Telecom Immunity: Playing the 9/11 Card … Again
by Tom Burghardt / April 1st, 2008
The Bush administration, never known for its veracity on any issue, once again is playing the “9/11 card” in an desperate attempt to continue violating the Fourth Amendment rights of the American people.
US Attorney General Michael Mukasey, a darling of Senate Democrats prior to his confirmation as Bush’s top lawyer, said in speech on Thursday at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco that the September 11, 2001 attacks could have been prevented, “if the government had been able to monitor an overseas phone call to the United States,” according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Mukasey went on to claim that “we knew that there had been a call from someplace that was known to be a safe house in Afghanistan and we knew that it came to the United States. We didn’t know precisely where it went. You’ve got 3,000 people who went to work that day, and didn’t come home, to show for that.”
Correctly calling Mukasey on his mendacious pronouncements, Chronicle reporter Bob Egelko writes:
Mukasey did not specify the call to which he referred. He also did not explain why the government, if it knew of telephone calls from suspected foreign terrorists, hadn’t sought a wiretapping warrant from a court established by Congress to authorize terrorist surveillance, or hadn’t monitored all such calls without a warrant for 72 hours as allowed by law. The Justice Department did not respond to a request for more information.
A congressional investigation found in 2003 that the National Security Agency had intercepted messages between one of the Sept. 11 hijackers and an al Qaeda safe house in the Middle East as early as 1999, but had not shared the information with other agencies. (Bob Egelko, “Mukasey Backs Bush Efforts on Wiretapping,” San Francisco Chronicle, March 28, 2008, Page B-1)
That we are supposedly to believe that the National Security Agency, the largest and most secretive outfit in the US intelligence “toolbox,” was somehow “blinded” by “unreasonable” civil liberties concerns, and were “following the letter of the law” regarding warrantless wiretapping of foreign terrorist organizations, beggars belief.
In fact, prior to, and even after 9/11, the United States and their favorite clique of murderous intelligence assets, the Afghan-Arab database known as al-Qaeda, were preoccupied with a series of destabilization operations that stretched from Central Asia to the Balkans.
From Chechnya to Kosovo, al-Qaeda operatives and their BND-CIA-MI6 handlers were subverting Russian and Yugoslavian national sovereignty and fomenting rebellion alongside dodgy Saudi and Gulf “charities” that served as a cats-paw for Western imperialist interests.
As with all strategic intelligence operations undertaken by the United States and their “friends,” the Saudis were playing a double-game: seemingly advancing the regional interests of their US partners in crime, al-Qaeda-linked Saudi “charities” were simultaneously wedded to a game plan they hoped would lead to the creation of a reactionary, far-right Islamist beachhead in the heart of Central Europe. That they did so with US-NATO collusion is beyond question.
Read all of it here.