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

* Before his recent arrest, Yazid Sufaat declined to tell DXer the strain of the “anthrax spore concentrate”

Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 29, 2013

Screen shot 2013-05-29 at 9.12.38 AM

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69 Responses to “* Before his recent arrest, Yazid Sufaat declined to tell DXer the strain of the “anthrax spore concentrate””

  1. DXer said

    Zemcar Advisor talking head Juliette Kayyem advises rideshare safety for teens.

    In her book “Security Mom,” she presumes to comment on whether Yazid Sufaat would have wanted to use the anthrax he was developing as a weapon in a mailed envelope such as instructed in the Al Qaeda manual — even though she nowhere even mentions the Al Qaeda anthrax program, the Al Qaeda manual, or that anthrax had been developed in Al Qaeda’s anthrax program precisely to execute on the threats of leaders of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad that Zawahiri would be used against US targets to retaliate for the detention of the Blind Sheik Abdel Rahman and other senior EIJ leaders..

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  2. DXer said

    Richard Lambert in 2 hour interview published on March 8, 2017:

    The second mailing looked “like flour.” “Two different methodologies were used to produce it.” (30.__)

    He doesn’t know the reason for the difference in the batches.

  3. DXer said

    Tom Ridge, the former Homeland Secretary (from 2003-2005), this week reportedly has said that “al-Qaida did experiments on anthrax on animals.”

    http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/tom-ridge-iran-iraq-influence/2015/11/05/id/700786/

    Mr. Ridge what strain of anthrax was used? Was it Ames strain such as reportedly detected by the CIA at the Afghanistan laboratory?

    http://www.dhs.gov/thomas-j-ridge-homeland-security-secretary-2003-2005

    The CIA’s detection of the Ames strain of b. anthracis in Afghanistan was discarded by the FBI due to different testing results, sampling procedures, and methodology used by the FBI and IC (“Intelligence Community”)

    Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 30, 2015

  4. DXer said

    NATIONAL BLUEPRINT FOR BIODEFENSE: LEADERSHIP AND MAJOR REFORM NEEDED TO OPTIMIZE EFFORTS
    BIPARTISAN REPORT OF THE BLUE RIBBON STUDY PANEL ON BIODEFENSE, October 28, 2015

    The Blueprint for Biodefense Recommendations includes:

    6. Improve management of the biological intelligence enterprise.

    and

    9. Better support and inform decisions based on biological attribution.

    http://www.biodefensestudy.org/SiteAssets/Pages/default/Executive%20Summary%20-%20A%20National%20Blueprint%20for%20Biodefense.pdf

  5. DXer said

    The officer explained at the trial on Monday that transcripts captured Yazid Sufaat explaining that he had trained 13 years to go on jihad.

    I have no idea how the trial will turn out. But I can imagine constitutional scholar (and Watergate prosecutor) Archibald Cox defending him based on the soapbox cases in US jurisprudence — which I vaguely recall established the standard of “clear and present” danger standard for protected First Amendment speech.

    Yazid Sufaat forgot to tell his recruits that it was his mother-in-law’s influence that caused him to cut his hair and lose his motorcycle. He was a cool dude in Sacramento. YS, what happened?

    https://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=ms&u=http://www.mstar.com.my/berita/berita-mahkamah/2015/10/05/yazid-sufaat/&prev=search

    English translation:

    “The speaker also incite participants usrah to hate the government on the grounds that the country’s cooperation with the United States (US) military arrested the Mujahideen and encourage participants usrah struggle in the battlefield,” he said.

    Zamihan, which has expertise in the field of theology and philosophy, asked the investigating officer Inspector S. Manivanan to analyze and create reports and transcripts of audio recordings between usrah dated July 7, 2012 to January 5, 2013.

    In addition, he said Yazid interpret the Koran literally and distorted Koranic position than narrow purposes only jihad with their wealth and lives and encourage jihad with weapons.

    “The speaker also encouraged followers military-style training to go to war … he said ‘be prepared to go on jihad … thirteen years’,” he said.

    The trial before Justice Datuk Mohd Azman Husin continues on Tuesday. – BERNAMA

  6. DXer said

    http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v8/bm/ge/newsgeneral.php?id=1176919

    Yazid Sufaat Sebar Ilmu Agama Secara Salah, Kata Saksi
    KUALA LUMPUR, 5 Okt (Bernama) — Mahkamah Tinggi hari ini diberitahu bahawa bekas tahanan Akta Keselamatan Dalam Negeri (ISA), Yazid Sufaat, menyebarkan ilmu agama secara salah dengan memanipulasikan maksud jihad dan al-Quran ketika menyampaikan usrah di rumahnya.

    Pegawai Hal Ehwal Islam Kementerian Dalam Negeri (KDN) Zamihan Mat Zin Al-Ghari, 39, berkata analisis yang dibuatnya terhadap transkrip usrah di rumah Yazid pada 21 Julai 2012 mendapati usrah itu menyemai fahaman Salafi Jihadi dan mencetuskan jihad bersenjata yang boleh menggugat keselamatan negara.

    “Sekiranya seseorang itu menerima dan mempraktikkan fahaman dan ideologi yang diberi penceramah (Yazid), mereka mampu melakukan tindakan kekerasan yang boleh menggugat keselamatan dan ketenteraman awam.

    “Doktrin radikal dan ekstremis yang mereka anuti mampu memburukkan imej Islam dan mencetuskan Islamphobia dalam kalangan bukan Islam serta memburukkan imej negara di mata dunia apabila keluar berperang di negara asing seperti Filipina, Chechnya dan Afghanistan,” katanya ketika menjawab soalan Timbalan Pendakwa Raya Nadia Mohd Izhar.

    Saksi pendakwaan ke-21 itu berkata demikian pada perbicaraan kes Yazid, 51, dan pembantu kafetaria, Muhammad Hilmi Hasim, 35, yang didakwa terbabit dalam aktiviti menggalakkan keganasan.

    Yazid berdepan dua pertuduhan menggalakkan keganasan dengan niat mengugut orang awam di Syria dan menjadi anggota kumpulan Tanzim Al Qaeda Malaysia manakala Muhammad Hilmi didakwa bersubahat dengannya.

    Mereka didakwa melakukan perbuatan itu di sebuah rumah di Taman Bukit Ampang, Lorong Mutiara 2, Lembah Jaya, Ampang dekat sini antara 1 Ogos 2012 dan 7 Feb 2013 mengikut Seksyen 130KA Kanun Keseksaan (Akta 574) yang membawa hukuman penjara seumur hidup dan boleh dikenakan denda, jika sabit kesalahan.

    Yazid dan Muhammad Hilmi diwakili oleh peguam Amer Hamzah Arshad.

    Zamihan, yang bertugas di Bahagian Keselamatan dan Ketenteraman Awam KDN, berkata melalui siri usrah sama, Yazid turut memanipulasi ayat al-Quran dari Surah Al’An’am ayat 116 yang menyatakan sistem demokrasi merupakan rasuah kepada rakyat.

    “Penceramah menggunakan ayat ini yang menyatakan sistem demokrasi merupakan rasuah kepada rakyat, sedangkan di dalam surah itu tidak menyebut mengenai demokrasi di Malaysia.

    “Penceramah juga menghasut peserta usrah supaya membenci kerajaan atas alasan negara ini bekerjasama dengan Amerika Syarikat (AS) menangkap tentera mujahidin dan menggalak peserta usrah berjihad di medan perang,” katanya.

    Zamihan, yang mempunyai kepakaran dalam bidang akidah dan falsafah, diminta pegawai penyiasat Insp S. Manivanan untuk menganalisis dan membuat laporan rakaman audio dan transkrip usrah bertarikh antara 7 Julai 2012 hingga 5 Jan 2013.

    Selain itu, katanya Yazid mentafsir al-Quran secara literal dan menyelewengkan kedudukan ayat Al-Quran selain menyempitkan maksud jihad hanya dengan harta dan nyawa serta menggalakkan jihad dengan senjata.

    “Penceramah turut menggalakkan pengikut berlatih ala tentera untuk pergi berperang…katanya ‘be prepared untuk pergi jihad…tiga belas tahun’,” katanya.

    Perbicaraan di hadapan Hakim Datuk Mohd Azman Husin bersambung esok.

    — BERNAMA

  7. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat’s attorney in his ongoing trial for terrorism is hooked on how to commit the perfect murder.

    What is the current status of Yazid Sufaat’s trial? Did he get away with it?

    A lawyer hooked by ‘the perfect murder’ – Malaysiakini
    http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/303332‎
    Jun 28, 2015 … MALAYSIANS KINI How to commit the perfect murder was … happiest moment as a lawyer when clients Yazid Sufaat …

  8. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat’s gracious daughter reported she is back at the court complex. Is there Court today?

    https://www.swarmapp.com/c/kzLLimqCOyU

    Soraya Yazid checked in at Kompleks Mahkamah Kuala Lumpur (Courts Complex)
    Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur|9 hours agovia Swarm for Android

    Back at Kompleks Mahkamah Kuala Lumpur (Courts Complex) after 2 months.

    First Courthouse in 2 months!

    • DXer said

      An article reporting on testimony (July 27, 2015) refers to a government witness who reports that 141 documents of potential interest may have been deleted from laptops seized in connection with Yazid Sufaat’s arrest.

      10 keywords were obtained from the investigating officer Inspector Mohd Nur Shakirin Ishak. The investigating officer asked the witness to analyze the laptops involved for producing a document has been deleted and has to do with terrorism. The witness said among other words provided, jihad or usrah, fisabillah, infak, have been deleted or redacted.

      This does not seem to be powerful evidence where a man’s liberty is at stake. Either the computer forensic expert can retrieve and reconstruct a document or not.

      People who follow terrorism and counterterrorism news have all sorts of documents on their computer.

      The witness reported that there were 73439 images, either still on the laptop or deleted. Again, our computers include a combination of documents and images, to include those that we think we have deleted. If not securely deleted, they are easily retrieved by a forensic computer expert. I don’t know how these documents were deleted. I myself have deleted many thousands of documents and images — it is the only way to keep using the same computer for years.

      How about searching for the word “anthrax”?

      We likely will know more with the first article in English about the day’s testimony given that I don’t speak Malay and my rough translation is incomplete and unreliable .

      ISNIN, 27 JULAI 2015 @ 7:22 PM

      Nama Yazid Sufaat antara kata kunci 141 dokumen yang dipadam – Saksi

      http://www.bharian.com.my/node/70430

    • DXer said

      http://www.bernama.com.my/bernama/v8/ge/newsgeneral.php?id=1155949

      141 Documents Linked To Terrorism Retrieved From Laptop, Says Witness

      KUALA LUMPUR, July 27 (Bernama) — A witness told the High Court here today that he retrieved 141 deleted documents from a laptop, which he analysed based on 10 passwords including the name of an Internal Security Act former detainee.

      Police forensic analyst Insp Muhammad Adib Rasol, 33, said the 10 passwords were given to him by investigating officer (IO) Insp Mohd Nur Shakirin Ishak.

      He said Mohd Nur had asked him to analyse the laptop and retrieve deleted material and documents related to terrorism activities.

      He said the IO had also provided him words such as, ‘jihad’ or ‘usrah’, ‘fisabillah’, ‘infak’, ‘teknik penyamaran’, ‘teknik membuat bom’ or ‘IED’, ‘Al-Qaeda’, ‘Mujahidin’, ‘Jemaah Islamiah’ and ‘Osama bin Laden’.

      “All 141 documents that I retrieved contained passwords given by the IO,” he said at the examination-in-chief by deputy public prosecutor Shukor Abu Bakar.

      In the dock are former ISA detainee Yazid Sufaat, 51, and cafeteria assistant Muhammad Hilmi Hasim, 35.

      Yazid is facing two charges of promoting terrorism to threaten the public in Syria, and being a member of the Tanzim Al-Qaeda Malaysia, while Muhammad Hilmi is accused of abetting him.

      They allegedly committed the offence at DL 11, Taman Bukit Ampang, Lorong Mutiara 2, Lembah Jaya, Ampang between Aug 1, 2012 and Feb 7, 2013.

      Muhammad Adib, who has been working at the Royal Malaysian Police forensic laboratory in Cheras since Sept 1, 2009, said he retrieved 73,439 photographs that had either been deleted or were still in the system.

      Comment: While this English version of course is far better than my rough translation, I think the article means “key words” rather than “passwords.”

  9. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat may be an accused terrorist, but even his jailers would have to admit he can be a very affable fellow even under trying circumstances.

    http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/prosecution-to-prove-former-isa-detainee-was-founder-of-terrorist-group-ber

    Prosecution to prove former ISA detainee founder of terrorist group – Bernama
    Published: 14 April 2015

    “The prosecution will also prove that both the accused had throughout August 1, 2012 and February 7, 2013 been members of the Tanzim al-Qaeda Malaysia terrorist group,” he said in his opening remark at the trial of Yazid and cafeteria assistant, Muhammad Hilmi Hasim before judge Datuk Mohd Azman Husin.”

    ***

    “In proving every element of the offence charged against Yazid and Muhammad Hilmi, Mohamed Hanafiah said the prosecution would submit, among others, oral evidence through public witnesses including evidence of protected witnesses, and documentary evidence which involved sensitive information and audio recordings.”

  10. DXer said

    EXCLUSIVE: Marwan’s ties that bind: From family to global terrorism
    http://www.rappler.com/newsbreak/in-depth/83258-marwan-ties-family-global-terrorism

    In 2002, authorities around the world working to prevent ongoing plots didn’t know the role Marwan [Zulkifli bin Hir] played in these networks. Now, looking back, we can piece together the ties that bind him and his family to local and global terror plots. In that hideout, along with the explosives, the Philippine police found an identity card with the picture of Marwan, a Malaysian terrorist whose real name is Zulkifli bin Hir. It was the first time authorities in the Philippines would see the man whose death in a special forces operation 13 years later would cost the lives of 44 police special operatives.

    ***

    Rahmat said Marwan was working with Yazid Sufaat, a Malaysian who experimented with biological weapons for al-Qaedaand who hosted some of the 9/11 hijackers in his apartment in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital. Sufaat used a company he owned to purchase 4 tons of ammonium nitrate, which Marwan arranged to hide in a palm oil plantation near Muar, Malaysia.

    Reuters, Wed Apr 1, 2015
    FBI confirms death of militant with DNA from severed finger
    WASHINGTON | BY JULIA EDWARDS
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/01/us-philippines-rebels-marwan-idUSKBN0MS5BI20150401

    • DXer said

      http://www.nst.com.my/node/79066

      Police received confirmation on Marwan’s death
      BY HANI SHAMIRA SHAHRUDIN – 2 APRIL 2015

      Philippine security forces had claimed after the raid in Mindanao that Marwan had been killed, but could not locate the body Southeast Asia’s most wanted terrorist.

      Their claims, however, were strengthened by the day, said the source, as there had been no contact whatsoever between him and his wife who lives in Johor.

      Reuters earlier reported that a person familiar with the investigation said the FBI was able to confirm Marwan’s death through DNA analysis of a severed finger that Philippine authorities collected from the gruesome scene of a raid that they claimed left Marwan dead.

      Only a finger, and not a full body, was recovered from the scene because of the chaotic aftermath of the raid in which 44 Philippine police commandos were killed when they clashed with Muslim rebels.

      Comment:

      Stupid question: What would prevent a committed jihadist from cutting off his finger and leaving it at the scene? Or a ruthless enemy cutting off a finger and taking him for interrogation? If 44 officers were killed in the firefight, emotions probably were running high. Is it really so surprising that if such a firefight he does not contact his wife? I would think the FBI would want his body, not just his finger.

      I do not follow the matter. Award winning journalist Maria Ressa, who told us so much about Bojinka as I recall, covers the details.

      She reports that Marwan’s uncle owned the plantation where Yazid Sufaat hid the 4 tons of explosivies that Yazid planned on using on targets in Singapore and in Malaysia.

      http://www.google.com/search?q=uncle+plantation++Sufaat&hl=en&gl=us&authuser=0&tbm=nws&oq=&gs_l=

    • DXer said

      If I were JI, MILF etc. followers, I would work on the possibility that Marwan is alive and was taken into custody for interrogation by an SAF member who had just lost dozens of colleagues.

      An SAF officer severed Marwan’s finger:

      “Early in the morning of 25 January 2015, Zulkifli was reportedly taken by surprise as his nipa hut was raided by SAF member(s) who proceeded to shoot and kill Zulkifli after a brief exchange of fire. The commandos sent a cellphone message back to their base saying: “Mike 1 bingo”, a code to be used in case Zulkifli was neutralised.[41] A SAF officer severed one of Zulkifli’s fingers and retrieved a hair sample to bring back for official DNA testing, as Zulkifli’s body could not be recovered in time due to heavy fire.[42] His corpse was quickly buried by civilians in accordance with Islamic tradition. Regional governor Mujiv Sabbihi Hataman has stated that the body could not be exhumed as that would go against Islamic burial practices.[43][44] The FBI were requested to help confirm Marwan’s DNA samples.”

      ***

      “It was reported that his last words as he attempted to fire against the SAF officers raiding his nipa hut was “Allahu Akbar!” [49]”

      “Reactions to death from Abdhir family

      His family in Malaysia have said that they have no intention to claim his body, his daughter said “To us, our father died a long time ago, there is no need to claim the body.”[56]

      A male relative said; “Our family had been informed six times, over the years, that he had been killed. … All he told us were lies after lies. We are the ones who were forced to face the predicament of his doings. More so after he was labelled as the mastermind behind the 2002 Bali Bombings.” adding that the only person who still saw the good in Marwan was his mother.”

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zulkifli_Abdhir

      As Maria Ressa noted in an article linked above, Marwan is US-educated, with an electrical engineering degree from Arizona State University. (Marwan’s associate, Yazid Sufaat, had graduated from Sacramento State. )

      Marwan planned to assassinate Pope Francis in 2015. I don’t understand how these folks think of themselves as travelling any sort of moral high road. Since the 2000 church bombings, they have proven themselves evil and deluded mass murderers, with the affable Yazid Sufaat leading the pack.

      Marwan’s brother-in-law, Taufik bin Abdul Halim was also arrested for terrorist charges in 2001 for involvement in an attempted mall bombing in Jakarta, Indonesia. Pundits who argued that mail bombs were not the modus operandi of Al Qaeda and its associates were mistaken.

      A different brother reportedly is in a California prison rather than Guantanamo as sometimes reported.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zulkifli_Abdhir

      http://www.eonline.com/news/641846/spy-trailer-melissa-mccarthy-goes-undercover-as-jason-statham-fights-her-for-control-of-the-cia-mission

      “Susan [McCarthy] rises to the occasion when her boss Elaine Crocker (Allison Janney) announces Rayna Boyanov (Rose Byrne) plans to sell a nuclear weapon to a terrorist organization. There’s just one tiny problem: “She knows the identity of all our agents. We need somebody to find the bomb without being detected.”
      Agent Rick Ford (Jason Statham) is out of the running, so Susan, who has never worked in the field, volunteers her services. “OK, thanks lunch lady,” he tells her. “Yeah, bring one of your cats as a sidekick.”
      “I don’t have a cat,” she tells him. …
      Before she can thwart Rayna’s plan, Susan is equipped with state of the art weapons and given a major makeunder. “Cat lady,” she says, looking at her fake ID. “Just missing the shirt that says I’ve never felt the touch of a man.” Elaine reminds her, “You are not to make direct contact with any of the targets.”
      That’s easier said than done, of course.”

  11. DXer said

    In its forthcoming report, GAO might usefully start by identifying the date that this “anthrax spore concentrate” was cultured and identify the strain.

    In regard to the “anthrax spore concentrate” produced in Afghanistan on “7-4-001” in 2001, note that the handwriting is handwriting of Rauf Ahmad. (GAO should obtain the FBI’s expert handwriting comparison).

    Now the particular plan of Rauf Ahmad’s 1999 letter to Dr. Ayman includes a planned “anthrax vaccine production” unit as part of the planning. Thus, you can reasonably suggest that the pictured straine is Sterne — as Milton Leitenberg has always argued ( merely assuming it because it fit his preconception. ).

    But an expert handwriting report would confirm that is the handwriting of Rauf Ahmad and I can prove he was working with virulent b. anthracis in 2000.

    My purpose today is simply to establish that Rauf Ahmad was working in Afghanistan on the date of the label — whether it is understood to be April 2001 or July 2001. Perhaps Lew could post this handwriting side-by-side with an exemplar of Rauf Ahmad’s handwriting.

    The best source is the anthrax lab director who says his staff disappeared in June 2001 — and in 2001 was very stressed out about talking about it. In an interview, he urgently hushed up the other scientists from responding to a question by the person who took this picture.

    • DXer said

      Pakistan follows the European style of writing dates. And so the date appears to be April 2001, not July 2001. This is consistent with Yazid Sufaat moving operations from Kabul to Kandahar in May 2001.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Date_and_time_notation_in_Pakistan
      Date and time notation in Pakistan
      From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
      Pakistan follows the DD-MM-YY format as the predominant short form of the numeric date in its calendar date usage. Almost all government documents need to be filled up in the DD-MM-YYYY format. An example of employing usage of DD-MM-YYYY form is the Pakistani passport application form, the National Identity Card or the Pakistan Origin Card.[1] However, the MM-DD-YY format is not altogether absent; many media publications and prominent newspapers feature dates in MM-DD-YY format.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Date_format_by_country

  12. DXer said

    I have no idea what young man Yazid Sufaat’s daughter is wooing, but I cannot imagine the object of her affections being able to resist her charm and openness. She’s captivating.

    If the entire family were to embrace the protection of innocents, the world would be a better place.

    I’m sure they feel the same of people in the West — but change starts with each of us.

    Governments organize the people just by the coincidence of geography. Religions organize the minds of people just by the coincidence of birth and upbringing.

    Shared coconut clusters transcend it all.

    https://twitter.com/sorayaanur

  13. DXer said

    What happened in court?

    Soraya Yazid @sorayaanur · 14h
    I’m so sleepy, I’m afraid I’ll doze off in court

    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid
    Rohayati Azizli @rohayatiazizli · Aug 12
    And suddenly you know…It’s time to start something new & trust the magic of beginnings.
    Unknown

  14. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat’s daughter would be great at scrabble with some practice given her love of words and diligence.

    She follows #wordporn on twitter.
    _________

    Here are some new Scrabble words via ADLAND ADBOT.

    MUX:

    1. HASHTAG EEJIT ED — GAMEPLAY KABLOOEY! OOF! BUZZKILL, CAFARD. WAAH … CAPEESH?

    2. CAMI CAZH and CAVA TEXTER. CHILLAX at the CREPERIE with MOJITOS. FABULISM FLOREAT PEEPBO. PLUOT?

  15. DXer said

    From Syria to Ukraine, social media opens up warfare
    BY PETER APPS
    WASHINGTON
    http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/08/06/us-security-socialmedia-idINKBN0G61MU20140806

    Excerpt:

    BELLING THE CAT

    Higgins is not the only such activist and researcher out there, although he has become a high profile exponent.

    On Syria, he was amongst the first to identify new foreign weapons, mainly Chinese made, reaching rebel groups. After the Damascus chemical attack, he located footage of the suspected warheads in hours.

    On the site Ukraine@War, activists in Ukraine and elsewhere have also been following events on the battlefield including their own methods of tracking the SA-11 launcher.

    here

    Higgins began his “Brown Moses” blog – largely focused on Syria weapons – as a hobby while looking after his baby daughter after taking redundancy. It grew to become an essential resource for journalists and human rights groups, allowing him to get funding to pursue his activities full-time.

    Last month, he launched a new website aimed at helping other part-time activists perform similar work in conflict zones worldwide. The project is dubbed “bellingcat” after a fable in which a community of mice protect themselves from a cat by attaching a bell to its collar so they know where it is.

    So far, it has raised more than 35,000 pounds on fundraising site Kickstarter.

    The site includes multiple resources such as a new tool from Amnesty International allowing activists to examine YouTube videos. It extracts metadata from video and also indicates to what extent the video footage has been edited and when.

    Metadata is the additional data attached to still and video pictures indicating what kind of device was used to record them, when it was recorded and sometimes a GPS location.

    ***

    Some in the intelligence community say agencies simply do not have time to track the huge volume of potentially useful social media information on top of the signals and human intelligence that already swamp them.

    “Intelligence agencies exist to collect intelligence no one else can get,” said former British spy chief Inkster. “I suspect this is an area in which governments will increasingly look to private sector contractors to provide analysis which they can then combine with other data streams.”

  16. DXer said

    Soraya Yazid @sorayaanur · 20h
    If only you knew what’s going on

    Comment: Yazid Sufaat’s writes on Twitter:

    “If only you knew what’s going on.”

    I’m reminded of being at an fair with rides this past week and there was a health service offering a stuffed animal if you answered right on a true and false question.

    I was musing over the question out loud and asked my daughter. She said: “But what’s truth?”

    The woman at the booth understood us to be choosing the answer “True” and so gave us the stuffed animal because we lucked into the right answer.

  17. DXer said

    Live reporting by Yazid Sufaat’s daughter:

    Putrajaya, Putrajaya
    Soraya Yazid @sorayaanur · 9h
    I’m at Istana Kehakiman (Palace of Justice) (Putrajaya, WP Putrajaya) w/ 4 others http://4sq.com/1p5e5aa

    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid
    MCCHR PusatRakyatLB @PusatRakyatLB · 8h
    Amer @edmundbon @S_Y_New Yen Hui @HidaNadirah Farida & @diavolorossi appear for appellants, Yazid Sufaat & Hilmi Hasim. #SOSMA

    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid
    MCCHR PusatRakyatLB @PusatRakyatLB · 8h
    Amer Hamzah opens #SOSMA appeal at the Federal Court – art 149 doesnt allow trial of terrorism offences v countries outside Msia.

    MCCHR PusatRakyatLB @PusatRakyatLB · 8h
    CJ says Court cannot strike out charge now on the basis that #SOSMA procedure cannot be used. To raise at end of trial. Arguments ensue.

  18. DXer said

    In addition to identifying the strain of this “anthrax spore concentrate” harvested in July 2001 (was it Sterne?), the GAO should obtain and disclose a copy of the handwriting analysis done comparing the label with the Fall 2001 anthrax letters. (The handwriting seems dissimilar).

  19. DXer said

    Ms. Gannon was injured today and an AP photographer Anja Niedringhaus was killed instantly. This photo was from Kathy Gannon’s “Taliban Showed Interest In Anthrax Research Lab. Scientists Say An Official Paid Frequent Visits” in The Boston Globe, November 22, 2001. She and a photographer can be seen pictured in the reflection of the glass. Ms. Gannon described to me walking through the vaccine lab and I still marvel at that sort of reporting from the field.

    I once lived a stone’s throw to the monument at the former USA Today building in Arlington that had a walkway that memorialized killed reporters. Although I do not have the figures handy, the world seems to have become increasingly hostile to reporters that actually go out and do important reporting from the field and get important images. They are a rare breed.

    • DXer said

      Associated Press photographer killed, reporter shot in Afghanistan: Tribute to two brave women
      By Jennifer GriffinPublished April 04, 2014
      http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2014/04/04/associated-press-photographer-killed-reporter-shot-in-afghanistan-tribute-to/

      Kathy was tough.

      She was the first Western journalist to arrive in Kabul after 9/11. The Taliban gave her a visa.They knew her from the many years she had spent covering Afghanistan.

      She could get their leaders to answer the phone on the first ring. She still can.

      She also was Canadian and her Canadian passport, some thought, would protect her in the wake of the U.S. invasion. She was there when the first U.S. troops arrived in Kabul.
      ***

      [Gannon’s] book “I is for Infidel: From Holy War to Holy Terror in Afghanistan” is a must read. There is no more seasoned reporter who has covered Afghanistan in the past 30 years.

      AP Executive Editor Kathleen Carroll issued the following statement from New York: “Anja and Kathy together have spent years in Afghanistan covering the conflict and the people there. Anja was a vibrant, dynamic journalist well-loved for her insightful photographs, her warm heart and joy for life. We are heartbroken at her loss.”

      If there is one thing for which I am certain, Kathy Gannon would not want the focus to be on her today as Afghans prepare for their most important election since the fall of the Taliban.

      She would want people to be talking about the women of Afghanistan.

      She would want people to focus on how since the Taliban were overthrown 12 years ago, 3 million girls are now in school. None were allowed to be educated under the Taliban.

      Infant mortality for children under the age of 5 is now down from 46 percent when the Taliban were ruling Afghanistan to 12 percent today, according to figures provided by the US House Armed Services Committee.

      Maternal mortality for Afghan women has gone from 15 percent to less than one percent since an international coalition of troops invaded Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban after 9/11.

      Twenty-seven percent of the Afghan Parliament is now made up of women. The international community can be proud of what it has helped Afghan women achieve after 13 years of war.

      All of it is threatened to be undone if the Taliban return to power, making Saturday’s election one of the most consequential in Afghan history.

      AP photographer Anja Niedringhaus won’t be there to bear witness, nor will Kathy Gannon, for now.

      The rest of us must.

      see also

      Wounded US Reporter Kathy Gannon, Among The Brave and The Passionate
      By Jon Williams
      Apr 4, 2014
      http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2014/04/wounded-us-reporter-kathy-gannon-among-the-brave-and-the-passionate/

  20. DXer said

    Has former Al Qaeda anthrax lab director Yazid Sufaat cooperated with authorities about what strain(s) he was using in the summer before 9/11? When is his next court date? It seems that GAO should be able to obtain information about the strain(s) Al Qaeda was using.

  21. DXer said

    Two Sosma Detainees Detained For Over A Year
    Details Published on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 12:55

    http://www.malaysiandigest.com/news/487521-two-sosma-detainees-detained-for-over-a-year.html

  22. DXer said

    Today Soraya, Yazid’s thoughtful daughter tweets:

    Nader | ‏@BonsaiSky9h
    Seeking forgiveness doesn’t have to be some crazy, long ritual. It’s simply, sincerely saying, “O Allāh, forgive me.”
    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid

    A grudge is never worth the time and energy spent on it.
    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid

    Life was never meant to be Paradise. It was created to break our hearts; to test us.
    Retweeted by Soraya Yazid

    Comment:

    I think Yazid’s path to forgiveness would begin with a simple: “Forgive me. I now understand that targeting civilians is wrong.”

    Violence against innocents is ineffective in combating the perceived wrongs committed by others.

    For example, if in 2000, if it was thought that the government had harmed civilians in Mindinao, the jihadists should not then promptly lost favor in the court of public opinion by targeting civilians in retaliation — and blowing up churches.

    Such killing does not in fact lead to desired policy changes — quite the opposite. Jihadists instead should arm themselves with cell phones and get videos of atrocities and then upload them.

    Bin Laden’s and Zawahiri’s efforts have been entirely unproductive in achieving their goals.

    Zawahiri, IMO, seems motivated by seeking personal aggrandizement. He wants to follow the footsteps of his grandfather, the “Pious Ambassador”
    — his doctor gig wasn’t working out for him.

    Similarly, Adnan El-Shukrijumah’s garage sales and car washes weren’t making living with his mom any easier.

    So much discussion of these matters is a waste of paper and time. For example, Stanley Cohen may consider being able to depose Bin Laden’s driver as a major legal victory but in fact the testimony does not avoid guilt on any of the charges. Abu Ghayth’s trial begins February 24.

    As for both Yazid Sufaat and Abu Ghayth, if they aren’t truth-tellers — and don’t now understand that killing innocents is wrong — then under their own belief systems it is not paradise that awaits them in the after-life they believe in.

    Abu Ghayth wrote a book a couple years ago — that would be really worth reading and introducing as an exhibit — where he revisited the principles of jihad that apply. So it is not like he doesn’t appreciate the importance under his belief system of reaching the correct interpretation of the moral guidelines.

    Soraya, seeking Allah’s forgiveness and being a truth-teller is the only way to save Yazid’s soul.

    • DXer said

      Here is a copy of the Judge’s decision on Wednesday in the Abu Ghayth matter.

      UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, -against- SULAIMAN ABU GHAYTH, Defendant.
      S14 98 Crim. 1023 (LAK)

      UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK

      2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 5318
      January 15, 2014, Decided
      January 15, 2014, Filed

      PRIOR HISTORY: United States v. Ghayth, 945 F. Supp. 2d 511, 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168268 (S.D.N.Y., 2013)

      COUNSEL: [*1] For Sulaiman Abu Ghayth, Defendant; John P. Cronan, Michael Ferrara, Nicholas J. Lewin, Assistant United States Attorneys, Preet Bharara, UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Stanley L. Cohen, STANLEY COHEN & ASSOCIATES, LLC, Geoffrey S. Stewart, Zoe Dolan, Ashraf Nubani.

      JUDGES: Lewis A. Kaplan, United States District Judge.

      OPINION BY: Lewis A. Kaplan

      OPINION

      MEMORANDUM OPINION

      Lewis A. Kaplan, District Judge.

      Before this Court are two motions — one by the government and one by defendant — to introduce testimony at trial from witnesses located abroad who allegedly refuse to travel to the United States to testify in person. The government proposes to introduce live testimony of a confidential witness (“CW”) at trial through closed-circuit television (“CCTV”). Defendant seeks to take a Rule 15 deposition of Salim Ahmed Hamdan, who is believed to have been Usama Bin Laden’s driver from approximately 1998 until November 2001.1

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      1 Cohen Decl. [DI 1397] ¶ 7.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Background

      I. The Government’s Motion

      The CW was arrested in the United Kingdom in 2003 and was convicted there of offenses relating to his participation in an al Qaeda plot to detonate a shoe bomb on a transatlantic airplane flight.2 He now has a cooperation agreement with the British [*2] government that, among other things, contemplates his assistance in investigations and trials in the United States.3 The CW has been indicted also in the District of Massachusetts on charges relating to the shoe-bomb plot, and the CW and United States Attorney’s Office have been informed that the CW will be arrested if he travels to this country.4

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      2 Lewin Decl. [DI 1411-1] ¶¶ 9(b)-(c).3 Cohen Letter [DI 1416], Ex. B.4 DI 1411-1 ¶ 4.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      The CW allegedly will provide testimony demonstrating that Abu Ghayth “knowingly participated in al Qaeda’s overall conspiracy to kill Americans.”5 Specifically, the government asserts that the CW will testify that he was involved in a post-9/11 terrorist plot to bomb airplanes in the United States at approximately the same time as Abu Ghayth appeared in videos threatening that “the storm of the airplanes will not stop” and stating “as a word of advice and for emphasis, we strongly advise Muslims in America and the Britain, the children, and those who reject the unjust American policies—we advise them not to board aircraft.”6

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      5 Gov. Br. [DI 1411] at 8 (emphasis in original).6 DI 1411-1 ¶ 9(b); DI 1411 at 9-10.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      The CW allegedly will testify further that he visited [*3] an al Qaeda training camp called Matar that Abu Ghayth also is alleged to have visited.7 The CW there claims to have “received urban warfare training” that included “training in assassination, weapons and explosives.”8

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      7 DI 1411-1 ¶¶ 9(d)(i)-(ii).8 Id. ¶ 9(d)(i).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      II. The Defendant’s Motion

      Hamdan now is a Yemeni resident who was imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba for several years due to his relationship with al Qaeda and bin Laden.9 The defense asserts that Hamdan refuses to travel to the United States to provide in-person testimony at trial and most likely would not be permitted to travel to this country in any event.10

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      9 DI 1397 ¶¶ 6-8.10 Id. ¶¶ 16, 20.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Hamdan’s proposed testimony, defendant claims, would show that Hamdan spent considerable time with Bin Laden and met Abu Ghayth on various occasions, but that he did not observe Abu Ghayth engage in any of the acts specified in the indictment and that he does not believe that Abu Ghayth swore an oath to or was a high ranking member of al Qaeda.11 In addition, Hamdan allegedly would testify that he never saw Abu Ghayth in possession of a brevity card, which apparently was used by al Qaeda and contains coded names and locations of certain individuals.12 [*4] The defense claims Hamdan that would testify that “the brevity cards included the names of some inner circle members and leaders of al Qaeda; some old friends of Usama bin Laden; as well as the names of auto mechanics and persons of no particular importance or consequence, including visitors passing through the Kandahar community.”13

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      11 Id. ¶¶ 21, 23, 27-31, 35-39.12 Id. ¶ 32.13 Id. ¶ 33.
      Discussion

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      I. Legal Standard

      A. CCTV

      The Second Circuit has held that prosecution witnesses may testify through CCTV where the government satisfies the standard for taking a deposition under Rule 15.14 Such testimony, it held, preserves the criminal defendant’s rights under the Confrontation Clause despite the fact that the criminal defendant and witness are not present in the same room.15 This in part is because it facilitates “1) the giving of testimony under oath; 2) the opportunity for cross-examination; 3) the ability of the fact-finder to observe demeanor evidence; and 4) the reduced risk that a witness will wrongfully implicate an innocent defendant when testifying in his presence.”16

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      14 United States v. Gigante, 166 F.3d 75, 81 (2d Cir. 1999).15 Id. at 80.16 Id. (citing Maryland v. Craig, 497 U.S. 836, 845-46, 110 S. Ct. 3157, 111 L. Ed. 2d 666 (1990)).
      B. [*5] Rule 15

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      The Rule 15 standard thus governs both the government’s motion and defendant’s. It permits parties to “move that a prospective witness be deposed in order to preserve testimony for trial. The court may grant the motion because of exceptional circumstances and in the interest of justice.”17 This standard is met where the “testimony is material to the case and if the witness is unavailable to appear at trial.”18

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      17 Fed. R. Crim. P. 15(a)(1).18 United States v. Johnpoll, 739 F.2d 702, 709 (2d Cir. 1984).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      To satisfy the materiality requirement, the moving party must make some showing that the proposed testimony exculpates or, in the event that the government is the moving party, inculpates, the defendant.19 It need not be definitive proof of guilt or innocence,20 but should be more than merely relevant.21 Furthermore, the proposed testimony must be admissible and non-cumulative of other evidence.22

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      19 United States v. Kelley, 36 F.3d 1118, 1125, 308 U.S. App. D.C. 314 (D.C. Cir. 1994).20 United States v. Bronston, 321 F. Supp. 1269, 1272 (S.D.N.Y. 1971) (“It is not necessary that defendant show the testimony will surely acquit him.”).21 United States v. Ismaili, 828 F.2d 153, 161 (3d Cir. 1987).22 United States v. Stein, 482 F. Supp. 2d 360, 365 (S.D.N.Y. 2007); [*6] United States v. Grossman, No. S2 03 Cr. 1156 (SHS), 2005 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3135, 2005 WL 486735, at *3 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 2, 2005).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      To satisfy the unavailability requirement, the moving party must show that the witness is unable or unwilling to attend trial and that it has made a good faith effort to secure that witness’s attendance.23 Foreign witnesses who are not subject to the government’s subpoena power and, despite the moving party’s appropriate efforts, refuse to travel to this country to testify routinely are found unavailable.24

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      23 See Johnpoll, 739 F.2d at 709.24 See, e.g., United States v. Drogoul, 1 F.3d 1546, 1551-53 (11th Cir. 1993); Johnpoll, 739 F.2d at 709; United States v. Vilar, 568 F. Supp. 2d 429, 438-39 (S.D.N.Y. 2008); United States v. Sun Myung Moon, 93 F.R.D. 558, 559-60 (S.D.N.Y. 1982).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      II. The CW

      The government has sustained its burden of demonstrating that the CW’s testimony would be material, inculpatory evidence against Abu Ghayth. The government asserts that the CW would testify that he was involved in a terrorist plot against the United States to detonate explosives on airplanes. That this plot existed at approximately the same time that Abu Ghayth appeared in videotapes making statements [*7] threatening that exact type of attack on the United States tends to show that Abu Ghayth knowingly participated in al Qaeda’s conspiracy to kill Americans. According to the government’s affidavit, the same senior al Qaeda members who personally were involved in this plot to bomb aircraft in the United States — Abu Hafs al-Masri and Usama bin Laden25 — appeared in the post-9/11 videos with Abu Ghayth.26

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      25 DI 1411-1 ¶ 9(b).26 Id. ¶ 9(d).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      The CW’s proposed testimony concerning his time at the al Qaeda training camp called Matar is material for similar reasons. Abu Ghayth is said to have admitted giving speeches to trainees at that camp at approximately the same time that the CW was there as a trainee.27 Testimony that the CW and others at that camp received urban warfare training potentially is probative of Abu Ghayth’s knowing involvement in a conspiracy to kill Americans and provision of material assistance to terrorism.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      27 Id. ¶ 9(d)(i).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      The government has sustained also its burden of showing that the CW is unavailable to testify in person at the trial despite the its good faith efforts to secure his presence. The CW has refused to come to the United States because he fears arrest. This [*8] fear apparently is well founded, as both the witness and the prosecutors in this case have been informed that the witness would be arrested if he came to the United States.28

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      28 Id. ¶ 4.
      The Court acknowledges that, in some sense, the CW’s unavailability is a problem of the government’s own making. The same government that seeks the CW’s testimony has indicted and threatens to arrest him. This Court, however, will not rule in a manner that effectively requires a coordinate branch of government to choose between two criminal defendants.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Defendant insists that the government simply could extradite the CW to the United States and compel his testimony in that manner. As an initial matter, the good faith requirement does not obligate the government to take such extreme steps to secure a witness’s presence at trial. Moreover, the extradition process can be incredibly lengthy and cumbersome and undoubtedly would not be completed in time for trial.29

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      29 It took the United States over ten years to extradite Khalid al Fawwaz and Adel Abdel Bary from the United Kingdom to face trial on S7 98 Crim. 1023 (LAK). See Steve Swann, The Extradition Suspects Who Led To Bin Laden, BBC News (Oct. 5, 2012), http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19843376.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      III. [*9] Hamdan

      The defense by all appearances seeks to introduce considerable testimony from Hamdan, some of which would be inculpatory, some irrelevant, and some inadmissible.

      Proposed testimony that Abu Ghayth met with bin Laden and that bin Laden “used” him “to give a few religious sermons, and ultimately to add religions ‘weight’ to the three videos that were aired after 9-11″30 and that Abu Ghayth gave religious sermons at an al Qaeda camp and guest house if anything would be inculpatory.31 Testimony that Hamdan did not observe Abu Ghayth urge others to pledge an oath of allegiance to al Qaeda or that he rarely heard bin Laden talk about Abu Ghayth would not be material exculpatory evidence. There is no claim that Hamdan was or would have been by Abu Ghayth’s side at all relevant times. Based on the information provided in the Cohen Declaration, there is no reason to believe that the fact that these acts did not occur in Hamdan’s presence makes them any less likely to have occurred at all.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      30 DI 1397 ¶ 26.31 Id. ¶¶ 28, 31.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Similarly, Hamdan’s opinion of Abu Ghayth’s role in al Qaeda or reasons for being in Afghanistan largely are inadmissible on grounds of relevance or hearsay. The government [*10] need not prove that Abu Ghayth was a high ranking al Qaeda official in order to secure a conviction. Any statement that Abu Ghayth made to Hamdan regarding his reasons for being in Afghanistan are classic hearsay.

      There are, however, a few topics on which the defense suggests that Hamdan may be able to provide admissible, material testimony. First, he allegedly will testify that an individual’s inclusion on a brevity card does not necessarily denote membership in or allegiance to al Qaeda. Travelers, car mechanics, and other innocent bystanders apparently were listed on these cards. This testimony would address directly the government’s suggestion that Abu Ghayth’s appearance on a brevity card is probative of his guilt.

      Second, he allegedly will testify that “the camps were used almost exclusively to train Arab fighters and others to fight against the Northern Alliance alongside the Taliban.”32 Such testimony potentially could weigh against the government’s claim that any speeches Abu Ghayth made at such camps were in furtherance of a conspiracy to kill Americans. Thus, there are certain topics on which Hamdan appears to be able to offer material testimony.

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      32 Id. ¶ 40.

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      Defendant has demonstrated [*11] also that Hamdan is unavailable. Despite the defendant’s request and offer to pay for all travel expenses, Hamdan has refused to travel to the United States and may in fact be legally barred from coming here.33

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      33 Defendant has waived any right he may have had under Rule 15(c) to be present at Hamdan’s location during the deposition. See DI 1446.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Finally, the government argues that Hamdan’s testimony should not be permitted because he would testify from Yemen and the government thus has no mechanisms available to it to ensure that he will testify truthfully. The defense has provided no basis to believe that the United States would be able to extradite Hamdan to stand trial for perjury in the United States. This situation, however, is no different from one in which a witness travels to the United States from a foreign country with no extradition treaty, testifies in court (truthfully or otherwise), and immediately boards a plane to return to his or her home country.34 The government is entitled to use the lack of a viable enforcement mechanism against Hamdan to impeach his credibility, but this is not a basis for denying defendant’s motion.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      34 Cf., Grossman, 2005 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 3135, 2005 WL 486735, at *4 (“Finally, [*12] the government asserts that foreign depositions are untrustworthy because they lack a realistic perjury sanction. However, courts routinely order the taking of foreign depositions when the witness is unavailable and his testimony is material, as is the case here.”).

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      Conclusion

      For the foregoing reasons, the government’s motion to offer the CW’s testimony through CCTV [DI 1411] is granted.

      Abu Ghayth’s motion to take a Rule 15 deposition of Salim Ahmed Hamdan [DI 1396] is granted to the extent that the defense may depose Hamdan under the following conditions: The deposition will take place over CCTV and must be completed by February 15, 2014.35 Each side will be afforded three hours to question the witness. The topics will be limited to brevity cards, the purpose of al Qaeda training camps that Abu Ghayth visited, and lay opinion testimony with regard to defendant’s role in al Qaeda. All objections to admissibility save those as to the form of questions are preserved for later determination without the need for such objections on the record. Moreover, the Court has not concluded that lay opinion testimony would be material, and the government may move in limine to limit or exclude such [*13] testimony on any appropriate ground, including materiality.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Footnotes – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      35 Defendant agreed at oral argument to a deposition conducted in this manner. Tr. at 21:3-19.

      – – – – – – – – – – – – End Footnotes- – – – – – – – – – – – – –
      SO ORDERED.

      Dated: January 15, 2014

      /s/ Lewis A. Kaplan

      Lewis A. Kaplan

      United States District Judge

  23. DXer said

    There are many federal prosecutions ongoing that may shed light on the events in 2001 and 2002.

    see, e.g.,

    “Stanley Cohen ‏@StanleyCohenLaw13 Jan
    Sorry folk for being AWOL. On trial schedule full time on Abu Ghayth. 1 month to go. Buried. Up the Rebels. 6000p of new discovery.”

  24. DXer said

    The beautiful and enchanting Soraya today asks, of no one in particular:

    • Soraya Yazid ‏@sorayaanur6h

    How do you stay consistent in everything?

    How do you keep yourself motivated?

    As for Yazid’s motivation, we know, I think, that it was not money. He was well-off. (Rauf Ahmad’s motivation was money. That was why Ayman Zawahiri did not pursue things with him beyond the couple of years that he did. Rauf Ahmad was infiltrating Porton Down/USAMRIID anthrax conferences and visiting B3 labs.)

    OTOH, Hambali, to be sure, wanted to be reimbursed from KSM for the ammonium nitrate he bought for those church bombings. And Hambali wasn’t about to buy the amount 10X larger that Zacarias Moussaoui had asked for. But I think there is only mixed evidence that it was for financial resources or personnel.

    The authors of the article about JI and the anthrax plot emphasize a minority of JI (about 10%) were attended a training camp in Afghanistan. The authors suggest, as I understand it, that formal approval process of JI was avoided because of their connection in Afghanistan to Dr. Ayman Zawahiri, Atef, Bin Laden etc. (Given Hambali was the JI military commander it seems a distinction without a difference). But I definitely would agree that the Al Qaeda anthrax program was Dr. Ayman Zawahiri’s show.

    I think like minds merely found each other. I believe it dates back to the connection and funding that Khalifa, Bin Laden’s brother-in-law, provided in the region. Khalifa at the time had a close connection to the Blind Sheik’s organization in Brooklyn. J.M. Berger of intelwire has done excellent work on the subject. Adnan El-Shukrijumah was the son of the Blind Sheik’s translator in Brooklyn.

    I don’t think of Al Qaeda’s appeal to Sufaat related to resources so much as a combination of ideology and a desire for adventure.
    Indeed, it was his being financially well-off that permitted him his adventuring in 2000 and 2001. His assets, I believe, are still frozen.

    But there is also reason to think that Hambali’s timeline needs a polishing before it is persuasive.

    As explained in the 2006 book excerpted below by Kenneth J. Conboy, Hambali and Yazid were already making inquiries about anthrax in 2000. It was not a coincidence that Yazid had gone to Afghanistan to the training camp. Yazid had already established his Taliban medical brigade as his cover story and so I think lab work was always contemplated. Even upon waterboarding, there is little reason to doubt that Hambali massaged his characterizations whenever possible.

    Now what would motivate the charming and thoughtful Soraya to focus on the importance of truth-telling and the protection of innocents, of whatever religious faith?

    What would encourage her to change her thoughts?

    http://weheartit.com/entry/70603607/via/sorayaanur

    Coffee, books, and chocolate would be a start. And this beautiful necklace.

    http://weheartit.com/entry/70601796/via/sorayaanur

    And especially a simple hello and some kind words.

    http://weheartit.com/entry/70603551/via/sorayaanur

    Most of all, I think the key in motivating her would be helping her beloved father reunite with the family.

    Personally, although I may be wrong, I think the course to chart is let loose Yazid’s truth-telling nature.

    As controlled as he can be, he also knows the power of truth-telling.

    Absent a pretense of truth telling, any religious belief system seems a bankrupt motivation.

    In other words, don’t ever do anything that you aren’t willing to admit.

    Getting back to Soraya’s question, as for my motivation, I’ve promised so many people 50/50 of the $25 million reward that applies that I need to cross the finish line just to break even so I can buy Soraya that necklace.

  25. DXer said

    This Newsweek article about FBI counterintelligence officials is very flattering.

    “In the murky world of counterintelligence, that means taking more direct runs at suspected enemy agents with the goal of flipping them, either through seduction or threats or other kinds of manipulation.”

    That’s why I sought out Yazid Sufaat to be my Facebook buddy. I was hoping he would confess for the adventure of it and turn himself in so that I could claim the $25 million reward. (I’ve committed to pay Lew all his copying costs). But Yazid invoked the Fifth so often it seemed like I was dealilng with an FOIA officer. It was thrilling though to see that people from entirely different perspectives can behave graciously toward each other.

    Then I fell under the spell of his beguiling daughter and so once again Al Qaeda’s spy operation proved superior. I’m a sucker for good quotations and someone who loves books and coffee.

    I’ve devoted myself to thinking of a way to explain that it is logical for Yazid to reveal the strain he was using (and confirm it was the Ames strain).

    If NSA is willing to cut a deal with Snowden, it seems that authorities could cut a deal with Yazid. Tea with a pair of angry young men en route to Syria, without evidence of more, is little more than tea with a pair of angry young men en route to Syria.

    As I noted to his wife Chomel, his defense counsel can reason that he’s already served his time for Al Qaeda’s anthrax program.

    For him to confirm the strain he was using would only stand greatly in favor of his being released.

    It seems a minor thing given the testing from 2002 and 2003 still being suppressed by the USG.

    For Yazid to reveal the strain would really just be a way of tweaking and upsetting the apple cart of his adversaries.

    http://www.newsweek.com/new-generation-spy-catchers-shakes-fbi-224580

    A New Generation of Spy Catchers Shakes Up the FBI
    By Jeff Stein / December 16 2013 1:40 PM

    Not that long ago, top FBI counterterrorism officials didn’t know the difference between Sunnis and Shiites. And, judging from their public statements, didn’t really care.

    “You don’t need subject-matter expertise,” the FBI’s chief of counterterrorism, Gary Bald, said in one of several risible statements a few years ago by high-level FBI officials. “The subject-matter expertise is helpful, but it isn’t a prerequisite. It is certainly not what I look for in selecting an official for a position in the counterterrorism [program].”

    That was 2005. Now, slowly, and with little notice, the FBI is finally fielding a team of intelligence and counterterrorism leaders who came of age, professionally speaking, in the post-9/11 era. Unlike most of their FBI forebears, who impressed their bosses by collaring bank robbers, kidnappers, Mafia bosses, and white-collar criminals, the new generation of FBI leaders is steeped in the world of al Qaeda and Hezbollah, Chinese hackers, and Russian spies.

    They’re the FBI’s new young guns – a moniker that will no doubt provoke endless hilarity in the bureau’s fortified castle on D.C.’s Pennsylvania Avenue. Most are in their mid- to late-40s, after all – not so young. But they bring to the job a fresh, young mind-set: They crave getting inside the enemy’s head.

    And since 2007, the FBI has opened up a new career branch for intelligence professionals, which finally provides an incentive to work in a realm where handcuffs and guns remain in a desk drawer.

    The new spy catchers are also more willing to take chances. “The last generation was more reactive,” the intelligence expert added, “and the current guys are extremely proactive. I think they will initiate things just to find out if there’s something there, as opposed to waiting and seeing.”

    In the murky world of counterintelligence, that means taking more direct runs at suspected enemy agents with the goal of flipping them, either through seduction or threats or other kinds of manipulation. “It’s like the difference between waiting for the girl to make eye contact and smile at you,” he said, “and just walking up to her without any sign at all and saying, ‘How about a drink?’”

    This new breed is led by Andrew McCabe, head of the FBI’s National Security Branch since last October. In 2010, McCabe, now 45, was tapped to be the first director of the FBI’s high-value detainee interrogation group, a multiagency squad formed to question top terrorist suspects immediately after their capture. Most agents work 19 or 20 years before they get a chance to head an FBI field office in someplace like Cleveland, Murphy said. These guys shot to the top.

    “He did a tremendous job with the HIG,” which included operatives from the Pentagon and CIA, had high-level briefings at the White House and Justice Department, says Murphy. “That was so politically charged, you know, trying to get people together in one group to do interrogations, with everybody having conflicting and competing interests.

    “So not only is he well-thought-of by people in the organization, he’s very well-thought-of by the White House and people in the intelligence community,” Murphy adds. “He handled some very tough problems.”

    ***

    Another young-ish gun is Michael Steinbach, 47, whose promotion to head counterterrorism has yet to be announced. Steinbach, special agent in charge of the FBI’s busy Miami office, knows D.C. politics, having done a previous tour as an assistant in the FBI’s executive suite.

    Steinbach proved himself in tricky assignments at Guantanamo, as a legal attaché in Tel Aviv and at the CIA counterterrorism center, according to his official FBI profile. But he’s as familiar with bullets as he is with bullet points: In Afghanistan in 2004, Steinbach was awarded the FBI’s Shield of Bravery in recognition of his actions while engaged with enemy forces.

    So the question remains: Will the FBI use its new talent – not to mention its immense new legal and technological tools – prudently in pursuit of national security threats? Or will it revert to the political witch-hunts and break-ins of earlier eras?

    If the younger ones see something bad going down inside the FBI, he says, they will “stand up and say something.”

    Jeff Stein is a Newsweek contributing editor in Washington, D.C.

  26. DXer said

    If we are to credit the formal court-filed representations of the Departmnet of Justice, the anthrax attacker would have cultivated at least “2.8 to 53 liters of liquid medium to produce the spores required for the letters.” If the attacker used Petri dishes instead, he would have needed 463 to 1250 plates to grow enough anthrax.

    The government says at least three to seven times more liquid solution would have been needed for the anthrax letters than were in RMR-1029. (And we know that it didn’t come directly from RMR-1029 anyway.)

    DEFENDANT UNITED STATES’ STATEMENT OF MATERIAL FACTS NOT IN GENUINE DISPUTE IN SUPPORT OF ITS MOTION FOR SUMMARY JUDGMENT BASED ON THE ABSENCE OF PROXIMATE CAUSE

    21. The anthrax attacker would have cultivated at least “2.8 to 53 liters of liquid medium to produce the spores required for the letters.” Id., p. 77. If the attacker used Petri dishes instead, he would have needed 463 to 1250 plates to grow enough anthrax. Id.

    22. By way of comparison, the smallest possible estimate of liquid solution used to prepare the anthrax letters was at least three to seven times larger than the liquid contents of RMR-1029, which never contained more than one liter of liquid, and contained less than 400 milliliters on October 4, 2011. Compare id., with U.S. Ex. PC-10.

    • DXer said

      Hey, Yazid did the bottle you used for virulent anthrax look a lot like the one pictured above that was harvested in July 2001?

      Why did the FBI only report on testing from 2004 and 2005 to the NAS?

      What about the anthrax found in March 2002?

      What about the anthrax found in August 2003?

      What about the bottle above that was pictured by a friend, as I recall, of Kathy Gannon? (That’s Kathy in the reflection).

  27. DXer said

    I still haven’t been able to glean anything about Yazid Sufaat’s court case from his daughter’s tweets. Most recently, she writes:

    HarukiMurakamiFan ‏
    “Is this what it means to go back to square one?”

    His pillow is hard, but his heart is soft.
    Our pillows are soft, but what about our hearts?

    I certainly identify with her love of coffee, food and books — and the bond she feels toward her family. But haven’t been able to get on the same page with her or her mother about the benefit of Yazid to the extent of cooperating by identifying the anthrax strain he was using. (Have you noticed that the FBI told NAS only of testing done in 2004 and not the testing done in March 2002)?

    I see intel as far more useful in this context than the forensic science that the DOJ prosecutors and FBI investigators misleadingly manipulated in cobbling together an Ivins Theory.

    To argue that a test that winnowed sources of Ames from 1,000 to up to 300 pointed to Ivins — when the prosecutors and investigators falsely claimed (contrary to what they knew) it had not been in 1412 — is pretty outrageous.

    The claim that they had eliminated all other sources necessarily was destroyed from the very start by that false central claim. See Henry Heine’s 4th interview interview on the Frederick talk show station..

    If Yazid want to purport to stand for justice and fairness, then he should speak to this issue of anthrax strain. Chomel would know it. She could disclose it in an interview or even Soraya could mention it in a tweet.

  28. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat’s daughter has tweeted “8 more years.” I have no idea what the reference concerns. But given he served about 8 years on his prior sentence I’m wondering if a deal has been reached where he now is to serve “8 more years.”

    Although I don’t know the reference concerns I am reminded today that Dr. Rafil Dhafir has already spent 10 of years of his 22-year sentence. An activist I have long admired handed me a postcard today saying “Syracuse oncologist Dr. Dhafir has paid a heavy price for his compassion of sending food and medicine to starving Iraqi civilians during the 13-year-long US and UK sponsored UN sanctions against that country.”

    The postcard explains that supporters can “write and let him know he is not forgotten and that his humanitarian outreach is appreciated.”

    Rafil Dhafir, #11921-052-Unit HB, Federal Medical Center Devens, PO Box 879, Ayer MA 01432.

    The postcard handed out at the Plowshares Craft fair today shows a person holding a placard “Brother Rafil is the best of us.”

    The other person pictured on the postcard, a woman, sold me some extremely delicious barbousa, a sweet cake made of cooked semolina soaked in simple syrup with coconut added.

    She had once led a fundraiser for Dr. Dhafir at the local mosque and asked the gathered audience what “Operation Imminent Horizon” was all about.

    I told her that it was no coincidence that 100 agents came here at the same minute they raided Ali Al-Timimi’s townhouse — and that Ali Al-Timimi shared a suite with the leading DARPA-funded Ames anthrax researchers.

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    The sentence already served by Dr. Dhafir likely far exceeds the sentence ever imposed for billing irregularities. It seems harsh that the lives of people are so dramatically affected just because they are on the wrong side of an issue favored by a political national state — maybe even just a particular Administration in that nation state — where they reside.

    I have no doubt that the two women in adjacent booths at the fair today are as noble-minded as they come. It seems that any discretion possible should be exercised in Dr. Dhafir’s favor.

    Dr. Dhafir spoke alongside Anwar Awlaki and Ali Al-Timimi in Canada and the UK and July and August 2001. Dr. Dhafir would be a fascinating interview if the SAMs permitted.

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  29. DXer said

    Yazid in this six minute filmed interview explained that he told the CIA:

    “You are not going to get it from my mouth”

    He says he was taking “the equivalent of the Fifth.”

    http://wn.com/sufaat

    • DXer said

      At Sufaat’s lab, they found a fermenter and a dryer. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff also said it appeared someone had attempted to destroy some of the equipment.

      Anthrax was found at two places and ricin was found at three others. What strain was the anthrax at the two locations referenced by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff?

      http://abcnews.go.com/International/story?id=80052

      Evidence of Anthrax Labs Near Kandahar

      March 25

      Several suspected biological weapons laboratories have been found in Afghanistan near the former Taliban stronghold of Kandahar, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff revealed today.

      Some of the equipment found in the labs could have been used to make anthrax, said Gen. Richard Myers, “but not all the equipment you need was present.”

      Among the items found were petri dishes and slides, which could be used to grow anthrax cultures; a fermenter, where cultured organisms multiply; and a dryer, used to get the substance ready for packaging.

      Out of 370 samples taken from 60 sites throughout Afghanistan, anthrax was found at two places and ricin was found at three others, Myers said. Ricin is a toxin derived from processed castor beans that, when inhaled, causes one to suffocate, turn blue and die within 48 hours.

      But Myers also told today’s Pentagon press briefing that there was “no conclusive proof of active agents,” and that evidence of the germs could be naturally occurring.

      He also said it appeared someone had attempted to destroy some of the equipment.

      Myers was joined by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who announced that the United States will start training an Afghan national army to help restore stability in the war-torn Central Asian nation.

      However, many of the details, including the size of the training force, their mission, and the cost were yet to be determined, he said.

  30. DXer said

    Al-Barq, what strain was this? Yazid pled the Fifth Amendment when I asked him.

    Family Al Qaeda Terrorist Held by Israel Denies Charges
    Terrorist’s mother claims son ‘just wanted to study microbiology’; officials say he planned to release anthrax into urban center.

    By Tova Dvorin
    First Publish: 11/19/2013, 11:31 AM

    Illustration: Islamist fighters in N. Africa
    Reuters

    The mother of Samer Halmi Abdel Latif Al-Barq, the Senior al-Qaeda terrorist revealed to have been held in Israel for the past three years, has insisted in an interview with Israeli media that her son was “never” involved in building biochemical weapons.

    Al-Barq, 39, was detained by security forces as he attempted to enter Israel from Jordan via the Allenby Bridge. He faces allegations of planning a large-scale biological weapons attack against Jews via Jordan, and officials say he had elaborate plans to recruit a suicide bomber to release anthrax in a major urban center.

    Al-Barq’s family – Kuwaiti nationals – lives in the Palestinian Authority settlement of Jayyous, near Qalqiliya. While reports have been surfacing across the nation of her son’s capture, Al-Barq’s mother vigilantly denies his involvement, Channel 10 / Nana revealed Monday.

    “I know my son,” Al-Barq’s mother claims. “If he only got the chance to say his side of the story, there would be no reason to continue the administrative detention he is in now.”

    Al-Barq’s family claims that the terrorist’s odyssey from Arab country to Arab country was a quest to learn the best biology at local universities – nothing more. In his youth, he left Kuwait for Pakistan, ostensibly to study, then continued to Afghanistan.

    There, officials say, he began to prepare biochemical weapons. Al-Barq has reportedly told Israeli investigators that he performed initial tests in Afghanistan, using nerve gas on a dog. “Within seconds, the dog died,” he told them coolly. “I began talking to friends about possible plans to go back to the West, and use weapons like this against Israel.”

    Al-Barq also described how he was recruited into the terror organization, Nana reports, by the organization’s leader, Ayman Al-Zawahiri. “I met him in Afghanistan. He said I should be in touch with him to learn about producing anthrax,” al-Barq stated. “We talked about the possibility of a suicide attack by releasing anthrax into a major urban center.”

    While he has yet to be charged with a specific crime in Israel, al-Barq can be legally detained indefinitely if shown that he poses a threat. On Monday, the State told the High Court that the terrorist must remain in jail for the time being.

  31. DXer said

    Israel secretly holding Al-Qaida bio-weapons expert for three years
    The High Court to rule on Samar Albarak, an administrative detainee, who has been held in Israel since August 2010.
    By Gili Cohen and Jack Khoury | Nov. 18, 2013

    Palestinian prisoners at the Megiddo Prison. They are routinely denied access to all the prosecution evidence, says military courts president.Photo by Itzik Ben-Malki

    RELATED ARTICLES
    The case against detention without trial
    By Aeyal Gross | Nov. 14, 2013 | 3:01 PM

    A Palestinian who Israel says is active in Al-Qaida, has been held in administrative detention in Israel for over three years. The High Court of Justice is due to hear his appeal on Monday.

    Samar Halami Abed Allatif Albarak, who has been in administrative detention since August 2010, has requested that the court order his release, but the Shin Bet security service is expected to ask that his detention order be extended by a further six months.

    Born in Qalqilyah in 1974, Albarak studied micro-biology in Pakistan. According to the state’s response to the appeal, he underwent military training in Afghanistan in 1988, and joined Al-Qaida three years later. The state further maintains that “the appellant accumulated knowledge and experience in various forms of non-conventional weapons, especially biological weapons, and was in touch with Al-Qaida’s leadership.”

    The state added that Albarak was involved in a terror attack against Israeli and Jewish tourists in Jordan in 2001, and agreed to teach Palestinian militants how to produce toxic substances for use in terror attacks in Israel. His release, according to the state, “would constitute a point-of-no-return for the establishment of a significant base for the world Jihad in the region.”

    Albarak’s family argues that he has been targeted by the authorities because he is a devout Muslim who follows a radical ideology, despite not being involved in any activity that could constitute a threat to the public. Albarak’s attorney, Saleh Mahameed, told Haaretz that Albarak did indeed spend time in Afghanistan and Pakistan and admits to contacts with Al-Qaida leaders – but he only offered them medical services, not any form of military service.

    Due to his Al-Qaida connections, Albarak was arrested by U.S. and Jordanian authorities.

    The state maintains that Albarak was imprisoned in Jordan between 2003 and 2008 “due to his activity in a terror organization and his involvement in the biological weapons project.” After being expelled from Jordan he reached the Israeli border and was arrested in the Allenby Crossing.

    Mahameed says that Albarak did not reach the crossing of his own free will, but rather, was handed over to Israel by the Jordanian authorities.

    The first administrative detention order was issued in August 2010 and it has been extended ever since. Over the years Albarak gone on hunger strike three times he has lost half his weight, according to his family.

    According to the military prosecutor, the courts have often ordered shortening the detention period in order to examine the possibility of deporting Albarak, but the option never materialized.

    When his administrative detention was last extended in July, the military court wrote: “The appellant is an Al-Qaida operative with personal and direct connections to the current leaders of the organization. One cannot argue as to the special danger he poses, and that his return to the area would set off military actions by the Salafi Jihad against the state of Israel.”

  32. DXer said

    Will Halimah, if recaptured, testify against Yazid Sufaat?

    http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=115611:malaysian-police-intensifies-hunt-for-housewife-terror-suspect&Itemid=2#axzz2kXIpsV00

    “Don’t help her

    Mohamad Fuzi further added that the places raided included locations in Gombak, Ampang and Kajang in Selangor, Pandan Indah in Kuala Lumpur and Masai in Johor.
    He explained that these locations are residences of Halimah’s family members and relatives but the raids produced no results.

    The police however believe that Halimah is still in hiding within Malaysian borders and appealed to the public to contact the Investigation Officer, Inspector Hasimah Ismail, at 03.2266.7026 should they have any information that can aid in the investigation as well as apprehend the suspect.

    “I would like to remind the public that anyone who renders aid and shelter to Halimah might be committing an offence under Section 130 K of the Penal Code which carries a 20 year prison sentence or life imprisonment. Anyone who deliberately witholds information about the suspect might also be committing an offence under Section 130 M of the Penal Code which carries a seven year prison sentence,” he warned.

    Law degree from IIU

    Halimah is a widow and holds a law degree from the International Islamic University. She was initially arrested together with Yazid and Muhammad Hilmi last February on the suspicion that they were recruiting locals for militant activities prior to being sent overseas for terrorist missions.”

    Full article: http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=115611:malaysian-police-intensifies-hunt-for-housewife-terror-suspect&Itemid=2#ixzz2kXJ4moi2

  33. DXer said

    Al-Qaeda’s Biological Weapons Program, October 2013

    Dr. Jill Bellamy van Aalst and Oliver Guitta
    http://henryjacksonsociety.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/HJS-briefing-AQs-WMD.pdf

    “Al Qaeda’s primary biological weapon expert, Yazid Sufaat, was arrested in February 2013 while trying to enter Syria,” the report states. [sic] “His arrest is all the more concerning given that the [United Nations] has allowed the Assad regime to maintain its [bioweapons] program.”

    Suffaat is a graduate of California State University, Sacramento, where he received a degree in biology, according to Guitta and van Aalst.

    “In 1993, Sufaat established Green Laboratory Medicine, a pathology lab where he tried to weaponize anthrax on behalf of al Qaeda,” according to the report. “Sufaat had direct ties to Nawaf Alhazmi and Khalid Almihdhar, both of whom were on Flight AA 77, which crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11.”

    Syria’s biological weapons are particularly vulnerable due to the dispersed and highly clandestine nature of the research program, according to the report.

    “The structure of Syria’s biological warfare programs are latent, compartmentalized, and spread across its remaining bio-pharmaceutical infrastructure,” the experts write. “The programs are designed to be highly agile to allow swift production if required

    Comment:

    Yazid Sufaat was not arrested while trying to enter Syria. He was in Malaysia and reported each day to the family’s food stall where he worked. At one point he even geo-located his phone. Lew had posted a feature “Where is Yazid Sufaat.” I think he may have been coming from the grocery store to the stall when he was arrested.

    If these are Syria biological experts, they will want to correct this very fundamental mistake — so as to refer to the young men with whom Yazid had shared meals. They were the ones en route to Syria.

    I have not yet read the report but would carefully check the citations in support. The authors should correct the mistake and re-upload the pdf. Yazid’s next court date is in November.

    Background:

    Hank Crumpton Says Yazid Sufaat’s “mission was bio-attacks against American targets”
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 14, 2012
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/05/14/hank-crumpton-says-yazid-sufaats-mission-was-bio-attacks-against-american-targets/

    Yazid Sufaat was happy with the anthrax work when he stayed with KSM for 6 days in 2001 and when he reported to Dr. Ayman on the results of his research with virulent anthrax in August 2001 with Hambali; in his correspondence with DXer, he seems happy today also (and very much in love).
    Posted on May 1, 2012

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/05/01/yazid-sufaat-reported-he-was-happy-with-the-anthrax-work-when-he-stayed-with-ksm-for-6-days-in-august-2001-at-the-time-he-reported-to-dr-ayman-on-the-results-of-his-research-with-virulent-anthrax/

  34. DXer said

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24092776

    Genome Announc. 2013 Oct 3;1(5). pii: e00380-13. doi: 10.1128/genomeA.00380-13.
    Whole-Genome Sequences of 94 Environmental Isolates of Bacillus cereus Sensu Lato.
    Van der Auwera GA, Feldgarden M, Kolter R, Mahillon J.
    Source

    Laboratory of Food & Environmental Microbiology, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium.
    Abstract

    Bacillus cereus sensu lato is a species complex that includes the anthrax pathogen Bacillus anthracis and other bacterial species of medical, industrial, and ecological importance. Their phenotypes of interest are typically linked to large plasmids that are closely related to the anthrax plasmids pXO1 and pXO2. Here, we present the draft genome sequences of 94 isolates of B. cereus sensu lato, which were chosen for their plasmid content and environmental origins.

    Comment:

    In failing to swab suspect labs for the contaminating subtilis — which Vahid Majidi admits in his new manuscript — the FBI relied upon on-the-book labs and formally retained and archived strains voluntarily submitted by the institutions. By its nature, the approach pretty much excluded off-the-books, surreptitious production. The approach assumed that the perpetrator would cooperate. Even when folks like Yazid Sufaat are chatty it doesn’t mean that they cooperate. Yazid Sufaat, in addition to being vaccinated to protect himself from the virulent anthrax, would decontaminate his lab. Moreoever, he would not have voluntarily responded to a subpoena — and he says he refused to cooperate with his interrogators.

    Stateside, as another example, consider that at Aafia’s former school in Boston. Researchers were doing research in Fall 2001 with virulent anthrax that was not approved by administration. When a question was raised they decontaminated the lab before hazmat responded. (One of the researchers tells me that the virulent strain was Vollum).

    The FBI should start with providing the testing of any swabbing done in Afghanistan for subtilis — and should identify the anthrax spore concentrate found in this bottle. Was it Sterne?

  35. DXer said

    In his new manuscript, Dr. Majidi writes:

    “Attribution, as I often preached at the Bureau and intergovernmental meetings, is a confluence of information gathered from investigation, intelligence sources and forensic evidence. We had plenty of each, and our job was to identify key information resulting in unambigous attribution.”

    Dr. Majidi, you have claimed that all case information was produced, everything was declassified and gag orders have been listed as to scientific matters. Okay — what strain did Yazid Sufaat say he was using? Was this subtilis?

  36. DXer said

    Yazid Sufaat had taken over from Rauf Ahmad. Special Agent Borelli interview Rauf Ahmad, along with two CIA agents, in Pakistan. Rauf served them tea and cookies. Page 260.

    Page 261 of the September 2013 ENEMY WITHIN states:

    “Without warning, [Rauf] Ahmad [when confronted with the correspondence between him and Dr. Zawahiri] sprang to his feet and yanked off his sweater. At first, the Americans thought he was going for a bomb or a gun. Then they sensed that he felt physically constricted by his own lies. He was trying to unburden himself.

    Once he regained his composure, he began answering questions, admitting what they already knew: He had been recruited to be al-Qaeda’s chief scientist in charge of weapons of mass destruction. He had been instructed to make anthrax. He pointed out the location of a laboratory he’d set up in Kandahar. He detailed everyone he had met in al-Qaeda and how he gained entree into the organization. For [FBI Special Agent] Borelli, it was the biggest confession of his career. When it was over, he did what he’d been trained to do. He got Ahmad to sign a statement admitting everything he’d just said, for the court case.

    Court cases, however, were out of fashion. The most important terrorism suspects were dragged into the CIA’s secret prisons.”

    Comment:

    The FBI should provide GAO a copy of Agent Borelli’s written statement.

    The CIA should provide GAO a copy of the statements by the two agents. I believe both were the chain-smokers who had interviewed Dr. Aziz — perhaps one tall and one female.

    As I recall the chronology, I first published Rauf Ahmad’s (Abdur Rauf) name in Fall 2002 after it was provided in a local news report. The report was on the occasion of the raid of a compound of doctors named Khawaja which housed the families of senior EIJ leaders. The article appeared in a public CIA database called FBIS.

    Then I publicized his correspondence with Dr. Zawahiri in a 2005 New York Times article. The NYT journalist, perhaps nudged by Milton L., mistakenly reversed the order of the undated letters. The handwritten one came first. The typed one came second. If GAO obtains a copy of Agent Borelli’s written statement(s) at least this confusion as to the order of the letters can be straightened out.

    Joby Warrick of the Washington Post then did a good treatment of the issue in a later article on the subject. The ISI had agreed to let Washington Post correspondent interview Rauf Ahmad but then backpedaled.

    Rauf is still available for an interview. He may even serve tea and cookies like he did Agent Borelli. When I contacted him, he always asked for money. When it was clear I had none to offer him communication dropped off. Rauf’s interest in money was what caused Dr. Ayman Zawahiri to turn to Yazid Sufaat instead. Already well-off, Yazid was motivated by his religious belief system.

    Three chain smoking agents interviewed Dr. Aziz in related questioning under considerably more onerous circumstances. One spoke Urdu. One was tall. The other was female. The agents were polite and released Dr. Aziz upon the 30 day limit.

    • DXer said

      Former FBI Agent Borelli was interviewed on a show with Paul Keim last April on NPR.

      Investigating Explosions And Chemical Threats

      April 18, 2013 1:00 PM
      http://www.npr.org/2013/04/18/177788371/investigating-explosions-and-chemical-threats

      KEIM: Well, you know, there are traditional forensic methods, such as DNA analysis and latent print analysis, and those experts and our capabilities to carry out those very powerful forensic approaches are made more difficult when you have to deal with, say, a biological agent or something that might explode on you.

      And so in the past 10 years, the U.S. government, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security, have gone to great lengths to try to create the ability to handle those in a common environment. In 2001, for example, when the anthrax letters were sent around, the FBI didn’t have the capability to handle biological agents that were dangerous like this, and so it was difficult for them to do the latent print and DNA-type analysis that they were very expert at.

      ***

      BORELLI: No, I think that kind of falls into the old school. I mean, you still, sometimes with all the technology we have available, it boils down to, you know, just good old-fashioned police work, and, you know, like that story, you know, using a little logic and intuition behind the investigation.

      ***

      BORELLI: Well, when you’re operating abroad, you have to do it in concert with the host country. Obviously, you know, you’re in their turf. You’re operating under their laws. I’ve actually had experience with this. I was in Kampala, Uganda, when they had bombings – multiple bombings – people watching the final game of the World Cup soccer, and a number of people were killed. So we had an FBI team that went over there with full capabilities, with bomb technicians, with evidence technicians, support and everything you need.

      Basically, it was a mobile FBI field office. But we worked with the local authorities in concert, you know, with them, and you trying to use their laws and put the crime scene together and interview the people and basically conduct a full investigation.

      ***

      HEADLEE: That’s Don Borelli, chief operating officer of The Soufan Group. He’s a veteran of the FBI as a special agent. Before him, you heard Malcolm Brady, former assistant director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Explosives. And also on the line from Arizona, Paul Keim, the Cowden Endowed Chair of Microbiology at Northern Arizona University. And, you know, Paul, let me ask you: How many tests you end up having to run on something? If they send you a sample of what they think, suspect may be ricin or anthrax, as you investigated in 2001, how many tests do you end up running on that piece of material?

      KEIM: Well, you don’t do it blindly. You have information from the investigators already, knowing something about what the material is, and so you focus upon particular questions. So, for example, in the anthrax letter, the first thing we did was go look to see what type of anthrax it was. In these types of letters where you’re looking for ricin, there’s these tests that can be done on the site to see if there is in fact potential for ricin to be in there. And, you know, so they don’t go out and look for something way out of left field.

      There are very focused questions that are being addressed by the investigators and informed by them. But the repertoire of tests that we have that can be brought to bear is enormous. In the last decade, with genome technology, we’ve been able to come up with a test for just about anything. But, of course, you don’t throw the book at it. You select.

  37. DXer said

    A month later after this bacteria was harvested Sufaat’s pal Moussaoui was being interviewed about his travels with Sufaat. Moussaoui travelled from Karachi to Malaysia with Sufaat.

    Moussaoui’s laptop — the one with the letter of introduction from Sufaat as his marketing representative and the crop-dusting materials — was also discussed in the formerly “SECRET” document now produced to this blog:

    “Moussaoui was then confronted with the information that he was known to be an extremist intent on using his past and future aviation training in furtherance of a terrorist goal. He was asked to provide the name of his group, the religious scholars whom they followed, and to describe his plan in detail. Moussaoui was visibly surprised at the mention that he was a member of a group and that the FBI/INS were aware that he subscribed to fundamentalist beliefs.

    “He was then asked if such materials were on his laptop computer, to which he quickly resplied in the negative. In writer’s opinion the suggestion that his laptop might be accessed by the FBI clearly provided an extremely strong emotional reaction.”

  38. DXer said

    Comment:

    Disclosure of scientific results, more often than not, is a good thing. It helps to clarify analysis and get the public on the same page. Alternetivaly, it may show that the US government officials are mistaken. In a recent poll, over 60% of those polled think that Bruce E. Ivins was not responsible for the anthrax mailings.

    There is a similar lack of public support regarding the pronouncements by top government officials about Syria.

    I think we need fewer politicians telling us their confidence that Assaad used sarin and more scientific experts explaining the forensic and pathology tests done that indicate both any agent used — as well as any scientific evidence or intelligence relating to attribution. The UN Team should not report on its findings. NSA maybe should expend less effort to intercept UN videoconferences and more effort to intercept artillery communications that might provide direct evidence of attribution.

    Vice President Biden’s broad reasoning, while seeming logical, fell far short of the scientific evidence and intelligence that now should be set forth this week in support of any action. I am not schooled on the tests relating to sarin. Aren’t there methods of testing that would provide definitive evidence at least that sarin was deployed by someone? Or otherwise identify the agent used? Weren’t those testing and detection methods deployed and available to be used at the scene?

    Are biological weapons next on Assad’s agenda?

    http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_opinion.php?id=5517

    If this latest alleged chemical weapons attack is confirmedby independent forensic analysis, the international community should develop a nuanced coordinated response. Given Syria’s vast arsenal of VX and sarin, among other deadly chemical warfare agents, military options such as possible cruise missile attacks on chemical weapons caches in Syria may be problematic and could cause collateral casualties among adjacent civilian populations.

    Should the cruise missiles be designated for use against command and control infrastructure, Hezbollah quite possibly may initiate unconventional attacks in Lebanon or into Israel using drones mounted with biological weapons, in swarming strategies. Both their biological warfare capability and small drones could pose a dangerous escalation. Not only is this a direct threat to Israel, but such a strike would only create greater instability by emboldening the Assad regime, its ally Iran and proxy Hezbollah to undertake retaliatory actions.

    Given the probable use of chemical weapons by Assad’s forces in Jobar, we should be equally concerned about Syria’s biological weapon programs, which have the capacity to cause global epidemics. With the exception of Israel, the international community and media seem heedless that Assad would actually release biological warfare agents.

    Assad views chemical and biological weapons as two components of his conventional arsenal. Syria has designated and trained military units in the use and deployment of both chemical and biological weapons. Like the late Saddam Hussein, Assad has demonstrated that he will use these unconventional weapons against his own citizens. The international community must now begin to plan for the use of biological warfare Category A agents (anthrax, botulinum toxin, smallpox, plague, tularemia, and viral hemorrhagic fevers such as Ebola), given the significant global impact of such an attack.

    Assad’s chemical and biological weapons programs are long-term and strategic in nature. The reality of chemical and biological weapons programs is that these are clandestine and Syria’s most valued weapon class. The Assad regime has for years designated targets for its chemical weapons. It has also made statements, most recently in July 2012, acknowledging its chemical and biological weapons programs. In 2006, it considered chemical and biological weapons part of its conventional arsenal.

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      On a tour of the UN last month, the day Bill Clinton was speaking, the tour guide asked me about a lytro camera that I was carrying. It is more in the nature of a computer than a conventional camera. It looks like a short, square tote umbrella with a lense in the end. The US should wrap itself in the moral authority of the UN in such matters — in the moral authority of validated scientific tests rather than self-serving assertions of confidence.

      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      What forensics can say about Syria chemical attack

      • 19:41 23 August 2013 by David Hambling, Lisa Grossman, Michael Bond
      http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24103-what-forensics-can-say-about-syria-chemical-attack.html#.Uh3sBRYwkTN

      Right now, the evidence that a chemical attack has taken place is based onvideo footage of the people affected, eye-witness accounts and images of what appears to be the remnants of a delivery rocket. All point to a chemical weapon attack, but there is the possibility, albeit an unlikely one given the scarcity of reports, that the rocket contained no chemical payload but struck a chemical factory or warehouse.

      Comment:

      Perhaps UN testing of remnants of a delivery rocket would provide direct evidence that would persuade Russia, China and Iran that their support is misplaced.

      For starters, reports on blood tests from June 2013 indicating exposure to sarin should be made public and reviewed by independent experts.

      It’s fascinating that the US officials should be so quick to emphasize that evidence could have been destroyed in the last few weeks without making the same points in connection with the shelling of Al Qaeda’s anthrax labs — and the formalized plan that the labs be decontaminated on an ongoing basis. (Dr. Ayman planned to have the waters painted so that they could be wiped down with insecticide.)

    • DXer said

      Syria is one of only seven countries not to have joined the 1997 Chemical Weapons Convention, which commits members to completely destroying their stockpiles.

      http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/28/us-syria-crisis-chemical-idUSBRE97R0GJ20130828

      To boost its own capabilities, Damascus set up the Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC), an agency with a civilian figure head that was run by military intelligence.

      It is “the best-equipped research center in Syria, possessing better technical capacity and equipment than the four Syrian universities,” the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a leading non-proliferation group, wrote in May.

      The SSRC, attacked by rebels and Israeli airstrikes earlier this year, oversees chemical weapons facilities in Dumayr, Khan Abou, Shamat, and Firaqlus, according to the U.S. Center for Strategic and International Studies. It set up facilities for blister agent, sarin, mustard and VX nerve gas, the Center said.

      The agency is now headed by one of Assad’s top advisers, national security chief Ali Mamlouk, said Brigadier General Mustafa al Sheikh, a Syrian army defector.

      “The man overseeing the chemical weapons in general is Ali Mamlouk, but effective control of the weapons is becoming fragmented,” Sheikh, who served for almost two decades in chemical weapons units, told Reuters from an undisclosed location in northern Syria. “Assad himself has lost overall command and control.” …

      The bulk of chemical and biological weapons production technology came from “large chemical brokerage houses in Holland, Switzerland, France, Austria and Germany,” said Globalsecurity, a security information provider.

      In the early 1980s, Syria mostly imported French pharmaceuticals, some of them so-called “dual use” chemicals, which could also be used for chemical weapons, it said.

      A wide range of industrial chemicals with legal applications, such as in agriculture, are also precursors for chemical weapons. The most important precursors for sarin, the nerve agent believed to have been used in recent fighting in Syria, are methylphosphonyl difluoride and isopropanol.

      None of the reports cited named specific companies as suppliers. Syria has said it intended to use the chemicals for agriculture.

      Comment:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chemical_Weapons_Convention

      Of the seven states that are not, two have signed but not yet ratified the treaty (Burma and Israel) and five states have not signed the treaty (Angola, North Korea, Egypt, South Sudan and Syria).

      Stupid question: As a condition of military appropriations, why hasn’t the US required that Israel ratify and that Egypt sign and ratify the Convention? If the US wants to take the moral high road and succeed in isolating Syria in world opinion, it seems that’s the way to go.

    • DXer said

      http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/28/israeli-intelligence-intercepted-syria-chemical-talk

      The 8200 unit of the Israeli Defence Forces, which specialises in electronic surveillance, intercepted a conversation between Syrian officials regarding the use of chemical weapons, an unnamed former Mossad official told Focus. The content of the conversation was relayed to the US, the ex-official said.

      The 8200 unit collects and analyses electronic data, including wiretapped telephone calls and emails. It is the largest unit in the IDF.

      Comment:

      That’s a start. But for the sake of authenticating the intercept, the NSA should provide the UN with such intercepted communications. Then it should be associated with the forensic evidence — the best evidence combining sarin traces from fired shells with communications associated with the artillery unit firing the shells.

    • DXer said

      U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has asked for an extension, saying “the team needs time to do its job” on the ground.

      Speaking in The Hague today, Ban joined Brahimi to urge the international community to work within the U.N. framework.

      “The body entrusted with international peace and security cannot be missing in action,” he said. “The Council must find the unity to act. It must use its authority for peace.”

      http://abcnews.go.com/International/seeks-time-syria-chemical-probe-us-strike/story?id=20091760

  39. DXer said

    When the Malaysian defense minister acknowledged the threat of bioterrorism, it was on the occasion of the arrest of the two young men who we later learned had been meeting with Yazid Sufaat at his cafeteria stall.

    Malaysian defense minister acknowledges threat of bioterrorism
    Published on October 31, 2012 by Ted Purlain

    Ahmad Zahid Hamidi

    Malaysia’s minister of defense recently said that biological warfare is becoming a new threat to the country.

    Defense Minister Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said that new laws were being drawn up to help prepare the country to respond to biological warfare, according to Bernama.com.

    “Biological warfare is a new war which can happen not only in Malaysia but also in the ASEAN region,” Hamidi said, Bernama.com reports.

    The defense minister also said that his country should not be regarded as a terrorist nation after two Malaysians were detained in Lebanon on suspicion of having links to terrorists groups. Hamidi said that Malaysia has taken steps to stop the spread of extremism in the country.

    “The Malaysian Armed Forces, police and National Security Council cooperate in monitoring terrorist activity,” Hamidi said, Bernama.com reports.

    Two Malaysians, Razif Mohammed Ariffin and Mohammed Razin Shahar Mustafa Kamal, were recently arrested at a hotel in Beirut. The two are suspected of participating in suicide bomber training and of having links to al-Qaeda.

    The youths are to be represented by counsel when their cases are heard at Lebanon’s Military Tribunal in Beirut. They maintain that they are not guilty of committing or being involved in terrorism of any kind.

  40. DXer said

    I would not be surprised at all if it turns out that this concentrate is the Sterne strain. (That was my friend’s ML’s assumption when I asked his opinion years ago). But as I recall, the director hushed up the staff when the wonderful reporter asked. But there is no reason for this sort of information not to have been disclosed to the NAS panel.

    As a general matter, people should be far slower to make assumptions and much more determined to obtain the best available information.

  41. DXer said

    Frederick News-Post, I now see, is conducting a poll asking

    Do you still believe that Bruce Ivins is responsible for the Fall 2001 mailings?

    Please see the link for the precise phrasing and be sure to vote.

    http://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/news_regular_features/daily_poll/poll_71ab3fa6-f70d-11e2-84e7-001a4bcf6878.html

    As a refresher on the matter, see

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  42. DXer said

    Comment:

    These SRC bioforensic researchers here in Syracuse are now just one building over. I’m at computer #16 each morning at Bird between 8 a.m.- 9 a.m. (before the meter maid wakes up). If they stop down from Lyman Hall, I’ll tell them what Yazid Sufaat, Al Qaeda’s anthrax lab director, told me about the origin of the Fall 2001 anthrax letters.

    If you wanted to know where Captain Kidd hid his treasure, wouldn’t you try to ask him if he was around?

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    SRC transfers bioforensics researchers, assets to Syracuse University national security program

    Lyman Hall on the Syracuse University campus, home of the Forensic and National Sciences Institute. (Michelle Gabel)

    SYRACUSE, NY — Defense contractor SRC Inc. is transferring its bioforensics assets and staff to the Forensic and National Security Sciences Institute (FNSSI) at Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences.

    Bioforensics involves examining traces of biological agents as part of investigations into bioterrorism acts or the inadvertent releases of toxins, and determining the origin of the substances.

    SRC, according to its website, uses bioforensics “as a means of determining where someone or something has been.” The company has been performing advanced research and development in the area of bioforensics for about six years.

    ***

    Under an agreement between SU and SRC, three SRC scientists will become SU employees, continuing their research in Lyman Hall and joining the 10 faculty already teaching at the FINSII.

    ***

    The agreement will also enable SRC and SU to jointly bid on contracts, said Rob Enslin, a spokesperson for the FINSII. Already the FINSII receives some of its funding from outside sources, including the U.S. Dept. of Justice and the National Science Foundation, said James T. Spencer, the FINSII’s executive director.

    Spencer saids the transfer was prompted by SRC’s decision to shift its focus to other areas.

    “SRC has developed considerable expertise and capabilities in bioforensics research,” said Spencer, who also serves as the college’s associate dean for science, mathematics and research. “The timing of the transition couldn’t be better, given the growing need for methodologies involving bioterrorism threats, chemical detection and analysis, and sample provenance and origin.

    SRC’s revenue has dropped precipitously in recent years with the wind-down of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

    Most of SRC’s revenue comes from the Department of Defense, nearly all the rest from other federal agencies.

    According to a federal website that tracks government spending SRC’s revenue reached a high of $567 million in 2010, and was $265.5 million in 2012. Partial data for fiscal year 2013, which ends in September, listed SRC’s revenue as $34.4 million.

    In the past 18 months, SRC laid off nearly 100 people, leaving some 1,020 employees.

    … From SRC, the FNSSI will gain state-of-the-art DNA capabilities, as well as expertise in worldwide biological systems, including research tools that determine the geospatial origins of things…

    Syracuse University’s FNSSI was officially formed two years ago as a research and teaching center, though teaching and research involving forensic science had been taking place at Syracuse for the last six to eight years, said Spencer.

    SU’s FINSII is the nation’s first program to comprehensively focus on scholarship in forensic and national security sciences at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

  43. DXer said

    Check out the picture of Vladimir Roman of Roxbury who was arrested outside of Kerry’s home after being seen taking pictures of Kerry’s window.

    http://www.boston.com/metrodesk/2013/07/15/west-roxbury-man-facing-alcohol-related-charges-after-photographs-secretary-state-john-kerry-beacon-hill-home/cBulX7lsRAu6f2SAgpJpRP/story.html

    The mailed body suspects part from Canada used as an alias the name Vladimir Romanov.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/7028308/Mailed-body-parts-video-murder-suspect-flees

    Stupid question (because I have to leave and am terrible at matching photos):

    Are they the same person?

    On the one hand, a photo is worth 2000 words. Other times, a photo is simply misleading.

  44. DXer said

    If you like Chipotle burritos, then the treasure hunt adventurrito gives you the opportunity to learn the very well done PR — the corporate story — in the context of an ongoing promotion. The prize is a lifetime supply of burritos.

    I had to be handed the answer to the first puzzle: Porkutopia.

    A person is most truly wrong when they are handed the answer and don’t time to process new information and revise their earlier conclusion.

    But it is never too late to be right — until it is.

    A lifetime of burritos awaits.

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    http://www.adventurrito.com/

  45. DXer said

    Eight years ago, in the summer of 2005, researchers in New York conducted a related subway gas test in Midtown. Similar tests have also been carried out in Boston and Washington, D.C.

    Subway Gas Test Begins Today: Why Is NYPD Pumping Chemicals Into New York City Train Tunnels? [VIDEO]
    By Philip Ross on July 8, 2013
    http://www.isciencetimes.com/articles/5575/20130708/subway-gas-test-nypd-nyc-train-chemicals.htm

    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  46. DXer said

    Yazid and Hilmi claim trial for involvement in terrorist activities
    By MAIZATUL NAZLINA

    http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2013/6/24/nation/20130624155830&sec=nation

    Comment:

    The authorities are still looking for Halimah and raided her family and friends recently. Is there confirmation she is still alive? I believe she was a 52-year-old housewife, who had been trained as a lawyer in religious studies.

    For example, when mob co-defendants in Whitey Bulger’s social circle would go missing, darker possibilities were often the more likely prospect.

    As another possibility, is she at a safe house cooperating against Yazid in connection with his anthrax work? Dr. Amer Aziz in Pakistan was missing for 30 days when he actually was being questioned by three chain-smokers.

    While Halimah being on the run certainly is very plausible — and perhaps the most likely scenario absent other direct indications — it does not appear to be the only logical possibility.

  47. DXer said

    Does Halimah, now at large, have any insights into the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings — from her conversations with Yazid?

    Perhaps she could go to a luxury hotel in Hong Kong, order room service, and give interviews to the media.

    Cops closing in on JI splinter cell
    http://news.asiaone.com/News/AsiaOne%2BNews/Malaysia/Story/A1Story20130619-430707.html

    Special Task Force (Operations and Counter Terrorism) Director Comm Datuk Mohamad Fuzi Harun said seven swoops had been conducted so far in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Negri Sembilan and Johor in search of the 52-year-old International Islamic University law graduate-turned religious teacher.

    “According to our intelligence, she is still in the country. We have tightened security at exit points so it is almost impossible for her to escape,” he said yesterday.

    Comm Fuzi said Halimah disappeared after being acquitted and discharged by the Kuala Lumpur High Court on May 20 on charges of promoting acts of terrorism in strife-torn Syria.

    The Court of Appeal has since issued a warrant of arrest against Halimah and adjourned an appeal hearing against her acquittal. Also acquitted and discharged were Yazid and Muhammad Hilmi.

    Both were picked up from their homes in Kuala Lumpur last month.

    The trio were alleged to have threatened the public in Syria with acts of terror, an offence punishable with up to 30 years’ jail and a fine under Section 130G (a) of the Penal Code.

  48. DXer said

    “Privacy, Security & Your Data – Concerns in a Changing World”

    In this fast paced, technological world, our personal information is vulnerable every single day. As companies grow globally, and cyber security becomes ever more challenging, how do businesses preserve individual privacy and maintain the security of personal data?

    Presented by Cornell University and Hunton & Williams LLP, please join us for a livestream event, broadcasted from New York City.
    http://www.livestream.com/cornellalumni

    To tune in, visit our Livestream page a few minutes before the broadcast.

    Date: Tuesday, June 18, 2013
    Time*: 6:45PM (EDT)
    TUNE IN HERE
    No pre-registration necessary. Free to tune in.
    *Please base your start time on your specific time-zone.

    Keynote: The Changing Landscape of Lawful Access (30min)
    Panel: Hot topics in Global Privacy and Data Security (60min)

    Speakers:
    Keith Enright, Senior Privacy Counsel, Google
    Mark Fasciano ’90, Managing Director & Internet Entrepreneur, Canrock Ventures
    Tracy Mitrano JD ’95, Director of IT Policy and Institute for Computer Policy and Law, Cornell University
    Lisa Sotto ’84, Head, Privacy and Data Security Practice, Hunton & Williams LLP
    JoAnn Stonier, SVP/Global Privacy & Data Usage Officer, MasterCard Worldwide
    Stephen B. Wicker, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Cornell University

  49. DXer said

    http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/nsa_should_come_clean_ray_kelly_dfAKlqJ4keYDNiJqANhIMO

    ‘NSA should come clean about domestic spying’: Ray Kelly

    • By JENNIFER BAIN
    • Last Updated: 6:18 PM, June 17, 2013

    Police Commissioner Ray Kelly launched a stinging rebuke to the federal government’s secret phone and Internet monitoring campaign — and suggested leaker Edward Snowden was right about privacy “abuse.”

    “I think the American public can accept the fact if you tell them that every time you pick up the phone it’s going to be recorded and it goes to the government,” Kelly said. “I think the public can understand that. I see no reason why that program was placed in the secret category.”

    Comment:

    Technology permits not only taping of the phone call but eavesdropping on calls within earshot of the cellphone — even if the cellphone is off. (It merely is silently turned on remotely).

    In our society, there are cameras that take pictures of all these financially stressed young men who walk into banks and demand money. The problem is not with that surveillance but with law enforcement’s failure to effectively act on the images and connect the dots — the failure to identify and apprehend the perpetrator based on the image.

    If the FBI cannot connect dots that are publicly available, the problem is that there is no reason to think they will be able to correctly the dots surreptitiously obtained, especially given the compartmentalization that occurs with information collected on a secret or top secret basis.

    So when you read about facial recognition software being used on images uploaded to social media, is that a bad thing or good thing? That’s open to debate. But considerations of security should not get lost in the discussion about privacy. Robberies need to be prevented — and where they occur the robberies need to be solved and prosecuted.

    With all this massive eavesdropping, Amerithrax remains unsolved. The present Adminstration merely added insult to injury.

  50. DXer said

    The religious instructor, Halimah, a woman, was a no-show in court today. The appeals court issued an arrest warrant.

    The investigators had already been looking for her to arrest her along with Yazid and his assistant.

    I believe Halimah would be eligible for the $25 million reward if she provides information that leads to avoidance of the next 911.

    She would be entitled to $5 million if she provides information leading to the capture of anthrax letter suspect Adnan El-Shukrijumah.

    Instead of thinking that blowing up people furthers religious values, she might instead think about feeding the poor and hungry.

    http://www.bernama.com.my/bernama/v7/ge/newsgeneral.php?id=953310

  51. DXer said

    Dr. Batarfi reports that he identified for his interrogator “the one who sent the anthrax to the United States or the one who knows the man that they was the Pakistani shah.” He says it was not Yazid Sufaat — it was Tahar Butt Kashmeri. He says that he didn’t discuss anthrax with Yazid (but merely helped him procure equipment). Who is Tahar Butt Kashmeri? (These operational folk are known to have many aliases).

    I believe Dr. Batarfi is in Yemeni now and is available fo ran interview.

    “I recently came to know through here that the one who sent the anthrax to the United States or the one who knows the man that they was the Pakistani shah. His name is Tahar Butt Kashmeri and I mentioned it to my interrogators and I discuss it with my AMO last time. I came to know who was behind the anthrax and so it wasn’t the Malaysian guy. It was not only the anthrax issue we came to know about the material that was used to blow up the USS COLE. I gave a lot of my information to my interrogators regarding a very sensitive point. I never discussed with this Malaysian guy about any germs or a very sensitive point.”

    Who is Tahar Butt Kashmeri? Who does Tahar say is responsible?

    Lesson for Yazid: It’s my understanding that Dr. Batarfi cooperated and was released and now is home with his family.

  52. DXer said

    Pakistan: Security Agencies Looking for Suspected Malaysian Al-Qa’ida Operative
    Report by MANSOOR KHAN: “Qaeda suspect present in country: Report”
    The Nation
    Saturday, February 28, 2009

    KARACHI – The secret service agencies who are looking for a suspected Malaysian national Al-Qaeda (Al-Qa’ida) operative believe that he has arrived in Pakistan, The Nation learnt here on Thursday (26 February).

    According to the report, one of the masterminds of the 9 /11 and expert of Anthrax, namely Yazid Bin Sufaat who is believed to have close links with Osama Bin Laden and professionally a microbiologist has reached Pakistan.

    A letter written by an intelligence agency revealed to this scribe that Yazid Bin Sufaat, an operative of Al-Qaeda had vanished since his release from the custody of Malaysian authorities.

    In the letter written by a joint director of a secret agency asserted that Sufaat, who was born on January 20, 1964 at Johor, Malaysia, bears a passport number A-10472263 and Malaysian ID card number 640120-015529, has disappeared after serving a seven-year detention in Malaysia.

    It is believed that Sufaat could be in Pakistan, therefore it has also been asserted, “The individual is a concrete and significant security threat and has been at the watch-list of western countries.” It was also pointed out that the said suspect has links with various terrorist groups, head a group name “Jemaah Islamiyah” and has been masterminding the Al-Qaeda’s Anthrax programme.

    It has also been asserted that he may also try to conduct a terror attack in Pakistan.

    In the letter, authorities have sought information about Sufaat’s whereabouts and directed to freeze his financial assets. The letter stated that it was requested that any information of Yazid including his previous visits to Pakistan must be shared with SRHQ-IB for necessary action. The said agency has dispatched the said letter to the Home Secretary Sindh Arif Ahmed Khan and Inspector General Sindh Police Salahuddin Baber Khattack.

    (Description of Source: Islamabad The Nation in English — Conservative daily, part of the Nawa-i-Waqt publishing group. Circulation around 20,000.) [ I pulled this from the Foreign Broadcasting Information Service which is available through DIALOG.]

    Comment: Yazid went to Pakistan after he was released? What were his dates of travel? How did he get papers to go? Why did he go? Where did he go? Who did he meet? Did he meet anthrax letters suspect Adnan El-Shukrijumah, now the current head of Al Qaeda external operations? Chomel and the girls know the dates of his travel. What do they say? If this report is correct, why didn’t they convince him to stay home? Was he as stubborn as he is cheerful? Do his lawyers think they will prevail while ducking these issues? Successful advocacy requires that they address the issues head-on and argue that he has already served his time for his work on the anthrax program and that he was just feeling wanderlust and adventure in his travels.

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