Posted by Curt on 8 December, 2005 at 11:47 am. 1 comment.


AJStrata is burning the nightoil once again with his latest piece on Able Danger:

Looks like this is the week for my Able Danger predictions to come true. Yesterday, Gen Hugh Shelton confirmed my early suspicions that Able Danger was a technology demonstration program.

Today there is a major article on Able Danger out from, which has many fascinating details I want to discuss. This goes back to my theory that Able Danger had its initial data set purged when results of the China study, being done in parallel to the Al Qaeda study that had ID? the four 9-11 terrorists/pilots Atta, Shehhei, Hazmi and Mihdar, came up with results that implicated people in the Clinton administration. I made this prediction back in September when the NY Post broke the China connection aspect of Able Danger (here andhere). This is what JD Smith had to say about those times:

The China chart was put together by James Smith, who confirmed yesterday that his contract with the military was canceled and he was fired from his company because the military brass became concerned about the focus on U.S. citizens.

?It was shut down in a matter of hours. The colonel said our service was no longer needed and told me: ?You just ended my career.? ?

Back then, in the referenced post, I pulled the name of John Podesta?s brother out of the news and wondered if he was the name that panicked the Clinton administration, which was just getting through impeachment. The GovExec story has a different name:

The people involved said the experiment looked specifically at technology transfers to China, whose military posed the gravest post-Cold War threat to the United States. Kleinsmith says the particular technology the IDC researched was arbitrary. ?I think we flipped a coin? to decide. The point was to show the Pentagon that data mining could identify front companies, potential leaks of technology, and other vulnerabilities. ?What we found was absolutely enormous,? Kleinsmith said.

Former IDC employees and others familiar with the work say the China research exposed a variety of avenues through which military technology designs could end up in Chinese government hands. The IDC created a diagram showing how organizations and people in the United States were connected to the Chinese. Hamre had visited the center, and according to Weldon, reported back, ?It is amazing what they are doing there.?

The experiment ?went well,? the former IDC employee said. ?Unfortunately, it went too well.? During construction of those link diagrams, the names of a number of U.S. citizens popped up, including some very prominent figures. Condoleezza Rice, then the provost at Stanford University, appeared in one of the harvests, the by-product of a presumably innocuous connection between other subjects and the university, which hosts notable Chinese scholars.

William Cohen, then the secretary of Defense, also appeared. As one former senior Defense official explained, the IDC?s results ?raised eyebrows,? and leaders in the Pentagon grew nervous about the political implications of turning up such high-profile names, or those of any American citizens who were not the subject of a legally authorized intelligence investigation. Rumors still abound about other notable figures caught up in the IDC?s harvest. ?I heard they turned up Hillary Clinton,? the fficial said. The experiment was not continued.

That is clear as it gets folks. Able Danger was working to identify Al Qaeda and had struck gold with the Hamburg cell. But the same technology and group, working on a completely independent study implicates the Clinton administration so all the data, China and Al Qaeda targets, is destroyed in a moment of political panic.

It is now highly possible 9-11 happened because the Clinton administration was afraid of bad PR.

So my question is where are the hearings? Why is it the 9/11 commission is all over the news lately talking about this and that but we are not hearing one iota about one of the biggest facts they missed during their investigation.

Shaffer has already stated that government lawyers prevented Able Danger from sharing the Atta info with the FBI during the summer of 2000.

He shared the information with the executive director of the 9/11 Commission, Philip Zelikow, two years later in Afghanistan

“My bottom line to them was that through a data-processing exercise, we were able to identify two of the cells which conducted the 9/11 attack to include Atta.”

You’d think that the Atta revelation would have been one of the most significant aspects of the work of the 9/11 Commission. Instead, it wasn’t even mentioned in the 664-page final report.

But nothing was done with this information. Why?

The Ommission Commission co-chairs was asked by Russert recently to respond to all this:

Hamilton told Russert: “Look, we looked at Able Danger very, very carefully. We do not think there was anything there of great significance. Now, something could come out in the future. I don’t know. But in Mr. Freeh’s article he did not present any new evidence at all.

“Our investigators were informed about Able Danger. We requested all of the documents relating to Able Danger. We reviewed these documents. We had investigators meet with some of these people in Afghanistan and other places. The bottom line is that they can furnish no documentary evidence to support their charges that they had a chart, for example, with Mohamed Atta’s name on it.”

Kean agreed: “We had an awful lot of people coming forward, 50 or 60, saying they saw Mohamed Atta here, they saw Mohamed Atta there; they had this and that. There was absolutely no evidence to back this up.

“There still isn’t any evidence to back it up. If people want to look into it, they’re welcome to. We still haven’t seen the evidence to indicate it. We saw every file. The Pentagon denies it. They say they haven’t gotten any information.”

Freeh called the response of Hamilton and Kean “silly.” He said the Able Danger participants who have come forward “are not informants or criminals who have to prove their case. They are intelligence officers who had that job to perform.”

“I take exception to this notion that it was fully investigated. The longest period of time they had was 10 days…

“How could you fully investigate, with all due respect to Mr. Hamilton who is not an investigator, a fact of that potential significance within 10 days?” Freeh asked.

“As for me reviewing new evidence, that is not my job. It was the 9/11 Commission job to go out and not only find, but to fully and fairly evaluate evidence, and how could they do that in 10 days, it is ridiculous,” Freeh said.

While I was interviewing Freeh, Weldon called. He was much more blunt. “Lee Hamilton has just lied to the American people. They did NO investigation.”

But where are the hearings? Where is the outrage that 9/11 may have been prevented by the Able Danger information if only that information had been used instead of swept under the rug?

Andrew McCarthy is asking the same questions:

‘Tis the season when annual performance awards are handed out. If there is one for chutzpah, could there possibly be a more worthy candidate than the 9/11 commission?

It appears that this panel, an astronomically overrated study in self-absorption, is finally going away. You can never be too sure, of course. Clinging to the last fading glimmers of limelight, the august commissioners have already once overcome statutory death. Resurrecting themselves as an ombudsman through the miracle of private financing, they’ve been keen to morph from our high-profile raconteurs to our high-profile conscience. What they are, though, is a high-profile debacle.

How fitting that in its last not-so-official act of self-promotion, the commission has seen fit to grade out a report card on everybody else in government ? even as it continues to tap dance around its own inexplicable derelictions of duty. These are most recently, but by no means exclusively, illustrated by the scandal over “Able Danger,” the Defense Department’s circa 1999-2001 data-mining intelligence project.

Though consciously ignored by the commission, whose key conclusions it contradicts, Able Danger appears to have identified Mohamed Atta and perhaps three other hijackers long before 9/11. Rep. Curt Weldon (R., Pa.) continues to press urgently for answers about what Able Danger found, why that intelligence was purged rather than acted on, and why the commission’s purportedly comprehensive investigation omitted even a single mention of it. But while the commission has a lot to say about the performance of the Bush administration, Congress, the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and other federal agencies, introspection is not, shall we say, its strong suit.

Other’s Blogging:

Captain’s Quarters
Able Danger Blog
The Jawa Report
Politechnical Institute
A Goy And His Blog
Small Town Veteran

But where are the hearings? Where is the outrage that 9/11 may have been prevented by the Able Danger information if only that information had been used instead of swept under the rug?

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