens died in the World Trace Center on 9/11. 

The 9/11 Vancouver Tribunal was convened by a worldwide community of citizens June 15-17, 2012  and via streaming internet from diverse locations around the world including the United States, India, and elsewhere.

During the 9/11 Vancouver Hearings, 19 expert witnesses gave sworn testimony as to names, titles, and implicating evidence for individuals, each of whom acted acted as part of a common plan as a leading co-conspirator in the events of 9/11 and for whom they are aware of prima facie evidence that is sufficient to raise a presumption of fact.

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http://youtu.be/NO24XmP1

 

Look east and what does Bashar see? Iran standing with him and Iraq refusing to impose sanctions

The Independent, UK

Tuesday 07 February 2012

President Bashar al-Assad is not about to go. Not yet. Not, maybe, for quite a long time. Newspapers in the Middle East are filled with stories about whether or not this is Assad’s “Benghazi moment” – these reports are almost invariably written from Washington or London or Paris – but few in the region understand how we Westerners can get it so wrong.

The old saw has to be repeated and repeated: Egypt was not Tunisia; Bahrain was not Egypt; Yemen was not Bahrain; Libya was not Yemen. And Syria is very definitely not Libya.

It’s not difficult to see how the opposite plays in the West. The barrage of horrifying Facebook images from Homs, and statements from the “Free Syrian Army”, and the huffing of La Clinton and the amazement that Russia can be so blind to the suffering of Syrians – as if America was anything but blind to the suffering of Palestinians when, say, more than 1,300 were killed in Israel’s onslaught on Gaza – doesn’t gel with reality on the ground. Why should the Russians care about Homs? Did they care about the dead of Chechnya?

Look at it the other way round. Yes, we all know that Syria’s intelligence service has committed human rights abuses. They did that in Lebanon. Yes, we all know this is a regime in Damascus, not an elected government. Yes, we all know about corruption. Yes, we watched the UN’s humiliation at the weekend – although why La Clinton should expect the Russians to click their heels after the “no-fly zone” in Libya turned into “regime change” is a bit of a mystery.

The destruction of the Alawite-led government in Syria – which means in effect, a Shia regime – will be a sword in the soul of Shia Iran. And look at the Middle East now from the windows of the massive presidential palace that overlooks the old city of Damascus. True, the Gulf has turned against Syria. True, Turkey has turned against Syria (while generously offering Bashar exile in the old Ottoman empire).

But look east, and what does Bashar see? Loyal Iran standing with him. Loyal Iraq – Iran’s new best friend in the Arab world – refusing to impose sanctions. And to the west, loyal little Lebanon refusing to impose sanctions. Thus from the border of Afghanistan to the Mediterranean, Assad has a straight line of alliances which should prevent, at least, his economic collapse.

The trouble is that the West has been so deluged with stories and lectures and think-tank nonsense about the ghastly Iran and the unfaithful Iraq and the vicious Syria and the frightened Lebanon that it is almost impossible to snap off these delusional pictures and realise that Assad is not alone. That is not to praise Assad or to support his continuation. But it’s real.

The Turks, after much Clinton-style huffing and puffing, did not follow through on their “cordon sanitaire” in northern Syria. Nor did King Abdullah II follow through on the Syrian opposition’s call for a Jordanian “cordon sanitaire” in the south. Oddly, I repeat yet again, only Israel has remained silent.

As long as Syria can trade with Iraq, it can trade with Iran and, of course, it can trade with Lebanon. The Shia of Iran and the Shia majority in Iraq and the Shia leadership (though not majority) in Syria and the Shia (the largest community, but not a majority) in Lebanon will be on Assad’s side, however reluctantly. That, I’m afraid, is the way the cookie crumbles. Crazed Gaddafi had real enemies with firepower and Nato. Assad’s enemies have Kalashnikovs and no Nato.

Assad has Damascus and Aleppo, and those cities matter. His principal military units have not defected to the opposition.

The “good guys” also contain “bad guys” – a fact we forgot in Libya, even when the “good guys” murdered their defected army commander and tortured prisoners to death. Oh yes, and the Royal Navy was able to put into Benghazi. It cannot put into Tartous because the Russian Navy is still there.

http://youtu.be/jIB88qleY50

Under Obama’s term as president there has been more people prosecuted for whistle blowing than all other US presidents combined. Bradley Manning, the latest whistle blower, is being held on trial for releasing video exposing a US Apache helicopter shooting and killing civilians and journalists in Baghdad. Some say Manning is a hero, but he is being charged with aiding the enemy. Susan Lindauer, former CIA asset, gives us her taking on whistle blowing.

http://youtu.be/cLjZoA3GaVE

By Susan Lindauer, former U.S. back channel to Iraq
and the second non-Arab American arrested on the Patriot Act

Once upon a time there was a President named George who wanted to be Emperor. (Not a bad idea. He was a lousy President. He really needed a different job.)

President George had traveled to Mexico—once. So he figured the whole world was pretty much like Texas. He thought about it for, oh, five minutes. What he needed was a country far, far away to invade. Surely those foreigners would be charmed by his folksy swagger (being more primitive and all). They’d appreciate him more than those Gosh Darn Americans, who had awfully high expectations of a President. Why, he imagined these foreigners would bow and scrape and wow over his every golf shot.

So he pulled out a map. And he saw Iraq— with a “Q.” And he asked one of his ministers what he’d heard about this place. The minister’s eyes got bright: “Ohhh,” he said. “Iraq’s got oil and pipelines. We could make some serious profits if we grabbed Baghdad, and tossed its rulers in the trash can of history.”

Well, if there was one thing President George understood, it was oil profits. That’s what paid for those Black Helicopters ferrying rich folks to private parties in Houston. Absolutely everybody who was anybody had a helo-pad on their ranch. So when George heard about Iraq’s oil, he saw his destiny. He would be Emperor of the World from Texas to Baghdad.

President George called all his Republican friends to a Grand Old Party, where he proclaimed his vision. He promised to share Iraq’s oil wealth (so they could ride in helicopters and private jets, too). And he started handing out military contracts by the fistful.

And the Republicans declared, “This is a Democracy. We vote to make you Emperor.”

And George answered, “Amen.”

There was just one pesky Little Female who would not shut her mouth! He called her “Miss Bossy Boots,” and he hated her like nobody else. She was T-R-O-U-B-L-E!!! See, she’d been a covert back channel to Iraqi diplomats at the United Nations in New York years before he ever got to be President. And she shrieked from the rooftops and banged on every door on Capitol Hill, warning this War with Iraq would be catastrophic.

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By Ralph Lopez

Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has been stripped of legal immunity for acts of torture against US citizens authorized while he was in office.
The 7th Circuit made the ruling in the case of two American
contractors who were tortured by the US military in Iraq after uncovering a smuggling ring within an Iraqi security company. The company was under contract to the Department of Defense.   The company was assisting Iraqi insurgent groups in the “mass acquisition” of American weapons.  The ruling comes as Rumsfeld begins his book tour with a visit to Boston on Monday, September 26, and as new, uncensored photos of Abu Ghraib spark fresh outrage across Internet.  Awareness is growing that Bush-era crimes went far beyond mere waterboarding.

Torture Room, Abu Ghraib

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham told reporters in 2004 of photos withheld by the Defense Department from Abu Ghraib,
“The American public needs to understand, we’re talking about rape and murder here… We’re not just talking about giving people a humiliating experience. We’re talking about rape and murder and some very serious charges.”  And journalist Seymour Hersh says: “boys were sodomized with the cameras rolling. And the worst above all of that is the soundtrack of the boys shrieking that your government has.”
Rumsfeld resigned days before a criminal complaint was filed in Germany in which the American general who commanded the military police battalion at Abu Ghraib had promised to testify.
 General Janis Karpinski in an interview with Salon.com was asked: “Do you feel like Rumsfeld is at the heart of all of this and should be held completely accountable for what happened [at Abu Ghraib]?”
Karpinski answered: “Yes, absolutely.”  In the criminal complaint filed in Germany against Rumsfeld, Karpinski submitted 17 pages of testimony and offered to appear before the German prosecutor as a witness.  Congressman Kendrick Meek of Florida, who participated in the hearings on Abu Ghraib, said of Rumsfeld:
“There was no way Rumsfeld didn’t know what was going on. He’s a guy who wants to know everything.”
And Major General Antonio Taguba, who led the official Army investigation into Abu Ghraib, said in his report:
“there is no longer any doubt as to whether the [Bush] administration has committed war crimes. The only question is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account.”
Abu Ghraib Prisoner Smeared with Feces
Amazingly, the two American contractors in the 7th Circuit decision were known by the military to be working undercover for the FBI, to whom they had reported witnessing the sale of U.S government munitions to Iraqi rebel groups.  The FBI in Iraq had vouched for Vance and Ertel numerous times before they nevertheless disappeared into military custody.  They were held at Camp Cropper in Iraq where the two were tortured, one for 97 days, and the other for six weeks.

January 4, 2011 No Lies Radio

Barrett
I understand that you had some 9/11 foreknowledge, but were actually busted for trying to explain to the Bush Administration through your cousin Andrew Card, that invading Iraq was insane, that the Iraqis were basically going to do anything we wanted anyway–they’ll agree to anything for peace–and that there would be a terrible resistance and a terrible war if there was an invasion. And for that very accurate and prescient warning, they went after you.

Lindauer
Well, you have a very good grasp of this issue, I will tell you. It is a complicated story. I was one of the very few (CIA) assets covering Iraq before the war. And I had established contact with the Iraqi embassy at the United Nations in New York back in August of 1996. And for seven years before the invasion, I was what they call a “back channel” to Iraq on the question of terrorism. That was my foremost priority. This was covert in the sense that it was covert to the West. But the Iraqis were fully informed as to who I was and what I was doing and what my purpose was. My motivation was that I hated the United Nations sanctions. I hated the genocidal consequences and suffering for the Iraqi people, most truly and genuinely–that was very sincere. And they knew it. And both sides knew my politics. In fact, the CIA had come to me knowing my politics and said “hey, why don’t you try to help us.” They co-opted me–they did–but I agreed to be co-opted. We all understood each other. And that’s very important for what happened.

Barrett
That’s not necessarily a bad thing. There is a role for people who are intermediaries between warring parties and who try to make peace. And it sounds like that’s what you were doing.

Lindauer
Yes indeed. And both sides understood my politics, that I wanted to help end the sanctions. And the CIA was very adamant that Iraq had to meet certain criteria in order for that to happen. And my contribution from the very first days was on terrorism. Our team started what we called preliminary talks with Baghdad in November of 2000, two years before the United Nations got involved. Our team started back channel talks to get Iraq’s agreement on the weapons inspections. And over the next fifteen months, my supervisor, Richard Fuisz (pronounced “fuse”), through talks at the Iraqi embassy, mostly with Iraq’s ambassador Dr. Sayeed Hassan, and with other senior Iraqi diplomats, on what conditions Iraq would have to accept in order to resume the weapons inspections. And at that point we had begun to develop a comprehensive peace framework which extended great support to anti-terrorism. Iraq agreed to let the FBI come into Baghdad and operate a task force that would have authority–this was before 9/11 ever happened! Nine months before 9/11 happened, Iraq agreed to have the FBI come into Baghdad with the authority to conduct terrorism investigations, interview witnesses, make arrests. After 9/11, Iraq agreed to give financial records on al-Qaeda to the United States. BUT the United states didn’t want to take the records.

Barrett

It makes you wonder why not.

Lindauer
Isn’t that an interesting question.

Barrett
It leads me to (my next question): You apparently had some kind of foreknowledge of 9/11. Can you explain to us what that was?

Lindauer
Yes. This is a very interesting thing, and I’m glad…I hope your audience will pay attention to this. We absolutely expected 9/11 to happen. And there’s a subtlety here that I hope your audience will appreciate. In April and May of 2001 I was summoned to my CIA handler’s office and told that I needed to confront the Iraqi diplomats at the United Nations, through my back channel, with a demand for any fragment of intelligence regarding airplane hijackings and/or airplane bombings. And over the summer, that progressed to a deep belief that there was going to be an airplane hijacking attack, and some sort of aerial strike, on the World Trade Center. We talked about this in our one-on-one meetings practically every week. Just so we are clear, this was not a one-time conversation. This was a major focus of our efforts. Richard (Fuisz, Lindauer’s CIA handler) was very worried about it, very agitated about it, how Iraq must give us this intelligence. Now, I don’t mean to patronize you, but I’m sure you’re familiar with the concept of deniability. I do not think that Richard Fuisz knew all the details of 9/11. However, he knew enough. My book Extreme Prejudice goes into the conversations that we had in great detail. And he knew the timing of the attack. By August 2001, Richard was telling me not to go into New York City because this attack was immanent. And on the day of FBI Director Robert Mueller’s confirmation hearings, which I think was August 2nd–in my book it’s very clear, I’ve checked all the dates–Richard Fuisz told me that the attack was immanent. And I said, well, I’m going up to New York to ask my Iraqi sources about this again. And he said “Don’t go to New York, it’s too dangerous, I don’t want you going there again.” And I said “I’m just going up this weekend, and I promise I will not go back to New York.” And that’s how close this was. They knew a great deal. And what was interesting is that after 9/11, I get arrested, and he gets thirteen million dollars in payoffs. (laughs)

Barrett
(laughing) Oh boy. That’s amazing. They arrested you, because they were probably concerned about you revealing the contents of your conversations with Richard, among other things.

Lindauer
Oh yes, absolutely. And the fact that there was a peace option on the table that had been developed over a two year period before the war, a comprehensive peace framework. It included cooperation on anti-terrorism; it included the weapons inspections, of course–you already knew that; and it included Iraq’s commitment to donate economic reconstruction–donate is not the right word–to dedicate economic reconstruction contracts to United States corporations with preferential treatment, preferential contracts in telecommunications, health care, pharmaceuticals, and transportation. This was a comprehensive peace framework! We covered everything! We covered a lot. And nobody even knows about this!

Barrett
That’s amazing. There have been general reports of this nature, including post-9/11, right up to the eve of the invasion, there have been reports that Saddam Hussein was willing to give the US basically everything it wanted to hold off the invasion.

Lindauer
Yes. Yes.

Barrett

That leads to the question: Why do you think, given that you recognize just how insane this invasion was, how completely unnecessary–the Iraqis were caving as far as they had to cave anyway–what was the point?

Lindauer
Yes, literally, Iraq said to me: “What is it the United States wants? Anything that the United States asks for, we will give them. Just tell us what it is!” When I was on a trip to Baghdad, they offered to buy one million American-made automobiles every year for ten years. And (an Iraqi diplomat) said to me, “Look, Susan, if ten years isn’t enough, we’ll make it twenty years.”

Barrett
You know, Susan, you’re kind of ruining Saddam Hussein’s posthumous reputation as somebody who stood up to the U.S.!

Lindauer
He was more harsh on terrorists than we were.

Barrett
He didn’t get along with al-Qaeda, and he didn’t get along with Islamists of any kind, including the Iranians.

Lindauer

That’s right.

Barrett
You would have thought that the U.S. would have just kept running him as an American puppet. He got his start as a CIA hit man, apparently.

Lindauer

Yes indeed.

Barrett
So why, why this insane insistence on going to war with Iraq–a war that has killed one and a half million innocent Iraqis and destroyed that country. What was the purpose of it?

Lindauer
It was so incredibly stupid. And 9/11…9/11 could have been used at the start…9/11 was a tragedy, a terrible, terrible tragedy, but 9/11 could have accomplished great good. Because right after 9/11 Iraq went into high mode of giving. They were offering us everything we wanted: Financial records on al-Qaeda, proof of a Middle Eastern link to what we used to call the inter-Arab group of terrorists, which was actually an amalgamation of several different terrorist factions, coalesced into al-Qaeda. They were willing to prove that there was a Middle Eastern link to the Oklahoma City bombing and the first attack on the World Trade Center, and those included financial documents, bank records…we could have tracked the money that’s financing terrorism around the world. Instead what we do is, we create an enemy. Because it looks better–the politicians could go grandstand. As a former (CIA) asset I can assure you, they don’t actually do anything on terrorism. They give speeches. They go wave their hands in the parades. But they don’t do anything to contribute to anti-terrorism efforts. But the people have been fooled by their showmanship and their grandstanding and their spectacle. It’s like a circus performance now! In fact, before 9/11, there were 200 to 300 terrorists in the world who wanted to attack America. Now, after 9/11 and after the war in Iraq and after the war on Afghanistan, there are only about 2000 to 3000 individuals whose entire focus of life is revenge and coming into the United States and attacking us. That’s only 3000 people. The way I look at it, this is like a high school auditorium that you could fill with the potential terrorists. That’s it! This is an invention! We’ve made this up!

Barrett

Right. Very well put. I’ve often explained to people that there was no real terrorist threat pre-9/11, and that for every one person pre-9/11 who was bent on doing harm to the US, there must be a great many today, because of all the terrible things that have gone on since 9/11.

Lindauer
Yes.

Barrett
So the question then, is…is it just sheer total incompetence and stupidity and grandstanding and egotism–I’m sure all of that contributes to it, but—uh…well, frankly, Susan, my take on all of this is that 9/11 was a Mossad operation, that it was of course done through Cheney’s office. There were no hijackings. The guys that they blamed for it were not terrorists at all. They weren’t even on the planes. There is not a shred of evidence that any of these guys were on those planes, nor is there a shred of actual evidence that there were any hijackings. Instead, we had a military operation that was essentially a Zionist coup d’état by the Likkud faction that wanted to destroy Iraq so it would never be a threat to Israel. A prosperous Iraq, allied to the US, would actually be terrible for Israel. That’s why they wouldn’t take the deals that you were brokering. Care to comment?

Lindauer
I think that you are–I do believe in the hijackings, but I believe in everything else that you have just said. One of the things that came out right after 9/11: I’ve often been asked by people what my CIA handler Richard Fuisz’s source was for the 9/11 attack. And he told me briefly, he let it slip. Immediately after the attack, when we were all in a state of shock, he said to me…the first building had collapsed, but it was before the second building collapsed. This is a very important time frame. He made reference to video tape, which by the way was not released to the public until the next day, but right after 9/11 Richard Fuisz already knows about this video tape! Right after the attack–the first building has collapsed, the second one is still standing–and we’re both talking in the living room, we’re both shouting–I’m in my living room, he’s in his living room, and we’re shouting at the televisions–and he blurts out to me: “Susan, how many times do you think a camera is cued up waiting for a car accident to occur?” He said, “What do you think are the odds  that those two people were just standing on the sidewalk with a video camera waiting patiently for the plane to hit the building?” And he said, “Those are Mossad agents. They knew that the World Trade Center was about to get hit, and they were waiting there for it to happen so they could record it and put it out in the media.” Now this is before it has even come out in the media. He identifies them as Mossad agents, and I believe–I’m convinced–that that was the source of our knowledge of al-Qaeda. But what you guys don’t know, which I will throw out to you, which comes out in my book, is that from April and May of 2001 onwards, Richard Fuisz instructed me to threaten the Iraqis with war. Now everybody assumes that the war stuff came after 9/11. But it didn’t. They had decided months before 9/11 ever happened that as soon as this attack occurred, this would be the motivation for the war. So they absolutely knew that this attack was coming. They knew that it was going to be in late August or September. And that opens up a whole new dynamic proving what you have just said: That it was a Mossad conspiracy, that there was complicity…maybe that’s a better word, complicity…I’m going to go a little softer on the language than you. Mossad complicity.

Barrett

I would argue that it’s a little more than complicity–that the demolitions of the three tallest buildings ever taken down in controlled demolitions required immense skill and military specialization and so on…

Lindauer

Oh yes, when I say complicity, I include that in it. Yes. I believe in the detonations. In fact…do I have time to tell you one story before break?

Barrett
Tell it, go for it.

Lindauer

While I was writing my book, I had a high-ranking State Department official, who has a very very high, top-top-top security classification, and I cannot name him for you because I don’t want to hurt his reputation. He’s close to retirement, he’s going to have a pension–they would crush him if he was ever exposed, I suspect.  He thinks it too. He says that a couple of weeks before 9/11, at the end of August, for about two weeks, strange vans were arriving at the World Trade Center at three o’ clock in the morning. They were staying from about three o’ clock to about four-thirty or five. They were coming in for a brief period. And he swore to me that he personally had investigated the janitorial services, and he said “I know first hand how many employees the janitorial service had, what their trucks looked like, what their revenues were like, where they lived.” He said “we know the addresses.” We are confident that none of the people from the janitorial services were tied to these trucks. It had never happened before, it was a unique thing. This was not a constant thing like over a six month period. It was a strange anomaly right before (the attack on) the World Trade Center. And he was convinced that this was government-level thermite, government-level weapons, that had been put into either the stairwells or the elevator shafts. And he is convinced that this is when it happened.

By Susan Lindauer

If only I’d known Julian Assange, everything would have been different.
Mine was a spook’s world of black ops and counter-terrorism. The real stuff—not color coded threats. For a decade I performed as a covert back channel to Libya and Iraq at the United Nations in support of anti-terrorism. My special access made me one of the very few Assets covering Baghdad before the War. Our team started talks for the Lockerbie Trial with Libyan diplomats. We also held preliminary talks to resume the weapons inspections with Iraq’s Ambassador, Dr. Saeed Hasan. Once Baghdad agreed to rigorous U.S. conditions for transparency in the inspections, I notified the Security Council myself, and within 72 hours the U. N invited Iraq to attend formal talks to ratify the technical language. By then it was a done deal. Contrary to official reports, Iraq always welcomed the return of weapons inspectors as a necessary step to ending the sanctions.  Ordinary people just didn’t know it.
My world was “black.” Off radar. So deeply secretive that my father, brother, aunts and cousins had no knowledge of my work in Washington. I operated in absolute secrecy.

My bona fides in anti-terrorism were no less outstanding for my lack of public acclaim. I discovered advance intelligence about the bombing of the U.S.S. Cole in Yemen, and the first World Trade Center attack in 1993. My team conducted one of the very first investigations of Osama bin Laden and his cohorts—then known as the Inter-Arab group— six months before the Embassy bombings in Dar es Salaam/Nairobi in 1998.

Most provocatively by far, my team warned about a 9/11 scenario involving airplane hijackings and a strike on the World Trade Center throughout the spring and summer of 2001. My CIA handler responded aggressively, ordering me to threaten Iraqi diplomats with War, in the event they failed to supply intelligence to thwart the attack.

If that wasn’t politically dangerous enough, I solicited Iraq’s cooperation with the 9/11 investigation—a cause Baghdad embraced enthusiastically. Oh yes, Iraq was one of our best sources on anti-terrorism throughout the ’90s. You didn’t know that either, did you?

If only I’d known Julian Assange.

A Time for Openness

For all of the political scolding, there comes a time when secrecy becomes its own greatest handicap in the ultimate game to protect global security. Informed consent creates power for the people to make better decisions that impact the welfare of the total community. Just like government leaders require a depth of information to guide them, the people require it, too—so they can provide better instructions to government leaders representing their interests.

Conversely, interrupting that flow of information robs the community of the power to make the wisest possible choices. That’s a major drawback of secrecy. There comes a point where secrecy compromises the community’s capability to evaluate events and trends, in order to protect its own best interests. Politicians are loath to admit that, not surprisingly. They’re most often the ones invoking secrecy as a method of hiding the incompetence of their policies. Lately, that’s become a serious problem in Washington, as elected leaders try to dodge voters’ questions.

That’s not just lip service, tragically. Three examples prove my point most painfully, that a wider breadth of knowledge for the people would have substantially improved their ability to shape government policy, with better outcomes for national security.

Exposing the failure of anti-terrorism policy

The first is obvious: My team’s 9/11 warnings.

Of course the intelligence community anticipated the 9/11 attacks! EXTREME PREJUDICE reveals the whole context of our 9/11 warnings from May, 2001 onwards. It infuriates me that any politician would dare to deny it! Political fraud like that dishonors the community—and the dead.

Worst of all, people know the government lied, and that has festered like a wound in the American heart. People have lost confidence in our leaders’ capability to speak truthfully because of 9/11—and that hurts the fabric of our democracy. It particularly offends Americans to recognize that politicians could be so cynical as to demagogue the issue for personal attention, and then use secrecy and intelligence classifications to prevent the electorate from adequately evaluating their leadership performance on anti-terrorism overall.

If government honestly makes mistakes, they could be forgiven. But when the government actively creates a patchwork of deception to thwart public knowledge, though they clearly see they have created a crisis in the psyche of our nation, in my opinion, they have no business occupying positions of leadership at all.

It’s serious reason why, despite my life amidst such black secrecy, I would have told Julian Assange everything, so that somebody could give that information to the people honestly. All of America and the world community would have rested easier for having that truth.

Not only did the government lie about the 9/11 warnings, in my opinion as a participant, the 9/11 investigation was thwarted at every turn—mostly to conceal offers of assistance from Baghdad. Saddam’s government offered a windfall of intelligence on terrorism, including financial records on Al Qaeda figures. And the U.S. refused to take it, amounting to false promises and false leadership on a matter of genuine importance to national security.
If only I had known Julian Assange. The world could have accepted the same documents that Tony Blair and George Bush spurned.

Unhappily, the government’s decision to leave that terrorist money in play—mostly from global heroin trafficking—stands out as the single most dangerous decision in the War on Terrorism. That money is being deployed as a weapon in conflicts all over the world today—from Yemen and Indonesia to India, Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Yet thanks to our great secrecy laws, the public has lacked the necessary information to challenge that decision to forego Iraq’s financial records on Al Qaeda figures. Instead, the American people have bought into the myth of outstanding leadership performance in the fight against terrorism, without ever knowing if it’s true.

Here we come to the third and most tragic example of abusive secrecy that I discuss in great depth in EXTREME PREJUDICE. Forced to rely on the government’s word of honor before the War, the public failed to discover a range of non-military options dealing with Iraq, which required no deployment of troops, whatsoever.

The corporate media has never reported the existence of our comprehensive peace framework, so even the most sophisticated opinion leaders have no comprehension that the U.S. and Britain could easily have resolved their conflicts with Iraq, without firing a single missile or killing a single Iraqi child.

Oh, politicians in Washington were thoroughly debriefed on all its components, developed in a two year period before the War, and faithfully reported to White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card in 11 progress reports on the success of our back channel. Andy Card happened to be my second cousin. For all of their denials afterwards, members of Congress in both parties understood that the peace option was rock solid to the very last days before the invasion.

If only I’d known Julian Assange– Empowering the global community with knowledge of the choices and options for peace in the Iraqi conflict would have given the people more power to compel the U.S. and British governments to accept the will of the people.

Unfortunately, there was no Julian Assange. I had to trust in formal channels to raise these points on Capitol Hill. And I quickly saw proof their bad faith. Thirty days after I phoned the offices of Senate leaders, John McCain and Trent Lott, requesting to testify before Congress, I awoke to find FBI agents pounding on my front door, with a warrant for my arrest on the Patriot Act—a frightening arsenal of secret charges, secret evidence, secret grand jury testimony, and secret attorney debriefings.

Because there was no Julian Assange to  expose these major deceptions, I got locked in prison on a Texas military base, while politicians in Washington and London reinvented the story of Pre-War Intelligence—focusing blame onto my shoulders as the “incompetent” Asset who failed to correct mistakes in pre-War assumptions. I watched it all on prison television.

In the absence of public knowledge, politicians manipulated silence and secrecy to their own advantage. They abused secrecy classifications to prevent the public from discovering their own weakness and policy mistakes.
Without public examination of their actual performance, they continued to promote policies, which have caused grave harm to American security, and perhaps most ironically of all, undermined the War on Terrorism. Voters have been denied the fundamental right to hold leaders accountable for their actions and decision making, which is critical to the well being of democracy.

And all because there was no Julian Assange to help protect American soldiers from easily avoidable battle deployments, triple tours of duty, amputations, head injuries, paralysis, and post traumatic stress disorder.

There was no Julian Assange to expose opportunities for peace that would have saved Iraqi families and children from an onslaught of suicide bombings, sectarian warfare, starvation, and the loss of their future.
There was no Julian Assange to guarantee that non-military options for anti-terrorism would be used to maximum impact for the world community—reducing terrorism and closing down the cash pipeline without water boarding, rendition, Guantanamo, wasteful wars, or seizing Islamic charitable donations.

Nobody could stop leaders in Washington and London from lying to all of us pretty much non-stop. Nobody could expose the fraud of using secrecy and the aura of intelligence to undercut national security at all levels.

The world is not better off today because secrecy won out over accountability. Global security is weaker not stronger. An organ vital to a healthy system of governance has been cut down.

And so perhaps you can understand why I shake my head alarmed over the attacks on Wiki-leaks and Julian Assange by those who pretend to defend national security, those who, in promoting their own self interests, have selfishly undermined the foundation of national security for all countries for the foreseeable future.

If only there’d been a Julian Assange, the world would have been spared so much pain. Life would have turned out differently for all of us. If only.

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