Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Abu Zubaydah Not The Terror Mastermind Bush Claimed

The veracity challenged Bush administration publicly hailed the capture of Abu Zubaydah a major victory in the "Global War on Terror."

It turns out that Bush's poster boy for Al Qaeda terrorism was much less important than advertised.

A new book, THE ONE PERCENT DOCTRINE: Deep Inside America's Pursuit of Its Enemies Since 9/11 by Ron Suskind reveals some interesting facts about the reflexive deception practiced against the American people by the White House.

Abu Zubaydah (was captured) in Pakistan in March 2002. Described as al-Qaeda's chief of operations even after U.S. and Pakistani forces kicked down his door in Faisalabad, the Saudi-born jihadist was the first al-Qaeda detainee to be shipped to a secret prison abroad. Suskind shatters the official story line here.

Abu Zubaydah, his captors discovered, turned out to be mentally ill and nothing like the pivotal figure they supposed him to be. CIA and FBI analysts, poring over a diary he kept for more than a decade, found entries "in the voice of three people: Hani 1, Hani 2, and Hani 3" -- a boy, a young man and a middle-aged alter ego. All three recorded in numbing detail "what people ate, or wore, or trifling things they said." Dan Coleman, then the FBI's top al-Qaeda analyst, told a senior bureau official, "This guy is insane, certifiable, split personality."

Abu Zubaydah also appeared to know nothing about terrorist operations; rather, he was al-Qaeda's go-to guy for minor logistics -- travel for wives and children and the like. That judgment was "echoed at the top of CIA and was, of course, briefed to the President and Vice President," Suskind writes. And yet somehow, in a speech delivered two weeks later, President Bush portrayed Abu Zubaydah as "one of the top operatives plotting and planning death and destruction on the United States." And over the months to come, under White House and Justice Department direction, the CIA would make him its first test subject for harsh interrogation techniques...

In interviews with intelligence officers, Suskind often finds them baffled by White House statements. "Why the hell did the President have to put us in a box like this?" one top CIA official asked about the overblown public portrait of Abu Zubaydah. But Suskind sees a deliberate management choice: Bush ensnared his director of central intelligence at the time, George J. Tenet, and many others in a new kind of war in which action and evidence were consciously divorced...

Suskind's enterprise has turned up several scoops, including the important disclosure that First Data Corp., among the largest processors of credit-card transactions, began to give the FBI access to its records after Sept. 11, 2001. Suskind's account is fuzzy on some of the legal questions, but he argues that the operation "swept up the suspicious, or simply the unfortunate, by the stadiumful and caught almost no one who was actually a danger to America."...

Which brings us back to the unbalanced Abu Zubaydah. "I said he was important," Bush reportedly told Tenet at one of their daily meetings. "You're not going to let me lose face on this, are you?" "No sir, Mr. President," Tenet replied. Bush "was fixated on how to get Zubaydah to tell us the truth," Suskind writes, and he asked one briefer, "Do some of these harsh methods really work?" Interrogators did their best to find out, Suskind reports. They strapped Abu Zubaydah to a water-board, which reproduces the agony of drowning. They threatened him with certain death. They withheld medication. They bombarded him with deafening noise and harsh lights, depriving him of sleep. Under that duress, he began to speak of plots of every variety -- against shopping malls, banks, supermarkets, water systems, nuclear plants, apartment buildings, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty. With each new tale, "thousands of uniformed men and women raced in a panic to each . . . target." And so, Suskind writes, "the United States would torture a mentally disturbed man and then leap, screaming, at every word he uttered."

Chickenshit nation in action, folks. Making us "safe" from "terr'r."

4 Comments:

Blogger zzsimonb said...

It is easy to knock the folks doing it, hell I hate much of what is going on. Poke into the EFF v At&T action. Now thats a nail biter, will the Bushettes manage to bury it? Well probably, they have some pretty big shovells. But on the other hand, the case has received enought publicity online to make it tricky to hide.

Yes you are right in your post, but there is so much more going on!

Simonb

6/20/2006 5:51 PM  
Blogger Effwit said...

zzsimonb:

This blog has "poked" into the issue you mention. Much farther than almost everyone else.

I am aware that there is "more going on."

What are you doing about it?

6/20/2006 6:23 PM  
Blogger Flo said...

But then, this "Ron Suskind" (if that is his real name) has got to come up with something interesting to sell his book, hasn't he?

I mean, if it's just all a rehash of what we already know, then no-one would buy it, right?

So why should we believe him?

And regarding your piece on Joerg Haider, he is a nazi who no-one in Europe really likes, with a penchant for rhetoric to get his name into the news. No-one listens to him anymore. In fact, the Austiran government even had to issue an apology to the rest of the EU for the inclusion his party in their government. So a great choice of source there.

http://www.dfat.gov.au/media/releases/foreign/2000/fa008_2000.html

6/21/2006 2:55 AM  
Blogger Effwit said...

Flo:

So why should we believe him?

Why should you (or anyone else) believe the serial prevaricator George W. Bush, who has lied about aluminum tubes, yellowcake, WMD, Iraq involvement in 9-11, the outing of Valerie Plame, "mission accomplished", etc.

By such a standard, both Suskind and Haider shine.

Thanks for sharing.

6/21/2006 7:42 AM  

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