Ketcham keeps bolstering the Big Lie by pretending that the incompetence theory of 9/11 has merit. In numerous ways he defends the criminal actions of high level players who have a long history of helping terrorists and funding their networks. While admitting to such practices in the distant past, Ketchum ignores the period leading up to 9/11 as well as the present.
What Ketcham should have grilled Baer about is terrorism by proxy: ISI and Saudi intelligence in particular, (MI6, BND and Mossad also engage in this practice).
It is no longer even denied that ISI created and protected "Al Qaeda," and assists the Taliban to this day, nor is it reasonable to deny that the USA funds the ISI.
Much credible evidence links the Saudi government to the 9/11 hijackers, and we don't hear anything about that, despite Senator Graham's open admissions of the facts. FBI surveillance showed links between a Saudi agent and the Saudi embassy, as he assisted hijackers in San Diego.
(James Bamford has done another great deed for the public by revealing the extent of the NSA's wiretapping on U.S. soil, and how the NSA sub-contracts the vast majority of its work to Israeli high-tech firms bristling with "former" Israeli military intelligence agents, and in the case of Verint, a company with serious corruption issues. It was Bamford who popularized the existence of Operation Northwoods in his 2001 book, Body of Secrets. In The Shadow Factory, he sheds light in the secret rooms of Verizon and AT&T, and shows the NSA to be a very poor custodian of the nation's security.)
Bamford Brings the Goods
On October 14, 2008, James Bamford talked about some of the shocking research in his new book on Democracy Now!, with Amy Goodman;
(Continued below the fold...)
Originally published in the May/June 2008 Radar magazine.
by Christopher Ketcham - April 29, 2008
For decades the federal government has been developing a highly classified plan that would override the Constitution in the event of a terrorist attack. Is it also compiling a secret enemies list of citizens who could face detention under martial law?
In the spring of 2007, a retired senior official in the U.S. Justice Department sat before Congress and told a story so odd and ominous, it could have sprung from the pages of a pulp political thriller. It was about a principled bureaucrat struggling to protect his country from a highly classified program with sinister implications. Rife with high drama, it included a car chase through the streets of Washington, D.C., and a tense meeting at the White House, where the president’s henchmen made the bureaucrat so nervous that he demanded a neutral witness be present.
The bureaucrat was James Comey, John Ashcroft’s second-in-command at the Department of Justice during Bush’s first term. Comey had been a loyal political foot soldier of the Republican Party for many years. Yet in his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, he described how he had grown increasingly uneasy reviewing the Bush administration’s various domestic surveillance and spying programs. Much of his testimony centered on an operation so clandestine he wasn’t allowed to name it or even describe what it did. He did say, however, that he and Ashcroft had discussed the program in March 2004, trying to decide whether it was legal under federal statutes. Shortly before the certification deadline, Ashcroft fell ill with pancreatitis, making Comey acting attorney general, and Comey opted not to certify the program. When he communicated his decision to the White House, Bush’s men told him, in so many words, to take his concerns and stuff them in an undisclosed location.
Comey refused to knuckle under, and the dispute came to a head on the cold night of March 10, 2004, hours before the program’s authorization was to expire. At the time, Ashcroft was in intensive care at George Washington Hospital following emergency surgery. Apparently, at the behest of President Bush himself, the White House tried, in Comey’s words, “to take advantage of a very sick man,” sending Chief of Staff Andrew Card and then-White House counsel Alberto Gonzales on a mission to Ashcroft’s sickroom to persuade the heavily doped attorney general to override his deputy. Apprised of their mission, Comey, accompanied by a full security detail, jumped in his car, raced through the streets of the capital, lights blazing, and “literally ran” up the hospital stairs to beat them there.
Minutes later, Gonzales and Card arrived with an envelope filled with the requisite forms. Ashcroft, even in his stupor, did not fall for their heavy-handed ploy. “I’m not the attorney general,” Ashcroft told Bush’s men. “There”—he pointed weakly to Comey—“is the attorney general.” Gonzales and Card were furious, departing without even acknowledging Comey’s presence in the room. The following day, the classified domestic spying program that Comey found so disturbing went forward at the demand of the White House—“without a signature from the Department of Justice attesting as to its legality,” he testified.
The following are excerpts from the recent Counterpunch article, "Cheering Movers and Art Student Spies," by Christopher Ketcham. The article itself takes up about 10 pages, so what follows is a selective representation, beginning with the tale of the five Israelis in a van arrested on 9/11.
"From inside the vehicle the officers, who were quickly joined by agents from the FBI, retrieved multiple passports and $4,700 in cash stuffed in a sock. According to New Jersey’s Bergen Record, which on September 12 reported the arrest of the five Israelis, an investigator high up in the Bergen County law enforcement hierarchy stated that officers had also discovered in the vehicle “maps of the city … with certain places highlighted. It looked like they’re hooked in with this”, the source told the Record, referring to the 9/11 attacks. “It looked like they knew what was going to happen when they were at Liberty State Park.”
The LINK TV broadcast featured an additional 8 minutes of commentary after the regular Democracy NOW! broadcast, linked below. The additional segment looks at Carl Cameron's piece a bit more, and Ketcham reveals that his FOX sources told him that Abe Foxman (ADL) put pressure on FOX's parent company, NEWSCORP to shut down Cameron's investigation.
Putfile video stream - Part 1 (original segment):
Click here to watch 'Democracy-NOW---2-8-2007'
Putfile video stream - Part 2 (additional segment only broadcast on LINK TV):
Click here to watch 'Democracy-NOW---2-8-2007---Part-2'
Thursday, February 8th, 2007
Cheering Movers and Art Student Spies: Was Israel Tracking the Hijackers Before the 9/11 Attacks?
A new article in the newsletter Counterpunch examines unresolved questions over whether Israeli agents were tracking the 9/11 hijackers before September 11th. ABC’s 20/20, The Forward, and Salon.com have all covered the story. But where’s the follow up? We speak to the author of the article, Christopher Ketcham; Counterpunch editor Alexander Cockburn, and Marc Perelman, the Forward reporter who did one of the first reports on the story in 2002.
Were Israeli agents tracking the 9/11 hijackers before September 11th? In 2002, ABC’s 20/20 Salon.com and The Jewish newspaper The Forward all did this story. But where’s the follow up?
Freelance journalist Christopher Ketcham has just published a comprehensive piece on this story in the newsletter Counterpunch. The article highlights various interconnected stories: The five Israeli “movers” who witnesses say were cheering after the first plane struck the World Trade Center; the so-called Israeli art students who were living in concentrated areas where hijackers were living around the United States and how two of the hijackers ended up on the Watch List weeks before 9/11.
Christopher Ketcham, the author of the article, joins us on the line from upstate New York. Alexander Cockburn also joins us on the line. He is the editor of Couterpunch where the piece is published. And with us here in the firehouse studio is Marc Perelman he is the reporter who did one of the first reports on the story for The Forward in 2002.
* Marc Perelman. Diplomatic Correspondent for The Forward. He broke the story about Israeli spies in 2002.
* Alexander Cockburn. Editor of Counterpunch.
* Christopher Ketcham. Freelance journalist. Author of “What Did Israel Know in Advance of the 9/11 Attacks?” in the latest edition of CounterPunch’s print newsletter.
Download MP3 at Democracy NOW!:
Segment starts at 45:35
(Transcript after jump...)