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

Archive for March, 2010

* If it had become known that the Administration had allowed this infiltration — the Bush Administration would never have won a second term

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 31, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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Al-Timini, Bailey, Card ... Cheney, Bush, Rumsfeld

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from DXer’s comment …

  • Al-Timimi had been Andrew Card’s assistant.
  • He had a letter of commendation from the White House for classified work for the Navy while at the contractor SRA at the same time as Battelle consultant Charles Bailey (the former deputy USAMRIID Commander who turned prolific co-author of Ames research).
  • If it had become known that the Administration had allowed this infiltration — the Bush Administration would never have won a second term.
  • Al-Timimi’s dad worked at the Iraqi embassy in Washington.

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* United States District Court Judge Lamberth criticizing failure to hold any government official accountable for paying Steven Hatfill $5.8 million after improperly accusing him of being a “person of interest” in the 2001 anthrax attacks

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 31, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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Judge Lamberth

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth, in a case brought by a former federal drug agent who accused the CIA of illegally spying on him when he was stationed overseas, chastised the government Tuesday for striking a $3 million settlement over alleged CIA misconduct without punishing anyone.

Lamberth said Tuesday that the payment, coming not long after a $6 million settlement with someone wrongly implicated in the 2001 anthrax letter attacks, is too costly to taxpayers to be swept under the rug.

Judge Lamberth’s comments on the Hatfill matter are as follows ..

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LMW COMMENT …

And who, indeed, will be held accountable for the FBI’s broader failure to solve the anthrax case at all, after 600,000 investigative man-hours?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | 34 Comments »

* Ken Dillon asks … Who Was the Real Anthrax Mailer? … the key people in the anthrax mailings were not Bruce Ivins or Steven Hatfill … instead, they appear to have been Ali al-Timimi and Abderraouf Jdey.

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 28, 2010

to learn more about Lew Weinstein and his novels,

go to … http://lewweinsteinauthorblog.com/

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al-Timini … Bailey … Alibek … Jdey

Ken Dillon asks … Who Was the Real Anthrax Mailer?

  • There’s a gaping hole in the FBI’s argument that U.S. Government scientist Bruce Ivins was the anthrax mailer.
  • In addition to the 100 scientists with access to virulent anthrax from Ivins’s flask whom the FBI claims to have ruled out, one unauthorized individual had a special kind of access-the kind you get when you steal something.
  • Hovering in proximity to an unlocked refrigerator with the anthrax at George Mason University was Islamic ideologue Ali al-Timimi, who in early 2001 was studying for a Ph.D in computational biology.
  • Al-Timimi has since been arrested and sentenced for inciting Muslims in Virginia to travel to Pakistan to fight against U.S. forces.
  • (Note: The GMU researchers used what is known as Delta Ames.)
  • Al-Timimi’s office was right around the corner from the offices of Charles Bailey and Ken Alibek, co-principal investigators on a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)-funded anthrax project.
  • Bailey was a former deputy commander of USAMRIID at Fort Detrick, Maryland, where he had been a boss of Bruce Ivins.
  • Alibek was the former deputy director of the Soviet biowarfare program. Bailey and Alibek had partnered on a patent application for a method of preparing anthrax that would closely resemble the sophisticated preparation in the letters mailed to Senators Daschle and Leahy.
  • As a computer expert, al-Timimi presumably knew how to access Bailey’s poorly secured computer to obtain this application.

All these details and more have been worked out by attorney Ross Getman, a leading researcher on the anthrax mailings case.

  • Getman found several other labs where al Qaeda may have gained access to the anthrax
  • Al-Timimi does not show up in FBI’s report on the case, which dismisses the possibility that any foreign entity was involved in the anthrax mailings.

Assuming that al-Timimi indeed stole the anthrax and the instructions, here is what then seems to have happened.

  • Al-Timimi provided the anthrax to a scientist who sympathized with al Qaeda and who had a lab somewhere along the Canadian border (according to the isotope ratios in the water used to prepare the anthrax).
  • When it was ready, al-Timimi gave it to Mohamed Atta. Atta and his group of intending hijackers in Florida unsuccessfully sought to obtain a cropduster, and they evidently handled the anthrax themselves, infecting themselves in the process.
  • As September 11 neared, Atta contacted Abderraouf Jdey in Montreal.
  • Jdey, a Canadian citizen of Tunisian origin who had trained in Afghanistan, had been designated first as an alternate hijacker, then as a part of the second wave of attacks.
  • He returned to Canada in the summer of 2001 and was detained by FBI and INS together with intending pilot Zacarias Moussaoui. Jdey was carrying biology textbooks.
  • Atta appears to have handed over the vials of anthrax to Jdey in Portland, Maine on September 10, which powerfully explains Atta’s otherwise anomalous trip to Portland on the day before the September 11 terrorist attacks.
  • Jdey, whose modus operandi involved travelling to sites in the northeastern U.S., wrote and mailed the anthrax letters in September and October. In November he left his apartment in Montreal, drove to New York, boarded American Airlines Flight #587 on November 12, and brought it down with a shoebomb.

The FBI seems to have learned of Jdey’s likely role as the anthrax mailer in 2004, when this writer contacted the Bureau about Jdey.

  • Investigating further, FBI appears to have found confirmatory evidence.
  • But then-because Jdey was a terrific embarrassment-it suppressed the information it had developed, removed the note in his online biography that he had studied biology, listed him as one of the terrorists it was still hunting for, and searched for a new anthrax mailings suspect.

Eventually, the FBI focused on capable, dedicated, patriotic, and psychologically vulnerable Bruce Ivins.

  • Under the pressure of FBI questioning and surveillance, Ivins became unhinged and committed suicide.
  • Then the FBI accused him of having perpetrated the anthrax mailings, produced a collection of circumstantial evidence, and closed the case on February 19, 2010.

FBI Director Robert Mueller told a 2008 Senate committee that he thought Ivins was guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

  • Beyond a reasonable doubt? Given the weak evidence and the widespread skepticism among experts and the public, this is an extreme statement that lacks any credibility.
  • In fact, the key people in the anthrax mailings were not Bruce Ivins or Steven Hatfill, his predecessor as the FBI’s target.
  • Instead, they appear to have been Ali al-Timimi and Abderraouf Jdey.
  • And the key person in the investigation was FBI Director Robert Mueller himself.

Kenneth J. Dillon is a retired foreign service officer who writes books on science and teaches history as an adjunct at Marymount University.  A detailed discussion of the roles of al-Timimi, Jdey, and FBI in the anthrax mailings case can be found at scientiapress.com

read the entire article at … http://www.aim.org/aim-column/who-was-the-real-anthrax-mailer/

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* Stuart Jacobsen on PROMED … 6 unanswered questions regarding the anthrax attacks

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 25, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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Posted on PROMED by Stuart Jacobsen …

Subject: 6 unanswered questions

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NOTE: ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases


(1) The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP) published a Newsletter in October 2002 in which they stated: “Fort Detrick sought our assistance to determine the specific components of the anthrax found in the Daschle letter,” said Florabel G. Mullick, MD, ScD, SES, AFIP Principal Deputy Director and department chair.  AFIP experts utilized an energy dispersive X-ray spectrometer (an instrument used to detect the presence of otherwise-unseen chemicals through characteristic wavelengths of X-ray light) to confirm the previously unidentifiable substance as silica. “This was a key component,” Mullick said. “Silica prevents the anthrax from aggregating, making it easier to aerosolize.” <http://www.anthraxinvestigation.com/AFIP.html>

In their Newsletter AFIP also included an EDX spectrum of a reference sample of silica titled “Silicon Dioxide (Silica), as it appears
through energy dispersive X-ray analysis”

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1.1: What was in the AFIP EDX data that allowed them to conclude that silica was a deliberate additive?

1.2: The complete set of EDX spectra and scanning electron microscope pictures for all of the attack powder samples measured by AFIP need to be published in order for independent experts in EDX spectroscopy to assess the validity of AFIP’s conclusion that silica was a deliberate additive.

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(2) In April 2002 information that an “unusual chemical” had been found coating the attack powders was provided by senior government officials to Newsweek, CNN and the Washington Post. Later on it was revealed by the FBI that this “unusual chemical” was “polymerized glass.”

Source: Newsweek, 8 Apr 2002.
<http://www.ph.ucla.edu/epi/bioter/sophisticatedstrainanthrax.html>
A Sophisticated Strain of Anthrax
By: Mark Hosenball, John Barry and Daniel Klaidman

“Government sources tell Newsweek that the secret new analysis shows anthrax found in a letter addressed to Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Patrick Leahy was ground to a microscopic fineness not achieved by U.S. biological-weapons experts. The Leahy anthrax — mailed in an envelope that was recovered unopened from a Washington post office last November [2001] — also was coated with a chemical compound unknown to experts who have worked in the field for years; the coating matches no known anthrax samples ever recovered from biological-weapons producers anywhere in the world, including Iraq and the former Soviet Union. The combination of the intense milling of the bacteria and the unusual coating produced an anthrax powder so fine and fluffy that individually coated anthrax spores were found in the Leahy envelope, something that U.S. bioweapons experts had never seen.”
Source: Washington Post, 9 Apr 2002.
<http://www.ph.ucla.edu/epi/bioter/anthraxpowdernotroutine.html>
Powder Used in Anthrax Attacks ‘Was Not Routine’

By: Joby Warrick, Washington Post Staff Writer

“Whoever concocted the wispy white powder used in last fall’s [2001] anthrax attacks followed a recipe markedly different from the ones commonly used by scientists in the United States or any other country known to have biological weapons, law enforcement sources said yesterday.

“Extensive lab tests of the anthrax powder have revealed new details about how the powder was made, including the identity of a chemical used to coat the trillions of microscopic spores to keep them from clumping together. Sources close to the investigation declined to name the chemical but said its presence was something of a surprise.

“The powder’s formulation ‘was not routine,’ said one law enforcement official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. ‘Somebody had to have special knowledge and experience to do this,’ the official said.”

Source: CNN, 11 Apr 2002.

<http://www.ph.ucla.edu/epi/bioter/unusualcoating.html>
Official: Unusual coating in anthrax mailings
By: Kelli Arena, CNN Washington Bureau

“Scientists have found a new chemical in the coating on the anthrax spores mailed to journalists and politicians last fall, a
high-ranking government official said Wednesday.

“The discovery of the unnamed chemical, something scientists are familiar with, was surprising, the official said.

“Previously, officials had reported that the coating on the anthrax included silica, which helped the spores not to clump.”

Source: OpEdNews.com
<http://www.opednews.com/articles/World-s-Top-Anthrax-Expert-by-George-Washington-080909-527.html>

“Apparently, the spores were coated with a polyglass which tightly bound hydrophilic silica to each particle. That’s what was briefed (according to one of my former weapons inspectors at the United Nations Special Commission) by the FBI to the German Foreign Ministry at the time.”

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2.1: What laboratory results were performed in order for the FBI to conclude that “polymerized glass” was individually coating the spores?

2.2: The complete set of laboratory data, including any and all spectroscopic results, that led to this conclusion needs to be published in order for independent experts in the chemistry of silanes, siloxanes and polysiloxanes to assess the conclusion that polymerized glass was present as a spore coating.

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(3) Quantitative elemental silicon analysis results released by the FBI: FBI lab director Dr Hassell made the following statement to the
National Academy of Science in July of 2009:
<https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/fbi-assistant-director-hassell-statement-to-nas-7-30-09.pdf>

“There has been a great deal written regarding the presence of silicon in the samples and the location of that silicon. The FBI
Laboratory used Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES) to quantify silicon, as well as other
elements, in the Leahy letter spore powder. The results indicated the Leahy spores contained 1.45 percent by weight. The New York Post letter spore powder was qualitatively analyzed using ICP-OES and was found to have Silicon present in the sample. However, the limited quantity of recovered material precluded a reliable numerical measurement of any elements present within this powder. Insufficient quantities ofboth the Daschle and Brokaw letters spore powders precluded the analysis of these samples using this elemental analysis technique.”

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3.1: What is the minimum amount of sample needed to perform accurate quantitative elemental analysis on spore samples?

3.2: All of the FBI’s ICP-OES data for all of the spore powders they measured needs to be released and published for independent verification by experts in analytical chemistry.

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(4) Role of Pacific Northwest National Labs in the Amerithrax investigation: In his slide presentation to NAS in July 2008, FBI lab director Dr Hassell acknowledged the involvement of Pacific Northwest National Labs. This can be seen in slide 14 here:
<https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2010/02/01/fbi-slides-d-christian-hassell-%EF%BB%BFscientific-approaches-to-the-2001-anthrax-letters-investigation/>

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4.1: What role did Pacific Northwest National Labs serve in the Amerithrax investigation?

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Pacific Northwest Labs demonstrated in 2005 that accurate quantitative Elemental Analysis can be performed on bacillus spores with samples as small as one nanogram. The Pacific Northwest paper on this technique can be seen here: Differentiation of Spores of Bacillus subtilis Grown in Different Media by Elemental Characterization Using Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry, John B. Cliff, Kristin H. Jarman, Nancy B. Valentine, Steven L. Golledge, Daniel J. Gaspar, David S. Wunschel, and Karen L. Wahl, Applied and Environmental Microbiology, November 2005, p. 6524-6530, Vol. 71, No. 11

<http://aem.asm.org/cgi/content/full/71/11/6524?maxtoshow=&HITS=10&hits=10&RESULTFORMAT=&fulltext=subtilis&searchid=1&FIRSTINDEX=630&resourcetype=HWFIG>

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4.2: Did Pacific Northwest National Labs determine the elemental quantities of silicon and other elements in the attack powders? What was the quantity of silicon they determined for each powder?

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(5) Amount of spores needed for all of the attack letters: The single flask of RMR-1029 consisted at its origination date of 30g of Ames anthrax spores in a slurry of 1 liter of water. The resources needed to make this 30g of spores consisted of a combination of 12 x 10 liter fermentor runs at Dugway Proving Ground and 22 flask culture lots made at USAMRIID. Dr Bruce Ivins had calculated that to make 30g of spores at USAMRIID it would take approximately one year of work, which is why USAMRIID contracted the large fermentor runs at Dugway in order to fulfill their need for spores for animal vaccine challenge studies.

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5.1: What calculations did the FBI labs perform that allowed them to conclude that the total quantity of spores needed for all the mailed letters could be made by a single person over a few evenings?

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(6) Dugway researchers publish in 2008 that the Daschle spores were “fluidized.” In March 2008 authors from Dugway Proving Ground and the CDC published a paper titled: Development of an Aerosol System for Uniformly Depositing Bacillus anthracis Spore Particles on Surfaces. Paul A. Baron1, Cherie F. Estill1, Gregory J. Deye1, Misty J. Hein1, Jeremy K. Beard2, Lloyd D. Larsen2, and Gregory E. Dahlstrom2, 1_Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA 2_Dugway Proving Ground, Dugway, Utah, USA

<http://pdfserve.informaworld.com/168090__790515467.pdf>

In this paper, which was concerned with manufacturing a powder that would display similar aerosol and dispersability behavior to the Daschle powder, the authors make the following statement: “In the anthrax attack of 2001, some of the material was believed to be in a “fluidized” form (defined here as having fumed silica added).”

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6.1: Were the authors from Dugway Proving Ground privy to the nature of the powder used in the attacks? What led the authors to conclude that the spores used in the attacks were “fluidized?”

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posted by Stuart Jacobsen PhD, Analytical Chemist

http://www.promedmail.org/pls/otn/f?p=2400:1001:459862648644425::NO::F2400_P1001_BACK_PAGE,F2400_P1001_PUB_MAIL_ID:1010,81897

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* Anwar Aulaqi, who was coordinating with Ali Al-Timimi, was interviewed by 9/15/2001 by the FBI

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 22, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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* The head of intelligence for Egyptian Islamic Jihad had a document on his computer seized by the FBI that outlined principles of cell security that would be followed

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 22, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , | 31 Comments »

* Jim White … the silicon evidence raises serious doubts that Dr. Bruce Ivins could have worked alone as the FBI continues to assert

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 21, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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fermenter at USAMRIID

Extracts from Jim White’s article MOST LIKELY SOUCES OF SILICON IN ANTHRAX ATTACK SPORES ARGUES AGAINST PRODUCTION BY IVINS (3/20/10)  …

  • If the silicon in the anthrax attack spores does indeed come from the material having been cultured in the presence of a silicone antifoam agent that also had silica present, then the FBI’s conclusion that Bruce Ivins acted alone in the attacks is called into serious doubt.
  • The alternative explanation to Ivins growing 36 two liter cultures is one fermenter run of approximately 70 liters or more. Note that the FBI investigative summary informs us that Dugway was engaged for the 1997 work precisely because Ivins did not have access to large scale culture equipment.
  • If Ivins had grown the spores in his shake flask equipment, he would have had no reason to include any sort of antifoam agent, much less one containing silica, because antifoam is just not used in shake flasks.
  • It also seems unlikely that Ivins would have changed his culture process to produce the attack material. If he did not introduce silicon in his early shake flask cultures (and we know he didn’t from the silicon analysis of the RMR-1029 material), it seems unlikely he would have done so with shake flasks for the attack material.
  • Note also from the Science report that the only other elevated (but not as high as the attack spores) silicon content spores analyzed came from Dugway, where we know that fermenters are available.
  • In conclusion, the finding of high silicon in the spores used in the anthrax attacks suggests that these spores were grown in a large fermenter that used an antifoam agent containing silica.
  • Since Bruce Ivins did not have access to a large fermenter, fermenter growth would suggest that he could not have acted alone in the attacks.

NOTE: I have extracted only the conclusions of Jim White’s article.

To read the entire analysis, go to  … http://seminal.firedoglake.com/diary/36259

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* status report on the NAS anthrax study … it’s due to be released this summer

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 20, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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NAS Publications

BILL … It’s been some time since I’ve seen any updates from NAS regarding the status of the Amerithrax study. Can you provide any information regarding … recent meetings, nature of testimony given, anticipated report date? … LEW

The answer from NAS (3/19/10) …

The report is expected to be released this summer. I need to check on meeting schedule but I believe they’re deep into writing of report, which needs to be peer reviewed prior to approval for release.

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* Holt demands Obama administration support further Amerithrax investigation … says FBI has stonewalled for a decade

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 19, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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UPDATE (3/19/10) … President Obama warned House Democrats this week that he will veto the intelligence authorization bill if it includes provisions intended to increase transparency within the CIA. It is the second time the White House has told the House Intelligence Committee that it will not support a version of the legislation that increases Congressional oversight of intelligence activities. The current draft of the bill would give the Government Accountability Office greater authority to review intelligence operations, require the executive branch to provide information about intelligence activities to the full House and Senate Intelligence committees and lay the groundwork for videotaping the interrogation of detainees in CIA custody.

LMW COMMENT … I tend to agree with the President regarding CIA transparency. The CIA is supposed to be a secret organization, doing secret and covert work on behalf of the American people. Congress has proven itself totally incapable of keeing secrets, even legitimate national security secrets. This issue, however, has nothing to do with the need to investigate the FBI’s failed anthrax investigation.

Congressman Holt’s Press Release  …

http://www.house.gov/apps/list/press/nj12_holt/maranthrax.html

March 18, 2010
Contact: Zach Goldberg
202-225-5801 (office)

  • (Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12), Chair of the Select Intelligence Oversight Panel and a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, today responded to the Obama Administration’s concerns about two provisions he included in the 2010 Intelligence Authorization Bill that passed the House.
  • One provision would require the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community to examine the possibility of a foreign connection to the 2001 anthrax attacks.
  • Another provision would require the videorecording of all pertinent interactions between CIA officers and detainees arrested in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.

“I am not surprised at the FBI’s opposition to [a Congressional investigation], given the fact that they have stonewalled every House and Senate member who has sought information on this investigation over last decade,” Holt wrote.

“What surprises me is that an Administration that has pledged to be transparent and accountable would seek to block any review of the investigation in this matter.”

A copy of Holt’s letter to Peter Orzag,

Director of the Office of Management and Budget …

March 18, 2010
Peter Orzag
Director
Office of Management and Budget
Eisenhower Executive Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20503

Dear. Mr. Orzag,

I am in receipt of your letter of March 15 to Chairman Reyes regarding the Administration’s concerns over two provisions I included in the Fiscal Year 2010 Intelligence Authorization Act (H.R. 2701). Let me begin by addressing the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s claims regarding my provision on the “Amerithrax” investigation.

As you may know, the 2001 anthrax attacks evidently originated from a postal box in my Congressional district, and they disrupted the lives of people throughout the region and the country. For months, Central New Jersey residents lived in fear of a future attack and the possibility of receiving cross-contaminated mail. Mail service was delayed and people wondered whether there was a murderer at large in their midst. Further, my own Congressional office in Washington, D.C. was shut down after it was found to be contaminated with anthrax. Therefore I have followed closely the case and the investigation.

In the wake of the attacks and at a number of points thereafter, a number of media reports—citing government officials, usually anonymously—suggested a possible link between the attacks and foreign entities. Most of these stories attempted to link Iraq to the attacks, but questions have also been raised about whether the strain of anthrax used in the attacks had been supplied to foreign laboratories.

My provision in H.R. 2701 is designed to have the DNI IG address those issues, to determine whether, in fact, all available intelligence on this topic was supplied to investigators. The provision itself is unremarkable in its scope and does not, contrary to the Bureau’s assertion, constitute Congress directing the Inspector General of the intelligence community to “replicate” a criminal investigation.

However, I am not surprised at the FBI’s opposition to it, given the fact that they have stonewalled every House and Senate member who has sought information on this investigation over last decade. What surprises me is that an Administration that has pledged to be transparent and accountable would seek to block any review of the investigation in this matter.

The Bureau has asserted repeatedly and with confidence that the “Amerithrax” investigation is the most thorough they have ever conducted—claims they made even as they were erroneously pursuing Dr. Steven Hatfill. Instructing the DNI IG to ensure that all intelligence information was in fact passed to the FBI would not “undermine public confidence” in the investigation.

Many critical questions in this case remain unanswered, and there are many reason why there is not, nor ever has been, public confidence in the investigation or the FBI’s conclusions, precisely because it was botched at multiple points over more than eight years.

Indeed, opposing an independent examination of any aspect of the investigation will only fuel the public’s belief that the FBI’s case could not hold up in court, and that in fact the real killer may still be at large.

However, that is not the primary purpose of this provision in H.R. 2701. It is appropriate that the Intelligence Community contemplate whether it did consider this case and would consider a similar case properly to protect Americans from bioterrorist attacks. The people of central New Jersey, the Congress, and the Administration need to know that every lead—foreign and domestic—was supplied to the FBI and investigated thoroughly. My provision in H.R. 2701 would help ensure this goal is achieved, and I urge the Administration to support this provision.

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Thank you for your distinguished service to our nation.

Sincerely,

RUSH HOLT

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* capture of Mustafa Hawsawi and laptop with anthrax spray drying documents

Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 18, 2010

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The New York Times says the FBI’s anthrax case has “too many loose ends.” Find out where some of those looses ends might have originated in my novel CASE CLOSED. Sure it’s fiction, but many readers, including a highly respected member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, think my premise is actually “quite plausible.”

* buy CASE CLOSED at amazon *

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Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | 27 Comments »