that has got to be one very unsurprising headline gee, you mean US government
employees are obstructing an investigation into their incompetence? the implications
are really much more ominous than a bunch of self-serving fools covering their
own asses. For what it means is that we will never unravel the mystery surrounding
the genesis of this perpetual "war on terrorism."
the big question of the post-9/11 era has so far gone unanswered. After the expenditure
of multi-billions of tax dollars for "anti-terrorist" programs, how
is it that a terrorist network could exist in this country over a stretch of years
perhaps longer than five years and remain completely unknown to US law enforcement
and intelligence agencies? After all those "anti-terrorist task forces,"
studies, warnings, premonitions remember
the Great Terrorist Scare of New Year's 2000? you mean to tell me they missed
sure, there's that guff about the famous "20th
hijacker," the pursuit of whom had them supposedly hot on the trail of
Mohammed Atta & Co., but, tragically, too late. This detail merely underscores
the criminal incompetence of the authorities, and points to the need for a thorough
and public investigation. Some, however, say it wasn't incompetence, but something
more ominous: deliberate criminal neglect
McKINNEY CONSPIRACY THEORY
question of foreknowledge of the 9/11 attack has been the subject of several unfortunate
conspiracy theories unfortunate in the sense that they discredit any real challenge
to the "official" non-story. The most infamous is the one advanced by
Representative Cynthia McKinney, who seems to believe that George W. Bush knew
all about it in advance, and deliberately let 9/11 happen because "persons
close to this administration are poised to make huge profits off America's new
war." She offers no evidence for her claim, but, still, she insists,
we need to have a congressional investigation in order to validate her ideological
prejudices and kneejerk lefty mindset.
is using 9/11 to promote their own smelly little orthodoxies, as
Orwell described the mindset of the ideologues of his time. Just as Bill Kristol
and the neocons are using
9/11 to promote their program of war, and yet more war, the loony left is
seizing the moment to demonstrate, to its own satisfaction if no one else's, that
money is the root of all evil, and America not just the government, but
America comes in a close second.
neocons, naturally, are far more dangerous, because their hands are on the levers
of power, or close enough. But the danger posed by McKinney is, in its way, worse,
because it closes off the possibility of the public ever discovering the whole
truth about 9/11. She is clearly not in possession of any proof for her fantastic
and easily ridiculed charges, but then again, the zealot doesn't require all that
much in the way of proof. There is a very thin line between political and religious
ideology, especially at the extremes, and McKinney seems to exemplify the deforming
effects of ideology on the human mind. But the truth can be blurted out unthinkingly
and in passing by a madwoman as much as a seer. In an interview with a Berkeley
radio station, she said something a few sentences that made sense:
know there were numerous warnings of the events to come on September 11th. . .
. What did this administration know and when did it know it, about the events
of September 11th? Who else knew, and why did they not warn the innocent people
of New York who were needlessly murdered? . . . What do they have to hide?"
is like an unguided missile, veering off opportunistically in several directions
at once, but her scattershot technique manages to strike one real target a direct
hit obscured in the uproar over her other, admittedly outrageous remarks. She
asks: "Who else knew
READ IT HERE FIRST
else, indeed. Longtime readers of this column know that I have been pursuing,
since November of last year, the question of whether a foreign intelligence agency
renown for its ruthless efficiency had foreknowledge of 9/11. (Indeed, I have
written so many columns on the subject that we've had to set up a
separate page for them, along with ancillary material from outside sources.)
Alerted to the implications of a
story in the Washington Post about the arrest of 60 Israelis in the
wake of 9/11, I was onto the Israeli-9/11 connection early but I wasn't alone
for long. You read about it here first
even as the story was percolating over at Fox News.
STORY BREAKS IN THE 'MAINSTREAM'
reporter Carl Cameron broke the stunning news in December, with a four-part series
detailing an extensive Israeli covert action in the US months prior to the events
of 9/11. His shocking report depicted what seemed to be an all-out intelligence
offensive directed at US government offices and installations, including military
bases. In the guise of "art students" promoting their "artwork"
cheap paintings and geegaws made in China young Israelis with extensive experience
in intelligence, explosives, and electronic interception approached government
offices, including FBI stations with no identifying outward insignia, in what
was clearly a massive and systematic attempt to gather crucial intelligence. In
addition, as Cameron
is no indication that the Israelis were involved in the 9-11 attacks ,but investigators
suspect that they Israelis may have gathered intelligence about the attacks in
advance, and not shared it. A highly placed investigator said there are -quote
'tie-ins.' But when asked for details, he flatly refused to describe them, saying,
quote 'evidence linking these Israelis to 9-11 is classified. I cannot tell
you about evidence that has been gathered. It's classified information.'"
of Israel were horrified by this story, and Cameron and Fox were bombarded with
criticism. The Israelis naturally denied it, and put out the line that this was
yet another "urban myth" a really
ingenious way to discount an uncomfortably persistent truth. The great problem
for the denialists, however, was that a lot of documents government documents
were being fed to reporters. Cameron referred to:
classified documents obtained by Fox News indicate that even prior to September
11,as many as 140 other Israelis had been detained or arrested in a secretive
and sprawling investigation into suspected espionage by Israelis in the United
documents turned out to be various drafts of a 60-page compendium of over 180
separate reports of attempted Israeli penetration of US government and defense
facilities in the US, complete with the names of the apprehending US agents involved
and the names, military indentification, and immigration information on the Israeli
"art"-spooks. LeMonde broke
the story in Europe, and the Online Intelligence news service published a
useful map detailing the strange congruence of two underground networks in
the US, operating seemingly side-by-side, one affiliated with Al Qaeda and the
other the other with the Mossad. Both Online Intelligence and John
Sugg of Creative Loafing, the Southern "alternative" newspaper chain,
reported that one branch of the Israeli spy coven operated out of 4220 Sheridan
Street, in Hollywood, Florida, while Mohammed Atta and his suicide squad lived
down the block at 3389 Sheridan Street. Florida, the scene of the hijackers' training
program, was apparently the center of Israel's cozy little spy nest: more than
a third of the alleged "art students" arrested and subsequently deported
were based in Florida.
BUT NOT LEAST
story took off, for a while, but then the furor died down. The US government was
stonewalling, and journalists working on the story, including Cameron, reported
a lot of pressure to lay off. And we haven't heard a word about it, lately, until
now. Surprisingly, at this late date, Salon has finally
stumbled on the story, and finds it
theme of the piece, by one Christopher
Ketcham, is that the whole thing is a "mystery" not easily unraveled,
and the author floats several contradictory theories of just what's behind it
all. But aside from contributing nothing original except obfuscation, Ketcham's
depiction of how the story unfolded explains much about why our crusading journalists
failed to stumble on it until months after others had broken the news:
such obvious holes in the official story, neither the Post nor any other
mainstream media organization ran follow-up articles. The New York Times has
not yet deemed it worth covering in fact, the paper of record has not written
about the art student mystery even once, not even to pooh-pooh it. One or two
minor media players did some braying Israel had been caught spying, etc.
and the bonko conspiracy fringe had a field day, but the rest of the media, taking
a cue from the big boys,
decided it was a nonstarter: the Post's "debunking" and the Times' silence
had effectively killed the
leave it to you to separate the "minor media players" from the "bonko
conspiracy fringe," but, coming from Salon, this is a jibe worth less
than a share of their stock. And now
Salon is having a field day with this story: does that make them
part of the Bonko Conspiracy Fringe?
it makes me wonder: what was David
Talbot's fat-assed overpaid staff doing in those fancy downtown San
Francisco offices while our little operation was reporting the story of the century?
Not-a-lotta, by any account: that, at least, was the verdict of the markets,
and their bloated staff has since been slimmed down to near anorexic proportions.
So, now a leaner, meaner Salon is finally! catching on to a big story,
all the while typically denigrating those who had it first. Well, uh, not
great bulk of Ketcham's piece is devoted to reiterating what others have written
and reported, often without attribution or acknowledging the source. But Ketcham
does introduce a new element, one that seems to reduce the whole thing
to some sort of cheap spy thriller. Indeed, Ketcham explicitly compares the Israeli
"art student" mystery to a novel by Tom
Clancy, and, furthermore, introduces a character with all the earmarks of
a fictional device and yet we are expected to accept it as fact.
to Ketcham, as he was working on his piece he was contacted by a government agent
of some unspecified sort who goes by the "codename" "Stability,"
and who poured out his heart to our intrepid reporter.
extreme sensitivity of the Israeli art student story in government circles was
made clear to this reporter when, in the midst of my inquiries at DEA and elsewhere,
I was told by a source that some unknown party had checked my records and background.
He proved it by mentioning a job I had briefly held many years ago that virtually
no one outside my family knew about. Shortly after this, I received a call from
an individual who identified himself only by the code name Stability. Stability
said he was referred to me from 'someone in Washington.' That someone turned out
to be a veteran D.C. correspondent who has close sources in the CIA and the FBI
and who verified that Stability was a high-level
intelligence agent who had been following the art student matter from the inside."
could someone fall for this transparent ruse? After all, it doesn't take a James
Angleton to figure out that this guy's story is nonsensical. Any half-decent
private investigator could easily follow the trail of Ketcham's employment history.
So, what gives?
tells us that, although "guarded" at first, "Stability" became
more voluble, and was soon babbling about "patriots" who "have
taken a lot of heat on this." Our mystery man gives his story a melodramatic
twist by adding: "Typically, patriots are dead." Ketcham's tall tale
has everything but spooky music in the background, adding to the general air of
government, says "Stability," is retaliating against DEA agents and
others responsible for leaking the Israeli spy memo: "Half a dozen agents
have been polygraphed several times over, computers have been seized, desks have
been searched." According to Ketcham's source, the existence of an Israeli
covert operation prior to the horrific events of 9/11 is "indisputable."
Ah, "but to what end?" asks Ketcham. "What was the value? What
was to be gained?" "Stability" has no answer:
unknown,' Stability said. 'You could be anywhere from D.C. to daylight on that
one. Even on our side, you have to take all the stuff and draw it all out and
clean out all the chaff. I will tell you that from those who are working ground
zero [of this case], it is a difficult puzzle to put together, and it is not complete
by any means.' Even the spooks are baffled; they have no answers."
then lists four possible scenarios,
It was a drug operation, since the bulk of the effort seemed to be directed
at penetrating the DEA. Although Ketcham seems to be disdaining this possibility,
his method of doing so is curious indeed. He lists a panoply of perfectly credible
motivations for a drug gang to pull off such an operation:
the annals of crime chutzpah, for drug dealers to brazenly approach drug agents
in their homes and offices may represent the all-time world record. And what conceivable
useful intelligence could they gather that would be worth the risk? Were the tee-heeing
tight-sweatered Israeli babes pulling some kind of Mata Hari stunt, seducing paunchy
middle-aged DEA boys and beguiling them into loose-lipped info sharing?"
perfectly plausible to me, except for a few things not mentioned by Ketcham. For
example: why would a drug gang be interested in monitoring military facilities,
such as Tinker Air Force Base? And why is the possibility of an alliance of Israeli
intelligence and the Israeli Mafia in this country never broached? Intelligence
agencies often deal with people whose moral sense is not highly developed, and
certainly this can't be ruled out in the case of the Mossad, which is well-known
for its unscrupulous methods.
They really were art students. This is dismissed as unlikely, considering
that the "art schools" they claimed to be from either did not exist,
or else had no record of their attendance.
It was espionage but "this doesn't make much sense," according
to Ketcham. Why, after all, would the Mossad go barging into US government offices
and sensitive defense facilities in such an obvious way?
It was a covert operation designed to throw off our own intelligence agencies:
This appears to answer the above question. If the operation was conspicuous, then
that was the whole point. "Stability" pontificates:
was a noisy operation. Did you ever see 'Victor/Victoria'?
It was about a woman playing a man playing a woman. Perhaps you should think about
this from that aspect and ask yourself if you wanted to have something that was
in your face, that didn't make sense, that couldn't possibly be them.
it this way: How could the experts think this could actually be something of any
value? Wouldn't they dismiss what they were seeing?"
now we're entering "truly dark territory," warns Ketcham. But what's
so dark about it? This is never explained. Instead, we are told that Stability's
theory "has major problems," yet we are asked to "roll with it
for a moment." Ketcham writes:
to this theory Stability's "Victor/Victoria" scenario Israeli agents
wanted, let's say, to monitor al-Qaida members in Florida and other states. But
they feared detection. So to provide cover, and also to create a dizzyingly Byzantine
story that would confuse the situation, Israeli intel flooded areas of real operations
with these bumbling "art students" who were told to deliberately stake
out DEA agents."
I nudged Stability on the obvious implication of the 'Victor/Victoria' scenario:
If this was a ruse, a decoy to conceal another operation, what was that other
operation? 'Unknown,' Stability said."
Give me a break! Ketcham never states any definitive conclusion, yet leaves the
door open for the worst, and that is the whole point of this article. Early on,
the author relates how "Stability" tells him that people in the intelligence
community believe Ketcham is being "used." Well, he's being used alright,
but, the question is, by whom?
doesn't connect the dots, fully expecting that others will in a way that will
completely discredit them, and divert us away from the real story. He has left
the door open for nutball anti-Semites to barge through, declaring that, at last,
here is proof the "Jewish conspiracy" was really behind the horrific
events of 9/11. It wasn't Al Qaeda these wackos will cry who drove those planes
into the World Trade Center, it was the Mossad! The available evidence supports
no such conclusion, but that won't stop the purveyors of this theory, who are
motivated by ideology i.e. a form of religion and could care less about the
facts. And, of course, that suits the Israelis just fine
such an improbable story and in a respectable rag like Salon! can have
only one purpose: to discredit the real story, which is not too far removed from
this lie. For what Cameron, and others, including myself, have always maintained
is not that the Israelis were responsible for 9/11 in the sense that they
directly aided and abetted the terrorists, but that they were watching the conspirators
and were in a position to have had foreknowledge.
overstating the case, "Stability" and Ketcham cast a dubious air over
the story even as they purport to reveal its vast dimensions and ominous implications.
Let's apply the "Victor/Victoria" scenario to Ketcham's own work.
Ask yourself what is the purpose of telling us the following:
asked Stability how hotly the matter was now being pursued in intel and law enforcement.
'Depends on who you speak to,' he told me. 'Some people say that it's a dead issue,
a fantasy. Most of the investigations are happening at an ad hoc level. There
are people out there that you couldn't sway off some of the cases, because that's
how dedicated they are.'"
yes, one might even say fanatical. Oh, and they're "ad hoc," doing this
on their own: free-lance conspiracy theorists, in other words, real whack-jobs
who've gone off the deep end. Ketcham couldn't have done a better job of discrediting
them if he'd come out openly deriding them.
TACTICS OF DIVERSION
we are told that that "the subject may not be officially dead yet. The art
student matter may be taken up by the congressional committees investigating intelligence
failures leading up to the Sept. 11 attacks, according to another source."
h*ll. The same congress that overwhelmingly voted to support Israel unconditionally
as Sharon bulldozed the Palestinians into the blood-soaked earth is not about
to investigate or even acknowledge this explosive story. Period.
if he exists and I'm giving Ketcham the benefit of a doubt in assuming this
to be true is certainly doing his damnedest to divert our gaze and obscure the
truth about the Israeli connection to 9/11. The Salon piece is nothing
but an incitement aimed at anti-Semites, who will do the work of those who want
this story discredited.
"Stability" is "a high-level intelligence agent," eh? For
answer to this question should be clear enough to anyone who has been following
this story, or takes the time to think about its implications. For if and when
the Israeli underground in the US is flushed out into the open, what will this
burgeoning spy scandal say about the US government and its own law enforcement
and intelligence apparatus? If even half of what Fox News revealed about
the Mossad's pre-9/11 operation turns out to be true, the cover-up alone is enough
to sink this administration: it implies, at least, a tragi-comic incompetence
and, at worst, outright treason on the part of some sections of our own government.
the President butting heads with Ariel Sharon, and the US-Israeli conflict of
interest now coming out into the open, perhaps this is payback time for George
W. Bush. Perhaps the Israelis themselves are leaking the story, acknowledging
that the broad outlines of the "Israeli art student" story are true,
while downplaying or obscuring its real purpose and damaging Bush politically
in the process.
now is the time for the above-ground Israeli agents, both paid and volunteer,
to go into action against a White House that has suddenly seemed to turn on Israel.
A political offensive is now being launched by Israel's partisans in this country
to reverse the President's Middle East policy, which they (rightly) see as hostile,
and it is all-too-appropriate that Salon, which has always served as a
house organ of the Democratic party's Clintonian wing, should be the instrument
of their retaliation.
SEEN IN A FUN-HOUSE MIRROR
that an informal network of journalists has developed over this story, and, via
the grapevine, I hear that the interest of the big media in this story persists.
Pat Buchanan predicted a few weeks ago on The McLaughlin Group that the
Israeli spy story was about to blow, and he may be right. The Salon story
could be a pre-emptive strike: if the facts are coming out anyway, better to see
their distorted reflection in the Mossad's fun-house mirror.
one point, "Stability" exhorts Ketcham to imagine that "Almost
nothing is wrong in this particular instance, Mr. Ketcham. In this particular
situation, right is wrong, left is right, up is down, day is night." Goodness
gracious, I feel dizzy now, and my head is spinning so can we please forget
this Israeli spy mystery stuff and start bombing Iraq already?
the story of the century, and still the "major" media with one exception
have failed to seriously investigate it beyond soliciting the bland denials
of government officials, who write it off as an "urban myth." "Stability"
says that this debunking
article, published in the Washington Post, was "a plant" yeah,
but who planted it? "Stability" blames the FBI. But, hey, wait a minute
not so fast. The Israelis seem like a more logical candidate, given their strong
interest in this matter. That they are now in a position to deny the veracity
of the lie they spread to begin with should surprise no one familiar with the
art of "black
propaganda." Remember the official motto of the Mossad "By
way of deception, thou shalt do war." With this latest development in
the ongoing saga of the Israeli "art students" spy scandal, they are
certainly living up to it.
520 S. Murphy Avenue, #202
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
or Contribute Via
our Secure Server
Credit Card Donation Form
are now tax-deductible