How the United States covered up Saudi Arabia's role in 9/11

IN its report on the still-censored “28 pages” implicating the Saudi
government in 9/11, America's '60 Minutes' investigations TV show said
last weekend that the Saudi role in the attacks has been
“soft-pedalled” to protect America’s delicate alliance with the
oil-rich kingdom. That’s quite an understatement.

Actually,
the kingdom’s involvement was deliberately covered up at the highest
levels of US government. And the cover-up goes beyond locking up 28
pages of the Saudi report in a vault in the US Capitol basement.
Investigations were throttled. Co-conspirators were let off the hook. <figure itemscope="" itemtype="schema.org/ImageObject"; class="inlineImage orientationlandscape
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Osama bin Laden was a Saudi national and key member of al Qaeda, which carried out the attack





AP






Case agents I’ve interviewed at the
Joint Terrorism Task Forces in Washington and San Diego, the forward
operating base for some of the Saudi hijackers, as well as detectives
at the Fairfax County Police Department in Virginia, who also
investigated several 9/11 leads, say virtually every road led back to
the Saudi Embassy in Washington, as well as the Saudi Consulate in Los
Angeles. Yet time and time again, they were called off from pursuing leads. A common excuse was “diplomatic immunity.”

Those sources say www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/7080198/Whats-inside-
— which comprise the entire final chapter dealing with “foreign
support for the September 11 hijackers” — details “incontrovertible
evidence” gathered from both CIA and FBI case files of official Saudi
assistance for at least two of the Saudi hijackers who settled in San
Diego. Some information has leaked from the redacted
section, including a flurry of pre-9/11 phone calls between one of the
hijackers’ Saudi handlers in San Diego and the Saudi Embassy, and the
transfer of some $130,000 from then-Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar’s
family checking account to yet another of the hijackers’ Saudi
handlers in San Diego. An investigator who worked with the
JTTF in Washington complained that instead of investigating Bandar,
the US government protected him — literally. He said the US State
Department assigned a security detail to help guard Bandar not only at
the embassy, but also at his mansion in McLean, Virginia. <figure itemscope="" itemtype="schema.org/ImageObject"; class="inlineImage orientationportrait
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Prince Bandar was Saudi Arabia's ambassador to the US at
the time, and saw $130,000 leave his family bank account bound for one
of the plane hijackers' handlers





AP






The source added that the task force
wanted to jail a number of embassy employees, “but the embassy
complained to the US attorney” and their diplomatic visas were revoked
as a compromise. Former FBI agent John Guandolo, who
worked 9/11 and related al Qaeda cases out of the bureau’s Washington
field office, says Bandar should have been a key suspect in the 9/11
probe. “The Saudi ambassador funded two of the 9/11 hijackers through a third party,” Guandolo said.

“He
should be treated as a terrorist suspect, as should other members of
the Saudi elite class who the US government knows are currently
funding the global jihad.”But Bandar held sway over the FBI.

After
he met President Bush in the White House on 13 September 2001, where
the two old family friends shared cigars on the Truman Balcony, the
FBI evacuated dozens of Saudi officials from multiple cities,
including at least one Osama bin Laden family member on the terror
watch list. Instead of interrogating the Saudis, FBI
agents acted as security escorts for them, even though it was known at
the time that 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens. “The
FBI was thwarted from interviewing the Saudis we wanted to interview by
the White House,” said former FBI agent Mark Rossini, who was
involved in the investigation of al Qaeda and the hijackers. The White
House “let them off the hook.”What’s more, Rossini said
the bureau was told no subpoenas could be served to produce evidence
tying departing Saudi suspects to 9/11. The FBI, in turn, iced local
investigations that led back to the Saudis. “The FBI
covered their ears every time we mentioned the Saudis,” said former
Fairfax County Police Lt. Roger Kelly. “It was too political to touch.”Added
Kelly, who headed the National Capital Regional Intelligence Center:
“You could investigate the Saudis alone, but the Saudis were
‘hands-off.’”Even Anwar al-Awlaki, the hijackers’ spiritual adviser, escaped America's grasp.

In
2002, the Saudi-sponsored cleric was detained at JFK on passport fraud
charges only to be released into the custody of a “Saudi
representative.”It wasn’t until 2011 that Awlaki was brought to justice — by way of a CIA drone strike.

Strangely,
“The 9/11 Commission Report,” which followed the congressional
inquiry, never cites the catch-and-release of Awlaki, and it mentions
Bandar only in passing, his named buried in footnotes. Two
commission lawyers investigating the Saudi support network for the
hijackers complained their boss, executive director Philip Zelikow,
blocked them from issuing subpoenas and conducting interviews of Saudi
suspects. 9/11 Commission member John Lehman was
interested in the hijackers’ connections to Bandar, his wife and the
Islamic affairs office at the embassy. But every time he tried to get
information on that front, he was stonewalled by the White House. “They
were refusing to declassify anything having to do with Saudi Arabia,”
Lehman was quoted as saying in the book, “The Commission.”Did the US scuttle the investigation into foreign sponsorship of 9/11 to protect Bandar and other Saudi elite?

<figure itemscope="" itemtype="schema.org/ImageObject"; class="inlineImage orientationportrait
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The World Trade Center in New York was destroyed by Islamic terrorists in the 9/11 atrocity





Getty






“Things that should have been done at
the time were not done,” said Representative Walter Jones, the North
Carolina Republican who’s introduced a bill demanding Obama release
the 28 pages. “I’m trying to give you an answer without being too
explicit.”A Saudi reformer with direct knowledge of embassy involvement is more forthcoming.

“We
made an ally of a regime that helped sponsor the attacks,” said Ali
al-Ahmed of the Washington-based Institute for Gulf Affairs. “I mean,
let’s face it.”www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/7082309/How-the-United-St

Added:

By: Ahmad Shah Durrani (647.80)

Tags: saudi terrorist

Location: United Kingdom

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