"The real truth of the matter is, as you and I know, that a financial element in the large centers has owned the government of the U.S. since the days of Andrew Jackson.”
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt.
~ Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Today I have a round-up of some of Luke Ryland's latest work on the campaign to get a public, open congressional hearing on the Sibel Edmonds' case, in order to break open the Deep State in the US. For starters, here's a transcript of former CIA Istanbul deputy chief of base, Philip Giraldi, lifted from the pages of American Conservative magazine and carried on Stress:
Sibel Edmonds, the Turkish FBI translator turned whistleblower who has been subjected to a gag order could provide a major insight into how neoconservatives distort US foreign policy and enrich themselves at the same time. On one level, her story appears straightforward: several Turkish lobbying groups allegedly bribed congressmen to support policies favourable to Ankara. But beyond that, the Edmonds revelations become more serpentine and appear to involve AIPAC, Israel and a number of leading neoconservatives who have profited from the Turkish connection. Israel has long cultivated a close relationship with Turkey since Ankara’s neighbours and historic enemies - Iran, Syria and Iraq - are also hostile to Tel Aviv. Islamic Turkey has also had considerable symbolic value for Israel, demonstrating that hostility to Muslim neighbours is not a sine qua non for the Jewish state.
Turkey benefits from the relationship by securing general benevolence and increased aid from the US Congress - as well as access to otherwise unattainable military technology. The Turkish General Staff has a particular interest because much of the military spending is channeled through companies in which the generals have a financial stake, making for a very cozy and comfortable business arrangement. The commercial interest has also fostered close political ties, with the American Turkish Council, American Turkish Cultural Alliance and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations all developing warm relationships with AIPAC and other Jewish and Israel advocacy groups throughout the US.
Someone has to be in the middle to keep the happy affair going, so enter the neocons, intent on securing Israel against all comers and also keen to turn a dollar. In fact the neocons seem to have a deep and abiding interest in Turkey, which, under other circumstances, might be difficult to explain. Doug Feith’s International Advisors Inc, a registered agent for Turkey in 1989 - 1994, netted $600,000 per year from Turkey, with Richard Perle taking $48,000 annually as a consultant. Other noted neoconservatives linked to Turkey are former State Department number three, Marc Grossman, current Pentagon Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman, Paul Wolfowitz and former congressman Stephen Solarz. The money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed. Some of it may come from criminal activity, possibly drug trafficking, but much more might come from arms dealing. Contracts in the hundreds of millions, or even billions of dollars provide considerable fat for those well placed to benefit. Investigators are also looking at Israel’s particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India. Fraudulent end-user certificates produced by Defense Ministries in Israel and Turkey are all that is needed to divert military technology to other, less benign, consumers. The military-industrial-complex/neocon network is also well attested. Doug Feith has been associated with Northrup Grumman for years, while defense contractors fund many neocon-linked think tanks and “information” services. Feith, Perle and a number of other neocons have long had beneficial relationships with various Israeli defense contractors.
Regarding Giraldi's comments, the money coming from arms deals should be noted, because this is a fact about Ralston's appointment as "PKK coordinator" that I've tried to make for months. The Deep Staters don't give a damn about negotiating a political solution to end Turkish repression of the Kurdish people, not do they care about spreading "democracy" or "stability" in the Middle East (Remember in what regard neocon ideology holds the vast majority of the world's population: "And they are certainly not too concerned about the happiness of mere mortals. They have little pity or compassion for them. On the contrary, the pain, suffering, and tragedies of the mortals provide them with entertainment.").
For more on Giraldi, Luke conducted an interview with one of the directors of Sibel's documentary, Kill The Messenger. Here's a portion of Luke's interview with director Mathieu Verboud:
LR: OK, Philip Giraldi now. What did he have to say?
MV: Philip Giraldi appears in the last chapter of the film. Giraldi is the one who connects the final dots. He was stationed in Turkey in the 80s for the CIA. He knows the players in the game. He recently published a remarkable article in the American Conservative on Sibel’s case. Giraldi obviously understood most of what was to be understood about it.
As explained before, Giraldi knows the reason why there was a military relationship between Turkey and Israel for the last 30 years - Turkey wanting to get access to weapons in the US and Israel being interested in becoming friendly with a Muslim country. That's the starting point.
Beyond that, he understands the role of the Military Industrial Complex, both in the US and in Israel and Turkey - for example, Turkish Generals retain commissions on the works and the production lines of the Turkish arms manufacturing companies - in other words, baksheesh.
Giraldi then pointed to the neocons who are intertwined in the U.S-Turkey-Israel triangle and also insists on the fact that these people have been connected to the Turkish government, Israeli arms companies and the Military Industrial Complex in the U.S, as he says "making money, doling out influence."
Giraldi also insisted very specifically about the FBI investigations on Feith and Perle and some others. The belief we had before meeting Giraldi was that Turkey recruited the ‘crème de la crème’ of Israel's friends in the U.S, so that they would then have access to not only Washington’s officials, but also to the Pentagon and its most hi-tech weaponry. Giraldi confirmed that.
LR: In his article, Giraldi says that the false end-user certificates were used by Israel and Turkey to provide weapons to both China and India - I hadn't heard of India being involved.
MV: Well, in the 1990’s, it is well known that Israel has sold China sensitive U.S military technology. For almost two decades now, China and Israel have spied on the U.S more than any other country in the world. In the film, Philip Giraldi states that the FBI does an annual compilation of who spies most on the U.S. As he says : "The result is always the same: number one is China, number two is Israel. "
India is a different story. In Sibel’s case, some witnesses fingered the ‘India’ component, but for reasons already mentioned we didn’t go further (laughs)… By the way, if you look at the Giza case, it’s public record that the Israeli broker Asher Karni was also selling the nuclear detonators he got from Giza to India.
Regarding the sale of "sensitive U.S. military technology" to China, Lockheed Martin has been in trouble for doing just that. Of course, the State Department didn't seek criminal sanctions against Lockheed Martin, but only civil penalties. It simply would not do to criminalize a major corporation that is part of the US foreign policy-making process.
Luke has a new post today in his diary at Daily Kos, in which he outlines and discusses the main issues behind Sibel's case. I'm stealing most of it here, but for the entire post, including congressional contact links, see the diary:
Former FBI translator and whistleblower Sibel Edmonds discovered massive criminality when she was at the FBI and was told to shut up. Sibel is the most gagged person in US history. We're in the final days of a campaign, Let Sibel Edmonds Speak, to demand that Henry Waxman hold hearings into her case and the State Secrets Privilege.
Because Sibel is gagged, and because her case is complicated, it can be difficult to understand of all the different elements. In this post, I will lay out the most simple of the issues that Sibel raised - espionage in the FBI translation department - and why it is still important today (hint: a confirmed 'mole'/foreign agent is in charge of all Arabic translators at the FBI.)
In other words, I hope that you can send this diary to your friends and family - people who may not be involved in politics, people who have never heard of Sibel - and they are sufficiently outraged that they can't wait to call Waxman on Monday morning and demand hearings.
The reason they should be outraged is because America is more likely to be attacked because of the information in this diary.
Last week, more than 30 'good-government' groups from across the political spectrum petitioned Henry Waxman to hold hearings into Sibel Edmonds' case.
From the petition:
The issues that were reported by Ms. Edmonds include:
• Cases of espionage activities within the FBI...
• Cases of cover-up of information and leads pre and post 9/11, under the excuse of protecting certain diplomatic relations
• Cases of intentional blocking and mistranslation of crucial intelligence by FBI translators and management
Today I want to describe exactly what she's talking about regarding espionage at the FBI translation unit, and prove that we are all less safe because the problems have not been rectified - in fact, the problems are much worse today.
When Sibel Edmonds joined the FBI immediately after 911, she was the first and only Turkish translator there. Shortly afterwards, the FBI recruited two other translators, Melek Can Dickerson and Kevin Taskasen. Their boss was former translator Mike Feghali.
Let's dispense with Kevin Taskasen first, because he isn't particularly important in the scheme of things, although his situation does demonstrate the massive incompetence and cronyism in the translation department. Taskasen failed two language proficiency exams, English and Turkish, but his wife worked at the FBI's language testing center so... he got the job. Three months later he was sent to Guantanamo Bay to translate the interrogations: to perhaps help foil a new terror attack, or to help determine the guilt or otherwise of the prisoners held there.
Now on to more serious matters: Melek Can Dickerson.
In a fantastic interview with Sibel last week titled "What if the FBI Hired Someone Honest to Look into 9-11?" David Swanson said:
There's a saying in Italian "Traduttore traditore" which means "The translator is a traitor"...
Not all translators are traitors, of course, but translators do have tremendous power, as Sibel described in the same interview:
You know, a lot of people consider the language specialists as like a clerical job, but you need to realize, when the information comes... the first people exposed to it are the language specialists. Before that information gets transferred to agents or analysts, the first person who sees it is the language specialist... and that language specialist is in a position to decide whether or not this particular piece of information... is important enough to be translated, whether or not it should be translated verbatim - in detail, or just a summary translation. So by the time that information goes to an analyst or an agent, it has already gone through this filter of the language specialist.
In other words, America's enemies are motivated to A) try to recruit existing translators B) place their own translator 'moles' in the translation unit and C) if they're really lucky/skilled/successful, take over an entire 'desk' in the FBIs translation unit. Unfortunately, and scarily, in Sibel's case, we see all three.
Melek Can Dickerson had worked for at least three organizations that were under investigation by the FBI's counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism divisions. She lied on her application form, saying that she'd never worked before in her life, and was given Top Secret clearance and immediately began working in the translation unit. We don't know whether Dickerson was given her job, and Top Secret clearance, as a result of FBI incompetence or corruption - I suspect corruption - but it doesn't really matter, because within weeks of her arrival, the Turkish desk of the FBI translation unit was completely corrupted.
On Sunday December 2nd, 2001, Dickerson and her husband, Doug, arrived at Sibel's house and tried to persuade Sibel and her husband, Matthew, to join the American Turkish Council (ATC) - one of the organizations that Dickerson had previously worked for and failed to mention on her FBI application form. The Dickersons promised Sibel and her husband, Matthew, an early retirement if they joined the ATC. Sibel immediately recognized that she was being recruited to be a mole in the translation unit because the ATC, and some of the Dickersons' other friends, were targets of counter-intelligence & counter-terrorism investigations that Sibel had been translating at the FBI.
According to the 10-page Vanity Fair article on Sibel and her case, the ATC "was being used as a front for criminal activity" involving "laundering the profits of large-scale drug deals and of selling classified military technologies to the highest bidder." In other words, serious business. We also have evidence from a bunch of other places that suggest that the ATC was involved with all sorts of illegal activity - not least, we know that Valerie Plame's CIA front company, Brewster Jennings, had been investigating the ATC for years.
Brewster Jennings' main focus was Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), and we know that companies involved with the ATC were actually supplying rogue nations with nuclear technology - hardware, and nuclear secrets, stolen (via bribes paid to vaious State Dept officials) from US nuclear labs (Sandia, Los Alamos etc)
Story so far: FBI employed Melek Can Dickerson, an agent/mole for a foreign/criminal network involved in WMD (among other things). Dickerson tried to recruit Sibel into the network.
Sibel immediately reported the Dickerson's 'recruitment' attempt to her boss at the FBI, Mike Feghali, but he had already (if not before) been co-opted by Dickerson and the ATC. Within a month of Dickerson joining the FBI, she had changed the FBI translation unit's internal procedures, with the help of her boss, Feghali, so that she alone was in charge of translating any intercepts from her friends at the ATC (and elsewhere). Of course, now that Dickerson, the mole, was in charge of 'translating' her criminal friends' wiretaps, whenever she came across anything incriminating (and there were many such situations), she simply didn't translate it, or marked it 'Not Pertinent.'
Sibel thinks that Feghali and Dickerson were having an affair - often conducted in his office, during business hours. Not only that, he also
"covered-up information and leads pre and post 9/11" (for more, see Sibel's open letter to the 911 Commission)
Sibel reached out to Dennis Saccher, the F.B.I.’s special agent in charge of Turkish counter-intelligence, and told him what had happened. He said "It sounds like espionage to me." We aren't sure of what other payoffs Feghali may have received, from Dickerson or the ATC, but he clearly shouldn't be in charge of such a sensitive translation facility at the FBI. "The translator is a traitor."
Sibel took her case up the FBI hierarchy - eventually pleading her case that the translation unit, the frontline against America's enemies, had been infiltrated by a criminal network to FBI Director Robert Mueller, to no avail - and was eventually fired 'at the government's pleasure.'
Despite being fired, Sibel continued to try to bring attention to the fact that America was in danger because foreign criminal elements had taken over the FBI translation unit. She went to the FBI Office of Professional Responsibility (internal affairs), the Department of Justice's Inspector General, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the Senate Judiciary Committee, the 911 Commission, and Henry Waxman's office. Every one of them confirmed Sibel's allegations - Republican Senator Charles Grassley explains why:
"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."
Veteran FBI counterintelligence agent John Cole said the same thing:
"I knew (Sibel) was doing the right thing. I knew because she was right."
Cole tells how he had "talked to people who had read her file, who had read the investigative report, and they were telling me a totally different story" than FBI officials...
"They were telling me that Sibel Edmonds was a 100 percent accurate, that management knew that she was correct."
In fact, in a CBS 60 Minutes report (download, 300 megs) by Ed Bradley about Sibel's case in 2002, Charles Grassley said angrily, about these facts, "We need to turn the FBI upside down." Five years later, and the FBI has indeed been turned upside down. Five years ago, Mike Feghali was in charge of three Turkish translators, a patriot, an incompetent, and a foreign agent - he fired the patriot, sent the incompetent to Guantanamo, and had an affair, and probably received payment, from the foreign agent. Five years later, he is no longer at the bottom of the pyramid, but at the top. The FBI has been turned upside down! Feghali has been promoted, and promoted again, and is now in charge of all Arabic speakers at the FBI. "The translator is a traitor."
And if Feghali's promotion isn't bad enough, in and of itself, let me repeat that Sibel's claims about him have been reported up the chain all the way to Direct Mueller, and her allegations have been verified by the FBI OPR, the Dept of Justice's Inspector General, the Senate Intelligence Committee and the 911 Commission. All of them know of Sibel's claims, all of them know that her claims have been validated, and all of them know that Feghali has been promoted again and again and that he is now in charge of all 300 Arabic translators.
Surely that makes us all much less safe.
For more detail on just this one element of Sibel's case, see my "Sibel Edmonds' Corrupt Boss is STILL the key to National Security" post.
Please call the offices of Congressmen Waxman and Conyers demanding open hearings into Sibel Edmonds' case and the State Secrets Privilege. We need you to call on Monday and Tuesday of this week - and we'll demand an answer from Waxman mid-week.
Luke recently did an interview with Expert Witness Radio, which you can download and listen to here. It runs about 60 minutes. Tomorrow, the final 30 minutes of the interview should be available at the same site and, according to Luke, that portion will focus on Sibel's former supervisor, Mike Feghali, as everyone tries to determine whether he's simply an incompetent or if he's corrupt. Or both.
One of the interesting things about this interview is that it's repeatedly remarked that, over the years with various corruption/incompetence/criminal scandals, nothing has ever been done to correct the problems that inspire outrage. The answer to this is to use alternative media, such as the Internet, to outrage the grassroots enough that they hold the feet of all corrupted/incompetent/criminal officials to the fire in order to clean House . . . and Senate . . . and judicial branch . . . and executive branch . . . and anyone else who needs cleaning out.
As Michael Levine mentioned in the interview, "Luke has done is a first-class job of putting together an indictment."
I definitely second that comment.
In a Kurdish-related matter, there's someone in North Dakota paying attention to the situation of Kurds under Turkish occupation, at Left in East Dakota:
A lot was made of Saddam's brutal treatment of the Kurds (and rightfully so.) But we don't hear much about Turkey's very overt attempts to wipe out anything that is Kurdish or related to the Kurdish people. The Kurds make up 20% of the population of Turkey and have virtually no voice in government.
Turkey's terrorist war against the Kurds has been largely supported by the United States. Just as Saddam was backed by the US when he was gassing the Kurds, Turkey has been receiving military aid during their campaign to suppress millions of Kurds. Turkey has received millions in military aid, along with other notorious human rights abusers like Israel, Egypt and Colombia.
[ . . . ]
The Kurds I have spoken to are skeptical of the US. I can't blame them. If the US really wants to be spread freedom, it should stop supportings oppression.
See? It's really very simple.