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FTR #462 Fifth Column Part III: The Subversion of Operation Green Quest

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This broadcast highlights the activities of an apparent Fifth Column within the U.S. political, economic and law-enforcement/intelligence establishments. Particular emphasis is on the subversion of Operation Green Quest—the effort to interdict terrorist financing. Central to the frustration of Operation Green Quest is the FBI’s refusal to share jurisdiction on the operation with other agencies (the Department of Homeland Security in particular), generating charges that the bureau is deliberately undermining the investigation. In the context of the frustration of Operation Green Quest, it is important to remember that the targets of the 3/20/2002 Green Quest raids include members of the Bush administration’s inner circle and that FBI chief Robert Mueller appears compromised because of his less than vigorous investigation of the BCCI case when he was a U.S. attorney under George Bush. In part, the subversion of Operation Green Quest is responsible for the fact that Al Qaeda’s funding sources remain largely intact.

Note that this description contains material not included in the original broadcast due to the limitations of time.

Program Highlights Include: The Ptech case—the investigation of a software company financed in part by alleged Al Qaeda financier Yasin Al-Qadi; the fact that Ptech developed software for—among other agencies—the FAA and the Air Force; the possible role of the Ptech software in the anomalous behavior of U.S. air defenses on 9/11; the alleged connections of Ptech director Yaqub Mirza with the highest levels of the FBI; Mirza’s role in setting up the organizations targeted in the 3/20/2002 raids; the harassment of Green Quest investigators by both FBI and CIA; review of the connections between the targets of the Operation Green Quest raids and the Bush administration; the charges of FBI whistleblower Sibel Edmonds that the terrorist support network in this country involved people in high places with powerful political connections; details of the Sami Al-Arian investigation that led to the Green Quest raids of 3/20/2002; the “accidental” destruction of key documents in the Al-Arian case (this destruction threatens the case.

1. Beginning discussion of the failure to interdict terrorist financing, the program opens with mention of a report from a British intelligence analysis think-tank. This report notes that Al Qaeda’s funding conduits have remained largely intact. ” . . . In its annual strategic survey, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) says al-Qaeda’s financial network has survived largely intact, and that the war in Iraq has brought new recruits to its ranks. . . .”
(“Al-Qaeda ‘May Have 18,000 Operatives'” by Mark Huband and David Buchan in London; Financial Times; 5/25/2004.) [4]

2. FBI translator Sibel Edmonds has noted that her disclosures concerning forewarnings of the 9/11 attacks have been muzzled. Among her disclosures is the allegation that people in high places are blocking investigation of her charges. She seems to imply that these people are implicated to a certain extent in the financing of terrorism. ” . . . [Sibel] Edmonds said she had heard the details of the Afghan asset story in an unclassified meeting at the Capitol, but she cannot talk about the specifics because of a Justice Department gag order that classifies as secret what she has to say. She said, however, that ‘there are a lot of activities in the U.S. A lot of money . . . and these activities involve money laundering, drugs, a support network for terrorism . . . people in high places . . . [people] in the political arena.’ [Italics are Mr. Emory’s]”
(“This Made Ashcroft Gag” by James Ridgeway; The Village Voice; 5/25/2004; p. 1.) [5]

3. ” . . . . Edmonds can’t tell what she may know because attorney General John Ashcroft recently invoked an arcane law to make her statements ‘classified’—including previously public statements and journalism quoting her on the case.” (Ibid.; p. 2.)

4. “At a Senate Judiciary committee hearing last week, Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa summarized the Edmonds case in questioning FBI director Robert Mueller: ‘I would also like to, on a second point, figure out why the FBI is going back in time and classifying some pretty basic information that’s already in the public sector in regard to classification of information that we have received in Congress from a whistle-blower, Sibel Edmonds. We have, for instance, an e-mail sent out by the chairman’s office last week saying that the FBI is classifying two-year-old information that the committee got in two previous briefings. Ms. Edmonds worked for the FBI as a translator and was fired after she reported problems. As part of the committee’s legitimate oversight, we looked into that. The e-mail I have is right here. And so I’m very alarmed with the after-the-fact classification. On the one hand, I think it’s ludicrous, because I understand that almost all of this information’s in the public domain, and has been very widely available. On the other hand, this classification is very serious, because it seems like the FBI would be attempting to put a gag order on Congress.'” (Ibid.; pp. 2-3.)

5. Supplementing previous discussion of the FBI’s failure to cooperate with other agencies in pursuing Operation Green Quest (FTR#’s 432 [6], 433 [7]), the program notes that the effort has largely been frustrated, courtesy of the FBI. (FTR#’s 310 [8], 424 [9]—among other programs—note that FBI director Robert Mueller’s background suggests that his appointment may well have been intended to block any investigations leading in the direction of the Bush/BCCI/Bin Laden nexus that lies at the core of the president’s past business relationships. The 3/20/2002 Operation Green Quest raids led directly to elements connected to the GOP. Bush business associate Talat Othman, himself connected to the BCCI milieu, interceded on behalf of the institutions targeted in those raids. For more about the Talat Othman intercession, see—among other programs—FTR#’s 356 [10], 357 [11], 390 [12], 454 [13].) “While the U.S. military wages war in Iraq, the FBI and the new Department of Homeland Security are fighting their own fierce battle—against each other. The casus belli of th

is conflict is Operation Green Quest—the high-profile federal task force set up to target the financiers of Al Qaeda and other international terrorist groups. Ever since Green Quest was created by former U.S. Customs chief Robert Bonner just after the September 11 terror attacks, Green Quest agents have conducted some of the Bush administration’s best-publicized and most controversial terrorist-finance cases—including a series of raids against the offices of Islamic charities in the Washington area last year that drew strong protests from American Muslim and civil-rights groups. [These were the Operation Green Quest raids of 3/20/2002—D.E.]”
(“Whose War on Terror?”; Newsweek; 12/10/2003; p. 1.)

6. “But as the Green Quest team made headlines, its investigations triggered a bitter dispute within the government. Internally, FBI officials have derided Green Quest agents as a bunch of ‘cowboys’ whose actions have undermined more important, long-range FBI investigations into terrorist financing. Green Quest sources, in turn, accuse the FBI of jealousy. Now that the Customs-led Green Quest operation has been folded into the new Homeland Security Department, Newsweek has learned, the FBI and its parent agency, the Justice Department, have demanded that the White House instead give the FBI total control over Green Quest.” (Idem.)

7. “One senior law-enforcement official called the lack of coordination between the FBI and Green Quest ‘an intolerable situation’ and noted that the bureau-not Homeland Security—has been formally designated by President Bush as the ‘lead agency’ for terrorism investigations. ‘You can’t have two lead agencies’ conducting terror cases, the official said.” (Idem.)

8. Green Quest investigators from the Department of Homeland Security charge that the FBI is deliberately sabotaging their investigations. “The FBI-Justice move, pushed by DOJ criminal Division chief Michael Chertoff and Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson, has enraged Homeland Security officials, however. They accuse the bureau of sabotaging Green Quest investigations—by failing to turn over critical information to their agents—and trying to obscure a decades long record of lethargy in which FBI offices failed to aggressively pursue terror-finance cases.” (Idem.)

9. ” ‘They [The FBI] won’t share anything with us,’ said a Homeland Security official. ‘Then they go to the White House and they accuse us of not sharing . . . If they can’t take it over, they want to kill it.’ If nothing else, the battle over Green Quest illustrates the bureaucratic tensions that still plague the war on terror. The creation of the Homeland Security Department was supposed to put an end to such turf fights. The new department took over a diverse assortment of federal agencies that had various responsibilities for combating terrorism, including the Customs Service, the Immigration and Naturalization Service and the U.S. Border Patrol.” (Ibid.; pp. 1-2.)

10. Among the investigations weakened by the interagency friction is the Ptech investigation. Accused terrorist financier Yasin Al-Qadi is one of the main investors in Ptech, which develops computer software for, among other agencies, the Air Force and the FAA. One of the questions that suggests itself in this regard concerns the possibility that the anomalies in the performance of air-defense units on 9/11 may be due, in part, to software sabotage by Ptech. “But even while the White House was preaching cooperation, the various agencies that were being folded into Homeland Security were squabbling with the FBI—the behemoth in the domestic war on terror. One prime example of the tension is the investigation into Ptech, the Boston-area computer software firm that had millions of dollars in sensitive government contracts with the Air Force, the Energy Department and, ironically enough, the FBI. In what turned into a minor embarrassment for the bureau, the firm’s main investors included Yasin Al-Qadi, a wealthy Saudi businessman whom the Bush administration had formally designated a terrorist financier under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. Al-Qadi has vigorously denied any connection to terrorism.” (Ibid.; p. 2.)

11. “The Ptech case turned into an ugly dispute last year when company whistleblowers told Green Quest agents about their own suspicions about the firm’s owners. Sources close to the case say those same whistleblowers had first approached FBI agents, but the bureau apparently did little or nothing in response. With backing from the National Security Council, Green Quest agents then mounted a full-scale investigation that culminated in a raid on the company’s office last December. After getting wind of the Green Quest probe, the FBI stepped in and unsuccessfully tried to take control of the case.” (Idem.)

12. “The result, sources say, has been something of a train wreck. Privately, FBI officials say Green Quest agents botched the probe and jeopardized other more promising inquiries into Al-Qadi. Green Quest agents dismiss the charges and say the problem is that the bureau ws slow to respond to legitimate allegations that an outside contractor with terrorist ties may have infiltrated government computers. [Italics are Mr. Emory’s.] Whatever the truth, there is no dispute that the case has so far produced no charges and indictments against Al-Qadi or anyone else connected with Ptech. The company has denied wrongdoing.” (Idem.)

13. Still more about the turf war between the FBI and the DHS over Green Quest: “A war has broken out on American soil, largely below the public radar screen. On May 13, 2003, Attorney General John Ashcroft and Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge signed a ‘memorandum of Agreement’ between the Department of justice and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that gives the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) unprecedented unilateral control of all terrorist-financing investigations and operations. The agreement raises questions about the need for a Department of Homeland Security, if the FBI will be handling all relevant terror investigations.”
(“Perilous Power Play: FBI vs. Homeland Security” by Rita Katz & Josh Devon; National Review; 5/27/2003; p. 1.)

14. “Several seasoned government agents fear for the nation’s security should the FBI be tackling most terrorism cases, as their ineptitude in preventing terrorism has been established time and time again. Yet, the memorandum between Ashcroft and Ridge places the FBI in an incredibly powerful position over Homeland Security. According to the memorandum, ‘[A]ll appropriate DHS leads relating to money laundering and financial crimes will be checked with the FBI.'” (Idem.)

15. “This usurpation creates a gigantic imbalance of power in criminal investigations, as the FBI now has the power to create or kill any terrorist-financing investigation it deems appropriate or inappropriate to investigate. This puts the FBI in a position to control too much and is eerily reminiscent of the former Soviet Union’s oppressive intelligence agency, the KGB. Like the KGB, the FBI seeks to run itself with no checks and balances, a necessary hallmark of the American system of government and civil rights. The memorandum makes the point that FBI agents assigned to work in conjunction with DHS agents ‘are provided full an

d timely access to all data developed in ICE’s [Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement] money laundering and financial crimes cases on an ongoing basis.’ The reciprocal is not stated in the agreement, continuing the FBI’s long-held policy of refusing to share their information with other agencies.” (Idem.)

16. A point of information that raises serious questions about the FBI’s motivation for attempting to monopolize Green Quest investigations concerns the bureau’s admission that it did not have the ability to handle counterterrorism cases! “Amazingly, though, just after 9/11 the FBI admitted it did not have the ability to handle counterterrorism cases. According to a May 2003 General Accounting Office (GAO) Report about interagency information sharing, ‘the Director of the FBI testified in June 2002 that implementing a more proactive approach to preventing terrorist acts and denying terrorist groups the ability to operate and raise funds require a centralized and robust analytical capacity that did not exist in the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division.’ Yet, because the FBI is so well funded and staffed compared to the other agencies, the bureau can play the PR game better than any other agency. Thus, while strong-arming other agencies and bullying them out of investigations, the FBI maintains a positive face in the eyes of the American public and takes credit for investigations in which they were only tangentially involved.” (Ibid.; pp. 1-2.)

17. “For those who do not fear that the FBI will be handling future terrorist financing investigations, let’s look at the agency’s track record when it comes to protecting the United States from terrorist financing: Even after the September 11 attacks, the FBI failed to pursue obvious terrorist financing leads. In a hugely embarrassing moment, the FBI failed to do anything about Ptech, Inc. a company whose prime investor was a Specially Designated Global Terrorist entity, Saudi Yassin al-Qadi. In desperation, the vice president of sales at Ptech contacted the FBI and pleaded with them to look into the organization, as he saw in the news that Qadi was allegedly connected to funding al Qaeda. After repeated meetings with increasingly higher-ranking FBI officials where the employees beseeched the agency to look into the company, the bureau did nothing, despite knowing that Qadi was a primary financier of Ptech.” (Ibid.; p. 2.)

18. Among the more alarming details about the Ptech debacle concerns a statement attributed to the president of Ptech. He allegedly told a subordinate that Yaqub Mirza—a member of the board of directors—had connections high up in the FBI! Mirza set up the organizations targeted in the Operation Green Quest raids of 3/20/2002! “Furthermore, the FBI was aware that Ptech provided computer software for several government agencies, including the FBI itself, the FAA, the U.S. Treasury, the Department of Defense, the IRS, and the White House, proving a visible and viable threat to national security. The FBI ignored the repeated requests of concerned employees. Frighteningly, when an employee told the President of Ptech he felt he had to contact the FBI regarding Qadi’s involvement in the company, the president allegedly told him not to worry because Yaqub Mirza, who was on the board of directors of the company and was himself a target of a terrorist financing raid in March 2002, had contacts high within the FBI. [Italics are Mr. Emory’s].” (Idem.)

19. “After months of the FBI refusing to do anything substantive, it took the efforts of U.S. Customs, now a part of Homeland Security, to raid the business in December 2002 and jumpstart the investigation into the alleged terrorist financial network.” (Idem.)

20. The FBI had previously ignored the organizations set up by Mirza and targeted in the 3/20/2002 Green Quest raids (the SAAR network). “Perhaps the FBI’s biggest blunder was in ignoring the enormous alleged terrorist financial network of companies and nonprofit organizations mostly in Herndon, Virginia, named by investigators as the ‘SAAR Network.’ The FBI had been aware of the SAAR Network was funneling money to al-Arian. The FBI chose to ignore the case for unknown reasons, though some have speculated it was due to the SAAR Network’s close association to wealthy Saudis who funded the network.” (Idem.)

21. “It was not until Operation Green Quest, a joint task force headed by U.S. Customs which sought to disrupt terrorist financing, picked up the scent of the SAAR Network that a raid occurred. In March, 2002, Green Quest, in a victory for Americans everywhere, raided the SAAR Network in 15 locations in the largest terrorist financial bust in U.S. history. . . .” (Ibid.; pp. 2-3.)

22. More about the frustration of Operation Green Quest: ” . . . Now, the FBI is attempting to wrest the SAAR Network investigation from Green Quest and take all the credit for Green Quest’s dedication and hard work. The agreement between Ashcroft and Ridge is a crushing blow to Green Quest, as it effectively dissolves the outstanding task force. According to the memorandum, ‘The secretary of [Homeland Security] agrees that no later than June 30, 2003, Operation Green Quest (OGQ) will no longer exist as a program name.’ [Italics are Mr. Emory’s].” (Ibid.; p. 3.)

23. “Green Quest, the most successful antiterrorist-financing task squad in history of the United States, is being disbanded because of the FBI’s lust for power and glory. At a time when al Qaeda is resurging, the more agencies we have sharing information and investigating terrorism, the better off this nation will be. Given the FBI’s track record, the bureau should be punished, not rewarded for unjustifiably bullying a new department into giving it more power, especially after FBI Director Robert Mueller admitted the bureau does not have the analytical capability to provide effective counterterrorism. . . .” (Idem.)

24. Reviewing information presented in FTR#460 [14], the program notes the allegation that among the people enlisted by Bin Laden to assist his efforts was the chief of the Pakistani air force. When taken in combination with the allegedly Al Qaeda-linked Ptech (which developed software for the Air Force and the FAA), this detail may account for some of the anomalous behavior of air defense unites on 9/11. Might elements within Ptech, with the assistance of Mir, have engineered a way to delay interception? “Nor was that the end of it. During his interrogation, Zubaydah had also said that Osama bin Laden had struck a deal with Pakistani air force chief Air Marshal Mushaf Ali Mir, and had told him that there would be unspecified attacks on American soil on 9/11. Seven months after the Saudi deaths, on February 20, 2003, Mir and sixteen others were killed when their plane crashed in a northwest province of Pakistan. Sabotage was widely speculated to be behind the crash but could not be proved.”
(House of Bush, House of Saud; by Craig Unger; LinkScribner [HC]; Copyright 2004 by Craig Unger; ISBN 0-7432-5337-X; p. 269.) [15]

25. As discussed in (among other programs) FTR#’s 356 [10], 454 [13], Talat Othman (a close associate of both Georges Bush) interceded o

n behalf of the targets of Operation Green Quest. (For more about this, see FTR#’s 356 [10], 376 [16], 415 [17].) “And the connections do not end there. One of the Muslim activists who met with O’Neill was Talat Othman, a longtime friend and former business associate of President Bush. The two served together on the board of the Texas-based oil company Harken Energy starting in the late 1980’s and have remained close ever since. Othman sat on Harken’s board as the representative of Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, a Saudi business magnate and a close associate of suspected terrorist financier Khalid bin Mahfouz. [Bin Mahfouz was one of the principal figures in the BCCI investigation, overseen by now-FBI chief Robert Mueller—D.E.] Bakhsh now heads an oil company that is a subsidiary of Halliburton, the energy giant formerly run by Vice President Dick Cheney.”
(“Charity Cases: Why Has the Bush Administration Failed to Stop Saudi Funding of Terrorism?” by David Armstrong; Harper’s; March/2004; p. 82.) [18]

26. More on Yaqub Mirza and Talat Othman: “In addition to his work at the Islamic Institute, Othman serves on the board of Amana Mutual Funds Trust, an Islamic investment group that had close ties to raided entities and yet was not itself targeted. At the time of the Green Quest raids, in March 2002, at least four figures from the targeted groups were affiliated with Amana, including M. Yaqub Mirza, the individual who set up the U.S. branch of MWL, the fund-raising arm of the U.S. branch of IIRO, and many of the other raided organizations. Despite Mirza’s presence on the board, and despite the fact that large sums of money from the suspect groups have moved through Amana, Green Quest agents chose not to raid the firm.” (Idem.)

27. The milieu of the 3/20-targeted SAAR network significantly overlaps the GOP’s ethnic outreach organization and the Bush administration. That fact may well explain the FBI’s and CIA’s hostile interest in the investigators of Operation Green Quest. The investigators who were so harassed included Rita Katz, A.K.A. “Anonymous.” “The CIA was investigating me and the SAAR investigators from Green Quest and Customs. The CIA and the FBI investigated everyone who had anything to do with the SAAR investigation. White vans and SUV’s with dark windows appeared near all the homes of the SAAR investigators. All agents, some of whom were very experienced with surveillance, knew they were being followed. So was I. I felt that I was being followed everywhere and watched at home, in the supermarket, on the way to work . . . and for what? . . .”
(Terrorist Hunter by “Anonymous” [Rita Katz]; CCC [imprint of Harper Collins]; Copyright 2003 by Harper Collins [HC]; ISBN 0-06-052819-2; p. 328.) [19]

28. ” . . . The Customs agents were questioned. So were their supervisors. So was the U.S. attorney on the SAAR case. One of the questions they were all asked was whether they’d leaked material to me. They all kept saying that this was the most preposterous idea; they all said that before I came, none of them had the slightest clue about SAAR and 555. They said that there was nothing of value they could give me that I didn’t have already. That it was I who gave them the material, not the other way around. None of the investigated parties has the slightest clue as to the real reason they were being investigated.” (Ibid.; p. 329.)

29. “Risking criticism for being unfoundedly paranoid, I must convey my theory about the investigation and CIA’s involvement in it, I don’t know for certain what’s the deal with the CIA investigating the SAAR investigators, but it sure feels as if someone up in that agency doesn’t like the idea that the Saudi Arabian boat is rocked. The raids on 555 had taken place already—the CIA couldn’t change that—but investigating and giving the people behind the raids a hard time is a most efficient way of making sure the SAAR investigation stops there. Which, come to think of it, may be the reason the government looks so unfavorably on the lawsuit filed by 9-11 victims’ families against several Saudi entities and individuals, accusing them of funding terrorism and seeking damages.” (Idem.)

30. Another example of the Saudi/Bush-linked Fifth Column for which the program is named concerns an operational connection between Prince Bandar and former FBI director Louis Freeh. This link was established behind the back of the Clinton administration and served to frustrate the investigation into the 1996 Khobar Towers investigation. Former president George H.W. Bush was Freeh’s liaison man to Bandar. One wonders if this connection may have had something to do with the allegation (noted above) that M. Yaqub Mirza allegedly had links high inside the FBI. “After the Khobar Towers bombing in 1996, Clinton’s national security adviser, Sandy Berger, repeatedly met with Prince Bandar to press for better Saudi cooperation with the FBI. But the Saudis still refused to allow the FBI access to the suspects or relevant materials and tried to blame Iran for the bombing. Berger got nowhere. According to Benjamin and Simon, Bandar’s unending evasions were so frustrating that Berger described them as ‘Groundhog Day’ rituals, a reference to the Bill Murray movie in which one day repeats itself endlessly.”
(House of Bush, House of Saud; by Craig Unger; Scribner [HC]; Copyright 2004 by Craig Unger; ISBN 0-7432-5337-X; p. 176.) [15]

31. “At the same time Prince Bandar was stalling Berger, however, he had secretly established a back channel to FBI director Louis Freeh. A 1993 Clinton appointee, Freeh had never enjoyed a good relationship with the White House, partly because of the bureau’s disastrous failure in counterterrorism. According to Benjamin and Simon, Bandar eagerly exploited Freeh’s well-known antipathy toward Clinton to ‘undercut U.S. efforts to pursue the investigation.'” (Idem.)

32. “Notwithstanding Berger’s repeated efforts to get Saudi help, Bandar told Freeh again and again that the White House had absolutely no interest in the investigation whatsoever. But President Clinton kept after the Saudis. When he met with Saudi crown prince Abdullah in 1998, Clinton warned Abdullah that Saudi-American relations would suffer if the Saudis did not cooperate on the Khobar Towers investigation. Nevertheless, Bandar continued to tell Freeh that he was the only one in Washington who cared about the Americans who had died in Khobar Towers.” (Idem.)

33. “In response, Freeh did something highly irregular. He reached out to former president Bush, knowing full well how Bush was revered by the Saudis, and asked Bush to be his secret emissary to get the Saudis to cooperate with the investigation. Later, Bandar invited Freeh to his estate in northern Virginia and told him the FBI would be allowed to watch through a one-way mirror while Saudis interrogated the suspects. According to Elsa Walsh of the New Yorker, Freeh credited this sudden breakthrough not to the Clinton administration’s efforts, but to former president George H.W. Bush.” (Ibid.; pp. 176-177.)

34. “Whether it was Bush’s phone call or pressure from Clinton that actually triggered the Saudi cooperation is not entirely clear. But one thing was certain: the House of Saud preferred Bush, not Clinton, in part because the Democratic administration was violating the unwritten rule about Saudi-American relations: Don’t ask any questions about what really goes on in Saudi Arabia. . . .” (Ibid.; p. 177.)

35. Supplementing previous discussion about the genesis of the GOP/Islamist link, this description presents information from Craig Under’s book that was not included in the original broadcast. “As a result, Norquist’s Muslim strategy was sometimes criticized—usually from the right—for giving credibility to Muslim groups that seemed harmless, but were in fact supporting extremist interests. . . . Nevertheless, with Norquist working behind the scenes, Bush aggressively pursued the Islamists in hopes of winning their endorsements. In appearances on TV, Bush and fellow campaign staffers referred not just to churches and synagogues as places of worship, but to mosques as well. Again and again, Governor Bush sought out meetings with Muslim leaders—often without looking into their backgrounds. He invited the founder of the American Muslim Council, Abdurahman Alamoudi, to the governor’s mansion in Austin. In the mid-1990’s, Alamoudi had played an important role in recruiting as many as a hundred ‘Islamic lay leaders’ for the U.S. military. The Wall Street Journal reported that he had arranged for ‘an arm of the Saudi government’ called the Institute of Islamic and Arabic Sciences to train ‘soldiers and civilians to provide spiritual guidance when paid Muslim chaplains aren’t available.’ The Journal added that there were indications that there were indications that ‘the school . . . disseminates the intolerant and anti-Western strain of Islam espoused by the [Saudi] kingdom’s religious establishment.’ A self-proclaimed supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah, Alamoudi reportedly attended a terrorist summit in Beirut later in 2000 with leaders of Hamas, Hezbollah, and Al Qaeda. But such a militant background did not keep Alamoudi away from Norquist and Bush. According to an article by Frank Gaffney, Alamoudi wrote two checks for $10,000 each, one an apparent loan, to help found Norquist’s Islamic Institute.” (Ibid.; pp. 205-206.)

36. “On March 12, 2000, Bush and his wife, Laura, met with more Muslim leaders at a local mosque in Tampa, Florida. Among them was Sami Al-Arian, a Kuwaiti-born Palestinian who was an associate professor of engineering at the University of South Florida. . . . But Al-Arian had unusual credentials for a Bush campaigner. Since 1995, as the founder and chairman of the board of World and Islam Enterprise (WISE), a Muslim think tank, Al-Arian had been under investigation by the FBI for his associations with Islamic Jihad, the Palestinian terrorist group. Al-Arian brought in Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, the number-two leader in Islamic Jihad, to be the director of WISE. A strong advocate of suicide bombings against Israel, Shallah was allegedly responsible for killing scores of Israelis in such attacks.” (Ibid.; pp. 206-207.)

37. “Al-Arian also brought to Tampa as a guest speaker for WISE none other than Hassan Turabi, the powerful Islamic ruler of Sudan who had welcomed Osama bin Laden and helped nurture al Qaeda in the early nineties. . . .Nor were those Al-Arian’s only ties to terrorists According to American Jihad by Steven Emerson, in may 1998 a WISE board member named Tarik Hamdi personally traveled to Afghanistan to deliver a satellite telephone and battery to Osama bin Laden. In addition, Newsweek reported that Al-Arian had ties to the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center. Among his claims to fame, the magazine said, Al-Arian had ‘made many phone calls to two New York-area Arabs who figured in the World Trade Center bombing investigation.'” (Ibid.; p. 207.)

38. “There were also Al-Arian’s own statements. In 1998, he appeared as a guest speaker before the American Muslim Council. According to conservative author Kenneth Timmerman, Al-Arian referred to Jews as ‘monkeys and pigs’ and added, ‘Jihad is our path. Victory to Islam. Death to Israel. Revolution! Revolution! Until victory! Rolling, rolling to Jerusalem!’ That speech was part of a dossier compiled on al-Arian by federal agents who have had him under surveillance for many years because of suspected ties to terrorist organizations. In a videotape in that file, al-Arian was more explicit. When he appeared at a fund-raising event, Timmerman says, he ‘begged for $500 to kill a Jew.'” (Idem.)

39. “Al-Arian would be arrested in Florida in February 2003 on dozens of charges, among them conspiracy to finance terrorist attacks that killed more than one hundred people—including two Americans. The indictment alleged that ‘he directed the audit of all moneys and property of the PIJ [Palestinian Islamic Jihad] throughout the world and was the leader of the PIJ in the United States.’ The charges refer to the Islamic Jihad as ‘a criminal organization whose members and associates engaged in acts of violence including murder, extortion, money laundering, fraud, and misuse of visas, and operated worldwide including in the Middle District of Florida.’ Al-Arian was still facing prosecution in December 2003.” (Ibid.; p. 208.)

40. ” . . . ‘The Al-Arian case was not a solitary lapse. . . . That outreach campaign opened relationships between the Bush campaign and some very disturbing persons in the Muslim-American community.’ Nevertheless, Norquist continued to build a coalition of Islamist groups to support Bush. On July 31, 2000, the Republican National Convention opened in Philadelphia with a prayer by a Muslim, Talat Othman, in which Othman offered a duaa, a Muslim benediction. It was the first time a Muslim had addressed any major U.S. political gathering. A third-generation American and a businessman from Chicago of Muslim-Arab descent, Othman was chairman of the Islamic Institute. He had also been the board member of Harken Energy representing the interests of Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, the Saudi investor who had helped Bush make his fortune by bailing out Harken in the late eighties. When the convention ended on August 3, after George W. Bush had formally been nominated for president, between his family’s extended personal and financial ties to the House of Saud and his campaign’s ties to Islamists, it could be said that he was truly the Arabian Candidate. . . .” (Ibid.; pp. 208-209.)

41. Again, it was the investigation into Al-Arian that led to the Green Quest raids of 3/20/2002. In that context, it is frightening to note that search warrants in the Al-Arian case were “accidentally” destroyed. Was this REALLY an accident? The destruction of the documents threatens the Al-Arian case! ” . . . In December 2003, clerks at a federal courthouse in Tampa accidentally destroyed search warrants in the Al-Arian case. The documents contained affidavits from federal agents that supported 1995 searches of Al-Arian’s home and offices and were among thousands of documents shredded sometime between 1998 and 2002. As this book went to press, there were serious questions as to whether the destruction of the documents might affect his prosecution.” (Ibid.; p. 208.)