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Reply #10: Don't let the CIA off the hook. They're the ones who had the UBL files [View All]

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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Mar-26-06 12:51 PM
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10. Don't let the CIA off the hook. They're the ones who had the UBL files
To avoid stepping on the Agency's domestic surveillance operation, the FBI brass handcuffed and blindfolded their field agents whenever they came in contact with what DoD called "the Brooklyn cell". The Pentagon was also prevailed upon to abandon its own operations that threatened to conflict with the CIA's work. That's why Able Danger was shut down.

Here's what we know from open sources:


A Congressional report later describes (Bush's 08/06/01 PDB) as based on the memo discussed in July by Clarke and other high-level national security decision-makers. The Senate Intelligence Committee summarized that memo, as follows:

"embers of al-Qaeda, including some US citizens, had resided in or traveled to the US for years and that the group apparently maintained a support structure here. The report cited uncorroborated information obtained in 1998 that Osam bin Laden wanted to hijack airplanes to gain the release of US-held extremists; FBI judgments about patterns of activity consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks and the number of bin Laden-related investigations underway; as well as information acquired in May 2001 that indicated a group of bin Laden supporters was planning attacks in the US with explosives." .

Meanwhile, that August, FBI investigators in New York and Minneapolis were trying desperately to gather sufficient evidence to obtain FISA warrants to track down four al-Qaeda members known to be at large in the country and information for a warrant to open the computer files of a fifth suspect, Zacarias Moussaoui, who had been arrested at a Norman Oklahoma flight school. FBI requests that summer to the CIA for information contained in the Agencys files were repeatedly stonewalled.

On August 23 2001, the CIA finally informed the Bureau that two intending terrorists Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar -- had entered the US in January 2000 information it had in its files for some 17 months. As they tried to get evidence for warrants, FBI agents in New York and Minneapolis were particularly in need of what

the CIA knew about these two al-Qaeda members. In refusing to turn over information the previous month, a CIA officer told FBI investigators attached to the FBIs New York National Security office he would not turn over operational information. In a now famous e-mail message, one of the New York Bureau investigators remarked about the seeming meltdown in US counterterrorism, Someone is going to die. Colleen Rowley, a lawyer in the Minneapolis FBI office frustrated after the CIA refused to provide materials supporting warrants to open Moussaouis laptop -- and by the obstruction of FBI headquarters later conjectured that her own investigation was being sabotaged by moles.

For reasons that have not yet been satisfactorily explained, the federal terrorism alert was relaxed after Bush received his briefing. Five weeks later, 19 hijackers armed with box cutters were able to board four commercial airliners, flying them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and into a crash site in western Pennsylvania.

Three thousand people died in what was possibly, at high levels of the US Government, the most widely anticipated mass murder in American history.

Why did the President and his senior national security officials behave as they did in the face of these warnings? Was US intelligence simply deceived into believing that any al-Qaeda attack would occur abroad, as has been claimed, or was there an unstated reason officials took the enormous risks they did? What were top

Administration officials thinking?



"They Had It Covered." - Anonymous Aide to NSC Counterterrorism Chief, Richard Clarke What could have been the line of reasoning behind the terrorism alert stand-down in the weeks before 9/11? The final report of the Congressional Joint Inquiry, released in September 2003, casts some new light on these key questions. *Main&url= [br />

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