Tuesday, August 16, 2005                                               The Daily Battle Against Subjectivity
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Q U O T E   O F  T H E  D A Y

"You get America out of Iraq and Israel out of Palestine and you'll stop the terrorism."
- Cindy Sheehan


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THE ISRAELI ART STUDENTS AND MOVERS STORY
By Wayne Madsen

The presence in the United States of a number of young Israelis, most of whom had specialized military and intelligence backgrounds, in the months prior to 911 is a subject that has received inadequate attention from the major U.S. media and government investigators.

The activities of the Israelis fell into two main areas: the casing of the offices and homes of Federal law enforcement officials, U.S. military bases, and other sensitive sites by Israeli "art students" during 2000 and 2001 and the unusual activities of Israeli "movers" around sensitive areas during and after 911. These incidents occurred in tandem with the suspiscious activities of other former Israeli military and intelligence officials in neighboring countries, including Canada and Mexico, after 911. In addition, a number of Israeli intelligence agents were apprehended abroad for passport violations and other illegal activities.

The possibility that the suspicious Israeli activity was linked to the movements of Al Qaeda cells cannot be brushed aside as merely coincidental. For example, a number of the Israelis arrested for suspicious activities involving selling bogus Israeli art and driving moving vans were concentrated in some of the same neighborhoods where a number of the 911 Saudi and other Arab hijackers lived and trained at flight schools.

Two internal U.S. government documents revealed that among the 120 Israeli "art students" who attempted to penetrate the security of dozens of Federal office buildings and who visited the homes of scores of U.S. law enforcement personnel during 2000 and 2001 were some who used addresses and mail drops in southern Florida and Texas near those used by a number of the 911 hijackers. The information came from a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Report drafted in June 2001 on the activities of the art students and a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) list of the hijackers and other terrorist suspects, accidentally released in early October 2001 on a Finnish government web site. The DEA memo specifically stated that the Israelis may have had ties to an "Islamic fundamentalist group."

As a journalist, it has become increasingly difficult since the 911 terrorist attacks to cover the more secretive aspects of the U.S. intelligence and law enforcement communities. Many government officials have readopted the famous World War II missive of "Loose Lips Sink Ships," in refusing comment on anything deemed sensitive. Journalists who rely on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain copies of documents also face unprecedented challenges. After 911, Attorney General John Ashcroft issued a memorandum that states his Justice Department will use its enormous legal might to defend any refusal by any government agencies to withhold information requested under the FOIA.

Coming into possession of a sensitive Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) report on the activities of Israeli "art students" was, therefore, a welcome surprise. DEA, the chief agency that investigates drug cartels, dangerous work under any circumstance, is traditionally very secretive about its investigations. However, some members of the agency, frustrated that their concerns were not being taken seriously by senior officials of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Justice Department, apparently decided to leak the report. Their decision was supported by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), another agency involved with the DEA in the joint task force set up to investigate the Israeli "students."

Being presented with a document such as the DEA report, titled "Suspicious Activities Involving Israeli Art Students at DEA Facilities," posed unique problems in itself. For example, the document had to be verified as authentic and not a hoax. Many times, government agencies will merely state they "can neither confirm nor deny" the genuineness of leaked documents. However, in the case of the DEA report, confirmation of its genuineness came from the DEA in relatively quick fashion.

One amazing element of the story was the fact that a number of DEA, INS, and FBI agents had discovered, as had I, that several of the known addresses of the Israeli students were very close to those of the Al Qaeda terrorists and their supporters. These included addresses in Hollywood, Florida; Miami, Florida; and Irving, Texas. Speaking off-the-record, some of the agents told me that the fact that the Israelis and Al Qaeda were living in the same neighborhoods at the same time--January through May 2001--led the agents to believe the real mission of the Israelis was not to sell art at federal facilities but to spy on the Al Qaeda members.

As rock solid as the story about the true nature of the art students remains, it has had to face another, even more insurmountable problem than getting federal agents to talk. Immediately after the story appeared in Intelligence Online, Le Monde, and the Associated Press, the sizeable pro-Israeli lobby in the United States began to gear up for a counter punch. They had been through this in December 2001 when the Fox News Network, in a four part series by Carl Cameron, referred to Israelis being arrested and detained in the United States for espionage. Cameron also stated, "Evidence linking these Israelis to 911 is classified. I cannot tell you about evidence that has been gathered. It's classified information." No sooner had Fox put the story on its web site it was pulled down without explanation. A similar story on Houston's CBS affiliate, KHOU-TV, provided the following introduction:

"10/02/2001 - Fifteen People Arrested in March in Dallas, Suspected of Casing Federal Buildings. 11News reported how people claiming to be "Israeli art students" might be trying to sneak into federal buildings and defense sites, and even doing surveillance. In Dallas, the so-called students hit early this year at the city's FBI building, the Drug Enforcement Administration and at the Earle Cabell Federal building, where guards found one student wandering the halls with a floor plan of the building."[1]

When trying to access the full story on the TV station's web site, one receives the following message: "The page you requested could not be found." However, Channel 11 News' terrorism expert and former Defense Department analyst Ron Hatchett said the Israeli activity was "obvious surveillance" and "not a bunch of kids selling artwork." A Federal Protective Service memo, obtained by KHOU after Israelis were seen casing the Leland Federal office building in Houston, stated, "Federal sites have experienced an inundation of art solicitations at office buildings by students claiming to be selling Israeli art."[2]

Federal agents in Dallas were also concerned that the Israeli art students had other intentions. The office manager for a Plano physician reported that after being told to leave, the Israelis kept returning to her building, which had a no soliciting policy. Channel 8 in Dallas reported that a number of Israelis were caught casing Federal buildings in Dallas and being involved in suspicious behavior in north Texas.[3]

The author's own colleagues reported that aggressive Israeli art students paid visits during late 2000 and early 2001 to the offices of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Washington, DC and the headquarters of the National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) in Arlington, Virginia.

Other suspected Israeli intelligence activity surrounding 911, including the arrest by New Jersey police near Giants Stadium of five Israelis who were seen celebrating, high-fiving, jumping up and down, and videotaping the collapse of the World Trade Center, was reported by the media. A New Jersey apartment resident named Maria, who declined to give her last name, told ABC News about several Israelis she saw celebrating the attack on the Twin Towers in her parking lot. The Israelis were later linked to an Israeli-owned office moving company called Urban Moving Systems headquartered in Weehawken, New Jersey at 3 West 18th Street. Another Urban Moving office was located on West 50th Street in Manhattan. Urban Moving's owner, Dominik Otto Suter, fled to Israel shortly before he was to be re- questioned by the FBI. [4] One of the five Israelis had a ticket for Bangkok and was due to fly out on September 13.[5] The New York Department of Transportation revoked Urban Moving Systems' license after it was discovered that its Manhattan business address was merely a post office box.

At 3:31 P.M. the FBI issued a nationwide alert called "Be On Lookout" or "BOLO" for the Israelis. Drafted by Special Agent Dave O'Brien, it read:

"Vehicle possibly related to New York terrorist attack. White, 2000 Chevrolet van with New Jersey registration (JYJ 13Y) with 'Urban Moving Systems' sign on back seen at Liberty State Park. Jersey City, NJ, at the time of the first impact of jetliner into World Trade Center."[6]

According to FBI sources, Urban Moving Systems and the activities of its employees on 911 did not sit too well with one member of the FBI's New York Joint Terrorism Task Force, Special Agent Michael Dicks. He pursued the Israeli angle but soon found himself transferred to Karachi, Pakistan to help rescue Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl who had been kidnapped by Al Qaeda functionaries. There was one hitch. The FBI was already aware that Pearl had been brutally murdered by his captors.

Moments after Maria felt the ground shake from the impact of the first plane into the World Trade Center and she received a phone call from a neighbor to look out her window at the southern Manhattan skyline, she noticed a white Chevy van parked in the lower parking lot with three of the five men in the van jumping on the roof of the vehicle and videotaping each other with the carnage in the background. Maria was also shocked that the men were celebrating the horrific scenes across the Hudson River. After writing down the license plate number of the van, Maria and her husband Pat phoned the police.[7]

Subsequently, Information Spectrum, Inc. (ISI) of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, a subsidiary of the Fairfax, Virginia-based defense contractor, Anteon, took over the operation of the Jersey City police computer system that handled all incoming emergency phone calls on September 11. The system had been maintained by Larimore Associates, a company that specializes in archiving police emergency calls. However, Larimore's contract was abruptly canceled by Jersey City authorities and awarded to Information Spectrum after the sudden death from a heart attack of Jersey City's first African-American mayor, Democrat, Glenn D. Cunningham, himself a former Jersey City police officer. According to Jersey City Police officials, after the emergency call system was changed from a Wang to a Windows environment, 8000 emergency 911 system calls registered on September 11 were scrubbed from the archives. In fact, archives dating back to 1989, including those dealing with the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center, were similarly affected. Information Spectrum's running of the computer system resulted in a number of server crashes. When Larimore volunteered to help recover the lost data, there was no response from the police department.[8] Some Jersey City police sources speculated the change from Larimore to ISI/Anteon was prompted by orders from Trenton and the administration of Governor James McGreevey. They termed the changeover as "political." Governor McGreevey resigned in 2004 after it was discovered he had an alleged gay relationship with his chief of Homeland Security, Golan Cipel. An Israeli citizen, Cipel, a former diplomat assigned to Israel's Consulate General in New York City, was thought by many intelligence experts to be a junior Mossad case officer who lured McGreevey into a "honey trap."

Jersey City was a major base of operations for the 1993 World Trade Center attack. The Ryder van used in that attack was rented from a Jersey City rental agency. As for the 911 attacks on the World Trade Center, there were no records of a call by Maria or any other witness to the Israeli activity in Maria's building parking lot or at Liberty State Park. The only call remaining in the system was a late night call on September 11 about a suspicious vagrant in a south Jersey City neighborhood.[9]

However, there was a call placed to the Jersey City Police Department that claimed "Palestinians" in Arab clothes were seen celebrating the attacks. Although the Jersey City Police discovered their 911 system tapes on September 11, 2001 disappeared from their servers and achives after ISI took over the contract, some tapes implicating "Arabs" found their way into the hands of WNBC-TV in New York in June 2002. WNBC played transcripts of 911 calls from the Jersey City Police:

Dispatcher: Jersey City police.
Caller: Yes, we have a white van, 2 or 3 guys in there, they look like Palestinians and going around a building.
Caller: There's a minivan heading toward the Holland tunnel, I see the guy by Newark Airport mixing some junk and he has those sheikh uniform.
Dispatcher: He has what?
Caller: He's dressed like an Arab. [10]

It is clear that the Jersey City Police Department's 911 call tapes were manipulated to delete any calls that might implicate the Israelis. The one call provided to WNBC was clearly an attempt at a "false flag" operation implicating "Palestinians" wearing "sheik uniforms" as the culprits in at least one of the white vans driven by Israeli "movers" on the morning of September 11.

After the van was traced to the Israeli moving company, the BOLO went out for the arrest of the vehicle's driver and passengers. An East Rutherford policeman directing traffic away from the closed Lincoln Tunnel on Route 3 East noticed the van was driving slowly on the service road towards the tunnel. The tag of the vehicle was only off by one letter from what was contained in the BOLO (JRJ 13Y) and the front New Jersey plate had been removed. It is very possible that to confuse the police, the Israelis were using NJ plate JRJ 13Y as the rear tag on two white vans – the one sighted in Liberty State Park and the other in Maria's apartment building parking lot. In fact, local police reported a number of white van sightings during September 11, with a number of them phoned into the police. Maria told ABC News she phoned tag number JRJ 13Y to the Jersey City Police after seeing the Israelis driving in a white van celebrating the first plane's impact, while Liberty State Park witnesses said the same tag number -- JRJ 13Y -- had been passed to the police and FBI after a white van with "celebrating Arabs" had been chased from the park by the park's chief ranger after the first plane impact.[11] It was clear that officials of New Jersey's Department of Environmental Protection in Trenton, which has authority over the state's parks, ordered Liberty State Park officials not to talk to the media about September 11 and the Israeli van.[12]

The East Rutherford Police report on the Israeli van states:

"Officer assigned to Special Detail on Route 3 was rerouting traffic on Highway 3 East to Hwy 120 and 3 West. Lincoln Tunnel was shut down and officer was diverting traffic. Officer notified by dispatch of a National Broadcast to be on lookout for 2000 Chevy Van White, NJ tag JYJ 13Y. 3 to 4 occupants. Officer noticed van traveling at slow speed east towards Lincoln Tunnel on the Service Road with 2 occupants visible. Officer informed sergeant of possible match. No front license plate but JRJ 13Y tag may have one letter off from National Broadcast. Sergeant told officer to stop vehicle because van seen in Liberty State Park at time of first impact. Driver did not exit vehicle. He fumbled with a black "fanny pack." Officer removed driver and van was searched. County bomb squad and FBI notified. FBI Newark ordered occupants to be held for prints because occupants were seen in Liberty State Park at time of first impact. 5 individuals were detained. Vehicle registration and insurance card were obtained. Officer spoke to FBI Special Agents Robert F. Taylor, Jr., Bill Lloyd, and Dave O'Brien. Prior to transportation to NJ State Police Barracks at Giants Stadium, driver said, "We are Israelis, we are not your problem. Your problems are our problem. Palestinians are the problem." [13]

After the Israelis were arrested they misrepresented their location to one of the arresting police officers, Scott DeCarlo, claiming they were driving on West Side Highway in Manhattan when the planes struck the Trade Center. Dogs provided by the Bergen County Police K-9 unit alerted to the presence of explosives in the van. The nearby Homestead Studio Suites Hotel was evacuated for several hours. Asked about the Israelis in the van being present at Liberty State Park at the time of the first World Trade Center impact, one East Rutherford officer responded, "sure they were there."[14] Another confidential source told the Bergen County Record, "There are maps of the city in the car with certain places highlighted . . . It looked like they're hooked in with this. It looked like they knew what was going to happen when they were at Liberty State Park."[15] According to several Weehawken neighbors of the Urban Moving Systems warehouse, the FBI, upon searching the warehouse, discovered fertilizer, other chemicals for making explosives, pipes, caps, and traces of anthrax. After anthrax was discovered, investigators wearing hazardous material suits went through the warehouse. Residents around Urban Moving Systems who had connections to the local police also reported that helicopters with infrared radar swooped in over the warehouse on several occasions.[16]

According to the ABC 20/20 report and echoing the East Rutherford police report, the van's driver, Sivan Kurzburg, told DeCarlo, "We are Israeli. We are not your problem. Your problems are our problems. The Palestinians are the problem."[17] The Israelis also reportedly told police they were tourists.[18] When the FBI developed the photos taken by the Israelis of the World Trade Center carnage, one photo depicted Kurzburg flicking a cigarette lighter in a celebratory manner with the burning buildings in the background.[19]

On the morning of September 12, the FBI canvassed the residents of the Israelis' apartment building, The Doric, in Union City. They asked the residents if they could identify photographs of the five Israelis.[20] The three Newark-based FBI agents on the case were Robert F. Taylor, Jr., Bill Lloyd and Dave O'Brien, the same agents who questioned the van drivers arrested in East Rutherford. All have subsequently been transferred from the Newark Field Office. A Union City off-duty policemen, saw three suspicious people at Union Park next to the Doric Temple at the corner of 9th Street and Palisades Avenue in Union City. The three, who matched the description of other Israeli "false flag" teams, were filming New York City's skyline before the first plane hit the World Trade Center. The officer also witnessed the three high-fiving each other. The officer chased the celebrants on foot but was unable to apprehend them. The officer later reported the three headed into Jersey City by car.[21]

Another van carrying explosives was stopped by police on an approach ramp to the George Washington Bridge from the New Jersey side. Police suspected the perpetrators were trying to blow up the bridge.[22]

According to Jersey City police sources, another FBI agent, Monica Patton, investigated the activities of Israeli "movers" and four of the hijackers, Mohammed Atta, Marwan al Shehhi, and two Saudi brothers – Waleed M. and Wail Al-Shehri -- at the same video rental store in Jersey City. One of the videos the Saudi brothers rented was an HBO documentary on the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. Another video they rented was "The Towering Inferno." The video storeowner said his video rental records were later stolen after the FBI interviewed him and he told them about the Saudis' rental history. The Al Shehri brothers also purchased phone cards from the video store for special use in calling Dubai. The Jersey City intrigue does not stop with the Saudis and Israelis. Jersey City Police also reported that the business card of a Jersey City municipal government social worker had been found on Timothy McVeigh after his arrest for the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in 1995.[23]

After serving two and a half months in prison and after a barrage of official complaints from the Israeli government, the five Israeli "movers" (Kurzberg, his brother Paul Kurzberg, Yaron Shmuel, Oded Elner, and Omer Marmari) were released over the objections of the CIA and permitted to return home. However, when Jersey City police checked the Israelis' van they found $4,700 hidden in a sock, two foreign passports and a Stanley-knife box cutter (the same brand used by the 911 hijackers). Paul Kurzberg, refused for ten weeks to take a polygraph and then flunked it when he did. His lawyer said his client once worked for Israeli intelligence in "another country."[24] Jerusalem Mayor Ehud Olmert interceded twice with his good friend New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani to have the Israelis released. On September 14, 2004, the five "dancing Israelis" filed suit against the United States in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn for wrongful arrest and imprisonment.

In their complaint, Silvan Kurzberg, Paul Kurzberg, Yaron Shmuel, Omer Gavriel Marmari, and Oded Oz Elner cited the following defendants:

JOHN ASHCROFT, Attorney General of the United States; JAMES W. ZIGLAR (Former Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service); MICHAEL ZENK (Warden of the Metropolitan Detention Center); DENNIS HASTY (former Warden of the Metropolitan Detention Center) KATHLEEN HAWK SAWYER (former Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LINDA THOMAS (former Associate Warden of Programs of the Metropolitan Detention Center); ROBERT MUELLER (Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation); KEVIN LOPEZ (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); S. CHASE (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); "JORDAN" (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, whose true first and last names are unknown to the plaintiffs, who believe they heard him being called "Jordan") MARIO MACHADO (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); WILLIAM BECK (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); RICHARD DIAZ (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); C. SHACKS (first name unknown first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); SALVATORE LOPRESTI (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); STEVEN BARRERE (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); JON OSTEEN (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); J. MIELES (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); MICHAEL DEFRANCISCO (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); F. JOHNSON (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); CHRISTPHOR WITSCHEL (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); MOSCHELLO (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); NORMAN (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); HOSAIN (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); MOUNBO (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); M. ROBINSON (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); TORRES (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons) COUNSELOR RAYMOND COTTON (believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); DR. LORENZO (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT BIRAR (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT BUCK (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT T. CUSH (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT GUSS (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT D. ORTIZ (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); LIEUTENANT J. PEREZ (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); UNIT MANAGER C. SHACKS (first name unknown, believed to be an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons); JOHN DOES 1-30, Metropolitan Detention Center Corrections Officers, "John Doe" being fictional first and last names, intended to be the corrections officers at the Metropolitan Detention Center who abused the plaintiffs and violated their rights, and whose identities are known to the defendants but at this time unknown to the plaintiffs; JOHN ROES 1-30, Federal Bureau of Investigation and/or Immigration and Naturalization Service Agents, "John Roe" being fictional first and last names, intended to be the corrections officers at the Metropolitan Detention Center who abused the plaintiffs and violated their rights, and whose identities are known to the defendants but at this time unknown to the plaintiffs.

A number of interesting facts are stated in the Israelis' complaint. It states that some of the Israelis were classified as being "of high interest" to the government's terrorism investigation, "Witness Security" and/or "Management Interest Group 155." They were "housed in one of the most highly restrictive prison settings possible, the Administrative Maximum Special Housing Unit ("ADMAX SHU") of the Metropolitan Detention Center ("MDC")." The government was also interested in the Israelis' possessions. The complaint states the government "confiscated personal identification, money, and valuable personal items" from the Israelis. In addition, the government searched the homes of the Israelis and confiscated additional personal items.

One intriguing complaint was that the U.S. government detained the Israelis precisely because they were Jewish Israelis. The court filing states: "Defendants and others have also engaged in racial, religious, ethnic, and/or national origin profiling. Plaintiffs' race, religion, ethnicity, and/or national origin played a determinative role in Defendants' decision to detain them initially, to subject them to a blanket non-bond policy, to subject them to punishing and dangerous conditions of confinement, and then to keep them detained beyond the point at which removal or voluntary departure could have been effectuated . . ."

Comment: Intriguing, perhaps - but the Zionists' accusations of "anti-Semitism" are certainly nothing new, and are constantly used to shield the Zionists and their Mossad henchman from any allegations of wrongdoing.

Silvan Kurzberg was required to provide a blood sample while in prison, an indication that federal authorities may have had some DNA evidence they wanted to match. At the time of their arrest, all the Israelis had plane tickets back to Israel. When they were first detained, the Israelis were not permitted to meet with a Rabbi. Later access to a Rabbi was granted under "severely limited" circumstances. Prayer books and a bible given to the Israelis by the Rabbi were inspected by prison guards. During their first two weeks of detention, the FBI prohibited the Israeli Consul in New York from meeting with the Israelis.

One of the most astounding claims of the Israelis was that the FBI, Bureau of Prisons, and Immigration and Naturalization Service did not understand the difference between Arab Muslims and Jewish Israelis. The complaint states: "The plaintiffs are Jewish Israelis, not Moslems, but due to the similarity of language and the geographical location of Israel in the Middle East, and the ignorance or lack of understanding of the Arab-Israeli conflict and the fact that Israel is an ally of the United States, the defendants mentally placed the plaintiffs in the same category as Moslems, and discriminated against them the same way."[25]

***

At around noon on September 12, 2001, Roy Barak, a former Israeli paratrooper, and Motti Butbul, both employed by Urban Moving Systems as drivers, were stopped by police near York, Pennsylvania. They were en route from Chicago to New York City. Police discovered Barak had an expired visa and Butbul had no work permit. FBI agents were soon on the scene and grew suspicious when a box cutter was found inside the truck. The FBI polygraphed Barak and showed him a picture of his five colleagues arrested in New Jersey and asked him why they were smiling. Barak responded that they were not smiling. The FBI thought Barak was a possible terrorist and a Mossad spy. The FBI was particularly interested if someone sent Barak to the United States and if, at the time, he held a security clearance in the Israeli army. Barak spent his second week in solitary confinement without a television, radio, or any books.[26]

Vince Cannistraro, the former operations chief for counter-terrorism for the CIA, said that a search of the CIA's national intelligence database turned up some of the names of Israelis arrested in New Jersey. He said a number of people in the U.S. intelligence community concluded that Urban Moving was a Mossad operation and the Israelis were pursuing Islamist radicals in the New Jersey-New York area and particularly in Patterson, New Jersey. Pauline Stepkovich, who lived across the street from Urban Moving, told ABC News that FBI agents removed about a dozen boxes and computers, enough to fill up two SUVs. Cannistraro told ABC News that the FBI was concerned that the Israeli movers had some advanced knowledge of the 911 attacks but failed to warn the United States. "The fear of some of the FBI investigators in this particular case was that this group had some advanced knowledge of what was going to happen on 911. And once they understood there was an Israeli connection--an Israeli intelligence connection--they became very disturbed, because the implication was that the Israelis may have had some advanced knowledge of the events of 911 and hadn't told us," Cannistraro said.[27] Israeli intelligence foreknowledge about the 911 attacks was confirmed by two senior-level intelligence officials at the CIA and FBI.[28]

In Washington, Israeli embassy spokesman, Mark Regev, dismissed the espionage charges, claiming the excitement of the Israelis seeing the World Trade Center collapse was due to "youthful foolishness." [29] A lawyer for one of the Israelis said his client denied celebrating the terrorist attack on the Trade Center, however, after the FBI developed their film it clearly showed three of the Israelis on top of the van "smiling and clowning around" with the buildings burning in the background.[30] The evidence bolstered what Maria and Pat told the police and proved that the Israelis lied to the police when they claimed they were in Manhattan during the attack.

The Jewish weekly newspaper, The Forward, reported that a top U.S. government official told it, "The assessment was that Urban Moving Systems was a front for the Mossad and operatives employed by it… the conclusion of the FBI was that they were spying on local Arabs."[31] ABC 20/20 host Barbara Walters commented on how the story of the Israeli movers was received in the Arab world, "The story is that Israel knew more than it would like to admit about the terrorist attack in this country. It's a rumor, but in some Arab countries--including Saudi Arabia, which I visited earlier this year--even educated people told me that they believe it is absolutely true."[32]

Perhaps the young Israelis were only mirroring the feelings of former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who when asked how the 911 attacks would affect U.S.-Israeli relations, said, "It's very good… Well, it's not good, but it will generate immediate sympathy for Israel from Americans." Bergen County Police Chief John Schmidig was not as serene. He said, "We got an alert to be on the lookout for a white Chevrolet van with New Jersey registration and writing on the side. Three individuals were seen celebrating in Liberty State Park after the impact. They said three people were jumping up and down."[33]

It is no coincidence that both Fox News and KHOU-TV had to pull down their web stories on the Israeli art students (based on the exposés in Intelligence Online and Le Monde, Fox began referring to its original December 2001 story on its web site). According to a number of Washington journalists, any time an article critical of Israel appears in the U.S. press, reporters and editors can expect to hear from a Boston-based group called the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America or "CAMERA." The Kafkaesque group makes no secret of its aggressive intimidation methods. Its web site states: "CAMERA systematically monitors, documents, reviews and archives Middle East coverage. Staffers directly contact journalists and publishers concerning distorted or inaccurate coverage… CAMERA members are encouraged to write letters both to the publication or network, and to the sponsors or advertisers… If corrections and improved coverage are not forthcoming, we publicize the faulty reporting and the journalist's refusal to admit error."

As an example, CAMERA cited a Washington Post story that refuted the legitimacy of the DEA's investigation and report on the Israeli art students. The story by reporters John Mintz and Dan Eggen questioned the motive behind the DEA's report by claiming, without offering any proof, that the agent who wrote it was disgruntled. Moreover, there was more than one author of the report. Apparently, CAMERA's "fact checkers" were only interested in checking out stories with which they disagreed or found embarrassing.

Neither the Washington Post nor CAMERA seemed all that much interested in a warning about the Israeli "art students" and their "aggressive" visits to the offices and homes of U.S. federal agents that was circulated in March, 2001 by the White House Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive. The warning stated:

"In the past six weeks, employees in federal office buildings located throughout the United States have reported suspicious activities connected with individuals representing themselves as foreign students selling or delivering artwork. Employees have observed both males and females attempting to bypass facility security and enter federal buildings.

If challenged, the individuals state that they are delivering artwork from a studio in Miami, Florida, called Universal Art, Inc., or that they are art students and are looking for opinions regarding their work. These individuals have been described as aggressive. They attempt to engage employees in conversation rather than giving a sales pitch.

Federal police officers have arrested two of these individuals for trespassing and discovered that the suspects possessed counterfeit work visas and green cards. These individuals have also gone to the private residences of senior federal officials under the guise of selling art."[34]

The nature of reporting on Israeli espionage in the United States can result in sources drying up rapidly. In the case of the DEA, the spokesman who originally confirmed the veracity and validity of the DEA Report was suddenly sent away on "vacation." Other DEA agents and employees of other Justice Department agencies began to seal their lips. Attorney General John Ashcroft refused on two occasions to comment on the DEA investigation. Congress was also unwilling to look into the matter. Asked why, a senior congressional staffer replied, "You've got to be kidding… This is an election year!" He was referring to the 2002 congressional elections.

Ashcroft was portrayed as "disinterested" in counterterrorism during the summer of 2001, according to internal FBI memos written by Acting Director of the FBI Thomas Pickard.[35] Ashcroft's "disinterest" in terrorism did not affect his looking out for his own safety. At the end of July 2001, Ashcroft broke with precedence and flew in a private G-3 Gulfstream to go on a fishing trip to Missouri. Ashcroft had previously flown on commercial planes. When asked why Ashcroft did not fly commercial, the Justice Department said that because of a "threat assessment" by the FBI, Ashcroft would "travel only by private jet for the remainder of his term." Neither the FBI nor the Justice Department would identify what the threat was, when it was detected or who made it. However, the FBI security detail for Ashcroft determined that the threat was critical enough for Ashcroft not to fly on commercial aircraft.[36]

After the DEA Report was leaked, I met with a journalist colleague who was also covering the art student story and had high level contacts within the Justice Department and FBI. During our meeting at the Navy Memorial just across the street from the National Archives, he summed up the problem: the cover-up went right to the top and the primary culprits were John Ashcroft and FBI Director Robert Mueller.

The Israelis were described in the DEA Report and other security advisories as being part of an "organized intelligence gathering activity." According to the FBI list, the Arab terrorist and suspect cells lived in the same neighborhoods as the Israeli cells in Irving, Texas and Hollywood and Miami, Florida from Dec. 2000 to April 2001. In the case of Irving, the Israeli cell used a rental mailbox in a shopping center just one block away from an Arab suspect's apartment. In Hollywood, the terrorists, including lead hijacker Mohammad Atta, the Egyptian who piloted American Airlines Flight 11 into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, used a rental mailbox drop two blocks from an apartment rented by an Israeli "art student" team leader.

If the Israelis were stalking the hijackers, they would have also likely known about their interest in the World Trade Center. Speaking at a press conference in Washington, DC on March 22, 2004, William Rodriguez, the President of the Hispanic Victims Group and a 20-year veteran employee of the World Trade Center, revealed that he spotted Mohand Al- Shehri (alias Mohammed al Shehhi), one of the terrorist hijackers of United Flight 175 that crashed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center, two and a half months before September 11. Rodriguez said he saw Al-Shehri, a Saudi citizen, casing the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Rodriguez's comments were part of the press conference partly organized by family members of 911 victims. The family members were calling for a full accounting by members of both the Clinton and Bush administrations about what they knew about the Al Qaeda threat to hijack planes prior to 911.

Rodriguez was a building manager for the World Trade Center and he held the master key for the North Tower. He was the last survivor pulled by rescue workers from the rubble of the building after it collapsed.

Rodriguez said Al-Shehri asked him how many public bathrooms were in the building and, in retrospect, Rodriguez believed the terrorist was looking for ways to place additional explosives in the building prior to the airplane attack. Rodriguez also said as he was climbing the stairs to help rescue people after American Airlines Flight 11 struck his building he heard heavy equipment being moved around on the 34th floor, which was closed and locked for renovation. In the chaos, Rodriguez did not have time to open the doors to the 34th floor to find out who was there but he believed there might have been additional explosives placed inside the building. Rodriguez also claimed that while assisting evacuees he heard non-aircraft-related explosions coming from floors below his location on the 33rd floor. The former chief economist for the Bush Labor Department, Morgan Reynolds, believed the Bush administration's story about the World Trade Center collapse was "bogus." Reynolds, who was the director of the Criminal Justice Center at the National Center for Policy Analysis in Dallas and later professor emeritus at Texas A&M University, opined that "if demolition destroyed three steel skyscrapers [the Twin Towers and Building 7] at the World Trade Center on 9/11, then the case for an 'inside job' and a government attack on America would be compelling." Reynolds added, "The government's collapse theory is highly vulnerable on its own terms. Only professional demolition appears to account for the full range of facts associated with the collapse of the three buildings."[37]

Moreover, Rodriguez passed along several of his tips about pre- 911 surveillance of the World Trade Center to the FBI but he said the agency never bothered to talk to him. However, according to the August 6, 2001 President's Daily Brief, the FBI was aware that suspected terrorists were conducting surveillance of buildings in New York. The White House revealed that prior to 911, the FBI interviewed two Yemenis it detained for taking photographs of buildings in Federal Plaza in New York City. The FBI released them after determining the Yemenis were "tourists."[38] Yemen is the birthplace of Osama bin Laden and a number of Al Qaeda operatives hail from Yemen.

Of course, not everyone within the FBI was asleep at the wheel. Minneapolis Special Agent Coleen Rowley tried in vain to get a wiretap on Zacarias Moussaoui. Phoenix Special Agent Kenneth J. Williams reported flight training by Arab students connected to Bin Laden. John P. O'Neill, the FBI's top counterterrorism agent, constantly raised the problem of Saudi support for Al Qaeda, only to be rebuffed, and eventually, hounded out of the bureau by his superiors.

The internal DEA report from June 2001 dealt with attempts by teams of Israeli "art students" to penetrate the security of various Federal buildings and offices throughout the United States. The DEA refused to officially comment on the report but a high-level source within the agency reports that it was the product of a larger investigation conducted jointly by a DEA and Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) Operational Task Force set up in 2000 specifically to investigate the Israelis.

A number of the art students, who claimed they were from either Bezalel University in Jerusalem or the University of Jerusalem, said they answered ads in Israeli newspapers but could not give details of the identities of their bosses when interviewed by Federal agents. A number of the male and female art students, who were mainly in their early to mid 20s, had recently served in Israeli military and intelligence service, according to the report. Their activities were concentrated during the February-March 2001 time frame. More important, there was no University of Jerusalem and Bezalel said it had no record of any of the students having ever been enrolled there.

The DEA compiled an extensive list of the Isreali art students as an appendix (Indexing Section) to its report [LNU means "last name unknown"] [Full list available at the linked site]

On April 30, 2001, the Air Force issued a security alert from Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma City concerning a "possible intelligence collection effort being conducted by Israeli art students." DEA, INS, FBI, and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offices received similar alerts. The FBI office in New Orleans reportedly received a "Counter terrorism Advisory Report regarding suspicious activities around Federal buildings that related to Israeli students" in February 2000. The FBI also reported that an Israeli art student attempted to sell art at the residences of a U.S. District Judge and U.S. Magistrate in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. However, according to knowledgeable U.S. government sources, the FBI stayed away from the ongoing DEA-INS investigation for "political reasons." [...]

There are a number of possible explanations about why the Israeli art students were living so close to the hijackers, especially in Florida where much of the terrorists' flight training occured. One is that the Israelis had penetrated Al Qaeda with two cells comprising six Egyptian- and Yemeni-born Jews and that some of these agents posed as Israeli art students and were shadowing the Al Qaeda cells inside the United States and reporting their movements back to Mossad or a "cut out" intelligence unit in Ariel Sharon's office. Another explanation is that, like the Israeli "movers" in the New York-New Jersey area, the art students were providing an operational decoy and even material support to the hijackers. This theory arose when several Israeli art students in Canada were arrested for selling bogus Chinese art that they were passing off as Israeli. Two Canadian newspapers reported that U.S. counter-intelligence officials had warned Canadian authorities that the Israeli art students were funneling proceeds from the art sales to Islamist radical groups.[40] If the Florida and Texas Israeli art rings discovered prior to 911 were providing such financial support to the hijackers, it would explain why they closely located their mail drops so close to one another.

The involvement of the Israeli cells with communications companies raised serious concerns at the DEA and Justice Department, which were both using Israeli communications intercept software in their field operations. The DEA used a T2S2 intercept system provided by Comverse and JSI, two Israeli companies. Comverse was very close to the Israeli government, which reimbursed it up to 50 percent for its research and development costs. The FBI's Communications Assistance to Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) Implementation Office in Chantilly, Virginia was extremely concerned about the threat posed by Comverse's intercept system. But the worries of the Chantilly office and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) were overridden by the FBI's engineering office in Quantico, Virginia, which was supported by such contractors as Booz Allen Hamilton.[41] The nexus of art students, intelligence surveillance, and possible involvement in Ecstasy trafficking set off alarm bells at the highest levels of the DEA about the "art students." The reason was simple. T2S2 systems were used in what the DEA, Coast Guard, Customs, and other counter narcotics agencies called High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTAs) and associated wiretap centers and surveillance teams (STs).[...]

On March 4, 2002, Robert F. Diegelman, the acting Assistant Attorney General for Administration, issued a Justice Department memo reiterating that standing Justice Department Order 2640.2D, dated July 12, 2001, prohibited non-U.S. citizens from access to Department of Justice information technology. The order and memo reiterated the policy, "Foreign Nationals shall not be authorized to access or assist in the development, operation, management or maintenance of Department IT systems, unless a waiver has been granted by the Department CIO."

Small teams of Mossad agents found with eavesdropping equipment are nothing new to European or American law enforcement. In February 1998, five Israelis, three men and two women, were arrested in an apartment in the suburbs of Berne, Switzerland. The Israeli team managed to convince the police that they did not break and enter into the apartment but were there legally. The apartment was the residence of an Islamic activist. Four of the Israelis, two men and two women, were released. However, the fifth Israeli was later discovered with sophisticated surveillance equipment and a number of false passports. He was arrested, detained, and held for 65 days until Israel paid 3 million Swiss francs for his release with a promise he would return from Israel to stand trial. In July 2000, Isaac Bental, the cover name under which the Mossad allowed the Swiss to prosecute their agent, stood trial for espionage before the Swiss Federal Court. It was the first time a Mossad agent had gone on trial outside Israel.[43]

In December 1998, Cypriot police arrested two Israeli agents, Uri Argov and Yisrael Damari, for the illegal possession of communications intercept equipment and espionage. In March 1998, three Mossad agents aborted a wiretapping operation in London after they were tipped off to the police. The Mossad had operated illegally in London since 1987. That year, a furious Margaret Thatcher ordered Israel to close its Palace Green, Kensington Mossad station after its role in the assassination of a Palestinian cartoonist on a South Kensington street was revealed.[44]

In 1999, Shalom Shaphyr, an Israeli national having residences in Vancouver, Washington and Portland, Oregon was arrested by the FBI in Alexandria, Virginia for trying to buy computer intercept equipment from undercover FBI and Customs Service agents. Shaphyr was accused of trying to illegally export the equipment to Vietnam. Shaphyr possessed a business visa that permitted him to enter and leave the United States at will.[45]

On May 31, 2005, it was announced in Israel that Israeli police and Interpol discovered a huge computer espionage ring involving a number of former Israeli intelligence officers and Israeli companies, including AMDOCS. Israeli police questioned AMDOCS computer security manager Eitan Shiron in the investigation that surrounded the use by over a dozen Israeli companies of a sophisticated hacking software program, called a Trojan horse, which bypassed the security controls on targeted computer systems.[46] The Israeli investigation also focused on four major Israeli telecommunications companies – Cellcom, Israel's largest mobile phone company; two subsidiaries of the largest telecommunications company Bezeq Israel Telecom; mobile phone company Pelephone; and satellite television company Yes.[47] Scotland Yard also participated in the take down of the Israeli espionage ring, arresting dual Israeli-German citizen Michael Haephrati and his wife Ruth Brier- Haephrati in London on an Israeli extradition warrant. The Israeli couple was charged with "unauthorized modification of the contents of a computer" between December 12, 2004 and February 28, 2005." Police said they wrote the Trojan horse computer program and provided it to a middleman. The Trojan horse in question was believed to be a derivative of the PROMIS software program illegally procured from Inslaw, Inc. in Washington, DC in the early 1980s and re-engineered by a number of intelligence agencies, including Israel's, to perform computer espionage. Oddly, The Scotsman newspaper reported that Haephrati was questioned about a "separate matter" by detectives with Britain's National Hi-Tech Crime unit on May 25, before his arrest on the Israeli warrant. The Haphraetis were remanded in the Bow Street Magistrates Court in London.[48]

Yet another possible Israeli intelligence link to electronic eavesdropping on the U.S. government was unearthed in the questionable awarding by the U.S. Congress of a wireless contract to a company owned by Israel. In 2000, LGC Wireless, a San Jose, California-based firm was considered in the lead to provide wireless connectivity for the U.S. House of Representatives. A year earlier, the House Administration Committee, then headed by Republican Representative Bill Thomas of California, granted LGC authority to conduct a design and security survey of the Capitol. In addition, the FBI and NSA reviewed LGC's system design to ensure that foreign intelligence agencies could not penetrate the House's wireless network. By December 2000, LGC had cleared its plans with the Capitol Architect, the House Information Resource Office, and the House Administration Committee. However, soon a new Israeli company named Foxcom Wireless, which changed its name to MobileAccess, began making an end run to secure the Capitol wireless contract. The new chairman of the House Administration Committee, Republican Representative Bob Ney of Ohio, clearly favored MobileAccess over LGC and in 2002, the Israeli company received the House wireless contract. Ney had a close poltical and financial relationship with GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff, an extreme pro- Israeli political insider, who came under Justice Department investigation for questionable ties to Ney and House Majority Leader Tom DeLay. It was later revealed by The Washington Post that in 2001 MobileAccess donated $50,000 to the Capital Athletic Foundation, which was run by Abramoff. In 2004, MobileAccess paid $240,000 in lobbying fess to Greenberg Traurig, Abramoff's former firm. The ranking member on the House Administration Committee, Democratic Representative Steny Hoyer of Maryland, said he was not kept fully informed of the wireless contract by either Thomas or Ney. LGC also cried foul when, in 2004, the U.S. Senate awarded MobileAccess a $3.9 million contract to install a wireless network for the Senate.[49] As with the questions surrounding Information Spectrum Inc. abruptly replacing Larimore Associates as the Jersey City Police Department computer system contractor, similar complaints were aired by LGC. Ian Sugarboard, LGC's CEO told The Hill newspaper, ". . . it appeared that lobbyists had exerted undue influence on the deal." In addition, the House Administration Committee did not specify what security criteria MobileAccess had to meet. The FBI and NSA had previously approved LGC's security countermeasures.[50]

Abramoff's strong connection to Israel and his influence in the Bush administration serve as yet another nexus between Israel, the Bush administration, and officials closely connected with Saudi Arabia. Top GOP adviser and Abramoff friend Grover Norquist, who was Abramoff's campaign manager when he ran for President of the College Republicans (a post also once held by Karl Rove), also maintained close links to a number of Saudis, some of whom were implicated in funding terrorism. Norquist was a cofounder of the Islamic Institute, co-located in Norquist's Americans for Tax Reform offices in Washington, DC. Norquist was a key player in the Bush 2000 outreach for Muslim and Arab voters. Sami al Arian, a University of South Florida professor, was an ardent supporter of Bush's Florida campaign to woo Muslim and Arab voters and his support likely helped tip the close election to Bush. The Islamic Institute was founded in 1999 with start up money from Kuwait; Qatar; other Arab countries; the founder of the American Muslim Council, Abdurahman Muhammad Al Amoudi; and two Islamic non-profits, the Safa Trust and the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT). In 2002, as part of Operation Greenquest, the FBI raided Safa and IIIT for their role in financing international terrorism. Another one of Al Amoudi's groups, the International Relief Organization, was suspected of laundering Saudi money to terrorist groups. Although Arian and Al Amoudi were later charged by the federal government with supporting terrorist groups, they maintained close ties to the Bush campaign. Just a few months before the 911 attacks, Arian attended a June 2001 White house briefing with Karl Rove. Suhail Khan, the White House point man for arranging access to Bush by prominent Muslim-Americans and a former director of the Islamic Institute, was the son of the late imam of the Santa Clara, California mosque. The mosque had once hosted Dr. Ayman al Zawahiri, the second in command of Al Qaeda. Norquist and his friends were clearly part of a Saudi- and Wahhabi- funded political machine that sought to marginalize moderate Muslims in the United States. Agha Jafri, a Sh'ia leader in New York, said there was in the United States a Saudi "mafia" that was "intent on crushing moderate Sufi and Shiite Muslims in the United States."[51] In addition, Norquist's friend Al Amoudi was also discovered to have links to the 911 hijackers. German police files indicated that Al Amoudi met in the fall of 2000 Mohammed Belfas, an Islamic leader in Hamburg who once shared an apartment with Ramzi bin al- Shibh, a kingpin behind the 911 attacks. One of Belfas's colleagues, Agus Budiman, had accompanied Belfas on a scouting mission to Washington, DC in late 2000. Budiman pleaded guilty to helping Belfas obtain a phony identification card using a non-existent address in Arlington, Virginia. German police obtained a photograph from Belfas's Hamburg apartment showing a meeting between him, Budiman, and Al Amoudi in Al Amoudi's Arlington, Virginia office. [52]

***

Texas was not the only case where the Israelis were found to be in the same location as the Saudi hijacker cells. According to the DEA Report, another Israeli team operating out of Hollywood, Florida, led by team leader Hanan Serfaty lived at 4220 Sheridan St., #303, Hollywood, Florida 33021 (Emerald Greens Apartments) while the Saudi hijackers Khalid Al Midhar, Abdulaziz al Omari, Walid Al Shehri, and UAE national Marwan al Shehhi, operated from a mail drop at Mailbox Rentals, 3389 Sheridan St. #256, Hollywood, Florida 33021-3608. Another Serfaty residence at 701 S. 21st Ave., Hollywood was located near the homes of Atta and Al Shehhi, including a residence on Jackson Street, just a few blocks away, and the Bimini Motel Apartments, Apartment 8, at 1600 North Ocean Drive. On September 7, just days before their terrorist attack, Atta and Al Shehhi spent several hours at Shuckums Oyster Bar and Grill at 1814 Harrison St., just a few blocks away from Serfaty's 21st Ave. residence. A Miami-based Israeli unit, led by Legum Yochai, operated from 13753 SW 90th Ave., Miami while hijacker Al Shehri lived nearby at Horizons Apartments, 8025 SW 107th Ave.

During the time the Israelis and Arabs were living in Hollywood, Atta and his team were attending flight training and inquiring about crop dusting planes in southern Florida. According to a source with high-level contacts within the Mossad, Israeli agents based in southern Florida were able to successfully penetrate the Arab cells in southern Florida and informed their Tel Aviv headquarters that an attack on the east coast of the United States was being planned and that it involved commercial aircraft. Although it is not known if these agents were art students, they were Yemeni and Egyptian-born Jews who spoke fluent Arabic and were trained at a secret base in Israel's Negev Desert. Although Mossad chief Efraim Halevy warned CIA Director George Tenet of an "imminent attack," the warning contained no details about the terrorists training on commercial aircraft. Tenet was said to have dismissed the warning because it was not specific. The Mossad units reportedly left the United States after the September 11 attack on El Al flights and were listed on sky marshal manifests as El Al employees.

It is likely that some of the Mossad warnings about hijackings in the United States did reach some people. Officials at Odigo, an instant-messaging company with offices in New York and Herzliya (where the headquarters of Mossad is located) admitted that two of its employees said they received e- mail warning of the attack two hours before the planes careened into the twin towers. Alex Diamandis, Odigo's vice president for sales and marketing, confirmed that Odigo employees in New York and Israel received a warning two hours before the attack. The warning appeared to be anonymous but Odigo programmers recorded the Internet protocol address of the message's sender. Odigo also notified Mossad and the FBI but the FBI failed to take action and notify occupants of the World Trade Center.[53]

By September 3, 2001, Zim-American Israeli Shipping Company, completed its move from the World Trade Center to Norfolk, Virginia after suddenly canceling its lease in April 2001 and forfeiting a $50,000 lease cancellation penalty. World Trade Center and New York-New Jersey Port Authority Police had previously determined that Zim's World Trade Center office was an intelligence operation that involved Mossad and CIA agents. Unlike other tenants in the World Trade Center, Zim's stairwell access door were covered by security cameras.[54] [...]

Comment: Did you catch that? "Zim's Word Trade Center office was an intelligence operation that involved Mossad and CIA agents."

Newspapers across the United States also reported Israelis being arrested around U.S. military installations. In May 2001, two Israelis, Gal Kantor and Tsvi Watermann, were arrested at the Volk Field Air National Guard base at Camp Douglas in Juneau County, Wisconsin. They said they were going to visit a museum on the base but instead began taking photographs on the runway. When an Air Force security guard asked the young men if they were selling art, Kantor became upset and demanded to know why the question was being asked. Obviously, the Volk Field security personnel had been warned about the suspicious activities of Israeli art students. Three days before the two Israelis were arrested at Volk Field, four Israelis were arrested and deported after they were discovered selling art door-to-door in a neighborhood close to Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma. Reflecting some sort of official sensitivity about the Volk Field incident, the base sent a news release to the Capital Times of Madison marked "for release on request only."[57]

The Tinker Air Force Base incident was confirmed by Midwest City Police Chief Brandon Clabes who said his police officers "were on alert" because they received a national security advisory warning that "Israeli nationals were posing as students selling artwork… to gain information about the U.S. military and security." Clabes said his officers encountered the Israelis on May 17, 2002, shortly after 7:15 PM. Two of the Israelis were on foot conducting "unusual door-to-door solicitations" in the Oakwood East housing area. A third Israeli was acting as a driver. In addition to several other photo identification cards, all three had Israeli Air Force identification. Clabes identified the three Israelis as Naor Topaz, Zeev Cahen, and Yaron Ohana. The three Israelis and a fourth member of their team were later arrested by the police on visa violations. The Israelis denied they were selling their artwork. Although the Air Force Office of Special Investigations later denied the Israelis were involved in espionage, Clabes said higher authorities in U.S. law enforcement believed the Israelis were using the selling of art to get people to divulge additional information by first engaging in "casual conversation about art, and then start slipping in questions about who lived there, is their family in the military--those types of things."[58]

Around 8:10 AM on September 11, 2001, American Airlines flight attendant Madeline Amy Sweeney, a 13-year veteran of the airline, used her cell phone to report to her supervisor at Logan Airport in Boston about the hijacking and murders occurring on her aircraft. A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Memorandum written the same day stated that one of the hijackers assigned to seat 10B (reportedly Satam Al Suqami) shot and killed the passenger assigned to seat 9B. The passenger shot was reported to have been Daniel C. Lewin, an Israeli-American agent with the top secret Israeli anti-terrorist Unit 269 of the counter-terrorism Sayeret Matkal branch of the Israeli Defense Force. Lewin also served as the chief technology officer of Akamai Technologies, Inc., a software company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.[59] The 911 Commission Report stated that Lewin was stabbed and not shot by Suqami. While Lewin and Israel were praised in the report no mention was made of Sweeney's last words to her superiors.

The FAA Memo, which was later reported by the FAA to be alternately erroneous and a first draft, was eventually scrubbed from the FAA's internal e-mail system. The original FAA memo stated:

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

September 11, 2001

On September 11, 2001, several commercial air carrier incidents, believed to be terrorist-related, occurred in various locations in the United States. As numerous U.S. passenger air carriers were involved, this has impacted many passengers as well as numerous persons on the ground in these various crash sites. The following is a summary of the events, which have occurred:

American Airlines Flight 11, departed today from Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), bound for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The aircraft type was a Boeing 767-200 with eighty-one passengers, nine flight attendants and two crew in the cockpit, which totaled 92 persons on this flight. At approximately 9:18 AM, it was reported that the two crew members in the cockpit were stabbed. The flight then descended with no communication from the flight crew members. The American Airlines FAA Principle Security Inspector (PSI) was notified by Suzanne Clark of American Airlines Corporate Headquarters, that an on board flight attendant contacted American Airlines Operations Center and informed that a passenger located in seat 10B shot and killed a passenger in seat 9B at 9:20 AM.[60] The passenger killed was Daniel Lewin, shot by passenger Satam Al Suqami. One bullet was reported to have been fired. The flight headed in the direction of John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). At 9:25 AM, this flight crashed directly into one of the towers at the World Trade Center. At 11:26 AM, a passenger manifest was obtained. The status of any selectees is as yet undetermined.

United Airlines Flight 93 departed this morning, from Newark International Airport (EWR) bound for San Francisco International Airport (SFO). The aircraft type is Boeing 757, confirmation pending. The flight consisted of thirty-eight passengers, two pilots and five crew members, which totaled 45 persons on this flight. Two selectee passengers (Christine Adams and Nicole Miller) were boarded on this flight with no unusual behavior noted per the air carrier personnel and screeners.[61] No cargo was on board this flight. One unit load device (ULD), was on board containing U.S. mail. At 9:42 AM, there was a report of a bomb threat on board this flight. Passengers' screams were heard in the cabin. At 10:05 AM, the Illinois State Police received a 9-1-1 telephone call from a passenger on that flight, who reported that three hijackers were on board with knives and reportedly made a bomb threat. The three hijackers were reported to be rushing to the cockpit area. At 10:12 AM, the flight crashed near Sommerset, PA. This location is approximately 70-90 miles from Pittsburgh near Route 30.

United Airlines Flight 175, departed from Boston-Logan International Airport (BOS), bound for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). This aircraft type was a Boeing 767. There were no selectee passengers on this flight. The flight consisted of nine crew members and forty-seven passengers, which totaled fifty-six persons on this flight. At 9:30 AM, radar contact with FAA air traffic control was lost. At 9:45 AM, United Airlines reported that one flight attendant was stabbed and two crew members were killed. This flight crashed into the second World Trade Center Tower.

Page 2

American Airlines Flight 77, departed Washington-Dulles International Airport (IAD), destined for Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). This flight departed Gate D26 of the IAD mid-field terminal at 8:09 a.m., and was airborne at 8:21 AM. The aircraft type was a Boeing 757. Number of selectee passengers is unknown at this time; ramp personnel noticed two selectees checked bags on the ramp. One non-selectee passenger did not board due to confusion of gate location. This flight consisted of fifty-eight passengers and six flight crew members, which totaled sixty-four persons on this flight. There was no cargo being transported on this aircraft. There were a total of thirty-five checked bags. It is presumed that this flight crashed into the Pentagon located in Washington, DC at approximately 10:00 AM.

Additional information is continuously being gathered on each of the four incidents described above.

911/01 5:31 PM

In November 2001, the INS arrested several Israelis, including some with military backgrounds, selling Puzzle Car and Zoom Copter toys from shopping mall kiosks and vending carts. Many of the malls were located near U.S. government facilities, including the Pentagon and CIA. A majority of the Israelis, arrested for visa violations instead of espionage, worked for a Florida-based company called Quality Sales. A spokesman for the company admitted the company hired vacationing Israeli students but they had the wrong visas. The spokesman also revealed the Israelis were deemed "special interest" cases by INS – a new government designation applied to terrorism suspects in the wake of 911.[62] Federal authorities suspect the Israelis were using the kiosks as intelligence fronts in the same manner that Israelis were using door-to-door art sales as covers. The National Counterintelligence Center (NCIX) stated in a report issued in March 2001 that, "In the past six weeks, employees in federal office buildings located throughout the United States have reported suspicious activities connected with individuals representing themselves as foreign students selling or delivering artwork. Employees have observed both males and females attempting to bypass facility security and enter federal buildings." The report was temporarily removed from the NCIX web site.

One of the malls where the Israeli "toy sellers" based their operations was the Pentagon City Mall, just across Intersate 395 from the Pentagon. In July 2004, the mall served as the rendezvous point for alleged Israeli Pentagon spy Larry Franklin and Keith Weissman, an AIPAC official. Franklin warned Weissman that Iranian agents were going to start attacking American soldiers and Israeli agents in Iraq. Weissman then went to brief the account of the meeting to Steve Rosen, another senior AIPAC official. They both informed the Israeli embassy in Washington and Glenn Kessler, a reporter for The Washington Post. Those phone calls were being wiretapped by the FBI as part of its investigation of a major Israeli spy ring in the United States, an investigation that had been going on since before the 911 attacks. The FBI was also monitoring meetings between Franklin, Weissman, and Rosen, including one held in February 2003 at the Arlington, Virginia Ritz-Carlton hotel, which adjoins the Pentagon City Mall. [63]

In February 2005, an Israeli man named Ohad Cohen was deported, along with four other Israelis, from Omaha, Nebraska. In what was becoming a common occurrence in the United States, a total of ten Israelis, who were working at shopping mall kiosks in the Omaha and Lincoln areas, were deported by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials for illegally working in the United States on tourist visas. The Israelis operated out of Omaha's Oak View Mall and Lincoln's Gateway Westfield Mall. The Federal government probe was reported to be part of a wider probe of Israeli shopping mall kiosk activity throughout the Midwest. In December 2004, FBI and immigration officers arrested 15 Israelis in Minnesota and three operating from a mall kiosk in Grand Forks, North Dakota.[64] Omaha is also the headquarters of the U.S. Air Force Strategic Air Command (SAC).

The International Association of Counter-terrorism and Security Professionals wrote in a May 2000 report that "U.S. law enforcement reports 'numerous encounters' with Middle Eastern 'art students' with 'fraudulent documents' who attempted to 'gain unauthorized access' to federal buildings."[65]

The unusual casing of sensitive locations continued after 911. According to informed sources in Corpus Christi, Texas, young Israelis were seen conducting surveillance of the Port of Corpus Christi in January 2002. The report was contained in the U.S. Coast Guard's Corpus Christi Marine Safety Office Intelligence Bulletin. The bulletin stated:

…There were four significant events in the Port of Corpus Christi in the past four weeks. Each event is under current investigation by the FBI. They may or may not be cases of actual or potential surveillance.

- Three men of Middle Eastern descent on board a charter boat in Port Aransas were asking unusual and very nosy questions about the operation of the ship's machinery and equipment.

- Five men of Middle Eastern descent taking photographs of the Clark Flagship charter boat at 11:30 at night.

- A man and a woman of Middle Eastern descent were taking pictures outside the fence of Citgo East. Upon questioning by security personnel, the female stated they were art students. She further added they were photographing a "pipe rack." The term is one that would only be used by someone in the industry. Coupled along with several other suspicious indicators, the picture taking did not seem legitimate.

- Two men of Middle Eastern descent drove through a gate at Citgo West after it was opened to let a delivery truck out. The men drove straight down to the oil docks where a ship was moored. Before security personnel could arrive, the men boarded the ship for several minutes, and were en-route back out of the facility. The men claimed to be selling electronic equipment. In a search of their truck by the sheriff's office, a loaded pistol was found in the cab. They had also been denied access at an adjacent facility shortly before this incident.[66]

The FBI investigated a case of a "Middle Eastern-looking" man photographing the Ultramar Diamond Shamrock refinery in Three Rivers, Texas, near Corpus Christi. On November 22, 2001, a refinery employee saw the man taking pictures from Highway 281. The man sped away when refinery employees approached his vehicle, a Dodge van rented from McAllen, Texas. The FBI was called in to investigate. Live Oak County Sheriff Larry Busby said the FBI never followed up with his office after the incident. Busby and Three Rivers police chief Ace Robbins had been on the alert ever since September 11 when a suspicious aircraft was seen circling the Ultramar refinery.[67]

In June 2004, groups of young and neatly dressed "Middle Eastern-looking" men were also spotted near the U.S.-Mexican border in Arizona's Cochise County near Tombstone and the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command at Fort Huachuca. A spokesman for the U.S. Border Patrol in Tucson said he was not at liberty to discuss the country of origin of the Middle Eastern- looking men.[68] According to FBI sources, "Middle Eastern-looking" or "Middle Eastern descent" are internal code words used to describe Israelis without having to face the inevitable political problems of identifying them as such.

Copies of Department of Homeland Security morning briefs, classified "For Official Use Only," were mistakenly leaked to the public from an Energy Department web site. The briefs contain a number of references to suspicious "Middle East looking" persons seen around sensitive U.S. facilities. The descriptions match identically the behavior of Israeli "art students" cited in the DEA Report and various other law enforcement encounters with Israeli "movers."

The September 27, 2004 brief [...] [Briefs included on linked site]

From the September 29, 2004 briefing there were additional reports of suspicious "Middle Easterners," in addition to a report from San Francisco about suspicious activity by two individuals whose van was traced to a jewelry store in Seattle: [...]

From the September 30, 2004, Homeland Security brief, there were further descriptions of "Middle Eastern" activity: [...]

On October 14, 2004, a further report on "Middle Eastern" activity: [...]

A particularly suspicious report was found in the October 19, 2004 brief. Several teams of Israeli art students had cased U.S. Air Force bases, including Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma City: [...]

From the December 9, 2004 brief yet another incident involving a U.S. Air Force Base: [...]

Another suspicious case was reported in the December 28, 2004 briefing involving two "Middle Easterners" with Florida connections: [...]

The December 30, 2004 brief actually contained a report concerning Israeli- Ukrainians detained in Buffalo for passport fraud: [...]

The December 30 brief also included a report reminiscent of Israeli art student surveillance of Federal buildings and offices: [...]

The January 5, 2005 brief also mentioned an incident involving a named Israeli citizen: [...]

On July 27, 2005, it was revealed that New York's Metropolitan Transportation (MTA) Authority's Interagency Counter Terrorism Task Force was maintaining a database of individuals stopped and questioned for filming bridge and tunnel crossings around New York City. Some of the people in the database were stopped on more than one occasion for filming and photographing bridges and tunnels and in one case an individual who was stopped for filming a New York area bridge was discovered to be driving the same vehicle as another person who was stopped earlier for filming the Verazano Narrows Bridge. An MTA source revealed that much of the filming did not involve regular tourists, but much more. The source said the filming "appear[ed] to be more than just casual filming." The filmers and photographers were concentrating on bridge beams (as in the case of the Memphis I-40 bridge) and security checkpoints. The MTA database includes individuals stopped for filming the bridges and tunnels under the control of the MTA: Verrazano, Triborough, Throgs Neck, Whitestone, Henry Hudson, Marine Parkway, Cross Bay Veterans Memorial, the Midtown Tunnel and the Battery Tunnel.[79] A number of Federal law enforcement authorities report that suspicious Israelis continue to be stopped around the nation photographing and filming sensitive facilities and infrastructures but are not charged and brought to trial.

In October 2004, a suspicious Israeli was detained by the Delaware County, Oklahoma Sheriff's Department. Two miles of State Highway 20, east of Jay, were closed down while an Oklahoma State Police Bomb squad searched the Israeli's car for "possible terrorist activities." As has been the modus operandi in such cases, the FBI from Tulsa questioned the Israeli, who could not produce either a passport or a visa, and released him after seven hours. The Israeli had an Arizona driver's license showing an address in Gentry, Arkansas. The FBI said they were familiar with the Israeli. Delaware County Undersheriff Dale Eberle did not disclose the Israeli's identity since he was never arrested. The 40-year old Israeli, who was married to a U.S. citizen, had been traveling around the Tulsa area with a tubular camera on the roof of his car. Police were notified that the camera looked like a pipe bomb. Eberle said police were concerned that the Israeli may have been targeting the Pensacola Dam and two watersheds that feed Tulsa. The Israeli had recording devices and tools in his car, according to a police inventory. The Israeli had been asking questions about local industries in Jay and when he stopped at a local diner he refused to use a glass or silverware because he did not want to leave fingerprints.[80]

On May 15, 2003, Cloudcroft, New Mexico Police Chief Gene Green stopped a U- Haul van in Cloudcroft, New Mexico, near the White Sands Missile Test Range, for speeding. According to the Alamogordo Daily News, the two truck drivers had Israeli driver's licenses and claimed they were hauling furniture from Austin to Chicago. Yet the rental agreement had expired two days earlier and New Mexico was way off track from the Austin to Chicago route. The Israelis then changed their story--they claimed they were dropping off furniture in Deming, New Mexico. But they could not provide a delivery address in the town. Also, their rental agreement was only for intrastate use in Illinois. Inside the truck, Chief Green found junk furniture not worth moving anywhere and 50 boxes that the Israelis claimed were a "private delivery." The Israelis were turned over to INS and nothing more was heard about them or their "cargo."[81] Consumers who have hired them have complained about suspicious behavior and illegal practices of Israeli-owned moving companies from Wisconsin to Florida to Pennsylvania. Advanced Moving Systems of Sunrise, Florida, an Israeli-owned moving company, complained that police in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and North Carolina stopped several of its crews. The firm's owner, Zion Rokah, claimed the police were "xenophobic and racist."[82]

Almost one year earlier, on May 7, 2002, two Israelis were arrested in Oak Harbor, Washington, near Naval Air Station Whidbey Island. Police and Naval law enforcement investigators found traces of TNT and plastic explosives in a rental truck driven by the Israelis after they were stopped for speeding. One of the Israelis had an expired visa, an international driver's license, and no identification. They claimed they had delivered furniture in Oak Harbor and were on their way back to Canada. A bomb-sniffing dog reacted to traces of explosive material on the truck's steering wheel and gear shift. The FBI later said the explosive tests were negative and the INS, in keeping with tradition, refused to comment on the case.[83] In the days following September 11, a number of residents of Island County called emergency centers to report sightings of "Middle Eastern" looking men driving Canadian trucks.[84]

In a similar incident on May 21, 2004, two Israeli men, Tamir D. Sason and Daniel Levy, both of Metar, Israel, and reported to have been working for an Atlanta moving company, attempted to enter the King's Bay, Georgia U.S. Naval Submarine base. They were supposedly contracted to move someone from the base. As with the Whidbey Island incident, a bomb-sniffing dog alerted to a briefcase in the truck. Security guards became suspicious when one of the Israelis could not provide proper identification. The base went into a three-hour security lockdown and a bomb squad inspected the truck. As in the other cases involving Israelis trying to penetrate security perimeters, the Israelis were handed over to immigration authorities and the FBI refused comment. In addition to the FBI, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and Navy Criminal Investigate Service were called in to investigate the Israeli incident.[85] King's Bay is close to Sea Island, Georgia, the site of the June 2004 G-8 Summit, a fact that obviously piqued the interest of law enforcement officials in the area.

On May 10, 2004, two other Israeli "movers" were apprehended suspiciously close to the Oak Ridge National Laboratories in Tennessee and the Federal Correctional Institution in Butner, North Carolina where convicted Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard was incarcerated. Driving a Ryder rental truck leased in Plantation, Florida, Shmuel Dahan and Almaliach Naor, led Unicoi County Sheriff Kent Harris on a high-speed chase. The Israelis claimed they were delivering furniture to West Virginia but Harris wondered why they would have been on the more remote two-lane U.S. Highway 23 rather than the faster Interstate 26. The Israelis also possessed false identification documents, Dahan a bogus Florida driver's license issued in Plantation, Florida and Naor a fake identification card. Harris also searched a storage facility the Israelis rented in Mars Hill, North Carolina. The FBI was called in to investigate but in typical fashion they turned the matter over to U.S. immigration officers who scheduled a deportation hearing. An FBI spokesman said the Israelis were guilty of nothing more than littering. Agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms also joined the investigation. While chasing the Israelis, Harris noticed they threw a vial out of the truck. The Israelis later denied they threw anything out of the truck. The ejected container was reported to have contained a suspicious "fuel source" that was sent to the Tennessee Emergency Management office in Sevierville, Tennessee. It was later discovered to have contained a mixture of a cleaning fluid called Astromid 18, Gluconic acid, and water. Harris said he was not sure why the substances were mixed together. The Israelis also had a "Learn to Fly" brochure in their truck. Harris said he "got a sick feeling" when he saw the brochure and the business card of a Fort Launderdale, Florida-based flight instructor named Nissan Giat, another Israeli citizen. Police feared the Israelis might have been targeting the Nuclear Fuel Services plant in nearby Erwin, Tennessee. A lawyer for the Israelis later claimed they meant no harm, that Naor possessed a fake identification card so he could get into a Miami nightclub. Naor's age was never given.[86] Although the Federal government said the Israelis posed no danger, the state of Tennessee kept the case open. The DEA report on the activities of Israeli "art students" cited a case in which the Federal Protective Service arrested two Israeli art students in Plantation, Florida for possession of fake Social Security cards. Plantation was also the base of operations for Dahan.

On October 17, 2001, three Israelis driving a truck were discovered by Plymouth, Pennsylvania police with possession of a close-up videotape of the Sears Tower in Chicago. Plymouth Police Chief David McCann reviewed the tape and then found the Sony camera inside the truck. The police had responded to a call that the Israelis were illegally dumping furniture into a dumpster behind a Pizzeria Uno restaurant from a tractor-trailer truck registered in Florida. When the restaurant manager confronted the Israeli driver he drove off quickly from the scene. The leader of the team who drove the truck sporting the sign "Moving Systems Incorporated" was Moshe Elmakias. Two other Israelis, a woman named Ayelet Reisler, and a man named Ron Katar, were also questioned by Plymouth police after the truck was seen parked. Reisler had a German passport in one name and a prescription in another name. Whitpain, Pennsylvania Police later discovered that the truck's operator log had been falsified. All the evidence of the Whitpain and Plymouth police was collected by the FBI, which then deep-sixed the investigation in typical FBI fashion when it came to Israeli surveillance and espionage activity in the United States. Elmakias and Katar were turned over to the INS but Reisler was released.[87]

The Interstate 40 Hernando De Soto Bridge in Memphis was also an apparent surveillance target for the Israelis. According to the Arkansas State Police, a few days after 911, the FBI and Memphis police were alerted to two Israelis (officially reported to be of "Middle Eastern" appearance) taking photographs of the De Soto span and the older Interstate 55 Bridge. The Israelis were particularly interested in the undersides of the bridges. They had seven cameras of different sizes and makes. Upon being detained by the FBI, the men claimed to have diplomatic immunity and one produced a diplomatic passport. After the Israelis were turned over to the INS, the FBI dropped any further investigation.[88]

In early October 2001, the FBI was on a nationwide search for six Israelis stopped by the police in the Midwest and found to be in possession of box cutters and "other equipment." The Israelis also had photos and descriptions of a Florida nuclear power plant and the Trans- Alaska Pipeline. The Israelis were traveling in groups of three in two white sedans. Although the INS ordered the men released, the FBI was reported to be furious that the Israelis were allowed to flee, possibly to Canada. The INS refused to reveal in what state the Israelis were stopped. Although their Israeli passports were reported valid, there was no way to know if their true identities matched those in the passports. The FBI refused to release the names and descriptions of the Israelis. FBI Director Robert Mueller and Attorney General John Ashcroft held a news conference on October 2, 2001 warning that a new wave of terrorist attacks could be expected in the United States. Their warning came after the Israelis were stopped in the Midwest.[89] In what may have been a related case, six Israelis were arrested in Cleveland in mid-October and were held incommunicado. A seventh Israeli woman was also reported to have been arrested.[90]

On October 10, 2001, two Israelis, one a former Israeli Army Colonel and the other a Mossad agent, were arrested in the Mexican Congress with 9mm pistols and dynamite. According to the Mexican Justice Department official web site "the head of Congressional Security Salvador Alarcón verified that the Israelis had in their possession nine hand grenades, sticks of dynamite, detonators, wiring and two 9mm 'Glock' automatics." The Israelis were subsequently released after the intervention of the Israeli embassy in Mexico City.[91]

In 1990, the head of Colombia's secret police, General Miguel Maza Marquez, blamed Israeli paramilitary training for a wave of terrorist attacks in Colombia during the entire year. These included the bombing of an Avianca passenger jet in November 1989 that killed 117 people, assassinations of local political leaders, and two attempts on his own life. A bombing of Maza's police headquarters killed 63 people. Colombia responded to the Israeli involvement with terrorism by abrogating a 1962 no visa travel agreement with Israel.[92]

In April 2004, New Zealand's Foreign Minister called in Israel's ambassador to that nation to complain about two suspected Mossad agents arrested at Auckland airport after trying to obtain false New Zealand passports. The Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO) and the New Zealand Security Intelligence Service (NZSIS) had cooperated in the sting of the Israelis, identified as Elisha Cara and Uri Zoshe Kelman. New Zealand and Australian police and intelligence services tied the Israelis to the Russian-Israeli mafia. Police were looking for a third suspected Mossad spy, Zev William Barkan, who was believed to have fled New Zealand for Israel, and a fourth unidentified Israeli believed to have gone into hiding in New Zealand. Barkan was later discovered to have served at Israeli embassies in Austria and Belgium. Police later identified a New Zealander named Anthony David Resnick, a 13-year veteran of the Israeli Defense Force and a member of Auckland's Jewish Council, as another conspirator in the Mossad operation. Resnick reportedly fled to Israel. Cara and Kelman were both released on bail with the provision that they remain at two separate Auckland hotels but both Israelis violated their bail and checked out of their hotels.[93] They were eventually sentenced to six months in jail and New Zealand protested the illegal Mossad operation in New Zealand by suspending relations with Israel.[94] There were reports that the Israeli operation extended to Australia and that the Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO) may have tipped off its New Zealand counterpart about the espionage ring. After tipping off New Zealand about Cara and his accomplices, Australian agents raided Cara's rental home on Sydney's north shore. Cara's front was a Haifa-based travel agency called Eastward Bound.[95] After it was discovered that Kelman, an Israeli- Canadian, used a Canadian passport to enter New Zealand, Canada lodged a protest with Israel. In 1997, after two Mossad agents on an assassination mission were caught in Jordan using Canadian passports, Israel agreed to refrain from using Canadian passports in its intelligence operations.[96]

In February 2005, it was reported that Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade ordered a senior Israeli embassy officer in Canberra to leave the country for his intelligence ties to Cara and Kelman. Although the opposition Australian Labor and Green parties demanded details of the explusion of the suspected Mossad agent, the John Howard government remained tight lipped about the matter.[97] Israeli President Moshe Katsav cancelled a March 2005 trip to New Zealand over the affair but he visited Australia on schedule.

On January 12, 2000, Indian Central Bureau of Intelligence (CBI) agents arrested 11 Israelis disguised as Islamic preachers ("tabliqis") before they boarded a Bangladesh Biman Airlines flight from Calcutta to Dhaka. The 11 Israelis, reported at first to be Afghans who spent some time in Iran, were to attend an Islamic conference in Dhaka but the government of Bangladesh denied them a visa. They all had one-way tickets to Dhaka, something that triggered alarms in Bangladesh. CBI officials were surprised when they discovered the arrested Islamic preachers were actually Israelis from the West Bank. After the Israelis were arrested, Israel exerted enormous pressure on the Indians to release them and permit them to return to Tel Aviv. A CBI official said, "It appeared that they could be working for a sensitive organization in Israel and were on a mission to Bangladesh." It was suspected that the Israelis, who could have been Afghan Jews, may have been recruited by Mossad to penetrate Al Qaeda cells in Bangladesh.[98]

Comment: Why do the authorities always ignore the most obvious possibility: there is no "al-Qaeda"? There is only Mossad pretending to be al-Qaeda. Think about it. Israeli spies are caught photographing bridges and sensitive installations in the US, and soon thereafter a terrorism alert is issued and blamed on unconfirmed information that an al-Qaeda branch is planning something big...

On January 11, 2000, India's Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) issued a Top Secret circular (NO: ER/BCAS/PIC/CIRCULAR/99), regarding a possible hijacking attempt on a Bangladesh Biman aircraft in India. The circular was signed by India's regional civil aviation security chief at Calcutta Airport and copies were sent to other Indian agencies as well as to the Bangladesh Biman office in Calcutta. It was this alert that helped India and Bangladesh nab the 11 Israelis the following day.[99]

***

The DEA-INS continued to have a "keen interest" in the activities of the Israeli art students. The DEA believed there may have been links between the Israeli espionage teams and trafficking in the drug Ecstasy. Although the Israelis denied any espionage activity in the United States, some of their supporters in the Bush administration have defended the art students claiming, "It is quite normal for young Israelites to travel around the world for one year after they complete their military service."

Comment: Well sure, it probably is normal. The question is, what are they doing when they travel around the world? Sightseeing, or spying? And do all young Israelites decide to become art students after they get out of the military?

A March 8, 2002, an editorial in the Albuquerque Journal summed up the general angst and suspicion over the activities of the Israeli art students:

When U.S. authorities suspect an organized team of spies is seeking to infiltrate sensitive federal office buildings and the homes of government employees, they should arrest and interrogate to get to the bottom of the plot. Instead, a draft report from the Drug Enforcement Administration reports that young Israelis posing as art students but suspected of espionage activities were merely deported.

DEA first said the youths' actions "may well be an organized intelligence- gathering activity." But immigration officials deported the suspicious Israelis, said to number in the dozens, for visa violations.

Perhaps the officials had forgotten the case of Jonathan Pollard, a civilian Navy intelligence officer who gave classified information to the Israelis. It was an operation that Israel eventually acknowledged was known and approved of in the highest reaches of the Israeli government. Pollard has served some 13 years of a life sentence.

The recent arrests were made in a number of major U.S. cities from California to Florida, amid public warnings from U.S. intelligence agencies about suspicious behavior by people posing as Israeli art students and "attempting to bypass facility security and enter federal buildings."

The United States owes no duty to Israel to ignore spying. Israel, it could be argued, should at least be grateful enough to the United States that it should be reluctant to try to steal secrets.[100]

Perhaps the espionage incident would have faded entirely had it not been for the fact that similar art students, with unbelievable alibis, were caught in 2003 by Canadian security police around the Houses of Parliament in Ottawa.

On September 12, 2003, nine Israeli art students were arrested by Canadian Immigration officers and Ottawa police on Lisgar Street, just a few blocks from Parliament Hill, the day after the second anniversary of the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington. The Canadian police were tipped off by the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS) that the Israelis, who were reported selling paintings in downtown Ottawa, were possible Mossad agents. The Israeli embassy spokesman in Ottawa used the same sort of language used by his Washington, DC counterpart to brush aside the arrests as routine, "We don't know full details about what the paintings were but it was a completely commercial matter," said Ben Forer, the spokesman for the Israeli embassy.[101] The arrests followed similar arrests of Israeli art students in Calgary, Toronto, and Saskatoon, according to Canadian Immigration officials. Residents of the Ottawa suburban district of Centrepoint had complained about Israelis selling fake art in 2001. Canadian authorities issued exclusion orders for all nine Israelis arrested in Ottawa and ordered them deported. Residents of the Ottawa suburban district of Centrepoint had complained about Israelis selling fake art in 2001.

In August 2004, two ringleaders of an Israeli "art student" door- to-door sales scam, Guy Grinberg and Yukov Senior, were deported from Canada for operating an art sales ring in Alberta. The "art student" ring operated in Calgary, Edmonton, and Red Deer. Eight others were rounded up with the art sales ringleaders. Three apparently escaped Canadian law enforcement arrest.[102] In neighboring Manitoba, twelve Israelis – six men and six women – were arrested in Winnipeg for selling the junk art.[103]

It is interesting to note the answers that some of the Israelis gave when they were questioned by the immigration court. Thanks to the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board, transcripts of the hearings were made available and they permit the reader to have an inside view of how the Israeli art selling rings operated, both in Canada and the United States. Five transcripts were provided but two provide interesting details of the art selling rings. The Canadian immigration authorities did not believe most of the evasive explanations provided by the Israelis. The answers of the team leader, Roy Laniado, are extremely interesting, especially his discussion of his "boss," an unnamed individual who traveled from the United States to Canada. As a result of the secrecy surrounding the INS roundup of some 120 Israeli "art students" in the United States, Americans never had the opportunity to know the inside story of how the operation worked:

[Minutes of a hearing The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration available on the linked site] [...]

The transcripts of the deportation hearings of the art students are revealing. Former and well-educated former members of the Israeli military acted as if they never knew it was against the law to work in another country without a permit. There were references to an unnamed "boss" who lived in the United States and owners of the art selling operation who wanted to avoid run-ins with law enforcement. Perhaps the art students in Canada were merely unaware but couple the Canadian art operation with the American operation carried out just two years prior and a pattern of deception emerges. The motto of the Mossad is noteworthy when pointing to its foreign operations: "By way of deception, thou shalt do war."

There was an interesting postscript to the Israeli espionage activity in the United States before, during, and after 911. In December 2004, it was reported that a former senior U.S. government official, commenting on the FBI's raid of AIPAC's Washington offices, stated that in 2001 the FBI discovered a "massive" Israeli espionage operation on the East Coast, specifically including New York and New Jersey.[104] National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice and her deputy Stephen Hadley were both briefed on the FBI investigation of Israeli espionage in the United States shortly after they took office in early 2001.[105] A Justice Department source confided that it was Attorney General John Ashcroft who personally ordered the investigation of the Israelis stopped in the months prior to 911 – a decision that proved fateful for the thousands of people who persished on September 11.

[References and notes available on the linked site]

Comment: This article is a good summary of the numerous instances where Israelis have been caught all around the US and Canada - posing as "art students" - engaging in what can only be described as highly questionable activities. When the data is viewed as a whole, it is difficult to come to any other conclusion but that there seems to be a huge operation involving reconnaissance of sensitive government and military installations, as well as key landmarks that have been associated with "al-Qaeda" terrorist threats publicized by the US government. Laura Knight-Jadczyk wrote about this very topic in her article "Mossad and Moving Companies: Masterminds of Global Terrorism?"

In addition to Israelis often masquerading as "Arab terrorists", we would also note that it seems that there are, apparently, New Age types that are dressing up as Arabs, promoting the "magick" and/or Kaballah variation of the Judao-Christian Cult nonsense who are clearly operating with a false flag agenda. For example, one Vincent Bridges - an erstwhile New Age Impresario - declared on 9-11 that "The Ringing Voice of the Goddess is heard at last!" (see the article "The Mossad Happy Dance"). Interestingly, Vincent Bridges seems to have been put on permanent assignment defaming Cassiopaea.org and Signs of the Times starting with the publication of Mossad and Moving Companies in the spring of 2003.

In any case, the following article presents some insight into what is in store for the US...

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A Jewish Defector Warns America
By Benjamin H. Freedman

Introductory Note: Benjamin H. Freedman was one of the most intriguing and amazing individuals of the 20th century. Mr. Freedman, born in 1890, was a successful Jewish businessman of New York City who was at one time the principal owner of the Woodbury Soap Company. He broke with organized Jewry after the Judeo-Communist victory of 1945, and spent the remainder of his life and the great preponderance of his considerable fortune, at least 2.5 million dollars, exposing the Jewish tyranny which has enveloped the United States. Mr. Freedman knew what he was talking about because he had been an insider at the highest levels of Jewish organizations and Jewish machinations to gain power over our nation. Mr. Freedman was personally acquainted with Bernard Baruch, Samuel Untermyer, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, Joseph Kennedy, and John F. Kennedy, and many more movers and shakers of our times. This speech was given before a patriotic audience in 1961 at the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C., on behalf of Conde McGinley's patriotic newspaper of that time, Common Sense. Though in some minor ways this wide-ranging and extemporaneous speech has become dated, Mr. Freedman's essential message to us -- his warning to the West -- is more urgent than ever before. -- K.A.S.

HERE IN THE UNITED STATES, the Zionists and their co-religionists have complete control of our government. For many reasons, too many and too complex to go into here at this time, the Zionists and their co-religionists rule these United States as though they were the absolute monarchs of this country. Now you may say that is a very broad statement, but let me show you what happened while we were all asleep.

What happened? World War I broke out in the summer of 1914. There are few people here my age who remember that. Now that war was waged on one side by Great Britain, France, and Russia; and on the other side by Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Turkey.

Within two years Germany had won that war: not only won it nominally, but won it actually. The German submarines, which were a surprise to the world, had swept all the convoys from the Atlantic Ocean.

Great Britain stood there without ammunition for her soldiers, with one week's food supply -- and after that, starvation. At that time, the French army had mutinied. They had lost 600,000 of the flower of French youth in the defense of Verdun on the Somme. The Russian army was defecting, they were picking up their toys and going home, they didn't want to play war anymore, they didn't like the Czar. And the Italian army had collapsed.

Not a shot had been fired on German soil. Not one enemy soldier had crossed the border into Germany. And yet, Germany was offering England peace terms. They offered England a negotiated peace on what the lawyers call a status quo ante basis. That means: "Let's call the war off, and let room. There was absolutely no reason for World War I to be our war. We were railroaded into -- if I can be vulgar, we were suckered into -- that war merely so that the Zionists of the world could obtain Palestine. That is something that the people of the United States have never been told. They never knew why we went into World War I.

After we got into the war, the Zionists went to Great Britain and they said: "Well, we performed our part of the agreement. Let's have something in writing that shows that you are going to keep your bargain and give us Palestine after you win the war." They didn't know whether the war would last another year or another ten years. So they started to work out a receipt. The receipt took the form of a letter, which was worded in very cryptic language so that the world at large wouldn't know what it was all about. And that was called the Balfour Declaration.

The Balfour Declaration was merely Great Britain's promise to pay the Zionists what they had agreed upon as a consideration for getting the United States into the war. So this great Balfour Declaration, that you hear so much about, is just as phony as a three dollar bill. I don't think I could make it more emphatic than that.

That is where all the trouble started. The United States got in the war. The United States crushed Germany. You know what happened. When the war ended, and the Germans went to Paris for the Paris Peace Conference in 1919 there were 117 Jews there, as a delegation representing the Jews, headed by Bernard Baruch. I was there: I ought to know. Now what happened? The Jews at that peace conference, when they were cutting up Germany and parceling out Europe to all these nations who claimed a right to a certain part of European territory, said, "How about Palestine for us?" And they produced, for the first time to the knowledge of the Germans, this Balfour Declaration. So the Germans, for the first time realized, "Oh, so that was the game! That's why the United States came into the war." The Germans for the first time realized that they were defeated, they suffered the terrific reparations that were slapped onto them, because the Zionists wanted Palestine and were determined to get it at any cost.

That brings us to another very interesting point. When the Germans realized this, they naturally resented it. Up to that time, the Jews had never been better off in any country in the world than they had been in Germany. You had Mr. Rathenau there, who was maybe 100 times as important in industry and finance as is Bernard Baruch in this country. You had Mr. Balin, who owned the two big steamship lines, the North German Lloyd's and the Hamburg-American Lines. You had Mr. Bleichroder, who was the banker for the Hohenzollern family. You had the Warburgs in Hamburg, who were the big merchant bankers -- the biggest in the world. The Jews were doing very well in Germany. No question about that. The Germans felt: "Well, that was quite a sellout."

It was a sellout that might be compared to this hypothetical situation: Suppose the United States was at war with the Soviet Union. And we were winning. And we told the Soviet Union: "Well, let's quit. We offer you peace terms. Let's forget the whole thing." And all of a sudden Red China came into the war as an ally of the Soviet Union. And throwing them into the war brought about our defeat. A crushing defeat, with reparations the likes of which man's imagination cannot encompass. Imagine, then, after that defeat, if we found out that it was the Chinese in this country, our Chinese citizens, who all the time we had thought were loyal citizens working with us, were selling us out to the Soviet Union and that it was through them that Red China was brought into the war against us. How would we feel, then, in the United States against Chinese? I don't think that one of them would dare show his face on any street. There wouldn't be enough convenient lampposts to take care of them. Imagine how we would feel.

Well, that's how the Germans felt towards these Jews. They'd been so nice to them: from 1905 on, when the first Communist revolution in Russia failed, and the Jews had to scramble out of Russia, they all went to Germany. And Germany gave them refuge. And they were treated very nicely. And here they had sold Germany down the river for no reason at all other than the fact that they wanted Palestine as a so-called "Jewish commonwealth."

Now Nahum Sokolow, and all the great leaders and great names that you read about in connection with Zionism today, in 1919, 1920, 1921, 1922, and 1923 wrote in all their papers -- and the press was filled with their statements -- that the feeling against the Jews in Germany is due to the fact that they realized that this great defeat was brought about by Jewish intercession in bringing the United States into the war. The Jews themselves admitted that. It wasn't that the Germans in 1919 discovered that a glass of Jewish blood tasted better than Coca-Cola or Muenschner Beer. There was no religious feeling. There was no sentiment against those people merely on account of their religious belief. It was all political. It was economic. It was anything but religious. Nobody cared in Germany whether a Jew went home and pulled down the shades and said "Shema' Yisroel" or "Our Father." Nobody cared in Germany any more than they do in the United States. Now this feeling that developed later in Germany was due to one thing: the Germans held the Jews responsible for their crushing defeat.

And World War I had been started against Germany for no reason for which Germany was responsible. They were guilty of nothing. Only of being successful. They built up a big navy.

They built up world trade. You must remember that Germany at the time of the French Revolution consisted of 300 small city-states, principalities, dukedoms, and so forth. Three hundred separate little political entities. And between that time, between the times of Napoleon and Bismarck, they were consolidated into one state. And within 50 years they became one of the world's great powers. Their navy was rivalling Great Britain's, they were doing business all over the world, they could undersell anybody, they could make better products. What happened as a result of that?

There was a conspiracy between England, France, and Russia to slap down Germany. There isn't one historian in the world who can find a valid reason why those three countries decided to wipe Germany off the map politically.

When Germany realized that the Jews were responsible for her defeat, they naturally resented it. But not a hair on the head of any Jew was harmed. Not a single hair. Professor Tansill, of Georgetown University, who had access to all the secret papers of the State Department, wrote in his book, and quoted from a State Department document written by Hugo Schoenfelt, a Jew whom Cordell Hull sent to Europe in 1933 to investigate the so-called camps of political prisoners, who wrote back that he found them in very fine condition. They were in excellent shape, with everybody treated well. And they were filled with Communists. Well, a lot of them were Jews, because the Jews happened to comprise about 98 per cent of the Communists in Europe at that time. And there were some priests there, and ministers, and labor leaders, and Masons, and others who had international affiliations.

Some background is in order: In 1918-1919 the Communists took over Bavaria for a few days.

Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht and a group of other Jews took over the government for three days. In fact, when the Kaiser ended the war he fled to Holland because he thought the Communists were going to take over Germany as they did Russia and that he was going to meet the same fate as the Czar. So he fled to Holland for safety, for security. After the Communist threat in Germany was quashed, the Jews were still working, trying to get back into their former status, and the Germans fought them in every way they could without hurting a single hair on anyone's head. They fought them the same way that, in this country, the Prohibitionists fought anyone who was interested in liquor. They didn't fight one another with pistols. Well, that's the way they were fighting the Jews in Germany. And at that time, mind you, there were 80 to 90 million Germans, and there were only 460,000 Jews. About one half of one per cent of the population of Germany were Jews. And yet they controlled all the press, and they controlled most of the economy because they had come in with cheap money when the mark was devalued and bought up practically everything.

The Jews tried to keep a lid on this fact. They didn't want the world to really understand that they had sold out Germany, and that the Germans resented that.

The Germans took appropriate action against the Jews. They, shall I say, discriminated against them wherever they could. They shunned them. The same way that we would shun the Chinese, or the Negroes, or the Catholics, or anyone in this country who had sold us out to an enemy and brought about our defeat.

After a while, the Jews of the world called a meeting in Amsterdam. Jews from every country in the world attended this meeting in July 1933. And they said to Germany: "You fire Hitler, and you put every Jew back into his former position, whether he was a Communist or no matter what he was. You can't treat us that way. And we, the Jews of the world, are serving an ultimatum upon you." You can imagine what the Germans told them. So what did the Jews do?

In 1933, when Germany refused to surrender to the world conference of Jews in Amsterdam, the conference broke up, and Mr. Samuel Untermyer, who was the head of the American delegation and the president of the whole conference, came to the United States and went from the steamer to the studios of the Columbia Broadcasting System and made a radio broadcast throughout the United States in which he in effect said, "The Jews of the world now declare a Holy War against Germany. We are now engaged in a sacred conflict against the Germans. And we are going to starve them into surrender. We are going to use a world-wide boycott against them. That will destroy them because they are dependent upon their export business." And it is a fact that two thirds of Germany's food supply had to be imported, and it could only be imported with the proceeds of what they exported. So if Germany could not export, two thirds of Germany's population would have to starve. There was just not enough food for more than one third of the population. Now in this declaration, which I have here, and which was printed in the New York Times on August 7, 1933, Mr. Samuel Untermyer boldly stated that "this economic boycott is our means of self-defense. President Roosevelt has advocated its use in the National Recovery Administration," which some of you may remember, where everybody was to be boycotted unless he followed the rules laid down by the New Deal, and which was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of that time. Nevertheless, the Jews of the world declared a boycott against Germany, and it was so effective that you couldn't find one thing in any store anywhere in the world with the words "made in Germany" on it. In fact, an executive of the Woolworth Company told me that they had to dump millions of dollars worth of crockery and dishes into the river; that their stores were boycotted if anyone came in and found a dish marked "made in Germany," they were picketed with signs saying "Hitler," "murderer," and so forth, something like these sit-ins that are taking place in the South. At a store belonging to the R. H. Macy chain, which was controlled by a family called Strauss who also happen to be Jews, a woman found stockings there which came from Chemnitz, marked "made in Germany." Well, they were cotton stockings and they may have been there 20 years, since I've been observing women's legs for many years and it's been a long time since I've seen any cotton stockings on them. I saw Macy's boycotted, with hundreds of people walking around with signs saying "murderers," "Hitlerites," and so forth. Now up to that time, not one hair on the head of any Jew had been hurt in Germany. There was no suffering, there was no starvation, there was no murder, there was nothing.

Naturally, the Germans said, "Who are these people to declare a boycott against us and throw all our people out of work, and make our industries come to a standstill? Who are they to do that to us?" They naturally resented it. Certainly they painted swastikas on stores owned by Jews. Why should a German go in and give his money to a storekeeper who was part of a boycott that was going to starve Germany into surrendering to the Jews of the world, who were going to dictate who their premier or chancellor was to be? Well, it was ridiculous.

The boycott continued for some time, but it wasn't until 1938, when a young Jew from Poland walked into the German embassy in Paris and shot a German official, that the Germans really started to get rough with the Jews in Germany. And you found them then breaking windows and having street fights and so forth.

Now I don't like to use the word "anti-Semitism" because it's meaningless, but it means something to you still, so I'll have to use it. The only reason that there was any feeling in Germany against Jews was that they were responsible for World War I and for this world-wide boycott. Ultimately they were also responsible for World War II, because after this thing got out of hand, it was absolutely necessary for the Jews and Germany to lock horns in a war to see which one was going to survive.

In the meanwhile, I had lived in Germany, and I knew that the Germans had decided that Europe is going to be Christian or Communist: there is no in between. And the Germans decided they were going to keep it Christian if possible. And they started to re-arm.

In November 1933 the United States recognized the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union was becoming very powerful, and Germany realized that "Our turn was going to come soon, unless we are strong." The same as we in this country are saying today, "Our turn is going to come soon, unless we are strong." Our government is spending 83 or 84 billion dollars for defense.

Defense against whom? Defense against 40,000 little Jews in Moscow that took over Russia, and then, in their devious ways, took over control of many other countries of the world.

For this country now to be on the verge of a Third World War, from which we cannot emerge a victor, is something that staggers my imagination. I know that nuclear bombs are measured in terms of megatons. A megaton is a term used to describe one million tons of TNT. Our nuclear bombs had a capacity of 10 megatons, or 10 million tons of TNT, when they were first developed. Now, the nuclear bombs that are being developed have a capacity of 200 megatons, and God knows how many megatons the nuclear bombs of the Soviet Union have.

What do we face now? If we trigger a world war that may develop into a nuclear war, humanity is finished. Why might such a war take place? It will take place as the curtain goes up on Act 3: Act 1 was World War I, Act 2 was World War II, Act 3 is going to be World War III. The Jews of the world, the Zionists and their co-religionists everywhere, are determined that they are going to again use the United States to help them permanently retain Palestine as their foothold for their world government. That is just as true as I am standing here. Not alone have I read it, but many here have also read it, and it is known all over the world.

What are we going to do? The life you save may be your son's. Your boys may be on their way to that war tonight; and you you don't know it any more than you knew that in 1916 in London the Zionists made a deal with the British War Cabinet to send your sons to war in Europe. Did you know it at that time? Not a person in the United States knew it. You weren't permitted to know it.

Who knew it? President Wilson knew it. Colonel House knew it. Other insiders knew it.

Did I know it? I had a pretty good idea of what was going on: I was liaison to Henry Morgenthau, Sr., in the 1912 campaign when President Wilson was elected, and there was talk around the office there. I was "confidential man" to Henry Morgenthau, Sr., who was chairman of the finance committee, and I was liaison between him and Rollo Wells, the treasurer. So I sat in these meetings with President Wilson at the head of the table, and all the others, and I heard them drum into President Wilson's brain the graduated income tax and what has become the Federal Reserve, and I heard them indoctrinate him with the Zionist movement. Justice Brandeis and President Wilson were just as close as the two fingers on this hand. President Woodrow Wilson was just as incompetent when it came to determining what was going on as a newborn baby.

That is how they got us into World War I, while we all slept. They sent our boys over there to be slaughtered. For what? So the Jews can have Palestine as their "commonwealth." They've fooled you so much that you don't know whether you're coming or going.

Now any judge, when he charges a jury, says, "Gentlemen, any witness who you find has told a single lie, you can disregard all his testimony." I don't know what state you come from, but in New York state that is the way a judge addresses a jury. If that witness told one lie, disregard his testimony.

What are the facts about the Jews? (I call them Jews to you, because they are known as Jews. I don't call them Jews myself. I refer to them as so-called Jews, because I know what they are.) The eastern European Jews, who form 92 per cent of the world's population of those people who call themselves Jews, were originally Khazars. They were a warlike tribe who lived deep in the heart of Asia. And they were so warlike that even the Asiatics drove them out of Asia into eastern Europe. They set up a large Khazar kingdom of 800,000 square miles. At the time, Russia did not exist, nor did many other European countries. The Khazar kingdom was the biggest country in all Europe -- so big and so powerful that when the other monarchs wanted to go to war, the Khazars would lend them 40,000 soldiers. That's how big and powerful they were.

They were phallic worshippers, which is filthy and I do not want to go into the details of that now.

But that was their religion, as it was also the religion of many other pagans and barbarians elsewhere in the world. The Khazar king became so disgusted with the degeneracy of his kingdom that he decided to adopt a so- called monotheistic faith -- either Christianity, Islam, or what is known today as Judaism, which is really Talmudism. By spinning a top, and calling out "eeny, meeny, miney, moe," he picked out so-called Judaism. And that became the state religion. He sent down to the Talmudic schools of Pumbedita and Sura and brought up thousands of rabbis, and opened up synagogues and schools, and his people became what we call Jews. There wasn't one of them who had an ancestor who ever put a toe in the Holy Land.

Not only in Old Testament history, but back to the beginning of time. Not one of them! And yet they come to the Christians and ask us to support their armed insurrections in Palestine by saying, "You want to help repatriate God's Chosen People to their Promised Land, their ancestral home, don't you? It's your Christian duty. We gave you one of our boys as your Lord and Savior.

You now go to church on Sunday, and you kneel and you worship a Jew, and we're Jews." But they are pagan Khazars who were converted just the same as the Irish were converted. It is as ridiculous to call them "people of the Holy Land," as it would be to call the 54 million Chinese Moslems "Arabs." Mohammed only died in 620 A.D., and since then 54 million Chinese have accepted Islam as their religious belief. Now imagine, in China, 2,000 miles away from Arabia, from Mecca and Mohammed's birthplace. Imagine if the 54 million Chinese decided to call themselves "Arabs." You would say they were lunatics. Anyone who believes that those 54 million Chinese are Arabs must be crazy. All they did was adopt as a religious faith a belief that had its origin in Mecca, in Arabia. The same as the Irish. When the Irish became Christians, nobody dumped them in the ocean and imported to the Holy Land a new crop of inhabitants.

They hadn't become a different people. They were the same people, but they had accepted Christianity as a religious faith.

These Khazars, these pagans, these Asiatics, these Turko-Finns, were a Mongoloid race who were forced out of Asia into eastern Europe. Because their king took the Talmudic faith, they had no choice in the matter. Just the same as in Spain: If the king was Catholic, everybody had to be a Catholic. If not, you had to get out of Spain. So the Khazars became what we call today Jews.

Now imagine how silly it was for the great Christian countries of the world to say, "We're going to use our power and prestige to repatriate God's Chosen People to their ancestral homeland, their Promised Land." Could there be a bigger lie than that? Because they control the newspapers, the magazines, the radio, the television, the book publishing business, and because they have the ministers in the pulpit and the politicians on the soapboxes talking the same language, it is not too surprising that you believe that lie. You'd believe black is white if you heard it often enough. You wouldn't call black black anymore -- you'd start to call black white. And nobody could blame you.

That is one of the great lies of history. It is the foundation of all the misery that has befallen the world.

Do you know what Jews do on the Day of Atonement, that you think is so sacred to them? I was one of them. This is not hearsay. I'm not here to be a rabble-rouser. I'm here to give you facts.

When, on the Day of Atonement, you walk into a synagogue, you stand up for the very first prayer that you recite. It is the only prayer for which you stand. You repeat three times a short prayer called the Kol Nidre. In that prayer, you enter into an agreement with God Almighty that any oath, vow, or pledge that you may make during the next twelve months shall be null and void. The oath shall not be an oath; the vow shall not be a vow; the pledge shall not be a pledge. They shall have no force or effect. And further, the Talmud teaches that whenever you take an oath, vow, or pledge, you are to remember the Kol Nidre prayer that you recited on the Day of Atonement, and you are exempted from fulfilling them. How much can you depend on their loyalty? You can depend upon their loyalty as much as the Germans depended upon it in 1916.

We are going to suffer the same fate as Germany suffered, and for the same reason.

Comment: So there you have it. Keep in mind that the author of this article was formerly a Jew, so it is kind of difficult to dismiss it outright as "anti-Semitic". Besides, the facts speak for themselves. Israel is spying on the US and posing as Arab terrorists, and it seems that many of the higher-ups in the Bush administration are complicit. Yet even as all the spying and deception occurs, Bush continues to dump billions of dollars and weapons on Sharon so he can conduct his "little war" against the Palestinians. Meanwhile, despite the substantial circumstantial evidence of Mossad and CIA involvement in 9/11, anyone who even suggests that the Zionists had anything to do with that fateful September morning is immediately branded an anti-Semite. Ultimately, the average American needs to decide for herself if she is willing to sacrifice her children for a pack of lies. At least one mother had to lose her son before she spoke up, saying:

"You get America out of Iraq and Israel out of Palestine and you'll stop the terrorism."

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Gaza settlers, Israeli security clash
Tuesday 16 August 2005, 13:53 Makka Time, 10:53 GMT

Clashes have erupted between Israeli settlers and hundreds of security forces inside the main Gaza settlement as removal vans tried to reach houses of residents facing eviction.

About 1000 police and soldiers on Tuesday stormed into the Neve Dekalim settlement as hundreds of orange-clad protesters tried to block the path of several removal lorries.

Many were thrown to the floor in the violent pushing and shoving as settlers, most of them youngsters, threw themselves at the wall of police barring their way.

At least a dozen youngsters were arrested, most of them dragged off screaming and kicking as the crowd howled in rage: "Jews don't evict Jews!"

Silent tears rolled down the face of one female soldier in the barricade as a young settler woman was knocked to the floor and nearly crushed under the feet of the raging crowd.

Many settlers, men and women, broke down in tears, while others were enraged. "Nazis! Shame on you," spat one religious man.

Israeli police had used a bulldozer and bolt cutters to break down the gates into the settlement to enable around 120 removal vans to enter Neve Dekalim.

A police spokesman said a decision had been made to forcibly enter Neve Dekalim to enable removal vans to have access to residents who wanted to leave of their own accord.

"We came in at around 7 am (0400 GMT) in order to allow 120 trucks to get inside for those who want to voluntarily evacuate. We are not going to allow anyone to stop them," he told AFP.

Israeli police have gained control of the Gaza Strip's largest settlement, a key location for Jewish settlers resisting eviction.

Earlier on Tuesday, police burst through the main gate and other entrances of Neve Dekalim and cut off the metal gate with an electric saw.

Hundreds of activists, many of them youths, had blocked police from entering on Monday, and moving trucks struggled to get through the crowd.

"Now the police can decide when it opens and when it closes," said police spokesman Avi Zelba.

"Now people who want to move can go out freely."

After midnight on Tuesday, settlers remaining in the Gaza Strip are to be removed by Israeli forces.

Arrests

Israeli police arrested about 500 Jewish extremists opposed to the Gaza Strip pullout who tried to sneak into the settlements on Monday night, triggering clashes, military radio said on Tuesday.

Parliamentary speaker Reuven Rivlin, who is opposed to the withdrawal, called on settlers "not to raise a hand against the security forces" during the historic operation, warning of the risk of "civil war".

Among those arrested were a number of known settler leaders opposed to the pullout, which began on Monday when Israel sealed off the Gaza Strip and began issuing evacuation orders to settlers, the radio said.

An Israeli army officer was wounded in the ensuing violence, it said, adding that another 250 settlers were forced away from the area without being arrested.

The protesters were arrested near the Kissufim entry point between Israel and Gush Katif, the main bloc of Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip.

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Settler-funding a billion dollar question

Some believe $60 billion has been pumped into settlements
Aljazeera
Friday 12 August 2005

Israel's illegal effort since the 1967 Arab-Israeli war to fill the West Bank and Gaza Strip with Jews has grown from the scattered actions of zealous squatters into a network of 142 settlements that house nearly 240,000 people.

Now that Israel plans to spend $2 billion to dismantle just 25 of these enclaves in the West Bank and Gaza - for which US aid has been requested - raises the question of how much money has been poured into the ambitious settlement project, and exactly where it came from.

The official answer: No one knows.

Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres estimates Israel has spent about $50 billion since 1977, when the hardline Likud government took over from his Labour party. Other former finance ministers and government officials do not discount a price tag - commonly floated but never documented - of $60 billion.

"No one eye in the world saw the whole picture," says Labour Party lawmaker Danny Yatom, a confidant of the late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. "Most of it is not camouflaged, but it is not possible to connect A to B to C to D to E to F to G."

Calculating an exact figure is impossible because much of the building was financed through winks and nods, an opaque state budget and secret military spending that sometimes violated Israel's laws and undercut international peacemaking efforts, according to official Israeli inquiries as well as interviews with past and present officials, settlers and their opponents.

Among the methods used, the interviews show, were government subsidies, shadowy land deals, loopholes in military spending, and an auditing bait-and-switch in which US aid was used to free up billions of dollars for spending on the settlements formally opposed by the United States.

Expansion continues

Even today, with preparations under way for demolishing 21 settlements in Gaza and four in the West Bank, housing and roads continue to be built in West Bank settlement blocs Israel wants to keep in a final peace deal with the Palestinians. This contradicts the internationally backed "road map" peace plan to halt settlement expansion.

And a government-commissioned inquiry in March revealed similar methods were used to build and expand dozens of unauthorised West Bank "outposts" - set up as flag-showing exercises and usually consisting of a handful of people in mobile homes.

It found widespread government complicity in establishing more than 100 such outposts, and the inquiry's chief, former prosecutor Talia Sasson, called the government's actions "a blatant violation of the law".

Last year, the funding of the outposts came in for sharp criticism from the state controller, the government's main watchdog. It found at least two cases where the Housing Ministry funded outposts that the military had ordered demolished.

Government policy

Now settler leaders, eager to embarrass Prime Minister Ariel Sharon over his Gaza withdrawal plan, say they had official backing in all their ventures.

"Let me be very, very clear: It's not a question of dark-of-night grabs, or hide-and-seek or deceit on anyone's part," said lawmaker Yitzhak Levy of the pro-settler National Religious Party, who headed ministries in Likud and Labour governments.

"It is government policy," he said.

The settlements started after 1967 under Labour governments, which sought to confine them to border areas they considered necessary for national security.

Benefits for settlers

But then Likud came to power in 1977, claiming a God-given right to the whole West Bank and Gaza Strip. The chief settlement advocate was Ariel Sharon, the former general who - now as prime minister - has ordered the Gaza pullback.

Using his Cabinet posts between 1977 and 1992 - agriculture, defence and housing - he doled out government grants, low-cost loans and tax breaks to settlers. He also gave birth to the idea of advertising the enclaves as bedroom communities just minutes from Israeli urban centres.

Some settlements close to towns in Israel proper were subsidised by giving the inhabitants tax cuts, cheap mortgages and grants of between $6900 and $57,000 - perks ordinarily reserved for outlying areas.

Maaleh Adumim, the largest settlement with about 30,000 people, received this "priority" status even though it is just 5km from Jerusalem. So did Elkana, an affluent settlement 8km from Israel's economic hub, Tel Aviv.

Not legal

Settler leader Adi Mintz said even some of the settlers thought the tax breaks for bedroom communities were unfair.

The state also picked up as much as half the tab for hooking up utilities. And pro-settler lawmakers fought to control key ministries such as Construction and Housing, National Infrastructure, and Transportation so they could direct money to settlements.

The classified defence budget further propelled expansion, funding troop deployments to guard settlements, and building fences and wide roads for settlers living among more than 2 million Palestinians who adamantly oppose their presence.

A government official conceded that some uses of military funds "in hindsight ... aren't legal and shouldn't have been done".

He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing possible violations of the law by the government.

Winks and nods

At times, government watchdogs balked at the way government funds were being used. Most recently, the Interior Ministry launched an investigation into the transfer of $2.8 million in 2003 and 2004 from settlement municipalities to a settlement lobby group, which is funding the fight against the Gaza pullout.

Because the state and separate ministerial budgets do not break down outlays by region, it is difficult to identify the flow of money to settlements. Supporters and detractors both say this allowed Israeli governments to hide behind the budget when it came to settlement financing - and forestall friction with Washington.

"The state of Israel didn't want a head-on confrontation with the United States ... therefore Israel always did things with winks and nods," said Mintz, the settler leader.

Despite its declared opposition to settlements, Washington only began taking action in the early 1990s, when Israel sought billions of dollars in US loan guarantees.

Washington said it would deduct sums that went into settlements dollar for dollar.

US lobby

In 2003, when Israel was granted $9 billion in loan guarantees over three years, the cut was $289.5 million.

Officials familiar with the issue, and speaking on condition of anonymity, say that low figure was reached with the help of the influential pro-Israel lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, known as AIPAC.

AIPAC officials refused to discuss the issue on the record, but denied they helped to negotiate the numbers.

Israel also used private US donations for which it secured US tax-exempt status, said David Newman, a political scientist at Israel's Ben Gurion University who researched settlement funding.

US tax laws do not exempt donations for political activities such as settlements. Israel separated the World Zionist Organisation from the quasi- governmental Jewish Agency, a move that allowed donors to inject money into settlements without losing tax exemptions.

Land expropriated

In reality, the two groups operate under one umbrella, with the same officials, departments and administrators overseeing the activities, Newman said.

Sharon was a champion of the settler movement

Perhaps the greyest area is how Israel expropriated, confiscated or purchased land for settlements.

During the first 12 years of occupation, more than 4000 hectares of land confiscated by the military for security needs were handed to settlers, according to Defence Ministry statistics quoted in Lords of the Land, a book by Israeli authors Akiva Eldar and Idit Zartel.

Even after Israel's Supreme Court in 1979 raised the bar for security- related land confiscations, the state seized thousands more hectares (acres) of West Bank land on security grounds and turned it over for settlers, some living in unauthorised enclaves.

The state-funded Jewish National Fund, along with settler groups and their supporters, also bought land from private Palestinians, using middlemen to cloak the sellers' identity and shield them from attack by other Arabs.

Shaul Goldstein, head of the Gush Etzion Regional Council in the West Bank, said his council recently paid $10,000 for 990 square metres of Palestinian land - about one-twentieth of the cost of land just over the border.

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When it started raining birds
Monday August 15 2005 11:57 IST

VELLORE: On Saturday, Vaniyambadi town and its suburbs witnessed a bizarre phenomenon. The residents woke up to an astounding sight of kites falling dead from the sky before them.

Some of the birds were half-dead and panting for life. Locals tried to feed them with water, but to no avail. And a stunned town watched cluelessly as the kites died in agony.

Remarked 70-year-old Jadaiyan, a watchman at a coconut grove in Periyapettai area, "This might be a bad omen. I have already collected carcasses of 50 birds from my grove."

Rani, another caretaker of a coconut grove in Chennampet area, said she was horrified to find about 100 dead birds littered around it. The kites, which were a rare sight in the region, had died only in a confined area along the banks of the Palar river.

Saleem, a municipal councillor, said he informed the municipality immediately, which collected the dead birds and buried them in the compost yard. Municipal officials said that they collected around 70 birds.

Conservator of Forests A Samanth Singhar said that two teams of veterinarians and forest officials have been formed to go into the matter. The teams sent two samples to the Tamil Nadu Veterinary University of Animal Sciences and three to the regional forensic laboratory at Vellore.

The local veterinarians conducted post-mortem on four birds and the materials were sent for analysis. Though the reason is not yet known, speculations are rife that they could have died after eating carcasses of poisoned animals.

Another theory is that the birds could have been affected by some deadly infection.

According to the third theory, some change in local habitat conditions, possibly due to air and water pollution, could have brought about the problem.

However, as things stand, only the much-awaited test reports can reveal the mystery behind the death of these birds.

The cause of their death is yet to be ascertained.

Comment: Last week we ran a story about a parade of deep water sea life winding its way down the Florida coast just off the beach. Then we heard that there are large sections of the Gulf of Mexico that are dead. Now birds are falling from the sky in India.

These events may have something to do with out-gassing, the dispersal of methane gas from beneath the sea or land from tectonic shifts. Mike Baillie, an Irish paleogeologist and specialist in dendrochronology, discusses the effects of out-gassing in his book Exodus to Arthur, in relation to among others a mysterious mid-sixth century event that appears to have been the trigger for the dark ages that seems to have included earthquakes and comets.

We've been having our share of major quakes in the last year, now some suspected out-gassing events. Are the comets far behind?

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How Bush would gain from war with Iran

The US has the capability and reasons for an assault - and it is hard to see Britain uninvolved

Dan Plesch
Monday August 15, 2005
The Guardian

President Bush has reminded us that he is prepared to take military action to prevent Iran acquiring nuclear weapons. On Israeli television this weekend, he declared that "all options are on the table" if Tehran doesn't comply with international demands.

In private his officials deride EU and UN diplomacy with Iran. US officials have been preparing pre-emptive war since Bush marked Iran out as a member of the "axis of evil" back in 2002. Once again, this war is likely to have British support.

A plausible spin could be that America and Britain must act where the international community has failed, and that their action is the responsible alternative to an Israeli attack. The conventional wisdom is that, even if diplomacy fails, the US is so bogged down in Iraq that it could not take on Iran. However, this misunderstands the capabilities and intentions of the Bush administration.

America's devastating air power is not committed in Iraq. Just 120 B52, B1 and B2 bombers could hit 5,000 targets in a single mission. Thousands of other warplanes and missiles are available. The army and marines are heavily committed in Iraq, but enough forces could be found to secure coastal oilfields and to conduct raids into Iran.

A US attack is unlikely to be confined to the suspected WMD locations or to involve a ground invasion to occupy the country. The strikes would probably be intended to destroy military, political and (oil excepted) economic infrastructure. A disabled Iran could be further paralysed by civil war. Tehran alleges US support for separatists in the large Azeri population of the north-west, and fighting is increasing in Iranian Kurdistan.

The possible negative consequences of an attack on Iran are well known: an increase in terrorism; a Shia rising in Iraq; Hizbullah and Iranian attacks on Israel; attacks on oil facilities along the Gulf and a recession caused by rising oil prices. Advocates of war argue that if Iran is allowed to go nuclear then each of these threats to US and Israeli interests becomes far greater. In this logic, any negative consequence becomes a further reason to attack now - with Iran disabled all these threats can, it is argued, be reduced.

Iraq is proving an electoral liability. This is a threat to the Bush team's intention to retain power for the next decade - perhaps, as the author Bob Woodward says, with President Cheney at the helm. War with Iran next spring can enable them to win the mid-term elections and retain control of the Republican party, now in partial rebellion over Iraq.

The rise in oil prices and subsequent recession are reasons some doubt that an attack would take place. However, Iran's supplies are destined for China - perceived as the US's main long-term rival. And the Bush team are experienced enough to remember that Ronald Reagan rode out the recession of the early 1980s on a wave of rhetoric about "evil empire".

Even if the US went ahead, runs the argument, Britain would not be involved as Tony Blair would not want a rerun of the Iraq controversy. But British forces are already in the area: they border Iran around Basra, and will soon lead the Nato force on Iran's Afghan frontier. The British island of Diego Garcia is a critical US base.

It is hard to see Britain uninvolved in US actions. The prime minister is clearly of a mind to no more countenance Iran's WMD than he did Iraq's. In Iran's case the evidence is more substantial. The Iranians do have a nuclear energy programme and have lied about it. In any event, Blair is probably aware that the US is unlikely to supply him with the prized successor to the Trident submarine if Britain refuses to continue to pay the blood sacrifice of standing with the US. Tory votes might provide sufficient "national unity" to see off Labour dissenters.

New approaches are needed to head off such a dismal scenario. The problem on WMD is that Blair and Bush are doing too little, not too much. Why pick on Iran rather than India, Pakistan, Israel or Egypt - not to mention the west's weapons? In the era of Gorbachev and Reagan, political will created treaties that still successfully control many types of WMD. Revived, they would provide the basis for global controls. Iran must not be dealt with in isolation.

As the Iran debate unfolds, we will no doubt again hear about the joint intelligence committee. We should follow the advice of a former head of the committee, Sir Paul Lever, to remove US intelligence officials from around the JIC table, where they normally sit. Only in this way, argues Lever, can the British take a considered view themselves.

We need to be clear that our MPs have no mandate to support an attack on Iran. During the election campaign, the government dismissed any suggestion that Iran might be attacked as ridiculous scaremongering. If Blair has told Bush that Britain will prevent Iran's nuclear weapons "come what may", we need to be equally clear that nothing short of an election would provide the mandate for an attack.

Comment: Tony Blair is wedded to Bush's politics of fear, destruction, and Armageddon. Blair knows what is in store for the planet, as climate change brings on a new ice age and those who haven't been killed by earthquakes, volcanoes, or falling rocks from heaven fight over the leftovers while the war criminals hide in their bunkers. Even if it sounds like the script of a very bad sci-fi flick, there is substantial evidence that all or part of the above scenario is a probable future.

Add to the pot the apocalyptic tendences of millennialist Christians and Jews and you have an explosive cocktail, for if the Messiah is coming, be it for the first or second time, why worry about earthly things such as peace, security, and a future for your children and their children?

Obviously, they don't. They think that if World War Three is needed to bring back Jesus, then so be it. Load up the nukes, and let's get the Second Coming rolling.

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The myth of the EU olive branch
By Kaveh L Afrasiabi

The crisis over Iran's nuclear program unfolding before our eyes is by all accounts one of the most serious challenges facing the 1979 post-revolutionary system in Iran. This crisis is potentially capable of re-isolating Iran in the international community and, thus, exacerbating internal and regional tensions and, even worse, igniting the flares of yet another military confrontation in the turbulent Middle East.

As Tehran rather heroically defies Western will and resumes the initial stages of the nuclear fuel cycle, regardless of strong condemnation by Europe, as well as Russia, the United States and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the country also inevitably braces for the harsh winds of the ramified hurricane blowing in its direction. This is the threat of economic sanctions, capital scare and flight, and the inevitable attrition of foreign trade, at least with Europe, Iran's number one trade partner.

Economically, none of this bodes well for the high-unemployment economy and the agenda of President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, who has made job creation his top priority. Sadly, the stark coincidence of Ahmadinejad's ascendency and the nuclear crisis simply means that the new president will have no choice but to focus on foreign policy, an area completely alien to him since the former mayor of Tehran has no background and no experience in foreign affairs.

Undoubtedly, the Iranian people will stand up to any unreasonable external pressure or threat, as they have repeatedly in the past, but the price for the young and aspiring generation, yearning for steady progress without another setback, as was the case with the generation of the 1980s Iran-Iraq war, may prove to be too much.

Certainly, it is still possible to prevent the degeneration of this crisis into a major one with long-lasting implications, and hopes for a compromised solution have not yet expired.

As the IAEA chief, Mohammad ElBaradei, said on Thursday, there is "still a window of opportunity", despite the IAEA resolution that mandates a September 3 report by ElBaradei on Iran, ie, whether Iran has complied with the IAEA's request for "full suspension of all enrichment-related activities".

The resolution fell considerably short of the US-EU expectation as a direct result of the input by Non-Aligned Movement countries resisting pressure to condemn Iran and to threaten serious reprisals, a half-victory for Iran.

This resolution, while recalling that all nuclear material is accounted for, maintains that the agency is not yet in a position to declare that there are no undeclared nuclear material or activities. And this is echoed by ElBaradei's subsequent statement that the agency cannot yet account for "the whole country". All this brings to mind the sour memories of Iraq, when the UN Security Council and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, who has rushed to endorse the IAEA's latest resolution on Iran, called on Saddam Hussein to be "proactive" and prove that he did not have nuclear weapons. Thus, the Iranians are now asked to somehow prove that there are no undeclared activities, a harsh demand bound to backfire and cement the Iranian objections to the agency's resolution.

However, as a sign of compromise, at the Wednesday session of the IAEA in Vienna, Iranian representatives assured the agency's governing board that that they would continue to have the activities at the enrichment factories suspended, and that their conversion activities will continue to be under full IAEA verification.
Meanwhile, Ahmadinejad has expressed his government's desire to continue dialogue with Europe and, in his recent telephone conversation with Annan, promised to unveil his own counter-proposal. It remains to be seen what this proposal contains, and one can anticipate it containing a central focus on Iran's "inalienable right" to nuclear technology, which encompasses the right to fabricate nuclear fuel, as admitted to by ElBaradei, whose statement, on August 9, is worth quoting at length:

The flash point, or the main point of contention in that proposal, as I understand, is the right of Iran to maintain fuel cycle activities. This is particularly the enrichment and reprocessing activities. This is an issue which goes much beyond Iran. As you again recall that I have been calling attention to the danger of disseminating fuel cycle activities around the world, because that brings us very close to the capability to develop nuclear weapons and I have been asking for a new framework for managing nuclear energy by which countries would have the right to have nuclear energy to generate electricity and other applications, but not necessarily to move forward on a national basis to have fuel cycle activities. I have been discussing and consulting with many member states to develop what we call assurance of supply scheme by which countries will have reactor technology and the fuel they need and not necessarily sit on enrichment facilities or reprocessing facilities. That could be, may be organized on a region basis or multilateral basis. However, this continues to be the sticking point in the negotiation, but the European offer is made on the assumption that this is an offer to be responded to by Iran.

ElBaradei's candid statements, implicitly criticizing the EU-3, Germany, France and Britain, for their rather cavalier attitude in their latest proposal to Iran, cannot be taken lightly, especially given the uniform anti-Iran chorus of the Western press blaming Iran for rejecting the "marvelous" European incentives, including the nuclear ones.

Sadly, there has been little objective reporting, paper or electronic, that has scrutinized the European proposal without the lens of bias. The main newspapers in Europe and the US have sounded in unison with the official interpretation that the "bad" Iranians unreasonably turned down the decent offers of the "good Europeans". But what of the legal basis for Europe's request from Iran to deny to itself a right they themselves enjoy to the fullest? And what is one to make of the broadly vague and indeterminate promises of nuclear and security cooperation?

Per the terms of last year's Paris Agreement, the EU-3 were supposed to provide Iran with "firm commitments" on the various security, economic and technological fronts, and, yet, their "Framework for Cooperation" with Iran is thick on generalities and thin on specifics, falling considerably short of the Iranian expectation.

But, on the other hand, no amount of economic and other incentives could possibly convince Iran to forfeit its right to produce nuclear fuel and, instead, rely on external sources. Anticipating problems with the latter scenario, the European proposal actually contains a rather extensive discussion of the procedure for Iran to follow in the event the promised foreign sources renege and fail to deliver the fuel needed by Iran's reactors. From Iran's vantage point, this of course raises serious concern about the reliability of the present promises by politicians who may be out of office soon, given the precarious state of the European Union right now.

Iran signed the Paris Agreement, viewed as temporary, calling for the suspension of "all uranium-enrichment activities" pending a long-term agreement. Several months later, EU leaders have now presented a proposal to Iran that seeks to make permanent a temporary and confidence-building measure, without one iota of international law behind their request, except their stated "suspicion" of Iran's intentions to build nuclear weapons.

And it is precisely here that Europe is at its weakest and Iran at its strongest position in the current argument, in light of Iran's offer of concrete steps for objective guarantee of the peacefulness of its nuclear activities, involving the expanded role of IAEA inspectors, use of surveillance cameras, etc. Yet, the European negotiators have so far shown no interest whatsoever in pursuing this track. To open a caveat here, at a recent German-Iran roundtable at Berlin's think-tank, Stifflung Fur Wissenschaft und Politik, the top German negotiator even admitted that the EU-3 did not even bother to accept officially Iran's proposal in March. This attitude caused this author to react by saying that if they really respected Iranian negotiators they would have received the proposal and studied it seriously, instead of giving it cursory attention.

The Iranian reaction, that the EU-3 proposal is "insulting", can perhaps be better understood in the context of this background history, where the Iranian negotiators had to endure such blatant manifestations of disrespectful behavior, as if the world has stood still in the late 19th century, eg notice the tone of the proposal's item (33): "Effective long-term cooperation between Iran and the international community in the civil nuclear field along the lines set out in this document will, however, require the continued building of confidence over a significant period." Seeing how "confidence-building" has been used and misused to connote an Iranian "waiting for Godot", this cannot but be interpreted as a European merry-go-round on their nuclear promises to Iran.

Yet another flaw of the European proposal is that instead of giving security assurance, it in fact exacerbates the Iranian anxiety by letting the door open for nuclear attack in response to a conventional attack. The proposal, item 4(a) reads: "The United Kingdom and the French republic would reaffirm to Iran that they will not use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear weapon states parties to the treaty on the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons except in the case of an invasion or any attack on them, their dependent territories, their armed forces or other troops, their allies or on a state toward which they have a security commitment."

Indeed, had the authors of this proposal bothered to put themselves in the position of the recipient of this proposal they would have most likely reconsidered such brazen, aggressive statements meant to steer Iran away from nuclear weapons. Some reassurance. Whatever happened to a categorical rejection of use of nuclear weapons in conventional warfare?

But as ElBaradei presciently stated, this crisis could be a "lose-lose" proposition for both sides if reason and spirit of compromise do not prevail, and one can only hope that the opposite occurs and this turns out to be a prelude for a "win-win" situation. But for this to happen, it will take enormous energy and diplomatic dexterity from all sides, and an important prerequisite is that Iran's strides of the past two years be fully recognized:

# Iran has signed and fully implemented the intrusive Additional Protocol
# Iran has allowed extensive IAEA inspections
# Iran has provided a detailed account of it nuclear activities
# Iran has for some 20 months maintained a voluntary suspension of its uranium-enrichment program as a gesture of good will and confidence-building
# Iran has fully and satisfactorily answered all the remaining IAEA questions, such as about the sources of equipment contamination with highly enriched uranium
# Iran has fully participated in marathon, multi-track negotiations with the Europeans covering a wide variety of issues other than the nuclear issue, such as terrorism, drug traffic, energy transport, technology transfer, trade, etc
# Iran's proposal, offered to the EU on March 23, explicitly called for the following: ceiling of enrichment at low-grade; open-fuel cycle, to remove any concerns about reprocessing and production of plutonium; immediate conversion of all enriched uranium to fuel rods; and incremental and phased approach to implementation of the enrichment cycle
# Iran has promised to fulfill the legislative approval of the Additional Protocol
# Iran has pledged to tighten its export control regulations
# Iran has proposed a continuous on-site presence of IAEA inspectors at nuclear facilities, an unprecedented move for the sake of objective guarantee.

But the Iranian initiatives have been either ignored or downgraded in importance by the Western media, which have for the most part obediently followed the official lines of the governments - in London, Paris, Berlin and Washington. It is now amply obvious that with the jolt of Iran's resumption of uranium-processing activities, policy-makers in these capitals can no longer afford to ignore Iran's point of view. In the next round of negotiations in "hot August", the European-hoped-for compromise can potentially be achieved only through a flexible mutual approach by both sides, and on the European side this may mean a wholesale change of attitude toward Iran.

Kaveh L Afrasiabi, PhD, is the author of After Khomeini: New Directions in Iran's Foreign Policy (Westview Press) and co-authored "Negotiating Iran's Nuclear Populism", The Brown Journal of World Affairs, Volume X11, issue 2, Summer 2005, with Mustafa Kibaroglu.

Comment: It is important and enlightening to read the point of view of the Iranians on the subject of their nuclear development given the way they are portrayed in the Western media. The hilighted section above which amounts to the Europeans promising not to use nuclear weapons against Iran except in times of war is no assurance at all. But as long as the media is controlled, the West can make whatever offers it wishes and the Iranians will be portrayed as the nit-pickers.

This tactic has worked for decades with the Palestinians, painting them as refusing to compromise when their people have been put into exile and they are facing extermination at the hands of the Zionist cancer in their midst. The killers in power get away with such blatant manipulation, however, because there is no free press, and the hard truth is that their populations don't care one iota for what is happening half-way across the globe to people who neither speak their language not share their culture.

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Bush Against the Generals
Iran, the White House, and the purge of the military
August 15, 2005
by Justin Raimondo

The tipping point against this immoral, ill-conceived and in-every-way disastrous war seems to have been reached, as hundreds – and soon to be thousands – of Gold Star Mothers and sympathizers march against the war in Crawford, Texas. Popular support for George W. Bush's Napoleonic foreign policy has plummeted to its lowest point ever. "Like the Japanese soldier marooned on an island for years after V-J Day, President George W. Bush may be the last person in the United States to learn that for Americans, if not Iraqis, the war in Iraq is over," avers Frank Rich:

"'We will stay the course,' he insistently tells us from his Texas ranch. What do you mean we, white man? A president can't stay the course when his own citizens (let alone his own allies) won't stay with him. The approval rate for Bush's handling of Iraq plunged to 34 percent in last weekend's Newsweek poll – a match for the 32 percent that approved President Lyndon Johnson's handling of Vietnam in early March 1968.'"

The war against Ba'athist Iraq may be over, but the war against the mullahs of Iran is just beginning. What else are we to make of the president's recent interview with Israeli public television:

"When asked if the use of force was an alternative to faltering diplomatic efforts, Bush said: 'All options are on the table.' 'The use of force is the last option for any president. You know we have used force in the recent past to secure our country,' he said in a clear reference to Iraq. 'I have been willing to do so as a last resort in order to secure the country and provide the opportunity for people to live in free societies,' he added."

A "last resort"? Don't make me laugh. The Bushies came to Washington all primed up to invade Iraq: 9/11 gave them the excuse they needed to carry out their plan – a plan, by the way, not limited to the conquest of Iraq. The confluence of the president's pronouncement with news of Vice President Dick Cheney's recent request that the military come up with a plan to attack the Iranians – using nuclear weapons – as a response to a terrorist attack in the U.S., should send a good-sized shiver down your spine, dear reader, as it does mine.

Frank Rich believes Bush "can't stay the course when his own citizens" refuse to go along, but that is nonsense: he can and will do exactly as he pleases. The constitutional provision assigning exclusively to Congress the power to declare war has long been a dead letter, killed by Harry Truman when he sent U.S. troops to Korea. Aside from a few old-fashioned conservative Republicans, the peoples' elected representatives uttered hardly a peep of protest. Just as Congress – aside from a few isolated, and heroic, cases – will stay silent today. As long as the Democratic party is successfully neutered on foreign policy issues by the neocon-influenced Democratic Leadership Council, the War Party will encounter no opposition on that front.

The political groundwork for an assault on Iran has already been laid, as Joshua Kurlantzick points out in an excellent piece in Vanity Fair magazine, and these preparations ought to evoke in us an eerie sense of déjà vu: the same playbook is being used as was followed in Iraq, even including a mysterious (and, in this case, uniquely kooky) group of exiles funneling fake "intelligence" to the war hawks in the Pentagon.

You say Chalabi, I say Rajavi – let's call the whole thing off!

As the president of the United States cowers in his ranch, afraid to meet with a 48-year-old mother who wants to know why her son had to die, he hurls anathemas at Tehran and gathers his hosts for fresh conquests. Bush can safely ignore Congress – not that they'll give him any trouble – and he can tell the chauffeur to speed up when he passes Cindy Sheehan on the way to a fundraiser for the Republican War Machine. However, he can't safely ignore the grumbling of his generals – who may be just short of joining the Crawford peace camp, along with a few divisions from the North American Command. Bush has just slapped down the top American commander in Iraq, General George Casey, for daring to suggest that troop reductions were in the offing. The London Telegraph reports:

"The top American commander in Iraq has been privately rebuked by the Bush administration for openly discussing plans to reduce troop levels there next year, The Sunday Telegraph has learned. … Gen George Casey, the U.S. ground commander in Iraq, was given his dressing-down after he briefed that troop levels – now 138,000 – could be reduced by 30,000 in the early months of next year as Iraqi security forces take on a greater role."

If the troops are going into Iran – or, as some say, Syria – then bringing them home is out of the question. Is the president facing an officers' rebellion as he ratchets up the rhetoric against Tehran?

The firing of General Kevin Byrnes, allegedly for "adultery" – even though he's already been separated from his wife – a few months before he's due to retire, is awfully suspicious in this context: General Byrnes reportedly made an enemy of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for opposing the Rumsfeldian "transformation" of the military into a more "flexible" instrument of the Bush Doctrine and the neocons' imperial vision. In essentially firing a four-star general – a vicious act of retribution that certainly bears the personal stamp of the chimp-in-chief – the White House engaged in a preemptive strike against the War Party's enemies in the military. This is no doubt a sore spot for the White House: opposition from American's military leaders to the Iraq adventure made headlines in the run-up to war, and their continuing objection to this administration's policy of unconstrained aggression was summed up in the remark of a retired general to the Washington Times: "The Army is just too small for what they want it to do."

General Eric Shinseki, the former chief of staff of the Army, dared face down Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz in estimating "several hundred thousand" U.S. troops as the required size of an Iraq occupation force – and was forced into retirement. Now Casey has been rebuked and is presumably on the way out, while Byrnes has been purged, along with no one knows how many others. It's the night of the long knives in the Pentagon, as the War Party cleans out suspected dissidents from the top ranks of the military and prepares for the next move on the Middle Eastern chessboard.

It doesn't matter if the majority of Americans overwhelmingly oppose the president's war plans, just as long as organized opposition can be effectively neutralized. Is a housewife from Vacaville threatening to show up the president as a coward and a liar? Then smear her and make her the issue – anything to divert attention away from the president's own cowardice and the monstrous immorality of his foreign policy. Is a four-star general standing in the way of the neocons? Then smear him, too, on trumped-up charges and haul him out of his office in disgrace. Is the antiwar movement beginning to gain momentum? Then bring out the smear artists and begin a media campaign of demonization.

The regime has a two-note strategy: fear and smear. This summer, they're firing with both barrels, and we can expect the noise level to rise appreciably as we approach the fourth anniversary of 9/11 – the catalytic event that catapulted us into this Bizarro World, where up is down, all morals are inverted, and we live in a "democracy" where a war opposed by a clear majority is about to be escalated, not ended.

If I were president in such a world, I, too, would be nervous about opposition to my crazed war policy emanating from the military. In Bizarro America, after all, anything might happen – including uniformed generals leading the antiwar movement.

Finally taking seriously their sworn duty to defend the Constitution, will they take up their positions next to Cindy Sheehan and march on the president's Crawford compound? We can dream, can't we? Who knows, but in Bizarro America, it just might happen, and wouldn't that be a sight to see? The final rout of the chickenhawks, as they meet their Waterloo!

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Is Bush Out of Control?
By DOUG THOMPSON
Aug 15, 2005, 05:46

Buy beleaguered, overworked White House aides enough drinks and they tell a sordid tale of an administration under siege, beset by bitter staff infighting and led by a man whose mood swings suggest paranoia bordering on schizophrenia.

They describe a President whose public persona masks an angry, obscenity-spouting man who berates staff, unleashes tirades against those who disagree with him and ends meetings in the Oval Office with "get out of here!"

In fact, George W. Bush's mood swings have become so drastic that White House emails often contain "weather reports" to warn of the President's demeanor. "Calm seas" means Bush is calm while "tornado alert" is a warning that he is pissed at the world.

Decreasing job approval ratings and increased criticism within his own party drives the President's paranoia even higher. Bush, in a meeting with senior advisors, called Senator Majority Leader Bill Frist a "god-damned traitor" for opposing him on stem-cell research.

"There's real concern in the West Wing that the President is losing it," a high-level aide told me recently.

A year ago, this web site discovered the White House physician prescribed anti-depressants for Bush. The news came after revelations that the President's wide mood swings led some administration staffers to doubt his sanity.

Although GOP loyalists dismissed the reports an anti-Bush propaganda, the reports were later confirmed by prominent George Washington University psychiatrist Dr. Justin Frank in his book Bush on the Couch: Inside the Mind of the President. Dr. Frank diagnosed the President as a "paranoid meglomaniac" and "untreated alcoholic" whose "lifelong streak of sadism, ranging from childhood pranks (using firecrackers to explode frogs) to insulting journalists, gloating over state executions and pumping his hand gleefully before the bombing of Baghdad" showcase Bush's instabilities.

"I was really very unsettled by him and I started watching everything he did and reading what he wrote and watching him on videotape. I felt he was disturbed," Dr. Frank said. "He fits the profile of a former drinker whose alcoholism has been arrested but not treated."

Dr. Frank's conclusions have been praised by other prominent psychiatrists, including Dr. James Grotstein, Professor at UCLA Medical Center, and Dr. Irvin Yalom, MD, Professor Emeritus at Stanford University Medical School.

As a recovering alcoholic (sober 11 years, two months, nine days), I know all too well the symptoms that Dr. Frank describes and, after watching Bush for the past several years, I have to, unfortunately, agree with him.

Conversations over the last few weeks with longtime friends who work in the Bush White House confirm even more what Dr. Frank says and others have suggested.

The President of the United States is out of control. How long can the ship of state continue to sail with a madman at the helm?

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Masculinity Challenged, Men Prefer War and SUVs

By LiveScience Staff
posted: 02 August 2005
03:58 pm ET

Men whose masculinity is challenged become more inclined to support war or buy an SUV, a new study finds.

Their attitudes against gays change, too.

Cornell University researcher Robb Willer used a survey to sample undergraduates. Participants were randomly assigned feedback that indicated their responses were either masculine of feminine.

The women had no discernable reaction to either type of feedback in a follow-up survey.

But the guys' reactions were "strongly affected," Willer said today.

"I found that if you made men more insecure about their masculinity, they displayed more homophobic attitudes, tended to support the Iraq war more and would be more willing to purchase an SUV over another type of vehicle," said Willer said. "There were no increases [in desire] for other types of cars."

Those who had their masculinity threatened also said they felt more ashamed, guilty, upset and hostile than those whose masculinity was confirmed, he said.

Comment: Dear George,

OK, you've proved your point. We apologise. The whole world apologises. And we're sure the kid in sixth grade who made fun of you that day is sorry, too... if he's still alive.

Now please call home the troops.

And stop the false flag operations.

You're a man, George, a real, John Wayne strutting man, a cowboy with the hottest pistol in the West. And you're so kind and caring underneath that manly exterior. You're the man in white, the good guy who saves the heroine in the last reel, the man who saves babies from spooked buffalo herds. And we're so proud of you, George, that we just made you a new set of cowboy duds. Here, try 'em on.

See the way they slip on from the front?

Isn't that easy? Just put your arms into these sleeves.

Yes, they are long, aren't they? But they have these handy little ropes on the ends so you'll always be able to round up the cattle. You'll never be without your lariat.

Yes, that is clever. Now climb up into your new SUV.

Yes, those bars will keep the freedom-hating Americans away from you. And don't worry about waving at Cindy Sheehan.

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Al-Qaeda, a Secret Service Operation?
By Ercan Gun
08/14/05 "Zaman"

A fire in a house near the docks in the southern Turkish city of Antalya has revealed that al-Qaeda was preparing an attack to target Israeli cruise ships. The security operations that followed this fortuitous incident made Turkish security the focus of security agencies all around the world.

Countries facing the al-Qaeda threat are awaiting the intelligence Turkish security is to provide. Amid the smoke from the fortuitous fire emerged the possibility that al-Qaeda may not be, strictly speaking, an organization but an element of an intelligence agency operation. Turkish intelligence specialists agree that there is no such organization as al-Qaeda. Rather, Al-Qaeda is the name of a secret service operation. The concept "fighting terror" is the background of the "low-intensity-warfare" conducted in the mono-polar world order. The subject of this strategy of tension is named as "al-Qaeda."

Sakra, the fifth most senior man in Osama bin Ladin's al-Qaeda that has challenged the whole world from a base in the Afghan mountains, is in the hands of Turkish Justice. Sakra has been sought by the secret services since 2000. The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) interrogated him twice before. Following the interrogation CIA offered him employment. He also received a large sum of money by CIA. However the CIA eventually lost contact with him. Following this development, in 2000 the CIA passed intelligence about Sakra through a classified notice to Turkey, calling for the Turkish National Security Organization (MIT) to capture him. MIT caught Sakra in Turkey and interrogated him. Sakra's protests that, "MIT abducted my wife and interrogated her for 20 days," as he was brought to Besiktas court in Istanbul for sentencing, seem to confirm these claims.

Sakra was sought and caught by Syrian al-Mukhabarat as well. Syria too offered him employment. Sakra eventually became a triple agent for the secret services. These astounding claims are the outcome of Sakra's four-day interrogation at Istanbul Anti-Terror Department Headquarters. Turkish security officials, interrogating a senior al-Qaeda figure for the first time, were thoroughly confused about what they discovered about al-Qaeda. The prosecutor too was surprised. A second hearing of the case about the attacks in Istanbul between November 15-23, 2003, is reportedly possible.

Comment: And here is the ever perspicacious Kurt Nimmo's take on this story....

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Turkish Intelligence: Al-Qaeda a U.S. Covert Operation
Kurt Nimmo
Another Day in the Empire

Consider the following, published in Zaman, the fifth largest newspaper in Turkey: "Amid the smoke from the fortuitous fire [i.e., the capture of Louai Sakra, said to be the al-CIA-duh regional boss in Turkey] emerged the possibility that al-Qaeda may not be, strictly speaking, an organization but an element of an intelligence agency operation. Turkish intelligence specialists agree that there is no such organization as al-Qaeda. Rather, Al-Qaeda is the name of a secret service operation. The concept ‘fighting terror' is the background of the ‘low-intensity-warfare' conducted in the mono-polar world order. The subject of this strategy of tension is named as ‘al-Qaeda.'" Note the use of the phrase "strategy of tension," an obvious reference to Gladio, the state-sponsored terrorist operation in Italy (basically a series of fascist false flag operations, or "low intensity warfare," blamed on leftists). It is interesting that Turkish intelligence would admit that the neocon "war against terrorism" is an entirely artificial construct.

Moreover, according to Turkish intelligence, "Sakra has been sought by the secret services since 2000. The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) interrogated him twice before. Following the interrogation CIA offered him employment. He also received a large sum of money by CIA. However the CIA eventually lost contact with him." It is curious how alleged key people in the al-CIA-duh network end up working for the CIA and other intelligence agencies.

For instance, Abdurahman Khadr, who (according to ABC News Online) "lived side-by-side with Osama bin Laden," was a "double agent, sent to spy on Al Qaeda fighters at Guantanamo Bay and in Bosnia." Ali Mohamed, a former U.S. Army sergeant who trained Osama bin Laden's bodyguards and helped plan the 1998 bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kenya, worked for the FBI (Mohamed, obviously with the grace of the feds, brought Ayman al-Zawahiri to San Francisco on a covert fund-raising mission), according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Hamid Reza Zakeri claimed (during the trial of Abdelghani Mzoudi, a Moroccan accused of helping the nine eleven hijackers) that "Iran's secret service had contacts with Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network ahead of the September 11 attacks," according to Reuters. It just so happens Zakeri claims the CIA owes him $1.2 for services rendered as a double agent. Mullah Krekar, the leader of Ansar al-Islam, told al-Hayat newspaper in 2003 he had "a meeting with a CIA representative and someone from the American army in the town of Sulaymaniya (Iraqi Kurdistan) at the end of 2000. They asked us to collaborate with them," an offer Krekar said he refused. Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, aka Abu Omar, "a dangerous terrorist who once plotted to kill the Egyptian foreign minister," according to the Chicago Tribune, was such a valued CIA asset it was deemed necessary to kidnap him off the streets of Milan after he had second thoughts about his work. And then there was Muhammad Naeem Noor Khanm, the al-Qaeda "computer engineer" who "became part of a sting operation organized by the CIA," according to the Washington Post.

Of course, all of this CIA funny business is coincidental. Remember, the CIA is ineffectual, even if it did create Islamic terrorism—the agency actually boasts about this, says the Afghan Mujahideen (aka "al-Qaeda") was its most successful operation to date—and it was "intelligence failures" that caused nine eleven.

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Guantanamo Detainee Says Beating Injured Spine

Now in Wheelchair, Egyptian-Born Teacher Objects to Plan to Send Him to Native Land

By Carol D. Leonnig
Washington Post Staff Writer
08/13/05 "Washington Post"

An Egyptian-born teacher imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for the past 3 1/2 years recently convinced the U.S. military that he is not an enemy combatant, but rather what he said he was: a pro-democracy English teacher swept up when the military seized fighters and suspected terrorists from the battlefields of Afghanistan.

In newly declassified records of statements to his attorney, Sami Al-Laithi said that as a result of his detention at the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, he is now confined to a wheelchair with two broken vertebrae. He said military personnel and interrogators stomped on his back, dropped him on the floor and repeatedly forced his neck forward soon after his arrival at the prison.

He said he has been denied an operation that could save him from permanent paralysis and is being held at Camp V, a maximum-security wing of isolation cells reserved for the most uncooperative and high-value inmates, while he awaits transfer.

Al-Laithi's account of his treatment comes as the Bush administration moves to downsize the military prison, negotiating agreements to transfer as many as 400 of the 510 Guantanamo detainees to other countries. A small number of those to be transferred are detainees whom the military has found not to be enemy combatants. Others were judged to be enemies who tried to harm the United States but are of little current danger -- or intelligence value -- to the military as it tries to combat terrorism.

Military interrogators have told Al-Laithi they may return him to Egypt, the birth country he fled 17 years ago, where he believes he will be imprisoned and tortured for his past criticism of rigged elections there. Al-Laithi, 49, would prefer to be sent elsewhere, including Pakistan or Afghanistan, where he lived for most of his adult life.

A spokesman for the U.S. Southern Command, which oversees Guantanamo, declined to discuss Al-Laithi's case and said the Defense Department does not discuss transfers until they are completed. He said the department "operates a safe, humane and professional detention operation" and provides state-of-the-art medical care.

"Each detainee receives expert medical attention and treatment, if necessary, throughout detention," said Lt. Col. James Marshall, deputy director of public affairs. "This medical care is often better than what detainees would receive in their home countries."

Al-Laithi's case came before a U.S. military tribunal in May, when it ruled he was not an enemy combatant. He remains at Guantanamo until authorities decide where to send him. His attorney, Clive A. Stafford Smith, wants him to get medical care for his spinal injuries, to be removed from Camp V and to have his prison medical records turned over. Smith said he hoping that the declassified statements will bolster Al-Laithi's case.

"This is barbarism," Al-Laithi said of his treatment in the statement. "Why, even if I was guilty, would they do this?"

"I am in constant pain," he continued. "I would prefer to be buried alive than continue to receive the treatment I receive. At least I would suffer less and die."

Al-Laithi said he was teaching English and Arabic at Kabul University when American troops began bombing Afghanistan in the fall of 2001, and was picked up by the U.S. military in Pakistan while trying to flee the assault. Soon after he was transferred to the prison in Cuba.

It is not disputed that Al-Laithi walked into Guantanamo and now must use a wheelchair. What is in question is the reason. Al-Laithi traces his disability to a day soon after his arrival at the prison when he was beaten by U.S. military personnel while at the prison hospital.

"Once they stomped my back," Al-Laithi wrote. "An MP threw me on the floor, and they lifted me up and slammed me back down. A doctor said I have two broken vertebrae and I risk being paralyzed if the spinal cord is injured more."

Laithi said his neck is also permanently damaged because Emergency Response Force teams at the prison repeatedly forced his neck toward his knees. He said the military also forced a large object into his anus on what his lawyer called the "pretext" of doing a medical exam.

"I know most prisoners had Americans put their fingers up their anuses, but with me it was far worse -- they shoved some object up my rectum," he wrote. "It was very painful."

According to his attorney's account, a prison spokesman, when asked last month about Al-Laithi's back condition, responded that the fractured vertebrae were the result of a degenerative disease.

A department spokesman said yesterday that officials could not discuss Al-Laithi or the cause of his injury but noted that the prison often cares for detainees' preexisting conditions and injuries.

A spokeswoman for Amnesty International, which last week criticized U.S. efforts to try to transfer detainees to countries with a known record of torture and abuse, said any plan to transfer Al-Laithi or others to Egypt is unconscionable.

"They'd rather have them in detention in a country where there'll likely never be heard from again," said Jumana Musa, Amnesty's director of advocacy for domestic human rights. "It seems to be an effort to keep them from suing and to keep their cases and claims underground." Claims that detainees received serious injuries from their captors are becoming common, she said.

Comment: It's just a degenerative disease, says the military, which, in their eyes, could simply mean he was born an Arab.

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Iraq cautious after missed deadline
Tuesday 16 August 2005, 13:22 Makka Time, 10:22 GMT

Iraq is weighing the fallout from its failure to meet a deadline to draft a new constitution, facing warnings of fresh political turmoil if it does not complete the charter next week.

Iraqi legislators granted a one-week extension to draft the country's post-Saddam Hussein constitution after leaders missed a midnight Monday deadline to submit it to parliament despite intense US pressure to wrap up the charter on time.

"This is a one-time extension ... if Iraq misses the next deadline, we have to dissolve the national assembly, the government will collapse and fresh elections will have to be held," Kurdish panelist Munther al-Fadhal said.

The main sticking points in drafting the constitution were the role of Islam, federalism and distribution of national oil wealth.

Fadhal said the present interim law stipulated that it could be amended only once to seek an extension for drafting the charter, which is due to be put to a referendum in mid-October followed by new elections by the end of the year.

Dramatic events

Exhausted negotiators were taking stock of Monday's events and said there would be no talks on Tuesday, despite the new 22 August deadline.

"Nothing will happen today," Kurdish constitution committee member Mahmud Othman said.

"Everyone is tired after the last week's hectic activities. It is like a holiday today," Othman told AFP, adding that a scheduled assembly meeting Tuesday was delayed.

Despite the missed deadline, US leaders who had expected an agreement until the last minute hailed the faltering process as "democracy at work".

"I applaud the heroic efforts of Iraqi negotiators and appreciate their work to resolve remaining issues through continued negotiation and dialogue," US President George Bush said.

"Their efforts are a tribute to democracy and an example that difficult problems can be solved peacefully through debate,
negotiation and compromise," he said in a statement.

US upbeat

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was also optimistic about the work of Iraq's Shias, Kurds and Sunnis to formulate a constitution 28 months after US-led forces ousted Saddam.

Rice said the request for a seven-day extension in the deadline was "in full accordance" with interim law adopted to end the US occupation.

"We are witnessing democracy at work in Iraq," she said.

US ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad blamed the failure on a Baghdad sandstorm that he said had led to the loss of three negotiating days.

"I have no doubt that Iraq will have a good draft constitution completed in the coming days."

Agreement

One Shia said he was optimistic an agreement would be reached, but indicated a draft might be presented without the consent of all parties.

"I think we'll be able to overcome the differences, I hope we'll do it before the next deadline, during this week," Jawad al-Maliki told AFP.

"We are not seeking 100% consensus - the most important thing is that the people of Iraq accept (the constitution) in a referendum."

A number of differences remain, but in the days leading to Monday's deadline, a broad consensus had seemingly emerged between the Kurds and Shias who both favour a federal structure for Iraq.

The once-dominant Sunni Arabs, however, fear a federalism with regionally-autonomous governments could leave them without a share of the country's vast oil reserves, which lie largely in the Kurdish zone of the north and the Shia south.

Oil sharing

An initial agreement to share the oil revenues has been agreed, but the mechanism to distribute it remains to be formulated.

Kurdish MPs blamed Sunni Arabs for the missed deadline.

"The Sunni Arabs are way apart on the issue of federalism ... I doubt if they would come on board even during the next one week," Othman said.

"But next time I think the MPs will approve the draft without the Sunnis," he added.

In a special session on Monday night, the 275-member parliament voted to amend the present interim law with a fresh deadline of 22 August, side-stepping the need to dissolve parliament and hold fresh elections.

"The national assembly should draft the permanent constitution within a period ending by 22 August," parliament speaker Hajim al-Hasani said.

Basic amenities

Although the missed deadline was on the front pages of most newspapers, editorials criticised the fledgling administration for ignoring basic amenities in the war-torn country, where power cuts and water shortages are recurring problems.

"Why talk about progress in the political process when the quality of life is deteriorating at all levels," said Al-Mashriq, a daily close to the Kurdish community.

"Politics was invented to improve life, not to make it worse, but in Iraq this truth has been altered."

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Former Russian Nuclear Minister Says U.S. Charges Politically Motivated

Created: 16.08.2005 15:42 MSK (GMT 3), Updated: 15:42 MSK, 34 minutes ago
MosNews

A former Russian nuclear minister in Swiss custody pending a U.S. extradition request has accused the American authorities of fabricating a criminal case against him to avenge his push for nuclear contracts with Iran, India and China, Associated Press reported.

Yevgeny Adamov intended to improve Russia's nuclear safety, said in a letter published by Izvestia daily that the U.S. criminal charges against him were intended to convey a hidden political message: "You guys ... don't forget who's the boss in the world."

Adamov, who served as Russia's nuclear minister in 1998-2001, was arrested on May 2 while visiting his daughter in Bern. He has since been indicted by a U.S. federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges of conspiracy to transfer stolen money and securities, conspiracy to defraud the U.S., money laundering and tax evasion.

Adamov has denied the charges. He said the U.S. grudge against him dated back to 1998, when he visited China, India and Iran to speed up efforts to build Russian nuclear power plants in these countries.

Shortly afterwards the U.S. Vice President Albert Gore visited Moscow and tried vainly to persuade him to drop the nuclear contract with Iran in a conversation that lasted nearly two hours, Adamov said in the letter.

"By 1998, the Americans got accustomed to the fact that people in Russia must listen to them and they don't have to listen to anyone here," Adamov said.

He claimed that a later Russian probe against alleged financial abuse in the nuclear ministry had been encouraged by the Americans.

U.S. prosecutors say he diverted up to $9 million from U.S. Energy Department funds intended to improve Russian nuclear security, and want him extradited to the U.S.

Russian authorities, concerned that he could divulge nuclear secrets if extradited to the U.S., have demanded he be sent to Russia.

Switzerland now must decide whether to extradite Adamov to the U.S. or Russia, or to reject both extradition requests.

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Phone message from doomed plane was hoax - police
Last Updated Mon, 15 Aug 2005 17:14:18 EDT
CBC News

Greek police on Monday arrested a man they said had hoaxed TV stations by saying he had received a mobile phone message from a cousin on an airliner which said the passengers were freezing cold shortly before it crashed.

"The pilot has turned blue. Cousin farewell, we're freezing," the supposed message said, in words that were flashed around the world as a dramatic description of the Cypriot plane's plight.

"The man did not receive any message from the plane and has been charged with spreading false information," a police spokesman said.

Police said they spotted the hoax when they realised that the name of the passenger who had supposedly sent the message was not on the airliner's passenger list.

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SNCF to ban smoking on all trains by year's end
AFP

PARIS, Aug 15 (AFP) - The head of France's railway company said Monday it plans to ban smoking on all its trains by the end of the year.

"We are going to propose that between now and the end of the year 100 percent of trains be designated non-smoking," said SNCF chief Guillaume Pepy.

The French railway has experimented with non-smoking trains for several years. It declared all its high-speed TGV trains non-smoking from mid-December 2004.

That was followed by some regional Transilien and TER trains banning smoking, Pepy said.

"We now think it's time to take a further step and make trains in general non-smoking," he said. [...]

Comment: We repeat for those who think the anti-smoking campaign is being done out of the concern and caring of our governments for our health: when was the last time a government did something for the good of their population, other than invade other countries in the name of homeland security?

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A blow for the 'Prince of Pot'

The possible extradition to the US of a prominent marijuana enthusiast has sparked anger in Canada, reports Anne McIlroy

Tuesday August 16, 2005

For years, Canadian authorities ignored the lucrative mail-order marijuana business run by Marc Emery, Canada's most prominent proponent for legalising weed. The self-styled "Prince of Pot" sold cannabis seeds via the internet to customers all over the world, including the United States.

But the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was far less tolerant, and, during an 18-month investigation, sent undercover agents to pose as customers. They asked that Mr Emery be arrested for selling to Americans, and, earlier this summer, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police picked him up. Now he is facing extradition to the United States, where he could be sentenced to at least 10 years and possibly life in prison if he is convicted on a number of drug-related charges.

This has angered many Canadians, who even if they don't approve of Mr Emery's activities, fear that the long arm of the law in the US is now reaching across the border. They say it is wrong for a Canadian to be tried in the United State for selling marijuana seeds from his Vancouver base. The US has far harsher penalties.

"I'm deeply concerned about subjecting a Canadian citizen to the draconian laws of a foreign nation when we don't bother charging this person for violating our laws," Alan Young, an associate professor of law at Osgoode Hall, wrote in the Globe and Mail newspaper.

"A Canadian citizen is now exposed to US drug sentences which border on cruel and unusual punishment - for violating a law we rarely enforce in Canada," said Mr Young, who in the past has done legal work for Mr Emery.

Mr Emery, the head of the British Columbia Marijuana party, has been arrested 11 times for offences related to smoking pot or selling it over the counter at a Vancouver store, but he was usually fined or imprisoned for short periods. He says the police did not bother him once he began selling seeds exclusively through his mail-order business. But it was that business that led a federal grand jury in the United States to indict him on charges of distributing marijuana seeds, marijuana and of money laundering. The DEA says he was bringing in about $2.5m a year and that many of his customers were in the US.

He says he never tried to hide what he was doing.

"Unlike most other seed dealers, I use my real name and I'm easy to find," he said in a media interview in 2002.

The case highlights the dramatically different approaches to marijuana in Canada and the United States. Using the drug for medical purposes is legal in Canada, and the federal government is planning to decriminalise the possession of small amounts of the drug. Earlier this summer, an appeal court in British Columbia ruled that a two-year jail term for growing marijuana was excessive.

But that doesn't mean that a Canadian court - or ultimately the federal justice minister - will refuse to extradite Mr Emery to the US under the mutual legal assistance treaty, someone can be sent the United States to be tried for acts that are considered an offence in both countries. Selling marijuana seeds in Canada is still illegal, even if the law is rarely enforced.

If the courts rule in favour of extradition, Mr Emery's supporters say Irwin Cotler, the federal justice minister, should intervene and refuse to extradite the pot activist on the grounds that he faces cruel and unusual punishment. At the very least, they say he should get a guarantee from the US that the minimum 10-year sentence will not be enforced.

While the DEA portrays him as a wealthy drug trafficker, his supporters say Mr Emery is primarily an activist, who uses the money from his cannabis business to finance political activities. After getting out of jail on bail earlier this month, he compared himself to Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King and said he was prepared to serve time to help his crusade to legalise pot.

"If I thought my death or my lifetime in prison - even with great suffering - would bring about the liberation of the hundreds of thousands of people around the world who are oppressed, I am looking forward to that," he told reporters.

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Yuan float a move towards new currency zone

By Jude Wanniski
Sunday 31 July 2005, 7:25 Makka Time, 4:25 GMT

To those of us who have followed the mysterious world of floating currencies and exchange rates since President Nixon cut the dollar loose from its gold anchor in 1971, the Bush administration's pressure on China to break the yuan's 11-year link to the dollar is one of the most interesting political issues of the year. [...]

In a real sense, where American politicians have been accusing China of "manipulating" its currency by rigidly fixing it to the dollar, China can now really "manipulate" behind the curtain of its own mystery basket. In the 27 July Wall Street Journal, the deputy director of the Shanghai Stock Exchange, Fang Xinghai, put it this way:

"China could have implemented the new currency regime without any initial revaluation. But the decision to accompany it with a small revaluation was a clever move that responds to both China's growing external surpluses and American demands for an appreciation in value of the yuan.

Since the new basket arrangement aims to keep China's nominal effective exchange rate relatively constant, it's quite impossible for the yuan to appreciate against the dollar by the much larger amount that many US politicians have demanded, unless the dollar declines dramatically relative to other major currencies.

Because the other major central bankers at least keep an eye on the price of gold, for signs of incipient inflations or deflations, it would be "quite impossible" as Fang suggests, for the dollar to decline dramatically against other major currencies unless the dollar/gold price shot up, above $450 oz, heading toward $500.

Optimum currency area

This has been exactly the advice China has been getting from Canadian economist Robert Mundell, who spends much of his time in Beijing and has listed a dozen reasons why China should resist a "significant" revaluation of the RMB that have been well-publicized in the Chinese press.

Because Mundell got his 1999 Nobel Prize in economics for work he did on "optimum currency areas" that led to the creation of the euro, his arguments carry great weight with the People's Bank of China. The fact he is Canadian also helps with the government, which is aware of the American advice to Moscow in 1989, the "shock therapy" that led to the great inflation of the rouble and the break-up of the Soviet federation.

The idea of an "optimum currency area" or "zone" is that neighbouring countries or those that engage in significant trade with each other benefit enormously from using a common currency-which is the effect when China gives the RMB a value it keeps identical to the dollar. Several other Asian countries have monetary policies that keep their currencies in line with the dollar and, ipso facto the RMB, becoming part of this broad trading zone.

Malaysia, for one, immediately joined China in revaluing its currency by 2.1%. In that sense, Malaysia clearly signalled that it was joining an RMB zone, moving away from a dollar zone.

RMB zone

An RMB zone? Yes. Unless the United States ends its own dollar manipulations, which show up in the serious fluctuations in the dollar/gold price, the Asian economies will almost certainly move toward a Chinese currency umbrella, providing a superior "money" that will end the dollar's dominance in Asia. [...]

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Russia Reports Bird Flu Dangerous to Humans Spreading Towards Europe

Created: 16.08.2005 11:50 MSK (GMT 3), Updated: 11:50 MSK, 4 hours 26 minutes ago
MosNews

Russia, which has been striving to stop the spread of deadly bird flu across its territory, said an outbreak in Chelyabinsk was dangerous to humans, Reuters reported Tuesday.

The H5N1 strain of bird flu is behind the outbreak in Chelyabinsk, a city in the Ural mountains, the Emergencies Ministry said in a statement, adding that 497 birds had died over the past 24 hours. The strain is the same one that has killed dozens of people in Asia and many millions of poultry.

The bird flu was first reported in Russia's Novosibirsk Region in July. In three weeks it spread over neighboring Tyumen, Omsk and Kurgan regions as well as Kazakhstan and Mongolia. Initial reports said that the disease was caused by the strain of the virus potentially dangerous to humans, but no one has been diagnosed with the disease in Russia so far.

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Russia Reports Bird Flu in Sixth Region

Created: 15.08.2005 11:23 MSK (GMT 3), Updated: 11:23 MSK
MosNews

Russia reported an outbreak of bird flu in the Urals region of Chelyabinsk on Monday, the sixth region in the country to have been struck by the virus since mid-July, the Interfax news agency said on Monday.

The agency quoted Andrei Gasilov, vice-governor of the region, as saying that 60 birds had died in the village of Oktyabrskoye since Saturday.

It was unclear whether the virus was the deadly strain that can kill humans, the Reuters news agency reported. However, one woman was hospitalized with bird flu symptoms in Novosibirsk Region last week.

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Earthquake Strikes North of Tokyo; Injuries Reported (Update4)
Bloomberg

Aug. 16 (Bloomberg) -- A magnitude 7.2 earthquake struck the Tohoku region north of Tokyo, the U.S. Geological Survey said on its Web site. Eighty people were hurt in the city of Sendai and about 17,000 are without power in the area, NHK Television said.

The quake, the biggest to hit Japan in nearly 12 months, struck at 11:46 a.m., 55 kilometers (34 miles) below the surface off the coast of Miyagi Prefecture, the U.S. Geological Survey said on its Web site. The epicenter was located 350 kilometers northeast of Tokyo, where buildings shook for about two minutes. [...]

The earthquake is the biggest since a magnitude 7.4 quake struck off the coast of Honshu in September 2004, injuring at least 40 people in areas around the western city of Kyoto, according to USGS statistics.

A 6.6 magnitude earthquake in October last year killed more than 40 people and destroyed 6,000 buildings in Niigata prefecture northwest of Tokyo. That was the worst earthquake since the 1995 Kobe quake which left more than 6,000 dead.

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Mild earthquake rattles Arkansas
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

DEARMAN — A mild earthquake rattled a portion of northeast Arkansas in a region that has seen a number of temblors this year.
Sunday night's quake of magnitude 3.0 was centered twothirds of a mile west of Dearman, and six miles southwest of Blytheville, in Mississippi County. The area is in the New Madrid Seismic Zone.
Six earthquakes of magnitude 2 or greater have been reported in the southern part of the zone, which includes Arkansas, between May 1 and late July. Four earthquakes near magnitude 4.0 have occurred since February.

Researchers say that, on average, the state has 150-200 earthquakes each year. A quake of magnitude 2.5 to 3.0 is generally the smallest felt by people.

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Did double whammy of volcano and asteroid wipe out dinosaurs?
By Steve Connor, Science Editor
Published: 16 August 2005

Volcanic eruptions may have triggered the demise of the dinosaurs.

Many scientists believed that an asteroid caused the mass extinction 65 million years ago. However, a new study points to a more complex event that began with a series of eruptions which took place in what is now north-western India. The Deccan Traps in Maharashtra state are flows of lava resulting from huge outpourings of molten rock and ash. A mile deep, they cover about 200,000 square miles.

Vulcanologists have long thought the eruption, dated to about 65 million years ago, could have caused the extinction.

However, the Deccan Traps resulted from a series of eruptions that occurred over perhaps a million years. This would have given the global climate plenty of time to adjust. But the study shows a major part of the eruption occurred over a short period.

Scientists from the Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris calculated that at least 2,000 ft of lava was deposited in 30,000 years, which could have greatly altered global climate. They have also shown that the Traps were erupting when the asteroid crashed into what is now Mexico. This was a spectacular and almost unprecedented double whammy for Earth.

Mike Widdowson, a vulcanologist, said it seems the end of the dinosaurs may have begun with climate change brought about by the eruptions and ended with the asteroid. "The eruptions pre-conditioned the global environment toward a catastrophic tipping point before the impact occurred. The asteroid was the coup de grâce," he said.

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