Turning a Blind Eye to Ayman. Overshadowed by former US “terror czar” Richard Clarke’s terrific interview on 60 Minutes, was the show’s short piece on Al Qaeda mastermind Ayman Zawahiri. Egypt’s former terror czar is interviewed and says that he warned the US about aiding the jihadis but the US didn’t listen. Zawahiri himself visited the USA on fundraising trips in the ’90s – after he had co-founded al Qaeda, and while he was a wanted man charged with terrorism in Egypt – either “many” times, or at least 3 times, according to an interviewed terror expert and show’s talking head, respectively.
Zawahiri met bin Laden during the Afghan jihad, in which they were aided by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency, the CIA, and Saudi intelligence, and the same players keep reappearing. In a story released this week, Pakistani journalist Hamad Mir describes Zawahiri bragging about al Qaeda buying a nuke (“Journalist says al-Qaeda has black market nuclear bombs“). A number of news reports suggested that Pakistan’s army had Zawahiri trapped in a semi-autonomous border region but now that seems unlikely. Pakistan’s military has promised a group of international Afghan war vets /al Qaeda suspects there that if they surrender they won’t be turned over to any foreign power (“Peace Deal Sought With Pakistan Militants“) – such as the foreigners who are directing the attack (“US directing operations in Pakistan border battle“).
Blind Eye to Khan. Someone else who Pakistan is protecting from an interview with Americans is Islamist scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan – pardoned by Pakistan’s dictator Pervez Musharraf after confessing to dealing nukes to dictators. This week, UPI editor Arnaud de Borchgrave “exposed” an alleged plot to replace Musharraf with Khan (“Exclusive: Pakistani Plot Exposed“). The alleged mastermind of the alleged coup plot is Gen. Hamid Gul, who was head of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (of jihad- and Taliban-supporting fame) and is now “strategic adviser” to MMA, a coalition of Muslim Pakistani political parties.
Also according to press reports this week (“Malaysian company in nuclear parts scandal to sell businesses“), Dr. Khan’s nuke network included a company run by the only son of Malaysia’s Prime Minister. Former Malaysian PM Mahathir claimed that the US knew about this company’s nuke shipments years ago (“Mahathir: US asked Malaysia to stop nuclear shipment once before“). So the nuke network shouldn’t have been much of a surprise. In any event, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists scooped the world’s governments by re-publishing Khan’s centrifuge sales brochure last May. Six months later Khan confessed to what we can only hope isn’t a lesser charge. The see-no-evil Pakistan “surprise,” right after the invasion of WMD-free Iraq would seem to support the BBC’s claim that the Bushies spiked the investigation of Khan’s nuke program in order to protect its alleged Saudi financial backers.
Teflon Terrorists. Then there’s the wacky charity, Benevolence International, that was set up by Saudi sheik Adil Abdul Galil Batargy, a bin Laden associate, during the Afghan war. In the early ’90s, when US and Saudi intelligence were moving the jihad to the Balkans, BI moved its headquarters to Illinois. While in Illinois, according to the FBI, its leaders lied about connections to terrorists, while supporting people who tried to obtain nuclear weapons for Osama bin Laden starting in the early ’90s (“Islamic charity tied to al-Qaida“). Until nearly a decade later, after the 9/11 attacks, BI received corporate matching funds (“‘TERROR’ CHARITY GOT FORTUNE 500 CASH“), while the corporate donors got US tax breaks. What’s a little al Qaeda nuke when you have Slavic competitors to undermine?
Rise of the Vulcans. This week, the Denver Post published an excerpt from the book Rise of the Vulcans by James Mann. Mann explains how post-WWII the government recruited experts among business leaders, and in the Vietnam era the experts came from the universities.
“The Vulcans were the military generation. Their wellspring, the common institution in their careers, was the Pentagon. The top levels of the foreign policy team that took office in 2001 included two former secretaries of defense (Cheney and Rumsfeld), one former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (Powell), one former undersecretary of defense (Wolfowitz) and one former assistant secretary of defense (Armitage). Even Rice had started her career in Washington with a stint at the Pentagon, working for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. … The story of the Vulcans serves as a reminder that this bifurcation of history into cold war and post-cold war is ultimately artificial. In their careers, the Vulcans worked on both sides of the arbitrary divide. ‘While working in government, they confronted firsthand both the world of the Berlin Wall and the world without it.”
Richard Clarke on 60 Minutes:
“I blame the entire Bush leadership for continuing to work on Cold War issues when they back in power in 2001. It was as though they were preserved in amber from when they left office eight years earlier. They came back. They wanted to work on the same issues right away: Iraq, Star Wars. Not new issues, the new threats that had developed over the preceding eight years.”
Tomorrow’s Blowback Today. One of the Afghan jihad era Cold Warriors, California Congressman Dana Rohrabacher, was in the New York Times this week – staying ahead of the curve, his new cause is supporting Cambodian terrorists (defined as such by the US government) who are organizing in Long Beach (“The Strip-Mall Revolutionaries”). (Last time the government turned a blind eye to terrorists in California things didn’t turn out too well for most Americans not part of the military industrial espionage complex.)
But Someone is Planning Ahead. And to end on a creepy note, this week SF Chronicle writer David Lazarus reported that there are 3 companies licensed to manufacture over-the-counter potassium iodide pills, used to treat radiation poisoning. One of them is tiny, one is foreign, and the third is the Bushie-Saudi influence-peddling investment company, the Carlyle Group (“A firm in position to profit“).