9/11: THE TRUTH COMES OUT


9/11: THE TRUTH COMES OUT

Israel's 9/11 connection exposed  and you read it here first!



http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j030802.html



by Justin Raimondo



In late November, the Washington Post ran a story that stopped me dead 

in

my tracks: "60 Israelis on Tourist Visas Detained Since Sept. 11," but 

it

was the subhead that really got my attention: "Government Calls Several

Cases 'of Special Interest,' Meaning Related to Post-Attacks

Investigation." In addition to the 1000-plus Middle Easterners of the

Muslim persuasion swept up in Ashcroft's post-9/11 dragnet, it seems, 

some

60 Israelis were in custody. And these were no ordinary tourists: INS

officials testified in immigration court hearings that this group was 

"of

special interest to the government"  the same argument used to justify 

the

detention of Arabs in connection with the investigation into 9/11. 

Shortly

thereafter, in a column dated 11/28/01, I asked: "What, exactly, is the

meaning of this?" Today, I am relieved to note, the rest of the media 

is

finally catching up to Antiwar.com and asking the same question.









THE ISRAELI ANGLE



While my own answer has developed over at least half a dozen subsequent

columns, the core of my thesis has remained essentially unchanged. As I

put it:



"As long as 60 Israeli citizens are being held  under conditions of 

great

secrecy  in connection with the 9/11 investigation, it is no longer

tenable to dismiss the possibility of an Israeli angle in this story."



The Post story went on to describe the Israeli detainees as having 

served

in special anti-terrorist and intelligence units. "Something tells me

these guys are no ordinary tourists," I averred. While "we just don't

know" because of the secrecy surrounding the government's actions, I

thought that the whole point of the Ashcroft round-up was not only to

sweep up potential suspects but to gather information that could lead 

them

to Al Qaeda's underground network in the US. Therefore, I theorized,



"It could be that the Israelis, or at least some of them, fall into 

this

category: while not being directly involved, maybe they know something.

Nothing else could account for the government's 'special interest.'"



A TRAIL OF CLUES



The suggestion of an Israeli connection to the events surrounding 9/11 

did

not spring, full blown, like Athena from the head of Zeus. It had been

hovering in the background, implied in odd accounts such as the one 

about

the group of Israelis picked by the FBI after they were spotted in 

Liberty

State Park, Jersey City, NJ, laughing and giving each other high-fives 

as

the World Trade Center burned on the other side of the river. In an

astonishing story in the Bergen Record, we learn that 5 men described 

as

"Israeli tourists," were picked up 8 hours after the WTC attack, 

"carrying

maps linking them to the blasts." "...[S]ources close to the 

investigation

said they found other evidence linking the men to the bombing plot. 

'There

are maps of the city in the car with certain places highlighted,' the

source said. 'It looked like they're hooked in with this. It looked 

like

they knew what was going to happen when they were at Liberty State 

Park.'"

According to this account, the 5 "tourists" had been picked up by local

police after receiving the following alert from the FBI:



"Vehicle possibly related to New York terrorist attack. White, 2000

Chevrolet van with New Jersey registration with 'Urban Moving Systems'

sign on back seen at Liberty State Park, Jersey City, NJ, at the time 

of

first impact of jetliner into World Trade Center. Three individuals 

with

van were seen celebrating after initial impact and subsequent 

explosion.

FBI Newark Field Office requests that, if the van is located, hold for

prints and detain individuals."



INSTANT MESSAGE



Then there was the story about the two employees of the Odigo Company, 

an

Israeli-based "instant-messaging" software company, with New York 

offices

in the vicinity of the WTC, who received messages in the hours before

disaster struck that the World Trade Center would be hit. I was so

skeptical of this report, published in Ha'aretz, an Israeli daily

newspaper, that I wrote the author: he confirmed the contents of these

mysterious missives and cited his sources. In this context, the 

Washington

Post story fit into an eerie pattern: it was not the final but the

definitive piece of the puzzle: the piece that, once found and put in

place, evokes an exclamation of "so that's what it is!" I was alone, at

the time, in raising the possibility of an Israeli angle to the story 

of

9/11  but not for long.



CAMERON'S BOMBSHELL



On December 11, Fox News ran the first of a four-part series by Carl

Cameron that offered yet more evidence to support my contention that 

the

Israelis had some rather specific foreknowledge of the 9/11 atrocity.

Citing sources in law enforcement, Cameron dropped a bombshell:



"A handful of active Israeli military were among those detained, 

according

to investigators, who say some of the detainees also failed polygraph

questions when asked about alleged surveillance activities against and 

in

the United States. There is no indication that the Israelis were 

involved

in the 9-11 attacks, but investigators suspect that they [sic] Israelis

may have gathered intelligence about the attacks in advance, and not

shared it. A highly placed investigator said there are  quote  

'tie-ins.'

But when asked for details, he flatly refused to describe them, saying,

quote  'evidence linking these Israelis to 9-11 is classified. I cannot

tell you about evidence that has been gathered. It's classified

information.' Fox News has learned that one group of Israelis, spotted 

in

North Carolina recently, is suspected of keeping an apartment in

California to spy on a group of Arabs who the United States is also

investigating for links to terrorism."



The detained Israelis, reported Cameron, had been part of a vast spy

operation that had very possibly been tracking the hijackers, and had 

both

the means and the opportunity to discover the terrorist plot. Over four

nights, he detailed extensive Israeli penetration of US defense and

government facilities revealed in the documents of a secret task force

within the government that has been collecting evidence on this case 

since

the early 1990s.



ART FOR ART'S SAKE?



Posing as "art students" selling cheap handicrafts and paintings, as 

many

as 120 young Israelis  the majority of whom "stated they served in

military intelligence, electronic surveillance intercept and or 

explosive

ordinance units" in the Israeli army  made contact with US government

officials and personnel in "hundreds of incidents and towns across the

country." Indeed, there had been so many news reports in local media,

concentrated especially in Texas and Florida, detailing this activity 

that

the National Counterintellligence Center (a dot-gov site) issued the

following alert:



"In the past six weeks, employees in federal office buildings located

throughout the United States have reported suspicious activities 

connected

with individuals representing themselves as foreign students selling or

delivering artwork. Employees have observed both males and females

attempting to bypass facility security and enter federal buildings."



WANNA SEE MY ETCHINGS?



These "students," the NCC observed, who "have been described as

aggressive," didn't seem too interested in selling anybody anything, 

and

instead seemed intent on simply gaining access. Two were arrested (in

Texas) and, lo and behold, it was discovered that their work visas and

green cards were counterfeit. One particularly eerie aspect of all this 

is

these "students" turning up at "the private residences of senior 

federal

officials under the guise of selling art." On October 2, KHOU-TV of

Houston, Texas, reported that, earlier in the year, these guys were 

caught

sneaking into "federal buildings and defense sites," and, in Dallas,



"The so-called students hit early this year at the city's FBI building,

the Drug Enforcement Administration and at the Earle Cabell Federal

building, where guards found one student wandering the halls with a 

floor

plan of the building."



THE MARRIAGE OF ART AND HI-TECH



The Fox News expos also reported on the near-total penetration of US

communications facilities by Israel, through two "private" Israeli

telecommunications companies, Amdocs, Ltd., and Comverse Infosys, 

which,

together, handle virtually all the billing records and government 

wiretaps

in the US. Indeed, many of the "art students" not only had 

"intelligence

expertise," but also worked for Amdocs "or other companies in Israel 

that

specialize in wiretapping."



THE SOUND OF SILENCE



Cameron's report, which was immediately denied by the Israelis, spread

pandemonium throughout the government, and official spokesmen 

stonewalled.

Ari Fleischer was unusually laconic, referring questions from reporters 

to

an unresponsive Justice Department and other equally uncooperative

government agencies. As for the rest of the American media  a stunning

silence. You could hear a pin drop. As Cameron put it in an interview 

with

CSPAN:



"The biggest story of our time, of Israel spying on all branches of the

government, on all our intelligence agencies  in the CIA [Central

Intelligence Agency], the DEA and the White House itself, is not picked 

up

by the leading newspapers like the New York Times and the Washington

Post."



BREAKTHROUGH



Ah, but the Post, at least, would eventually be forced to pick up the

story, if only to serve as a conduit for official government denials. 

In



the meantime, for months, the only place you could read about this 

story

was on Antiwar.com, and specifically right here in this space: that is,

here, and here, and here, and here  and also here, and here. Not to

mention here. (And don't forget here.) Until, finally, the story was

picked up overseas, by LeMonde, a major French newspaper, which based 

its

story [go here for the French version] on a report published in the 

Online

Intelligence newsletter. The editor of the newsletter, Guillaume Dasqui

co-author of Bin Laden: The Hidden Truth  was recently taken to task in

this space for positing the 9/11 conspiracy as being part of a plot by

Saudi Arabia, which, after all, "since the 18th century  has been 

focused

on conquering the world." I am glad to see, however, that the direction 

of

his investigation has now taken a radically different turn.



STUMBLING ON A RATTLESNAKE



This turn was helped along, it seems, by yet another "leak" from a US

government agency, this time the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Dasqui had somehow gotten his hands on a classified 61-page report 

drafted

by an interagency task force charged with summarizing information 

gleaned

from the nearly 120 Israelis rounded up in the wake of 9/11. The DEA, 

it

seems, took the lead in the investigation because its Office of 

Security

Programs  responsible for internal security  first stumbled on "unusual

behavior of young Israeli nationals who had gained access to DEA 

circles."

As it turned out, nearly all these "art students" belonged to a 

particular

school of art  that is, if espionage and spying in general can be

considered an art, albeit a black one.



NAMING NAMES



What I like best about Online Intelligence is that it names names,



"A few of the operatives are well known in the Israeli intelligence

community. The report cited the names of Peer Segalovitz (military

registration number 5087989) and Aran Ofek, son of a renowned two-star

general in the Israeli army. The network targeted some of the most

sensitive sites in the U.S., such as Tanker Air Force Base near 

Oklahoma

City. Indeed, the U.S. Air Force's Office of Special Investigation sent 

a

letter to the Justice Department on May 16 of last year to ask for

assistance in a case against four Israelis suspected of spying: Yaron

Ohana, Ronen Kalfon, Zeev Cohen and Naor Topaz."



ISRAEL'S UNDERGROUND ARMY



According to the DEA, Israel's underground army in the US consisted of

"around 20 units composed of between four and eight members each." More

names are named: Michael Calmanovic headed up the team in Irving, 

Texas,

while Florida was the domain of Hanan Serfaty. Legum Yochai had charge 

of

the Miami operation. Online Intelligence also notes the Amdocs 

connection:

it seems these "art students" "cultivated contacts with Israeli

information technology companies based in the US and serving as regular

suppliers to various U.S. federal agencies, such as Amdocs" and others.

The Fox News series is cited, by Online Intelligence and Le Monde, and 

the

former even provides a convenient map of the Texas chapter of the "art

students" underground apparatus, complete with not only names, but 

arrival

dates, corporate connections, when and where they were arrested, and 

their

specific functions in the Israeli military-intelligence apparatus. How

much more evidence do we need before the editorialists and the pundits

start calling government officials on their lies  and Congress begins 

an

investigation?



TRUTH WILL OUT



As I said in my first column on this subject, written before Fox News

expanded on the story and introduced it to a wider public, "truth will

out" in spite of government stonewalling and obsessive secrecy:



"In these days of the Internet, and the instant dissemination of

information, the gatekeepers have to resort to quasi-legal means to 

keep

the truth from coming out. But it will come out, sooner rather than 

later

in which case, the question, 'Haven't we had enough of Israel?' may be

definitively answered."



This story was really too big to keep under wraps for long, which is 

why I

kept flailing it week after week, certain that sooner or later it would

find its way into the major media and have a decisive impact on the 

public

debate over this war, and our relations with the rest of the world in

general. It is a nice feeling to be vindicated, and, if you'll permit 

me

to indulge myself for a moment, let me just remind my regular readers: 

you

read it here first!



AN 'URBAN MYTH'  MY EYE!



As the embargo on the Israeli spy story began to break down, with 

reports

from the British media filtering into the US and Canada, the Washington

Post  the original source of the news that 60 Israelis had been 

detained

ran what is fated to become the prototypical denial coming from the US 

and

Israeli governments:



"'This seems to be an urban myth that has been circulating for months,'

said Justice Department spokeswoman Susan Dryden. 'The department has 

no

information at this time to substantiate these widespread reports about

Israeli art students involved in espionage.'"



An "urban myth"  oh, that's rich! Confronted with the evidence, the

denialists equate documented reports from reputable news sources with

stories of alligators in the New York City sewer system. Faced with a

leaked government document that reveals names, places, and military

identification numbers, government spokesmen resort to characterizing 

the

(so far unknown) leaker as a "disgruntled" DEA employee who

single-handedly wrote the memo. We don't know what person or persons

authored the DEA task force report on Israeli spook activity in the US

prior to 9/11, but, in any case, what loyal American wouldn't be

disgruntled at this administration's increasingly unsuccessful effort 

to

bury this deeper than the lowest rung of Hell?



SOPHISTRY, WASHINGTON-STYLE



As the new revelations were met with a barrage of denials in Washington

and Israeli consulates around the country, Dasqui stuck by his story. 

The

FBI was engaging in sophistry, he said, when it denied that the "art

students" had been arrested for carrying out espionage on behalf of a

foreign power in the US: all were expelled, the FBI piously averred, 

for

routine visa violations. But that is precisely how a cover-up of spying 

by

a "friendly" government would be accomplished, Dasqui points out:

especially by the Israel-friendly Bush administration, which is doing

everything it can to tamp down the growing scandal. Haul them into

immigration court, get them out of the country quick  and no one's the

wiser. Except, for once, they are.



IF I LISTEN LONG ENOUGH TO YOU



Ms. Dryden's smug arrogance in dismissing serious charges as "urban 

myth"

may have backfired. Denigrating your opponent when he has the goods on 

you

is not a smart strategy. As long as US and Israeli officials continue 

to

lie straight-faced, while gullible journalists look to find a reason to

believe government lies, Intelligence Online is threatening to publish 

the

leaked DEA report in its entirety:



"'It seems irresponsible for us to publish it, but if the denials go 

on,

we could put the report on our Internet site and in so doing possibly

blacken the names of the people most exposed,' the editor of the

Intelligence Online site, Guillaume Dasqui, said.  'The document we 

have

in our possession details not only the identities of the members of 

this

network, but also their activities in the Israeli army, and even their

serial numbers in the intelligence services, their passport numbers and

their validity, and their visas and their validity."



Au contraire, messieurs Dasqui, et al, it would be irresponsible to

refrain from publishing it. Don't we have a right to know the full 

context

of the biggest terrorist attack in American history  an attack that

signaled the start of a rapidly expanding war? As for "blackening the

names of the people most exposed"  isn't that what we mean by justice?



FUN, FUN, FUN!



But of course the responsibility for all this goes much higher than the

son of an Israeli general and a few high-ranking intelligence officers

including responsibility for the ongoing cover-up. That is why we are

seeing both the US and Israeli governments going into full "spin" mode,

the signal that a real panic is going on behind the scenes. This should

provide us with plenty of entertainment for the next few weeks, and I 

see

by this item in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that the fun has already

started.



KNOCK, KNOCK  WHO'S THERE?



Reiterating the basic facts of the story  Israeli spies penetrating

government facilities posing as "art students"  the Sun-Sentinel 

reports

that, in South Florida, these suspicious characters were employed by an

outfit known as "Universal Art," with addresses in South Miami and

Southrise:



"On Wednesday, there was no sign of a company called Universal Art 

Inc.,

at 10873 NW 52nd St. in Sunrise. The address in Florida incorporation

documents came back to a light industrial complex next to the Sawgrass

Expressway and south of Commercial Boulevard. No one answered the door,

and several occupants had not heard of the company. The company's

officers, Yitzchak Shish and Chava Sagi, are not listed. They were not

among those who were deported."



Nobody answered the door, eh? Well, then we ought to be knocking a 

little

harder. And if no one answers, then why not break down the door and see

who or what is inside? After all, the authorities haven't hesitated to 

do

this in the case of Arab-Americans and other non-Israeli Middle Eastern

visitors and immigrants. Why the reluctance in this case?



DON'T HOLD YOUR BREATH



As the hijackers were training for their deadly mission in South 

Florida,

the resident Israeli cell, all of whom lived nearby, could have easily

kept a close watch on their activities. If anyone ever catches up with

Yitzchak Shish and Chava Sagi, perhaps we will learn more about what 

the

Israelis knew about the events surrounding 9/11, and when they knew it.

But if we're depending on the FBI and our own intelligence services to

find these two, and make their story public, then I'm afraid we are in 

for

a long wait indeed.






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