History Commons Groups

January 23, 2010

Additional Information and Possible Correction about Richard Blee


One thing that has been puzzling me for some time is the reorganisation that took place at the CIA’s Counterterrorist Center in the first part of 2000. We know that at some time between January and July 2000 Alec Station was merged into a larger group that was formed at this time. We know this because it says so in the DoJ IG report, on page 231-232. We can now figure out the name of this group.

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January 21, 2010

9/11 Commission Documents about KSM (updated 17 March 2010)


This post lists documents related to the 9/11 Commission’s investigation of alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed (KSM). The documents have been posted at the 9/11 Document Archive at Scribd. I am reading through them gradually and highlighting interesting information. This post will be updated continuously.

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January 18, 2010

One Lie from KSM’s Confessions


One feeling I have always had from reading KSM’s confessions, or rather the information that has slipped through to the media from them, is not only that he was lying, but that he was lying in specific ways. First, he seems to me to have been lying for the usual reason of telling his torturers what he thought they wanted to hear to get them to stop torturing him. Second, he seems to have been lying for the specific purpose of benefiting his associates.

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January 15, 2010

What John Farmer Does Say and What He Doesn’t

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline — kevinfenton @ 4:00 pm
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I recently read John Farmer’s Ground Truth and need to write about five posts digesting it. The first point that needs to be made is about what it says and what is does not say.

The book’s blurb at Amazon states that “the official version of events [of 9/11] was almost entirely, and inexplicably, untrue,” and the dust jacket echoes similar sentiments. Another blurb adds, “What emerges with painful, stunning clarity is that ‘at some level of the government, at some point in time…there was an agreement not to tell the truth about what happened.’ The implications of this are profound.” When you read this, the logical assumption is that “official version” = “9/11 Commission version,” so he’s telling us the commission’s version’s of events is wrong, right?

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January 10, 2010

Update: Iraq-Niger/Plame Wilson


As some of you are aware, I am working diligently to construct a complete and accurate timeline of events surrounding the Iraq-Niger uranium controversy — where Bush officials used forged documents to claim that Iraq had attempted to buy weapons-grade uranium from Niger, presumably to construct nuclear devices — and the subsequent outing of covert CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson, whose husband, Joseph Wilson, had played a key role in proving that claim false. It appears incontrovertible that the White House outed Plame Wilson to the press in an attempt to smear her husband’s credibility and to intimidate others from publicly criticizing the administration.

335 entries have been published so far, and more are in the “pipeline,” to be published within the next few days, but that steady flow will slow down for a while. There are numerous reasons for the upcoming slowdown, including my heavy (non-HC) work schedule, but it is largely because I am incorporating a tremendous amount of information that isn’t in the original entries. Much of it comes from Murray Waas’s invaluable series of articles printed in the National Journal, and quite a few other sources besides, including Scott McClellan’s book What Happened. I also want to get a copy of Marcy Wheeler’s book Anatomy of Deceit, but that may have to wait for a while. When I get it, I will use it to supplement and extend the existing entries. If you know of other reliable sources of information, link them in the comments, please.

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January 8, 2010

Can’t Help Wondering Who She Was

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline,Torture and Abuse — kevinfenton @ 3:55 pm
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There is some interesting information coming out of the attack on the CIA drone intelligence base in Afghanistan at the end of last year. The most important figure there seems to have been the base chief.

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January 7, 2010

Name that Contractor

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline,Torture and Abuse — kevinfenton @ 4:05 pm
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As I continue to digest the recent Vanity Fair piece on Blackwater owner Erik Prince by estranged CIA lawyer Adam Ciralsky, I cannot but help recall the Imam Rapito affair. A while back there was a great article about the case in GQ by Matthew Cole. Maybe this is significant, about the behaviour of the CIA team in Milan:

At least two others decided to use the trip for romantic encounters in rooms at some of Milan’s swankier hotels, like the Sheraton Diana Majestic and the Principe di Savoia, on the CIA’s dime. One team member, believed to be a freelance contractor, used his real name when checking in to hotels.

It says “believed to be a freelance contractor.” However, it is clear from the Vanity Fair piece that Prince was helping with the programme  even before it was formally outsourced to Blackwater in 2004. For example, he kindly let the relevant officers hone their assassination techniques at his house.

I can’t help wondering whether the contractor really was freelance, or whether he was from Blackwater. Cole is said to be writing a book about the case, so maybe he will now find out more for that.

January 5, 2010

Another Minor Reorganisation of the 9/11 Timeline

Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline — kevinfenton @ 3:27 am

As probably only the really observant have noticed, there has been another minor reorganisation of the 9/11 Timeline. A new meta-category, Counterterrorism before 9/11, has been established. It has three categories, all of which have been moved here from the Before 9/11 meta-category. They are the Hunt of Bin Laden, Other Counterterrorism Action before 9/11 and Other Counterterrorism Policy/Politics before 9/11.

The point of this was to separate counterterrorism before 9/11 from things like the Soviet-Afghan War and Pipeline Politics, which are not that closely related. In addition, some of the Hunt for Bin Laden entries were in one or both the other counterterrorism categories, but some weren’t and I didn’t see any system in it. Now the hunt for bin Laden entries have been taken out of the other two categories, except where they relate to other counterterrorism issues as well.

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