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

* 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

unnamed-30

Advertisements

26 Responses to “* 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

    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
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. DXer said

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

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/sessions-orders-justice-dept-to-end-forensic-science-commission-suspend-review-policy/2017/04/10/2dada0ca-1c96-11e7-9887-1a5314b56a08_story.html?utm_term=.fedb1c1e1720

    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.

  5. 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

    Comment:

    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.

  6. 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.

    Comment:

    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.

  7. 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.”

    Comment:

    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.”

  8. DXer said

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

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-taps-kushner-to-lead-a-swat-team-to-fix-government-with-business-ideas/2017/03/26/9714a8b6-1254-11e7-ada0-1489b735b3a3_story.html

    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
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    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”

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/jared-kushner-everything-czar_us_58d95499e4b02a2eaab6664f

      • 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

  9. 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:

    “Kris,

    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 ( https://vault.fbi.gov/Amerithrax/amerithrax-part-55-of/view ),
    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.

    RIID NOTEBOOKS.xls

    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. ( https://vault.fbi.gov/Amerithrax/amerithrax-part-55-of/view )

    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).

    [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.”

    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.”

  10. DXer said

    Glaring gaps: America needs a biodefense upgrade

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

    ABSTRACT
    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.

    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/00963402.2017.1288438

    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?

  11. 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 …

    http://www.aim.org/aim-column/trump-should-drain-the-swamp-at-the-fbi-before-terror-strikes-again/

    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.

  12. 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
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/01/25/atta-was-coordinating-with-jdeys-associate-al-hazmi-first-in-fort-lee-nj-in-late-august-2001-and-then-in-laurel-md-in-september-2001-jdeys-associate-nawaf-al-hazmi-had-been-at-the-planning/

    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
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2016/05/12/dxer-says-adnan-el-shukrijumah-son-of-saudi-missionary-was-the-fall-2001-anthrax-mailer-and-fbi-is-withholding-relevant-documents/

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

    • 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
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2015/10/15/in-response-to-dillons-foia-request-for-information-relating-to-ivins-activities-in-sep-oct-2001-the-fbi-falsely-claimed-that-it-had-uploaded-the-information-such-as-notebook-4282-to-the-f/

      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.
      http://mrmc.amedd.army.mil/index.cfm?pageid=foia_reading_room.overview

      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
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2014/06/06/dxer-adnan-el-shukrijumah-is-the-anthrax-mailer-on-9132001-he-phoned-from-ksms-house-to-tell-his-mom-he-was-coming-to-the-us/

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

  13. 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).”

  14. 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 …
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/02/18/bill-gates-bioterrorism-could-kill-more-than-nuclear-war-but-no-one-is-ready-to-deal-with-it/

    Comment:

    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
      PUBLISHED
      18/02/2017
      http://www.independent.ie/world-news/europe/bioterrorists-a-bigger-threat-than-nuclear-weapons-warns-gates-35461383.html

      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.

      https://newswire.net/newsroom/news/00095282-bill-gates-warns-of-an-intentional-biological-attack.html

      Comment:

      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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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. ( https://vault.fbi.gov/Amerithrax/amerithrax-part-55-of/view )

    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).

    [redaction]
    *************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

      https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/when-nature-is-a-terrorist/2017/02/23/57bed82e-f942-11e6-bf01-d47f8cf9b643_story.html

      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.”

      Comment:

      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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: