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FTR #375 “Take Two” For the Fifth Column?

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This program is interrogatory in nature. While of the opinion that the events of 9/11 were executed, in part, by an actively subversive element constituting a Fifth Column, connected to the United States through the structural economic relationships between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia and, beyond that, the Underground Reich and its Islamofascist allies, the program examines some recent thefts and unexplained disappearances of materials sensitive to the issue of terrorism and counter-terror.

1. Past programs (FTRs 322, 326, 349) highlight the theft of a briefcase containing top-secret documents about counterintelligence and counterterrorist operations in New York. (“FBI Terror Expert Lost Track of Top-Secret Plans” by David Johnston [New York Times]; San Francisco Chronicle; 8/9/2001; p. A8.) The FBI expert in question, the late John O’Neill, was in charge of the Bin Laden investigation for the FBI, and Mr. O’Neill may have been deliberately frustrated and betrayed by the fifth columnists within elements of U.S. intelligence and the Bush administration. This broadcast delineates a disturbing aspect of the documents stolen from O’Neill in the summer of 2000. “Officials identified one document in the briefcase as a draft of the annual field office report for national security operations in New York. The closely guarded report contained a description of every counterespionage and counterterrorism program in New York and detailed the manpower for each operation.” (Idem.) In August, O’Neill left the bureau to become director of security for the World Trade Center. He was killed on 9/11.

2. Tampa, Florida (the site of the theft of the O’Neill documents in 2000) has seen the disappearance of sensitive laptop computers from a military command center deeply involved in the effort in Afghanistan. Subsequent pronouncements were vague, but downplayed any connection to terrorism or espionage. (There was a similar denial to the possibility of espionage in the theft of the O’Neill documents.) “Two laptop computers are missing from the military command center coordinating the war in Afghanistan, including one with classified information, officials said Wednesday. The Air Force Office of Special Investigations is investigating the computers’ possible theft from U.S. Central Command, said Major Mike Richmond, a press officer. The computers disappeared last week. Central Command would not release further details, such as what information was stored on the computers and what office or person was responsible for them . . .” (“2 Military Laptops Missing” [AP]; San Jose Mercury News; 8/8/2002; p. 4A.)

3. The Justice Department, FBI and Immigration and Naturalization Service also lost sensitive equipment. “Earlier this week, a government audit was released that showed the Justice Department lost 400 computers last year. Most belonged to the FBI and the Immigration and Naturalization Service, and many had classified information. The agencies said poor tracking of equipment was likely to blame, not theft.” (Idem.)

4. In addition, the U.S. Customs Service has lost equipment and documentation that could be of interest to terrorists. “Thousands of U.S. Customs Service computers and employee credentials were reported lost or stolen over a three-year period, worrying officials who noted that customs personnel commonly have access to some of the most sensitive areas of airports, harbors and other transportation centers. The report by the Treasury Department’s inspector general found that Customs could not account for 2,251 computers and nearly 1,200 credentials between October 1998 and September 2001.” (“Customs Equipment Missing” by Dan Eggen; Washington Post; 8/9/2002; p. A21.)

5. “Many of the computers could have contained information that was classified or related to law enforcement investigations, while the badges could be used for someone to pose as a customs officer or gain access to prohibited areas, according to the report and security experts. ‘It is totally inexcusable that they cannot account for every single credential,’ said Douglas R. Laird, a former Secret Service agent who works as a security consultant. ‘It shows that the system lacks integrity . . . ” (Idem.)

6. “The findings released yesterday were similar to a report earlier this week on the FBI and INS, both of which had lost track of hundreds of guns and laptop computers in recent years. Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), who is a member of the judiciary and finance committees, and who requested the Customs audit, said the lapses outlined in the report ‘pose serious threats to national security and public safety.” (Idem.)

7. “It’s ironic and alarming that a federal agency charged with accounting for goods coming into our country has so much trouble keeping track of its own sensitive property,’ Grassley said in a statement. ‘If the Customs Service can’t keep track of something as simple as employee badges, then how is it going to meet it’s more complicated responsibilities? The report was initially classified as ‘law enforcement sensitive’ by customs officials, a designation that shielded it from public view. A redacted version of the report was provided to Grassley yesterday shortly after he sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Paul H. O’Neill demanding its release.” (Idem.)

8. Another disturbing development involves information concerning thefts and physical surveillance of airline personnel that, together or separately, could be utilized in the perpetration of terrorist attacks. As is the case with the information about the missing computers presented above, the theft from and surveillance of, airline employees is another of the activities that seems suspicious, possibly evidence of Fifth Column activity. “The Transportation Security Administration has warned airlines to be on the lookout for impostors wearing stolen uniforms trying to gain access to planes or airports, citing a series of recent thefts from flight crews. Agency officials would not comment on the confidential warning, which was issued July 22-a week after burglars took airline uniforms, keys and identification tags from the New York apartment of two Delta Airlines flight attendants.” (“Airlines Warned of Stolen Uniforms” by Greg Schneider [Washington Post]; San Francisco Chronicle; p. A4.)

9. “The warning does not cite any particular case, saying only that ‘TSA continues to receive reports’ about such thefts. It adds that ‘recent reporting also suggests a possible trend in the thefts of uniforms, vehicles and other items used by police, firefighters and emergency response personnel.’ The warning urges airport security officials to be vigilant about checking employee identification cards.” (Idem.)

10. “Rumors about terrorists posing as law enforcement or rescue personnel abounded in the United States shortly after the September 11 attacks, and as recently as June, two Middle Eastern men were questioned by police after trying to buy a used ambulance in New Jersey. ‘The threat is very real,’ said Capt. Stephen Luckey, head of security for the Air Line Pilots Association, a union representing some 67,000 commercial pilots. Pilots and flight attendants have always been vulnerable to theft when traveling, Luckey said, but since September 11, the items taken seem to have changed. ‘They used to steal things like radios, maybe a computer. Now, they’re focusing more on uniforms and accessories,’ Luckey said . . . ” (Idem.)

11. “In the incident last month in New York, two Delta flight attendants returned home after several days away to find that someone entered their Astoria, Queens, apartment and stole airline uniforms, a key that opens storage compartments on board a plane, crew-bag tags, flight attendant wings, a flight book and a Delta ID card. The only other items reported stolen were $20 in cash and two cartons of cigarettes. In May in Kansas City, Mo., someone stole a delivery truck containing uniforms for mechanics and other flight-line workers. The truck was later recovered, but the uniforms-for employees of three airlines-were gone. FBI counter-terrorism agents were consulted on that case and the one in New York but said they found no links to terrorism in either. FBI officials said they are keeping tabs on both situations but are no longer participating in the investigations.” (Idem.)

12. “Luckey said the pattern of such incidents cannot be dismissed. ‘Taken out of context, individually, I don’t think they’re that significant. But when you put them together, they paint a fairly good mosaic of threat,’ he said. ‘In light of the 9/11 attacks . . . I think this is an actual indication of something that requires a little more than casual attention.’ In addition to theft, pilots and flight attendants say they increasingly feel they’re being watched or even followed when traveling abroad.” (Idem.)

13. “The Northwest Airlines unit of the pilots’ union issued a security alert to its members on July 2, warning that ‘flight crews from other airlines have reported being the subjects of obvious surveillance by Mid-Eastern looking males and females’ while traveling in Frankfurt, Amsterdam and London. One American Airlines flight crew member who asked not to be identified said a co-worker was in a London pub during a layover when ‘a Middle Eastern man started taking pictures’ of her and other crew members. ‘There are lots of stories of stalking, and I don’t know of these kind of stories before 9/11,’ the American employee said.” (Idem.)

14. The program concludes with discussion of one of the above-ground elements of the Fifth Column in the United States-Islamic organizations masquerading as legitimate or representative when, in fact, they are involved with the realization of terrorist activities. Organizations like CAIR and AMC (American Muslim Council) make it much more difficult to respond effectively and intelligently to situations such as that faced by airlines personnel in the theft of identify documention and uniforms. Steven Emerson noted the groups’ activities as propaganda agents and flak-catchers for terrorist organizations. “The attacks on today’s hearing and on me by various Islamic and Arab advocacy groups illustrates the growing danger of allowing militant groups to masquerade uncritically under the banner of self-anointed ‘civil rights’ and ‘human rights’ status. These groups are no more deserving of civil rights status than the Ku Klux Klan’s patently transparent efforts to masquerade under civil rights monikers advocating ‘human rights’ for whites. In particular, the Council on American Islamic Relations and American Muslim Council, as well as others, have sent e-mails and internet alerts ‘warming’ their supporters about these hearings this morning. In effect, the message disseminated by these groups was that merely discussing the presence of Islamic radicals on American soil is to be construed as an attack on Islam. The same type of message was issued by Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman, spiritual ringleader of the World trade Center bombing-related conspiracy, when he claimed that his conviction was ‘an attack on Islam.’ This type of contrived delusion is but a transparent effort to prevent a free discussion of the threat of militant Islamic fundamentalism in the United States. On Sunday night, an even more incendiary e-mail alert was distributed by the ‘Free Arab Voice’ when it labeled this hearing an ‘attack on Islam.'” (“The American Connection to Islamic Terror” by Steven Emerson [Emerson’s official prepared statement before the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology, and Government Information on 2/24/98]; p.3.)

15. “The Threat to Free speech and Thought: If not confronted, the efforts by radical Islamic groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the American Muslim council (AMC) to intimidate those who speak out on the threat of militant Islamic fundamentalism poses one of the greatest dangers to the freedoms in American society. In point of fact-elucidated later in this testimony-these groups are actual political wings of radical Islamic fundamentalist organizations. They have defended terrorist groups, terrorist leaders including Hamas chieftain Musa Marzook and World Trade Center bombing conspiracy ringleader Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman, and the Sudanese terrorist regime currently engaged in a genocidal war against the Christian minority. Both of these groups have sponsored visits in the United States of leading international militants and known anti-Semites (including those who exhorted their followers to kill Jews) and consistently attacked American writers for exposing the threat of militant Islamic extremism. These groups pose a clear and present danger to American freedoms and society, not to mention moderate Muslims around the globe.” (Ibid.; pp. 3-4.)

16. The recent passage of untracked nuclear materials across the Canadian/Michigan border is not encouraging either. (Michigan has one of the largest Muslim populations in the United States.) “Federal agents and teams of nuclear specialists are searching the Midwest for a mysterious shipment of radioactive material that was trucked across the Canadian border into Michigan in May, government officials say. Government inspectors did not become aware of the material until early June, about a week after it crossed the border. Investigators with the FBI and U.S. Customs have been tracking the vehicle that transported the shipment through customs records, federal officials said. Officials characterized the point of entry as a major crossing in the Detroit area.” (“Mysterious Radioactive Shipment in U.S.” by Tamara Audi [Knight Ridder]; San Jose Mercury News; 8/4/2002; p. 10A.)

17. It is stressed that so-called “neo” Nazi and White Supremacist elements may very well be operating in conjunction with the Islamofascist milieu of Al Taqwa/Al Qaeda/Wahhabiism/oil.

Discussion

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