Completely forgotten in all the hoopla over the release of the heavily edited and redacted documents known as “The bin Laden Papers,” is the uncomfortable fact that immediately after 9/11, bin Laden went on Al Jazeera to announce he was innocent. In fact, zero actual evidence has been produced linking bin Laden to 9/11—other than some transparently manipulated audio and video clips of dubious origins. We have faked confessions, no doubt, but no forensic evidence for a crime that involved tremendous resources and intense planning? After all the Gitmo waterboarding that’s gone on, you’d think something concrete would have emerged. In fact, the FBI never even accused bin Laden of being a suspect in 9/11, as his wanted poster mentioned only two embassy bombing incidents. The patsy being put on trial (after over a decade of torture and isolation) will be judged and sentenced based solely on the testimony of another terror suspect put in a cell with him, a man whose testimony was extracted under torture and promise of an easier sentence? This is not a trial but a national disgrace.
We do know, however, bin Laden began his career as an Islamic jihadist at the request of the CIA and the organization he built was designed to repel Russian invaders in Afghanistan. It was only after the anti-Russian campaign ended that bin Laden came into conflict with Israel, England and the United States. Prior to our invasion of Afghanistan, he likely could have been easily captured. When troops encircled his Tora Bora command post (built by our CIA) they strangely left the back door escape route to Pakistan wide open. Clearly, this “escape” was nothing but a carefully orchestrated withdrawal.
But the most intriguing bit of information I’ve come across was a reference on a Middle-Eastern website to a suspected decline in bin Laden’s mental facilities after 2003. Did you even know two of his wives had PhD’s? Wouldn’t it be nice to hear their perspective on the raid and death of their beloved husband? Was an unarmed man suffering from dementia actually executed in front of his unarmed family? Clearly, this was no fire-fight. Do you ever wonder why the body was disposed of in the ocean, why the compound was quickly turned to dust, why the witnesses have disappeared from press and public scrutiny? And a year after the execution, we get treated to the release of “incriminating” papers, which actually reveal nothing of any substance about who bin Laden actually was and who he was working for. The strangest thing in these papers is a long diatribe on why jihadists should not attack oil company installations or refineries. I wonder who’s agenda that might be? After seizing every computer and scrap of paper in that compound, it is astonishing how little is revealed in the 17 fragments released, many of which have no attribution, author or context.
When we really want to get to the bottom of 9/11, it will be necessary to interrogate Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Armitage, Frank Carlucci and George Bush Senior, who was meeting with Osama’s brother Shafig in the Ritz-Carleton in Washington that day. Meanwhile, the only forensic evidence we have is a $100,000 money transfer from an ISI operative in Pakistan. Is it worth noting ISI chief Mahmoud Ahmad was meeting with Bob Graham and Porter Goss on the morning of 9/11?
But even Bob Graham (who sat and signed off on the whitewash commission) called for a new investigation last fall when it was revealed that all the Saudi links to 9/11 had been concealed rather than investigated. You can bet neither the ISI nor Saudi nor Mossad links will be touched upon in the upcoming trial.
And finally, is it worth mentioning another suspicious detail in this case: the deaths last August of the Seal Team that assassinated bin Laden?