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UQ Wire: The Venice, Fl. Terabyte - Hopsicker

Distribution via the Unanswered Questions Wire .


Was Pentagon Tracking Mohamed Atta Just Before 9.11 Attack?
September 20,2005 -Venice, FL.
by Daniel Hopsicker
A MadCowMorningNews World Exclusive!

"Two years before the 9.11 attack a Pentagon employee was ordered to destroy a cache of documents that identified Mohamed Atta as a terrorist totaling 2.5 terabytes—equal to one-fourth of all printed material in the Library of Congress, or 150,000 trees made into paper and printed."

See also latest edition of the MadCowMorningNews TV Show @


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Mohamed Atta may have been under U.S. military surveillance until just days before the 9.11 attack, long after the Tampa-based Able Danger military intelligence operation currently under scrutiny was disbanded, in early 2001.

On August 6, 2001, the same day Atta and Marwan Al-Shehhi returned to Venice after renting a car at Warrick's RentaCar in Pompano Beach, FL, and picking up Siad Al-Jarrah at the airport in Miami, the MadCowMorningNews has learned that a self-described former NAVY SEAL named Joe Gesell applied for and was hired as the night driver (they only need one) at Venice Yellow Cab.
Gesell squired Atta around Venice and Sarasota in his cab on a number of occasions. What raises suspicions that he may have been working for more than just tips is this: after starting his new job on the day of Atta’s return, Gesell quit a month later, just one day after Atta left town for the last time.
On Friday, Sept. 14, three days after the Sept. 11 attack, cab driver Bob Simpson, the day driver for Venice Yellow Cab at the time, was contacted by the FBI. According to Simpson, the FBI was intent on finding and interviewing Gesell. (watch the video.)

Here until Atta Goes Somewhere else?

“I heard a voice say ‘this is Special Agent Joe Anderson from the FBI calling,’” Simpson recalled. “My heart sort of skipped a beat. Then he said, ‘don’t worry, you haven’t done anything wrong,’ and asked if I’d seen pictures of the terrorists, and if I had, wanted to know if I recognized any.”

“I said yes, I recognized Mohamed Atta,’” Simpson continued. “I told him, ‘I’m the day driver for Yellow Cab in Venice, and he was in my cab a bunch of times in August, 2001. The night driver had him even more than I did.’”

The Yellow Cab office manager in Sarasota confirmed that the FBI expressed a keen interest in cab rides Atta took with Gesell.

If Gessell is shown to have taken part in unacknowledged U.S. military surveillance of Atta continuing until just before the attack, it would not be uncharacteristic...

Tiptoeing Through the U.S. un-noticed?

U.S. military surveillance of Al Qaeda terrorists like Mohamed Atta has been far more extensive than has been so far revealed. The Able Danger unit, for example, was by no means the first military intelligence investigation into the activities of the Hamburg cadre.

According to one Army C.I.D. officer there at the time, military investigators were being detailed to Hamburg, Germany, tracking “Al Qaeda heroin flows” from Afghanistan to the West as far back as 1991

Yet, in a discrepancy of monumental proportions, the 9/11 Commission's final report—which now may not be the final report—concluded that U.S. intelligence agencies were not aware of Atta until the attacks.

Little wonder the Pentagon is pressuring the Senate Judiciary Committee to close to the public Wednesday’s hearings on the Able Danger military intelligence unit, as Congressional sources confirmed over the weekend.

Also last week Pentagon officials told a hastily arranged briefing for reporters that much data generated by the project has already been destroyed in accordance with standard operating procedure for handling material that might contain the names of Americans.

Oddly enough, this is the same excuse used by the secretive National Security Administration—the NSA —in revealing that they had destroyed tapes with 9.11 evidence, including conversations between Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and Mohamed Atta, just weeks after the 9.11 attack.

“Analysts at the super-secret National Security Agency, acting on advice from the organization's lawyers, have been destroying data collected on Americans or US companies since the Sept. 11 attacks - angering other intelligence agencies seeking leads in the antiterrorist probe, according to two people with close intelligence ties,” reported the Boston Globe on Oct 27,2001. (Spy agency destroys data, angering others in probe.)

“In heated discussions with the CIA and congressional staff, NSA lawyers have turned down requests to preserve the intelligence because the agency's regulations prohibit the collection of any information on US citizens. The lawyers said that preserving the information would invite lawsuits from people whose names appear in the surveillance reports.”

The “official story’ about Mohamed Atta’s timeline, activities, and associates while in the U.S. is riddled with lies, misdirection and deliberate deception. Documents being destroyed by the Pentagon probably include at least a terabyte on Atta & company’s activities in Venice, Florida.

What was he doing... and who was he doing it with?

On at least three occasions during the last six weeks of his life, for example, terrorist ringleader Mohamed Atta left the jazzier precincts of Miami to travel across the state to the more tranquil pace of life in the retirement community of Venice.

The FBI has said nothing about this. The FBI says Atta didn’t live there anymore. The FBI says Atta was already nine months gone. The FBI is lying.

So, just what was Atta doing in Venice? It's a secret....But the one thing the FBI seems most eager to hide—and it is horrible to have to contemplate that your own government is covering up mass murder—is the identity of who Mohamed Atta was doing it with.

Why? Because this discovery would inexorably lead to the organization, or global network that was so clearly smoothing the way for Atta’s Hamburg cadre in America. And then... Then we would know just who in the United States had been doing business, on September 10,2001, with Osama bin Laden’s thugs—on this end, the U.S. end, where this until-now unidentified enemy is still inside the gates.

Here’s a big clue: Mohamed Atta was seen in Venice with ‘flight school owner’ and international con man Rudi Dekkers, who swore in testimony before Congress that he never saw Atta after he ‘left’ his flight school in December, 2000.

For example, according to Bob Simpson and other Venice Yellow Cab employees interviewed by the FBI, Atta took numerous cab rides to and from Huffman Aviation as well as several other locations in Venice during August 2001.

On at least two of these occasions Atta was traveling with Rudi Dekkers, a man who testified under oath before Congress that his relationship with the terrorist ringleader ended almost nine months earlier.

“They knew each other well, really well," stated cabbie Simpson. "They were friends. They were going to a nightclub in Sarasota, talking and very sociable with each other. He and Atta were friends, you could tell.”

Simpson said he first took Atta and Dekkers from Huffman Aviation to James' Place, a restaurant in downtown Venice. On another occasion he picked the two up at the Pompano Road residence of former Huffman employee Charlie Voss, and took them to a Sarasota nightclub, the Gator Club, which Atta is known to have frequented. (It was Voss, recall, whose home was made available to Atta and Marwan when they arrived in Venice.)

The Yellow Cab office manager in Sarasota confirmed that the trips were recorded in the firm's cab logs.

“Perjury would be a start”

Yet in sworn testimony in front of the House Judiciary Committee in March 2002, Dekkers insisted his relationship with the terrorist ringleader had been distant, and ended the previous December, nine months before the attack.

Dekkers told the hearing about complaints from his staff that Atta and Al-Shehhi had behavioral problems, that they were not following instructions, and that they also had bad attitudes. “On December 24th, 2000, Atta and Al-Shehhi rented a Warrior (N555HA) from Huffman Aviation for a flight,” the Dutch national stated, telling of his last encounter with Atta.

“Atta and Al-Shehhi returned to Huffman Aviation to make final payments on their outstanding bills. Because they were not taking any more flying lessons, they were asked to leave the facility due to their bad attitudes and not being liked by staff and clients alike. Huffman never heard about or from them again until September 11th, 2001.”

Speaking with reporters, he had been more colloquial. “They did not socialize with anyone,” Dekkers said three days after the attack. “They did not go to the bar with us. That Atta guy was an asshole.

Dekkers is guilty of a lot more than perjury... but its a start.

Is Bob Simpson a credible witness? Could he somehow be mistaken in his identification of Dekkers? Not likely... He knew Rudi Dekkers well, he said, from numerous trips to Huffman Aviation to pick up arriving flight students.

And Simpson is a retired Navy veteran who saw duty off the coast of Libya, and other Mediterranean hot spots during the 1980’s, and he comes from a law enforcement background: his father was Asst. Chief of Police in Pleasant Hill, California, his brother is a cop, and he has an uncle in the DEA.

Moreover, authorities deported three young Saudi students who had just arrived in Venice in early September, just before the attack, based primarily on Bob Simpson’s testimony that they were associates of Atta. So they had no trouble believing he was telling the truth....

Were he to be faced in court with conflicting testimony from Rudi Dekkers, we have no doubt who the jury would believe.

Tidbits from the Venice Terabyte

During final preparations for the Sept 11 attack, Mohamed Atta’s father was 'visiting' his terrorist ringleader son in Venice, Florida. After seeing him on television denying that his son had anything to do with the terrorist hijackings, a number of credible witnesses called the Sarasota office of the FBI to report they had seen Atta’s father in Venice with his son ten days to two weeks before the attack.

Closed circuit videotape provided to the FBI as evidence of Atta Senior’s presence appears to have been intentionally erased.

The FBI knew about the U.S. visit of Atta’s father, Cairo attorney Mohammed El-Amir, in Venice. So why has someone with clear foreknowledge of an attack which murdered almost 3000 civilians not been brought to justice?

Might the answer be in those 2.5 terabytes?

The recent "Atta in America" controversy started by Rep. Curt Weldon (R. PA) is a hopeful sign of the unraveling of the "official story" about 9/11... even as those in charge of maintaining the illusion of the "official story" are hard at work creating new layers of disinformation in the media.

The official story of the 9.11 attack resembles a Potemkin’s village, a false front hiding a set of what must be really undesirable facts. The term refers to a Russian official in the 18th century who had elaborate fake villages built to give Catherine the Great a false impression of peace and prosperity when she toured the Ukraine and the Crimea, regions that in actuality were in turmoil and poverty.

Selling Wolf Cookies in Potemkin's Village

What’s the best way to honor the memory of 9.11's three thousand murder victims on the fourth anniversary of the attack?

Ask the questions they cannot; expose the FBI’s massive 9.11 cover-up; and burn down their hastily-constructed and totally phony Potemkin’s Villages. Terry McDermott, author of “Perfect Soldiers,” the biggest whitewash since Tom Sawyer was painting fences, is the chief shill and Potemkin Villager of the moment...

He writes: “Over the last four years I have interviewed dozens of people who swore they saw Atta somewhere he wasn't. This includes an assortment of waiters, students, flight instructors, taxi drivers and, more dramatically, two women who each claim to have been married to Atta, this despite the fact that they were never in the same city at the same time he was.’

“How could it be that so many people remember that they knew Atta, that they saw him or his name, when all the facts argue otherwise? I don't think they are all lying. Maybe none of them are. I think Atta entered an American psyche desperate for a name and face and an explanation. He came complete with what has become one of the iconic images of 9/11 -- his Florida DMV mug shot, an image so memorable, so powerful and perfect for the moment that it allowed people to see in it whatever they needed to see.”

Nothing to see here. Move along. In other words:

You didn’t see what you thought you saw. See?

You can read more about Perfect Soldiers here: Our mini-review: 'Perfect Soldiers is perfect dreck... But dreck which speaks volumes about the state of the 9.11 cover-up."

McDermott’s book did contain one new bit of information: the revelation that Rudi Dekkers offered Mohamed Atta (and his bodyguard Marwan) a job. The positions were on his phony start-up airline, a transparent dummy front for something else altogether, although this fact escapes McDermott’s notice.

The perfect crime: Steal $350 million of 'the little people's' money

Another fact which somehow escaped his notice: Dekkers' partner in the failed airline venture, Richard Boehlke, was just then participating in the $350 million bust out of pension funds of mostly Mob-led unions.

This is, no doubt, just another freak coincidence.

Boehlke told a reporter for ABC News in Portland that Dekker's proposed using flight students like Atta to ride along as co-pilots on their flights, as a way to save money and also give the students cockpit experience. This, said Boehlke, was patently illegal.

As we’ve seen, that’s not a consideration that would have worried Dekkers. "The thought that terrorists might have been allowed access to secure airport facilities is chilling," said Boehlke.

We will leave you with one more Atta sighting which McDermott would be hard-pressed to tap dance away...Tom and Rene Adorna own the Pelican Alley Restaurant in Nokomis, just a block from the rented home which Atta and Marwan vacated nine months earlier.

They saw Mohamed Atta, along with Marwan Al-Shehhi and a third, unidentified man, in their restaurant just a few weeks before the attack, during the same time period Bob Simpson and Joe Gessell testify they were driving him around town.

The three men had caused a scene in her restaurant, she told us. When reporters showed up the day after September 11, Rene Adorna says she immediately knew why they were there.

“Right after the incident happened, we had newspapers come down, and right away I knew what it was about, because I remembered the table. Tommy knew, Jeff knew, and we said right away, and they showed us one picture and we knew immediately.”

"We thought they were Mob."

“There were three of them,” Rene recounted. “And they all looked of the Egyptian persuasion, dark skin, dark hair, lots of jewelry, lots of jewelry. They were dressed in Florida type shirts—the silk, you know, with the pattern, that kind of thing—and I could have sworn there was a cross, the one guy had a big cross, the big gaudy gold cross thing, I thought, but you know, I’m not sure now, but I know he had the big watch on.”

“They were loud, making comments, one had his fist pounding the table, saying, ‘We’re talking $200,000! We have to answer to the family!’”

Gold jewelry, expensive watches, and silk shirts. Its not exactly a description of Islamic fundamentalists. But then neither were their actions.

“I thought they were Mafia,” Rene said.

She confirmed again what numerous women who had encountered Atta said about him: Atta wouldn’t talk to her. “He barely spoke a word to me, but when I’d come over I’d feel like, jeez, what’s his problem, because he had that really mean, mean look on his face all the time, like he was very unhappy.”

Marwan, as always, served as buffer and go-between.

“Then there was the other guy, the heavier-set guy, he did all the talking, with me, anyway. He was very out-going, very pleasant actually.”

It was Marwan loudly arguing with Atta, we learned to our surprise.

“The big guy… actually he, the big guy, was yelling at the other guy (Atta). I tried to stay away from the table pretty much, and then went and told Tom (her husband and co-manager): ‘You better watch his table, they’re getting a little out of hand.”

Tom came out front to see what the trouble was about. “He (Marwan) was a pretty big guy,” he recalled. “And he was doing most of the talking. He kept saying stuff to them, about money, we kept hearing about money. The other guy(Atta), I guess, was the main guy, but he wasn’t saying a word, he just sat there with a look on his face and he didn’t say anything.”

Both Tom and Rene Adorna remain surprised that the FBI hadn’t bothered to interview them. When we told them they were in good company, they sounded slightly mollified. “Two newspapers came by,” said Tom. “That was it. And they (the terrorists) were living right down the street, right down the block. But they never came over here to see us.”

The FBI already knew everything they wanted to know.

“I did think it was strange,” added Rene. She shrugged. “We thought like they might want some information. But maybe they already had everything that they needed.”

Prescription for a cover-up. How you can tell when the Fix is In:

" Maybe they already had everything they needed.”

Four years on… and there has still not been an official investigation into the murder of 3000 people nor a report on how it was perpetrated to which the American people are privy.

Four years on… and the CIA has fewer experienced case officers assigned to the bin Laden unit than it did when the hijackers took over the planes.

Four years on… and the remarkable assertion by the Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation into 9/11 that our current President may be serving another country’s interests is still being completely ignored by the major media.

"It was as if the president's loyalty lay more with Saudi Arabia than with America's safety,” said Sen. Bob Graham in a comment met with thundering silence.

Four years ago, the firefighters cheering Bush during his visit to Ground Zero “weren’t cheering for regime change in Iraq,” wrote Maureen Dowd in the N.Y. Times. “They wanted the head of Osama bin Laden.”

They still do.


"Threats of law suits against journalists have become the hallmark of the Bush administration in their not-too-clever tactic to silence the independent media in the United States." --Wayne Madsen Censorship by lawsuit happens if we can't stay current with our ever-growing legal bills. And probably we will always be being least if we're doing it right. Please help us continue by making a donation directly into our defense fund.

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- Daniel Hopsicker is the author of Barry & 'the boys: The CIA, the Mob and America's Secret History. About the author. - Email the author.

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STANDARD DISCLAIMER FROM UQ.ORG: does not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the above article. We present this in the interests of research -for the relevant information we believe it contains. We hope that the reader finds in it inspiration to work with us further, in helping to build bridges between our various investigative communities, towards a greater, common understanding of the unanswered questions which now lie before us.

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