August 22, 2008
From the Desk of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton:
Judicial Watch Obtains New Information On What Clinton Administration Knew About Bin Laden Threat
The more we uncover about the Clinton administration’s response to the bin Laden threat, the worse it looks for Bill Clinton.
Judicial Watch made headlines when it obtained documents from the State Department in August 2005 related to what the Clinton administration knew about the threat posed by Osama bin Laden in the lead up to the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Judicial Watch’s discovery led to a barrage of media coverage, including a front-page story in The New York Times.
Well three years later, on August 5th, we received brand new information from the State Department that had been blacked out on the original documents released to Judicial Watch. (Immediately after noting the redactions, Judicial Watch had filed an appeal with the Department of State Appeals Review Panel on October 13, 2005.)
As far as I can tell, two important news items emerged from this new information:
First, according to new information on a document entitled, "Terrorism/Usama bin Ladin: Who’s Chasing Whom?" dated July 18, 2006, the Clinton administration was warned of a bin Laden suicide car bombing threat in London: "[redacted] . . . indicated bin Ladin planned to sponsor suicide car bombings against US interests in the UK, in part to punish London for ‘submitting’ to US pressure to bar his entry into the UK." The information about the terrorist threats to London had previously been redacted.
Secondly, the documents also suggest the leadership of Sudan, President Al Bashir and Hassan Turabi, had nefarious ties with bin Laden: "National Islamic Front (NIF) leader Turabi…agreed to the expulsing of terrorist financier Usama bin Ladin on the condition that in the future he be allowed to return…. Turabi and President Bashin hoped that when bin Ladin visited he would use false documentation and provincial airports…to avoid publicity."
These new pieces of information help to complete the picture with respect to the Clinton administration’s shocking failure to respond to the bin Laden threat.
The State Department documents were first produced to Judicial Watch in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed with the agency on December 11, 2001 concerning the government of Sudan’s reported offer to share intelligence files on bin Laden. (The Clinton administration, of course, rebuffed an offer by Sudanese officials to turn bin Laden over to the U.S.)
Overall, the documents obtained by Judicial Watch in 2005 discuss bin Laden’s travels, his prolonged stay in Afghanistan, financial networks, anti-Western threats in press interviews, his ties to the Khobar Towers bombing and his "emboldened" threats against U.S. interests.
According to the declassified documents, bin Laden’s many passports and his private plane allowed him considerable freedom to travel "with little fear of being intercepted or tracked." Bin Laden reportedly even traveled to London where he gave a press interview subsequent to his departure from Sudan.
The report also warns that bin Laden’s prolonged stay in Afghanistan "could prove more dangerous to U.S. interests in the long run than his three-year liaison with Khartoum." The intelligence predicts that even if bin Laden were forced to keep on the move, it would prove no more than an inconvenience since, ". . . his informal and transnational network of businesses and associates remains resilient." The report goes on to explain that bin Ladin on the move, "can retain the capability to support individuals and groups who have the motive and wherewithal to attack U.S. interests almost worldwide."
Over five years before 9/11, the Clinton administration was warned about bin Laden’s murderous intent – including specific threats to attack U.S. interests through suicide car bombings in London. And yet the Clinton administration took no meaningful action against bin Laden. As a result of this inaction, not only did 9/11 come to pass, but so did massive suicide bombings in London’s Underground in 2005.
Gardasil Under Fire
For more than two years, Judicial Watch has led the way in raising questions about Gardasil, the vaccine approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in June 2006 to prevent certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV) which may lead to cervical cancer.
We tracked adverse reaction reports from the FDA documenting the dangerous and deadly side effects of the vaccine and we have published this information for the world to see. Check out a special report we produced earlier this summer entitled, "Examining the FDA’s HPV Vaccine Records," and a lawsuit we filed against the Food and Drug Administration to obtain more information. Our report not only focused on questions about Gardasil’s safety, but also questions about its efficacy. The report concluded that Gardasil was a vaccine that may not work and which has potential serious (deadly) side effects.
So after millions in advertising and lobbying by Merck, the creator of Gardasil, our concerns have been confirmed. The news this week is that researchers haven’t a clue as to whether or not Gardasil even works!
The New York Times had the story this week. Here’s an excerpt:
"Two vaccines against cervical cancer are being widely used without sufficient evidence about whether they are worth their high cost or even whether they will effectively stop women from getting the disease, two articles in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine conclude.
"Both vaccines target the human papillomavirus, a common sexually transmitted virus that usually causes no symptoms and is cleared by the immune system, but which can in very rare cases become chronic and cause cervical cancer.
"’Despite great expectations and promising results of clinical trials, we still lack sufficient evidence of an effective vaccine against cervical cancer,’ Dr. Charlotte J. Haug, editor of The Journal of the Norwegian Medical Association, wrote in an editorial in Thursday’s issue of The New England Journal. ‘With so many essential questions still unanswered, there is good reason to be cautious.’"
Talk about an understatement! The article also goes on to note that because cervical cancer develops only after years of chronic infection with HPV, researchers really have no idea if the vaccine even prevents cervical cancer.
Here’s what we do know. The FDA has documented at least 8,864 adverse reactions associated with the vaccine, including seizures, paralysis, blood clots and hemorrhaging. And as many as 18 young girls died after the vaccine was administered to them. (Click here for the full details.)
We hope federal and local governments pushing this vaccine educate themselves and pull back from pushing this evidently dangerous, expensive and perhaps useless vaccine on our children.
Judicial Watch Lawsuit Against Iraq for Role in Oklahoma City Bombing Moves Forward
On Thursday, a federal judge ruled that Judicial Watch’s lawsuit against the Republic of Iraq on behalf of victims of the April 19, 1995 Oklahoma City bombing can move forward. Judge Reggie B. Walton rejected a motion to dismiss the lawsuit filed by lawyers on behalf of Iraq. Finally, after many years of delay, the families of the Oklahoma City bombing will have their day in court. The Iraqi government was determined to end this case, but failed.
I haven’t written about this case in quite some time, so here’s a quick refresher. Judicial Watch filed its lawsuit on March 14, 2002 in a district court for the District of Columbia on behalf of 14 survivors of the Oklahoma City bombing, which took place on April 19, 1995.
As you may recall, the federal government prosecuted Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols, two "domestic" terrorists, for perpetrating the bombing, which killed 168 people. Both were convicted. McVeigh was executed and Nichols is now serving a life sentence. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of over twenty of the bombing’s victims, alleges that "the entire plot was, in whole or in part, orchestrated, assisted technically and/or financially and directly aided by agents of The Republic of Iraq."
You can read the complaint here. Below are just a few pieces of the allegations in our complaint:
- "Prior to the Gulf War, Iraq had developed a covert network in the United States to acquire materials for weapons of mass destruction. After the Gulf War, Iraq converted that network into organized terrorist cells. Those covert Iraqi procurement and terrorist activities directly involved Oklahoma City, Oklahoma."
- Ramzi Youssef, the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, was identified by the U.S. Customs Service as an Iraqi government agent assisting with Iraq’s weapons and technology programs.
- After the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, Youssef went in search of willing accomplices to carry out terrorist activities, focusing his recruitment activities on Southwest University in Cebu, Philippines. At some point, Youssef "recruited a willing convert in the person of Terry Nichols who witnesses say went to the Philippines seeking technical help in learning to build a bomb. Meetings between Terry Nichols and Ramzi Youssef were witnessed by a Filipino government informant."
- After the Oklahoma City bombing, Abdul Hakim Murad, an associate of Youssef arrested for his part in a plot to bomb 5 American 747s, "admitted verbally on April 19, 1995 and in writing that Ramzi Youssef’s ‘liberation army’ was responsible for the [Oklahoma City] bombing."
- According to a CIA intelligence report, "there was a ‘squad’ of people currently in the United States, very possibly Iraqis, who have been tasked with carrying out terrorist attacks against the United States." One of the three targets specifically mentioned in the report was Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
As I say, I suggest you read our complaint for all of the details. And I’ll be sure to keep you posted as this lawsuit moves forward to discovery.
Until next week…
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