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Former Top U.S. Officials Voice Suspicions Over CIA Pre-9/11

September 20, 2011

Former Top U.S. Officials Voice Suspicions Over CIA Pre-9/11

(Austin) -- In a podcast to be released tomorrow, Richard Clarke, a former top Bush counter-terrorism official, Bob Baer, a retired CIA officer, a Pulitzer-prize winning author, former FBI agents and 9/11 Commission Chairman Tom Kean voice their concerns over violations of protocol, outright deception and apparent malfeasance in the CIA’s handling of pre-9/11 intelligence.

Last week speaking to Dylan Ratigan on MSNBC, former Co-Chair of the Congressional "Joint Inquiry" into 9/11, Senator Bob Graham called on authorities to re-open the investigation in the 9/11 attacks, referring to the CIA’s withholding, from the FBI, information about two future hijackers.

The documentary audio podcast, titled “Who is Rich Blee?” and available at features several interviews with direct witnesses to events beginning in early 2000, within the CIA’s Bin Laden Station, headed by its chief Richard Blee, tasked with tracking suspect Al-Qaeda operatives.

The release comes after the leak in August of a controversial interview with Richard Clarke and follows a delay after the CIA made veiled threats of federal prosecution if the podcast revealed the names of two CIA analysts.

Beginning from a scant footnote in the 9/11 Commission Report (Endnote 44, Chapter 6) the program carefully builds a narrative how CIA intelligence about two future hijackers, Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, including their presence in San Diego, was repeatedly withheld from the FBI and the White House.

These former officials, several of them for the first time, recount their experiences with the CIA and their suspicions surrounding violations of protocol and seemingly purposeful ‘bungling’ of critical intelligence the CIA had in hand, that if shared, they believe would have likely prevented the 9/11 attacks.

Repeated and ongoing attempts by the CIA to obscure the facts around this case, have raised concerns about possible criminal acts and brought increased scrutiny on the CIA and a pattern of obstruction there in the 18 months leading up to 9/11 and cover-up afterwards.

“This was perhaps the closest U.S. intelligence got to foiling the 9/11 plot,” explains Producer Ray Nowosielski, “but instead of stopping the attack, the CIA stopped key intelligence about two high-value targets from getting to the right people, at least a half-dozen times. The podcast begins to examine the question, why?”

For further background visit Producers plan to release Part II of “Who is Rich Blee” on October 11th. Part I is available at

UPDATE: Part I of Podcast currently available for download at
Note: The transcript is also available to download.


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