9/11 ANNIVERSARY, PAKISTAN AND IRAQ
Dennis L. Cuddy, Ph.D.
With the 6th anniversary of 9/11 and Gen. David Petraeus' report on Iraq occurring about the same time, it's worth examining both of these issues, as well as Pakistan's connection to terrorism. In previous articles, I've mentioned how the head of Pakistan's intelligence service (ISI), Gen. Mahmoud Ahmad, had $100,000 wired to 9/11 ringleader Mohamed Atta shortly before the attack. I've also mentioned the closeness of the CIA to the ISI, with most of our recent covert operations in that part of the world run through the ISI. The $100,000 Gen. Ahmad had wired to Atta was sent just after August 11, 2001, by Saeed Sheikh, about whom the PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW reported March 3, 2002: "There are many in Musharraf's (head of Pakistan) government who believe that Saeed Sheikh's power comes not from the ISI, but from his connections with our own CIA. The theory is that...Saeed Sheikh was bought and paid for."
Al Qaeda member Khalid Shaikh Mohammed was the mastermind of the 9/11 attack, Richard Reid's shoe bomb attempt, and along with Saeed Sheikh the kidnapping of WALL STREET JOURNAL reporter Daniel Pearl. K.S. Mohammed, like Saeed Sheikh, was also connected to the ISI.
In early January 2002, Daniel Pearl began investigating shoe bomber Richard Reid. According to the GULF NEWS (March 25, 2002), Pearl also may have been looking into U.S. training and backing of the ISI. This training and backing actually began in March 1985. The CIA and ISI funded new madrasses in Pakistan which taught jihad against the Soviets.
The ISI also began making a lot of money from the drug trade. On November 29, 1999, the U.N. Drug Control Program reported that the ISI makes about $2.5 billion annually from illegal drug sales. And on September 27, 2001, the SYDNEY MORNING-HERALD revealed that "opium cultivation and heroin production in Pakistan's northern tribal belt adjoining Afghanistan were a vital offshoot of the ISI-CIA cooperation....Heroin sales in the U.S., carried out through an elaborate web of deception, transport networks, couriers, and payoffs, offset the cost of the decade-long war in Afghanistan." The ISI created the Taliban in Afghanistan in September 1994.
Daniel Pearl was kidnapped on January 23, 2002, and his murder was confirmed on February 22 of that year. Interestingly, the American press hasn't pursued Pearl's investigation of the connection between the ISI (which helped Osama bin Laden get medical treatment on September 10, 2001, in a military hospital in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, where he was guarded by military forces) and the CIA (a CIA operative earlier met bin Laden in a Dubai hospital where the latter was being treated).
Nor has the American press seemed interested in investigating the connection between 9/11 mastermind K.S. Mohammed and the ISI, or ISI radicals' facilitation of Osama bin Laden's and Al Qaeda's escape from Afghanistan into Pakistan when the U.S. launched its attack. One would think that would be extremely important today in case radical elements of the ISI oust Pakistani leader Gen. Pervez Musharraf (who took over Pakistan in a coup October 12, 1999), because then Al Qaeda could have access to nuclear weapons.
Likewise, the press hasn't seemed interested in pursuing how 9/11 easily could have been prevented. Some time after the attack, NBC's Andrea Mitchell (wife of former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan) reported on the possibility of another similar attack. I called her and told her how similar future attacks (and 9/11 itself) easily could have been prevented (Apache Longbow helicopter on standby alert as described in my earlier articles). She said, "Oh, my! Thank you for calling. Thank you." But neither she nor NBC ever reported on my solution. A few days ago, the CBS News assignment desk asked me to e-mail them my solution, so perhaps something eventually will be done.
Belatedly, the press and Congress also may pay attention to my description of why we have a mess in Iraq. Gen. David Petraeus' Iraq report is due soon and will have mixed results, mentioning difficulties but some progress in certain areas of Iraq. The problem with this "progress" is that even I could make certain areas in Iraq safe given enough troops at that one location, but it's a whack-a-mole progress with insurgents simply shifting locations. We never have had enough forces to secure every area of Iraq at the same time.
On August 23, 2007, Sen. John Warner said "American soldiers are now fighting for a failing government more interested in narrow sectarian interests." Long ago, I had warned of the intractable problem of their new Constitution proclaiming Islamic law above the "freedoms" allegedly provided for within the document. This made the sectarian differences between Shiites and Sunnis of critical legal as well as religious importance. The minority Sunnis could be forced to live under the Shiite interpretation of Sharia (Islamic) law.
Because the Shiites are the majority, their government leader, Nouri al-Maliki, felt comfortable on August 26, 2007, telling Senators Hillary Clinton and Carl Levin they should "come to their senses and stop treating Iraq like one of their villages." Shortly before this, he also said he didn't have to abide by any American timetable for progress. After all, what's the U.S. going to do? We've proclaimed them a democratic government in charge of their own destiny, not subject to American dictates!
Therefore, what we have today, according to Sen. Mitch McConnell on August 26, is an Iraq government which hasn't passed an oil law (sharing profits among Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds), hasn't completed the de-Baathification process, and hasn't even had local elections. Pehaps we should have paid more attention to the facts that when Saddam was in charge of Iraq, Maliki spent his exile in Iran and Syria, and that Maliki's constitutional mandate is to last until 2010.
Dennis Laurence Cuddy, historian and political analyst, received a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (major in American History, minor in political science). Dr. Cuddy has taught at the university level, has been a political and economic risk analyst for an international consulting firm, and has been a Senior Associate with the U.S. Department of Education.
Cuddy has also testified before members of Congress on behalf of the U.S. Department of Justice. Dr. Cuddy has authored or edited twenty books and booklets, and has written hundreds of articles appearing in newspapers around the nation, including The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He has been a guest on numerous radio talk shows in various parts of the country, such as ABC Radio in New York City, and he has also been a guest on the national television programs USA Today and CBS's Nightwatch.
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Therefore, what we have today, according to Sen. Mitch McConnell on August 26, is an Iraq government which hasn't passed an oil law (sharing profits among Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds), hasn't completed the de-Baathification process, and hasn't even had local elections.