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Response to ProSense (Original post)

Wed Aug 7, 2013, 05:51 PM

33. For once, I agree with you. When actual US terrorist attacks occurred, NSA spying was useless.

For several decades, every real mass casualty "foreign" terrorist attack that has succeeded inside the US has been carried out by groups and individuals associated with CIA covert operations. In some of these, particularly 9/11, the NSA was conducting surveillance on some of the principal participants, but the FBI was prevented from accessing this data by another federal agency, the Central Intelligence Agency.

Consider this, for instance, about the hijackers who commandeered Flt. 77 on 9/11: http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=journals&uid=143890

Court records from the trial of convicted co-conspiractor Zakaria Moussaoui shows the FBI was aware of NSA intercepts of Midhar and and his partner Nawaf al-Hazmi in the months leading up to 9/11, who went on to hijack Flt. 77 that slammed into the Pentagon. The pair had also met with the other principal 9/11 hijackers at various locations inside the US. Based in part on NSA wiretaps that were later withheld and suppressed, FBI agents had, in fact, located the pair inside the US in mid-2001, but the investigating agents were ordered to close their files after CIA refused to cooperate and pressured the Bureau to shut down several lines of field investigation that were focusing on the plotters.

(FBI Director) Mueller's claims omit those key facts. The Director instead stated that Khalid al-Midhar was being monitored by intelligence agencies, but “they lost track of him,” Mueller said. http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2013/0613/Secret-NSA-program-could-have-derailed-9-11-attacks-FBI-director-says-video


In each major terrorist attack that occurred here during the last twenty years, one or more of the perpetrators was known directly to the CIA and identified as a terrorist, yet they somehow managed to enter the US and carry out attacks. This is true going back to WTC '93, and includes 9/11, the string of Anwar al-Awlaki-related incidents (which included 9/11 and the Underwear Bomber), and the Tsarnaev brothers. In other words, almost all real terrorism that has caused civilian casualties in America in recent times has been carried out by "our" terrorists, or more accurately, individuals known by the CIA to be part of terrorist groups.

Let's look at the older Boston Bomber, Tamarlan Tsarnaev. Tamarlan was nominated by the CIA as a terrorist in the fall of 2011 after a Massachusetts triple-murder in which the older brother is now implicated in the killing of his closest friend. Nonetheless, while an active murder investigation was ongoing, Tamarlan was allowed to leave the country to travel to Russia and Chechnya where he met with Islamic militants, and then hastily returned when his local contact with the militants was killed by the Russian security forces. Yet, inexplicably, he was never stopped or questioned during these travels, despite being on three terrorist watch lists. Again, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was designated a terrorist at about the same time he is alleged to have been involved in a triple murder, but at the time whatever was known to the CIA was never turned over to Boston Police or the FBI. In addition, he was not stopped when he left or returned to the US, despite the fact that he is not a US Citizen and was listed on the watchlist: http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/04/27/17945669-boston-bombing-suspects-mother-was-in-us-terror-database?lite


If, after 9/11, we had simply curtailed the CIA's use of terrorists, instead of hastily passing the Patriot Act, we wouldn't be having this debate about NSA. Instead, the government threw money at NSA contractors to spy on everyone, Bush invaded Iraq, and the CIA continued along its merry way, running known terrorists in and out of the country who proceed to carry out attacks with seeming impunity.

Unfortunately, American casualties from terrorist attacks is seen as acceptable collateral damage of CIA covert operations (or, treated as acceptable by US policymakers, who never really change the way intelligence agencies do business) and are used as a pretense to go to war (not necessarily against those who actually attack us) and to build up a police state apparatus inside the US.

This is the real "intelligence failure" of U.S. Counter-terrorism. The lies told to obscure and redirect responsibility for these losses are all the more revolting for the fact that they are so transparent.

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LineReply For once, I agree with you. When actual US terrorist attacks occurred, NSA spying was useless.
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