Today’s VIDEO Highlights: 9/11 GTMO Brief’s, * California Power Outage Update * Stories Political Coup D’Etat by the Daily Ledger * Pre-view of Posted C-VINE Breaking News
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Military Tribunal Brief’s (click the links to read the full articles)
- GTMO Military Tribunal Scheduling Order for 9/11 KSM et al
- Who is al Baluchi and Why Should you Care?
- Hearing of September 17, 2019, considers the admissability of clean team evidence.
- Clean Teams were developed as way to obtain testimony from the alleged terrorists of their free will. Part of that can be psychological persuasion or even listening devises.
- During one of the pre-trial proceedings, held on September 17, 2019, the prosecution released a transcript from a conversation al-Baluchi had with another captive, when they were in two nearby recreation yards. It had not been known, until the release of this transcript, that the recreation yards contained hidden listening devices. They had at least two recreation yards. Captives got a whole recreation yard to themselves, during their outdoor recreation time. But they could hear other captives in nearby yards, and could communicate with them, by yelling.Prosecutors claimed the transcript’s discussion of a confession al Baluchi was considering, drafted for him by fellow captive Ramzi bin al-Shibh, was evidence of al Baluchi’s guilt. His defense attorney’s argued that his willingness to consider a confession was an after effect of his years of torture.The purpose of the hearing was to help a new judge, W. Shane Cohen, make a decision as to whether confessions given to the “clean team“ were still compromised by al Baluchi’s torture.
Preparation for 9/11
Baluchi “volunteered his services” to uncle KSM in 1997.
According to U.S. officials, the majority of money that came to the Saudi hijackers for the September 11 attacks was transferred through Baluchi and Mustafa al-Hawsawi. The 9/11 Commission reported that he “helped them with plane tickets, traveler’s checks, and hotel reservations”, and “taught them about everyday aspects of life in the West, such as purchasing clothes and ordering food”. In his defence, Baluchi claims that he often helped people in Dubai with such things to supplement his income, and he had no way of knowing whether any of them were criminals.
On October 10, 1998, Baluchi used his passport to open a bank account with the Emirates Bank International, using the name “Ali” based on his kunya name Ibn Abdulaziz Ali and listing his employer’s address with PO box 16958, Jebel Ali, Dubai.
He was then introduced to Marwan al-Shehhi by his uncle, and Shehhi allegedly asked him to help transfer money from Shehhi’s company in Dubai to his company in the United States, ostensibly to help avoid banking fees if he transferred the money himself.
In January 2000, an order using Shehhi’s credit card had a Boeing 747-400 flight simulator program, a Boeing 767 flight deck video, and some flight attendant literature and flight manuals shipped to Baluchi’s work address. Baluchi then shipped them to his uncle to pass onto Shehhi.
On April 18, Baluchi sent a wire transfer of $5000 to Adel Rafeea, the administrator of the Islamic Center of San Diego, from the Wall Street Exchange Centre in Dubai, using his PO Box, passport and listing his phone number as 0506745651. Rafeaa later claimed that Nawaf al-Hazmi had asked him to accept the money on his behalf.
Tracing the calls made to Baluchi’s phone number, authorities discovered that he had received 16 calls from June 28–30 from a pre-paid Voicestream cellphone purchased in Manhattan on June 4. The phone was deactivated on July 11, and authorities allege it belonged to Atta, while Baluchi insisted that he only ever spoke with Shehhi, who had hired him. Around this time, Baluchi complained to Mohammed that he couldn’t do all this additional work himself, and his uncle told him that Mustafa al-Hawsawi would co-ordinate with him to act as an assistant.
On June 29, a man named “Isam Mansur” wired $5000 to the Western Union at 1440 Broadway in New York, where Shehhi picked it up. This is alleged to have been Baluchi, since two later direct payments into Shehhi’s Sun Trust account from the Exchange Center, a $10,000 payment to Shehhi on July 18 from “Isam Mansur” and a $9500 August 5 payment from “Isam Mansour”, gave Baluchi’s PO Box number.
On August 8, Baluchi opened a bank account at Dubai Islamic Bank, using his name, passport and phone number. A $20,000 payment from Baluchi’s bank account to Shehhi’s Sun Trust account on August 29 gave a phone number one digit different than the one given by Isam Mansour on August 5.
A $70,000 payment was made to Shehhi’s account by “Hani (Fawaz Trading)” on September 17 from the same exchange centre. Hani gave a telephone number one digit removed from the one Baluchi used on the transfer from his bank account on August 29.
In September, Hani Hanjour went to Dubai, where Baluchi gave him $3000 to open a new bank account, and later deposited $5000 in the account which Hanjour later accessed from ATMs in the United States. When Ahmed al-Ghamdi went to Dubai, Baluchi helped him purchase a cell phone. It is believed nine of the hijackers met with him in Dubai and received various levels of aid.
On August 27, 2001, Baluchi applied for a visa to travel to the United States for a week after his employer announced the closing of their Dubai branch, and the government had sent notices informing the employees their work permits had been rescinded and they had to leave the country. He was declined since he appeared to be an economic immigrant, and instead moved back home to Pakistan a few days before the attacks.
- According to the CIA, after the Taliban was initially driven from power after the 9/11 attack, al-Baluchi assisted KSM in organizing the movement of al-Qaeda operatives and their families to safe houses in Pakistan.
- According to US government information, KSM had Baluchi be the “communications intermediary” between al-Qaeda and “shoe bombers” Richard Reid and Saajid Badat. In early 2002 Baluchi helped his uncle “prepare operatives” for travel from Pakistan to the United States, “ostensibly to carry out attacks”.
- Another plan was to hijack airliners and crash them into London’s Heathrow airport, but
- This plan was set aside in order to focus on a plan to bomb the US Consulate and other Western targets in Karachi.
- He also worked with his uncle to prepare Majid Khan and others for travel to the United States to conduct terrorist operations.
- Baluchi reportedly sent Majid Khan to Thailand in late 2002 to deliver $50,000 to finance a plan by Jemaah Islamiya leader Hambali (Riduan Isamuddin) to attack US and Israeli targets in Southeast Asia.
He later told investigators he helped his uncle arrange travel visas for people, but didn’t know whether any of them were militants or not. In August 2002, the FBI questioned Abdul Samad Din Mohammed, the brother-in-law of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. He reported that Baluchi was often in the company of his uncle, and would pick people up from the airport. His uncle KSM was arrested in Rawalpindi on March 1, 2003. Baluchi spent the next two months with Walid bin ‘Attash. According to US reports, following his uncle’s arrest Baluchi took charge of some of the new attacks being planned.
Baluchi also married Aafia Siddiqui. She was accused of being an al-Qaeda member and in February 2010 was convicted of assaulting with a deadly weapon and attempting to kill U.S. soldiers and FBI agents who were seeking to interrogate her while she was in custody, claimed to be married to Baluchi. The marriage was confirmed by Pakistani and US intelligence, a defense psychologist, and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s family.
The marriage lasted only a couple of months. Baluchi divorced her after he was arrested.
- Siddiqui was arrested April 29 in Karachi along with al-Baluchi.After his arrest al-Baluchi was kept in CIA custody at undisclosed locations until September 6, 2006 when he was transferred to Guantanamo Bay Prison in Cuba.
- Other Plots to Attack Civilian Targets
According to US investigators, Baluchi told them that al-Qaeda had set up a biological weapons lab and he asked Aafia Siddiqui (who has a biology degree from MIT) advice on how long it would take to develop such weapons and whether the man in charge was capable of developing the weapons. Siddiqui replied that she “was willing to participate in a biological weapons (BW) project if al-Qaida tasked her to do so”.
Another plot involving Bauchi alleged by US investigators involved Heathrow airport.
According to Balochi’s file, he told interrogators that he became aware of a plan to attack Heathrow airport in January 2003 and had intended to seek help from a more senior al-Qaida operative, Walid bin Attash, to carry it out. An “analyst note” in the files notes that the plot called for “crashing numerous airplanes into Heathrow, with a secondary explosion immediately outside of the airport as a diversion”. It collapsed after KSM was arrested in March 2003.
January 2009 Executive Order to Close Guantanamo
On January 22, 2009, United States President Barack Obama issued Executive Order 13492, ordering a halt to the Guantanamo military commission as part of the overall closure of Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp. On April 21, 2009, United States Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell cited “Ali Abd al-Azeez Ali” (al-Baluchi) as an example of the kind of captive United States President Barack Obama might free in the United States when he closes the camp in January 2010, because he didn’t know what else to do with him.
Top News Stories Today (click links to read the full articles)
Office of Military Commissions & KSM et al 9/11 Transcripts for Download (click on links)
U.S. v KSM et al (2) (click on links to download)
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