TBR News August 24, 2010

Aug 24 2010

The Voice of the White House

          Washington, D.C., August 22, 2010: “Livid with rage at the collapse of a dim-witted public relations venture, the organs of our government have turned against their own foils. The release of thousands of pages of low-level documentation was intended to give Obama an excuse for pulling out of Afghanistan without drawing the hysterical super-militants of the far right. Instead, the documents supplied to Mr. Assange via the Army and its people created, and is still creating, terrible trouble for the American government and its organs of control.

The brutal personal attacks on Pfc Manning (the obedient New York Times promptly claimed, without any proof whatsoever, that Manning was a rampant homosexual) and subsequently, to claim that Assange was a rapist and molester.

This reeks of the CIA and its long, long and very ugly history of similar vicious smears that we have seen, aimed at individuals and institutions that the government in general, and the CIA in specific, does not like.

During its long existence, the CIA has developed “close and working” connections with American media outlets, to include book publishers, newspapers, television entities, and a growing number of bloggers. This is why sniggering innuendos and gross libels pour out of what is alleged to be a free press whenever the masters speak. Remember the moronic Tom Ridge mouthing dire warnings about red days and pink days, don’t you?

It is interesting to note that accusations of misdeeds in others always seem to reflect the secret sins of the attackers.

Inside the Beltway, it is not a secret that many CIA operatives down at Langley are as queer as a three dollar bill but outside, thanks to the media, they are seen as heroic defenders of the country.

The old question is still very valid: “Who will guard us against the guardians?”

Wikileaks says Australia warned of ‘dirty tricks’

August 23, 2010


             STOCKHOLM — Australian intelligence services had warned WikiLeaks of “dirty tricks” before Swedish authorities issued a short-lived arrest warrant for founder Julian Assange over a rape claim, he said Monday.

“We were warned on the 11th (of August) by Australian intelligence that we should expect this sort of thing,” Assange said in a telephone interview with broadcaster Al-Jazeera from a secret location in Sweden.

Assange — whose whistleblowing website is embroiled in a row with the Pentagon over the release of thousands of secret US documents on the Afghan war — faced allegations from two women in Sweden of rape and molestation.

Prosecutors issued a warrant for his arrest on Friday night on the rape claim but abruptly withdrew it the following day saying that new information had come to light.

“We were warned about dirty tricks and specifically that they would be of a type like this,” the 39-year-old Australian said.

Swedish authorities are still investigating the claim of molestation, but Assange insisted that all the allegations against him were untrue.

“It is clearly a smear campaign … the (rape) accusation was withdrawn six hours later. The only question is who was involved,” he said in the interview which was posted on Al-Jazeera’s website.

But while Assange had said at the weekend that he believed the Pentagon could be behind the claims, he was more circumspect on Monday, acknowledging that he could not say for sure.

“We don’t have direct evidence that this is coming from a US or other intelligence” agency, he said. “We can have some suspicions about who will benefit, but without direct evidence I won’t be making direct allegations.”

The Pentagon said Sunday any allegation of dirty tricks was “absurd”.

Assange has promised to publish 15,000 new documents about the war in Afghanistan, after posting 77,000 leaked documents online late last month in a move that the Pentagon said could endanger the lives of informants.

He told Al-Jazeera the new release would take place in “two to four weeks.”

Dirty Tricks:Smear campaign against Julian Assange reaches new low

August 23, 2010

by Justin Raimondo,


The smear campaign targeting Julian Assange and WikiLeaks isn’t very subtle, nor is it very effective. First the Pentagon refuses Assange’s request to vet the tens of thousands of secret files WikiLeaks put online, expunging material that might cost American or Afghan lives – and then turns around and declares Assange and his organization have “blood on their hands.” In a similar act of self-refutation, they announce there will be no negotiations with the WikiLeakers, and then denounce WikiLeaks’ American lawyer for not keeping a 10 a.m. appointment to … negotiate.

All this was preceded by a smear campaign against Pfc. Bradley Manning, the 23-year-old intelligence analyst suspected of leaking the “Collateral Murder” video, posted by WikiLeaks (Manning is also suspected of leaking the Afghan logs database, consisting of some 75,000 internal US Army communications, the so-called Afghan war logs). A whispering campaign was launched which targeted Manning’s sexuality: links to his Facebook page detailing his opposition to “Don’t ask, don’t tell,” were accompanied by wildly speculative assertions that he might be a transsexual. Then it was asserted that his alleged boyfriend is a drag queen – an odd relationship for a transsexual to have, but then I don’t keep up with these things.

In any case, the campaign against Assange has taken the same turn – in the direction of Kraft-Ebbing – with the bizarre arrest warrant issued by a Swedish prosecutor against the WikiLeaks founder on charges of rape and molestation. The rape charge was revoked less than 24 hours later, with the explanation that an “on call” prosecutor had filed the original charges based on incomplete evidence, while the regular prosecutor was able to obtain more information and revoke the warrant. The charges of “molestation,” we are told, are still being investigated.

The source of these charges is two anonymous women, one in her twenties and the other in her thirties, whose story is very murky. According to the Telegraph,


One of the two women behind the charges yesterday told a Swedish newspaper that the women who alleged rape had been a stranger who had also attended speeches by Mr. Assange. The woman had approached her and she had agreed to attend a police interview to lay the charges and make a complaint of her own.


“’I believed her information immediately because I had a similar experience myself, she said. The other woman wanted to report a rape, I gave my statement as a support statement to her story and to support her.’”

Sisterly solidarity in the Pentagon’s cause: just one of the many ways Western feminism is useful in the selling of the Afghan war (that recent Time magazine cover is another example). Looks like the War Party is aiming its propaganda at a targeted demographic: it’s all so very professional.

And not a bit credible. The big problem for the Smear Brigade, quite aside from the swift retraction of the rape charges, is this story stinks to high heaven. So these two women just happened to meet up at one of Assange’s lectures, and – in the course of casual conversation – realized they’d both been raped by this monster. I don’t know how many rape victims attend lectures by their assaulters, but the number is probably very low. More indications the whole thing is a set up: the Guardian reports that “the preliminary allegation, made on the Friday night, and not further investigated at that stage, was apparently leaked by police to a tabloid in Stockholm, which published dramatic claims on Saturday morning that Assange was to be arrested.”

The police leaked all by their lonesome selves, with no prodding either from Swedish or American intelligence services – who naturally knew nothing of any of this. And anyone who believes otherwise is a “conspiracy theorist,” as one of the women put it:


In her [Aftonbladet] interview, she dismissed the idea, seized on by many conspiracy theorists that dirty tricks lay behind the rape allegations, because of WikiLeaks defiance of the US government. She said: The charges against Assange are of course not orchestrated by the Pentagon.’”

Oh, of course not: why, it’s pure coincidence that these charges have appeared just at the moment when US government prosecutors are looking for ways to nail him.

In the same interview, Assange’s anonymous accuser averred “that she had never intended Assange to be charged with rape. She was quoted as saying: ‘It is quite wrong that we were afraid of him. He is not violent and I do not feel threatened by him.’… She said each had had voluntary relations with Assange: ‘The responsibility for what happened to me and the other girl lies with a man who had attitude problems with women.’ Sources close to the woman said today that issues arose during the relationships about Assange’s willingness to use condoms.”

The story, you see, is no longer about WikiLeaks, the Afghan logs, war crimes committed by the US under cover of darkness, or the US government’s frantic efforts to cover them up – it’s now about Assange’s sexual habits, and Manning’s, too.

So why am I so certain this is what Assange says it is: a coordinated effort by Washington to smear and discredit him?

Because it’s all so very American, i.e. sex-obsessed. In what other country would their spooks exhibit such an unhealthy interest in the erotic routines of their quarry? The combination of voyeurism and puritanism is a national characteristic: this smear campaign has “Made in America” stamped all over it.

It’s a new low for the War Party, even by their debased standards, but not really all that surprising. A debased empire reveals its character in little things, and large: the lies they spin are perfervid projections of their own decadent appetites, sprung from the depths of a culture that resembles Rome in full decline.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in web furore over Swedish rape claim

Allegation apparently leaked to press by police
Story garners 1m hits before prosecutor steps in

August 22,  2010


The founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, was himself the subject of a rapidly spreading online story when news cascaded across the internet for several hours at the weekend mistakenly saying he was being sought in Sweden on rape charges.

Before Stockholm’s chief prosecutor made clear on Saturday afternoon that Assange was in fact neither charged with rape nor due to be arrested, the story had spread, generating more than 1,200 articles, available through internet news search, that received more than 1m hits.

“It was 7am when a friend who is Swedish and has been out on the net told me about the allegations,” Assange told Stockholm daily newspaper Aftonbladet, which has hired him as a columnist : “It was shocking. I have been accused of various things in recent years, but nothing so serious as this.”

He said none of his sexual relations had ever been built on anything other than totally consensual activity.

The preliminary allegation, made on Friday night, and not further investigated at that stage, was apparently leaked by police to a tabloid in Stockholm, which published dramatic claims on Saturday morning that Assange was to be arrested.

The Swedish Prosecution Authority today said an “on-call” prosecutor issued an arrest warrant for Assange late on Friday, only to see it revoked the next day by a higher-ranked prosecutor who found no grounds to suspect him of rape.

“The prosecutor who took over the case had more information, and that is why she made a different assessment than the on-call prosecutor,” said Karin Rosander, a spokeswoman for the authority.

One of two women involved told Aftonbladet in an interview published today that she had never intended Assange to be charged with rape. She was quoted as saying: “It is quite wrong that we were afraid of him. He is not violent and I do not feel threatened by him.”

Speaking anonymously, she said each had had voluntary relations with Assange: “The responsibility for what happened to me and the other girl lies with a man who had attitude problems with women.”

Sources close to the woman said that issues arose during the relationships about Assange’s willingness to use condoms.

In her interview, she dismissed the idea, seized on by many conspiracy theorists that ‘dirty tricks’ lay behind the rape allegations, because of WikiLeaks’ defiance of the US government. She said: “The charges against Assange are of course not orchestrated by the Pentagon.”

Swedish prosecutors said today that a decision would be taken early this week whether to continue investigations into lesser possible charges against the nomadic Assange, which he also denies.

Some of WikiLeaks’ computer servers are currently based in Sweden, and he has sought to shelter under Sweden’s journalistic source protection laws for the organisation’s crusade to promote worldwide leaking of information. Assange and his co-activists at WikiLeaks have refused US defense department demands that they cease publishing thousands of leaked military documents about the US war in Afghanistan, and making accusations of murder of civilians.

US generals have accused WikiLeaks of wholesale leaking that does too little to protect informants and the identities of Afghan villagers who co-operated with US and British forces.

Assange has riposted that it is US soldiers who have “blood on their hands” and he is seeking to edit sensitive files before posting them online.

A former US army intelligence analyst, Bradley Manning, is in military custody at Quantico, Virginia, accused of turning over to outsiders a huge quantity of classified material which subsequently appeared on WikiLeaks. Bradley reportedly told fellow computer enthusiasts that he was horrified by what he found.

Sweden withdraws warrant for WikiLeaks founder

August 21, 2010

by Karl Ritter 

Associated Press

STOCKHOLM – Swedish authorities revoked a short-lived arrest warrant for the founder of WikiLeaks on Saturday, saying a rape accusation against him lacked substance.

Julian Assange, who was believed to be in Sweden, remained under suspicion of a lesser crime of molestation in a separate case, prosecutors said.

The nomadic 39-year-old Australian dismissed the allegations in a statement on WikiLeaks’ Twitter page, saying “the charges are without basis and their issue at this moment is deeply disturbing.”

WikiLeaks is preparing to release of a fresh batch of classified U.S. documents from the Afghan war, despite warnings from the Pentagon that they could endanger American soldiers and their Afghan helpers.

A Stockholm prosecutor issued the arrest warrant on Friday, saying Assange was suspected of rape and molestation in two separate cases. But chief prosecutor Eva Finne withdrew the warrant within 24 hours.

“I don’t think there is reason to suspect that he has committed rape,” Finne said in a brief statement.

Karin Rosander, a spokeswoman for the Swedish Prosecution Authority, said Assange remains suspected of molestation, a less serious charge that would not lead to an arrest warrant.

“The prosecutor hasn’t made a decision” on that count, Rosander told The Associated Press. “The investigation continues.”

Molestation covers a wide of range of offenses under Swedish law, including inappropriate physical contact with another adult, and can result in fines or up to one year in prison.

Assange was in Sweden last week seeking legal protection for the whistle-blower website, which angered the Obama administration by publishing thousands of leaked documents about U.S. military activities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The first files in Wikileaks’ “Afghan War Diary” revealed classified military documents covering the war in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010. Assange said Wednesday that WikiLeaks plans to release a new batch of 15,000 documents from the Afghan war within weeks.

The Pentagon has demanded WikiLeaks return all leaked documents and remove them from the Internet.

Assange has no permanent address and travels frequently — jumping from one friend’s place to the next. He disappears from public view for months at a time, only to reappear in the full glare of the cameras at packed news conferences to discuss his site’s latest disclosure.

Assange declined to talk about his background at a news conference in Stockholm a week ago. Equally secretive is the small team behind WikiLeaks, reportedly just a half-dozen people and casual volunteers who offer their services as needed.

A WikiLeaks spokesman, who says he goes by the name Daniel Schmitt in order to protect his identity, told AP in a telephone interview from Iceland that the “extremely serious allegations” came as a complete surprise.

Apart from the comment from Assange, WikiLeaks’ Twitter page had a link to an article in Swedish tabloid Expressen, which first reported the allegations.

“We were warned to expect ‘dirty tricks.’ Now we have the first one,” it said.

On its official blog, WikiLeaks expressed “full support” for Assange and said it “will be continuing its regular operations.”

Assange was in Sweden partly to apply for a publishing certificate to make sure the website, which has servers in Sweden, can take full advantage of Swedish laws protecting whistle-blowers.

He also spoke at a seminar hosted by the Christian faction of the opposition Social Democratic party and announced he would write bimonthly columns for a left-wing Swedish newspaper.

A physics Ph.D, Assange hasn’t shied from taking on both government officials and the press. Media profiles have detailed an unsettled upbringing — the Australian press has reported Assange attended dozens of schools growing up — and he still seems to live on the move, his computer traveling with him in a backpack.

Assange told Der Spiegel in an interview that he likes confronting the powerful. “I enjoy creating systems on a grand scale, and I enjoy helping people who are vulnerable,” he said. “And I enjoy crushing bastards. So it is enjoyable work.”


Associated Press Writer Juergen Baetz in Berlin contributed to this report.

Scathing SBI audit says 230 cases tainted by shoddy investigations

August 24, 2010

by Mandy Locke, Joseph Neff and J. Andrew Curless

NewsObserver, Raleigh, NC

RALEIGH — The North Carolina justice system shook Wednesday as an audit commissioned by Attorney General Roy Cooper revealed that the State Bureau of Investigation withheld or distorted evidence in more than 200 cases at the expense of potentially innocent men and women.

The full impact of the disclosure will reverberate for years to come as prosecutors and defense attorneys re-examine cases as much as two decades old to figure out whether these errors robbed defendants of justice. Some of the injustices can be addressed as attorneys bring old cases back to court. For others, it’s too late: Three of the defendants in botched cases have been executed.

“This report is troubling,” said Cooper, who oversees the SBI. “It describes a practice that should have been unacceptable then and is not acceptable now.”

The revelation came after a five-month review in which two former FBI agents pulled dusty case files from shelves to find the truths that analysts chose to keep to themselves.

Two former FBI agents, Chris Swecker and Mike Wolf, examined more than 15,000 cases at the invitation of Cooper, a Democrat who has been attorney general since 2001. The exoneration of Greg Taylor, a Wake County man imprisoned 17 years for a murder he didn’t commit, prompted the review. SBI analyst Duane Deaver admitted in February that he failed to report tests indicating a substance on Taylor’s SUV was not blood. Deaver, who was suspended Wednesday, said that his bosses told him to write reports that way.

He was telling the truth. Swecker determined that the practice of not reporting results of more sophisticated blood tests was sanctioned by some analysts. In 1997, it became written policy. That policy remained in effect as recently as 2003.

Swecker said his findings signal potential violations of the U.S. Constitution and North Carolina laws by withholding information favorable to defendants. Swecker stopped short of determining whether the hidden results affected guilt or innocence in the cases he examined; often there was other evidence in the cases that linked defendants to the crimes. Still, the withheld information could have made a difference in the sentences handed down.

“This is mind-boggling,” said veteran Wayne County District Attorney Branny Vickory, a Democrat. “It is really a nightmare for everyone. I don’t know how we are going to make this right.”

The audit is another black eye for a beleaguered SBI.

The News & Observer reported this month in a series, “Agents’ Secrets,” that analysts across the laboratory push past the accepted bounds of science to deliver results pleasing to prosecutors. They are out of step with the larger scientific community and have fought defense attorneys’ requests for additional information needed to review the SBI’s work. Cooper last month dismissed SBI Director Robin Pendergraft after she struggled to answer questions about SBI cases and policies.

“This is such a damning indictment on the SBI,” said Staples Hughes, the state appellate defender, whose office oversees appeals of all defendants convicted by juries. “Why didn’t they just say ‘we lied.’ That’s what they did. Sadly, I’m not surprised.”

Prosecutors and defense attorneys are scrambling to review the 230 problem cases cited in Swecker’s report. At least 80 defendants are still in prison, a top priority for Prisoner Legal Services, said executive director Mary Pollard.

No rules, bad science

Swecker’s report paints a picture of a renegade unit at the SBI crime lab acting without rules and with misguided notions about the science behind blood analysis.

In serology, police use rudimentary presumptive tests at crime scenes to determine where blood might be. Those tests are fallible, prone to giving false positives. So analysts depend on more sophisticated, confirmatory tests to determine whether a substance is, in fact, blood.

Before 1997, the serology unit operated without report-writing guidelines. Analysts set their own criteria until 1997; that policy sanctioned the practice of not reporting negative or inconclusive results of confirmatory tests.

Swecker found policies and practices out of step with the rules of serology. They were also far afield of fairness, according to the report.

“There was anecdotal evidence that some Analysts were not objective in their mindset,” Swecker wrote.

Tests used to confirm the presence of blood never yield “inconclusive results,” Swecker noted. Two analysts interviewed for the report told Swecker that despite volumes of warnings about the potential for false positives on presumptive blood tests, they didn’t believe it because they had not gotten a positive result when testing plant material and bacteria known to signal false positives. Those two analysts believed that positive presumptive tests were absolute indications of blood.

Eight analysts were involved in these bad practices. Some are dead; a few are retired.

Four still work for the SBI, and another performs contract work for the agency.

Behind the five cases Swecker deemed most problematic: Deaver, a 23-year veteran of the agency.

New SBI Director Greg McLeod suspended Deaver on Wednesday, pending further investigation.

‘An abomination’

The cost of these errors was tough for lawyers to comprehend Wednesday.

“This report reveals staggering lack of competence at the lab,” said Mike Klinkosum, a Raleigh lawyer who represented Taylor in February and helped discover Deaver’s withheld test results. “It’s an abomination of the criminal justice system and an affront to all the decent law enforcement officers out there doing their jobs.”

Cooper delivered copies of the report and a list of affected cases to district attorneys across the state little more than an hour before announcing his findings to the public.

At least one met the findings with anger.

“We’ve been out here asserting things as fact that just weren’t,” said John Snyder, district attorney of Union County. “Now, when I’ve got jurors coming in, I’ve got to enter into a whole line of questioning I never should have been forced to do. They won’t trust us.”

Snyder, a Republican , called for an independent audit of the entire crime lab.

On Wednesday, Cooper promised a more independent review would follow and that McLeod, the new director, would bring in experts.

“The lab cannot accept a lack of thoroughness,” Cooper said. “It cannot accept attitudes that are not open to the possibility that a mistake has been made. It cannot ignore criticism and suggestions from the outside.”

Pistol-packing preacher protests arrest; DC police confiscate guns

by John Thompson

Johnson City Press

ELIZABETHTON — For the rest of his life Pastor William Duncan of Caldwell Springs Baptist Church will remember the Fourth of July as the day he lost his freedom.

“I learned our freedoms can be taken away in a heartbeat,” the 64-year-old Duncan said of the ordeal he encountered in Washington, D.C., when he was arrested in front of his shocked family and forced to spend last month’s Fourth of July weekend in the city’s jails.

The nightmare for the entire Duncan Family began with a trip to the nation’s capital to celebrate Independence Day and enjoy the spectacular fireworks show on the Mall.

Duncan had been to Washington a few times in the past but his wife, Carolyn, had never been there. Accompanying them were their daughter, son-in-law and his 4-year-old granddaughter and 9-month-old grandson. Duncan’s daughter is a police officer, and her husband is a federal agent.

The family’s ordeal began when they reached the hotel’s parking garage, which is shared with a Federal Emergency Management Agency building. A security guard at the parking garage entrance asked if Duncan had any weapons. Duncan said he carried two Smith and Wesson pistols under his seat.

Unaware that his Tennessee handgun carry permit was not valid in the District of Columbia, Duncan was surprised when police were called. He was even more surprised by the belligerent attitude of the officer in charge. Surprise became shock when federal agents and a Special Weapons and Tactics team arrived. The street in front of the hotel was blocked off.

“It looked like the middle of New York City and they had just arrested Osama bin Laden,” Duncan said.

Duncan’s federal agent son-in-law attempted to help him. He identified himself and explained the family was in town to celebrate Independence Day and that Duncan was a Baptist preacher and not a terrorist.

Soon the federal officers were satisfied there was no threat and left. The hotel security people said they did not have a problem and offered to store Duncan’s guns in the hotel safe during his stay. Most of the police also seemed satisfied that Duncan was not a threat. The one exception was the officer in charge.

“You know what you have done, you will have to go to jail,” the officer told him.

At the police station, the officer grilled Duncan about the reason for carrying two big guns.

“I told them I have arthritis and two bad shoulders. If someone attacked my family there was no other way I could protect them,” Duncan said.

The officer said he did not think it was likely anyone would attack him or his family. Duncan then told them the story of the Lillelid Family, who were traveling to a Jehovah’s Witness convention in Johnson City in 1997 when the four members of the family were shot at a rest stop. Only the 2-year-old son survived the shootings and he was left orphaned and permanently disabled.

“What would happen if someone like those thugs attack me and my family? The Lord said a man who won’t protect his family is worse than an infidel,” Duncan said.

After the questioning, Duncan was given his one call to his family. He told them he was being held without bond and he hoped to see them on Monday at his court hearing.

As shocked as he was by his arrest, Duncan was even more shocked when he was taken to jail.

“I pity anyone who has to go into the jails of D.C.,” Duncan said.

He was placed in a cell in which the toilets did not work. They were filled with filth.

“There was no soap, no toilet paper, I wasn’t given any blankets or a pillow. I was strip searched three times. My dignity was gone.”

The family had provided the police with his Bible and his medication for arthritis and restless leg syndrome. The items were never given to him.

Without his medication, Duncan could not sleep on the steel bunk. He spent his first night in jail walking around the cell and trying to keep his legs working.

Every guard and every prisoner treated me with respect,” Duncan said.

“There were some very bad people in there with me, but I never felt threatened. There was a peace that I felt. I knew that everything was going to be OK.”

Some prisoners said it was God’s will that he should be in there with them. He didn’t know quite how to take that, examining his own conscience to see why he was being punished, but some of the prisoners seemed to feel he had been sent to them for a purpose. They asked him to teach them.

That made him really miss his Bible, but he spoke to them of God’s goodness.

“The only time I really broke down was on the night of Independence Day,” Duncan said. He heard booms and realized the sounds must be the fireworks he and his family had traveled

 to see.

“I got off my bunk and went to the door. I said ‘dear God, we are here to celebrate freedom and my freedom and has been taken from me.’ I couldn’t see the fireworks but I could listen.”

His family also missed the fireworks. After his arrest, they retreated to their hotel room and hardly left. Carolyn said she didn’t eat the whole time and her daughter, a nursing mother, found she could no longer provide her 9-month-old son with milk. To this day she can no longer nurse him.

As the hours crawled by, Carolyn felt she had to do something but did not know what she could do to help her husband. Finally, she thought of a leader in the church, Dexter Lunceford, who is a trooper for the Tennessee Highway Patrol. She called and told him what happened.

Lunceford wondered what he could do and decided to call Sonny Fletcher, a close friend of Rep. Phil Roe of the 1st Congressional District. Fletcher reached Roe with the news.

“I was infuriated when I got the phone call,” Roe said. “They called the SWAT team for a preacher and a veteran. They are arresting the good guys.”

Although it was Sunday night of a holiday weekend, Roe went to work to make sure Duncan was freed. He also called Carolyn several times to assure her his staff was working for them.

“I didn’t know Dr. Roe before this. I had voted for him, but that was about it,” Duncan said.

Roe was a cosponsor of a national right-to-carry reciprocity bill in 2009 and his chief of staff staff, Andrew Duke, was familiar with National Rifle Association lobbyists and representatives. He was able to reach attorney Richard E. Gardiner, who is in private practice but formerly served as legal counsel to the NRA.

After a weekend in jail, Duncan took comfort when a public defender assured him his case would be dropped. He was shocked when he approached the judge and heard the authoritative voice of Gardiner tell the judge he would represent him.

Duncan was quickly released on his own recognizance. He was allowed to return home and the case was dismissed three weeks later.

His problems are not yet over. Duncan wants the case expunged from his record and his guns returned. Gardiner is working on that.

“I told the church when I came back that I would resign if anyone didn’t want a jailbird for a preacher. They told me they weren’t ashamed of me, that I was a hero. But I don’t want to cause the church any embarrassment.”

Roe said he still feels bad about what happened to the Duncans in Washington and he hopes they will permit him to help make amends.

“I was so mad their trip was ruined, the first time his wife had visited D.C. I want them to come back and they will be treated as royalty,” Roe said.

Roe, the former mayor of Johnson City, said he also plans to have a little mayor-to-mayor chat with the mayor of Washington about the incident.

Joint Inquiry Staff Statement, Part I

Eleanor Hill, Staff Director, Joint Inquiry Staff

September 18, 2002


Intelligence Information on Possible Terrorist Use of Airplanes as Weapons

Central to the September 11 attacks was the terrorists’ use of airplanes as weapons. In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks, there was much discussion about the extent to which our Government was, or could have been, aware of the threat of terrorist attacks of this type and the extent to which adequate precautions were taken to address that threat. We therefore asked the question: Did the Intelligence Community have any information in its possession prior to September 11, 2001 indicating that terrorists were contemplating using airplanes as weapons? Based on our review to date of the requested information, we believe that the Intelligence Community was aware of the potential for this type of terrorist attack, but did not produce any specific assessments of the likelihood that terrorists would use airplanes as weapons.

Our review has uncovered several examples of intelligence reporting on the possible use of airplanes as weapons in terrorist operations. As with the intelligence reports indicating Bin Ladin’s intentions to strike inside the United States, the credibility of the sources is sometimes questionable, and the information is often sketchy. Nevertheless, we did find reporting on this kind of potential threat including the following:

•1. In December 1994, Algerian Armed Islamic Group terrorists hijacked an AirFrance flight in Algiers and threatened to crash it into the Eiffel Tower. French authorities deceived the terrorists into thinking the plane did not have enough fuel to reach Paris and diverted it to Marseilles. A French anti-terrorist force stormed the plane and killed all four terrorists;

•2. In January 1995, a Philippine National Police raid turned up materials in a Manila apartment indicating that three individuals – Ramzi Yousef, Abdul Murad and Khalid Shaykh Mohammad – planned, among other things, to crash an airplane into CIA headquarters. The Philippine National Police said that the same group was responsible for the bombing of a Philippine airliner on December 12, 1994. Information on the threat was passed to the FAA, which briefed U.S. and major foreign carriers;

•3. In January 1996, the Intelligence Community obtained information concerning a planned suicide attack by individuals associated with Shaykh Omar Adb al-Rahman and a key al-Qa’ida operative. The plan was to fly to the United States from Afghanistan and attack the White    House;

•4. In October 1996, the Intelligence Community obtained information regarding an Iranian plot to hijack a Japanese plane over Israel and crash it into Tel Aviv. An individual would board the plane in the Far Fast. During the flight, he would commandeer the aircraft, order it to fly over Tel Aviv, and then crash the plane into the city;

•5. In 1997, one of the units at FBI headquarters became concerned about the possibility of a terrorist group using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for terrorist attacks. The FBI and CIA became aware of reporting that this group had purchased a UAV. At the time, the agencies view was that the only reason that this group would need a UAV would be for either reconnaissance or attack. There was more concern about the possibility of an attack outside the United States, for example, by flying a UAV into a U.S. Embassy or a visiting U.S. delegation;

•6. In August 1998, the Intelligence Community obtained information that a group of unidentified Arabs planned to fly an explosive-laden plane from a foreign country into the World Trade Center. The information was passed to the FBI and the FAA. The FAA found the plot highly unlikely given the state of that foreign country’s aviation program. Moreover, they believed that a flight originating outside the United States would be detected before it reached its intended target inside the United States. The FBI’s New York office took no action on the information, filing the communication in the office’s bomb repository file. The Intelligence Community has acquired additional information since then indicating there may be links between this group and other terrorist groups, including al-Qa’ida;

•7. In September 1998, the Intelligence Community obtained information that Usama Bin Ladin’s next operation could possibly involve flying an aircraft loaded with explosives into a U.S. airport and detonating it; this information was provided to senior U.S. Government officials in late 1998;

•8. In November 1998, the Intelligence Community obtained information that the Turkish Kaplancilar, an Islamic extremist group, had planned a suicide attack to coincide with celebrations marking the death of Ataturk. The conspirators, who were arrested, planned to crash an airplane packed with explosives into Ataturk’s tomb during a government ceremony. The Turkish press said the group had cooperated with Usama Bin Ladin. The FBI’s New York office included this incident in one of its Usama Bin Ladin databases;

•9. In February 1999, the Intelligence Community obtained information that Iraq had formed a suicide pilot unit it planned to use against British and U.S. forces in the Persian Gulf. The CIA commented that this was highly unlikely and probably disinformation;

•10. In March 1999, the Intelligence Community obtained information regarding plans by an al-Qa’ida member, who was a U.S. citizen, to fly a hang glider into the Egyptian Presidential Palace and then detonate the explosives he was carrying. The individual, who received hang glider training in the United States, brought a hang glider back to Afghanistan. However, various problems arose during the testing of the glider. He was subsequently arrested and is in custody abroad;

•11. In April 2000, the Intelligence Community obtained information regarding an alleged Bin Ladin plot to hijack a 747. The source, who was a “walk-in” to the FBI’s Newark office, claimed that he had been to a training camp in Pakistan where he learned hijacking techniques and received arms training. He also stated that he was supposed to meet five to six other individuals in the United States who would also participate in the plot. They were instructed to use all necessary force to take over the plane because there would be pilots among the hijacking team. The plan was to fly the plane to Afghanistan, and if they would not make it there, that they were to blow up the plane. Although the individual passed an FBI polygraph, the FBI was never able to verify any aspect of his story or identify his contacts in the United States; and

•12. In August 2001, the Intelligence Community obtained information regarding a plot to either bomb the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi from an airplane or crash an airplane into it. The Intelligence Community learned that two people who were reportedly acting on instructions from Usama B in Ladin met in October 2000 to discuss this plot.

The CIA disseminated several of these reports to the FBI and to agencies that would be responsible for taking preventive actions, including the FAA. The FAA has staff assigned to the DCI’s CTC, the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division, and to the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service to gather relevant intelligence for domestic use. The FAA is responsible for issuing information circulars, security directives and emergency amendments to the directives alerting domestic and international airports and airlines of threats identified by the Intelligence Community. Despite these reports, the Intelligence Community did not produce any specific assessments of the likelihood that terrorists would use airplanes as weapons. Again, this may have been driven in part by resource issues in the area of intelligence analysis. Prior to September 11, 2001, the CTC had forty analysts to analyze terrorism issues worldwide, with only one of the five branches focused on terrorist tactics. As a result, prior to September 11, 2001, the only terrorist tactic on which the CTC performed strategic analysis was the possible use of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons (CBRN) because there was more obvious potential for mass casualties.

At the FBI, our review found that, prior to September 11, 2001, support for ongoing investigations and operations was favored, in terms of allocating resources, over long-term, strategic analysis. We were told, during the course of our FBI interviews, that prevention occurs in the operational units, not through strategic analysis, and that, prior to September 11, the FBI had insufficient resources to do both. We were also told that the FBI’s al-Qa’ida-related analytic expertise had been “gutted” by transfers to operational units and that, as a result, the FBI’s analytic unit had only one individual working on at-Qa’ida at the time of the September 11 attacks.

            While focused strategic analysis was lacking, the subject of aviation-related terrorism was included in some broader terrorist threat assessments, such as the National Intelligence Estimates (NIE) on terrorism. For example, the 1995 NIE on terrorism mentioned the plot to down 12 U.S.-owned airliners. The NIE also cited the consideration the Bojinka conspirators gave to attacking CIA headquarters using an aircraft loaded with explosives. The FAA worked with the Intelligence Community on this analysis and actually drafted the section of the NIE addressing the threat to civil aviation. That section contained the following language:

“Our review of the evidence… suggests the conspirators were guided in their selection of the method and venue of attack by carefully studying security procedures in place in the region. If terrorists operating in this country [the United States] are similarly methodical, they will identify serious vulnerabilities in the security system for domestic flights.”

The 1997 update to the 1995 NIE on terrorism included the following language:

“Civil aviation remains a particularly attractive target in light of the fear and publicity the downing of an airliner would evoke and the revelations last summer of the US air transport sectors’ vulnerabilities.”

As a result of the increasing threats to aviation, Congress passed Section 310 of the Federal Aviation Reauthorization Act of 1996, requiring the FAA and the FBI to conduct joint threat and vulnerability assessments of security at select “high risk” U.S. airports and to provide Congress with an annual report. In the December 2000 report, the FBI and FAA published a classified assessment that suggested less concern about the threat to domestic aviation:

“FBI investigations confirm domestic and international terrorist groups operating within the U.S. but do not suggest evidence of plans to target domestic civil aviation. Terrorist activity within the U.S. has focused primarily on fundraising, recruiting new members, and disseminating propaganda. While international terrorists have conducted attacks on U.S. soil, these acts represent anomalies in their traditional targeting which focuses on U.S. interests overseas.”

In short, less than a year prior to the September 11 attacks and notwithstanding historical intelligence information to the contrary, the FBI and FAA had assessed the prospects of a terrorist incident targeting domestic civil aviation in the United States as relatively low. After September 11, 2001, the CIA belatedly acknowledged some of the information that was available regarding the use of airplanes as weapons. A draft analysis dated November 19, 2001, “The 11 September Attacks: A Preliminary Assessment,” states:

“We do not know the process by which Bin Ladin and his lieutenants decided to hijack planes with the idea of flying them into buildings in the United States, but the idea of hijacking planes for suicide attacks had long been current in jihadist circles. For example, GIA terrorists Algeria had planned to crash a Air France jet into the Eiffel Tower in December 1994, and Ramzi Yousef – a participant in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing – planned to explode 12 US jetliners in mid-air over the Pacific in the mid-1990s. Likewise the World Trade Center had long been a target of terrorist bombers.”

Despite the intelligence available in recent years, our review to date has found no indications that, prior to September 11, analysts in the Intelligence Community were:

•Cataloguing information regarding the use of airplanes as weapons as a terrorist tactic;

•Sending requirements to collectors to look for additional information on this threat; or

•Considering the likelihood that Usama Bin Ladin, al-Qa’ida, or any other terrorist group, would attack the United States or U.S. interests in this way

 Comment: In the intervening years since 9-11, it has become very evident that the Bush Administration did everything within its power to block any official investigation into the circumstances surrounding the 9/11 attack. In previous matters, such as Pearl Harbor or the Kennedy assassination, the administrations concerned made every public effort to support official investigations and the American media made every public effort to support the findings of the various investigative bodies (but only insofar as these findings supported the administration’s views.)


The frantic attempts on the part of the Bush people, and most especially on the part of the President himself, to either totally avoid any investigation into the background of the September 11, 2001 attacks or, second best, to completely derail it, does not speak well of its motives but it certainly highlights widespread belief in their fore-knowledge.

Regulators shut down big Chicago bank, 7 others

August 21, 2010

by Marcy Gordon 

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Regulators on Friday shut down a big community bank based in Chicago that has been known for its social activism but racked by financial troubles in recent months. A consortium funded by several of the biggest U.S. financial firms is buying its assets and pledging to operate the new bank by the same principles.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. took over ShoreBank, with $2.16 billion in assets and $1.54 billion in deposits. Urban Partnership Bank, the newly chartered financial institution, agreed to assume ShoreBank’s deposits and nearly all its assets.

The FDIC also seized seven other banks Friday, bringing to 118 the number of U.S. bank failures this year amid the recession and mounting loan defaults.

In an unusual move, the FDIC allowed some of ShoreBank’s executives to continue running the restructured bank. Executives who joined ShoreBank recently, as the bank struggled to raise capital, will manage Urban Partnership Bank. These managers “did not contribute to the bank’s problems,” the FDIC said.

The FDIC and Urban Partnership Bank also agreed to share losses on $1.41 billion of ShoreBank’s loans and other assets.

ShoreBank’s failure is expected to cost the deposit insurance fund $367.7 million.

The FDIC also took over Community National Bank at Bartow, in Bartow, Fla.; Independent National Bank of Ocala, Fla.; Imperial Savings and Loan Association of Martinsville, Va.; and four California banks: Butte Community Bank, based in Chico; Pacific State Bank, based in Stockton; Los Padres Bank, in Solvang; and Sonoma Valley Bank, in Sonoma.

The four closures in California boosted to 10 the number of bank failures in the state so far this year.

ShoreBank lost $39.5 million in the second quarter amid soured real estate loans. The bank had been under a so-called cease and desist order from the FDIC for more than a year, requiring it to boost its capital reserves. ShoreBank was able to raise more than $146 million in capital this spring from several big Wall Street institutions. It was unable, however, to secure federal bailout funds it sought from the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Investors in Urban Partnership Bank read like an all-star roster of U.S. finance, including American Express Co., Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., GE Capital Equity Investments Inc., Morgan Stanley, Northern Trust Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co. The Ford Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation also are investors.

ShoreBank was founded in 1973 with the aid of several dozen institutional backers. The bank has been known for promoting redevelopment, minority business and environmentally responsible lending, and serving low- and moderate-income neighborhoods in Chicago. It was the nation’s first community development and environmental bank, branching out from its roots on Chicago’s South side to Cleveland, Detroit, the Pacific Northwest and 40 foreign countries.

ShoreBank had indirect ties to a few members of the Obama administration — one of them, presidential adviser Valerie Jarrett, was on the board of a Chicago civic organization led by a ShoreBank director — and powerful supporters, including former top federal banking regulators Ellen Seidman and Eugene Ludwig.

House Republicans launched an inquiry this spring into whether the administration intervened to help shepherd a bailout of ShoreBank. Rep. Darrell Issa of California, the senior Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, sent a letter to a White House legal adviser asking specific questions on possible contacts between administration officials and executives of ShoreBank or potential investors.

The White House has said no administration officials met with ShoreBank concerning its rescue or requested help from financial institutions on its behalf.

The new bank’s chairman will be David Vitale, a former president of First National Bank of Chicago and an adviser to Arne Duncan, now the U.S. Education Secretary, when he headed the Chicago school system.

“Urban Partnership Bank will provide access to financial services and support to distressed neighborhoods in order to help transform distressed neighborhoods into strong, stable communities,” Vitale said in a statement issued Friday night. “The private investment in this new financial institution demonstrates commitment to restoring the economic vitality of our communities,” Vitale said.

He said the bank will continue the mission of serving low- and moderate-income and minority communities, and to support energy efficiency and environmentally constructive development.

The other banks closed Friday:

Community National Bank at Bartow, Bartow, Fla., had $67.9 million in assets. Its failure is expected to cost the deposit insurance fund $10.3 million.

Independent National Bank, Ocala, Fla., $156.2 million in assets. Expected cost to insurance fund is $23.2 million. CenterState Bank of Florida, WinterHaven, Fla., agreed to assume the assets and deposits of Community National Bank at Bartow and Independent National Bank.

Butte Community Bank, Chico, Calif., $498.8 million in assets. Expected cost to fund, $17.4 million.

Pacific State Bank, Stockton, Calif., $312.1 million in assets. Expected cost to fund, $32.6 million. Rabobank, El Centro, Calif., agreed to assume the assets and deposits of Butte Community Bank and Pacific State Bank.

Los Padres Bank, Solvang, Calif., $870.4 million in assets. Expected cost to fund, $8.7 million. Pacific Western Bank, San Diego, agreed to assume the assets and deposits of the bank.

Sonoma Valley Bank, Sonoma, Calif., $337.1 million in assets. Expected cost to fund, $10.1 million. Westamerica Bank, San Raphael, Calif., agreed to assume the assets and deposits of the bank.

Imperial Savings and Loan Association, Martinsville, Va., $9.4 million in assets. Expected cost to fund, $3.5 million. River Community Bank, also of Martinsville, agreed to assume the assets and deposits of the bank.


AP Business Writer Daniel Wagner in Washington contributed to this report.


Troops: Skipping Christian concert got us punished

August 20, 2010

by Steve Szkotak 

Associated Press

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Army said Friday it was investigating a claim that dozens of soldiers who refused to attend a Christian band’s concert at a Virginia military base were banished to their barracks and told to clean them up.

Fort Eustis spokesman Rick Haverinen told The Associated Press he couldn’t comment on the specifics of the investigation. At the Pentagon, Army spokesman Col. Thomas Collins said the military shouldn’t impose religious views on soldiers.

“If something like that were to have happened, it would be contrary to Army policy,” Collins said.

Pvt. Anthony Smith said he and other soldiers felt pressured to attend the May concert while stationed at the Newport News base, home of the Army’s Transportation Corps.

“My whole issue was I don’t need to be preached at,” Smith said in a phone interview from Phoenix, where he is stationed with the National Guard. “That’s not what I signed up for.”

Smith, 21, was stationed in Virginia for nearly seven months for helicopter electrician training when the Christian rock group BarlowGirl played as part of the “Commanding General’s Spiritual Fitness Concerts.”

Smith said a staff sergeant told 200 men in their barracks they could either attend or remain in their barracks. Eighty to 100 decided not to attend, he said.

“Instead of being released to our personal time, we were locked down,” Smith said. “It seemed very much like a punishment.”

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation first reported on the Christian concert. The foundation said it was approached by soldiers who were punished for not attending or offended by the religious theme of the event.

The group’s president, Mikey Weinstein, claims Christian-themed events are “ubiquitous” throughout the military, and he credited the soldiers for stepping forward.

“Whenever we see this egregious, unconstitutional religious tyranny our job is to fight it,” he said.

Smith said he and the other soldiers were told not to use their cell phones or personal computers and ordered to clean up the barracks.

About 20 of the men, including several Muslims, refused to attend the concert based on their religious beliefs, he said.

Smith said he went up the chain of command and traced the concert edict to a captain, who said he simply wanted to “show support for those kind of events that bring soldiers together.”

While not accepting blame, the officer apologized to the soldiers who refused to attend the concert and said it was not his intent to proselytize, he said.

“But once you get in there, you realize it’s evangelization,” Smith said.

Associated Press writer Pauline Jelinek in Washington contributed to this report.

The Conversations with the Crow

          When the CIA discovered that their former Deputy Director of Clandestine Affairs, Robert  T. Crowley, had been talking with author Gregory Douglas, they became fearful (because of what Crowley knew) and outraged (because they knew Douglas would publish eventually) and made many efforts to silence Crowley, mostly by having dozens of FBI agents call or visit him at his Washington home and try to convince him to stop talking to Douglas, whom they considered to be an evil, loose cannon.

             Crowley did not listen to them (no one else ever does, either) and Douglas made through shorthand notes of each and every one of their many conversation. TBR News published most of these (some of the really vile ones were left out of the book but will be included on this site as a later addendum ) and the entire collection was later produced as an Ebook.

            Now, we reliably learn, various Washington alphabet agencies are trying to find a way to block the circulation of this highly negative, entertaining and dangerous work, so to show our solidarity with our beloved leaders and protectors, and our sincere appreciation for their corrupt and coercive actions, we are going to reprint the entire work, chapter by chapter. (The complete book can be obtained by going to:


Here is the twenty-fifth  chapter

Conversation No. 25

Date:  Monday, July 22, 1996

Commenced: 9:40 AM CST

Concluded:  10:10 AM CST

GD: Good morning, Robert. Been out and about today?
RTC: Gregory, I rarely get out and about these days. My hip problems you know. And there is nothing on television but trash and the continuing entertainment of the ignorant masses.

GD: Oh God, tell me about it. And the news is so controlled that the only way you can figure out what is happening is to read the foreign press. Not ours.

RTC: Well, if it doesn’t impact on Israel in a negative sense, we do get some news but God help the TV managers if anything negative in that area ever gets out. Israel and her boys inside the Beltway are sacred cows, believe me.

GD: I have no doubt of that, Robert. It’s interesting to consider than in the two thousand years since the mythic Jesus got nailed up, the poor Jews have been kicked out of every country they have colonized. No one wants them around after they get to know them. They were kicked out of England, France, Russia, Poland, Spain, and on and on. Why? Infectious bigotry? No, the locals get wind of what they are like and out they go. Get their hands on all the money and squeeze the public dry. None of them ever did manual labor in their lives but they live off the labor of everyone else. And then they get too greedy and too careless and out they go or, in some countries, into the bonfires.

RTC: The Germans?

GD: No, I had the Spanish in mind. Now I ask you, Robert, why would there be such universal hatred against Jews? There must be a reason. Jews have told me that it’s because they are so smart that people are jealous of them and perhaps this might have some validity but I personally think that it’s their utterly predatory nature. Jews are taught in their religion that non-Jews, and especially the hated Christians, are legitimate targets to attack. I mean, this sounds like some  kind of redneck propaganda but an objective reading of history will more than bear me out. Besides, most of the really evil Jews are not Semitic Jews at all but actually Mongolian Turks. The Khazars. Before they were converted to Judaism by their Khan in 900 AD, they were a particularly vicious and depraved Caspian Sea army of marauding, raping and killing Turks, intermixed with Mongolian blood. The other Jews, the real ones, hate them with a passion.

RTC: And why so?

GD: Because they make them look bad. My God, they hate them. But these internecine fights are of no lasting consequence.

RTC: Jim loved the Jews and I warned him many times to be careful. But he never listened and got that Mossad right into our organization. What I’m truly afraid of is that these shits suck up all kinds of secret information and off it goes to Israel, mostly through their Embassy here. A real spy center.

GD: Well, under Roosevelt, who opened the gates for them, they stole everything and sent it to Stalin under the mistaken apprehension that he loved Jews. He did not, of course, but that’s another story. So, now they steal everything, like Pollard, and ship it off to Tel Aviv instead of Moscow.

RTC: Sometimes, I can sympathize with Hitler.

GD: Well, when it happens here, and it will soon enough, Hitler will be seen in a different light. But I must comment on something else. Johnson passed the Civil Rights laws and gave the blacks a good crack at a decent middle-class life. Of course he did it to get votes and not out of any decency, but they do have entrée now and many of them are coming up. Which, considering that we brought them all here as slaves, is not a bad nor improper concept. However, there are many people here who despise blacks and, in fact, hate them. We don’t hear from them because of the political correctness crap being shoved on kids in the schools but they are still there. I say this because I know some of them. Anyway, they are quiet now but if the time ever comes when the lower middle class loses its position, look for the racial issue to erupt here. Oh yes, civilization is only a very thin veneer on very cheap plywood, Robert. And the clever Jews have managed to promote the blacks, not to help them but to use them as potential victims. If they get too gross, the Jews that is, and the economy takes a dump, then the public will want scapegoats and guess what? The Jews will point to the blacks and we can count on their papers, writers, think tanks and so on to play the race card in the domestic economic poker game. A nasty business but totally predictable.

RTC: Yes, I’ve seen this coming and so have some of my friends. But there is nothing to do with it. I suppose it’s better to see the black district of New Orleans going up in flames rather than synagogues in Skokie.

GD: But the economy is pretty sound now, Robert, so that hypothesis is not valid. I am speaking theoretically here.

RTC: My God, Gregory, I do hope the FBI isn’t tapping your phone.

GD: Or yours, Robert. Don’t forget, they hate you.

RTC: Well, there is freedom of speech.

GD: Yes, there is, but don’t scream fire in a crowded theater, Robert.

RTC: (Laughter) No correct on that one.

GD: My late grandfather once told me that. Do you know what else he said? I think I might have told you this before because it’s so funny but he said that you should not tell bald-headed jokes to Custer’s widow.

RTC: You may have said that but these days, I wouldn’t bother to tell anyone that.

GD: Bad taste?

RTC: No, no one remembers Custer anymore.

GD: How soon they forget. They’ve forgotten Pollard but I will bet you that he will never get out of prison alive.

RTC: I wouldn’t take that bet. They are supposed to be our wonderful allies yet they encourage one of theirs to steal our most valuable secrets, all of which ended up in Russia, and then, after he got caught, toss him out of the safety of the Israeli Embassy here right into the waiting arms of the FBI and life in prison. On the other hand, they set up a trust fund for him and made him a honorary member of their Knesset. That sends someone a message, doesn’t it?

GD: Yes, it does. I’m not quite sure what message, but it does send a message.

RTC: Can you imagine the New York Times or the Post running one of your comments?

GD: That would be like someone in Dublin endorsing an Orange candidate for the Dial.

RTC: (Laughter)

(Concluded at 10:10 AM CST)

Dramatis personae:

James Jesus Angleton: Once head of the CIA’s Counterintelligence division, later fired because of his obsessive and illegal behavior, tapping the phones of many important government officials in search of elusive Soviet spies. A good friend of Robert Crowley and a co-conspirator with him in the assassination of President Kennedy

James P. Atwood: (April 16, 1930-April 20, 1997) A CIA employee, located in Berlin, Atwood had a most interesting career. He worked for any other intelligence agency, domestic or foreign, that would pay him, was involved in selling surplus Russian atomic artillery shells to the Pakistan government and was also most successful in the manufacturing of counterfeit German dress daggers. Too talkative, Atwood eventually had a sudden, and fatal, “seizure” while lunching with CIA associates.

William Corson: A Marine Corps Colonel and President Carter’s representative to the CIA. A friend of Crowley and Kimmel, Corson was an intelligent man whose main failing was a frantic desire to be seen as an important person. This led to his making fictional or highly exaggerated claims.

John Costello: A British historian who was popular with revisionist circles. Died of AIDS on a trans-Atlantic flight to the United States.

James Critchfield: Former U.S. Army Colonel who worked for the CIA and organizaed the Cehlen Org. at Pullach, Germany. This organization was filled to the Plimsoll line with former Gestapo and SD personnel, many of whom were wanted for various purported crimes. He hired Heinrich Müller in 1948 and went on to represent the CIA in the Persian Gulf.

Robert T. Crowley: Once the deputy director of Clandestine Operations and head of the group that interacted with corporate America. A former West Point football player who was one of the founders of the original CIA. Crowley was involved at a very high level with many of the machinations of the CIA.

Gregory Douglas: A retired newspaperman, onetime friend of Heinrich Müller and latterly, of Robert Crowley. Inherited stacks of files from the former (along with many interesting works of art acquired during the war and even more papers from Robert Crowley.) Lives comfortably in a nice house overlooking the Mediterranean.

Reinhard Gehlen: A retired German general who had once been in charge of the intelligence for the German high command on Russian military activities. Fired by Hitler for incompetence, he was therefore naturally hired by first, the U.S. Army and then, as his level of incompetence rose, with the CIA. His Nazi-stuffed organizaion eventually became the current German Bundes Nachrichten Dienst.

Thomas K. Kimmel, Jr: A grandson of Admiral Husband Kimmel, Naval commander at Pearl Harbor who was scapegoated after the Japanese attack. Kimmel was a senior FBI official who knew both Gregory Douglas and Robert Crowley and made a number of attempts to discourage Crowley from talking with Douglas. He was singularly unsuccessful. Kimmel subsequently retired and lives in retirement in Florida

Willi Krichbaum: A Senior Colonel (Oberführer) in the SS, head of the wartime Secret Field Police of the German Army and Heinrich Müller’s standing deputy in the Gestapo. After the war, Krichbaum went to work for the Critchfield organization and was their chief recruiter and hired many of his former SS friends. Krichbaum put Critchfield in touch with Müller in 1948.

Heinrich Müller: A former military pilot in the Bavarian Army in WWI, Müller  became a political police officer in Munich and was later made the head of the Secret State Police or Gestapo. After the war, Müller escaped to Switzerland where he worked for Swiss intelligence as a specialist on Communist espionage and was hired by James Critchfield, head of the Gehlen Organization, in 1948. Müller subsequently was moved to Washington where he worked for the CIA until he retired.

Joseph Trento: A writer on intelligence subjects, Trento and his wife “assisted” both Crowley and Corson in writing a book on the Russian KGB. Trento believed that he would inherit all of Crowley’s extensive files but after Crowley’s death, he discovered that the files had been gutted and the most important, and sensitive, ones given to Gregory Douglas. Trento was not happy about this. Neither were his employers.

Frank Wisner: A Founding Father of the CIA who promised much to the Hungarian and then failed them. First, a raging lunatic who was removed from Langley, screaming, in a strait jacket and later, blowing off the top of his head with a shotgun.

Robert Wolfe: A retired librarian from the National Archives who worked closely with the CIA on covering up embarrassing historical material in the files of the Archives. A strong supporter of holocaust writers.

Note: We understand that a large collection of documents, assembled by Robert T. Crowley, will be offered to the public in the near future. Here is a listing of some of the documents which will be included:



Catalog Number               Description of Contents                                      __________________________________________________________________________________

1000 BH            Extensive file (1,205 pages) of reports on Operation PHOENIX. Final paper dated January, 1971, first document dated  October, 1967. Covers the setting up of Regional Interrogation Centers, staffing, torture techniques including electric shock, beatings, chemical injections. CIA agents involved and includes a listing of U.S. military units to include Military Police, CIC and Special Forces groups involved. After-action reports from various military units to include 9th Infantry, showing the deliberate killing of all unarmed civilians located in areas suspected of harboring or supplying Viet Cong units. *

1002 BH            Medium file (223 pages)  concerning the fomenting of civil disobedience in Chile as the result of the Allende election in 1970. Included are pay vouchers for CIA bribery efforts with Chilean labor organization and student activist groups, U.S. military units involved in the final revolt, letter from  T. Karamessines, CIA Operations Director to Chile CIA Station Chief Paul Wimert, passing along a specific order from Nixon via Kissinger to kill Allende when the coup was successful. Communications to Pinochet with Nixon instructions to root out by force any remaining left wing leaders.

1003 BH                  Medium file (187 pages) of reports of CIA assets containing photographs of Soviet missile sites, airfields and other strategic sites taken from commercial aircraft. Detailed descriptions of targets attached to each picture or pictures.

1004 BH            Large file (1560 pages) of CIA reports on Canadian radio intelligence intercepts from the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa (1958) and a list of suspected and identified Soviet agents or sympathizers in Canada, to include members of the Canadian Parliament and military.

1005 BH          Medium file (219 pages) of members of the German Bundeswehr in the employ of the CIA. The report covers the Innere Führung group plus members of the signals intelligence service. Another report, attached, covers CIA assets in German Foreign Office positions, in Germany and in diplomatic missions abroad.

1006:BH            Long file (1,287 pages) of events leading up to the killing of Josef Stalin in 1953 to include reports on contacts with L.P. Beria who planned to kill Stalin, believing himself to be the target for removal. Names of cut outs, CIA personnel in Finland and Denmark are noted as are original communications from Beria and agreements as to his standing down in the DDR and a list of MVD/KGB files on American informants from 1933 to present. A report on a blood-thinning agent to be made available to Beria to put into Stalin’s food plus twenty two reports from Soviet doctors on Stalin’s health, high blood pressure etc. A report on areas of cooperation between Beria’s people and CIA controllers in the event of a successful coup. *

1007 BH            Short list (125 pages) of CIA contacts with members of the American media to include press and television and book publishers. Names of contacts with bios are included as are a list of payments made and specific leaked material supplied. Also appended is a shorter list of foreign publications. Under date of August, 1989 with updates to 1992. Walter Pincus of the Washington Post, Bradlee of the same paper, Ted Koppel, Sam Donaldson and others are included.

1008 BH            A file of eighteen reports (total of 899 pages) documenting illegal activities on the part of members of the U.S. Congress. First report dated July 29, 1950 and final one September 15, 1992. Of especial note is a long file on Senator McCarthy dealing with homosexuality and alcoholism. Also an attached note concerning the Truman Administration’s use of McCarthy to remove targeted Communists. These reports contain copies of FBI surveillance reports, to include photographs and reference to tape recordings, dealing with sexual events with male and female prostitutes, drug use, bribery, and other matters.

1009 BH            A long multiple file (1,564 pages) dealing with the CIA part (Kermit Roosevelt) in overthrowing the populist Persian prime minister, Mohammad Mossadegh. Report from Dulles (John Foster) concerning a replacement, by force if necessary and to include a full copy of AJAX operation. Letters from AIOC on million dollar bribe paid directly to J.Angleton, head of SOG. Support of Shah requires exclusive contracts with specified western oil companies. Reports dated from May 1951 through August, 1953.

1010 BH            Medium file (419 pages) of telephone intercepts made by order of J.J. Angleton of the telephone conversations between RFK and one G.N. Bolshakov. Phone calls between 1962-1963 inclusive. Also copies of intercepted and inspected mail from RFK containing classified U.S. documents and sent to a cut-out identified as one used by Bolshakov, a Russian press (TASS) employee. Report on Bolshakov’s GRU connections.

1011 BH            Large file (988 pages) on 1961 Korean revolt of Kwangju revolt led by General Park Chung-hee and General Kin-Jong-pil. Reports on contacts maintained by CIA station in Japan to include payments made to both men, plans for the coup, lists of “undesirables” to be liquidated  Additional material on CIA connections with KCIA personnel and an agreement with them  to assassinate South Korean chief of state, Park, in 1979.

1012 BH            Small file (12 pages) of homosexual activities between FBI Director Hoover and his aide, Tolson. Surveillance pictures taken in San Francisco hotel and report by CIA agents involved. Report analyzed in 1962.

1013 BH             Long file (1,699 pages) on General Edward Lansdale. First report a study signed by DCI Dulles in  September of 1954 concerning a growing situation in former French Indo-China. There are reports by and about Lansdale starting with his attachment to the OPC in 1949-50 where he and Frank Wisner coordinated policy in neutralizing Communist influence in the Philippines.. Landsale was then sent to Saigon under diplomatic cover and many copies of his period reports are copied here. Very interesting background material including strong connections with the Catholic Church concerning Catholic Vietnamese and exchanges of intelligence information between the two entities.

1014 BH            Short file (78 pages) concerning  a Dr. Frank Olson. Olson was at the U.S. Army chemical warfare base at Ft. Detrick in Maryland and was involved with a Dr. Gottleib. Gottleib was working on a plan to introduce psychotic-inducing drugs into the water supply of the Soviet Embassy. Apparently he tested the drugs on CIA personnel first. Reports of psychotic behavior by Olson and more police and official reports on his defenstration by Gottleib’s associates. A cover-up was instituted and a number of in-house CIA memoranda attest to this. Also a discussion by Gottleib on various poisons and drugs he was experimenting with and another report of people who had died as a result of Gottleib’s various experiments and CIA efforts to neutralize any public knowledge of these. *

1015 BH            Medium file (457 pages) on CIA connections with the Columbian-based Medellín drug ring. Eight CIA internal reports, three DoS reports, one FBI report on CIA operative Milan Rodríguez and his connections with this drug ring. Receipts for CIA payments to Rodríguez of over $3 million in CIA funds,showing the routings of the money, cut-outs and payments. CIA reports on sabotaging  DEA investigations. A three-part study of the Nicaraguan Contras, also a CIA-organized and paid for organization.

1016 BH            A small file (159 pages) containing lists of known Nazi intelligence and scientific people recruited in Germany from 1946 onwards, initially by the U.S. Army and later by the CIA. A detailed list of the original names and positions of the persons involved plus their relocation information. Has three U.S. Army and one FBI report on the subject.

1017 BH            A small list (54 pages) of American business entities with “significant” connections to the CIA. Each business is listed along with relevant information on its owners/operators, previous and on going contacts with the CIA’s Robert Crowley, also a list of national advertising agencies with similar information. Much information about suppressed news stories and planted stories. *


Anti-Israel sentiment grows in US

August 20, 2010


            A new opinion poll shows the Israeli regime is losing support among the American public as more US citizens question Tel Aviv’s commitment to peace.

            The survey presented to Israeli leaders last week was conducted by pollster and strategist Stanley Greenberg and sponsored by America’s pro-Israeli organization, the Israel Project, Ha’aretz reported on Thursday.

            The opinion poll revealed the number of Americans who think the US needs to support Israel dropped to 51 percent in July from 58 percent in June and 63 percent in August 2009.

            On Tel Aviv’s commitment to peace, only 45 percent of Americans surveyed in July said they felt Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was committed to the Middle East peace process.

             Meanwhile, 39 percent responded that Netanyahu and his administration are not committed to seeking peace with the Palestinians.

            The finding is a serious challenge for the rightist Netanyahu as a late 2007 poll indicated that 66 percent of American respondents believed the Israeli administration, then led by his predecessor Ehud Olmert, was committed to peace.

             Conducting similar surveys in European countries, Greenberg said the data reflects the worst time for Israel with regard to German public opinion since 2008.

            In Germany, 50 percent of the respondents said they had “very cold” or unfavorable feelings toward Israel, compared with 39 percent who said they experienced “cold” or “very cold” feelings toward Palestinians.

            In Sweden, the situation was similar to that in Germany, with 49 percent saying their feelings toward Israel were “cold” or “very cold.”

            In France, those sympathizing with Israel did not go beyond 24 percent and the number, though narrowly, was outweighed by 31 percent who said that felt “cold” or “very cold” feelings toward it.



France Deports Gypsies: Courting the Xenophobes?

August. 19, 2010

by  Bruce Crumley 


Paris -France has begun the first deportations of 700 members of the Roma Gypsy minority, to Romania and Bulgaria, as part of its controversial crackdown on communities officials hold responsible for criminal activity. The expulsions are set to be completed by the end of the month. Also affected by the law-and-order push are the nomadic “travelers” group the Roma are a subset of; delinquents and their families in France’s troubled suburban housing projects; and human traffickers and the illegal immigrants they smuggle into France. But the highly publicized targeting of Roma in particular has been criticized by opposition politicians as a cynical move by the conservative government of President Nicolas Sarkozy to seduce hard-right voters in the long march toward the President’s 2012 re-election bid. It’s also raising alarms from Romanian and European Union officials that France’s drive may be fanning xenophobia and impinging on the rights of fellow E.U. citizens. Romania has been a member of the E.U. since 2007.

An initial flight took 79 Roma to their Romanian homeland on Thursday, with at least 292 additional deportations scheduled to take place over the next week. Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux said 51 illegal camps inhabited by migrant Roma had been raided and broken up by police since late July. Apart from the 700 Roma from those camps to be expelled by the end of August, thousands more will follow as Hortefeux presses ahead with the dismantling of half of the 600 illegal camps in the next three months. Sarkozy embarked on the action on July 21, less than a week after youths from one of the transient communities ran amok in Saint-Aignan, south of Blois, to protest the alleged killing of one of their peers by police.

Opposition politicians and human-rights organizations have widely condemned the operation as abusive and racist, saying the Roma have too often been Europe’s scapegoats. Other observers pointed out that the itinerant people involved in the Saint-Aignan violence weren’t Roma but part of the far larger travelers communities, whose members are virtually all French citizens. Critics have said the more narrow focus on Roma is an effort by Sarkozy’s government to divert attention from dismal approval ratings and the scandals that have dogged it for months. Even members of Sarkozy’s ruling majority have expressed concerns over the moves. Parliamentarian Jean-Pierre Grand recently lamented what he called the rafles of Roma — a term used to refer to the notorious roundups of Jews during the Nazi occupation of France.

Despite the criticism, government officials moved ahead with the plan, which included not just Thursday’s deportations but also a raid on a new Roma camp in southeastern France. Such high-profile strutting is getting a little harder to do, however. On Aug. 18, the E.U. Commission for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship reminded France of the “freedom of movement for E.U. citizens.” It also warned that it would be watching France closely to make sure due process and the rights of European Roma were being respected.

Around the same time, Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi stepped into the fray, advising Paris not to use Roma as scapegoats for political advantage. “I am worried about the risks of populism and xenophobic reactions,” Baconschi told Radio France International. He isn’t the only one. Last week, a U.N. human-rights report decried what it called “a notable resurgence in racism and xenophobia” in France. It cited repeated French government initiatives that stigmatize foreigners and minorities — including a national debate on French identity and the anti-Roma drive — as contributing factors.

But Paris is on firm legal ground: it requires Romanian and Bulgarian citizens to obtain resident permits for stays of more than three months under the seven-year transition conditions set when both nations joined the E.U. in 2007. (Most Roma wouldn’t meet the residency requirement of stable employment.) Meanwhile, France also manages to get the Roma to return home “voluntarily”: deportees receive a payment of $386 per adult and $129 per child if they leave. Such sums, Paris says, are to allow impoverished Roma to set up a viable life at home — and stay there.

How, then, might opponents force Sarkozy to alter his anti-Roma drive? Perhaps by pointing out that despite the attention Sarkozy is drawing to the operation, his latest push is not new — nor does it work. Last year alone, around 10,000 Roma — or two-thirds of their estimated population in France — were deported, most with French taxpayer money in their pockets. Virtually all returned to France weeks later, according to international Roma organizations. Also, prior to Thursday’s deportations, 25 similar flights returned Roma to Bulgaria and Romania since January. The total for 2009 was 44 flights. Meaning, there’s nothing new to the current French expulsion of Roma except the shouting — and a crass calculation to win votes through xenophobia.


Comment: As time goes by, we can expect to see horror stories in the media about mass executions, by guillotine no doubt, in the squares of Paris and the gassing of millions Gypsies in huge French concentration camps. Soap and lampshades might also be mentioned. The public is forewarned.  Ed.

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