Editor’s note: Paul V. Sheridan earned his master’s in business administration from the Johnson School at Cornell in 1980. He is a former member of the Alumni Executive Council, Alumni Interviewer Network and a frequent visitor to Ithaca and the Cornell campus. Sheridan has made an exhaustive research of FBI documents relating to the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks in the United States. He recently brought attention to the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist Web page for Osama Bin Laden, pointing out that it makes no connection between Bin Laden and the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
A thought provoking e-mail circulated through Internet news groups in June, and was sent to the Muckraker Report by Paul V. Sheridan (Winner of the 2005 Civil Justice Foundation Award), bringing attention to the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist web page for Osama bin Laden.
In the e-mail, the question is asked, “Why doesn’t Osama bin Laden’s Most Wanted poster make any direct connection with the events of Sept. 11, 2001”? The FBI says on its bin Laden Web page, http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/terrorists/terbinladen.htm, that Osama bin Laden is wanted in connection with the Aug. 7, 1998 bombings of the United States Embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya. According to the FBI, these attacks killed over 200 people. The FBI concludes its reason for “wanting? bin Laden by saying, “In addition, bin Laden is a suspect in other terrorists attacks throughout the world.”
The Muckraker Report contacted the FBI headquarters on June 6 to learn why their bin Laden’s Most Wanted poster did not indicate that Osama was also wanted in connection with 9/11. The Muckraker Report spoke with Rex Tomb, chief of investigative publicity for the FBI. When asked why there is no mention of 9/11 on the Bin Laden’s Most Wanted Web page, Tomb said, “The reason why 9/11 is not mentioned on Osama Bin Laden’s Most Wanted page is because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.”
Surprised by the ease with which this FBI spokesman made such an astonishing statement, I asked, “How was this possible”? Tomb continued, “bin Laden has not been formally charged in connection to 9/11.” I asked, “How does that work”? Tomb continued, “The FBI gathers evidence. Once evidence is gathered, it is turned over to the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice then decides whether it has enough evidence to present to a federal grand jury. In the case of the 1998 United States Embassies being bombed, bin Laden has been formally indicted and charged by a grand jury. He has not been formally indicted and charged in connection with 9/11 because the FBI has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.”
It shouldn’t take long before the full meaning of these FBI statements start to prick your brain and raise your blood pressure. If you think the way I think, in quick order you will be wrestling with a barrage of very powerful questions that must be answered. First and foremost, if the U.S. government does not have enough hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11, how is it possible that it had enough evidence to invade Afghanistan to “smoke him out of his cave”? The federal government claims to have invaded Afghanistan to “root out? bin Laden and the Taliban. Through the talking heads in the mainstream media, the Bush administration told the American people that Osama bin Laden was Public Enemy Number One and responsible for the deaths of nearly 3,000 people on Sept. 11, 2001. Yet nearly five years later, the FBI says that it has no hard evidence connecting bin Laden to 9/11.
Next is the bin Laden “confession? video that was released by the U.S. government on Dec. 13, 2001. Most Americans remember this video. It was the video showing bin Laden with a few of his comrades recounting with delight the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks against the United States. The Department of Defense issued a press release to accompany this video in which Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld said, “There was no doubt of bin Laden’s responsibility for the Sept. 11 attacks before the tape was discovered.” What Rumsfeld implied by his statement was that bin Laden was the known mastermind behind 9/11 even before the “confession video” and that the video simply served to confirm what the U.S. government already knew; that bin Laden was responsible for the 9/11 attacks.
In a Dec. 14, 2001 BBC News article reporting on the ?9/11 confession video? release, President Bush is said to have been hesitant to release the tape because he knew it would be a vivid reminder to many people of their loss. But, he also knew it would be “a devastating declaration” of bin Laden’s guilt. “Were going to get him,” said President Bush. “Dead or alive, it doesn’t matter to me.”
In a Dec. 14, 2001 CNN report regarding the bin Laden tape, then-New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani said that “the tape removes any doubt that the U.S. military campaign targeting bin Laden and his associates is more than justified.” Senator Richard Shelby, R-Ala,, the vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said, “The tape’s release is central to informing people in the outside world who don’t believe bin Laden was involved in the Sept. 11 attacks.” Shelby went on to say, “I don’t know how they can be in denial after they see this tape.” Well, Senator Shelby, apparently the Federal Bureau of Investigation isn’t convinced by the taped confession, so why are you?
The Muckraker Report attempted to secure a reference to the U.S. government authenticating the bin Laden “confession video,” to no avail. However, it is conclusive that the Bush Administration and U.S. Congress, along with the dead stream media, played the video as if it was authentic. So why doesn’t the FBI view the “confession video? as hard evidence? After all, if the FBI is investigating a crime such as drug trafficking, and it discovers a video of members of a drug cartel openly talking about a successful distribution operation in the United States, that video would be presented to a federal grand jury. The identified participants of the video would be indicted, and if captured, the video alone would serve as sufficient evidence to net a conviction in a federal court. So why is the bin Laden “confession video? not carrying the same weight with the FBI?
Remember, on June 5, 2006, FBI spokesman, Rex Tomb said, “The FBI has no hard evidence connecting Osama bin Laden to 9/11.” This should be headline news worldwide. The challenge to the reader is to find out why it is not. Why has the U.S. media blindly read the government-provided 9/11 scripts, rather than investigate without passion, prejudice or bias, the events of Sept. 11, 2001? Why has the U.S. media blacklisted any guest that might speak of a government sponsored 9/11 cover-up, rather than seeking out those people who have something to say about 9/11 that is contrary to the government’s account? And on those few occasions when a 9/11 dissenter has made it upon the airways, why has the mainstream media ridiculed the guest as a conspiracy nut, rather than listen to the evidence that clearly raises valid questions about the government’s 9/11 account? Why is the Big Media Conglomeration blindly content with the government’s 9/11 story when so much verifiable information to the contrary is available with a few clicks of a computer mouse?
Who is it that is controlling the media message, and how is it that the U.S. media has indicted Osama bin Laden for the events of Sept. 11, 2001, but the U.S. government has not? How is it that the FBI has no “hard evidence? connecting Osama bin Laden to the events of September 11, 2001, while the U.S. media has played the bin Laden-9/11 connection story for five years now as if it has conclusive evidence that bin Laden is responsible for the collapse of the twin towers, the Pentagon attack, and the demise of United Flight 93?
No hard evidence connecting Osama bin Laden to 9/11. … Think about it.
Freelance writer / author Ed Haas is the editor and columnist for the Muckraker Report at http://teamliberty.net. The guest column was reprinted in The Ithaca Journal with permission from Haas.
Originally published June 29, 2006