Do we know who attacked America on 9/11? by Pete Johnson

another old one that got missed, some typos, but lots of good points and the first time i've seen cover 9/11 questions- they're fierce election integrity activists

Do we know who attacked America on 9/11? by Pete Johnson
October 7, 2007

Americans are convinced that Osama Bin Laden orchestrated the attack on America on September 11, 2001. This “fact” has been called into question by serious researchers because very little hard, credible evidence has ever been presented to support the contention. Then Secretary of State Colin Powell promised release of a White Paper that would document the links to bin Laden, but then claimed he had “misspoken”. The White Paper was shown to British officials instead, who were quoted in their press saying, “It’s not enough to go to court, but it’s enough to go to war.” The contents remain secret to the American public.

In the days after September 11, Bin Laden released this statement. "The U.S. government has consistently blamed me for being behind every occasion its enemies attack it. I would like to assure the world that I did not plan the recent attacks, which seems to have been planned by people for personal reasons. I have been living in the Islamic emirate of Afghanistan and following its leaders' rules. The current leader does not allow me to exercise such operations”. In a separate denial, Bin Laden added "I stress that I have not carried out this act, which appears to have been carried out by individuals with their own motivation".

Of course, this could have been said to protect Afghanistan from Bush's threatened attacks, but it would also put bin Laden's later "admissions" into question, at least in the Arab states. Also, bin Laden could get added credibility among Islamic radicals by claiming responsibility for the attack even if he was not involved.

The bottom line is that the attacks on 9/11 were not acts of war; they were mass murders and crimes against humanity. As such they should have been pursued through existing international law and agreements, using an ad-hoc international tribunal similar to Nuremberg. In fact, the Taliban offered three times to turn bin Laden over to just such a tribunal, but the Bush administration officials declined on the grounds that they would not "negotiate with terrorists".

Motive, means and opportunity are not enough to convict either bin Laden or the US government of such a crime, only enough to create a suspect who has to be eliminated or chosen by all the evidence to the exclusion of others before a charge is brought, much less a conviction. The American public has never seen all or most of the evidence in this matter. We were given a culprit and a country to attack, and the fearful wanted revenge. Few knew the war on Afghanistan had been planned well before 9/11 and was already being staged by the time of the attack.

Soon thereafter, the US Government released a videotape of Bin Laden in which incriminates him. However, a close comparison of Bin Laden's face in the video to other known Bin Laden photographs brings into question the authenticity of the evidence against Bin Laden. In the video, Bin Laden is wearing a ring, which is forbidden by Islamic law, and is not seen in any previous images. The video shows Bin Laden signing a document right-handed, although Bin Laden who was armed and financed by the United States to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan was left-handed. Additional questions have arisen about the accuracy of the translation, and other individuals appearing in the video.

As reported in Paul Thompson's Terror Timeline, analyst Maher Osserian believe the home video in which Osama bin Laden admits foreknowledge of 9/11 was made around September 26th, not on the later date suggested by US officials. Osseiran argues that the video was part of a sting operation run by the US, and that the first part—making the video—was successful, but the second part—capturing or killing bin Laden—failed. This is supported by a report in the London Observer, which reported, “several intelligence sources have suggested… that the tape, although absolutely genuine, is the result of a sophisticated sting operation run by the CIA through a second intelligence service, possibly Saudi or Pakistani.”

Add to this that FBI Director Robert Mueller, in a speech at the Commonwealth Club on April 19, 2002, said: "In our investigation, we have not uncovered a single piece of paper - either here in the United States, or in the treasure trove of information that has turned up in Afghanistan and elsewhere - that mentioned any aspect of the September 11 plot." Interestingly, Osama Bin Laden is listed as a wanted criminal terrorist by the FBI, based on numerous bombing attacks here and abroad, but not for 9/11, a crime for which they claim to lake sufficient proof for a conviction.

One obvious way of linking Bin Laden to September 11th would be to tie him to the hijackers themselves. For example, there are official claims that Mohammed Atta was associated with Al Qaeda. Although the FBI identified 19 suspected hijackers immediately following the attacks, but according to the British press eight of those identified have come forward to contend they are living in Saudi Arabia and Egypt and were not on the plane or part of the plot, leaving the true identity of the hijackers and their sponsorship in doubt. Clearly, at least these eight were flying and living under stolen identities, if not all the suspects. No autopsy or DNA matching with remains ever forensically identified any of the hijackers. The hijackers' names were not on the initial passenger manifests that were released by the airlines after September 11th.

Of the remaining hijackers, several have reportedly been traced back to Al Qaeda, but there is no direct evidence of a link to Bin Laden or his command structure. To reconstruct their activities before 9/11, as the Commission's Final Report does, without questioning the point at which their identities were stolen, is one of the major faults in their analysis. There is no way to know who is using which identity at any given point. Also, the only evidence ever presented to the 9/11 Commission linking the hijackers to bin Laden was a series of statements taken during indefinite detention in an undisclosed location from the alleged "masterminds of 9/11", Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Ramsi Yusef and Ramsi bin al Shibh. Mohammed was being water boarded according to a CIA Inspector General's report, and there is no reason to think the others were not being tortured, since others with far less alleged connections to the event were interrogated using these methods. The Commission relied on these statements despite the fact that they were refused access to the detainees who made them, their prison handlers or even the translators who reportedly created the documents. It is on this house of cards that their conclusions and Bush's War on Terrorism have been built, along with many other unsupported claims.

The 9/11 money trail leads to Pakistani military intelligence (ISI), rather than to Al Qaeda. The fact that the CIA covertly financed the Afghani Mujahadeen who fought the USSR via the Pakistani intelligence (ISI) in the 80s and 90s is well documented. This was the foundation for the rise of Al Qaeda, since those funds went to Osama bin Laden in those years through his mentor and opium kingpin Hekmyatar in Afghanistan.

India's intelligence agencies reported that Omar Saeed Sheikh was the bagman for 9/11 (wiring $100,000 to Mohammed Atta in Florida, in August of 2001, which the FBI initially called "the smoking gun" in the case. Soon thereafter, they discovered that the money trail lead back from Saeed Sheikh to the head of Pakistani intelligence, General Mahmoud Ahmed. On his return to Pakistan, Ahmed was forced to resign. At this point, the US news media lost interest in the story, even though (or because?) it was revealed that General Ahmed had been in the United States meeting with high level military, CIA and State Department personnel, up to and including the day of the attacks. Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was one of the few to report on the transfer, and was investigating the story in Pakistan when he was kidnapped and killed. Although Omar Saeed Sheikh was convicted of Pearl's murder, the Pakistani police told Pearl's wife that the real assassin was Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who also "admits" this in his tortured confessions.

Despite the often-repeated official conclusions, questions still abound regarding the true facts of September 11th. The families of the victims have said that the 9/11 Commission investigation failed to answer 70% of their listed questions. The Final Report is documented with over a hundred pages of footnotes citing documents and interviews which will not be released to the public until January 2, 2009, by order of Commission chairs Lee Hamilton and Governor Thomas Keane, a date which will mark the waning days of the current Bush administration, allowing the President to block release without political cost, as one of the final acts of his administration. However, the question of who orchestrated the 9/11 attacks is fundamental to our understanding of our history, our real enemies and our dangerously flawed responses here and abroad since that fateful day.

-- This article is based, in part, on conversations with independent researcher John Judge, founder of the 9/11 Research Project based in Washington, DC, and a former staffer for Rep. Cynthia McKinney.

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