- If you believe the media, John P. O'Neill was simply
another innocent victim killed in the September 11 attacks on the World
Trade Center. But you don't need much imagination to suspect something
deeper was at work.
- Clearly, O'Neill was a man Osama bin Laden wanted dead.
O'Neill had been a Deputy Director of the FBI, and Osama bin Laden's main
pursuer in the US government. O'Neill had investigated the bombings of
the World Trade Center in 1993, a US base in Saudi Arabia in 1996, the
US embassies in Nairobi and Dar-Es-Salaam in 1998, and the USS Cole last
- But once the first plane hit the North Tower, Osama bin
Laden wouldn't be the only man to profit from O'Neill's death. At the moment
of impact, O'Neill became the man who knew too much.
- Just two weeks, TWO WEEKS, prior to the attack, O'Neill
had left his job with the FBI. O'Neill had quit because he believed that
the Bush administration had stymied the intelligence agency's investigations
on terrorism. O'Neill charged that it had done so even as it bargained
with the Taliban on handing over of Osama bin Laden in exchange for political
recognition and economic aid. In the ultimate irony, O'Neill had gone public
with these charges at the same time that he was leaving the FBI to become
the head of security at the World Trade Center.
- "The main obstacles to investigate Islamic terrorism
were US oil corporate interests, and the role played by Saudi Arabia in
it," O'Neill reportedly told the authors of an explosive new book,
Hidden Truth, by intelligence analysts Charles Brisard and Guillaume Dasquie.
Brisard met O'Neill several times last summer and reports that O'Neill
complained bitterly that the US State Department - and behind it the oil
lobby who make up President Bush's entourage - blocked attempts to prove
bin Laden's guilt.
- Released just last November, Brisard and Dasquie's book
was mostly ignored by the US media. But it is beginning to cause a stir.
Just two days ago, the story aired for the first time on US television
when CNN's Paula Zahn interviewed former Iraqi chief U.N. weapons inspector
Richard Bulter. "The most explosive charge, Paula, is that the Bush
administration -- the present one, just shortly after assuming office slowed
down FBI investigations of al Qaeda and terrorism in Afghanistan in order
to do a deal with the Taliban on oil -- an oil pipeline across Afghanistan"
- Maybe part of the reason Paula left Faux news is because
she knew her right wing bosses would never let her run a story like this
one. But what Paula didn't explore, or even mention, was that O'Neill was
not alive to confirm or refute those charges. What CNN didn't find interesting
was the fact that John P. O'Neill was in his 34th-floor office in the World
Trade Tower when the first of two hijacked planes hit the building, or
that he phoned a son and a friend to reassure them he was fine.
- What the US media have apparently found less interesting
than the death of Clinton's dog is that we have only the government's version
of what happened next. O'Neill is reported to have called FBI headquarters,
and then re-entered one of the towers to help others. The official story
is that O'Neill was inside when the buildings collapsed.
- How convenient for the Bush administration that Mr. O'Neill
would not only die in the attack, but also that he would make such a call.
Not only was the Bush administration's most dangerous critic forever silenced,
but he also provided the administration the perfect story to explain his
- Can you imagine how the events of the past four months
would have differed had John P. O'Neill, former Deputy Director of the
FBI and head of security at the World Trade Tower at the time of the attacks,
had been alive to tell this story?
- Can you imagine the uproar this story would be causing
if Bill Clinton were still president?
- As things stand, only time will tell if O'Neill's story
is investigated by the US press that found Monica Lewinsky worthy of two
years of our lives. Certainly, the authors who have reported it are credible.
Till the late 1990s, Brisard was the director of economic analysis and
strategy for Vivendi, the giant French conglomerate that owns Universal
Studios and effective control of USA Networks. He also worked for French
secret services (DST), and wrote for them in 1997 a report on the now famous
Al Qaeda network, headed by bin Laden. Dasquie is an investigative journalist
and publisher of Intelligence Online, a respected newsletter on diplomacy,
economic analysis and strategy. And Richard Bulter, who put the story in
play on the US cable networks, is hardly an excitable conspiracy nut.
- Perhaps the CIA will investigate. But I wouldn't expect
much from them. After all, they were apparently unable to penetrate the
same Al Qaeda network that welcomed in John Walker, a confused 20 year
old kid from California, who is reported to have met bin Laden himself.
- Note: See also, a reprint of a recent Bush Watch letter,
- TODAY'S LETTER AT BUSH WATCH
- There's really only one thing that needs to be known
about the culpability for 9/11 - during the Clinton administration, no
requests for a FISA warrant were denied. (Foreign Intelligence Security
Act) Under the Bush administration, previous to 9/11, all such requests
were denied, because the Bush administration shut down all intelligence
inquiries that would expose Saudi complicity with terrorism. The Minneapolis
FBI office, with its 20th hijacker in custody since August, asked for a
FISA warrant and was denied. New York FBI counter-terrorism chief John
O'Neill quit his job in protest of Bush's obstructionism, only to die in
his new job as chief of security at the WTC, probably the only man to die
that day that understood the context of his death.... --Kent Southard