Saturday, May 21, 2005

Lobbyist in Espionage Inquiry Says That He Broke No Laws - New York Times

Lobbyist in Espionage Inquiry Says That He Broke No Laws - New York Times: "Lobbyist in Espionage Inquiry Says That He Broke No Laws

By JOEL BRINKLEY
Published: May 22, 2005
WASHINGTON, May 21 - A former senior officer in a pro-Israel lobbying group who was fired because of his involvement in an espionage case says that he did nothing wrong and that he does not understand why he is the subject of a criminal investigation.

"I did not violate any U.S. laws," said the former officer, Steve Rosen, who is at the center of the swirling counterintelligence investigation. Mr. Rosen was a well-connected senior policy analyst and lobbyist for the group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, until he was fired last month.

Leaders of other major Jewish organizations - some who are close to Aipac, as the organization is known, and others who are not - say they believe that Mr. Rosen and a colleague, Keith Weissman, were fired to insulate the group from criticism ahead of its annual convention, which opens on Sunday. Aipac denies that.

Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman were fired because of their association with Lawrence A. Franklin, a former Pentagon analyst who was arrested on May 4 on charges of illegally disclosing military secrets.

No charges have been filed against the two, and the organization has not been implicated in the investigation, law enforcement officials said. Many senior government officials, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the House speaker, J. Dennis Hastert, are scheduled to attend the convention, as is Prime Minister Ariel Sharon of Israel. None of the major officials have canceled their plans to attend.

Aipac has long been an important organization to the government; officials strive to keep close relationships with it.

Even with the two former Aipac officials under federal investigation, support for Aipac among other Jewish groups remains strong.

Still, there is little question that the organization's lobbying arm has been damaged by the loss of Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman, and the broader espionage accusations may discourage some government officials from dealing with Aipac. Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman often spoke with colleagues in the Israeli Embassy, and as part of their work traded information with the Israelis.

"Some middle-level people in government will be hesitant" to talk to Aipac now, said Malcolm I. Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, an umbrella group whose members include Aipac. He and others suggested that some government officials might fear that they, too, could be swept up in an espionage case.

Patrick Dorton, a spokesman for Aipac, said that the organization "continues to have meetings and exchanges at all levels of government."

Morris J. Amitay, a former executive director of Aipac, voiced another concern shared by almost everyone interviewed: "the risk," he said, "that the Department of Justice comes up with something that could be incriminating to Aipac."

Over several years one or both of the Aipac lobbyists held four meetings with Mr. Franklin, who was under surveillance by Justice Department investigators. When Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman began meeting him, they too were under surveillance. During a final meeting between Mr. Franklin and Mr. Weissman in July 2004, Mr. Franklin was serving as a government informant, and the meeting was taped.

The people sympathetic to Mr. Rosen's case said they regarded the meeting as a sting because Mr. Franklin described information about threats to Israeli operatives who were working in northern and southern Iraq. Iranian agents, Mr. Franklin said, planned to kill them.

Mr. Weissman told Mr. Rosen about this, the people said, and the two set out to confirm what Mr. Franklin had said by talking to American and Israeli officials.

Soon after, an F.B.I. agent questioned the two and asked if they had spread classified information. They said no and maintained in discussions with the agent and with Aipac officers that Mr. Weissman never heard Mr. Franklin say the material he was describing was classified.

Later, lawyers learned that the tape of Mr. Franklin's last conversation with Mr. Weissman showed that he did note that the information was classified. After learning that, Aipac fired Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman, said several friends of Aipac who were briefed on the investigation."

Iran Policy Committee: Pentagon mouthpiece, Israeli ally, MEK supporter

Iran Policy Committee: Pentagon mouthpiece, Israeli ally, MEK supporter: "Iran Policy Committee: Pentagon mouthpiece, Israeli ally, MEK supporter

By John Stanton
Online Journal Contributing Writer
May 21, 2005—The Iran Policy Committee (IPC) has a website up and running at iranpolicycommittee.org.*

The IPC made the news in February when it released a report titled "US Options for Iran." In that report, the IPC recommended that a terrorist group known as the Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK) be removed from the US government's hit list. The authors of the IPC report equate the terrorist MEK with the African National Congress that fought long and hard against the despicable all-white South African regime and its US supporters so many years ago. Of course, the implication here is that the MEK will somehow produce a Nelson Mandela, or at least is on the same playing field as Mandela's group was.

Those two wacky thoughts should be enough to dismiss the 11 IPC principals, their mission and their clumsy report as nonsense. But inside the Washington Beltway, it's never wise to dismiss ignorance until performing background checks on the individuals and their affiliations. The record shows that the IPC operates in very close proximity to the US intelligence community, has the support of 150 members in the US Congress, and is linked to individuals/groups who successfully lied and led the US into another Vietnam-like war, and whose primary purpose is the creation of a US empire that controls the world's resources and protects a greater Israel. Crazy is selling these days and the loonies are in charge.

The IPC is supported by the neocon all-stars that we've come to know and love such as Douglas Feith, Frank Gaffney, Michael Leeden, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld, Condoleezza Rice, et al. But these frontbenchers are running out of political muscle as their war in Iraq continues to drain the resources of the American people on political, economic and military fronts. What's worse, perhaps, is their "with us or against us" mentality has caused new political and economic alliances to form (example: South America-China-Iran) and has accelerated both conventional and nuclear arms races. Having failed on so many fronts, they recognize that to get the US into Iran, some new faces are needed and that's where the IPC backbenchers are critical to the forthcoming anti-Iranian/Persian propaganda operations.

The IPC is linked through its purpose and people to the Coalition for a Democratic Iran and the MEK, the Washington PAC, JINSA, AIPAC, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, the Department of Defense (DoD), the Center for Security Policy, and all the major US intelligence agencies. IPC members are primarily defense and security contractors/consultants and would benefit financially from a war with Iran.

FOX This!

Anyone who can tolerate FOX News—the electronic equivalent of Reverend Moon's Washington Times—on a regular basis will recognize these IPC members: Lt.Gen. Tom McInerney, USAF (Ret.) formerly of the Business Executives for National Security and member of the Center for Security Policy; Major Gen. Paul Vallely, USA (Ret.); Capt. Chuck Nash, USN (Ret.); and Lt.Col. Bill Cowan, USMC (Ret.). These four folks are frequently seen and heard discussing military matters on FOX. Other IPC heavy hitters include Raymond Tanter, a former staffer at the National Security Council and current member of the Committee for the Present Danger and the Washington Center for Near East Policy; Clare Lopez a former CIA analyst; and Jim Atkins, former US President Richard Nixon's ambassador to Saudi Arabia, who is known in some circles as "the westerner who knows the most about the Middle East . . ."

The military heavyweight of the IPC is McInerney. One of the highlights of McInerney's military career, besides being a top-notch pilot in Vietnam, was assisting Alaska in the clean up of the oil spill caused by the Exxon Valdez when it ran aground in March of 1989. From April to September of that year, McInerney admirably headed the Joint Task Force Alaska Oil Spill while commander of the Alaskan Air Command (then Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney argued for a minimalist DoD/federal government role). These days, though, McInerney is busy promoting the neocon cause and dabbling in a host of money-making and influence peddling activities.

You can find him—and fellow IPC cohorts Vallely, Cowan and Lopez—at conferences like Intelcon 2005** as speakers and members of the Intelcon's Program Advisory Group (Michael Leeden, Frank Gaffney and Daniel Pipes are among them). Former directors of the NSA, CIA and DIA are featured panelists, along with more, yes more, FOX News commentators no doubt opining in conference as on the network with all the volume of an announcer at a Monster Truck bash. Yehoshuah Mizrachi of Operation Shiloh apparently spoke at Intelcon about handling terror like an Israeli (he equates the Battle of Shiloh from the US Civil War with 9–11). Finally, the conference program shows that the standard mix of defense contractors and US government bureaucrats round out Intelcon's conferees, along with a few token liberals thrown in for what appears to be some sort of balance.

Do You Hear What I Hear?

So what are all these IPC characters doing at Intelcon? Well it's a good place to drum up business and get nod-and-wink-intel about what's really going on "over there and with that contract award." At the Intelcon blast held this past February, McInerney chaired a panel on Securing Intelligence Networks. As a director of NetStar Systems, that subject matter is an important part of his job. According to NetStar's website, it is "a fast-growing Virginia corporation with headquarters in Vienna, Virginia. It was founded in 1998 and most of our employees are cleared at the Top Secret or higher levels. NetStar is growing rapidly in the Intel and DoD sectors and has provided numerous solutions and staff to many of the Intelligence agencies in the DC metro area." Clients include the NSA, CIA, DIA, FBI, DHS and the Office of Naval Intelligence. NetStar is a member of the National Military Intelligence Association (NMIA). Most of NetStar's clients were at Intelcon 2005 including General Jim Williams, USA (Ret.), former director of DIA, and NMIA's current director.

With the IPC plugged into US global and domestic intelligence operations, and connected with neocon/Israeli lobbying activities here in the USA, it's important to listen to them—no matter how maniacally they articulate their position. So when McInerney was quoted by the Washington Times' Rowan Scarborough in February about the likelihood of an attack on Iran, one has to wonder how and where he is getting his information as he states it with an air of complete certainty

What are we to make of his almost 30-year old assessment of Iranian anti-aircraft defenses? Is it likely that Iran has done nothing about its defenses since the 1970s or does personnel experience mean something else given his contacts in the neocon pipeline and US/foreign intelligence communities?

"He [Bush] doesn't have any choice [but to attack Iran because] he understands [the Iranians] are the king of terror right now. They are striving for nuclear weapons that can get into the hands of terrorists and then it's too late. B-2 stealth bombers, armed with the huge penetrating bombs commonly called bunker busters, would be able to pierce Iran's aging air defenses and hit 20 or more sites. They have not updated that very, very old air defense system. McInerney said that as a colonel in 1977 he went to Iran and conducted a war exercise against various Iranian targets during the rule of the United States' ally, the Shah of Iran. They were not very good then, and they have clearly just gotten worse . . . I can tell you from my personal experience we would have no problem there."

McInerney's buddy, Vallely, is of the same mind. According to FOX News, Vallely believes that "while the United States has the ability to launch a major ground invasion, it wouldn't have to . . . we can take a country down with just our air assets . . . we don't have put boots on the ground all the time if we're after specific targets."

Did they forget about how difficult Iran could make it for US troops on the ground in Iraq? What about the impact on the US and world economy?

It is vacuum packed thinking like this that prompted the following Amazon Books review of McInerney and Vallely's book Endgame: Blueprint for Victory in the War on Terror. Robert Steele of the noted Open Source Solutions had this to say: "I finally figured it out. This is a puff piece of, by, and for FOX Cable News viewers. There are no footnotes in this book. It is a rambling opinion piece. Let us not confuse rank with brains, or opinions with thought. This is a double-spaced book that could probably be distilled to 30 pages of core reading, all summed up as 'we're always right, no matter the cost.' This book also adopts the Richard Perle neoconservative game plan of using terrorism as a pretext to invade Syria and Iran. The authors—who demonstrate how far one could get in the Cold War military without reading or thinking, call this a military assessment. It is not . . . It avoids discussing Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Central Asia, Muslim Africa, and Muslim Pacifica. This is not analysis, this is flim-flam . . . This book is a blueprint for a nuclear winter in which America self-immolates."

We Know Terrorism?

IPC notable Cowan runs a company called wvc3. Among other things, Cowan's group states "Talking about terrorists is one thing. Having conducted successful operations against them in their midst is another. We know terrorism. It's not something we've learned since 9/11. We can speak with absolute authority about how they organize, think, act, and operate. Programs and operations designed to neutralize them will only be as successful as the thinking behind them. We provide the bedrock around which sound counterterrorism initiatives and efforts are based."

Uh, if that's so, where were they on 911? What about the MEK?

Anyway, Cowan's group links to companies like Aegis whose claim is that "Our management staff consists of prior U.S. military, police and government personnel. Their many years of dedicated service provides Aegis MEP with a network of international contacts that enable us to act anywhere in the world. Our linguists are rigorously tested to ensure their proficiency in English and their specialty language(s). Our consultants and operational personnel have extensive international experience and are accustomed to acting professionally in politically sensitive environments . . . The projects we complete for our clients are generally sensitive in nature."

In sum, they are either guarding people and things, killing/destroying people and things, or watching and listening to someone on something. Which makes one wonder why resort to all the self-inflating crypto military/intelligence speak?

MEK: Terrorists Working for America

On April 6, a number of IPC principals met with elected officials in the US government. The IPC has the complete account on its website from US Newswire. Here are some of the highlights:

"The IPC convened on Capitol Hill at the invitation of the Iran Human Rights and Democracy Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives. At issue were US policy options for Iran. In attendance were over 80 members of the Congress and their aides, foreign diplomats, experts from other think tanks . . . Co-chairs of the caucus, Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-CO.) and Congressman Bob Filner (D-CA), chaired the briefing. Tancredo raised the issue of the terrorist designation of Iran's main opposition group, the Mujahedeen e-Khalq organization and IPC panelists concurred on the need to remove it from the U.S. Foreign Terrorist Organizations List. Tancredo stated that the MEK was designated not because it was involved in terrorist activities, but because the Clinton administration sought to curry favor with the Iranian regime."

In fact, the MEK did a lot of Saddam Hussein's dirty work inside Iraq, according to GlobalSecurity.org. The MEK assisted Saddam Hussein's suppression of the 1991 Iraqi Shiite and Kurdish uprisings and in the 1970s MEK members killed a number of US soldiers and contractors. Its membership has been steadily falling. "The MEK was allied with the Iraqi regime and received most of its support from it. MEK members supported the 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, in which 52 Americans were held hostage for 444 days.

The MEK assisted the Hussein regime in suppressing opposition within Iraq, and performed internal security for the Iraqi regime. MEK was founded in the 1960s by a group of college-educated Iranian leftists opposed to the country's pro-Western ruler, Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. Although the group took part in the 1979 Islamic revolution that replaced the Shah with a Shiite Islamist regime, MEK's ideology, a blend of Marxism and Islamism, put it at odds with the post-revolutionary government. MEK activities have dropped off in recent years as its membership has dwindled."

But the future is bright. The MEK has the IPC and its supporters working on its behalf.

* All biographies for the IPC members and the referenced report can be found on the IPC website.

** There are far too many websites to reference in the body of the article. You can find the links to IPC member companies on their website. Intelcon is at fbcinc.com/intelcon/organizers.asp. Operation Shiloh is opshiloh.com. NetStar is netstarsys.com. NMIA is at nmia.org. Go to the NMIA Awards/Citations and you'll get an idea of some of the intelligence ops being run in the USA and elsewhere.

John Stanton is a Virginia based writer specializing in security and political matters. He is the author of "America 2004: A Power But Not Super." Reach him at cioran123@yahoo.com."

Israel has become the new state sponsor of MEK terrorism.

[traitorsusa] American Totalitarian (Democratic AIPAC Republican Neoconservative) Party Agenda by Paul Sheldon Foote:

"Outside of Iran, the MEK has had to rely upon hosts to support its terrorism. For details of the extensive French and Iraqi governments support of the MEK in the past, read Anne Singleton's Saddam's Private Army. While the MEK has been able to raise some money in America from Iranian-American Communists and from fake charities (such as earthquake relief for victims in Iran), the MEK requires much more support. Israel has become the new state sponsor of MEK terrorism. For example, "Who pays for Rajavi's satellite programs?" lists these MEK service providers in Israel:

R. R. Sat (Global Network)
4 Hagoren St., Industrial Park, Omer 84965, Israel
Tel: +972-8-6257500
Fax: +972-8-6257501

REEM Teleport
Reem Junction, D.N. Shikmim 79813, Israel
Tel: +972-8-8610000
Fax: +972-8-8610002

Tel-Aviv Teleport
5 Haaskala Blvd. Tel-Aviv, 67890, Israel
Tel: +972-3-5623994
Fax: +972-3-5613061"

Tyler Marshall and Sonni Efron Extensively Quote Known Terrorist in LA Times Article and never Mention His Affiliations

Iran Said to Smuggle Material for Warheads:

Alireza Jafarzadeh is linked to the Ultra-Violent terrorist Group the MKO by the US Government. Tyler Marshall and Sonni Efron who are Times Staff Writers use this dubious source and never mention his links to those violent killers. This leaves two possibilities, Tyler Marshall and Sonni Efron are Morons or they are willing to further a Terrorist Agenda. Maybe Tyler Marshall and Sonni Efron should come clean on why they are helping a Mossad backed terrorist group. JBOC

" Iran Said to Smuggle Material for Warheads
Iran Said to Smuggle Material for Warheads
A regime opponent in exile says Tehran is buying a ceramic with weapons applications. Timing of allegations before talks questioned.

By Tyler Marshall and Sonni Efron, Times Staff Writers

WASHINGTON — Iran is smuggling a highly sensitive material that could be used to encase a nuclear warhead atop a missile, a prominent Iranian exile claimed Friday.

Alireza Jafarzadeh, who helped spotlight previously unknown uranium enrichment sites in Iran nearly three years ago, said a source within the government provided evidence to him that Tehran's Defense Ministry "has in the past and continues to smuggle" the material into the country.

The substance is a composite graphite material known as CMC, or ceramic matrix composite. Several nuclear materials experts emphasized Friday that although CMC is ideal for use on missiles with nuclear warheads, it also has roles unrelated to missiles. Some also questioned the timing of the allegations, with crucial talks between Iran and European diplomats about its nuclear program planned for next week in Paris.

Jafarzadeh, who operates a Washington consulting firm, said in a telephone interview that the material was an essential part of an Iranian government drive to develop a nuclear weapon. He also said Iran had managed to produce small quantities of CMC domestically and allocated $450 million last year to a program that could eventually make large amounts.

There was no immediate response from the regime in Tehran, which insists that it is running a nuclear program for civilian energy purposes.

The Iranian mission to the United Nations in New York did not return a telephone call seeking comment.

The graphite material's characteristics — it's heat-resistant, lightweight and very strong — make it ideal for protecting a missile's payload during the re-entry phase of its flight, according to Gary Milhollin, director of the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control. It also can be used for unrelated purposes, he said.

International trading of CMC for use in nuclear weapons is banned under a voluntary agreement involving more than 30 nations that is known as the Missile Technology Control Regime. Ceramic heat shields are listed in the agreement as an item of the "greatest sensitivity."

Opponents of Iran's government have made repeated allegations aimed mainly at exposing what they say is Tehran's determination to build a nuclear weapon.

Although their initial claims were verified by the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency and led to an international effort to halt Iran's nuclear program, some recent charges made by regime opponents have proved false.

The timing of the current claims led some arms control specialists and regional experts to view them with caution.

"This timing is certainly no accident," said Cliff Kupchan, a Middle East expert at the Eurasia Group in Washington. "It seems to me to be a rather transparent attempt either to detonate or complicate next week's talks, on which the future of diplomacy could ride.

"It's incumbent on the Iranians to refute these charges or demonstrate that the goal of these programs is not to develop a nuclear warhead," he said.

Sig Hecker, a former director of the Los Alamos National Laboratory, said in a telephone interview Friday that even if the claims that Iran had imported CMC were true, it would not necessarily mean the material was intended for use in delivering a nuclear weapon. Ceramic matrix composites are often used in conventional weapons and armor, said Hecker, a leading metallurgist who has helped evaluate North Korea's nuclear capability.

Although much of the recent international attention on Iran has focused on its nuclear program, the regime has worked to develop missiles that are, at least in theory, capable of delivering a nuclear weapon.

The Shahab-3 medium-range missile, derived from a North Korean design, has a range of just less than 1,000 miles.

In comments in November that raised eyebrows, then-Secretary of State Colin L. Powell said the U.S. had information that the Iranians "were working actively" on missile systems.

"You don't have a weapon until you can put it in something that can deliver a weapon," Powell said at the time. "We are talking about information that says they not only have missiles but information that suggests they are working hard about how to put the two together."

Milhollin said Friday that the characteristics of Iran's Shahab-3 missile make it better suited for delivering a nuclear payload than chemical, biological or conventional weapons.

"CMC would better enable Iran to deliver a nuclear warhead over long distances," he said.

He emphasized that CMC was not itself a nuclear material and Iran was not obligated to report its possession to the International Atomic Energy Agency.

It "would likely have to be smuggled into Iran because no reputable manufacturer would fulfill such an order" from Tehran, he said.

Richard H. Speier, a missile technology expert who helped negotiate the Missile Technology Control Regime, called allegations of Iran smuggling CMC "plausible."

"They've been smuggling in all sorts of stuff for these programs," Speier said. "Virtually none of these proliferator countries can go it alone."

Speier added that the importing of CMC to Iran could pose a serious proliferation threat.

Jafarzadeh said Tehran had purchased an undetermined amount of CMC from countries that have mastered the technology to manufacture the material. The shipping was often organized through Iranian front companies located in third countries, he said.

One of the companies he identified, Iranian-owned Gulf Resources Development Corp., located in the Jebel Ali free-trade zone of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is on a U.S. watch list for possible illegal trading.

Jafarzadah said front companies were used mainly to purchase the CMC, much of which came from China. He said, however, that Chinese authorities had banned shipment in some cases when it was discovered that Iran was to be the final destination.

"There were shipments stopped in the past two months," Jafarzadeh said.

According to the Wisconsin Project's Risk Report, a database of suspect activities and sensitive equipment used for export control, CMC is also produced in France, Germany, India, Israel, Russia, Britain and the United States."