White House Has Some Terror Experts Worried

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by IJ Reilly, Aug 11, 2004.

  1. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    Officials here and overseas say U.S. alerts and release of information could hinder broader investigations.

    BERLIN — Heightened terror alerts and high-profile arrests of suspected Islamic extremists have international security experts and officials concerned that the Bush administration's actions could jeopardize investigations into the Al Qaeda network.

    European terrorism analysts acknowledge that the U.S. and its allies are under threat by Al Qaeda, but some suggest that the White House is unnecessarily adding to public anxiety with vague and dated intelligence about possible attacks. Some in Western Europe suspect the administration is using fear to improve its chances in the November election.

    Terrorism experts say too much publicity about possible plots and raids of Islamic extremist networks, including the arrest of 13 suspects in Britain last week, could hurt wider investigations. American politicians have called for an examination of that contention. Officials in Pakistan reportedly said Tuesday that Washington's recent disclosure of the arrest of a suspected Al Qaeda operative, Mohammed Naeem Noor Khan, allowed other extremists under surveillance to disappear.

    "It causes a problem. There's no doubt about that," said Charles Heyman, editor of Jane's World Armies. "The moment you make any announcement, you tell the other side what you know. As a rule of thumb, you should keep quiet about what you know."

    British security officials are angry over recent U.S. revelations of terrorist threats and arrests, said Paul Beaver, an international defense analyst based in London. He said the attitude among some British intelligence officials was that the "Americans have a very strange way of thanking their friends, by revealing names of agents, details of plots and operations."

    ...

    Larry Johnson, a former senior counterterrorism official at the State Department and CIA, said Tuesday that the leaks were part of a pattern in which the administration had undercut its own efforts to fight terrorism by divulging details when doing so was deemed politically advantageous.

    The administration "has a dismal track record in protecting these secrets," said Johnson, deputy director of the State Department's Office of Counterterrorism from 1989 to 1993.

    "We have now learned, thanks to White House leaks, that the Al Qaeda operative was being used to help authorities around the world locate and apprehend other Al Qaeda terrorists," Johnson said, citing reports that the disclosures "enabled other Al Qaeda operatives to escape."

    "Protecting secrets and sources is serious business," he added. "Regrettably, the Bush administration appears to be putting more emphasis on politicizing intelligence and the war on terror. That approach threatens our national security, in my judgment."

    ...

    The U.S. has been less forthcoming with intelligence when it comes to Germany's attempts to prosecute suspected terrorists. It is refusing to allow alleged Al Qaeda operatives in its custody to testify at a retrial of a suspected extremist that began Tuesday in Hamburg. Saying it would harm ongoing intelligence gathering, the U.S. is denying the court access to Ramzi Binalshibh and Khalid Shaikh Mohammed.

    In a letter this week to German authorities, the State Department said it would provide only unclassified summaries of interrogations with certain suspects. The decision, German prosecutors say, jeopardizes the case against Mounir Motassadeq, a Moroccan accused of having links to the Sept. 11 hijackers. A second Moroccan in Germany was acquitted this year on similar charges after a judge found he could not get a fair trial without access to Binalshibh or his interrogation transcripts.

    ...​

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-terror11aug11,1,6583785.story
     
  2. mischief macrumors 68030

    mischief

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    This is a serious lapse

    Since WW2 it has been common knowledge in defence circles that, when dealing with a serious enemy capable of rapid response it is IMPERATIVE to protect the following in ALL CIRCUMSTANCES.

    1: Any agent that yields reliable intelligence, their movements, their agency, their associations, their identifying characteristics.

    2: Any intelligence that, if acted upon would reveal it's source.

    3: Any source of information beyond the above with simillar sensitivity.

    It was determined in WW2 that in many instances it becomes neccessary to NOT act on or disclose intelligence when that intelligence is gathered in such a manner that acting upon it would negate further gathering of intelligence via that method or source. When Enigma and Swordfish were broken much of the data gathered could not be acted upon because to do so would have made it clear that the codes were compromised and would quickly be changed. Likewise it is ESSENTIAL to extend that same caution to NOCs and informants as the revelation of either the identity or the Intelligence itself can be used (by the relevant enemy) to track and eliminate other sources as well as change plans, locations, tactics, etc. In short: Intelligence is of NO value when it is made open knowledge.
     
  3. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    The administration is being utterly two-faced here. When it comes to broadcasting intelligence that serves their domestic agenda, then no cost is too high. But when it comes to releasing intelligence that might be crucial to convicting an actual, alleged 9-11 terrorist, then the secrets must be kept under wraps.

    So, I'm wondering why we're no longer hearing about how today's intelligence lapses are the responsibility of the Clinton administration. Where is everybody who advanced the case that the human intelligence apparatus was gutted by Clinton?
     
  4. mischief macrumors 68030

    mischief

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    I'd also like to know what happened to the whole issue of the Whitehouse exposing a NOC. In times of war that's elevated beyond it's normal penalty into the realm of Treason.
     
  5. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

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    It is bad form to tell the terrorist we know you are coming and we know what your target is. Be better to set a trap for them. Problem is if you do and are wrong or aren't good enough to stop them and the terrorist blows up their attended target then your guilty of using innocents as bait. It is a no win situation. I think it is best in the long run to keep such knowledge secret and use it to stop the long term terrorist agenda at the risk of short term losses.

    I believe Bush explains his public announcements of terror warnings to the problem, how do you notify the proper local authorities without the information leaking out. And if something bad happens is it right to throw the leadership to the dogs for not being perfect?
     
  6. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    I read something about this the other day. Apparently it's still being "investigated" (read: sandbagged until after the election).
     
  7. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    are we talking about valerie plame? the fitzgerald investigation is still underway. for those who don't know, he's the one who led the investigation against former IL gov george ryan. many were indicted and many charges were brought. i got the impression fitzgerald is dedicated, determined and thorough.

    which is why it suprised me when he was put on the plame case.
     
  8. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    Yes, I think we're talking about the same thing. The prospects of the investigation turning up anything definitive are so close to zero as to be unmeasurable. If he doesn't have subpoena powers and the ability to force people to testify under oath, he's netting nothing.
     
  9. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

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    Sandbagged like the investigation into the UN members illegal black market activity with Iraq? The one that UN leadership is trying to coverup by trying to keep the information from getting outside over their control. Sandbagged like that?
     
  10. mischief macrumors 68030

    mischief

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    Yeah, that's the one. It's unconscionable in addition to being potentially impeachable.
     
  11. IJ Reilly thread starter macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    I was wrong about subpoena power. Fitzgerald has it, and he has started to use it. The problem is he's going to be fighting a long battle with journalists over First Amendment issues and the disclosure confidential sources. This is an unsettled area of Constitutional law, and it could easily take years to sort out who can be made to testify to what.
     
  12. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

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    so then this would also possibly be wrong?
    Or is this somehow Bush's fault?
     
  13. mischief macrumors 68030

    mischief

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    Lets hope things are quiet because they're building an effective case and prefer to wait till after the election to take action. It'd make sense to do so... If Bush wins it'd take an Impeachment proceeding to make any case they have against him and if he loses he's open to prosecution.
     
  14. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

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    I didn't post this but a couple of days ago Boortz posted "Anyone want to make a bet who is going to be the first democrat who demands that Bush be impeached after he wins the election?" Paraphrased of course.
     
  15. SuperChuck macrumors 6502

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    That's not sandbagged, it's just going to be ignored. It's no secret that corporations from just about every industrialized nation (including Halliburton in the US) were evading the sanctions against Iraq. Why would the UN vote to condemn all of its most powerful members? It's not like it would pass.

    Oh, and here comes the part where I back up what I say with an actual, reliable source.

    According to oil industry executives and confidential United Nations records, however, Halliburton held stakes in two firms that signed contracts to sell more than $73 million in oil production equipment and spare parts to Iraq while Cheney was chairman and chief executive officer of the Dallas-based company.
    The Washington Post
    Saturday, June 23, 2001


    Please take note of the source, Leo. That would be an actual news source, as opposed to The Partisan Brainwashing Tribune. If I were to play by your rules, I could fill these boards with "proof" that Bush plays golf with Osama Bin Laden every other Sunday, right after he has lunch with Bat Boy and Elvis.
     
  16. Leo Hubbard macrumors newbie

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    Come up with proof on that. Give it to the FBI and I am sure they would prosecute any US company that vilated any sanctions against Iraq.

    I'm not sure but I don't think it is a violation of the sanctions, to sell oil production equipment to Iraq. I would assume something like that would be a necesity to insure that the oil for food program actually stayed on track. :rolleyes:
     
  17. SuperChuck macrumors 6502

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    Actually, Leo, you're right for once - it was perfectly legal.

    Had Halliburton conducted the deals as a US company, it would have been illegal - the US embargo was not altered for the oil for food program. Lucky for Cheney and Company, they owned a French-based distributor. France was very involved in Oil for Food (which was part of the reason they resisted calls for war). This allowed Halliburton to circumvent US law by acting through a foreign distributor, and Cheney oversaw the whole operation.

    Illegal? No. Corrupt? Absolutely.

    Just out of curiosity, why do you ignore sound arguments from reliable sources and continue to believe any ludicrous conspiracy theory the right wing pundits throw at you?
     
  18. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    because he's still getting people to argue with him.
     
  19. SuperChuck macrumors 6502

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    Point taken.

    For some reason, I keep hoping that he'll start to think for himself and see through the garbage he's been reading. Unless people learn to question what they're told by propagandists of either party, we'll never heal the divides that are tearing this country apart.

    I'll give up on this one, though.
     
  20. mischief macrumors 68030

    mischief

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    * From the back of the saloon, in the shadows a wicked grin from the past exposes sharp teeth and thrusts a white painted chin past the edge of gloom.

    " In the olde days we'd just pie the guy into frustration. After a certain point it became more effective than reason. But now we're civilized and the AZC has disbanded."

    There is a creak as the figure drops his boots from the table and leans foreward.

    "Some of us can still slap leather though.... If we was allowed to."

    There is a chittering from the next chair and a simian hand flashes out; a playing card flies spinning and spiralling to stick in the opposite wall.

    " And Winky's stiil around of course."* :eek:
     

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