WASHINGTON - August 3 -
- SIBEL EDMONDS, email@example.com, www.commondreams.org/views04/0802-06.htm
A former FBI translator and whistleblower, Edmonds has written a "Public Letter to 9/11 Commission Chairman from FBI Whistleblower." In it, she states: "Unfortunately, I find your report seriously flawed in its failure to address serious intelligence issues that I am aware of, which have been confirmed, and which as a witness to the commission, I made you aware of. Thus, I must assume that other serious issues that I am not aware of were in the same manner omitted from your report. These omissions cast doubt on the validity of your report and therefore on its conclusions and recommendations. Considering what is at stake, our national security, we are entitled to demand answers to unanswered questions, and to ask for clarification of issues that were ignored and/or omitted from the report."
According to the New York Times, a report by the Justice Department's inspector general concluded that the allegations by Edmonds "were at least a contributing factor in why the FBI terminated her services." The Times reported: "The [Justice] Department has blocked her from testifying in a lawsuit brought by families of Sept. 11 victims, it has retroactively classified briefings Congressional officials were given in 2002, and it has classified the inspector general's entire report on its investigation into her case." [See: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/29/politics/29fbi.final.html]
- RAY McGOVERN, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.tompaine.com/articles/911_commission_chimera.php
McGovern is a 27-year veteran of the CIA. He recently wrote the article "9/11 Commission Chimera." Regarding the 9/11 Commission's recommendation of having a new "intelligence czar," McGovern said: "Did commission staff not uncover [former CIA head Stansfield] Turner's thoughtful op-ed in the Christian Science Monitor of May 28, 2002, in which he emphasized that: 'With a stroke of the pen tomorrow, the president could make the Director of Central Intelligence responsible for ensuring coordination and give him/her the authority to do so ... and thus move a good distance toward rectifying the failure last summer to deduce what would happen on Sept. 11.'"
McGovern added: "The families pressed heroically for a nonpartisan, independent investigation; what they got was a bipolar panel, thoroughly partisan at each pole, who nonetheless grew to like one another and decided to settle for the lowest common denominator and hold no one accountable.... Gradually the 9/11 families will begin to realize that treating merely the symptoms of terrorism is quixotic; that the soil and roots of terrorism must be dug and uncovered; that, as the 9/11 report acknowledges in a very subdued way, it is Washington's strong and uncritical bias toward Israel and its invasion of Iraq that have fueled Al Qaeda; that our current approach to defeating terrorism by trying to kill all the terrorists is akin to trying to eradicate malaria by shooting as many mosquitoes as possible; that moving the intelligence director's chair one deck higher on the Titanic holds no promise." Along with other members of the steering group for Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity, McGovern co-authored the memo "Cooking Intelligence for War" before the invasion of Iraq.
- ROBERT DREYFUSS, email@example.com, www.tompaine.com/articles/sins_of_commission.php
Author of the recent article "Sins Of Commission," Dreyfuss said today: "The politicians don't want to be accused of dragging their heels when it comes to implementing all 567 pages, in case there is a pre-election terrorist incident.... Just as the Patriot Act knocked down the 'wall' between the CIA and the FBI, making it far easier to conduct domestic spying operations against U.S. citizens not suspected of a crime, the [commission recommendations] would concentrate the power to carry out domestic spying in an all-powerful nexus -- located in the White House.... Such changes in our foreign and domestic spying capabilities cannot, and should not, even be considered in the months before a presidential election, with each party competing with the other to show how tough on terrorism they are."
Dreyfuss added: "Nowhere in the report does it conclude that the attack on Iraq had nothing to do with the so-called War on Terrorism. And nowhere does the commission say point-blank that Iraq was innocent of ties of Al Qaeda.... What caused bin Ladenism? According to the commission, it was 'social and economic malaise.' Then, it says, 'A decade of conflict in Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989 gave Islamist extremists a rallying point and training field.... Young Muslims from around the world flocked to Afghanistan to join as volunteers in what was seen as a "holy war" -- jihad -- against an invader.' That's it. No mention of the CIA's role in backing Osama bin Laden and his crew. No mention of the CIA, working with Egypt and Saudi Arabia, in recruiting the jihadists."