Monday, July 31, 2006

Sibel Edmonds Won't Deny It: Intelligence Intercepts Tied 9/11 Drug Money To U.S. Election Campaigns

The following article was published at on April 25, 2005. I blogged about it briefly at the time. Unfortunately it is no longer online, and the original link no longer works, so I have dug it up and reposted it here.

NB: Ms. Edmonds was/is under a gag order and could not speak freely, so she and Tom played a little game of "deny-it-if-it's-false": you see, she can't confirm any delicate assertions, because then she would be "giving away" "state secrets", but if she refuses to deny something ... well, that leaves you to your own devices, doesn't it?

(I have edited the text slightly for typography and layout; added bold to highlight direct quotes from Ms. Edmonds (or statements she wouldn't deny), and added italics to draw your attention to passages that seemed especially important to me. But what do I know? Maybe it's all important. Here, read!

FBI linguist won’t deny intelligence intercepts tied 911 drug money to U.S. election campaigns

by Tom Flocco

Washington --- Former FBI contract translator and whistleblower Sibel Edmonds and her attorneys were ordered removed from the E. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse so that a three-judge U.S. Court of Appeals panel could discuss her case in private with Bush administration lawyers.

In an exclusive interview on Saturday, we asked Edmonds if she would deny that laundered drug money linked to the 911 attacks found its way into recent House, Senate and Presidential campaign war-chests, according to what she heard in intelligence intercepts she was asked to translate.

"I will not deny that statement; but I cannot comment further on it," she told, in a non-denial [non-]denial.

Edmonds is appealing the Bush administration’s arcane use of "state secrets privilege," invoked last year to throw out her U.S. District Court lawsuit alleging retaliation for telling FBI superiors about shoddy wiretap translations and allegations that wiretap information was passed to the target of an FBI investigation. Given our multiple reports and numerous other interviews, Edmonds heard much more -- but enough to warrant public suppression of criminal evidence by a wholly Republican appeals court panel?

"Tom, I’m telling you that not a single newspaper covered what happened to me on Thursday when I went into court," said the exasperated translator, adding, "[Judge David] Ginsberg kicked everyone out, cut off my lawyer’s arguments and told us
‘We have questions to ask the government’s attorneys that you cannot hear.’"
Criminal evidence in Edmonds’ explosive case is apparently getting too close to Washington officials, since the former contract linguist also told us she would not deny that "Once this issue gets to be ... investigated, you will be seeing certain [American] people that we know from this country standing trial; and they will be prosecuted criminally", revealing the content of the FBI intercepts she heard indicates that recognizable, very high-profile American citizens are linked to the 9/11 attacks.

Edmonds implied that legislators and even lobbyists were benefiting from laundered narcotics proceeds in an earlier interview with the Baltimore Sun:

"... this money travels. And you start trying to go to the root of it and it’s getting into somebody’s political campaign, and somebody’s lobbying. And people don’t want to be traced back to this money."

So the Bush administration’s Department of Justice enlisted its taxpayer-funded lawyers to petition a Republican U.S. Appeals Court to suppress Sibel Edmonds’ criminal evidence -- allegations linked to a 3,000-death mass murder -- in the name of "state secrets."

When we asked how many Americans were named in the intercepts, Edmonds said: "There is direct evidence involving no more than 10 American names that I recognized," further revealing that "some are heads of government agencies or politicians -- but I don’t want to go any further than that," as we listened in stunned silence.

When asked in 2002 by CBS 60 Minutes co-host Ed Bradley, "Did she seem credible to you? Did her story seem credible?"

Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA) said "Absolutely, she’s credible. And the reason I feel she’s very credible is because people within the FBI have corroborated a lot of her story."

Plaintiff and attorneys asked to leave courtroom

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said "the court orally instructed the clerk that the hearing would be open only to the attorneys involved in the case and Edmonds."

During Thursday’s arguments, the volatility of Edmonds’ charges and the high officials it may criminally implicate prompted what looked to be a one-sided hearing, reminiscent of a medieval kangaroo court where rights and precepts of justice are ignored and the outcome is usually known beforehand.

All three judges who removed Edmonds and her attorneys are Republicans: Douglas Ginsburg and David Sentelle, having been appointed by Ronald Reagan, and Karen LeCraft Henderson who was tapped in 1990 by President George W.Bush’s father, former President George H. W. Bush.

"Judge Ginsberg said ‘I am asking the plaintiff and her attorneys to stand outside;’ then they had government officers standing at the door to prevent anyone from listening.

And after about 25 minutes, they came out and said ‘we have finished questioning the government attorneys and we don’t need you anymore, so you are free to leave,’"
said the crestfallen former translator.

"I cannot be present at my own hearing; and not a single paper was there Thursday to cover the story -- even though all of my allegations were supported by the FBI Inspector General’s report and my case involves 9/11 and national security," said Edmonds.

Assistant Director Dale Watson: FBI's Mr. Fix-it?

Edmonds told another paper "I took the allegations to higher levels all the way up to assistant FBI director Dale Watson and Director Robert Mueller. And, again, I was asked not to take this any further and just let it be. And if I didn’t do that they would retaliate against me," according to the Baltimore Sun.

Despite the court’s unprecedented actions, the Inspector General said Edmonds’ allegations to her superiors about a co-worker "raised serious concerns that, if true, could potentially have extremely damaging consequences for the FBI," having also concluded that the Bureau did not adequately investigate the allegations and that Edmonds was retaliated against for speaking out to protect the United States.

The former FBI translator had already linked laundered illegal narcotics money and terrorism to recent U.S. political campaigns in an earlier statement made to the Baltimore paper,

"... You have money laundering activities, drug related activities, and terrorist support activities converging at certain points and becoming one ... they are citing ‘Foreign Relations’ which is not the case ... we are not talking about only government levels. And I keep underlining semi-legit organizations and following the money."

When we pressed Edmonds as to whether she would deny that FBI Assistant Director Dale Watson had prior knowledge of the 9/11 attacks, she quickly said, "No Comment," carefully adhering to her judicial gag order -- and not revealing all she knows.

Watson came under scrutiny when we attended one of the 9/11 Commission Hearings when Richard Clarke, former Bush Administration National Coordinator for Counterterrorism for the National Security Council (NSC), was asked "Who gave the final approval for the bin Laden family to leave the country without being interviewed?"

Clarke answered that it could have been the "Inter-Agency Crisis Management Group, but most likely it was the White House Chief of Staff's office or the State Department." [according to this writer's notes / Commission transcripts for March 23 - 24, 2004 are available at]

When Commissioner Tim Roemer asked "Why the Saudis were allowed to leave the country, who was on the planes, how many, and why the decision was made," Clarke said the government "Feared for their lives ... some of them were bin Laden family members, and the Saudi embassy requested their evacuation."

During testimony Clarke told Roemer "I refused to approve the [Saudi] request. I passed it on to [FBI Asst. Director] Dale Watson and the flight was approved....I don't think they were ever interviewed in this country." Only subpoenaed transcripts and/or video would negate Clarke's assertion.

Dale Watson, who Clarke intimated as the sponsor of the FBI-approved flights and the decision not to interview bin Laden family members and other Saudi royals or citizens, was the former FBI Executive Asst. Director for Counter-Terrorism and Counter-Intelligence.

Interestingly, Watson led controversial investigations of the first World Trade Center attack, Oklahoma City bombing, East Africa Embassy bombings, Khobar Towers bombings, USS Cole bombing, the September 11 attacks and the anthrax attacks, before retiring in 2002 to assume a position with Booz Allen Hamilton.

Democrats in Congress have been strangely silent regarding the actions of the Republican court toward Sibel Edmonds; and she won’t reveal which politicians and high government agency officials were named in the intercepts -- potentially linked to laundered 9/11 drug money which was likely used in U. S. political campaigns.

Uncomplicated drug money laundering

"It’s so simple," Edmonds told "Nobody is looking at the Department of Defense aspect of the whole 911 cover-up. The FBI is citing two reasons for my gag order: to protect 'Sensitive Diplomatic Relations' and to protect foreign U.S. business relationships." broke the story of Sibel Edmonds' first public press conference on March 24, 2004, when over 50 reporters and 12 news cameras did not publish the story for days.

This, despite Edmonds' allegations that she was offered a substantial raise and a full-time job to encourage her 'Not to Go Public' that she had been asked by the Department of Justice to Adjust Translations of [terrorist] subject intercepts that had been received before September 11, 2001 by the FBI and CIA. Kristen Breitweiser, 9/11 family member and spokeswoman, arranged to have Ms. Edmonds address the media in a public press conference for the first time, right after Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet testified before the 9/11 Commission.

In attempting to let the American people how close the 9/11 cover-up comes to home, Edmonds told us,"I will say this: the FBI is only a mouthpiece for the State Department.

The State Department is the main reason for the cover-up. It has to do with foreign business relationships and who they are ... Pakistan, Turkey ... espionage in the State Department preventing an ... investigation."

The former FBI translator has implicated everything "from drugs to money laundering to arms sales. And yes, there are certain convergences with all these activities and international terrorism," adding "they don’t deal with 1 or 5 million dollars, but with hundreds of millions."

In an interview with the website Antiwar, Edmonds cryptically pronounced

"As for the politicians, what I can say is that when you start talking about huge amounts of money, certain elected officials become automatically involved. And there are different kinds of campaign contributions -- legal and illegal, declared and undeclared."

Espionage and Treason?

Edmonds has reported information about an FBI translator named Jan Dickerson whose husband, U.S. Air Force Major David Dickerson, belonged to a Turkish organization which was an Investigative Target of the FBI’s own counter-intelligence unit.

Edmonds said Jan Dickerson told her husband that "All you have to do is tell them where your wife works and what she does, and they will let you in like that ... They wanted to sell me for the information I could provide, basically."

Jan Dickerson insisted to Edmonds that she be the only one to translate the FBI’s wiretaps of a Turkish official, according to CBS 60 Minutes, which added that Edmonds revealed that Jan Dickerson told her, "Why would you want to place your life and your family’s lives in danger by translating these tapes?"

CBS host Ed Bradley said Edmonds found that "Dickerson had left out information crucial to the FBI’s investigation; information that Edmonds says would have revealed that the Turkish intelligence officer had spies working for him inside both the U.S. State Department and the Department of Defense at the Pentagon."

After reporting evidence of espionage in December, 2001 -- right after the 9/11 attacks, Edmonds told an FBI special agent who had also harbored suspicions about the Dickersons and they pursued the issue; but Bureau heads said they were never notified despite Edmonds’ proof to the contrary.

She said the FBI permitted other targets of the investigation, key people ... foreign nationals based in the U.S. ... to flee the country "right up through January and February, 2002 -- five months after the 9/11 attacks."

Edmonds has said in the past that "I reported some of the suspects’ names higher up as I came across them in our investigation. And you know what? Within two weeks, they had all left the country. Just vanished."

Given the astonishing allegations, the strange actions of the appeals court and congressional silence on the current matter, questions can be raised as to who is on which team.

According to Edmonds, only two weeks after the Air Force convened a formal investigation, Jan and David Dickerson were permitted to leave the country on September 9, 2002 -- about a year after September 11.

Edmonds also said during the whole month the Dickersons were being subpoenaed, starting in June, 2002, Jan Dickerson continued to work in the FBI translations department -- with a top-secret security clearance; and even though the Bureau admitted to a congressional committee that Jan Dickerson worked for the suspect organization in the past and had maintained ongoing relationships with at least two individuals under investigation, according to her interview with

Protecting high government officials

Special agent John Roberts, a chief of the FBI’s Internal Affairs Department told CBS 60 Minutes that "I don’t know of another person in the FBI who has done the internal investigation that I have and has seen what I have and that knows what has occurred and what has been glossed over and what has, frankly, just disappeared, just vaporized, and no one disciplined for it."

When asked by Bradley whether he had found cases since 911 where people were involved in misconduct and were not, let alone reprimanded, but were even promoted, Roberts replied, "Oh, yes. Absolutely."

In October, 2002, former Attorney General John Ashcroft asked the court to dismiss Edmonds’ case on grounds 'It would Compromise National Security'; and the FBI declined to discuss the specifics of her case on grounds that it would harm National Security.

Attorney General John Ashcroft testified that he flew on a private jet to Milwaukee on the morning of September 11. Earlier reports indicated that he changed from a commercial jet to a private one due to reported terrorism "threat assessments" which government officials refuse to make public simply by redacting the "sources and methods" used in obtaining the intelligence.

Commission members failed to ask Ashcroft to explain the contents of the threat assessments and why they influenced his decision to use a private jet.

911 Insider Trading subject to "National Security" restrictions?

We also wanted to know whether Edmonds thought the 3 Republican appeals court judges were taking drastic steps to clothe their private talks with Bush administration attorneys in secrecy for the purpose of conspiring to shield members of the President’s hierarchy from criminal prosecution and Possible Treason linked to the events of September 11.

So we ended the interview with a question dealing with the only area of 911 evidence not subject to the standard but evasive invocation of "national security," the secret "control list" of all stock trades -- both puts and calls -- and the master list of those individuals and entities making insider stock market trades prior to the 9/11 attacks about which the same FBI said "We didn't find anything incriminating."

While only a subpoena, testimony and questioning by non-political, career prosecutors will properly answer the insider trading question, we asked Sibel Edmonds the big question anyway -- given the above FBI track record implicating espionage:

Do you deny that the FBI intercepts you translated indicated that financial arrangements were in place well before the 9/11 attacks to both fund and profit from the World Trade Center and Pentagon "terrorism" while also facilitating the laundering of drug money into recent congressional and presidential campaigns?

"I cannot comment on that, Tom. You know I’m under a gag order," she said.

That should tell the American people all they need to know.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Mayor Mark Jenkins: Loss of 2004 GC Election Started as 'Personal' Battle, Quickly Turned Political

Originally published by (All rights reserved.)
But they don't have it online anymore. Well, it's still available here.

It wasn't political, it was personal. I want to get that straight right off the bat. No matter what you may think or have heard, this is the truth.

I took it very personally when I lost the May 2004 Gate City Election well aware that criminal activities had gone on to control the outcome of the election.

I took it personally when honest people came to me and told me I couldn't do anything about what had happened in the town election because of all the political connections and family relations and all the back scratching that goes on. It seems that those who might be able to correct the situation "owed" those that created or continued in the corrupt election procedures taking place in Scott County. This is what I was told by many good citizens.

I took it personally when Charles Dougherty made the comment that "we had run a good clean race" when I knew only one of us had. I took it personally when I was told by two candidates that I could not get elected because "I didn't know how to vote headstones."

And yes, it would have been in the best interest of a few people if I had dropped this and just "moved on" as Jerry suggested, but this was personal. And also we're talking about everyone's basic right to fair elections.

I took it personally when I called the Registrar's office on May 5, 2004, the day after the town election, and was told I would have to wait until November of 2004 because the Election Board did not meet again until then. Thank you, Les Free, for being there to take the phone from Willie and for providing me the correct information to proceed with the recount and contest of the election. You are an honest man.

I took it personally when people came to me and told me they had actually been threatened harm because they had openly shown support for me in my bid for Mayor.

I took it personally when Charles Dougherty told me I wasn't going to get this thing to go anywhere because he had talked to the Attorney General and it would be stopped.

I took it personally when Tom Keller waived the 40-foot constraint at the polling place and then didn't have the guts to admit it.

I took it personally when I heard people swear under oath that inappropriate, if not illegal, activities never happened and then saw that they most certainly did happen as I watched the DMV surveillance footage.

I took it personally when Jerry Kilgore, while serving as Virginia's Attorney General, publicly made the comment that nothing was intentionally done wrong in the Gate City Election when I knew differently. In my opinion, he was trying to stop any possibility of an investigation into this matter. If I had not continued to push, I believe that is exactly what would have happened. In my opinion, just the unusual high percentage of absentee votes alone would suggest an impropriety to anyone of marginal intelligence.

And yes, it would have been in the best interest of a few people if I had dropped this and just "moved on" as Jerry suggested, but this was personal. And also we're talking about everyone's basic right to fair elections.

I took it so personally that I addressed the grand jury requesting that a special prosecutor be appointed to investigate the botched election. By doing so, the court had no choice but to honor the grand jury's request and finally after many months of frustration, Joel Branscom from Botetourt County began an investigation that resulted in Charles Dougherty being indicted on 37 class five felonies. Finally!

I took it very personally when Martha Bledsoe attacked and accused me of signing my name to comments and articles published in the Scott County Virginia Star and elsewhere saying that they were not written by me but by Rex McCarty. I had worked long and hard before submitting these to the newspaper and yes, Martha, I wrote them. And anyone who knows me knows I don't need someone else to speak for me. I have no problem in that area.

I also took it personally when Martha told me that I needed to get out of the Republican Party if I couldn't get behind and support the Kilgores. In effect, I think she told me that there was no longer a true Republican Party in Scott County but that it was now the "Kilgorian Party."

I took it personally when some of the "Kilgorian Party" attacked Republicans, who are close to me and have worked so hard for the true Scott County Republican Party, just because they have tried to help me in my efforts to straighten out the mess I walked into when I was appointed interim Mayor of Gate City.

I took it personally having to fight tooth and nail to keep this thing alive when we have people in elected and appointed positions charged with the responsibility to investigate and prosecute those involved in illegal activities no matter the last name or whose back is being scratched by the guilty parties. At least that's the way it's supposed to work, isn't it?

I took it personally having to spend hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars to see to it that everyone didn't just "move on." Again, there are those that I and all the tax payers of Scott County pay to do such things.

I took it personally when I learned that someone having been involuntarily committed to a mental institution was employed in a position that required and allowed them to carry a firearm. That's really scary folks! And then I learned that when the ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms) found out about it they sent a gentle warning of "you'd better quit that."

I took it personally when the accusations began about my questioning the legality of the activities of the 2004 Gate City election as being a political attack on the Kilgore boys' mother. I could care less whose mother she is because to me it was the "person" filling the Registrar's position and that was all.

I took it personally when Tom Baker sent the note that I was just a "pawn" and hoped I realized that. No, Tom, I am no one's pawn. That is unless I do so gladly and willingly.

I took it personally when a Judge stopped by my home to tell me that I had better be careful of crossing the Kilgores because they would "grind me up and spit me out like they had done him before he learned to play their game."

I hope that care is taken to find the person's hand that appeared to have scribed so many of the signatures on the ballot requests. I hope that Charles Dougherty is not the scapegoat for all those who are guilty in this matter...

I took it personally when strategic rumors got started that Rick Boucher was funding my whole effort of getting this stirred up for political reasons. As of today I have never even talked to the man. I do hear he is coming to Gate City near the end of the month to assist with technology funding though. I look forward to meeting him - if he is willing to help Gate City.

I take it personally knowing that the criminal actions of those involved in what I feel is an election fraud conspiracy will end up costing us the taxpayers thousands of dollars. I think care should be taken to ensure that all involved are charged and that an attempt is made for full restitution to the good people of Scott County for the cost of the investigation and prosecution.

I take it personally when I see people elected or appointed to positions, having the responsibility to make sure laws are followed to support the working of a free system, abuse the system for their personal gain.

I think "dirty politics" may be construed as getting dismissed from an appointed position and then suing to get the job back that you evidently are not capable of performing. And with back pay!

I am tired of hearing the "political whining" every time something happens that reflects badly on one's political career that is in fact only being used as a personal endeavor.

I am tired of hearing the idiotic cries of a bunch of people who lose touch with what is political and what is personal. Political is not, or at least should not be, for personal gain but should be taking a personal responsibility for those you represent in your political position.

I hope Joel Branscom is not finished with the indictments of the crimes committed in the May 2004 Gate City election. I appreciate the good work Jeff Lewis and Mr. Branscom have done to date. The evidence I have seen proves Charles Dougherty was not the only one involved. I hope Mr. Branscom will look again at the depositions that were taken last fall and again compare it to events that were captured by the DMV surveillance cameras and the findings from Jeff Lewis' investigation and that charges will be filed accordingly which may include perjury charges. I hope that care is taken to find the person's hand that appeared to have scribed so many of the signatures on the ballot requests. I hope that Charles Dougherty is not the scapegoat for all those who are guilty in this matter.

I hope now that there is hard evidence of blatant abuse of the voting system in our county that the electoral board will be diligent in ensuring that proper voting procedures as mandated by the Commonwealth of Virginia are followed. And I trust that they will no longer trust anyone who was involved in the past elections in this county. It is vital to this county that they get to the root of the problem. I like the suggestion the Kingsport Times News made to secure an independent auditor. I hope they will strongly consider this possibility and act on it. How else are the citizens of Scott County ever going to feel that their vote really counts?

I hope the absentee ballot applications I gave to Jeff Lewis from the recent Scott County Primary will be acted upon. In my opinion these few applications prove without a shadow of a doubt that no amount of training will correct the blatant errors of the Registrar's office. By the way, I don't believe Charles Dougherty was involved in this matter.

I took it personally… but it turned political.


I don't have time for more than a quick note, to say:

I'm blogging like a madman again, on behalf of my favorite invesitgative blogger, Brad Friedman, who's trying to experience something resembling a vacation.

The current arrangement may remain in place for several weeks!
We'll see ... in the meantime:

If you wanna meet me, if you wanna meet me baby ...
I said: if you wanna meet me, if you wanna meet me baby ...
Hey! if you wanna meet me, if you wanna meet me baby ...

Just come on down, come on down, come on down ...

Down by The BRAD BLOG ...
Down by the sea ...
At the green and yellow blog, baby ...
That's where I'll be ...

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Cynthia McKinney Is Getting Robbed And Nobody Is Even Blogging About It

Yesterday in Georgia, Representative Cynthia McKinney, whose reputation -- for speaking truth to power, asking tough questions, and refusing to back down when she's right -- is entirely deserved, went through the first stage of the primary elections leading up to November, when she hopes to retain her seat in Congress.

The Democratic candidate is expected to win easily in November, and McKinney was expected to win easily yesterday. But then a funny thing happened.

What happened? Nice question! Voters who were trying to vote for McKinney on on Diebold touch-screen machines saw their votes flipped to her strongest opponent, Hank Johnson, as they looked on in disbelief!

It's as if the clerk at a McDonald's pressed "McChicken", and the screen lit up where it says "Quarter Pounder" ... and it kept happening over and over and over ...

Does this sound strange? Well it shouldn't. It's such a common phenomenon that it's already got at least two names: it's commonly called either "vote-flipping" or "vote-switching". And there's even a long history of similar incidents.

It's a shame that this doesn't get much coverage in the big media. But don't get me started on the failings of the big media: That's another story -- a long sad one. Instead let's concentrate on what happened in Georgia yesterday.

Guess what? Vote-switching was only one of the many so-called "irregularities" that the McKinney campaign has reported. None of which have made a single dent in a single big media outlet; and there are precious few other sites covering this story either.

I gave up blogging almost a year ago, or at least I thought I did. Now I can't believe I'm blogging again -- and even more bizarre: I can't believe I'm the only one on the whole internet who is blogging about this today.

Well, maybe I'm not the only one, but if any other blogger has posted anything at all about this story, I sure can't find it.

I will post some more details here when I can, but in the meantime you can read all about it at The BRAD BLOG, where this lowly and nearly frozen blogger is guest-hosting for a while.

Wouldn't you know it? He leaves me in "the chair" and within 24 hours all what-cha-ma-callit breaks loose!

REPORTS: GA Dem Primary Votes Flipping from Cynthia McKinney to Opponent Hank Johnson

Atlanta Progressive News covers McKinney Vote-Flipping Claim