COPYRIGHT 2002, Michael C. Ruppert And
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22, 2002, 1200 PDT (FTW) – A dispassionate examination
of existing reliable, open-source evidence on advance warnings
of the Sept. 11 attacks provides strong and sustainable grounds
to conclude the Bush Administration was in possession of sufficient
advance intelligence to have prevented the attacks, had it wished
to do so. With a known intelligence budget of approximately $30
billion, it must be assumed there are classified files that only
add to the weight of the available data presented here. Is it
reasonable to assume that what is presented here is the only intelligence
This article will focus
on four primary areas where the U.S.
had information that forewarned of the attacks in sufficient detail
to have prompted their prevention. Those areas are: Documented
warnings received by the United States Government (USG) from foreign
intelligence services; Obvious and large scale insider stock trading
in the days before the attacks; Known intelligence successes achieved
by the USG in its penetrations of Al Qaeda; and, the case of Delmart
"Mike" Vreeland, a U.S. Naval intelligence officer jailed
in Canada at the request of U.S. authorities, who -- with his
attorneys -- spent months attempting to warn USG and Canadian
intelligence officials of the pending attacks, only to be rebuffed
This article will not focus
on a number of well-known and documented instances where the Bush
Administration actively interfered with or curtailed investigations
into Al Qaeda-linked groups that could have
provided even more intelligence. Included in this category
are reports by the BBC's Gregg Palast, the French book "The
Forbidden Truth," and a lawsuit/OPR complaint filed by an
active FBI agent alleging investigations that could have prevented
the attacks were derailed by superiors, in some cases on orders
from the White House.
WARNINGS FROM FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SERVICES
This section focuses on
known advance warnings received by the U.S. government from foreign
intelligence services that proved to be specific enough to have
identified the date (within one week), method, targets, and perpetrators
of the attacks. It will not include warnings issued to the USG
that could be considered vague or non-specific. The latter includes
documented warnings sent by the governments of Egypt
However, in light of the specific warnings, these additional warnings
add greater weight to the argument that the Administration was
in possession of sufficient information to have prevented the
As reported in the respected
German daily Frankfurter Algemeine Zeitung (FAZ) on Sept.
14, 2001 the German intelligence service, the BND,
warned both the CIA and Israel
that Middle Eastern terrorists were "planning to hijack commercial
aircraft to use as weapons to attack important symbols of American
and Israeli culture." The story specifically referred to
an electronic eavesdropping system known as Echelon, wherein a
number of countries tap cell phone and electronic communications
in partner countries and then pool the information. The BND warnings
were also passed to the United
No known denial by the
BND of the accuracy of this story exists, and the FAZ story indicates
that the information was received directly from BND sources.
According to a Sept. 14
report in the Internet newswire online.de, German police, monitoring
the phone calls of a jailed Iranian man, learned the man was telephoning
USG intelligence agencies in summer 2001 to warn of an imminent
attack on the World Trade Center (WTC) in the week of Sept. 9.
German officials confirmed the calls to the USG for the story
but refused to discuss additional details.
In August 2000 French intelligence
sources confirmed a man recently arrested in Boston
by the FBI was an Islamic militant and a key member of Osama bin
Laden's Al Qaeda network. The FBI knew the man had been taking
flying lessons at the time of his arrest and was in possession
of technical information on Boeing aircraft and flight manuals,
as reported by Reuters on Sept. 13.
According to a story in
Izveztia on Sept. 12, Russian intelligence warned the USG that
as many as 25 suicide pilots were training for missions involving
the crashing of airliners into important targets.
In an MSNBC interview on
Sept. 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that he had
ordered Russian intelligence to warn the USG "in the strongest
possible terms" of imminent assaults on airports and government
buildings before the attacks on Sept. 11.
As reported by CNN's Daniel
Seberg on Sept. 28, Newsbytes' Brian McWilliams on Sept. 27 and
the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz, Odigo, the Israeli instant messaging
company located in Herzliyya,
telephone calls stating that attacks on the WTC were imminent.
The calls came less than two hours before the first plane hit
the WTC. This information was immediately forwarded to Israeli
Conclusion: From just these
six press stories, then, the USG had received credible advance
warnings, some from heads of state, that commercial aircraft would
be hijacked by as many as 25 suicide pilots at airports, with
Boston a strong candidate,
during the week of Sept. 9. The call to Odigo would have signaled
the exact day.
No known preventive measures
The documented pre-Sept.
11 insider trading that occurred before the attacks involved only
companies hit hard by the attacks. They include United Airlines,
American Airlines, Morgan Stanley, Merrill-Lynch, Axa Reinsurance,
Marsh & McLennan, Munich Reinsurance, Swiss Reinsurance, and
In order to argue that
the massive and well-documented insider trading that occurred
in at least seven countries immediately before the attacks of
Sept. 11 did not serve as a warning to intelligence agencies,
then it is necessary to argue that no one was aware of the trades
as they were occurring, and that intelligence and law enforcement
agencies of most industrialized nations do not monitor stock trades
in real time to warn of impending attacks. Both assertions are
false. Both assertions would also ignore the fact that the current
executive vice president of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
for enforcement is David Doherty, a retired CIA general counsel.
And also ignored is the fact that the trading in United Airlines
stock -- one of the most glaring clues -- was placed through the
firm Deutschebank/Alex Brown, which was headed until 1998 by the
man who is now the executive director of the CIA, A.B. "Buzzy"
One wonders if it was a
coincidence then, that Mayo Shattuck III, the head of the Alex
Brown unit of Deutschebank -- which had its offices in the WTC
-- suddenly resigned from a $30 million, three-year contract on
Sept. 12, as reported by the New York Times and other papers.
The American exchanges
that handle these trades, primarily the Chicago Board of Options
Exchange (CBOE) and the NYSE, know on a daily basis what levels
of put options are purchased. "Put options" are highly
leveraged bets, tying up blocks of stock, that a given stock's
share price will fall dramatically. To quote 60 Minutes from Sept.
19, "Sources tell CBS News that the afternoon before the
attack, alarm bells were sounding over unusual trading in the
stock options market."
It is hard to believe that
- A jump in UAL put options
90 times (not 90 percent) above normal between Sept. 6 and Sept.10,
and 285 times higher than average on the Thursday before the attack–
[CBS News, Sept. 26]
- A jump in American Airlines
put options 60 times (not 60 percent) above normal on the day
before the attacks. [CBS News, Sept. 26]
- No similar trading occurred
on any other airlines. [Bloomberg Business Report, the Institute
for Counterterrorism (ICT), Herzliyya,
data from the CBOE]
- Morgan Stanley saw, between
Sept. 7 and Sept.10, an increase of 27 times (not 27 percent)
in the purchase of put options on its shares. [ICT
Report, Mechanics of Possible Bin-Laden Insider Trading Scam,
Sept. 21, citing data from the CBOE].
- Merrill-Lynch saw a jump
of more than 12 times the normal level of put options in the four
trading days before the attacks. [Ibid]
These trades were certainly
noticed after the attacks.
"This could very well
be insider trading at the worst, most horrific, most evil use
you've ever seen in your entire life…This would be one of the
most extraordinary coincidences in the history of mankind if it
was a coincidence," said Dylan Ratigan of Bloomberg Business
News, interviewed on Good Morning Texas on Sept. 20.
"'I saw put-call numbers
higher than I've ever seen in 10 years of following the markets,
particularly the options markets,' said John Kinnucan, principal
of Broadband Research, as quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle,"
reported the Montreal Gazette on Sept. 19. The paper also wrote,
"Agence France Presse, on Sept. 22, reported, ‘And Germany's
Bundesbank chief, Ernst Weltke, said on the sidelines of the meeting
that a report of the investigation showed "bizarre"
fiscal transactions prior to the attacks that could not have been
chalked up to coincidence.
"Weltke said the transactions,
‘could not have been planned and carried out without a certain
knowledge,' particularly heavy trading in oil and gold futures."
ABC World News reported
on Sept. 20, "Jonathan Winer, an ABC News consultant said,
‘it's absolutely unprecedented to see cases of insider trading
covering the entire world from Japan,
to the U.S.,
to North America, to Europe."
How much money was involved?
Andreas von Bulow, a former member of the German Parliament responsible
for oversight of Germany's
intelligence services estimated the worldwide amount at $15 billion,
according to Tagesspiegel on Jan. 13. Other experts have estimated
the amount at $12 billion. CBS News gave a conservative estimate
of $100 million.
Not a single U.S.
or foreign investigative agency has announced any arrests or developments
in the investigation of these trades, the most telling evidence
of foreknowledge of the attacks. This, in spite of the fact that
former Security and Exchange Commission enforcement chief William
McLucas told Bloomberg News that regulators would "certainly be able to track down
What is striking is that
a National Public Radio report on Oct. 16 reported Britain's
Financial Services Authority had cleared bin Laden and his henchmen
of insider trading. If not bin Laden, then who else had advance
knowledge? Who else had certainty that the attacks would succeed
to give them confidence to make millions of dollars in stock purchases?
It has been standard and
established USG policy to be alert and responsive to anything
even remotely resembling an attack on U.S.
companies and/or the economy. The word "remote" does
not apply here. The possible claim by the Bush Administration
that, ‘Gee, we just happened to miss this,' becomes even more
implausible when considering the lengths intelligence agencies
go to in order to track stock trades.
Note that the Israeli Institute
for Counter-Terrorism was the first entity to release a detailed
report on the insider trading. That alone is prima facie evidence
of a direct relationship between the financial markets and terrorist
CIA and the Markets
We can thank Fox News on
Oct. 16 for breaking post 9-11 stories disclosing the use of sophisticated
PROMIS software by the FBI and the Justice Department. A multitude
of court records and investigative reports have established not
only the reality, but the versatility of a program initially designed
to incorporate data from a variety of data bases in different
languages into one readable format. PROMIS has since been refined
to include artificial intelligence and "back doors"
inserted by intelligence agencies to allow for surreptitious retrieval
and/or removal and alteration of data.
The Fox stories clearly
confirmed, especially when added to stories from last summer by
the Washington Times which were based on interviews with Justice
Department officials, that PROMIS was used to monitor banking
and financial transactions in a virtual real-time environment.
This writer has written
extensively on the software. More information can be found on
the Web site at http://www.fromthewilderness.com/free/
However, one point is critical
to this report. In the Autumn of 2000 I was visited in Los Angeles
by two members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) national
security staff. They were conducting a major investigation inside
to determine whether or not the RCMP's version of the software
had been compromised. During discussions with the Mounties, I
confirmed several times that the software was used to monitor
stock trades in real time. A subsequent investigation led me to
contact several people in Canada
who had been interviewed in the same investigation. They were
In a taped panel discussion,
which aired March 14 on Canada's
Vision-TV, I faced a panel of three Canadian experts on the issue
foreknowledge of, and possible complicity in, the 9-11 attacks.
Among them was Ron Atkey, former Canadian Solicitor-General and
the former parliamentary head of the committee charged with oversight
military and intelligence operations. Over the course of the program
I made specific statements, relying not only on the RCMP interactions
but also on previous investigations, in which it was
documented that intelligence services track stock trades in real
time. On camera, I produced the business cards of the two RCMP
agents. Atkey, who had not hesitated to challenge me on other
points during the show, went silent.
Four basic intelligence
successes need to be acknowledged here. These admitted successes,
while not addressing any other still secret penetrations of the
Al Qaeda network, further diminish any Bush Administration assertion
that it did not know of the attacks.
On Feb. 13 United Press
International terrorism correspondent Richard Sale, while covering
a Manhattan trial of one of Osama bin Laden's followers, reported
that the National Security Agency had broken bin Laden's encrypted
communications. Even if that prompted an immediate change in bin
Laden's methods of communication, just six months before the attacks,
the administration has consistently maintained -- and military
and covert experience dictates -- that the attacks were planned
for at least several years.
The FAZ story indicates
that the secret eavesdropping program Echelon had been successful
in securing details of the pending attacks. Echelon employs highly
sophisticated computer programs capable of both voice and word
recognition to filter billions of telephone conversations and
locate specific targets. Assuming, as some sources indicate, Al
Qaeda stopped using encrypted communications after it was known
that their system was compromised, why was the NSA not able to
pick up any cell phone calls or e-mails? Mohammed Atta and other
alleged hijackers were known to have used cell phones. The FAZ
story establishes that as late as June, Al Qaeda operatives were
being tracked in this manner.
In the trial of a former
Deutschebank executive Kevin Ingram, who pled guilty to laundering
drug money to finance terrorist operations linked to Al Qaeda
just two weeks before the 9-11 attacks, indications surfaced that
the Justice Department had penetrated the terrorists' financial
networks. A Nov. 16 Associated Press story by Catherine Wilson
stated, "Numerous promised wire transfers never arrived,
but there were discussions of foreign bankers taking payoffs to
move the money to purchase weapons into the United States, said
prosecutor Rolando Garcia."
Two questions are begged
but unanswered. How were the wire transfers blocked and how was the Justice Department
able to monitor the money flows without alerting either the bankers
or the suspects?
Finally, as reported by
the German paper Die Welt on Dec. 6 and by Agence France Presse
on Dec. 7, Western intelligence services, including the CIA, learned
after arrests in the Philippines,
that Al Qaeda operatives had planned to crash commercial airliners
into the WTC. Details of the plan, as reported by a number of
American press outlets, were found on a computer seized during
the arrests. The plan was called "operation Bojinka."
Details of the plot were
disclosed publicly in 1997 in the New York
trial of Ramsi Youssef for his involvement in the 1993 WTC bombing.
"I believe that, from
the information I have seen, Mike Vreeland tried to pass information
to the Canadian government that should have been passed to the
government. That information had to do with the attacks of Sept.
11. Whatever other attempts were made by Vreeland and his attorneys
to alert U.S.
and Canadian officials of the attacks, it is clear that he did
pass information about the pending attacks to his guards in August.
I am willing to go to the Secretary of the Navy to determine whether
or not he was actually a Navy officer.”
"I know that there
have been other U.S.
citizens with a similar background used on missions similar to
what has been alleged by Vreeland. This man fits a pattern. I
would like for the Secret Service to put him on a polygraph."
-- Mike Osborne, a veteran former CIA case officer with 26 years
of experience in counter-terrorism.
With a court record now
estimated to approach 10,000 pages, the case of Delmart "Mike"
Vreeland is starting to attract worldwide attention. Vreeland,
with a growing amount of evidence admitted into court record in
claims to be a former U.S. Naval lieutenant assigned to the Office
of Naval Intelligence. He was jailed in Canada
-- at the request of U.S.
authorities – in December 2000 after returning from Moscow.
Although Canadian authorities
initially alleged vague fraud charges against him and also held
him on an extradition warrant alleging credit card fraud in Michigan,
the actual motive for his arrest now seems to be something quite
different. All Canadian charges against Vreeland were dropped
this March and he has been granted political refugee status in
until the extradition issues are resolved.
Vreeland's position is
that he returned from Russia
to meet with a Canadian and a Russian intelligence operative,
and had intended to hand over a sealed pouch containing intelligence
documents. When the handoff was compromised and the Canadian did
not show for the Toronto
meet, Vreeland opened the pouch and looked at some of the documents.
Those documents, which he later had translated, gave specific
warnings of the pending WTC attacks that were to take place nine
months later. Again, on its face, since these documents were in
a sealed intelligence pouch, this indicates that intelligence
operatives were aware of the contents because they had placed
them there originally.
According to both Vreeland
and his lawyers, as reported in numerous interviews with this
writer and other members of the FTW staff, immediately after his
arrest Vreeland began making urgent attempts to alert both Canadian
intelligence officials of the coming danger.
After eight months of unsuccessful
attempts to have either Canadian or U.S.
intelligence services debrief him, Vreeland wrote a desperate,
last-ditch warning in August. Through means he will not disclose,
he acquired two high-tech Pilot water-based pens with light blue
ink and used them to write the letter. The only pens permitted
by Canadian jail authorities were oil-based, dark blue Bic pens.
Immediately after writing
the letter, Vreeland notified his jailers that he had pens which
might be considered contraband. A Sept. 17 letter from the Ministry
of Correctional Services was entered as Exhibit "M"
into court records on Oct. 7, along with Vreeland's warning letter
which had been opened on Sept. 14 and entered as Exhibit "N."
The letter states, "On August
13, 2001 inmate Vreeland's corridor #2 was searched
and as far as we know 2 blue ink pens were removed from his cell
because they were considered contraband. There is no written record
of them being placed in his personal property. He did submit a
request to have them returned to him on August 14, 2001, but was denied."
Since the ink on the warning
letter, if tested, will match the ink in the confiscated pens,
there can be no doubt that the letter was written a month before
In an interview with this
writer published on April 4, Vreeland clearly stated his belief
that Al Qaeda operations had been completely penetrated by U.S.
intelligence services. That belief is supported by a statement
in his warning letter.
The statement, following
a list of potential targets that included the WTC, the Pentagon
and the White House said, "Let one happen, stop the rest."
Such a statement could only imply complete penetration or compromise
of the terrorist cells perpetrating the attacks.
Compelling evidence continues
to grow that Vreeland was, in fact, a U.S. Navy officer. On Jan.
10 from open court with a court reporter recording the conversation,
his attorneys placed a speaker-phone call to the Pentagon. A Pentagon
operator, after checking a back-up military database, confirmed
Vreeland was a U.S. Navy officer and provided an office listing
and a telephone number for his office. The primary database had
been disabled, according to Vreeland, on 9-11. In addition, redacted
and incomplete military records provided by the Pentagon to the
Canadian courts indicate Vreeland had a service record of more
than 1,200 pages.
This is difficult to reconcile
with the U.S. Navy's assertion that Vreeland was discharged as
a Seaman Recruit after four months of unsatisfactory service in
No press entity has covered
the Vreeland case more than FTW. This writer has traveled twice
to Toronto, sat in
on court proceedings, and retained the services of a Canadian
correspondent to cover the case. I have interviewed Vreeland personally
and conducted numerous interviews with his attorneys. Greta Knutzen,
FTW's Canadian correspondent, has also interviewed Vreeland and
his attorneys, as well as Vreeland's mother. Knutzen has attended
every court proceeding since January, 2002. All of our previous
reporting on the case can be located on the Internet at www.copvcia.com.
Mike Vreeland believes
that if he is successfully extradited to the U.S.,
he will be assassinated. Previous press stories concerning Vreeland's
criminal past and a criminal arrest record fail to account for
the fact that, as an undercover operative who targeted organized
crime and terrorist organizations, a criminal record would have
been necessary to give him credibility with organizations that
have previously demonstrated capabilities to retrieve law enforcement
records. They also fail to account for an Oct. 2, 1986 Los Angeles Times story that lists Vreeland
as a non-criminal witness to a major cocaine bust carried out
by LAPD investigators known to have contacts with USG intelligence
There is much about Vreeland's
past that is objectionable, questionable, or both. But even in
a worst-case scenario, nothing in his past explains how he was
able to write a detailed warning of the attacks before they occurred,
and why the intelligence services of both Canada
and the U.S.
ignored attempts to warn them while both Vreeland and his attorneys
were banging down their doors.
There is clear and substantial
evidence to suggest that the Bush Administration had sufficient
foreknowledge of the attacks of Sept. 11 to have prevented them.
Rather than viewing each of the four listed areas as a separate
piece of evidence, they should be considered as a body,
in the exact same way exhibits presented to a jury in a criminal
trial are viewed as a body. By viewing the evidence in this manner,
an unavoidable conclusion is reached -- the USG knew 25 suicide
hijackers during the week of Sept. 9 were going to use United
and American airlines commercial planes, some of them likely originating
in Boston, to attack
the WTC and the Pentagon. A multitude of press stories and intelligence
reports indicate the WTC would have been the primary target.
Given the financial commitments
made during insider trading activity that occurred immediately
before the attacks involving businesses that were directly damaged
by the attacks, the threats had clearly moved from the realm of
speculation to reality. Why else would mysterious investors have
risked millions of dollars to purchase the put options? There
is compelling evidence to suggest these trades were noted by the
CIA and other USG entities.
Recently, Rep. Cynthia
McKinney, D-Ga., has been widely criticized in the mainstream
press for raising the need for a Congressional investigation to
answer some of these obvious questions. This,
in spite of the fact that popular reaction indicates a different
sentiment. An opinion poll, conducted by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
just a day after McKinney's
remarks received wide public attention in a Washington Post story
dated April 12, was pulled after poll numbers showed that 51 percent
of the respondents agreed with McKinney.
The people seem to recognize
and agree with the opinion of former CIA officer Mike Osborne
who says, "I think that the U.S.
government needs to get behind McKinney's
questions because her agenda is truth and justice, and nothing