Newly Released Memo: Government ‘Minders’ at 9/11 Commission Interviews ‘Intimidated’ Witnesses

A recently released 9/11 Commission memo highlights the role of government “minders” who accompanied witnesses interviewed by the commission. It was added to the National Archives’ files at the start of the year and discovered there by History Commons contributor paxvector.

The memo, entitled “Executive Branch Minders’ Intimidation of Witnesses,” complains that:

* Minders “answer[ed] questions directed at witnesses;”
* Minders acted as “monitors, reporting to their respective agencies on Commission staffs lines of inquiry and witnesses’ verbatim responses.” The staff thought this “conveys to witnesses that their superiors will review their statements and may engage in retribution;” and
* Minders “positioned themselves physically and have conducted themselves in a manner that we believe intimidates witnesses from giving full and candid responses to our questions.”

The memo was drafted by three staffers on the commission’s Team 2, which reviewed the overall structure of the US intelligence community. One of the drafters was Kevin Scheid, a senior staffer who led the team. His co-writers were Lorry Fenner, an air force intelligence officer, and lawyer Gordon Lederman. The complaint was sent to the commission’s counsels, Daniel Marcus and Steve Dunne, in October 2003, about halfway through the commission’s 19-month life.

Continued here.

You can also vote this article up at Raw Story

more proof of coverup.

Add this to the massive pile of evidence that the 911 Commission was a coverup.

Great revelation.

Digg link

Good job...

To those involved.

Do these people deserve to know how and why their loved ones were murdered? Do we deserve to know how and why 9/11 happened?

Kevin, this is


Who released the memo? Who got it? How can I authenticate it?

Hi George

If found the link on what really happened. com

Team 2, Box 6, "Memo Concerning Minders Conduct" Folder

See the finding aid:

The National Archives are open to the public, but for those who can't visit in person, copies can be ordered here:


It was part of the National Archives document dump from the 9/11 Commission in January. We have a guy (paxvector) who goes there every week and scans stuff - he found it. We have over a thousand 9/11 Commission documents uploaded to Scribd:

(If the quality is bad, just download it, then it stops being fuzzy).

The document itself is here:

The masterlist for all blog posts at the History Commons blog is here:

Anybody can go get another copy from the archives, although unfortunately I don't know which files and box it was in (I'll ask paxvector). It was drafted by Team 2, so I guess it might be in their files.

voted it up at raw, and reddit:


disclosure- i'm paxvector at historycommons. Kevin has been reviewing the uploaded records and blogging them at - Masterlist here:

Team 2 Workplan - "Intelligence Collection, Analysis, Management, Oversight and Resources"

This minder memo potentially explains a lot about the 9/11 Commission Report's omissions and distortions. It seems clear from other govt. records and credible MSM reporting that what the CIA knew about some of the alleged hijackers, particularly almihdhar and alhazmi, doesn't match the Commission's conclusions:

Alhazmi and Almihdhar: The 9/11 Hijackers Who Should Have Been Caught by Paul Thompson

CIA Hiding Knowledge of Alhamzi and Almihdhar

The memo was from 3 members of Team 2, but says it was happening to other teams; considering that the Commission's account of the air defense response is inconsistent with what's in the public record about Standard Operating Procedure for requesting military assistance with off-course planes, and the historical record of scrambles- avg. 100/yr. (EDIT), the presence of minders in interviews of FAA personnel might explain why the MFRs and interview notes show a conspicuous absence of questioning and answers regarding why the FAA didn't alert the military immediately when planes went off course. The main focus seems to be on when they knew it was hijacked- but even then, the response was incredibly slow thru the chain of command

Considering the Commissioner's conflicts of interest, there's no reason to believe they were actually looking for the truth- some of them may have really appreciated Zelikow's role in keeping info from them, giving them "plausible deniability"

From Kevin's post:
"Author Philip Shenon, who wrote a history of the commission, found that at the start of the commission’s work Zelikow drafted a welcome memo containing ground rules for staffers, such as not talking to journalists. One of the rules was that the staff should not talk freely to the commissioners. If a staffer were contacted by a commissioner, he should not deal with the commissioner himself, but contact Zelikow or his deputy, who would then “be sure that the appropriate members of the commission’s staff are responsive.

"This rule was rescinded after complaints from some of the commissioners, including former Deputy Attorney General Jamie Gorelick. Nevertheless, Zelikow’s control of information continued. When the commission’s counterterrorism team found a draft of the final report to be overly deferential to the FBI, they did not launch a formal objection to the draft’s language though the commission’s bureaucracy, but a female staffer cornered Gorelick “where Zelikow would not see it”–in the ladies room.""

Is Fix in at 9/11 Commission? by Paul Sperry

Who's Who on the 9/11 "Independent" Commission By Michel Chossudovsky

Mar 20, 2004 - FSC calls for Zelikow's resignation

Apr 18, 2004 - Statement of the Family Steering Committee Regarding Conflicts of Interest and the 9/11 Commission

Great job, guys!

Can you scan in a clearer version at Scribd?

that's a problem with Scrid's reader; download the .pdf

and it'll look fine

they use the term Minder...

which in this case is Newspeak for censor, silencer, controller, spinner, muzzler and asshole.