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

* Harry Samit 8/30/01 Memo: Al-Attas, Detained With Moussaoui, Was Carrying A Will That Explained Death Was Near And That God Favored Those Who Participate In Jihad ; Al-Attas Later Pled Guilty To Lying To Investigators To Protect Others

Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 8, 2012

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17 Responses to “* Harry Samit 8/30/01 Memo: Al-Attas, Detained With Moussaoui, Was Carrying A Will That Explained Death Was Near And That God Favored Those Who Participate In Jihad ; Al-Attas Later Pled Guilty To Lying To Investigators To Protect Others”

  1. DXer said

    Ali below notes that El Shukrijumah reportedly stayed with the fellow who bailed Al-Attas out. While I look for the best authority for that proposition, I note that as early as March 2003 (which is after KSM’s capture), a senior Bush official is saying that evidence suggests Adnan had attended the flight school in Norman. This would have been after KSM began talking about Aafia and the month after they searched Ali’s townhouse and 100 agents came here. I had written the CIA about Norman in December 2001..

    Now what is the authority for the proposition that Adnan stayed in the apartment of Mr. M and what does Mr. M say about this? I realize that he likes guns but his mom vouched for him and he seems very well-spoken and that’s good enough for me. But if the “second wave” cell is directly tied to the guy who bailed out Al-Attas, Harry Samit must know this and the connection between Amerithrax/anthrax and WTC 1993 would not be lost on someone as astute as Agent Samit or his collleagues. Maybe the postal inspectors and others who don’t have experience in such matters should step aside while analysts expert at counterintelligence analysis are allowed to connect the dots. Jennifer, the FBI/CIA person put her money on Bruce. Maybe her forte was science rather than intelligence analysis. Certainly, any poker player would appreciate that the “pot odds” do not warrant betting on an Ivins Theory. New intelligence points to plans for attacks linked to war‎

    Helena Independent Record – Mar 21, 2003
    A senior official of the Bush administration said the government had evidence to suggest that El Shukrijumah had attended the Airman Flight School in Norman …

    • DXer said

      … Adnan el Shukrijumah–who attended flight schools in Florida and Norman, Oklahoma, with Mohammad Atta and the other 9/11 hijackers–attended Hamilton , …

      Link between wanted Saudi man and ‘dirty bomb’ suspect? -…‎

      CNN – Apr 22, 2005
      El Shukrijumah lived in Pembroke Pines, Florida, at the same time as Padilla, 31 … said El Shukrijumah has a connection to the Airman Flight School in Norman, …

      The Washington Times: FBI steps up hunt for Pakistani – …‎
      $2.95 –
      Washington Times – Apr 2, 2003
      El Shukrijumah has been trained by Ramzi Binalshibh, the terrorist network’s … to a flight school in Norman, Okla., where terror suspect Zacarias Moussaoui also …

      Comment: Given the Moussaoui-Adnan-Minneapolis tie-in to WTC through Mr. M, it is an egregious mistake if the FBI did not test the subtilis sampled from places associated with the subtilis expert associated by phone records to Ramzi Yousef’s apartment and telephone number.

      I would think that everyone whose family lives in New York City and Washington, DC would roll up their sleeves and check Rachel’s and Ken’s work on such issues as the mass spec of the photocopier, Dr. Ivins’ work on the rabbits being overlooked, etc., the fact that the psychiatrists’ key witness, the first counselor, thought she was being pursued by nasty astral entities attached to her clients and thought she was controlled by a space alien who had implanted a chip in her butt etc.

      Amerithrax represents the greatest intelligence history in the United States.

      It is an even bigger mistake to think that all will not come to be known.

      • DXer said

        What is there to corroborate the claim by the unnamed senior official of the Bush Administration? Note that one additional development is now the former CTC head Mowf says that Jdey was detained at same time as Moussaoui and was carrying biology textbooks. Which brings us back to the question: Where was Jdey detained and released?

        New York Times:

        “A senior official of the Bush administration said the government had evidence to suggest that El Shukrijumah had attended the Airman Flight School in Norman, Okla., one of two schools that Zacarias Moussaoui attended in 2001. Moussaoui, a Frenchmen, is awaiting trial in Virginia on charges that he conspired with the Sept. 11 hijackers.

        But the director of operations at the school, Dale Davis, said a search of its records found no student with any of the six names that El Shukrijumah is believed to have used. In a telephone interview, Davis said that the FBI had not been in contact with the school for months and that, to his knowledge, the bureau had never asked about El Shukrijumah.”

        • DXer said

          Ali,

          Note that Adnan’s father was Blind Sheik’s translator and Jdey expressly quotes blind sheik in letter explaining his motivation (uploaded at West Point website)

      • DXer said

        Use of Code: “Greendale School”

        “Greendale” School is the return address of the anthrax letters to Senators Daschle and Leahy. In December 2002, the Arabic paper London Al-Sharq al-Awsat reported that correspondence on Zawahiri’s computer (which was obtained by the Wall Street Journal) shows Zawahiri uses “school” as code for Egyptian Islamic Jihad. The letter was found on Al Zawahiri’s computer. The letter was designed to look innocent. It was dated 3 May 2001 and signed “Dr. Nour, Chairman of the Company.” Nour is one of Zawahiri’s aliases. In this context, it was Egyptian Islamic Jihad, not Al Qaeda, of which he was Chairman.

        “We have been trying to go back to our main, previous activities. The most important step was the opening of the school. We have made it possible for the teachers to find openings for profitable trade.”

        Dr. Jean Rosenfeld, a researcher associated with the UCLA Center for the Study of Religion, and an expert on the symbolism of religious extremist movements, wrote me: “Greendale’ to me signified a conscious choice to use the symbolic color of Islam.” She continued: “The franked eagle on the envelope of the anthrax letters was identical to the one I caught on a documentary that showed a one-second shot of the site where Sadat was assassinated–the huge eagle above the podium where he was when he died. That assassination was of great significance to Egyptian Jihad and produced the pamphlet by Faraj that justifies “fard ‘ayn”/individual duty as the basis of jihadist doctrine.” She explained that “AQ is rooted in Egypt and Salafism, not Saudi Arabia and Wahhabism. Al-Zawahiri, I believe, is intensely nostalgic for the Nile Valley.”

        The CIA factbook explains that the color green — such as used by anthrax lab technician Yazid Sufaat in naming his lab “Green Laboratory Medicine” , and by the mailer who used the return address “Greendale School” — is the traditional color of islam. Green symbolizes islam, Mohammed and the holy war. In its section on Saudi Arabia, and the “Flag Description:,” the CIA “Factbook” explains that the flag is “green with large white Arabic script (that may be translated as There is no God but God; Muhammad is the Messenger of God) above a white horizontal saber (the tip points to the hoist side); green is the traditional color of Islam.”

        In Amerithrax, “Greendale School” likely symbolized the Egyptian militant islamists just as a green bandana worn on the head by a shiite fighting in Iraq symbolizes martyrdom.

        Likely for the same reason, Al Qaeda anthrax lab technician Yazid Sufaat and Zacarias Moussaoui used the name Green Laboratory Medicine as the name of the company that he used, for example, to buy 4 tons of ammonium nitrate, and that he used to cover his anthrax production program. In a Hadith the Messenger of Allah explains that the souls of the martyrs are in the hearts of green birds that fly wherever they please in Paradise.

        Green dale refers to green “river valley” — Egypt, Cairo, Egyptian Islamic Jihad and/or Egyptian Islamic Group. Put it all together and you have their new official name (though the American press does not use it) — Qaeda al Jihad. For what it is worth, at the Darunta complex where jihadis trained, recruits would wear green uniforms, except for Friday when they would be washed.

        A similar type of coded talk was used around the same period between Atta and Binalshibh as they approached the zero hour of 11 September. Code phrases included:

        Faculty of Fine Arts/arts = Pentagon

        Faculty of Town Planning/architecture = World Trade Center

        Faculty of Law / law = The Capitol

        politics = White House

        White Meat = Americans

        Terminal = Indonesia

        Market = Malaysia

        Hotel = Philippines

        Village = Egypt

        In the conversations that the blind sheikh’s spokesman, Sattar, had with people like Taha, al-Sirri, and the sheikh’s son, Ahmed, they used the same language found in emails between Zawahiri and the Yemeni cell in email. If a brother was in the hospital, it meant he was in prison. If he had an accident, it meant perhaps that Egyptian security services had killed him.

        Given that using the same address helps the second recipient receiving the letter to identify it and avoid opening it, the perp would have no reason to use the same address unless he was communicating something and wanted to draw attention to it.

        On the return address, Greendale School purported to be in Franklin Park. Padilla, the former Broward man suspected of plotting to explode a ”dirty bomb” to spread radiation in the United States, worshipped at a Broward County mosque, Masjid Al-Iman, in Fort Lauderdale. That mosque was across the street from Franklin Park. Padilla was a former gang member who converted to islam while in South Florida and became an extremist while in Egypt beginning in 1998. He attended al Azhar University in Egypt and started a family there after leaving his American wife. In 1999, Padilla left for Pakistan. Authorities detained him May 8, 2002 when he got off a plane at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. The FBI has found no ties between Padilla and the September 11 hijackers, even though several of them had lived in Broward County.

        While in Pakistan, Padilla had reported to KSM, the al Qaeda’s No. 3 leader who had anthrax production documents on his laptop when he was arrested. It appears that in April 2002, Khalid Mohammed dispatched Padilla to the United States, with several thousand dollars for a mission to disperse a radiological device that was still in the thinking stage. He was placed in a military brig in North Carolina and has been held incommunicado, forbidden from contacting his family or attorney. Shortly before leaving for the US from Pakistan in June 2002, Padilla was staying with Al Qaeda’s military commander Mohammed Atef, the former Cairo police sergeant, who Ayman reported to about Project Zabadi.

        A Padilla acquaintance, Adham Hassoun, was detained in June 2002 in Sunrise by federal agents. His home had been searched in November 2001 but authorties had laid back, not arresting him and hoping surveillance would lead to insights. Hassoun once served as distributor of a magazine published in Australia advocating Muslim holy war and was associated with one or more charities accused by the Bush administration of funding terrorists. Padilla reportedly had contacted Hassoun from overseas and was apparently en route to meet Hassoun when he was arrested. Investigators monitored the communication between Padilla and Hassoun and arrested Hassoun after he was called by a reporter from Miami about his acquaintanceship with Padilla. State records indicate that he was the Florida registered agent of the Chicago-based Benevolence International Foundation. The leader of the mosque across from Franklin Park was Awad, the Florida representative of Holy Land Foundation.

        Hassoun had established Benevolence International Foundation in Plantation, Florida in 1992. In 1993, the headquarters was moved to Chicago area. A man named Mohammed Loay Bayazid was its president in 1993 and 1994. He was arrested while visiting Northern California in December 1994 along with Osama Bin Laden’s brother-in-law. Bayazid, according to authorties, had been looking to purchase enriched uranium for Bin Laden. Thus, things had quickly come full circle for BIF to once again be involved in an investigation relating to Al Qaeda’s attempt to obtain weapons of mass destruction.

        In late 2002, it was announced that authorities were urgently seeking a Florida pilot El Shukrijumah, who worshiped at this same Fort Lauderdale mosque across from Franklin Park and had possible ties to Adham Hassoun. The pilot El Shukrijumah is said to be at the level of Mohammed Atta and is thought to have been associated with Aafia Siddiqui, an MIT-trained biologist. Aafia Siddiqui reportedly also has a yet-undisclosed connection to Adham Hassoun. Mohammed Atta lived 11 miles away from this mosque across from Franklin Park, where these members of the Egyptian Islamic Group worshiped. Holy Cross hospital –where Dr Tsonas treated Flight 93 hijacker Ahmad al-Haznawi for a suspicious leg lesion that he and other experts think was due to cutaneous anthrax — is only 7 miles from the mosque. Is it all a coincidence? Possibly. Certainly, it is speculative and the relevant information is classified.

        As Ali now points out to us, El Shukrijumah according to a senior Bush official spent time in Norman with the hijackers. According to another uncorrobborated source, he actually stayed with the fellow who went to bond Al-Attas out of the INS detention center.

        Remember: Given that using the same address helps the second recipient receiving the letter to identify it and avoid opening it, the mailer would have no reason to use the same address unless he was communicating something and wanted to draw attention to it.

        This speculation underscored the importance of finding the Florida “Jafar the Pilot.” El Shukrijumah reportedly was seen in Canada looking for nuclear material for a dirty bomb. Operatives named El-Maati and Anas al-Liby may have been there also. A man thought to be El Shukrijumah was spotted by a witness lin Hamilton, Ontario, in the role of a student at McMaster University, which has a 5-megawatt research reactor. U.S. officials believe El Shukrijumah was in Hamilton seeking to obtain radioactive material in preparation for planned simultaneous attacks.

        There was a detailed description at a June 1, 2004 press conference of Padilla’s plot and his relationship with Jafar the Pilot by a senior DOJ official. The official also described Padilla’s relationship with Atef, Zubaydah, KSM, and Ramzi Binalshibh. He emphasized that there is an urgent need to find Adnan (Jafar)

        Both the man who recruited Padilla into Al Qaeda and his sponsor to go to the camp were from Yemen. After 9/11, Padilla spent much of his time at the house of the military commander Atef. Egyptian Atef, who was in charge of Al Qaeda’s military operations and a former Cairo police sergeant, had been handling Padilla until he died in a bombing raid in November 2001.

        Padilla met Zubaydah, who helped with logistics and travel arrangements, at the border crossing into Pakistan, then again at a safe house in Lahore, Pakistan, and again at another house in Faisalabad, Pakistan. The night before he left for the US, Padilla had dinner with 9/11 plotters KSM and Ramzi Binalshibh. (Ramzi taught him email protocol). After the senior DOJ official described the plot of doubtful or uncertain feasibility, he noted there was a lot he is not telling us because it is still classified. He said it was still classified who was to assist Padilla.

        Hassoun disputes all the allegations, noting he was not permitted to refute them in court. He says that the government bases its allegations on “bits and pieces of a few phone conversations.” Of course, these interceptions include phone conversations in 2002 that they intercepted when Padilla was arranging to meet with Hassoun after arriving in the States. On September 16, 2004 a new indictment charged Adham Hassoun and his use of coded messages to plot terror recruiting and the like. Also indicted was alleged conspirator Mohammed Hesham Youssef,who is imprisoned in Egypt. At one point in 1996, Egyptian Youssef told Hassoun he is “ready for trade immediately.” This is the same code used by Ayman Zawahiri in his May 2001 letter to supporters in which he used “School” to refer to Egyptian Islamic Jihad.

        The coded e-mail Faris wrote back to KSM suggesting that the idea of removing bolts from the span of the Brooklyn Bridge was not a viable idea was but one of many examples of the simple codes used by Al Qaeda operatives. Sometimes the code might be as simple as Adham Hassoun’s “stuff” for the local soccer team in places like Bosnia or his references to a young man who wanted to go out and get some “fresh air” [go join the jihad]. Sometimes it might be Iyman Faris’ reference to the weather or Ramzi Binalshibh’s “shirts” for Sally. Sometimes it might be a reference to Greendale School or a marriage proposal to Jenny such as in the case of the anthrax mailings. The CIA apparently thinks wedding is Al-Qaeda-speak for an event. That, according to New York Times journalists, is why the CIA got so anxious to have the Buffalo boys arrested. Apart from an email about a “big feast,” they had started talking about a planned wedding. Interpreting such code is not without risk. The CIA kicked down the door in Bahrain and dragged him away from the altar to the horror of his bride-to-be.

        But putting aside this question of nuptials, impending or annulled, the fact remains that the sender of the anthrax letters would have had no reason to use the same address on the second letter unless he was communicating something. That identical return address, in fact, helped authorities locate and intercept the letter to a Senator.

        • DXer said

          Use of Code: “In The Hearts Of Green Birds” (Inside Green Birds)

          Moussaoui was big on telling Al-Attas that jihad was the path to paradise. Moussaoui would regularly have lunch with Menepta, who it has been suggested hosted Jafar the Pilot although we have not seen confirmation of that point.

          It was widely published among the militant islamists that martyrs go to paradise “in the hearts of green birds.” The image above of the bird is from the homepage of the designer of the stamp used in the anthrax mailings. It was designed by artist Michael Doret. The image is “a file made directly from the original art [he] created, so the color is an accurate representation of the printed envelope.” Mr. Doret advises me that the color of the eagle is a “teal” or greenish-blue.

          In the very interview in which they admitted 9/11, and described the codes used for the four targets for the planes, KSM and Ramzi Binalshibh admitted to the Jenny code, the code for representing the date 9/11, and used the symbolism of the “Green Birds.” Osama Bin Laden later invoked the symbolism in his video “The 19 Martyrs”, describing a hijacker as “A man of worship who enjoined good and forbade evil. His body was on earth but his heart roamed with the green birds that perch beneath the Throne of the Most Merciful.”

          Echoing the symbolism of green birds invoked by key 9-11 plotter Ramzi Binalshibh a few months earlielr in his interview with al-Jazeera, in a lengthy and articulate essay “The Nineteen Lions” published by Azzam Publications on December 2002, the jihadist explained:

          A FAQ on Al Qaeda’s website, the Azzam Publications, website explained that “In the Hearts of Green Birds” refers to what is inside. The actual Arabic word used in the Hadith is not Qalb (heart) but it is Jowf which can mean any of interior, inside, or heart (as in center). There was a video based on the hadith with the title In The Hearts of Green Birds about foreign mujahideen that had been martyred in Bosnia. The audiocasette was created in August 1996 and its 3rd edition was released in January 1997. The azzam.org website selling the “In the Hearts of Green Birds” audiocassette was shut down after 9/11 because authorities thought it might contain codes and instructions to militants.

          Ibn Khattab, the Arab Chechnyan fighter who was Bin Laden’s good friend, had told his public that azzam.com was highly recommended and that only the two charities identified by the website should be used to route donations — announcing in 2000 that Benevolence International Foundation was one of the charities that should be used. In February 2000, the Quoqaz.net website posted donation links for the two charities, one being BIF. Ibu al-Khattab, the late Arab-Afghan commander of foreign mjuahideen in Chechnya (who in March 2002 was killed by a poison letter), said of Azzam Publications:

          Azzam.org had “no bricks and mortar address, but operates a post office box in London, and bill[ed] itself as “an independent media organisation providing authentic news and information about jihad and the Foreign Mujahideen everywhere”. One posting datelined from the southern Afghan city of Kandahar and was a message to Muslim youth from top terror suspect Bin Laden.

          A farewell message from Azzam Publications … exhorts “Muslims all over the World (to) render as much financial, physical, medical, media and moral support to the Taliban as they can.” Azzam also urged those with computer expertise to mirror the website so as to keep it up after authorities took it down. One can access old websites as they existed on past dates through http://www.archives.org and its wonderful Wayback Machine.

          British and US intelligence sources suspected that some of Azzam.com’s jihad photos and graphics contain messages embedded with a technology known as steganography. The code instead perhaps was there for all to see on the stamps of the lethal missives being sent.

          Even Zarqawi invoked the imagery in a 60-minute audio message:

          In Fall 2004, the federal authorities indicted the fellow behind Azzam Publications selling “Green Birds,” Babar Ahmad, pointing, in part, to the “distribution of videotapes and compact discs depicting fighters in Bosnia, Chechnya and elsewhere, and the eulogizing of dead fighters, for the purpose of recruiting individuals and soliciting donations to support the mujahideen in Afghanistan and Chechnya.” Of Pakistani descent, Ahmad is a British computer specialist. He is associated with KSM, who had anthrax production documents on his laptop. Ahmad is also the cousin of Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan, who was arrested mid-2004 in Pakistan. Khan’s computers carried detailed surveillance of five financial buildings in New York, Newark and Washington and prompted the Department of Homeland Security to elevate the threat alert level to orange. The surveillance was conducted by Jafar the Pilot and the Briton al-Hindi, whom KSM had sent to meet with Hambali in late December 1999 or early 2000 in Kuala Lumpur. That was where and when the key 9/11 planning meeting was held at the condominium of anthrax lab technician Yazid Sufaat. Jafar the Pilot worshipped at the mosque at Franklin Park, which was used as part of the fictitious return address in the anthrax mailings.

          In an affidavit, an FBI special agent and computer investigative specialist, alleged that a New Brunswick, NJ man, Mazen Mokhtar, assisted Babar in maintaining the continued operation of the Azzam sites, through the use of mirror sites, when the administrators of Azzam sites shut down the Azzam.com site down after 9/11.” The mirror sites, http://www.qoqaz.net and http://www.waaqiah.com, allegedly routed people trying to access http://www.azzam.com. The affidavit alleges that Mr. Mokhtar is listed as the administrative contact for the mirror sites. He also operated minna.com. A friend reports: “He said he used to run a hosting service four or five years ago that used to resell Web hosting services to people. He said he didn’t know those guys (mentioned in court papers) and he is not involved in anything like that.” An Egyptian-born imam and political activist, he is a supporter of Palestinian cause and frequent speaker before groups in Brooklyn and the Bronx. He is said to be nice and seems a man of peace.

          Of course, given that the symbolism used in this regard in the anthrax mailings had an origin in religious writing, there is no direct tie with the website — the tie could be with the hadith. The webmaster has said that the FBI allowed it to remain up (while it moved from server to server) for another year hoping to get leads on supporters.

          Bin Laden was using “Green Birds” in the same way he used the repeated phrase “Looming Tower” to hint of what was to come with the planes attack on the World Trade Center. He would say:

          “Wherever you are, death will find you,

          even in the looming tower.”

          On October 7, 2001 in a prerecorded tape aired October 7, Bin Laden said “The winds of faith have come.”

        • DXer said

          Was Elzahabi the mailer? Dr. Majidi, how did authorities exclude him?

          Elzahabi came from Chechnya in mid-August. He was fresh from fighting with Ibn Khattab, who was Bin Laden’s confidante in WMD aspirations. He went straight for Minneapolis, rather than Boston or New York City where he had previously lived. He applied for a job as a school bus driver on September 11, 2001. He did not start work until after the mailings. Elzahabi lived at a small community center in Dinkytown near the University of Minnesota. Why did Elzahabi go to Minneapolis. Was he the anthrax mailer? His prosecution is surrounded in secrecy.

          Elzahabi reentered the US in mid-August 2001 and went to Minneapolis (the month Zacarias was arrested in Minneapolis). Did Moussaoui know Elzahabi? Elzahabi was held for three months under a material witness warrant beginning May 2004. When the federal district court judge lost his patience (because the government had not presented him to a grand jury), the government brought charges relating to making false statement to investigators. US Attorney Heffelfinger wouldn’t comment on whether Elzahabi’s case had any connection to Moussaoui.

          Elzahabi trained 4 years in Khalden in the early 1990s. He came back to the US for medical care after being shot. Elzahabi lived in a house near the University of Minnesota that was also home to a mosque. He was being “trashed” (G-Men were going through his garbage) What mosque did Zacarias attend while in Minneapolis? They “trashed” Elzahabi for months before arresting him — or was it for a matter of years? These perps who don’t just assume the worst and flee are incredibly stupid. Where was Elzahabi on the dates of mailing? He applied for a job with a school bus company on September 11. Elzahabi did not begin work until at least about October 17, 2001, according to a published report quoting a named First Student spokesperson. He reportedly was dismissed in January 2002 after missing a few days of work. Elzahabi was granted a hazmat truck license in January 2002 by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Department. His license to drive a bus was cancelled in February 2002 for reasons that are not known.

          Elzahabi was questioned for two weeks at a Marriott in downtown Minneapolis, a few blocks away from FBI offices. Elzahabi said he had long renounced his extremist interests — he had once taught sniping in Afghanistan and associated with Al Qaeda leaders — and was willing to help the FBI.

          Moussaoui trained at the Khalden camp in or about April 1998, which is the year Zubaydah asked Elzahabi to be a trainer there (though Elzahabi says he declined, and says he went to Bosnia to fight instead). (At the time of Zubaydah’s request, Elzahabi had been living in NYC providing logistical support (shipping radios) to the Afghan fighters. Zubaydah is one of the Al Qaeda planners that Zacarias wants to testify at his trial. Zacarias said in a March 2002 motion: “Abu Zubaydah must talk to the world about September 11.” According to the statement of facts filed in support of his plea, Moussaoui managed an al Qaeda guesthouse in Kandahar. This was a position of high respect within al Qaeda. Moussaoui communicated directly with Bin Laden and Abu Hafs al Masri.

          According to the complaint unsealed in US District Court in Minneapolis, Elzahabi lied about the extent of his relationship with Hijazi. When questioned in April 2004 by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, Elzahabi “denied knowing him very well.” The complaint alleged that Elzahabi helped obtain a driver’s license for Hijazi. Elzahabi served as the sponsor for the application and Hijazi used Elzahabi’s Everett address for mailing. The Boston Globe reports that one friend, who did not want to be identified, says “that Elzahabi had taken a used mattress from his apartment in Everett and brought it to Hijazi’s apartment in Malden.”

          Elzahabi knew Khalid Mohammed, Zubaydah, and even Zarqawi. He lived in Queens in NYC in 1995-1997, where he allegedly shipped portable field radios to Afghan fighters. Then he worked in Boston with Al-Marabh and Hijazi in 1997-1998. In 1998, Zubaydah asked him to come back to work as a trainer (though he actually ended up in Lebanon). Before 9/11, he fought under Khattab the Arab Chechnya fighter who was killed in 2002 by a poison letter. He travelled to Minneapolis in mid-August 2001 as did Zacarias Moussaoui. He applied for a job as a driver for a school bus company job on 9/11. Then he was fired on January 18, 2002 for missing a few days of work.

  2. DXer said

    Who bailed Al-Attas out? Was the one who when told Moussaoui was going to be deported said “What are we going to do? What are we going to do?”

    A Review of the FBI’s Handling of Intelligence Information Related to the September 11 Attacks

    Special Report
    (November 2004), Released Publicly June 2006
    Office of the Inspector General

    http://www.justice.gov/oig/special/s0606/chapter4.htm

    The Minneapolis FBI learned that an individual, who we call “Mohammed Mohald,” had gone to the INS District Office near Minneapolis and paid Al-Attas’ bond on August 20.114 According to documents prepared in the case, Mohald had reported to INS officials that he was and had been Al-Attas’ roommate for some time, and that he knew Attas’ traveling companion – whom he called “Shaqir” – because they attended the same mosque in Norman, Oklahoma, where they all lived. Mohald advised that he had been a Muslim since 1970 and had traveled to a Middle Eastern country in the late 1980s as part of a missionary group.115 The EC stated that a search in ACS revealed that Mohald had an extensive criminal history and was the subject of a New York criminal terrorism-related investigation. The EC did not state the date, status, or findings of the investigation.

    Comment: That was nice of him to bail out his roommate. That’s a 12 hour drive and 800 mile drive. What did the New York criminal terrorism-related investigation entail?

    • DXer said

      I was mistaken. The fellow bonding Al-Attas out of the detention center apparently flew rather than drove. It still was very nice of him. Does Mr. Lattimore know anything about Jdey? About what that CTC person meant when he said that Jdey had been detained at the same time as Moussaoui but then released?

      http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=mujahid_abdulqadir_menepta_1

      August 20, 2001: Moussaoui Associate Bailed Out of Custody by Subject of Counterterrorism Investigation

      M. A. Menepta (Melvin Lattimore). [Source: Public domain]

      Hussein al-Attas, an associate of Zacarias Moussaoui, is released from an immigration detention center on bail. Al-Attas was questioned and detained shortly after Moussaoui’s arrest (see August 16, 2001 and August 16, 2001). His bail is paid by Mujahid Abdulqadir Menepta (a.k.a. Melvin Lattimore), who was investigated by the FBI over terrorism suspicions. When agents from the Minneapolis field office investigate Menepta, they find that he knows Moussaoui and attended the same mosque as him in Norman, Oklahoma. They also discover that he has an extensive criminal history and was the subject of a New York criminal-terrorism related investigation. Minneapolis agent Harry Samit writes in a memo to FBI headquarters that he thinks Menepta may be involved in whatever Moussaoui is plotting. Samit explains that he told immigration officers that he traveled to Pakistan in 1989 as part of a missionary effort. Samit says the international Islamic organization that sponsored the trip has been linked by the FBI to the recruitment of militants. Samit also reports that Menepta wasn’t entirely truthful with the INS. Samit says Pakistan apparently issued him a visa in April 1990, something he failed to disclose to the INS. Additionally, Menepta told immigration officers that he is al-Attas’ roommate, but al-Attas has been living with Moussaoui and another man for one month at an address different than the one indicated by Menepta. Samit says that the the explanation that he flew to Minneapolis to post al-Attas’ bond so that al-Attas can return to teach children at the Oklahoma mosque seems “farfetched.”

      • DXer said

        For his trouble Mr. Menepta, who bonded out Al-Attas, was arrested on October 9.

        The prosecutor says Mr. Menepta was told by the Secret Service (?) that his visa card was used to buy the WTC 1993 bomb chemicals. What is the best sourcing on this — whether the card was in fact used? Who bought the chemicals reportedly with his visa? Did he know the WTC 1993 bombers? Did he know Ramzi Yousef, KSM’s nephew? Did he know the subtilis expert in contact with the Ramzi Yousef’s phone number up to the time the blind sheikh was arrested? Did the FBI ever test different areas to see if they could find a genetic match to that subtilis in the mailed anthrax? Did Mr. Rolince step up his reading after 911?

        A NATION CHALLENGED: THE DETAINEES; No Bail for Friend of Man Suspected of Preparing for Sept. 11 Hijackings
        By JO THOMAS
        Published: November 10, 2001

        [Federal prosecutor] Whitney also told the court that Mr. Menepta had said the Secret Service told him that one of the terrorists who bombed the World Trade Center in 1993 had used his visa number. Mr. Whitney said he could not confirm Mr. Menepta’s account.
        http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/10/us/nation-challenged-detainees-no-bail-for-friend-man-suspected-preparing-for-sept.html

        The article continues:

        After the Sept. 11 attacks, Mr. Menepta, who lives in Norman, gave several interviews in which he defended Mr. Moussaoui, 33, whom he knew through a mosque. Mr. Moussaoui, a French citizen of Moroccan descent was arrested in Minneapolis on Aug. 17 on immigration charges after he sought lessons on how to fly jets, but expressed no interest in learning how to take off or land.

        ”I think he’s a scapegoat,” Mr. Menepta told the newspaper in an article published on Oct. 9.

        He was arrested as a material witness two days later. …

        Mr. Menepta served time in prison for a 1970 robbery in Colorado and was charged with being a felon in possession of firearms.

        His court-appointed lawyer in New York, Lawrence Gerzog, said that the charges in Oklahoma have ”nothing to do with the World Trade Center…”

        • DXer said

          http://www.stlmag.com/St-Louis-Magazine/October-2008/Sidelined/

          In this in-depth feature from 2008, the reference is to testimony of a federal agent about his visa being used by someone to exit the country after the WTC 1993 bombing — rather than to buy the bomb chemicals. (Or was it used for both?) Who used his visa fraudulently to exit the country? Anthrax planner KSM’s nephew Ramzi Yousef? KSM was also the uncle of Al-Balucchi who discussed the anthrax lab with his new wife Aafia. It sure is a small world, especially in light of Moussaoui saying he only wanted anthrax that would kill members of a particular religion.

          What were the circumstances of the WTC 1993 bomber obtaining his visa number and using it fraudulently?

          Are you saying that KSM’s nephew, WTC 1993 mastermind Ramzi Yousef, was using the credit card of the fellow who bonded out Moussaoui’s colleague and travelmate?

          From the article:

          “Earlier that year, in August 2001, Moussaoui and his 24-year-old roommate, Hussein al-Attas, had traveled to Minnesota, where Moussaoui aroused the suspicions of flight instructors after telling them he wanted to practice only steering planes — as opposed to taking off and landing. Authorities detained the pair on August 17, 2001, jailing Moussaoui indefinitely and holding al-Attas until later that month, when Menepta drove to Minnesota and bonded the younger man out of jail.

          “He was a beautiful youngster,” says Menepta, adding that he acted as a “mentor” to al-Attas. “He had totally memorized the Koran, but he was easily influenced. This guy [Moussaoui] overwhelmed him.”

          As the man who bonded Moussaoui’s roommate out of jail, Menepta came under suspicion that fall as authorities tried to tie Moussaoui to the 9/11 hijackers. It didn’t help that as a de facto spokesman for the mosque, Menepta told reporters that he “was as close to [Moussaoui] as anyone” and that he believed the man who’d once eaten at his house was being used as a “scapegoat.”

          That October, federal agents arrested Menepta, holding him for three weeks in New York as a material witness to the 9/11 attacks. His arrest warrant states that he was being investigated on charges of “conspiracy to destroy aircraft,” “bombing conspiracy” and “seditious conspiracy to levy war against the United States.”

          Today, Menepta has few kind words for the man he once defended.

          “They were asking me what did I know about Moussaoui’s involvement. I told them Moussaoui’s an idiot — you’re barking up the wrong tree,” says Menepta. “This guy was not in good standing with one Muslim at the mosque. He was trouble, a disturbance.”

          … federal authorities declined to press terrorism charges against his father. Instead, they shipped Menepta back to Oklahoma, where, as a convicted felon legally barred from possessing weapons, he faced charges stemming from a shotgun, an SKS rifle and a .380-caliber semiautomatic pistol agents recovered during their initial sweep of his house.

          During court proceedings, a federal agent testified that … St. Louis police arrested Menepta in 1997 for carrying a concealed weapon and that one of the terrorists involved in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing had fraudulently used Menepta’s visa number to exit the country.”

        • > “It sure is a small world….”

          Sometimes, it’s downright claustrophobic….

          Only three of the WTC93 bombers left the country, right?

          * Yasin (Baghdad, now ???). Flew to Jordan, then overland to Baghdad, and his retirement villa.

          * Ramzi Yousef (jugged). Flew to Pakistan, then overland via Baluchistan to Gulf. (Odd that. PK is the long-way about.) Called ahead to make sure travel onward to Gulf was in place. Flew first class, too.

          * Abouhalima (jugged). Flew to Saudi, or perhaps Sudan, then made his way to Egypt, where he met his German wife and four (?) kids. Immediately arrested, ten-days tortured, confessed, and handed over to the FBI (with a copy of his confession pinned to his forehead) — the very first rendition.

        • “Following the training at Hoffman, Adnan accompanied Atta and Shehhi to the Airman Flight School in Norman, Oklahoma, where Atta and Shehhi signed up for advanced training on commercial jet airliners. In Norman, Adnan bunked up with Shehhi at the apartment of Majahid Abdul Quaadir Menepta. Menepta (Melvin Lattimore), an African-American convert to Islam. Menepta, who was finishing his studies in biochemistry at The University of Oklahoma, was a member of Jamaat ul-Fuqra, a terrorist agency with ties to al-Qaeda that had established paramilitary training compounds in rural areas throughout the United States. Also living in Menepta’s apartment was Zacarias Moussaoui, the so-called “20th terrorist” of 9/11. During this time, Adnan appears to have met and befriended Wael Rabeh and Muhanned Debeh, two students from The University of Oklahoma with ties to an al-Qaeda cell in Toronto.”

          [Paul L. Williams, The Search for Adnan El Shukrijumah, February 6, 2008]

        • “Rohrabacher was provided detailed evidence about Menepta before his
          report came out. When given this evidence, Rohrabacher claimed that
          neither his investigators, the FBI, CIA nor the Justice Department,
          had ever told him about Menepta before. The evidence about Menepta
          was given to Rohrabacher at the same time he was also given the
          evidence about Samir Khalil being an unindicted co-conspirator in
          the 1993 WTC bombing. However, it is a mystery why Rohrabacher did
          not mention Menepta in his OKC bombing report since Menepta, like
          Samir Khalil, was involved in the 1993 WTC and 1995 OKC bombings.
          Menepta was not even mentioned in the chapter of the Rohrabacher
          report where Rohrabacher did complain about Samir Khalil not being
          adequately investigated by the FBI and DOJ.”

          “Menepta was named by BATF agent Jerry Whitney as a participant in
          the 1993 WTC and OKC bombings during a federal trial in OKC in
          November 2001. Menepta’s credit card was used to purchase the bomb
          making materials used by Emad Salem and Abdul Rahman Yasin to build
          the 1993 WTC bomb. Menepta also roomed at various times in Norman,
          Oklahoma with 9/11 participants Al Shehhi, Al Hazmi, AlAttas and
          Zecharias Moussaoui. Menepta traveled to Minnesota in August 2001
          and attempted to bail AlAttas and Moussaoui out of FBI custody.
          Imam Nedaya from Senegal was at the Norman mosque attended by
          Menepta, AlAttas and Moussaoui. Nedaya was taped by the FBI talking
          to AlAttas and Moussaoui about “being on jihad” just before 9/11.
          The DOJ prosecutor, John Richter, arranged a reduced sentence for
          Menepta at the November 2001 trial. Menepta was put back on the
          streets less than a year after 9/11 despite the testimony from the
          BATF about Menepta’s role in the 1993 WTC and 1995 OKC bombings.
          Menepta now runs an Islamic terror institute in St Louis. AlAttas
          and Meneptas involvement was suppressed at the Moussaoui trial by
          U.S. Attorneys, the FBI or DOJ even though they knew about it.”

          [Patrick B. Briley, The Oklahoma City Bombing Case Revelations, 2007]

        • DXer said

          Mr. Williams did not cite any authority for his claim that Mr. Menepta, at age 50 or so, was a student of biochemistry and I see no corroboration of the claim or corroboration that Mr. Menepta was ever at McMasters. What is his sourcing? What is his sourcing even as to the claim quoted that Adnan stayed with Mr. M. Mr. M’s Khalid would go later go there — and Mr. M claimed to room with Al-Attas. So it may very well be true. But how many 50 year-olds with a conviction for armed robbery do you know going to school? In the fascinating 2008 feature, there is no mention that he was studying. Selling incense and tchotchoke’s was said to be how he occupied his time. The Department listings were not in the Wayback machine when I last looked.

          When DOJ issued the BOLO for Jdey, Adnan and Aafia, the DOJ official made a point of explaining that they were withholding information. So I won’t be surprised by anything with respect to connections between Adnan, Jdey and others like Al-Hazmi etc. But we need primary source material.

          On WTC, Attorney Stewart uploaded trial transcripts from WTC 1993 and that would be a useful resource as to how Mr. Menepta’s credit card came to be used. Ramzi was short of cash. Years ago I emailed the subtilis expert calling the phone associated with Ramzi Yousef up to the time of the blind sheik’s arrest to ask about possible explanations for the Silicon Signature but I didn’t hear back.

        • DXer said

          Adnan’s dad, an imam (and I believe a translator for the bilnd sheik) served as a character witness for one of the bombers. So Adnan likely would know Mr. M. from Brooklyn (I assume he was in Brooklyn for his visa number to be accessed but I don’t know that for a fact).

          There’s a $5 million reward for Adnan. Also for Jdey.

  3. DXer said

    The Daily Telegraph

    March 23, 2006 Thursday
    State Edition

    ‘Be ready for jihad’ – Court told of terror boast

    BYLINE: MATTHEW BARAKAT

    SECTION: WORLD; Pg. 36

    LENGTH: 315 words

    WASHINGTON: Al-Qaeda conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui told a roommate that fighting a holy war was the only way to get to paradise, a US court heard yesterday.

    A videotaped deposition of Hussein al-Attas, who lived with Moussaoui before the September 11, 2001 attacks, was played for the jury in Moussaoui’s sentencing trial.

    Al-Attas said Moussaoui talked about jihad, or holy war, every day.

    ”Your obligation, like any other Muslim, is to be ready for jihad,” he quoted Moussaoui as telling him.

    Al-Attas also said he was told: ”This is the only way for me to get to paradise.”

    Al-Attas, a Saudi-born Yemeni citizen, was attending the University of Oklahoma when he lived with Moussaoui for more than a month in 2001. Moussaoui was taking flight training in Oklahoma.

    When federal agents arrested Moussaoui in Minnesota in August 2001, al-Attas was with him. Al-Attas spent more than a year in jail for making false statements to 9/11 investigators.

    Yesterday, FBI agent Harry Samit told the court he worked obsessively after arresting Moussaoui on August 16, 2001, to convince FBI headquarters that Moussaoui warranted investigation and a search warrant should be obtained.

    The agent, who obtained a search warrant only after the 9/11 attacks, attributed the FBI’s failure to launch a timely investigation to ”criminal negligence” and careerism by certain agents.

    The FBI’s failures thwarted an opportunity to prevent the attacks, he said.

    Comment: In the hard-to-read memo above, who was the roommate who when told of Moussaoui’s arrest and possible deportation, said “What are we going to do? What are we going to do?”

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