Sunday, December 21, 2008

The FABRICATED al-Qaeda Presence in Palestine

Edited by Alex Constantine

Palestinians arrest al-Qaeda 'poseurs'
December 8 2002

Palestinian security forces have arrested a group of Palestinians for collaborating with Israel and posing as operatives of Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terrorist network, a senior official said yesterday.

The arrests come two days after Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon charged al-Qaeda militants were operating in Gaza and in Lebanon.

"The Palestinian Authority arrested a group of collaborators who confessed they were working for Israel, posing as al-Qaeda operatives in the Palestinian territories," said the official, on condition of anonymity.

He said the alleged collaborators sought to "discredit the Palestinian people, justify every Israeli crime and provide reasons to carry out a new (military) aggression in the Gaza Strip."

The official did not say how many suspects had been arrested, nor where or when they were nabbed.

Earlier, international cooperation minister Nabil Shaath announced he would hold a press conference here on the alleged presence of al-Qaeda operatives in the Gaza Strip.

Sharon's announcement marked the first time Israel officially claimed that al-Qaeda, held responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States, was operating in the Palestinian territories.

It was considered a surprise because the Gaza Strip is virtually sealed off by Israeli troops.

The hardline Israeli leader also charged other members of the terror group were cooperating with Lebanon's Shi'ite militia Hizbollah.

The Palestinians slammed the allegation as "totally absurd" and accused Sharon of trying to piggyback on the US-led "war against terrorism" to strengthen his military operations against militants in the territories.

Both the Lebanese government and Hizbollah made similar statements.

A US citizen of Syrian descent was arrested last month at Ben Gurion airport in Tel Aviv on suspicion of transferring funds to terrorist organisations in general, and those connected to al-Qaeda in particular.

Three Israelis and 10 Kenyans were killed in a suicide attack on a hotel near the Kenyan port of Mombasa last Thursday, shortly after missiles narrowly missed an Israeli charter flight taking off from there with 261 passengers.

The attacks were purportedly claimed by al-Qaeda on an Islamic website.

Meanwhile, Israeli troops backed by tanks and helicopter gunships swept into the Bureij refugee camp in the Gaza Strip yesterday, sparking a gun battle and killing 10 people, Palestinian witnesses and medics said.

Army officials said the troops had met fierce resistance in the three-hour pre-dawn incursion, which it said was intended to root out militants responsible for attacks on troops in Gaza in a more than two-year Palestinian uprising for independence.
Report: Mossad behind destroying London Israeli embassy in 1994

The British daily "The Independent" on Thursday unveiled important information on spying attempts made by the Israeli Mossad and operations targeting the destruction of Israeli embassies abroad.

In an article published on Thursday and quoted by the BBC, the paper added that the person who is accused of being behind the bombing of the Israeli embassy in London in 1994, Rida Maghribi, was an agent recruited by the Mossad and was assigned by Israeli foreign intelligence for that purpose.

The paper added that behind such an act, Israel was seeking to distort the image of the Palestinians in Britain and the western countries. However, this new Mossad scandal unveiled by the British paper is added to several similar scandals dogging the Mossad in Switzerland, Cyprus and Germany involving spying against the interests of these countries and on Lebanese and Palestinian resistance forces.
Who Peddles the al Qaeda Fabrication in American Journals? - CIA Disinformation on Campus

Al Qaeda Strikes Back
Bruce Riedel

"Summary: By rushing into Iraq instead of finishing off the hunt for Osama bin Laden, Washington has unwittingly helped its enemies: al Qaeda has more bases, more partners, and more followers today than it did on the eve of 9/11. Now the group is working to set up networks in the Middle East and Africa -- and may even try to lure the United States into a war with Iran. Washington must focus on attacking al Qaeda's leaders and ideas and altering the local conditions in which they thrive. ... "

The author: "Bruce Riedel is a Senior Fellow at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution. He retired last year after 29 years with the Central Intelligence Agency. ... "

The CIA/Brookings Institution itself contradicts Riedel's finding: "Al-Qa`ida’s senior leadership, based in the tribal areas of Pakistan-Afghanistan, has no franchise or coordinated group in Lebanon." Further: "The current Salafi-jihadi threat is caused by a network of capable terrorist cells scattered across the country, mostly in northern Lebanon. The most dangerous terrorist axis is the one that links, by land and sea, regions in the north—such as Tripoli, al-Koura and Akkar—to the Palestinian refugee camp of Ayn al-Hilwa in Sidon."

See: "Al-Qa`ida’s Presence and Influence in Lebanon"
Meanwhile, in the real world ...

Hizbullah is Lebanon`s bulwark against Al-Qaeda

"We do not have any relations with that group"

By Clancy Chassay
The Daily Star
December 24, 2005

Since the events of September 11, 2001, there have been numerous attempts to link Hizbullah to Al-Qaeda - some more plausible than others. Investigation, however, reveals considerable animosity between the two groups, and two leading academics on the subject suggest Hizbullah may be Lebanon`s best protection against an Al-Qaeda presence in the country.

On October 28, the Kuwaiti newspaper As-Siyassa reported Hizbullah was training Arab fighters for Al-Qaeda in Iran. In August the same paper ran a story with the headline: `Most of [Al-Qaeda`s commander in Iraq Abu Musab] Zarqawi`s men are Palestinians trained by Hizbullah.`

Then last week, the Shiite weekly Ash-Shiira claimed Al-Qaeda had set up a major base of operations in Lebanon and that alleged Hizbullah associate Imad Moughniye was now representing Al-Qaeda in talks with potentially sympathetic Palestinian groups in the country.

Hizbullah`s director of media relations Mohammad Afif Naboulsi firmly denies the alleged links to the militant jihadi network, `We do not have any relation with that group, not in the present nor in the past. They are working toward tearing the Islamic Nation apart, dividing Muslims into numerous sects and mutilating the face of Islam in the world.`

Amal Ghorayeb of the Lebanese American University believes any operational cooperation between the two groups is out of the question. `Hizbullah would in no way share Al-Qaeda`s goals. The Americans have to understand Al-Qaeda is a threat to American security, Hizbullah is simply a threat to American interests,` says Ghorayeb.

An expert and writer on Hizbullah, Ghorayeb says: `Al-Qaeda would never work with Hizbullah; their greatest enemies are the Shiites. There is a very strong cultural and religious animosity on the side of Al-Qaeda.`

Last week a Shiite cleric in Lebanon received a death threat from an Al-Qaeda-type Salafi jihadist group confirming this hostility.

And on July 27, Al-Mustaqbal reported that a group calling itself the `Al-Qaeda Organization in the Levant, Umar Brigade - Lebanon Province` had announced plans to assassinate senior members of Hizbullah along with the country`s most senior Shiite clerics and politicians.

The statement accuses senior Hizbullah officials of `treason with the US, British and Israeli enemies of Islam against the victorious resistance and its great leaders ... our master Imam Osama bin Laden and the mujahid Sheikh Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi.`

Afif dismisses the statement as `fabricated locally` but says: `These groups have issued threats before and they find it very easy to kill so we must take them seriously.`

According to Dr. Redwan Sayyed, considered Lebanon`s foremost expert on Al-Qaeda and a professor of Islamic history at the Lebanese university, Salafi Jihadi ideologues, described as the intellectual voices of Al-Qaeda, view Hizbullah with deep disdain and are threatened by the Shiite group`s popularity on the Sunni Arab street.

Contributors to pro Al-Qaeda Web sites such as Global Islamic Media regularly refer to Hizbullah as Hizb al-Shaytan or `party of the devil` and in 2004, a leading scholar of jihadists in Saudi Arabia Abed al-Munim Mustafa Halimah published an article `the Lebanese Hizbullah rejectionist school` condemning Hizbullah for being nationalist, serving local interests and for their relationship with apostate Shiite Iran and the secular Assad regime in Syria.

Halimah, known as Abu Basir, accuses Hizbullah`s leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah of exploiting the January 2004 prisoner exchange with Israel solely for his organization`s goal of exporting `Shiite Islam` to the Muslim world.

Sayyed says Hizbullah regards Al-Qaeda with similar contempt and has been preventing the network from gaining a foothold in the country.

`Al-Qaeda could not maintain a base in Lebanon because Hizbullah is against Al-Qaeda and has always worked to hinder Syria`s accommodation of Al-Qaeda in Lebanon. One of the reasons Al-Qaeda has not been allowed by Syria to operate in Lebanon under the Sunnis is because of Hizbullah objection.`

Sayyed believes `Hizbullah is not only a big military power, it is also a very big intelligence power and is using its intelligence network to keep Al- Qaeda out of Lebanon.`

Ghorayeb agrees with this assessment, saying Hizbullah has been using its extensive intelligence network to counter Al-Qaeda growth in the country. `Nasrallah, drawing from Hizbullah intelligence, warned Al-Qaeda was trying to infiltrate Lebanon.`

Sayyed says: `Hizbullah has a policy of taking action against Lebanese Sunni individuals who even claim to have links with Al-Qaeda, either by warning the individuals or telling the Syrians that if they didn`t stop them `then we will.``

Hizbullah says they would act to prevent an Al-Qaeda attack but, apparently cautious of being drawn into an intra-Muslim sectarian conflict, the group says the organization needs to be defeated on an intellectual level.

Afif claims the party has been approached by mediators from the CIA `who asked us to collaborate by supplying them with information about Islamic groups.`

He adds: `We will not be taken into a sectarian war between Muslims, but we believe it is the responsibility of the Islamic theologians, the Sunnis, as well as social figures and media to play a role in raising awareness about the dangers of these ideas.`

Ghorayeb says Hizbullah is playing a delicate balancing game between Lebanon`s Sunni and Shiite communities.

`There are many instances of this Sunni-Shiite tension in Lebanon now, Hizbullah is really trying to safeguard the relations between the two groups. Now, I can tell you, the tension is a lot more palpable than it was,` says Ghorayeb.
Al Qaeda in Gaza?
October 1, 2007

In the past year I’ve had dozens of conversations with colleagues, experts, politicians, analysts, etc, about whether or not Al Qaeda is present in Gaza, especially foreign, non-Palestinian jihadis. As such, this news caught my eye today.

Hamas has extradited a wanted Al-Qaida militant to Egypt in exchange for Cairo’s agreement to allow dozens of stranded Hamas and Islamic Jihad members to return to the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian news agency Maan reported on Monday.

The not always reliable Debka file claims the Al Qaeda militant turned over to Egypt was Muhammed Fayad Ibrahim from Nebi Saweil near Cairo. They reported he was Al Qaeda-Egypt’s senior liaison officer with Osama bin Laden and that he gained asylum in the Gaza Strip in July.

If true, it’s interesting that an Al Qaeda militant would have turned to Gaza for refuge and was able to smuggle himself into the territory without a problem. The fact that Gaza is so cut off from the outside world has always been one of the arguments against Al Qaeda establishing itself there.

So if it’s all true as reported, the big question is what he’s been up to since July. Has Hamas had him in custody? Who’s he been staying with? And what would it really matter even if there was an active Al Qaeda cell in Gaza?

It’s not surprising that Hamas didn’t stomach an Al Qaeda operative’s presence for long. Even if Hamas did feel the need to justify itself after Zawahiri criticized the movement for the Mecca accord, Hamas’ relationship with Egypt is too important. That being said, Egypt didn’t get their jihadi for cheap. Hamas got an estimatd 85 militants let back into Gaza. And symbolically speaking, this deal with Egypt represents perhaps the first time it has cracked the international siege since June.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

'Popular Mechanics' Link to the CIA's In-Q-Tel

From Peter Wakefield Sault

I have just read Mr Jim Hoffman's response at

to the recent article in 'Popular Mechanics' at

that tries to debunk the truth about 9/11 by the use of the 'straw man' tactic. Although everything in his response is quite correct and exposes the straw man for what it is, I feel Mr Hoffman was dealing with this particular issue at the wrong level. Approached from a different angle the article tells us who really was behind 9/11 and who is still desperately trying to cover it up. This is how it works:-

'Popular Mechanics' is published by the Hearst Corporation, proprietor (chairman of the board) George R. Hearst, grandson of William Randolph Hearst, sometime would-be builder of large aeroplanes.

The president and CEO of Hearst Corporation is one Victor F. Ganzi, since June 1st, 2002. Mr Ganzi is also an officer/director of the Hearst Foundation.

A close look at the titles of the books on the shelf behind Mr Ganzi in the photo (GANZI_2003_2_BW.jpg) reveals that some part of Mr Ganzi's early career was spent working for the owners of the Atlantic City Boardwalk and associated hotels and casinos; sometime friends of a certain Mr Frank Sinatra, as I recall.

Victor F. Ganzi is on the board of directors of The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASA), alongside Columba Bush, wife of Jeb Bush, Governor of Florida, brother of George W. Bush, President of the USA and son of George H.W. Bush, former DG of the CIA.

Victor F. Ganzi is a member of B.E.N.S. - "Business Executives for National Security" - wherein we learn that "When it came time to evaluate In-Q-Tel, the CIA's innovative technology development enterprise, Congress turned to BENS"

In October 2002, B.E.N.S. received a "CIA Agency Seal Medallion" for its work on the In-Q-Tel program.

In-Q-Tel? It is described as "A new partnership between the CIA and the 'private sector' [my apostrophes].", making it a classic front for traditional fascism and other American-style old-fashioned family values.

... So, we should all be most grateful to 'Popular Mechanics' and its new editor James Meigs for indirectly telling us who the real perpetrators of 9/11 were by its rather long-winded "blind 'em with science" attempt to suppress the truth of behalf of those perpetrators.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Warren Buffett's Takeover of Constellation Energy, Mayo Shattuck, the CIA and 9/11 Inside Trades

EU approves MidAmerican deal to buy Constellation
Baltimore Business Journal
November 24, 2008

MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. has been given European Union antitrust approval to purchase the largest U.S power marketing company. MidAmerican is owned by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A, BRK.B).

The deal is worth about $4.7 billion. MidAmerican will get Baltimore-based Constellation's Baltimore Gas and Electric unit along with three nuclear plants and other power stations in 10 states. Iowa-based MidAmerican needed EU approval to move forward because it operates utilities in the UK.

The proposed union between Constellation and MidAmerican could take nearly a year to close and would need the approval of federal and state regulators and company shareholders.

Constellation Energy & Mayo A. Shattuck III:

CEO: Mayo A. Shattuck III
Employees: 9,645
Address: 750 E. Pratt St., Baltimore, MD 21202
Phone: 410-783-2800

CIA & 9/11 Inside Trades with Mayo

The strange case of Mayo Shattuck III, head of the A.B. Brown unit of Deutsche bank

1999. Bankers Trust merged with Deutsche Bank and Shattuck became Chairman of Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown. While there Mayo Shattuck was also CEO of the Americas for the bank's Private Client and Asset Management Group and had numerous responsibilities at the bank, including Global Head of Investment Banking and Global Head of Private Banking.

Head of the bank resigned under suspicious circumstances:

September 15, 2001. The New York Times reported that Mayo Shattuck III had resigned on September 12, 'effective immediately', from a 3-year $30 million contract as head of the Alex (A.B) Brown unit of Deutsche Bank.

Krongard with Mayo: "By 1991 he became president and chief operating officer at Alex. Brown, second to future CIA Executive Director A. B. "Buzzy" Krongard."

Mayo's Resignation on September 12, 2001

"The New York Times reported that Shattuck had resigned on September 12, 'effective immediately', from a 3-year $30 million contract as head of the Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown.[1] Shattuck found a new job quickly: by October 26, he would be appointed President and CEO of Constellation Energy Group, and was elected Chairman of the Board in July 2002."

Other affiliations

In 1997, Mayo Shattuck was made trustee of the Seagram Company, Ltd.

Shattuck has several other notable past and current affiliations, including directorships at Gap, Inc and Capital One,[2] positions on several lobbying and policy advocacy organizations (including the Edison Electric Institute, the Nuclear Energy Institute and the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations), board memerships at several educational institutions (Johns Hopkins, Stanford and the University of Maryland), and at The Walters Art Museum.

He was also a candidate to take over as NFL commissioner after Paul Tagliabue's retirement, but Roger Goodell won the job.

Deutsche Bank is also one of the four banks most used by the bin Laden family.

Who Killed Theresa Duncan and Jeremy Blake?

Bottom line, simple answer: Warren Buffett's CIA/GOP friends murdered Duncan and Blake. Disgraced former Omaha police chief/accused Mormon pedophile Robert Wadman, who recently put my publisher through a nuisance suit in Ogden, Utah, is Buffett's CIA-pervert lieutenant - Wadman hoped to silence me with his - alas - dismissed "lawsuit," have my books recalled, and - not incidentally - my investigation of Duncan-Blake taken off the Internet., a CIA/GOP front, was the core of a smear campaign waged against the "paranoid conspiracy theorists" post mortem to discredit Theresa's research on Buffett's CIA/GOP pedophile network buds, and send a "message" to "conspiracy" researchers aware of the "Sage of Omaha's" role in 9/11.

The mapping of intelligence connections to the Duncan/Blake murders and cover-up are here. It behooves anyone concerned about fascism in America to have an understanding of this central, operationally covert cog in the machine.

Also see: "Warren Buffett's Genocidal Investments,"
"Some of the Buffett Family's Political, CIA and Nazi Connections," "Buffett's Wrigley Deal puts Spotlight on Secretive Mars Family," and "The Path to 9/11 (Part 17): Buffett-CIA-Coke Links to a Fugitive Uzbek Princess, ZeroMax, GlobalOptions, Mohammed Atta & 9/11"

- AC

Monday, November 17, 2008

The CIA & the Brothers Krongard

Alvin Buzzy Krongard - ABC News: "In a dramatic turn of events on Capitol Hill today, the State Department inspector general recused himself from all Blackwater-related issues after admitting to Congress that his brother served on the private security contractor’s advisory board. After initially rejecting allegations that his brother, Alvin “Buzzy” Krongard, was a Blackwater board member, Howard Krongard later told lawmakers that his brother was in fact on the board. ... "

The CIA's Buzzy Krongard and Deutsche-Alex. Brown - " ... A.B. Buzzy Krongard of In-Q-Tel, formerly 'Number Three' at the CIA. Mayo Shattuck, who resigned from AB about the time the WTC fell, dogged by reports of 9/11 inside trades. These were just two of the CIA officers haunting the corridors of Deutsche-Alex. Brown. ... "
Blackwater's Brothers
The Nation
November 15, 2007

Every day, new revelations emerge in the mounting scandal rocking the Bush Administration and the mercenary company Blackwater Worldwide. Much of the attention focuses on the now infamous shooting spree in Baghdad's Nisour Square on September 16, in which seventeen Iraqi civilians were killed and twenty-four wounded. FBI investigators are now alleging that fourteen were victims of unjustified and unprovoked shooting--some were shot while they were fleeing. Investigators also say they found nothing to substantiate Blackwater's claims of being fired on by Iraqis. This comes a month after a US Army investigation determined there was "no enemy activity involved" and labeled the shootings a "criminal event." But while Blackwater gets hammered in the press, the behind-the-scenes actions of the company's paymaster, the State Department, grow more scandalous by the minute.

Blackwater Busted?

JEREMY SCAHILL: Six Guards may be charged in Iraq massacre, but critics fear the company's 'reckless behavior' will continue.

Almost from the moment the Nisour Square shootings happened, the State Department has taken actions that give the impression of trying to cover up the incident. The department's initial report on the shooting was drafted by a Blackwater contractor on official US government stationery. The FBI was not dispatched to investigate the case until two weeks after the shootings, meaning that the initial investigation was in the hands of a non-law enforcement agency, the State Department, that just happens to be Blackwater's employer. In late October it emerged that the department had actually granted some Blackwater operatives "limited use immunity" in return for their statements on the shooting. Some Blackwater agents have reportedly refused to answer FBI questions, citing their State Department-granted "immunity." This means that their statements, and information gleaned from them, cannot be used to bring criminal charges against them. The State Department also offered to facilitate the payment of what amounted to hush money to victims of the shooting, which it has done on numerous occasions for Blackwater and other companies when they kill Iraqis.

Now this story has taken yet another dramatic twist. On Wednesday the State Department Inspector General, Howard "Cookie" Krongard, was in the hot seat on Capitol Hill, where he found himself being grilled by Representative Henry Waxman's Oversight and Government Affairs Committee. Krongard is the top State Department official charged with investigating allegations of waste, fraud and abuse. In addition to all of the questionable actions by the State Department in the Blackwater investigation, Krongard has faced charges that he impeded a Justice Department investigation into Blackwater over allegations the company was illegally smuggling weapons into Iraq. But the bombshell at the hearing was the revelation that Krongard's brother, Alvin "Buzzy" Krongard, recently accepted a position as a paid consultant for Blackwater, where he serves on the company's advisory board. Until his resignation in 2004, Buzzy was the number-three man at the Central Intelligence Agency (more on that later).

Waxman's committee broke the news of Buzzy's Blackwater position as part of what can only be described as a masterful ambush of the Inspector General.

When Waxman revealed the conflict of interest with the brothers Krongard and Blackwater, alleging that Cookie Krongard had "concealed" his brother's relationship with Blackwater, the Inspector General told Waxman:

"I can tell you very frankly, I am not aware of any financial interest or position [my brother] has with respect to Blackwater. It couldn't possibly have affected anything I've done, because I don't believe it. And when these ugly rumors started recently, I specifically asked him. I do not believe it is true that he is a member of the advisory board, as you stated, and that is something I think I need to say."

This statement would quickly thrust Cookie Krongard, who was testifying under oath, in front of a firing line that would ultimately produce his recusal from the Blackwater investigation. Moments after Cookie Krongard denied that his brother had any involvement with Blackwater, the committee produced a letter from Blackwater CEO Erik Prince to Buzzy Krongard, dated July 26, inviting him to join the board and offering him a $3,500 honorarium per meeting attended plus all expenses paid. "Your experience and insight would be ideal to help our team determine where we are and where we are going," Prince wrote.

Cookie Krongard said his brother "has been involved in a lot of activities involving security. So it's no surprise that someone like Erik Prince would invite him to continue to support 'security, peace, and freedom.'" But Cookie Krongard insisted his brother had not accepted the position, saying, "I dispute that." Representative Elijah Cummings then produced a September 5 e-mail from Prince to Buzzy saying, "Welcome and thank you for accepting the invitation to be a member of the board." Cummings told Cookie, "Prince invited your brother to be at a board meeting to discuss strategic planning. And this meeting is taking place right now, in Williamsburg, Virginia, this week as we speak. Staff contacted the hotel to speak to your brother and the hotel confirmed that he was scheduled to be there."

Cookie replied that he was not aware of this, adding, "By the nature of my brother's work, you should understand that we have never discussed his work or my work, so I had no reason to even think that he had any involvement with Blackwater. But when these things surfaced, I called him and I asked him directly, he has told me he does not have any involvement, he does not have any financial interest. If you're telling me he does absolutely I would recuse myself" from the Blackwater investigation.

During a recess of the hearing, Cookie later said, he called his brother, who confirmed for him that he had indeed accepted a position on the Blackwater advisory board. Cookie abruptly announced he was recusing himself from all matters relating to Blackwater. But this is unlikely to be the end of Cookie's problems stemming from this scandal. He may actually have perjured himself. After the hearing, Buzzy Krongard told reporter Spencer Ackerman of TPM Muckraker that he had informed Cookie weeks ago of his position with Blackwater. "I had told my brother I was going on the advisory board," Buzzy said. "My brother says that is not the case. I stand by what I told my brother." When Ackerman asked Buzzy if Blackwater knew who his brother was when Prince offered him the advisory board position, Buzzy said, "You think I had to tell them? That they didn't know?" He added, "If [Cookie's] got integrity it's not gonna matter one way or other.... If he doesn't have integrity it's not gonna matter."

While Buzzy's new position on Blackwater's advisory board is indeed a salacious development, it is just the tip of the iceberg. In my book Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, I explore in depth the relationship between Buzzy Krongard and Blackwater founder Erik Prince. The two men go back at least to 2002, when Buzzy helped jump-start Blackwater's ultra-profitable role as a provider of soldiers-for-hire in the "war on terror."

Though Blackwater was founded in 1997, Blackwater Security Consulting--its mercenary division--was incorporated in Delaware on January 22, 2002. Within months, as the United States occupied Afghanistan and began planning the Iraq invasion, Blackwater Security was already turning a profit, pulling in hundreds of thousands a month from a valuable CIA contract.

One of the players in forging that first Blackwater Security contract was Buzzy Krongard, at the time executive director of the CIA, the agency's number-three position. Krongard, who was named to that post in March 2001, had an unusual background for a spook, having spent most of his adult life as an investment banker. He had built up Alex.Brown, the country's oldest investment banking firm, into one of the most successful, and eventually sold it to Bankers Trust, from which he resigned in 1998. There have been some insinuations that Krongard was working undercover for the CIA years before he officially joined the agency in 1998 as a special adviser to George Tenet. But he won't reveal how he met the CIA director, except to say that it was through "mutual friends." The Princeton alum, Hall of Fame lacrosse player and former Marine boasts of having once punched a great white shark in the jaw; and he keeps one of its teeth on a chain and pictures of the animal in his office. Despite his bravado, some at the agency thought of Krongard as a wanna-be, according to a 2001 Newsweek story published shortly after his ascension to the number-three spot. "A wanna-be? Maybe I am. Maybe I'm not. That's as much as you're going to get," Krongard responded.

While working under Tenet at the CIA, Krongard acted internally, reorganizing divisions and pushing for projects like an intelligence venture capital firm, but he did on occasion speak publicly. In October 2001, he declared, "The war will be won in large measure by forces you do not know about, in actions you will not see and in ways you may not want to know about, but we will prevail."

Some three years later, in January 2005, Krongard made news when he became the most senior Administration figure to articulate the benefits of having not killed or captured Osama bin Laden. "You can make the argument that we're better off with him [at large]," he said. "Because if something happens to bin Laden, you might find a lot of people vying for his position and demonstrating how macho they are by unleashing a stream of terror.... He's turning into more of a charismatic leader than a terrorist mastermind." Krongard also characterized bin Laden "not as a chief executive but more like a venture capitalist," saying, "Let's say you and I want to blow up Trafalgar Square. So we go to bin Laden. And he'll say, 'Well, here's some money and some passports and if you need weapons, see this guy.'"

It's not clear exactly what the original connection was between Prince and Krongard. Some have alleged that Krongard knew Prince's father. In a brief telephone interview conducted for my book, Krongard would only say he was "familiar" with Prince and Blackwater. A former Blackwater executive, however, asserted, "I know that Erik and Krongard were good buddies."

Whatever Krongard's involvement, it was during his tenure at the CIA that Blackwater landed its first security contract, in April 2002. Krongard visited Kabul and said he realized the agency's new station there was sorely lacking security. Blackwater received a $5.4 million six-month no-bid contract to provide twenty security guards for the Kabul CIA station. Krongard said it was Blackwater's offering and not his connection to Prince that led to the company landing the contract, and that he talked to Prince about the contract but wasn't certain who called whom, that he was "not sure which came first, the chicken or the egg." He said that someone else was responsible for actually signing off on the CIA contract. "Blackwater got a contract because they were the first people that could get people on the ground," Krongard said in the interview. "We were under the gun, we did whatever it took when I came back from Kabul.... The only concern we had was getting the best security for our people. If we thought Martians could provide it, I guess we would have gone after them."

The relationship between Krongard and Prince apparently got chummier after the contract was signed. "Krongard came down and visited Blackwater, and I had to take his kids around and let them shoot on the firing range a number of times," said a former Blackwater executive in an interview for my book. "That was after the contract was signed, and he may have come down just to see the company that he had just hired." Prince apparently became consumed with the prospect of being involved with secretive operations in the "war on terror"--so much so that he personally deployed on the front lines. Prince joined Jamie Smith, a former CIA operative who originally headed up Blackwater Security Consulting, as part of the original twenty-man contingent Blackwater sent to fulfill its first CIA contract, which began in May 2002, according to Robert Young Pelton's book Licensed to Kill.

Since CIA and other intelligence and security contracts are "black" contracts, it's difficult to pin down exactly how much Blackwater began pulling in after that first Afghanistan contract, but Smith described it as a rapid period of growth for Blackwater. The company's work for the CIA and the military and Prince's political and military connections would provide Blackwater with important leverage in wooing what would become its largest confirmed client, the US State Department. "After that first contract went off, there was a lot of romancing with the State Department where they were just up the road, so we traveled up there a lot in Kabul and tried to sweet-talk them into letting us on board with them," Smith said in an interview. "Once the State Department came on and there was a contract there, that opened up some different doors. Once you get your foot in the door with a government outfit that has offices in countries all over the world, it's like--and this is probably a horrible analogy--but it's something maybe like the metastasis of a cancer. You know, once you get into the bloodstream you're going to be all over the body in just a couple of days, you know what I mean? So if you get in that pipeline, then everywhere that they've got a problem and an office, there's an opportunity."

A year later, Prince's mercenary operations would get the boost of a lifetime when Blackwater was handed a $27 million no-bid contract to serve as the elite bodyguards of the US occupation of Iraq. To date that arrangement has brought Blackwater about $1 billion in federal "security" contracts. Is it just a coincidence that one of the key players in securing Blackwater's role as the leading mercenary company of the Bush Administration has a brother whose job it was to oversee Blackwater? Or that the Inspector General stands accused of failing to do his duty and actually impeding federal investigations into the company's potentially criminal activities? Is there a connection between the Krongards and the State Department's systematic cover-up campaign for Blackwater? Unsurprisingly, Blackwater's spokesperson, Anne Tyrrell, said, "We do not see a conflict of interest." But these aren't questions for the company's PR people. These are questions that must be answered by the brothers Krongard under oath.

About Jeremy Scahill

Jeremy Scahill, a Puffin Foundation Writing Fellow at The Nation Institute, is the author of the bestselling Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army, published by Nation Books. He is an award-winning investigative journalist and correspondent for the national radio and TV program Democracy Now!.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Path to 9/11 (Part 17): Buffett-CIA-Coke Links to a Fugitive Uzbek Princess, ZeroMax, GlobalOptions, Mohammed Atta & 9/11

Edited by Alex Constantine (Revised)

Gulnara Karimov, eldest daughter of the President of Uzbekistan, Islam Karimov

Also see: "Coca-Cola & the Nazis/British Comedian Publicizes Coke's Nazi Past," "Some of the Buffett Family's Political, CIA and Nazi Connections," and "Warren Buffett's Father was a Birch Society Nazi" "Warren Buffett ... was on the audit committee of Coca-Cola Co.'s board when the SEC found the soft-drink maker had misled investors about its earnings. ... "

Background from "Warren Buffett Buys Nebraska Furniture Mart, Scott Fetzer and an Airplane for Berkshire Hathaway," "In 1988, he started buying up Coca-Cola stock like an addict. His old neighbor, now the President of Coca-Cola, noticed someone was loading up on shares and became concerned. After researching the transactions, he noticed the trades were being placed from the Midwest. He immediately thought of Buffett, whom he called. Warren confessed to being the culprit and requested they don't speak of it until he was legally required to disclose his holdings at the 5% threshold. Within a few months, Berkshire owned 7% of the company, or $1.02 billion dollars worth of the stock. Within three years, Buffett's Coca-Cola stock would be worth more than the entire value of Berkshire when he made the investment. ... "
9/11: " ... Oddly enough, SunTrust Banks were the most heavily relied upon by the 9/11 hijackers and no one seems to know how they were able to use false social security numbers and still be able to set up bank accounts. ... There is a link between SunTrust and Atta/Coca Cola and Gulnara or ZeroMax at least in theory and of course, SunTrust is Coca Cola and Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway is the main player in both those interlinked entities. ... "

Warren Buffet link to Fugitive Uzbek Princess
(June. 11, 2007 Scoreboard contributor)

Recent articles have noted that the self-styled 'private CIA/FBI' called GlobalOptions has as a client Gulnara Karimov, the daughter of Uzbekistan strongman Islam Karimov. She is wanted by INTERPOL for allegedly leaving New Jersey in 2001 during a custody dispute with her children's father and fleeing to Uzbekistan. INTERPOL issues what it calls 'red notices' for fugitive persons on a global scale. Apparently there is one for her. This information became public in an article published by Harper's Magazine or their online blog on alleged corruption called Washington Babylon.

It is suspected that a company in Uzbekistan known as ZeroMax is an alter ego for the fugitive "Princess of the Uzbeks" as the controlled media calls her. ZeroMax denies that she is involved with them, but allegedly few in her native land believe that. ZeroMax is based in Zug, Switzerland and has the Coca Cola franchise in Uzbekistan among other interests.

ZeroMax is being sued by the former husband of Ms. Gulnara and it is odd how she travels to Russia and Paris untouched in spite of the Interpol fugitive status. One of the defendants along with ZeroMax is Coca Cola itself. The largest shareholder in Coca Cola is Berkshire Hathaway, the investment firm started by the legendary "Oracle" of Omaha, Warren Buffet.

Likewise, SunTrust Bank has a very close relationship with Coca Cola, it goes back to the beginnings of the famous company [No longer - See:]. The relationship between Coca Cola and SunTrust has been described as incestous by a famous left wing activist and organizer. In fact, the original formula for coke sits in one of its bank vaults.

Oddly enough, SunTrust Banks were the most heavily relied upon by the 9/11 hijackers and no one seems to know how they were able to use false social security numbers and still be able to set up bank accounts. Mohammed Atta had money wired to him at his SunTrust account from the UAE.

The Israeli intelligence related website DEBKA indicates that Gulnara Karimov may have links to terrorism. This should be taken with a grain of salt at least since DEBKA may have an agenda for saying this. This article does not agree or disagree nor is able to judge the DEBKA article as to accuracy. The reader must investigate the accuracy independently - but.... There is a link between SunTrust and Atta/Coca Cola and Gulnara or ZeroMax at least in theory and of course, SunTrust is Coca Cola and Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway is the main player in both those interlinked entities.

Further, Coca Cola has long been associated at least in speculation and theory as linked with the CIA. The behavior of Warren Buffet on 9/11 has been the topic of speculation and conspiracy theory. This includes the coincidence of his being at the same military base in Nebraska on that day.

A very odd development is the fact that attorneys from the blue chip firm Crowell & Moring represent ROZ Trading, Ltd. based in New Jersey, USA. They are suing ZeroMax, Coca Cola Export Corporation - which obviously link up to SunTrust Bank and Warren Buffet. The suit also points at Gulnara Karimova, even though that is denied and in dispute. She is a client of GlobalOptions if connected to ZeroMax which is the local partner in Uzbekistan for Coke.

A retired partner in Crowell & Moring sits on the Board of SunTrust Banks. Karen Hastie Williams. Therefore a retired partner in Crowell & Moring sits on the board of Suntrust a company very closely linked to Coca Cola , a defendant along with Zeromax its Uzbek Partner in a lawsuit filed by other Crowell & Moring law firm lawyers.

Ms. Williams was a law clerk for US Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, who it turns out was a freemason and an informant for the FBI. GlobalOptions is linked to William Webster and William Sessions leaders of the FBI. Webster is the only man to ever head the CIA and the FBI. There are ALLEGED links regarding the 9/11 attacks stock trades in a 'conspiracy theory' site.

One of the suspect options trading companies with alleged links to 9/11 according to the conspiratorial article ... is located as noted on the previous link in Zug, Switzerland. This is also where ZeroMax is based and Zug is the stomping ground of Clinton-pardoned Marc Rich.


Crowell Moring is against the Republic of Uzbekistan, Coca Cola and Zeromax.

Coca Cola is a partner of ZeroMax and closely linked to SunTrust Bank.
A retired partner of Crowell Moring which apparently still has a website at that office sits on the Board of SunTrust Bank.*

(The appearance of a conflict of interest does not imply misconduct - only that the firm should disclose this and move to withdraw as counsel if deemed appropriate.) *

A lot of odd players surround all of this activity, Zug Switzerland, Interpol warrants, Fugitive Princess......Warren Buffet is a major player in Coca Cola, his company's partner in Uzbekistan is ZeroMax linked to the Interpol Fugitive Princess Gulnara Karimova.

1. Terror suspicions against Gulnara by DEBKA. 2. Warren Buffet odd behaviour on 9/11. 3. SunTrust linked to Coca Cola and thus to Warren Buffet was Mohamed Atta's favorite Bank. Warren ....strike 3 - your out as they say in Baseball.
Buffett, SunTrust, Fidelity Savings, Tom Kean, Offutt AFB and 9/11

Excerpt: "Duncan & Blake 'Suicides' Solved: The Omaha/Des Moines Allegations, MediaBistro.Com Data Mining & the CIA," by myself:

Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway/SunTrust Banks and 9/11: "Officials said the hijackers appeared to have relied most heavily upon SunTrust Banks for the movement of funds through accounts opened in Florida ... "

"Anne Tatlock found out about the collision of a plane with the North Tower while en route to the U.S. Strategic Command headquarters in Omaha. The 62-year-old chief executive of Fiduciary Trust Co. International was one of a small group of business leaders at a charity event hosted by Warren Buffett. Military officers boarded the bus she was on, and escorted her to an officer's lounge and a television, just in time to see the second plane hit the South Tower between the 87th and 93rd floors--right where 650 of her employees worked. Fiduciary, which today manages $44 billion of securities for pension plans, endowments and wealthy individuals..." - Forbes (10/15/01)

WHO ELSE ATTENDED BUFFETT'S CHARITY EVENT AT OFFUTT?: " ... Warren Buffett hosted this event. Rush Limbaugh said on the air that he was there also. Then there is the group of top Pentagon officials who suddenly canceled travel plans on September 10th due to security concerns. ... "

Anne Tatlock

" ... Tatlock is on the board of Merck and Howard Hughes Medical Center."

THE FIDUCIARY TRUST 9/11 TERROR DRILL: " ... Fiduciary Trust, located in the south tower, had scheduled an emergency drill for the day." NY Times (03/31/06) clip. ... "

FIDUCIARY TRUST AND 9/11: " ... Thomas H. Kean, Coca-Cola executive - sits on the BOD of a Fortune 500 company [Franklin Resources, based in San Mateo, California] which owns the company (Fiduciary Trust) which had offices where Flight 175 hit the South tower of the WTC. ...

Also on the BOD of Franklin was the CEO of Fiduciary, Anne Tatlock, who had a famous near miss - being out of the office that day in order to attend Warren Buffett’s celebrity charity event, arriving at Offutt AFB just in time to witness the second plane hit the South tower. Of course, Offutt is where Dubya would land later in the day; the same location where Brent Scowcroft was en route to observe the nuclear wargame Global Guardian… "

Kean has long served as director of Fiduciary Trust Co. and FRANKLIN RESOURCES.

Franklin acquired Fiduciary Trust FIVE MONTHS before the WTC collapsed and profited handsomely from the tragedy: "Only five months before the attacks, mutual fund firm Franklin bought Fiduciary - a 70-year-old asset manager catering to high-net worth clients and institutional investors - for $825 million.... Through the first two weeks after the attacks, Franklin had paid out $16.46 million in benefits payments to victims' families, according to its annual report to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Franklin could write off $19.8 million in lease, property and equipment leases - and recover an estimated $27.2 million from insurance ... "
GlobalOptions & the CIA

Washington Insiders Lend Helping Hand to “Princess of Uzbeks”
By Ken Silverstein

On its website, GlobalOptions, a Washington-based corporate security and investigations firm, describes itself as a “private CIA, Defense Department, Justice Department, and FBI, all rolled into one,” and says it offers

attorneys, crisis communications specialists, investigators, former senior policymakers and even commandos who can be mobilized on a moment’s notice to protect you, your employees, corporate reputation, bottom line, and share holder value.

The company does not reveal who it works for but pledges “absolute loyalty to our clients, because we believe that clients are the most important people in the world.”

According to recently filed court documents, GlobalOptions clients include Zeromax, a Swiss-based holding company widely reported to be the property of Gulnara Karimova, the powerful daughter of Uzbek dictator Islam Karimov. (A well-placed source told me that she exercises control over the company through a chain of individuals, including two whom she directly employed.) Gulnara, like the rest of the Karimov clan, has grown fabulously wealthy through corruption. She’s also the subject of an Interpol arrest warrant because she fled the United States with her children after losing a child-custody battle with her ex-husband, an American citizen.

GlobalOptions was founded in 1998 by Neil Livingstone, a former Pentagon and State Department advisor who frequently appears on TV to opine about terrorism. Livingstone was once one of the voices issuing repeated public calls for the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, and following the American invasion, GlobalOptions began to offer consulting services to companies doing business in Iraq. Now he calls for destabilizing the Iranian regime. In addition to Livingstone, a host of big name insiders hold top positions at the firm, including former CIA director James Woolsey and former FBI and CIA director William Webster.

GlobalOptions recently went public and a 10-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission says that its “foreign clients operate primarily in Russia and the Caribbean.” The Wall Street Journal has reported that GlobalOptions has worked for a Cyprus-based firm called Highrock Holdings, which is controlled by a shady Ukrainian businessman named Dimytro Firtash. “In 2003-2005, Mr. Firtash brokered several billion-dollar deals between Gazprom and the government of Ukraine,” the Journal said. “They netted big profits for Highrock–and criticism from the U.S. ambassador to the Ukraine at the time for the deals’ lack of transparency . . . [I]n a recent lawsuit filed by GlobalOptions against Highrock claiming unpaid bills, the security firm alleged that Mr. Firtash hired GlobalOptions for an unspecified ‘special operation’ on behalf of a Ukrainian government official.”

GlobalOptions is now in the middle of another lawsuit with Livingstone, who left the firm after it went public to start a new company called Executive Action. Because Executive Action provides roughly identical services, GlobalOptions is accusing Livingstone of seeking to steal away its clients. Livingstone explained his position in a letter to clients explaining his departure, which I obtained from court records: “I did not like the bureaucratic and other constraints of a public company, nor was I comfortable with some of the disclosures that have to be made, especially concerning our discreet clients and cases.”

Among the documents from that lawsuit is an e-mail to Livingstone from Tom Ondeck, who runs a crisis management unit for GlobalOptions. A recent New York Times story detailed the role played by Ondeck–a disbarred attorney, according to the Times–in bringing a luxury golf resort to Akwa Ibom, a remote, desperately poor state in Nigeria. The letter identified four clients that Ondeck and Livingstone served jointly, and which GlobalOptions planned to keep: Akwa Ibom, Hayground Cove Asset Management, the Motley Rice law firm, and Zeromax. (I called Ondeck at GlobalOptions to ask him about the Zeromax account, but he declined to return my phone call.)

Gulnara, a would-be singer, is considered a possible successor to her father. A story in the Guardian identified $60 million in assets belonging to Gulnara, which included nightclubs, investment holdings, and a recording studio. That is believed to be a very small portion of her overall wealth, which reportedly includes stakes in energy and telecommunications ventures as well. “Uzbek media,” said the newspaper, “which are tightly state-controlled, have praised Ms. Karimova for charity works, dubbing her the Princess of Uzbeks.” It looks like GlobalOptions is Princess Gulnara’s escort to the Washington Ball.
Gulnara and Daddy's Death Squads

“ ... She [Gulnara Karimova] owns nothing directly, but everyone knows who is in control.” All this is possible thanks to “daddy” and the disappearance of competitors–the effectiveness of the SNB, the Uzbek secret services, is sadly well known. ... "

July 8, 2008

Washington Babylon
By Ken Silverstein

Northern Italy’s leading daily, La Stampa of Turin, reports on the “Unavoidable Rise of the Beautiful Gulnara,” on Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of Uzbekistan’s autocrat-for-life Islam Karimov. When daddy rules with an iron hand, and you’re the heir apparent, the sky is truly the limit.

Her wishes are orders. Everything she wants, she gets… She graduated from Harvard and took a doctorate in political science from the University of Tashkent, she holds a karate black belt and is a poet, singer, jewelry designer, goes wild over luxury goods, haute couture, and gemstones, she directs the Center for Political Studies of Uzbekistan, and is the founding president of a charitable foundation, founding president of the Forum of Uzbek Culture and Art and Advisor-Minister Plenipotentiary in Uzbekistan’s embassy in Russia, and finally—but most significantly—she is a voracious and ruthless business woman.

Today, according to some analysts, the woman known simply as ‘the daughter’ owns half the country. In 2001, she divorced her first husband, an American of Afghan-Uzbek origin, and set out to build her own empire. Hotels, restaurants, night clubs, a television chain (TV Markaz), a radio station (Earth), a magazine (Bella Terra), a mobile phone company … nothing resists her bulimic impulses …People talk about the “Gulnarization” of Uzbekistani industry.

“She owns nothing directly, but everyone knows who is in control.” All this is possible thanks to “daddy” and the disappearance of competitors–the effectiveness of the SNB, the Uzbek secret services, is sadly well known.
Karimova's Think-Tank

" ... Karimova also supervises the Center [for] Political Studies, a think-tank on internal and external policy of Uzbekistan, regional security, economy and international development. It has close partnership ties with a number of foreign research centers. ... "
Karimova's Think-Tank and USAID Sponsor a Security Conference

May 26, 2008

From: "CAPS' analyst participates in an international conference in Uzbekistan":

The Foundation for Regional Policy of Uzbekistan (FRP) and the Center for Political Studies (CPS), Uzbekistan with support from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), USAID and Institute for New Democracies (IND) organized the international conference “Problems of ensuring security and sustainable development in Central Asia” in Tashkent, Uzbekistan ...
Center for Political Studies – caprice of President’s daughter or a real think-tank?
Posted by Mansurhon
March 28, 2008

When Center for Political Studies was founded by Alisher Fayzullaev, one of the first diplomats who represented our country in UK in mid-90th he couldn’t imagine that his brainchild would generate Gulnara Karimova’s interest in political studies in future.

“He gathered 20-25 most active students of the University of World Economy and Diplomacy and called those who were interested to make proposals on topics and fields for academic researches. Also he conducted specialized courses on Leadership, meetings with outstanding academicians, politicians both local and foreign. It hadn’t had a big interest of any governmental structures and functionalized as an NGO.” – says one of the students participated in that meeting.

Gulnara Karimova, who wasn’t well-known enough as a public figure and her (or her father’s) PR-agents decided to start the campaign of creating new image of President’s elder daughter with appropriation of CPS.

The first wise thing Gulnara Karimova did was blocking the passageway from the first floor to the second in one of the blocks of the University of World Economy and Diplomacy with security aims in order to let her have free safe (from whom and what?) way to her new office. While the passageway for student which used to pass by this way was transferred close to the Rector’s office. It became looking like courtyard without any hint to the Rector’s presence on the reverse side of the wall.

And no one expressed indignation because of impertinent appropriation of the CPS, even Alisher Fayzullaev. He had to be silent because he knew who is the new owner of the Center.

Ambitious Director held pompous opening of the Center as if it was opened by her and the Center didn’t exist before the presentation. But after a little period of time she put her deputy instead of herself and used to visit “her” center once a week, or more rare.

Nowadays there is no conference on political issues when CPS isn’t announced as a partner-organizer: starting from Gaz&Oil-Uzbekistan Conference which is held annually and ending with negotiations on governmental level.

After becoming popular as a pop-star everybody found in Googoosha a new side of Gulnara Karimova. After she was assigned with Islam Karimov’s special decree to a new position of deputy minister on cultural affairs within Ministry of foreign affairs, everybody found her a good political leader. All these reincarnations were supposed to be understood by people of Uzbekistan as a presentation of a new potential political leader of Uzbekistan and heiress of Presidential throne of Islam Karimov. ...

So, what is CPS looking for in the future: to be recognized as a real think-tank or stay as another [un]successful experiment of President’s PR-agents?–-caprice-of-president’s-daughter-or-a-real-think-tank/

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Man Sentenced in 9/11 Fraud Case

By Debra Friedman
The Advocate

A former Greenwich man who credited himself and his golden retriever Bear with recovering bodies at the World Trade Center after Sept. 11, 2001, has been sentenced to eight months in federal prison after his conviction for fraudulently obtaining thousands of dollars in government relief funds, according to court records.

Shields pleaded guilty earlier this year to illegally obtaining government money from two agencies, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency and American Red Cross, according to documents on file in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

He was arrested, along with his sister, Patricia Shields, in March 2007 and initially pleaded not guilty, records show. In March 2008, Scott Shields changed his plea to guilty, according to court records.

"Mr. Shields has pleaded guilty to defrauding the American Red Cross and FEMA, in an attempt to exploit programs that were providing financial assistance to people affected by one of this country's greatest tragedies," read the sentencing opinion handed down by District Judge Robert Sweet on Oct. 14.

The sentence opinion said that Shields had a previous conviction for bank fraud 18 years ago involving a "significant sum."

After his release from prison, Shields will enter into three years of supervised release. He also was ordered pay back $49,439 to the government. His sister received an identical sentence.

According to court records, Scott and Patricia Shields applied for mortgage and rental assistance from FEMA after Sept. 11, 2001, claiming they lived in Manhattan at the time. However, government records show they were living and working in Greenwich and not eligible for FEMA assistance.

The aid only was meant for people who lived near the World Trade Center, those who had been injured by the events and businesses that were damaged.

Scott and Patricia Shields were evicted from their rental unit in Greenwich in October 2001 for nonpayment of rent, court documents show.

While they did move to lower Manhattan after their eviction, they were not eligible for the funds they received and did not use them to pay rent owned on their city apartment, according to court records.

They were evicted for nonpayment of rent at the Manhattan location, according to court records.

Scott Shields' sentencing comes after six years of making claims about his search and rescue exploits, which were detailed in a book titled "Bear: Heart of a Hero," credited to Captain Scott Shields and co-author Nancy West.

The book was pulled from shelves in 2006, according to a spokesman from the publisher, Hero Dog Publications, after the firm realized Shields was not a captain.

Shields' main claim was that he and his dog Bear aided in the rescue of victims at ground zero. Roy Gross, chief of the Department at the Suffolk County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, whose organization maintained logs of every dog who assisted in the rescue effort, said Shields and Bear were never documented in its records.

"He was a fraud, unfortunately," Gross said.

Shields claimed in a Greenwich Time article in 2001 that he was a marine safety specialist who consulted with the New York City parks department.

Phil Abramson, a spokesman for the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, said the department was aware of Shields' claim, but that it was not true.

"Scott Shields was never employed by the parks department and he was never connected to the parks department," Abramson said.

Shields' Manhattan-based attorney, Joel Mark Stein, said he had no comment about the case.

Shields is scheduled to being serving his term on Wednesday, according to the clerk's office for the United States District Court in the Southern District of New York.

- Staff Writer Debra Friedman can be reached at or 625-4439.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

"Khashoggi Suspected of Financing 9/11 [Plotline]"

" ... El-Assir is suspected of arming Hezbollah and associations with al-Qaida and has been trading weapons for many years, especially in the Middle East and Africa. El-Assir has allegedly close connections with the man suspected of financing the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Adnan Khashoggi, a close friend of Osama bin Laden. ... "

Poland’s shipyards, the Kuwaiti prince and the international arms dealer

Poland’s ministry of treasury ignored an offer from a member of Kuwait’s ruling family, Mubarak al Jaber al Sabah, to buy Polish shipyards via the mediation of an international weapon dealer.

The Kuwaiti prince attempted to invest in the shipyards a year ago. The potential investor was to be SPF Communication Team Fortis Bank, behind which was Prince Mubarak al Jaber al Sabah, the oldest son of the former emir of Kuwait. A mediator in the transaction, however, was to be an international weapon dealer Abdul Rahman el-Assir from Lebanon, who was conducting the prince’s business.

The ministry of treasury confirmed that it received the offer form Kuwait, but ignored it, even though it was positively evaluated. “Kuwait wanted to modernise its fleet by renovating old and buying new ships,” explained one of the high officials of the ministry in Rzeczpospolita today. “It would mean large commissions for the shipyards”.

Still, the Polish officials refused to negotiate with the controversial mediator el-Assir. “We do not conduct negotiations with mediators. The more so if they have very controversial connections and make suspicious deals,” a representative of the ministry explained.

El-Assir is suspected of arming Hezbollah and associations with al-Qaida and has been trading weapons for many years, especially in the Middle East and Africa. El-Assir has allegedly close connections with the man suspected of financing the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Adnan Khashoggi, a close friend of Osama bin Laden.

Poland‘s shipyards are currently in danger of bankruptcy as the EU ponders the viability of new privatisation plans submitted by the government. (jm)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The War on Our Civil Liberties is no Quagmire: Sensenbrenner Says "Real ID Would Have Prevented 9/11 Terrorists From Boarding Planes"

By Penny Starr, Senior Staff Writer
November 04, 2008

( – Panelists with the Stop Real ID Coalition are calling for repeal of the Real ID Act of 2005, which they said violates states’ rights and the U.S. Constitution and creates a national identification card that gives the government the ability to monitor citizens and invade their privacy.

But Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) [who defeated Independent challenger Robert Raymond on November fourth] helped write the bill with the House Judiciary Committee, said if the law had been in place before Sept. 11, 2001, the 19 terrorists could not have boarded the planes that they crashed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

“We use driver’s licenses as identification documents, because there is no national identity card, and I would submit that we would have a greater push for a national ID card in the Congress if we didn’t have Real ID,” Sensenbrenner told

“(Real ID) just firms up the state driver’s licenses as a way to prevent a loophole in the system that 19 terrorists were able to exploit to pull off the biggest domestic tragedy in the history of our country.”

He also said the Real ID Act is based on the recommendations of the bi-partisan 9/11 Commission.

“The reason this is necessary is that the 9/11 Commission found that the 19 hijackers had valid driver’s licenses issued by five states and they all had multiple driver’s licenses,” Sensenbrenner said.

“There are two principles involved in Real ID. One is: one person, one license; and the other is: no driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants or people who are not legally present in the United States,” he said.

Panelists at the press conference were billed as “diverse” and “bipartisan” and included representatives of the American Civil Liberties Union, American Center for Law and Justice, American Policy Center, Liberty Coalition, and Republican state Reps. Sam Rohrer of Pennsylvania and Charles Key of Oklahoma.

They presented a long list of reasons why they opposed the legislation, including the claim that Real ID would force states to comply with the law, which Key said inspired him to draw up his own state amendment to challenge it.

“Key’s amendment draws a line in the sand and tells the government, you must cease and desist from threatening the sovereignty of the states,” said Mark Lerner, co-founder of the Stop Real ID Coalition.

Sensenbrenner, however, said that Real ID does not force states to comply.

The Real ID is consistent with federalism, because it is voluntary,” Sensenbrenner said. “However, if the state chooses not to comply with Real ID, then their citizens have to get some type of federally accepted ID for federal purposes,” including for boarding aircraft.

The law mandates that the federal government cannot accept a state driver’s license for “any official purpose” unless it meets the minimum requirements of Real ID – those rules require, among other things, state entities that issue driver’s licenses to confirm the authenticity of documents needed to get a license.

Panelists also claimed that the Real ID law would create a central database with “biometric” information that the government and the agencies that operate it can share at will, even with the governments of other countries.

“That is absolutely false,” Sensenbrenner said. “Real ID does not create a new database. What Real ID does is it requires states to check applicants against databases that are already maintained by the other states.

“And this is the same system that has been used for almost 20 years to check out whether someone who applies for a commercial driver’s license has a valid commercial driver’s license issued by another state,” he added.

Some panelists said they opposed the Real ID Act, because it infringes on people’s privacy by requiring driver’s licenses to include personal information, such as political or religious affiliation.

But according to the law, the information required only includes an individual’s full legal name, date of birth, gender, driver’s license number, a digital photo, address of principle residence, and the individual’s signature. The law does call for “physical security features” and “common machine-readable technology” to make checking data between states possible.

“That’s the kind of information that has been on people’s driver’s licenses for as long as I can remember,” Sensenbrenner said, adding that making state driver’s licenses compatible is necessary to make the system work. “There has to be some kind of uniformity involved so that the databases match up.”

But panelists painted a picture of a much more sinister system that puts private information about U.S. citizens in the hands of corporations, or what Rohrer described as “big business entities.”

“That’s a joke,” Sensenbrenner said. “The 9/11 Commission was not in the pocket of corporations. Real ID came out of a recommendation of the 9/11 Commission, purely and simply. And the 9/11 Commission said implicitly that false identification documents are as important to terrorists as explosives.”

In fact, he added, Mohammed Atta, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, could have been thwarted from carrying out his plans if the Real ID Act was in place. The law says temporary licenses should be issued to people who are only in the country temporarily, including the kind of student visa Atta carried.

“The reason he was able to use his Florida driver’s license to get on the plane is that he got a six-year driver’s license for a six-month visa,” Sensenbrenner said.

The coalition said that nearly half the states have spoken out against the Real ID Act of 2005 and some, including Oklahoma, have said they will not comply.

Although the May 2008 deadline for states to sign on has passed, the Department of Homeland Security reports that states that request an extension will have until Dec. 31, 2009 to meet federal requirements for state driver's licenses. Some states could qualify for an extension date of May 10, 2011

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Informant in Fort Dix Case Paid Nearly $240,000

By GEOFF MULVIHILL/Associated Press via
October 27, 2008

CAMDEN, N.J. - Being an informant for the FBI in the Fort Dix terror investigation has paid well, a witness explained to jurors Monday.

John Stermel, an investigator assigned to an FBI counterterrorism task force, spent Monday on the stand detailing the role of informant Mahmoud Omar, who wore a wire for 16 months and recorded 200 conversations in the investigation of five men accused of planning to shoot soldiers at the Army training base.

The 39-year-old Omar was expected to testify beginning Tuesday. Lawyers expect that he will be on the witness stand for several days.

Defense lawyers say it was Omar who tried to plot an attack, not their clients _ all foreign-born Muslims in their 20s who are all charged with conspiracy to kill military personnel and attempted murder. The men, who lived for years in the Philadelphia suburb of Cherry Hill, were arrested in May 2007.

They have been in federal custody since their arrest.

No attack happened.

For his help, authorities will recommend that immigration officials, who once were considering deporting Omar, offer him legal resident status _ perhaps even citizenship, Stermel testified.

By year's end, Omar will have received nearly $240,000 for his help: $185,000 in direct payments plus reimbursement for $25,000 in expenses _ including $2,000 to repair his car _ and nearly $29,000 in rent.

Weekly payments of $1,500 began in August 2006, the month Omar went with one of the defendants, Mohamad Shnewer, to check out Fort Dix and other military installations in New Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania, Stermel said.

The government also has paid the former used car salesman's $1,400-a-month rent since someone working for a defense lawyer in the case tracked him down more than a year ago, Stermel said. He needed to be relocated then for security reasons, the investigator said.

Jurors also heard about Omar's past on Monday, though some details remain sketchy. The Egyptian-born man told investigators that he sneaked into the United States through Mexico in 1995, but told a probation office that it was actually three years earlier.

He pleaded guilty in 2001 to a bank fraud charge and was under investigation in January 2005 in a similar case, Stermel said.

It was then he agreed to become a federal informant in return for not having charges brought. But apparently, he had second thoughts. Stermel said that later the same day, he was picked up at a border crossing between Detroit and Canada.

He agreed to return to the Philadelphia area and help authorities, who say his work has resulted in three criminal convictions and other active investigations.

Stermel said it was serendipity that landed Omar on the Fort Dix case in March 2006.

In January 2006, the FBI had obtained a video of a group of men firing weapons and shouting "Allah akbar," or "God is great," and was trying to decide whether they were a threat, Stermel said.

He said Omar didn't know about the video. But in March 2006, Omar told his handlers that he shopped at a small grocery store in Pennsauken, where he got to know Shnewer, who was one of the people on the video. Omar told authorities that Shnewer was "tight with the religion," or a Muslim extremist.

Anticipating defense attacks on Omar's credibility, a prosecutor asked Stermel about Omar's missteps. Among them: He tested positive for marijuana once while on probation, admitted selling a Social Security number and used to a fake address to try to get a Virginia driver's license.

Shnewer's lawyer, Rocco Cipparone, began his cross-examination of Stermel by asking if he agreed or disagreed with this statement: "If it were not for Mr. Omar's cooperation in this investigation, there would not be a case against Mr. Shnewer."

"I can't say that," replied Stermel, who remained unflappable through hours of grilling by defense lawyers. "We would have investigated it until its logical conclusion with or without an informant.",0,6073222.story

Monday, October 27, 2008

Obit.: Keyboardist Merl Sauders was Booked on Flight 93, but Rescheduled to Watch a Football Game

Star keyboardist Merl Saunders dies
Joel Selvin, Chronicle Senior Pop Music Critic
October 25, 2008

(10-24) 16:44 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- Keyboardist Merl Saunders, the gentle lion of the San Francisco music scene best known as co-captain of guitarist Jerry Garcia's solo excursions outside the Grateful Dead, died Friday at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center after fighting infections.

The 74-year-old musician suffered a debilitating stroke 6 1/2 years ago and, although he lost the ability to speak, he made numerous sentimental guest appearances at shows over those years playing with one hand.

"I never met anybody so happy who had a stroke," said Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart. "In the end, the only thing that lit him up was the music. Sometimes he'd cry, but I've never seen anybody so happy in the realm of music."

The native San Franciscan attended Polytechnic High School with singer Johnny Mathis.

After serving in the Army from 1953 to 1957, he played jazz organ on the same circuit as Jimmy Smith and Brother Jack McDuff. He worked as musical director of the Billy Williams Revue and served in a similar capacity in Oscar Brown Jr.'s off-Broadway show "Big Time Buck White." He backed up Dinah Washington and jammed with Miles Davis. Mr. Saunders, who was rarely seen in public without his trademark aviator shades and black leather fisherman's cap, started playing with Garcia in 1971 at a small Fillmore Street nightclub called the Matrix, where the Grateful Dead guitarist liked to hold informal jam sessions on Dead nights off. Within months, the loose-knit band was playing to packed houses at small local clubs like the Keystone Korner in North Beach every weekend the Dead wasn't working. Members sometimes included former Creedence Clearwater rhythm guitarist Tom Fogerty and former Journey rhythm guitarist George Tickner.

The Saunders-Garcia Band, as the group came to be called, backed Mr. Saunders on his 1971 solo album, "Heavy Turbulence," and recorded two albums for Berkeley's Fantasy Records.

"Merl was an ensemble guy, a groupist," said Hart, who played with Mr. Saunders in his early '80s solo group, High Noon. "He brought those sensibilities to the Garcia band. He let Jerry have his flights of fancy."

Mr. Saunders told The Chronicle in 1972 that playing with Garcia offered them both an opportunity to experiment and explore different forms of music. "We do it just for fun," he said.

With the addition of saxophonist Martin Fierro in 1974, the group transformed into the Legion of Mary and disbanded the following year. Mr. Saunders also played in Reconstruction with Garcia in 1979 and 1980. Garcia appeared on Mr. Saunders' 1990 solo album and video, "Blues From the Rainforest," a surprise hit on the New Age music charts.

After Garcia fell into a diabetic coma in 1986 and lost some of his basic motor skills, Mr. Saunders spent hours daily with the stricken guitarist running scales, working him out on jazz standards such as "My Funny Valentine."

Mr. Saunders' music appeared on such soundtracks as "Fritz the Cat" and "Steelyard Blues." He worked on the TV series "Nash Bridges" and, as musical director of the 1985 TV series "The New Twilight Zone," inveigled the Grateful Dead into a new recording of the classic theme song.

He recorded numerous albums, toured constantly and earned a welcome spot in the post-Dead jam band scene. Mr. Saunders headlined the Haight Street Music Fair for 24 consecutive years.

After his stroke, Mr. Saunders' musician son, Tony Saunders, completed his final solo album, "Still Groovin'." The album featured duets with Bonnie Raitt and Mavis Staples. Huey Lewis stepped up with a lead vocal after Mr. Saunders was disabled.

In his first public appearance following the stroke, Mr. Saunders attended the September 2004 CD release party at the Great American Music Hall, and played a handful of notes on the keyboard.

Mr. Saunders cheated death twice before. He was booked to return to San Francisco on United Flight 93 out of Newark, N.J., on Sept. 11, 2001, but decided to take an earlier flight so he could get home in time to watch the 49ers on Monday Night Football. In 2002, he underwent surgery for cancer, only weeks before his stroke.

He is survived by his longtime companion, Deborah Hall; his sons, Tony of Martinez and Merl Saunders Jr. of Novato; daughter Susan Mora of Oakland; six grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday at First AME Zion Church, 2159 Golden Gate Ave., San Francisco.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Shake-Up at Scholars for 9-11 Truth & Justice Over Draft Bill Sent to Eight House Members
Press Release for October 25, 2008

On October 18, 2008, an OpEdNews article titled, "8 House Members View Draft Bill on Independent Science/Tech Probe of WTC 1, 2, 7 Collapses," was published by four members of the group Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice ( The authors of the article and draft bill are not spokespersons for Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice, and therefore are individually responsible for it. Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice does not endorse the draft bill due to the inclusion of numerous unscientific claims and misrepresentations, and condemns in the strongest of terms any associations between the organization and the claims presented by the authors of this bill. As stated at the front page of their website, Scholars for 9-11 Truth and Justice "take[s care to present the strongest, most credible research available..."

Berkeley, CA (PRWEB) October 25, 2008 -- On October 18, 2008, an OpEdNews article titled, "8 House Members View Draft Bill on Independent Science/Tech Probe of WTC 1, 2, 7 Collapses," was published by four members of the group Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice ( The authors of the article and draft bill are not spokespersons for Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice, and therefore are individually responsible for it.

Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice does not endorse the draft bill due to the inclusion of numerous unscientific claims and misrepresentations, and condemns in the strongest of terms any associations between the organization and the claims presented by the authors of this bill. As stated at the front page of their website, Scholars for 9-11 Truth and Justice "take[s care to present the strongest, most credible research available..."

While in agreement with the authors of this bill that a new investigation into the tragic events of September 11, 2001 is warranted, representatives of the Scholars group note that the draft bill and article lack basic scientific rigor and credibility, with statements such as, "the entire WTC [complex was destroyed by directed energy weaponry (DEW)," and the ideas that "nuclear materials, missiles or DEW weapons were used." The sister publication of the Scholars group, The Journal of 9/11 Studies, has numerous peer-reviewed scientific articles refuting such claims.

Scholars for 9/11 Truth & Justice believes that a much better bill can be crafted using the strong analysis in articles by its members, several of which are recently published in scientific journals, including The Open Civil Engineering Journal, The Environmentalist, and the Journal of Engineering Mechanics.

Kevin Ryan, a former Underwriters Laboratories (UL) manager who was fired in 2004 for publicly questioning the NIST report, and a committee member of the Scholars' group, says the bill is harmful to the cause of exposing the truth. "Basically," he said, "asking Congress to investigate many poorly defined, and highly implausible hypotheses minimizes the chances that Congress would be willing or able to investigate the actual evidence for the demolition of three WTC buildings." In fact, the bill also omits any mention of the 9/11 Family Steering Committee, which provided hundreds of questions left unanswered by the 9/11 Commission.

Scholars' member Dr. Steven E. Jones, a Professor of Physics, also notes that statements attributed to him in the bill are "errors . . . misrepresenting my published statements." Dr. Jones goes on to say, "It is unacceptable to misrepresent my views, as is done in this document by Ellis et al., and to ignore my published technical papers in established journals."

Scholars for 9/11 Truth and Justice is a non-partisan organization of over 500 independent researchers analyzing the September 11, 2001 attacks with a strong emphasis on the scientific method.

For information: or
Contact: stj911 @
Phone: 510-769-5109

Friday, October 24, 2008

Thomas Kean & UnitedHealth Backdating

1) Thomas Kean is a director at UnitedHealth Group Inc.

Thomas H. Kean
Drew University
Compensation and Human
Resources Committee
2) Thomas kean covers up the company stock option backdating scandal:

Backdating stock options: The plot thickens
by PsiFighter37
Fri Aug 11th, 2006 at 07:56:38 PM EST

... The board of UnitedHealth Group Inc. met on May 1 to deal with questions about unusually well-timed stock-option grants to top executives such as Chief Executive William McGuire. The gathering heard a briefing from a lawyer who was running UnitedHealth's internal probe of how the options were dated.

One director whose recollections would be important to the investigation was THOMAS H. KEAN, a former New Jersey governor who had served on the compensation committee that approved options grants.

The same day as the board meeting, some UnitedHealth directors and executives were supporting a campaign by Mr. Kean's son for a U.S. Senate seat from New Jersey. Some of them attended a fund-raiser for Tom Kean Jr. that day, in UnitedHealth's home state of Minnesota. It isn't clear whether Dr. McGuire and his wife attended, but each donated $2,000 to the cause. So did Richard T. Burke, who sits on a special board committee that is overseeing the options investigation. All told, UnitedHealth-affiliated donors have contributed $25,000 to the campaign.


When the donations to the Kean Senate campaign were described to former SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt, he said they struck him as "ill-advised and strange" and something that could be seen as an attempt to influence a witness because of the senior Mr. Kean's role on the compensation committee. A spokeswoman for the Kean campaign said the fund raising came at a "UnitedHealth breakfast" hosted by Minnesota Republican Sen. Norm Coleman, and there was absolutely no effort to curry favor with the elder Mr. Kean. The former New Jersey governor didn't return calls seeking comment.