W HR - Al-CIA-duh:
Patrick Fitzgerald: "Independent" Prosecutor or Experienced
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Al-CIA-duh: Is Patrick Fitzgerald a Zealous "Independent" Prosecutor or Experienced Cover-up Artist?
Tuesday, October 25, 2005 - 03:22 AM,
- Posted by valis (7751 Reads)
SOURCE W/LINKS: http://valis.cjb.cc/index.php?name=News&file=article&sid=100

"Coincidentally, the U.S. Attorney for Chicago, Patrick Fitzgerald, on the job for only a couple of weeks, had extensive experience as a terrorism prosecutor and immediately became involved in the investigation of BIF [Benevolence International Foundation] and GRF [Global Relief Foundation]"

# National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States
Terrorist Financing Staff Monograph
Chapter 6 - The Illinois Charities Case Study
[ PDF | HTML]

And "Fitzgerald immersed himself in the case and took a major role"? Well, this was quite a "coincidence." In this post Re: FRANK RICH: It's Bush-Cheney, Not Rove-Libby!!!!, I explained that Fitzgerald also was part of the prosecution team in the Omar Abdel Rahman case. Just to recap this, the prosecutors in the Rahman case didn't want their case thrown out on "national security" grounds, so they were careful to totally leave the CIA out of the picture. The leading prosecutor even claimed that when they discovered this "mujahideen" paramilitary training by Rahman's followers, "the FBI’s concern was that the group could be violating federal 'neutrality' laws." Of course, everybody knows that the US was not "neutral" in the Afghan war, and US officials publicly eulogized the "mujahideen" as "freedom fighters." I think that Fitzgerald's role in the Rahman case indicates that the Valerie Plame case will remain as matter of "Rove-Libby," and not "Bush-Cheney."

After examining Fitzgerald's role in the GRF & BIF cases, I am even more convinced that this Valerie Plame case will not reach the "Bush-Cheney" level. Just look at the outcome of the BIF & GRF cases. As soon as the investigations reached those close to higherups in Washington, the prosecutors seemed to spend more time on a coverup, than on pursuing a bona fide investigation. Then attorney general Ashcroft kept a tight rein on the BIF-Arnaout case. "The case fell apart and Arnaout was convicted only of fraud." The terrorism charges were dropped and the DOJ reached this plea deal with Arnaout. It doesn't look like the feds ever even intended to bring a criminal case against the Haddad or the GRF. The plan seemed to be to lock him up until they got him out of the country.

"The decision to deport him rather than continue the criminal investigation was made in Washington, without consultation with the Detroit case agent who had investigated Haddad"? I think that the feds opted to skip a public trial and to get Haddad deported because Haddad had worked directly with the Bin Laden, Azzam, & MAK. With Arnaout, he did work for MAK, but there was more distance between him & the hierarchy of the MAK. GRF co-founder "Rabih Haddad had worked for years for bin Laden‘s [and Azzam's] Makhtab al-Khidamat, which supported the tens of thousands of Arabs who rushed to Afghanistan to join the anti-Soviet resistance in the 1980s." A GRF attorney said "The United States also supported that organization [Makhtab al-Khidamat] then." This is true. A BIF attorney also correctly stated that "Mr. Arnaout's activities in war-torn regions like Afghanistan in the 1980's and Bosnia in the 1990's came on behalf of many of the same rebel fighters the United States was backing then." I think this is the main reason why Fitzgerald came to have such a "major role" in these cases. He had already proved himself in the Rahman case, as someone who knew when to limit the scope of these inquiries. Quite frankly, if he didn't have this reputation, I think that the Bush administration would have found a way to get him off the Valerie Plame case.

It came out in the Kifah Waed Jayyousi case that Rahman's followers had "a network across North America to fund-raise for and recruit mujahedeen to train and fight in various areas including but not limited to Bosnia, Kosovo, Chechnya, and Somalia." Jayyousi "was transferring money intended for Chechen militants through the Global Relief Foundation." Fitzgerald would have been well aware of a connection between the GRF and the followers of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman through Alkifah and Wadih El Hage:

"At the beginning of the Afghan war against the Soviet Union, El Hage left Louisiana and traveled to Pakistan to enroll in mujahedeen war training programs. Thousands of young Arab men from around the world flocked to Pakistan to help the Afghans expel the Soviets. Sources told FRONTLINE that El Hage was a follower of Sheik Abdullah Azzam, one of the most important spiritual leaders of the Arab mujahedeen forces. Azzam preached that the war in Afghanistan was a jihad, or holy war, and that those who participated would have a special place in heaven...

In early 1991, according to El Hage's grand jury testimony, he was called to New York to help direct the Alkifah Refugee Center, a Brooklyn-based group that raised money to support veterans of the Afghan war. According to documents from the World Trade Center case, Alkifah had a Tucson office and contacts with the main mosque in Arlington, Texas, and family members confirmed that El Hage had been in contact with the group." "

Azzam was also involved with Brooklyn's Alkifah group. During the CIA’s Jihad, to the “US intelligence community,” "Azzam was considered a prime asset because of his close connections to the Muslim Brotherhood, Saudi intelligence, and the Muslim World League." Note that Rahman himself had received four visas from "CIA agents acting as consular officers at American embassies in Khartoum and Cairo." Alkifah in Brooklyn “became the de facto headquarters of” Rahman. This was the springboard for building up this "string of jihad offices that had been set up across America with the help of Saudi and American intelligence.” This network didn't dry up after the Cold War ended. It came out in Rahman's trial that his followers were receiving funds from the Saudi embassy in Washington to recruit for Bosnia. See: Al Qaeda Recruited U.S. Servicemen: Testimony Links Plot To Saudi Gov't. Alkifah followed suit: ARAB VETERANS OF AFGHANISTAN WAR LEAD NEW ISLAMIC HOLY WAR

[Oct. 1994] "The Al-Kifah, or Struggle, Refugee Center in New York, which used to recruit and raise funds for Mujahedeen headed for Afghanistan, last year announced it was switching its operations to Bosnia. It was established in the mid-1980s by Egyptian Mustafa Rahman as a joint venture with Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, spiritual leader of Gamaat al-Islamiya."

If the FBI wanted to know what the GRF & BIF were doing and where the money was going, they didn't have to rely on what they found in trash bins. The GRF & BIF didn't exactly keep their agenda a secret. It was known for years that these "charities" did a lot more just than feed starving kids. This List of Muslim Relief Organizations was published by the Muslim Students Association of the USA and Canada in the 1990's. The BIF & GRF are listed:

Benevolence International Foundation
PO Box 548, Worth, IL 60482 USA
Tel. 708-233-0062
Fax. 708-233-0069
Email: bif@benevolence.org
URL: www.benevolence.org
Focus: Benevolence International Foundation (BIF) is a humanitarian organization dedicated to helping those afflicted by wars. BIF first provides short-term relief such as emergency food distribution, and then moves on to long term projects providing education and self-sufficiency to the children, widowed, refugees, injured and staff of vital governmental institutions.
Current list of projects include running refugee camps, hospitals and clinics, sponsoring orphans, operating vocational and computer centers, and conducting seasonal projects.
Established in 1987, BIF is currently conducting projects in five countries including Azerbaijan, Bosnia, Chechnya, Daghestan, and Tajikistan.
BIF is incorporated in the state of Illinois, USA as a non-profit, humanitarian organization and coordinates its efforts through an office in Chicago. BIF is solely supported by private donations and does not receive any governmental assistance.
Entry updated: Apr 1999. .......

Global Relief Foundation
PO Box 1406, Bridgeview, IL 60455
Phone: 1-888-256-2532 (1-888-ALNAJDA)
Phone: 708-233-1473
Fax: 708-233-1474
Email: talk2grf@aol.com
Email: info@grf.org
URL: www.grf.org
US Tax ID#: 36-3804626
Focus: Chechnya, Kosova (Kosovo) and other places. You can ask for a documentary illustrating the genocide in Kosovo. You can use this documentary to create awareness and raise funding for Kosvo. You can order English/Arabic.
Entry updated: Dec 1999."

In 1992, the GHW Bush administration decided that Izetbegovic was their man to lead the Bosnia "jihad." Warren Zimmerman, U.S. Ambassador in Belgrade "persuade[d] Izetbegovic to renege on the [Lisbon peace] agreement, promising him all political, diplomatic and military aid if he agreed to do so." The GHW Bush & Clinton administrations "pulled the strings from the background, encouraging the world-wide Moslem agitation in favor of Izetbegovic." Many of these "strings" were in the Bin Laden network. As to Kosovo, Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) training camps in Albania were "run by Osama bin Laden, and various other foreign mujahedeen" and also by the "CIA and British intelligence." And "the CIA seems to have provided monetary support." There was a civil war in Kosovo with atrocities on all sides, but there was no "genocide." Kosovo - the site of a genocide that never was. In other words, after the Cold War, the CIA & the Pentagon continued to use this same network of "charities," like the BIF & GRF, to serve US strategic aims.

Batterjee was "affiliated with a group of wealthy donors from the Persian Gulf region known as the 'Golden Chain'"? This Golden Chain was a huge Pandora's box, which shows that the BCCI never was really shut down. Just some of the names of the fronts changed. After Fitzgerald took on a leading role in the BIF investigation, the feds made a plea deal with Arnaout, dropping the terrorism charges and ending any further investigation of the case. Now the last time I looked, Bin Laden's Al Qaeda was officially called a "terrorist organization." So there was no lack of evidence. The evidence just led to directions where the higherups in Washington didn't want to go. How many references do you see to the Muslim World League [MWL], the Binladens, Bin Mahfouz, & Abdullah Taha Bakhish on this Golden Chain? According to the DOJ's own documents in the Arnaout case, this is "a list of people referred to within Al Qaida as the 'Golden Chain,' wealthy donors to mujahideen efforts." This was found in a file called "Osama's history" in the BIF office in Bosnia. The CIA had used the BCCI to channel the funds "to CIA client Osama bin Laden, part of the $2 billion Washington sent to the Afghani mujahideen." Bill Clinton's old pal in Arkansas, Jackson Stephens, arranged a BCCI "bailout" for George W. Bush's Harken. "A board seat was given to Harken shareholder Sheikh Abdullah Taha Bakhsh, whose chief banker was BCCI shareholder Bin Mahfouz." You may also remember Jackson Stephens and the Riadys from the Clinton "China-gate" scandal. In 1984, Mochtar Riady bought "a stake in the Worthen holding company whose assets include the Stephens-controlled Worthen Bank....Other Worthen co-owners will eventually include BCCI investor Abdullah Taha Bakhish." Jackson Stephen had bankrolled both Republican and Democratic campaigns.

It is also clear from this 9-11 Commission's staff report account that the CIA was working with the FBI on both the BIF & GRF cases prior to 9-11 and the Patriot Act. Apologists for the Patriot Act claim that this was needed to authorize communications and "intelligence sharing" between the FBI and CIA or other intelligence agencies. Of course, since the BIF & GRF involved the protection of former and current CIA "assets," the "CIA held back some information" in dealing with the FBI. Also one way to kill an investigation is to make inflated claims, which if disproved, can bring down the entire case. I think that the WMD in these "charity" cases was really a stretch, and I think that when the investigation was diverted into this direction, that it was headed for a deadend. Also this could have served as a rationale for Haddad's deportation. Unproven weapons claim led to Islamic charity raid in '01

"This plan went awry when word of the impending action apparently leaked to GRF. FBI personnel learned that some of the targets of the investigations may be destroying documents"? There is some question as to Judith Miller's involvement in "alerting" the GRF of action to freeze their assets. We do know that Judith Miller had connections to the Pentagon & other top Bush officials and that she did play a role in the disinformation about Saddam's WMD. Last year, Chicago U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald "informed the [New York] Times by letter...that his office has subpoenaed telephone company records" of reporters Philip Shenon and Judith Miller. "The move is part of an effort to determine whether anyone in the government told Times reporters of planned federal asset seizures in December 2001" at the GRF's office. "The FBI believes that a call from a reporter to a representative of the charity, the Illinois-based Global Relief Foundation, may have led to the destruction of documents there the night before the government's raid, according to findings by the Sept. 11 commission." It is possible that Shenon & Miller were the channel for this "alert" to the GRF. However, this "alert" could have come from a number of sources through channels in the US "intelligence community," in ways that could not be traced back to the source. There is also a question of exactly how much damage that this destruction of evidence may have done to the prosecutors' case. It is very unlikely that there was ever any serious intent to prosecute Haddad or anyone else in the GRF. The Bush administration certainly seemed in a rush to get him out of the country, and this plan was brought to fruition after "Fitzgerald immersed himself in the case and took a major role."

By BlackJade

[Note: For laughs, check out: Fitzgerald 'too clean' for GOP criticism to stick]
http://www.suntimes.com/output/sweet/cst-nws-sweet26.html

 

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