* why have Dr. Ivins’ emails concerning his whereabouts when the anthrax letters were mailed in Princeton not been released? who is withholding this information?
Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 10, 2010
CASE CLOSED is a novel which answers the question … Why did the FBI fail to solve the 2001 anthrax case? Here’s the (fictional) DIA Director giving the charge to his team re-investigating the FBI anthrax investigation …
“Those FBI bastards hounded a Defense Department employee until he committed suicide, if it was suicide. After seven years the FBI hasn’t come close to making a case that could convict the lowest grade criminal, let alone an internationally respected scientist. And they think they can say ‘case closed’ and sweep their incompetent investigation under the rug?”
“I’ve already spoken to Secretary Morgan,” General Drysdale continued. “The Secretary agrees that the Defense Department is taking an unwarranted hit from the FBI, and we don’t know why. At my request, the Secretary has authorized us to find out what really happened.
“You’re the team I’ve selected. You’re authorized to go where you need to go, ask what you need to know. You’ll have whatever resources are necessary.
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why have Dr. Ivins’ emails
concerning his whereabouts when the anthrax letters
were mailed in Princeton
not been released?
who is withholding this information?
DXer’s comment …
It used to be reasoned that the mailer would be living alone — because otherwise his wife would know. Dr. Ivins’ wife, in a private note to Dr. Ivins, stated that she knew he had nothing to do with it. That is a pretty compelling piece of evidence as to her private thoughts. Especially after the first mailing when the public was sensitive to the matter, the FBI would not have met its burden on the evidence disclosed that Dr. Ivins could have travelled without being observed.
In terms of what has NOT yet been disclosed, there likely are contemporaneous emails from those days that both would establish his location at some particular times and would refer to how he was spending his time generally.
It thus is worth noting that the most probative evidence, such as contemporaneous emails from the dates they allege processing and mailing and Lab Notebook 4010, are being withheld.
Instead the affidavit in support of probable cause for a search referred only to his inability to justify his time in a 2005 interview (or at least that is their characterization). At the same time there was a FOIA for exit/entry times, there was a FOIA for emails.
Why are they withholding the emails? They were processed many months ago but are being withheld. The FBI’s unsupported factual assertion of travel therefore is in the context of a refusal to provide the documents that might corroborate or contradict their assertion. If someone cannot back up their claims and refuses to provide documentary support, a logical inference is that the evidence does not support the claim.
Anonymous Scientist’s comment …
I think this is a very good observation. If Ivins sent time-stamped emails on the days he supposedly drove to Princeton to mail the letters this immediately destroys the FBI’s theory. There would have to be at least 12 hour windows of zero emails sent in a distinct pattern. There would also have to be 12 hour windows of zero cell phone usage, zero credit card usage etc.
I think it’s obvious they DON’T have this – and they know fully well that releasing emails will immediately have internet bloggers all over the emails analyzing them for gaping holes in the FBI’s theory.
Michael Green (see below) also pointed out that the FBI failed completely to adequately describe how Ivins made the powder and Green similarly concluded that the reason the never explained it is simple – they couldn’t.
It is important not to distract ourselves with the task of resolving exactly what attributes the Senate anthrax spores had — attributes that the FBI and DOJ have deliberately kept secret and muddled through confusing and contradictory press leaks and releases. It is wiser to rely on the obvious inference that if the FBI had a simple, straightforward, true and compelling story to tell about how Ivins could have made such a deadly powder in a few brief spates at night, they would have told it.
They did not tell it because they did not have it.