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

* OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE? … DXer asks Vice President Pence: Who at the FBI is responsible for withholding Ivins’ Notebook 4282, containing the notes from the time of the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings?

Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 17, 2017



113 Responses to “* OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE? … DXer asks Vice President Pence: Who at the FBI is responsible for withholding Ivins’ Notebook 4282, containing the notes from the time of the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings?”

  1. DXer said

    To think, if Notebook 4282 were just produced, the sheen might leave former Director Mueller’s White Knight armor. The White House missed a shrewd move as a news-filled December approaches.

    Little did AUSA Peterson know, when he took the job, that he someday might hold the fate of the free world in his hands by how much longer he drags his feet in producing Notebook 4282.

    Tuesday, 28 November 2017
    Mueller Record: Can He Be Trusted with Power?

    Written by Steve Byas

    While Mueller is portrayed in the media as a non-partisan prosecutor who is simply seeking justice, his record as the head of the FBI indicates that he has sought convictions more than he has sought justice.

    Mueller became the head of the FBI one week before the September 11, 2001 attacks on America, having been appointed by President George W. Bush. The next morning, a senior agent had been given only one hour to prepare for a presentation on what had happened. According to the Los Angeles Times, when the agent told Mueller and Attorney General John Ashcroft that accurate information had not yet been “established,” Mueller exploded into a profanity-laced tirade, demanding answers.

    Shortly after that Mueller said the role of the FBI would be to prevent a second terrorist attack.

    This is the background for Mueller’s thinking when some letters containing powdered anthrax were received in government buildings in Washington, D.C. According to Michael Mason, then head of the FBI’s Washington field office, Mueller took personal leadership over the anthrax investigation.

    The FBI quickly centered its investigation on Steven Hatfill, a virologist who worked at the Army laboratories at Ft. Detrick, Maryland. Mueller told congressional leaders that the FBI had traced the anthrax to Hatfill. Yet the FBI eventually concluded that Hatfill was innocent. This was reminiscent of the FBI’s targeting an innocent man as responsible for a bombing episode at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. That turned out to be wrong as an innocent man’s reputation was severely damaged. Mueller was not responsible for that overzealous effort from the FBI. But he was responsible for the agency’s dogged pursuit of Hatfill. The FBI wound up settling with Hatfill for almost $6 million.

    Instead of Hatfill, the FBI later re-focused its interest on an Army microbiologist, also at Ft. Detrick, Bruce Ivins. When Ivins was told by his lawyers that he was about to be prosecuted for the anthrax-laced letter murders, he killed himself.

    This is illustrative with the larger problem of the office of “independent” counsel. It is the very antithesis of the concept of separation of powers and limited government. There are no “checks and balances” for an independent counsel. The independent counsel’s investigation can take any turn he wishes it to take, for as long as he wants to pursue a case, without fear of facing voters in re-election, and little concern about being fired by someone in the Justice Department.


    It is easy to criticize Attorney Mueller’s appointment given his friendship with Attorney Comey. But who do we know that had the stature to inspire such confidence across the political spectrum? I can’t think of anyone. I think the suggestion that Jared Kushner, if indicted, would “flip like a pancake” on the President is mistaken. I think there is no way he would flip on his father-in-law, especially in light of the emotional ordeal he went through his father.
    Besides, why would you flip on the guy who (debatably) could pardon you? Jared loves Ivanka. Ivanka loves the President. It simply would never happen — even if Jared had to go to jail for a couple years. Let’s not forget that we are talking about White Collar crime — which historically is treated very leniently. Criminal appeals about whether the President can pardon Jared would go on for years.

    Obama ethics czar: Jared Kushner ‘will flip like a pancake’ on Trump

  2. DXer said

    Report: Trump Paid Over $1 Million to Settle Polish Workers’ Lawsuit


    My acquaintance, the late William Kaczycki, from Herkimer, NY — while reaching for vodka chilled in his freezer –would tell me that Trump paid his way out of the troubles over the illegal workers (while Bill later honed his chess skills with his jail keeper). Bill never had money to pay the workers because of the money that had to be paid to the mafia. Trump Organization took over the account. I still likely have a deposition or two or three from a related matter, maybe even the bank records. Trump railing against illegal immigrants is very hypercritical given that he knew the Polish workers recruited by the window washing company were illegally in the United States. They even lived in a separate building owned by Bill.

    Now Archibald Cox was fond of quoting the Supreme Court jurist who said that consistency was the hobgoblin of a petty mind. So I wouldn’t deny Mr. Trump to take the position he does on a current policy issue. But at least the public should be aware that Trump knowingly hired illegal immigrants — and that payments to the mafia were made in connection with the destruction of Bonwit Teller, to make way for Mr. Trump’s first tower.

    If you think Mr. Trump did not know of such payments, well, okay, you likely voted for him and are entitled to your opinion. Zebras don’t change their stripes very often. And the public record is already sufficient to show that Trump knew that the workers were not legally in the country. Trump wanted them for the job to cut his costs. The money trail showing that the Trump Organization took over the account is also already public if you dig into the legal record in public archives.

  3. DXer said

    Donald Trump Wants Ivanka and Jared Kushner to Move Back Home to NYC

    By Beatrice Dupuy On 11/22/17

    Updated | President Donald Trump has told his daughter Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, to move back to New York, fueling rumors of a strained relationship between his son-in-law and senior adviser, according to a new report.

    Comment: I don’t think it points to a strained relationship. It points to a loving father’s concern for his daughter and son-in-law — and good advice in stressful times. I recommended that they move back no later than last August — to avoid drawing prosecutorial fire.

    If Mr. Kushner is indicted, it seems that Mr. Trump either will attempt (unsuccessfully) to pardon Kushner before a conviction or fire Mueller (which will lead to impeachment proceedings. Either way, it will prove a very messy business.

    I had always thought that one possible way for the White House to undermine the Mueller investigation is to direct DOJ to provide the Notebook 4282 in the unrelated Amerithrax investigation. (The notebook has already been retrieved and is not subject to FOIA exemption — except a couple minor redactions of one person’s name.

    I have suggested that the Notebook may show that former FBI Director Mueller allowed Amerithrax to be resolved in a wholly unsatisfactory way — with the evidence not showing the source of the Ames, the identity of the processor or the identity of the mailer.

    (At the very least, it might show that he was not briefed on the Notebook by the AUSAs or agents).

    It might set up the argument that Mueller has gotten by too long, and gone too far, based on his rugged good looks and Gary Cooper-esque air of integrity.

    It’s way past time for Jared to get out of Dodge.

  4. DXer said

    The government’s answer is due November 28, 2017.

    United States District Court Contreras, who is hearing the case, has said in an unrelated matter:

    “If documents are destroyed between now and August 17, the government will have to answer for that, and, you know, if they don’t want to do anything out of the ordinary to preserve between now and then, they can make that choice. I will allow them to make that choice, but they will answer for it, if something happens.”

  5. DXer said

    Let’s consider the possibility that FBI withheld the Notebook 4282 because even producing a redacted version would pose a problem — due to the exemption they wish to claim is not available.

    For example, let’s consider the logical possibility that on the date of mailing and week prior, there are entries by the person who shared the notebook with Ivins rather than Ivins himself.

    The (b)(6) exemption for personal privacy — which would justify redacting an individual’s name — is available but not of much use. From all the notebooks below, we likely could readily identify the person who wrote any particular passage based on the handwriting.

    Let’s consider the possibility that the person who shared the notebook is his assistant, the person who wore a wire in the coffee shop meeting with Bruce. She has been mum on the subject for many years now.

    Let’s consider Senator Leahy’s angry comment in a public official forum that there were other people who could be charged — that he did not believe the FBI’s “Ivins Theory” for a minute. (He served on the Judiciary Committee) and was closely briefed by FBI Director Mueller.) Leahy has quite emphatically said that “It’s not closed.”

    But let’s consider that the FBI has officially closed Amerithrax — and so the exemption for a pending law enforcement investigation is not available to it. (Such an exemption ordinarily would cut a broad swath and routinely be upheld in judicial review).

    Okay, well… under the rule of law, doesn’t that require production of the notebook if the exemption the FBI needs is unavailable?

    If Patricia Fellows turns out to be the one who shared the notebook, and it is her nice cursive showing that she was in the lab for a small animal experiment on those days — rather than Ivins — well, that factoid can be used as an input in assessing the credibility of the FBI’s claim that Ivins had no reason to be in the lab. Similarly, if it turns out the notations were made by Ivins and show that he was working on a small animal or other experiment as he claimed, then it is even more directly devastating to the FBI’s Ivins Theory.

    Patricia Fellows has never addressed any questions. That would be the interview to score for a journalist.

    Then she can describe the technical assistance she gave to the University of Michigan researchers, the supply of virulent Ames to those researchers by Bruce, her trips to Michigan with Bruce, etc.

    The FBI is assuming that what they are withholding is not already known — that is, not known by those under its control. But is that a safe assumption?

    The way to get ahead of such news breaking is to comply with the transparency law (FOIA) that Congress passed.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    Contents of: Lab Notebooks

    • 19950124_LabNotebook 3716(redacted) (18811 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 19950618_LabNotebook4103(redacted) (107678 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 19960903_LabNotebook3919(redacted) (2993 KB) — Posted: 05/10/2011
    • 19980106_LabNotebook4000(redacted) (155721 KB) — Posted: 06/21/2011
    • 19981202_LabNotebook3745(redacted) (32444 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000114_LabNotebook4237(redacted) (16714 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000216_LabNotebook 4240(redacted) (7698 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 20000216_LabNotebook 4241_B01-11(redacted) (6173 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 20000303_LabNotebook3921(redacted) (22150 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000608_LabNotebook4281(redacted) (6568 KB) — Posted: 05/13/2011
    • 20000828_LabNotebook4306(redacted) (4286 KB) — Posted: 05/03/2011
    • 20010809_LabNotebook4383(redacted) (28822 KB) — Posted: 04/29/2011
    • Notebook 3655 redacted (19003 KB) — Posted: 04/28/2016
    • Notebook 3945 redacted (12176 KB) — Posted: 04/28/2016
    • Notes and Sample Anaylsis from Notebook 3268 (19684 KB) — Posted: 01/05/2012

  6. DXer said

    Judge bars public from trial over Homeland Security contract for device to detect bioterrorism

    David Willman
    September 11, 2017

    “The government has spent more than $20 billion over the last 16 years on efforts to protect against potential bioterrorism,…”

    Comment: The government spends $20 billion in a totally biotection efforts and yet won’t put Lab Notebook 4282 in the mail — pursuant to legal requirements — for a few dollars postage. Notebook 4282 is documentary evience bearing on Bruce Ivins alibi as to why he was in the B3 laboratory the week prior to and the day of mailing. If the FBI had not taken the only copy from USAMRIID, USAMRMC could have emailed the notebook at no cost. The FBI has put itself in the position of willfully concealing Bruce Ivins alibi evidence — and there is no exemption warranting its withholding. Individual FBI employees are responsible for its continued withholding — rather than FBI as an institution.

  7. DXer said

    Archibald Cox has long been my hero. Robert Mueller is cut from the same cloth. In these times more than most, a country needs its heroes. So while I may disagree with FBI Director Mueller that the FBI could have convicted Bruce Ivins of the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings, I’ve never had cause to doubt his integrity (or skill at his job). (People can disagree about the difficult and complex mystery; they are entitled to their own opinion).

    But this increasingly intense criticism of Mueller does not seem to be based on anything. And I’m the guy who suggested that Notebook 4282, if the President directed that it be produced under FOIA without further delay, might show both former Director Mueller and Comey to have knowingly screwed the pooch in Amerithrax, the biggest mystery of their tenure.

    So sit down. Let the man do his job.

  8. DXer said

    Robbie Martin‏ @FluorescentGrey Oct 30

    Smart? Mueller was sued by the lead investigator in the FBI amerithrax case for stove piping the evidence in order to frame Bruce Ivins

    Robbie Martin‏ @FluorescentGrey 23h23 hours ago

    I changed my mind: covering up a crime that involved murdering 5 americans with weaponized anthrax made by the US government and getting away with it is arguably pretty smart


    We can better assess FBI Director Mueller’s handling of the Amerithrax matter if the contemporaneous notes from the withheld Notebook 4282 are produced under FOIA, as required under the rule of law. The FBI’s “Ivins Theory” was largely premised on the claim that he had no reason to be in the B3 lab (when that was not true).

  9. DXer said

    Forensic Science: Daubert’s Failure

    Case Western Reserve Law Review, Forthcoming

    Case Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2017-16

  10. DXer said

    Trump: Justice Dept., FBI should release ‘who paid for’ Russia dossier
    Politico-2 hours ago

    President Donald Trump on Saturday called on the Justice Department “and/or” the FBI to identify who paid for a dossier that contains allegations of ties between …
    Trump calls on FBI to release names behind dossier
    The Hill (blog)-3 hours ago


    President Trump should use his bully pulpit to direct that the FBI comply with FOIA and produce Bruce Ivins Notebook that has notes from the day of mailing and week prior. He could develop a theme of compliance with the rule of law in regard to legally mandated transparency.

  11. DXer said

    Silverglate: How Robert Mueller Tried To Entrap Me

    October 17, 2017

    Mueller walked into the room, went to the head of the table, and opened the meeting with this admonition, reconstructed from my vivid and chilling memory: “Gentlemen: Criticism of the Bureau is a non-starter.” (Another lawyer attendee of the meeting remembered Mueller’s words slightly differently: “Prosecutorial misconduct is a non-starter.” Either version makes clear Mueller’s intent – he did not want to hear evidence that either the prosecutors or the FBI agents on the case misbehaved and framed an innocent man.)

    Special counsel Mueller’s background indicates zealousness that we might expect in the Grand Inquisitor, not the choirboy.

  12. DXer said

    It is surprising that President Trump, while Gorka was still in the White House, did not attempt to show that former FBI Director Mueller and former FBI Comey botched their biggest case.
    It would have been as simple as directing the FBI to comply with FOIA with respect to the documents requested by academic researcher Dillon. (FOIA would have permitted redactions required by the statute).

    Now with cooperation agreements falling into place and indictments looming, it seems to have reached a point where the prosecutorial momentum will be unstoppable with respect to one of his family members — which will be too difficult for the President to bear. He’ll just want to resign, I suspect..

    Will Trump Be Impeached, Removed Via the 25th Amendment or Resign?

    By Jason Le Miere On 10/14/17 at

  13. DXer said

    R. Scott Decker in a book due out this Spring on the anthrax mailings reports that he coordinated the forensics of the case. He would have reviewed Notebook 4282. What does he say about it in his book? How does he view the FBI’s withholding of the notebook for all these years?

  14. DXer said

    AUSA Lieber explained that it was FBI Agent Lawrence Alexander who came up with the hours theory that steered her focus onto Bruce Ivins. Yet he was not a scientist and had no experience understanding lab experiments. Neither of them did. In the highly compartmentalized investigation, what did FBI Special Agent Alexander, a lay person, do to understand the nature of the nature of the animal challenges, the requirements of the animal protocols, and the time it would take to complete the tasks that were mandatory under the protocols. Did he even ever read — even have access to — the protocols given the compartmentalization of the investigation? Did he even ever read the laboratory notebook pages that the FBI has taken many years to locate? Why didn’t he know about the shift from Building 1412 to Building 1425 — and the shift from aerosol to parenteral challenges. Parenteral challenges, challenges by injection, were preferable because they involved fewer personnel. (see Ivins emails) They could be done in Building 1425 rather than Building 1412. (see Ivins emails) And they involved animal checks 3X’s daily — with such checks being a one-person job and taking about 2 hours, which was what was recorded. Bruce Ivins lived very near the Laboratory and so it was natural for him to offer to do the checks.

    Lawrence Alexander had no experience in the field of microbiology or small animal research in laboratories. Once Ivins killed himself, he had no incentive to encourage the disclosure of the lab notebook pages that would have supported — or debunked — his theory. Because the lab notebook pages debunk it.

    U.S. Faulted In Slaying Of Witness
    Defense Cites Lax Supervision

    By Jerry Markon and Jamie Stockwell
    Washington Post Staff Writers
    Wednesday, April 13, 2005; Page B01

    You had someone with no experience in the lab developing the theory with a lawyer new to the case, who then came to focus on Bruce Ivins’ fixation on sorority girls and his crush on a co-worker (that included improprieties such as the Georgetown sex shop.

    Then you had psychiatrists developing a theory based on things written by an addictions counselor who has written a self-published book explaining that SHE was psychotic at the time she counseled Ivins and felt that astral beings were attached to her patients trying to kill her. (She then made the notations about Ivins filling that bill). (The notes in the file were HER notes).

    the material on the CASE CLOSED blog about Judith McLean (see prior posts linked below) is relevant to an evaluation of the validity of David Willman’s conclusions in his recently published “The Mirage Man” … because Willman himself, in his publicity blurb (see below), shows just how much he relied on the psychic who says … she was granted her abilities by an extraterrestrial being … got sick in 2001 from doing astral recovery work at Ground Zero and in Afghanistan after 9/11 … and was pursued by nasty Taliban entities
    Posted on June 12, 2011

    AUSA Lieber explained the origin of the hours argument:

    “That is I think one of the most compelling aspects of our investigation and certainly would have been a very early focus point of any trial, would have been taking a look at Dr. Ivins’ access to the material late at night, on weekends, when nobody else was around, relative to all the other investigators.

    And he stands alone. One of my first days working on the investigation in spring of 2007, one of the agents, Lawrence Alexander, who was one of the lead agents on the case, showed me basically a graphic of everyone’s lab access hours. When everyone else was in the lab between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. generally, or 7 [a.m.] and 3 [p.m.], he said, “Do you see anything different?” And it was just extraordinary when you see Dr. Ivins’ lab hours all late at night, on the weekends, when nobody else was there. The graphic itself told quite a story. So that was quite significant.

    Also significant was the fact that his lab hours spiked in August and then really September and October of 2001; never before and never after had he shown anything like that, those late-night and weekend lab access hours. That was extraordinary. …

    These are real, concrete things you can point to to show opportunity, which is significant.”

    AUSA Lieber, if she wanted people to credit her argument, should have encouraged the FBI produce the contemporaneous notes relating to what Ivins was doing in the lab those nights. (She declined to help me years ago when I emailed her). The FBI’s game of hide-the-ball on this issue constitutes bad faith.

    Her colleague, AUSA Ken Kohl, is the senior national security at the US Attorney’s Office charged with handling the defense of Dillon’s suit. He would know that the surest way to establish that Ivins had no reason to be in the B3 lab on those nights — if it were even remotely true — is to produce the withheld lab book pages.

    It certainly wasn’t true in connection with the lab pages withheld for years from the time of the second mailing.

    DXer summarizes the documentary evidence relating to Dr. Ivins work with rabbits (nowhere mentioned by the DOJ) which demolishes the FBI’s claim that Dr. Ivins had no reason to be in the lab
    Posted on July 3, 2012

  15. DXer said

    Now look at the the discussion of “alibi” during the window period in the 9 or so page Ivins section in the 2006 memo by former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert. And compare it with the discussion of the same issue in the Amerithrax Investigative Summary written by AUSA Lieber in 2007.

    Oh, wait. You can’t.

    Because, without any justification, the FBI has failed to provide the pages from the Lambert memo requested by Ken Dillon under FOIA.

    Doesn’t Attorney Lambert explain that a review of Notebook 4282 addressed what Ivins was doing in the lab? Isn’t it hugely immoral for the FBI to continue to withhold them?

    Shouldn’t the FBI be obligated to pay Dillon’s attorneys fees?

    Should there be a finding of “bad faith” and a “Special Counsel” determine the officer or employee “primarily responsible” for the withholding — as expressly contemplated by the FOIA statute. (See DIllon’s federal complaint).

    Federal courts should not ignore the express language of a statute. A federal court can take judicial notice of the allegations filed in federal district court by the former lead Amerithrax investigator.

    Ex-FBI official: Agency is hiding evidence in anthrax case

    Associated Press Published: April 16, 2015, 1:28 pm

    A former director of the FBI’s anthrax investigation says the agency is concealing evidence that casts doubt on whether an Army scientist sent the anthrax-filled letters that killed five people in 2001.

    Richard Lambert made the assertion in a federal lawsuit filed earlier this month in Knoxville, Tennessee.

    The FBI has said its conclusions were based on all the evidence it collected.

    The scientist, Bruce Ivins, took his own life in 2008 as prosecutors prepared to charge him.

    Lambert ran the investigation from 2002 to 2006, when he transferred to Knoxville. Now retired, he contends the Justice Department illegally got him fired from a security job because he had complained internally about mismanagement of the anthrax probe.

    Under Lambert, anthrax investigators focused on another Army scientist, Steven Hatfill, who was eventually cleared.

  16. DXer said

    Federal Judge to FBI: Release Full Details of Hillary Clinton Email Probe
    Valentina Zarya
    Sep 01, 2017

    The FBI is under attack on two different fronts.

    Three days after the FBI denied an attorney’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for documents related to the Hillary Clinton email investigation, a federal judge is telling the agency to make them public.

    The Washington Times reports that U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg overruled objections by the Trump administration, which insisted that making the information public would violate grand jury secrecy rules.

    “After reviewing the document in camera, the court concludes that it largely rehashes information already made public, thus obviating any need for secrecy,” Boasberg said.

    The attorney, Ty Clevenger of Texas—who helped remove two federal judges appointed to lifetime appointments and trigger the indictment of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, according to The Dallas Morning News—originally filed a FOIA request in March of 2016 to see the documents. The head of the FBI’s Records Management Division, David M. Hardy, sent a letter (originally obtained by Fox News) to Clevenger this week telling him that the bureau had “determined you have not sufficiently demonstrated that the public’s interest in disclosure outweighs personal privacy interests of the subject.”

  17. DXer said

    President Trump, who seems headed for impeachment, really missed the opportunity to show that former FBI Directors Mueller and Comey botched Amerithrax (and stood by and did nothing as they saw the pooch being screwed). All it would have required was a simple phone call asking if the FBI was going to comply with FOIA.

    I’m advised that the Notebook 4282, at pages 65-70, contains notes on the experiments dating back to August 23 — which would be relevant given the FBI shifts its rationalizations relating to its Ivins Theory in response to objections. So for example, if you tell Dr. Majidi that Dr. Ivins time for September 14-18 is explained based on the entries, he suddenly begins talking about how the dried powder could have been made by Ivins before 9/11 or in August 2001. There are documents being withheld to debunk every flavor and incarnation of Dr. Majidi’s rationalizations.

  18. DXer said

    Here are the docket entries regarding Ken Dillon’s federal lawsuit under the FOIA. Over the past two years, Ken certainly has exhausted all attempts to obtain the Notebook. There were numerous letters, calls and emails. Obtaining the notes from Dr. Ivins Notebook 4282 that were contemporaneous with his alleged mailing of anthrax in Fall 2001 should have been a lot easier. The FBI should have returned a copy of all the Ivins notebooks to the USAMRIID — as the USAMRMC FOIA Officer requested — for uploading in the USAMRMC’s excellent reading room.

    Docket last updated: 08/27/2017 11:59 PM EDT

    Thursday, August 24, 2017

    2 service Electronic Summons Issued as to AUSA,USAG Thu 2:39 PM
    SUMMONS (3) Issued Electronically as to U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General (md)
    Att: 1 Notice of Consent
    Wednesday, August 23, 2017

    1 cmp Complaint Wed 1:32 PM

    COMPLAINT against U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE ( Filing fee $ 400 receipt number 0090-5086122) filed by KENNETH J. DILLON.(Hodes, Scott)
    Att: 1 Civil Cover Sheet,
    Att: 2 Summons
    utility Case Assigned/Reassigned Thu 2:28 PM

    Case Assigned to Judge Rudolph Contreras. (md)

    • DXer said

      Lots of people have different theories of the difficult and complex Amerithrax whodunnit. But Dr. Dillon’s efforts will serve to help get people “on the same page.” An additional item he is seeking is the lengthy memorandum by lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert, who has publicly said that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of evidence that is exculpatory of Bruce Ivins. But given that the FBI, I believe, has already located Notebook 4282, all that is left for them to do is to shoot it over to USAMRIID so that USAMRMC FOIA Officer Sandra Rogers can process it under FOIA. (USAMRIID, not the FBI, is the “originating agency.”)

      (I see a reference in the FBI’s “Vault” that the notebooks relating to the distribution of Ames strain were added as “a 1A to the FD-340 section of the file, serial 7825.” There also is a CD containing all the Ivins notebooks that were in the library.)

  19. DXer said

    In the suit being brought by Ken Dillon, no justification would exist for withholding the Fellows and Linscott emails to and from Bruce Ivins. The FBI extensively quoted from the emails in spinning its “Ivins Theory”. Thousands of other emails to and from Bruce Ivins have been uploaded at the USAMRMC Electronic Reading Room, but the FBI withheld key Sept-Oct Fellows and Linscott emails from production, even during the weeks that such alibi evidence plays a key role in assessing the Ivins Theory.

    Judge Lamberth was an expert on FOIA dating back to the 1980s, and knows DOJ/FBI agency personnel to be fully capable of getting it right when they want.

    Notebook 4282 has been withheld wrongfully now for many years. In an Affidavit, Dave Hardy at the FBI can explain to the federal district court judge the reason the FBI has been playing hide-the-ball with the contemporaneous notes in Ivins notebook from September, 14, 15 and 18, 2001 (at pages 65-70). The notes relate to an anthracis gelatin experiment.

    “In the district court of the District of Columbia we have a high volume of civil litigation, a large part of which is FOIA litigation,” says Royce C. Lamberth, Chief of the Civil Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. A very large percentage of all FOIA litigation is conducted through his office (see related story below).

    “We rely very heavily on the professional care and cooperation of the agency attorney and the agency’s FOIA processing staff,” Lamberth stresses. “Experience has shown that have can anticipate high quality document processing and litigation assistance when we get to court.”

    It is extremely important for the Justice Department litigator to work closely with the agency in the preparation of its Vaughn affidavit. in the filing of motions and briefs, and in the making of oral representations and arguments before a court.

    “We always discuss the cases with the agency attorney and send him or her an example of a Vaughn affidavit that meets the criteria of the court in this circuit,” says John Oliver Birch, deputy to Lamberth and an experienced FOIA litigator himself. “We try to determine and discuss in advance the particular circumstances of each case which might warrant a special or especially careful approach on certain points.”

    The coordinative relationship between the Assistant U.S. Attorney and agency counsel varies from agency to agency, even from case to case.

    “Some agencies prepare briefs and send them to us for review before filing,” observes Birch. “Other agencies rely on the Assistant U.S. Attorney to prepare all briefs and motions. This depends on the agency’s perception of its role in the litigation process. Also, some agencies have demonstrated a historical capacity to handle litigation. Given the average workload of Assistant U.S. Attorneys, we’re happy with all the help we can get,” he adds.

  20. DXer said

    Judge Lamberth has such deep experience with FOIA cases that he should put teeth into FOIA by applying the statutory provision relating to discipline of the officer or employee primarily responsible for an improper withholding.

    Judge blasts, but won’t punish, EPA over FOIA failures


    03/02/2015 04:31 PM EST

    A federal judge has blasted the Environmental Protection Agency for badly botching its response to a conservative group’s Freedom of Information Act request, but ultimately declined to punish the agency for its conduct.

    In an opinion issued Monday, U.S. District Court Judge Royce Lamberth delivered a brutal tongue-lashing to the EPA over its handling of a request from Landmark Legal Foundation about possible delays in regulations prior to the 2012 elections.

    The case helped expose that former EPA Administration Lisa Jackson had a semi-secret internal email account under the fake name Richard Windsor.

    “Thirty months after Landmark’s initial FOIA request, it remains unclear to this Court whether EPA undertook a comprehensive search of either official or personal email accounts belonging to the agency’s senior leadership,” Lamberth wrote. “While the existing record in this case does not support a holding that EPA acted in bad faith, it is obvious to this Court that EPA has, once again, fumbled its way through its legally unambiguous FOIA obligations.”

    Landmark had asked Lamberth to impose sanctions on the agency and to imposed an independent monitor on its handling of FOIA requests. But the judge said the evidence fell short of proving that EPA officials intentionally destroyed records in order to evade the requirements of the disclosure law.

  21. DXer said

    In the case of Notebook 4282, as recently as this past week, the Army FOIA Officer has asked that it be returned to USAMRIID for processing. (USAMRIID is the originating agency). The notebook involves an anthrax gelatin study. An FBI employee is not in a position (unlike a USAMRMC/USAMRIID person) is not in a position to know that about the only thing that gets redacted is the other person’s name on the cover of the notebook. (See the dozens of other notebooks uploaded to the USAMRMC Electronic Reading Room).

    Here is a story about a recent decision by Judge Lamberth.

    FBI Loses FOIA Suit Over Program To Fire Gay Employees

    By Vin Gurrieri

    The federal government responded to the FOIA request by producing about 550 pages of documents, but it also withheld about 580 additional documents.

    Because of the apparent sparseness of the government’s response, Mattachine filed the instant suit in April 2016 seeking a court order forcing the DOJ and the FBI to release various material that had been withheld and order the FBI to conduct a more thorough search of their files to identify more documents relevant to the FOIA request.

    The DOJ filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that it already conducted an adequate search and produced all the relevant documents. Mattachine then filed its own summary judgment motion contending that the DOJ wrongly invoked various statutory exemptions to withhold certain documents, prompting the court to review unredacted versions of the documents in question to determine whether the DOJ’s action was proper.

    In Monday’s ruling, Judge Lamberth said that the FBl’s search wasn’t adequate and hadn’t been shown by the agency to be reasonably calculated to uncover all relevant documents.

    While the locations searched and the search techniques employed by the FBI were sufficient, the judge said the limited nature of the terms used as well as the FBI’s “complete failure” to search for documents related to Burger “are wholly insufficient.”

    More specifically, the judge said that the FBI had improperly limited its initial search to the terms “Executive Order 10450,” “sex deviate” and “Sex Deviate Program,” even though Mattachine had asked the FBI to turn over a wider range of documents.

    Judge Lamberth also chastised the FBI for claiming during the lawsuit that it searched all documents containing all permutations of Warren E. Burger’s name and that there wasn’t a single responsive document amongst the results.

    “Respectfully, this strains credulity,” the judge said. “It is suspicious at best and malicious at worst for the FBI to assert in one paragraph that the review of 5,500 documents would be burdensome and in the next claim to have conducted a review of every document related to any permutation of the name Warren E. Burger … this absurd dichotomy stretches credulity further, as the FBI claims that the review of that search did not yield a single responsive document.

    But the judge did rule in the FBI’s favor as to whether it properly withheld or redacted certain documents that it uncovered.

    One set of documents, according to Judge Lamberth, were properly held back because they were information provided by a foreign government entity under the assumption of confidentiality, while another set of documents had been properly redacted because they contained personally identifiable information. …

    The case is Mattachine Society of Washington, D.C. v. U.S. Department of Justice, case number 1:16-cv-00773, before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

    • DXer said

      Judge Tells Feds to Speed Release of Travel Ban Records

      August 24, 2017
      SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – Federal agencies must start producing records on President Donald Trump’s travel ban to avoid a court order that would require a speedier release of documents, a federal judge said Thursday.

      “Can I get a representation that all the agencies can do a rolling production,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley asked during a hearing Thursday. “If not, I will order it.”

      Corley is presiding over a lawsuit filed by journalist Cora Currier of The Intercept, who lodged multiple requests for records from the U.S. Departments of State, Justice, and Homeland Security on their “analysis and implementation” of two executive orders to bar entry into the United States by non-citizens from certain majority-Muslim countries.

      Currier says obtaining those records promptly is vital because they could offer new facts relevant to arguments the Supreme Court will hear in October, when it weighs the constitutionality of Trump’s partially enjoined travel ban.

    • DXer said

      Second judge says Clinton email setup may have been in ‘bad faith’

      Jonathan Allen

      “Where there is evidence of government wrong-doing and bad faith, as here, limited discovery is appropriate, even though it is exceedingly rare in FOIA (freedom-of-information) cases,”

      Lamberth noted in his order.

  22. DXer said

    The FOIA provides a mechanism for disciplinary action against agency officials who have acted inappropriately in withholding records. Specifically, when requiring the release of improperly withheld records, if the court makes a written finding that “the circumstances surrounding the withholding raise questions whether agency personnel acted arbitrarily or capriciously,” a disciplinary investigation is triggered. 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(4)(F).

    Now look at the draft of the book by the former FBI scientist who has the book due out in April 2018. Consider whether and why he is referring to documents not produced by the FBI under FOIA. Does he imagine that they were not sought — not wrongfully withheld by the FBI?

  23. DXer said

    Notebook 4282 was titled “Anthrax.” It was shared with another scientist. Typically that scientist would have been Ivins’ highly skilled assistant Patricia Fellows. Other scientists, anthrax leading lights, shared the same lab space and worked on anthrax but I do not believe Patricia Worsham, would have been sharing the lab notebook.

    See, e.g.,
    Dr. Patricia Worsham, a leading anthrax and genetics expert who testified before the NAS, was not persuaded by the FBI’s argument on the issue of “morphs” and sample submissions
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 14, 2014

    Were the entries on September 14, 15 and 18 made by Patricia Fellows? Does the notebook chronicle an ongoing experiment involving a challenge to small animals? Rabbits, guinea pigs, mice, anyone?
    What does Patricia Fellows say?

    GAO: With respect to the rabbit formaldehyde study in late Sep and early Oct 2001 involving Bruce Ivins and Patricia Fellows — nowhere mentioned by AUSA Lieber in her investigative summary — did Dr. Fellows address the study in the deposition that the Department of Justice required to be shredded?
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 4, 2012

    The scientist who made the large amount of virulent Ames that is missing, who was thanked by the former Zawahiri associate for providing technical assistance re the Ames, is the person who could explain about the rabbits ; but she’s not talking.
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on November 9, 2011

    We don’t have the benefit of Patricia Fellows civil deposition because the DOJ shredded it — about the same time they claimed the dog ate this notebook 4282. (That’s right — the US DOJ put the Fellows’ civil deposition in a shredder and hit “start”).

    GAO: Did Patricia Fellows Ever Find the Missing “National Security” Sample That Dr. Ivins Was (Apparently Falsely) Told Was From Iraq Before Moving On To SRI That Summer? Was There An Emailed Response(s) To Dr. Ivins’ Question? Her Deposition Should Not Be Shredded.
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 14, 2011

    Does the notebook indicate that Bruce Ivins was doing night and weekend checks on the animals?

    As Dr. Ivins’ assistant Mara Linscott explained, checking animals at night and on weekends was a one-person job. (DOJ also shredded Linscott civil deposition).

    Contrary to the US Attorney’s mistaken understanding (inappropriately based on his experience at nuclear labs rather than USAMRIID’s biodefense labs), there was no two-person rule in effect. A short-lived 2 person rule was not implemented until January 2002. It in no way would have been suspicious for Ivins to have been in the lab alone in the course of this week in September 2001.

  24. DXer said

    This morning I emailed the FBI employee sitting on Notebook 4282, Kris Weart, an explanation of the relevant DOJ rules contemplating referral to the originating agency for processing as soon as practicable (which, mind you, was years ago).

    I sent a copy to the USAMRMC FOIA Officer Sandra Rogers who requested that the FBI return the notebooks to USAMRIID so that they might be processed under FOIPA.

    Notebook 4282 should have been referred to USAMRIID as soon as it was located — just as the other numerous notebooks were. In the litigation the DOJ has made necessary, DOJ should now be required to pay Dr. Dillon’s attorneys fees. Dr. Dillon astutely has turned to a former FBI Litigation Section Chief who knows DOJ FOIA processing rules.

    Notebook 4282 should have been referred to USAMRIID for processing as soon as it was located, just as numerous other notebooks were. If pages 65-70 destroy an Ivins Theory and prove an Ivins Theory a crock — if they show that Dr. Ivins DID have reason to be in the laboratory on the date of mailing and the week prior — that would not be grounds for concealing the Notebook or continuing to delay its production.

    Indeed, concealing it or continuing to delay production would constitute obstruction at Justice.

    Below are the Department of Justice regulations.

    Sandra Rogers has previously processed and uploaded the following of Ivins notebooks — which on their face establish where Ivins was and what he was doing.

    Now look at the draft of the book by the former FBI scientist coming out in October of this year. Where does he disclose the entries made on the date of mailing and week prior? The FBI is withholding these key documents at the same time its present and former employees spin the same facts. See also Vahid Majidi’s e-book.

    • 19950124_LabNotebook 3716(redacted) (18811 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 19950618_LabNotebook4103(redacted) (107678 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 19960903_LabNotebook3919(redacted) (2993 KB) — Posted: 05/10/2011
    • 19980106_LabNotebook4000(redacted) (155721 KB) — Posted: 06/21/2011
    • 19981202_LabNotebook3745(redacted) (32444 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000114_LabNotebook4237(redacted) (16714 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000216_LabNotebook 4240(redacted) (7698 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 20000216_LabNotebook 4241_B01-11(redacted) (6173 KB) — Posted: 08/24/2012
    • 20000303_LabNotebook3921(redacted) (22150 KB) — Posted: 06/02/2011
    • 20000608_LabNotebook4281(redacted) (6568 KB) — Posted: 05/13/2011
    • 20000828_LabNotebook4306(redacted) (4286 KB) — Posted: 05/03/2011
    • 20010809_LabNotebook4383(redacted) (28822 KB) — Posted: 04/29/2011
    • Notebook 3655 redacted (19003 KB) — Posted: 04/28/2016
    • Notebook 3945 redacted (12176 KB) — Posted: 04/28/2016
    • Notes and Sample Anaylsis from Notebook 3268.pdf (19684 KB) — Posted: 01/05/2012

    Referrals, Consultations, and Coordination:

    Procedures for Processing Records When Another Agency or Entity Has an Interest in Them

    In the course of processing records responsive to FOIA requests, it is not uncommon for agencies to locate records which either originated with another agency, or another component within their agency, or which contain information that is of interest to another agency or component. The long-standing practice in such situations is to either refer the requested record to the originating agency or component for it to process, or to consult with the other agency or component that has equity in the document to get its views on the sensitivity of the document’s content prior to making a disclosure determination. Typically, agencies refer records for direct handling to another agency when the records originated with that other agency. By contrast, when records originated with the agency processing the request, but contain within them information of interest to another agency, the agency processing the request will typically consult with that other agency prior to making a release determination.

    There are several benefits to these procedures. They foster efficiency and ensure consistency of responses. They also help ensure that agencies making release determinations are fully informed about any sensitivities of the content of the documents. While referrals and consultations are widely utilized and accepted, see, e.g., Sussman v. U.S. Marshals Service, 494 F.3d 1106, 1118 (D.C. Cir. 2007), it is important that agencies remain cognizant of the importance of keeping requesters informed so that they understand what has happened to the documents that are responsive to their requests, that they are not disadvantaged by the referral and consultation process, and that they have a point of contact at the relevant agency where they can make inquiries about the status of their requests, including the status of any records that have been referred.

    The updated procedures for referrals and consultations that are outlined below are designed to address all these important interests. They set forth the general rules agencies should follow both in making referrals and consultations and in handling any such referrals and consultations sent to them. They also address the exceptional cases where there is a need to protect personal privacy or national security interests and so coordination, as described below, rather than the standard referral procedures, should be used. Lastly, the procedures are designed to maximize efficiency and ensure agency accountability for the overall benefit of FOIA administration.

    Threshold Considerations

    There are a few threshold considerations that must be taken into account prior to making a referral or consultation. First, while the typical practice should be to refer records when they originated with another agency, if the agencies jointly agree that the records can be handled as a consultation, that is permissible. Ultimately, the agency in the best position to respond regarding the records should do so. Typically that is the originator of the records, but that is not necessarily always the case.

    Second, before making a referral of records to another agency or component for handling and direct response to the requester, agencies must be sure that the entity that will receive the referral is itself subject to the FOIA. It is not appropriate to refer records for direct response to the FOIA requester if the entity that originated the records is not itself subject to the FOIA. See EPIC v. NSA, No. 10-0196, 2011 WL 2650206, at *5 (D.D.C. July 7, 2011) (holding that while “[i]t is true that agencies that receive FOIA requests and discover responsive documents that were created by another agency [they] may forward, or ‘refer’“ those documents to the originating agency, if the originating entity is not an agency subject to the FOIA, it “cannot unilaterally be made subject to the statute by any action of an agency, including referral”). Thus, a referral should not be made to Congress, the courts, state governmental entities, private businesses, or individuals. As discussed below, an agency may consult with such entities as necessary, but the agency must then make a disclosure determination and respond itself concerning those documents.

    Third, when agencies find that they routinely locate the same or similar types of documents or information that originated with another agency, or when agencies find that they routinely receive for consultation or referral the same type of record or information from another agency, they should look for ways to collaborate to see if they can adopt standard processing procedures with regard to the documents or information that might reduce the number of referrals or consultations that need to be made. This, in turn, will improve overall processing times both for the agency which otherwise would have made the referral or consultation and the agency that otherwise would have received the referral or consultation.

    Updated Standard Procedures for Making a Referral

    In the absence of a processing agreement, when an agency locates records which originated with another agency or component, the records should ordinarily be referred to the originating agency for processing and direct response to the requester. The following steps should be taken when making a referral of documents to another agency or component, subject to the exceptions described below regarding coordinating a response.

    • Identify records appropriate for referral to other agencies or components as soon as practicable during the course of processing a request.

    • Prior to making the referral, review the records for any equity your agency may have and include your agency’s disclosure recommendations in the referral memorandum. That will facilitate the processing of the referral by the receiving agency.

    • Send the documents, with the accompanying memorandum containing your agency’s disclosure recommendations, to the originating agency or agencies as soon as practicable during the course of your processing.

    • Include in the referral package the FOIA request number assigned by your agency. That original FOIA request number should always accompany any communication concerning the referred documents. Also include a copy of the FOIA request.

    • Provide the date the request giving rise to the referral was received by your agency. That will allow the agency receiving the referral to place the records in any queue according to that request receipt date.

    • Advise the FOIA requester that a referral of records has been made, provide the name of the agency to which the referral was directed, and include that agency’s FOIA contact information.

    • Maintain a copy of the records being referred and the cover memorandum accompanying the referral.
    These steps serve several overlapping purposes. They make the referral process transparent; they maximize administrative efficiency; and they facilitate tracking of the referred documents. By identifying the agencies to which referrals were directed and by maintaining the original FOIA request number on any communication concerning the referred documents, the requester will be able to readily match the documents released as a result of the referral with the original request.

    • DXer said

      Former FBI Agent [and former lead Amerithrax investigator] Claims Bureau Hid Anthrax Evidence, Accused Wrong Man

      NowThis•April 11, 2015
      Richard L. Lambert, a 24-year FBI veteran, sued the Bureau claiming they bungled the anthrax investigation, and ruined his life when he spoke out about it.


      Agencies don’t hide documents and information. People hide documents and information. If an employee hides the information or spins the information to a superior, the person in charge of deciding the agency’s course of action, responsibility for the concealment lies with the employee, not with the agency or the superior. So the question is: who knew what when?

    • DXer said

      Above I wrote:

      “Now look at the draft of the book by the former FBI scientist coming out in October of this year. Where does he disclose the entries made on the date of mailing and week prior? The FBI is withholding these key documents at the same time its present and former employees spin the same facts. See also Vahid Majidi’s e-book.”


      The book has been postponed until April 8, 2018 — which is enough time to include reference to the entries that were made in Bruce Ivins’ still-concealed notebook titled “Anthrax” on September 14, 15, 18.

  25. DXer said

    How an ex-FBI profiler helped put an innocent man behind bars
    By Marisa Gerber

    July 20, 2017

    After reinvestigating the case, authorities now suspect gang members killed Michelle O’Keefe and that the motive was robbery, not sexual assault. The profiler, Mark Safarik, has withdrawn his testimony. And a judge earlier this year declared Jennings — the security guard who patrolled the lot the night of the murder — factually innocent, putting a capstone on his legal nightmare that included 11 years behind bars.


    In recent decades, profilers have captured the public’s imagination as the stars of a plethora of television shows and movies. In the real world, they work to help detectives predict the likely characteristics of a criminal in an unsolved case and explain to jurors how evidence left at crime scenes can reveal a killer’s motive or modus operandi.

    But there is a deep chasm in legal and academic circles about how much credibility to give profilers. Many detectives credit them with helping investigations, but some researchers have criticized profiling as nothing more than glorified guesswork.

  26. DXer said

    If he were to address it in his forthcoming book, how would former FBI Director Comey justify the FBI’s (still continuing) withholding of the contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins notebook for 10 years?

    And how would he address Vahid Majidi’s suggestion (who was supervised by Mr. Comey) in his e-book that Comey had his back — or depending on one’s point of view, would adhere to the guiding CYA principle that has dominated the selective disclosures and the withholdings.

    Former FBI Director Comey agrees to book deal

    By John Bowden – 07/15/17 07:15 PM EDT

  27. DXer said

    The Buzz
    The Story of the Deadly Anthrax Outbreak Russia Didn’t Want the World Discovering

    U.S. intelligence analysts were skeptical of the Soviet tainted-meat story—CIA agents had obtained scattered reports supporting the narrative that there had been a factory accident at the time of the outbreak. Furthermore, the deaths of Soviet citizens spanning over two months did not cohere with a tainted meat-supply problem, which could have been dealt with swiftly. The Reagan administration seized on the incident to lay into the Soviet Union for apparently contravening the bioweapons ban.

    The Soviet press maintained that this just showed how Washington was ready to use any tragedy afflicting the Soviet people to its political advantage. Some U.S. scientists, such as renowned Harvard researcher Matthew Meselson, were also inclined to believe the Soviet explanation.


    Indeed, Professor Meselson received a medal from the Russians for buying the story. DIA analysts, after one meeting with Professor Meselson, were shocked. (see account of meeting in national secrurity archives).

    Being given a medal by the Russians for believing their propaganda doesn’t have the same feel now, and for some, it never did.

    Maybe some day there will be a belated accounting of the talking heads and authors who were unconcerned with obtaining the contemporaneous notes being withheld from Bruce Ivins’ notebook 4282.

    Some people focused on policy and/or science are not wired to think critically about true crime or counterintelligence analysis. I’ve known more than one author writing on the subject of Amerithrax to expressly tell me that they don’t care about understanding the evidence — their focus was on advancing their agenda or political or policy argument.

  28. DXer said

    Report: Army improperly tracked sarin, other chemical agents hours ago
    … for protocol failures that allowed live anthrax spores to be shipped to 194 … 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, chemical and biological testing facilities …

    Dugway Proving Ground was the same Utah location cited in 2015 for protocol failures that allowed live anthrax spores to be shipped to 194 laboratories in 50 states and nine foreign countries.

    Some of the packages were shipped by commercial carriers such as FedEx.

    In the June 7 Defense Department IG report, titled, “The Army Needs to Improve Controls Over Chemical Surety Materials,” leaders from the deputy assistant secretary of defense for chemical and biological defense down to the commander of Dugway Proving Ground simultaneously agreed with some of the IG’s findings while also disagreeing with some of the report’s recommendations.

    Inspectors reviewed accountability controls at Dugway, U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot in Colorado and U.S. Army Deseret Chemical Depot in Utah.

    Dugway and contractors associated with the facility “did not conduct chemical agent inventories by primary container” when those containers were stored within a secondary container.

    Meaning that the container that contained the actual agent, such as sarin, was not physically inspected.

    “…therefore, custodians cannot identify and account for leaks, evaporation or theft that may have occurred,” according to the report.

    Additionally, Dugway officials did not “immediately notify the chemical materials accountability officer” of a 1.5 milliliter shortage of sarin discovered during an April 19, 2016, inventory. That amount is enough to cause death within minutes, according to the CDC.

    Dugway officials also used re-sealable tape to seal containers, which means that the container could have been tampered with between inspections, according to the report.

    These incidents and other practices contradicted specific requirements outlined in a 2008 Army regulation on chemical surety as well as DoD instructions on chemical and biological storage and inventory, the IG wrote.


    Despite the importance of such issues, the FBI has failed to provide the contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins Notebook 4282 from the date of mailing and week prior to that date.

    The shortcoming of inadequate inventorying procedure is inadvertent.

    The FBI’s withholding of documents, however, is intentional and willful.

    Imagine if someone were killed by the sarin and then the FBI withheld the documents without an applicable FOIA exemption.

  29. DXer said

    3 July 2017
    Ignore Bill Gates: Where bioweapons focus really belongs

    Filippa Lentzos

    “Second, any breaches in the norm against biological weapons, or any actual use of biological weapons, must be met with a collective and convincing response. The continual use of chemical weapons in Syria has had a deteriorating effect on the norm against the use of those weapons. The international community must redouble its efforts to ensure that the same thing does not happen with biological weapons. Likewise, the international community must increase its capacity to investigate allegations of use. If methods for attributing or confirming who was behind an attack are enhanced, the operational advantages of “stealth” biological weapons may be reduced.”


    It has taken years of requests and the FBI still has not produced the contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins’ notebook. Maybe it relates to an institutional inability to manage document and information flow. Or a work ethic focused on punching the clock to make the summer softball game. Maybe dreams of effective analysis and attribution are illusory.

    Maybe the FBI’s denial that the request be expedited indicates fundamental weakness in judgment-making.

  30. DXer said

    Sarin used in deadly April 5 attack in Syria, watchdog probe finds

    Comment: What credibility does the US have in attribution when it is withholding contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins’ Notebook?

  31. DXer said

    The Publishing World
    July 3, 2017 Issue
    The National Enquirer’s Fervor for Trump

    The tabloid is defined by its predatory spirit. Why has it embraced the President with such sycophantic zeal?

    By Jeffrey Toobin

    In late September, 2001, Bob Stevens, a sixty-three-year-old photo editor at the Sun, fell ill. On October 2nd, he checked into a local hospital and was later given a diagnosis of inhalation anthrax. On Stevens’s desk, in the A.M.I. building, investigators discovered an envelope containing powdered anthrax and addressed to the “photo editor” of the Sun. Stevens died on October 5th, becoming the first anthrax fatality in the United States since 1976. In short order, the Centers for Disease Control closed the Enquirer building, and most of the employees never set foot inside it again. The structure was so contaminated that all of its contents were destroyed in 2003; the Enquirer’s archive, including photographs, back issues, and notes, was lost in the process.

    During the outbreak, Pecker offered to bring in a team of doctors to dispense Cipro, an antibiotic, to hundreds of employees at his own expense. (Only one other employee was exposed to anthrax, and he survived.) Pecker also located alternative offices. “He protected his people,” Hyson said. “And we never missed an issue.” As a former Enquirer staffer, who was generally critical of Pecker, told me, “This was his finest hour.” (No arrests were ever made in the 2001 anthrax attacks, which ultimately killed four people in addition to Stevens. Bruce Ivins, a government scientist who was a leading suspect, committed suicide in 2008.)

  32. DXer said

    Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller has an impressive background.

    He appears to have earned the influence he has among his peers.

    Perhaps at the watercooler or the next Christmas party he could mention to FBI’s FOIA person Dave Hardy that it would be good if the FBI complied with both the letter and spirit of the FOIA law in regard to outstanding FOIA requests.

  33. DXer said

    Trump-World Turns On ‘Anti-Trump Special Counsel’ Robert Mueller
    Despite previous compliments, the president and his supporters are now saying Robert Mueller is unfit for the job.

    By Igor Bobic

    Mueller is a highly-respected former director of the FBI and is the second-longest-serving director in the agency’s history. He was appointed by a Republican president in 2001 and confirmed unanimously by a 98-0 vote in the Senate.

    Moreover, like another prominent target of the president, he is a decorated veteran of the Vietnam War. He received the Bronze Star, two Navy medals, the Purple Heart, and the Republic of Vietnam Cross of Gallantry.

    But those details do not appear to have swayed the allies and surrogates of the president, who have stepped up attacks and criticisms of Mueller’s handling of the investigation. In fact, the campaign against the special counsel is beginning to resemble attacks against former FBI director James Comey, whom the president fired abruptly earlier this year.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  34. DXer said

    Indiana lawmakers unhurt by shooting but not unaffected

    Maureen Groppe , Washington Bureau Published 9:11 a.m. ET June 14, 2017

    “After trace amounts of anthrax were found in Pence’s congressional office after the 2001 anthrax attack on Capitol Hill, he and his aides took antibiotics.”.

  35. DXer said

    Is Mr. Trump a good chess player?

    Could President Trump save his son-in-law Jared from indictment by something as simple as requiring a few pages from Bruce Ivins Notebook 4282 (from Fall 2001) to be produced?

    Amerithrax is totally unrelated to the Russia investigation — and yet that is the move he could make. And he could accomplish that simply by having someone like the Attorney General Sessions have the FBI comply with FOIA — avoid further delaying the requests.

    I think those few pages would permit the world to better judge the FBI’s controversial “Ivins Theory.” (Although FBI Director was not its proponent, he allowed the investigators to run a victory lap when it wasn’t warranted.) Maybe it would provide “cause” for Robert Mueller’s termination.

    (And if you don’t think the response is being delayed, just call the FBI’s Kris Weart and ask).

    Donald Trump, with all his myriad of responsibilities, does not have enough hours in the day to form an effective chess strategy.

    Absent some shrewd moves, I see the Russia investigation ending badly for a number of players, leaving only a Presidential pardon to pull their fanny from the fire at the end of the day.

    Jared Kushner ‘worried’ Steve Bannon is about to drop ‘a new round’ of damaging leaks about him: report
    Brad Reed
    13 Jun 2017 at 14:27 ET

    [New York Times Glen] Thrush [on Twitter] also says that Kushner is “worried Bannon is pushing a new round of negative stories about him” that would compound the negative press he’s received over the past month for his contacts with the head of a Russian state bank during the 2016 presidential transition.

    • DXer said

      Special counsel is investigating Jared Kushner’s business dealings, By Sari Horwitz, Matt Zapotosky and Adam Entous June 15 at

      “The White House has said the subsequent meeting with the banker was a pre-inauguration diplomatic encounter, unrelated to business matters. The Russian bank, Vnesheconombank, which has been the subject of U.S. sanctions following Russia’s annexation of Crimea, has said the session was held for business reasons because of Kushner’s role as head of his family’s real estate company. The meeting occurred as Kushner’s company had been seeking financing for its troubled $1.8 billion purchase of an office building on Fifth Avenue in New York, and it could raise questions about whether Kushner’s personal financial interests were colliding with his impending role as a public official.

      Mueller’s investigation is still in a relatively early phase, and it is unclear if any criminal charges will be brought when it is complete.”

  36. DXer said

    Trump’s friend Christopher Ruddy says President ‘considering’ firing Mueller
    By Saba Hamedy and Jim Acosta, CNN


    Let’s consider the suggestion by Chris Ruddy (Newsmax) — who I believe went to the White House today — that Trump is considering the option of firing Mueller.

    If Mr. Trump were to do that without cause, I think there would be movement on articles of impeachment. Mr. Ruddy agrees that firing Mr. Mueller would be a mistake.

    Putting aside the politics of the matter — and putting aside my high regard for former FBI Director Mueller — this blog has pointed out a possible source of “cause” for firing the Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller (depending on what those pages of the notebook 4282 say).

    Chris Ruddy, with the ear of the President, has the opportunity to make history.

    In publishing an essay on Al Qaeda’s anthrax program a decade and a half ago, I once told Mr. Ruddy that I didn’t need to be paid for an article I wrote on this subject — because it was so important to get the message out.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    Specifically, Chris Ruddy, knows enough about Amerithrax to understand this argument:

    Bruce Ivins’ Notebook 4282,, being withheld by the FBI, contains contemporaneous notes that may debunk the FBI’s controversial Ivins Theory. Ivins had said that the FBI withholding of his notebooks prevented him from proving why he was in the lab on the date of mailing and week prior to that. (It confirmed the small animal experiments he was doing). If then FBI Director Robert Mueller allowed the FBI to proclaim Ivins guilty — while knowing of this evidence — and he WAS briefed by AUSA Rachel L (as he was)., then Mr. Trump has the “cause” he would need to fire Mr. Mueller.

    • DXer said

      Cliff Kincaid addresses the relevance of Amerithrax to this question whether President Trump should terminate the Special Prosecutor Mueller.

      The FBI’s Pathetic Track Record on Terrorism

      “To make matters worse, all of this censorship occurred after Mueller’s investigation into the post 9/11 anthrax attacks was totally mishandled. Al Qaeda carried out the attacks, in conjunction with the actual 9/11 terrorist hijackings, but Mueller and his people blamed a series of American scientists. Finally, they found one they could blame, Bruce Ivins, who committed suicide following persecution by FBI agents. Ivins was dead and could not defend himself.

      The anthrax letters, which carried statements of “Death to America” and “Death to Israel,” were assumed to be the work of right-wingers working for U.S. government military or civilian labs. One of Mueller’s agents, Richard Lambert, later sued Mueller for botching the probe.”


      Comey would take over for Mueller, obviously aware of the major deficiencies in the anthrax inquiry, but did not reopen the investigation to seek the truth about al-Qaeda’s role in the attacks.

      The flawed anthrax investigation was an example of the politically twisted investigative methodology that Mueller would officially implement, under pressure from Islamist groups such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), in regard to Islamic terrorism in general.

      As Farrell told me in an interview, Mueller has a reputation as an effective law enforcement official, but the evidence shows that he permitted political manipulation of FBI training materials regarding the Islamic threat and “completely bungled” the anthrax investigation.

      Regarding Mueller and Comey, Mueller’s successor as FBI director, Farrell says there is “an appearance of a deep, long professional relationship, if not a personal one.” When Mueller was FBI director, Comey was deputy attorney general. Both of them had said American scientist Steven J. Hatfill was guilty in the anthrax case though he was completely innocent. The Department of Justice eventually had to pay Hatfill over $5 million in damages after ruining his career.

      Farrell said the fact that Comey cleared his Senate Intelligence Committee testimony with Special Counsel Mueller suggests they have been “synchronizing the effort.” He adds, “It stinks.” Under these circumstances, it is impossible to believe that Mueller will conclude that Comey mishandled the Russian investigation and deserved to be fired by Trump. Instead, they both have enormous incentive to find Trump guilty of something. Together, they cannot permit FBI misdeeds to be exposed to public view.


      The former Republican House Speaker says, “…what we have here is a fired FBI director, who leaked private material to the press, so he could get his friend appointed as a special counsel in order to take retribution on the President—with the aid of a department full of federal lawyers who would have rather seen Hillary in the White House. And we are supposed to believe this will be an objective, unbiased investigation?”


      On a minor but important note, as I recall his last interview, former lead Amerithrax Richard Lambert thinks Bob Mueller is the smartest person he knows. I believe he holds him in very high regard.

      I’ve only met Cliff once in a dark DC parking lot, but it would be fascinating to know him better given our dramatically different political views. He helpfully filmed key speakers at the conference in DC organized by Ken Dillon and moderated by Lew (and sponsored by an organization at UCLA).

      On the true crime matter that is the subject of this blog, I happen to think he is right that the letters were related to Al Qaeda’s anthrax program and the affable Yazid Sufaat, Al Qaeda’s anthrax lab director. I’ve interviewed Sufaat (before he was thrown in jail), and he does not deny responsibility.

      My narrow disagreement with Cliff on the true crime matter is that I think Shukrijumah was the anthrax mailer — while he in a recent column he adopted my friend Ken’s (not unreasonable) view that Jdey was the anthrax mailer.

      Cliff covers a very wide range of matters — the news of the day keeps him very busy. But not so busy that he doesn’t appreciate that Ayman Zawahiri is still very dangerous and wants to attack the United States in a mass attack.

      From my perspective of a liberal who does not think Mr. Trump has the temperament to be President, it is unfortunate that Mr. Comey so plainly said that he passed on the memo in order to get a special prosecutor appointed. That was very unfortunate phrasing — or a gift — depending on one’s view of the importance of the Russian hacking.

      Comey might have just as readily said that he passed on the memo so that the public had the benefit of the best record of the conversation — an aim that both he and the President purport to share.

      If former FBI Director Comey really understood the importance of contemporaneous notes — regardless what they say — he would have not have tolerated the FBI’s withholding of the contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins notebook on the date of mailing of the anthrax.

      In his e-book, WMD head Vahid Majid said that he was confident that Comey, his former supervisor, had his back. And even now that Mr. Comey is gone, the FBI has still failed to produce the documents.

      The irony is that if President Trump obtained Notebook 4282, he then might have leverage over the Special Prosecutor. The question might be: What did Robert Mueller know and when did he know it? Or what did Jim Comey know and when did he know it?

      The better approach would be for the FBI to comply with FOIA — that is, if the FBI truly abides by the rule of law that it so often pays lip service.

      (It is assuming a lot to think that the contents are not already known).

      The notes are exculpatory of Bruce Ivins.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

      • DXer said

        Gregg Jarrett: Are Mueller and Comey ‘colluding’ against Trump by …


        Fox News-13 hours ago

        I wrote a column two days later, arguing that Mueller should resign as special counsel. He has a flagrant conflict of interest that disqualifies him from serving. To wit, his personal and professional closeness to Comey. They have long been allies. Comey regards his predecessor at the FBI as a mentor, while Mueller considers Comey his protégé.

        It was evident at the outset that the fired FBI Director would be the pivotal witness in any potential obstruction of justice investigation by Mueller. Therefore, it was incomprehensible that Rod Rosenstein, the Acting Attorney General, would choose him. It was equally baffling that Mueller would accept the position.


        But the Comey-Mueller duo are best known for “badly bungling the biggest case they ever handled” together –the 2001 anthrax letters attacks that killed 5 …

        Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  37. DXer said

    U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions had suggested in the past several weeks he might resign amid a widening rift with President Donald Trump, according to a person familiar with the matter.

    Sessions has come under fire from the president over his recusal from an investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election, an inquiry that’s now exploring whether Trump associates colluded with Moscow. The attorney general’s suggestion that he might consider quitting was reported earlier by ABC News and confirmed by a person familiar who discussed the matter on condition of anonymity.

    Trump, furious and frustrated, gears up to punch back at Comey testimony

    The West Wing, meanwhile, has taken on an atmosphere of legal uncertainty. White House counsel Donald F. McGahn has told staff to hold onto emails, documents and phone records, officials said, a move of caution designed to prepare the staff for future legal requests, should they come. McGahn has specifically advised staffers to avoid what are known as the “burn bags” in the executive branch that are often used to discard papers.

    While people familiar with the White House counsel’s office described McGahn’s moves as appropriate steps because of the ongoing probes, they said many junior staffers are increasingly skittish and fearful of their communications eventually finding their way into the hands of investigators.

    Some staffers nervous about their own personal liability are contemplating hiring lawyers and have become more rigorous about not putting things in text messages or emails that they would not want to be subpoenaed, one person familiar with the situation said.


    Trump’s team is preparing a campaign-style line of attack aimed at undercutting Comey’s reputation. They plan to portray him as a “showboat” and to bring up past controversies from his career, including his handling of the Hillary Clinton email investigation in 2016, according to people involved in the planning.

    Comment: I believe something like 40 people went to jail for Watergate. Regardless of one’s partisan passions, compliance with the rule of law is never out of fashion.

    The White House and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions should cause Notebook 4282 to be produced (pursuant to and consistent with FOIA) if it wants simultaneously

    (1) to demonstrate compliance with the rule of law, and

    (2) permit the public to check Mr. Comey’s substantive work. (He oversaw the agency withholding the Notebook until recently).

    I have caused dozens of other notebooks to be uploaded but the FBI is withholding this one — and never returned it to USAMRIID. It contains the contemporaneous notes from Bruce Ivins’ notebook which would test the FBI’s claim that Dr. Ivins had no reason to be in the lab. This claim was central to its cotton candy Ivins Theory.

    We then we could better assess the “13 Reasons” Army scientist Bruce Ivins committed suicide.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    • DXer said

      Fired FBI director Comey ‘asked not to be left alone with Trump’

      “The claim that Mr Comey told Mr Sessions he did not want to be left alone again with the president was published by the New York Times and the Associated Press.

      The conversation occurred the day after the president asked Mr Comey to end the investigation into Mr Flynn during a private dinner, the NYT said. Mr Comey believed the attorney general should protect the FBI from White House influence, officials told the paper.”


      From a purely partisan perspective of a Trump supporter, the Administration has really missed an opportunity to give the media something else to focus on.

      If Attorney General Sessions is going to protect his legacy (as his deputy accomplished by the appointment of a Special Prosecutor), then he should make a special effort to comport with the rule of law across all matters, to include FOIA as it pertains to Notebook 4282.

      Compliance with FOIA requires avoidance of undue delay and expedition of requests where the standards under the statute are met.

      The years of foot-dragging relating to production of these pages from Notebook 4282 — from the date of mailing and week prior — is inexcusable.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  38. DXer said

    Proponents of more spending on biodefense should join in asking that the FBI comply with FOIA and produce the contemporaneous notes made in Bruce Ivins’ Notebook 4282 on the date of mailing and the week prior — so as to test the FBI’s claims that he had no reason to be in the lab on those days.

    How Trump’s budget makes us all vulnerable to bioterrorism

    By Tara Kirk Sell, Crystal Watson and Matthew Watson, opinion contributors – 05/31/17 04:40 PM EDT

    “Threats to national and international biosecurity are far from speculative. In October 2001, anthrax spores were sent through the mail in an unprecedented act of bioterrorism against the U.S. This experience served as a wake-up call regarding our nation’s vulnerability to biological threats.

    Today, ISIS and other terrorist organizations are showing continued interest in using biological weapons. In 2014 an ISIS laptop was recovered containing a 19-page document on how to develop biological weapons, and late last year Kenyan authorities disrupted an anthrax plot by a medical student and associates affiliated with ISIS. Earlier this year, South Korea raised concerns that North Korea possesses biological weapons and could use drones to carry out attacks.

    One important domestic biological threat is the potential for wide-area anthrax attacks, much larger than occurred in 2001. In such an attack, emergency rooms would be flooded with patients of all ages experiencing severe respiratory distress, extreme anxiety about their potential exposure, or both.

    Politicians, individuals on social media and media would be trying to assess the damage, attribute blame and understand what was being done to respond. All would be trying to save lives, understand what happened and figure out what to do next. Political concerns, economic prosperity and societal stability would hang in the balance.”


    Tara Kirk Sell, Ph.D., Crystal Watson, DrPH, and Matthew Watson are faculty at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The Center has been the recipient of grants and contracts from a number of the federal organizations mentioned in this piece, including DHS, CDC, ASPR, and FEMA.

    • DXer said

      Advocates who want to avoid the closing of Ft. Derrick, it seems, should be particularly interested in showing that former USAMRIID scientist Bruce Ivins did, in fact, have reason to be in the lab.

      Fort Detrick research lab could close due to proposed budget cuts

      A number of jobs could be at risk

      By: Shennekia Grimshaw
      Posted: May 31, 2017 04:15 PM EDT

      FREDERICK, Md. – The President’s proposed budget for next year was released earlier this week and if it is adopted, it will impact the lab in Fort Detrick next year.

      The National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center currently employs 180 people, but due to the proposed budget plan in the works their jobs might be at risk.

  39. DXer said

    “Anthrax And “Russiagate”: Mueller’s Special Counsel Appointment Should Raise Concern,” May 31, 2017

    Politicians and mainstream media are praising the appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as head of an investigation into alleged collusion between Russia and President Donald Trump. But Mueller’s poor handling of the 2001 anthrax attacks should give many cause for concern.


    I have a lot of respect for Robert Mueller — and I just think Amerithrax was/is a tough mystery to solve. This blogger, Robbie Martin, however, today has a very credit-worthy and fairly stated discussion of the issue raised.

    In defense of the former Director, it’s easy to find fault — harder to do better in real-time.

    If President Trump drank more covfefe , he might realize that the way to distract from the growing (and very substantial) risk of impeachment, is to have the Vice President or someone on his staff call over and ask that the FBI comply with FOIA and produce Bruce Ivins’ Notebook 4282. That Notebook contains contemporaneous notes the date of mailing and the week prior. It would help people get on the same page. I’ve arranged for dozens of other of his notebooks to be uploaded but the FBI has withheld this one. No FOIA exemption applies except in the case of one name.

    Who knows, President Trump. It might lead to the firing of the Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller if it is found that it was improperly withheld by the FBI under his tenure and he stood by while the US Attorney Taylor, and Washington Field Office head Persichini, and WMD head Vahid Majidi, knowingly made false representations — and falsely claimed that Dr. Ivins had no reason to be in the lab.. I assume that they made the claim in good faith. But we’ll be able to get people on the same page only if the notebook pages are produced.

  40. DXer said


    Any news regarding Dillon Amerithrax FOIA?

    Is the delay in responding due to the prospect of a federal court judge getting angry like in the Sarasota decision?

    Just deny the request, if you must, so that FOIA requestor Ken Dillon can proceed pursuant to his rights granted under law. Dave Hardy can try his luck with an affidavit defending the failure to produce the requested notebook pages.

    The issues are mercifully simple as to the notebook pages.

    “The FBI undertook processing of the FOIA requests in this case with a black cloud already hanging over its handling of FOIA requests. The agency just one year earlier had been severely sanctioned for misleading federal courts through declarations filed by David M. Hardy, the section chief of the FBI’s offensivel y-named Record Information Disseminat ion Section (referred to by the FBI by its acronym “RIDS”). In Islamic Shura Council v. FBI, 278 F.R.D. 538 (C.D. Cal. 2011) (Order Granting Plaintiffs’ Motion for Sanctions) (DE -134), vacated, 757 F.3d 870 (9th Cir. 2014), a FOIA case, Judge Cormac J. Carney , after reviewing declarations by Hard y, wrote: The Government’s in camera submission revealed a very disturbing issue: the Government had provided blatantly false and misleading information to the Court. The Government represented in pleadings, declarations, and briefs — most notably , in its summary judgment papers — that it found only a limited number of esponsive documents to Plaintiffs’ FOIA request. However, Hard y’s second declaration stated, for the first time, that the Government withheld “responsive information” from the Plaintiffs. (Decl. of David M. Hardy, M ay 1, 2009 (“Second Hardy Decl.”) ¶¶ 1, 15.) Contrary to its previous representations, the Government revealed that it located a significant number of responsive documents, which the Government asserted it withheld to avoid compromising national security.”

    Id. at 540 -41. The FBI’s false representations in that case were based on an initial declaration submitted by Hardy, which later was admitted to be false in a his second declaration. Id. at 545. Judge Cormac ruled “the objective facts” showed that the “Government presented false information to the Court — not negligently or without reasonable inquiry — but with the Government’s full knowledge, over the course of two years in litigating this action.” Id. He added: “The fact that the Government knowingly and deliberately provided misinformation to the Court cannot be recast simply as a ‘misunderstanding’ or a legal disagreement.” Id. “The Government’s deception” was “legall y untenable ” and, Judge Cormac noted that “presenting false information to the Court is antithetical to the very structure of FOIA.” Id. at 546. The Ninth Circuit vacated the sanctions imposed, but not because it disagreed with these rulings. It held sanctions cou ld not be imposed on the Government for its actions solely because the sanctions motion had been presented after the district court had ruled on the merits of the FOIA matter , thus preventing the FBI from exercising Rule 11’s safe harbor provisions. 17 Islamic Shura Council , 757 F.3d at 873. Having narrowly escaped sanctions in that case just a year before it received the FOIA request that initiated this case, it is surprising that the FBI has taken a similar approach to this case.”

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    • DXer said

      March 1, 2017
      U.S. judge cites ‘shameful’ FBI delays in making 9/11 records public

      By Dan Christensen,

      A Miami federal judge Tuesday excoriated the FBI for what she called its “shameful” delays in making public certain records about the bureau’s 9/11 Review Commission.

      “It is distressing to see the length to which a private citizen must go” to obtain records under the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA],” said U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga. “It’s quite shocking frankly.”

    • DXer said

      Broward Bulldog, Inc. v. US DOJ, May 16, 2017

      “Because the law only requires the FBI’s search be reasonable, not exhaustive, the Court finds the Government —
      through detailed declarations — has met its burden of showing the search was adequate”

      Comment: If the US DOJ wants to say it cannot find Dr. Bruce Ivins’ notebook from the date of mailing, and the week prior, it should say so. The Agent wrote down a pertinent description of the content. If the FBI destroyed the notebook pages, a federal court can determine whether that summary should be unredacted (at the same time it determines who destroyed the crucial evidence in such an important matter).

  41. DXer said

    Is John S. Pistole going to be appointed the next FBI Director? I have no idea. But the fact that President Trump kept interviewing additional candidates when Senator Lieberman didn’t pan out, suggests he is one to watch.

    Ex-TSA chief John Pistole in talks for top FBI job: report
    By Julia Manchester – 05/25/17 04:51 PM EDT

    John S. Pistole

    Trump considers major changes amid escalating Russia crisis


    If the Administration wants to change the subject from the rumors involving Jared Kushner, then perhaps they might get some things done substantively so as to give the media alternative content — say, by directing the FBI to comply with FOIA and produce Notebook 4282.
    The Administration will especially want to do that if they hope to name John Pistole, who was Deputy Director over lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert. Because the Ivins Theory in Amerithrax flourished on his watch.

  42. DXer said

    I think Cliff Kincaid and Ken Dillon are mistaken. Specifically, I think Adnan El-Shukirjumah is the Fall 2001 anthrax mailer, not Jdey But I do think a Jdey Theory is a reasonable theory supported by lots of evidence. President Trump could help get people on the same page by ordering the FBI to produce Notebook 4282, containing the contemporaneous pages from Bruce Ivins’ notebook…. subject to any FOIA exemptions or other grounds for withholding. (There are no grounds for withholding other than CYA.)

    Special Counsel Mueller Will Get His Man

    By Cliff Kincaid on May 24, 2017

    One of the big problems with the media is that journalists publish so many things that aren’t true, especially when they are writing about people in positions of power whom they want to pursue their liberal agendas.

    Consider this statement from a Politico article by Garrett M. Graff about the special counsel investigating Russia-gate: “Robert Mueller might just be America’s straightest arrow—a respected, nonpartisan and fiercely apolitical public servant whose only lifetime motivation has been the search for justice.”

    This so-called straight arrow blew the biggest terrorism investigation in the history of the United States—the post-9/11 anthrax mailings which killed five people, and spread terror and panic in the populace.

    We knew al-Qaeda carried out the actual 9/11 terrorist attacks. That was an easy one to solve. Al-Qaeda had declared war on the United States and had been broadcasting their intentions to hit the U.S. In a major intelligence failure, our CIA, FBI and other agencies failed to stop the deaths of almost 3,000 people.

    But then-FBI director Mueller was also in charge of solving the post-9/11 anthrax attacks. He ignored the abundant evidence of an al-Qaeda role in those, too, because the FBI had picked up the anthrax mailer and let him go. He went on to bring down Flight 587 with a shoe bomb. All of this was just too embarrassing for Mueller to admit. A deliberate cover-up was engineered.

    What’s more, FBI director Mueller purged government materials of information that identified the nature of the Islamic terrorist enemy. Judicial Watch has explained how this “disturbing” turn of events occurred. They document that training materials deemed “offensive” to Muslims were purged following secret meetings between Mueller and various Islamic organizations. What’s more, Judicial Watch indicates that Mueller thus became an agent of a broader Islamist “influence operation” aimed at “our government and Constitution.”

    So Mueller failed to officially recognize the role of al Qaeda in the post-9/11 anthrax attacks, and then blinded the bureau from recognizing more evidence of Islamic terrorist operations on American soil.

    And this is the guy who will get to the bottom of Russia-gate?

    Among other things, Mueller fingered an innocent man for the anthrax mailings, and was sued by an FBI agent who led the inquiry. His investigation wasted years on a wild goose chase. Analyst Kenneth J. Dillon says Mueller’s mishandling of the investigation led to the suicide of scientist Bruce Ivins, who was conveniently blamed for the mailings.

    “My research on the 2001 anthrax mailings case suggests that Mueller was responsible for the suicide of the alleged but wrongly accused mailer, Bruce Ivins, as well as for the subsequent cover-up. Mueller appears to have lied to a Senate committee about Ivins and destroyed key alibi evidence for him,” Dillon told Accuracy in Media (AIM).

    There is no evidence that Ivins actually mailed the letters, and former FBI agent Richard Lambert says the FBI has “a wealth of exculpatory evidence” regarding Ivins. That evidence has conveniently turned up missing for independent investigators like Dillon who are seeking it through Freedom of Information requests. The FBI, he says, has been sitting for more than a year on one request for 16 pages from the official investigation on Ivins.

    If we had a functioning democratic system and an honest press, we would have pressure on the FBI to investigate former director Mueller. Instead, Mueller is now in charge of investigating the President of the United States! This is how the “deep state” works.

    Appropriately enough, the Politico article is accompanied by a photo of Mueller and his sidekick, former FBI director James Comey. That photo captures the truth about a relationship that makes Mueller’s task as special counsel a supreme conflict of interest that should disqualify him from the task. But Washington insiders remain quiet about the conflict because they want to see Trump go. They know Mueller is a company man who will protect Comey and savage Trump.

    Those who say there is no evidence of a crime in Russia-gate miss the whole point. Mueller will produce evidence of a crime out of nothing if he has to. Former national security adviser Michael T. Flynn’s dealings with a Russian TV channel, though conducted out in the open for everyone to see through a speaker’s bureau, could become the basis of some flimsy “obstruction of justice” charges against Trump, his former boss who fired him.

    It’s the old familiar “what did he know and when did he know it” routine that can trip up anyone, even a president.

    Trump fired Comey for incompetence and frustration over his Russia-gate investigation that goes on and on, with no end in sight. Trump wanted to see it over and the facts to come out. He wanted the intelligence community to verify that evidence of “collusion” was not to be found after many months of fruitless investigation.

    Both Democrats and Republicans realized that Comey was not up to the job. But now Democrats (and some Republicans) are gleeful. They know Mueller will protect Comey and get Trump.

    Journalists are quiet about Mueller’s atrocious record on Islamic terrorism because they want his special counsel office of ambitious liberal attorneys to leak to them as the inquiry goes forward. Republicans on Capitol Hill are quiet because they know the FBI can destroy them through leaks.

    At least under J. Edgar Hoover we had an FBI that investigated America’s enemies. Mueller’s job is to damage and destroy a President elected by the people. His job is to protect his friend, former FBI director Comey, who used a spurious document, the “Trump Dossier,” to conduct an inquiry that has turned up nothing. A former British agent compiled the dossier but the fingerprints of the Russians are all over it.

    This document, which guided the FBI investigation, is the ultimate in meddling in America’s elections and democratic system, and the media pretend not to recognize it. Instead, the media repeatedly tell us that the Russians wanted to defeat Hillary.

    As we said in a previous column, America’s elected government is hanging in the balance, and the media are cheering on this spectacle. What should the American people conclude if a “special counsel,” with seemingly unlimited resources and power, brings down a President elected by those people?

    They should not be blamed for losing faith in the system. They are losing faith now as Washington pursues a phony scandal while the Islamic terrorists strike and kill young innocent teenagers in the heart of the West.

    Remember that Americans losing faith in the system was supposed to be one of Russia’s objectives. Ironically, the Russia-gate investigation is designed to do just that. We have a government that can’t investigate itself.

    It looks like the plan is to drag out the Mueller probe for a couple of years, so that the Democratic Party can take back the House of Representatives in 2018 and initiate impeachment proceedings against Trump. The Senate won’t convict, but Trump could be forced to step down.

    None of this had to happen if America had maintained a free and independent press, willing to subject the FBI to the scrutiny they apply so recklessly and anonymously to Trump.

    It is strangely appropriate that FBI apologist Garrett M. Graff wrote a book praising Mueller. He quotes Comey as saying about him, “His gift is that he’s decisive without being impulsive. He’ll sit, listen, ask questions and make a decision. I didn’t realize at the time how rare that is in Washington.”

    Comey was described by Graff as having worked for “years” alongside Mueller. Yet Mueller is the straight shooter who will get to the bottom of the mess that Comey found himself in and which necessitated his firing?

    How can any objective observer conclude anything other than that Trump is right when he says he is the target of a witch hunt?

    It’s a dishonest press, and it’s going to get worse.

    So while the special counsel pursues the chimera known as Russia-gate, the Islamic terrorists who killed innocent young girls in Britain now have their sights set on the United States.

    Trump’s initiatives to protect the American people from such attacks are tied up in the liberal courts.

    But Mueller will get his man!

    Cliff Kincaid

    Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at View the complete archives from Cliff Kincaid.

    • DXer said

      Wait. Back up. All we need is Senator Leahy or Senator Cornyn — who I believe co-sponsored a bill on FOIA, to call over to the FBI.

      Better yet, all we need is Attorney General Jeff Sessions to call Dave Hardy at FBI FOIA and recommend that he expedite the request, given the public interest in the matter of the Fall 2001 anthrax attacks and the Al Qaeda anthrax threat.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  43. DXer said

    One candidate for FBI Director, Frank Keating, in a published piece, not too long ago argued that President Trump’s statements constituted rhetoric of a Latin American strongman. The President asked him about the piece in a pleasant 25- minute interview.

    After the interview, former Oklahoma Gov. Keating said publicly that he does not expect to be named.

    This perhaps leaves former Senator Lieberman as the frontrunner — as some papers have reported.

    (I heard the question asked by a reporter but because of some background noise, it was unclear to me that when President Trump responded “yes,” he was responding to a question that had asked whether former Senator Lieberman was “A frontrunner” or “THE frontrunner.”

    My interest in the appointment and consideration of Senator Lieberman is due to the fact that Lieberman was Co-Chairman of the Blue Ribbon panel on the biothreat. I think he would pick up the phone and ask the FBI FOIA operation to produce Ivins Notebook 4282 without further delay — given that no FOIA exemption applies. I have no idea why Andrew McCabe hasn’t given that most FBI officials think of themselves as embracing the rule of law.

    I think given Jared Kushner’s influence, he may favor Lieberman over Mike Rogers because of Rogers’ reported connection to Christie. That’s unfortunate — given Mike Rogers also would see production of Notebook 4282 as required under the rule of law (i.e., compliance with FOIA).

    I always liked Michael Mason’s quote about not being political because it was too complicated. :0) He was the former head of the DC Field Office. I always thought of him as head of Amerithrax — and thought he had great PR and would be well-qualified to be appointed the new FBI Director. But I haven’t seen his name mentioned.

    Former Oklahoma Gov. Keating doesn’t expect to get FBI top job …
    3 days ago – Former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating was interviewed Wednesday by President Donald Trump for the FBI’s top job but said he does not expect …

    Keating said he had a “very, very pleasant” interview with Trump for about 25 minutes in the Oval Office. Also present, he said, were Vice President Mike Pence and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

    “He is, obviously, a great conversationalist,” Keating said of the president. “We had a good talk around the table.”

    Keating said he expects to be a “bridesmaid” in the process, not the bride.

    “I would think they would go for somebody who is, you know, a career law enforcement person,” he said. “I think they want to make sure that the bureau functions professionally and well.

    “Who knows?” he said. “We will see.”

    Keating was an FBI agent for a few years after getting his law degree in 1969 from the University of Oklahoma. He later was a state legislator and then U.S. attorney in Tulsa.

    He has experience in key positions in Washington. He held the No. 3 job at the U.S. Justice Department for a time, overseeing criminal prosecutions. He later held the No. 2 job at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

    He was elected governor in 1994, getting national acclaim shortly after taking office for his response to the deadly bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building.

    After serving eight years as governor, he became president of a trade association for the insurance industry. He later became president and CEO of the American Bankers Association.

    He now lives in Oklahoma City.

    He said the attorney general called him Wednesday morning and asked him to go to Washington to be interviewed.

    He was interviewed even though he criticized Trump in an opinion piece published last year in the Tulsa World. In that piece, Keating compared comments made by Trump early in the presidential campaign to the rhetoric of a Latin American strongman.

    “This is not the rhetoric deserved by a free people,” wrote Keating, who at first supported Jeb Bush for president. “In a country rooted in faith, family and freedom, there cannot be them and us. We cannot be held apart by demagoguery and anger.”

    Keating said Trump asked him during the interview Wednesday about the Tulsa World piece.

    “He did bring it up — with a smile,” Keating said. “You know, I voted for him. I was very happy he got elected. But I was not there at the start.”

  44. DXer said

    In this politically charged atmosphere, would Frank Keating, otherwise highly qualified, survive scrutiny of his representations at Holland & Knight? Or would critics urge that this was just another fox-in-the-henhouse scenario.

    With 5 minutes having passed since my last best guess, now that I see Attorney Keating’s law firm representations, it seems that President Trump would find a far safer choice among the well-qualified current FBI officials.

    Alternatively, Mike Rogers has the advantage of both being recommended by the FBI Agents association, being highly experienced in matters relating to counterintelligence, and (hopefully) not being subject to a withering conflicts of interest analysis relating to representation of financial interests.

    If the Trump Administration is going to survive the current speculative impeachment frenzy, it would do well to avoid getting entangled in complicated conflict analyses inherent in large law firm practice.

    There are too many off-the-radar representations that could bring horror stories in tow given the current media frenzy.

    Mike Rogers, in contrast, seems to have a fairly transparent recent background since leaving government. Similarly, the various FBI officials (e.g., Lee, Abbate, Evanina and Anderson) likely are even freer of conflicts.

    (OTOH, Mike Rogers has the distinct disadvantage of having served briefly on President Trump’s transition team).

    Read more:

    Holland & Knight

    Frank A Keating
    Washington, D.C.

    Frank Keating, former two-term governor of Oklahoma, is an attorney in the Financial Services Team and focuses on the banking, financial services and insurance industries. He recently completed a five-year term as president and CEO of the American Bankers Association (ABA); from 2003 to 2011, he was president and CEO of the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI).

    As Associate Attorney General, Mr. Keating had supervisory responsibility over all of the U.S. Attorneys. At the Treasury Department, he had oversight over the U.S. Secret Service; U.S. Customs; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; U.S. Marshals; the Bureau of Prisons; the Immigration and Naturalization Service; and all 94 U.S. Attorneys.

    Through his federal government service, as well as with the ABA, Mr. Keating has worked extensively on regulatory issues concerning lending practices, housing finance, securitization, enforcement and the Bank Secrecy Act.

    • DXer said

      White House looking at ethics rule to weaken special investigation: sources

      Mueller’s former law firm, WilmerHale, represents Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, who met with a Russian bank executive in December, and the president’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort, who is a subject of a federal investigation.

      Legal experts said the ethics rule can be waived by the Justice Department, which appointed Mueller. He did not represent Kushner or Manafort directly at his former law firm.

      If the department did not grant a waiver, Mueller would be barred from investigating Kushner or Manafort, and this could greatly diminish the scope of the probe, experts said.

      The Justice Department is already reviewing Mueller’s background as well as any potential conflicts of interest, said department spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores.


      Mueller’s former colleagues at WilmerHale, James Quarles and Aaron Zebley, are expected to join his investigation, according to a spokeswoman for the law firm. Neither Quarles nor Zebley represented Kushner or Manafort.


      This issue demonstrates well the potential difficulties in appointment of Frank Keating as FBI Director.

      As for Mueller’s former colleagues at WilmerHale who are coming with him, they are clearly high-scoring from a scrabble perspective.

      Conflicts involving Jared Kushner, whose name is pretty impressive also scrabble-wise, may loom larger than we presently appreciate.

      Mueller’s integrity seems to be widely recognized as a gold standard — but any necessary waivers, it seems, will need to be made.

  45. DXer said

    Here is the biography of Frank Keating who seems qualified to be the next FBI Director. I now think President Trump will appoint Frank Keating if he found him “agreeable” at his interview. But wait a few minutes, my best guess might change.

    From Wikipedia

    “The same year he finished law school, Keating was made a Special agent for the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Relocated to the West Coast, Keating was charged with investigating terrorism incidents in the area and other various duties. After years on the coast, Keating returned to Tulsa to become an assistant district attorney.

    In 1973, Keating, was elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives. He would serve a single term in the House, until 1975, when he was elected to the Oklahoma Senate. He would serve in the Senate from 1975 until 1981. While in the Senate, Keating became the minority leader.[3]

    Federal career

    Keating’s law enforcement career and prominence in the Oklahoma Republican Party prompted newly elected President Ronald Reagan to appoint Keating as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Oklahoma.[5] Keating served from 1981 until 1983, serving for part of that time as chairman of all U.S. Attorneys. He gave up that post in 1983[6] to run for Congress in Oklahoma’s 1st congressional district and nearly defeated House Budget Committee chairman Jim Jones, holding him to only 52 percent of the vote as Reagan carried the district.

    Shortly after Reagan was sworn in for his second term, he appointed Keating to serve as an assistant secretary of the Treasury and later elevated him to associate attorney general, the third ranking official within the U.S. Department of Justice. These appointments made Keating the highest ranking Oklahoman during the Reagan administration. In his positions as assistant secretary of the Treasury and associate attorney general, Keating oversaw both the Justice and Treasury’s law enforcement agencies. These included the United States Customs Service, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Secret Service, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the U.S. Marshals, the Immigration and Naturalization Service, all 94 U.S. Attorneys and the U.S. role in Interpol.

    Late in the Reagan Administration, Keating continued to serve in the Justice Department in his role as associate attorney general. In 1990, President Bush elevated Keating to general counsel and acting deputy secretary of Housing and Urban Development, that department’s second highest office, under Secretary Jack Kemp. He would serve as deputy secretary until 1993. As was the case in the Reagan administration, Keating became the highest ranking Oklahoman in the federal government, under Bush.

    On November 14, 1991, Bush nominated Keating to a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, but with Democratic control of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Keating’s nomination languished and no hearing was held before Bush’s presidency ended.”

  46. DXer said

    I see now (belatedly) that Judge Garcia has formally withdrawn his name — joining FBI official McFeeley and the others who have withdrawn their name from consideration.

    So perhaps this increases the prospects of Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating as media reports about objections to Joe Lieberman mount.

    Garcia Withdraws Name as Potential FBI Director

    New York Law Journal (registration)- May 17, 2017
    Court of Appeals Judge Michael Garcia, who was on the short list to be FBI director and was interviewed for the job Saturday, has removed …

    White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Wednesday that President Donald Trump will be interviewing four potential candidates to lead the FBI: former Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman, former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating, FBI acting director Andrew McCabe and Richard McFeely, a former top FBI official.

    Trump has suggested he hopes to name Comey’s successor before he departs Friday for his first overseas trip as president.

    Garcia, 55, joined New York’s highest court about a year ago from Kirkland & Ellis, where he was a litigation partner. He is the only Republican on the court.

    He previously served as Southern District U.S. attorney—a position Comey once held as well.

  47. DXer said

    Today’s news…

    FBI official Richard McFeely has removed himself from consideration for FBI director …

    I think President Trump would most likely quell criticism of his pick if he picked a current “by-the-book” type FBI official or a federal judge (such as Garcia or Hudson).

    His preference for someone well-known does not seem a good basis for a decision.

    May 10-

    “Justice Department officials identified the contenders as Michael Anderson, agent-in-charge in Chicago; Adam Lee, who runs the FBI’s field office in Richmond, Va.; Paul Abbate, who oversees the FBI’s criminal and cyber branch; and William Evanina, the government’s chief counterintelligence officer.”

    I think most any of his other choices would be approved, though, regardless of the sporadic criticism of various possible picks — Ray Kelly, Mike Rogers, Fran Townsend, Joe Lieberman are all qualified.

    Mike Rogers has the strong plus (imo) of being the pick of the FBI agents’ association. He has a negative of having served on the transition team for 10 days in November.

    Fran Townsend would avoid the negative of having visited the White House just before the firing of Mr. Comey if it were explained and found to be unrelated.

    Joe Lieberman might pose the biggest risks depending on his compensation arrangement as special counsel for President Trump’s law firm. With so much blood in the water, I think the President’s critics are going to be digging deep.

    The appointment of a special counsel, very widely hailed as an excellent choice, takes the pressure off some of these negatives regarding choice of FBI Director.

    For the purposes of this blog, my personal favorite is Michael Rogers because, like Joe Lieberman, he is informed about the biological threat. I sense he understands the importance of keeping politics out of true crime and intelligence analysis.

    If people do not have access to classified information relating to the anthrax threat and Al Qaeda’s anthrax program, they tend to stay rooting around trash for semen-stained panties and relying on short poems as evidence of murder.

    FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe likely appreciates that the political donation involving Terry McAuliffe makes him a problematic, unviable choice. from the perspective of President Trump.

    Besides, FBI Deputy Director McCabe has never caused Notebook 4282 containing Bruce Ivins’ contemporaneous notes to be produced. So he has not represented the rule of law as it relates to Amerithrax and compliance with the FOIA statute.

    • DXer said

      This article noting that FBI official McFeely has withdrawn his name mentions that Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating is in the running. Keating participated in “Dark Winter” prior to 9/11 — and so he at least likely would have the insight that the reason the Secret Service advised the Bush White House officials to take Cipro BEFORE the first anthrax mailing was because it had been credibly threatened that Al Qaeda/EIJ had threatened (promised) to use anthrax to retaliate for the rendering of senior EIJ leaders. It is remarkable that major media missed that story.

      For the spin to develop that it was somehow suspicious that the White House officials took Cipro was the fault of the reporters who did not inform themselves.

      I found the news of infiltrator Rauf Ahmad (Abdur Rauf)’s arrest by reading local Pakistani news reports. (I then contacted the helpful director of sfam, which sponsored the Porton Down conferences infiltrated by Rauf Ahmad).

      The Bush Administration was trying to spin things toward Iraq when the evidence always pointed to Al Qaeda — and Al Qaeda did not need Iraq’s help.

      The media blames the Bush Administration when it was the media that dropped the ball in not reporting the evidence (even pre-911) that pointed to Al Qaeda plan to use anthrax against symbolic targets in the US. If they had not dropped that ball, maybe the US would not have invaded Iraq.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

      “Sources told WJLA that McFeely withdrew his name from President Trump’s FBI director shortlist. Three potential candidates left include Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), former Republican Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating and acting FBI chief Andrew McCabe.


      Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn was on Trump’s list, but said in a statement that the upper chamber is his top priority. Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) said Monday that he is “not the right person” to replace Comey, despite Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the head of the Justice Department, speaking with him about running the agency.

      Former Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher, who was appointed by former President George W. Bush, also removed herself from the White House’s shortlist earlier this week.”

  48. DXer said

    Senator Lieberman,

    You note that we are spending $6 billion a year but not getting our money’s worth.

    If appointed to be FBI Director, could one of your first acts be to make a telephone call asking that Dr. Ivins’ notes from the date of mailing and the week prior be produced under FOIA?

    There is no FOIA exemption that justifies its withholding. Yet, the FBI has been withholding the notebook for many months.

    It would help the American public “get on the same page” relating to the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings.

    Newsmax Prime | Joe Lieberman discusses how vulnerable America is to a biological terror attack
    Newsmax TV
    Published on Oct 28, 2015

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  49. DXer said

    The issue of obstruction of justice — being raised so frequently this week — is illustrated in Amerithrax by the FBI’s withholding of Notebook 4282.

    Senate intel member says Trump closer to impeachment process
    By Chris Perez
    May 16, 2017

    “Obstruction of justice is such a serious offense,” King (I-Maine) said. “And I say it with sadness, and reluctance. This is not something I’ve advocated for, the word has not passed my lips in this whole tumultuous, three or four months.

    “But if indeed, the president tried to tell the director of the FBI, who worked for him, that he should drop an investigation — whether it was Michael Flynn or whether it was some investigation that had nothing to do with Russia or politics or the election — that’s a very serious matter.”


    Politics is beyond the scope of this blog. But when I heard that Professor Tribe praise Joy on O’Donnell’s MSNBC show for being “brilliant” (while noting that he wasn’t one to use the term lightly), I was reminded that there are those who would drill down and press the point of Vice President Pence’s role in consulting with Attorney General Sessions about the dismissal of FBI dismissal of Comey.

    Given the purpose of this blog is narrowly to advance analysis of Amerithrax, I would merely point out that any focus on an impeachment proceeding that went beyond President Trump, it seems, would be a non-starter — given the need for Republican support on an impeachment vote.

    So while I too saw how lucid Joy was on the Lawrence O’Donnell MSNBC show in the comments that I heard, I hope critics leave Mr. Pence alone. We might need him to advance things in reassessing the closing of Amerithrax.

    It’s bad enough that we likely have lost Mike Rogers, who could make a difference in Amerithrax based on the insights he has from the classified information he’s already received. We don’t want to lose Vice President Pence too. He at least, in his early instincts, had a grasp of the Al Qaeda anthrax threat. Fran Townsend, Homeland Security Advisor, as I recall, from 2004-2008, might be good (or maybe not) based on what she knew generally about “Agent X”. But beyond that I don’t see any of the others being able to be effective in reassessing Amerithrax given the many pressing responsibilities of the office.

    Yesterday, O’Donnell said that several dozen associated with the White House went to jail in connection with Watergate.FN/ I’m not sure I would give up a lifelong appointment to take the FBI Director job in light of the most recent development.

    Ray Kelly might send the right no-nonsense, not-a-politician vibe. He would be wired to protect NYC and have the WTC 1993 background. But investigative reporters likely will bear down on any past connections to Trump.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    Watergate Casualties and Convictions

    In the aftermath of Richard Nixon’s resignation, Watergate continued to claim victims.

    The final toll included:

    • one presidential resignation

    • one vice-presidential resignation – although Agnew’s crimes were unrelated to Watergate

    • 40 government officials indicted or jailed

    • H.R. Haldeman and John Erlichman (White House staff), resigned 30 April 1973, subsequently jailed

    • John Dean (White House legal counsel), sacked 30 April 1973, subsequently jailed

    • John Mitchell, Attorney-General and Chairman of the Committee to Re-elect the President (CREEP), jailed

    • Howard Hunt and G. Gordon Liddy (ex-White House staff), planned the Watergate break-in, both jailed

    • Charles Colson, special counsel to the President, jailed

    • James McCord (Security Director of CREEP), jailed

    • DXer said

      Mr. Rosenstein,

      How about Michael Mason for FBI Director? He is apolitical and experienced. Even though he may have been the head of the DC Field Office with which Richard Lambert took issue, he certainly knows Amerithrax.

      Behind the scenes of the hunt for a new FBI director

      By Gloria Borger and Mary Kay Mallonee, CNN

      Updated 8:30 PM ET, Tue May 16, 2017

      In recent days, Trump has also asked about 75-year-old former New York Police Department Commissioner Ray Kelly as a possible FBI director, a source told CNN. The source said the President asked him about Kelly, who was not one of the eight candidates Sessions and Rosenstein interviewed at the Justice Department on Saturday. The source said he told the President he was concerned Kelly lacked federal experience.


      The process could be completed by the end of the week, said one source, with the President likely interviewing the top contenders. Another source, however, said the process may take longer as Justice officials are making calls to people outside of the reported list of candidates for FBI director.
      As Sessions and Rosenstein met with candidates over the weekend, officials — including Rosenstein — also phoned other candidates not on the list. One source said the fact that the Justice Department is seeking additional names may indicate they are not satisfied with the current list of candidates and not sold on anyone on the list. The source adds, however, that the two men are feeling “a sense of great pressure” to identify a candidate as they try to meet the President’s expectation of naming someone by Friday.

      Current and former FBI officials say in the wake of Comey’s sudden firing, the 10-year tenure that comes with the director’s job and is meant to insulate the director from political pressure is now meaningless.
      “Whoever becomes director, no matter how independent and honest, they will be operating with the knowledge that this president will not hesitate to fire you if he doesn’t like your performance, for any reason,” one source said. “You can expect to be tossed like an old shoe — with a dose of humiliation.”

      • DXer said

        Wouldn’t Alice Fisher fail to be approved by the Senate? With last night’s development, it seems that the optics would be that the White House and those involved in selecting her were bringing in a white collar defense lawyer to protect them from the fallout of the obstruction of justice coming to light.

      • DXer said

        Did President Trump just decide today on Fran Townsend as FBI Director?

        Is this the official trailer for the new Wonder Woman? Fran Townsend, is that “Agent X” in the vial?

      • DXer said

        It is being reported today that President Trump is considering Senator Joe Lieberman as the replacement for former FBI DIrector Comey.

        I think Joe Lieberman would be easily confirmed. With respect to the narrow purpose of this blog, he would be akin to Mike Rogers. He likely has been privy to the same sorts of classified information regarding Al Qaeda’s anthrax program that would allow him to understand the importance that Notebook 4282 be produced. There is no FOIA exemptionj that applies, except perhaps the redaction of one scientist’s name (next to Ivins’) on the cover. Dozens of comparable notebooks have been produced. I obtained them, had the FBI give them to USAMRMC, and then USAMRMC upload the notebooks. (The wonderful FOIA officer who was there was Sandra Rogers.)

        Overcoming the FBI’s wrongful withholding of this notebook is a way of providing members of the hill insight into Amerithrax without them having have to have access to classified information relating to Al Qaeda’s anthrax program. (That info was not even known by the FBI agents so busily engaged in CYA spin after Dr. Ivins’ suicide.) (Psst… Hey, FBI, complying with FOIA is part of abiding by the rule of law.)

        Heed Joe Lieberman’s Warning On Biological Weapons
        Forward-Apr 26, 2017
        Heed Joe Lieberman’s Warning On Biological Weapons … Other than the “anthrax in the mail” attacks that followed 9/11, k

  50. DXer said

    Andrew McCabe will not be Trump’s choice. But for so long as he has the position, he perhaps should take a moment to inform himself — he is said to be a quick study — about the FBI’s withholding of Notebook 4282 so that its withholding does not become part of his legacy.

    Andrew McCabe: McCabe is the current acting Director of the FBI. He served as the Deputy Director under now former Director James Comey. He is currently the subject of an internal DOJ investigation over whether he should have recused himself in the Hillary Clinton email investigation. His wife ran for office in Virginia and took money from a Clinton-linked donor.

  51. DXer said

    The Fed Page
    Candidates under consideration for FBI director
    By Jill Colvin and Ken Thomas | AP May 14 at 4:39 AM

    WASHINGTON — Candidates under consideration to replace fired FBI Director James Comey:



    Cornyn is the No. 2 Senate Republican and a former Texas attorney general and state Supreme Court justice. He has been a member of the Senate GOP leadership team for a decade and serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee. In the aftermath of Comey’s dismissal, Cornyn said Trump was “within his authority” to fire him and said it would not affect the investigation of possible Russian ties to Trump’s presidential campaign.



    The South Carolina Republican is best known for leading the congressional inquiry into the deadly attacks on a U.S. facility in Benghazi, Libya, a panel that oversaw a lengthy grilling of Hillary Clinton in 2015. A former federal prosecutor and state attorney, Gowdy was elected to Congress in the 2010 tea party wave and has focused on law enforcement issues. He originally endorsed Florida Sen. Marco Rubio for president before backing Trump in May 2016.



    Rogers is the former chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. He served Michigan in Congress for more than a decade before stepping down in 2015. Rogers worked for the FBI as a special agent based in Chicago in the 1990s and briefly advised Trump’s transition team on national security issues. His name was floated as a possible replacement for then-FBI Director Robert Mueller in 2013, and he received support from an association of FBI agents before President Barack Obama chose Comey.



    Kelly was commissioner of the New York City Police Department for more than a decade, serving two mayors. In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, he created the first counterterrorism bureau of any municipal police department and oversaw a drastic reduction in crime. But Kelly also came under fire for his use of aggressive police tactics, including a program that spied on Muslims and a dramatic spike in the use of stop-and-frisk, which disproportionately affected nonwhite New Yorkers.



    Luttig, the general counsel for Boeing Corp., is viewed as a conservative legal powerhouse from his tenure as a judge on the 4th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals and his time as a Justice Department lawyer. He was considered for two U.S. Supreme Court vacancies that went to Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito. Luttig clashed with the George W. Bush White House on a prominent terror case, rebuking the administration for its actions in the case involving “enemy combatant” Jose Padilla.



    A deputy attorney general under President George W. Bush, Thompson served as the department’s No. 2 from 2001 to 2003. Among his most high-profile actions was allowing Syrian-born Canadian citizen Maher Arar to be deported to Syria, where he was tortured, after being falsely named as a terrorist. Thompson also served as U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia and held several high-level positions at PepsiCo.



    Abbate is a senior official at the FBI, currently responsible for the bureau’s criminal and cyber branch. He previously led FBI field offices in Washington, one of the agency’s largest, and in Detroit. He’s been deeply involved for years in FBI efforts to fight terrorism, serving in supervisory roles in Iraq and Afghanistan and later overseeing FBI international terrorism investigations as a section chief. He’s been with the FBI for more than 20 years, and is one of the FBI officials who interviewed this week for the role of interim director.



    Currently a partner at the law firm Latham & Watkins specializing in white-collar criminal and internal investigations, Fisher formerly served as assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division of the Justice Department. Fisher faced resistance from Democrats during her confirmation over her alleged participation in discussions about policies at the detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She also served as deputy special counsel to the Senate special committee that investigated President Bill Clinton’s Whitewater scandal. If selected, she would be the bureau’s first female director.



    A Duke-educated lawyer, McCabe was named last year as the FBI’s deputy director, the No. 2 position in the bureau, overseeing significant investigations and operations. Since joining the FBI more than 20 years ago, he’s held multiple leadership positions, including overseeing the FBI’s national security branch and its Washington field office. McCabe became acting director after Comey was fired, but has shown a repeated willingness to break from White House explanations of the ouster and its characterizations of the Russia investigation.



    A former New York prosecutor, Garcia has served as an associate judge on the New York Court of Appeals — the state’s highest court — since early 2016. He served as the U.S. attorney in Manhattan from 2005 to 2008, and previously held high-level positions in the Commerce Department, the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security.



    A former U.S. attorney and Colorado attorney general, Suthers was elected mayor of Colorado Springs in 2015. He is widely respected among state law enforcement and many Colorado Democrats. Suthers was inspired to become a prosecutor after he spent part of an internship in the Colorado Springs district attorney’s office watching the trial of a gang of soldiers convicted of killing various citizens, including actor Kelsey Grammer’s sister, during a crime spree in the 1970s.



    Lee, a longtime agent, is special agent in charge of the FBI’s Richmond office. He worked in a variety of positions within the bureau. Before Comey tapped him to lead the Richmond office in 2014, he was section chief of the Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section, investigating some of the highest profile cases against government officials and civil rights violations in recent years. He also led the FBI’s global Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and Antitrust Programs.



    Hudson is a federal judge in Richmond who earned praise from conservatives when he struck down the centerpiece of the Obama administration’s health care law in 2010. He is a George W. Bush appointee who earned the nickname “Hang ‘Em High Henry” for his tough-on-crime stand as a federal prosecutor and on the bench. He became a hero to animal rights activists when he sentenced NFL star Michael Vick to nearly two years in prison in 2007 for running a dogfighting ring.



    Townsend was homeland security and counterterrorism adviser to President George W. Bush after a series of high-profile Justice Department jobs.

    Among other roles, Townsend is a national security analyst for CBS News. She worked as a federal prosecutor in New York under then-U.S. Attorney Rudy Giuliani, focusing on white-collar and organized crime. At the Justice Department, she worked in a variety of jobs including leading the Office of Intelligence Policy and Review, which helped oversee intelligence-gathering activities related to the nation’s top secret surveillance court.

  52. DXer said

    The new or acting FBI Director replacing Mr. Comey should direct the agency produce Notebook 4282 without further futzing around.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    • DXer said

      Many critics of Mr Trump’s sacking of Mr Comey are making comparisons with disgraced former president Richard Nixon, when he sacked special prosecutor Archibald Cox in 1973.

      “Archibald Cox was getting a little bit too close to the collusion and the cover-up going on inside the Nixon White House of the Watergate break-in,” Mr Painter said.

      “President Nixon wanted to fire the special prosecutor, he asked the attorney-general to do so and the attorney-general resigned. He refused to do so.

      “And then the next acting attorney-general also refused and he had to get to his third attorney-general — in the course of one day — in order to get the special prosecutor fired.

      “The other two attorneys-general had said, ‘No, of course we can’t fire a special prosecutor in the middle of an investigation that concerns the president. It’s an abuse of power by the president’.

      “Ultimately that led to President Nixon being forced from office.

      “So, President Trump is not doing the right thing here.”


      I took a First Amendment seminar and labor law class from Archibald Cox. It was a great pleasure and honor. We celebrated his 70th birthday with a cake that had little pickets on it.

      He had been my hero even before that — not only in college, but I believe that years earlier I had mentioned his textbook in my college essay (which was on the subject of industrial and labor relations).

      I wonder if the President and the Attorney General realize what a difficult historical example they face in moving forward.

  53. DXer said

    Baltimore Practices For Widespread Medical Emergency In Drill

    May 4, 2017 5:57 PM By Alex DeMetrick

    “We’re doing a training today on what happens if Anthrax is in our city and we have to get the antibiotic to every single resident,” says Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore’s Health Commissioner.”

    Comment: Government officials are regularly saying an anthrax attack is their worse nightmare and yet none of them bother to call FBI’s Kris Weart and ask why the FBI has not provided Bruce Ivins notebook containing the handwritten notes on the day of the mailing and the week prior.

    Is the FBI’s withholding of the documents because the notes alibi Ivins and explain why he was in the lab on those dates? Is it because the FBI’s proposed solve of Amerithrax was not supported by the evidence?

    Kris is going to have a lot of explaining to do in the event of a mass attack.

  54. DXer said

    Times Gets $52K in Fees for Pursuit of FOIA Suit Against CIA
    Andrew Denney, New York Law Journal
    May 3, 2017

    A federal judge has awarded almost $52,000 in attorney fees to The New York Times for its successful Freedom of Information Act suit against the CIA to force the production of records related to abandoned chemical weapons in Iraq that sickened U.S. soldiers.

  55. DXer said

    In his recent interview, former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert says

    “I do expect we’ll see it again due to the success and notoriety…Anthrax and biological weapons continue to be high on the list of terrorist operations. So we will see this again in United States and again my concern is that those in senior leadership positions known and understand the history.”

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

  56. DXer said

    Questioner: “You mentioned before that Richard Cheney was on top of this.”

    Lambert: “At the time, you may remember just almost the public hysteria surrounding these attacks…baking the mail before opening it… so I spent a lot of time briefing Cabinet level officials and the White House on developments in the investigation.”

    [He emphasizes that he is speaking only in his capacity as a private citizen.]

    “The White House was very intensely concerned about this, as was the Director…”

    “That sense of urgency stopped there.”

    Comment: That’s the same disconnect with FBI FOIA people. They have never treated these issues with any sense of urgency and have refused to expedite requests. Today my request for Notebook 4282 was something that had to be researched. Same answer weekly for months now.

    At Arnold & Porter, if in litigation you wanted to tell someone to screw off, you would tell them that you were taking their request under advisement. That effectively is what FBI’s Dave Hardy has done with the request for Notebook 4282.

  57. DXer said

    Question: Why hasn’t Senator Leahy requested a copy of Notebook 4282, the notebook with contemporaneous notes on the date of mailing and week before? It shows why he was in the B3 lab — and debunks the FBI’s claim he had no reason to be in the lab.

    Philip Baruth, in his biography of Senator Leahy, at page 215 writes:

    “Even as the Amerithrax task force laid its thick dossier of evidence before the public, even as a skeptical Tom Daschle came to accept the bureau’s conclusion as solid, Leahy remain convinced — and very publicly so — that the FBI had failed to ferret out the entire network behind the attacks. That alone was an explosive thought, and an even more explosive statement to enter into the public record.

    But after having been briefed in Vermont by FBI director Mueller on August 7, 2008, Leahy chose a packed Judiciary Committee oversight hearing nine days later to amplify the allegations he had first laid out for me the previous September.

    Voice low but steady, and pausing throughout for emphasis, Leahy alleged the existence of a full-blown criminal conspiracy, in language borrowed very deliberately from his days as a courtroom prosecutor. He had always had the instructs of a performer; he had spent long years honing his capacity for the sound bite. But behind this particular bite lay long years of resentment and anger and fear for his family. All of which gave five of Leahy’s sentences in particular a palpable force:

    “If [Ivins] is the one who sent the letter, I do not believe in way way, shape or manner that he is the only person involved in this attack on Congress and the American people. I do not believe that at all. I believe there are others involved either as accessories before or accessories after the fact. I believe there are others out there. I believe there are others who can be charged with murder.”

    Comment: Although Senator Leahy is the former prosecutor, not me, I don’t believe there is a statute of limitations for murder. A murder charge can be filed even decades after the alleged murder was committed. So it seems that Senator Leahy may be correct when he said that the case is not closed.

  58. DXer said

    Sessions orders Justice Dept. to end forensic science commission, suspend review policy

    By Spencer S. Hsu April 10 at 1:57 PM
    Attorney General Jeff Sessions will end a Justice Department partnership with independent scientists to raise forensic science standards and has suspended an expanded review of FBI testimony across several techniques that have come under question, saying a new strategy will be set by an in-house team of law enforcement advisers.

  59. DXer said

    “I write thrillers. My research showed me how easily terrorists can …”

    Washington Post-6 hours ago
    The biodefense sensors DHS deployed after the 2001 anthrax attacks don’t work reliably, and as Steven Brill reported in the Atlantic, nearly half of the thousands …

    My books have nothing on reality. Why haven’t we taken basic steps to protect ourselves from these kinds of attacks?

    By Matthew Quirk April 5


    The FBI has refused to spend the very modest amount to send a can-do office worker to go to retrieve a copy of the contemporaneous notes from the day of mailing from Dr. Ivins’ notebook.

    Why is that? Excuses vary — the dog ate it, we already provided it, I’ll will have to check (a fourth time) on the status…

    The FBI failed to expedite the request because there was no public interest, Dave Hardy’s FOIA operation said.

    It is a balmy Wednesday in Washington and Northern Virginia. The job isn’t getting done and office softball season beckons. If you showed me someone with responsibility for retrieving the notebook who stays in the office past that clock tick to closing time, I might be able to show you the pages from the notebook that help people get on the same page in the Amerithrax mystery.

    Is it because the pages did not support the FBI’s Ivins Theory? Did a few investigators and AUSAs not want to be blamed for Dr. Ivins’ suicide? (He killed himself when, after finding more semen-stained panties, they swabbed him for DNA — even though they already had it from a cup. It was a psychiatrist-approved attempt to pressurize him to the breaking point and it worked. It just worked a little too well and for the wrong reasons. The first time they found the panties (in November 2007), a doctor had to come and sedate him he was so uncontrollably upset.

    AUSA Lieber told me that I would never get anything more under FOIA.

    But my spies are much better than her spies, and I don’t quit at closing time. And it’s been a decade now.

    More importantly, Ken Dillon is going to be entitled to attorneys fees given FBI’s determined failure to cough up the Notebook pages.

  60. DXer said

    After Syria Gas Attack, World Awaits What Kind of Leader Trump Will Be
    April 5, 20178:35 AM ET

    President Trump issued a remarkable statement following a Syrian gas attack U.S. officials say was leveled by that country’s leader against his own people.

    Some 41 words of the short, 78-word statement blamed former President Obama for inaction.

    “These heinous actions by the Bashar al-Assad regime are a consequence of the past administration’s weakness and irresolution,” the statement read, in part. “President Obama said in 2012 that he would establish a ‘red line’ against the use of chemical weapons and then did nothing.”

    Obama declining to act when Syrian President Bashar al-Assad crossed the “red line” was arguably the low point of Obama’s presidency when it came to his handling of foreign policy.

    But it’s not like Trump called for action back then; just the opposite, as NPR’s Tamara Keith reports. And Trump is not calling for action now — even after an attack that killed dozens with horrific images emerging. The new American president is being tested on the world stage, as this attack comes just

    days after the White House said Assad’s ouster is not its priority. It also raises questions about Trump’s support for autocracies and authoritarian regimes — and whether he can lead the world with moral clarity and authority as U.S. presidents have done for decades.


    Both Trump and Obama have been guilty of inaction on Amerithrax. The action Trump should be calling for is a UN resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons and urging that there be an investigation of both the bombed sites, flight logs and related bases.

    His job in Amerithrax is a tad easier. Vice President Pence, who has a lot of credibility across party lines, could simply call up the FBI and ask that a copy of Notebook 4282 be produced showing his contemporaneous notes on the date of mailing. He could ask Kris Weart why the request wasn’t treated in an expeditious manner.

    Getting people on the page is more important than fingerpointing and line drawing. The worst possible result would occur upon misattribution.

  61. DXer said

    “The ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee had accused the FBI of withholding critical information from an investigation. Some Democrats had called for FBI Director James Comey to resign. And in one dramatic moment behind closed doors, frustrated lawmakers shouted at Comey in anger.”


    “Brower said he’s confident the FBI will be able to assuage lawmakers’ concerns.”


    “It’s all about relationships and it’s all about making sure that members and staff are getting what they need from us in terms of communication and information — that’s a huge part of the job, just sharing information.”


    “I understand the position [Comey] is in,” Rep. Pete King (R-N.Y.) said. “I want everything out there now — but on the other hand, I’m not the FBI director. I don’t know what other leads they could be following.”


    Like Director Mueller before him, Director Comey, in his testimony, seemed pretty impressive and well-spoken. It’s hard to judge these things, especially as an outsider. Then, of course, politics comes into play, unfortunately, in how one views what should be strictly a true crime or counterintelligence matter.

    But with Amerithrax serving an example, Mr. Brower wouldn’t be assuaging anyone’s concerns if he were to have to report that the dog ate Notebook 4282, which is FBI’s explanation.

    And this is in the context of DOJ SHREDDING the civil depositions of Patricia Fellows and Mara Linscott and then refusing to produce their emails (which they extensively relied upon in developing the FBI’s “Ivins Theory.”

  62. DXer said

    Trump taps Kushner to lead a SWAT team to fix government with business ideas, March 26, 2017

    What are Jared Kushner’s super powers?

    Instead of bringing in efficiency and data storage experts to take a look at the USG FOIA system, perhaps he could more narrowly consider a case study relating to the FBI’s withholding of FOIA documents relating to Amerithrax.

    Perhaps he could make a call to obtain Notebook 4282, which includes notes on the date that Bruce Ivins allegedly mailed the anthrax in Fall 2001. That day’s notes, along with some other entries the prior week, would show why Ivins was in the lab. The FBI’s entire “Ivins Theory” was premised on the claim that Ivins had no reason to be in the lab — and yet the FBI has withheld this notebook while spinning a highly selective cotton-candy Ivins Theory. (And that’s according to the former lead Amerithrax investigator, Richard L. Lambert).

    Mr. Kushner could shed light on the biggest criminal case in history by a simple phone call to Kris Weart’s bosses.

    Big ideas —and big, positive accomplishments — often start with baby steps. The new Administration certainly could use a big positive accomplishment.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    What are Mr. Kushner’s super powers?

    Justice League – Official Trailer 1 – Warner Bros. UK

    • DXer said

      “this new office will also be responsible for “modernizing the technology and data infrastructure of every federal department and agency”

      • DXer said

        The letters said “Death to Israel,” as I recall. With two parents involved in the Holocaust, Mr. Kushner may agree that it is worth obtaining this Notebook 4282 bearing on whether the Fall 2001 anthrax letter saying “Death to Israel” were sent by Al Qaeda rather than Dr. Ivins.

        Jared Kushner Will Just Fix Everything

        Bloomberg-6 hours ago
        Trump has already tasked Kushner with bringing peace to the Middle East (“If you can’t produce Middle East peace, nobody can,” Trump

  63. DXer said

    Upon learning the FBI had not made any progress, I emailed the FOIA specialist today in order to provide help in locating the pages:


    It is Dr. Dillon’s understanding that the FBI either lost or destroyed the notes showing what Dr. Ivins was doing at the time of the anthrax mailings when he was growing Ames anthrax. It has now been a couple of weeks and the notes were not located.

    Although you are the expert, my guess is that may have been indexed and filed either under Science (see SCI designation) in memo URL — or under Ivins. The entire Part 55 seems to relate to Ivins. (But I do not know anything about your indexing system).

    If you go to Part 55 of the FBI’s online Vault ( ),
    you can see the first reference at page 47 describing the contents.

    The memo explains that “Notebook 4282, IVINS/ __________, Pages 65 through 70, contain experiments conducted between 08/23/2001 and 09/18/2001, including the growth of Ba Ames. [redaction].

    (Ames was the strain used in the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings and so these pages are hugely important).

    Here is an image of a description of the notebook contained in the Vault at page 55 of Part 55.


    To locate the notes, perhaps one would go to 279A-WF-222936-SCI18-11. The memo was declassified on January 6, 2009. A redacted copy in produced in Part 55 of 59 parts of Amerithrax documents in the FBI’s FOIA Vault. ( )

    The memo explains that between April 10, 2007 and April 29, 2007, Special Agents reviewed laboratory notebooks of Dr. Ivins that had been collected pursuant to a Federal Grand Jury subpoena number 5429, issued in the District of Columbia on March 20, 2007. The memo attached an inventory of the laboratory notebooks reviewed with notations indicating: date received, date reviewed, date returned, reviewer, comments on the the notebook, and 1B numbers (if applicable).


    When you turn to the Excel spreadsheet, RIID NOTEBOOKS.xls, you see that the column indicating the date returned is redacted, as is the column indicating Location.
    But although much of the entry is redacted, it states “Copied several pages from time of mailings. See 1A GJ 1100.”

    Pages 65 through 70 contain contain experiments conducted between 8/23/2001 and 9/18/2001. That is, they explain what Ivins was doing in the lab at a time when the AUSA argued that he had no reason to be in the lab. That pages should be produced. The pages constitute contemporaneous record of what Ivins was doing in the lab. If the FBI destroyed or lost the notebook pages, it is important that the public know.”

  64. DXer said

    Glaring gaps: America needs a biodefense upgrade

    Daniel M. Gerstein
    Pages 86-91 | Published online: 16 Feb 2017

    When it comes to preparedness and response capabilities in the face of a large-scale biological incident, whether natural or human-made, American planning remains a work in progress. Recent legislation has called for a comprehensive biodefense strategy. If carried out in a thorough and systematic way, and properly funded, this will be a great improvement for the country and the world.

    Daniel M. Gerstein

    Daniel M. Gerstein, PhD works at the nonprofit, nonpartisan RAND Corporation and is an adjunct professor at American University, in Washington, where he teaches courses in bioterrorism and technology policy. He was the undersecretary (acting) and deputy undersecretary in the Science and Technology Directorate of the Department of Homeland Security from 2011 to 2014.

    Comment: Why is biodefense such a priority when it requires spending billions but it is not a priority warranting that the FBI pull a key document from its files showing contemporaneous notations made in Bruce Ivins on the date of mailing… the date that the FBI mistakenly claimed he had no reason to be in the lab?

  65. DXer said

    Trump Should “Drain the Swamp” at the FBI Before Terror Strikes …
    Accuracy In Media-2 hours ago

    “Playing down the threat of jihadist bioterrorism is something that U.S. intelligence agencies, led by the FBI, did in the case of the anthrax attacks. In 2010, the FBI officially blamed those attacks, which killed five Americans, on a dead man, U.S. Army scientist Bruce Ivins.

    The independent investigators, including historian Kenneth J. Dillon, a former Foreign Service officer and intelligence analyst, and attorney Ross Getman, an expert on al Qaeda’s biowarfare program, are asking President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence to reopen the anthrax mailings investigation. This could lead, Dillon argues, to exonerating an innocent man, identifying the real al-Qaeda perpetrator, and getting to the bottom of what went wrong in America’s premier federal law enforcement agency.

    Historian Dillon notes that Richard Lambert, who headed the FBI’s anthrax investigation from 2002 to 2006, filed suit in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Tennessee against Attorney General Eric Holder et al. for retaliating against him for his whistleblowing about the FBI’s handling of the case. In his lawsuit, he criticizes the FBI’s efforts to railroad the prosecution of Ivins in the face of daunting exculpatory evidence.

    When we asked him for an interview, Lambert declined, saying “All of the information the Justice Department is withholding from the American people is either restricted from disclosure by the Privacy Act, governed by non-disclosure, non-disparagement clauses in other settlement agreements, or classified as national security information. The only avenue for remedying the government’s wealth of material omissions in this case would be through a congressional inquiry. Although bills have been introduced in the past to establish such an inquiry committee, they never became law.”


    Trump Should “Drain the Swamp” at the FBI Before Terror Strikes …
    Accuracy In Media-2 hours ago
    Playing down the threat of jihadist bioterrorism is something that U.S. intelligence agencies, led by the FBI, did in the case of the anthrax attacks …

    by Cliff Kincaid on February 27, 2017

    Bill Gates was recently quoted as saying that bioterrorism could kill more people than nuclear war, but that Western governments are not ready to deal with it. The situation may be worse than he thinks. What stories about his remarks at the Munich Security Conference did not explain is that the FBI has still failed to resolve the question of who carried out the post-9/11 anthrax attacks on America.

    Some of the evidence points to al Qaeda, and there are reports that other Islamic terrorist groups, such as ISIS, are now developing biological weapons.

    For his part, President Donald Trump is currently engaged in a feud with the FBI over “illegal leaks” that he wants investigated and stopped.

    Trump has a right to be concerned, even alarmed. And he certainly has a right to know the full extent of the corruption that ran rampant in the Bureau during its investigation of the post-9/11 anthrax attacks, known as Amerithrax. The gross mishandling of the case serves as an example of how not to conduct a national security investigation involving weapons of mass destruction. It is also a warning that something similar—or perhaps more catastrophic—could happen again unless changes are made at the FBI involving monitoring the activities of jihadist groups on American soil.

    We noted at the time that the anthrax letters, which were mailed to American media organizations and two senators, featured the phrases “Death to America,” “Death to Israel,” and “Allah is God.” These were indications that an Islamic extremist had written them. But the FBI dismissed these obvious leads as a diversion intended to falsely blame radical Islam and focus attention away from the real perpetrator, supposedly a right-winger with a military background.

    In the end, the FBI says “The Amerithrax Task Force—which consisted of roughly 25 to 30 full-time investigators from the FBI, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and other law enforcement agencies, as well as federal prosecutors from the District of Columbia and the Justice Department’s Counterterrorism Section—expended hundreds of thousands of investigator work hours on this case. Their efforts involved more than 10,000 witness interviews on six different continents, the execution of 80 searches, and the recovery of more than 6,000 items of potential evidence during the course of the investigation. The case involved the issuance of more than 5,750 grand jury subpoenas and the collection of 5,730 environmental samples from 60 site locations. In addition, new scientific methods were developed that ultimately led to the break in the case—methods that could have a far-reaching impact on future investigations.”

    Still, independent experts believe the FBI did not solve the case.

    While experts believe that al Qaeda was behind the attacks, a story about Bill Gates’ sensational warning about bioterrorism in the British Guardian reported that, “US and UK intelligence agencies have said that Islamic State has been trying to develop biological weapons at its bases in Syria and Iraq.” The publication said, however, that these intelligence agencies “have played down the threat, saying that the terrorists would need people with the necessary skills, good laboratories and a relatively calm environment free from the confusion and chaos of conflict zones.”

    Playing down the threat of jihadist bioterrorism is something that U.S. intelligence agencies, led by the FBI, did in the case of the anthrax attacks. In 2010, the FBI officially blamed those attacks, which killed five Americans, on a dead man, U.S. Army scientist Bruce Ivins.

    The independent investigators, including historian Kenneth J. Dillon, a former Foreign Service officer and intelligence analyst, and attorney Ross Getman, an expert on al Qaeda’s biowarfare program, are asking President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence to reopen the anthrax mailings investigation. This could lead, Dillon argues, to exonerating an innocent man, identifying the real al-Qaeda perpetrator, and getting to the bottom of what went wrong in America’s premier federal law enforcement agency.

    In 2002, then-Rep. Pence wrote a letter asking why international links weren’t being probed in the anthrax mailings.

    From the start of the FBI’s inquiry, the Bureau seemed determined to eliminate al Qaeda as a source of the attacks. Former government scientist Dr. Stephen Hatfill’s career was destroyed by the FBI as they sought to frame him. Eventually, the Department of Justice paid Hatfill a multi-million dollar settlement in recognition of the fact that they had persecuted an innocent man.

    At the time, Hatfill spoke to an Accuracy in Media conference, focusing on how American reporters were assisting the FBI campaign against him. For example, Pulitzer Prize-winning liberal columnist Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times wrote five columns and thousands of words urging FBI scrutiny of the scientist.

    After paying Hatfill a financial settlement, the FBI picked on another alleged villain, Dr. Bruce Ivins, and hounded him until he committed suicide. Ivins had worked at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland.

    Federal authorities conceded that al Qaeda planned that its next wave of terrorism after the 9/11 attacks was to be chemical or biological attacks. Medical reports suggested that two of the 9/11 hijackers may have come into contact with anthrax. Yet the FBI consistently diverted attention away from al Qaeda.

    There was a chance to review the case in 2010, when bipartisan congressional support was growing for an examination of the FBI’s gross mishandling of the post-9/11 anthrax attacks. But President Barack Obama’s representatives told Congress that the FBI’s conduct shouldn’t be scrutinized.

    Historian Dillon notes that Richard Lambert, who headed the FBI’s anthrax investigation from 2002 to 2006, filed suit in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Tennessee against Attorney General Eric Holder et al. for retaliating against him for his whistleblowing about the FBI’s handling of the case. In his lawsuit, he criticizes the FBI’s efforts to railroad the prosecution of Ivins in the face of daunting exculpatory evidence.

    When we asked him for an interview, Lambert declined, saying “All of the information the Justice Department is withholding from the American people is either restricted from disclosure by the Privacy Act, governed by non-disclosure, non-disparagement clauses in other settlement agreements, or classified as national security information. The only avenue for remedying the government’s wealth of material omissions in this case would be through a congressional inquiry. Although bills have been introduced in the past to establish such an inquiry committee, they never became law.”

    The independent investigators believe that Freedom of Information Act requests that are now being stonewalled by the FBI could lead to major breakthroughs and the clearing of Ivins if the FBI is ordered by the Trump administration to cooperate.

    In his remarks on possible bioterrorism, Bill Gates said, “Imagine if I told you that somewhere in this world, there’s a weapon that exists—or that could emerge—capable of killing tens of thousands, or millions, of people, bringing economies to a standstill, and throwing nations into chaos. You would say that we need to do everything possible to gather intelligence and develop effective countermeasures to reduce the threat.”

    Such a weapon could be in the hands of radical Islamic extremists. But if the FBI still hasn’t solved the matter of the post-9/11 anthrax attacks, what assurance do we have that the Bureau could prevent or solve the next devastating wave of biological attacks?

    President Trump and Vice President Pence have every reason in the world to be concerned about what is happening at the FBI. They could, and should, reopen the anthrax investigation. It would be an opportunity to expose and remove the corruption that may remain in the Bureau and makes us vulnerable to another biological terrorist attack.

  66. DXer said

    Cliff Kincaid:

    Can you help get Vice President Pence to focus on the FBI’s failure to produce Notebook 4282 so as to help people get on the same page in connection with the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings?

    The notebook has an entry on the date of the first mailing of anthrax in 2001 that murdered 5 people. I am informed and believe that it also has entries on 9/14/2001 and 9/15/2001, the date that the FBI theorized Ivins prepared the anthrax.

    The FBI claims Ivins had no legitimate reason to be in the lab. In contrast, I think the notebook will evidence a virulence study that shows Ivins was responsible for the nighttime and weekend animal checks. (According to lab tech Mara Linscott, such checks were a one-person job and took a couple hours, such as what was observed).

    I have suggested instead that an Al Qaeda operative Adnan El-Shukrijumah from Florida was responsible — was the mailer. He was an associate of Mohamed Atta who met with Atta in a Sarasota residence. Adnan told his mother on or about September 11, 2001 that he was coming back into the country. Adnan was staying with Al Qaeda’s #3 KSM. KSM was getting briefed by Al Qaeda’s lab director Yazid Sufaat, who I have interviewed. Sufaat does not deny responsibility for the anthrax mailings and instead pled the Fifth.
    The Army and FBI has not treated the issue with the expedition warranted under the FOIPA statute.

    Sometimes, the FBI closes a case upon lack of evidence when actually the problem is that the evidence was available but not efficiently obtained.

    Atta Was Coordinating With Jdey’s Associate Al-Hazmi, First In Fort Lee, NJ In Late August 2001 And Then In Laurel, MD in September 2001 ; Jdey’s Associate Nawaf Al-Hazmi Had Been At The Planning Meeting At Yazid Sufaat’s Kuala Lumpur Condo With Anthrax Planner Hambali And Anthrax Lab Director Yazid Sufaat And Yet The FBI Never Told The Public That Jdey Had Been Detained Along With Moussaoui In August 2001 (With Biology Textbooks) And Then Released
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 25, 2012

    DXer says … Adnan El-Shukrijumah, son of Saudi missionary, was the Fall 2001 anthrax mailer and FBI is withholding relevant documents
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 12, 2016

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense

    • DXer said

      FOIA Requestor Dr. Dillon is an academic and publisher. He is a former intelligence analyst associated with the US State Department. In testing the FBI’s theory that Dr. Ivins had no reason to be in the lab, he has sought Lab Notebook 4282 which contains contemporaneous handwritten notes about one of the many experiments he was working on (at pages 65-70). The pages were first obtained by the FBI in 2003 and put in Part 1A of an FBI 302 report. See 1A GJ 1100.

      In response to Dillon’s FOIA request for information relating to Ivins’ activities in Sep.-Oct. 2001, the FBI initially falsely claimed that it had uploaded the information (such as Notebook 4282) to the FBI’s “Vault”
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 15, 2015

      The original was then seized again in 2007 and not returned. An FBI agent in an excel spreadsheet that has been produced explains that the notebook has entries from the time of the mailings. (See Part 55 of 59 of Amerithrax documents in the FBI’s “Vault.”) The FBI and DOJ have failed to produce the notebook despite requests by both me and Dr. Dillon. Specifically, there are notations from September 14, 15 and from September 18, 2001, the date of the first mailing.

      The Army has sought the return of the notebooks taken by Dr. Ivins for years — and has uploaded all those that it has and that eventually were returned by the FBI. Notebook 4282, however, still has not been returned. According to USMRMC FOIA Officer Sandra Rogers, the FBI still has not returned Notebooks 4037, 4010 and 4282, preventing the Army from uploading them in USAMRMC’s excellent reading room that was created containing my FOIA requests directed to USAMRIID.

      I have uploaded the FBI discussing the documents relating to Notebook 4282 that is still subject of the DOJ and FBI’s game of hide-the-ball at the hyperlinks above. I forwarded them to Attorney Matt Hurd. Attorney Hurd, who has been very gracious, has expressed a willingness to have an attorney reconsider the denial. But that just lead to an attorney doing the same ineffectual searches in the decades-old database being used of words like “Notebook” “USMRMC.” Instead, Attorney Hurd should have picked up the phone and call FOIA analyst Meredith Savary or former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert or someone currently at the FBI who would know and ask where to find the documents. To claim that the dog ate the lab pages in Dr. Ivins’ notebook on the date of mailing of anthrax that killed 5 people is unacceptable. I am advised by FOIA Officer Ms. Rogers that the Notebook 4282 that the FBI has not returned is titled “Anthrax.”

      Now upon the request being reopened, Kris Weart is the FBI Specialist needs to pick up the phone and run down the pages from the Notebook.

      Adnan El-Shukrijumah is still at large.

      DXer says: Adnan El-Shukrijumah is the anthrax mailer … on or about 9/13/2001, he phoned from KSM’s house to tell his mom he was coming to the US
      Posted on June 6, 2014

      Politics has no role in true crime or intelligence analysis. Neither does a CYA mentality and non-compliance with the FOIA statute.

  67. DXer said

    The FBI’s “Ivins Theory” was premised on the notion that someone surreptitiously or accidentally acquiring or being provided virulent Ames would sign it out — or that records would confirm he was given it.

    Is there anything that the government has done in the biodefense field — or simple logic or the practical realities — that would have made the premise a sound one?

    FEMA countererrorism training center suspected lethal toxin mix-up …
    USA TODAY‎ – 13 hours ago

    Officials at a federal training facility that mistakenly exposed thousands of first responders to deadly ricin toxin were worried five years ago that their vendor had shipped the wrong type of powder, records obtained by USA TODAY show.

    The vial of powder contained ricin “greater than 90% pure,” according to its certificate of analysis. The certificate also warned: “Extremely toxic! … May be lethal if injected, inhaled, or ingested – use caution when handling.” Ricin, made from castor beans, is regulated as a potential bioterror agent. There is no antidote for ricin poisoning.

    But the vendor assured staff at the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Center for Domestic Preparedness that the powder was a safer, inactivated form of the poison, according to a December 2011 email.

    So FEMA went ahead and used the powder in its training programs – and for five years kept buying more of it for use in classes — despite the vials continuing to arrive with certificates declaring that the powder was lethal, nearly pure ricin, the records show.

    FEMA has blamed its vendor for the mix-up – the latest known high-profile mishandling of bioterror pathogens and toxins by a federal agency. But the newly released documents raise questions about why FEMA didn’t catch the problem sooner.

    The agency and the Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General are investigating the incident, which was revealed last fall by The Anniston Star.

    “The FEMA review and OIG investigation are ongoing,” the agency said in a statement to USA TODAY. FEMA said it is taking actions improve how it procures and verifies biological materials in the future. In the meantime, since Nov. 8, the agency has suspended use of biological and chemical agents in training programs at its Center for Domestic Preparedness facility in Anniston, Ala., until sometime in March.

    FEMA has refused to identify its vendor and blacked out the vendor’s name from the newly-released documents. USA TODAY has previously reported it was Toxin Technology in Sarasota, Fla. Company officials could not be reached Monday, but have previously said all of its ricin products were accurately labeled as “RCA60” — a scientific name for the whole ricin toxin, which can be deadly.

    Nearly 10,000 firefighters, paramedics and other responders participated in simulated bioterrorism response sessions where the deadly form of ricin was used in detection equipment classes instead of the safer form that FEMA thought it had purchased. All of the trainees wore protective equipment and nobody was sickened, FEMA has said.

    The FEMA mistakes follow several other high-profile safety lapses at federal biodefense facilities that have prompted ongoing congressional investigations. In 2015, the Pentagon discovered that an Army lab had been mistakenly shipping specimens of live anthrax – labeled as killed – to labs and defense contractors around the world for a decade. In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention potentially exposed workers to live anthrax and the Ebola virus.

    The newly released documents indicate that the FEMA mix-up began with an email exchange in December 2011 – after the training center had made some initial purchases of what it thought was the inactivated form of ricin, called “chain A” because it contained only one of the two parts of the whole ricin toxin.

    “Can you please confirm that you shipped Ricin chain A and not Ricin. The question has arose that there is a possibility we could have received Ricin instead of the chain A,” a training center employee wrote to the vendor that supplied the powder in a Dec. 6, 2011 email. FEMA blacked out the employee’s name from the records.

    The next morning, a representative from the supply company replied: “The only Ricin we have is chain A. So yes, the product we shipped you is Ricin chain A.” The company and employee’s name were also redacted.

    An October 31, 2011 invoice sent by the company to the training center showed that the item shipped was catalog item “RCA-1” and “LOT#20510RCA” and it was described as “Ricin Toxin (RCA 60).” RCA60 is the scientific name for the lethal whole ricin toxin. And the “Certificate of Analysis” for the specific lot that was shipped also stated that it was Ricin (RCA60) “greater than 90% pure” and it warned that it was extremely toxic.

    Over the next five years, the records show that FEMA placed several more orders with the company that indicate the training center intended to buy inactivated, chain A ricin. FEMA repeatedly submitted “Intended Use Declaration” forms to the vendor that state the agency was requesting “Ricin chain A” and not the more highly regulated whole toxin.

    Yet repeatedly over the years, the company sent back to FEMA invoices and certificates of analyses that said the vials being shipped were “RCA60” — the lethal form of ricin, the records show. Despite the conflicting documentation coming in from the vendor, when the vials would arrive at the Alabama training center, FEMA staff would log the product received as Ricin Chain A – the inactivated form.

    FEMA has said the ricin mix-up was discovered in November after training center staff “recognized a discrepancy in the documentation related to the type of ricin being provided.”

    According to the newly released records, a training center staffer was seeking an updated price quote in October 2016 to purchase the vendor’s catalog item “RCA-1” and during the discussions had specified that the center wanted just the “chain A” form of ricin. The request raised concerns from a worker at the supply company, who in an email told the FEMA worker to note “that RCA-1 is both ‘chain A & B. [Redacted] mentioned that you were referring to ‘chain A’ only?”

    Unsaid in the email is that when both chains are present, the ricin is a whole toxin – and capable of being fully lethal, unlike the partial toxin FEMA thought it had been ordering.

    In a statement to USA TODAY, FEMA said the supply firm told the training center biologist requesting the price quote that the company only sold ricin holotoxin. “This response was the opposite from what the vendor had originally told (the training center) in 2011 (that they only sold ricin A-chain).”

  68. DXer said

    Bill Gates: Bioterrorism could kill more than nuclear war — but no no one is ready to deal with it. Washington Post‎ – 46 minutes ago

    Gates, who founded the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with his wife in 2000, has been worrying about the world’s ability to stop a deadly …


    If the FBI cannot even retrieve basic documents from their files, do you think they are going to be able to stop a planned massive attack?

    It’s a lot easier to find a document in your own files than it is to find the relevant proof relating to a clandestine bioweapons program.

    Moreover, the FBI’s failure to provide expedited treatment of Dillon’s requests was, on its face, misfeasant.

    • DXer said

      Bioterrorists a bigger threat than nuclear weapons, warns Gates
      Ben Farmer in Munich

      the defence and security establishment “have not been following biology and I’m here to bring them a little bit of bad news”.

      “With nuclear weapons you’d think you would probably stop after killing 100 million. Smallpox won’t stop. Because the population is naive, there are no real preparations. That, if it got out and spread, would kill a larger number.”

    • DXer said

      Bill Gates Warns of an Intentional Biological Attack

      By Zoe McAlister February 19, 2017

      Microsoft founder estimates a 30 million people could die in a year due to a deadly virus attack that could happen within the next 15 years.

      Gates’ speech at the Munich conference came as no surprise. In almost every public appearance in the last decade, he voiced a concern about bio-terrorism.


      I rhink Mr. Gates, to his great credit, is more focused on the risk of natural epidemics. Although he definitely touches on the threat of intentional bioterrorism, his main emphasis remains natural epidemics. See Business Insider piece he authored.

      Personally, I think jihadists would not choose to use a bioweapon that could blow back on them. Many muslim countries have poor health systems and might be disproportionately affected.

      And, who knows … if they have attempted to weaponize, for example, the plague, maybe the reports are true that it did precisely that and wiped out the camp.

      (That’s not to say that I don’t keep a pair of rowboat oars locked in my car).

      If his emphasis, indeed, was intentional bioterrorism, then surely someone with his influence could have obtained Notebook 4282 so as to get people on the same page with the FBI’s controversial Ivins theory.

      But I can’t help but like and admire any bridge player who has the realistic means of making a bid to save millions.

  69. Lew Weinstein said

    Progress? Your persistence is remarkable.

    • DXer said

      I spoke with Kris Weart this morning at the FBI. Whether there is progress will be up to him.

    • DXer said

      And just to clarify, for a long while, the FOIA requests are solely due to the persistence of former intelligence analysis, Dr. Dillon. Another request by Dr. Dillon that is pending and long overdue is his request for the lengthy memo written by former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard L. Lambert. The delay associated with that request illustrates how broken FOIA is at the FBI. If government were a business, it would have not have survived the marketplace because it is too inefficient, too slow in getting tasks done.

  70. DXer said

    I just got off the phone with the FBI’s Kris Weart. He was patient as I sought to explain, in substance:

    To locate the notes, one would go to 279A-WF-222936-SCI18-11. The memo was declassified on January 6, 2009. A redacted copy in produced in Part 55 of 59 parts of Amerithrax documents in the FBI’s FOIA Vault. ( )

    The memo explains that between April 10, 2007 and April 29, 2007, Special Agents reviewed laboratory notebooks of Dr. Ivins that had been collected pursuant to a Federal Grand Jury subpoena number 5429, issued in the District of Columbia on March 20, 2007. The memo attached an inventory of the laboratory notebooks reviewed with notations indicating: date received, date reviewed, date returned, reviewer, comments on the the notebook, and 1B numbers (if applicable).

    *************The memo explains that “Notebook 4282, IVINS/ __________, Pages 65 through 70, contain experiments conducted between 08/23/2001 and 09/18/2001, including the growth of Ba Ames. [redaction]**************

    When you turn to the Excel spreadsheet, RIID NOTEBOOKS.xls, you see that the column indicating the date returned is redacted, as is the column indicating Location.
    But although much of the entry is redacted, it states “Copied several pages from time of mailings. See 1A GJ 1100.”

    Disclosure of the fact that the notebook was not returned in April 2007 along with others is hidden by the redaction.

    All the FBI need do to comply with the statute is to go 1A GJ 1100 and provide those pages. Should it really be so hard to keep track of Dr. Ivins’ contemporaneous notes at the time of mailing — which may either alibi him or prove his guilt?

    ************(The FBI’s entire Ivins Theory was predicated on him having no reason to be in the lab and so notes showing otherwise would destroy an Ivins Theory).*************

    Dr. Ivins complained bitterly that the FBI had not returned key notebooks that he needed to reconstruct his time.

    If the OGIS had been effective, an explanation of the meaning 1A GJ 1100 would have been provided — and an explanation why those pages could not now be produced.

    Is it because they were destroyed? Or because the FOIA system at DOJ is broken and the new Administration needs to bring in experts experienced with data storage and data retrieval.

    • DXer said

      The Post’s View Opinion
      When nature is a terrorist

      Mr. Gates insisted that world leaders think differently about public health and national security. They should listen.

      In 2001, bioterrorism was suddenly a very real security problem. After the anthrax attacks that year, the United States spent billions of dollars to develop and stockpile medical countermeasures and build warning systems. But in the years that followed, the villain that appeared to cause death and illness was not a bioterrorist, but Mother Nature….

      “Imagine if I told you that somewhere in this world, there’s a weapon that exists — or that could emerge — capable of killing tens of thousands, or millions, of people, bringing economies to a standstill and throwing nations into chaos,” Mr. Gates said. “You would say that we need to do everything possible to gather intelligence and develop effective countermeasures to reduce the threat. That is the situation we face today with biological threats. We may not know if that weapon is man-made or a product of nature. But one thing we can be almost certain of. A highly lethal global pandemic will occur in our lifetimes.”


      I had great fun yesterday tracking down my IPhone (see police report), which had an adventure like the cat that somehow crawls into the crevice of someone else’s car (formerly associated with law enforcement). There was an early morning stakeout by me and my sidekick, a high-speed chase using a geolocator, and then some nice policemen I had enlisted confronted the individual with the fact that my phone was secreted in his car parked outside the criminal courthouse. My IT Department caused it to beep as they approached, confirming or debunking his explanation, depending on one’s point of view. (It was slid down into the crevice holding his windshield wipers.)

      My IPhone had valuable brainstormed possible interpretations of clues in a treasure hunt sponsored by by the local newspaper. Things are heating up — apart from the nearly 70 degree weather.

      But if the FBI is as bad at finding out things as they are at retrieving notebook pages retrieved in their own files, don’t expect Bill Gates’ efforts to save those millions to be successful.

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