Posted tagged ‘Iran and 9/11’

Connecting the Nuclear Dots

August 5, 2016

Connecting the Nuclear Dots, Gatestone InstitutePeter Huessy, August 5, 2016

♦ Iran seeks to do us grave harm, potentially with ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. The threat warnings are clear and we have strong evidence — Iran has attacked us repeatedly over the past 30 years.

♦ Instead of heeding the nuclear missile “dots” that are emerging all around us, we are busy promoting trade with Iran, downplaying its violations of the nuclear deal, simply ignoring its ballistic missile developments and dismissing the growing evidence of its terrorist past.

After the attacks on September 11, 2001, Congress, the Bush administration, and terrorist experts complained that the country had simply not “connected the dots” provided by prior terrorist threats.

The 9/11 Commission also concluded that the attacks “should not have come as a surprise,” as “Islamist extremists had given plenty of warning that they meant to kill Americans indiscriminately and in large numbers.”

The Commission then listed 10 Islamic terror plots against the US prior to 9/11:

“In February 1993, a group led by Ramzi Yousef tried to bring down the World Trade Center with a truck bomb.

“Plans by Omar Abdel Rahman and others to blow up the Holland and Lincoln tunnels and other New York City landmarks …

“In October 1993, Somali tribesmen shot down US helicopters, killing 18 and wounding 73…

“In early 1995, police in Manila uncovered a plot by Ramzi Yousef to blow up a dozen U.S. airliners while they were flying over the Pacific.

“In November 1995, a car bomb exploded outside the office of the US program manager for the Saudi National Guard in Riyadh, killing five Americans and two others.

“In June 1996, a truck bomb demolished the Khobar Towers apartment complex in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, killing 19 US servicemen and wounding hundreds.

“In August 1998, al Qaeda, carried out near-simultaneous truck bomb attacks on the US embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The attacks killed 224 people, including 12 Americans, and wounded thousands more.

“In December 1999, Jordanian police foiled a plot to bomb hotels and other sites frequented by American tourists…

“…US Customs agent arrested Ahmed Ressam at the US-Canadian border as he was smuggling in explosives intended for an attack on Los Angeles International Airport.

“In October 2000, an al Qaeda team in Aden, Yemen, used a motorboat filled with explosives to blow a hole in the side of a destroyer, the USS Cole, almost sinking the vessel and killing 17 American sailors.”

Despite the overwhelming indications that an attack like 9/11 was around the corner, as former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told the country in her April 2004 testimony to the 9/11 Commission, “The terrorists were at war with us, but we were not yet at war with them. For more than 20 years, the terrorist threat gathered, and America’s response across several administrations of both parties was insufficient.”

Are we now better equipped to “connect the terrorist-threats by dots” than we were prior to 9/11? Certainly we are not still echoing the testimony of Richard Clarke when he told the Emerging Threats Subcommittee in the summer of 2000 that the administration “had not yet” determined how to spend homeland security funds even some eight years after the first World Trade Center bombing of February 1993.

Unfortunately, not only are we not connecting the terrorist dots, we are actively downplaying their significance. Nowhere else is this more apparent than in the virtually complete failure, on the part of the US, to hold Iran responsible for the terror attacks that have killed and maimed thousands of Americans since 1979. This failure is all the more disturbing after the numerous court decisions that have found Iran accountable for nearly $60 billion in damages owed to the victims and survivors of these attacks, including the 9/11 attacks.

The outstanding news analyst and author Melanie Phillips wrote nearly a year ago that Iran had been “…perpetrating acts of war against Western interests for more than three decades — including playing a key role in the 9/11 attacks on America.” Phillips noted that a Revolutionary Guard-Iranian Intelligence (MOIS) task force

“designed contingency plans for unconventional warfare against the US… aimed at breaking the American economy, crippling or disheartening the US, and disrupting the American social, military and political order — all without the risk of a head-to-head confrontation which Iran knew it would lose.”

She explained that the court testimony from former Iranian agents illustrates that Iran “…devised a scheme to crash hijacked Boeing 747s into the World Trade Center, the White House and the Pentagon. … The plan’s code name was ‘Shaitan dar Atash’ (‘Satan in flames’).” Further, the court evidence revealed that Iran obtained “a Boeing 757-767-777 flight simulator which it hid at a secret site where the 9/11 terrorists were trained.”

In December 2011, Judge George B. Daniels found that Iran, with the participation of its Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, was directly and heavily involved in the 9/11 atrocities. Khamenei instructed intelligence operatives that while expanding collaboration between Hezbollah and al-Qaeda, they must restrict communications to existing contacts with al-Qaeda’s second-in-command Ayman al Zawahiri and Imad Mughniyeh — Hezbollah’s then terrorism chief and agent of Iran.

1081Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (center), is shown meeting in May 2014 with Iran’s military chief of staff and the commanders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. (Image source: IRNA)

While the 9/11 Commission found solid evidence Iran aided the 9/11 hijackers in their travels from Iran, the “Extensive cooperation in major global terrorist activities,” between Iran, Hezbollah and Al Qaeda, including the 1996 bombing of the Khobar Towers housing complex in Saudi Arabia and the 1998 East Africa US embassy bombings, escaped the 9/11 Commission’s detailed attention. Notably, as long ago as in 2000, a US Defense Intelligence Agency analyst was alerting the government to a web of connections between al-Qaeda, the Iranian intelligence agencies controlled by Khamenei, and other terrorist groups.

Many press reports and analysts, cognizant of Iran’s terrorist history and aware that Iran has been designated by the US Department of State as the world’s premier state sponsor of terror, choose to believe the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal should not be derailed over concern of Iran’s possible future terrorist plans. Especially when it is often assumed these plans are aimed primarily at Israel and groups in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon, and thus not of real concern to the United States.

Is the nuclear deal with Iran thus a good trade? We get to slow Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons, but any serious sanctions or military effort to stop Iran’s terror agenda are off the table. Let’s connect the new nuclear-related Iran dots.

First, the world’s expert on Iran ballistic missiles, Uzi Rubin, revealed on July 15 that Iran has five new missile capabilities: they can strike the middle of Europe, including Berlin; they can target with GPS accuracy military facilities in Saudi Arabia; they can launch missiles from underground secret tunnels and caves without warning; they have missiles that are ready to fire 24/7; and they have developed other accurate missiles whose mission is to strike targets throughout Gulf region.

Second, the Associated Press revealed that a side agreement under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear “deal” actually allows Iran to break out of the agreement in year 11, not 15, at which point Iran will not even be six months away from having sufficient nuclear fuel to arm a nuclear warhead, and Iran will be able to install nuclear centrifuges five times more efficient than the ones they have today.

Third, according to German intelligence reports, Iran has, a few dozen times since the July 2015 nuclear agreement, sought to purchase nuclear ballistic missile technology, a violation of previous UN resolutions.

As Americans wonder who will be behind the next terrorist attacks on our country — “lone wolf” terrorists inspired by social media from Islamist groups; organized cells of ISIS, Al Qaeda, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah; states such as Iran and Syria; or a combination of all three — we would do well to be reminded of the long-term use of terrorism by the former Soviet Union as one of their trademark elements of “statecraft.”

Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons has not been stopped and at best has been delayed. Add to that Iran’s enhanced ballistic missile capability, its growing partnership with North Korea and its history of terrorist attacks on the United States, and connecting the dots reveals a stark reality — nuclear terrorism by missile may be on its way.

During the spring and summer of 2001, US intelligence agencies received a stream of warnings that Al Qaeda was determined to strike. The specific information pointed to threats from overseas. The Bush administration began developing a strategy in early 2001 to eliminate Al Qaeda in three years. The 9/11 attacks happened “too soon.”

Iran seeks to do us grave harm, potentially with ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. The threat warnings are clear and we have strong evidence — Iran has attacked us repeatedly over the past 30 years

But instead of heeding the nuclear missile “dots” that are emerging all around us, we are busy promoting trade with Iran, downplaying its violations of the nuclear deal, simply ignoring its ballistic missile developments and dismissing the growing evidence of its terrorist past.

In short, we are not connecting these dots; we are erasing them.

Not Just the Saudis: Iran’s Huge Role in 9/11 Also Covered Up

July 19, 2016

Not Just the Saudis: Iran’s Huge Role in 9/11 Also Covered Up, PJ MediaRobert Spencer, July 19, 2016

Iran and Saudi

“Satan in Flames” was the Iranian’s elaborate plot to hijack three passenger jets, each packed full of people, and crash them into American landmarks: the World Trade Center, which jihadis took to be the center of American commerce; the Pentagon, the center of America’s military apparatus; and the White House.

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The 28-page section of the 9/11 report detailing Saudi involvement in the terror attack has finally been released (although with substantial portions still redacted). We now know why one president who held hands with the Saudi King and another president who bowed to him worked so hard all these years to keep these pages secret. The 28 pages confirm that the 9/11 jihad murderers received significant help from people at the highest levels of the Saudi government.

However, Saudi involvement in 9/11 was not the only subject of a cover-up: Iran’s little-noted role in 9/11 has been covered up as well.

As I detail in my new book The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Iran, on December 22, 2011, U.S. District Judge George B. Daniels ruled in Havlish, et al. v. bin Laden, et al., that Iran and Hizballah were liable for damages to be paid to relatives of the victims of the September 11, 2001 jihad attacks in New York and Washington.

Judge Daniels found that both the Islamic Republic and its Lebanese proxy had actively aided al-Qaeda in planning and executing those attacks. He found that Iran and Hizballah had cooperated and collaborated with al-Qaeda before 9/11, and continued to do so after the attacks.

Before 9/11, Iran and Hizballah were implicated in efforts to train al-Qaeda members to blow up large buildings. This training resulted in the bombing of the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia in 1996, the bombing of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, and the attack on the USS Cole in 2000.

Shortly after the Cole attack, the 9/11 jihad plot began to come together — and Iran was involved.

Former MOIS operative Abolghasem Mesbahi, a defector from Iran, testified that during the summer of 2001 he received messages from Iranian government officials regarding a plan for unconventional warfare against the United States. The plot was entitled Shaitan dar Atash (“Satan in Flames”).

“Satan in Flames” was the Iranian’s elaborate plot to hijack three passenger jets, each packed full of people, and crash them into American landmarks: the World Trade Center, which jihadis took to be the center of American commerce; the Pentagon, the center of America’s military apparatus; and the White House.

A classified National Security Agency analysis referred to in the 9/11 Commission report reveals that eight to 10 of the 9/11 hijackers traveled to Iran repeatedly in late 2000 and early 2001.

The 9/11 Commission called for a U.S. government investigation into Iran’s role in 9/11 — but none was ever undertaken.

So Kenneth R. Timmerman of the Foundation for Democracy in Iran was, in his words, “engaged by the Havlish attorneys in 2004 to carry out the investigation the 9/11 Commission report called on the U.S. government to handle.”

Timmerman noted that during the 9/11 hijackers’ trips to Iran, they were “accompanied by ‘senior Hezbollah operatives’ who were in fact agents of the Iranian regime.” Iranian border agents did not stamp their passports so that their having been inside the Islamic Republic would not arouse suspicion when they entered the United States. The CIA, embarrassed by its failure to recognize the import of these trips, tried to suppress this revelation.

However, Timmerman contends that even the available evidence is explosive enough. In his words, he reveals that the Islamic Republic of Iran:

  • Helped design the 9/11 plot
  • Provided intelligence support to identify and train the operatives who carried it out
  • Allowed the future hijackers to evade U.S. and Pakistani surveillance on key trips to Afghanistan — where they received the final order of mission from Osama bin Laden — by escorting them through Iranian borders without passport stamps
  • Evacuated hundreds of top al-Qaeda operatives from Afghanistan to Iran after 9/11 just as U.S. forces launched their offensive
  • Provided safe haven and continued financial support to al-Qaeda cadres for years after 9/11
  • Allowed al-Qaeda to use Iran as an operational base for additional terror attacks, in particular the May 2003 bombings in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

The Ayatollah Khamenei knew about the plot. During the summer of 2001, he instructed Iranian agents to be careful to conceal their tracks. He told them to communicate only with al-Qaeda’s second-in-command — Ayman al-Zawahiri — and Imad Mughniyah of Hizballah.

Mughniyah was Iran’s key player in the 9/11 “Satan in Flames” plot. During the Havlish trial, former CIA agents Clare M. Lopez and Bruce D. Tefft submitted an affidavit stating:

Imad Mughniyah, the most notable and notorious world terrorist of his time, an agent of Iran and a senior operative of Hizballah, facilitated the international travel of certain 9/11 hijackers to and from Iran, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Afghanistan, and perhaps various other locations for the purpose of executing the events of September 11, 2001.This support enabled two vital aspects of the September 11, 2001 plot to succeed: (1) the continued training of the hijackers in Afghanistan and Iran after securing their United States visas in Saudi Arabia, and (2) entry into the United States.

The Obama-era CIA went to great pains to try to ensure that information about Iran’s role in 9/11 did not come out in the Havlish case.

In August 2010, a CIA official pressured a Havlish witness to withdraw his testimony in exchange for a new identity, new passport, and new job.

In December of that year, another CIA operative approached a different Havlish witness, showed him documents stolen from the case, and took him to a U.S. embassy where he was subjected to five hours of interrogation. He was finally offered cash if he recanted his testimony. Says Timmerman:

After I reported those attempts at witness tampering to a Congressional oversight committee, they ceased.

Judge Daniels determined that Iran, Hizballah, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, the Iranian Ministry of Intelligence and Security, and other Iranian government departments — as well as the Ayatollah Khamenei himself and former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani — were all directly implicated in Iranian efforts to aid al-Qaeda in its 9/11 plot.

Daniels awarded the plaintiffs in the Havlish case $394,277,884 for economic damages, $94,000,000 for pain and suffering, $874,000,000 for mental anguish and grief, $4,686,235,921 in punitive damages, and $968,000,000 in pre-judgment interest for a total of $7,016,513,805.

The Havlish plaintiffs will not receive a check for that amount from the Islamic Republic of Iran neatly signed by the Ayatollah Khamenei. Still, the judgment provided a small bit of solace for the loss of life and years of trauma these families suffered as a result of the Islamic Republic’s war against the United States.

Most importantly, the judgment stands as an acknowledgment of Iran’s role in the 9/11 attacks.

Clearly, Iran is and has been at war with the United States, Over a period of many years, Iran has conducted that war on numerous unconventional fronts while threatening conventional attacks if its agenda is thwarted in any way.

For the Islamic Republic this war is very real, a principal focus of its energy and expenditures. But it appears that only one side is fighting.

This was underscored in March 2016, when it came to light that Iranian hackers who were accused of being tied to the Islamic Republic had attempted to hack into the operating system of the Bowman Avenue Dam north of New York City, as well as into financial conglomerates Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, and HSBC – and the New York Stock Exchange.

Said Attorney General Loretta Lynch:

These attacks were relentless, they were systematic, and they were widespread.

Such attacks, if they had been successful, could have caused catastrophic damage to New York City and the American economy. Yet true to form, the Obama administration only indicted the accused (none of whom it had in custody). He took no measures against the Iranian government.

After 9/11, the U.S. declared war on terror and entered Afghanistan and Iraq. But if Bush had really been serious about attacking jihad terror at its root, he would have invaded Saudi Arabia and Iran instead. Under Obama, the denial and willful ignorance have only gotten exponentially worse.