Wednesday, May 17, 2006

exquisite ratfucking

* demnow on friday:
"AMY GOODMAN: Is the war in Iraq a war for oil?

GREG PALAST: Is the war in Iraq for oil? Yes, it's about the oil, but not for the oil. In my investigations for Armed Madhouse, I ended up with a story far more fascinating and difficult than I imagined. We didn't go in to grab the oil. Just the opposite. We went in to control the oil and make sure we didn't get it. It goes back to 1920, when the oil companies sat in a room in Brussels in a hotel room, drew a red line around Iraq and said, “There'll be no oil coming out of that nation.” They have to suppress oil coming out of Iraq. Otherwise, the price of oil will collapse, and OPEC and Saudi Arabia will collapse."
* glenn has a roundup of the degenerati response to the speech. the president has lost even them.

* "Specter has mollified conservative opposition to his bill by agreeing to drop the requirement that the Bush administration seek a legal judgment on the program" (link)

* cbs blog:
"Are we watching a story fall apart before our very eyes? Something is certainly going on with that USA Today front-page splash about the secret NSA program to collect and analyze all the phone calls made within the United States. The story, published last week, sparked a fierce debate about privacy and the government’s ability to spy on Americans. It drew rebukes from even administration allies. There were no blanket denials made by the administration and no protestations of inaccurate reporting by those in the know. And there were no denials made by the phone companies named in the story as having provided information to the NSA – at least until now...
Now, however, both Verizon and BellSouth are denying having been asked or having provided such information to the NSA... So far, no comment from AT&T, but there appears enough here to start wondering about the accuracy of the original USA Today story.

It is curious that these two companies took several days to issue these denials (the story broke last Thursday and the companies did not deny it then)...

Still, we’re entering some rocky territory, especially for a story about a “secret” program based entirely on anonymous sources. Given the administration’s refusal to confirm or deny the report, the company denials and the anonymous sources, it may be time to ask how we’ll ever get the truth out of this story. "
an exquisite piece of rat-fucking. the only question is why it was done.


Anonymous said...

Hopsicker continues his story on the Mexican cocaine bust:

Makram Chams, a Lebanese national, helped Mohamed Atta and Marwan Al-Shehhi. He owned a mini mart in Venice Fl where the terrorists received a $70,000 money transfer from the UAE. After 9/11 Chams then went missing, abandoning his mini mart, but has recently re-surfaced in Saudi Arabia, as a contractor for US defense firm Titan Corp.

In Titan Corp’s 2005 SEC filing they claimed that Chams had brought a $21.9m legal action in Saudi Arabia for defamation and wrongful termination of a consultancy agreement.

Meanwhile, Venice cab driver, Bob Simpson, says that prior to 9/11 he had transferred a wealthy Saudi businessman and his wife from the airport to the apartment above Chams minimart (owned by Chams) to meet Atta and al-Shehhi.

Hopsicker notes that the FBI never identified Chams at the 9/11 Commission hearings, but that the $70,000 money order receipt they did provide showed the address of Makram Chams mini mart.

As previously mentioned Titan Corp has connections to Cunningham, Hunter, Wilkes and Foggo, mostly through a fraudulent company called SkyWay Communications Holding (owned by Brent Kovar) whose drug plane was captured in Mexico on April 12 with 5.5 tons of cocaine.

SkyWay's partner in the plane ownership was a Florida air charter company, Royal Sons LLC , which was at one time housed in a hanger at the Venice Fl. Airport owned by flight school Huffman Aviation, home of the 9/11 terrorists.

So there now appears to be documented evidence that a 9/11 terrorist enabler has been working for a US defence company.

Don said...

an exquisite piece of rat-fucking. the only question is why it was done.

2 words: Al Neuharth

Anonymous said...

in regards to the denials by the phone companies...

the only way to truly resolve this issue now, would be to hold Congressional investigations into the NSA domestic spying.

- Jiminy Cricket

Anonymous said...

It's likely that the USA Today story is still true. As EW points out at her place and dKos, there's a tremendous amount of parsing going on in those non-denial denials issued by the Telcos. Like if the NSA just asked for ACCESS to the fiber backbone itself, but not for any records, per se. Of course, that also means they're listening to all of our calls too, but the telcos could reasonably say, hey we never gave them any records.

Another possibility is this interesting Presidential memo of May 5 that's the subject of a dKos diary right now. Apparently, Bush delegated the powers of the Presidency to Negroponte to basically protect corporations from shareholder lawsuits if the material has anything to do about national security (note: this delgation is only in regards to the President's power under the SEC act to excuse corporations from lawsuits regarding cooperation with Federal officals on matters of national security, I'm not saying that Negroponte has other Presidential powers).

So the telcos could lie with impunity, and never be called on the carpet about it by a lawsuit.

Doesn't mean the story's not true.

Miguel said...

Here's another possibility: the telcos may have been told by the Bush Administration that any lawsuit against them will be stopped by the now famous "State Secrets" privilege, which the Supreme Court has now upheld in 2 recent cases (Sibel's and a CIA agent who sued for discrimination).

Thus, the telcos can lie as much as they want knowing the full truth is likely to never be revealed, absent someone leaking the actual documents/contracts to the press.

Anonymous said...

Here's a link to the Presidental Memo that viget was speaking of.

- Jiminy Cricket

lukery said...

don - nice catch - although my guess is that there is more involved here than trying to hurt USAT

viget - yeah - there's much parsing to be done - i'm not really sure where it all ends. we know that qwest was approached by the egadmin and denied access - so we can presume that they at least asked the other companies.

that pres directive looks kinda spooky (thnx jiminy cricket). it's kinda odd that it is only two weeks old.