CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

Archive for August 30th, 2009

* the former head of Homeland Security said in August 2008 he didn’t know how deep the FBI had dug to reach its conclusion that Dr. Bruce Ivins was the sole perpetrator of the 2001 anthrax attacks; is that really an acceptable answer? now it’s a year later; maybe someone will ask him again when he’s out pushing his new book next week

Posted by DXer on August 30, 2009

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Ridge

Tom Ridge

On August 2, 2008, Tom Ridge, appeared on This Week with George Stephanopoulos as a McCain supporter.

This was a few days before the FBI announcement that Dr. Bruce Ivins was, in their judgment, the sole perpetrator of the anthrax attacks, and that, after a few administrative details were completed, they would be closing the case.

Stephanopoulos’ Question: It appears that the FBI believes it was Dr. Ivins at Fort Detrick. Do you believe the FBI has found the culprit?

Ridge’s answer: Well, it’s difficult. I don’t know how far. I don’t know the evidentiary trail. I don’t know how deep they’ve dug. So it would be difficult for me to comment.

This is a Jon Stewart moment!

Tom Ridge was Assistant to the President for Homeland Security from 2001 to 2003, and the first United States Secretary of Homeland Security from 2003 to 2005.

He was responsible for Homeland Security  for most of the time the FBI was conducting the largest investigation in their history.

And he doesn’t know ‘how deep they’ve dug.”

If Tom Ridge says he doesn’t know enough to comment on whether the FBI had a case against Dr. Ivins, what conclusions can we draw from that?

Perhaps the answer is that Secretary Ridge knew, not too little, but rather too much, to offer a comment in the midst of a presidential campaign.

Perhaps someone will ask him again now that he is out pushing his book.

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* Tom Ridge’s new book reports lack of cooperation with the FBI in early days of anthrax attack investigation

Posted by DXer on August 30, 2009

DXer sends these two pages from an advance copy of Tom Ridge’s new book “The Test of Our Times” (hardcover due out 9/1/09) …

Ridge - book cover

Ridge p 57

Ridge p 58

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* some have alleged (but not proven) the FBI is covering up the truth in the anthrax case to protect illegal bioweapons research; until we know the whole truth about the anthrax attacks, this allegation cannot simply be dismissed

Posted by DXer on August 30, 2009

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Martin Matishak writes in Global Security Newswire (8/28/09) …

  • The Obama administration recently convened the first in what could be a series of meeting with dozens of biological scientists and research analysts in an effort to bolster the White House’s evolving strategy on bioterrorism.
  • The Aug. 13 meeting at the White House Conference Center brought together roughly 40 participants to discuss “policies to prevent intentional biothreats,” according to one international analyst who attended the session and spoke on the condition of anonymity.
  • The discussion was led by Laura Holgate, the National Security Council’s senior director for WMD terrorism and threat reduction, and James Petro, a top official in the office, one expert told GSN early last week.
  • “The administration is trying to think through what the agenda will be for addressing the challenges of bioterrorism,” Brian Finlay, a senior associate at the Henry L. Stimson Center who attended the meeting, told GSN.
  • “The focus of the conversation was on the prevention of biothreats, so I believe that is their general strategy,” according to the research expert … their emphasis was on prevention instead of crisis management.”
  • Concerns regarding certain research have grown since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the anthrax mailings that followed.
  • Participants also offered their opinions on the Biological Weapons Convention and its upcoming review conference, in which member states will review the operations of the pact.
  • The treaty, which entered into force in 1975 and today has 162 member nations, prohibits development, production, stockpiling and use of weaponized disease agents such as anthrax, smallpox or plague, as well as equipment and delivery systems intended for hostile use.
  • The treaty has no provisions for verification or for monitoring compliance.

read the entire article at … http://www.govexec.com/dailyfed/0809/082809gsn1.htm

LMW COMMENT …

There have been several comments on the CASE CLOSED blog alleging (but not proving) that the FBI’s failure to solve the 2001 anthrax case is related to protecting the interests of those who are illegally engaged in precisely the kind of bioweapons research which is prohibited by the 1975 Biological Weapons Convention. The FBI’s willingness to convict innocent men in the Boston case (recent $101 million verdict against the government) suggests that there may be times when the FBI is willing to break the law in pursuit of what it sees as a larger objective.

see related posts …

* more details about the FBI hiding evidence to convict the innocent in Boston case … who is safe when those responsible for upholding the law can break it to gain a conviction?

This is one more compelling reason why our elected officials must insist that the FBI either admit the anthrax investigation is still ongoing (i.e., Dr. Ivins is not the sole perpetrator) or else close the case and make its documents available under FOIA.

Kudos to the Obama administration for taking what might be the first step down the path of evaluating our bioweapons defense capabilities as well as any illegal bioweapons research and development.

Posted in * FBI refusal to testify, * questioning the FBI's anthrax investigation | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

* more details about the FBI hiding evidence to convict the innocent in Boston case … who is safe when those responsible for upholding the law can break it to gain a conviction?

Posted by DXer on August 30, 2009

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Jonathan Saltzman writes in the Boston Globe (8/28/09) …

  • A federal appeals court upheld yesterday a landmark ($101 million) verdict for four men framed by the FBI in a gangland slaying.
  • when we take into account the severe emotional trauma inflicted upon the scapegoats,’’ the appeals court wrote of the wrongly imprisoned men, “we cannot say with any firm conviction that those awards are grossly disproportionate to the injuries sustained.’’
  • Limone, now 75, of Medford, spent more than 33 years in prison as a result of his wrongful conviction in the 1965 murder. Salvati, now 76, of the North End, was in prison for more than 29 years. The other two men, Greco and Tameleo, died in prison after decades of imprisonment.
  • In a dramatic ruling on July 26, 2007, Gertner found the FBI “responsible for the framing of four innocent men’’ in the murder of a small-time criminal, Edward “Teddy’’ Deegan, in a Chelsea alley.
  • She concluded after a 22-day bench trial that the FBI deliberately withheld evidence of the four men’s innocence and helped hide the injustice for decades.
  • The discovery of secret FBI files that were not handed over during the men’s 1968 state murder trial prompted a state judge in 2001 to overturn the murder convictions of Limone and Salvati. Limone was immediately freed from prison. Salvati had been paroled in 1997. The convictions of Tameleo and Greco were later set aside posthumously.
  • Documents in the Deegan slaying showed that the FBI knew that the key witness in the case, notorious hitman-turned-government witness Joseph “The Animal’’ Barboza, may have falsely implicated the four men while protecting one of Deegan’s real killers, Vincent “Jimmy’’ Flemmi, an FBI informant.
  • Gertner found that the FBI protected Barboza and Flemmi because both provided valuable information against the Mafia, which was the bureau’s top priority at the time.

read the entire article at … http://wrongful-convictions.blogspot.com/2009/08/fbi-loses-appeal-of-1017m-verdict.html

LMW COMMENT …

In the Boston case, the FBI thought they had a good reason to break the law, so they went right ahead and broke it, withholding evidence and convicting four innocent men of a crime they didn’t commit.

It is not clear how high the decision went in the FBI hierarchy. Who authorized the withholding of evidence?

Another question is whether any FBI agent or official will be charged with withholding evidence and prosecuted? Criminal behavior by law enforcement officials is a frightening event. Who is safe when those responsible for upholding the law can break it to gain a conviction?

Are there any similarities between this long ago case in Boston and the anthrax case? Is the FBI withholding evidence in the anthrax case? Did they purposely implicate a dead man so they would never have to prove an unwinnable case in court? Will the truth ever come out?

I feel very strongly about the illegal misconduct of prosecutors, police and FBI agents, strong enough to write a novel about a young man convicted of a murder by a NYC prosecutor who knew he was innocent. Law enforcement officials who commit acts like that are rarely punished, but they should be. They are a black mark on the many good and honest prosecutors, police officers and FBI agents who follow the law. My novel about prosecutorial misconduct is called A GOOD CONVICTION and is available at amazon.

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A Good Conviction is a novel, written by Lew Weinstein, about a young man convicted of murder by a NYC prosecutor A GOOD CONVICTIONwho knew he was innocent.

A reader comment about A Good Conviction

This gripping story demonstrates how one’s life can take a 180 degree turn in a moment. Weinstein is a great story teller and this is a very well crafted story.”

click here to … * buy A GOOD CONVICTION by Lew Weinstein

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