Jeffrey Kaye continues lifting the veil on 9-11 intelligence failures with a new article at Truthout. The Unclassified FOIA Response attached to the article is an absolute must read. The FOIA Response was the result of a 2006 complaint to the DoD Inspector General filed by a former intelligence officer known only as IRONMAN.
EXCLUSIVE: New Documents Claim Intelligence on Bin Laden, al-Qaeda Targets Withheld From Congress' 9/11 Probe
By Jeffrey Kaye and Jason Leopold, Truthout, June 13, 2011
Attachments - Unclassified FOIA Response
The last page of the FOIA Response holds particular interest for me.
(U) [unclassified] My motivation for this complaint is multi-faceted. I do believe that knowledge of the work done by DO5 would add to DoD's understanding of its role in the events leading up to 9/11 and how to avoid future attacks. For this reason, and other more personal reasons, I believe that DO5's work, when I am certain that that information is not and has not been classified since 9/11, and I do want to see myself cleared of that false accusation. In addition, I and the deputy of that team, [redacted] especially carried the burden of knowledge of how close DoD came to bin Laden and perhaps being able to reduce the number of lives lost on 9/11. I do not want that burden any longer. [redacted] [redacted] and I discussed this issue the last time we spoke. He remains the longest missing man in Iraq in this war, and I want, one day, to be able to explain to his children what their father foresaw.
The former deputy of the Asymmetric threat Division and still the longest missing man in Iraq is Kirk von Ackermann. The complicated and contentious history of the company he worked for in Iraq, Ultra Services, was featured in a 2006 article at ePluribus Media. Make the jump»
A slight detour from what I had originally intended to post today.
Regular readers know that for years now I've been following the story of the 2003 disappearance of a contractor in Iraq, Kirk von Ackermann. In a strange twist, the Department of Defense recently released a report about the joint forces counter terrorism division he worked with. Truthout has released an article about that report.
Report: Intelligence Unit Told Before 9/11 to Stop Tracking Bin Laden
By Jeffrey Kaye, Truthout, May 23, 2011
Tracking Bin Laden had been undertaken by a secret unit within the JFIC, the Asymmetric Threats Division, formed in 1999 "to take a non-traditional approach to analysis." Known by its DoD acronym, DO5, it was tasked with providing "current intelligence briefings and produced the Worldwide Terrorist Threat Summary in support of the USJFCOM Intelligence staff [J2]." Almost no public source material exists on DO5 activities, except what is in the IG report.
Based on 7+ years of research, I can with 100% confidence say that the above Asymmetric Threats Division, is the same division that Capt. Kirk von Ackermann USAF was assigned to. (I've provided some of the background research as to why on my blog - including two scans of Capt. Kirk von Ackermann's JFIC awards See: Counter Terrorism and JFIC, By Susie Dow, Missing Man, May 6, 2011). Make the jump»
Yes, you already knew our government was extremely supportive in propping up the corrupt Egyptian regime, mostly as a means of keeping their torture routes protected and the oil and military markets flowing profitably... And, no doubt, we will send more tear gas if they need it because there is a lot of money to be made in never ending wars:
The United States has given billions of dollars in military aid to Egypt over the decades. The State Department approved the sale of tear gas to its police, despite its known history of brutality.
But the entire Arab world is starting to look like another neoconservative disaster as the lies and collusion between the USA, the UK, Israel and the supposed enemies of freedom - like the contorted and distorted "enemies" in Palestine, for example - come to light. It is another neoconservative contrived clusterfrack of foreign policy failure. But much like the Shock Doctrine delivered banking disaster is, the organized chaos the elite powers that be have preyed upon should be exposed for the Disaster Capitalism that has resulted. Make the jump»
Fiction delivers justice that reality rarely approaches. Victims endure suffering and emerge as victors after overcoming incredible challenges. Stieg Larsson's gripping Millennium Trilogy weaves a story of revenge and triumphs for Lizbeth Salander, locked away in a mental institution and sexually abused for years. When Salander got out and threatened to go public about a high level sexual exploitation ring, the perpetrators sought to lock her up again. In the final installment, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, Salander found some justice. (Image)
Susan Lindauer's autobiography, Extreme Prejudice, tells a story with certain broad similarities. In her case, however, the hornet's nest kicked back with a real vengeance. After over a decade as a U.S intelligence asset, Lindauer was privy to information about pre war Iraq that threatened to serve up a huge embarrassment to the Bush-Cheney regime. She hand delivered a letter to senior Bush administration officials in hopes of averting what she predicted would be the inevitably tragic 2003 US invasion of Iraq. Those officials, unnamed in the indictment, were her second cousin, then White House chief of staff Andy Card, and Colin Powell. Make the jump»
Apparently a military budget was passed. Continuing trends... It is the largest military "Defense" budget ever. From Federal News Radio:
Congress has authorized the Pentagon to spend nearly $160 billion on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with no major restrictions on the conduct of operations. This year's approved legislation includes $725 billion in defense programs, including $158.7 billion for overseas combat. Among its numerous provisions is a 1.4 percent pay raise for troops and a guarantee that children of service members can stay covered under the military's TRICARE health care program until they are 26 years of age.
I believe there was no debate on this, but it is only endless war, eh? Just in case you did not hear about this news from your local media, because there ain't much in the Google search on it, YET, below the fold is some video from another untypical source because it ain't in the papers of record or other Traditional Media sources under any obvious headline like, say: "2011 Defense Budget Passed". Make the jump»
Cross posted at dKos
There are an estimated 18 Americans still missing in Iraq.
The missing cover a wide range of citizens, from a civilian installing water bottling equipment to military personnel to civilian and government contractors to private security. At least four of the missing are Iraqi American - one of whom is a Staff Sargent.
The WikiLeaks Iraq War Logs (mirror site) includes a number of the earliest known incident reports for the kidnappings of most of these Americans. And of some of the kidnapping victims, absolutely nothing is known beyond what is in these early reports.
To this day, some of the victim's identities have never been revealed to the public. Make the jump»
While it's very slow going, I am currently searching the WikiLeaks Iraq War Logs for the preliminary incident reports of kidnappings of Americans in Iraq. It is - most definitely - not a speedy project. That said, I thought I'd share some of my findings as well as search methodology that seems to work fairly well in terms of maneuvering around the database.
For whatever reasons, navigating the WikiLeaks' site is a bit clunky.
Here is a sample incident report for the kidnapping of American photojournalist, Paul Taggart, abducted on October 10, 2004. Taggart was released several days later:
US ___ KIDNAPPED IN BAGHDAD (ZONE ___)
AT 1600C, /___ MP REPORTS THAT AN ___ WAS KIDNAPPED NEAR THE ___ HOSPITAL. THE E___ DRIVER AND ___ REPORTED THE KIDNAPPING TO THE ___ IP STATION. HE WAS WEARING A LIGHT BLUE GOLF SHIRT AND BLUE JEANS. E___ NAME IS ___. KIDNAPPERS WERE DRIVING A BLACK ___ PLATES. IPS CASE NUMBER ___, INVESTIGATING OFFICER ___ BADGE # ___.
Originally posted 2010-09-08 19:50:54 -0400. Bumped and promoted. -- GH
As best as I can tell, that plowhand in Gainesville has never even had the benefit of half-idiot pedagogues and brokendown preachers. He acquired his theological learning by watching Jimmy Swaggart on the TV and taking copious notes.
There’s a plow-hand preacher born every time a pledge number lights up on the screen. But what about congregations? They must be coming even faster than the rubes at a carnival midway. “Step right this way and see the burning books!” The Agonist
It gets better ... Make the jump»
I feel kinda depressed today. I think the Depression is getting to me.
A very large number of my friends and former colleagues are out of work or grossly under employed. Those with jobs have seen their earnings severely scaled back. Those lucky enough to land a job face employers who are offering lower wages while expecting longer hours and more responsibility (often wearing two or more hats).
I am so not liking where this highway is taking us. Make the jump»
A revealing article appeared in Voice of America (VOA) on August 12. Defense Secretary Robert Gates made the following statement:
"I think we have an agreement with the Iraqis that both governments have agreed to, that we will be out of Iraq at the end of 2011," he (Gates) said. "If a new government is formed there and they want to talk about beyond 2011, we're obviously open to that discussion. But that initiative will have to come from the Iraqis." Robert Gates in "US Military Prepares to Leave Iraq, But May Stay If Asked", Voice of America (VOA), Aug 12
Cross posted at the Missing Man
There are currently 7 American men publicly known to be missing in Iraq. Those men are:
Kirk von Ackermann
Timothy E. Bell
Aban Abdel Malek Mahmoud Elias (also Aban Elias)
Radim Sadeq Mohammed Sadeq (also Dean Sadek)
Spc. Ahmed Qusai al-Taayie (also Ahmed K. Altaie)
Maj. Troy L. Gilbert (deceased)
Based on news reports, as many as an additional 10 Americans may also be missing. Attached below is a chart showing the incident date, name and status of those Americans known to be missing and/or held hostage in Iraq in table format.
With billions having been tossed into Iraq without any accountability at all, is it surprising in any way that the GOP's complete financial incompetence has left the nation in tatters?
Yesterday, the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) released its findings on how the money was spent from a special Iraq reconstruction fund set up by the Department of Defense (DOD) between 2003-2007. The account used Iraqi oil money to fund the reconstruction of Iraq. SIGIR concluded that 96 percent of the $9.1 billion the reconstruction program cannot be accounted for by the DOD:
A US federal watchdog has criticised the US military for failing to account properly for billions of dollars it received to help rebuild Iraq. The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction says the US Department of Defence is unable to account properly for 96% of the money. Out of just over $9bn (£5.8bn), $8.7bn is unaccounted for, the inspector says. [...]
The funds in question were administered by the US Department of Defence between 2004 and 2007, and were earmarked for reconstruction projects. But, the report says, a lack of proper accounting makes it impossible to say exactly what happened to most of the money.
Shiite Iraqi militants have trained in Iran in preparation for attacks against U.S. military bases as American combat forces prepare to withdraw by September, the top U.S. commander in Iraq said on Tuesday.
In an unusually candid assessment, Gen. Ray Odierno said that Kataib Hezbollah - an Iraqi Shiite militant group backed by Iran - may be seeking to take some credit for the long-planned departure of U.S. troops.
"For years these groups have been (saying) that they are forcing the U.S. to leave," Odierno told reporters in Baghdad. A significant strike "could be a huge propaganda tool for them in the future."
I guess al Qaeda no longer scares people enough to want them to keep America in Iraq (or Afghanistan) since, now, we have the al Iran Hezbollah Qaeda super army being rolled out in one big bogeyman to try to get you to cower in support of forever war. As Laurence Lewis at dKos notes: Make the jump»
I love sites like Campaign for America's Future or Think Progress because they provide near infinite resources to the left leaning kind of people like myself that, in the past, were fighting so many of the big political arguments of the day without the benefit of any credible sources for research material. But they are not perfect.
Where else but Think Progress' The Progress Report are you going to find a page of material sent to you in your email inbox with pre-fact-checked material that is almost always timely and insighful. I.E. and from yesterday's (June 1st) The Progress Report: Make the jump»