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Monday, November 26, 2007

A 9/11 bombshell

The situation is infuriating. Whenever a spectacular piece of new 9/11 information comes out, it gets relegated to the "conspiracy buff" leper colony.

The Times of London has published just such a breakthrough. The subject is Louai al-Sakka (sometimes spelled Sakra), a captured Al Qaeda member now sitting in a jail cell in Turkey, where he was arrested in 2005. He was making bombs in his apartment, hoping to use them against Israeli vessels. An accidental explosion scuppered his plans.

Previously, he specialized in the creation of fake documents; he had also set up a physical training camp in the mountains near Istanbul. Among his "students," back in 1999-2000, were six of the 9/11 hijackers.

Sakka claims that American Airlines 77, which struck the Pentagon, was actually piloted by Nawaf al-Hazmi. The conventional scenario ascribes that duty to Hani Hanjour, a less competent flight student than al-Hazmi. Many have questioned whether Hanjour could have accomplished the spiral descent.

The Sakka account (which includes rather more than I have here described) raises many questions. Is he credible? Turkish prisons are, of course, notorious.
In Turkey, police sources claim Sakka may have become clinically insane or perhaps be an egomaniac who has overstated his role.
Where, then, is the breakthrough in this story? Simply this: The estimable Paul Thompson -- whose "Cooperative Research" site does not get nearly the attention it deserves -- has compiled an impressive amount of information linking Sakka to Western intelligence services.

Needless to say, that surprising data nugget does not find its way into the recent Times piece.

Sakka's claim to have trained 9/11 hijackers has appeared before.
But he will also say that he knew Mohamed Atta, which presumably would take place during Sakra’s time in Germany (see Early August 2005). He will warn the Syrian government about the 9/11 attacks one day before they happen (see September 10, 2001) and evidence will suggest he was an informant working for the CIA and other governments (see 2000). He will later admit meeting Asaf Shawkat, head of Syrian intelligence, in Germany, but it is not known when this meeting took place. [BBC, 11/10/2005]
(Emphasis added.) George Tenet's autobiography almost certainly refers to Sakka in this passage: “[A] source we were jointly running with a Middle Eastern country went to see his foreign handler and basically told him that something big was about to go down. The handler dismissed him.”

Tenet said that the warning lacked specifics. However,
On September 10, 2001, he tipped off the Syrian secret service… that terrorist attacks were about to occur in the United States. The evidently well-informed al-Qaeda insider even named buildings as targets, and airplanes as weapons. The Syrians passed on this information to the CIA—but only after the attacks.” [Der Spiegel (Hamburg), 8/24/2005]
(Emphasis added.) Why divulge details to the Syrians but not the Americans? Why, if he were a trusted Al Qaeda operative, did he work with the CIA at all?

According to the Turkish newspaper Zaman, 2000 was the year when the Americans "turned" Sakka, who received an unspecified (but large) amount of money from the CIA. More than that: He received protection during his time in Turkey -- while he ran those Al Qaeda training camps.

Then came his mysterious sojourn in Germany in 2000-2001. During this period, he appears to have met Atta -- and then he went "underground.

Germany's BND -- their version of the CIA -- aided Sakka while he was on the run. This, despite the fact that Sakka was considered a wanted man in Germany, due to his role in earlier terror plots.

Please read -- do not skim; READ -- the following:
In late 2005, after Sakra’s arrest in Turkey (see July 30, 2005), the German television news show Panorama will report that the German BKA (Federal Office of Criminal Investigation) suspects the German BND (Federal Intelligence Service) to have helped Sakra escape from Germany in late 2001. Supposedly, German police had learned where he was staying in Germany, but the BND enabled him to escape via France to Syria in order to prevent further investigations about him. Panorama will report that Sakra was secretly still working for Syrian intelligence and was giving them information about al-Qaeda’s leadership. Sakra will go on to mastermind a series of suicide bombings in Istanbul, Turkey, in 2003...
(Emphases added.) The chronology is unclear: Where was Sakka on September 11, 2001 -- Germany or Syria? The phrase "late 2001" may or may not include September. We know that he warned Syrian intelligence on September 10 -- however, we also know that he met the head of Syrian intelligence at some point during his stay in Germany. The meeting may have taken place on that date.

Whatever the chronology, the BND's protection of Sakka tends to make us wonder about Tenet's assertion that Sakka was a walk-in who had provided only vague details about the 9/11 plot. (Although the CIA and BND sometimes conflict, they usually cooperate.) He was not an informant; he was an operative.

Factions within the intelligence services of America, Germany, Turkey and -- one presumes -- France were all protecting a 9/11 plotter before and after the event.

Why would the BND and/or the CIA help Sakka travel to Syria? Why did they encourage the meeting with Syria's intelligence chief?

He may have hinted at an answer during his trial:
Sakra makes additional claims during the trial. He says through his lawyer that shortly after being arrested in Turkey in 2005, he was visited in his Turkish prison cell by a group of English speaking foreigners. He claims that he was offered his freedom if he would falsely agree to testify that the Syrian government was involved in the assassination of Lebanese politician Rafiq Al-Hariri in 2005. He claims these people were aware that he had secretly met with the head of Syrian intelligence in the past, and that he turned down their offer.
(Emphasis added.) Is it conceivable that Western intelligence arranged Sakka's 2001-2002 "escape" to Syria in order to lay the groundwork for a false charge to be leveled (much later) against the Syrian government? Or was Sakka being used in some other way against Syria?

Even if we grant Tenet's assertion that Sakka's information about 9/11 was too vague to prevent the tragedy, surely after the attack, the CIA must have known that the man was an inside player. And yet Sakka was allowed to travel back to Turkey, where he continued to be a protected individual. (Recall: Tenet described a source "we were jointly running with a Middle Eastern country." This reference almost certainly goes to Turkey.)

Could the BND and Turkish intelligence have acted on Sakka's behalf without the CIA's knowledge and acquiescence? Doubtful.

We cannot know what Sakka was up to in Syria, but one thing seems clear: Western intelligence placed greater value on his services than on bringing a 9/11 plotter to justice. His protection continued in the face of the 1999 plots, the 9/11 tragedy, and the 2003 bombings. It ended only when he decided to go after Israeli ships.

At his 2005 trial, his lawyer offered an intriguing observation:
Sakra’s lawyer will claim that if Sakra revealed all that he knew, “a few states would collapse.”
No worries. Those states can rely on the protection of what I have derisively called the 9/11 "tranny" movement.

The world's conspiracy buffs are too dazzled by their beloved pseudoscience to follow this tale of spookery. Frankly, most buffs simply lack the intelligence to follow any complex storyline. Alex Jones and other "low-IQ, high-paranoia" types fetch the big audiences, while the extraordinary work of Paul Thompson remains largely ignored. Meanwhile, those annoyed by the fanaticism of the CD-ers tend to tune out all new information to arise from that event.

By endlessly repeating the baseless mantra that Al Qaeda had nothing to do with 9/11, the infantile CD-ers have successfully diverted journalists and the public from inquiring about the complicated links between Al Qaeda and various factions within western intelligence.

That outcome is what the funders of the of the "truth" movement paid for.
I think you do yourself a big disservice when you put forth so much energy attacking the "trannies", as you call them.

While the number of theories out there is clearly legion, I think very few people seriously claim that Al Quada wasn't part of the attacks.

Where the 9/11 conspiracy theories differ, however, is that many think Al Quada was helped along by Western intelligence services all too eager to have another "Pearl Harbor" type of attack.

Sure, Al Quada played a role in it, but seriously, who was running Al Quada at the time? If inside knowledge of the attack plans were available to said intelligence services, is it really that much of a stretch to infer that they may have nudged the plans along in order to allow them to inact the wars we all now know they were so desparate to start?

Just sayin...

Jamie in Boston
Joe, you're wrong about Alex Jones, at least. He's a proponent of the concept of synthetic terror, which is precisely the notion that nation states raise up and fund, perhaps co-opting on-going actual terror movements, and/or creating them themselves from whole cloth when that is required.

Jones has discussed in his films quite a bit of this history, from the way Ali Mohammed trained the 'al-Qaeda' and was continually allowed to reenter this country, the way other various notorious and wanted parties on watch lists were gotten into this country by 'CIA visas' (the blind Sheik Rahman, whose Islamacist cell around NY was used for the first WTC bombing in '93), the way all 19 alleged hijackers were admitted despite multiple and manifold omissions and red flags on their visa applications that should have seen every one of their entries barred, and etc. Typically, Mr. Springman, formerly from the State Dept. visa operation in Saudi Arabia, gets quoted by these people, to the effect that he was ordered to issue many visas upon incomplete, defective and huge red flagged visa applications, because of US intelligence operations that required they be admitted to the US.

So, not only is Alex Jones aware of government infiltration and use of terror organizations, it is a key part of his message. And so it is with many other 9/11 truth people, who point out the history of Project Gladio and Project Northwoods, etc., to show that western governments have been involved in creating synthetic terror events for reactionary political benefits, going back 30 and 40 years.

And so their other work on why they think there was CD at the WTC complex diverts from considering US and/or other 'friendly' or 'allied' governments involvement with terror groups.... how, exactly?

If I said that most likely LHO didn't have involvement in shooting JFK, does THAT in some way minimize or hide his probable US intelligence organization connections?

In fact, it appears to me that, like the case of LHO, who improbably denied his involvement in killing 'anybody,' declaring himself a patsy, quite to the contrary of his supposed psychological profiled reason to do the killing (to become a famous person), similarly, OBL's denial of involvement has to be taken seriously, as a statement against type and interest. Terrorists do not shrink from claiming credit when they've done a deed, because getting credit for the deed is how they make their grievances and demands for change known.

I bet you wanted your headline to read 'STOP THE PRESS!' until you realized they'd been stopped here a long, long time ago, huh? You can just skim my comments because I have nothing substantive to offer, only the usual once-red hairbrained analysis of some things. For starters, what is the basis (not the source) for the locution "[Sakka] will warn the Syrian government about the 9/11 attacks one day before they happen"; that is, why "warn", but not 'inform' or 'alert'? I'll bring that up again shortly.

We can either close both eyes or subscribe to one or another kind of theory or hypothesis because none of us knows the real meaning of the CIA, its operations, its business, its functions, purposes, etc. This is not a cop out, just an underestimated fact of the matter. Sure, guys like us wish the key players were more like William Hurt's cop Renko in Gorky Park than Matt Damon's spook Wilson in The Good Shepherd. Wilson acted on behalf of the owners of America, not its scruffy 'people' that included hordes of have-nots. In real life, when Eleanor Roosevelt had seen the subhuman living conditions in DC (no electricity, no indoor plumbing), she made sure that Franklin would do something to correct it. One of FDR's cabinet men (I forget, maybe it was a SC justice, an adviser, or some other pol) protested, worrying about how anyone would be able to tell the difference between 'them' and 'us'. Remember Warren Beatty's Jack Reed's one-word analysis for WW1? "Profits".

One can't expect the US government through its military to protect and defend the wealth, property, and resources of private families or their majority-owned corporations. We all know their names and generally the countries in our hemisphere where they own and control plantations, mines, and mountains. We know that our laws permitted US families and their companies to provide material and other resources to Hitler when he rebuilt Germany, even while Germany violated the Versailles Treaty by re-arming. After the US was legally at war against Germany, the US had no laws preventing American families from doing business with the Axis from outside the US. Thus, the Office of Strategic Services, or OSS, the first precursor to the CIA. Let's assume, which I do, that FDR wanted to be able to keep an eye on the bastards and make sure they didn't either fuck up the war effort or opportunistically gain unfair advantage in a post-war, and very complex world. But we also have to assume that FDR had no way to prevent the 'owners' of America from acting in their own interests; so the OSS also served the families where the US military could not. Hey it's just a theory.

We do know a lot about how the CIA operates, but we don't know why and for whom beyond the usual abstract suspects: 'our interests'.

Okay, here's my point: Where does it say the CIA is supposed to prevent anything, or promote anything, or solve anything? Its function is to find out things and wait for further instructions. When the OSS included trying to win the war among its goals, it employed (and invented) psychological profiling. The idea was that if you could learn how someone acts, you can predict how he will react. Therefore, if you can stage an action, you can predict its outcome based on your profiling of the people who will respond to the staged action. A lot of CIA activity became based on those early OSS 'staged' operations. The devil's bargain had been struck in 1947 when Truman established the National Security 'state' (as Gore Vidal forever repeats), with its CIA being answerable to -- who knows? The CIA's M.O. depends on its secret assets of people, many who don't even know they're CIA assets. The CIA has two primary functions: one is its charter function, which is secretive anyway, except for whatever its name denotes; the other function is to protect its secrecy at virtually any cost. From CIA's pov, it's none of our business what it knew and knows about JFK's murder. The same goes for 9/11. DON'T SKIM: if CIA could have prevented the attacks, it would have, or would have tried. It's looking more and more like they were actively prevented from knowing more about them, and were probably decoyed. But they won't tell.

Back to Sakka. HIs motive for telling the Syrian government about the 9/11 attacks when it would be too late to prevent them obviously gave him credibility and a lifetime of protection plus nice pocket change. Had CIA not evolved since 1947 as a self-serving and self-protecting paramilitary organization loyal to America's 'owners', we'd be safer, more secure, and still able to visit the World Trade Center.

Were my hair still red, I'd probably be able to sniff around and find out if Valerie was really working on behalf of Westinghouse or GE, and whether she even had any clue whose 'vital interests' she was employed to protect.

It's sort of impossible to comprehend the kind of wealth that America's 'owners' have. The lowest, basest rank includes mere billionaires. One of their homes in the Hamptons employs a landscaper who earns $500,000 a year. Donald Chump-Change Trump spends $50,000 on jet fuel for a weekend round trip from New York to Palm Beach.

There's nothing wrong with America's 'owners' controlling a paramilitary, police/intelligence agency such as the CIA, but it's awfully offensive to my Marxist sensibilities. And as long as there's a CIA, there will always be only conspiracy theories.

I just saw Jamie in Boston's stretch inference, another example of 'cynicism corrupts, but absolute cynicism corrupts absolutely'. I think WTC 7 was CD, not because I'm cynical, but I think such vital storehouses have to be wired to self-destruct, and I have the luxury of knowing that no one without a need to know will ever find out about any strategic self-destruct policy.
Jamie, I'm pretty sure Joe is referring to those who spin crap about controlled demolition.

I believe Joe, like myself, has always had an open mind to evidence that some folks allowed 9-11 to happen...and a little nudging is not too hard to believe.

Right Joe? Tranny = 9-11 CD freak, right?
Interesting, but isn't this partly building myth on myth? In the days of Al-Zarqawi I collected many articles that linked Al-Zarqawi to almost everything. From being the ringleader of the British ricin cell (which turned out to have never had any ricin), being the Al Qaeda chemical weapons expert, getting his leg amputated in a Baghdad hospital to being the middle man between Al Qaeda -> Ansar Al Islam -> and the Hussein regime. How more stories I found the more incredible it got. Like a true one-legged boogieman on a flying carpet, he never left a trail, he was everywhere at once and always just slipped through the net. To top it all off he dropped his letter from Osama into the hands of the Mossad.
flying carpets: As you may know, I've spent a lot of time on Z-Man, and my view all along was that the guy was half myth. And "half" may even be a generous estimate.

But -- as they say -- this ain't that. Or: Sakka ain't Zarq.

We have plenty of evidence that Z-man was pushed by American propagandists. By contrast, Sakka has received little press in this country. The damning stuff was all published in foreign languages. I don't think Americans have used him for any propaganda purposes.

It may be worth noting that the really damning stuff started to appear in the UK only after Tony Blair left power.

More to the point, the Sakka material is not convenient to American interests. It's a story of a 911 plotter working hand in glove with western intel services. That's gotta be embarrassing.

It's also the case that one really cannot begin to piece the story together until one has done a LOT of careful reading. The material is not easily assembled into a concise linear narrative -- in fact, I may be the first to do just that.

In other words, I'm sure Rove, W, Dick, Tenet and company were all quite happy to see those Zarqawi legends multiply. But would they be happy to see that material about Sakka and the CIA come out?

I don't see how it could benefit them in any way.

The MOST generous spin one can put on this tale is this: The CIA/BND wanted to use Sakka to penetrate Syrian intelligence, and possibly to manipulate the Syrians in some way. We do not know -- we can only guess -- as to what the plan involving Syria might have been. But I am sure it was something big.

I mean, it HAD to be big to justify allowing a guy like that to roam around free.

By the way, I'm letting the stuff about WTC7 through only because I like sofla. I can respond, but if I do, then the CD nuts will all come out of the woodwork -- as they always do -- and then I will have to answer 55 or so "Dear-Sir-you-cur" letters, and then I won't be able to get any damn work done tonight, and I am late on my deadline as it is. All I can say is read my previous stuff: The wonder is not that the building fell, but that it stayed up as long as it did.

And that's IT. Don't think you have anything new to tell me, trannies. I've heard it all before and was not convinced.

So take it somewhere else, because all further discussion of that topic is banned for now. You too, sofla.
The links of Sakka to western intelligence are indeed significant. The stuff about who piloted the plane that hit the Pentagon is just more disinfo, which, if you think about it, is kind of what one would expect from an Arab terrorist working with western intelligence.
BTW, you really need to clarify your thought when making generalized attacks on "conspiracy buffs." So-called conspiracy buffs are proponents of hundreds of different theories, many of them absolutely contradictory. Some of these theories are extremely stupid, based on no valid evidence, some are extremely plausible and based on very careful sifting and logical analysis of massive amounts of evidence. As other commentors have long pointed out, the stupidest theories are most likely to have been promoted by the conspirators themselves, to confuse and discredit the opposition to the official line. Furthermore, since you do not accept the official line either, you are a conspiracy buff yourself. In fact the official line is itself a conspiracy theory, just not one that is believable by any reasonably intelligent and openminded observer.
From much reading of this blog, I observe a regrettable tendency to assume that, because annoying people bombard you with stupid theories, then the truth must be the opposite of what they are saying. However, the situation is far more complex than that.
I've already analogized parts of the 9/11 attack to the JFK assassination, and here's another parallel:

The magic bullet serves as a hook on which to hang initial WC skepticism, as a starting point to interest the public, because it is sensational and outrageous. Is it the be-all and end-all of WC criticisms? No, for although it is a critical lynchpin of a single shooter theory, probably more truth can be be revealed out of LHO's biographical profile, trip to Russia, paid for return from Russia with bride in tow, employment at the defense related imaging company, palling around with de Mohrenshildt and his anti-Communist friends, etc.

Are the 'facts' alleged of the single bullet by WC critics (the stopping in mid-air, right turn/left turn presentation in Stone's JFK movie by Costner) airtight? Not really, for if you presume the two figures of JFK and Connally were turned in a certain plausible way, that trajectory becomes plausible as well.

So, does a possible exaggeration of WC critics as to the SBT matter? I'd argue no, because you still have the original problem that the trajectory requires the 'high' location error for the first entrance wound for it to work, and then you have the issue of the 'pristine' nature of the bullet (slightly oblated at the bottom with slight extrusions) being probably impossible given how many bones were allegedly hit. So, if perhaps the critics go too far with their derision of the SBT and could be attacked for those exaggerations, there are still remaining problems that impeach the SBT (making them more right than wrong).

Certain prominent themes (to remain unnamed by blog author decree, I guess!) in the 9/11 truth movement serve a similar function to begin interesting the public in going down the rabbit hole and through the looking glass, and considering the horrific possible alternative explanations from the official ones.

And here is this an interesting question. While the rebuilding of something at the WTC towers site has been delayed by various wranglings and disputes, something HAS been rebuilt, and I believe already opened for business, at a site to be named elsewhere. Why hasn't that achievement been trumpeted as a signal of rebirth, and the unbowed and undeterred United States'national spirit? It's almost as if there were a deliberate effort to sweep its existence, and past history, under the rug. Just sayin'.

Apparently Nawaf al-Hazmi or Nawaf Alhamzi was no Chuck Yeager either:

Rick Garza, a flight instructor at Sorbi's, said Mr. Almihdhar spoke little English but was able to communicate that he wanted to obtain a private pilot rating, one of the lowest levels of flying competence.

Mr. Garza recalled that he discussed the general plan for the lessons, but that Mr. Almihdhar and Mr. Alhamzi interrupted him to say they wanted to learn to fly larger aircraft, specifically Boeing jets.

''They had zero training before they got here, so I told them they had to learn a lot of other things first,'' Mr. Garza said.

The men took lessons and training over three weeks and paid $200 to $300, with a credit card, he said.

Mr. Garza said that their aptitude for flying was poor from the start, and that it never improved.

''It was like Dumb and Dumber,'' Mr. Garza said. ''I mean, they were clueless. It was clear to me they weren't going to make it as pilots.''

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