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Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 08:16AM

[corner.nationalreview.com]

Honorable Robert Mueller
Director
Federal Bureau of Investigation
935 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D. C. 20535-0001

Dear Director Mueller,

It has been reported in the news media and directly to my staff that Army Lt. Colonel Anthony Shaffer was the operations officer for a secret military program referred to as Able Danger. The mission of Able Danger was to use a sophisticated data mining program in conjunction with more traditional military intelligence methods to identify and track al Qaida terrorists oversees.

In connection with this mission, Shaffer reports that he and his associates discovered the names and U.S. locations of three of the four 9-11 pilots a year prior to 9-11. Because the suspected al Qaida terrorists were located in the U.S., Shaffer reports that he made repeated requests of Defense Intelligence Agency (“DIA”) officials to schedule a meeting with FBI officials in order to present this intelligence to the FBI for further investigation. Shaffer further contacted FBI agent Xanthig Mangum and asked her to schedule such a meeting within FBI. Shaffer states that he made this request both verbally and by email to Agent Mangum. Shaffer claims that the DIA decided not to share this information with the FBI on the advice of legal counsel and that certain meetings that had been scheduled on this issue were cancelled as a result.

This is an official request that your office provide to the Judiciary Committee all information and documents it has in connection with Able Danger, Lt. Colonel Anthony Shaffer, Captain Scott Phillipot or any other persons having any connections with Project Able Danger, including, but not limited to, email communication, notes, phone message slips, memos or any other supporting documentation.

I would appreciate it if you would provide Agent Mangum for an interview with my staff at your earliest convenience. Also, please provide information concerning any and all requests made to the FBI by any other entity, agency, branch or commission in connection with Agent Mangum, Lt Colonel Shaffer, Project Able Danger or any related matters, including, but not limited to, requests for interviews or documents.

Thank you for your attention to this important question about cross agency information sharing.

Sincerely,

Arlen Specter

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 08:47AM

Rush Limbaugh is changing his tune about Able Danger. Now it's the Washington political class at blame rather than Jamie Gorelick and the Clinton administration. Curt Welon does not appear to be part of that class despite being in Congress for 20 years. Somehow, he ties the issue of flat tax into Able Danger. Coincidentally, an ad for Steve Forbes' book advocating the flat tax is on the same page as this transcript.

Rush Limbaugh transcript

8/25/2005

Washington Elite Protect Their Power

RUSH: I think what's going to drive this is once they get to the hearing stage and if these Able Danger people come out and they're credible and they've got the documentation, it's going to be hard to stop this, because the American people are going to want to know the truth and they're going to be outraged about it, and that could end up driving it. When I said the political class, I don't have anybody particularly in mind. I didn't mean to say it for that reason, and so I don't want to suggest that there is a particular person that I have in mind here. I just know how that world works. It's a business like any other business. They have to be elected to get into the club but it's still a business once they get there -- and it's cutthroat, and it literally is about power, and let me tell you what makes it about power. Forget the ideology for a second, because that's obviously paramount and fundamental. But this is about money. Look at the money these people have control over. Look at the money they spend. Look at the trillion dollars they are in charge of allocating every year and look at the portion of that that they can end up steering their way in any number of ways -- after they leave office; sometimes it's been done while they're in office. You know, that's what I've always laughed when I've heard about how campaign finance reform, "gotta get the money out of politics." That's like saying we've got to get the oxygen out of life! You know, we're never going to get the oxygen out of life -- well, not human life -- and we're not going to get the money out of politics. John Linder and Neil Bortz have got a great book out called The Fair Tax Book. It's absolutely fabulous book; #1 on the New York Times. Steve Forbes has a book out on the flat tax. I love Steve Forbes. I love Bortz. I love these guys. They're great Americans and they care deeply.

But do you know what we're up against here? Do you really think that members of Congress are going to just give up the single greatest power they have -- and that is the social architecture they are able to construct via the tax code? The tax code is as big as it is because that is an illustration of the power these people have. They can determine home ownership. If they take away the home mortgage deduction, what do they do to the homeowners business? What's the homeowners lobby or the home builders lobby going to do about that if they ever tried that? The various ways that different kinds of income are taxed and not taxed and so forth -- and I don't want to be misunderstand. You've got a lot of ideologues who care deeply about all this. They run for office for that reason. I'm not besmirching everybody. I'm just saying this is a business as well and it's about money and power and reputation. So when something like 9/11 comes along, you have to understand: that is a huge failure somewhere. It is a massive failure somewhere, made ever so evident to me by how quickly we as Americans were told who the 19 hijackers were, complete with photographs. I don't want to be a broken record, but didn't it stun any of you that we knew where they went to flight school and all those details about them that night, the next day, two days after? It had to be known. Somewhere, it had to be known. This event, while people have done their best to erase it from our memories, as they conduct modern-day politics and fight Bush on the war on terror and so forth. If you want to put yourself in the minds of those who feel vulnerable on this, go back to that day and remember how you felt, and those people feel that way any time this investigation gets ginned up. Let me illustrate it this way: Does it surprise anybody that not one person, at any level of our government has been fired over what happened at 9/11? Does it surprise you?


It does me. Actually, it doesn't me. That's the point. That's the purpose. The purpose is to absolve blame from an individual. (interruption) What, somebody been fired? (interruption) What are you frowning at me about? (interruption) Well, I'm not surprised. I'm not surprised. The CIA blew this, and the CIA has been in a CYA mode ever since. The CIA has been trying to blame the FBI. The FBI has been trying to blame the CIA. They both been blaming the wall. Now everybody is blaming a building, the Pentagon, now the Pentagon lawyers. Not one person. Not one! There are people who are put into government, experts. We're the world's superpower. We have the National Security Agency. We have this big listening device. We can intercept any bit of intelligence in the world, and e-mail, cell phones, satellite phones. We have the ability. The NSA has the ability to pull this stuff out of the air. There's so much of it it may be hard to go through, but it's there. Somebody's on the hook here, or some organization is on the hook. Something is on the hook. This is where this is going to be. If it comes out that enough was known to stop this, I am telling you, heads will roll, and the whole purpose -- if somebody already knows that there was information present to stop this, there's been, you know, circling of the wagons going on ever since. And they will continue to circle the wagons to prevent that bit of information from getting out. But even at that, even if it never gets to that, even if that's not the case, nobody's been fired -- and clearly, there was, if not incompetence, there was laxness. Somebody dropped the ball or a group of people dropped the ball somewhere. Somebody wasn't taking something seriously. In fact some of the people that have been closer to this have been given medals.

George Tenet got a medal. Some might say, ''Why?'' I'm not going to speculate on that. I've gone farther than I want to on this. I'm just trying to convey to you an attitude or the way I think that these kinds of things happen. The elite political class in Washington, DC, folks, it's just like trying to take out Enron. It's just like trying to take out, you know, Halliburton. Take your favorite big organization. It's like trying to take it out. Look at the UN. The UN is a classic example of what I'm talking about. Oil-for-food? Even the investigator, Paul Volcker, doesn't seem to be interested in finding out what really happened. It's taking a journalist, Claudia Rosette, to embarrass everybody, and the Wall Street Journal -- and it's taking Senator Norm Coleman to get to the bottom of this. But the UN doesn't anybody to know what really went on there. They're still in a CYA mode -- and Kofi Annan even threw his own son overboard to save his own skin! I'm telling you this is the big time. This is not a principal trying to save his job at a school. This is the big time, and I just think that it's going to be very, very challenging to get to the root of this. But we've got the ingredients for it to happen. We have Curt Weldon, and I talked to him Tuesday, and you'll read this interview. He doesn't care what happens to him as a result of this. He told that he's already been told, "Congressman, you proceed, and you are giving up any chance to head up a more powerful committee as you get reelected. If you do this, if you go through with this, you may not get any reelection funds. You're going to have all kinds of problems," and these are friends of his and advisors of him telling him what the pitfalls are down the road, and he told me he doesn't care about that.

Well, his personal involvement is unquestioned here, but the degree of passion he brings to this is unlike, as I say in the interview, I've ever had with anybody -- and we will, in coming days, share you bits and pieces of this, just to show you what I'm talking about. But already, just with that, if people are already telling Curt Weldon, "You better be careful, congressman. What do you think you're doing?" and I'm not saying been threatened. These are friends of his saying, "If you go through with this, they might shut your career down right where it is." Well, who is the "They"? "Who is the 'They'?" is all I'm saying -- and there's always a They, and the political class in Washington includes the think tankers, includes the media; it includes elected officials, includes their staff. Sometimes staff will be thrown overboard, but it's a close-knit group, folks. It's the power center of the world. You have to understand this. It's not the UN. It's not China. It's not Russia and Moscow. It's not London. It's not Paris. Washington, DC, is the power center of the world, and that's why we're despised and hated because we have so much of it, but the people that have their own little fiefdoms of power. They're not going to say, "For the right thing, I will give up my power." The idea is to keep the right thing away from you, if you're there, if you're incriminated. If it were other than that, somebody would have come forth already say, "You know what? I blew this. My agency blew this. I'm sorry and I'm resigning."

No way. It ain't going to happen.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 08:59AM

I missed this aticle when it first came out.

[mediamatters.org]

Media Matters

8/16/05

NY Post editorial advanced Weldon's unsubstantiated claims on Able Danger, Atta, 9-11 Commission

An August 15 New York Post editorial strongly criticized the 9-11 Commission for its failure to report that a secret military intelligence unit, code-named Able Danger, allegedly identified Mohammed Atta as an Al Qaeda operative at least a year before his actions as lead hijacker in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. But this claim about military intelligence awareness of Atta, made recently by Rep. Curt Weldon (R-PA), who has reportedly cited a senior intelligence official, has been strongly undermined in news accounts. Moreover, the Post editorial ignored an August 12 memo from the commission detailing its investigation into the Atta allegations and subsequent conclusion that the evidence did not warrant inclusion in its final report.

From the New York Post editorial titled "The 9/11 Omission Commission":

It's outrageous enough to learn -- via Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.) -- that a classified military-intelligence unit, working out of the Army's Information Dominance Center and code-named "Able Danger," identified 9/11 lead hijacker Mohammed Atta and three others as members of a Brooklyn-based terrorist cell fully a year before the World Trade Center attacks.

And it's more outrageous still to discover that the Pentagon never handed over the information to the FBI -- under orders from Pentagon lawyers.

But now it's been disclosed that, despite initial denials, the staff of [chairman Thomas] Kean's [9-11] commission twice was told this alarming story -- but rejected the information and refused to inform the commission members or even refer to it in their final report.

This, from a commission that was tasked to uncover the full story of 9/11 and shed light on why it happened.

On Friday, Kean & Co. said the operation was not considered "historically significant." But make no mistake: These facts are critical to a complete understanding of the conditions that permitted 9/11 to take place.

Contrary to the Post's apparent confidence in the Able Danger allegations, significant evidence has come to light in recent days calling into question the veracity of Weldon's claims. While Weldon has previously asserted that he saw Atta's name on a chart produced by Able Danger prior to September 11, a Time magazine article published online on August 14 reported that Weldon conceded he is "no longer certain" if Atta's name appeared on the document:

In a particularly dramatic scene in Weldon's book, Countdown to Terror, the Pennsylvania Republican described personally handing to then-Deputy National Security Adviser Steve Hadley, just after Sept. 11, an Able Danger chart produced in 1999 identifying Atta. But Weldon told TIME he's no longer certain Atta's name was on that original document. The congressman says he handed Hadley his only copy.

Further, Time reported that Pentagon officials "say they can find nothing produced by the Able Danger program ... mentioning Atta's name."

Ignoring the serious doubt recently cast on Weldon's underlying allegations, the Post editorial joined in criticizing the 9-11 Commission for failing to include mention of Able Danger's findings in its final report. The Post suggested that new disclosures had refuted the commission's "initial denials" that its staff "twice was told this alarming story -- but rejected the information." The editorial concluded, "[I]t's time they [the commission] started providing some of their own information to the people they were meant to serve."

But the 9-11 Commission had, in fact, provided its "own information" days earlier. On August 12, Kean and commission vice-chairman Lee H. Hamilton issued an account of their investigation of Able Danger and its findings. The memo depicted the commission staff actively pursuing information on the unit after learning of its existence from intelligence officials during an October 2003 meeting in Afghanistan. According to Kean and Hamilton, commission staffers were told only once -- not twice -- that Able Danger had identified Atta. This mention came during a July 2004 interview with an unnamed naval officer who claimed to have briefly seen the terrorist's name on an "analyst notebook chart" four years earlier. As the memo stated, however, the officer's account lacked the specificity and substantiation to warrant inclusion in the final report:

The interviewee had no documentary evidence and said he had only seen the document briefly some years earlier. He could not describe what information had led to this supposed Atta identification. Nor could the interviewee recall, when questioned, any details about how he thought a link to Atta could have been made by this DOD [Department of Defense] program in 2000 or any time before 9/11. The Department of Defense documents had mentioned nothing about Atta, nor had anyone come forward between September 2001 and July 2004 with any similar information. Weighing this with the information about Atta's actual activities, the negligible information available about Atta to other U.S. government agencies and the German government before 9/11, and the interviewer's assessment of the interviewee's knowledge and credibility, the Commission staff concluded that the officer's account was not sufficiently reliable to warrant revision of the report or further investigation.

While Weldon has asserted that commission staffers were first informed at the 2003 meeting in Afghanistan that Able Danger had identified Atta as early as 2000, Kean and Hamilton's memo disputed this account:

As with their other meetings, Commission staff promptly prepared a memorandum for the record. That memorandum, prepared at the time, does not record any mention of Mohamed Atta or any of the other future hijackers, or any suggestion that their identities were known to anyone at DOD before 9/11. Nor do any of the three Commission staffers who participated in the interview, or the executive branch lawyer, recall hearing any such allegation.

The memo further stated that the Able Danger documents subsequently examined by the commission staff did not mention Atta:

None of the documents turned over to the Commission mention Mohamed Atta or any of the other future hijackers. Nor do any of the staff notes on documents reviewed in the DOD reading room indicate that Mohamed Atta or any of the other future hijackers were mentioned in any of those documents.

Beyond asserting Weldon's Able Danger allegations as fact and entirely ignoring the 9-11 Commission's version of events, the Post editorial also repeated the claim, which Media Matters for America has debunked, that former commission member Jamie Gorelick, while deputy attorney general under President Clinton, had created a "wall" between intelligence and law enforcement agencies. This "wall," the Post suggested, may have led to the Defense Department's failure in 2000 to notify the FBI of Atta's Al Qaeda connections. The editorial posited the theory that the commission ignored the Able Danger information "to protect one of its members":

Had the Pentagon information [on Atta] been passed along to the FBI, it's possible the terrorist attack would have succeeded nonetheless.

But it's also possible it wouldn't have.

Either way, the orders preventing the passage of information surely didn't help.

And, just as surely, their role in the story should have been recognized in the 9/11 Commission's official report.

Equally disturbing is the possibility that the commission ignored the information to protect one of its own members, Democratic attorney Jamie Gorelick.

As a deputy attorney general in the Clinton administration, Gorelick wrote the infamous order creating a "wall of separation" that precluded intelligence on terrorists from being shared with law-enforcement agencies -- the very "wall" that kept Able Danger from passing along the information it had uncovered on Mohammed Atta.

As The Post's Deborah Orin reported Friday, then-U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White -- who headed up key terrorism prosecutions, like the first WTC bombing -- blasted Gorelick's order in blistering memos at the time.

— J.K.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 10:56PM

The 8/22/05 NYT and 8/24/05 Post stories introduce James D. Smith, a former employee of a defense contractor involved in Able Danger. Mr. Smith claims that Atta's name and photo came from an Islamist website, not immigration records. This is the basis for Capt. Philpott's claim that Atta was identified by Able Danger in January/February 2000.

In the 8/9/05 NYT story, Shaffer claimed that the chart with the names of the four hijackers was presented to SOCOM in the summer of 2000. So, some time between February 2000 and summer 2000, AD identified the other three hijackers and tracked them to the US.

NYT: The former contractor, James D. Smith, said that Mr. Atta's name and photograph were obtained through a private researcher in California who was paid to gather the information from contacts in the Middle East. Mr. Smith said that he had retained a copy of the chart for some time and that it had been posted on his office wall at Andrews Air Force Base. He said it had become stuck to the wall and was impossible to remove when he switched jobs.

NY Post: A Pentagon secret intelligence team identified 9/11 leader Mohamed Atta through a probe of blind Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman — the mastermind of the first attempt to destroy the World Trade Center, it was revealed yesterday.

An outside contractor to the intelligence unit, code named Able Danger, has told congressional staffers Atta's name was discovered by a computer data-mining search of connections to Abdel-Rahman, the Muslim cleric in prison for inspiring the 1993 trade center bombing and a plot to blow up New York landmarks.

Contractor James D. Smith testified that a California researcher was later able to purchase Atta's photograph from an Islamic Web site, officials confirmed.

James D. Smith might be this guy:

[www.iccbss.org]

Her is his bio from a software conference:

James D. Smith III

Prior to joining the Software Engineering Institute, Jim spent 15 years developing, acquiring, testing, and fielding software-intensive systems within the DoD. He has DAWIA Level-III certification in both the Program Management and Systems Planning, Research, Development and Engineering career fields. Before retiring from the Navy in 1999, Jim served in a variety of Joint and Navy system engineering and program management positions in the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, the Military Satellite Communications Joint Program Office, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the Joint Tactical Radio Systems Joint Program Office.

If this is indeed AD's James Smith, he left the Navy and then immediately joined up with the AD defense contractor. His bio omits the defense contractor which is too bad. I am curious to know if it is SAIC, the company that has operations in Weldon's district.

The Software Engineering Institute is a federally funded research and development center sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense and operated by Carnegie Mellon University. The DoD established the Software Engineering Institute to advance the practice of software engineering because quality software that is produced on schedule and within budget is a critical component of U.S. defense systems.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 11:04PM

Terry McDermott wrote a book, "Perfect Soldiers: The Hijackers -- Who They Were and Why They Did It". In the LA Times today, he dismissed the Able Danger story.

LA TImes

By Terry McDermott

8/26/05

Seeing what we want to see


THE NEVER-ENDING effort to find someone — anyone — to blame for Sept. 11, the latest scrum involves claims by an ambitious congressman about a secret Defense Department unit pursuing a pilot program in data mining.

Data mining is a technique in which huge databases are fed into powerful computers that sift them looking for links. It's a technology that holds vast promise, but its main usefulness to date seems to be giving mortgage lenders the ability to find out how much you still owe on your house.

The Defense data-mining program, established in 1998, was called Able Danger. It focused on identifying potential Al Qaeda terrorists. Two weeks ago, Curt Weldon, a melodramatic Republican congressman from Pennsylvania, introduced it to the world via Fox News and the New York Times. The story has changed in its details almost daily since, as asserted high-flying facts have fallen to ground, but the gist has remained the same:

Sometime before Sept. 11, 2001 — the dates vary but lately have settled around the first few months of 2000 — the Able Danger computers came up with the name Mohamed Atta as a potential terrorist associated with an Al Qaeda cell in Brooklyn, N.Y. Atta, remembers Weldon and a pair of military men he has dragged before the cameras and notebooks, was one of four 9/11 hijackers identified by the computers more than a year before the attacks. They can't produce records, and the Pentagon denies it, but it's what they remember seeing, hearing and being told.

I know nothing about Able Danger other than what I've read, so I can't speak with authority on what the program uncovered about Atta, or when. But, having spent the better part of the last four years investigating Atta's life, I can speak to what is otherwise known about him and his whereabouts.

Atta's academic, immigration, credit, transit and telephone records provide a fairly complete account from the time he left his native Egypt in autumn 1992 to his death. This includes the period during which Able Danger is said to have identified him as a terrorist in the United States. The story those records, and corroborating interviews, tell is that Atta was not in the United States and made almost no contact with the U.S. until June 2000.

In November 1999, Atta and three friends traveled from Germany — via Istanbul and Karachi — to Afghanistan, where they intended to receive military training before going to fight the infidels in Chechnya. They were, instead, recruited into Al Qaeda and assigned the Sept. 11 mission. Atta returned to Hamburg in late February, and the next month he made what is thought to be his first contact with someone in the United States. He e-mailed dozens of flight schools inquiring about commercial pilot training for "a small group of Arab men." He also e-mailed a friend from Egypt who was studying at a Florida university and asked about visa requirements. In May, he applied for a visa from the U.S. Embassy in Berlin. Six weeks later he landed in Newark, N.J.

It is hard to see how computers could have named Atta as a member of an American cell before he got here. Some have argued that perhaps Able Danger mined data that included flight records of young Arab men traveling to Pakistan. Even if it did, it probably would not have found Atta. He was listed on airline flight manifests as Mohamed el-Amir, not Atta. His full name was Mohamed Mohamed el-Amir Awad el-Sayed Atta. El-Amir is how Atta was known to friends at school, to the banks that issued his credit cards and to the immigration service in Germany. It's the name on his high school and college diplomas.

Even if Able Danger somehow produced a name, "Mohamed Atta," that might not mean much. Variations of "Mohamed" are overwhelmingly the most common name in the Muslim world. It is James, John and Robert combined. Atta isn't Smith or Jones, but it isn't Einstein either. There are plenty of Mohamed Attas — and plenty of Mohamed el-Amirs too. The likelihood of mistaken identity is enormous.

But there is another possibility. Over the last four years I have interviewed dozens of people who swore they saw Atta somewhere he wasn't. This includes an assortment of waiters, students, flight instructors, taxi drivers and, more dramatically, two women who each claim to have been married to Atta, this despite the fact that they were never in the same city at the same time he was.

How could it be that so many people remember that they knew Atta, that they saw him or his name, when all the facts argue otherwise? I don't think they are all lying. Maybe none of them are. I think Atta entered an American psyche desperate for a name and face and an explanation. He came complete with what has become one of the iconic images of 9/11 — his Florida DMV mug shot, an image so memorable, so powerful and perfect for the moment that it allowed people to see in it whatever they needed to see. I think people subsequently, subconsciously placed that face where it made sense to them. There is no reason that a congressman or even two career military men searching for solutions are any less susceptible to seeing what they need to see, where they want to see it.

Whatever the resolution of the Able Danger imbroglio, there were plenty of missed opportunities on the road to 9/11. German law enforcement knew in mid-1999 that Atta and Marwan al-Shehhi, another Sept. 11 hijacker, were acquaintances of an Al Qaeda recruiter. This information was passed on to the CIA. The name of a third hijacker, Ziad Jarrah, was given to U.S. intelligence agencies in early 2000 when he was interrogated at length as he passed through customs in the United Arab Emirates en route from Afghanistan to Germany. He told Emiratis he was going to the United States to become a pilot. The Emiratis say they passed this information to the Americans.

More famously, the CIA tracked two known Al Qaeda operatives through eight CIA stations from the Middle East to Malaysia, then somehow didn't notice as they walked onto a jetway and a plane bound for Los Angeles. We don't need to invent intelligence failures; we need to grapple with those that we already have.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 25, 2005 11:11PM

[www.wtopnews.com]

WTOP, federalnewsradio.com

Chaffer interview woth J. D. Green

Aug. 26, 2005

Intrigue Over Able Danger Grows

WASHINGTON - The primary whistleblower who says a secret military intelligence unit identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist a year before the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks is coming forward to say the the Pentagon and Sept. 11 commission have tried to discredit him.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer is one of the military officers who contends a unit code-named Able Danger identified Atta in 2000. He says three other Sept. 11 hijackers also were identified.

Shaffer, a member of the elite military intelligence team, is the first of a dozen people who are expected to verify the Able Danger story.

"Some folks in DoD I don't think are too happy with this information coming forward for whatever reason, and lot of folks who have this information are considering very carefully how they bring themselves forward," Shaffer tells federalnewsradio.com and WFED, which are part of the WTOP Radio Network.

Shaffer says the problem is not coming from military brass.

"Every time I've talked to the Army they've said tell the truth. There have been other conversations that I have had with other elements of DoD, and I think you all have seen some of this in the press where there was a whisper campaign and some other not so subtle means of dissuasion -- kind of put out there to wave people off this."

Schaffer says he's bothered by the continuing relationship between Pentagon and the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, also known as the Sept. 11 Commission.

"Why would the Pentagon be providing information to a commission that no longer exists? The 9-11 commission does not exist."

U.S. Sen. Slade Gordon, R-Wash., came out and said the Pentagon was leaking information to him and others on the commission, Shaffer said, raising the question of whether the defense department is trying to cover up something.

The Pentagon has said there is no evidence of intelligence information on the hijackers a year before the attacks, but did not respond to requests for comment on this story.

Shaffer and Capt. Scott Philpott say they've commented about Able Danger to the Sept. 11 commission, but weren't taken seriously.

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, does want to know more about the Able Danger unit. He has asked the FBI to hand over all information related to it.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 26, 2005 12:51PM

Fox News

Friday, August 26, 2005

Third Source Backs 'Able Danger' Claims About Atta

WASHINGTON — A third person has now come forward to verify claims made by a military intelligence unit that a year before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, it had information showing that lead hijacker Mohamed Atta (search) and other terrorists were identified as being in the United States.

J.D. Smith, a defense contractor who claims he worked on the technical side of the unit, code-named "Able Danger" (search), told reporters Friday that he helped gather open-source information (search), reported on government spending and helped generate charts associated with the unit's work. Able Danger was set up in the 1990s to track Al Qaeda activity worldwide.

"I am absolutely positive that he [Atta] was on our chart among other pictures and ties that we were doing mainly based upon [terror] cells in New York City," Smith said.

Smith said data was gathered from a variety of sources, including about 30 or 40 individuals. He said they all had strong Middle Eastern connections and were paid for their information. Smith said Able Danger's photo of Atta was obtained from overseas.

Rep. Curt Weldon (search), R-Pa., arranged the media roundtable with Smith. Weldon drew attention to Able Danger by speaking about it on the House floor months ago and has publicly called for the Sept. 11 commission to explain why the intelligence information wasn't detailed in its final report.

Besides Smith, Lt. Colonel Anthony Shaffer (search) and Navy Captain Scott Philpott (search) have also gone on the record, saying they were discouraged from looking further into Atta, and their attempts to share their information with the FBI were thwarted because Atta was a legal foreign visitor at the time.

"This story needs to be told. The American people need to be told what could have been done to prevent 3,000 people from losing their lives," Weldon told FOX News this week.

Shaffer and Philpott claim that in October 2003, they told Sept. 11 commission staffers of the presence of Al Qaeda operatives in the United States in 2000 yet little was included in the panel's final report about those conversations.

During Friday's roundtable with Smith, he was asked by reporters about Atta, who was using another name during 1999-2000. Smith said the charts Able Danger was using had identified him through a number of name variations, one being "Atta."

Two sources familiar with Able Danger told FOX News that part of its investigative work focused on mosques and the religious ties between known terrorist operatives such as Omar Abdul Rahman (search), who was part of the first World Trade Center bombing plot in 1993.

An independent terrorism analyst pointed out to FOX News that German intelligence had no record of Atta before the Sept. 11 attack; that's significant because Atta headed up the Sept. 11 Al Qaeda cell in Hamburg. The analyst also questioned how Atta could be connected to Rahman, who was in prison by the mid-1990s.

Smith claims that one way the unit came to know Atta was through Rahman. Smith said Able Danger used data mining techniques — publicly available information — to look at mosques and religious ties and it was, in part, through the investigation of Rahman that Atta's name surfaced.

Aides to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter (search), R-Pa., are actively discussing scheduling a hearing on Able Danger and the larger issue of information-sharing between the Pentagon and the FBI.

One of the central Able Danger claims — that military lawyers blocked the sharing of the Atta information from the FBI in the late summer and early fall of 2000 — will be a focus of the committee if a hearing takes place, FOX News has confirmed.

Specter sent a letter to FBI Director Robert Mueller on Wednesday asking the agency to provide to the committee "all information and documents it has in connection with Able Danger, , Lt. Colonel Anthony Shaffer, Captain Scott Philpott or any other persons having any connections with Project Able Danger, including, but not limited to, e-mail communication, notes, phone message slips, memos or any other supporting documentation."

Specter also asked Mueller to make available FBI agent Xanthig Mangum to meet with his staff. Mangum is reported to have corresponded in 2000 with Shaffer, who helped run Able Danger's mission and has offered to testify on its findings, about scheduling a meeting between Able Danger and FBI staffs. No meeting ever took place.

The Pentagon has been looking into what it knew and when it knew it, but defense officials have not been able to verify the Able Danger claims so far. A Pentagon spokesman confirmed Thursday that the department has interviewed both Shaffer and Philpott.

"There's something very sinister going on here that really troubles me," Weldon told FOX News on Thursday, blasting the Sept. 11 commission (search) for not taking the claims more seriously. He said some panel members were trying to smear Shaffer and Able Danger.

"What's the Sept. 11 commission got to hide?" Weldon asked. "The commission is trying to spin this because they're embarrassed about what's coming out. In two weeks with two staffers, I've uncovered more in this regard than they did with 80 staffers and $15 million of taxpayer money."

Sept. 11 commission Chairman Thomas Kean recently told FOX News that the panel is waiting for a response from the Pentagon. Until then, the commission has stood by its work, maintaining that no documents they received from the military backed up the Atta claims.

Weldon added that at least five people on the federal payroll will testify under oath about the validity of the Able Danger intelligence.

"When this is over, the Sept. 11 commission is going to have egg all over their face," he said.

FOX News' Catherine Herridge, Molly Hooper and Liza Porteus contributed to this report.

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 26, 2005 09:27PM

New York Post

8/27/05

By NILES LATHEM

MILITARY 'SPIED' ON RICE

WASHINGTON — Cyber-sleuths working for a Pentagon intelligence unit that reportedly identified some of the 9/11 hijackers before the attack were fired by military officials, after they mistakenly pinpointed Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and other prominent Americans as potential security risks, The Post has learned.

The private contractors working for the counter-terrorism unit Able Danger lost their jobs in May 2000. The firings following a series of analyses that Pentagon lawyers feared were dangerously close to violating laws banning the military from spying on Americans, sources said.

The Pentagon canceled its contract with the private firm shortly after the analysts — who were working on identifying al Qaeda operatives — produced a particularly controversial chart on proliferation of sensitive technology to China, the sources said.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, the veteran Army officer who was the Defense Intelligence Agency liaison to Able Danger, told The Post China "had something to do" with the decision to restructure Able Danger.

Sources said the private contractors, using sophisticated computer software that sifts through massive amounts of raw data to establish patterns, came up with a chart of Chinese strategic and business connections in the U.S.

The program wrongly tagged Rice, who at the time was an adviser to then-candidate George W. Bush, and former Defense Secretary William Perry by linking their associations at Stanford, along with their contacts with Chinese leaders, sources said.

The program also spat out scores of names of other former government officials with legitimate ties to China, as well as prominent American businessmen. There was no suggestion that Rice or any of the others had done anything wrong.

A Pentagon official said last night that, while the canned contractors worked for Able Danger, the China project was separate from the counter-terrorism assignment.

The Able Danger work was transferred to another Department of Defense contractor — and the program quietly expired later that year when it was completed, the official said.

The China chart was put together by James Smith, who confirmed yesterday that his contract with the military was canceled and he was fired from his company because the military brass became concerned about the focus on U.S. citizens.

"It was shut down in a matter of hours. The colonel said our service was no longer needed and told me: 'You just ended my career.' "

Smith also claims his team came up with 9/11 hijacker Mohamed Atta's name and photo in 2000.



Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 29, 2005 08:56PM

On 8/25/05, I posted a story from WTOP, a Washington radio station. WTOP has updated its story since then. There appears to be three different stories on the FTOP website.

[www.wtopnews.com]

Intrigue Over Able Danger Grows
Updated: Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2005 - 4:31 AM

J.J. Green talks with former Pentagon contractor J.D. Smith.
J.J. Green, federalnewsradio.com

WASHINGTON - The primary whistleblower who says a secret military intelligence unit identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist a year before the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks is coming forward to say the the Pentagon and Sept. 11 commission have tried to discredit him.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer is one of the military officers who contends a unit code-named Able Danger identified Atta in 2000. He says three other Sept. 11 hijackers also were identified.

Shaffer, a member of the elite military intelligence team, is the first of a dozen people who are expected to verify the Able Danger story.

"Some folks in DoD I don't think are too happy with this information coming forward for whatever reason, and lot of folks who have this information are considering very carefully how they bring themselves forward," Shaffer tells federalnewsradio.com and WFED, which are part of the WTOP Radio Network.

Shaffer says the problem is not coming from military brass.

"Every time I've talked to the Army they've said tell the truth. There have been other conversations that I have had with other elements of DoD, and I think you all have seen some of this in the press where there was a whisper campaign and some other not so subtle means of dissuasion -- kind of put out there to wave people off this."

Schaffer says he's bothered by the continuing relationship between Pentagon and the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, also known as the Sept. 11 Commission.

"Why would the Pentagon be providing information to a commission that no longer exists? The 9-11 commission does not exist."

U.S. Sen. Slade Gordon, R-Wash., came out and said the Pentagon was leaking information to him and others on the commission, Shaffer said, raising the question of whether the defense department is trying to cover up something.

The Pentagon has said there is no evidence of intelligence information on the hijackers a year before the attacks, but did not respond to requests for comment on this story.

Shaffer and Capt. Scott Philpott say they've commented about Able Danger to the Sept. 11 commission, but weren't taken seriously.

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, does want to know more about the Able Danger unit. He has asked the FBI to hand over all information related to it.


Intrigue Over Able Danger Grows
Updated: Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2005 - 4:31 AM

J.J. Green talks with former Pentagon contractor J.D. Smith.
J.J. Green, federalnewsradio.com

WASHINGTON - The primary whistleblower who says a secret military intelligence unit identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist a year before the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks is coming forward to say the the Pentagon and Sept. 11 commission have tried to discredit him.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer is one of the military officers who contends a unit code-named Able Danger identified Atta in 2000. He says three other Sept. 11 hijackers also were identified.

Shaffer, a member of the elite military intelligence team, is the first of a dozen people who are expected to verify the Able Danger story.

"Some folks in DoD I don't think are too happy with this information coming forward for whatever reason, and lot of folks who have this information are considering very carefully how they bring themselves forward," Shaffer tells federalnewsradio.com and WFED, which are part of the WTOP Radio Network.

Shaffer says the problem is not coming from military brass.

"Every time I've talked to the Army they've said tell the truth. There have been other conversations that I have had with other elements of DoD, and I think you all have seen some of this in the press where there was a whisper campaign and some other not so subtle means of dissuasion -- kind of put out there to wave people off this."

Schaffer says he's bothered by the continuing relationship between Pentagon and the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, also known as the Sept. 11 Commission.

"Why would the Pentagon be providing information to a commission that no longer exists? The 9-11 commission does not exist."

U.S. Sen. Slade Gordon, R-Wash., came out and said the Pentagon was leaking information to him and others on the commission, Shaffer said, raising the question of whether the defense department is trying to cover up something.

The Pentagon has said there is no evidence of intelligence information on the hijackers a year before the attacks, but did not respond to requests for comment on this story.

Shaffer and Capt. Scott Philpott say they've commented about Able Danger to the Sept. 11 commission, but weren't taken seriously.

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, does want to know more about the Able Danger unit. He has asked the FBI to hand over all information related to it.

Intrigue Over Able Danger Grows
Updated: Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2005 - 8:42 AM

WTOP's J.J. Green looks into how Able Danger altered careers.
J.J. Green, federalnewsradio.com

WASHINGTON - The Pentagon appears to have reversed its position on Able Danger, the Army intelligence collection team.

A Pentagon spokesman now says "there's no reason to doubt the specific recollections" of the growing number of team members. The team members say the project had pre-Sept. 11 intelligence on al Qaida, which Defense Department lawyers prohibited them from sharing with the FBI.

Members of the team say they identified the lead Sept. 11 terrorist Mohamed Atta as a cell leader more than a year before the attacks on the World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon.

"You could touch the picture and literally drill down and it would give you all the facts that we had from whatever source we had, we identified our sources and then why we had made a link," says defense contractor J.D. Smith, describing how Able Danger's computer software program worked.

The team collected and analyzed information gathered by the "deep" data mining operation.

Smith says data was gathered from a variety of sources, including about 30 or 40 individuals, but one day it all came to a grinding halt. So why did that happen?

"The I.G. (inspector general) came in and shut down the operation because of a claim that we were collecting information on U.S citizens," says Smith.

It turned out to be more than just a claim.

"On some of my charts I had links to U.S citizens," he says.

Smith notes that it's illegal for the military to collect intelligence on U.S. citizens.

Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., has alleged a Pentagon coverup regarding Able Danger and is seeking congressional hearings on the matter. Weldon has said coverup will "shake the country to its roots."


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 29, 2005 08:59PM

Time Magazine

Aug. 28, 2005

By BRIAN BENNETT AND TIMOTHY J. BURGER/WASHINGTON

Able Danger: More Mysteries
Further questions about whether a data mining program identified Atta before 9/11

As questions continue to swirl around claims that the Pentagon failed to act on pre-September 11 intelligence about the hijackers, a Senate panel is trying to clear up a key mysteries surrounding the data-mining intel program known as "Able Danger." The Senate Intelligence Committee is asking the Pentagon to let it interview anyone who worked on Able Danger, and last week drafted a letter asking the White House for a copy of a chart that Congressman Curt Weldon claimed in a recent book he gave then-deputy national security adviser Steve Hadley just after the 9/11 attacks.

Weldon says in the book, Countdown to Terror, that the chart was produced by Able Danger before the attacks and pegged lead hijacker Mohammad Atta as a threat to the U.S. Hadley—since promoted to be President Bush's national security adviser—has refused to confirm or deny the claim. Whether such a chart existed and was given to Hadley could prove or greatly undermine claims by Weldon and a handful of members of the Able Danger team.

Though another Defense Department contractor last week backed up Weldon's story, former 9/11 commission chairman Tom Kean said in a statement earlier this month that all three commission aides who attended a 2003 interview at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan with Lt. Col Anthony Shaffer, an intelligence liason to Able Danger, do not remember Mohammad Atta's name coming up.

The panel also said that a Bush Administration lawyer—who, sources told TIME, was a National Security Council attorney present as a "minder" on behalf of the White House—agreed that Shaffer did not mention Atta's name. But Shaffer told TIME that he remembers specifically saying that the staff on the secret project had "found through the effort two of the three cells which conducted the 9/11 attack, to include Atta."

The Pentagon has yet to find any documents to support this claim. Pentagon spokesman Larry Di Rita said on Fox news Friday they are still reviewing the matter but "thus far have not found what it is those handful of individuals seem to remember."

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 29, 2005 09:18PM

I missed this New York Post story the first time around. Interesting to note that "a Pentagon spokesman" claims that AD was only using "open source data." But was the source of the data provided by thos 30 or 40 private contractors?

Other claims in the article are just as interesting. I doubt very much that AD technology enabled the US military to capture Saddam but I would like to know what link-analysis work was relied on by the Bush administration re Saddam and OBL. I once sat next to Rush Limbaugh on a plane and afterward, he sent me one of his videos but that doesn't make me a conservative.

New York Post

8/22/05

'ABLE' WAY TO BAG SADDAM

WASHINGTON - The computer technology used by the secret Pentagon unit that allegedly detected the presence of 9/11 hijackers in the United States is now a major tool of American intelligence - and was used to track down Saddam Hussein, The Post has learned.

U.S. military and intelligence officials said that so-called "link analysis," or data mining - the process of organizing vast amounts of data that was the primary mission of the Pentagon's now-controversial Able Danger program - played a key role in Saddam's capture in 2003.

Link analysis makes connections out of seemingly random data and organizes it in easily recognizable visual form, says terrorism expert Evan Kohlman.

The technology is now at the center of the furor on Capitol Hill over claims by Rep. Curt Weldon (R-Pa.) and veteran Army intelligence officer Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer that Able Danger, a program run for nine months by the U.S. Special Forces Command, produced a chart of known terrorists in the United States in 2000 that included 9/11 mastermind Mohamed Atta and three other future hijackers.

Although the Atta claims are being denied by the 9/11 commission and, less forcibly, by the Pentagon, experts inside and outside the government say there is no doubt that Able Danger's technology is now widespread in the intelligence community and is considered an effective counterterrorism tool.

Its biggest known success came when members of Alpha Company of the 104th Military Intelligence Battalion assembled a color-coded chart of the families that were likely protecting Saddam.

A man on that chart was eventually identified as a major figure in Saddam's post-fall circle, and when that man was arrested, he led U.S. forces to the farmhouse outside Saddam's hometown of Tikrit where the ex-tyrant was found hiding, military officials said.

The Bush administration also used data based on link-analysis work - including its controversial declarations of connections between Saddam and al Qaeda - in its campaign to persuade the United Nations and Congress to back the Iraq war in 2003, U.S. intelligence officials said.

In the case of Able Danger, a Pentagon spokesman said the unit, based in Tampa, Fla., was using the technology only with "open source" - or publicly available - material.

Officials close to the probe of Able Danger said some of the data came from known al Qaeda Internet chat rooms and message boards.

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: August 29, 2005 09:40PM

NewsMax.com

Aug. 29, 2005 1:22 a.m. EDT

Missing Able Danger 'Atta' Chart in 2002 Video

A copy of the Able Danger chart that identified lead 9/11 hijacker Mohamed Atta as a terrorist operating inside the U.S. a year before the 9/11 attacks is clearly visible in a video of a 2002 speech by delivered by Rep. Curt Weldon to the Heritage Foundation.

The Pentagon, the 9/11 Commission and the Senate Intelligence Committee are currently seeking evidence that the bombshell chart, featuring a photo Atta, ever existed - as claimed by three members of the Able Danger team, along with Rep. Weldon. But so far, no physical evidence of the controversial document has surfaced. Until now.

A third of the way through his May 23, 2002 address on data fusion techniques, the video shows Rep. Weldon unfurling a copy of the now missing document and displaying it to the Heritage audience.

"This is the unclassified chart that was done by the Special Forces Command briefing center one year before 9/11," he explains. "It is the complete architecture of al Qaeda and pan-Islamic extremism. It gives all the linkages. It gives all the capabilities. . . ."

Though Weldon never mentions Able Danger or Atta by name - and the video never zooms in on the chart to the point where Atta's photo is identifiable - it's clear from Weldon comments that the chart is the same one currently being sought.

Since the Able Danger story broke three weeks ago, the Pennsylvania Republican has repeatedly insisted that he gave a copy of the chart shortly after the 9/11 attacks to then-Deputy National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley.

In the 2002 speech, Weldon told the same story in greater detail, standing beside a copy of what he said he gave Hadley.

"I went to the White House. I don't mean to embarrass this guy cause he's a good friend of mine. But I took a mini version of this chart in Nov. [2001] and I turned it over to him - Steve Hadley, who works directly for [then-National Security Advisor] Condi Rice."

Weldon said Hadley was stunned after viewing the Al Qaeda-Atta document.

"This is unbelievable - where'd you get this?" he wanted to know.

After being told that the chart was prepared by military intelligence a year before the 9/11 attacks, Hadley said, according to Weldon, "I've got to show this to the man" - apparently referring to President Bush.

In the same speech, Rep. Weldon also revealed that then-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Hugh Shelton received a briefing on the Able Danger chart in the closing weeks of the Clinton administration.

To view Rep. Weldon's entire 2002 speech to the Heritage Foundation, go to: [www.heritage.org] He displays the al Qaeda-Atta chart approximately 34 minutes into the presentation.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: September 1, 2005 04:10PM

Washington Post

9/1/05

By ROBERT BURNS
The Associated Press

Pentagon Finds More Who Recall Atta Intel

WASHINGTON -- Pentagon officials said Thursday they have found three more people who recall an intelligence chart that identified Sept. 11 mastermind Mohamed Atta as a terrorist one year before the attacks on New York and Washington. But they have been unable to find the chart or other evidence that it existed.

Last month, two military officers, Army Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer and Navy Capt. Scott Philpott, went public with claims that a secret unit code-named Able Danger used data mining _ searching large amounts of data for patterns _ to identify Atta in 2000. Shaffer has said three other Sept. 11 hijackers also were identified.

In recent days Pentagon officials have said they could not yet verify or disprove the assertions by Shaffer and Philpott. On Thursday, four intelligence officials provided the first extensive briefing for reporters on the outcome of their interviews with people associated with Able Danger and their review of documents.

They said they interviewed at least 80 people over a three-week period and found three, besides Philpott and Shaffer, who said they remember seeing a chart that either mentioned Atta by name as an al-Qaida operative or showed his photograph. Four of the five recalled a chart with a pre-9/11 photo of Atta; the other person recalled only a reference to his name.

The intelligence officials said they consider the five people to be credible but their recollections are still unverified.

"To date, we have not identified the chart," said Pat Downs, a senior policy analyst in the office of the undersecretary of defense for intelligence. "We have identified a similar chart but it does not contain the photo of Mohamed Atta or a reference to him or a reference to the other (9/11) hijackers."

She said more interviews would be conducted, but the search of official documents is finished.

Downs and the other officials said they could not rule out that the chart recalled by Shaffer, Philpott and three others had been destroyed in compliance with regulations pertaining to intelligence information about people inside the United States. They also did not rule out that the five simply had faulty recollections.

Navy Cmdr. Christopher Chope, of the Center for Special Operations at U.S. Special Operations Command, said there were "negative indications" that anyone ever ordered the destruction of Able Danger documents, other than the materials that were routinely required to be destroyed under existing regulations.

Shaffer, who is now a civilian employee of the Defense Intelligence Agency, also has publicly asserted that military lawyers stopped the Able Danger staff from sharing the information on Atta with the FBI out of concern about gathering and sharing information on people in the United States legally.

Chope said there is no evidence that military lawyers blocked the sharing of Able Danger information with the FBI.

Chope also said the nature of Able Danger has been misrepresented in some news stories. He said it was created as a result of a directive in early October 1999 by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to U.S. Special Operations Command to develop a campaign plan against transnational terrorism, "specifically al-Qaida."

He called it an internal working group with a core of 10 staffers at Special Operations Command. Philpott was the "team leader," he said. "Able Danger was never a military unit," and it never targeted individual terrorists, he said. It went out of existence when the planning effort was finished in early 2001, he said.




Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: September 15, 2005 10:23AM

Rather than copy the lengty press briefing from the Pentagon on Able Danger, I'm posting the link:

[www.defenselink.mil]

U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)
News Transcript

Thursday, September 1, 2005

Presenter: Various DoD Officials

Special Defense Department Briefing




Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: September 15, 2005 01:19PM

Ap Press
By Donna de la Cruz

9/15/05

Weldon: Atta Papers Destroyed on Orders By DONNA DE LA CRUZ, Associated Press Writer

A Pentagon employee was ordered to destroy documents that identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist two years before the 2001 attacks, a congressman said Thursday.

The employee is prepared to testify next week before the Senate Judiciary Committee and was expected to name the person who ordered him to destroy the large volume of documents, said Rep. Curt Weldon (news, bio, voting record), R-Pa.

Weldon declined to name the employee, citing confidentiality matters. Weldon described the documents as "2.5 terabytes" — as much as one-fourth of all the printed materials in the Library of Congress, he added.

A Senate Judiciary Committee aide said the witnesses for Wednesday's hearing had not been finalized and could not confirm Weldon's comments.

A message left Thursday with a Pentagon spokesman, Army Maj. Paul Swiergosz, was not immediately returned.

Weldon has said that Atta, the mastermind of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and three other hijackers were identified in 1999 by a classified military intelligence unit known as "Able Danger," which determined they could be members of an al-Qaida cell.

On Wednesday, former members of the Sept. 11 commission dismissed the "Able Danger" assertions. One commissioner, ex-Sen. Slade Gorton, R-Wash., said, "Bluntly, it just didn't happen and that's the conclusion of all 10 of us."

Weldon responded angrily to Gorton's assertions.

"It's absolutely unbelievable that a commission would say this program just didn't exist," Weldon said Thursday.

Pentagon officials said this month they had found three more people who recall an intelligence chart identifying Atta as a terrorist prior to the Sept. 11 attacks.

Two military officers, Army Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer and Navy Capt. Scott Phillpott, have come forward to support Weldon's claims.


Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: marcos (IP Logged)
Date: September 15, 2005 10:49PM

The official reactions to CIA pre-9/11 knowledge is quite disturbing. "No comment" or "we need corroboration" is standard, but to say that Able Danger did not exist and these things did not happen was not even necessary to say.

I personally had access to chit chat in 1998 about the 9/11 plot and the CIA was able to pick up the details of the entire plot in 1998, not just information about particular memberships in Al Qaeda. Not only was Atta's name known in 1999, but the CIA already had details of a plot to crash airplanes into the WTC.

In fact, knowledge that the WTC could collapse was already known as far back as 1969. The WTC was designed and engineered to collapse under the circumstances that have occurred. The architectural design and engineering processes of the different aspects and phases of the WTC were very compartmentalized and subcontracted. The WTC was put up to come down and to come down when and how it did. Only the exact crew to bring it down waited until the 90s to begin to emerge. A plot (or perhaps counterplot is more apt) against the American establishment, even against civilization has been brewing for decades.

My role has been as a channel for information about "the fall" of America, which we are now nearing and which will likely help to collapse this current world capitalist phase of civilization.

Henry Robert Merle (Bob Merle), now 58 years old, then of Forrest Hills, Queens, New York told me in 1969 that the, then only partial steel skeleton of the WTC was "supposed to collapse" in the future. One Frankie M of Canarsie, Brooklyn, New York, now in his 70s and his superior, an F.F., also in his 70s, had Merle informed of the intentional construction anomalies, and had Merle, in turn, to inform me.

Then, in the 90's,before 1999, meetings and conversations I had with Leonard Dechamps, a former Roy Innis protege of CORE, subsequently involved in top secret U.S. defense intelligence, and one Katherine (a.k.a. Katia, Katrina, Kat), supposedly, according to CIA chit, to be of former Soviet GRU, in my travels to McAllen, Texas from Mexico, in Mexico D.F. and in Havana, Cuba definitively and in great detail articulated the entire 9/11/01 events, including the date, method, targets and personnel. The CIA was monitoring me during the conversations and had all of the 9/11 details by the winter of 1998.



Edited 1 times. Last edit at 09/15/05 10:58PM by marcos.

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: marcos (IP Logged)
Date: September 15, 2005 10:50PM

The official reactions to CIA pre-9/11 knowledge is quite disturbing. Deleted account unintended duplication.



Edited 1 times. Last edit at 09/15/05 11:00PM by marcos.

Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: 277fia (IP Logged)
Date: October 17, 2005 02:18AM

I haven't kept up with the Able Danger news stories here and I'm not going to.

Hats off to Congressman Weldon, Colonel Shaffer and Captain Philpott. The Pentagon confirmed that it spied on US citizens long before 9/11. At least the creeps had the decency to admit it.

I doubt very much that the Pentagon destroyed the giant database it maintained on US citizens. In fact, I'm sure it is a gazillion times bigger than it was in 2000. Given the humongus defense budget, the Pentagon probably has the capability to track everyone's internet usage all at the same time. Posse comitatus - a remnant of American history.

Who the fuck cares? If enslaving Americans is the military's idea of a good time, I can't stop them. I'd sure like to know what they think is the meaning of life, though.

Every day, I'm going to try and do something to annoy the shit out of them. And they can't count on me to lend a helping hand. Those days are over.

Time to take to the streets. Steal this book!



Re: Able Danger Controversy
Posted by: Freeman (IP Logged)
Date: October 23, 2005 07:50PM

Paul Thompson and Matthew Everett are only to be congratulated for -- another -- detailed effort, their Able Danger timeline.

Probably the Able Danger story is a cover for the actual recruitment of patsies for what was to become 9/11 -- the foundation stone of the upcoming Black Empire.

Here is my own, relatively small, effort:-
[www.geocities.com]


Freeman

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