Rumsfeld: There Was No Waterboarding of Courier Source

May 3, 2011

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld tells Newsmax the information that led to the killing of Osama bin Laden was obtained through “normal interrogation approaches” and says the notion that terrorist suspects were waterboarded at Guantanamo Bay is a “myth.”Rumsfeld also claims that elements of Pakistani intelligence could have been complicit in hiding the terrorist mastermind, asserts that his killing exonerates George W. Bush’s approach to fighting terrorism, and warns that terrorists will likely try to avenge bin Laden’s death with new attacks against America or its allies.

Rumsfeld was Secretary of Defense under Gerald Ford from 1975 to 1977, then under George W. Bush from 2001 to 2006, and as a member of the Bush administration was one of the chief architects of America’s response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
His new book, “Known and Unknown: A Memoir,” was released in February.
In an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV, Rumsfeld was asked how important was the killing of bin Laden after all these years.
“It is important,” he responds.
“He had become the face of terrorism, radical Islamists in the world, and I think the fact that the coalition of countries shared intelligence and worked the problem seriously for a number of years and were successful, ought to be a signal to other terrorists that while manhunts are difficult, they’re not impossible. The world’s a better place with him gone.
“It’s a good signal that the United States, thanks to George W. Bush’s administration, put in place some structures that put pressure on terrorists and led to this event. And thanks to the Obama administration for continuing those approaches and procedures, we’ve now been successful.”
Asked if harsh interrogation techniques at Guantanamo Bay played a role in obtaining intelligence on bin Laden’s whereabouts, Rumsfeld declares: “First of all, no one was waterboarded at Guantanamo Bay. That’s a myth that’s been perpetrated around the country by critics.
“The United States Department of Defense did not do waterboarding for interrogation purposes to anyone. It is true that some information that came from normal interrogation approaches at Guantanamo did lead to information that was beneficial in this instance. But it was not harsh treatment and it was not waterboarding.”
Rumsfeld reiterated that the killing of bin Laden exonerates the Bush administration’s response to 9/11.
“It certainly points up the fact that the structures that President Bush put into place – military commissions, Guantanamo Bay, the Patriot Act, indefinite detention, and humane treatment, but intensive interrogation to be sure – all contributed to the success we’ve had in the global war on terror.
“The fact that we’ve not had another attack on America for close to a decade, I don’t think anyone would have been bold enough to predict that 10 years ago.
“And certainly the killing of bin Laden is a testimony to our intelligence community. We’ve always had the ability to capture or kill Osama. What we didn’t have was the intelligence that was needed.”
Asked if Pakistan played a role in hiding bin Laden, Rumsfeld tells Newsmax: “I think it’s a fair question to ask the extent to which, probably not the Pakistani government but possibly some people connected to the Pakistani intelligence services, may or may not have had information about his location.”
In light of the fact that Pakistan has received billions of dollars in U.S. aid, what does the possible hiding of bin Laden say about the trustworthiness of Pakistan, Rumsfeld was asked.
“We don’t know yet. What we do know is it’s a Muslim country, they have nuclear weapons, they have been enormously helpful to us, particularly under the Musharraf regime, in allowing us access into Afghanistan and being with us from a military standpoint.
“We always knew there were people in Pakistan who have supported the Taliban and al-Qaida. That’s true in a number of countries. But the assistance we’ve provided to Pakistan has in my view been well spent.”
Rumsfeld says he doesn’t think the killing of bin Laden “will have any bearing at all” on destabilizing the security of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons.
He adds: “We do know that al-Qaida has sought out chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, and we do know they’ve alleged that in the event that Osama bin Laden is killed or captured, they would undertake some additional terrorist attacks on America and on our friends and allies around the world.”
Referring to new CIA Director Leon Panetta’s warning that terrorists’ attempts to avenge bin Laden’s death are inevitable, Rumsfeld says: “I think it’s likely they will try.” via {Newsmax/ and image via


CHECKMATE! Saddam’s WMDS found

December 10, 2010

… now what argument does the “Left” have?

Even Chomsky admitted there was satelite activity that he saw. 

President George W. Bush was subjected to one of the most vicious smear campaigns in history, based on the false assertion that he lied about Saddam Hussein pursuing weapons of mass destruction as a justification for the Iraq War. WikiLeaks documents released in October once again confirm (AT had the story in December, 2009) that Iraq did indeed possess  yellowcake uranium, despite the lies of Joseph Wilson, husband of CIA desk jockey Valerie Palme. 

Larrey Elder presents a debunking of the “no WMD” media fantasy today on Townhall, and makes the entirely proper point that George W. Bush is owed a huge apology. Strangely, for whatever reason, the ex-president has not defended himself on this point in his current bestselling book, nor did he during his presidency.   

So, congratulations Pvt. Manning and Julian A. for confirming what AT readers already knew, but don’t expect any kudos from the left or the press.

Saddam's missing nukes found? Another Syrian nuke site?

  I’m going to have to ask for apologies from a lot of people

You will recall that there are three sites in Syria, which are associated with the al-Kibar reactor site that was mysteriously destroyed in September 2007, and to which the Syrians have denied the IAEA access. Now, thanks to satellite images, there is more evidence of suspicious activities at the sites in question.

The Sueddeutsche Zeitung has reported the names of three cities in Syria which are near sites suspected of being functionally related to a destroyed covert reactor construction project. These suspect sites are located near Masyaf, the village of Marj as-Sultan near Damascus, and Iskandariyah (see figure 1).

ISIS has learned that the site seen in Figure 2 is the suspect site located near Masyaf.

This site is located approximately six kilometers northeast of Masyaf city center 1 in Syria (see figures 3 and 4), and appears to be comprised of storage buildings. Aside from what could be a line of berms or trenches (see figure 5), the site does not appear to have many security measures visible in commercial satellite imagery. The entire site, however, is situated in a ravine between two hills and buildings at the site are located along the base of the hills—a common method for providing general protection and isolation. This could indicate that the site is a military depot/storage facility. Hundreds of items can also be seen stored in rows out in the open (see figures 6 and 7). It is unclear what these items are.

Read the whole thing. The bottom line is that without access to the sites in question, no one can tell for sure what they are, and the Syrians are refusing to grant the inspectors access to the sites.

read the rest at the link

David Kelley Iraqi weapons inspector case in the UK reopened

June 7, 2010

The death of the former Iraq weapons inspector Dr David Kelly seven years ago caused a political firestorm that profoundly destabilised the Blair government.
Dr Kelly was found dead in the woods near his home after he had been named as the source of an explosive BBC report that claimed the Government had ’sexed up’ the evidence that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction.
In the high-profile inquiry chaired by Lord Hutton into the circumstances surrounding Dr Kelly’s death, the one thing that was never queried was the premise that he had committed suicide. This was taken as read, and many believed his ‘outing’ had driven him to take his own life.
Yet now the new Attorney-General Dominic Grieve has let it be known that he may order an inquiry to look again at the assumption that Dr Kelly died by his own hand. At the same time, the Justice Secretary Ken Clarke is said to be considering a request to release the medical files relating to the scientist’s death.
This is all very much to be welcomed as potentially shedding light on an intensely controversial event that has grown ever more murky as the years have rolled on.
It was especially puzzling, for example, that, as was revealed earlier this year, Lord Hutton quietly ensured the evidence relating to Dr Kelly’s death was to remain a classified state secret until 2073.
Given that Dr Kelly had been closely involved in the most sensitive of intelligence work, it would not be surprising if certain evidence given to the inquiry in closed session was to be kept secret in order not to compromise security sources.
But Lord Hutton went much further than this and classified all the medical and scientific records connected with Dr Kelly’s death, the post mortem report and photographs of his body.
This inexplicable secrecy can excite only suspicion that the authorities have something very bad indeed to hide. So an inquiry would be welcome if it kills off such speculation.
Nevertheless, such a move by the Attorney-General would raise many eyebrows. For it suggests that the real scandal over Dr Kelly was one that was totally missed in all the sound and fury of the Hutton inquiry.
Until now, those claiming Dr Kelly did not commit suicide have been regarded as off-the-wall conspiracy theorists. Neither Mr Grieve nor Mr Clarke, however, can possibly be considered to be among their number.
Moreover, it’s not as if they are being forced to respond to the kind of public pressure that brought about the farcical inquest into the death of Princess Diana. There has been no widespread public disquiet over the manner of Dr Kelly’s death at all. The prospect of an inquiry comes out of a clear-blue sky.
It is being mooted simply because the rational, cautious and circumspect Attorney-General is said to be concerned that the full truth about this may not have emerged.
This is particularly welcome for those of us who have long thought that Dr Kelly’s presumed ’suicide’ raised troubling questions that have never been satisfactorily answered — indeed, never addressed at all.
Those behind the campaign to reconsider the suicide verdict are a group of doctors who have looked at the available evidence and decided that it just doesn’t stack up. The points they make are compelling — so much so that Mr Grieve has commended them for making ‘an impressive and cogent case’.
For example, Dr Kelly was said to have killed himself by severing the ulnar artery in his left wrist with a blunt gardening knife, along with swallowing some 29 Coproxamol painkiller tablets. He was said to have died either from haemorrhaging blood or a combination of cutting his wrist and taking the overdose.
But the doctors pointed out that virtually no blood was found near his body — and his stomach contained merely a fraction of one Coproxamol tablet. Moreover, severing the ulnar artery was a very odd way to commit suicide since, they said, it was of match-stick thickness and difficult to access.
None of these concerns — and many more — was ever tested out, because the coroner’s inquest where such evidence would have been heard was suspended in favour of the Hutton inquiry. And unlike an inquest, this had no statutory powers and did not require witnesses to give evidence under oath.
This all led Lib Dem MP (now Transport minister) Norman Baker to smell a rat — giving up his front-bench opposition post to investigate what had actually happened.
Mr Baker, who has a ferocious reputation for digging out politically uncomfortable truths, claimed that the police operation to investigate Dr Kelly’s death had started around nine hours before the weapons expert was reported missing.
He also made public letters suggesting that the coroner, Nicholas Gardiner, had doubts about the Hutton inquiry’s ability to establish the cause of death — and may have been led up the garden path.
The normal practice would be for the coroner to issue a temporary death certificate pending an official inquiry. But in this case, he issued an unprecedented full death certificate just one week after the inquiry started — and after he had held a meeting with Home Office officials.
Three years ago, Mr Baker published a book claiming that Dr Kelly had been murdered by opponents of Saddam Hussein, who feared that Dr Kelly would ‘discredit’ them by revealing ‘misinformation’ they had deliberately planted to bolster the case for war in Iraq.
In a rival claim, however, Richard Spertzel, a retired American micro-biologist who led the United Nations biological inspection team in Iraq, says evidence had emerged that Saddam was planning to attack American and European cities with deadly nerve agents placed in over-the-counter perfume bottles.
And Mr Spertzel says he was told that he and Dr Kelly, with whom he had worked closely, were numbers three and four on an Iraqi hit list.
I myself have met people familiar with the shadowy world in which Dr Kelly moved who are certain he was murdered. They are adamant that he would never have committed suicide, that he was an outstanding patriot who had done much dangerous work for his country, and that there was no shortage of foreign tyrants who might have wanted him killed because of the evidence he uncovered about their biological weapons.
Of course, all of this seems just too fantastic to be credible. Not only is it like a plot from a spy thriller, but if Dr Kelly was indeed murdered there must have been a real conspiracy to cover this up involving police officers and pathologists, civil servants and politicians. Yet if the Attorney-General does launch an inquiry into Dr Kelly’s ’suicide’, this is precisely the incredible possibility that he would be opening up.
And while it is entirely plausible that Princess Diana would not have died if she had been wearing her seat-belt, the story we have been given about the ’suicide’ of Dr Kelly doesn’t make any sense. Might the truth be that the outing of David Kelly’s name led not to his suicide — but to his killing?
Maybe, in the end, the truth will turn out to be more prosaic. But let us hope that Messrs Grieve and Clarke are not deflected from their intention to lay this disturbing episode finally to rest.