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TOPIC: 9/11 Commission

9/11 Commission 05 Aug 2009 18:49 #216

  • stefanlebkon
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stefan lebkon schrieb am 27.05.2009 um 18:12 Uhr
Those 9/11 Commission Minders Again

New details have emerged about minders who sat in on 9/11 Commission interviews during a fact-finding trip to Canada. Commission heads Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton mentioned the minders generally in interviews during the panel’s lifetime, but a memo recently found in the National Archives and blogged here a couple of weeks ago showed how prevalent they were.

Another document, again found by History Commons contributor paxvector, provides more details of how the minders worked during a trip to Canada. The commission, which eventually recommended taking part of the CIA director’s responsibilities away and giving them to a Director of National Intelligence, was considering changes to the intelligence community and sent a team to Canada to examine how its intelligence services were organised and report back.

The three-page memo, entitled “Canada Trip Lessons Learned” and apparently drafted by staffer Gordon Lederman in the autumn of 2003, highlights how the minders behaved.

One minder “acted as a participant,” “responded to inquiries” and “consulted with” the interviewee. She took verbatim notes in all three interviews she attended, doing so while sitting next to the interviewees in two of them. In addition, in one interview she “sighed heavily repeatedly.” The memo-writer also points out, “She had an opportunity to coach/poison the well with [Redacted] at dinner the night before and with others before they arrived including with FBI attorney and Legat [legal attaché].” It’s not clear which agency this minder was from, although she said she was an intelligence community attorney.

Another minder attended commission interviews with the Privy Council Office, Solicitor General, Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), Security intelligence Review Committee (SIRC) and Foreign Affairs International Trade Canada. The memo says, “I think at a maximum he should have only sat in on CSIS and RCMP and RCMP really would have been LEGAT [legal attaché] (He had never even met SIRC before).” As the legal attaché is a FBI employee, this minder cannot have been from the FBI and the fact that Lederman is not complaining he attended the meeting at the CSIS – an agency broadly equivalent to the CIA – indicates that he may have been an Agency employee.

The commission staffers were clearly annoyed with his behaviour, and the memo points out: “He sat next to the subjects in at least two. He responded to questions and even asked a question.” Worst of all, “He sought to describe Canadian system/organization while there were 3 Canadians there to talk to us.” As though there weren’t enough minders sitting in on the interviews already, he invited another minder to an interview the commission was to conduct the next day.

With this in mind, it is not hard to see why the commission’s staff became annoyed with the minders and tried to curb their influence.

Finally, given that this was a low-profile fact-finding trip to Canada, one cannot but wonder what the minders were doing in more sensitive interviews that had a bearing on the 9/11 plot itself and the US response to perceived threats.

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/05/27/those-911-commission-minder s-again/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 22.05.2009 um 15:33 Uhr
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 History Commons contributor paxvector and posted to the History Commons site at Scribd.

Initially, the FAA and NORAD claimed that the FAA had notified NORAD of the third hijacked flight 13 minutes before it hit the Pentagon and that it had also notified NORAD of the fourth plane, which NORAD then allegedly tracked until it crashed in Pennsylvania. After working for a year and analyzing documents and audio recordings, the commission formed the opinion that the FAA had given NORAD much less notice and that the fourth plane had never been tracked. The staff also thought that the FAA and NORAD officials who had made the false statements must have known they were false when they made them, and wanted the issue to be referred to the proper authorities for investigation.

The staff then spent months discussing what to do and which body the false statements should be referred to. One option was a referral to the Justice Department for a criminal investigation, as the statements had been made under oath and the officials could be prosecuted for perjury. The other option would be a referral to the FAA and Pentagon inspectors general. As the inspectors general themselves could not bring criminal charges, a referral to them would cause less discomfit to the officials who made the false statements.

At its last meeting, the commission decided to refer to matters to the inspectors general. However, the two inspector general reports blamed the errors on innocent mistakes and poor logkeeping, and no officials were seriously punished for the false statements.

In an interview with Philip Shenon, who wrote a book about the commission’s workings, staffer John Azzarello accused Zelikow of frustrating the criminal referral and not acting on the staff’s initial memo urging such referral for several months. “He just buried that memo,” said Azzarello.

Zelikow denied the allegations and in correspondence with Shenon repeatedly emphasized that he had not maneuvered against a criminal referral: “Three basic options emerged: criminal referral to DOJ, referral to the IGs (with a possible criminal referral as a follow-on to that), or proceed with our investigation without further action… Once I had worked through the evidence and felt I understood it, I concluded that the evidence was serious enough that we needed to make a referral, either criminal or to the IGs… Strongly tempted by the possible need for a criminal referral, I worked with Dan [Marcus, the commission’s counsel,] and others to play out how that would work and the sequence that would follow.”

Zelikow also wrote that he had mentioned the possibility of a criminal referral at a meeting of the full commission, although by this time he had already decided to recommend referral to the inspectors general, not the Justice Department.

The newly-found document, entitled “How Should the Commission Handle Evidence of Possible False Statements of US Officials” and dated June 6, 2004, casts doubt on Zelikow’s version and offers some support to Azzarello. If Zelikow really was “strongly tempted” by a criminal referral, why is this possibility not mentioned a single time in four-page memo to the commission’s chairman Tom Kean and Vice Chairman Lee Hamilton on what action the commission should take?

Although the memo was written several weeks before the commission’s final decision on the matter, Zelikow does not even offer criminal referral as an option. For example, in the second question he simply asks whether the commission should contact the Pentagon inspector general now or later. A person who was not knowledgeable of the issue and read the memo would not even know that the possibility of a criminal referral existed.

Although Zelikow is not known to have had friends at the FAA, according to Shenon he was a close friend of Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Stephen Cambone. Marcus even later said that Zelikow would “flaunt” his closeness to Cambone. Staffers also accused Zelikow of favoring the Pentagon in a dispute over whether a subpoena would be issued on the Defense Department.

It is unclear what other communications exist between Zelikow and the commissioners about the issue. Presumably, Zelikow did mention the possibility of a criminal referral in some documentation which has yet to be found. For example, the memo to Kean and Hamilton was found with a withdrawal notice for three memos totalling 50 pages about the false statements and they may contain discussion of the criminal referral.

Nevertheless, the way it looks is that Zelikow decided to recommend a referral to the inspectors general instead of a criminal referral and then frontloaded the documentation for the commissioners with his preferred option, instead of offering them an unbiased overview of the possibilities upfront. This again supports allegations that Zelikow was a uniquely powerful person on the commission and regulated the information flow to the commissioners to get them to rubber-stamp actions he had already decided on.

Zelikow worked on counterterrorism issues during the Bush transition under National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. When this work and all his links to Rice, with whom he co-authored a book in the 1990s, came to light in the middle of the commission’s work, he was recused from part of the investigation.

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/05/21/zelikow-failed-to-men tion-possible-criminal-referral-of-false-statements-by-norad-and-faa-in-memo-to- commission-heads/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 22.05.2009 um 15:31 Uhr
Zelikow Caught in a Whopper; Made False Statements to Author about Criminal Referral for NORAD, FAA

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 wrote to Shenon at some length about the issue in preparation for a book-length history of the commission Shenon was preparing (emphasis added):

On the later [2004] question of a later criminal or IG referral of NORAD and FAA, there was indeed a dispute on how to handle these issues between the team and Dan & Steve. So they [the team] did have a dispute with “the front office.” [Marcus & Dunne were part of the ‘front office’] I later deduced that this dispute had been percolating for a while, building up some tension and perhaps also some misunderstanding.

The issue was them bumped up to me, hitting me for the first time as I returned to DC from a trip out of town. I well remember being startled when I came back and read a message on this, addressed or cc’d to me for the first time, in which emotions were already riding pretty high and people were mistakenly assuming that I’d been involved in this seemingly long-running dispute all along.

The recently discovered e-mail chain, which apparently contains the e-mail where “emotions were already riding pretty high” – sent at 1:11 in the morning and accusing Marcus of distorting what had taken place at a previous meeting – shows that Zelikow was already aware of the matter.

The first e-mail in the chain is from John Farmer, the leader of the commission’s team investigating the failed air defense on 9/11 and is dated June 1, 2004. In it, Farmer discusses a call placed to him by 9/11 Commission Chairman Tom Kean and writes that Kean “knew nothing of the April 6 interim report” – the memo Zelikow allegedly buried. Farmer assumes that Zelikow knows exactly what he is talking about, indicating that Farmer and Zelikow had discussed the issue before.

It is also interesting how Farmer emphasizes that it was Kean that contacted him: “Gov. Kean reached out for me over the weekend regarding the June hearing. I had made no effort to reach him, directly or indirectly.” Early in the commission’s investigation, Zelikow had tried to prevent staff talking directly to commissioners, to centralize all contacts through himself. Although this rule was formally rescinded following protests from at least one commissioner, the fact that Farmer, one of the commission’s most senior staffers, felt the need to write this may indicate it continued to operate informally.

Zelikow replied a few hours later and, instead of claiming to know nothing of the issue, repeatedly stated he knew exactly what Farmer was talking about: “I believe that I discussed this matter with him [Kean] in April. I’ll talk to him and see if he agrees. The issue was certainly discussed with Lee [Hamilton, the commission’s vice chairman], who had a view. But first, just so we don’t all start suffering from a collective case of Alzheimer’s, let’s try together to remember what the issues were in April, when this topic was originally discussed, and the last time anyone discussed it with me.”

Zelikow then outlines the options mentioned at the April meeting and writes that “my initial judgment of these questions in April led me to propose the option of immediate referral to the two IGs [at the FAA and the Pentagon]…” Finally, he discusses how to proceed and says he thinks they should make a decision on referral.

This e-mail is followed by one from Marcus, who sets out what he thinks they agreed to do in April, then the emotional, early morning one from four staff members, Kevin Schaeffer, Miles Kara, Dana Hyde and Azzarello. Despite the clear emotional undercurrent, this e-mail is written in unusual, highly formal language, with sentences like, “We disagree with Dan’s characterization of our position at that meeting.”

It is this e-mail that Zelikow evidently referred to in his exchange with Shenon as being the first notice he had of the issue. He told Shenon that “I quickly tried to collect everyone, clear the air, and start working this,” and in his response to the emotional e-mail he does just that, calling a meeting for 10:30 a.m. the same day.

It is also interesting to note the second sentence of Zelikow’s response: “Receiving e-mails like this makes me wonder if all of you have lost the ability to use the telephone or, in Dana’s case, walk ten feet to my office.” One cannot read that sentence without thinking that perhaps Zelikow would have preferred not to have this disagreement in writing. After all, Zelikow sent some of the staffers an e-mail, and they replied by e-mail. What could be so very wrong with that?

The e-mail chain therefore shows that Zelikow had had various interactions on the issue before the first one he claimed in his exchange with Shenon:

(1) He attended the April 22 meeting, and may have read Farmer’s interim memo on the topic;

(2) He “believes” he discussed the issue with Kean, who was certainly aware of the vague allegations, as is shown by his later call to Farmer;

(3) There was also a discussion with Hamilton, which either Zelikow was involved in or learned of later;

(4) He received the June 1 e-mail from Farmer;

(5) He replied to Farmer;

(6) He received the e-mail from Marcus that led to the emotional e-mail.

Either these six, and possibly more interactions just slipped Zelikow’s mind when he was replying to Shenon’s inquiry, or he lied deliberately. The explanation that they slipped his mind is unlikely due to (a) the high number of the interactions, (b) the fact the inquiry was by e-mail, giving Zelikow more time to consider his response than in an ordinary face-to-face interview, (c) the extreme seriousness of the matter – they were discussing possible perjury by high-ranking military officers regarding events in which 3,000 people were murdered, and (d) Zelikow’s claim to Shenon that he “well remember[ed]” the emotional e-mail.

In addition, Zelikow’s claim that the staffers were “mistakenly assuming that I’d been involved in this seemingly long-running dispute all along” is false. This assumption was not at all mistaken, and in one of the e-mails Zelikow admits to having attended the April meeting. One of the things that upset the investigators most is Zelikow’s characterization of what happened at that meeting–that the “sense of the group” was to essentially do nothing for two months.

After Shenon’s book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Commission, was published in 2008, some of the commission’s staff banded together to attack Shenon and claim he had been overly critical of Zelikow. However, on this issue Shenon sat on the fence, writing it was “almost impossible to sort out the truth” between Zelikow and Azzarello, but then implicitly favoring Zelikow’s version by pointing out a subsequent business relationship between Farmer and Azzarello and highlighting Azzarello’s emotional involvement in the investigation–two of his family had died in the WTC.

In the light of the e-mail chain, it seems that, if anything, Shenon took it easy on Zelikow. We have to ask the question: why did Zelikow lie? The logical option would seem to be to cover up the fact he had maneuvered against a criminal referral of the false statements to the Justice Department as a favor to his friends at the Pentagon, but this is not yet certain. Finally, it’s worth asking if Zelikow lied about his involvement in this issue, did he lie about anything else? If he did this for Stephen Cambone, what would he do for Condoleezza Rice?

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/05/22/zeliko...ught-in-a-whopper-ma de-false-statements-to-author-about-criminal-referral-for-norad-faa/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 19.05.2009 um 18:04 Uhr
Official story of 9/11 "almost entirely untrue"


"... As of the 9/11 Commission’s one of the primary authors report, John Farmer is proud of his and his colleagues’ work. Yet he came away from the experience convinced that there was a further story to be told, one he was uniquely qualified to write.

Now that story can be told. Tape recordings, transcripts, and contemporaneous records that had been classified have since been declassified, and the inspector general’s investigations of government conduct have been completed. Drawing on his knowledge of those sources, as well as his years as an attorney in public and private practice, Farmer reconstructs the truth of what happened on that fateful day and the disastrous circumstances that allowed it: the institutionalized disconnect between what those on the ground knew and what those in power did. He reveals — terrifyingly and illuminatingly — the key moments in the years, months, weeks, and days that preceded the attacks, then descends almost in real time through the attacks themselves, revealing them as they have never before been seen.

Ultimately Farmer builds the inescapably convincing case that the official version not only is almost entirely untrue but serves to create a false impression of order and security. The ground truth that Farmer captures tells a very different story — a story that is doomed to be repeated unless the systemic failures he reveals are confronted and remedied..."

www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2009/5/16/732116/-Official-sto ry-of-9-11-almost-entirely-untrue zuletzt geändert am 19.05.2009 um 19:23 Uhr
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 05.05.2009 um 16:11 Uhr
Hier einige Übersichtsartikel zu den jüngst veröffentlichten 9/11 dokumenten:

9/11 Commission Documents Related to Day of Attacks
hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/04/12/911-co...sion-documents-relat ed-to-day-of-attacks/

9/11 Commission Staffers Involved in Search of NSA Records Knew of Hijackers’ Monitored Calls from US

... ne of the most serious omissions in the 9/11 Commission report was its failure to discuss NSA intercepts of calls between two of the alleged hijackers in the US, Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhazmi, and al-Qaeda’s central communications hub in Yemen. Why the commission failed to deal with the intercepts properly is still unknown, but information newly released by the National Archives shows that two of the staffers involved in searches of NSA records for 9/11-related information must have known of the calls, as they attended a meeting with then-NSA Director Michael Hayden at which Hayden offered an explanation for why the NSA did not exploit the calls....

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/02/25/911-commission-staffers-in volved-in-search-of-nsa-records-knew-of-hijackers-monitored-calls-from-us-did-no t-find-recordings-transcripts-reports/

9/11 Commission Documents Related to White House Document Battle

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/04/12/911-commission-documents-rela ted-to-white-house-document-battle/

Miscellaneous 9/11 Commission Documents

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/04/12/miscellaneous-911-commissi on-documents/

9/11 Commission Documents Related to Saeed Sheikh

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/04/17/911-commission-documents-rela ted-to-saeed-sheikh/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 27.04.2009 um 23:10 Uhr
Constitutional Expert Slams 9/11 Commission

georgewashington2.blogspot.com/2009/04/c...onal-expert-slams-91 1.html
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 27.04.2009 um 19:26 Uhr
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.


www.911blogger.com/node/19944 zuletzt geändert am 27.04.2009 um 19:26 Uhr
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 20.04.2009 um 16:34 Uhr
9/11 Commission Counsel: Government Agreed to Lie About 9/11
Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
Tuesday, April 14, 2009

www.infowars.com/911-commission-counsel-...t-agreed-to-lie-abou t-911/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 31.01.2009 um 06:33 Uhr
www.nswbc.org/Reports%20-%20Documents/Ve...nal%20Security%20Exp erts.pdf
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 29.01.2009 um 01:11 Uhr
Infos zu DIETRICH SNELL, einem mitarbeiter der Commission:
www.peterlance.com/Peter_Lance/Spizter_and_Snell.html
http: //www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=dietrich_snell
www.counterpun ch.org/cockburn03092006.html
911citizenswatch.org/?p=810
www.rea dersread.com/features/peterlance.htm
www.democraticunderground.com/discu ss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=364x456428 zuletzt geändert am 29.01.2009 um 01:57 Uhr
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 24.01.2009 um 19:52 Uhr
Infos zu Chairman Thomas Kean und möglichen Interessenkonflikten bzgl. BMI

www.insider-magazine.com/911Kean.pdf

Allg. zu BMI:

www.historycommons.org/timeline.jsp?time...complete_911_timelin e&financing_of_al-qaeda:_a_more_detailed_look=bmiPtech
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# Andreas Pern
Andreas Pern schrieb am 23.01.2009 um 22:44 Uhr
Beste deutsche Zusammenfassung:

Sebastian Range
tinyurl.com/aq62vd
[Nachricht]
# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 23.01.2009 um 16:33 Uhr
Attorney General contender carries 9/11 related baggage
Peter Lance

rawstory.com/news/2008/A_possible_A.G._c...e_with_911_1111.html
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 16.01.2009 um 19:54 Uhr
FBI documents contradict 9/11 Commission report
Larisa Alexandrovna


www.rawstory.com/news/2008/FBI_documents_contradict_Sep t. _11_Commission_0228.html
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 15.01.2009 um 19:04 Uhr
Summaries of 9/11 Commission Interviews Released

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/01/14/summaries-of-911-commission -interviews-released/
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 25.09.2008 um 11:23 Uhr
9/11 Panel 2003: Zelikow wrote Outline of Final Report when Panel started

truthaction.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4350
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 20.09.2008 um 12:43 Uhr
Zelikow: Losing to the bacteria
Open letter to Philip Zelikow and The Washington Post
By Nicholas Levis
Online Journal Guest Writer
www.mail-archive.com/ctrl@listserv.aol.com/msg116474.html

OPEN LETTER: National Security Experts Speak Out: 9/11 Commission Falls Short

911citizenswatch.org/?p=401
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 10.09.2008 um 18:34 Uhr
Infos zu Lee Hamilton

Excellent analysis of Lee Hamilton, Iran-Contra, and Onward...
www.atlargely.com/2008/03/excellent-analy.html

http://www.h istorycommons.org/context.jsp?item=amid8...#amid80shamiltoniran contra
www.historycommons.org/context.jsp?item=...rprisecoverup#a92sur prisecoverup
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 10.09.2008 um 17:37 Uhr
The 9/11 Commission's Incredible Tales
Flights 11, 175, 77, and 93 by Prof. David Ray Griffin
www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=1478
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# stefan lebkon
stefan lebkon schrieb am 09.09.2008 um 14:39 Uhr
Der Kommission standen nciht alle Informationen zur VErfügung, verschiedene Regeirugninstitutionen wie das Weiße Haus, FAA etc. hielten der Kommission hieltzen wichtige Informationen zurück, außerdem kann die Neutralität der Kommission bezweifelt werden.

www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0446580759/centerforcoop-20
http://w ww.historycommons.org/context.jsp?item=a...restnsa#alate02commi ssioninterestnsa
www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/0 1/AR2006080101300.html
www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/200 6/08/04/AR2006080401026_pf.html
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Aw: 9/11 Commission 08 Aug 2009 18:33 #230

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9/11 Commission Staffer to NSA: How Can We Help You?



I recently found an interesting 9/11 Commission document about the NSA in the National Archives. The handwritten note from one of the commission’s staffers, Gordon Lederman, shows that one of his acquaintances had lunch with NSA Director Michael Hayden on May 7, 2003. Before the lunch, the acquaintance called Lederman and asked him whether he had any questions he wanted put to Hayden. According to the note, Lederman’s reply was, “I suggested that [the acquaintance] ask what the 9/11 Comm could do in its investigation that would be most useful to DirNSA [Hayden].”

The note was written the next day by Lederman and sent to his boss, Kevin Scheid, the leader of the commission’s team that investigated the US intelligence community. It was found in the National Archives by History Commons contributor paxvector and posted to the History Commons site at Scribd.

Although the commission had subsidiary tasks such as commenting on the structure of the US intelligence community, its main job was to document the 9/11 plot and work out why the US failed to prevent it, despite the numerous opportunities. The NSA intercepted calls to and from the hijackers for years, including calls made when the hijackers were in the US that the NSA could have used to trace their location. The calls were intercepted because they were made to al-Qaeda’s global operations center in Yemen, which fell under NSA surveillance in 1996.

Contradictory explanations have been offered as to why the NSA failed, but the commission had little to say about the issue in its final report. The calls between the hijackers in the US and the operations centre in Yemen were mentioned, but they commission did not point out the NSA was intercepting them.

Hayden’s reply to the lunch query was to indicate “that he would rather the 9/11 Comm not exist.” Given the commission’s apparent lack of interest in the NSA–it did not take public testimony from any high-ranking NSA officials, and the agency only rated a few dozen mentions in the commission’s final report–it seems that whatever Hayden was worried about did not come to pass. Exactly what he was worried about, and why the commission outwardly showed little interest in the agency is still to be explained.

Philip Shenon’s 2008 book The Commission gave the impression that the commission simply lacked interest in the NSA, implying that Executive Director Philip Zelikow’s greater enthusiasm for the CIA part of the investigation contributed to this. However, there are several documents in the commission’s files about the NSA, hinting that the issue may be more complex.

Full text of the note:

To: KS [Kevin Scheid]

From: GL [Gordon Lederman]

Date: 5/8/03

Re: Bruce & DirNSA

Bruce called me yesterday to ask me whether I had any questions Bruce should ask DirNSA [Hayden] at today’s lunch. I suggested that Bruce ask what the 9/11 Comm could do in its investigation that would be most useful to DirNSA. Bruce agreed.

Bruce called me today to report on his lunch. He said that DirNSA indicated that he would rather the 9/11 Comm not exist and that he took issue with Philip’s [Philip Zelikow, the 9/11 Commission's executive director] charge that NSA did not completely co-operate with the JI [Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 failings]. DirNSA said he supported a DNI [Director of National Intelligence]. I asked Bruce why NSA supports a DNI – Bruce responded it is because NSA thinks the DCI [Director of Central Intelligence] is controlled by CIA & DO [the CIA's Directorate of Operations]. I asked whether NSA thought a DNI would compete with SecDef [Secretary of Defense]– Bruce said that issue did not come up and that we should discuss it.

Additionally, Zelikow’s apparent charge that the NSA did not completely co-operate with the Joint Inquiry is interesting. I wonder what was meant by that?

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/08/04/911-co...e-help-you/#more-816


9/11 Commission Report Outline from Spring 2003 Similar to Final Report



An outline of the 9/11 Commission’s report apparently drafted in the spring of 2003, about 16 months before the commission reported, has been found in the National Archives by History Commons contributor paxvector and posted to the History Commons site at Scribd. The outline, which consists of chapter headings and sub-headings, was mentioned first in Without Precedent, the official account of the commission by its chair and vice-chair Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton, and then in Philip Shenon’s The Commission. Three versions of the document were found (here, here and here).

The documents in the archives are undated, although according to Shenon the first such outline was drafted in March 2003 by Philip Zelikow, the commission’s executive director, and Ernest May, a consultant to the commission who helped write its final report. In their book, Kean and Hamilton recall seeing the outlines in July 2003.

The similarity between the outline and the report is striking. The main difference is that the number of dry chapters containing policy recommendations at the end was drastically reduced from six in the proposal to just two in the final report. The other more noticeable changes are that the chapter on the air defence on the day of 9/11 was moved from the middle of the report to the front, and the chapter on the period immediately before the attacks, number six in the proposal, was broken up into two chapters in the final report, numbers seven and eight.

Several of the chapter headings in the outline were used in the final report, including “Counterterrorism Evolves,” “Responses to Al-Qaeda’s Initial Assaults,” “Al-Qaeda Aims at the American Homeland,” “From Threat to Threat,” “The Attack Looms,” “Heroism and Horror” and “Wartime.”

Many of the sub-headings for the various chapters are also the same. For example the sub-headings for chapter 2 in the outline are:

2.1 From the old terrorism to the new: The case of WTC I

2.2 Adaptation – or non-adaptation – in the law enforcement community

2.3 … the intelligence community

2.4 … the departments and the Congress

2.5 … the White House

In the final report this becomes:

3.1 From the Old Terrorism to the New: The First World Trade Center Bombing

3.2 Adaptation–and Nonadaptation–in the Law Enforcement Community

3.3 … and in the Federal Aviation Administration

3.4 … and in the Intelligence Community

3.5 … and in the State Department and the Defense Department

3.6 … and in the White House

3.7 … and in the Congress

The situation with some of the other chapters is similar.

The document was not shared with the rest of the commission’s staff for some months, causing controversy on the commission. This is Shenon’s telling:

He [Zelikow] and May proposed a sixteen-chapter report that would open with a history of al-Qaeda, beginning with bin Laden’s fatwa against the United States in 1998. That would lead to chapters about the history of American counterterrorism policy. The White House response to the flood of terrorist threats in the spring and summer of 2001 were left to the sixth chapter; the events of September 11 were left to the seventh chapter. Zelikow and May proposed that the tenth chapter be entitled “Problems of Foresight–and Hindsight,” with a subchapter on “the blinding effects of hindsight.”

Zelikow shared the document with Kean and Hamilton, who were impressed by their executive director’s early diligence but worried that the outline would be seen as evidence that they–and Zelikow–had predetermined the report’s outcome. It should be kept secret from the rest of the staff, they all decided. May said that he and Zelikow agreed that the outline should be “treated as if it were the most classified document the commission possessed.” Zelikow came up with his own internal classification system for the outline. He labelled it “Commission Sensitive,” putting those words at the top and bottom of each page.

Kean and Hamilton were right to be wary. When it was later disclosed that Zelikow had prepared a detailed outline of the commission’s final report at the very start of the investigation, many of the staff’s investigators were alarmed. They were finally given copies of the outline in April 2004. They saw that Zelikow was proposing that the findings about the Bush administration’s actions before 9/11 would be pushed to the middle of the report, which meant that readers would have to go searching for them past long chapters of al-Qaeda history. Many assumed the worst when they saw that Zelikow had proposed a portion of the report entitled “The Blinding Effects of Hindsight.” When “blinding hindsight”? They assumed Zelikow was trying to dismiss the value of hindsight regarding the Bush administration’s pre-9/11 performance. A few staffers began circulating a two-page parody of Zelikow’s effort entitled “The Warren Commission Report—Preemptive Outline.” The parody’s authorship was never determined conclusively. The chapter headings included “Single Bullet. We Haven’t Seen the Evidence Yet. But Really. We’re Sure.”

That’s from pages 388-389 of Shenon’s book, the outline is dealt with on pages 270-271 of Without Precedent and in the Shenon-Zelikow correspondence (main section starts on page 118).

The main issue here is clear: did the outline predetermine the report’s outcome in any way? And, if so, to what extent?

hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/08/07/911-co...lar-to-final-report/
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Re:9/11 Commission 21 Aug 2009 18:57 #270

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Chronik der ersten Untersuchung (Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, March/April 2003)
www.thebulletin.org/article.php?art_ofn=ma03prados

Zwischenbericht der ersten Untersuchung (US-Senat, 20.09.2002)
intelligence.senate.gov/0209hrg/020920/hill.pdf

Behinderungen (CNN, 29.01.2002; New York Times, 31.03.2003; Spiegel 27.10.2003)
archives.cnn.com/2002/ALLPOLITICS/01/29/inv.terror.probe/
www.nytimes.com/2003/03/31/opinion/31MON2.html
www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,271477,00.html

Eröffnung der zweiten Untersuchung durch Statement der Opferfamilien (31.03.2003)
www.9-11commission.gov/hearings/hearing1/witness_kleinberg.htm

Abschlussbericht der zweiten Untersuchung (22.07.2004)
www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report.pdf

Interner Prüfungsbericht der FBI-Untersuchung (November 2004, veröffentlicht 10.06.2005)
abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory?id=835741
www.usdoj.gov/oig/special/0506/final.pdf
Ein ernüchternder Gedanke, daß man zur Strafverfolgung eines Ladendiebs bessere Beweise braucht als dazu, einen Weltkrieg anzufangen. Anthony Scrivener
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Aw: 9/11 Commission 09 Sep 2009 15:50 #310

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Kommissionsmitglieder glauben selbst nicht an das eigene Teufelswerk:

"We to this day don't know why NORAD [the North American Aerospace Command] told us what they told us," said Thomas H. Kean, the former New Jersey Republican governor who led the commission. "It was just so far from the truth. . . . It's one of those loose ends that never got tied."

"I was shocked at how different the truth was from the way it was described," John Farmer, a former New Jersey attorney general who led the staff inquiry into events on Sept. 11, said in a recent interview. "The tapes told a radically different story from what had been told to us and the public for two years. . . . This is not spin. This is not true."

www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/ar...AR2006080101300.html
Ein ernüchternder Gedanke, daß man zur Strafverfolgung eines Ladendiebs bessere Beweise braucht als dazu, einen Weltkrieg anzufangen. Anthony Scrivener
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Aw: 9/11 Commission 16 Oct 2009 15:32 #376

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9/11 Commission Intended to Ask FAA Administrator about Actions on Day of Attacks at Public Hearing
Filed under: Complete 911 Timeline — kevinfenton @ 1:52 am
Tags: 9/11 Commission, Federal Aviation Administration, Jane Garvey

One of the things that I always wondered about in the 9/11 Commission’s public questioning of former FAA Administrator Jane Garvey is that they never asked her about what she did on the day of 9/11–at least as far as I can tell. I’ve been through the record of her public testimony at the hearing on 22 May 2003 a couple of times and I don’t see anything about what she personally did on the day of the attacks, although she is questioned about several others issues (such as aviation security and actions by other FAA officials on the day of the attacks).

I had wondered about this primarily because of a passage in Richard Clarke’s Against All Enemies conference the White House-initiated video conference:

I resumed the video conference. “FAA, FAA, go. Status report. How many aircraft fo you still carry as hijacked?”

Garvey read from a list: “All aircraft have been ordered to land at the nearest field. Here’s what we have as potential hijacks: Delta 1989 over West Virginia, United 93 over Pennsylvania…”

Clarke places this at just before notice of the Pentagon impact, which was at 9:38. I know questions have been raised about the accuracy of Clarke’s memory, but the idea that Garvey was on the video conference and failed to mention once that United 93 had been hijacked has never sat well with me. FAA headquarters found out about the hijacking of United 93 at 9:34 (according to the commission’s report), seven minutes after the place was taken over, and Clarke has her passing on the notification of the hijacking about four minutes later, which seems unsurprising.

In this context, I can’t help but recall the commission’s seemingly lack of curiousity about the video conference–it’s investigation did not extend to determining which defense official was on the video conference for the first hour. Possibly the commission’s investigators did not trouble themselves to ask, possibly the interviewees had their brains scrambled by the high-tech memory loss field sometimes emitted by investigators :-) .

Imagine therefore my surprise when I came across two lists of questions to be put to witnesses at the hearing (h/t: Erik Larson). The questions for Garvey include:

Where were you when the hijacking took place on September 11, when and how were you notified, and what did you do? Were your actions and responses following the incident guided by any prepared protocol, or were your required to respond spontaneously?

However, as far as I can see, this question was never put to Garvey in the public hearing, although the memo of an interview with her in October 2003 does discuss her actions on the day of 9/11. In the memo she talks about being on the video conference, but does not mention updating it with information about either United 93 or Delta 1989. I still find this odd. Wouldn’t it be nice to know what she knew about United 93, when she knew it, and whether she communicated it over the video conference?



hcgroups.wordpress.com/2009/10/14/911-co...s-at-public-hearing/
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Re: 9/11 Commission 13 Sep 2010 00:06 #874

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Lawrence Wilkerson, former Powell Chief of Staff, says 9/11 CR probably did not get 60% right

www.youtube.com/watch?v=fRKFbLJDfl4&feature=player_embedded



Seven CIA Veterans Challenge 9/11 Commission Report

www.opednews.com/articles/genera_alan_mi...n_cia_veterans_c.htm


9/11 Commissioners:

• The 9/11 Commission’s co-chairs said that the 9/11 Commissioners knew that military officials misrepresented the facts to the Commission, and the Commission considered recommending criminal charges for such false statements (free subscription required)

• 9/11 Commission co-chair Lee Hamilton says “I don’t believe for a minute we got everything right”, that the Commission was set up to fail, that people should keep asking questions about 9/11, and that the 9/11 debate should continue

• 9/11 Commissioner Timothy Roemer said “We were extremely frustrated with the false statements we were getting”

• 9/11 Commissioner Max Cleland resigned from the Commission, stating: “It is a national scandal”; “This investigation is now compromised”; and “One of these days we will have to get the full story because the 9-11 issue is so important to America. But this White House wants to cover it up”

911blogger.com/news/2010-09-10/anniversary-911
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