August 9, 2005, - 6:57 am
More on Peter Jennings’ Friend, Tariq Hamdi: Indicted for Immigration, Mortgage-Loan Fraud; Flees U.S.
By Debbie Schlussel
What a coincidence! Yesterday, I write about Tariq Hamdi, the man Peter Jennings repeatedly presented as a “journalist” during his 9/11 coverage. And today’s Washington Post has an article about Hamdi.
Because I’d written, back in 2001 and since, about Hamdi’s ties to Bin Laden–he provided Bin Laden the satellite battery for the attacks on our embassies in East Africa, worked for a charity raided by Customs for laundering billions to Qaeda (International Institute for Islamic Thought), and was an employee of indicted Islamic Jihad chief Sami Al-Arian–I was shocked when Jennings repeatedly presented Hamdi only as “journalist” on 9/11 and post 9/11 attacks (who has ZERO experience as a journalist). Jennings, while mentioning absolutely nothing about Hamdi’s disturbing activities, also noted that Hamdi was his friend.
The Washington Post repeats what I’ve said about Jennings’ friend Hamdi, but adds more. Apparently Hamdi was just indicted for immigration and mortgage-loan fraud. The Post repeats what I’ve written about the Bin Laden satellite battery. It also adds, “ABC did not respond to a request for more information about its relationship with Hamdi.”
Here’s what I know about ABC’s relationship with Hamdi: HAMDI WAS A FRIEND OF PETER JENNINGS. Enough said.
The Hamdi indictment also states that in 1994 Hamdi had been the U.S. representative for the Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights in Saudi Arabia, “a London-based organization that has embraced many of bin Laden’s views,” according to the Post.
And guess what? Tariq Hamdi has now fled the U.S. Gee I wonder why. Don’t count on him coming back to face justice.
Question for ICE (Immigration & Customs Enforcement) press flack Dean Boyd: With everything that was known about him, why was Tariq Hamdi allowed to leave the U.S.?
***UPDATE: ICE spokesman Dean Boyd tells me that ICE believed Hamdi would return to the country, and that it was the U.S. Attorney’s Office (Justice Department) that made the bone-headed (my word, not Boyd’s) decision to bring down the indictment and have it unsealed after Hamdi left the country and before he returned–which he now never will. Boyd says Hamdi is now a fugitive.
While ICE did its job in this case, this is yet another huge screw-up by our friends at the “Justice” Department.
Tags: ABC, bin Laden, chief, Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights, Dean Boyd, Debbie Schlussel What, Department of Justice, East Africa, ICE spokesman, International Institute for Islamic Thought, Islamic Jihad, journalist, London, Peter Jennings, representative, Sami Al-Arian, satellite battery, Saudi Arabia, Tariq Hamdi, The Washington Post, U.S. Attorney's Office, United States, Washington Post