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Qtec
04-05-2006, 08:12 AM
http://www.commondreams.org/headlines02/0907-08.htm

Published on Saturday, September ,7, 2002 in the lndependent/UK
Revealed: The Taliban Minister, the US Envoy and the Warning of September 11 That Was Ignored
by Kate Clark in Kabul

Weeks before the terrorist attacks on 11 September, the United States and the United Nations ignored warnings from a secret Taliban emissary that Osama bin Laden was planning a huge attack on American soil.

The warnings were delivered by an aide of Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil, the Taliban Foreign Minister at the time, who was known to be deeply unhappy with the foreign militants in Afghanistan, including Arabs.

Mr Muttawakil, now in American custody, believed the Taliban's protection of Mr bin Laden and the other al-Qa'ida militants would lead to nothing less than the destruction of Afghanistan by the US military. He told his aide: "The guests are going to destroy the guesthouse."

The minister then ordered him to alert the US and the UN about what was going to happen. But in a massive failure of intelligence, the message was disregarded because of what sources describe as "warning fatigue". At the same time, the FBI and the CIA failed to take seriously warnings that Islamic fundamentalist students had enrolled in flight schools across the US.

Mr Muttawakil's aide, who has stayed on in Kabul and who has to remain anonymous for his security, described in detail to The Independent how he alerted first the Americans and then the United Nations of the coming calamity of 11 September.

The minister learnt in July last year that Mr bin Laden was planning a "huge attack" on targets inside America, the aide said. The attacks were imminent and would be so deadly the United States would react with destructive rage.

Mr bin Laden had been in Afghanistan since May 1996, bringing his three wives, 13 children and Arab fighters. Over time he became a close ally of the obscurantist Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar.

Mr Muttawakil learnt of the coming attacks on America not from other members of the Taliban leadership, but from the leader of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Tahir Yildash. The organization was one of the fundamentalist groups that had found refuge on Afghan soil, lending fighters for the Taliban's war on the Northern Alliance and benefiting from good relations with al-Qa'ida in its fight against the Uzbek government.

According to the emissary, Mr Muttawakil emerged from a one-to-one meeting with Mr Yildash looking shocked and troubled. Until then, the Foreign Minister, who had disapproved of the destruction of the Buddhist statues in Bamian earlier in the year, had no inkling from others in the Taliban leadership of what Mr bin Laden was planning.

"At first Muttawakil wouldn't say why he was so upset," said the aide. "Then it all came out. Yildash had revealed that Osama bin Laden was going to launch an attack on the United States. It would take place on American soil and it was imminent. Yildash said Osama hoped to kill thousands of Americans."

At the time, 19 members of al-Qa'ida were in situ in the US waiting to launch what would be the deadliest foreign attack on the American mainland.

The emissary went first to the Americans, traveling across the border to meet the consul general, David Katz, in the Pakistani border town of Peshawar, in the third week of July 2001. <font color="blue"> remember this date </font color> They met in a safehouse belonging to an old mujahedin leader who has confirmed to The Independent that the meeting took place.

Another US official was also present * possibly from the intelligence services. Mr Katz, who now works at the American embassy in Eritrea, declined to talk about the meeting. But other US sources said the warning was not passed on.




Ashcroft Flying High

WASHINGTON, July 26, 2001
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(CBS) Fishing rod in hand, Attorney General John Ashcroft left on a weekend trip to Missouri Thursday afternoon aboard a chartered government jet, reports CBS News Correspondent Jim Stewart.

In response to inquiries from CBS News over why Ashcroft was traveling exclusively by leased jet aircraft instead of commercial airlines, the Justice Department cited what it called a "threat assessment" by the FBI, and said Ashcroft has been advised to travel only by private jet for the remainder of his term.

"There was a threat assessment and there are guidelines. He is acting under the guidelines," an FBI spokesman said. Neither the FBI nor the Justice Department, however, would identify what the threat was, when it was detected or who made it.

A senior official at the CIA said he was unaware of specific threats against any Cabinet member, and Ashcroft himself, in a speech in California, seemed unsure of the nature of the threat.

"I don't do threat assessments myself and I rely on those whose responsibility it is in the law enforcement community, particularly the FBI. And I try to stay within the guidelines that they've suggested I should stay within for those purposes," Ashcroft said.

Asked if he knew anything about the threat or who might have made it, the attorney general replied, "Frankly, I don't. That's the answer."

Earlier this week, the Justice Department leased a NASA-owned G-3 Gulfstream for a 6-day trip to Western states. Such aircraft cost the government more than $1,600 an hour to fly. When asked whether Ashcroft was paying for any portion of the trips devoted to personal business, a Justice Department spokeswoman declined to respond.





The CIA said there was no specific threat against Ashcroft.
What threat would cause him to change from commercial to govt planes if the 'threat' wasnt against him personally?


Its not surrprising Bush was AGAINST an investigation and would only give testimony NOT under oath and under condition that NO written record of his testimony was to be made!
In the recent terror trial it was revealed that an FBI agent sent 70 emails and he was stonewalled. Why?
Check out the Phoenix Memo and check the date.

Q......... /ccboard/images/graemlins/crazy.gif