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Pakistan,ISI,drugs
civil liberties
Saudis, Bush
Anthrax attacks
Cover-up,lies
Oil,Enron,pipeline
Advance info;kind
Afghan war prep
Incompetence
Advance info;time
Israeli spies

Day of 911

Bush on 9/11
Flight AA 11
Flight UA 93
Flight UA 175
Flight AA 77
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Complete 911 Timeline

 
  

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January 26, 2002

       Salon exposes details about the FBI's anthrax investigation. The FBI appears to be casting a very wide net, for instance approaching all 40,000 members of the American Society of Microbiologists and putting flyers asking for information all over New Jersey. Yet all the evidence suggests that the anthrax strain could only be made in one of two places: USAMRIID in Maryland or US Army's Dugway Proving Ground in Utah. Meanwhile, the FBI has not yet subpoenaed employee records of the few labs that used the strain of anthrax used in the attacks. Numerous anthrax experts express puzzlement. Barbara Hatch Rosenberg, a biological arms control expert, believes the FBI is dragging its heels for political reasons. She is convinced the FBI knows who mailed the anthrax letters, but isn't arresting him, because he has been involved in secret biological weapons research that the US does not want revealed. “This guy knows too much, and knows things the US isn't very anxious to publicize. Therefore, they don't want to get too close.” [Salon 1/26/02]
          

January 28, 2002

       The kidnappers of reporter Daniel Pearl (see January 23, 2002) e-mail the media a picture of Pearl and a list of very strange demands. [BBC, 7/5/02] The kidnappers call themselves “The National Movement for the Restoration of Pakistani Sovereignty,” a previously unheard of name. [Vanity Fair, 8/02] Their demands include the return of US-held Pakistani prisoners and the departure of US journalists from Pakistan. [ABC News, 2/7/02] Most unusually, they demand that the US sell F-16 fighters to Pakistan. No terrorist group had ever shown interest in the F-16's, but this demand and the others reflect the desires of Pakistan's military and the ISI. [London Times, 4/21/02, Guardian, 7/16/02] On January 29, “a senior Pakistani official” presumably from the ISI leaks the fact that Pearl is Jewish to the Pakistani press. This may have been an attempt to ensure the kidnappers would want to murder him, which they do shortly thereafter (see January 31, 2002). [Vanity Fair, 8/02] On the same day, it is reported that US intelligence believes the kidnappers are connected to the ISI. [UPI 1/29/02] Secretary of State Powell will later say there is no connection between the kidnappers and the ISI.
          

January 29, 2002

       President Bush's State of the Union speech describes an “axis of evil” between Iraq, Iran and North Korea. Advisor Richard Perle cautioned against these same three countries a month before 9/11 (see August 6, 2001). Bin Laden is not mentioned in the speech. [CNN, 1/29/02] The speech is followed by a new public focus on Iraq and a downplaying of bin Laden (see September 15, 2001-April 6, 2002).
          

January 31, 2002

      
Reporter Daniel Pearl moments before he is killed.
Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl is murdered by his kidnappers in Pakistan (see also January 23, 2002). Pearl is reported dead on February 21; his body is found months later. Police investigators say “there were at least eight to ten people present on the scene” and at least 15 who participated in his kidnapping and murder. “Despite issuing a series of political demands shortly after Pearl's abduction four weeks ago, it now seems clear that the kidnappers planned to kill Pearl all along.” [Washington Post, 2/23/02] Some captured participants later claim 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed is the one who cuts Pearl's throat (see January 22, 2003).
          

February 5, 2002

       Pakistani police, with the help of the FBI, determine Saeed Sheikh is behind the kidnapping of Daniel Pearl (see January 23, 2002), but are unable to find him. They round up about ten of his relatives and threaten to harm them unless he turns himself in. Saeed Sheikh does turn himself in, but to Ijaz Shah, his former ISI boss (see June 1993-October 1994). [Boston Globe, 2/7/02, Vanity Fair, 8/02] The ISI holds Saeed for a week, but fails to tell Pakistani police or anyone else that they have him (see February 12, 2002). This “missing week” is the cause of much speculation. The ISI never tells Pakistani police any details about this week. [Newsweek, 3/11/02] Saeed also later refuses to discuss the week or his connection to the ISI, only saying, “I will not discuss this subject. I do not want my family to be killed.” He adds, “I know people in the government and they know me and my work.” [Newsweek, 3/13/02, Vanity Fair, 8/02] It is suggested Saeed is held for this week to make sure that Pearl was killed. Saeed later says that during this week he got a coded message from the kidnappers that Pearl had been murdered. Also, the time might have been spent working out a deal with the ISI over what Saeed would tell police and the public. [Newsweek, 3/11/02] Several others with both extensive ISI and al-Qaeda ties wanted for the kidnapping are arrested around this time. [Washington Post, 2/23/02, London Times, 2/25/02] One of these men, Khalid Khawaja, “has never hidden his links with Osama bin Laden. At one time he used to fly Osama's personal plane.” [PakNews 2/11/02]
          

February 6, 2002

       Pakistani police publicly name Saeed Sheikh and a terrorist group he belongs to, Jaish-e-Mohammad, responsible for reporter Daniel Pearl's murder (see January 31, 2002 and February 5, 2002). [Observer 2/24/02] In the next several months, at least 12 Western articles mention Saeed's links to al-Qaeda [ABC News, 2/7/02, Boston Globe, 2/7/02, AP, 2/24/02, Los Angeles Times, 3/15/02], including his financing of 9/11 [New York Daily News, 2/7/02, CNN, 2/8/02, AP, 2/9/02, Guardian, 2/9/02, Independent, 2/10/02, Time, 2/10/02, New York Post, 2/10/02, Evening Standard, 2/12/02, Los Angeles Times, 2/13/02, New York Post, 2/22/02, Sunday Herald, 2/24/02, USA Today, 3/8/02], and at least 16 articles mention his links to the ISI. [Cox News, 2/21/02, Observer, 2/24/02, Telegraph, 2/24/02, Newsweek, 2/25/02, New York Times, 2/25/02, USA Today, 2/25/02, National Post, 2/26/02, Boston Globe, 2/28/02, Newsweek, 3/11/02, Newsweek, 3/13/02, Guardian, 4/5/02, MSNBC, 4/5/02]. However, many other articles fail to mention either link. But only three articles consider that Saeed could have been connected to both groups at the same time. [London Times, 2/25/02, London Times, 4/21/02, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 3/3/02], and only one of these mentions he could be involved in the ISI, al-Qaeda and financing 9/11. [London Times, 4/21/02] By the time Saeed is convicted of Pearl's murder in July 2002, not a single US newspaper is connecting Saeed to either al-Qaeda or the ISI, while many British newspapers are still making one or the other connection (see July 15, 2002). Is the media afraid of reporting any news that could imply a connection between the ISI and the 9/11 attacks?
          

February 6, 2002 (B)

      
Tenet testifying on February 6, 2002.
CIA Director Tenet tells a Senate hearing that there was no 9/11 intelligence failure. When asked about the CIA record on 9/11, he says, “We are proud of that record.” He also states that the 9/11 plot was “in the heads of three or four people” and thus nearly impossible to prevent. [USA Today 2/7/02]
          

February 9, 2002

       Pakistani President Musharraf and Afghan leader Hamid Karzai announce their agreement to “cooperate in all spheres of activity” including the proposed Central Asian pipeline, which they call “in the interest of both countries.” [Irish Times, 2/9/02] [FTW]
          

February 9, 2002 (B)

       Dead microbiologist: Victor Korshunov, 56, is bashed over the head and killed at the entrance of his home in Moscow, Russia. He was the head of the microbiology sub-faculty at the Russian State Medical University and an expert in intestinal bacteria. [Pravda 2/9/02; Globe and Mail 5/4/02]
          

February 9, 2002 (C)

      
Aftab Ansari arrested.
Gangster Aftab Ansari is deported to India. He was arrested in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on February 5 (see January 22, 2002 and January 22-25, 2002). [Independent, 2/10/02] He admits funding terrorist attacks through kidnapping ransoms (see Early August 2001 (D)), and building a network of arms and drug smuggling. [Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 2/11/02] He later also admits to close ties with the ISI and Saeed Sheikh, whom he befriended in prison (see November 1994-December 1999). [Press Trust of India 5/13/02]
          

February 10, 2002

       Katherine Smith is killed one day before her scheduled appearance in court on charges she helped five Muslim terrorists get illegal drivers licenses. Her car supposedly hit a tree and then caught on fire. The FBI later determined that gasoline was poured on her clothing before she died in the fire. A suicide note was found, but prosecutors say they are looking for murder suspects. One of the five Muslims, Sakhera Hammad, was found with a pass for the WTC, dated September 5, 2001, in his wallet. Hammad claims he was a plumber and worked on the WTC's sprinkler system that day (see September 5, 2001). Smith was being investigated by the FBI; the five later plead guilty to charges of fraud. [AP 2/13/02; Reuters 2/15/02; Go Memphis 2/12/02; Memphis Commercial Appeal 2/21/02]
          

February 11, 2002

       Dead microbiologist: Dr. Ian Langford, 40, is found dead, partially naked and wedged under a chair in his home in Norwich, England. When found, his house was described as “blood-spattered and apparently ransacked.”He was an expert in environmental risks and disease and a senior Fellow at the University of East Anglia's Centre for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment. One of his colleagues states: “Ian was without doubt one of Europe's leading experts on environmental risk, specializing in links between human health and environmental risk… He was one of the most brilliant colleagues I have ever had.” [London Times 2/13/02; Globe and Mail 5/4/02]
          

February 12, 2002

      
Saeed Sheikh, head covered, being escorted by police shortly after his arrest.
Saeed Sheikh, already in ISI custody for a week (see February 5, 2002), is handed over to Pakistani police. Shortly afterwards, he publicly confesses to his involvement in reporter Daniel Pearl's murder (see January 31, 2002). Later he will recant this confession. It appears that initially he thought he would get a light sentence. Newsweek describes him as initially “confident, even cocky,” saying he would only serve three to four years if convicted, and would never be extradited. [Newsweek, 3/11/02] He is in fact sentenced to hang instead (see July 15, 2002). Did Saeed work out a secret deal during his “missing week” in ISI custody to get a light sentence, a deal that is later broken? Pakistani militants respond to his arrest with three suicide attacks that kill more than 30 people. [Guardian 7/16/02]
          

February 14, 2002

       The Israeli newspaper Ma'ariv astutely notes: “If one looks at the map of the big American bases created [in the Afghan war], one is struck by the fact that they are completely identical to the route of the projected oil pipeline to the Indian Ocean.” Ma'ariv also states, “Osama bin Laden did not comprehend that his actions serve American interests… If I were a believer in conspiracy theory, I would think that bin Laden is an American agent. Not being one I can only wonder at the coincidence.” [Chicago Tribune, 3/18/02] [FTW]
          

February 16, 2002

       Bush signs a secret national security council directive establishing the goals and objectives for going to war with Iraq, according to documents obtained by conservative author Rowan Scarborough. He details this in his book Rumsfeld's War. The Guardian notes, “The revelation casts doubt on the public insistence by US and British officials throughout 2002 that no decision had been taken to go to war, pending negotiations at the United Nations.” [Guardian, 2/24/04] There are indications the decision was informally made much earlier (see , and ). The war takes place in March, 2003 (see March 20, 2003).
          

February 18, 2002

       The Financial Times reports that the estimated opium harvest in Afghanistan in June 2002 will reach a record 4500 metric tons. Afghanistan is supplying 95% of the heroin in Europe, but the US shows “little interest” in stopping the production. [Financial Times, 2/18/02] [FTW]
          

February 18, 2002 (B)

       The Pakistani government unsuccessfully tries to stop the Pakistani newspaper The News from publishing a story revealing Saeed Sheikh's connections to the ISI, based on leaks from Pakistani police interrogations. [Washington Post, 3/10/02, London Times, 4/21/02, Guardian, 7/16/02] According to the article, Saeed admits his involvement in recent attacks on the Indian parliament in Delhi and in Kashmir (see October 1, 2001 (D) and December 13, 2001 (C)), and says the ISI helped him finance, plan and execute them. [The News [Pakistani newspaper], 2/18/02] On March 1, the ISI pressures The News to fire the four journalists who worked on the story. The ISI also demands an apology from the newspaper's editor, who flees the country instead. [Washington Post 3/10/02; London Times 4/21/02; Guardian 7/16/02]
          

February 20, 2002

       The Pentagon announces the existence of the new Office of Strategic Influence, which “was quietly set up after September 11.” The role of this office is to plant false stories in the foreign press, phony e-mails from disguised addresses, and other covert activities to manipulate public opinion. The new office proves so controversial that it is declared closed six days later. [CNN, 2/20/02, CNN, 2/26/02] It is later reported that the “temporary” Office of Global Communications will be made permanent (it is unknown when this office began its work). This office seems to serve the same function as the earlier Office of Strategic Influence, minus the covert manipulation. [Washington Post, 7/20/02] Defense Secretary Rumsfeld later states that after the office was closed, “I went down that next day and said fine, if you want to savage this thing fine I'll give you the corpse. There's the name. You can have the name, but I'm gonna keep doing every single thing that needs to be done and I have” (see also October 2002and November 24, 2002). [Department of Defense 11/18/02]
          

February 21, 2002

       Police and intelligence agencies in Britain predict “a potentially huge increase in heroin trafficking because of massive and unchecked replanting of the opium crop in Afghanistan.” This dovetails with a UN Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention report, which has detected massive opium planting that had mostly stopped under the Taliban. An intelligence source describes the idea of cracking down on opium growing as “a political nightmare” that could destroy support for the Afghan government. One solution would be to buy the opium and destroy it, but that has been rejected as too costly and controversial. Afghanistan is the source of 75% of the world's heroin. [Guardian 2/21/02]
          

February 25, 2002

       Time reports that the second highest Taliban official in US custody, Mullah Haji Abdul Samat Khaksar, has been waiting for months for the CIA to talk to him. Even two weeks after Time informed US officials that Khaksar wanted to talk, no one has properly interviewed him. He says he has useful information, and may be able to help locate former Taliban leader Mullah Omar. Time notes that “he claims to have information about al-Qaeda links to the ISI.” [Time, 2/25/02] “The little that Khaksar has divulged— to an American general and his intelligence aide—is tantalizing.” “He says that the ISI agents are still mixed up with the Taliban and al-Qaeda,” and that all three have formed a new group to get the US out of Afghanistan. He also says that “the ISI recently assassinated an Afghan in Paktika province who knew the full extent of ISI's collaboration with al-Qaeda.” [Time, 2/19/02] Did the US not want to hear from Khaksar because of his embarrassing information about the ISI?
          

February 28, 2002

       The notion that the 9/11 attacks were not done by bin Laden is only a conspiracy theory in the First World. A Gallup poll conducted in Muslim nations shows 18 percent believe that Arabs were responsible and 61 percent do not. 86 percent in Pakistan say Arabs were not responsible. [Guardian, 2/28/02] Even the President of Pakistan has said bin Laden was not the mastermind, though he probably backed it. [Reuters 8/4/02]
          

February 28, 2002 (B)

       Two dead microbiologists in San Francisco: While taking delivery of a pizza, Tanya Holzmayer, 46, is shot and killed by a colleague, Guyang Huang, 38, who then apparently shot himself. Holzmayer moved to the US from Russia in 1989. Her research focused on the part of the human molecular structure that could be affected best by medicine. Holzmayer was focusing on helping create new drugs that interfere with replication of the virus that causes AIDS. One year earlier, Holzmayer obeyed senior management orders to fire Huang. [San Jose Mercury News 2/28/02; Globe and Mail 5/4/02]
          

March 2002

       Beginning at least by this time, some political activists begin noticing they are being subjected to extra surveillance and security checks when flying in the US. Numerous government agencies later admit they are using a “no fly” list that bans certain people from flying. The government says about 1,000 names are on the list. It is also admitted that there is a second list that subjects anyone on it to increased security every time they fly. A number of agencies, including the CIA, FBI, INS, and State Department, admit that they have added names to such lists, but no agency admits controlling the list. There are no guidelines to determine who gets on the lists and no procedures for getting off a list if someone is wrongfully on it. Airport security personnel note that the lists seem to be netting mostly priests, elderly nuns, Green Party campaign operatives, left-wing journalists, right-wing activists, and people affiliated with Arab or Arab-American groups. [San Francisco Chronicle 9/27/02; Salon 11/15/02]
          

Early March 2002 (B)

       William Patrick (see February 1999) is interviewed by the FBI in relation to the anthrax attacks. He is surprised that the FBI didn't interview him earlier. [BBC, 3/14/02] After passing a lie detector test, the FBI invites him to join the inner circle of technical advisers to the anthrax investigation. [Baltimore Sun, 6/27/02] It is later noted that “many of the experts the FBI has turned to for help are also, almost by definition, potential suspects. That has put FBI agents in the uncomfortable position of having to subject their scientist-consultants to polygraph tests, and then, afterward, ask those same experts to help analyze evidence.” [Hartford Courant 9/7/02]
          

Early March 2002

      
Thierry Meyssan.
The book l'Effroyable Imposture (The Horrifying Fraud) is published in France. The book denies that a passenger airliner crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11. It is written by Thierry Meyssan, “president of the Voltaire Network, a respected independent think tank whose left-leaning research projects have until now been considered models of reasonableness and objectivity.” [Guardian, 4/1/02] The book is widely denounced by the media (for instance, [AFP, 3/21/02, London Times, 5/19/02, National Post, 8/31/02, Baltimore Sun, 9/12/02]). One reporter trashes the book even while admitting never to have read it. [LA Weekly, 7/19/02] But the book sets a French publishing record for first-month sales. [Time, Europe version, 5/20/02] One of Meyssan's theories is that people within the US government wanted to hit the Pentagon for its propaganda effect, but didn't want to create a lot of damage or kill important people like Defense Secretary Rumsfeld. They note that the crash hit the one section under construction, thus greatly reducing the loss of life. Furthermore, the wall at point of impact was the first and only one to be reinforced and have blast-resistant windows installed as part of an upgrade plan. [NFPA Journal 11/1/01]
          

March 2002 (B)

      
This partial image from a Total Information Awareness slide presentation shows types of data that will be collected. Note that even “gait” - the way one walks, will be analyzed.
The US military internally announces the creation of a new global data collection system called Total Information Awareness. The existence of this program is not reported until August 2002 [Wired, 8/7/02], and not widely known until November (see November 9, 2002). Interestingly, the early accounts of this program suggest its budget is a “significant amount” of $96 million [Federal Computer Week, 10/17/02], and not the $10 million later reported, [Guardian, 11/23/02] It is also reported that “parts” of the program “are already operational” whereas later it is said to be only in the conceptual stages of development. [Federal Computer Week 10/17/02]
          

March 2002 (C)

       Authorities in Bosnia, Sarajevo, raid the offices of the Benevolence International Foundation due to suspected funding of al-Qaeda The raid uncovers a handwritten list of twenty wealthy donors sympathetic to al-Qaeda. The list, referred to as “The Golden Chain,” reveals both the names of the donors, and the names of the recipients. Seven of the payments were made to Osama bin Laden, while at least one donation to him was made by the “bin Laden brothers.” UPI points out that “the discovery of this document in Sarajevo calls into question whether al-Qaeda has received support from one of Osama's scores of wealthy brothers.” Adel Batterjee, a wealth businessman from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, who is also the founder of both the charity BFI and its predecessor Lajnatt Al-Birr Al-Islamiah, appears to be mentioned as a recipient three times. Batterjee has been named as a defendant in a 9/11 lawsuit against wealthy Saudis, but he has been missing in Saudi Arabia for over a year. When the document was written is not mentioned, but it may date from the early 1990s. [UPI 2/11/03]
          

March 1, 2002

       An article in Vanity Fair suggests the ISI is still deeply involved in the drug trade in Central Asia. It estimates that Pakistan has a parallel drug economy worth $15 billion a year. Pakistan's official economy is worth about $60 billion. The article notes that the US has not tied its billions of dollars in aid to Pakistan to assurances that Pakistan will stop its involvement in drugs. [Vanity Fair 3/1/02]
          

March 2, 2002

       A New York Times article theorizes that a diesel fuel tank was responsible for the collapse of Building 7 near the WTC. It collapsed on 9/11 even though it was farther away than many other buildings that remained standing. It was the first time a steel-reinforced high-rise in the US had ever collapsed in a fire. The fuel tank had been installed in 1999 as part of a new “command center” for Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. [New York Times 3/2/02; Dow Jones News 9/10/02] What's curious, especially given all the Wall Street scandals later in the year, is that Building 7 was where the SEC was storing files related to numerous Wall Street investigations. All the files for approximately 3,000 to 4,000 SEC cases were destroyed. Some were backed up in other places, but many were not, especially those classified as confidential. [National Law Journal, 9/17/01] Lost files include documents that could show the relationship between Citigroup and the WorldCom bankruptcy. [The Street, 8/9/02] The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission estimates over 10,000 cases will be affected. [New York Law Journal, 9/14/01] The Secret Service also lost investigative files. Says one agent: “All the evidence that we stored at 7 World Trade, in all our cases, went down with the building.” [Tech TV, 7/23/02] It is also eventually revealed that there was a secret CIA office in Building 7. [CNN, 11/4/01] A few days later, the head of the WTC collapse investigation says he “would possibly consider examining” the collapse of Building 7, but all the rubble has already been removed and destroyed. [Committee on Science House of Representatives testimony 3/6/02]
          

March 2, 2002 (B)

       The Washington Post claims that nine of the 19 9/11 hijackers were selected for special security just prior to boarding for the 9/11 attack, including two who were singled out because of irregularities in their identification documents. “Six were chosen for extra scrutiny by a computerized screening system, prompting a sweep of their checked baggage for explosives or unauthorized weapons.” [Washington Post 3/2/02 (B)] None of the names selected for screening are given, but a different article makes clear that hijackers Nawaf Alhazmi and Khalid Almihdhar, on a watch list for international flights at the time (see August 23, 2001 (C)), are not selected. [Cox News, 10/21/01] It is later revealed that box cutters were illegal to bring on board airplanes at the time of 9/11. [AP, 11/11/02] If this is true, how did they get the box cutters on board, not to mention reports of illegal knives, bombs and chemical spray on two planes (for instance, see September 17, 2001 (C), July 18, 2002 and March 27, 2002)? Also, if all this is true, why have no photos of them boarding planes or interviews with security staff been released?
          

March 3, 2002

       Secretary of State Powell rules out any links between “elements of the ISI” and the murderers of reporter Daniel Pearl. [Dawn, 3/3/02] The Guardian later calls Powell's comment “shocking,” given the overwhelming evidence that the main suspect, Saeed Sheikh, worked for the ISI. [Guardian, 4/5/02] Defense Secretary Rumsfeld called him a possible “asset” for the ISI a week earlier. [London Times, 2/25/02] The Washington Post says, “The [ISI] is a house of horrors waiting to break open. Saeed has tales to tell.” [Washington Post, 3/28/02] The Guardian says Saeed “is widely believed in Pakistan to be an experienced ISI ‘asset.’ ” [Washington Post 5/3/02] Does Powell's comment indicate that the US is helping to cover up Saeed's ISI connections?
          

March 5, 2002

       It is reported that many spies in the uncovered Israeli spy ring seemed to have been trailing the 9/11 hijackers. For instance, five Israeli spies are intercepted in the tiny town of Hollywood, Florida, and four 9/11 hijackers are known to have spent time in Hollywood, Florida. [Le Monde, 3/5/02, Reuters, 3/5/02, Jane's Intelligence Digest, 3/15/02] In one case, some Israeli spies lived at 4220 Sheridan Street, only a few hundred feet from where Atta was living at 3389 Sheridan Street. Israeli spies appear to have been close to at least 10 of the 19 9/11 hijackers. [Salon 5/7/02]
          

March 6, 2002

       A Washington Post article completely denies the existence of any Israeli spy ring. A “wide array of US officials” supposedly deny it, and Justice Department spokeswoman Susan Dryden says: “This seems to be an urban myth that has been circulating for months. The department has no information at this time to substantiate these widespread reports about Israeli art students involved in espionage.” [Washington Post, 3/6/02] The New York Times fails to cover the story at all, even months later. [Salon 5/7/02] By mid-March, Jane's, the respected British intelligence and military analysis service, notes: “It is rather strange that the US media seems to be ignoring what may well be the most explosive story since the 11 September attacks—the alleged breakup of a major Israeli espionage operation in the USA.” [Jane's Intelligence Digest 3/13/02]
          

March 7, 2002

      
The Pentagon “video.” Click here for a larger image. [
A series of photos surface purporting to show a plane crashing into the Pentagon on 9/11. It's not clear who released the photos, but the Pentagon says they're authentic and taken from a Pentagon security camera. The release of these pictures comes within days of the publication of the book “l'Effroyable Imposture”(see Early March 2002). “Officials could not immediately explain why the date typed near the bottom of each photograph is Sept. 12 and the time is written as 5:37 p.m.” [Fox News, 3/8/02] Could this timing “glitch” help cover the official time of the hit being at 9:37, five minutes before other estimates? Do the pictures show an American Airlines 757, or a much smaller, darker plane that has the shape of a fighter? Because the plane in the first frame hard to see, here is an enlarged version with the plane and its exhaust circled.
          

March 7, 2002 (B)

       Pakistani President Musharraf says Saeed Sheikh, chief suspect in the killing of reporter Daniel Pearl (see February 5, 2002), will not be extradited to the US, at least not until after he is tried by Pakistan. [Guardian, 3/15/02] The US Ambassador later reports to Washington that Musharraf privately said, “I'd rather hang him myself” than extradite Saeed. [Washington Post, 3/28/02] Musharraf even brazenly states, “Perhaps Daniel Pearl was over-intrusive. A mediaperson should be aware of the dangers of getting into dangerous areas. Unfortunately, he got over-involved.” [Hindu, 3/8/02] He also says Pearl was caught up in “intelligence games.” [Washington Post, 5/3/02] In early April, Musharraf apparently says he wants to see Saeed sentenced to death. Defense lawyers are appalled, saying Musharraf is effectively telling the courts what to do. [BBC, 4/12/02] The Washington Post reports in early March that Pakistani “police alternately fabricate and destroy evidence, depending on pressure from above” [Washington Post, 3/10/02], and in fact Saeed's trial will be plagued with problems (see July 16-21, 2002).
          

March 11, 2002

       A newspaper reports that the DEA study on Israeli “art students” determined the “students” all had “recently served in the Israeli military, the majority in intelligence, electronic signal intercept or explosive ordnance units.” [Palm Beach Post 3/11/02]
          

March 13, 2002

       A bomb and two smaller explosive-type devices are found and defused in the stairwell outside of the Shelby County Regional Forensic Center, Memphis, Tennessee, where county medical examiner Dr. O. C. Smith works. Smith states, “We have done several high-profile cases from (missing Harvard researcher) Dr. (Don) Wiley to Katherine Smith but there has been no indication that we offended anyone… We just don't know if we were the intended target or not.” The police state, “It potentially could have been a large blast if exploded.” The mystery gets deeper: in June, Dr. Smith is attacked, bound with barbed wire and left with a bomb tied to his body (see June 1, 2002). [Memphis Commercial Appeal 3/14/02]
          

March 14, 2002

       Attorney General Ashcroft announces a second US criminal indictment of Saeed Sheikh (see August-October 2001), this time for his role in the kidnapping and murder of Daniel Pearl (see January 31, 2002). The amount of background information given about Saeed is very brief, and of all his many terrorist acts since he was released from prison in 1999, the only one mentioned is that in September and October 2001 he fought in Afghanistan with al-Qaeda. The indictment and Ashcroft fail to mention Saeed's financing of the 9/11 attacks, and no reporters ask Ashcroft about this either (see Early August 2001 (D)). [CNN 3/14/02; Los Angeles Times 3/15/02]
          

March 15, 2002

       Forward, a US publication with a large Jewish audience, admits that there has been an Israeli spy ring in the US. This is a reversal of their earlier stance (see [Forward, 12/21/01]). But, “far from pointing to Israeli spying against US government and military facilities, as reported in Europe last week, the incidents in question appear to represent a case of Israelis in the United States spying on a common enemy, radical Islamic networks suspected of links to Middle East terrorism.” [Forward 3/15/02]
          

March 22, 2002

      
Whistleblower Sibel Edmonds
Translator Sibel Edmonds later claims that she is fired by the FBI on this day after repeatedly raising suspicions about a coworker named Jan (or Can) Dickerson. When Dickerson was hired in November 2001, she had connections to a Turkish intelligence officer and had worked with a Turkish organization, both of which were being investigated by the FBI's own counter-intelligence unit. Edmonds claims that Dickerson insisted that she alone translate documents relating to the investigation of this organization and official. When Edmonds reviewed Dickerson's translations, she found information that the Turkish officer had spies inside the State Department and Pentagon was not being translated. Dickerson then tried to recruit Edmonds as a spy, and when she refused threatened to kill Edmonds. After her boss and others in the FBI failed to respond to her complaints, she wrote to the Justice Department's inspector general's office in March: “Investigations are being compromised. Incorrect or misleading translations are being sent to agents in the field. Translations are being blocked and circumvented.”Edmonds is then fired and she sues the FBI. The FBI eventually concludes Dickerson had left out significant information from her translations. A second FBI whistleblower, John Cole, also claims to know of security lapses in the screening and hiring of FBI translators. [Washington Post, 6/19/02, Cox News, 8/14/02, CBS, 7/13/03] In October 2002, at the request of FBI Director Mueller, Attorney General Ashcroft asks a judge to throw out Edmonds's lawsuit against the Justice Department. He says he is applying the state secrets privilege in order “to protect the foreign policy and national security interests of the United States.” [AP, 10/18/02 (B)] The supervisor who told her not to make these accusations and also encouraged her to go slow in her translations (see Late September 2001) is later promoted. [CBS 10/25/02]
          

March 22, 2002 (B)

       British officials claim to have found an al-Qaeda biological weapons lab near Kandahar, Afghanistan. But the lab was incomplete, and “there is still no indication that al-Qaeda ever succeeded in producing biological agents.” [New York Times, 3/22/02] Soon after, the US denies even the existence of any such lab, and the British government is accused of inventing the story to justify sending British soldiers to a certain part of Afghanistan. [Observer 3/24/02 (B)]
          

March 23, 2002

       Close on the heels of reports about al-Qaeda wanting to make anthrax in Afghanistan, a new report suggests that one of the 9/11 hijackers had an anthrax wound months before 9/11. Ahmed Alhaznawi went to a hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in June 2001 complaining of a nasty leg lesion that authorities believe could have been caused by anthrax. But an FBI spokesman says these possibilities were dismissed months ago, and “nothing new has in fact developed.” [Observer, 3/24/02] The spokesman adds, “Exhaustive testing did not support that anthrax was present anywhere the hijackers had been.” [CNN, 3/23/02] Phone calls from one of the hijacked planes suggest the hijackers kept passengers at bay with a chemical spray (see July 18, 2002)—could this wound be related to that chemical?
          

March 24, 2002 (B)

       Dead microbiologist: David Wynn-Williams, 55, is hit by a car while jogging near his home in Cambridge, England. He was an astrobiologist with the Antarctic Astrobiology Project and the NASA Ames Research Center. He was studying the capability of microbes to adapt to environmental extremes, including the bombardment of ultraviolet rays and global warming. [London Times 3/27/02; Globe and Mail 5/4/02]
          

March 24, 2002

       The Sunday Times reports that records of bin Laden's satellite phone calls indicate that before 9/11 he and his most senior lieutenants made over 260 calls from their base in Afghanistan to 27 numbers in Britain (see Early 1996-October 1998). They included calls to suspected terrorist agents, sympathizers and companies. If it was known who bin Laden was calling, why weren't those people watched and tracked? It appears British intelligence still doesn't know why bin Laden called certain numbers. Bin Laden's main British contact, Khaled al-Fawwaz, was called over 200 times. [Sunday Times, 3/24/02, Sunday Herald, 5/19/02] Although al Fawwaz was put in prison before 9/11, he told a fellow prisoner about a planned attack on 9/11 (see August 21, 2001).
          

March 25, 2002

       Dead microbiologist: Steven Mostow, 63, dies when the airplane he was piloting crashes near Denver, Colorado. He worked at the Colorado Health Sciences Centre and was known as “Dr. Flu” for his expertise in treating influenza, and expertise on bioterrorism. Mostow was “one of the country's leading infectious disease experts” and was associate dean at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Three others died in the crash. Mostow's death bring the total number of leading microbiologists killed in a six-month period to at least 15. [KUSA TV 3/26/02; Globe and Mail 5/4/02]
          

March 27, 2002

       New York Times reporter Jere Longman writes an article based on recent leaks to him about Flight 93's cockpit flight recording (later relatives of the victims are given a single chance to listen to the recording (see April 18, 2002)). He claims that earlier reports of a 911 call from a bathroom reporting smoke and an explosion are incorrect. He names the passenger as Edward Felt and notes that the dispatcher who took the call and Felt's wife both deny the smoke and explosion story. There were messages from both passengers and hijackers on the plane speaking of a bomb. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 10/28/01 (B)] Longman also claims that one passenger, Tom Burnett, told his wife there were guns on the plane. [New York Times, 3/27/02] >From immediately after 9/11, the fact that Tom Burnett told his wife that he didn't see any guns was widely reported. [Dateline NBC, 9/14/01] Note that the passengers appeared doubtful that the terrorists had either real guns or bombs, but there is a March 2002 report of a gun being used on Flight 11 (see September 11 , 2001 (X)). Why are we only hearing about the possibility of guns on board so many months later? Could it be that the airlines are liable to lose billions if it can be proven weapons were smuggled aboard the plane? Why was the Felt call widely reported and unchallenged by officials until now?
          

March 28, 2002

      
Abu Zubaida
FBI agents and Pakistani police commandos raid a house in the city of Faisalabad, Pakistan, and capture al-Qaeda leader Abu Zubaida. He's shot three times but survives. [New York Times, 4/14/02] Many documents are found that lead to the indictment of 100 more people. [Newsweek, 9/4/02] US intelligence found his location by tracing his phone calls. [New York Times, 4/14/02] He has since given the US useful information on 9/11 and other al-Qaeda plans. [Newsweek, 9/4/02] Zubaida is considered one of the highest in al-Qaeda's leadership and the highest ranking prisoner captured by the US so far. [New York Times, 4/14/02] It is believed that 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed takes over Zubaida's tasks. [Asia Times, 9/11/02] The claim is later made that during interrogation Zubaida claims ties to people high in the Saudi and Pakistani governments (see March 31, 2002).
          

March 29, 2002

       Abdullah bin Laden, spokesman for the bin Laden family and one of Osama's many brothers, speaks directly to the press for the first time since 9/11. He says the family cut all personal and financial ties to Osama in 1993, and that no family member has contact with him or provides any kind of support for him. “We went through a tough time. It was difficult. We felt we are a victim as well.” [ABC News, 3/29/02] This appears to be the same Abdullah bin Laden that the FBI began investigating in 1996 only to have the investigation killed by higher-ups in government (see September 11, 1996).
          

March 30, 2002

       With US troops already in many Central Asian countries (see January 2002 (D)), it is now reported that US Special Forces soldiers are training Kazakhstan troops in a secret location. [London Times, 3/30/02] An anonymous source in the Kazakh government previously stated, “It is clear that the continuing war in Afghanistan is no more than a veil for the US to establish political dominance in the region. The war on terrorism is only a pretext for extending influence over our energy resources ”(see October 11, 1996). [Observer 1/20/02]
          

March 31, 2002

      
Prince Ahmed bin Abdul-Aziz.
Author Gerald Posner, controversial for his books debunking JFK assassination and other conspiracy theories, claims a remarkable interrogation of al-Qaeda prisoner Abu Zubaida begins at this time. Zubaida, arrested three days earlier, is tricked into thinking the US has handed him to the Saudis for a more brutal interrogation, but in fact the Saudis are still American agents. Zubaida expresses great relief at this, and under the influence of the “truth serum” Sodium Pentothal, tells his interrogators to call Prince Ahmed bin Abdul-Aziz, a nephew of the Saudi king. He provides telephone numbers from memory and says, “He will tell you what to do.” He proceeds to give more information and phone numbers, claiming ties with higher ups in both the Saudi and Pakistani governments. He also names
  1. Pakistani air force chief Mushaf Ali Mir, said to be closely tied to the fundamentalists in the ISI,
  2. Saudi Intelligence Minister Prince Turki al-Faisal,
  3. Prince Sultan bin Faisal, another nephew of the Saudi King, and
  4. Prince Fahd bin Turki, another member of the Saudi royalty.
Zubaida claims all of these people were intermediaries he dealt with in the frequent transfer of money to al-Qaeda. The phone numbers and other details jibe with what US intelligence knows. According to Zubaida, he was present in a meeting in 1996 where the Pakistanis and the Saudis struck a deal with bin Laden, promising him protection, arms, and supplies in exchange for not being the targets of future terror attacks. He claimed both governments were told the US would be attacked on 9/11, but not given the details of how the attack would work. Within months, all of the people named by Zubaida die mysteriously except for Prince Turki, who is made an ambassador, giving him diplomatic immunity. [Why America Slept, by Gerald Posner, 9/03, pp. 186-194] Posner says he learned this story from two unnamed US government sources who gave similar, independent accounts. One is from the CIA and the other is a senior Bush administration official “inside the executive branch.” [Salon, 10/18/03] With the notable exception of a prominent Time magazine article [Time, 8/31/03], few news outlets cover the story [Salon, 10/18/03, MSNBC, 9/5/03, Asia Times, 9/17/03 (B)], and some that do cover it only in the form of book reviews. [Washington Post, 9/10/03 (C), New York Times, 10/12/03, New York Times, 10/29/03 (B)] Some experts put forth the theory that the story could be made up by neoconservatives interested in starting a war with Saudi Arabia. It is also possible Zubaida mixed facts with lies, as he was found to lie to interrogators on many other occasions. [Salon, 10/18/03] There is also speculation that the gist of the story may be true, but that Zubaida's Saudi and Pakistani contacts may have been pinned on dead men to protect the still guilty living. [Asia Times 9/17/03; Salon 10/18/03]

          

April 1, 2002

      
Opium poppy fields in Afghanistan.
“American officials have quietly abandoned their hopes to reduce Afghanistan's opium production substantially this year and are now bracing for a harvest large enough to inundate the world's heroin and opium markets with cheap drugs.” They want to see the new Afghan government make at least a token effort to destroy some opium, but it appears they're not doing even that. Afghan leader Hamid Karzai had announced a total ban on opium cultivation, processing, and trafficking, but it appears to be a total sham. The new harvest is so large, it could be “enough opium to stockpile for two or two and a half more years.” [New York Times, 4/1/02] Starting this month, Karzai's government offers farmers $500 for every acre of poppies they destroy, but farmers can earn as much as $6,400 per acre for the crop. The program is eventually canceled when it runs out of money to pay farmers. [AP, 3/27/03] If the US wants to ban opium, why doesn't it fund this program?
          

April, June or August 2002

       It is originally reported that Al Jazeera reporter Yosri Fouda interviews 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and 9/11 associate Ramzi bin al-Shibh at a secret location in Karachi, Pakistan in either June [London Times, 9/8/02] or August. [Guardian, 9/9/02] Details and audio footage of the interview come out between September 8-12, 2002. The video footage of the interview al-Qaeda promised to hand over is never given to Al Jazeera. [AP, 9/8/02] Both figures claim the 9/11 attacks were originally going to target nuclear reactors, but “decided against it for fear it would go out of control.” Interviewer Fouda is struck that Mohammed and bin al-Shibh remember only the hijackers' code names, and have trouble remembering their real names. [Australian, 9/9/02] Mohammed calls himself the head of al-Qaeda's military committee—the group that planned the targets for 9/11. These interviews “are the first full admission by senior figures from bin Laden's network that they carried out the September 11 attacks.” [Sunday Times 9/8/02] But the Financial Times has reported on Fouda's interview, “Analysts cited the crude editing of the tapes and the timing of the broadcasts as reasons to be suspicious about their authenticity. Dia Rashwan, an expert on Islamist movements at the Al-Ahram Centre for Strategic Studies in Cairo, said: ‘I have very serious doubts [about the authenticity of this tape]. It could have been a script written by the FBI.’ ” [Financial Times, 9/11/02] Mohammed is later reported to be arrested in June 2002 (see June 16, 2002), killed or arrested in September 2002 (see September 11, 2002), and then arrested in March 2003 (see March 1, 2003). After this last arrest, for the first time Fouda claims this interview took place in April, placing it safely before the first reports of Mohammed's capture. [Guardian, 3/4/03, Canada AM, 3/6/03] Bin al-Shibh also gets captured several days after Fouda's interview in broadcast (see September 11, 2002), and some reports say he is captured because this interview allows his voice to be identified. [CBS, 10/9/02, Observer, 9/15/02] As a result, Fouda has been accused of betraying al-Qaeda, and now fears for his life. [Independent, 9/17/02] As the Washington Post puts it: “Now al Jazeera is also subject to rumors of a conspiracy.” [Washington Post, 9/15/02] Yet after being so reviled by al-Qaeda supporters, Fouda is later given a cassette said to be a bin Laden speech. [MSNBC, 11/18/02] Why would al-Qaeda have given such an exclusive to the man said to have betrayed them? US officials believe the voice on that cassette is “almost certainly” bin Laden, but one of the world's leading voice-recognition institutes said they were 95% certain the tape is a forgery. [BBC, 11/18/02, BBC, 11/29/02] Is it possible that Fouda has been working with the US to pass on anti-al-Qaeda propaganda, including the Mohammed and bin al-Shibh interview?
          

April 4, 2002

       Dr. David Franz, a former commander of USAMRIID, says of the anthrax attacks: “I think a lot of good has come from it. From a biological or a medical standpoint, we've now five people who have died, but we've put about $6 billion in our budget into defending against bioterrorism.”Plentiful evidence suggests that the anthrax came from USAMRIID, but investigators say they have no suspects at all. They also say they have come up “against some closely held military secrets” which are slowing down the investigation. “Federal investigators tell ABCNEWS that military and intelligence agencies have withheld a full listing of all facilities and all employees dealing with top-secret anthrax programs where important leads could be found.” [ABC News, 4/4/02] Did the anthrax attacker(s) use similar logic as Franz, reasoning that the attacks would serve as a wake up call to protect the US against bioterror attacks?
          

April 5, 2002

       The Pakistani trial of Saeed Sheikh and three others begins. [BBC, 7/5/02] NBC reports that death sentences are expected for the four accused killers of Daniel Pearl, despite a lack of evidence. The case will be decided in top secret by handpicked judges in Pakistan's anti-terrorism courts. “Some in Pakistan's government also are very concerned about what [the defendant] Saeed might say in court. His organization and other militant groups here have ties to Pakistan's secret intelligence agency [the ISI]. There are concerns he could try to implicate that government agency in the Pearl case, or other questionable dealings that could be at the very least embarrassing, or worse.” [MSNBC, 4/5/02] Later in the month the London Times says that the real truth about Saeed won't come out in the trial because, “Sheikh is no ordinary terrorist but a man who has connections that reach high into Pakistan's military and intelligence elite and into the innermost circles of Osama Bin Laden and the al-Qaeda organization.” [London Times 4/21/02]
          

April 11, 2002 (C)

       A truck bomb kills 19 people in a Djerba, Tunisia, synagogue, most of them German tourists. It is later claimed that al-Qaeda is behind the attack, and that the suspected bomber speaks with 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed by phone about three hours before the attack. [AP 8/24/02]
          

April 11, 2002 (B)

       Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D) calls for a through investigation into whether President Bush and other government officials may have been warned of the 9/11 attacks but did nothing to prevent them, the first national-level politician to do so. “News reports from Der Spiegel to the London Observer, from the Los Angeles Times to MSNBC to CNN, indicate that many different warnings were received by the Administration. … I am not aware of any evidence showing that President Bush or members of his administration have personally profited from the attacks of 9/11. … On the other hand, what is undeniable is that corporations close to the Administration, have directly benefited from the increased defense spending arising from the aftermath of September 11. The Carlyle Group, DynCorp, and Halliburton certainly stand out as companies close to this Administration.” [Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 4/12/02] McKinney's comments are criticized and ridiculed by other politicians and the media (see September 23, 2001 (B)). For instance, Congressman Mark Foley (R) states, “She has said some outrageous things but this has gone too far … Maybe there should be an investigation as she suggests—but one focused on her.” Senator Zell Miller (D) says her comments were dangerous and irresponsible. [Washington Post, 4/12/02] An editorial in her home state calls her the “most prominent nut” promoting 9/11 “conspiracy theories.” [Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 4/15/02] One columnist says she is possibly “a delusional paranoiac” or “a socialist rabble-rouser who despises her own country.” [Orlando Sentinel, 4/21/02] Press Secretary Ari Fleischer said McKinney “must be running for the hall of fame of the Grassy Knoll Society.” [Washington Post, 4/12/02] One month after McKinney's comments, the Bush Administration comes under fire after reports reveal it had been warned five weeks before 9/11 about possible al-Qaeda plane hijackings (see May 15, 2002), and McKinney claims vindication. [McKinney website 5/16/02]
          

April 11, 2002

       Jim Pavitt, the CIA Deputy Director of Operations, emphasizes how prepared the CIA was to launch subversive actions in Afghanistan immediately after 9/11. “With a small logistical footprint they came with lightning speed. We were on the ground within days of that terrible attack. They also came with something else. They came with knowledge of local languages, whatever you heard to the contrary notwithstanding, terrain, and politics… In those few days that it took us to get there after that terrible, terrible attack, my officers stood on Afghan soil, side by side with Afghan friends that we had developed over a long period of time, and we launched America's war against al-Qaeda… Quite simply, we were there well before the 11th of September.” [CIA 4/11/02] This is in stark contrast to the official story reported in the media that the US overly relied on satellites and other high technologies and had no agents on the ground.
          

April 17, 2002

       The Washington Post reports that, “The Bush administration has concluded that Osama bin Laden was present during the battle for Tora Bora late last year and that failure to commit US ground troops to hunt him was its gravest error in the war against al-Qaeda,” allowing bin Laden to escape. The newspaper claims that while the administration has failed to acknowledge the mistake publicly, “inside the government there is little controversy on the subject.” [Washington Post 4/17/02] The next day, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld denies this, and states he didn't know at the time of the assault, “nor do I know today of any evidence that he was in Tora Bora at the time or that he left Tora Bora at the time or even where he is today”(see Early December 2001). [USA Today 4/18/02]
          

April 18, 2002

       The FBI allows relatives of passengers on Flight 93 to listen to and see a written transcript of the cockpit recordings. 70 do so. But the FBI says the relatives are not allowed to make recordings, because the tape might be used in the trial of Zacarias Moussaoui. [Guardian, 4/19/02] The San Francisco Chronicle responds: “Is there even a dollop of logic in that explanation? It's like saying we can't watch video of the planes crashing into the World Trade Center because that video might be used in a trial.”[San Francisco Chronicle, 6/3/02] New York Times reporter Jere Longman writes the book Among the Heroes based on his access to the recordings (see March 27, 2002) and interviews with officials and relatives. New details of their struggle on board emerges, but the government still has not officially stated if the passengers took over the plane or not. [Telegraph 8/6/02; MSNBC 7/30/02]
          

April 19, 2002

       FBI Director Mueller states: “In our investigation, we have not uncovered a single piece of paper—either here in the United States or in the treasure trove of information that has turned up in Afghanistan and elsewhere—that mentioned any aspect of the September 11 plot.”He also claims that the attackers used “extraordinary secrecy” and “investigators have found no computers, laptops, hard drives or other storage media that may have been used by the hijackers, who hid their communications by using hundreds of pay phones and cell phones, coupled with hard-to-trace prepaid calling cards.” [FBI speech transcript, 4/19/02, Los Angeles Times, 4/22/02, he repeats the quote the next month, Senate Judiciary Statement, 5/8/02] However, before 9/11, CIA Director Tenet told the Senate that al-Qaeda is “embracing the opportunities offered by recent leaps in information technology,” [CIA, 03/21/00], the FBI broke the al-Qaeda computer encryption before February 2001 (see February 13, 2001) [UPI, 2/13/01], witnesses report seeing the hijackers use computers for e-mail at public libraries in Florida and Maine [Sun-Sentinel, 9/16/01 (B), Boston Herald, 10/5/01], in October 2001 there were many reports that hundreds of e-mails discussing the 9/11 plot had been found (see October 2001 (B)), Moussaoui's laptop was found to contain important information. Look also at an MSNBC article about al-Qaeda using computers. [MSNBC 4/19/02]
          

April 21, 2002

       The Sunday Times reports on Saeed's connections to both the ISI and al-Qaeda in a story entitled, “Pearl Murder Case Briton Was a Double Agent.” Most other newspapers continue to fail to connect the dots, and not even this story connects Saeed with funding 9/11, as reported in the media months before. [Sunday Times 4/21/02]
          

April 23, 2002

      
Mohammed Zouaydi
Spanish authorities arrest Syrian-born Spaniard businessman Mohammed Galeb Kalaje Zouaydi and allege he is a key al-Qaeda financier. [Chicago Tribune, 5/6/02] An accountant, he is considered to be the “big financier” behind terrorist a network al-Qaeda in Europe, according to investigator Jean-Charles Brisard. >From 1996 to 2001 he lived in Saudi Arabia, and funneled money into a series of companies he set up that accepted donations; the source of the money is unknown. Around $1 million of money was then forwarded to al-Qaeda agents throughout Europe, especially to Germany. One of Zouaydi's associates had the phone number of Atta's apartment in Hamburg, Germany in the memory of his cell phone (see November 1, 1998-February 2001). [AFP, 9/20/02] Zouaydi also allegedly sent money to Mamoun Darkazanli (see September 24, 2001), a Syrian-born businessman who has admitted knowing Atta and others in the Hamburg al-Qaeda cell. [Chicago Tribune, 5/6/02] One of Zouaydi's employees in Spain visited the WTC in 1997 where he extensively videotaped the buildings (see 1998). Perhaps only coincidentally, while in Saudi Arabia, Zouaydi “was an accountant for the al-Faisal branch of the Saudi royal family, including Prince Mohammed al-Faisal al-Saud and Prince Turki al-Faisal”(see August 31, 2001). [AFP 9/20/02]
          

April 25, 2002

       Osama Basnan, an alleged associate of 9/11 hijackers Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhazmi (see April 1998, December 4, 1999, and November 22, 2002), reports his passport stolen to Houston, Texas police. [Newsweek, 11/24/02] This confirms that Basnan is in Houston on the same day that Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah, Prince Saud Al-Faisal, and Saudi US Ambassador Prince Bandar meet with President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Secretary of State Powell, and National Security Advisor Rice at Bush's ranch in nearby Crawford, Texas. [US-Saudi Arabian Business Council, 4/25/02] Abdullah's entourage passes through Houston that week en route to Bush's ranch. While in Texas, it is believed that Basnan “met with a high Saudi prince who has responsibilities for intelligence matters and is known to bring suitcases full of cash into the United States.” [Newsweek 11/24/02; Guardian 11/25/02] The still-classified section of the 9/11 Congressional Inquiry (see August 1-3, 2003) is said to discuss the possibility of Basnan meeting this figure at this time. [AP 8/2/03]
          

April 30, 2002 (B)

      
Camp X-Ray prisoners. Their detention cages can be seen on the right. Pictures like this provoked an outrage about their treatment.
The US begins transferring prisoners from the Afghan war from Camp X-Ray to Camp Delta. Both are in US-controlled Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, but Camp X-Ray was little more than metal wire cages and Camp Delta is made of proper buildings. [BBC, 4/30/02] Conditions in the new facility are considered more humane, but the prisoners are still not named, not allowed to contact their families, and are not given the rights of prisoners of war (see also January 11, 2002 and October 28, 2002). [Globe and Mail 9/5/02; Guardian 9/9/02] Halliburton, Vice President Cheney's former company, has been given the contract to build Camp Delta even though it is estimated military engineers could do the job for about half the price. [New York Times 7/13/02 (B)]
          

April 30, 2002

       It is reported that the US military is drawing up a plan for a long-term military “footprint” in Central Asia. The US says it plans no permanent bases, but the leaders of Central Asia speak of the US being there for decades, and inside US bases temporary structures are being replaced by permanent buildings (see also December 19, 2001 and January 2002 (D)). [AP, 4/30/02, Washington Post, 8/27/02, Los Angeles Times, 4/4/02] All of the countries are encumbered by corrupt dictatorships, and many experts say their serious social and economic problems are growing worse. Some experts wonder if the US is increasing Muslim resentment and the risk of terrorism by closely associating with such regimes. [Washington Post 8/27/02]
          

May 1, 2002 (B)

       FEMA releases its report of the WTC collapses. It concludes, “with the information and time available, the sequence of events leading to the collapse of each tower could not be definitively determined.” On Building 7: “The specifics of the fires in WTC 7 and how they caused the building to collapse remain unknown at this time.” [FEMA study, 5/1/02] Might their failure to come to conclusions have something to do with the fact that they destroyed the evidence before it could be analyzed? (see March 2, 2002).
          

May 1, 2002

       L. Britt Snider, ex-CIA official and the head of the joint congressional investigation into 9/11, resigns. Apparently there were many conflicts between Snider and his own staff, as well as with Congress. It is later revealed the final straw occurred when Snider tried to hire a CIA employee who had failed an agency polygraph test as an inquiry staffer. The hearings were expected to start in late May, but the resignation is one reason why the first public hearings are delayed until September (see September 18, 2002). [Los Angeles Times 5/2/02; Los Angeles Times 10/19/02] Snider is replaced by Eleanor Hill. She is widely credited for turning around an inquiry “hampered by infighting, politics, leaks and dueling agendas” after being hired in June. [Miami Herald 7/14/02; Washington Post 9/25/02 (B)]
          

May 2, 2002

       After extensive testing, the DNA sequence of the anthrax sent through the US mail in 2001 is deciphered, and it confirms suspicions that the bacteria originally came from USAMRIID. Furthermore, analysis of genetic drift determines that the attacker's anthrax was not separated from the source anthrax at USAMRIID for many generations. It suggests that USAMRIID or USAMRIID samples given to Dugway Proving Grounds in Utah and/or Porton Downs in Britain are the most likely sources of the anthrax used in the attacks. [New Scientist 5/2/02]
          

May 7, 2002

       A moving truck is pulled over for speeding in the middle of the night in Oak Harbor, Washington, near the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station. The base is the home of the advanced electronic warfare Prowler jets. A bomb-sniffing dog detects explosives on one of the men and inside the truck. High-tech equipment is then used to confirm the presence of TNT on the gearshift and RDX plastic explosive on the steering wheel. Both men turn out to be Israeli (one with an altered passport) and in the country illegally. [Fox News 5/13/02] However, the FBI later clears the two men, saying both the dog and the tests just detected false positives from “residue left by a cigarette lighter.” [Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 5/14/02, Jerusalem Post, 5/14/02] The “art student spy ring” frequently uses moving vans as cover (see October 16, 2001 (C)), and has been caught spying on the most top secret military bases. [Salon, 5/7/02] In a possibly related story, the Seattle FBI office that handled this case appears to have been broken into a few weeks later, and even a room containing evidence was penetrated. [Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 7/29/02] Is the spy ring is still active? Is the FBI covering up for them and releasing them?
          

May 7, 2002 (B)

       Salon reports on the Israeli “art student” ring. All the “students” claim to have come from either Bezalel Academy, or the University of Jerusalem. A look in the Bezalel database shows that not a single one of them appear to have attended school there. There is no such thing as the University of Jerusalem. In fact, the article points out that the sheer sloppiness and brazenness of the spy operation appears to be a great mystery, especially since the Mossad is renowned as one of the best spy agencies in the world. One government source suggests a theory to Salon that the “art students” were actually a smoke screen. They were meant to be caught and connected to DEA surveillance so that a smaller number of spies also posing as art students could complete other missions. One such mission could have been the monitoring of al-Qaeda terrorists. [Salon, 5/7/02] Shortly afterwards, a major Israeli newspaper publishes a story about the spy ring, but doesn't come to any conclusions. [Ha'aretz, 5/14/02] Could it be that Israel assisted the US in keeping an eye on the terrorists, thus allowing the US to maintain plausible deniability and a detachment if there were investigations on what the US knew?
          

May 8, 2002

       FBI Director Mueller: “there was nothing the agency could have done to anticipate and prevent the [9/11] attacks.” [Senate Intelligence Committee 9/18/02]
          

May 13, 2002

       The BBC reports that Afghanistan is about to close a deal for construction of the $2 billion gas pipeline to run from Turkmenistan to Pakistan and India. “Work on the project will start after an agreement is expected to be struck” at a summit scheduled for the end of the month. Afghan leader Hamid Karzai (who formerly worked for Unocal) calls Unocal the “lead company” in building the pipeline. [BBC, 5/13/02] FTWThe Los Angeles Times comments, “To some here, it looked like the fix was in for Unocal when President Bush named a former Unocal consultant, Zalmay Khalilzad, as his special envoy to Afghanistan late last year.” [Los Angeles Times 5/30/02 (B)]
          

May 15, 2002

      
The New York Post has a banner headline on May 16, 2002.
The Bush Administration is embarrassed when the CBS Evening News reveals that Bush had been warned about al-Qaeda domestic attacks in August 2001 (see August 6, 2001). Bush had repeatedly said that he had “no warning” of any kind. Press Secretary Ari Fleischer states unequivocally that while Bush had been warned of possible hijackings, “The president did not—not—receive information about the use of airplanes as missiles by suicide bombers.” [New York Times, 5/16/02, Washington Post, 5/16/02] “Until the attack took place, I think it's fair to say that no one envisioned that as a possibility.” [MSNBC, 9/18/02] Fleischer claims the August memo was titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike the US” but the real title is soon found to end with “ … Strike in US.” [Washington Post, 5/18/02 (B)] The Guardian will state a few days later, “the memo left little doubt that the hijacked airliners were intended for use as missiles and that intended targets were to be inside the US.” It further states that, “now, as the columnist Joe Conason points out in the current edition of the New York Observer, ‘conspiracy’ begins to take over from ‘incompetence’ as a likely explanation for the failure to heed—and then inform the public about—warnings that might have averted the worst disaster in the nation's history.” [Guardian, 5/19/02] [FTW]
          

May 16, 2002 (B)

      
National Security Advisor Rice tries to explain what Bush knew and when.
National Security Advisor Rice states: “I don't think anybody could have predicted that these people would take an airplane and slam it into the World Trade Center, take another one and slam it into the Pentagon, that they would try to use an airplane as a missile,” adding that “even in retrospect” there was “nothing” to suggest that. [White House, 5/16/02] Is Rice aware how many people did predict such a thing, even many years prior to 9/11? What about Japanese kamikaze pilots in WW2? For instance, Former CIA Deputy Director John Gannon has stated that scenario has long been taken seriously by US intelligence: “If you ask anybody— could terrorists convert a plane into a missile?— nobody would have ruled that out.” Rice also states, “The overwhelming bulk of the evidence was that this was an attack that was likely to take place overseas.”[MSNBC, 5/17/02] Slate compares this with the title of Bush's August 6 briefing: “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US,” and awards Rice the “Whopper of the Week.”[Slate, 5/23/02] Rice later concedes that “somebody did imagine it” but says she didn't know about such intelligence until well after this conference. [AP, 9/21/02] Which is worse: Rice lying again about not knowing such intelligence, or someone in her position actually not knowing such intelligence?
          

May 16, 2002

       In the wake of new information on what Bush knew (see May 15, 2002), Vice President Cheney states: “my Democratic friends in Congress … need to be very cautious not to seek political advantage by making incendiary suggestions, as were made by some today, that the White House had advance information that would have prevented the tragic attacks of 9/11.” He calls such criticism “thoroughly irresponsible … in time of war” and states that any serious probe of 9/11 foreknowledge would be tantamount to giving “aid and comfort” to the enemy. [Washington Post 5/17/02 (C)]
          

May 16, 2002 (C)

       In response to all of the revelations about what was known before 9/11 (see May 15, 2002), the major airlines hold a press conference saying they were never warned of a specific hijacking threat, and were not told to tighten security. For instance, an American Airlines spokesman states the airline “received no specific information from the US government advising the carrier of a potential terrorist hijacking in the United States in the months prior to Sept. 11, 2001. American receives FAA security information bulletins periodically, but the bulletins were extremely general in nature and did not identify a specific threat or recommend any specific security enhancements.” [Miami Herald, 5/17/02] The FAA gave 15 warnings to the airlines between January and August 2001, but about one general security warning a month had been common for a long time. [CNN, 5/17/02] Even a government official called these warnings “standard fare.” [Miami Herald 5/17/02]
          

May 17, 2002

       CBS anchorman Dan Rather tells the BBC that he and other journalists haven't been properly investigating since 9/11. He says: “There was a time in South Africa that people would put flaming tires around people's necks if they dissented. And in some ways the fear is that you will be necklaced here, you will have a flaming tire of lack of patriotism put around your neck. Now it is that fear that keeps journalists from asking the toughest of the tough questions.” [Guardian 5/17/02]
          

May 20-24, 2002

       The Bush administration issues a remarkable series of terror warnings that many believe are politically motivated. Vice President Cheney warns it is “not a matter of if, but when” al-Qaeda will next attack the US. [CNN, 5/20/02] Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge says the same thing. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld says terrorists will “inevitably” obtain weapons of mass destruction. FBI Director Mueller says more suicide bombings are “inevitable.” [Washington Post, 5/22/02] Authorities also issue separate warnings that al-Qaeda terrorists might target apartment buildings nationwide, banks, rail and transit systems, the Statue of Liberty, and the Brooklyn Bridge. USA Today titles an article, “Some Question Motives Behind Series of Alerts.” [USA Today, 5/24/02] David Martin, CBS's national security correspondent, says, “Right now they're putting out all these warnings to change the subject from what was known prior to September 11 to what is known now.” [Washington Post, 5/27/02] Remarkably, even Press Secretary Ari Fleischer says the alerts were issued “as a result of all the controversy that took place last week”(see May 15, 2002 and May 21, 2002). [Village Voice, 5/23/02, Washington Times, 5/22/02] Time notes, “Though uncorroborated and vague, the terror alerts were a political godsend for an Administration trying to fend off a bruising bipartisan inquiry into its handling of the terrorist chatter last summer. After the wave of warnings, the Democratic clamor for an investigation into the government's mistakes subsided.” [Time 5/27/02]
          

May 21-22, 2002

      
Walid Arkeh
Walid Arkeh is a prisoner in Florida who claims to have told the FBI in August 2001 that al-Qaeda was likely to attack the WTC and other targets soon. At the time, his information was dismissed (see August 21, 2001). After 9/11, his warning is still not taken seriously by the local FBI, but on May 21 he is interviewed by a different group of FBI agents in New York City. They begin by asking him what the three al-Qaeda prisoners he befriended told him of the 1998 US embassy bombings (see August 7, 1998). When Arkeh mentions he has information about 9/11 that he told the FBI before 9/11, the agents are stunned. One says to him: “Let me tell you something. If you know what happened in New York, we are all in deep shit. We are in deep trouble.” He tells them that these prisoners hinted that the WTC would be attacked, and targets in Washington were mentioned as well. However, they did not tell him a date or that airplanes would be used. The New York FBI later informs him that they found his information credible. [Orlando Sentinel 10/30/02] Arkeh is later deported to Jordan despite a Responsible Cooperators Program promising visas to those who provided important terrorist information. It is unclear if even one person has been given rewards through this program. [Orlando Sentinel 11/10/02; Orlando Sentinel 1/11/03; Orlando Sentinel 3/12/03]
          

May 21, 2002 (C)

       Abdulla Noman, a former employee of the US consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, where 15 of the 19 9/11 hijackers got their visas, says that he took money and gifts to provide fraudulent visas to foreigners. He pleads guilty and is convicted. About 50 to 100 visas were improperly issued by Noman from September 1996 until November 2001, when he was arrested. However, a former visa officer in Jeddah, Michael Springmann, has claimed in the past that the Jeddah office was notorious for purposefully giving visas to terrorists to train in the US. (see September 1987-March 1989). [AP, 5/21/02] If this is true, then was Noman “the fall guy” to provide a cover story?
          

May 21-24, 2002

       A New York Times editorial says it's time to “light a fire under the FBI in its investigation of the anthrax case. Experts in the bioterror field are already buzzing about a handful of individuals who had the ability, access and motive to send the anthrax.” [New York Times 5/24/02] Similarly, the Guardian suggests that the FBI investigation is moving deliberately slow because the federal authorities have something to hide, stating “there is surely a point after which incompetence becomes an insufficient explanation for failure.” [Guardian 5/21/02]
          

May 21, 2002

       Minnesota FBI agent Coleen Rowley, upset with what she considers lying from FBI Director Mueller and others in the FBI about the handling of the Moussaoui case, makes public a long memo she's written about the topic (previously discussed, see August 28, 2001 (D), and see the memo here: [Time, 5/21/02]). She also applies for whistleblower protection. Time magazine calls the memo a “colossal indictment of our chief law-enforcement agency's neglect” and says it “raises serious doubts about whether the FBI is capable of protecting the public—and whether it still deserves the public's trust.” [Time 5/27/02] After 9/11 Mueller made statements such as “There were no warning signs that I'm aware of that would indicate this type of operation in the country”(see September 14, 2001 (F)). Coleen Rowley and other Minnesota FBI agents “immediately sought to reach [Mueller's] office through an assortment of higher-level FBI [headquarters] contacts, in order to quickly make [him] aware of the background of the Moussaoui investigation and forewarn [him] so that [his] public statements could be accordingly modified,” yet Mueller continued to make similar comments, including in a Senate hearing on May 8, 2002. [Time, 5/21/02, New York Times, 5/30/02] Finally, after Rowley's memo becomes public, Mueller states, “I cannot say for sure that there wasn't a possibility we could have come across some lead that would have led us to the hijackers.” He also admits: “I have made mistakes occasionally in my public comments based on information or a lack of information that I subsequently got.” [New York Times 5/30/02] Time magazine later names Rowley one of three “Persons of the Year” for 2002, along with fellow whistleblowers Cynthia Cooper of Worldcom and Sherron Watkins of Enron. [Time 12/22/02; Time 12/22/02]
          

May 22, 2002

       At least half of the 48 Muslim radicals linked to terrorist plots in the US since 1993 manipulated or violated immigration laws to enter this country and then stay here. Even when the terrorists did little to hide violations of visa requirements or other laws, INS officials failed to enforce the laws or to deport the offenders. The terrorists used a variety of methods. At the time they committed their crimes, 12 of the 48 were illegal immigrants. At least five others had lived in the US illegally, and four others had committed significant immigration violations. Others were here legally but should have been rejected for visas because they fit US immigration profiles of people who are likely to overstay their visas. [USA Today, 5/22/02] Experts later strongly suggest that the visa applications for all 15 of the Saudi Arabian 9/11 hijackers should have been rejected due to numerous irregularities (see October 23, 2002).
          

May 23, 2002

       President Bush says he is opposed to establishing a special, 9/11 Commission to probe how the government dealt with terror warnings before 9/11. [CBS, 5/23/02] He later changes his stance in the face of overwhelming support for the idea (see September 20, 2002), and then sabotages an agreement that Congress had reached to establish the commission (see October 10, 2002).
          

May 27, 2002

       The New Yorker reports that a senior FBI official acknowledges there has been “no breakthrough” in establishing how the 9/11 suicide teams were organized and how they operated. Additionally, none of the thousands of pages of documents and computer hard drives captured in Afghanistan has enabled investigators to broaden their understanding of how the attack occurred, or even to bring an indictment of a conspirator. [New Yorker 5/27/02]
          

Late May 2002

       A memo written by a Phoenix FBI agent Ken Williams in July 2001 (see July 10, 2001), which warned that Middle Eastern terrorists might be training at US flight schools, is finally received by the FAA—weeks after it was recounted in news reports. [Washington Post 10/2/02]
          

May 30, 2002

       FBI Agent Robert Wright announces he is suing the FBI over a publishing ban. He has written a book but the FBI won't allow him to show it to anyone. He delivers a tearful press conference at the National Press Club describing his lawsuit against the FBI for deliberately curtailing investigations that might have prevented the 9/11 attacks. Unfortunately he has been ordered to not reveal specifics publicly. [Fox News 5/30/02] Wright claims the FBI shut down his 1998 criminal probe into alleged terrorist-training camps in Chicago and Kansas City (see October 1998). He uses words like “prevented,” “thwarted,” “obstructed,” “threatened,” “intimidated,”and “retaliation” to describe the actions of his superiors in blocking his attempts to shut off money flows to al-Qaeda, Hamas and other terrorist groups. He also alleges that for years the US was training Hamas terrorists to make car bombs to use against Israel, one of the US's closest allies (see also June 9, 2001 and August 9, 2002 (C)). [LA Weekly, 8/2/02] [FTW]
          

May 30, 2002 (B)

       Afghanistan's interim leader, Hamid Karzai, Turkmenistan's President Niyazov, and Pakistani President Musharraf meet in Islamabad and sign a memorandum of understanding on the trans-Afghanistan gas pipeline project. [Alexander's Gas and Oil Connections, 6/8/02, Dawn, 5/31/02] FTWThe agreement is finalized by the end of the year (see December 27, 2002).
          

May 30, 2002 (C)

       Attorney General Ashcroft relaxes decades-old rules limiting government agents from monitoring domestic religious and political groups. Now, FBI agents can attend political rallies or religious meetings without evidence of a crime or advance approval from superiors. The new rules also permit the FBI to broadly search or monitor the internet for evidence of criminal activity without having any tips or leads that a specific criminal act has been committed. [Philadelphia Inquirer 5/31/02]
          

May 31, 2002

       At some point prior to this date, when asked why the August 6, 2001 memo read by Bush on al-Qaeda has not been released (see August 6, 2001), Vice President Cheney calls the CIA memo just a “rehash” containing nothing new or interesting. But why Congress should not see it, Cheney says, “because it contains the most sensitive sources and methods. It's the family jewels.”[] How can this “rehash” of “jewels” be simultaneously worthless and full of sensitive information?
          

June 1, 2002

       Memphis, Tennessee, medical examiner O.C. Smith is attacked with chemical spray, bound with barbed wire, and left lying in a nearby parking lot with a bomb tied to his body. He is rescued several hours later. In recent months, Smith has been working on two interesting cases. One is the death of Harvard University microbiologist Don Wiley, who supposedly fell from a Memphis bridge in December (see November 16, 2001). He also helped identify the body of Katherine Smith, a state driver's license examiner who was found burned beyond recognition in February 2002, a day before a hearing on federal charges of helping five Middle Eastern men obtain fake driver's licenses (see February 10, 2002). Adding to the mystery, Smith had received a series of death threat letters early in 2001. [AP, 6/4/02] Perhaps it's all coincidence, but the events around O.C. Smith, Katherine Smith and Don Wiley seem to tie 9/11 and the rash of microbiologist deaths together in some inexplicable way. If someone wanted O.C. Smith dead, why didn't they just kill him instead of attacking him in such a strange way and then leaving him to live? Was this, and the earlier bomb attack against his office (see March 13, 2002), meant as a warning?
          

June 1, 2002 (B)

       In a speech, Bush announced a new US policy of preemptive attacks: “If we wait for threats to fully materialize we will have waited too long. We must take the battle to the enemy, disrupt his plans and confront the worst threats before they emerge.” [New York Times, 6/2/02] This preemptive strategy is included in a defensive strategic paper the next month (see July 13, 2002), and formally announced in September 2002. In all these developments, the media fails to notice that this preemptive policy was the fulfillment of a vision first articulated in Bush Sr.'s administration (see November 9, 1989 and March 8, 1992), and later pushed by the influential Project for the New American Century think tank (see June 3, 1997). [New York Times 9/20/02; Washington Post 9/21/02; Guardian 9/21/02]
          

June 2002

      
Rajaa Gulum Abbas holding a stinger missile, secretly recorded in a sting operation in August 1999.
The US secretly indicts Rajaa Gulum Abbas and Abdul Malik for attempting to buy $32 million in Stinger missiles and other military weaponry in an undercover arms-dealing investigation. However, a US official states that Abbas is an alleged member of the ISI, and is thought to have ties to Middle East terrorist groups and arms-trafficking operations. He also appears to have foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks (see July 14, 1999). Abdul Malik is said to be Abbas's money man. Abdul Malik is not related to Mohammed Malik, another Pakistani targeted by the undercover operation. The chief US informant in the case, Randy Glass, says that both men also have clear ties to al-Qaeda, and the arms were going to be funneled to al-Qaeda and used against American targets. [Palm Beach Post 3/20/03; South Florida Sun-Sentinel 3/20/03] The indictment is not revealed until March 2003; both men still remain missing and are presumed to be in Pakistan. The US says it is still working on capturing and extraditing Abbas and Malik. [MSNBC, 3/18/03] NBC seems to have no trouble reaching Abbas in Pakistan by telephone. [MSNBC 8/2/02; MSNBC 3/18/03] The indictment “makes no mention of Pakistan, any ties to Afghanistan's former Taliban regime or the ultimate destination of the weapons.” [Palm Beach Post, 3/20/03] In other court cases resulting from this sting, all mentions of Pakistan have been removed (see June 12, 2001).
          

June 3, 2002

       Former FBI Deputy Director Weldon Kennedy states: “Even in the [Zacarias] Moussaoui case, there's lots of uproar over the fact that the—there was a failure to obtain a warrant to search his computer. Well, the facts now are that warrant was ultimately obtained. The computer was searched and guess what? There was nothing significant on there pertaining to 9/11.” [CNN, 6/3/02] Three days later, The Washington Post reports: “Amid the latest revelations about FBI and CIA lapses prior to the Sept. 11 attacks, congressional investigators say it is now clear that the evidence that lay unexamined in Zacarias Moussaoui's possession was even more valuable than previously believed. A notebook and correspondence of Moussaoui's not only appears to link him to the main hijacking cell in Hamburg, Germany, but also to an al-Qaeda associate in Malaysia whose activities were monitored by the CIA more than a year before the terror attacks on New York and Washington.” [Washington Post, 6/6/02] Slate magazine later gives Kennedy the “Whopper of the Week” award for his comment. [Slate 6/7/02]
          

June 3, 2002 (B)

       A rare follow-up article about inside trading based on 9/11 foreknowledge confirms that numerous inquiries in the US and around the world are still ongoing (see for instance, Early September 2001 (I), Early September 2001 (J), Early September 2001 (K), Early September 2001 (L), Early September 2001 (M) and September 6-10, 2001). However, “all are treating these inquiries as if they were state secrets.” The author speculates: “The silence from the investigating camps could mean any of several things: Either terrorists are responsible for the puts on the airline stocks; others besides terrorists had foreknowledge; the puts were just lucky bets by credible investors; or, there is nothing whatsoever to support the insider-trading rumors.” [Insight 6/3/02]
          

June 3, 2002 (C)

      
Stanley Hilton.
San Francisco attorney Stanley Hilton files a $7 billion lawsuit against President Bush and other government officials, claiming that they allowed the 9/11 attacks to occur. Hilton is filing a class action suit on behalf of the families of 14 victims of 9/11. [San Francisco Examiner, 6/11/02] His suit names as defendants: President Bush, Vice President Cheney, National Security Adviser Rice, Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, Attorney General Ashcroft, FBI Director Mueller, Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, and the US government generally. [Stanley Hilton Suit, 6/3/02] While the suit has gotten virtually no press coverage, an interview in March 2003 shows that his suit is still ongoing. [Alex Jones Show 3/11/03]
          

June 4, 2002 (C)

       Air Force Lt. Col. Steve Butler is suspended from his post at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California and is told he could face a court martial for writing a letter to a local newspaper calling President Bush a “joke” and accusing him of allowing the 9/11 attacks to happen. The military prohibits public criticism of superiors. [BBC, 6/5/02, see the letter here: Monterey County Herald, 6/5/02] What is not reported is that he may have had unique knowledge about 9/11: A hijacker named Saeed Alghamdi trained at the Defense Language Institute and Butler was Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs there (note that this is not the same person as the Steven Butler who later testifies before the 9/11 Congressional inquiry (see October 9, 2002)) . [Gannett News Service, 9/17/01] Later in the month the Air Force announces “the matter is resolved”and Butler will not face a court-martial but it is unknown if he faced a lesser punishment. [Knight Ridder, 6/14/02] [FTW]
          

June 4, 2002 (B)

       For the first time, Bush concedes that his intelligence agencies didn't do the best job: “In terms of whether or not the FBI and the CIA were communicating properly, I think it is clear that they weren't.” [London Times, 6/5/02] However, in an address to the nation three days later, President Bush states, “Based on everything I've seen, I do not believe anyone could have prevented the horror of September the 11th.” [Sydney Morning Herald, 6/8/02] Days earlier, Newsweek reports that the FBI have prepared a detailed chart showing how agents could have uncovered the terrorist plot if the CIA been told them what it knew about the hijackers Almihdhar and Alhazmi sooner. One FBI official says, “There's no question we could have tied all 19 hijackers together.”[Newsweek, 6/2/02] FBI Director Mueller denies the existence of such a chart. Attorney General Ashcroft also says it is unlikely better intelligence could have stopped the attacks. [Washington Post 6/3/02]
          

June 4, 2002

      
The photo of Mohammed on the right has been flipped to better compare it with the photo on the left. Reporter Yosri Fouda says that the photo on the right is an “electronically enhanced version” of the photo on the left. [
Khalid Shaikh Mohammed is publicly identified as the “mastermind” behind the 9/11 attacks. He is believed to have arranged the logistics while on the run in Germany, Pakistan and Afghanistan. In 1996 he had been secretly indicted in the US for his role in Operation Bojinka (see January 6, 1995 and January-May 1996), and the US began offering a $2 million reward for his capture in 1998, which increased to $25 million in December 2001. [, New York Times, 6/5/02] There are conflicting accounts on how much US investigators knew about Mohammed before 9/11 (see Mid-1996-September 11, 2001). Mohammed is Pakistani (thought born in Kuwait [CBS, 6/5/02]) and a relative of Ramzi Yousef, the bomber of the WTC in 1993. [New York Times 6/5/02] Though not widely reported, Josef Bodansky, the director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare, says Mohammed also has ties to the ISI, and they had acted to shield him in the past. Bodansky claims Mohammed is the one who orders Pearl's murder (see December 24, 2001-January 23, 2002). [UPI, 9/30/02] If the 9/11 mastermind has ties to the ISI, and Saeed Shaikh, an agent of the ISI, helped train the hijackers (see January 1, 2000-September 11, 2001) and wired money to the 9/11 hijackers on the orders of ISI Director Lt. Gen. Mahmood Ahmed (see Early August 2001 (D)), and other ISI agents had foreknowledge of the 9/11 attacks in 1999 (see July 14, 1999), why has no mainstream media outlet ever suggested that the ISI could have been behind the 9/11 attacks? Mohammed is apparently captured in March 2003, if not earlier (see March 1, 2003).
          

June 10, 2002

      
Jose Padilla.
Attorney General Ashcroft announces the arrest of Abdullah al-Mujahir, a.k.a. Jose Padilla. He claims that Padilla was part of an al-Qaeda plot to detonate a radioactive “dirty bomb” in a US city, and supposedly Padilla was scouting bomb targets when arrested. Padilla, a US citizen, is being held as an “enemy combatant,” allowing him to be held indefinitely. [Guardian 6/11/02, PBS Newshour, 6/11/02] But almost immediately, doubts grow about this story. The London Times says that it is “beyond dispute” that the timing of the announcement of his arrest was “politically inspired.” Padilla was actually arrested a month earlier, on May 8. [London Times 6/13/02] It is widely believed that Ashcroft made the arrest announcement “only to divert attention from Intelligence Committee inquiries into the FBI and CIA handling of 9/11.” [Village Voice 6/12/02; Independent 6/12/02; BBC 6/13/02; Washington Post 6/13/03] Bush soon privately chastises Ashcroft for overstating claims about Padilla. [Guardian, 8/15/02] The government attorneys apparently could not get an indictment out of a New York grand jury and, rather than let him go, made Padilla an enemy combatant. [Village Voice, 6/12/02] It later comes out that the FBI found no evidence that he was preparing a dirty bomb attack and little evidence to suggest that he had any support from al-Qaeda, or any ties to al-Qaeda cells in the US. Yet the Justice Department maintains that its view of Padilla “remains unchanged,” and that he is a “serious and continuing threat.” [Guardian, 8/15/02] Because Padilla is a US citizen, he cannot be tried in a military court. So apparently he will simply be held indefinitely. It is pointed out that any American could be declared an enemy combatant and never tried or have that status questioned. [San Francisco Chronicle, 6/11/02, Washington Post, 6/11/02] The Washington Post says, “If that's the case, nobody's constitutional rights are safe.” [Washington Post, 6/11/02] Despite the evidence that Padilla's case is grossly overstated, the government won't even allow him access to a lawyer (see December 4, 2002 (B) and March 11, 2003).
          
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