Thursday, February 22, 2007

Negligence of the 9/11 Commission

Not only did the 9/11 Commission fail at investigating Sandy Berger's purloining of National Archive documents that would have shed more light on Bill Clinton's incompetence, but they also neglected to look at the Spanish connection, as detailed by Edward Jay Epstein.
The 9/11 Commission relied on information derived from two captured al Qaeda perpetrators for much of its picture of the conspiracy leading up to the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The interrogations of these men--Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, or "KSM," who masterminded the plot and got Osama bin Laden to finance it, and Ramzi Binalshibh, who acted as KSM's liaison with lead suicide terrorist Mohamed Atta--were performed by the CIA at secret locations.

KSM claimed that he left almost all the tactical details to Atta, and therefore could not say where Atta went, or whom he visited, in the final months of the plot. Binalshibh claimed he was Atta's only contact with al Qaeda during this period and that, other than himself, Atta never met with anyone on his trips abroad in 2001.

If these accounts are true, it follows that the conspiracy was a contained one, and the 9/11 Commission could preclude outside collaborators, including the participation of foreign countries. Thus, although the CIA was unable to trace the origin of the money supplied to Atta, the commission deemed this gap "of little practical significance" since the CIA's prisoners established that no one else was involved in the plot. Thus, too, when the CIA found that Iran had< "apparently facilitated" the travel of eight of the 9/11 muscle hijackers in flights to and from Afghanistan (by not putting the required stamps on their passports, and by having a top Hezbollah official accompany their flights in and out of Iran), the commission could nevertheless rule out the possibility Iran or Hezbollah were "aware of the planning." The basis for this conclusion was the information provided by KSM and Binalshibh.

But what if these CIA prisoners--who after all are diehard jihadists--were lying?
Read the rest.

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