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The September 11th "Cover Story" For Taking The War On Terrorism Into Iraq (Part 2)

In light of the above, it then becomes clear that the net effect of the focus on the two weaker organizations (The CIA and FBI) serves to at least distract from (if not all but prevent, in terms of Congress) a more serious public search for the truth. It also allows for narrow-minded interest groups to use the events of September 11th as the cover story to justify the obtainment of goals that they have long-sought well before September 11, 2001.

The clearest example of such is the manner in which certain individuals in the media and from within the Bush administration have attempted to cobble together a paper trail that would connect Al-Qaeda and Iraq, justifying massive action on the latter. By connecting Al-Qaeda and Iraq; Saddam Hussein and Ossama Bin Laden, this group believes it would have the story that can be placed in front of the American people that would justify military action in Iraq, even an invasion.

And some within this group, including Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz are beginning to make abundantly clear that no proof of an Al-Qaeda-Iraq relationship is necessary. The mere thought or threat of such an alliance justifies the use of action.

This is what is really behind President Bush's new doctrine of "first action" that would justify a preemptive low-level nuclear or conventional weapons attack on a nation that has weapons of mass destruction or nuclear weapons that it can supply to terrorist groups. These two factions who both want to "do Iraq" are clearly using the new environment and fears of the American public to get what they want.

We wrote about this in a BEC Dispatch for the clients of our Black Electorate Communications Financial Market and Political Economy Analysis. We explained the baseless and increasingly complicated and extravagant arguments of those in the mainstream media and government who hope to lead the United States into war with Iraq.

We wrote:

BEC Client Dispatch
The Axis Of Evil Value Meal
June 3, 2002

Do you remember the old saying : "you cannot explain a lie, you can only tell it"?

It is worth mental review when considering the lengths to which the military-industrial complex, Bush administration and conservative intellectual establishment are going to maneuver all of their enemies firmly within a single cross-hair. As you know, the optimum scenario for the "hawks" is to have an invasion of Iraq, asap. Unfortunately that initiative has fallen off of the public's radar screen, largely due to the fact that Ossama Bin Laden has moved ahead of Saddam Hussein as the most "evil" in the world, and there lingers in the background the cloud of an unsolved anthrax investigation and the specter of McVeigh-like domestic terrorism.

Not to worry, the "saviours" have the solution - an evil axis value meal that gives you Saddam Hussein, Al-Qaeda and the resolution of the anthrax case with a brown-skinned face, all in one. We can thank the chef, Robert Bartley, editor of The Wall St. Journal for cooking up the latest effort to drive the U.S. into war this year.

You can read the Bartley column at :

The Bartley piece is the third article we have noticed that has been written in the last couple of weeks since conservative columnist Robert Novak amplified a Newsweek column that dismisses the supposed Saddam Hussein Al Qaeda connection (a hawk's dream team of terror).

You can read Novak's column at:

And read these two other articles that attempt to pooh-pooh the Newsweek revelations/Novak support regarding the lack of proof for a Iraq - Mohammed Atta connection:

1) Saddam, Atta, and 9/11 by Ken Aldeman

2) Mr. Atta Goes To Prague by William Safire

Bartley's missive today is not to be taken lightly as he holds considerable sway in the Republican Party establishment's newspaper. The Iraq/Al-Qaeda/anthrax value meal is ridiculous but with so many players refusing to give up on the Iraq-Al-Qaeda angle, it will stay in the mix for a while. As his coalition erodes, even the President may have use for it. Here is what his "speechwriters" had him telling West point graduates on Saturday:

"(Containment) is not possible when unbalanced dictators with weapons of mass destruction can deliver those weapons on missiles or can provide them to terrorist allies,"

Don't forget – Saddam Hussein does have anthrax! Even though it came from Maryland...


The thought occurred to me after reviewing the factors involved that all of the attention on the FBI and CIA's imperfections could be used to re-write the original proposition that Iraq was not involved in what happened on September 11th. That somehow, the FBI and CIA missed an elusive Iraq-Al Qaeda connection. I also began to think that the "unsolved" anthrax mailing mystery could be pinned on Iraq, since the country does have anthrax, even though it came to them from a Maryland-based company.

If there were to suddenly appear a new batch of anthrax mailings, the fact that some are dropping innuendo and unsubstantiated anecdotes that Mohammed Atta had anthrax-induced burns on his hands weeks before September 11th; in combination with the alleged Iraqi intelligence/Mohammed Atta connection, could be used to argue that Iraq was responsible for supplying Al-Qaeda with weaponized spore-form anthrax.

However, a major problem, among others, with this argument is that there is no evidence Iraq does not have the form of anthrax that the media claims.

Economist and investigative writer Jude Wanniski, who receives our BEC Client Dispatches, explained this little-known fact later that same week at

Mr. Wanniski wrote, on June 5, 2002:

I noticed in Monday's Wall Street Journal that Bob Bartley, one of the best newspapermen of our time, had fallen victim to disinformation. Bob has been a full-throated supporter of a regime change in Baghdad and seems willing to believe anything he hears from his friends in the Pentagon, but he would never ever knowingly print something he knew to be incorrect. In his "Thinking Things Over" column Monday, for example, he wrote: "In any event, we know that Iraq has weaponized anthrax and has the capability to mount a serious anthrax attack, with germs released as aerosols rather than sent through the mail." How many people in high places read that column and believed it to be true, because it was written by the Pulitzer-Prize-winning Editor of the Wall Street Journal?

Now I just happened to know that Iraq had not "weaponized anthrax" as Bartley stated. To be sure, though, I e-mailed Dr. Gordon Prather, the nuclear physicist who served in the Pentagon during the Reagan years in the Army's top science-and-technology position.

His reply, which I sent to Bartley:

"All I know is what I read in the newspapers. But I thought the Iraqis told UNSCOM -- and UNSCOM accepted it -- that they had only loaded -- weaponized -- liquid anthrax into their projectiles, bombs and warheads. The anthrax that is so deadly has to be spore-like. (My emphasis.) Anthrax assumes that form, naturally -- as does slimemold - when there is no liquid around. The idea is to be light enough for the wind to carry the spores to someplace where there is liquid. Like your lungs. I don't think making an aerosol -- even if the Iraqis could do it-- would be enough. Certainly it couldn't be sent in envelopes."

Interestingly, a little-reported event is the fact that the noted watchdog group, Judicial Watch, is suing the White House (and representing the predominately Black U.S. postal workers, who handled the notorious anthrax envelopes), over the fact that the White House staff and President were taking Cipro since September 11th and prior to the public reports regarding the anthrax letters.

Judicial Watch in a statement has written:

In October 2001, press reports revealed that White House staff had been on a regimen of the powerful antibiotic Cipro since the September 11th terrorist attacks. Judicial Watch is aggressively pursuing the disclosure of the facts and the decision for White House staff, and President Bush as well, to begin taking Cipro nearly a month before anthrax was detected on Capitol Hill.

"The American people deserve a full accounting from the Bush administration, the FBI , and other agencies concerning the anthrax attacks. The FBI's investigation seems to have dead-ended, and frankly, that is not very reassuring given their performance with the September 11th hijackers," stated Judicial Watch Chairman and General Counsel Larry Klayman. "One doesn't simply start taking a powerful antibiotic for no good reason. The American people are entitled to know what the White House staffers knew nine months ago, " he added.

In addition, last week, the Hartford Courant reported a growing theory that the prime suspects in the anthrax mailings are American military scientists, not Saddam Hussein.

In an article published on June 13, 2002 and written by Dave Altimari and Jack Dolan came:

The FBI is investigating whether the anthrax spores used in last fall's attacks could have been grown secretly inside an Army lab and then taken elsewhere to be weaponized, according to three sources familiar with the ongoing probe.

A former government microbiologist, who was interviewed in recent days by the FBI, said agents focused their questioning on the logistics of how someone with access to the U.S. Army's biodefense labs at Fort Detrick, Md., might carry out the scheme. The microbiologist, who once worked at Fort Detrick, said the agents did not indicate if they had evidence that such an incident had occurred.

Last Friday the idea that some members of the media are passively or actively involved in the writing of a cover story that uses the events of September 11th to sell the need for an invasion of Iraq picked up steam, in our view, after an article appeared, again, in the Wall St. Journal, this time as the lead story. Written by Carla Anne Robbins And Jeanne Cummings, the piece, called "How Bush Decided That Iraq's Hussein Must Be Ousted" explains how while there is not a shred of evidence connecting Iraq and Al-Qaeda in terms of either the events of September 11th or weapons of mass destruction, the argument that such a nexus exists have influenced President Bush and members of his cabinet, that the need for a pre-emptive strike against Iraq is now paramount.

Here is the beginning of the article and other relevant portions, that show that a desperate cover story is being written and used in order to persuade the President of The United States to go to war, and to convince the American public that such action is justified.

In the chaotic days after Sept. 11, as several of his top advisers argued over whether to launch a strike on Iraq, President Bush sided with those urging restraint.

There was, after all, no real evidence that Saddam Hussein's regime had anything to do with the terror attacks. And President Bush wanted to keep the focus on alQaeda, the Afghanistan-based terrorist group that engineered the deadly hijackings.

But now, a showdown with Iraq appears nearly inevitable.

What happened?

In late October, the president received a series of chilling briefings that persuaded him that Iraq posed a major threat to America. U.S. intelligence agencies, he was told, had begun picking up warnings of an even more spectacular attack - one that, according to National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice, could "make Sept. 11 look like child's play by some terrible weapon." Other officials say the warnings came shortly after the U.S. identified four Pakistani scientists who appeared to have coached Osama bin Laden's terror organization in a quest to acquire nuclear weapons or material.

Putting two and two together, the administration in the last few days of October sent private notices to Washington police and congressional intelligence committees about the threat of a "dirty bomb" that uses conventional explosives to spew radioactive material. And, just as it had done immediately after Sept. 11, the White House again decided to keep Mr. Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney separated, to make sure that at least one would survive any such attack.

The attack didn't come. Nor, again, could Iraq be linked to any nuclear plot.

Nevertheless, the knowledge that alQaeda was aggressively searching for weapons of mass destruction - and wooing outside support - transformed the president's thinking about America's enemies, and the horrors that could unfold if any of them made such weapons available to terrorists.

As Mr. Bush and his advisers ticked off likely candidates, Iraq toppled the list of countries with both an arsenal of chemical, biological and perhaps nuclear weapons, and the apparent will to use them.

"It's not because you have some chain of evidence saying Iraq may have given a weapon to al Qaeda," Ms. Rice says, as she recounts the evolution of Mr. Bush's thinking. "But it is because Iraq is one of those places that is both hostile to us, and, frankly, irresponsible and cruel enough to make this available."

Here are other portions in the WSJ piece that push for a war against Iraq, using September 11th references, while simultaneously admitting no link between Iraq and Al-Qaeda:

Even in the first weeks after Sept. 11. Iraq didn't figure prominently in Mr. Bush's thinking, particularly after Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet reported there was "no evidence" Iraq was involved. On Sept. 20, when the president made a now-famous speech to a joint session of Congress calling for a global war on terrorism, he pointedly made no mention of Iraq.

...Mr. Tenet, the CIA director, testified in 1999 that Osama Bin Laden declared it his religious duty to acquire weapons of mass destruction. Now, during the last 10 days of October, Mr. Tenet gave several new briefings to the president and his top aides at the White House about al Qaeda's desire to acquire such weapons and what the group might be planning.

As part of his late October briefings, Mr. Tenet discussed which other countries had the capability and the malice to help al Qaeda acquire weapons of mass destruction. And for that, Iraq topped the list.

Visitors to the White House at the time reported privately that Mr. Bush seemed haunted by a nuclear threat. At one of his morning intelligence briefings he told his advisers, "We have to be thankful that on Sept. 11 they didn't have a weapon of mass destruction instead of an airplane," recalls one participant. And every day for at least two weeks he ended those meetings exhorting the group, "We have to make sure that this doesn't happen."

In early November, in a speech broadcast to a European anti-terrorism summit, Mr. Bush made his first public mention of the danger, warning that alQaeda is seeking chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

There was another bit of troubling intelligence emerging. Czech intelligence officials reported that Sept. 11 hijacker Mohammed Atta had met an Iraqi agent in Prague in April of 2001. That presented a possible Iraqi connection - not a nuclear one, but one tied to a terrorist who had just targeted the U.S. mainland. U.S. intelligence officials said Czechs had no hard proof to back up the claim.

...And crucially, U.S. officials recently concluded, after an exhaustive review, that they have no hard evidence to confirm the report that Mr. Atta, the Sept. 11 hijacker, actually met an Iraqi intelligence official in Prague last year.

The constant attention on the FBI and CIA's inability to "connect the dots" in the face of the reality that the NSA is the more appropriate place of inquiry, serves to provide a smokescreen by which some within the mainstream media and Bush administration are able to use the hysteria, confusion and insecurity of the American public and President to accomplish their own narrow foreign policy goals.

A focus on the CIA and FBI's shortcomings persuades people to believe that an Iraq-Al-Qaeda connection could have been missed.

A serious and thorough probe of the National Security Agency would provide the evidence leading to proof that the United States government knows for a fact that no such relationship, in terms of weapons of mass destruction,Al-Qaeda, Iraq, and September 11th exists. If the questions were to become "what did the National Security Agency know and when?"; or "Given NSA's enormous budget, its worldwide eavesdropping capabilities and its access to al-Qaida communications, why were these attacks able to succeed?"; or "what did foreign intelligence agencies tell the United States government about probable terrorist attacks and when?", the illusion that the United States government was not in a good position to prevent the September 11th attack evaporates. And with it, any residual that causes a powerful few to connect what happened at the World Trade Center and Pentagon with the desire to bomb Iraq.

We are witnessing a whole lot of shameless "cover story" being written in order to "do Iraq".

Those accepting the cover story, are all being cooked slowly, now susceptible to believing that the next, say, Anthrax mass mailing, or "dirty bomb" initiative is the work of Al-Qaeda, being supplied by Iraq, or even, Iran.

The depths to which some within the U.S. government will go in order to get what they want should absolutely frighten the American public.

In closing consider this story which ran earlier this year on

Friendly Fire
Book: U.S. Military Drafted Plans to Terrorize U.S. Cities to Provoke War With Cuba

By David Ruppe

N E W Y O R K, May 1 - In the early 1960s, America's top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.

Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.

The plans were developed as ways to trick the American public and the international community into supporting a war to oust Cuba's then new leader, communist Fidel Castro.

America's top military brass even contemplated causing U.S. military casualties, writing: "We could blow up a U.S. ship in Guantanamo Bay and blame Cuba," and, "casualty lists in U.S. newspapers would cause a helpful wave of national indignation."

Details of the plans are described in Body of Secrets (Doubleday), a new book by investigative reporter James Bamford about the history of America's largest spy agency, the National Security Agency. However, the plans were not connected to the agency, he notes.

The plans had the written approval of all of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and were presented to President Kennedy's defense secretary, Robert McNamara, in March 1962. But they apparently were rejected by the civilian leadership and have gone undisclosed for nearly 40 years."These were Joint Chiefs of Staff documents.

The reason these were held secret for so long is the Joint Chiefs never wanted to give these up because they were so embarrassing," Bamford told"

The whole point of a democracy is to have leaders responding to the public will, and here this is the complete reverse, the military trying to trick the American people into a war that they want but that nobody else wants."

Gunning for War

The documents show "the Joint Chiefs of Staff drew up and approved plans for what may be the most corrupt plan ever created by the U.S. government," writes Bamford.

The Joint Chiefs even proposed using the potential death of astronaut John Glenn during the first attempt to put an American into orbit as a false pretext for war with Cuba, the documents show.Should the rocket explode and kill Glenn, they wrote, "the objective is to provide irrevocable proof … that the fault lies with the Communists et all Cuba [sic]."

The plans were motivated by an intense desire among senior military leaders to depose Castro, who seized power in 1959 to become the first communist leader in the Western Hemisphere — only 90 miles from U.S. shores.The earlier CIA-backed Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba by Cuban exiles had been a disastrous failure, in which the military was not allowed to provide firepower.The military leaders now wanted a shot at it.

"The whole thing was so bizarre," says Bamford, noting public and international support would be needed for an invasion, but apparently neither the American public, nor the Cuban public, wanted to see U.S. troops deployed to drive out Castro.

Reflecting this, the U.S. plan called for establishing prolonged military — not democratic — control over the island nation after the invasion.

"That's what we're supposed to be freeing them from," Bamford says. "The only way we would have succeeded is by doing exactly what the Russians were doing all over the world, by imposing a government by tyranny, basically what we were accusing Castro himself of doing."

'Over the Edge'

The Joint Chiefs at the time were headed by Eisenhower appointee Army Gen. Lyman L. Lemnitzer, who, with the signed plans in hand made a pitch to McNamara on March 13, 1962, recommending Operation Northwoods be run by the military.Whether the Joint Chiefs' plans were rejected by McNamara in the meeting is not clear.

But three days later, President Kennedy told Lemnitzer directly there was virtually no possibility of ever using overt force to take Cuba, Bamford reports. Within months, Lemnitzer would be denied another term as chairman and transferred to another job.

The secret plans came at a time when there was distrust in the military leadership about their civilian leadership, with leaders in the Kennedy administration viewed as too liberal, insufficiently experienced and soft on communism. At the same time, however, there real were concerns in American society about their military overstepping its bounds.

There were reports U.S. military leaders had encouraged their subordinates to vote conservative during the election.And at least two popular books were published focusing on a right-wing military leadership pushing the limits against government policy of the day. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee published its own report on right-wing extremism in the military, warning a "considerable danger" in the "education and propaganda activities of military personnel" had been uncovered.

The committee even called for an examination of any ties between Lemnitzer and right-wing groups. But Congress didn't get wind of Northwoods, says Bamford."Although no one in Congress could have known at the time," he writes, "Lemnitzer and the Joint Chiefs had quietly slipped over the edge."

Even after Lemnitzer was gone, he writes, the Joint Chiefs continued to plan "pretext" operations at least through 1963.One idea was to create a war between Cuba and another Latin American country so that the United States could intervene.

Another was to pay someone in the Castro government to attack U.S. forces at the Guantanamo naval base — an act, which Bamford notes, would have amounted to treason. And another was to fly low level U-2 flights over Cuba, with the intention of having one shot down as a pretext for a war.

"There really was a worry at the time about the military going off crazy and they did, but they never succeeded, but it wasn't for lack of trying," he says.

After 40 Years

Ironically, the documents came to light, says Bamford, in part because of the 1992 Oliver Stone film JFK, which examined the possibility of a conspiracy behind the assassination of President Kennedy.

As public interest in the assassination swelled after JFK's release, Congress passed a law designed to increase the public's access to government records related to the assassination.

The author says a friend on the board tipped him off to the documents.

Afraid of a congressional investigation, Lemnitzer had ordered all Joint Chiefs documents related to the Bay of Pigs destroyed, says Bamford. But somehow, these remained.

"The scary thing is none of this stuff comes out until 40 years after," says Bamford.

Why haven't the United States Congress, mainstream media and others publicly dealt with this article that appeared at such a respected media outlet? All of this must be seriously considered today in terms of the concept of "cover story".

Cedric Muhammad

Thursday, June 20, 2002

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