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Report of the 9/11 Commission

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Author Topic: Report of the 9/11 Commission  (Read 5332 times)
Drifter
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« Reply #1335 on: September 08, 2009, 12:10:49 am »

74. Intelligence report, unsuccessful Bin Ladin probes for contact with Iraq, July 24, 1998; Intelligence report, Saddam Hussein's efforts to repair relations with Saudi government, 2001.

75. Intelligence report, Iraq approach to Bin Ladin, Mar. 16, 1999.

76. CIA analytic report,"Ansar al-Islam:Al Qa'ida's Ally in Northeastern Iraq," CTC 2003-40011CX, Feb. 1, 2003. See also DIA analytic report,"Special Analysis: Iraq's Inconclusive Ties to Al-Qaida," July 31, 2002; CIA analytic report,"Old School Ties," Mar. 10, 2003.We have seen other intelligence reports at the CIA about 1999 con-tacts.They are consistent with the conclusions we provide in the text, and their reliability is uncertain. Although there have been suggestions of contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda regarding chemical weapons and explosives training, the most detailed information alleging such ties came from an al Qaeda operative who recanted much of his original information. Intelligence report, interrogation of al Qaeda operative, Feb. 14, 2004.Two senior Bin Ladin associates have adamantly denied that any such ties existed between al Qaeda and Iraq. Intelligence reports, interrogations of KSM and Zubaydah, 2003 (cited in CIA letter, response to Douglas Feith memorandum,"Requested Modifications to 'Summary of Body of Intelligence Reporting on Iraq-al Qaida Contacts (1990-2003),'" Dec. 10, 2003, p. 5).

77. On Gulf-based donors to Bin Ladin, see Frank G. and Mary S. briefing (July 15, 2003); CIA analytic report, "Saudi-Based Financial Support for Terrorist Organizations," CTC 2002-40117CH, Nov. 14, 2002. On the relationship between Bin Ladin and Omar, see Intelligence report, interrogation of detainee, Feb. 20, 2002. On relations between the Arabs in Afghanistan and the Taliban, see ibid. On financial relations, see CIA analytic report, "Ariana Afghan Airlines: Assets and Activities," OTI IR 1999-170CX, July 29, 1999; CIA, NID,"Near East: UAE: Imposition of Sanctions Could Disrupt Bin Ladin's Finances," June 9, 1999.
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« Reply #1336 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:07 am »

78. CIA analytic report,"Afghanistan: An Incubator for International Terrorism," CTC 01-40004, Mar. 27, 2001; CIA analytic report, "Al-Qa'ida Still Well Positioned to Recruit Terrorists," July 1, 2002, p. 1.

79.The number of actual al Qaeda members seems to have been relatively small during the period before 9/11, although estimates vary considerably, from the low hundreds to as many as 5,000. For the low hundreds, see Intelligence report, interrogation of KSM, Dec. 3, 2003. For 5,000, see Intelligence report, interrogation of Khallad, Nov. 26, 2003. Khallad added that because pledging bayat was secret, the number of al Qaeda members can only be speculative. On al Qaeda's training and indoctrination, see minutes from the August 1988 meeting leading to the official formation of al Qaeda, cited in Government's Evidentiary Proffer Supporting the Admissibility of Coconspirator Statements, United States v.Arnaout, Jan. 6, 2003, p. 36.
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« Reply #1337 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:21 am »

80. By 1996, al Qaeda apparently had established cooperative relationships with at least 20 Sunni Islamic extremist groups in the Middle East, South Asia, Africa, and East Asia, as well as with elements of the Saudi opposition. See CIA analytic report, "Old School Ties," Mar. 10, 2003, p. 3. On ties with Southeast Asia and the Malaysian-Indonesian JI, see, e.g., Intelligence report, interrogation of Hambali, Sept. 5, 2003. On Pakistani militant ties to Bin Ladin, see CIA analytic report,"Terrorism: Extremists Planning Attacks Against US Interests in Pakistan," Nov. 29, 2001, p. 1 and appendix B; see also Gunaratna, Inside Al Qaeda, pp. 169-171, 199; Benjamin and Simon, Age of Sacred Terror, pp. 286-287. On Europe, see, e.g., trial testimony of Fadl, United States v. bin Laden, Feb. 6, 2001 (transcript pp. 301, 315-316), Feb. 7, 2001 (transcript p. 368). On London, see, e.g., Intelligence report, interrogation of detainee, Sept. 17, 1997. On Balkans, see Government's Evidentiary Proffer Supporting the Admissibility of Co-Conspira-tor Statements, United States v.Arnaout, Jan. 6, 2003; Kohlmann, Al-Qaida's Jihad in Europe.

81. See, e.g.,"Tareekh Usama" and "Tareekh al Musadat" (described in note 25). See also FBI report of investigation, interviews of Mohammad Rashed Daoud al 'Owhali,Aug. 22-25, 1998; FBI report of investigation, interview of Nasser Ahmad Nasser al Bahri, Oct. 3, 2001, p. 8.
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« Reply #1338 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:29 am »

82.The merger was de facto complete by February 1998, although the formal "contract" would not be signed until June 2001. See Intelligence report, Incorporation of Zawahiri's Organization into Bin Ladin's Al-Qa'ida, and Recent [1998] Activities of Egyptian Associates of Al-Qa'ida, Sept. 22, 1998; see also Intelligence report, interrogation of detainee, Feb. 8, 2002.

83. FBI report of investigation, interview of confidential source, Sept. 16, 1999; FBI report of investigation, interview of L'Houssaine Kherchtou,Aug. 28, 2000; Benjamin and Simon, Age of Sacred Terror, pp. 123-124.
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« Reply #1339 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:39 am »

84. On the group's surveillance and photography activities, see trial testimony of L'Houssaine Kherchtou, United States v. bin Laden, Feb. 21, 2001 (transcript pp. 1499-1500); FBI reports of investigation, interviews of L'Houssaine Kherchtou,Aug. 18, 2000; Oct. 18, 2000; see also FBI report of investigation, interview of confidential source, Sept. 16, 1999. On Bin Ladin's use of technical equipment to promote his intelligence/security capabilities, see Intelligence report,Terrorism: Usama Bin Ladin's Intelligence Capabilities and Techniques, Dec. 5, 1996.
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« Reply #1340 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:47 am »

85. On the surveillance reports and the Hezbollah training camps, see FBI report of investigation, interview of confidential source, Sept. 16, 1999; see also Intelligence report,Al Qaeda Targeting Study of U.S. Embassy Nairobi, prepared 23 December 1993, Apr. 5, 1999; Intelligence report, Establishment of a Tripartite Agreement Among Usama Bin Ladin, Iran, and the NIF, Jan. 31, 1997; Intelligence report, Cooperation Among Usama Bin Ladin's Islamic Army, Iran, and the NIF, Jan. 31 1997; FBI report of investigation, interview of Fadl, Nov. 10, 1996. Bin Ladin told his operatives he wanted them to study Hezbollah's 1983 truck bombing of U.S. marines in Lebanon that killed 241 and led to the American pullout from Lebanon. See, e.g., statement of Ali Mohamed in support of change of plea, United States v.Ali Mohamed, No. S(7) 98 Cr. 1023 (S.D. N.Y.), Oct. 20, 2000 (transcript p. 30); trial testimony of Fadl, United States v. bin Laden, Feb. 6, 2001 (transcript pp. 292-293); FBI report of investigation, interview of Fadl, Mar. 10, 1997; FBI report of investigation, interview of confidential source, Sept. 16, 1999.
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« Reply #1341 on: September 08, 2009, 12:11:58 am »

86. Hugh Davies,"Saudis Detain Member of Anti-American Terror Group," Daily Telegraph (London),Aug. 2, 1997.

87. For general information on Hage, see Oriana Gill, "Hunting Bin Laden: A Portrait of Wadih El Hage, Accused Terrorist,"PBS Frontline broadcast, Sept. 12, 2001. On returning to the United States, Hage was met at the airport by FBI agents, interrogated, and called the next day before the federal grand jury then investigating Bin Ladin. Because he lied to the grand jury about his association with Bin Ladin and al Qaeda, he was arrested immediately after the embassy bombings a year later.Testimony of Patrick Fitzgerald before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Oct. 21, 2003, pp. 3-4. On Hage's phone taps, see introduction of stipulation (government exhibit no. 36), United States v. bin Laden, Feb. 27, 2001 (transcript pp. 1575-1576). For Harun's fax, see government exhibit no. 300A-T, United States v. bin Laden.
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« Reply #1342 on: September 08, 2009, 12:12:08 am »

88."World Islamic Front's Statement Urging Jihad," Al Quds al Arabi, Feb. 23, 1998; closing statement by Asst. U.S.Attorney Ken Karas, United States v. bin Laden, May 1, 2001 (transcript pp. 5369, 5376-5377). On related activities in Kenya and Tanzania, see FBI report of investigation, interviews of Mohamed Sadeeq Odeh, Aug. 15-28, 1998.

89. FBI report of investigation, interviews of Mohamed Sadeeq Odeh,Aug. 15-28, 1998; closing statement by Asst. U.S. Attorney Ken Karas, United States v. bin Laden, May 1, 2001 (transcript pp. 5239, 5408, 5417).
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« Reply #1343 on: September 08, 2009, 12:12:17 am »

90. For the Atef fax, see government exhibit no. 1636-T, United States v. bin Laden. For the fatwa, see government exhibit no. 1602-T, United States v. bin Laden (translation of "Clergymen in Afghanistan Issue a Fatwa calling for the Removal of American Forces from the Gulf," Al Quds al Arabi, May 14, 1998). For the interview, see ABC News interview,"To Terror's Source," May 28, 1998.

91. See closing statement by Asst. U.S. Attorney Ken Karas, United States v. bin Laden, May 2, 2001 (transcript pp. 5426-5439); see also FBI report of investigation, interviews of Mohammad Rashed Daoud al 'Owhali, Aug. 22-25, 1998, p. 9. Copies of the declarations issued by "The Islamic Army for the Liberation of the Holy Places" taking credit for the operation were recovered from a raid in Baku, Azerbaijan, after the bombings in September 1998. See also government exhibit no. 1557C-T, United States v. bin Laden ("The formation of the Islamic Army for the Liberation of the Holy Places"); government exhibit no. 1557D-T, United States v. bin Laden ("Al-Aqsa Mosque operation"); government exhibit no. 1557E-T, United States v. bin Laden ("The Holy Ka'ba operation").

92. Closing statement by Asst. U.S. Attorney Ken Karas, United States v. bin Laden, May 2, 2001 (transcript p. 5445).

93. ABC News interview, "Terror Suspect: An Interview with Osama Bin Laden," Dec. 22, 1998 (conducted in Afghanistan by ABC News producer Rahimullah Yousafsai).
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« Reply #1344 on: September 08, 2009, 12:12:35 am »

3 Counterterrorism Evolves

1. Brief of the United States, United States v. Ramzi Ahmed Yousef, Lead No. 98-1041 (2d Cir. filed Aug. 25, 2000), pp. 42-43; John Miller and Michael Stone, with Chris Mitchell, The Cell: Inside the 9/11 Plot, and Why the FBI and CIA Failed to Stop It (Hyperion, 2002), pp. 95, 99.

2. On President Clinton's tasking the NSC, see Richard Clarke interview (Dec. 18, 2003). On the role of different U.S. government agencies, see Steve Coll, Ghost War:The Secret History of the CIA,Afghanistan, and bin Laden, from the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2001 (Penguin, 2004), p. 251.

3.Trial testimony of Brian Parr, United States v.Yousef, No. S12 93 CR 180 (KTD) (S.D. N.Y.), Oct. 22, 1997 (transcript p. 4694).

4. On the process of identification, see Joseph Malone interview (May 25, 2004).
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« Reply #1345 on: September 08, 2009, 12:12:44 am »

5. United States v. Salameh, 152 F.3d 88, 107-108 (2d Cir. 1998); Miller and Stone, The Cell, pp. 104-105, 107, 109. Abouhalima had fled to the Middle East after the bombing, and was picked up by Egyptian authorities and returned to the United States in late March 1993. Brief of the United States, United States v. Mohammed A. Salameh, Lead No. 94-1312 (2d Cir. filed Jan. 17, 1997), p. 64 and n. ***.

6. United States v. Salameh, 152 F.3d at 107-108, n. 2; United States v.Yousef, 327 F.3d 56, 78-79 (2d Cir. 2003); Miller and Stone, The Cell, p. 119; Daniel Benjamin and Steven Simon, The Age of Sacred Terror (Random House, 2002), p. 12.
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« Reply #1346 on: September 08, 2009, 12:13:09 am »

7. On Rahman's ties to the Farouq mosque, see Miller and Stone, The Cell, pp. 54-55. On Rahman's message, see United States v. Rahman, 189 F.3d 88, 104 (2d Cir. 1999); Brief for the United States, United States v. Siddig Ibrahim Siddig Ali, Lead No. 96-1044 (2d Cir. filed July 3, 1997), pp. 10, 15. See also DOS Inspector General report,"Review of the Visa-Issuance Process Phase I: Circumstances Surrounding the Issuance of Visas to Sheikh Omar Ali Ahmed Abdel Rahman," Mar. 1994, pp. 6, 8, 36. On the informant's reports, see United States v. Rahman, 189 F.3d at 106-107. On the landmarks plot, see United States v. Rahman, 189 F.3d at 108-111, 123-127; Miller and Stone, The Cell, p. 116.
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« Reply #1347 on: September 08, 2009, 12:13:23 am »

8.These prosecutions also had the unintended consequence of alerting some al Qaeda members to the U.S. government's interest in them. In February 1995, the government filed a confidential court document listing Usama Bin Ladin and scores of other people as possible co-conspirators in the New York City landmarks plot. Ali Mohamed, who was on the list, obtained a copy and faxed it to a close Bin Ladin aide for distribution. Statement of Ali Mohamed in support of change of plea, United States v.Ali Mohamed, No. S(7) 98 Cr. 1023 (S.D. N.Y.), Oct. 20, 2000 (transcript p. 29); Statements of Prosecutor and Judge, United States v. bin Laden, No. S(7) 98 Cr. 1023 (S.D. N.Y.), Mar. 26, 2001 (transcript pp. 3338-3339); Patrick Fitzgerald interview (Jan. 28, 2004).

9. On Ajaj's travels to Khaldan and interactions with KSM, see United States v. Salameh, 152 F.3d at 107-108. Ajaj had entered the United States on a B-2 tourist visa at New York City on September 9, 1991. INS alien file, No. A72215823, Sept. 9, 1991.
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« Reply #1348 on: September 08, 2009, 12:13:37 am »

10. On Yousef 's capture and the Manila air plot, see United States v. Yousef, 327 F.3d at 79-82. On KSM, see Joint Inquiry report (classified version), pp. 324-328; CIA analytical report, "WTC 1993:The Solid Case for al-Qa'ida Involvement," CTC 2002-40084H, July 11, 2002; Intelligence report, interrogation of KSM, May 27, 2003; James Risen and David Johnston,"Threats and Reponses: Counterterrorism; Qaeda Aide Slipped Away Long Before Sept. 11 Attack," New York Times, Mar. 8, 2003, p. A12.

11. For a general history of the FBI, supporting the subsequent text (unless otherwise noted), see Athan G. Theoharis, et al., The FBI: A Comprehensive Reference Guide (Onyx Press, 1999); the FBI's authorized history, FBI report,"History of the FBI" (online at www.fbi.gov/libref/historic/history/historymain.htm); the FBI's history as told by the Federation of American Scientists, "History of the FBI," updated June 18, 2003 (online at www.fas.org/irp/agency/doj/fbi/fbi_hist.htm). For discussion of field office autonomy,see FBI letter, Kalish to Wolf, responses to questions posed by the Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State, and Judiciary of the House Appropriations Committee, May 24, 2004, pp. 47-48.
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« Reply #1349 on: September 08, 2009, 12:13:54 am »

12. See, e.g., Dan C. interview (Aug. 27, 2003); Ruben Garcia interview (Apr. 29, 2004); DOJ Inspector General interview of William Gore, Oct. 24, 2002.

13.The Washington Field Office was originally assigned the East Africa bombings case because it generally has responsibility for investigating crimes overseas.When the attack was determined to be al Qaeda-related, responsibility shifted to the New York Field Office. See generally Kevin C. interview (Aug. 25, 2003).This created significant friction between agents in the respective offices. Edward Curran and Sidney Caspersen interview (Jan. 20, 2004). On the concept of the office of origin, see FBI memo, Kalish to Wolf, responses to questions from the Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State, and Judiciary of the House Appropriations Committee, pp. 47-48; testimony of Robert S. Mueller III before the Subcommittee on the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary and Related Agencies of the House Appropriations Committee, June 18, 2003; FBI report,"Counterter-rorism Program Since September 2001," Apr. 14, 2004, p. 20.
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