Tuesday, US Congress launched hearings devoted to the 11 September tragedy. The legislators are interested in two questions: what exactly did the special services know about the terrorist acts preparations and could the terrorist acts have been averted? The impending work is really great. The hearings will last till the end of this year. The participants of the investigation have to study over 350 thousand documents which are in some way connected with the terrorist act. Though congressmen and senators are not afraid of these work, especially democrats. The Senate’s Intelligence Committee chairman, Robert Graham said following: “We have two tasks. First, we would like to inform Americans about the event which leaded to the 11 September tragedy and made it possible. Second, we would like to make conclusions of this experience and propose some reforms to our citizens, which should in the future reduce probability of the terrorist acts like that.” The third task – to hit republicans as painfully is possible – was passed over in silence. Though, neither democrats, nor republicans could leave the prehistory of the tragedy without attention. There is too much evidence that American special services knew beforehand about the terrorist acts being prepared. Now, it turns out that everybody, except but probably Greenland Eskimos, warned about the terrorist acts. Even, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said, that Egyptian special services had warned their US colleagues about the terrorist acts. However, according to Mubarak, the Egyptian intelligence did not possessed exact data about where the terrorist acts would have place. Though, all the pieces of information from the Egyptian agent in the bin Laden organization was handed over to US special services. Now, US services refuse to comment on the Egyptian President’s statement. Though, FBI official admitted that Egyptians had warned about the terrorist acts: In the early 2001, they rendered to US special services certain information about possible terrorist acts against interests of Egypt and the US, though, just before the terrorist acts of September 11, there were no warnings. The Egyptian President added nothing to the 11 September picture, though one circumstance is remarkable: non-professionalism of CIA and FBI is being condemned too enthusiastically. And why it became known only recently that US special services had been informed about the terrorist acts? Why nothing was said about it earlier, before publications appeared in the press about the US authorities blunder. However that may be, but now the United States has a bigger problem than just establishing the fact that CIA and FBI were informed about the terrorist acts. First of all, Americans should think about the intellectual level of their authorities, who even possessing information did not managed to foresee possible targets of the terrorists. Second, how will the US authorities further guarantee security of the citizens? It is hardly sensible to appear with horror forecasts about new terrorist acts such as Richard Cheney recently presented. Especially taking into account that the US possesses the most powerful special services. Or was it just an attempt to draw away attention from the scandal with the Congress investigation? If so, the attempt was rather clumsy. The guilty seem to have been already appointed. Of course, that will not be FBI and CIA. For example, George Bush stated that the terrorist acts had not been averted because of non-coordination of activities between the two institutions. At the same time, the US President noticed that “now, these two agencies have much more direct contacts.” Whether these contacts really are effective, the future will show. Though the investigation will certainly found new interesting facts about the 11 September events. P.S. While the White House is trying to clear up who is guilty of the tragedy, the Canadian authorities refused to extradite businessman Liban Hussain to the US, suspected of financing the terrorists. “Being based on results of the careful investigation carried out on the extradition inquiry, the Canadian government concluded that there were no reasons to consider Liban Hussain being implicated in any terrorist activities,” – the statement of Canadian Department of Justice reads. The statement, in particular, notices that US Department of Justice did not express its disagreement with this decision. Though, Back Schinkman, press-secretary of US embassy in Ottava denied it: “We did not say we did not object to it. We presented evidence of financing the terrorists to the Canadian authorities,” – he said. Probably, the US and Canada have different valuation methods.
Vasily Bubnov PRAVDA.Ru NTVRU.com photograph Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2002/06/05/42230.html
The 23-year-old athlete was returning to the base through the forest after fishing on the Irtysh River. There were two other fishermen with him