A six-year-old memo from within the George W. Bush administration that came to light this week acknowledges that White House-approved interrogation techniques amounted to "war crimes."
"The Bush White House tried to destroy every copy of the memo, written by then-State Department counselor Philip Zelikow. Zelikow examined tactics like waterboarding -- which simulates drowning -- and concluded that there was no way they were legal, domestically or internationally.
“We are unaware of any precedent in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, or any subsequent conflict for authorized, systematic interrogation practices similar to those in question here," Zelikow wrote. The memo has been obtained by George Washington University's National Security Archive and Wired's Spencer Ackerman".
In an e-mail exchange with Britain's The Guardian newspaper, Zelikow said he still believes the techniques approved under Bush were "wrong" and may have violated U.S. and international laws. He said Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice supported his position.
Monday, November 7, 2011
By Travis Alford
As the crowd of students, professors and Houstonians brushed off the cold, Philip Zelikow stepped to the podium in The Honors College Commons on Thursday to discuss the US government’s defense against terrorism.
Zelikow, the executive director of the 9/11 Commission, an executive on the President Intelligence Advisory Board and a history professor at the University of Virginia, focused his lecture, “The Twilight of War,” on America’s resiliency and his experience with the horrific events of 9/11.
“It’s my job to make meaning of 9/11,” Zelikow said.
During the lecture, Zelikow spoke of his personal experiences on the scene during Sept. 11.
“I can still smell the sulfur, it stands out,” Zelikow said. “It was as if the terrorist opened up a special path to hell.”
“After the attack, the event entered popular culture,” Zelikow said. “9/11 opened up our eyes to zealousy.”
In the days following the attack, President Bush labeled Osama bin Laden as America’s enemy and the ringleader of 9/11.
Thursday, September 8th, 2011
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Ten years after al Qaeda's attack on the United States, the vast majority of the 9/11 Commission's investigative records remain sealed at the National Archives in Washington, even though the commission had directed the archives to make most of the material public in 2009, Reuters has learned.
The National Archives' failure to release the material presents a hurdle for historians and others seeking to plumb one of the most dramatic events in modern American history.
The 575 cubic feet of records were in large part the basis for the commission's public report, issued July 22, 2004. The commission, formally known as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, was established by Congress in late 2002 to investigate the events leading up to the 9/11 attacks, the pre-attack effectiveness of intelligence agencies and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the government's emergency response.
Disconnecting the Dots: How CIA and FBI officials enabled 9/11 and evaded government investigations, by Kevin Fenton. Waltersville, OR: Trine Day, 2011. 416 pages.
“Enabling 9/11 was a job done at the office, with memos” (15).
It is a non-controversial fact that the NSA, CIA and FBI missed a number of opportunities to disrupt the 9/11 plot. Many, but not all, of these failures were documented by the four main investigations that dealt with pre-9/11 intelligence failures: those by the Congressional Joint Inquiry, the 9/11 Commission, the Department of Justice Inspector General and the CIA Inspector General. The best-known investigation, the 9/11 Commission, ultimately concluded that 9/11 was preceded by “four kinds of failures: in imagination, policy, capabilities, and management” (339). This is the narrative largely held to by mainstream politicians and media, but these explanations do not credibly account for what happened at the NSA, CIA and FBI in the years, months and weeks leading up to 9/11. This has been demonstrated by a number of researchers, but Kevin Fenton’s* book, Disconnecting the Dots, has the most comprehensive documentation and in-depth analysis to date. Primarily using the official reports, the available source records and some reporting by mainstream media and journalists, Fenton documents how specific CIA and FBI officials engaged in deliberate efforts to protect the 9/11 plot from discovery and disruption by FBI investigators, and that the most probable explanation is that this was done in order to enable the 9/11 attacks.
One of Fenton’s major strengths is that he limits himself to his area of expertise; Disconnecting the Dots is narrowly focused on the pre-9/11 intelligence failures and the official investigations of these failures. The book is a complex and dense compilation of interrelated names, dates, bits of information and sequences of events, a situation that is unavoidable due to the complex nature of the subject. Fortunately for the reader, Fenton’s style and presentation are simple and lucid, which helps make the complicated and often unclear nature of the subject more easily understood. Whenever possible, he names those responsible for the decisions and actions being examined, though this is sometimes impossible due to the limited amount of information that has been made public. Whenever a particularly complex set of issues or series of events have been examined in a chapter, Fenton provides a summary at the end of that chapter, and at a number of points in the book he summarizes what can be understood from the pattern of facts presented up to that point. His analysis considers the full range of available evidence, assesses the quality of individual pieces and does not go beyond the evidence. When he does draw conclusions they are generally conservative and understated, and he is careful to address other possible explanations for the evidence.
Today I released the short film "Inside 9/11 - Obstructing the investigation":
It argues that former 9/11 commisson director Philip Zelikow fired a staff member for investigating highly sensitive evidence of a secret support network for the alleged hijackers in the United States. The recently published interview of former "anti-terror czar" Richard Clarke supports some of the claims made in the film.
To many 9/11 researchers this might not be new, since the issue is already mentioned in Philip Shenon´s book "The Commission", published in 2008. But I thought it might be the right time to remember ...
I was introduced to Kevin Fenton sometime in 2006. We met on 911blogger.com where he was a contributor for many years. I respected his keen insight and appreciated the fact that he used mainstream media accounts and Government documents for his postings there. Kevin is a contributor to the Complete 9/11 Timeline available at www.historycommons.org, along with people like Paul Thompson.
Eventually, Kevin signed up on my site, and started posting his information there. In September 2007, I started work on something I called the Who Is? Archives that was based on the material of the timeline. Kevin was kind enough to write several of the introductions for people mentioned.
By Catherine Herridge
Published October 04, 2010
A document obtained and witnesses interviewed by Fox News raise new questions over whether there was an effort by the Defense Department to cover up a pre-9/11 military intelligence program known as "Able Danger."
A Harpers Weblog
FOX News Presents WTC 7
Recently, two prominent articles were published – in opposing veins: “NPR & Trust in Government,” by Robert Shetterly (04/19), which called out NPR for allowing the propaganda operative Philip Zelikow to “frame [a] discussion” on “Trust in government,” while failing to note his long record of purposeful (world stage) obfuscation, including a treacherous role in the area of WTC 7, and “Shame On Jesse Ventura!,” by Jeffrey Scott Shapiro (another operative) (04/21), who asserts “that [Larry] Silverstein planned to use controlled demolition on WTC 7” – as if it’s common knowledge/no big deal. The focus here is on Shapiro’s brash, out of the blue, aggressiveness (under the cover of being clueless to the overall picture/consequences), while Shetterly’s should be read for many reasons: clarity, as a depiction of rare courage in our dominant landscape, and as a partial portrayal of how Timing works in our fabricated environment.
This is very surprising.
Common Dreams, a progressive internet website, has censored EVERYTHING relating to 9/11 Truth except a few mentions in which it mocked the whole 9/11 movement. (I was immediately banned from the comment section after just one innocuous comment, and remain banned after a couple of years).
But here we see in CommonDreams.org an article criticizing NPR for using Phillip Zelikow as a spokesman for focusing on Trust in Government.
Zelikow was the oversear of the 9/11 Commission, and used his power to ensure that the truth was ignored or avoided whereever possible.
And in this article, that was mentioned.
Here is an excerpt:
"What surprised me was what Ms. Hansen, and thus NPR, did not tell us about Mr. Zelikow. He was a neocon who worked very closely with Condoleezza Rice, Dick Cheney, and Carl Rove in the Bush administration. He was one of the primary authors of what has been called the Bush Doctrine -- the right of our country to make preemptive war on other countries in contradiction of international law and our own Constitution. During the Bush administration Zelikow defended the many lies that they told about the reasons for attacking Iraq. And he was put in charge of the 9/11 Commission, the committee that was supposed to tell the world what really happened on 9/11. He ran that committee so that the official version of events could not be questioned. He did not allow witnesses to testify who had seen and heard things that cast the official version into doubt. The commission totally ignored facts that made the official version untenable and it neglected to even mention that World Trade Center tower #7, not stuck by an airplane, also mysteriously collapsed that day."
This is either a big mistake, or things are changing.
I hope it is the latter.
We have found the famous "What Do I Do Now?" memo drafted by 9/11 Commission Executive Director Philip Zelikow on March 2, 2003. The memo advised staffers newly hired by the commission what they should do after starting work.
The memo was found by Erik at the National Archives and uploaded to the 9/11 Document Archive at Scribd.
Philip Shenon's The Commission highlighted the memo and one controversial section in particular. The section says:
Interactions with commissioners can be helpful to you and them. If you are contacted by a commissioner with questions, please contact Chris [Kojm, Zelikow's deputy] or me. Consulting with the Chair and Vice-Chair, we will be sure that the appropriate members of the Commission staff are responsive.
Shenon called this provision, channelling contacts between the staff and the commissioners through Zelikow and his deputy, "unusual" and "worrying to the staff." He added:
Documents recently found in the National Archives cast doubt on the integrity of the 9/11 Commission’s Executive Director Philip Zelikow. In an e-mail exchange with author Philip Shenon, Zelikow claimed that he first learned of a dispute on the commission over the investigation of false statements made by NORAD and FAA officials after it had been “percolating for a while” and was not involved in the initial stages of the argument. However, an e-mail chain (scroll down) found in the Archives by History Commons contributor paxvector shows that Zelikow had been involved in the issue from very near the beginning.
Zelikow made the claim he was not involved in the initial stages of the dispute in response to an allegation made by commission staffer John Azzarello and relayed by Shenon. After the staff investigators drafted a memo for the commissioners in early April 2004 outlining why they thought NORAD and FAA officials had deliberately lied to them to overstate the military’s readiness during the attacks, Zelikow “just buried that memo,” according to Azzarello. In response, Zelikow claimed that he had not even known of the issue at the start. The implication was that, as he had not known of it, it could not be him that was orchestrating--or even involved in--a dispute between the staff investigators and the commission’s lawyers, Daniel Marcus and Steve Dunne.
However, the newly found e-mail chain shows Zelikow did know of the issue in April, raising the question as to why he falsely told Shenon he did not. Zelikow is not known to be linked to the FAA, but, if the commission had referred the matter to the Justice Department and it had started a perjury investigation against NORAD officials, this would certainly have had the potential to embarrass his friends at the Pentagon. Zelikow is alleged to have husbanded the issue to ensure a less potentially embarrassing referral to the inspectors general of the FAA and Defense Department, who in the end blamed the false statements on innocent mistakes and poor logkeeping.
Zelikow Failed to Mention Possible Criminal Referral of False Statements by NORAD and FAA in Memo to 9/11 Commission Heads
A document recently discovered in the National Archives shows that, in a memo to the 9/11 Commission’s chairman and vice-chairman on false statements made by NORAD and FAA officials about the failure of US air defenses, the commission’s Executive Director Philip Zelikow failed to mention the possibility of a criminal referral. This supports allegations that Zelikow “buried” the option of a criminal referral by the commission to the Justice Department for a perjury investigation. The document was found at the National Archives by HistoryCommons contributor paxvector and posted to the History Commons site at Scribd.
In this article, the AP writer continually refers to Zelikow's memo as if it's a fact; as far as I know, the only evidence of it existing in 2005 is that Zelikow, a completely untrustworthy source, claims he wrote it and circulated it. Perhaps he did. Nowhere does this article claim the AP has already obtained a copy, and they say, "Several members of Congress have asked the Obama administration to search for a copy." Still, it will be interesting to see what he has to say, and how he justifies not resigning, knowing what was going on, and having the opinion that he alleges he did.
Historian Sheldon Stern found numerous errors in their transcription of JFK tapes, some of which change the context of statements and conversations, despite him being able to clearly understand the words when he reviewed the tapes himself:
May 2000: Future Authors of 9/11 Report Produce John F. Kennedy Book Riddled with Errors
The article quotes Zelikow as saying he "suspect[s]" he gave Rice a copy:
The 9/11 Commission, Karl Rove and Government Minders - Additions to the 9/11 Timeline as of May 10, 2009
Most of the new entries recently posted to the 9/11 Timeline concern the 9/11 Commission, in particular contacts between its executive director Philp Zelikow and White House official Karl Rove. Rove called Zelikow at the commission twice in June 2003 and again that September. When the commission's staff found out about the calls, they were furious and Zelikow told his secretary to stop logging his calls. Zelikow also reportedly understated the amount of his contacts with Rove in an interview with a reporter.