Part Five Synopsis: The question/answer session starts off by stating that her Nightly News links on her website Boiling Frogs Post has great updates on the Caucuses, Central Asia and Russia. James Corbett then addresses an email from Kurt who asks, "In your opinion is David Headley part of Gladio B?" Corbett prefaces this by saying Headley was the DEA informant who was accused of setting up the Mumbai Massacre a few years ago. Edmonds says all the info Corbett mentioned is all that she has, she doesn't know if Headley was part of Gladio B or not. Kurt's second question is, "What role did Sam Brownback, a former ATC member play, if any, in facilitating Gladio Plan A or Plan B? Was he aware of Gladio Plan A or B?" Edmonds explains his name was a regular name, but she's not sure, he was an active member but not a key figure. Kurt's third question, "Were any US politicians present when Prince Bandar met with Zawahiri in Baku in 1997, and if so, who were they?" Edmonds can't name individuals if their names have not been made public, but yes, and some of those Americans have official positions today under the Obama administration. Others have advisory and consulting positions, almost all are board members of the top 10 companies of the military-industrial complex.
Next, Katya asks, "In the last part of our interview, Sibel mentioned that the sharp drop in the opium production in Afghanistan in 2001 was not for the reason everyone thinks it is, that is prohibition by the Taliban, but I don't believe she expanded on that. I was always curious about this drop and its possible relationship to 9/11, which seems unlikely on first glance, since plans for the WTC attack and invasion of Afghanistan must have predated it. Could you ask Sibel to talk about this?" Edmonds can only give hypotheses on this. Production was going up and up from 1996 to 2000. But between the middle and end of 2000, something happened. We know production was reduced by more than 80%. But why? We know around this time Taliban officials were coming to the US, meeting with Dick Cheney in Texas during the Clinton administration. We also know there were disagreements between the Clinton administration and those actively involved in "Pipelinestan". The oil companies were saying, "We need to recognize the Taliban so we can build the pipelines and get this done", the Clinton adminstration was balking regarding human rights abuses by the Taliban. This was also the same time you had the "very mysterious" bombing of Sudan supposedly targeting Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, even though the US knew where he was the whole time. Within this political milieu, "something happened" to cause the heroin, but she can only speculate on what. Corbett elaborates that 9/11 may have been a plan on the table that could have gone either way but was given the green light around the time the "carpet of bombs" threat was given to the Taliban.
He then brings a question from Alan, "How does China and Russia play into all this? Many leading companies and NWO people have moved to China. Is China going to be the center of the New World Order, or is China going to be the enemy, like Russia was? Are the powers supporting China to destroy the USA? Is there an oil pipeline to China? Have they sold us out completely to China and it just hasn't hit us yet?" Edmonds summarizes that talking about China in relation to Russia, you're talking about two totally different paradigms. With Russia in the Cold War, the focus was on militaristic competion. With China, that's an economic competition. As far as pipelines go, there's plenty of news not reported in the US media between China and the various "Stans". Through this, you can see the Xinchiang region is very important. Their modus operandi is business deals, whereas the US is building military bases. The US can't seem to separate their economic interests from their military interests. With Russia post-Cold War, there is a bit of both military and economic where pipeline tactics go. But Edmonds points out that where pipeline blow-ups occur, the Islamists typically don't damage our pipelines, they damage the other guys!
Corbett then interjects his link to a recent article on China developing a pipeline in Baluchistan. Edmonds notes how that dovetails with NGOs recently crying out about human rights abuses in Baluchistan. Not that there isn't, just that the Baluchi people are being used as political pawns. Corbett then points out how NATO is courting a country they discussed in Part Four, Cyprus. Edmonds distinguishes between member nations and "partner members" to note that NATO has recently been opening offices in the United Arab Emirates! How does any of this figure into the original charter for what was a "North Atlantic" treaty to protect against the Soviet Bloc?! They should have been dissolved at the end of the Cold War.
The confusion over the motives perpetuating this figures into the next question from John, "In Part One, I was a bit confused when Sibel says as long as they, i.e. Central Asia, Caucuses region, are attached to Islam, they are going to pooh-pooh China and Russia, they're going to side with us. My understanding of Islam is always kind of anti-American sentiment, maybe it's that way with China and Russia as well. But why would this be a factor for them to side with NATO and the US?" Edmonds explains if you look throughout history, religion has always been used as a factor for choosing sides. Even before the Cold War choice of capitalism/communism, the United Kingdom did the same thing in the Middle East as part of The Great Game.
On the subject of blowback from Islamists, Bill asks, "There is a tremendous amount of great information in the most recent Gladio video. With regard to the Islamization of Eurasia, is it Mrs. Edmonds opinion that we in the West are being double-crossed by the Islamic organizations that the US and NATO have partnered with?" Edmonds thinks this mentality is like comparing apples and oranges. There's a parallel mentality where the Saudis involvement in 9/11 is concerned. Some say, 'Saudis did 9/11! Let's get them!' Sibel talks about her encounters with Saudi princes in college and how apolitical they were, summing up that the Saudis are our puppets. They know their police and their military respond to the US. The whole country, the oil refineries, all managed by the US. If you say the Saudis did it, you are automatically saying the United States did 9/11. Corbett points out again how it goes back to the UK inventing the Saudi royalty and Edmonds agrees, saying the idea that we're getting blowback is something the powers in charge want you to believe. She highlights that this is why CIA officer Michael Scheuer who wrote Imperial Hubris under Anonymous to print this slant that Edmonds calls "misinformation" that can't be further from the truth.
Corbett moves on to a related question from Jay, "If Zawahiri is an asset, do you have any evidence that he's just acting like a radical Muslim, in other words, is even his backstory a fraud?" Edmonds says there's nothing to back up his backstory, the numbers don't add up on his wikipedia entry, nothing to prove even his connection with the assassination of Anwar Sadat. She has difficulty characterizing him as an asset, he is more like one of the Majors or Lieutenant Colonels of Gladio B. Corbett finds that a fascinating distinction, then moves on to a question from Rowan, "How much did A) Qaddafi and B) Assad know about all this and were the renditions to them just patsies or wiseguys?" Edmonds can answer about Assad with confidence from her FBI days. In the first 7 or 8 months after 9/11, we were working very closely with Assad. An example she cites is the case of Canadian Maher Arar, who was sent by the US to Syria to be tortured. There is a mutual understanding in the case of Assad and others that in order to remain in power you must tell your constituents how much you hate Israel, but behind the scenes you can serve US and/or Israel's interests. At least until 2002, we had that relationship with Assad. Edmonds sees Assad and Qaddafi as patsies for NATO. Her hypothesis is that, like the UK did so well in the Great Game, the US goal is for Iraq to be split in two or three states. Why? To keep the countries at each other's throats, both as neighbors and internally: Sunni/Shia/Kurds. Also Pakistan/Baluchistan. To some degree it will happen in Afghanistan. But the area she believes will be the stickiest for the US is Kurdistan; Turkey says "over my dead body" will there be an independent Kurdistan. The biggest lesson the US learned from the OPEC crisis of the 70's is keep Middle East countries at each other's throats, or they'll band together and be at our throat.
After citing a link on drawing up the Middle East borders in 1919, Corbett brings up a question from Rob, "In an Infowars interview with Richard Cottrell, he states it was Lyman Lemnitzer who was responsible for adopting the Northwood strategy ideas into NATO Gladio. What is your or Sibel's idea on this and what evidence there is to support this claim?" Corbett states he will have Cottrell on his program at a later date, Edmonds says good, he is in a much better position to answer the question than she is. Corbett moves on to an email from Bradley, "Listening to Sibel, it does occur to one, how does she know all this, did she really have access to FBI reports that would supply her with all this information, or would she be limited more to the reports that related to her assigned tasks? Maybe she documents a lot of stuff in other venues in publications, I don't know. Just wondering what your take on this question would be: are you satisfied that you are getting true information from her and do you trust her sources?" Edmonds believes it would be important to have a future program detailing the methods for obtaining intelligence, because while she can't detail specifics for reasons of classification, she can detail the macro picture. With her background, she spent her life in Central Asia prior to working for the FBI. She lived in Iran, Azerbaijan and Turkey. She had a very politically active background with her father and other activists. She speaks Farsi and Turkish, which is helpful for understanding other languages in the region, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, etc. When she started working for the FBI after 9/11, she was originally assigned to the Iran division, which was not getting much work. Because there was no Turkish division, she took those jobs. There was huge demand within the FBI to start up a division because there was much intelligence in the wake of 9/11. These agents were hungry for information, so she helped agents like Dennis Sacher, who she mentions in her book. So all of the stuff that she speaks about, whether it relates to Gladio B or not, was something she learned within the first two weeks of working there. Then after discovering more about her background, the agents involved basically asked her to train them, since she knew how to look through Turkish papers, for example, to separate real intelligence from non-essential information. This basically gave her two jobs there: translation and analysis. She was the only person Turkish language specialist in the entire FBI. So she was really in a central position for gathering intelligence. Then after being fired from the FBI and becoming a whistleblower, the line of questioning that she would receive in a SCIF (Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility) would enlighten her on intelligence she had not previously received. There were also so many other agents who gave her information, some after they had retired, but some before. Creating the NSWC (National Security Whistleblowers Coalition) has given her a network of resources. On top of this, she stresses the need for critical thinking, that there is an absence of this in our culture. That's the real problem that allows the real powers controlling the world to get away with their crimes: we let them with our ignorance and apathy.
While it may be easy for some who want to dismiss her, Corbett points out that 99% of what she's talking about is available through other sources. Edmonds says she connects the dots as she can, but too many people want it all pre-digested, easy to swallow. But how many whistleblowers have had the State Secrets Privilege gag like Sibel has? Three. Richard Barlow was a CIA analyst who went to Congress and blew the whistle in 1989 on A.Q. Khan getting the bomb for Pakistan and that the CIA and Pentagon were hiding it because they wanted them to get nukes! Dick Horn was a high-level senior DEA agent who was about to bust a major heroin group in 1993 in Myanmar when the CIA tipped off the targets, endangering all the informants! They bugged his house to do this. After blowing the whistle, the case was settled for $3 million, but he had the State Secrets gag put on him. The third whistleblower is herself, and she went through the same thing as those guys. She was advised by her attorneys after the State Secrets gag was put on her prior to her appellate court hearing to come up with a number for settlement. But how do you put a price tag on never being able to go back to Turkey to visit relatives? It cheapens her roots. She says the FBI was willing to settle for $2 million, but Edmonds refused, she'd rather have justice; her freedom is not for sale. But what they were so afraid of in 2002-2004, they are not afraid of anymore. They used to be afraid of their warrantless wiretapping becoming public knowledge, now they openly talk about kill lists targetting Americans abroad without thinking twice. Nothing exists to galvanize mass outrage, they know now that no one cares enough. People need to trace the money line and connect it with the agenda and ask, "What does this fulfill?" Joseph and Valerie Plame Wilson campaigned for Hillary Clinton, then after the election were rewarded with millions of dollars. This doesn't happen to real whistleblowers. If you're not playing a partisan game, if you're not making millions of dollars, not getting a Hollywood movie made about you, either you must be a sick masochist, or this must be real. In Sibel's case, they tried to smear her by digging up dirt from exes she dated over 20 years ago! They couldn't find anything. Why does she continue? Not to hype a public image of being smart or pretty, but to tell the truth and fire up an irate minority! It's not difficult to be popular, but she's not concerned with that banality at all.
This answers the question of why she hasn't been killed yet. Sibel says she's too insignificant at this point. Since 9/11, David Kelly is the only one killed, she believes there was a cover-up, that it was not a suicide. But the rest, no one knows or cares enough. Thomas Drake is an NSA whistleblower, who's been on the front page of The Washington Post. Who in the general public knows who he is? Who cares enough to warrant him getting killed? They control all the legal outlets and the media. Edmonds received a couple death threats, but she feels they were mostly smoke. Corbett then states many people wrote in thanking her for her perspective. He mentions that Dick wrote in, "It occurred to me it would be fun to have a contest for the best liner notes" and while he can't have a contest, Corbett encouraged people to synopsize on their blog or website. Once again, he ends the broadcast like Part Four with an update on the fundraising drive for her website, Boiling Frogs Post.
Richard Barlow, CIA whistleblower
Part Five Analysis: Well, so much for being concise! There is so much to chew on that there's really only a couple areas I'd like to comment on. First, I want to talk about the concept of a "limited hangout". This is what Edmonds is talking about when she brings Michael Scheuer to task. Here's how wikipedia defines it:
A limited hangout, or partial hangout, is a public relations or propaganda technique that involves the release of previously hidden information in order to prevent a greater exposure of more important details. It takes the form of deception, misdirection, or coverup often associated with intelligence agencies involving a release or "mea culpa" type of confession of only part of a set of previously hidden sensitive information, that establishes credibility for the one releasing the information who by the very act of confession appears to be "coming clean" and acting with integrity; but in actuality, by withholding key facts, is protecting a deeper operation and those who could be exposed if the whole truth came out. In effect, if an array of offenses or misdeeds is suspected, this confession admits to a lesser offense while covering up the greater ones.
A limited hangout typically is a response to lower the pressure felt from inquisitive investigators pursuing clues that threaten to expose everything, and the disclosure is often combined with red herrings or propaganda elements that lead to false trails, distractions, or ideological disinformation; thus allowing covert or criminal elements to continue in their improper activities.
This is exactly the type of activity to describe someone who initially publishes an anonymous "expose" on the failings that lead to 9/11, then after revealing his identity, goes on to call for greater violence in the War on Terror. That's a pretty easy definition from my perspective, what's more difficult is where it concerns the case of Valerie Plame. I don't believe Sibel Edmonds is trying to say that Valerie Plame did not have a great injustice perpetrated against her. But when the pursuit of justice narrowed to focus on who had "sand thrown" rather than why she had her cover blown and who benefited, the case became a limited hangout. Which was a real travesty, because as I highlighted in the second edition of American Judas, Patrick Fitzgerald could have connected the dots between the outing of Plame, the Niger forgeries and the whole AIPAC spy scandal:
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. http://www.antiwar.com/blog/comments.php?id=P2452_0_1_0
To do this would have meant uncovering the whole dark truth, which would have exposed what Sibel Edmonds knew about but was gagged from revealing. As she put it:
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.But that's the problem: the real powers in control won't let that thread unravel completely. The solution is always to allow a limited hangout to sweep the darker truth under the rug. Play your cards right and you might even get a seven figure payout for your troubles. But some people won't have that payout, not because they couldn't use the money, but because they have integrity. Sibel Edmonds is one and I'm glad she mentioned Richard Barlow as another. I mentioned him in the first edition of American Judas because he actually exposed the A.Q. Khan network to Dick Cheney when he was Defense Secretary back in 1989 and Cheney covered up Barlow's report so that he could sell F-16 fighter jets to Pakistan!
-Sibel Edmonds http://www.antiwar.com/deliso/?articleid=6934
Defense Secretary Dick Cheney, circa 1989
So what happens to real whistleblowers whose truth threatens to upset the system? It saddens me to read Barlow's wikipedia entry:
Following congressionally ordered investigations, the inspector-general at the State Department concluded that Barlow had been fired as a reprisal; however, the inspector-generals at the CIA and the Defense Department stated that the Pentagon was within its rights to fire Barlow. A final investigation by Congress' own Government Accountability Office was completed in 1997 and "largely vindicated" Barlow, who had his security clearance restored. During the investigation, the State department inspector-general, Sherman Funk, described Barlow as "“one of the most brilliant analysts I’ve ever seen".
The activities of the Defense Department officials, however, including Cheney, Libby, Wolfowitz and Hadley, were never investigated. Rep. Stephen Solarz, a major player in counter-proliferation, told Seymour Hersh for the latter's famous exposé of the Pakistani nuclear programme that "If what Barlow says is true, this would have been a major scandal of Iran-Contra proportions, and the officials involved would have had to resign".
Barlow, however, was unable to find employment after his clearance was removed and marriage broke up. "They viciously tried to destroy my life, personally and professionally" he is quoted as saying. "Not just my career, but they went after my marriage, my livelihood, and smeared my name in truly extraordinary ways that no one had ever seen before or since—at least not until the Wilsons were victims of the same people years later." According to Barlow the allegations included the "fabrication" that he "was an ‘intended’ Congressional spy", that he was an alcoholic, had not paid his taxes, and was an adulterer. "Then they accused me of being psychotic and used that to invade my marital privacy, including that of my now ex-wife who also worked at the CIA, and sought to destroy my marriage as punishment."
Although he was found to have breached no national security regulations and was vindicated, Barlow did not receive his government pension and has had trouble finding employment. The authors of The Nuclear Jihadist, a biography of A.Q. Khan, caused a sensation in 2005 when they revealed that they had tracked him down to a motor home in Montana where he lived with two dogs.
What a shame. I hope he doesn't end up like the subject of my last blog entry, Gary Webb. Keeping your honor shouldn't mean losing your life.
Part Six, including Sibel Edmonds answering a question from yours truly, is coming soon!