How an Al-Qaeda Cell Planned a Poison-gas Attack on the N.Y. Subway
Al-Qaeda terrorists came within 45 days of attacking the New York subway system with a lethal gas similar to that used in Nazi death camps. They were stopped not by any intelligence breakthrough, but by an order from Osama bin Laden's deputy, Ayman Zawahiri. And the U.S. learned of the plot from a CIA mole inside al-Qaeda. These are some of the more startling revelations by author Ron Susskind, whose new book The One Percent Doctrine is excerpted in the forthcoming issue of TIME. It will appear on Time.com early Sunday morning.
posted by Postroad
on Jun 17, 2006 -
CIA vet Michael Scheuer:
"I think Iraq is finished. We’ll just find a way to get out. I frankly don’t think we ever intended to win there."
"As a professional intelligence officer, the last people you want to report to are generals and diplomats. And if General Hayden comes to the CIA, we’ll have Mr. Negroponte [a career diplomat] as head of the community, and a general as the head of the CIA."
posted by js003
on May 19, 2006 -
CIA warned White House -- no WMD programs in Iraq.
A retired senior CIA official
interviewed by 60 Minutes
claims that the White House ignored intelligence from Iraq's foreign minister, Naji Sabri
in the run-up to the invasion. CIA Director George Tenet delivered the information to President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and other high-ranking officials in September 2002
, according to the CIA official. A few days later the administration said it was no longer interested. "...we said 'Well, what about the intel?' And they said 'Well, this isn't about intel anymore. This is about regime change.' "
The interview airs on CBS, Sunday at 7 p.m. ET/PT.
posted by insomnia_lj
on Apr 22, 2006 -
CIA Officer Fired for Leaking Classified Info to Media
Newsfilter. The president, we are told, leaked via Libby a secret to the press. That is ok. The leak was telling the press that laws were being broken--FISA subverted--so that undermining national laws becomes a crime only when it is revealed?
A CIA officer has been relieved of his duty after being caught leaking classified information to the media.
Citing the Privacy Act, the CIA would not provide any details about the officer's identity or assignments.
posted by Postroad
on Apr 21, 2006 -
Internet blows CIA cover
The identities of thousands of Central Intelligence Agency employees, many of them operating under cover, have been available to anyone looking for the right information in public records searches. Only problem: The CIA was kind of surprised to find this out. (Site may require registration for some. Use BugMeNot.)
posted by emelenjr
on Mar 12, 2006 -
"It has become clear that official intelligence was not relied on
in making even the most significant national security decisions, that intelligence was misused publicly to justify decisions already made, that damaging ill will developed between [Bush] policymakers and intelligence officers, and that the intelligence community's own work was politicized," writes former CIA official Paul Pillar, coordinator of U.S. intelligence on the Middle East until 2005, in an article soon to appear in Foreign Affairs
, hardly a radical rag. More confirmation that Seymour Hersh was right about the administration "cherry-picking" intelligence
to justify a foregone conclusion to go to war in Iraq.
posted by digaman
on Feb 10, 2006 -
At last, someone is going to take the legal route.
Italian authorities have issued arrest warrants for 22 CIA Agents suspected of involvement in the US kidnap/torture policy. "The new warrants allow for the suspects' detention anywhere in the 25-nation EU, a prosecutor said."
That's more lost clients for the European tourist industry.
posted by cassbrown1
on Dec 24, 2005 -
The US has admitted
for the first time that it has not given the Red Cross access to all detainees in its custody. Meanwhile, the German citizen picked up by the CIA and tortured in one of the secret prisons, based solely on having the same name as a suspected terrorist, would really, really like an apology
If you think things are getting out of hand, why not join the Amnesty International Write-a-thon
? You can get the message across to the people in charge and let them know that you don't support prisoner abuse or rendition to secret prisons.
posted by Dag Maggot
on Dec 9, 2005 -
Has the C.I.A. legally killed prisoners? Two years ago, Manadel al-Jamadi, a suspected Iraqi insurgent, walked into a Baghdad interrogation room. He was dead in 45 minutes, his head covered with a plastic bag, shackled in a crucifixion-like pose that led to his asphyxiation. U.S. authorities classified his death a homicide. His CIA interrogator has not been charged with a crime and continues to work for the agency.
President Bush says "We do not torture."
But if that’s true, then why is Vice President Cheney fighting to exempt CIA interrogators from a torture ban?
And al-Jamadi? His case is stalled in the Alberto Gonzalez
Justice Department, two years after soldiers posed for thumbs-up pictures next to his corpse.
posted by sacre_bleu
on Nov 9, 2005 -
Osama bin Laden, littérateur and new-media star
. A thought-provoking analysis of bin Laden's adept use of Koranic language and the Internet by Bruce B. Lawrence, an Islamic scholar at Duke who edited a new anthology of bin Laden's public statements called Messages to the World
. The Western media -- says the millionaire mass-murderer formerly trained as a useful ally by the CIA
via Pakistan's ISI
-- "implants fear and helplessness in the psyche of the people of Europe and the United States. It means that what the enemies of the United States cannot do, its media are doing!" Know thy enemy. [via Arts and Letters Daily.]
posted by digaman
on Nov 3, 2005 -
The administration's latest innovation in its effort to export democracy: Soviet-style gulags
, a network of secret C.I.A. prisons known as "black sites." [From the Washington Post
]. Meanwhile, SecDef Rumsfeld says no thanks
to the idea of U.N. inspectors talking to detainees in Guantanamo Bay.
posted by digaman
on Nov 2, 2005 -
Why outing Plame mattered.
If you wonder what's really at stake behind all the media buzz around the Fitzgerald indictments, read this lengthy and cogent analysis by Stratfor's
no-nonsense George Friedman. "Rove and Libby had top security clearances and were senior White House officials. It was their sworn duty, undertaken when they accepted their security clearance, to build a 'bodyguard of lies' -- in Churchill's phrase -- around the truth concerning U.S. intelligence capabilities... The minimal story -- that they talked about Plame with a reporter -- is the end of the matter."
posted by digaman
on Oct 18, 2005 -
The world's biggest thief?
A warrant has been issued against former Iraqi Interim Defense Minister Hazim Shaalan for defrauding Iraq of over $1 billion. In January, I posted to MeFi about Shaalan's possible involvement in a $300 million fraud scheme and the murder of two American arms merchants
. What is more troubling, however, is that the U.S. government may have turned a blind eye to this massive defrauding of the Iraqi people. Prior to his role as Defense Minister, Shaalan ran a real estate agency in Britain and had no prior military qualifications. For this reason, Juan Cole believes it likely that Shaalan was a CIA agent
, while Ahmed Chalabi accused Sha'alan of spying for Saddam
. Meanwhile, the insurgents accused Shaalan of conspiring with the Bush administration to scrap Iraq's heavy weaponry
. What does seem clear is that he apparently tried to buy broken Soviet-era armored vehicles
and 28-year-old, second-hand Polish helicopters too old to fly at a premium, while pocketing lucrative kickbacks. Which begs the question -- if the U.S. government really wanted a strong, independent Iraqi military, then why doesn't it give Iraq the heavy arms they'll need to defend themselves?
posted by insomnia_lj
on Sep 20, 2005 -
Testimony of former CIA case officer James Marcinkowski
on the Plame Affair, via David Corn. Now that the US government has exposed a CIA case officer and endangered her contacts, it will be much more difficult for CIA officers to recruit informants in the future. Any undercover officer, whether in the police department or the CIA, will tell you that the major concern of their informant or agent is their personal safety and that of their family. Cover is safety. If you cannot guarantee that safety in some form or other, the person will not work for you and the source of important information will be lost. ... What has suffered perhaps irreversible damage is the credibility of our case officers when they try to convince our overseas contact that their safety is of primary importance to us.
posted by russilwvong
on Jul 22, 2005 -
"It wouldn't surprise me if we paid rewards"
--As part of the AP's receipt of transcripts of the millitary tribunals in Guantanamo, multiple reports of our allies using money the US gave them to buy "terrorists" for shipment there. ..."When I was in jail, they said I needed to pay them money and if I didn't pay them, they'd make up wrong accusations about me and sell me to the Americans and I'd definitely go to Cuba," he told the tribunal. "After that I was held for two months and 20 days in their detention, so they could make wrong accusations about me and my (censored), so they could sell us to you."
Another prisoner said he was on his way to Germany in 2001 when he was captured and sold for "a briefcase full of money" then flown to Afghanistan before being sent to Guantanamo....
posted by amberglow
on Jun 1, 2005 -
The Still Unsolved Stoffel Affair: How Is Known – but Not Who or Why
Iraqi guerrillas calling themselves Rafidan – the Political Committee of the Mujahideen Central Command – have recently woken up and begun releasing a series of communiqués claiming to shed new light on the still unsolved deaths on December 8, 2004, of two Americans, Dale C. Stoffel, 43, whom they describe as “a CIA shadow manager in Iraq, close friend of George Bush,” and his associate Joseph J. Wemple, also 43.
posted by Postroad
on May 10, 2005 -
The Reader of Gentlemen's Mail
In the spring of 1919, when the father of American cryptography, Herbert
, drew up a plan for a permanent State Department codebreaking organization — a "black chamber
— he estimated that a modest $100,000 a year would buy a chief (Yardley) and fifty clerks and cryptanalysts. Yardley rented a three-story building in New York City: on East 38th Street just off Fifth Avenue, he put two dozen people to work under civilian cover—as the Code Compiling Company
. His summary dismissal happened in 1929 at the hand of incoming Secretary of State Henry Stimson
, who closed down the Cipher Bureau
with the casual observation
that "gentlemen do not read each other's mail
". The son of a railroad telegrapher, a man with a lively Jazz Age interest in money, good-looking women, and drinks at five, Yardley not only taught his country how to read other people's mail but wrote two of the enduring American books—the memoir The American Black Chamber (1931)
, and The Education of a Poker Player (1957)
posted by matteo
on Apr 22, 2005 -
is the history of a secret, independent US intelligence-gathering group which preceded (and outlasted) the OSS. Shuffled from Cabinet to Cabinet to the CIA, it eventually ran aground against the infighting of McCarthy's Red Scare hearings and was no more by 1955.
posted by trondant
on Feb 2, 2005 -
CIA Predicts European Union Will Break Up Within 15 Years.
With all the attention focused on Iraq, this new CIA report seems to have slipped under the radar. Europe's dismal economic prospects and the continent's unfavorable demographics could have dire consequences for the EU, result in the dissolution of NATO and generally @#$?! up every post World War II/Cold War alliance that has been formed over the last half-century. Not that the CIA has ever been wrong...
posted by Heminator
on Jan 20, 2005 -
The death of Frank Olson on November 28, 1953 was a murder, not a suicide.
2. This is not an LSD drug-experiment story
, as it was represented in 1975.
This is a biological warfare
story. Frank Olson
did not die because he was an experimental guinea pig who experienced a “bad trip.”
He died because of concern that he would divulge information concerning a highly classified CIA interrogation program called “ARTICHOKE” in the early 1950’s, and concerning the use of biological weapons by the United States in the Korean War.
3. The truth concerning the death of Frank Olson was concealed from the Olson family
as well as from the public in 1953. In 1975 a cover story regarding Frank Olson’s death was disseminated. At the same time a renewed coverup of the truth concerning this story was being carried out at the highest levels of government, including the White House. The new coverup involved the participation of persons serving in the current Administration.
is his son Eric's search for his father.
posted by hortense
on Jan 2, 2005 -