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The Raw Story | FBI documents contradict 9/11 Commission report

FBI documents contradict 9/11 Commission report

Hijacker had post-9/11 flights scheduled, files say

Newly-released records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request contradict the 9/11 Commission’s report on the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks and raise fresh questions about the role of Saudi government officials in connection to the hijackers.

The nearly 300 pages of a Federal Bureau of Investigation timeline used by the 9/11 Commission as the basis for many of its findings were acquired through a FOIA request filed by Kevin Fenton, a 26 year old translator from the Czech Republic. The FBI released the 298-page “hijacker timeline” Feb. 4.

The FBI timeline reveals that alleged hijacker Hamza Al-Ghamdi, who was aboard the United Airlines flight which crashed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center, had booked a future flight to San Francisco. He also had a ticket for a trip from Casablanca to Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia.

Though referenced repeatedly in the footnotes of the final 9/11 Commission report, the timeline has not previously been made available to the public.

The FBI timeline is dated Nov. 14, 2003 but appears to have been put together earlier (since the last date mentioned in the document is Oct. 22, 2001) and was provided to the 9/11 Commission during its 2003 investigation. The final Commission report cites the FBI timeline 52 times.

Post Sept. 11, 2001 flights

The FBI timeline reveals that Al-Ghamdi, the alleged United hijacker, was booked onto several flights scheduled for after the 9/11 attacks, a piece of information not documented in the Commission’s final report. According to the FBI timeline, Al-Ghamdi was booked on another United Airlines flight on the very day of the attack.

On page 288 under an entry pertaining to “H AlGhamdi,” the FBI timeline reads: “Future flight. Scheduled to depart Los Angeles International Airport for San Francisco International Airport on UA 7950.”

The sourcing reads simply: “UA passenger information.”The timeline similarly documents Al-Ghamdi’s bookings for several other post 9/11 flights, including one on Sept. 20, 2001 from Casablanca, Morocco to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and another on Sept. 29, 2001 from Riyadh to Damman, Saudi Arabia. (FBI Timeline 2, p. 296 under “H Alghamdi”)

No additional information or explanation is offered in the FBI timeline itself.

The Saudi connection

In January 2000, then-FBI Director Louis Freeh and CIA Director George Tenet attended regular briefings as Malaysian intelligence conducted surveillance of a “terrorist summit meeting” in Kuala Lumpur. Among the attendees were Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar, two men who would later allegedly hijack American Airlines Flight 77 and crash it into the Pentagon.

A week after the Malaysian summit, al-Mihdar and al-Hazmi traveled to the United States. According to the 9/11 Commission report, they arrived in Los Angeles on Jan. 15 and “spent about two weeks there before moving to San Diego.” (9/11 Commission report, p. 215, chapter 7). The footnote for this item shows that the Commission relied on a different FBI report, “‘Summary of Pentbom Investigation,’ Feb.29, 2004 (classified version), p.16.”

But the FBI timeline contradicts this claim, placing the alleged hijackers in San Diego with specific details. According to the timeline, the two men resided in Apartment 152 at Parkwood Apartments, San Diego, from Jan. 15 through Feb. 2, 2000.

“A rental application shows that before renting Apartment 150 Parkwood Apartments on 02/05/2000, AL-MlHDHAR and Nawaf Alhazmi alleged that they resided with [REDACTED] from 01/15/2000 to 02/02/2000 at Apartment 152 of the same apartment complex,” page 52 of the FBI timeline reads.

Two pages later, the same apartment complex is noted again, this time with its full address: “AL-MIHDHAR and Nawaf Alhazmi resided at Parkwood Apartments, located at 6401 Mount Ada Road, Apartment 150, San Diego, CA. [REDACTED] was the co-signor and guarantor on the lease agreement for this apparement. The rental application shows that before renting Apartment 150, AL-MIHDHAR and Nawaf Alhazmi resided with [REDACTED].” (A photograph of apartment 152 appears atop this article. An image of apartment 150 appears on page 2.)
In other words, according to the only public account, both Al-Mihdhar and Hazmi were in San Diego, not Los Angeles, contrary to the Commission’s report.Why did the Commission use an alternate source for the whereabouts of the two men, when the FBI’s own timeline said they were in San Diego by Jan. 15, the same day as their arrival in the US?

Paul Thompson, author of the The Terror Timeline: Year by Year, Day by Day, Minute by Minute: A Comprehensive Chronicle of the Road to 9/11–and America’s Response, has been wading through the FBI timeline since its release. His preliminary analysis can be found at the website of the History Commons (formerly known as the Center for Cooperative Research).

Thompson believes that the possible motive for the Commission to alter the dates is to obscure official Saudi ties to the hijackers.

He points to the redaction of the name of a person who is a known employee of a Saudi defense contractor, Omar al-Bayoumi, who lived at the same location.

“We know it’s Bayoumi,” said Thompson, “because after 9/11, the Finnish Government mistakenly released a classified FBI list of suspects that showed Bayoumi living in apartment #152 of Parkwood Apartments.” That information is available here.

“But also important is that it strongly suggests that the hijackers already had a support network in Southern California before they arrived,” Thompson continued.

“In the official version of the story now, the hijackers drift around L.A. listlessly for two weeks before chancing to come across Bayoumi in a restaurant [according to Bayoumi’s account],” Thompson added. “Whereupon he’s an incredible good Samaritan and takes them down to San Diego, pays their rent, etc.”

”But from the FBI’s timeline, we now know the hijackers started staying at Bayoumi’s place on Jan. 15 – the very same day they arrived,” Thompson says. “So obviously they must have been met at the airport and taken care of from their very first hours in the US. That’s huge because the FBI maintains to this day that the hijackers never had any accomplices in the US.”

Robert Baer, a former CIA case officer in the Middle East whose See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA’s War on Terrorism became the inspiration for the award winning film Syriana, concurs with Thompson’s view.

“There are enough discrepancies and unanswered questions in the 9/11 Commission report that under a friendly administration, the 9/11 investigation should be re-opened,” Baer wrote in an email message Tuesday night.

“Bayoumi clearly offered material assistance to [the 9/11 hijackers].”

READ THE DOCUMENTS: PDF pages 1-105, PDF pages 106-210, PDF pages 211-297.

Who is Bayoumi?

Much has been reported about Omar al-Bayoumi and his alleged relationship with the government of Saudi Arabia. In his recent book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation, New York Times reporter Phillip Shenon discusses at length the questions surrounding Bayoumi and his ties to the Saudi government.

“Bayoumi seemed clearly to be working for some part of the Saudi government,” Shenon wrote on page 52. “He entered the United States as a business student and had lived San Diego since 1996. He was on the payroll of an aviation contractor to the Saudi government, paid about $2,800 a month, but apparently did no work for the company.”

In fact, Bayoumi was an employee of the Saudi defense contractor Dallah Avco. According to a 2002 Newsweek article about Bayoumi, Dallah Avco is “an aviation-services company with extensive contracts with the Saudi Ministry of Defense and Aviation, headed by Prince Sultan, the father of the Saudi ambassador to the United States, Prince Bandar.”

Newsweek points to another connection between Bayoumi and Bandar: “About two months after al-Bayoumi began aiding Alhazmi and Almihdhar, NEWSWEEK has learned, al-Bayoumi’s wife began receiving regular stipends, often monthly and usually around $2,000, totaling tens of thousands of dollars. The money came in the form of cashier’s checks, purchased from Washington’s Riggs Bank by Princess Haifa bint Faisal, the daughter of the late King Faisal and wife of Prince Bandar, the Saudi envoy who is a prominent Washington figure and personal friend of the Bush family. The checks were sent to a woman named Majeda Ibrahin Dweikat, who in turn signed over many of them to al-Bayoumi’s wife (and her friend), Manal Ahmed Bagader. The Feds want to know: Was this well-meaning charity gone awry? Or some elaborate money-laundering scheme? A scam? Or just a coincidence?”

According to then-Sen. Bob Graham (D-FL), who served as a co-chair of the 9/11 Congressional inquiry that preceded the 9/11 Commission, during the period of Alhazmi and Almihdhar’s arrival in the US, Bayoumi had an “unusually large number of telephone calls with Saudi government officials in both Los Angeles and Washington.” (Graham and Nussbaum, 2004, pp. 168-169)

Bayoumi moved to London in 2001 and lived there until his arrest immediately after the Sept. 11 attacks. Following his release, Bayoumi returned to Saudi Arabia, where he was interviewed in October 2003 by the Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission, Philip Zelikow, and Senior Counsel Dieter Snell.

Snell did not respond to requests for comment; Zeilkow could not be reached.

According to Shenon, several staff members working under Snell, “felt strongly that they had demonstrated a close Saudi government connection,” based on “explosive material” on al-Bayoumi and Fahad al-Thumairy, a “shadowy Saudi diplomat in Los Angeles.”

Shenon recounts how Snell, in preparing his team’s account of the plot, purged almost all of the most serious allegations against the Saudi government and moved the “explosive” supporting evidence to the small print of the report’s footnotes. (The Commission, pp. 398-399)

Two commission investigators who were working on documenting the 9/11 plot, Michael Jacobsen and Raj De, argued that it was “crazy” to insist on 100 percent proof when it came to al-Qaeda or the Saudi regime. In the end, however, and with a publishing deadline looming, Snell’s caution and Zelikow’s direction buried apparently promising leads.

In similar fashion, 28 pages of the Joint Inquiry Report produced by Congress — an entire chapter outlining evidence of Saudi and other state sponsorship — were redacted.

Baer has additional questions.

“Considering that the main body of evidence came from tortured confessions, it’s still not entirely clear to me what happened on 9/11,” Baer said. “Among other questions [I have]: Why did [Prince] Bandar’s wife sent money to Bayoumi? What are Bayoumi’s links to the Sultan? How were the 15 Saudis [among the 19 hijackers] selected to carry out the attack? Who fed the credit card used by Abu Zubayda? What happened to Abu Zubayda’s telephone bills? Who was he calling in the U.S? None of these questions are unreasonable nor would answering them violate intelligence sources and methods.”

In a recent review of Shenon’s book, former Democratic senator and 9/11 Commission member Bob Kerrey called on Congress to investigate alleged Saudi ties.

“Congress should demand direct access to those who organized the attacks; our indirect interviews were at best inadequate,” Kerrey wrote. “And Congress should pursue [the] question of whether the Saudi government aided the conspiracy.”

Kerrey declined to comment for this article. Other Commission members did not respond to requests for comment.

This is absolutely outrageous. Another example of  the 90s egoisitic view is spreading from the parents to their childrens and people in Sweden no longer give a shit about people in the 3rd world. The word solidarity has no meaning for half of Swedens young people. – Barnarbete inget problem för ungdomar

Barnarbete inget problem för ungdomar2008-02-29 16:42

Svenska ungdomar har lågt intresse för etik och ekologi när de shoppar kläder, smink eller duschprodukter. Varannan kille i åldrarna 15 till 25 tycker det är okej med barnarbete.


Det framgår av en ungdomsenkät på nätverkssajten Lunarstorm.

På frågan om det är viktigt att deras kläder inte är tillverkade av barn svarade nära hälften av killarna att de inte bryr sig om det.

Drygt hälften av både killarna och tjejerna var ointresserade av om kläderna de köper är ekologiskt framställda eller inte.

Fyra av tio tjejer tycker det är viktigt att smink inte testats på djur. Men vara tre av tio bryr sig om sminket är miljövänligt.

Fyra av tio tjejer tycker också det är mycket viktigt att sminket de köper är billigt.

Knappt 10.000 ungdomar deltog i undersökningen.

Aggressive Risk-Takers Fished Out of Fish Gene Pool?

Aggressive Risk-Takers Fished Out of Fish Gene Pool?

Randolph E. Schmid in Washington
Associated Press
February 26, 2008
When bigger fish are caught, the smaller, shy ones are left to replace the population—slowly, scientists reported this week.

It’s the fast-growing more aggressive fish that tend to get caught, removing them from the breeding pool, explained Peter A. Biro of the department of environmental science at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia.

That leaves reproduction up to slower-growing fish that are more timid, he said in an e-mail interview.

“This will cause evolution to slower growth rates and slow the rate of recovery for fished populations, and [it] could explain why fisheries tend not to rebound in the manner we expect after we reduce harvest or close a fishery,” he said.

The study findings are published in this week’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Two Lakes

Biro and his colleague, John R. Post, stocked two lakes in western Canada with different types of rainbow trout—one type was known to be aggressive in seeking food and to grow rapidly, while the other grew more slowly and tended to take fewer risks in foraging.

They set gill nets in the ponds for five days, moving them each day, and caught 50 percent of the stocked fast-growing fish but just 30 percent of the more cautious ones.

“Fish that are highly active and bold tend to bump into these nets more often and are less likely to avoid them,” he explained. And increased activity is necessary to get enough food for rapid growth.

Effects of Fishing

John Waldman, an aquatic biologist at Queens College in New York, called the report important.

“Harvest of fishes is probably the most profound impact mankind is having on the sea, yet we rarely succeed in even the basics of achieving long-term sustainability of important commercial species,” said Waldman, who was not part of the research team.

The report shows that “differences in ‘boldness,’ which are positively correlated with grow rate, render bold individuals more vulnerable to harvest, thereby adding an important and, till now, unconsidered direct effect to the known indirect effect” of fishing, Waldman said.

“The implication for managers is that the continued reproduction of a meaningful portion of fast growing individuals is likely even more important than previously recognized,” he said.

The research was supported by the University of Technology Sydney and the National Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

75 Years Ago, Reichstag Fire Sped Hitler’s Power Grab | Germany | Deutsche Welle | 27.02.2008

75 Years Ago, Reichstag Fire Sped Hitler’s Power Grab


View of the interior of the Reichstag after the fire

Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift:  The 1933 fire gutted the Reichstag’s main assembly room


Fire broke out in the German parliament on the night of Feb. 27, 1933. It accelerated Adolf Hitler’s dictatorial take-over of Germany, but he would have seized power even if the blaze hadn’t occurred.

The fire that tore through the Reichstag’s assembly room 75 years ago was blamed on Dutchman Marinus van der Lubbe, who was caught and arrested outside the building. The recent arrival from the Netherlands admitted to the act, saying he was a communist and single-handedly wanted to take revenge on capitalism.


His statement was, however, enough for then-Prussian Interior Minister Hermann Goering to call the event an “outrage” and the first act in a planned communist uprising.


Flames engulf the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, Feb. 27, 1933.

Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift:  Communists set the Reichstag fire, Goering said

“When [police chief Wolf-Heinrich] Graf von Helldorf heard about the fire, it was as clear to him as it was to all of us that the Communist Party had to be behind it,” Goering said. “Of course, I then called him to my office and said that all of them had to be arrested.”


Lead by von Helldorf, who headed a section of SA storm-troopers, police arrested numerous Communist Party (KPD) members and left-leaning authors in connection with the Reichstag fire.


Cause of fire still debated


While those immediate effects of the fire are clear, historians continue to disagree whether van der Lubbe acted alone, or if the Communist Party or even Hitler’s Nazi Party (NSDAP) set the blaze.


Historian Hans Mommsen, author of “The Reichstag Fire and Its Political Consequences,” says neither of the political parties was involved.


“The Reichstag fire was set by the Dutchman van der Lubbe and he was the sole perpetrator,” Mommsen said.  “The communists did not have anything to do with it and neither did the National Socialists. There are no motives or reasons to doubt he was alone.”


Marinus van der LubbeBildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift:  Van der Lubbe maintained he did not have any accomplices

Regardless of whether then-Chancellor Hitler and the Nazis laid the fire or took advantage of the situation as it unfolded, as Mommsen says, the event was followed by a state of emergency, established by President Paul von Hindenburg.


The emergency situation gave the government additional powers to censor the media, search homes and outlaw public assemblies, all rights which Hitler would have grabbed sooner or later, Mommsen says.


“The Reichstag fire decrees took care of much of what was already clearly planned in the Enabling Act,” he said, referring to the changes in law Hitler used to consolidate power. “In this way, the Reichstag fire accelerated the implementation of the dictatorship. In effect, Hitler came to power faster than he had expected so that the Enabling Act functioned more as ‘legalization.'”


After early elections made the Nazi Party the strongest parliamentary party in March 1933, the Enabling Act was passed, giving Hitler power to rule by decree, bypassing the parliament.


Four others acquitted


The trial of van der Lubbe and four other defendants began on Sept. 21, 1933, and ended on Dec. 23 with van der Lubbe convicted of arson and sentenced to death. The others charged, including the KPD’s parliamentary leader Ernst Torgler and Bulgarian Communist Georgi Dimitrov, were acquitted due to insufficient evidence against them.


Hermann Goering stands in the prisoner's dock at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial in Germany in Nov. 21, 1945 Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift:  Goering was sentenced to death at the Nuremberg Trials in 1945

The court’s decision, which infuriated Hitler, is reported to have been one of the reasons he created the “People’s Court” to try cases of treason against the Third Reich and other political offenses outside the established legal system. This extra-legal court became known for issuing death sentences and other severe punishments.


The sentence given to van der Lubbe, who was beheaded on Jan. 10, 1934, was overturned in January 2008, and a memorial dedicated to him is to be inaugurated on Wednesday, Feb. 27.


A private initiative, the memorial consists of two plaques and will be unveiled in his home city of Leiden.


The first plaque contains a large photograph of van der Lubbe and the second a short text, recounting — in Dutch and German — the history of what one of the memorial’s initiators, historian Cor Smit, told the DPA news agency was “an early act of resistance against the Nazi regime.”