Saturday, September 09, 2006

Did Americans Aid 9-11 Terrorists?

"We continue to examine the contacts between the 19 hijackers and a number of persons"---FBI Assistant Director John Miller

Some information is coming out today which suggests that Federal agencies are investigating the possibility that Americans may have aided the 9-11 Terrorists.

David Shuster has written an article titled "9/11 mystery: Did Americans aid terrorists?"

Lisa Myers, Jim Popkin & the NBC Investigative Unit have written an article titled "Did the 9/11 hijackers have a U.S. accomplice?"

In an 8-10-04 article titled "Hijackers' Friend Objects to 9/11 Report," writer Dan Eggen profiles Mohdar Abdullah, a man whom investigators suspect may have helped two 9-11 terrorists in San Diego.

According to Dan Eggen,

When [Abdullah] was detained as a material witness after the 2001 attacks, the [9-11] commission says, FBI agents found a notebook in his possession that had been written by someone else but described "planes falling from the sky, mass killing and hijacking."

According to Myers and Popkin,

Senior U.S. law enforcement officials tell NBC News that the FBI is again actively investigating a good friend of the 9/11 hijackers — two years after the U.S. allowed the man to be deported to his home country.

His name is Mohdar Abdullah, a Yemeni student who admits befriending two 9/11 hijackers — Nawaf Al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar — when they lived in San Diego.


NBC News has learned that the renewed FBI investigation was triggered, in part, by surveillance videotapes from inside the Los Angeles Airport shot in June 2000 — a year before 9/11.

Law enforcement officials tell NBC the grainy tapes show terrorist Nawaf al-Hazmi with Abdullah and an unidentified man. Sources say the men appear to be scouting out the airport. Some FBI agents believe that one of the men may be holding a video camera and rotates in a circle while secretly videotaping near the security area...


FBI Assistant Director John Miller issued the following statement to NBC News:

"At the time of his release, the FBI did not have sufficient evidence to charge [Mohdar Abdullah] with a crime. ICE did not have a legal basis to hold him indefinitely. Since deporting him, through investigation, the FBI has uncovered some additional information but not enough on its own to bring any formal charge. We continue to examine the contacts between the 19 hijackers and a number of persons."

David Shuster writes:

Prior to the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, all 19 of the terrorists had been living in the U.S. for several months, some for more than a year. They obtained visas, signed apartment leases, shopped, prayed at mosques, rented cars and bought airline tickets.

Could they have done so — especially those who did not speak English — without help from American citizens? It is one of the top unanswered questions lingering about the 9/11 attacks...


"It seems to me that there was some other support mechanism there,” said Roger Cressey, who was director of transnational threats for President Bush's National Security Council. “Now, did that support mechanism know what these individuals were going to do? We don't know. But I think there was something here in the United States they relied upon."

...Many questions have focused on two of the 19 hijackers, Nawaw al Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar.

They were among the first four al-Qaida members Osama bin Laden chose for the plot. Hazmi and Mihdhar settled in San Diego in February 2000, about 18 months before 9/11. According to the 9/11 report, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, who helped organize the attack, "instructed Hazmi and Mihdhar to pose as newly arrived Saudi students and seek assistance at local mosques."


Hazmi and Mihdhar made friends in San Diego. One friend investigated by the FBI — Mohdar Abdullah — was among those students who "appear to have held extremist sympathies." The 9/11 report says he helped Hazmi and Mihdhar get driver's licenses and enroll in English classes...

In the months that followed, Hazmi and Mihdhar also befriended another man in California, Anwar Aulaqi, a religious leader who soon moved to Virginia. Eventually, Hazmi himself moved to Virginia and showed up at Aulaqi's mosque.

Along the way, did Aulaqi or any other Muslims know what any of the 19 would-be hijackers were planning?


.....[T]he 9/11 commission says there is "no evidence" the hijackers received help from anybody in the U.S. who knew about the plot. But it's a question that has long bothered investigators.

Investigators are also convinced that there was supposed to be one more hijacker involved in the plot. This is the so-called "20th hijacker." We will examine the questions about who that may be in our third report on Friday.

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