Thursday, March 1, 2007


Robert Paulsen
Compiled From the Research by Posters on “The Plame Indictment Threads” From 2004 And Other Investigative Threads From 2004 to 2007

Overview of Contents

Part One: Recap and Update
A. 1st edition recap
B. Plame related news update

Part Two: Office of Special Plans
A. CTEG - The "Wurmser-Maloof" project
B. WMD planting story

Part Three: Ghorbanifar & Ledeen: Iran/Contra Redux
A. Ghorbanifar sells phony Iran/Iraq WMD story
B. Ghorbanifar/Ledeen meeting: Dec. 2001 in Rome
C. Ledeen's history with Italian intelligence

Part Four: AIPAC Spy Scandal
A. Franklin guilty of espionage
B. Other suspected neo-con spies for Israel
C. Contents of the documents

Part Five: Niger Forgeries
A. Michael Ledeen
B. Duane Clarridge

Part Six: Sibel Edmonds
A. The Dickersons
B. 9/11 foreknowledge
C. Gag order & cover-up
D. The American-Turkish Council

Essentially, there is only one investigation – a very big one, an all-inclusive one. Completely by chance, I, a lowly translator, stumbled over one piece of it. But I can tell you there are a lot of people involved, a lot of ranking officials, and a lot of illegal activities that include multi-billion-dollar drug-smuggling operations, black-market nuclear sales to terrorists and unsavory regimes, you name it. And of course a lot of people from abroad are involved. It's massive. So to do this investigation, to really do it, they will have to look into everything… That's the beauty of it. You can start from the AIPAC angle. You can start from the Plame case. You can start from my case. They all end up going to the same place, and they revolve around the same nucleus of people. There may be a lot of them, but it is one group. And they are very dangerous for all of us.

-Sibel Edmonds

Part One: Recap & Update

This paper is intended as an update to the 1st edition of American Judas, and a deeper exploration of Dick Cheney’s links to the various aspects of the criminal cabal Sibel Edmonds refers to above.

To summarize, the focus of the 1st edition of American Judas was the role that Cheney played in blowing the cover of CIA agent Valerie Plame and her cover company, Brewster, Jennings & Associates. At the time of her outing in Robert Novak’s column on July 14, 2003, she was active in a sting operation that involved tracking the proliferation of WMD components.,8816,1101040705-658343,00.html One of the operations compromised by the leak involved the nuclear smuggling network of Pakistan’s chief nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan. Khan’s network, vast enough to be dubbed by IAEA chief Mohamed El Baradei a “nuclear Walmart”, was exposed via a CIA investigation into a company in Malaysia called Scomi connected with Bukhari Sayed Abu Tahir. George W. Bush described B.S.A. Tahir as the "chief financial officer and money-launderer" of A.Q.Khan's clandestine operations.

Could Cheney have had a financial relationship with the Nuclear Walmart, which would have provided a motive for exposing Plame’s operation? Only a full investigation would be able to prove conclusively whether the one unnamed American company implicated in A.Q. Khan’s network of supplying rogue nations seeking nuclear arms had any connection with the former CEO of Halliburton. But the 1st edition of American Judas went a long way in establishing how Cheney had more than enough motive. In fact, he covered up the fact that he knew about Khan’s proliferation network since 1989! This was done so as not to sacrifice the sale of the F-16 fighter planes to Islamabad, which was secretly equipped to deliver nuclear weapons. State sponsors of terror that were proven recipients of Cheney’s nuclear proliferation include Pakistan, Libya and possibly Iran.,,

Finally, the 1st edition explored through circumstantial evidence the possibility of how Halliburton might have profited from Khan’s network. A link was discovered between Halliburton’s subsidiary company Baroid and Scomi, the company B.S.A. Tahir (Khan’s chief financier) used to produce components for the centrifuge unit for the uranium enrichment program. The link was a company called Cognis., These links are not in and of themselves direct proof of the laundering of nuclear proliferation profits. But they are proof of a relationship between these companies sharing common goals, through which individuals involved in nuclear proliferation, and there were many in these companies, could operate their network covertly.

In the two and a half years since the research from “The Plame Indictment Threads” inspired me to write American Judas, much has happened regarding the investigation of the outing of Valerie Plame that has validated our findings. Though some were wary of the source reporting that one aspect of Plame’s work involved tracking the nuclear smuggling network of A.Q. Khan, this fact was corroborated by the research of Larisa Alexandrovna in 2006 that while Plame’s team was focused on Iran, they “would have come in contact with A.Q. Khan’s network”. Her research was confirmed in a report on MSNBC. The OUTING THE CIA papers by Mark G. Levey thoroughly document how and when Plame was tracking the Khan network., Through the ongoing trial of Lewis “Scooter” Libby, we have seen evidence presented that Cheney was deeply involved in the leak of Plame, even going so far as to write out what his former Chief of Staff Libby should say to Time reporter Matt Cooper. Libby learned about Plame from Cheney and even told an FBI agent that he may have talked of outing Plame with Cheney. In addition to this criminal trial, there is the upcoming civil suit by Joseph and Valerie Wilson against Dick Cheney, Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Karl Rove, Dick Armitage and John Does 1-9. Much has been publicized in the mainstream media about Armitage being the first to leak the identity of Valerie Plame to a reporter, Bob Woodward. Whether Armitage engaged in malicious or oblivious gossip is almost of secondary importance; our research proves Cheney was the ringleader who helped to instigate such a poisonous environment against the Ambassador, who publicly contradicted the WMD intelligence that helped mislead the nation into war, and his wife, who secretly tracked WMD proliferation, that by the time the dust settled, the leak of a CIA operative and her Counter-Proliferation Division (CPD) cover company could be reduced to such a trivial and tawdry affair that someone as high up the ladder as a Deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Karl Rove, could feel comfortable saying to MSNBC reporter Chris Matthews that Wilson’s wife is “fair game”. This poisonous environment was created initially through the machinations of the White House Iraq Group (WHIG) and the Office of Special Plans (OSP).

Part Two: The Office of Special Plans

“WHIG, and its intention to sell an unnecessary war to a shell-shocked public, is only half the story. The other half of the manipulative sales team could be found in the neighborhood occupied by the Department of Defense. The Office of Special Plans, or OSP, was created by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld specifically to second-guess and reinterpret intelligence data to justify war in Iraq. Think of it like baseball: the OSP pitched, and WHIG caught.

The OSP was on no government payroll and suffered no Congressional oversight. Their tainted information and interpretations overtopped the Iraq data being provided by the State Department and CIA. The OSP was able to accomplish this thanks to devoted patronage from high-ranking members of the administration, most prominently Vice-President Cheney.

The highest levels of the OSP were staffed by heavy-hitters like Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Douglas J. Feith and William Luti, a former Navy officer who worked for Cheney before joining the Pentagon. When the OSP wanted to intimidate analysts into shaping conclusions to fit the already-made war decision, Cheney went to CIA headquarters on unprecedented visits. Once there, he demanded "forward-leaning" interpretations of the evidence. When Cheney was unable to go to the CIA, his chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, went in his place.

That's it, right there. Mr. Libby may be a target of Mr. Fitzgerald, but no one should forget the trips Cheney personally made to Langley in order to wring war-supporting evidence out of the analysts. He went himself. His fingerprints are all over the scene”.

-William Rivers Pitt

The catching part of Mr. Pitt’s baseball analogy, WHIG, was set up by White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card in August of 2002 and chaired by Karl Rove in the wake of what has come to be known as the Downing Street Memo. Weeks earlier on July 23, George W. Bush perceptibly shifted in London by wanting to remove Saddam through military action justified by terror links and WMD. With the formation of WHIG, Bush could publicly proclaim his commitment to diplomatic solutions to Iraq through the UN, while WHIG would highlight his real intentions through the justifications set on Downing Street, couched in “smoking gun” and “mushroom cloud” metaphors. While these scare tactics easily cowed a Congress still shaken by the events of September 11 only one year earlier into giving Bush authority to attack Iraq if he felt it was warranted, the UN looked for proof. The IAEA found the opposite on March 7, 2003, when Dr. Mohammed El Baradei told the UN the documents of the purported sale of uranium from Niger to Iraq were forgeries. The following day, as Joseph Wilson describes in pages 325-327 of his book The Politics of Truth, a “workup” was done for the Office of the Vice President, the objective of which was to figure out how to discredit Wilson, who had already reported how phony the story in the Niger Forgeries was to the CIA the previous year.

So where exactly did the OSP get their “forward-leaning” intelligence on Iraq to pitch to WHIG? Certainly Doug Feith, who General Tommy Franks referred to as the “fucking stupidest guy on the planet”, couldn’t have interpreted it all. Instead, Feith allowed OSP to become an open, unfiltered conduit to the White House in some very provocative ways. One colorful example is that they forged close ties to a parallel, ad hoc intelligence operation inside Ariel Sharon's office in Israel specifically to bypass Mossad and provide the Bush administration with more alarmist reports on Saddam's Iraq than Mossad was prepared to authorize. It is believed they were responsible for reports in mid 2003 that the reason why the fictional WMD were missing was because they had been moved to Syria.,2763,999737,00.html But prior to the war in 2001, Feith needed people he could trust to sift through raw intelligence to shape the story that the inquisitive Cheney and OSP creators Rumsfeld and his deputy secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz wanted to hear.

The answer was to delegate the task to a loyal pair called the Counter Terrorism Evaluation Group (CTEG), or the “Wurmser-Maloof” project. Feith didn’t create this group all by himself; he had help recruiting one member by a Middle East specialist named Harold Rhode. This member was David Wurmser, the director of Middle East studies for the neo-conservative organization American Enterprise Institute. Together with F. Michael Maloof, a former aide to Richard Perle, they head a secret intelligence unit, though neither are intelligence professionals. This four- to five- person unit, a “B Team” commissioned by Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, use powerful computers and software to scan and sort already-analyzed documents and reports from the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and other agencies in an effort to consider possible interpretations and angles of analysis that these agencies may have missed due to deeply ingrained biases and out-of-date worldviews.

Perhaps Wurmser’s best qualification for this job, in the eyes of his neo-con associates, was the paper he wrote in 1996 titled "A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm". It advised then-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "to work closely with Turkey and Jordan to contain, destabilize, and roll-back" regional threats, help overthrow Saddam Hussein, and strike "Syrian military targets in Lebanon" and possibly in Syria proper. Coauthors of the report included his wife Meyrav Wurmser, Richard Perle and Doug Feith. In addition, Wurmser worked on a strategy document in 2000 published by Daniel Pipe's Middle East Forum and Ziad Abdelnour's U.S. Committee for a Free Lebanon that advocated a wider U.S. role in Lebanon. The study, "Ending Syria's Occupation of Lebanon: The U.S. Role?" called for the United States to force Syria from Lebanon and to disarm it of its alleged weapons of mass destruction. It also argued that "Syrian rule in Lebanon stands in direct opposition to American ideals" and criticized the United States for engaging rather than confronting the regime. Among the documents signers were several soon-to-be Bush administration figures, including Elliott Abrams, Douglas Feith, Michael Rubin, and Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky. Other signers included Richard Perle, Michael Ledeen, and Frank Gaffney. Finally, there was the paper he wrote in 2001 titled ‘Middle East "War:" How Did It Come to This?’ To quote Wurmser, "Israel and the United States should adopt a coordinated strategy to regain the initiative and reverse their regionwide strategic retreat. They should broaden the conflict to strike fatally, not merely disarm, the centers of radicalism in the region—the regimes of Damascus, Baghdad, Tripoli, Tehran, and Gaza. That would reestablish the recognition that fighting with either the United States or Israel is suicidal." Wurmser was moved into the State Department, and then became Middle East advisor to Dick Cheney.

Maloof, a former journalist, has had a hard time hanging on to a security clearance; a necessity if one is to analyze classified documents. He was stripped of his security clearance in November of 2003 for being associated with a Lebanese-American businessman under federal investigation for possible involvement in a gun-running scheme to Liberia, the West African nation embroiled in civil war. The businessman, Imad El Haje, approached Maloof on behalf of Syria to seek help in arranging a communications channel between Syria and the Defense Department. He was also reportedly involved in a bizarre scheme to broker contacts between Iraqi officials and the Pentagon, channeled through Richard Perle, in what one report called a 'rogue operation' outside official CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency channels. But what is even more intriguing, in light of Patrick Fitzgerald’s grand jury investigation into the leak of Valerie Plame’s CIA identity, is the previous occasion Maloof had his security clearance revoked in December 2001. The following April, James Risen reported in The New York Times, “Several intelligence professionals say he came under scrutiny because of suspicions that he had leaked classified information in the past to the news media, a charge that Mr. Maloof denies.” His connections with the news media is significant in light of this quote from Frank Foer of New York Magazine on Judy Miller: “In particular, Miller is said to have depended on a controversial neocon in Feith’s office named Michael Maloof.” This is the same Judy Miller that Fitzgerald charged with contempt of court who spent 85 days in jail for refusing to testify that Scooter Libby revealed Plame’s identity to her.

Yet in spite of all these shenanigans, Maloof remained on "special detail" to Feith until August 2004, three years after his security clearance was revoked. The result is that the OSP got what Cheney called “forward-leaning” interpretations of intelligence, or what others have called cooking the books. James Risen of the New York Times wrote that Wurmser, Feith and Maloof culled classified material, often uncorroborated CIA data, uncovering what Maloof calls 'tons of raw intelligence' that two were 'stunned' to find was not mentioned in CIA's finished reports. The CTEG saw new alliances among Islamic terrorists such as Shiites and Sunnis and secular Arab regimes and gave senior Bush administration figures conclusions connecting Iraq and al Qaeda, Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden. Some intelligence experts charge the CTEG had a secret agenda to justify war and was staffed with people handpicked by conservatives like Richard Perle to justify preordained conclusions. Patrick Lang says those brought in were not analysts but people who would deliver desired opinions; chart showing links between Feith, Maloof, Wurmser and Richard Perle, head of DoD intelligence Stephen Cambone, leader of Iraqi National Congress (INC) Ahmad Chalabi and top officials briefed by unit: Undersecretary of State John Bolton, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, CIA Dir George Tenet, national security adviser Stephen Hadley and Scooter Libby.

But above all, Dick Cheney was CTEG’s patron. He had the group present its material at the Office of the Vice President (OVP) and the National Security Council. He made frequent public remarks, drawing on CTEG conclusions, alleging an al-Qaeda/Saddam connection. Even after the 9/11 Commission delivered its verdict that there was no collaborative relationship between the two sides, Cheney announced that the evidence of the Bin Laden-Baghdad ties was “overwhelming”. John Hannah, a Cheney aide who became the Vice President’s national security adviser after Libby’s resignation, recycled some of the material into a draft of the speech Secretary of State Colin Powell was to give at the United Nations in February 2003 – a draft that Powell threw out, calling it “bullshit”. The link between OVP and OSP is William Luti. He had come to run the Pentagon's Near East and South Asia Affairs section (NESA) directly from the office of Vice President Cheney. According to Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, who was working at NESA in 2002, she recalls one meeting in which Luti, pressed to finish a report, told the staff, "I've got to get this over to 'Scooter' right away." She later found out that "Scooter" was none other than Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Cheney's chief of staff. According to Kwiatkowski, Cheney had direct ties through Luti into NESA/OSP, a connection that was highly unorthodox. "Never, ever, ever would a deputy undersecretary of Defense work directly on a project for the vice president," she says. "It was a little clue that we had an informal network into Vice President Cheney's office."

The fact that the OSP manipulated intelligence regarding imaginary alliances is no secret. As recently as February 9, 2007, the Department of Defense’s IG investigation concluded that the Pentagon manipulated intelligence in an effort to link Saddam with al-Qaeda. Nor was CTEG Feith’s only outlet within the OSP for propagandizing the war effort. There was also the Office of Strategic Influence (OSI), headed by Simon Worden but answering directly to Feith, whose ties to him go back to the Reagan administration. Their objective was to provide news items, possibly false ones, to foreign news organizations to influence public sentiment. This black propaganda was financed by the Rendon Group, which in addition to being paid close to $100 million by the CIA for work with the INC, has assisted in US military interventions in Argentina, Colombia, Iraq, Haiti, Kosovo, Panama and Zimbabwe. They staged PR events, like the fall of Saddam Hussein’s statue and employed people like Francis Brooke, who went on to become INC leader Chalabi’s chief assistant. Perhaps a more independent investigation might uncover other manipulations, such as how the books on the imaginary WMD were cooked. And once the invasion was initiated, how did they try to circumvent the non-existence of the “smoking gun”? Larisa Alexandrovna reported in Raw Story in January of 2006 two plans: the first was to have WMD planted in Iraq; the second was to invent a story that the uranium was moved to Iran.

The first plan also originated with a story based on truth but filled with invention. In 1991, Lieutenant Commander Michael “Scott” Speicher was shot down over Iraq during the first day of Operation Desert Storm. He was classified as Killed in Action (KIA) within a few months thereafter. Ahmad Chalabi claimed that Speicher was alive and being held as a prisoner of war in order to convince the administration to invade Iraq. Armed with this pretext, the Pentagon civilian leadership under the guidance of Stephen Cambone, appointed to lead Defense Department intelligence in March 2003, dispatched a series of “off book” missions out of the ultra-secretive Office of Special Plans (OSP). Task Force 20, a 40-man assault team, was tasked to secure the following in order of priority: fallen Navy pilot Scott Speicher, WMD and Saddam Hussein.

Following closely behind TF20 in the 75th Exploitation Task Force was Judy Miller. She had used Chalabi as a single source on information for her fictional WMD stories for the New York Times. Chalabi was instrumental in transmitting the erroneous claims of an Iraqi defector codenamed “Curveball” about mobile biological weapons laboratories that the administration used as part of its war rationale. In her quest to find the infamous WMD, to say Miller rubbed her military companions the wrong way would be a huge understatement. Military officials said she had an “imperious manner” and “nobody could stand her” and that “she’s lucky we didn’t shoot her”. Apparently while embedded with these soldiers, “she wore a uniform” and told them “she had an exclusive deal with the Pentagon”. “Judith was always issuing threats of either going to the New York Times or to the Secretary of Defense” and as a result, “she ended up almost hijacking the mission”. Perhaps a deeper investigation into this “journalist” might uncover whether these claims were based on a real Pentagon deal or if it was just bluster, like many of her WMD stories. It might also reveal just how close she was to another Iraq war critic, British scientist David Kelly. He disputed the validity of mobile weapons laboratories in Iraq, as well as the claim by British intelligence that Iraq could fire chemical and biological weapons within 45 minutes of such an order. Maybe if the Hutton Inquiry, which ruled that Kelly committed suicide July 17, 2003, (coincidentally just three days after Plame’s identity was revealed in Novak’s column) had questioned Miller under oath, we might have a greater understanding why one of the last e-mails he sent on the day of his untimely death was to her, and what Kelly might have meant when he mentioned “many dark actors playing games”.

But the real dark actors lie within the extra-legal and unapproved task force missions deployed in obscurity by OSP through the approval of Feith, Cambone and Stephen Hadley. Of most concern is an alleged off-book 4-5 man team that operated in the summer and through the fall of 2003. Most sources pointed to TF20 as the most likely to have spawned this clandestine force. This force interviewed many Iraqi intelligence and former intelligence officers in hopes of securing help with a “political WMD” problem, telling them that ‘Our President is in trouble. He went to war saying there are WMD and there are no WMD. What can we do? Can you help us?’ A source close to the UN Security Council said intelligence officers understood quickly what they were being asked to do and that the assumption was they were being asked to provide WMD in order for coalition forces to find them.

The possible involvement of TF20 in activity of questionable legality doesn’t end with the request for planted WMD. It continues after the creation of Task Force 121 from TF20. TF121 was aggressively trained by Israelis at Fort Bragg, North Carolina as an assassination squad. One of the planners behind this offensive was Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin.,2763,1102940,00.html Boykin is infamous for saying in reference to the War on Terror that “the enemy is a guy named Satan” and regarding an Islamic Somalian warlord, “I knew my God was bigger than his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol”. After such dubious training, what is TF121 known for accomplishing in Iraq? Abusing detainees throughout Iraq in secret interrogation facilities like Abu Ghraib with beatings that, according to an investigation by retired Col. Stuart A. Herrington, could “technically” be illegal. And while we’re talking about torture, Feith seems to have something to do with the Iraqi prison abuses of Abu Ghraib. A part from being behind the phony “intelligence” gathered on the alleged WMD of Saddam, and behind the supporting of Ahmad Chalabi, it was Feith’s office who “housed the future undersecretary for intelligence, Stephen Cambone, who facilitated the transfer of Maj Gen Geoffrey Miller, the commander of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp that houses suspected al-Qaeda and Taliban prisoners, to Abu Ghraib prison in the interests of extracting more intelligence from detainees.

Part Three: Ghorbanifar & Ledeen: Iran/Contra Redux

Since Plan A of having WMD planted by Iraqis for coalition forces to find failed in more ways than could possibly be expected, Plan B was intended, to paraphrase Patrick Fitzgerald’s description of Libby’s lying of his knowledge of Joseph Wilson’s wife, “to tell a story”. But this time, the storyteller was not Libby, or even Chalabi. Instead it is someone much darker from Iran/Contra infamy: Manucher Ghorbanifar. The story Ghorbanifar was trying to peddle, which detailed how an Iranian intelligence team infiltrated Iraq prior to the start of the war in March of 2003, and stole enriched uranium to use in their own nuclear weapons program, was part of an attempt to implicate both countries in a WMD plot. Though some, including Congressman Curt Weldon (R-PA) were taken in by this con, the CIA thoroughly investigated the story spun by “Ali”, believed to be either Ghorbanifar or his agent, a former in the Shah’s Iran and a secretary to Ghorbanifar, Fereidoun Mahdavi. Though Ali succeeded in leading the CIA through multiple wild goose chases trying to prove his claims in what turned out to be an attempt to extract large sums of money, he did not succeed in selling this story, which was found to be not credible.

To understand more completely how intricately woven the web of criminality is surrounding Ghorbanifar’s attempt to manipulate intelligence, it is necessary to understand how his history is connected with Michael Ledeen, and what a disturbing figure Ledeen is in his own right. Currently the main foreign policy advisor to Karl Rove and a fellow at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, Ledeen holds a Ph.D. in History and Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin. His peculiar attitude toward whether the end justifies the means is evident in one of the many books he has authored, titled: "Machiavelli on Modern Leadership: Why Machiavelli's Iron Rules Are as Timely and Important Today as Five Centuries Ago." He is a former employee of the Pentagon, the State Department and the National Security Council. As a consultant working with NSC head Robert McFarlane, he was involved in the transfer of arms to Iran during the Iran/Contra scandal. Ledeen acted as a go-between for Oliver North in the early stages of the Iran/Contra scandal, working with Israeli spy David Kimche to gain the release of US hostages in Beirut through an Iranian arms dealer, Manucher Ghorbanifar. Ghorbanifar then served as the medium between Oliver North and Iran in the Iran/Contra scandal.

But this would not be the last time Ledeen and Ghorbanifar would join forces. Both were involved in a controversial meeting in December 2001 in Rome. While some believe it was Ledeen who organized this meeting, Ledeen says that Hadley had authorized the trip. This would also implicate Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, then-National Security Advisor. "Hadley authorized it and he could not have done so without reporting it to his direct superior," said Ledeen. While the purpose of the meeting remains unclear, what is clear is that the OSP authorized the meeting without notifying any other agency, violating protocol. Ledeen was consulting for OSP when he and two other Americans we will examine in greater detail later were dispatched to Rome in 2001, but they did not notify the Rome CIA station chief or the U.S. Ambassador to Italy, Mel Sembler.
All of the players at this mysteriously secret meeting deserve closer inspection; it serves almost as the nexus point of convergence for many of the scandals perpetrated by the dangerous group Sibel Edmonds refers to in the opening quote of this paper. In addition to Ghorbanifar, there were a number of other Iranians, including a former senior member of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard who claimed to have information about dissident ranks within the Iranian security services. While the names of these Iranians have not been disclosed, two highly influential Italians have been identified as having attended the meeting. Nicolo Pollari, the head of Italy's military intelligence agency, SISMI, attended the meetings, as did the Italian Minister of Defense Antonio Martino, who is well-known in neoconservative circles in Washington.

If the significance of the presence of these Italians at the meeting is to be understood, beyond the fact that the meeting took place in Rome, it is important to know the dark and twisted history of Michael Ledeen’s connection with Italian intelligence dating back to the 1970’s. Ledeen was allegedly tied to the Italian P2 Masonic Lodge, a violent right wing group that was involved in a number of terrorists attacks in Italy in the 1970s and the 1980s. In the late 1970s, while P2 was doing its dirty work, Ledeen was working as a consultant to Italian intelligence on terrorism issues. The involvement of P2 through Operation Gladio in terror attacks was known as the Strategy of Tension. It was a campaign of false-flag terror in the late 1970s, waged by outright fascists who enjoyed the patronage of the CIA, the Mafia and far right elements of the Italian State. These were the Gladio Brigades and Licio Gelli's P2 Lodge, and they intended to discredit the increasingly popular Communist Party, and to ensure it would not take power, by staging terrorist acts in the name of the Left. Their campaign culminated in the Bologna train station bombing of 1980. In an Italian criminal court in 1985, Francesco Pazienza, SISMI agent and P2 member was judged guilty of political manipulation, forgery, and the protection of criminals and terrorists, among other offenses. Indeed, according to the findings of the court, Pazienza falsified information about the Bologna bombing in order to divert attention away from the real (right-wing) terrorists who had staged the attack. From Barbara Honegger's October Surprise: “When the Italian police raided (P2 Lodge founder) Gelli's home in March 1981, it was Michael Ledeen who, at the instigation of Alexander Haig and Henry Kissinger, offered to buy the list of 953 P2 members in an apparent attempt to keep it from becoming public. Henry Kissinger had also reportedly sent Ledeen to Italy to try to squash an investigation into his and Haig's involvement in the founding of P2. On the morning of August 2, 1980, a massive bomb since linked to Gelli...exploded in the waiting room of the central train station in Bologna, killing 81 people and injuring 200 others. General Santovito, the chief of Italy's military intelligence agency, SISMI, who was also reportedly a member of P2, testified in the wake of the bombing that it had been planned by the British-Swiss-American Montecarlo Comite, P2's "sister" organization based in Monaco. When P2 had come under increasing scrutiny in 1979, grandmaster Licio Gelli had reportedly made his base of operations the Montecarlo Comite.... Not surprisingly, reported members of the Montecarlo Comite are Gelli, Henry Kissinger, Alexander Haig and Michael Ledeen.”

Honegger’s research on the links between influential Americans and false flag terror attacks can be verified from a number of different sources. Aside from our government’s flirtation with perpetrating false flag attacks on Cuba in 1962 through Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Lyman Lemnitzer’s documented proposal Operation Northwoods, CIA founder Allen Dulles was one of the key people in instituting Operation Gladio, and most of Gladio’s operations were financed by the CIA. Declassified secret service papers reveal that Ted Shackley, deputy chief of the CIA station in Rome in the 1970's introduced the notorious Licio Gelli - head of the neo-fascist P2 masonic lodge and for years a fugitive in Argentina - to General Alexander Haig, then Nixon's chief of staff, and later, from 1974 to 79, NATO Supreme Commander. After meetings between Gelli, Italian military brass and CIA men in the embassy, Gladio was given renewed blessing - and more money – by Haig and the then head of the National Security Council, Henry Kissinger. In 1980, Ledeen and Shackley teamed up to provide "war games-type training" for European intelligence services, including Italy's intelligence service. Bologna bombing manipulator Pazienza even testified Ledeen received $120,000 from SISMI. While the CIA took a “dim view” of Ledeen and Shackley freelancing with foreign intelligence services, Ledeen's damage to Jimmy Carter's presidential campaign, in colloboration with Pazienza who was indicted (Ledeen was an unindicted co-conspirator) for extorting, using fraudulent means, a compromising relationship between the President’s brother Billy Carter and Moammar Khaddafi earned the appreciation of Alexander Haig and other prominent Republicans. Ledeen further aggravated the CIA by becoming an unofficial conduit between Haig and General Giuseppe Santovito, head of the Italian Military Service (SISMI). Though at least a thousand names are still secret, General Giuseppe Santovito is one of the 900 names that is listed of P2 members found in 1981. Not surprising, considering that control of Operation Gladio passed from NATO to SISMI in 1980.

Is this all just titillating history, or is there a link between this activity and the OSP engineered meeting in Rome in December 2001? The possibility of a link is certainly worth exploring in light of the fact that one of the Italians, Nicolo Pollari, is head of the organization (SISMI) last responsible for Operation Gladio, and the other Italian, Antonio Martino, is named on the infamous list of P2 members discovered in 1981. An even more intriguing question: is it possible Valerie Plame and her CPD cover company Brewster Jennings & Associates may have been tracking a false flag operation? Perhaps the OSP trying to have WMD planted for political purposes falls within that category. Or perhaps something darker was uncovered, along the lines of something similar to the Bologna train bombings of 1980? It is interesting to note as a prelude to investigating these questions that Ledeen has been emphatic about the December meeting he attended NOT being about Iraq, but Afghanistan and Iran, while Ghorbanifar says one of the things he discussed at the meeting was regime change in Iran. It’s interesting because Plame’s focus in WMD proliferation was Iran; the damage sustained by the CIA impaired their ability to adequately monitor nuclear proliferation on the level of efficiency and accuracy it had prior to the White House leak for up to 10 years. What exactly Plame and the CPD might have been tracking regarding Iran that grew out of the December 2001 Rome meeting can be examined more closely by focusing on the relationships and activities of the other two Americans besides Ledeen who attended the meeting: Harold Rhode and Larry Franklin.

Harold Rhode was mentioned earlier in this paper as being responsible for recruiting David Wurmser to head the CTEG. He worked at the Pentagon in the Office of Net Assessment, an “in-house Pentagon think tank” under fellow neo-con Andrew Marshall. During their time there in 2001 and 2002, they helped purge career Defense officials considered not sufficiently neo-con enough. Not only did he attend the December 2001 meeting in Rome, but met again with Ghorbanifar in Paris with Larry Franklin in June of 2002. While shrouded in secrecy like the Rome meeting before, it is believed they may have discussed the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK), a US designated terrorist group in Iran. He once described himself as Deputy Secretary of State Paul Wolfowitz's chief adviser on Islam and is a protégé of Michael Ledeen. Rhode also acted as a liaison between Feith in the OSP and Ahmad Chalabi before the invasion of Iraq, then became an advisor to Chalabi after the invasion in mid-2003. Both Rhode and Franklin worked for Feith in the Office of Special Plans. And there may be one more thing these men have in common: a bad habit of passing classified information to Israel and Iran. Rhode is under investigation for charges, while Franklin has already pled guilty to passing on a classified Presidential Directive, and other sensitive documents pertaining to US deliberations on foreign policy regarding Iran, to a powerful pro-Israel lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), who in turn provided the information to Israel in what has become known as the AIPAC spy scandal.

Part Four: AIPAC Spy Scandal

On August 27, 2004, CBS News broke a story about an FBI investigation into a possible spy in the US Department of Defense working for Israel. The story reported that the FBI had uncovered a spy working as a policy analyst under Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith and then Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz. He was later identified as Lawrence Franklin, who had previously served as an attaché at the US embassy in Israel and was one of two mid-level Pentagon officials in the Office of the Secretary of Defense responsible for Iran policy in the office's Northern Gulf directorate. On August 30, 2004, Israeli officials admitted that Franklin had met repeatedly with Naor Gilon, head of the political department at the Israeli Embassy in Washington and a specialist on Iran's nuclear programs. Gilon was under FBI surveillance and Franklin only became a target after these meetings. On May 3, 2005, the FBI filed criminal charges against Franklin. The complaint alleges that, at a June 26, 2003 lunch, Franklin disclosed classified national defense information related to potential attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq to Steve Rosen, AIPAC's then-policy director, and Keith Weissman, a senior Iran analyst with AIPAC, while at the Tivoli Restaurant in Arlington, Virginia.

On August 4, a federal grand jury indicted Franklin on five charges of violating the Espionage Act of 1917. This consisted of one count of conspiracy to communicate national defense information to people not entitled to receive it, three counts of communicating national defense information to people not entitled to receive it and one count of conspiring to communicate national defense information to an agent of a foreign government. Rosen was further charged with one count each of the first two, and Weissman with one count of the first charge. The indictment revealed that the investigation had been going on since 1999. Franklin plead guilty to the three conspiracy counts on October 5, explaining that he had shared his frustrations over U.S. Iran policy with the other two defendants regularly in 2002 and later passed documents he knew were classified to them in the hope they could get them to employees of the National Security Council who might be able to help force a harder line. He also passed other classified information along to an Israeli official concerning weapons testing and military activities in Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries. In return, he said, the Israeli official told him far more. Franklin stated that he knew some of the documents he passed along could be used to the detriment of U.S. national security interests. On January 20, 2006, Judge T.S. Ellis, III sentenced Franklin to 12 years and 7 months in prison sentence and a $10,000 fine for passing classified information to a pro-Israel lobby group and an Israeli diplomat. In August, he denied Weissman and Rosen's motion to dismiss their indictment on the grounds that the government could still prosecute and punish those who retransmitted classified information regardless of whether they had a security clearance or not, an interpretation of the Espionage Act that could have wide-reaching implications if it were allowed to become legal precedent. This was done in spite of the efforts of defense lawyers, who tried to excuse their clients actions by claiming that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice leaked national defense information to a pro-Israel lobbyist in the same manner that Franklin did. While the defense’s attempt to highlight this as an example of backchannel exchanges that are part and parcel of how Washington works failed to persuade Judge Ellis to dismiss the case, in light of Ledeen’s implication that Rice approved of Hadley authorizing the December 2001 Rome meeting between Franklin and Ghorbanifar, this might turn out to be a Pandora’s Box if the defense chooses to open it when Weissman and Rosen’s trial occurs later this year.

This scandal appears to be part of a much broader set of FBI and Pentagon investigations of close collaboration between prominent U.S. neo-conservatives and Israel dating back some 30 years, including Doug Feith, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle and Michael Ledeen. While Feith served as a Middle East analyst in the National Security Council in the administration of former President Ronald Reagan (1981–89), he was summarily removed from that position in March 1982 because he had been the object of a FBI inquiry into whether he had provided classified material to an official of the Israeli embassy in Washington. In 1970, one year after he was hired by Senator Henry "Scoop" Jackson, an FBI wiretap authorized for the Israeli Embassy picked up Perle discussing classified information with an embassy official, while Wolfowitz was investigated in 1978 for providing a classified document on the proposed sale of a U.S. weapons system to an Arab government to an Israeli official via an AIPAC staffer. Finally, there is the story of how in 1983, on the recommendation of Perle, Ledeen was hired at the Department of Defense as a consultant on terrorism. His immediate supervisor was the Principle Assistant Secretary for International Security Affairs, Noel Koch. Early in their work together, Koch noticed with concern Ledeen's habit of stopping by in his (Koch's) outer office to read classified materials. When the two of them took a trip to Italy, Koch learned from the CIA station there that when Ledeen had lived in Rome previously, as correspondent for The New Republic, he'd been carried in Agency files as an agent of influence of a foreign government: Israel. Some time after their return from the trip, Ledeen approached his boss with a request for his assistance in obtaining two highly classified CIA reports which he said were held by the FBI. He'd hand written on a piece of paper the identifying "alpha numeric designators". These identifiers were as highly classified as the reports themselves, which raised in Koch's mind the question of who had provided them to Ledeen if he hadn't the clearances to obtain them himself. Koch immediately told his executive assistant that Ledeen was to have no further access to classified materials in the office, and Ledeen just ceased coming to "work".

What could Franklin have passed along that, as he stated, could be used to the detriment of U.S. national security interests? One Pentagon office concerned with the transfer of sensitive military and dual-use technologies has been examining the acquisition, modification and sales of key hi-tech military equipment by Israel obtained from the United States, in some cases with the help of prominent neo-conservatives who were then serving in the government. Selling dual-use technologies is exactly what Halliburton was fined for in 1995 when, under Dick Cheney’s leadership, they sold equipment which could be used to detonate nuclear weapons to Libya. But Pentagon investigators are examining a possibility equally as sinister in the AIPAC spy scandal: that a powerful case-management software called PROMIS has been sold by Israel – which in the last 20 years has become a top exporter of the world's most sophisticated hi-tech information and weapons technology – or by Israeli middlemen, to Russia, China and other potential U.S. strategic rivals. Some of it has also found its way onto the black market, where terrorist groups – possibly including al-Qaeda – obtained bootlegged copies. A modified version of the software, which is used to monitor and track files on a multitude of databases, is believed to have been acquired by al-Qaeda on the black market in the late 1990s, possibly facilitating the group's global banking and money-laundering schemes, according to a Washington Times story of June 2001. According to one source, Pentagon investigators believe it possible that al-Qaeda used the software to spy on various U.S. agencies that could have detected or foiled the Sep. 11, 2001 attack.

Franklin also admitted passing documents he knew were classified in the hopes of getting them read by employees of the NSC so they might be able to help force a harder line on Iran. What might have been in there that would have been so convincing? The FBI suspects that secret US intelligence on Iranian weapons of mass destruction programs was leaked to AIPAC and the Israelis on the one hand, and to Ahmad Chalabi on the other. Chalabi in turn is suspected of passing the information on to Tehran, playing the role of double agent. There is strong circumstantial evidence that there was a behind-the-scenes connection between Chalabi and the Israelis. That is, the information circuit may have been ingrown among the neo-conservatives, the Israelis and Chalabi's people. It should be noted that Chalabi, the neo-cons, and Israel's Likud Party were allied in wanting to get up a US war against Iraq. But they were divided on the next stage, which was to get Washington to attack Iran, as well. Chalabi hates Saddam, but as an Iraqi Shiite has strong ties to Tehran, so he was not actually on board with Stage Two, and may have helped derail it, for which he is now hated in some neo-con circles. Considering Judy Miller’s ties to Chalabi, it’s not surprising that she has been described as the “Unnamed Woman” in the AIPAC spy scandal.

It is clear the neo-cons have had plans for Iran, with or without Chalabi’s help. Even during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq, Undersecretary of State John Bolton was credited with saying, “Real men want to go to Iran”. On May 30, 2003, the Pentagon was reported to be advocating massive covert action to overthrow Iran’s ayatollahs. Indicating they would like to use the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq (MEK), though the State Department had them on their terrorist list, Feith went on the record arguing that the MEK had not targeted Americans since the 1970s and was only put on the terror list in 1996 by President Clinton to improve Iran relations. Subsequently, in the spring of 2006, the MEK was committing acts of violence in Iran in hopes of staging an insurgency among the Iranian Sunni population. They were being used by the Pentagon to do this in a plan made by Rumsfeld under pressure from Cheney. (Yet another example of what former Secretary of State Colin Powell’s Chief of Staff Lawrence Wilkerson describes as the “Oval Office Cabal” headed by Cheney. The crazy plan was carried out by Stephen Cambone, which consisted of him making them swear an oath to democracy and resign the MEK. He then incorporated them into their special unit and trained them. That might explain why Major Gen. Geoffrey D. Miller, of Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib infamy, stated in a memorandum that the US has designated members of the MEK as “protected persons”. It might also explain why the MEK was the subject of the Paris meeting in June 2002 between Ghorbanifar, Rhode and convicted spy Larry Franklin.

But what is particularly shocking regarding that conviction is that in exchange for classified information, Franklin said the Israeli official (Naor Gilon) told him far more in return. As Mark G. Levey pointed out, what Gilon told Franklin can be readily ascertained from pages 23-24, paragraph 6 of the Franklin indictment. Franklin pleaded guilty to charges that he had been, among other things, salting Pentagon files with phony Iran WMD data. His source for that, according to the charging papers, was the Mossad Chief of Station at the Israeli Embassy in DC. Mr. Gilon (FO-3 in the indictment) fled the country shortly after the FBI investigation of the OSP-AIPAC case was leaked. In other words, it was an attempt to “cook the books” on Iranian WMD’s; the same M.O. as the Niger Yellowcake incident. One would reasonably conclude that the source might be same, particularly as the same OSP desk officer -- Larry Franklin -- appears to have been involved in both incidents.

Part Five: Niger Forgeries

Getting back to the Niger forgeries, one overlooked aspect lost in the brouhaha over the mistaken 16 words in the 2003 State of the Union address that lead Joseph Wilson to take the administration to task is that the forgeries did not only implicate Iraq. They also attempted to implicate Iran in a bizarre nuclear sharing plot between Iraq and Iran. It was this part of the forgeries which, even before IAEA chief Mohamed El Baradei exposed the charade, made it seem far-fetched to the State Department Intelligence and Research Division. Investigating the trail of the origin of the Niger forgeries directly implicates at least two of the participants of the December 2001 Rome meeting. Nicolo Pollari, chief of Italy's military intelligence service SISMI, brought the Niger yellowcake story directly to the White House after his insistent overtures had been rejected by the CIA in 2001 and 2002. He met secretly in Washington on September 9, 2002, with then–Deputy National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley. Hadley, according to Michael Ledeen, was the official who authorized the Rome meeting that he and Pollari attended. Pollari claimed the dossier came from Italian spy Rocco Martino, who obtained them from SISMI. Martino, in turn, offered them to Italian journalist Elizabetta Burba. On instructions from her editor at Panorama, Burba offered them to the U.S. Embassy in Rome in October, 2002. Burba was dissuaded by the editors of the Berlusconi-owned Panorama from investigating the source of the forgeries. Berlusconi, of course, is Silvio Berlusconi, then Prime Minister of Italy and also named on the infamous list of P2 members discovered in 1981.

Perhaps if Burba had not been dissuaded from investigating the source, she might have come across a former contributor to her magazine Panorama, Michael Ledeen. In 2005, Vincent Cannistraro, the former head of counterterrorism operations at the CIA and the intelligence director at the NSC under President Reagan, expressed the opinion that the documents had been produced in the United States and funneled through the Italians. When asked what he would say if it was asserted that the source of the forgery was Ledeen, Cannistraro answered by saying: "you'd be very close." In an interview on July 26, 2005, Cannistraro's business partner and columnist for the "American Conservative" magazine, former CIA counter terrorism officer Philip Giraldi, confirmed to Scott Horton that the forgeries were produced by "a couple of former CIA officers who are familiar with that part of the world who are associated with a certain well-known neoconservative who has close connections with Italy." When Horton said that must be Ledeen, he confirmed it, and added that the ex-CIA officers, "also had some equity interests, shall we say, with the operation. A lot of these people are in consulting positions, and they get various, shall we say, emoluments in overseas accounts, and that kind of thing." The identity of two of these ex-CIA officers was revealed by a former CIA officer in a story Justin Raimondo broke that Patrick Fitzgerald, in his grand jury investigation of the Plame scandal, had received ‘a full copy of the Italian parliamentary oversight report on the forged Niger uranium document. Previous versions of the report were redacted and had all the names removed, though it was possible to guess who was involved. This version names Michael Ledeen as the conduit for the report and indicates that former CIA officers Duane Clarridge and Alan Wolf were the principal forgers. All three had business interests with Chalabi.' Wolf is dead now, but was CIA chief of station in Rome after Clarridge. The former CIA officer says Wolf ‘was Clarridge's Agency godfather. Significantly, both Clarridge and Wolf also spent considerable time in the Africa division, so they both had the Africa and Rome connection and both were close to Ledeen, closing the loop.’ Fitzgerald asked the Italians if he could share the report with Paul McNulty, the prosecutor in the AIPAC case.

A closer look at the curious career of Duane Clarridge reveals a lot of disturbing connections with scandals past and present. He was the first head of the CIA's Counter Terrorism (CT) Center, created by Vice-President George H. W. Bush's National Security Advisor, Donald Gregg. Gregg had managed the Phoenix Program in Vietnam in 1970. The Phoenix Program, the TF121 of its day, was a major factor in the My Lai Massacre. Phoenix claimed between 20,000 to 41,000 victims between 1968 and 1972. Prior to Gregg’s control, William Colby took charge of the Phoenix Program in 1968. Coincidentally, Colby was another former CIA chief of station in Rome and was CIA director when Clarridge ran the CT Center. Clarridge was eventually fired because the things he was doing were "too risky." During the Reagan administration, he purportedly was the intellectual author of the notorious "Psychological Operations in Guerilla Warfare," a CIA how-to manual instructing the Nicaraguan contras in the fine art of terrorism, including bombings, assassinations, and violence directed at noncombatants. It was Clarridge who came up with the bright idea of mining Nicaragua's harbors, which led to the unprecedented condemnation of the U.S. government's actions in the World Court. Clarridge was indicted for lying to prosecutors during the Iran-Contra imbroglio but was given a presidential pardon. He played a pivotal role in the illegal Iran-Contra operation, by providing the back channel, through his station chief in Lisbon, that allowed Oliver North and Richard Secord's Enterprise to sell HAWK and TOW missiles to the Iranians, at a huge profit for Secord and his Israeli counterparts, in exchange for the release of several American hostages. Prior to the Niger forgery debacle, Clarridge’s most recent exploit along with retired General Wayne Downing was to become military "consultants" to Chalabi's INC and then draft their own updated version of the Chalabi plan, now dubbed "the Downing Plan." The Downing-Clarridge plan insisted that a "crack force" of no more than 5,000 INC troops, backed by a group of former U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers (Green Berets), could bring down the Iraq Army. General Anthony Zinni denounced this scheme before Congress, comparing it to the failed CIA operation to overthrow Castro in 1961 through an invasion at the Bay of Pigs in Cuba, by warning that it would lead to a "Bay of Goats".

While the absurdity of some of these plans may seem laughable, the dedication these people have toward carrying them out is dangerously serious. Clarridge described in an interview that the CT Center, which still exists today, "divines" anti-terrorism policy, and then constructs entities that can conduct operations. The interviewer summed up his findings as such: ‘The moral to this story is crystal clear: Presidents Nixon, Reagan and Bush created secret "counter-terror" cabals within their administrations to conduct illegal operations and harass their domestic political opponents.’ The most recent example of this domestic harassment can be seen in George W. Bush’s admission he authorized the NSA to conduct wiretaps on American citizens without a warrant from Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (FISA) more than 30 times as of December 2005. This was done under the counsel of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales who confirmed the existence of the program, then stopped implementing the program on January 17, 2007. Not coincidentally this termination occurred after Detroit District Court judge Anna Diggs Taylor ruled, in ACLU v. NSA, that the program was illegal under FISA and unconstitutional under the 1st and 4th Amendments to the US Constitution. Once again, this is indicative of the poisonous environment of fear this administration has perpetuated to the point that now, potentially everyone is “fair game”. While the full range of Bush’s intercepts is not known, the administration’s use of NSA intercepts was an issue earlier in 2005, when it was disclosed that John Bolton had requested the names of Americans that had been excised from NSA transcripts for privacy reasons. At the time, some feared that one of the Bolton wiretap names might be Valerie Plame, that perhaps he might be the State Department source that disclosed her identity to Libby. But it turned out to be Marc Grossman who got the State Department memo and told Libby about Wilson’s wife working at the CIA on June 11 or 12. While this source and other media outlets portrayed the incident as above level, without malice in the context of their positions in the government, Grossman’s actions may not be benign within the context of the case of FBI translator-turned-whistleblower Sibel Edmonds.

Part Six: Sibel Edmonds

Scott Horton: [P]erhaps your case is tied in with the AIPAC spy scandal?

Sibel Edmonds: Absolutely. And I cannot go into any details. … But even the AIPAC spy scandal, as far as I'm reading today, is just touching the surface of it. It's going only to a certain degree. It doesn't go high enough, in what it involves and how far it goes, and that's as far, and the best – as far as I can explain.

It is not Sibel Edmonds intention to be vague or cryptic when she says she cannot go into any details, she is simply saying all that she is allowed by law. But before delving deeper into that peculiar circumstance, it is important to explore the link between the AIPAC spy scandal and Sibel Edmonds as links between other scandals were explored in the 1st edition of American Judas: in the words of W. Mark Felt, a.k.a. Deep Throat, “Follow the money.” The weak link in the financial trail starts with Plame/AIPAC provocateur Doug Feith and an institution plagued with scandal known as Riggs Bank. The notoriety of Riggs Bank became publicized at a time when Jonathan Bush, George W’s uncle, was an executive there. The trouble began when Omar al-Bayoumi opened bank accounts at Riggs for two of the 9/11 hijackers. The wife of al-Bayoumi got money from Prince Bandar’s wife through the Riggs account. Though the 9/11 Commission believed the money was not intentionally routed to fund terrorists, investigators were shocked at how lax Riggs was in their lack of background checks. Senator Bob Graham (D-FL), states that he asked the FBI to undertake a review of the Riggs Bank records on the terrorists' money trail, to look at other Saudi companies with ties to al-Qaeda, to plan for monitoring suspect Saudi interests in the United States; however, Graham adds: "To my knowledge, none of these investigations have been completed. Nor do we know anything else about what I believe to be a state-sponsored terrorist support network that still exists, largely undamaged, within the United States." Further investigations discovered that Riggs helped former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet hide millions, illegally allowing him to retain access to his fortune. Finally, there is the case of Teodoro Obiang Nguema, who Condoleeza Rice refers to as a ‘good friend’. The dictator of Equatorial Guinea, Obiang was allowed by Riggs to siphon oil revenue into his personal accounts. Despite the fact Obiang and his wife made cash deposits of nearly $13 million over a three-year period into their Riggs accounts, the bank never filed a single suspicious activity report to federal regulators as required by law. Obiang's brother—who is accused of torturing prisoners with stinging ants—was touted by a top bank official as a "valued customer." In the end, Riggs Bank was fined $25 million in February 2005 in the wake of these controversies. Feith’s connection to this debacle? Joe Allbritton, whose control of Riggs collapsed in the wake of these revelations. Allbritton pumped millions of dollars from his own holdings of bank stock and from George W. Bush's uncle Jonathan's investment-banking operation (which was part of the Riggs National Bank conglomeration) into the Allbritton Foundation. During 2000 and again in 2002, the records show, the foundation donated $25,000 to the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School. Doug Feith is a director and former president of this private school.

But it is Feith’s association with Richard Perle as a foreign lobbyist that takes the money trail closer geographically to Sibel Edmonds’ territory in the country of Turkey. In 1989, Feith registered International Advisors Inc. (IAI) as a foreign agent representing the government of Turkey. In official documents, one of the stated purposes of the work of IAI was to "promote the objective of U.S.-Turkish defense industrial cooperation." IAI was described in both the United States and Turkish press as Perle’s brainchild. Perle, however disputed this claim saying that IAI was not his group. He claimed that he was merely an "advisor." He further noted "I find very distasteful this business where people leave the government and the next thing you know, they’re on the other side of the table negotiating with the U.S." However, in semiannual reports filed by IAI during its 1989-1994 tenure, Richard Perle is listed as the single highest paid consultant to the group earning $48,000 each year. Feith, himself earned $60,000 per year and his law firm, Feith and Zell, received hundreds of thousands of dollars from IAI.

Chris Deliso: At several points you state that such organized crime networks employ "semi-legitimate organizations" as their point of interface with governments and the "legit" world. Can you explain exactly what you mean?

Sibel Edmonds: These are organizations that might have a legitimate front – say as a business, or a cultural center or something. And we've also heard a lot about Islamic charities as fronts for terrorist organizations, but the range is much broader and even, simpler.

CD: For example?

SE: You might have an organization supposed to be promoting the cultural affairs of a certain country within another country. Hypothetically, say, an Uzbek folklore society based in Germany. The stated purpose would be to hold folklore-related activities – and they might even do that – but the real activities taking place behind the scenes are criminal.

CD: Such as?

SE: Everything – from drugs to money laundering to arms sales. And yes, there are certain convergences with all these activities and international terrorism.

CD: So with these organizations we're talking about a lot of money –

SE: Huge, just massive. They don't deal with 1 million or 5 million dollars, but with hundreds of millions.

I don't think the issue here is about whistleblowing, being fired, being wronged – that is not the most important issue here. The most important issue is: What were these criminal activities, and why instead of pursuing these our government chooses to cover it up and actually issue classification and gag orders so the American public will not know about what is going on within these agencies within their government – and even within the Congress? That is my focus point, and I have been trying – it is what I have written and have said in my interviews – to steer away from the fact that yes, I was fired, yes I was wronged, and they retaliated against me, and how they ruined my life – which is all true. But this is not where I want to focus, and this is not where I want the country to focus, this is not where I want the Congress to focus. I'm not saying, "Look, they did wrong to me, and this is not fair." I'm saying, "I came forward because criminal activities are taking place – have been taking place – some of them since 1997." Some of these activities are 100 percent related to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the United States, and they are giving this illusion that they are pursuing these cases, but they are not.

-Sibel Edmonds

Sibel Edmonds, a Turkish-American, was hired, as a contractor, to work as an interpreter in the translations unit of the FBI on September 20, 2001. Between December 2001 and March 2002, Edmonds reported to FBI managers various incidents of misconduct and incompetence, involving her supervisor Mike Feghali and others, that she observed while employed as a translator. In response, she claims that managers retaliated against her. She escalated her complaints to the FBI's Office of Professional Responsibility and the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Inspector General. She was fired on March 22, 2002. The misconduct Edmonds reported information about concerned an FBI translator named Jan Melek Can Dickerson whose husband, U.S. Air Force Major David Dickerson, belonged to a Turkish organization which was an investigative target of the FBI’s own counter-intelligence unit. Both Dickersons have Turkish backgrounds, Jan by birth, Doug as an Air Force man formerly stationed in Turkey and tasked with weapons procurement there for countries including Uzbekistan and Turkey itself. Edmonds and her husband were asked by them to join the Turkish organization Edmonds refers to above as a “semi-legitimate organization”, explaining that joining that organization would be very lucrative for the Edmonds’ and in return would require passing over classified FBI information. When this overture proved unsuccessful, they threatened Sibel Edmonds and her family, allegedly influencing the Turkish government to harass Sibel Edmonds’ sister while in Turkey. CBS host Ed Bradley said Edmonds found that "Dickerson had left out information crucial to the FBI’s investigation; information that Edmonds says would have revealed that the Turkish intelligence officer had spies working for him inside both the U.S. State Department and the Department of Defense at the Pentagon." After reporting evidence of espionage in December, 2001, Edmonds told an FBI special agent who had also had suspicions about the Dickersons and they pursued the issue; but Bureau heads said they were never notified despite Edmonds’ proof to the contrary. She said the FBI permitted other targets of the investigation, key people, including foreign nationals based in the U.S, to flee the country right up through January and February, 2002. Edmonds has said in the past that "I reported some of the suspects’ names higher up as I came across them in our investigation. And you know what? Within two weeks, they had all left the country. Just vanished." During the whole month the Dickersons were being subpoenaed, starting in June, 2002, Jan Dickerson continued to work in the FBI translations department--with a top-secret security clearance. Finally, only two weeks after the Air Force convened a formal investigation, Jan and David Dickerson were permitted to leave the country on September 9, 2002--about a year after September 11.

What Edmonds discovered about espionage and corruption in the FBI pales in comparison to what she learned about September 11, which got her in much more unique trouble with the US government than a mere employment termination. On August 15, 2002, Burnett v. Al Baraka Investment & Dev. Corp., was filed by families of 600 victims of the 9/11 attacks against Saudi banks, charity organizations, and companies. Edmonds was to file a deposition in this case regarding her claim that FBI had foreknowledge of al-Qaeda's attacks against the World Trade Center. While she was employed as a contract linguist for the FBI, she was given top-secret security clearance and hired to retranslate material that was collected prior to 9/11 to determine if anything was missed in the translations relating to the plot. She concluded that documents clearly showed that the 9/11 hijackers were in the country and plotting to use airplanes as missiles to carry out an attack in a major city. She said documents also included information relating to terrorist financial activities. In response, the FBI offered her a substantial raise and a full-time job to encourage her not to go public that she had been asked by the Department of Justice to adjust translations of terrorist subject intercepts that had been received before September 11, 2001 by the FBI and CIA. The tapes she translated, often connected to terrorism, money laundering or other criminal activity, provide evidence that should have made apparent that an al-Qaeda plot was in the works. Edmonds is offended by the Bush White House claim that it lacked foreknowledge of the kind of attacks made by al-Qaeda on 9/11. "Especially after reading National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice where she said, we had no specific information whatsoever of domestic threat or that they might use airplanes. That's an outrageous lie. And documents can prove it's a lie." She testified before 9/11 commission staffers in February 2004 for more than three hours, providing detailed information about FBI investigations, documents and dates. Unfortunately, the 9/11 Commission reduced her contributions in the 9/11 Commission Report to a single footnote.

Amazingly, that footnote is more information than the Department of Justice has been willing to allow Edmonds to disclose to the American public. On October 18, 2002, Attorney General John Ashcroft, in response to her lawsuit filed July 22, 2002, against the Department of Justice, the FBI, and several high-level officials, alleging that she was wrongfully terminated from the FBI in retaliation for reporting criminal activities committed by government officials and employees, invoked the State Secrets Privilege in order to prevent disclosure of the nature of Edmonds' work on the grounds that it would endanger national security, and asked that the suit be dismissed. Then on December 11, 2003, in response to her deposition in the Burnett v. Al Baraka 9/11 case, Ashcroft again invoking the State Secrets Privilege, filed a motion calling for Edmonds' deposition to be suppressed and for the entire case to be dismissed. The judge, seeking more information, ordered the government to produce any unclassified material relating to the case. In response, Ashcroft submitted further statements to justify the use of the State Secrets Privilege, and on May 13, 2004, took the unprecedented step of retroactively classifying as Top Secret all of the material and statements that had been provided to the Senate Judiciary Committee in 2002 relating to Edmonds' own lawsuit, as well as the letters that had been sent by the Senators and republished by a watchdog group, Project On Government Oversight (POGO). Ashcroft’s reclassification was successful; Edmonds was barred from testifying in the 9/11 class action suit, and on July 6, 2004, her own suit was dismissed on state secrets grounds. The judge who dismissed her suit, Reggie Walton, is also the judge in the trial of Scooter Libby. To this date, the Department of Justice gag order, despite all appeal attempts by Edmonds’ lawyers, has remained in effect. If it were to be rescinded, Edmonds told Kyle Hence, cofounder of 9-11 Citizens Watch, “it could lead to charges of treason being leveled against officials at top levels of the U.S. government”. Hence added, “If that is the case, then all those who have been involved in keeping this information from getting to the public are complicit in this treason”.

While she has been gagged from revealing specifics of the crimes she discovered, Edmonds has gone on record describing the government’s reaction to 9/11 as a cover-up. "Nobody is looking at the Department of Defense aspect of the whole 911 cover-up. The FBI is citing two reasons for my gag order: to protect ‘sensitive’ diplomatic relations and to protect foreign U.S. business relationships," she said. "I will say this: The FBI is only a mouthpiece for the State Department. The State Department is the main reason for the cover-up. It has to do with foreign business relationships and who they are...Pakistan, Turkey...espionage in the State Department...preventing an investigation." She believes that "once this issue gets to be...investigated, you will be seeing certain (American) people that we know from this country standing trial; and they will be prosecuted criminally… There is direct evidence involving no more than ten American names that I recognized… some are heads of government agencies or politicians--but I don’t want to go any further than that," revealing the content of the FBI intercepts she heard indicates that recognizable, very high-profile American citizens are linked to the 9/11 attacks. When asked in 2002 by CBS 60 Minutes co-host Ed Bradley, "did she seem credible to you? Did her story seem credible?" Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) said "Absolutely, she’s credible. And the reason I feel she’s very credible is because people within the FBI have corroborated a lot of her story." Her credibility received further confirmation when on January 14, 2004, the Justice Department's Office unclassified summary of the Justice Department's Inspector General's report on Edmonds found that many of her claims “were supported, that the FBI did not take them seriously enough, and that her allegations were, in fact, the most significant factor in the FBI's decision to terminate her services”.

To help other whistleblowers like her, In August, 2004, Edmonds founded the National Security Whistleblowers Coalition (NSWBC), an alliance of whistleblowers who have come forward to address security weaknesses of the US. The NSWBC helps national security agency whistleblowers through advocacy of governmental and legal reform, public education on whistleblowing activity, provision of comfort and fellowship to national security whistleblowers suffering retaliation and other harms, and working with other public interest organizations. NSWBC is involved in backing former intelligence analyst Russ Tice, who was dismissed by the National Security Agency (NSA) in May, 2005. On December 16, 2005, ABC reported that Tice was among the sources of a leak about illegal NSA wiretap programs, ordered by the White House and first disclosed by the New York Times. And on a semi-related note, on February 25, 2007, Edmonds accused President Bush of using FISA warrants to spy on members of Congress, and that FISA was not aware of the misuse of the warrants.

So how do you translate the translator? How do you decipher the words of a gagged woman? How do you find out who the “semi-legitimate organizations” are that are engaging in drugs, money laundering and arms sales in convergence with international terrorism? Sibel Edmonds has been encouraging everyone, as Felt encouraged Woodward, to follow the money. Doing so helped Vanity Fair, who went on the record with allegations that while he was House Speaker, Dennis Hastert may have been the recipient of tens of thousands of dollars of secret payments from Turkish officials in exchange for political favors and information. In the article, titled "An Inconvenient Patriot," Edmonds says that she gave confidential testimony about the payments to congressional staffers, the Inspector General and members of the 9/11 Commission. Edmonds says that she heard of the payments while listening to FBI wiretaps of Turkish officials who were under surveillance by the FBI. But getting back to the Dickersons, Edmonds caught a lucky break being on the receiving end of an accidental disclosure from the Air Force Office of Special Investigations. According to the Edmonds team’s reply of September 19, 2002, the USAF Inspector General’s letter had referred specifically to the American-Turkish Council, based in Washington, D.C., as being related to the Dickersons. When asked if the American-Turkish Council (ATC) was in fact the name of the key “semi-legitimate organization” that had infiltrated the FBI during her time there, because of the DOJ gag order she could only say, “I cannot confirm that… they said it, we did not.”

One man described as a pillar of the ATC that Edmonds has been able to talk about is Marc Grossman. The same Marc Grossman who told Scooter Libby on June 11 or 12, 2003, more than a month before Novak’s column, about Wilson’s wife working at the CIA. The same Marc Grossman mentioned in the 1st edition of American Judas who had a meeting that was reported on September 10, 2001, as “most important” with General Mahmoud Ahmad, who resigned from being Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) Chief the following month in the wake of an investigation by Times of India, confirmed by the FBI, that he authorized ISI agent Omar Saeed Sheikh to wire transfer $100,000 in August 2001 to Mohammed Atta, the lead hijacker of the 9/11 attacks. When questioned in April 2006 by director Mathieu Verboud for an interview that was later cut out of a documentary about Sibel Edmonds titled Kill the Messenger, Grossman claimed he didn’t know anything about Sibel Edmonds or Valerie Plame. This cannot be true, according to Edmonds, because Grossman was one of three officials – the other two, she says, are Richard Perle and Douglas Feith – who had been watched by both Valerie Plame's Brewster Jennings & Associates CIA team, and by the major FBI investigation of organized crime and governmental corruption on which she herself was working until being terminated in April 2002.

Now that yet another motivation for Cheney to blow Plame’s cover has been revealed, the role that Turkey plays in this game of “many dark actors” appears much larger. Edmonds has researched this extensively and wrote about it in a two part article in November 2006 titled The Hijacking of a Nation. To quote: “Turkey played a major role in Pakistan and Libya's illicit activities in obtaining nuclear technologies. In June 2004, Stephen Fidler, a reporter for Financial Times reported that in 2003, Turkish centrifuge motors and converters destined for Libya's nuclear weapons program turned up in Tripoli aboard a ship that had sailed from Dubai. One of those detained individuals in this incident, a 'respected and successful' Turkish Businessman, Selim Alguadis, was cited in a public report from the Malaysian inspector-general of police into the Malaysian end of a Pakistani-led clandestine network that supplied Libya, Iran and North Korea with nuclear weapons technologies, designs and expertise. According to the report, "he supplied these materials to Libya." Mr. Alguadis also confessed that he had on several occasions met A Q Khan, the disgraced Pakistani scientist who has admitted transmitting nuclear expertise to the three countries”.

One more dot to connect: is Dick Cheney directly affiliated with any of the “semi-legitimate organizations” in this international criminal conspiracy? While only a thorough binding investigation with subpoena power can determine this, the gagged former FBI translator has left a trail of breadcrumbs pointing investigators in the appropriate direction. Again from The Hijacking of a Nation, 'ATC is joined in the creation of the New EuroAsia by the American Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce (AACC). AACC's Honorary Council of Advisors just happens to have General Scowcroft and the following persons of significance: Henry Kissinger and James Baker III. Former Council members include Dick Cheney and Richard Armitage, and Board of Trustee members include media-overkill subject Richard Perle of AEI, and Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas.'

Interesting that Cheney is listed as having resigned from the AACC in November 2000. As though leaving the organization a month before the Supreme Court selected him to be a heartbeat away from the Presidency could cover up the fact that this American Judas has made more money selling the security of his country out for the greater profits of drugs, money laundering, arms sales and international terrorism than the 30 pieces of silver the Biblical Judas sold his friend Jesus Christ out for. This is a story that cannot be swept under the rug. It is a huge story, sometimes daunting, but it must be told, and those who are in the best position to tell it must no longer be silenced by a government that claims to be of the people, for the people and by the people. We, the people, hunger for the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. The outline of the truth has been mapped in this paper, but there are many more pieces of the puzzle to discover. It’s important to remember that no matter how many stories are listed here, it is still just one story. But to get the whole story, we must have a whole investigation. Nothing in our lifetime could be more important, because there is no greater endeavor than establishing justice. It’s what our Founding Fathers listed first in the Constitution for their priorities of forming “a more perfect union”. We owe it to them, and ourselves, to see the truth through to the end.

1 comment:

Mayray said...


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