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Bush’s Fake Sheik Whacked:
The Surge and the Al Qaeda Bunny

Greg Palast 

A special investigative report from inside Iraq
Bush and Abu Risha Photo by AFP

Monday, September 17, 2007- Did you see George all choked up? In his surreal TV talk on Thursday, he got all emotional over the killing by Al Qaeda of Sheik Abu Risha, the leader of the new Sunni alliance with the US against the insurgents in Anbar Province, Iraq.

Bush shook Abu Risha’s hand two weeks ago for the cameras. Bush can shake his hand again, but not the rest of him: Abu Risha was blown away just hours before Bush was to go on the air to praise his new friend.

Here’s what you need to know that NPR won’t tell you.

1. Sheik Abu Risha wasn’t a sheik.
2. He wasn’t killed by Al Qaeda.
3. The new alliance with former insurgents in Anbar is as fake as the sheik – and a murderous deceit.

How do I know this? You can see the film – of “Sheik” Abu Risha, of the guys who likely whacked him and of their other victims.

Just in case you think I’ve lost my mind and put my butt in insane danger to get this footage, don’t worry. I was safe and dry in Budapest. It was my brilliant new cameraman, Rick Rowley, who went to Iraq to get the story on his own.

Rick’s “the future of TV news,” says BBC. He’s also completely out of control. Despite our pleas, …more

“Be Careful What You Say”

Greg Palast 

It’s a grim day for the Republic when John Ashcroft is the last line of defense of our liberties.

I didn’t know if I should barf or scream or set my hair on fire after watching former Deputy Attorney General James Comey describe how Bush’s Chief of Staff Andrew Card and his Tonto, Alberto Gonzales, tried to pry the Constitution from Ashcroft’s cold dying hand.

Imagine the scene: Attorney        …more

September 11:
What You “Ought Not to Know”

Greg Palast 

Watch the BBC Report / Read the Transcript
September 10, 2006- On November 9, 2001, when you could still choke on the dust in the air near Ground Zero, BBC Television received a call in London from a top-level US intelligence agent. He was not happy. Shortly after George W. Bush took office, he told us reluctantly, the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the FBI, “were told to back off the Saudis.”

We knew that. In the newsroom, we had a document already in 199-Ihand, marked, “SECRET” across the top and “” – meaning this was a national security matter.

The secret memo released agents to hunt down two members of the bin Laden family operating a “suspected terrorist organization” in the USA. It was dated September 13, 2001 ”” two days too late for too many. What the memo indicates, corroborated by other sources, was that the agents had long wanted to question these characters ”¦ but could not until after the attack. By that time, these bin Laden birds had flown their American nest.

Back to the high-level agent. I pressed him to tell me exactly which investigations were spiked. None of this interview dance was easy, requiring switching to untraceable …more

So, Osama Walks into This Bar, See?

Greg Palast 

Excerpted from Armed Madhouse

So, Osama Walks into This Bar, See? and Bush says, “Whad’l’ya have, pardner?” and Osama says…

But wait a minute. I’d better shut my mouth. The sign here in the airport says, “Security is no joking matter.” But if security’s no joking matter, why does this guy dressed in a high-school marching band outfit tell me to dump my Frappuccino and take off my shoes? All I can say is, Thank the Lord the “shoe bomber” didn’t carry Semtex in his underpants. …more

Armed Madhouse: Part I

Greg Palast 

Working Assets Serialization

06.13.06 – (Eds. note: This piece is part of a serialization of Greg Palast’s newest book, Armed Madhouse. Palast’s Armed Madhouse book tour is co-sponsored by Working Assets.)

THE FEAR: Including Marines in a tube, learning to speak Terrorist, Bush’s Khan job, National Security Document 199-I and Osama’s Mission Accomplished.

What are you afraid of? Our Fear Salesman-in-Chief has something for everyone.

So, Osama Walks into This Bar, See?

…and Bush says, “Whad’l’ya have, pardner?” and Osama says…

But wait a minute. I’d better shut my mouth. The sign here in the airport says, “Security is no joking matter.” But if security’s no joking matter, why does this guy dressed in a high-school marching band outfit tell me to take off my shoes? All I can say is, Thank God the “shoe bomber” didn’t carry Semtex in his underpants.

I’m a bit nervous. It’s an “ORANGE ALERT” day. That’s a “low threat” notice. According to the press release from the Department of Homeland Security, low-threat Orange means that there will be no special inspections of passengers or cargo today. Isn’t it nice of Mr. Bush to alert Osama when half our security forces are given the day off? Hmm. I asked an Israeli security expert why his nation doesn’t use these pretty color codes.

He asked me if, when I woke up, I checked the day’s terror color.

“I can’t say I ever have. I mean, who would?” He smiled. “The terrorists.” America is the only nation on the planet that kindly informs bombers, hijackers and berserkers the days on which they won’t be monitored. You’ve got to get up pretty early in the morning to get a jump on George Bush’s team.

There are three possible explanations for the Administration’s publishing a good-day-for-bombing color guidebook.

1. God is on Osama’s side.

2. George is on Osama’s side.

3. It’s about the oil.

A gold star if you picked #3.

Osama’s Mission Accomplished

On Thursday, May 1, 2003, President Bush landed on the deck of the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln. Forgetting to undo the parachute clips around his gonads, our President walked bowlegged on the ship’s deck in a green jumpsuit looking astonishingly like Ham, first chimp in space. The scene was so exciting that the media failed to notice that the War on Terror had ended on the previous Tuesday.

On that day, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld quietly acknowledged that he was withdrawing America’s armed forces from Saudi Arabia.

I’m always surprised at the debate over “What drives Osama? What does Al-Qaeda want?” There should be no confusion: Al-Qaeda states its mission, like most enterprises, on its Web site. Osama had it written out in English, in capital letters, so it wouldn’t be difficult to miss the point.

DECLARATION OF WAR AGAINST THE AMERICANS OCCUPYING THE LAND OF THE TWO HOLY PLACES””EXPEL THE INFIDELS FROM THE ARAB PENINSULA The “two holy places” are Mecca and Medina, and their “land” is Saudi Arabia. That’s what Osama wanted: U.S. troops out of Saudi Arabia.

Bin Laden issued his demand on August 23, 1996; and on April 29, 2003, the Tuesday before the President was chauffeured by fighter jet onto the deck of the Abe Lincoln, Mr. Bush gave bin Laden exactly what he wanted: U.S. troops sent packing from the Land of the Holy Places.

That’s astonishing. Until George W. Bush, the United States of America has never, ever, removed all our military bases from a foreign land no matter how much locals bitched or moaned. We even keep troops in Okinawa over the island’s strong objections, and World War II ended sixty years ago.

Am I accusing George Bush Jr. of being the first President of the United States to cravenly accede to the demands of terrorists? No, Reagan got there first, in 1984, when he gave in to Hizbollah’s demand and ordered our Marines to retreat from Lebanon.

No matter, President Bush was correct in announcing, “Mission Accomplished.” However, it was not America’s mission that was accomplished. It was Osama’s.

Coming soon: Part II of Armed Madhouse, “What Does Osama Want?”

URL: http://www.workingforchange.com/article.cfm?itemid=20950

George and Tony Get their al-Qaeda Fix

Greg Palast 

The tooth fairy, Santa Clause, WorldCom profits, the Easter Bunny, al-Qaeda.

The cruel, evil jerks who blew up the London subway last week, despite appropriating al-Qaeda’s name for their website and T-shirts, have about as much to do with al-Qaeda as a Beatles tribute band has to do with the Fab Four. …more