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Monday, August 22, 2005

"Would You Call That Treason?" 

Last week we directed you to streaming audio of Scott Horton's radio interview with whistleblower Sibel Edmonds, who had the bad fortune to stumble across certain inconvenient truths in her former job as an FBI translator, and has since been the target of more gag orders than any person in history. Zemblan patriot K.Z. informs us that a transcript of the interview has now been posted at Antiwar.com, and we are quite certain that you will be entertained by Ms. Edmonds's remarks on activist judges and the definition of treason:
SH: What sort of criminal investigation should we expect from the FBI on this matter when they are the ones to be investigated?

SE: That's exactly the problem. If you're in some company or in other places and you come across these criminal activities, who would you report it to? You would report it to the Department of Justice and the FBI. But what happens when you come across these criminal activities – and find out through the Department of Justice and the FBI and the fact they are blocking it from being investigated, then who do you go to? I have been asking this question, and that's why I started this court case three years ago (which is being gagged and stopped – they are fighting it ferociously) is so that maybe through the court system, we can subpoena witnesses and bring out these documents so I can give them to the American public and say "here are these documents" . . . .

To this day, they are not even allowing us any hearings. They go in private, and have these private, secret conferences with the judges, and then the judges come out and say, "OK, you cannot have any hearing." So, we filed with the Supreme Court last week, and by mid-October we will know whether or not the Supreme Court is going to accept the case, and question the legality of these gag orders. It's unconstitutional for the government to come and say, "we don't even have to present you with any reasons why we are issuing gag orders because the reasons themselves are classified." This is so Kafkaesque, Scott.

SH: It's interesting that the state-secrets privilege actually doesn't exist. There's no law that has ever been passed by Congress that even says such a thing. Wasn't it the Supreme Court that made up the state-secrets privilege in the first place?

SE: Yes, it's based on common law, and in fact, most judges don't even know how it is applied, and therefore that is another challenge we are bringing about: for the Supreme Court to look into this and say this is time for us to clarify just what the hell is this state-secrets privilege. If you were to go ask many attorneys in this country, they would tell you that, "Hey, I didn't know that the United States had any official secrets act," and they act surprised because even most attorneys don't know that we have this arcane draconian common law that is being exercised to gag people and rid them of their First Amendment rights.

SE: No, but as I said, the reason I went to the Congress and to the 9/11 Commission had to do with criminal activities and the criminal activities I provided information on had a lot to do with 9/11. And it's very interesting for example this latest development with the 9/11 Commission and this information from the Department of Defense that had to do with Atta, right?

SH: Able Danger.

SE: And the main media is treating it as if "here's one piece of information the 9/11 Commission didn't include." I had this press conference last summer and together with 25 national security experts. These sort of people from NSA, CIA, FBI. And we provided the public during this press conference with a list of witnesses that had provided direct information, direct information. Some had to do with finance of al-Qaeda. These are people from NSA, CIA, and FBI to the 9/11 Commission, and the 9/11 Commission omitted all of this information, even though some of this information had been established as fact. One of them had to do with certain informants in April 2001. This informant provided very specific information about the attacks. The other had to do with certain information the FBI had in July and August 2001, where blueprints and building composites of certain skyscrapers were being sent to certain Middle Eastern countries, and many more information was just omitted. With my case they just said, "Refer to the inspector general's report," even though I had provided the commissioners with the documents and names of witnesses. So now today you're seeing the press talk about "Oh, one piece of information," which right now the Commission is denying: "We don't recall seeing that information." Well, I can put out 20 other cases. These are agents who worked for agencies such as FBI, CIA, some of them for 20 years, some for 18 years. I have their list, I have their affidavits that provided documents, and they were all omitted. But the media is treating it as if "oh, look, this one piece of information was omitted" from the 9/11 Commission report . . . .

SH: This is all about the question of prior knowledge and who knew what, when before the attack.

SE: And also what happened afterward. I started working three days after Sept. 11 with a lot of documents and wiretaps that I was translating. Some of them dated back to 1997, 1998. Even after Sept. 11, covering up these investigations and not pursuing some of these investigations because the Department of State says, "You know what, you can't pursue this because that may deal with this particular country. If this country that the investigation deals with are not one of the Axis of Evil, we don't want to pursue them." The American people have the right to know this. They are giving this grand illusion that there are some investigations, but there are none.

SH: I want to get to your appearance on Democracy Now! earlier in the week, referring to officials at the State Department, you used the word "treason." And I wonder whether this is specifically referring to the Sept. 11 attacks and whether you have information that indicates complicity on the part of American elites who are part of these semi-legit organizations that funded Sept. 11, or are we talking seven degrees of Kevin Bacon here?

SE: Again, it's hard to talk about this around the gag order, but this is what I have been saying for the past three years, that's why I refer to the transcript of CBS 60 Minutes. These people who call themselves Americans and these people are using their position, their official position within these agencies – some of them in the Department of Defense, some of them in the Department of State – and yet, what they are doing with their position, with their influence is against the United States' national security, it's against the best interests of its people, and that is treason. Be it giving information to those that are either quasi-allies – and I would underline quasi, who one day will be another al-Qaeda – and who are already are engaged in activities that are damaging to our country, its security and its interests – and that is treason. So that's what I was referring to. And what would you call someone who, let's say if they were to go after Douglas Feith, and if they were to establish that Douglas Feith with his access to information, willingly, intentionally used the information he had and gave it to those that would one day use it or maybe right now are using that information against the United States. Would you call that treason?

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