NY Post December 4, 2009;
THE FBI’s failure to see clear warning signs in the Fort Hood case revives the ques tion of whether it’s up to the task of countering terrorism. Before his murderous rampage, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan was exchanging e-mails with a radical Yemen-based imam with ties to the 9/11 hijackers. FBI investigators examined intercepts — and, finding that their “content was explainable by his research,” concluded “that Hasan was not involved in terrorist activities or terrorist planning.” It did not warn the Army of the potential menace.
The lapse has been attributed to an FBI bending over backward to avoid giving offense to Muslims. Perhaps it did — but, thanks to reporting by National Public Radio, we’ve learned that sheer incompetence played a larger role.
After Hasan’s e-mails came under scrutiny, NPR reports, his investigative file languished for months on an agent’s desk, growing out of date. When the FBI opted to close the case, the file didn’t include fresh e-mails, held in another office, in which Hasan pondered whether Sgt. Hasan Akbar, a Muslim solder who threw grenades at fellow troops at the start of the Iraq war, was a holy martyr.
FBI lassitude in national-security cases has a long history. The bureau took years to investigate the possible Chinese theft of nuclear-weapons design plans by Los Alamos scientist Wen Ho Lee, ending the case inconclusively in 2000 with a conviction on only a minor count. A scathing Justice Department review noted that the FBI probe was marked “by dead-stop-in-the-water delays that can only be characterized as maddening and inexplicable.”
Just months after that fiasco came the revelation that Robert Hanssen, the FBI official in charge of ferreting out Soviet (and then Russian) spies, had been spying for Moscow since 1985. Despite bizarre personal behavior (one supervisor called him the “strangest person” he’d ever worked with), Hanssen was promoted into the critical slot, leading to the deaths of several (at least) US agents in the USSR.
Then, in August 2001, FBI investigators detained Zacharias Moussaoui — an al Qaeda operative then trying to learn how to fly a Boeing 747. When they sought a warrant to examine his laptop, FBI supervisors in Washington balked — despite Moussaoui’s known jihadist beliefs, ties to Chechen rebels and the field agents’ belief that he was preparing to hijack a plane. It took the toppling of the World Trade Center for FBI bosses to change their minds.
Charged at once with being too passive and too aggressive, the FBI has been whipsawed into failure. It’s high time to look at creating a new and separate domestic counter-terrorism/counter-intelligence agency along the lines of Great Britain’s MI5. This would not be a panacea, but the alternative is more of the same — and possibly worse. More from this source……………….
Wednesday, November 25, 2009, U.S. Based Stolen Car Rings Fund, Supply Terrorists Like Hezbo says Bill Warner, the boss of WBI Inc. Private Detective Agency in Sarasota, Fl.,
Terrorists have been using stolen car rings inside the United States to fund and supply their operations for years, recent investigations reveal. Stolen cars are obtained inside the United States, particularly in Tampa, Fl., and shipped to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and Dubai, United Arab Emirates, where they are then sold for profit or even used for car bombs in places such as Iraq.
Bill Warner, the boss of WBI Inc. Private Detective Agency in Sarasota, Fl., explained that Sami Al-Arian, who was convicted of supporting the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group, was linked to various used car dealers. Warner himself came upon the ring by discovering a car dealer on the west coast of Florida using tags that did not belong to him, at which point he tracked the shipment of cars to Dubai.
Warner also explained that the majority of the car exporters were Iraqi refugees, including some who had taken part in activities to overthrow Saddam Hussein, which failed after the U.S. declined to support them. “Shiite used car dealers who were exporting vehicles, operated out of the Port of Tampa and the Port of Savannah, [and] vehicles were purchased at salvaged auto actions and/or from street hustlers of recent stolen vehicles,” Warner explained.
“Stolen vehicles were disassembled, the engine and transmission taken out and then shipped with the hull of the vehicle packed in shipping containers [labeled] as auto parts and sent to Dubai, UAE,” he said. The disassembled vehicles get through U.S. ports because Vehicle Identification Numbers are not checked unless the car is fully assembled. Upon arrival, they were reassembled and sold at two to three times the price of what they’d be sold for in the United States.
According to Warner, the informant that helped crack the network was never given the full reward of up to $5 million that the Justice Department’s Rewards for Justice Program offers for information leading to disrupting a financing mechanism for terrorists. He also alleges that the FBI is failing to dismantle the network.
“The FBI (who has overall control of the investigation) has done nothing to curb the shipments or to make any additional arrests,” Warner said. “The FBI wants complete control over any investigation into the used car scam run out of Tampa, Fl., [and is] excluding I.CE. [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] and U.S. Secret Service, they will not share any information with other agencies, neither will the Department of Defense.”
Top terrorism expert Steven Emerson, director of The Investigative Project, confirms these networks are extensive and are important to terrorist operations. “The smuggling of cars to the Middle East has become a major cog in the terrorist arsenal. Either they are used to raise money for terrorist groups or in at least a handful of occasions, they have been used to ferry weapons or as actual suicide vehicles. There are several task forces that have been created to track down and stop this illegal smuggling. At this time, I am unable to say however, how successful the USG has been in dismantling the network,“ Emerson said, more from this source………