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FTR #376 A View From the Bridge

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As the anniversary of 9/11 approaches, this program looks at the worlds of two individuals and their connections to the milieu of Al Taqwa and Al Qaeda. Those two individuals are Francois Genoud and Talat Othman. Genoud was a key Nazi operative and banker and Othman is a business partner of George Bush. If one rents a suite at the “Villa Al Qaeda,” one can rent the Genoud suite and look upon the world of underground Nazi conspirators and spies, international terrorists and mass murder. Or, one can rent the Othman suite and look out upon the world of Big Oil, the upper echelons of the GOP and free-wheeling corporate enterprise. Both suites are accessible through the Nada corridor and the Bin Laden dining room. Although the information set forth in this program has been aired before, the points of information are assembled in a novel configuration. Doing so might be an appropriate way of doing the impossible: encapsulating this enormous event.

1. A recent U.N. report indicated that attempts to stem Al Qaeda’s funding have not, in fact, been successful. Bear in mind in this context that a consortium of U.S. financial institutions led by Sullivan & Cromwell has intervened with the Treasury Department in order to weaken its provisions against terrorist money laundering. (Talat Othman, as will be seen below, also intervened with Treasury on behalf of elements of the Al Taqwa milieu that were raided by Department agents on March 20.) “A global campaign to block Al-Qaeda’s access to money has stalled, enabling the terrorist network to obtain a fresh infusion of tens of millions of dollars and putting it in position to finance future attacks, said a draft report. In the months immediately after the September 11 attacks, the United States and other U.N. members and suspected members and supporters of the organization. But only $10 million in additional funds has been blocked over the past eight months, said the 43-page draft report, which was written by a U. N. panel responsible for monitoring enforcement of an arms , travel and financial embargo against Al-Qaeda and its associates . . . ‘Despite initial successes in locating and freezing’ Al-Qaeda assets, the network ‘continues to have access to considerable financial and other economic resources,’ the report said, adding that it had proven ‘exceedingly difficult’ to identify these funds . . . ‘Al Qaeda is by all accounts ‘fit and well’ and poised to strike again at its leisure,’ it continued. ‘The prime targets of the organization are likely to be persons and property of the United States of America and its allies in the fight against Al-Qaeda, as well as Israel.'” (“Terror Funds Said to Resurge” by Colum Lynch [Washington Post]; San Jose Mercury News; 8/29/2002; p. 14A.)

2. This program might also be called the Texas Rangers meet Al Qaeda. considerable journalistic resources have been devoted recently to the threat of a baseball strike. Some of the press coverage has noted that President Bush was a past owner of the Texas Rangers baseball team. As noted in FTR#368, the money Bush used to purchase the team came from the sale of his Harken Energy stock. As will be seen below, Talat Othman played a key role in the Harken dealings in which Bush is implicated. “President George W. Bush famously made his fortune by selling his share of the Texas Rangers baseball team.” (“Clubs Offer Owners Only a Sporting Chance” by Robert Clow; Financial Times; 8/30/2002; p. 22.)

3. On the heels of the U.N. report on Al Qaeda came an announcement by the Treasury Department that the assets of more individuals and institutions had been frozen. It is noteworthy that the Al Taqwa milieu once again was targeted in the raids. “The United States and Italy acted in concert Thursday to freeze the assets of 25 individuals and financial entities with alleged ties to the Al Qaeda terrorist group. The joint offensive was the biggest collaborative effort of its kind, U.S. officials said, and came amid growing concern about a perceived lack of progress in cutting off the flow of funds to terrorists. . . . The U.S. and Italy issued blocking orders that require commercial banks to search for assets belonging to the individuals and entities and to freeze any they find. The list includes 11 people associated with the Salafist Group for Call and Combat, described by U.S. officials as ‘a lethal terror group’ with ties to Al Qaeda. The other 14 are entities owned or controlled by Ahmed Idris Nasreddin and Youssef Nada, both of whom have been accused of bankrolling terrorists. . . . Treasury officials said Thursday’s action was significant because it was the largest asset-freezing operation to date involving collaborative efforts by several countries. In addition to the U.S. and Italy, Luxembourg and the Bahamas participated in the effort. . . . The 14 entities are part of the holdings of Nada and Nasreddin, both of whom were already on the list of alleged financiers. U.S. officials said the men have worked together for many years and exercise control over Bank Al Taqwa and Akida Bank, shell companies that share the same postal address in the Bahamas.” (“U.S., Italy Act Against Terror Suspects” by Warren Vieth; Los Angeles Times; 8/30/2002; p. A7.)

4. The relationship between the GOP, the Bush family, the Saudis, and the oil industry is illustrated by Talat Othman, Abdullah Bakshs, and Harken energy. A protégé of the BCCI milieu, business associate of George Bush, an intimate of (and interlocutor for) the milieu of Youssef Nada and Al Qaeda, as well as a key player in the GOP ethnic outreach organization, Othman embodies the overlap of the oil business and the 9/11 Fifth Column. (Forbidden Truth; Jean-Charles Brisard & Guillaume Dasquie; Copyright 2002 [SC]; Thunder’s Mouth/Nation Books; ISBN 1-56025-414-9; p. 132.)

5. “His [Bakshs] representative within Harken Energy is not unknown either. Talat Othman, is a member alongside Frank Carlucci of one of America’s most prestigious think tanks, the Middle East Policy Council as well as being a leading Arab-American supporter of the Republican party.” (Ibid.; p. 133.)

6. Othman, in turn, is a protégé of Abdullah Bakshs, the U.S. business representative of the Bin Laden family between 1976-1982. Salem Bin Laden was represented by another Bush business associate, James R. Bath-himself a representative of the Bin Mahfouz business interests (closely linked to the support network underlying Al Qaeda.) “Between 1976 and 1982, Abdullah Taha Bakhshs-an investor in Harken energy, recall-was the representative for the Bin Laden family in the United States. He also represents Khalid bin Mahfouz’s financial interests in the Middle East. What’s more, several sources emphasize the fact that he represents the interests of Khalid Salim bin Mahfouz on the board of directors of Investcorp. In fact, Bin Mahfouz holds a 25 percent stake in Investcorp, thanks to Bakhsh’s services.” (Ibid.; p. 136.)

7. Next, the program takes up Bush’s role in Harken’s questionable deals. Bear in mind that (as will be reviewed below) Talat Othman was involved in this deal as a member of the audit committee. “In early 1989, George W. Bush and his fellow board members at Harken Energy Corp. were presiding over a company that was headed south in a hurry. The Dallas-based oil firm had lost millions of dollars placing bad bets on commodity futures. Debt was piling up; red ink was beginning to flow.” (“Bush Ok’s Deal Like Enron’s” by Warren Vieth; Los Angeles Times; 7/12/2002; p. A13.)

8. “Harken’s executives came up with a novel plan to ease the pain. They would sell a small chain of Hawaiian gas stations called Aloha Petroleum to a group of investors that included Harken’s chairman and one of its directors. The buyers would pay $1 million up front, but the accountants would record an immediate $7.9-million profit, enough to erase most of Harken’s losses for the year.” (Idem.)

9. “They made a point of seeking the approval of directors who were not participants in the investor group. Bush, a member of the board’s audit committee, signed off on the deal, according to Harken documents. So did the company’s outside auditor, Arthur Andersen & Co.” (Idem.) In this context, one should remember that, just as the Harken deal with Aloha resembled Enron’s operations, Arthur Andersen was Enron’s accountant.

10. “But the government challenged and ultimately overturned the accounting method used by Harken to post a gain on the sale. Aloha was sold a second time, and the new buyer extracted big concessions from the company. The initial profit recorded on the sale morphed into a big loss. In the midst of all the maneuvering, Bush sold most of his Harken stock in June 1990.” (Ibid.; pp. A1-A13.)

11. “Based on a review of publicly released Securities and Exchange Commission filings, meeting minutes, memos and correspondence from that period, there is no evidence that Bush, or any of the other directors, raised objections or expressed concern about the Aloha deal. Experts on corporate governance say that as an independent director and one of only three members of the audit committee, Bush was in a position to exercise an important oversight role but apparently failed to do so.” (Ibid.; p. A13.)

12. “An audit committee’s primary responsibility is to ensure that the company’s outside auditors conduct a thorough examination of the financial records without interference from officers and employees.” (Idem.)

13. “The Aloha sale was so similar to what Enron Corp. did to hide its losses that Harken could have served as a model for the now-disgraced company, one accounting expert said. ‘The people at Enron could have gone to school on this thing,’ said Alfred King, former managing director of the Institute of Management Accountants, vice chairman of Milwaukee-based Valuation Research Corp. and former advisor to the Financial Accounting Standards Board.” (Idem.)

14. ” ‘They sold to themselves and recorded a profit,’ King said. ‘That’s exactly what Enron did on a number of those off-balance-sheet transactions. On this one transaction at lest, it’s almost identical.'” (Idem.)

15. “Still, accounting experts, security law specialists and political analysts say there is enough similarity between events at Harken and Enron to keep Bush on the defensive about his own actions a decade ago and undermine his credibility as a corporate reformer.” (Idem.)

16. “Indeed, Bush would not have been allowed to serve on Harken’s audit committee if the reform proposals he outlined this week had been in effect then. The president says audit panel membership should be limited to outside directors. Besides sitting on Harken’s board, Bush had a consulting contract with the company. According to accounting experts, that qualifies him as a corporate insider.” (Idem.)

17. ” ‘Hiding losses in partnerships, playing games with accounting not reporting forthrightly transactions as a potential inside trader-it’s all eerily reminiscent of Enron,’ said Charles Lewis, executive director of the Center of Public Integrity, a Washington research group. ‘This is not a corporate executive who laid awake at night worrying about complying with federal laws, from all appearances,’ said Lewis, who has been critical of the Bush administration.” (Idem.)

18. “Another transaction at Harken would have violated Bush’s reform proposals as well: On Thursday, the White House confirmed that Harken made two loans to Bush while he served on the board of directors, a practice that Bush now wants publicly held companies to prohibit.” (Idem.)

19. “The loans, totaling $180,375, were made in 1986 and 1988 at a below-market interest rate to enable Bush to purchase Harken stock under an incentive plan for board members.” (Idem.)

20. “Suspicions about the Aloha Petroleum deal have been fueled by the fact that most of the principals refuse to talk.” (Idem.)

21. “Of the seven Harken directors who served on the board with Bush, five declined to discuss the deal or did not return calls seeking comment.” (Idem.)

22. “Executives at Aloha, now a privately held company, also declined to comment. So did past and present officials at Harken, Arthur Andersen and the SEC.” (Idem.)

23. One of the central elements of the discussion of the Harken/Aloha insider deal is the aforementioned Talat M. Othman, a close Bush family associate, director of Harken, member (with Bush) of the audit committee and a key player in the maneuvering surrounding the Al Taqwa milieu. “Former director Talat M. Othman, who chaired the three-member audit committee, said he did not recall the details of the Aloha sale or the company’s reasons for arranging it. ‘I’m not sure that our motivation was to create instant profits,’ said Othman, a Palestinian who represented Saudi investors who owned 13% or Harken’s stock. ‘It was a normal part of the business to be buying and selling.” (Idem.)

24. “Harken acquired Aloha in 1986 when it bought a multi-state gas retailer called E-Z Serve. When it announced its plan to sell 80% of Aloha in 1989, it said Hawaii was too far away from its other gasoline markets and required too much management attention.” (Idem.)

25. Another of the significant players in Harken was Alan G. Quasha, descended from the milieu of the BCCI. “But the new owners looked an awful lot like the old owners. The buyers were an investor group controlled by the family of Harken Chairman Alan G. Quasha and included another Harken director, Jeffrey Laikind.” (Idem.)

26. “When Harken sold Aloha to Quasha’s group, it had agreed to retain liability for any environmental problems associated with the chain.” (Idem.)

27. The Aloha/Harken deal appears to anticipate Bush’s deep concern with the environment. “In early 1990, it discovered that the commitment would cost it dearly. Aloha’s new owner had 20 gas outlets tested and found that 11 had leaky underground tanks requiring expensive repairs. There were 21 sites still awaiting tests.” (Idem.)

28. 28. On April 4, Treasury Secretary O’Neill met with powerful Islamist Republicans whose spheres of interest overlap those of the institutions and individuals targeted by the Treasury Department on the March 20 counterterror raids. Powerful GOP operative Grover Norquist and his Islamic Institute was at the center of this nexus. (“O’Neill Met Muslim Activists Tied to Charities” by Glenn R. Simpson [with Roger Thurow]; Wall Street Journal; 4/18/2002; p. A4.)

29. One of the most important of these interlocutors on behalf of the Al Qaeda/Al Taqwa milieu was Talat Othman. “Among the Muslim leaders attending [the meeting with O’Neill] was Talat Othman, a longtime associate and supporter of President Bush’s family, who gave a benediction at the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia in August 2000. . . But he [Othman] also serves [with Islamic Institute co-founder Jamal Barzinji] on the board of Amana Mutual funds Trust, an investment firm founded by M. Yacqub Mirza, the Northern Virginia businessman who set up most of the entities targeted by the Treasury and whose tax records were sought in the raid.” (Idem.)

30. As hypothesized [4], the Grover Norquist/GOP/Islamist links are part of the Republican Party’s ethnic outreach program. “The case also highlights conflicts between the Bush administration’s domestic political goals and its war on terror. GOP officials began courting the U.S. Muslim community intensely in the late 1990’s, seeking to add that ethnic bloc to the party’s political base.” (Idem.)

31. The meeting between the Islamists and O’Neill was described as highly unusual. “Bruce Zagaris, an asset-forfeiture lawyer, who represents clients in similar cases, said a meeting between Treasury officials and anyone who might be associated with an entity under investigation is very unusual. ‘It’s virtually impossible [to arrange such a meeting], especially with the Treasury secretary,’ Mr. Zagaris said. ‘It’s very difficult to even get phone calls returned.'” (Idem.)

32. The Amana organization has numerous areas of overlap with organizations described as being implicated in terrorism and the milieu of Al Qaeda/Al Taqwa. “Two nonprofits affiliated with Mr. Mirza and named in the search warrant, the SAAR Foundation Inc. and the Heritage Education Trust Inc., held large blocks of shares in Amana’s mutual funds in 1997, according to SEC records. The SEC documents and other records detailing connections between Mr. Othman and the Islamic Institute [on the board of which Mr. Othman serves] and the raided groups were compiled by the National Security News Service, a Washington based nonprofit research group.” (Idem.)

33. Further details have emerged about the links between Al Taqwa and the GOP/Bush administration. “Mr. Othman also is on the board of Mr. Saffuri’s [and Norquist’s] Islamic Institute, the GOP-leaning group that received $20,000.00 from the Safa Trust, one of the raid’s targets. The president of the Safa Trust, Jamal Barzinji, is a former business associate of Switzerland based investor Youssef Nada, whose assets were frozen last fall after the Treasury designated him a person suspected of giving aid to terrorists.” (Idem.)

34. As seen above, Othman’s links to Bush are profound. “Mr. Othman has ties to the Bush family going back to the 1980’s, when he served with George W. Bush on the board of a Texas petroleum firm, Harken Oil [5] & Gas Inc. Mr. Othman has visited the White House during the administrations of both President Bush and his father George H.W. Bush.” (Idem.)

35. Highlighting one of the principal focal points of the discussion, the program further delineates major areas of intersection between the labyrinthine network attacked in the 3/20 raids, the Al Taqwa milieu [6], and the Republican Party. A recent Wall Street Journal article described some of the organizations targeted in the raids. “These include Al-Taqwa Management, a recently liquidated Swiss company the U.S. government believes acted as a banker for Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda terrorist network. . . Two people affiliated with the companies and charities are linked by records to entities already designated as terrorist by the U.S. government. Hisham Al-Talib, who served as an officer of SAAR, the International Institute of Islamic Thought and Safa Trust Inc., another Mirza charity, during the 1970’s was an officer of firms run by Youssef M. Nada, records show. Mr. Nada is a Switzerland-based businessman whose assets have been frozen by the U.S. for alleged involvement in terrorist financing, and is alleged by U.S. officials to be a key figure in the Taqwa network. . .Jamal Barzinji, an officer of Mr. Mirza’s company Mar-Jac and other entities, also was involved with Mr. Nada’s companies in the 1970’s, according to bank documents from Liechtenstein. A message was left yesterday for Mr. Barzinji at his address in Herndon. Mr. Barzinji and Mr. Talib live across the street from each other. A third business associate of Mr. Nada, Ali Ghaleb Himmat (who also has been designated by the Treasury as aiding terrorism), is listed as an official of the Geneva branch of another charity operated by Mr. Mirza, the International Islamic Charitable Organization.” (“Funds Under Terror Probe Flowed From Offshore” by Glenn R. Simpson [with Michael M. Phillips]; Wall Street Journal; 3/22/2002; p. A4.)

36. 36. Next, the discussion turns to a review of Clearstream, a major vehicle for the financing of BCCI and, as we shall see, Al Taqwa. (For more about Clearstream, see FTR#’s 356-360.) In this context, one should remember that Clearstream is a subsidiary of the Deutsche Borse, the German stock market which, in turn, in owned by major German commercial banks controlled by the Bormann organization. (See FTR#232.) “A controversial European book that might help authorities track terrorist funding sources remains unpublished and relatively unknown in the United States. Entitled Revelation$ [by Ernest Backes and Denis Robert], it exposes a secret banking system that might be used by terrorists. At the center is a clearinghouse in Luxembourg called Clearstream, which transfers money for international banks and major companies.” (“A Book Too Hot For U.S. to Handle? Tracking Terrorist Money” by Lucy Komisar; Pacific News Service; 10/4/2001.)

37. Furthermore, the Clearstream/BCCI link was apparently known to Rudy Giuliani (U.S. attorney under the elder George Bush.) “This reporter was shown copies of what Backes says are records of the secret accounts. He keeps the originals in caches outside Luxembourg. The documents are a mine of information for any financial inquiry, with detailed information on every cross-border transfer in cash or securities. Some U.S. officials-including New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani-may well be aware of the system detailed in the documents. . . .When Mayor Giuliani was an assistant prosecutor in charge of investigating the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) in the early 1990’s, he received documents from Backes according to Revelation$. ‘Giuliani and agents of the FBI were delighted with the official documents [which Backes sent him],’ the authors wrote.'” (Idem.) Note that the current director of the FBI, Robert Mueller, was in charge of the BCCI investigation and was less than vigorous in his pursuit of the truth. Mueller may well have been an inside plant, positioned in order to prevent an unraveling of the BCCI money trail in the direction of George W. Bush.

38. The duration of the broadcast consists of review of Francois Genoud and a number of different instances in which his name has surfaced in connection with 9/11. Genoud was close to Achmed Huber, one of the lynchpins of the Al Taqwa network. “During his many tribulations, Achmed Huber became acquainted with the neo-Nazi banker Francois Genoud, whose path in life presents a singular summary of the interconnections, the specific alliances that have been tied and untied between Islam and the swastika. Pierre Pean, who thoroughly studied the parallel lives of this enigmatic destiny, interviewed Achmed Huber at length. Achmed Huber explained to him that he is sympathetic to Francois Genoud because ‘everyone jumps on him.'” (Dollars for Terror: The United States and Islam; by Richard Labeviere; Copyright 2000 [SC]; Algora Publishing; ISBN 1-892941-06-6; pp. 143-144.)

39. “Still referring to the neo-Nazi banker, Achmed Huber told Pean, ‘I never asked him any questions, but I noted that, in circles as different as the Maghreb, people speak of him with great respect. Everyone told me: he helped us. I have the impression that he played an important, though discreet role. . . . It was I who introduced him to the Iranians. I said to them: ‘he is a friend, you can trust him.’ Here, in Switzerland, he was very active in opposing the antiracist law inspired by the Zionists who wanted to criminalize ‘revisionism.’ Genoud was with us. Officially we lost, but by such a small margin that the law is not applied.'” (Ibid.; p. 144.)

40. The program also notes another speculative link between Al Qaeda, Nazi banker and operative Francois Genoud and the 9/11 attacks. Remember that Backes was one of the founders of the Clearstream network cited above. “Ernest Backes, a leading European expert on money laundering, told the Luxembourg-based financial journal Plus Minus that he believed that the 9/11 terrorist money trail would ultimately lead back to Swiss bank accounts set up by an organization founded by Genoud. Reports of a possible Genoud trail cite the involvement of a Swiss lawyer named Baudoin [Dunand] on the management committee of the Geneva branch of the Saudi Investment Company (SICO), which handles much of the bin-Laden family’s investments abroad.” (“The Mysterious Achmed Huber: Friend to Hitler, Allah. . .and Ibn Laden?” by Kevin Coogan: Hit List; April/May 2002 [Volume 3, #4]; p. 125.)

41. Clearstream, Al Taqwa and Bin Laden were further described by the remarkable Mr. Backes in a recent article, also by Lucy Komisar. “In November, U.S. authorities named some banks that had bin Laden accounts, and it put them on a blacklist. One was Al Taqwa, ‘Fear of God,’ registered in the Bahamas with offices in Lugano, Switzerland. Al Taqwa had access to the Clearstream system through its correspondent account with the Banca del Gottardo in Lugano, which has a published Clearstream account (No. 74381). But Bin Laden may have other access to the unpublished system. In what he calls a ‘spectacular discovery,’ Ernest Backes reports that in the weeks before CEO Andre Lussi was forced to leave Clearstream last May, a series of 16 unpublished accounts were opened under the name of the Saudi Investment Company, or SICO, the Geneva holding of the Saudi binladen Group, which is run by Osama’s brother Yeslam Binladen (some family members spell the name differently.) Yeslam Binladen insists hat he has nothing to do with his brother, but evidence suggests SICO is tied into Osama’s financial network. SICO is associated with Dar Al-Maal-Al-Islami (DMI), an Islamic financial institution also based in Geneva and presided over by Prince Muhammed Al Faisal Al Saoud, a cousin of Saudi King Fahd, that directs millions a year to fundamentalist movements. DMI holds a share of the Al Shamal Islamic Bank of Sudan, which was set up in 1991 and partly financed by $50 million from Osama bin Laden. Furthermore, one of SICO’s administrators, Geneva attorney Baudoin Dunand, is a partner in a law firm, Magnin Dunand & Partners, that set up the Swiss financial services company SBA, a subsidiary of the SBA Bank in Paris, which is controlled by Khaled bin Mahfouz. Mahfouz’s younger sister is married to Osama bin Laden.” (“Banking with Bin Laden” by Lucy Komisar [sidebar to “Explosive Revelation$”]; In These Times; 3/15/2002.)

42. The broadcast reviews the fact that Clearstream was recently purchased by Deutsche Borse [7] (the German stock exchange), which had previously owned 50% of the house. (This took place after 9/11.) (“Deutsche Borse Buys Clearstream” by Jonathan Braude; The Deal.com; 2/1/2002.

43. Further developing the Genoud connection to the milieu of 9/11, the broadcast reviews the fact that Genoud’s 1983 counsel was none other than Baudoin Dunant of SICO. Mr. Emory views this connection as highly important. Since Genoud’s trial was for terrorist-related activities, it is probable that Dunant knew “where the bodies were buried” vis a vis Genoud. Genoud was unlikely to have trusted such a sensitive task to “an outsider.” “This company [SICO], established by the Bin Ladens in 1980, is the flagship for the group’s activities in Europe. It is headed by Yeslam bin Laden, and the board of directors is made up almost exclusively of members of the family clan, except for a Swiss citizen, Baudoin Dunant. This well-known lawyer from French-speaking Switzerland, who is on the boards of several dozen companies, came to public notice in 1983 when he agreed to represent the Swiss banker Francois Genoud, a controversial figure who had been a disciple of Hitler and sole heir of Goebbels’s copyrights before becoming one of the financiers of the FLN during the Algerian war.” (In the Name of Osama Bin Laden; by Roland Jacquard; Copyright 2002 [SC]; Duke University Press; ISBN 0-8223-2991-3; pp. 17-18.)

44. Further clarifying Dunant’s status on the board of SICO, the program highlights the fact that Dunant is the co-chairman of the board of directors of SICO. “The Saudi Investment Company is chaired by Beatrice Dufour, of Iranian origin and sister-in-law of one of the bin Laden brothers, Yeslam. In 1983, her co-chairman, Baudoin Dunant, represented Swiss banker Francois Genoud, who had helped finance Arab extremists in Algeria and was on trial for participating in international terrorism.” (“Family Ties: The Bin Ladens” by Neil MacKay; The Sunday Herald; 3/31/2002; p. 6.) His co-chairman (Beatrice Dufour) is of Iranian extraction and is the sister-in-law of Yeslam Bin Laden, the head of SICO and Osama’s brother. (Idem.) (FTR#352 noted that Genoud was alleged to have financed Khomenei’s exile in France. Huber also maintains extensive connections to the Iranian Islamist milieu.)

45. Reviewing an important article about Al Taqwa from FTR#352, (“Swiss Probe Anti-U.S. Neo-Nazi” by Jay Bushinsky; San Francisco Chronicle; 3/12/2002; p. A12; visit http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2002/03/12/MN192483.DTL.) One of the major breakthroughs in the article is an allegation that Third Reich operative Francois Genoud is believed to have founded Al Taqwa. “Authorities believe Genoud founded Al Taqwa Bank and allocated its resources to support international terrorists such as Vladimir Ilich Ramirez, alias Carlos the Jackal, and Bin Laden.” (Idem.)

46. The program further develops discussion of Genoud, Al Qaeda, the Underground Reich and some of the insider trading involved in the run-up to the 9/11 attacks. “Financial expert Ernest Backes of Luxembourg has [studied] white-collar crime in the field of banking for many years. According to him, there are indications of unusual transactions with which the groups [associated with] bin Laden could have earned money. ‘You can, for example, examine whether, within a certain time period there’s been an attack against the securities of a given airline company. Since these securities are safe in a ‘clearing system,’ you can’t get an overall view, who the owner was at a given time.’ . . .According to Backes’ information, the trail leads to Switzerland, to the accounts of an organization that was founded by the late lawyer Francois Genoud and evidently still survives. Says Backes, ‘One of the grounds for accusation is that this Swiss attorney had the closest connections with the Bin Laden family, that he was an advisor to the family, one of its investment bankers. It’s known for certain, that he supported terrorism and was the estate executor for Hitler and part of the terror milieu.'” (“Insider Trading Prior to the Terror Attacks in the US?: Speculating on Terror-Who Profited from the Attacks?” by Rolf Bovier & Pierre Matthias; Bayerische Rundfunk Online (BR-Online); 9/25/2001.)

47. Interestingly (and perhaps significantly), the recently indicted alleged Al Qaeda operative Zaccharias Moussaoui is being represented in France by Isabelle Coutant-Peyre, “who is well known for representing-and later promising to marry-Illych Ramirez Sanchez, better known as Carlos the Jackal.” (“‘It’s As If He Had Died,’ Mother of Suspect Says” by David Zucchino; Los Angeles Times; 12/13/2001; p. A5.)

48. As noted [8], Carlos the Jackal’s attorney and future wife, Isabel Coutant Peyre, is the attorney for alleged Al Qaeda member Zaccharias Moussaoui. Coutant Peyre is a protégé of Verges. (“Bucking the Court, Again, to Marry the Jackal” by Suzanne Daley; New York Times; 1/12/2002; p. A4.) As noted in FTR programs about the aforementioned Francois Genoud, Genoud was very close to both Carlos and Verges.