TERRORISM - WORLD TRADE CENTER
SEPTEMBER 11, 2001
DAY 1 DAY 2 DAY 3 DAY 4 DAY 5 with large map DAY 6 - with anomalous photo
DAY 7 DAY 8 DAY 9 DAY 10
MILITARY PAGE PASSENGERS TALIBAN
NUMBER SYMBOLISM OF THE WTC BOMBING
BODIES FOUND 218
|THE TERRORISTS DESTROYED NOT JUST THE BUILDINGS
BUT PEOPLE FROM 60 COUNTRIES
THERE WAS A 5TH SUICIDE PLANE WHICH DIDN'T MAKE IT TO IT'S DESTINATION. IT WAS FLIGHT 43 OUT OF BOSTON. IF IT WAS INDEED THE ONE CANCELED IN BOSTON SHORTLY AFTER FLIGHT 11 CRASHED, THEN THERE WAS A 6TH AS WELL, HEADED FOR THE WEST COAST. THESE SUSPECTED TERRORISTS WERE TAKEN OFF OF TRAIN 121 GOING TO DALLAS, FATER THEIR PLANE WAS FORCED DOWN IN KANSAS CITY. 121 = 11 X 11. SOURCES SAY THERE WERE SUPPOSED TO BE 8 SUICIDE CRASHES. WATCH THE FLIGHT NUMBERS FOR THE CLUES TO WHICH ONES THEY WERE. THEY WILL FIT IN WITH THE NUMBER SYMBOLISM.
Attack on America - Impact around the World
The terrorists thought they were striking against America, but dozens of countries lost people to the violence.
By Mary A. Schumacher
Last Tuesday's terrorist attacks have taken a heavy human toll on U.S. citizens, with thousands feared dead. We are now learning that the terror claimed victims from dozens of countries. Hundreds of expatriate workers, students and tourists lost their lives.
The USA Today reported on September 16 that more than 100 companies and government offices from 35 countries were tenants at the World Trade Center towers. (Hundreds of foreigners lost in NYC cataclysm.) Although numbers are not yet firm, a picture of the worldwide impact of the terrorists' acts is beginning to emerge.
Britain seems to have lost the most lives. According to The Associated Press, U.K. Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said on Thursday, "I understand that the number of confirmed British deaths is now approaching 100...the total number of British deaths is unlikely to be less than the middle hundreds and maybe higher."
Japan had 31 companies in the WTC, including Fuji Bank and Asahi Bank. Over 100 citizens are missing, including tourists.
China had 18 companies in the World Trade Center. Five companies have still not accounted for all their employees. Three Chinese citizens were killed on board a hijacked airliner.
Bangladesh has 50 confirmed dead, with more people missing.
Australia has nine confirmed dead and 85 missing.
Germany lost three citizens at the World Trade Center and another 11 are missing. Germany's Deutsche Bank had a branch office in the WTC. Three German citizens were on board a hijacked airliner.
Also missing are 27 South Koreans, six Zimbabweans, eight Taiwanese, seven Italians, seven Filipinos, 30 Thais, and 11 Mexicans. Six Columbians are confirmed dead. The list of countries doesn't stop here. People from six continents lost their lives in the terrorist attacks. Attack on America? Yes, that was the goal. But the whole world has lost.
|September 17, 2001
Four People Flown to New York for Questioning in Connection With Attacks
By CHRISTOPHER DREW
Interactive Feature: Attack on America
Terror Attacks on Manhattan
The federal authorities have flown four people to New York City for questioning in connection with last Tuesday's terrorist attacks, including a man who was arrested in Minnesota in August after he attempted to obtain training on a flight simulator for large jetliners, officials said yesterday.
As their investigation spread to cities across the United States and overseas, the authorities yesterday placed particular emphasis on Zacarias Moussauoi, who raised suspicions at a flight training facility near Minneapolis and was arrested on Aug. 17 on a passport violation.
In addition to Mr. Moussauoi, law- enforcement officials in New York were questioning two men who were pulled off a train in Fort Worth Wednesday with box cutters in their possession. The fourth person, who has not been identified, was also brought in from Texas, officials said.
One of the men seized on the Amtrak train has already been arrested in New York City under a material witness warrant, which can be used only to detain people who are believed to have significant information about criminal acts, investigators said. His apartment in Jersey City, was searched Friday and a box of evidence was removed.
A man who was detained at John F. Kennedy International Airport late last week also is being held as a material witness, and a law enforcement official said it was likely that three other material witness warrants would be issued soon.
The investigators provided these details as the worldwide hunt for people involved in the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon picked up speed, with law enforcement officers fanning out across the country to chase suspects and sift through tens of thousands of leads.
Arrests were also made in Canada, where the government handed over to the United States today one of two men who had been questioned in Toronto about possible links to the attacks. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police said on Saturday that a man detained this week was carrying photographs that American officials wanted to see.
The F.B.I. and the local authorities in several states have detained at least 25 people, including some in house and apartment searches.
Many of those are being held simply for expired visas or other immigration problems. And it is not clear how much progress the investigators have made toward determining whether the 19 hijackers were supported by large cells of confederates or whether other potential hijackers were involved in the plots and remain at large.
The most significant figure brought to New York for questioning appears to be Mr. Moussauoi, who apparently entered the United States this year on a student visa sponsored by Airman Flight School in Norman, Okla. Dale Davis, director of operations at the school, said the company is authorized to sponsor such foreign students once they have been cleared by their respective embassies.
He said Mr. Moussaoui, who is believed to be from a North African nation, contacted the school in September 2000 from London, got approval from the French embassy in England, then arrived in Oklahoma and enrolled in the school on Feb. 26.
Mr. Davis said Mr. Moussaoui struggled with training and never earned a pilot's license.
Mr. Moussaoui's whereabouts over the next few months are unknown, but he applied for training at Pan Am International Flight Academy, which operates a training facility in Eagan, Minn.
Todd Huvard, a spokesman for Pan Am, declined to comment.
Mr. Davis said he had not spoken with officials at Pan Am International about what prompted the arrest, but he said any flight training facility would become suspicious of someone with such limited experience insisting that he wanted to train on a simulator for jet airliner pilots.
The two men arrested on the Amtrak train, Ayub Ali Khan and Mohammed Jaweed Azmath, had boarded a flight Tuesday morning leaving Newark International Airport for San Antonio. After air-traffic controllers ordered all flights to land after the attacks, their plane was diverted to St. Louis, where they got on the Amtrak train for Texas with the box cutters and thousands of dollars.
Law enforcement authorities said their movements and the fact that they carried box cutters similar to those used in at least some of the four hijackings raised suspicions that they could have been part of another potential hijacking team or been assisting the hijackers. But the authorities emphasized that they had no proof that either of the men were involved in any crime.
The identity of the fourth man who was brought to New York, also from Texas, was not immediately clear.
The authorities in New York also are known to be holding a fifth man. They have refused to identify him, but they have said he has had ties to Mr. bin Laden and Mr. bin Laden's brother. The man was detained at Kennedy Airport on Thursday, and he was arrested under a material witness warrant.
Just how the hijackers pulled off the attacks still remains a puzzle, though officials said the pieces being gathered continue to build a picture of 19 men, scattered throughout the country, who kept in close communication as they moved in pairs or groups toward those devastating Sept. 11 flights.
But the F.B.I. also has sent a list of more than 100 possible witnesses to more than 18,000 local and state law- enforcement agencies.
"This is all were thinking about," said officer Brian Wolfe of the Dublin, Ohio, police department, who at the F.B.I.'s request searched area parking lots for two cars from New York.
Neighbors and residents said Mr. Khan, Mr. Azmath and a third man lived quietly in a second-floor apartment in Jersey City, N.J., at 6 Tonnele Avenue. A law enforcement official said the three were of Indian origin. A fourth man, neighbors said, who was the only one in the group who spoke Arabic, lived in the apartment until three or four months ago.
"I understood that he worked in the Saudi consulate in New York," said Sussana Alou, 30, who lives next door.
Rifle-toting federal agents raided the apartment building at 10:30 on Saturday morning. Neighbors said the men worshiped at the Al Salaam mosque, less than two blocks away at 2824 Kennedy Boulevard, which also was a gathering spot for the terrorists involved in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. Omar Abdel-Rahman, the blind Egyptian cleric who was the convicted ringleader of the 1993 attack, preached there. Worshipers at the mosque said they did not know the suspects.
|Taliban Threatens 'Holy War'
By AMIR SHAH
.c The Associated Press
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) - The hard-line Taliban said God would protect it if the world tried to ``set fire'' to Afghanistan for sheltering terrorist suspect Osama bin Laden, and in comments broadcast Tuesday also called on all Muslims to wage holy war on America if it attacks.
Hundreds of Islamic clerics gathered in the Afghan capital to discuss conditions for extraditing bin Laden to a country other than the United States, a Pakistan government official said.
The conditions, including international recognition of the Taliban government and the lifting of U.N. sanctions, were discussed Monday in Kandahar, headquarters of the Islamic militia that rules most of Afghanistan, the official said on condition of anonymity.
It seemed unlikely the United States would agree to have bin Laden extradited to another country. A delegation sent by Pakistan to try to convince the Taliban to hand over bin Laden went home Tuesday without reaching an agreement.
Before leaving Kabul, the Pakistani delegation met with eight detained aid workers being tried on charges of illegally preaching Christianity, the official said. Pakistan asked the Taliban to release the aid workers, two Americans, four Germans and two Australians, and the rulers promised to consider the request, he said.
The Taliban, who say bin Laden was wrongly implicated in the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the United States, urged the people of Afghanistan to prepare for a jihad, or holy war, against America, the official Bakhtar News Agency reported Tuesday.
``If America attacks our homes, it is necessary for all Muslims, especially for Afghans, to wage a holy war,'' Mullah Mohammed Hasan Akhund, the deputy Taliban leader, said Monday, according to state-run Radio Shariat. ``God is on our side, and if the world's people try to set fire to Afghanistan, God will protect us and help us.''
Since taking control of most of Afghanistan in 1996, the Taliban have declared holy wars against the northern-based anti-Taliban alliance, Russia and Iran, but never the United States.
The Taliban government is only officially recognized by three countries: Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
The Taliban's foreign minister, Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil, condemned the violence within hours of the attacks in New York and Washington but said it would have been impossible for bin Laden to carry out the assaults. Bin Laden lacks the facilities for such an elaborate operation, he said.
Since then, the Taliban's leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, who has declared himself head of all Muslims, has defended bin Laden and accused the United States of pointing the finger in his direction because its investigators have been unable to come up with a real suspect.
Many Pakistanis living along the 1,500-mile border with Afghanistan promised to join the jihad against America, and possibly their own government, if there are retaliatory strikes.
``America is putting a gun on Pakistan's shoulder to fire at Afghanistan. The Pakistani people cannot accept this,'' said Haji Abdul Razzaq, a mechanic in the western city of Peshawar, near the Afghan border.
On Tuesday, some 3,000 people in the Pakistani city of Karachi demonstrated near a mosque that runs a religious school many Taliban leaders attended, warning of more attacks. Many carried posters of bin Laden portrayed as a hero.
``Until now, only one World Trade Center has been destroyed,'' demonstrators shouted in unison in English. ``But we will destroy all of America. We will die for Taliban. We will die for Islam. We will die for Osama.''
Bin Laden and his alleged network of Islamic militants are the prime suspects in last week's airborne assaults on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
The United States believes bin Laden has played a role in a number of devastating attacks, including the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in East Africa in which 231 people were killed.
Bin Laden, who was stripped of Saudi citizenship and has been living in Afghanistan since 1996, is accused by Washington of running a global terrorist network from his bases inside the war-ruined Central Asian nation.
The Taliban, the hard-line Islamic militia that rules according to a strict interpretation of the Quran, have been placed under economic sanctions twice by the United Nations to press earlier U.S. demand to hand over bin Laden for trial.
The Taliban have consistently refused, calling bin Laden a ``guest'' and saying that to hand him over to non-Muslims would betray a tenet of Islam.
The U.S. Embassy in Islamabad said Tuesday that the U.S. government has authorized its nonessential embassy staff members and their families to evacuate Pakistan amid fears of possible violence and terrorist strikes against Americans. Several multinational companies also have evacuated their international staff.
However, the U.S. Embassy and its consulates in Pakistan, an Islamic nation of 140 million people, were to continue their normal operations.
Copyright 2001 The Associated Press.
HIJACKERS HAD STRONG LINK TO NAVY
Hijackers trained by US - NAVY LINK SURFACES INSIDE JOB.
Alleged Hijackers May Have Trained at U.S. Bases
- The Pentagon has turned over military records on five men to the FBI
By George Wehrfritz, Catharine Skipp and John Barry NEWSWEEK
Sept. 15 -- U.S. military sources have given the FBI information that suggests five of the alleged hijackers of the planes that were used in Tuesday's terror attacks received training at secure U.S. military installations in the 1990s.
THREE OF THE alleged hijackers listed their address on drivers licenses and car registrations as the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Fla.--known as the "Cradle of U.S. Navy Aviation," according to a high-ranking U.S. Navy source.
Another of the alleged hijackers may have been trained in strategy and tactics at the Air War College in Montgomery, Ala., said another high-ranking Pentagon official. The fifth man may have received language instruction at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Tex. Both were former Saudi Air Force pilots who had come to the United States, according to the Pentagon source. But there are slight discrepancies between the military training records and the official FBI list of suspected hijackers--either in the spellings of their names or with their birthdates. One military source said it is possible that the hijackers may have stolen the identities of the foreign nationals who studied at the U.S. installations.
The five men were on a list of 19 people identified as hijackers by the FBI on Friday. The three foreign nationals training in Pensacola appear to be Saeed Alghamdi and Ahmad Alnami, who were among the four men who allegedly commandeered United Airlines Flight 93. That flight crashed into rural Pennsylvania. The third man who may have trained in Pensacola, Ahmed Alghamdi, allegedly helped highjack United Airlines Flight 75, which hit the south tower of the World Trade Center.
Military records show that the three used as their address 10 Radford Boulevard, a base roadway on which residences for foreign-military flight trainees are located. In March 1997, Saeed Alghamdi listed the address to register a 1998 Oldsmobile; five months later he used it again to register a second vehicle, a late model Buick. Drivers licenses thought to have been issued to the other two suspects in 1996 and 1998 list the barracks as their residences.
NEWSWEEK visited the base early Saturday morning, where military police confirmed that the address housed foreign military flight trainees but denied access past front barricades. Officials at the base confirmed that the FBI is investigating the three students.
|September 18, 2001 Posted: 3:12 PM EDT (1952 GMT)
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Two weeks before the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C., FBI agents were at a flight school in Oklahoma asking questions about a man now suspected of having a link to those attacks, sources said.
The agents, sources said, were interested in Zacarias Moussaoui, who was arrested August 17 in Minnesota on an alleged passport violation. Moussaoui was in custody at the time of last week's attacks -- being held as a material witness -- but authorities are investigating whether he and others were part of a broader plot to hijack and crash even more jets.
The disclosure came as at least four people are being held as material witnesses into the U.S. investigation into the September 11 terrorist attacks.
More than 50 people are in government custody, held either as material witnesses to the investigation or on possible immigration violations.
They are all being questioned about the attacks, the FBI said, and their level of cooperation has varied. Material witnesses are people who are not necessarily considered suspects but are believed to have valuable information and may pose a flight risk.
Almost 200 other people are being sought for questioning in the case.
Jetliner training in Oklahoma
The fact that FBI agents were at the Airman Flight School in Norman, Oklahoma, two weeks before any attacks would seem to contradict the agency's assertion that it was not aware of any connection between aviation schools and suspected terrorists.
"There were no warning signs that I'm aware of that would indicate this type of operation in the country," FBI Director Robert Mueller said Monday.
In Oklahoma, Moussaoui had apparently raised suspicious because he sought training in flying commercial jets despite having a lack of experience.
The possibility that pilots were being trained for terrorist plots was revealed earlier this year during testimony at the trial of four men charged with the 1998 bombings of American embassies in Africa. U.S. prosecutors believe Osama bin Laden -- described as the "prime suspect" in the hijackings -- was behind that plot as well. He, in fact, was indicted for the 1998 bombings.
U.S. investigators also believe that two of the dead World Trade Center hijackers had toured the Oklahoma facility, seeking flight training.
Those two hijackers later enrolled in a Florida aviation school.
In other developments in the investigation: the hijackers left behind materials suggesting they had back-up plans for their mission of terrorism, according to government sources. No details about the plans were given.
The material was said to have been confiscated from one or more automobiles left at the airports where the hijackers began their suicide flights. It was not immediately known whether those automobiles included the car at Logan International Airport in Boston registered to Mohammed Atta, who was on the first jetliner that struck the World Trade Center.
|U.S. warned in 1995 of plot to hijack planes, attack buildings
September 18, 2001 Posted: 1:54 PM EDT (1754 GMT)
By Maria Ressa
MANILA, Philippines (CNN) -- The FBI was warned six years ago of a terrorist plot to hijack commercial planes and slam them into the Pentagon, the CIA headquarters and other buildings, Philippine investigators told CNN.
Philippine authorities learned of the plot after a small fire in a Manila apartment, which turned out to be the hideout of Ramzi Yousef, who was later convicted for his role in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center. Yousef escaped at the time, but agents caught his right-hand man, Abdul Hakim Murad, who told them a chilling tale.
"Murad narrated to us about a plan by the Ramzi cell in the continental U.S. to hijack a commercial plane and ram it into the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, and also the Pentagon," said Rodolfo Mendoza, a Philippine intelligence investigator.
Philippine investigators also found evidence targeting commercial towers in San Francisco, Chicago and New York City.
They said they passed that information on to the FBI in 1995, but it's not clear what was done with it.
One week ago, two hijacked commercial jets slammed into the World Trade Center, collapsing the towers. Another jet hit the Pentagon and a fourth crashed in rural Pennsylvania. Authorities believe that fourth jet may have been headed for the Capitol or the White House. Thousands were killed in the attacks.
On Monday, FBI Director Robert Mueller insisted the agency had "no warning signs" of last week's attacks.
Yousef and Murad both have ties to Osama bin Laden, the man President Bush has labeled the "prime suspect" in Tuesday's attacks.
Authorities also found on a computer in the Manila apartment details of a separate plot to bomb 11 U.S. airliners on overseas flights.
Yousef once listed his occupation as "international terrorist" on an ID card, and he has long been considered a disciple of bin Laden.
Murad was a pilot who admitted he had been trained in Afghanistan as well as the United States. Bin Laden, a Saudi native, lives in Afghanistan.
"(Murad) was principally recruited by Yousef's group and bin Laden's group to undertake a suicide mission," said Avelino Razon, superintendent for the Philippine National Police.
Yousef was eventually caught in Pakistan and brought to New York for trial. He was sentenced to life in prison. Murad is also serving a life sentence.
|Shortage of Anthrax Vaccine
By Pauline Jelinek
Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2001; 4:42 p.m. EDT
WASHINGTON The prospect of a major U.S. military campaign against terrorism comes as the Pentagon grows closer to running out vaccine for the deadly anthrax virus.
Pentagon officials declined Tuesday to say how many doses of the vaccine they have left following cutbacks ordered last year to conserve supplies.
"I'm not going to talk about it," said Pentagon spokesman Jim Turner.
With the sole manufacturer awaiting federal license approval, the supply problem has remained unresolved for well over a year.
The Pentagon originally wanted to immunize all 2.4 million members of the active and reserve military against anthrax bacteria that, when inhaled, can cause death within a few days.
The Pentagon believes Iraq and other nations hostile to the United States have produced anthrax weapons. When the program began in 1998 the first U.S. troops to get the vaccinations were those deployed in Korea and the Middle East.
As supplies dwindled, the program was cut back. Last December, announcing they had only 60,000 doses left, officials began limiting shots to those would be deployed to the Persian Gulf for 30 days, then again in June to only troops on "special missions" they declined to identify and to those involved in research.
A commander of Afghanistan's Taliban told The Associated Press last year that Osama bin Laden described by administration officials as the prime suspect in Tuesday's terrorist attacks was training his fighters in the use of chemical weapons. The New York Times reported Sunday that satellite photos show dead animals at a terrorist training camp in eastern Afghanistan operated by bin Laden.
The use of biological or chemical weapons is a more sensitive topic now, following last week's jetliner attacks.
Production of anthrax vaccine in the United States has focused on supplies needed for the American military. There is no U.S. manufacturer for supplies for the population at large, officials said.
More than 500,000 service members have received anywhere from one to six shots in the six-shot regime.
The Defense Department's only vaccine supplier, Bioport of Lansing, Mich., has experienced delays in obtaining certification for its renovated manufacturing plant.
The company hopes to provide the Food and Drug Administration additional information required for its license by Oct. 15, Bioport spokeswoman Kim Brennen Root said Tuesday. Under the law, the FDA has four to six months to review the information in deciding whether to grant the license.
Bioport has been trying to get a license for the facility since 1998 when it renovated a manufacturing plant formerly run by the State of Michigan.
There are lots of the vaccine that were produced by the state before the facility was taken over by Bioport, but there are various problems with them, Pentagon officials have said. For instance, some of the stock has expired and there was a problem with test procedures used to determine potency and other issues needed to extend expiration dates.
It was unclear whether any consideration was being given to releasing some stocks already produced or speeding up Bioport's licensing process.
FDA spokesman Brad Stone refused to comment Tuesday.
Another problem that the Pentagon faces with the vaccine is that a relatively small but vocal number of soldiers have declined to take it because they believe it is unsafe.
After the war, some troops with symptoms of the still-unexplained Gulf War syndrome pointed a finger at the vaccinations, saying they might have caused their problems.
Scientists have repeatedly said the vaccine is not linked to Gulf War syndrome, and it has had FDA approval for use since 1970.
On the Net: Pentagon anthrax program: http://www.anthrax.osd.mil
|'New war' to be fought with unprecedented secrecy
September 18, 2001 Posted: 1:03 PM EDT (1703 GMT)
By Jamie McIntyre
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- America's "new war" against terrorism will be fought with unprecedented secrecy, including heavy press restrictions not seen for years, Pentagon sources said Monday.
Planning for possible military action has been "highly compartmentalized" to ensure the fewest number of people possible have access to classified war plans, the sources said.
According to Pentagon officials close to the process, the Bush administration has decided to clamp down on even routine information because it could prove of some use to potential terrorists.
"I want to make it clear to the American people that this administration will not talk about any plans we may or may not have," President Bush said Monday. "We will not jeopardize in any way, shape or form, anybody who wears the uniform of the United States."
In response to the attacks, the U.S. Defense Department has stopped posting on the Internet the general location of U.S. warships. The department's Web pages that show ship location haven't been updated since September 10, the day before hijacked airplanes struck the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
In addition, the Pentagon currently has no plans to allow reporters to deploy with troops, or report from warships, practices routinely carried out in the 1991 Persian Gulf War.
Sources said the Pentagon is drawing up "high-end" and "low-end" options for military action.
The "high-end" options include air strikes against countries that support terrorists, while "low-end" plans include the use of special forces to capture or kill terrorist leaders, such as Osama bin Laden, sources said.
The actual plans are under close guard and have not been shared with news agencies. The rationale, according to Pentagon officials: Terrorist organizations lack the intelligence-gathering capacity that nations possess, relying instead on news organizations to find out what their enemies are doing.
|White House apologizes for using 'crusade' to describe war on terrorism
9/18/01 3:37 PM
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush regrets using the word "crusade," with all its historical connotations of religious war, to describe his campaign against terrorists, his spokesman said Tuesday.
Bush only meant to say that his is a "broad cause" to stamp out terrorism worldwide, White House press secretary Ari Fleischer said.
"I think to the degree that that word has any connotations that would upset any of our partners or anybody else in the world, the president would regret if anything like that was conveyed. But the purpose of his conveying it is in the traditional English sense of the word, it's a broad cause," said Fleischer.
On Sunday, Bush had told reporters: "This crusade, this war on terrorism is going to take a while."
With that comment, he stoked suspicion in some Arab and Muslim quarters where crusade is a loaded term that recalls the Christians' medieval wars against Muslims in the Holy Land.
Bush is trying to rally Arab nations to join an international coalition against the perpetrators of last week's twin terrorist strikes in New York and Washington.
"I think what the president was saying had no intended consequences for anybody, Muslim or otherwise, other than to say that this is a broad cause that he is calling on America and the nations around the world to join," Fleischer said.
Copyright 2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
|September 18, 2001 -- Build soaring memorial
At first, Donald Trump didn't want to talk about the terrible events that have changed our city's skyline more than anything the mega-developer has ever erected. But yesterday, we did talk on the phone about what should happen at the site of the World Trade Center.
"Once they get it cleared - and that is going to be a very long process - we will all have a better idea of what can be done on the site," Trump said. "The current mindset is to put up new towers, and I agree with that."
But, he said, they shouldn't be replicas of the downed buildings. "To be blunt, they were not great' buildings," he said. "They only became great upon their demise last Tuesday."
What Trump is thinking of is great, commanding architecture. "What goes up there should be a form of memorial to the dead," he said. "The buildings need to be a soul-soaring statement of our faith in the future."
Trump (who is looking at erecting the world's tallest building in Chicago and who has the world's highest apartment building across from the United Nations) said he didn't think people would be afraid to live or work high up after last week's outrage.
"This is a city largely based on great skyscrapers, and they will always be the essence of New York," he said. "That won't change, just as the character of the people who live here will not be altered by this tragedy."
Mr. Jackson takes action
The pop world is having as hard a time as everyone else trying to find the right way to cope with and respond to the tragedy. I hear that Michael Jackson is hastily trying to put together today's equivalent of the "We Are the World" spectacular he helped organize for the fight against famine in Africa more than 20 years ago. Michael is said to believe he can put things together quickly because many of the stars needed for such a concert appeared with him at Madison Square Garden just 10 days ago.
Madonna does her bit
Madonna is helping, too. The proceeds of her L.A. concert (a sellout, packed with VIPs, after being postponed from Tuesday to Saturday night) have been earmarked for the various relief efforts. They say Madonna displayed her patriotism by wearing an Old Glory skirt, but pop stars do things like that. They also say there were a few boos from the audience when she said she wants peace, not war.
|FBI probes 5th flight for hijackers
Plane grounded on day of attack
By Stephen J. Hedges and Naftali Bendavid
Published September 18, 2001
WASHINGTON -- The FBI is investigating the possibility that suicide hijackers were on board a fifth transcontinental airline flight last Tuesday, one that was cancelled just minutes before its scheduled 8:10 a.m. departure from Boston due to a mechanical problem, according to sources familiar with the investigation.
Federal agents are searching for an undetermined number of passengers who were on board American Airlines Flight 43, according to one source familiar with the passenger manifest. The flight was to have departed Boston 25 minutes after American Flight 11, which struck New York's World Trade Center, this source said.
In addition, one of the sources said that the FBI was "very interested" in passengers whose names appeared on the manifests of "several" other American flights that were in the air when the first attacks occurred. Those planes landed prematurely when air traffic controllers, responding to the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, ordered all flights in the U.S. to touch down as soon as possible.
None of the passengers in whom the FBI has expressed interest reappeared to continue their journeys after commercial flights resumed late last week, one of the sources said.
On Thursday, the FBI sent a list of several dozen Arabic-sounding names to state and local police with the request that those on the list be located for questioning. At least some of the passengers being sought are believed to be among those listed, according to one of the sources. An American Airlines spokesman said he was not immediately able to confirm the sources' accounts.
About 35 minutes after Flight 43 was due to depart, American Flight 11, which was bound for Los Angeles, struck the Trade Center's north tower. A hijacked United flight from Boston hit the center's south tower about 20 minutes later. A third American flight that left Washington's Dulles International Airport struck the Pentagon at 9:39 a.m. A fourth plane, United Flight 93, crashed in a field southeast of Pittsburgh at 10:10 a.m.
Urgent request for help
Federal authorities were holding 49 individuals in connection with last week's terrorist attacks, nearly twice as many as two days ago, and the FBI sent out an urgent request Monday for Arabic and Farsi speakers to help with its investigation of the hijackings.
French government officials confirmed Monday that one of the people being held by the FBI for questioning in connection with last week's attack is considered a dangerous, well-known militant associate of Osama bin Laden.
Habib Zacarias Moussaoui, a dual French-Algerian national, was detained last month after instructors at a flight school he attended in Minnesota grew suspicious that Moussaoui, an inexperienced pilot, wanted to learn only how to steer and turn passenger jets, not take off or land.
Sen. Bob Graham (D-Fla.), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said the hijackings were intended by their perpetrators to be the first in a multiday series of attacks. That suggests that other would-be perpetrators remain at large, and the FBI continued its massive effort Monday to track them down.
The FBI has 4,000 agents and 3,000 support personnel working on the case, making it the largest FBI investigation ever, but Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft assigned 300 deputy U.S. marshals to help. The investigation has reached a fever pitch, with 500 people from 32 agencies working at the FBI's special investigation center around the clock in 12-hour shifts.
Authorities have taken databases from various government agencies, such as the Immigration and Naturalization Service and Customs Service, into the FBI center in New York to speed up their work.
But FBI officials acknowledged that the bureau is being hampered by a severe shortage of investigators fluent in Arabic or Farsi, which is spoken in Iran. "This has been a perpetual problem for everybody," said FBI spokesman John Collingwood.
Although no one has yet been charged in last week's attacks, FBI Director Robert Mueller said some of those being detained are helping the investigation. "There are individuals cooperating," Mueller said. "There are a number of individuals that are not cooperating."
While the FBI is seeking anyone who aided the hijackers, agents are even more urgently hunting for anyone who might still be planning other attacks. Graham suggested the nation may have been fortunate to avoid further tragedies last week.
"There has been credible evidence gathered since Tuesday that Tuesday's attacks were not designed to be a one-day event," Graham told the Orlando Sentinel. "There were other acts of terrorism in the United States and elsewhere that were part of this plan."
That does not mean the seizure of more airplanes, Graham added. "Not necessarily hijacking another airliner, but maybe putting a chemical in a city's water system, or blowing up a bridge in a major urban center," he said.
Barry Mawn, assistant FBI director in charge of the New York office, said there is "no specific proof" that there were more terrorist teams in place. But "all of us are looking at that as the potential," he said, and finding any such teams is the investigation's highest priority.
Pressing for clues
The investigation moved forward Monday on various fronts. Evidence recovery teams have found a passport for one of the hijackers amid the rubble at the World Trade Center, which investigators consider a major find.
Several people were being held Monday as material witnesses in the attack, meaning they may have important information. Among them is one of the two men who were seized from an Amtrak train in Texas, Aybub Ali Khan and Mohammed Jaweed Azmath, though it is unclear which one. Khan and Azmath took a flight Tuesday from Newark, N.J., to St. Louis, and then boarded a train for San Antonio, Texas.
The pair lived in an apartment in Jersey City, N.J., that is just steps away from the Masjid As-Salaam Mosque, one of two New York-area mosques affiliated with radical Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, who is in prison.
Mawn said he expects more arrests of material witnesses in coming days. "Material witness warrants are a key grand jury tool," Mawn said. "I think that will continue."
Khan and Azmath rented the apartment for the last six years. Their landlord said in an interview Monday that FBI agents have asked him to secure all records and correspondence related to the two tenants. The landlord, who spoke only on the condition of anonymity, said the men did not list any references or previous addresses on their application, which he was expected to turn over to the FBI Monday night.
The landlord said they were initially referred by another tenant in the building who at the time described them as "very good guys," the landlord recalled, adding, "That was good enough for me." He said he also has been asked by the FBI to turn over every canceled check received from the men, which the landlord said he has saved. He said the pair paid rent even for this month.
FBI agents in Chicago spent a significant part of Monday trying to determine whether Khan ever lived in the city. A commercial database indicated Khan listed an address in Rogers Park as recently as last June. Shown photos of the two men by the Tribune, tenants could not say with certainty that they had seen either of them.
A man traveling on one of the U.S. flights that was diverted into Canada last Tuesday was detained in the Toronto airport by immigration officials. The man, whom authorities would not identify, was turned over to the FBI for questioning, according to Greg Peters, a spokesman for Canada's national police force.
"He had in his possession material of interest, given the situation that occurred in the U.S.," Peters said in an interview. "Specifically, photos." He declined to elaborate.
Across the U.S. border in Mexico, authorities detained and questioned a man with a Brazilian passport who said he had family ties to Jordan. Imad Mohammed Jaber, 26, was detained for immigration violations in Piedras Negras, across the border from Eagle Pass, Texas. Mexican officials said he had traveled recently to Germany and said he wanted to travel to the United States. A U.S. immigration official also questioned him.
As the investigation entered its second week, more details of the lives of the suicide hijackers have begun to emerge. One of the most intriguing is Mohamed Atta, a hijacker on American Airlines Flight 11, which crashed into the World Trade Center. Atta, a self-described urban planner, was known to U.S. authorities long before the hijacking for possible ties to terrorist groups, and had spent time in Germany and Egypt. He may have played a leadership role among the hijackers, based on the records of his travels and his interaction with several of them.
New, albeit sparse, details about Atta's life in the Egyptian Delta emerged Monday. Ralph Bodenstein, a German researcher who does urban studies work in the Arab world, said he spent many hours with Atta in 1995, when Atta was part of a three-man team from a Hamburg university studying ways to ease Cairo's traffic woes.
Atta's father was a professional living in Cairo, Bodenstein said, and during this period Atta lived with his middle-class family in that city. Atta's anti-American views were pronounced, he added, though such opinions are not uncommon in the Arab world.
"He didn't give a positive judgment on U.S. politics," Bodenstein said. "But there was nothing to indicate he would go to the lengths of such terror."
The issue of the hijackers' nationalities is explosive, and Egyptian officials continued to insist Atta was born in the United Arab Emirates. Although he lived in the Egyptian delta at one point, investigators said there was no trace of any family there.
Still, Egyptian security forces have sealed off the region, about an hour from Cairo, as they look for information.
One key unanswered question remains how the hijackers communicated with each other or with anyone who may have been giving them orders. There was some suggestion that they used computers and the Internet.
Clearly some of the hijackers were proficient on the Internet. Atta had his own Web site when he lived in Hamburg, Germany, describing his interest in architecture and other matters, according to German authorities.
FBI officials say they have seized numerous computers in connection with the investigation. For example, agents came into the apartment of Omar Hady, an Arkansas resident authorities questioned regarding the attacks, and confiscated the computer he used to send e-mails.
In other cases, the hijackers may have used the computers available in public libraries, which would have made their e-mail traffic harder to trace. After reports emerged that the FBI was investigating whether the hijackers used the library in Fairfax County, Va., in this way, a librarian and a motel operator in Florida both told authorities over the weekend they may have had similar experiences.
At Delray Beach's small public library, research librarian Katherine Hensman said she saw two men, whom she said matched descriptions of the hijackers who stayed at the nearby Homing Inn, using the library's Internet access one afternoon within the past six weeks.
The men used one of the 12 computers for about an hour, then left when a third man arrived and greeted them, she said, adding that she took note of the pair because they "kept staring over at me" while using a machine on the far side of the room.
Hensman did say she could not be sure whether the men were among those pictured in newspapers over the past few days as hijackers. Delray Beach police interviewed Hensman on Saturday, but so far, FBI agents have not visited.
Farther south, in Hollywood, Longshore Motel operator Paul Dragomir said Monday that two of his customers on Aug. 30 left after a dispute over the motel's Internet access. He, too, said he was uncertain whether the pair had any connection to the Sept. 11 events, except for general physical descriptions.
After the men got into the room, they asked for Internet lines to their room. Dragomir initially agreed to bring an office phone line into the room, where he saw two laptop computers and several CDs. The pair got in an argument when it became clear the guests wanted to use the phone line all night.
The men grew angry, Dragomir said. They told him, "We're on a mission."
Tribune staff reporters Cam Simpson in New York, Monica Davey and Geoff Dougherty in Florida, Todd Lighty in Boston, E.A. Torriero in Cairo contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2001, Chicago Tribune
|Hijackers connected to Albanian terrorist cell
By Bill Gertz
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
U.S. intelligence officials are investigating ties between the terrorists who carried out suicide airliner attacks and associates of Osama bin Laden based in Albania. Top Stories
The connections were described as support for the terrorist operation to hijack U.S. commercial jetliners and crash them into the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, according to U.S. intelligence officials.
No further details of the support could be learned.
One official said intelligence reports about the Albanian connection to the attacks is one of several leads being pursued overseas by the CIA and other U.S. intelligence agencies.
Bin Laden and his organization, al Qaeda, are believed to have small groups of terrorists or supporters in 50 to 60 nations, including Albania, according to U.S. officials.
Asked if getting bin Laden is the U.S. goal, Secretary of State Colin L. Powell told reporters yesterday that "we are after the al Qaeda network."
"It's not one individual," Mr. Powell said. "It's lots of individuals, and it's lots of cells. ... Osama bin Laden is the chairman of a holding company. And within that holding company are terrorist cells and organizations in dozens of countries around the world."
The administration's war on terrorism will "start with that one individual" bin Laden.
"It will not be over until we have gotten into the inside of this organization, inside its decision cycle, inside its planning cycle, inside its execution capability, and until we have neutralized and destroyed it," Mr. Powell said. "That's our objective."
Albania is one of several places U.S. intelligence agencies are focusing their resources from human agents to electronic eavesdropping.
Since the mid-1990s, bin Laden associates have been based in Tirana, Albania's capital, as well as in at least two other towns in the small, formerly communist nation, U.S. officials said.
Islamic radicals, including supporters of bin Laden, have been supporting Albanian rebels fighting in the region, including members of the Kosovo Liberation Army. Intelligence officials have said there are reports that KLA members have been trained at bin Laden training camps in Afghanistan.
Bin Laden and his Islamic extremist group, al Qaeda, are the main suspects in last week's terrorist attacks.
As of last year, the group operated a residence in Tirana, and the CIA has been pressing Albania's government to expel all associates of the Islamic terrorists.
According to U.S. officials, bin Laden gained a foothold in Albania in 1994 by portraying himself to the government there as a wealthy Saudi national who was in charge of a humanitarian agency that could help Albania.
Albanian intelligence believes terrorists have benefited from the theft of some 1,000 blank Albanian passports that were stolen during riots in 1997, according to a 1998 report in the London Sunday Telegraph.
Since the attack, the FBI has detained 49 persons, many of whom appear to be of Middle Eastern descent. Four of the detainees were are identified as "material witnesses" to the Sept. 11 attacks. None has been identified by nationality and the passports they used to enter the United States also have not been identified.
In 1998, U.S. and Albanian authorities broke up an Islamic terrorist cell in Albania and arrested two members of the bin Laden group.
The CIA was able to obtain a large quantity of documents and computer equipment that led to further arrests. Two members of the group, Egyptian nationals, were turned over to anti-terrorist police in Egypt that year.
"Bin Laden's group has a network in Albania," said former CIA counterterrorism official Vince Cannistraro.
"This looks like the support operation [for the U.S. attacks] was worldwide," he said of reports of the Albanian connection.
Albanian Police Chief Bilbil Mema told Agence France-Presse on Thursday that Albania had ceased to be a safe haven for terrorism. "In Albania there is no longer an Islamic threat," Mr. Mema was quoted as saying. "This country is no longer a refuge for Islamic terrorists."
Albanian security and intelligence authorities, in cooperation with the CIA, had "successfully led operations aimed at destroying the network that Islamic terrorists have attempted to establish in this country," Mr. Mema said.
|Tuesday, September 18 7:34 PM SGT
America's eyes in the sky turn to Afghanistan
PARIS, Sept 18 (AFP) -
America's constellation of spy satellites will play a key role in any strike on suspected terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden, but nothing will beat having an agent on the ground for divining his plans and movements, experts say.
The cream of US electronic surveillance from space is half a dozen satellites, launched from the 1990s, which have astonishing capacities to photograph and eavesdrop while in orbit.
Two of them are advanced KH (Key Hole) satellites, whose shell and solar panels are the same as that of the Hubble space telescope, but fitted with different optical and infra-red sensors than their cosmos-gazing counterpart, said David Baker, editor of Jane's Space Directory, a specialist British publication.
By repute, this series -- each of which costs 1.5 billion dollars -- has the power to identify an object 15-20 centimetres (six to 8.5 inches) across.
But according to an estimate by the private Federation of American Scientists (FAS), the true resolution is as good as 10 centimetres (four inches).
In other words, an object as small as a tennis ball could be spotted from several hundred kilometers (miles) away.
Other top US performers are three satellites in the Lacrosse series, which use radar to provide imaging, meaning that they can get pictures even if there is cloud over the target, according to a French parliamentary report issued in July.
The latest addition is a 8X, launched in May 1999 in the first of a likely series of 24 multi-function satellites that will eventually girdle the globe, passing over any given spot of the planet every 15 minutes, the report said.
Reconnaissance satellites are operated by the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), an agency that was formed in 1961 and whose existence was only officially acknowledged nine years ago. It has a budget of 30 billion dollars a year, Baker told AFP in a phone interview from London.
Other capacity at the NRO's disposal lies aboard ageing reconnaissance satellites that are at the end of, or beyond, their scheduled life expectancy, and imaging ability berthed aboard civilian satellites.
Added to these are the United States' electronic eavesdroppers, "big ears" in space that suck up mobile phone and e-mail communications, hoping to pin down the location of a suspect or divine his plans, perhaps by identifying key words in messages.
They cannot be used to monitor landline telephones -- nor, of course, conversations and ordinary mail.
"The problem with satellites epitomises the problem that the West has got itself into," Baker said.
Last week's terror attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center showed the "total, total failure" of dependence on technology rather than human resources, he said, adding that the scrapping of the SR-71 Blackbird spy plane left the United States without a manned reconnaissance ability in the air.
Satellites carry propellant onboard that can be used to push them into a different spying orbit.
This is an operation that is called "retasking" and is usually only done only at times of great crisis, because propellant is limited, and once it is used up the satellite's orbit cannot be shifted.
Two KH satellites, as well as two electronic eavesdropping satellites, have been retasked over Afghanistan as part of the search for bin Laden, the BBC reported Tuesday.
Although big advances have been made in the technology of satellites themselves, perhaps the greatest progress has been made on the ground, in processing the the digital data sent back.
Powerful computers are able to turn satellite pictures into a 3-D image of terrain and streets, and even give military planners an idea of the view from a terrorist's window.
This is a boon for pilots flying low-altitude missions through rugged mountains or a snatch squad that has to carry out a covert raid on a building and make a quick getaway.
Increasingly, the powerful of satellites has been entering the commercial domain, posing a dilemma to military chiefs.
There are several civilian companies now selling high-resolution one-meter (3.25-feet) images that, only a decade or so ago, were only available through a spymaster's lens.
"The genie is out of the bottle," Baker said, adding that Iraq used pictures of Kuwait City it bought from SPOT Image, a French company, as part of its military plans for invading Kuwait in August 1991.
|TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 18 2001
Millions of shares sold before disaster
BY JAMES DORAN
THE CIA has asked the City regulators in London to investigate suspicious sales of millions of shares before last Tuesdays attacks in America in the belief that the paper trail will lead to the terrorists.
American authorities are investigating unusually large numbers of shares in airlines, insurance companies and arms manufacturers that were sold off in the days and weeks before the attacks.
They believe that the sales were by people who knew about the impending disaster.
The investigators are looking at so-called short selling transactions in several financial centres across the world involving shares that dropped dramatically after the attack.
Short selling involves borrowing shares, selling them to a third party, then buying them back when the price falls. Large profits can be made if a share price falls significantly after it has been sold to the third party.
The Financial Services Authority (FSA), the stock market watchdog, was drawn into the investigation because it has a transaction monitoring department that checks suspicious share movements.
The FSA would not comment on its instructions from the CIA, but said that its team of specialists would do all they could to help the investigation. A spokesman said: The financial authorities have great expertise in this field and could have a big part to play. It is something that is incumbent upon us all to look at to the best of our ability.
Market regulators in Germany, Japan and the US received information of short selling of insurance company shares, airline stocks and shares in arms companies all of which have fallen since the attack. Italian, French and Swiss regulators have also joined the investigation.
Munich Re, Swiss Re and Axa, all insurance companies, are also helping the authorities with the inquiries as large numbers of their shares were short-sold before the attack.
A spokesman for Axa, a French company, said: We have informed the market regulators in Paris that there are concerns about short selling.
Richard Crossley, an analyst at Teather & Greenwood, a City broker, said that he had tracked suspicious short selling and share dumping in a swath of stocks badly affected by the terrorist attacks.
He said that on the Friday before the attacks, more than 10 million shares in Merrill Lynch, the US investment bank, were sold compared with 4 million on a normal day. He added that exceptionally high volumes of retail and leisure stocks had also caught his attention.
Before the attacks there was no pattern to this phenomenon, he said. The shares that were sold were doing very well and someone was selling them in very large quantities with no real reason.
Mr Crossley believes that someone with inside knowledge of the attacks could have been making money on its expected outcome for up to three weeks before the terrorists struck.
What is more awful than he should aim a stiletto blow at the heart of Western financial markets? But to profit from it. Words fail me, Mr Crossley said.
Copyright 2001 Times Newspapers Ltd.
GOA Urges Congress to Pass Bill Arming Pilots
-- Rep. Paul says his bill will save lives if enacted
Gun Owners of America E-Mail/FAX Alert
8001 Forbes Place, Suite 102, Springfield, VA 22151
Phone: 703-321-8585 / FAX: 703-321-8408
(Tuesday, September 18, 2001) -- In the wake of last week's terrible tragedy, Gun Owners of America mourns with all Americans over the lives that were lost in the horrific attack.
"We grieve for the families of these victims," said GOA Executive Director Larry Pratt, "and hope that Congress will implement policies that will save lives in the future.
"It seems clear that billions of dollars for metal detectors and ID checks have proven ineffective in stopping terrorism. Villains always manage to get weapons and always seem to get them through security checkpoints. Despite this obvious fact, many voices are now calling for Americans to give up more of their freedoms. What we really need is to instigate procedures that will serve as a deterrent to terrorists."
H.R. 2896 Will Arm Pilots
For example, Gun Owners of America is calling upon Congress to immediately adopt self-defense legislation that was introduced on Friday by Republican Representative Ron Paul of Texas.
Paul's bill (H.R. 2896) will overturn existing laws and regulations that prevent pilots from carrying sidearms onto planes. Rep. Paul believes that armed pilots could save the lives of thousands of individuals.
"It would be a mistake," Paul told Gun Owners of America, "to respond to last week's terrorist attacks by punishing the American people with more infringements on their liberties.
"We don't need more intrusive government. We need freedom. Freedom saves lives, and my bill is a modest step towards letting pilots defend their lives and the lives of their passengers -- not to mention the lives of thousands of innocent people who may be working in office buildings."
It is imperative that gun owners let their Congressman and Senators know that they support this common-sense legislation.
ACTION: Urge your Representative to cosponsor H.R. 2896, which allows pilots to defend the lives of their passengers. Please use the prewritten text below to help direct your comments to your Representative. You can call your Congressman at 202-225-3121. To identify your Representative, as well as to send a message via e-mail, see the Legislative Action Center at http://www.gunowners.org/activism.htm on the GOA website.
And if you are not currently receiving the full GOA membership benefits (such as The Gun Owners newsletter in the mail), go to http://www.gunowners.org/ordergoamem.htm on the web to sign up; or, call toll-free at 1-888-886-GUNS. GOA's upcoming newsletter will be a SPECIAL ISSUE entirely devoted to last week's bombing, and will include some of the best commentary from several different authors as to what America needs to do to stop similar tragedies in the future.
----- Pre-written message -----
I strongly urge you to cosponsor common-sense legislation introduced by Rep. Ron Paul last week. H.R. 2896 would allow airplane pilots to use firearms to defend the lives of their passengers against crazed terrorists.
Reports by the media indicate the pilots in last Tuesday's tragedy were overpowered by attackers armed only with knives. The thousands of deaths from this tragedy were made possible because those capable of defending against such an attack (the pilots and crew) were disarmed by our current laws and security policies.
Had the pilots of those doomed aircraft had access to firearms, these attacks could have been thwarted and thousands of American lives saved.
I truly believe that freedom will save lives. I keep hearing government officials say that Americans must give up their freedoms so that law enforcement can stop terrorists. The problem is that we have ALREADY given up too much freedom. The fact that pilots -- many of whom have prior military training -- do not have the freedom to defend the lives of their passengers on board is absurd.
Gun control once again has contributed to the loss of innocent lives. Haven't we learned the lessons that allowing good people to carry guns will deter criminals (and terrorists) from perpetrating their evil deeds? Whenever a state or county allows good people to carry guns, crime rates go down. Wherever guns are banned -- like in Washington, D.C. and in England -- crime rates go up.
So I urge you in the strongest way, to cosponsor the Paul legislation which will save American lives (H.R. 2896). And I also urge you to vote against any legislation that would further restrict the liberties of all Americans.
As Senator Phil Gramm said last week, "We are hearing a lot of talk today about what we can do to be safer. I want to be safe. But let me make it clear: I don't want to change our way of life. I want to change their way of life. If we start infringing on our own freedom, if we start limiting our own freedom to move about our country and engage in our business and live our lives, then we are giving up what this war is about. We want to change their lives...."
I agree with Senator Gramm. Let's punish the enemy and not America.
Saved by the Militia
Arming an army against terrorism.
By Randy E. Barnett is the Austin B. Fletcher Professor at Boston University and the author of The Structure of Liberty: Justice and the Rule of Law.
September 18, 2001 11:30 a.m.
A well-regulated militia being essential to the security of a free state. . . ." The next time someone tells you that the militia referred to in the Second Amendment has been "superceded" by the National Guard, ask them who it was that prevented United Airlines Flight 93 from reaching its target. The National Guard? The regular Army? The D.C. Police Department? None of these had a presence on Flight 93 because, in a free society, professional law-enforcement and military personnel cannot be everywhere. Terrorists and criminals are well aware of this indeed, they count on it. Who is everywhere? The people the Founders referred to as the "general militia." Cell-phone calls from the plane have now revealed that it was members of the general militia, not organized law enforcement, who successfully prevented Flight 93 from reaching its intended target at the cost of their own lives.
The characterization of these heroes as members of the militia is not just the opinion of one law professor. It is clearly stated in Federal statutes. Perhaps you will not believe me unless I quote Section 311 of US Code Title 10, entitled, "Militia: composition and classes" in its entirety (with emphases added):
"(a) The militia of the United States consists of all able-bodied males at least 17 years of age and, except as provided in section 313 of title 32, under 45 years of age who are, or who have made a declaration of intention to become, citizens of the United States and of female citizens of the United States who are members of the National Guard.
(b) The classes of the militia are
(1) the organized militia, which consists of the National Guard and the Naval Militia; and
(2) the unorganized militia, which consists of the members of the militia who are not members of the National Guard or the Naval Militia."
This is not to score political points at a moment of great tragedy, though had the murderers on these four airplanes been armed with guns rather than knives, reminders of this fact would never end. Rather, that it was militia members who saved whatever was the terrorists' target whether the White House or the Capitol at the cost of their lives points in the direction of practical steps in some cases the only practical steps to reduce the damage cause by any future attacks.
An excellent beginning was provided by Dave Kopel and David Petteys in their NRO column "Making the Air Safe for Terror." Whether or not their specific recommendations are correct, they are too important to be ignored and they are not the only persons to reach similar conclusions about the need for effective self-defense. Refusing to discuss what measures really worked, what really failed, and what is likely to really work in future attacks on airplanes and in other public spaces for reasons of political correctness would be unconscionable. And we need to place this discussion in its larger constitutional context.
Asking all of us if we packed our own bags did not stop this attack. X-rays of all carry-on baggage did not stop this attack (though it may well have confined the attackers to using knives). And preventing us from using e-tickets or checking our bags at the street (for how long?) would neither have stopped this nor any future attack. All these new "security" proposals will merely inconvenience millions of citizens driving them away from air travel and seriously harming our economy and our freedom. As others have noted, it would be a victory for these murderers rather than an effective way to stop them in the future. A way around them will always be open to determined mass murderers. More importantly, none bear any relation to the attack that actually occurred on September 11th.
Ask yourself every time you hear a proposal for increased "security": Would have in any way have averted the disaster that actually happened? Will it avert a future suicide attack on the public by other new and different means? Any realistic response to what happened and is likely to happen in the future must acknowledge that, when the next moment of truth arrives in whatever form, calling 911 will not work. Training our youth to be helpless in the face of an attack, avoiding violence at all costs will not work. There will always be foreign and domestic wolves to prey on the sheep we raise. And the next attack is unlikely to take the same form as the ones we just experienced. We must adopt measures that promise some relief in circumstances we cannot now imagine.
Here is the cold hard fact of the matter that will be evaded and denied but which must never be forgotten in these discussions: Often whether on an airplane, subway, cruise ship, or in a high school only self defense by the "unorganized militia" will be available when domestic or foreign terrorists chose their next moment of murder. And here is the public-policy implication of this fact: It would be better if the militia were more prepared to act when it is needed.
If the general militia is now "unorganized" and neutered if it is not well-regulated whose fault is it? Article I of the Constitution gives Congress full power "to provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining the Militia." The Second Amendment was included in the Bill of Rights in large part because many feared that Congress would neglect the militia (as it has) and, Congress could not be forced by any constitutional provision to preserve the militia, the only practical means of ensuring its continued existed was to protect the right of individual militia members to keep and bear their own private arms. Nevertheless, it remains the responsibility of Congress to see to it that the general militia is "well-regulated."
A well-regulated militia does not require a draft or any compulsory training. Nor, as Alexander Hamilton recognized, need training be universal. "To attempt such a thing which would abridge the mass of labor and industry to so considerable extent, would be unwise," he wrote in Federalist 29, "and the experiment, if made, could not succeed, because it would not long be endured." But Congress has the constitutional power to create training programs in effective self-defense including training in small arms marksmanship, tactics, and gun safety for any American citizen who volunteers. Any guess how many millions would take weapons training at government expense or even for a modest fee if generally offered?
Rather than provide for training and encouraging persons to be able to defend themselves and to exercise their training responsibly powerful lobbying groups have and will continue to advocate passivity and disarmament. The vociferous anti-self-defense, anti-gun crusaders of the past decades will not give up now. Instead they will shift our focus to restrictions on American liberties that will be ineffective against future attacks. Friday on Fox, Democratic Minority Leader Dick Gephart was asked whether additional means we have previously eschewed should be employed to capture and combat foreign terrorists. His reply was appalling. Now was the time, he replied, to consider adopting a national identity card and that we would have to consider how much information such "smart" cards would contain.
Rather than make war on the American people and their liberties, however, Congress should be looking for ways to empower them to protect themselves when warranted. The Founders knew and put in the form of a written guarantee the proposition that the individual right to keep and bear arms was the principal means of preserving a militia that was "essential," in a free state, to provide personal and collective self-defense against criminals of all stripes, both domestic and foreign.
A renewed commitment to a well-regulated militia would not be a panacea for crime and terrorism, but neither will any other course of action now being recommended or adopted. We have long been told that, in a modern world, the militia is obsolete. Put aside the fact that the importance of the militia to a "the security of a free state" is hardwired into the text of the Constitution. The events of this week have shown that the militia is far from obsolete in a world where war is waged by cells as well as states. It is long past time we heeded the words of the Founders and end the systematic effort to disarm Americans. Now is also the time to consider what it would take in practical terms to well-regulate the now-unorganized militia, so no criminal will feel completely secure when confronting one or more of its members.
|China seeks US favours for supporting war
By James Kynge in Beijing
Published: September 18 2001 20:21
China on Tuesday sought to extract hefty concessions from the US in return for supporting a US-led war against terrorism, but appeared to stop short of fully linking its demands to Chinese backing.
China's support for any US military action against guerrilla bases in Afghanistan would be important because of Beijing's considerable diplomatic clout with Pakistan and other countries in the region. China is not expected to pledge direct military assistance or allow US war planes to fly over its territory, official sources said.
Zhu Bangzao, the foreign ministry spokesman, said Beijing was prepared to discuss proposals to combat international terrorism before the United Nations' Security Council, where it has a veto as one of the five permanent members.
Any military action in retaliation for the terror attacks on the US would have to be based on concrete evidence, should not hurt innocent people, and should be conducted within international law, Mr Zhu added.
In a separate demand, he said China was asking the US to "give its support and understanding in the fight against terrorism and separatists". This would seem to include those campaigning for an independent homeland in Xinjiang, a region in the north-west of China, as well the followers of the Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of Tibet.
China also appeared to bring Taiwan into the equation, although obliquely. Asked whether Beijing was imposing specific conditions for US support, such as an end to US arms sales to Taiwan, Mr Zhu said: "The fight against terrorism is a different issue. We are not making bargains here".
But he stressed the US and China had "common interests" in combating Taiwan independence activists who he said were the main threat to stability across the Taiwan Strait. "We should stem the development of Taiwan independence forces," he said.
Foreign diplomats interpreted China's statement as an indication that Beijing was prepared to support US action against terrorism, but that it wants to do so through the UN so it can maintain influence over any ensuing military campaign.
However, Beijing's demands would put the US administration in a difficult position, some analysts said.
On one hand, China is an important presence in the area surrounding Afghanistan, the most likely location of military action against Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect behind the attacks.
On the other hand, US acquiescence to Beijing's demands - especially over the issue of US support for Taiwan - could be politically difficult in Washington.
Such problems are exacerbated by the fact that China is far from a natural ally of the US. Deep suspicions characterise many layers of the US-China relationship, with Washington criticising Beijing for selling missile technology to Pakistan and Beijing blasting Washington for its perceived "unilateralism" and "hegemonism" in Asia. In a separate development, Jiang Zemin, the Chinese president, on Tuesday discussed the terror attacks with Tony Blair, the UK prime minister, in a telephone conversation that centred on building international consensus for military action against Mr bin Laden.
|FBI warns terrorists may steal fire trucks
September 18, 2001 Posted: 8:40 PM EDT
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The FBI issued a warning to firefighters across the country Tuesday that terrorists could hijack their trucks and use them as bombs.
The FBI warning said fire and emergency services vehicles could be stolen by terrorist groups and turned into rolling bombs aimed at military bases or other government installations.
The FBI asked fire departments to review the security of their stations and vehicles. If a vehicle is stolen, stations were asked to immediately notify the FBI.
The FBI did not say there was any specific and credible threat that caused it to issue the warning.
One official said the FBI is exercising "an abundance of caution" and is passing on all information it is gleaning from interviews and tips, "regardless of the reliability of the source."
Some firefighters told CNN their vehicles -- even those carrying patients -- have been stopped and searched upon entering medical facilities.
The warning was sent by the FBI to the National Volunteer Fire Council and the International Association of Fire Chiefs, which passed it on to local fire departments.
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