Thursday, February 04, 2010

Who videotaped Flight 253?

The video below offers an important insight into the ongoing mystery of flight 253, the so-called Christmas bomber or "crotch bomber."

The video is some years old -- I'm not sure how old. It concerns 9/11, always a touchy subject in these here parts. The introductory comments are from John Judge, who came under sharp attack from the CD nuts because he didn't go along with their bombs-in-the-buildings crap. I'm not sure that I agree with what Judge has to say here about the Pentagon strike.

But 9/11 is not -- repeat: NOT -- the topic I want to address right now. And if you insist on jumping onto that topic anyways, stand warned: I am in a mood to moderate comments ruthlessly.

Right now, our topic is the more recent Christmas terror attempt -- the so-called "crotch-bomber case. If you watch this video all the way through, you will see the relevance:

Basically, the bulk of this presentation comes from a stewardess who often worked on that flight, and who lost a friend when the jet crashed into the Pentagon.

I'll transcribe the part which is germane to our present discussion:
On August 25 [2001] -- I'm constantly working this route, seven times a month -- I had one of the alleged hijackers on my plane, that flew the second trade tower plane, into the second trade tower. The one that kind of sliced it through. Flight 173 United Airlines. His name is Al-Shehhi. If you ever see a picture of all the hijackers, he's the one with the little round glasses.

I had him on my flight on August 25. He videotaped us almost the entire time. Which wasn't unusual, back then. And he asked us to go to the cockpit three times. And he told us he was a pilot for Saudi Arabian airlines. He was a nice, friendly guy. I wasn't suspicious of anything. Normal behavior back then.
The connection to the more recent incident should be obvious. As I wrote:
A mystery man kept his camera going throughout the entire flight, as though expecting an incident to occur. We have at least two perfectly congruent and credible eyewitness descriptions of this "mystery movie-maker," who has made no attempt to capitalize on his remarkable footage.

There may be an innocent explanation for that. But right now, the situation seems more than a little suspicious. A mystery videographer who films the whole flight suggests advanced knowledge of a "terror" scheme which was intended to fail.
The Al-Shehhi videography exercise, conducted a couple of weeks before 9/11, makes perfect sense: Hijackers would want to know in advance just what to expect during the flight. They were, in essence, casing the joint.

It therefore seems logical to presume that the guy videotaping on Christmas was similarly "casing the joint."

Okay. So why was there a fire in Farouk's crotch? Why that flight, as opposed to a later flight? It doesn't make sense for a jihadi to try to pull off an act of terror on the same flight that carries a compatriot who is doing surveillance for some future act of terror.

Now let's check in with Kurt Haskell, one of the witnesses who saw Farouk (the abortive bomber) meet with a "well-dressed man" in the Schipol airport. He has written a long piece from which I draw the following excerptions, relevant to the above:
The only reason I am here today is that Mutallab's bomb did not explode. We have to ask whether it was ever intended to explode?

The following evidence supports the theory that the bomb was intended to explode:

1. Mutallab went all the way to Yemen to obtain the bomb.
2. It was stitched into his underwear.
3. The quantity of explosive was enough to blow up the plane.
4. Mutallab purchased a one-way ticket without luggage (except for one small carry-on bag).

The following evidence supports the theory that the bomb was not intended to explode:

1. The bomb required a detonator to explode. This bomb did not have (Or had a malfunctioning detonator) a detonator.
2. It is difficult to believe that Mutallab would plan for this event in such great detail, but not assure that it would work.
3. A camera man filmed the entire attack from before it started until after it ended.
4. The U.S. Government allowed Mutallab on the plane in order to track him in the U.S. and catch potential accomplices.
The following is evidence that the U.S. Government knew Mutallab had a bomb when he boarded Flight 253:

1. The U.S. Government had pre-purchased body scanning machines.
2. The U.S. Government had already begun bombing Yemen.
3. The camera man on the plane. Although, this would indicate that the U.S. Government knew Mutallab had a defective bomb.
4. The extensive evidence over the months leading up to the flight, which included wire tapped intercepts indicating that someone named "Umar Farouk" would be attempting a terrorist attack.
5. Michael Chertoff's ties to the company that produces the body scanning machines.
The rest of Haskell's long piece is of great interest, but I don't have the time to talk about all of it. I would, however, like to draw your attention to this excellent piece from January 22 by our old friend AntiFascist. He develops an idea that few others have discussed:
CongressDaily reported on January 22 that intelligence officials "have acknowledged the government knowingly allows foreigners whose names are on terrorist watch lists to enter the country in order to track their movement and activities."

Leiter told the Committee: "I will tell you, that when people come to the country and they are on the watch list, it is because we have generally made the choice that we want them here in the country for some reason or another."

CongressDaily reporter Chris Strohm, citing an unnamed "intelligence official" confirmed that Leiter's statement reflected government policy and told the publication, "in certain situations it's to our advantage to be able to track individuals who might be on a terrorist watch list because you can learn something from their activities and their contacts."
And then there's this, which confirms the idea:
Patrick F. Kennedy, an undersecretary for management at the State Department, said Abdulmutallab's visa wasn't taken away because intelligence officials asked his agency not to deny a visa to the suspected terrorist over concerns that a denial would've foiled a larger investigation into al-Qaida threats against the United States.

"Revocation action would've disclosed what they were doing," Kennedy said in testimony before the House Committee on Homeland Security. Allowing Adbulmutallab to keep the visa increased chances federal investigators would be able to get closer to apprehending the terror network he is accused of working with, "rather than simply knocking out one solider in that effort."
So. Can we put all of this together into a single, reasonably persuasive "Theory of Farouk"?

Not yet. But I feel that we are close to that point.

If the videographer was a terrorist "casing" the flight, why didn't the government interview him or even talk about him?

Since it makes sense that a terrorist would videotape a flight before the actual attack, why didn't the "mystery videographer" of Christmas set off all sorts of alarms? Why was he allowed to tape? The stewardess in the video indicates that such taping, once common, is now no longer allowed -- or at least, it raises suspicions.

(If you're a CD crank, and if you are just dying right now for the chance to give me the familiar "Cannon doesn't understand the laws of physics" rap, head on over to Rigorous Intuition. Have yourself a ball.)
My questions:
Was the videographer accompanying the hero/movie producer who tackled the bomber?
Was the videographer our government agent?
Does the fact that the security at those airports the bomber went through are operated by the Israelis have any bearing on this?I read that security for certain flights through Amsterdam was/is lax to allow certain contraband into the country.
Someone else suggested that the banker father had ulterior motives in reporting his son to American authorities, that the son and he, who were supposedly estranged, were together for a family gathering just before this flight. Note that now that the family of the bomber have been brought to this country, the son is "cooperating" with our interrogators.

Something doesn't smell right.

Did the son really believe he was going on a suicide mission or was he injured inadvertently?
Who was the other man arrested at Detroit?
Why were the passengers moved to another area of the airport after dog sniffed his luggage?
Why did the government try to downplay eye-witness acounts of the other "well-dressed Indian man" in Amsterdam?

Was this all a play with some unintended consequences?
On the one hand, I'm still reviled by the term "crotch bomber." Because I hate the "c-word." (Personal thing.) On the other hand, "[i]...why was there a fire in Farouk's crotch?[/i]" is hysterical and made me LOL.
Sometimes I leave a coat hanger in the car just in case I accidentally lock my keys inside the car.

Clearly the videographer was videotaping the explosion from close up because he could get more money selling the tape later on.

And you thought it was more complicated than that.
(satire alert, satire alert).
Well Joseph you certainly keep it interesting. I really think the videographer had to be complicit in the scheme and like you said was gathering intelligence data if the bomb failed. Videotaping it most certainly gives them a mountain of information that they can use against us in the future. Positions of the Sky Marshall's, how many, what kind of crew, how big the crew was, where the bomber needs to be when detonation, etc.

That may be how these guys operate. Try something, if it fails analyze the evidence and work to fix the problem. That is a pretty scientific approach and unfortunately we've been educating some of these people in science fields for many years.

As for the belief that our government would let a man carrying even a useless bomb onto a plane where he could attempt to detonate it stretches the imagination pretty thin. Much as thinking our government could possibly have had anything to do with 9/11. There most assuredly is some misguided people in our government and our government hasn't functioned well in a long time but I can't believe our government would ever do anything so heinous.
The videographer was taping the whole flight, not just the explosion.
Was this a "play" and whose gov. was directing it? Ours or Theirs.

Bomber giving us new information...
I'm feeling paranoid that I'm stating the obvious, but maybe the idea was to amount what appears to be an attempt to bomb the plane (a dry run - not ever the real thing) in order to see how we respond to the bomber so that they can be prepared to disarm us in the real attempt.

If that's what they're doing, a videotape of the effort would contain invaluable information.
lori, I've been thinking along those lines. But what guy is going to set his private parts on fire just to stage a dry run?
Joe and Lori, could it be that the bomber decided at the last minute to get his share of virgins? He tried to turn the dry run into the real thing.
If you can't videotape any more why was the guy doing it allowed to continue? Was there no sky marshal on board?
I'm thinkin' he may not have known it was a dry run. He's crazy. Maybe they just wanted to see what we did with him.

I mean, why waste someone who is capable of pulling this off by having them do something that will get them to prison. Let the crazy guys do the dry runs so they can see what we do.

Videotaping the whole flight gives them information about how operatives behave on the plane, etc. are there any clues that someone is air marshal? Stuff like that.
"But what guy is going to set his private parts on fire just to stage a dry run?"

Joseph, the same kind of unsuspecting guy who prepared and lusted for 72 Virgins only to get PUNKED by our CIA friends, who THOUGHT he was flying on 'MO AIR.'
I say it was a setup. What's the point of videotaping a suicide flight? If it succeeds, the tape is gone. If it fails, the tape is seized. The young guy was a dupe.

If the bomb had actually exploded, the video taper - and his video - would have ended end up at the bottom of the ocean along with everything else, making the taping a useless gesture.

It seems to me that the video dude knew full well he was on a dry run.

The bomber (seems to me) did not know this. He did not know the detonator was defective. He did not know he would be apprehended, and did not know about the taping.

But now he does know about the video dude and has figured out for himself that the bomb was designed to be a dud.

Maybe he's realized he has been played for the ultimate fool.

Maybe that's why he has started talking again, Mirandized ro not.
To be clear as to why John Judge was judged harshly by the, well, Truther community I suppose you could say, it's exactly this woman and her story with regard to the no-plane theory at the Pentagon. (Only a 'no-bomb' theory as it regards that alternative explanation for what happened at the Pentagon. I don't know of Judge's position as to CD in the towers.)

Judge had been adamant that he knew someone like this woman and her story personally, that she had been there, told him these things with a high degree of credibility, including her repeated story here of finding a severed hand/wrist/forearm wearing a bracelet she recognized as her friend's.

The problem with Judge's story was somewhat the credibility (the original take seemed to say this person known to him somehow went from not being on that usual flight that day to being somehow on the scene there that day, seeing what she saw in situ, in real time, as part of the immediate recovery work. She now clarifies this was some day or two later at an area where these remains had been accumulated, which rather belies the purported import of her commentary in my view.)

The other problem was that while Judge promised he would soon provide this person, or at least her identity to check out her bona fides as being indeed a flight attendant who'd worked that route, his promise to do so was in late 2001 or early 2002 around the time of the Theiysson (sp?) 'no-Pentagon plane' book. Evidently he's now belatedly done so, but if this video was 2 years ago, it took 5 years or more for the 'soon' to happen, during which time Judge was under attack for credibility as a special pleading disinfo guy on this matter (citing personal exclusive knowledge that he wouldn't support with the evidence he said he would soon provide).

As much as I've looked at various allegations in these matters in that past I learned something today that ties in a number with what this woman says.

The passenger manifests have been at issue in the past. Partial lists of 'victims' (labeled as such, evidently, by airline company releases) didn't include alleged hijackers names, leading to claims that the manifests themselves (which weren't in evidence) didn't include such names.

A site I found reproduced alleged manifests that did include alleged hijacker names, but curiously, left **6** **alleged passengers'** names blank. This woman recounts (I guess a hearsay account) phone call from a flight attendant known to her stating **6** people were hijacking the plane. And this is common to all the flights. There are more unidentified parties per plane than the alleged 5.

This comment has been removed by the author.
You almost went unpublished, XI -- as I said, this post is not about 9/11, and if I allow a thread to get sidetracked down that path -- well, I know full well what will happen. Been there, done that, not again. I will never again relive the days when I dreaded visiting my own damned blog, and I really don't care who thinks I am being unfair.

Judge doesn't believe in violence. I do, at least to this extent: I wish that every CDer had but one set of teeth so that I could do major dentistry with a baseball bat.

I won't say all that I know, but I will say this, based on my experience. If Judge says he met a person, I would bet the rent money that he met that person. If he says he knows somebody, he knows somebody. But if he's reconstructing something he read in a book or an article, you should look for an exact citation before you repeat the info. I'm not saying that he's always wrong, or even often wrong. I'm just saying that it's best to double check. "Trust, but verify," to quote a president that neither Judge nor I much cared for.

Hey, you should double-check me as well. What else are hyper-links and Google for?

And it is very consistent with the man's personality for him to say in front of a crowd: "I know a person who says thus and such" -- without thinking of the potential repercussions. As in: hecklers crying "Oh yeah? Prove it! Let's talk to this person!" And then he would be faced with the problem of asking a person who wants to maintain her privacy to come out in public and grapple with half-insane (or fully insane) conspiracy nutters who feel obliged to defend the stupid theory that has a hammerlock on their souls and without which their entire self-image would crumble.

If I were that woman, I would not have come out and exposed myself to that mess.

By the way, would I be sexist if I said that I think she's attractive?
"the witnesses who saw Farouk (the abortive bomber) meet with a "well-dressed man" in the Schipol airport"

Afaik that has been cleared up. Check Haskell's blog. Another passenger contacted him and made the point that it wasn't Abdulmuttalab, but a similarly dressed teenager who was accompanied by an airline employee.
That is NOT what Haskell says. Haskell voices suspicion of the person who made that claim -- a government-linked individual who hasn't spoken in public. None of the other witnesses back up this idea.
Check this out. Maybe some leads in there.
I understand, and thanks for publishing that.

But what has become of tradecraft, when such blatant red flags such as these videotapers appear in the story so suspiciously? It's almost as if they aren't trying very hard, or know that the discrepancies and odd questions will not be aired.

I wouldn't rule out that the man videotaping it was simply another terrorist who, for whatever reason, managed to get through whatever security setup was there after the plane landed. Security set ups of TSA have often shown themselves to be quite weak.

As for the notion that it wouldn't make sense for an accomplice to videotape the flight if the bomb was expected to detonate, it could be just as likely that he was there to capture why a mission that was intended to succeed failed. For instance, if it did fail and the accomplice got the video out, it could demonstrate any potential on-board security plans that may have foiled the plot which future bombers could learn from.

Just figured I'd pose another speculative angle, assuming there's anything real about this videographer.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is 

powered by Blogger. 

Isn't yours?