March 25, 2008, - 2:18 pm
Failure of Terrorism Financing Investigations is Indictment of FBI, Current ICE “Leadership”; L.A. Times’ Annoying Excuses
By Debbie Schlussel
Although I have been extremely critical of Immigration and Custom Enforcement’s (ICE) Director of Investigations, Marcy Forman-Friedman, I have also praised her for her success in running the “Operation Greenquest” terrorism financing crackdown under the old U.S. Customs Service. I knew and gave tips to several agents involved in this successful operation to choke terrorism money laundering and funding. They made raids and stopped a number of large terrorism-financing monetary scams.
Now, though, it’s a different story.
When Homeland Security was created along with ICE, Forman-Friedman sought to keep Greenquest. But, unfortunately, she lost out, and the project was killed. Incompetent then-DHS chief Tom Ridge agreed to cede all terrorism investigations–including money-laundering investigations, on which ICE and the U.S. Secret Service successfully worked–to the inept FBI and signed an agreement with then-Atty. Gen. John Ashcroft to that effect.
But ICE still maintains investigations in a lot of money-laundering cases, and both it and the FBI have done very little in the area. A Los Angeles Times article, while not addressing that, reports that America is now failing to stop terrorism-financing. While that is true and extremely alarming, the rest of the article is bunk.
The article, by L.A. Times reporter Josh Meyer whom I don’t respect (because he recently contacted me for an article, lied to me, and tried to rook me), blames America’s failure in stopping terrorism financing on a host of excuses. He quotes some CIA has-been, who is clearly clueless and out-of-the-loop, as saying that America can’t deliver on Bush’s promises to strike the financial foundation of terrorists. But we could deliver . . . if we–and top officials–really wanted to. Sadly, the bottom line is that there’s no will to do so. Obama lies and says, “Yes we can.” They lie and say, “No we can’t.”
I don’t just blame the FBI–which deserves a lot of blame. I also blame ICE “leadership,” especially Julie L. Myers a/k/a “The ICE Princess” and her top minions, like Brian Moskowitz a/k/a “Abu Moskowitz”, Special Agent in Charge for Michigan and Ohio.
I personally know of a giant terrorism money-transfer operation, a Hawala, that illegally sends several million dollars a month overseas to Kuwait and elsewhere in the Arab gulf.
And I know that Moskowitz knows about it and has done nothing to stop this ring, which stretches across America, has a huge base in Michigan, and involves some of the top Shi’ite Muslim clerics in town with tight ties to Iran (one of whom DHS chief Michael “Serpenthead” Chertoff feted on a trip to Dearbornistan, last year). Moskowitz’s agents met with me and tried to recruit me as an informant in this case. While I declined, I told them what I knew about the parties involved.
And, even though, for some time, an enterprising, courageous agent did the legwork and developed the case against this ring, conducting surveillance against the many participants in this terror-financing ring, Moskowitz has since decided to allow the money to flow and to do nothing because he and his agents are too lazy to do the legwork. They’d rather do dope busts, which are easier and net more glory from less work. Who cares about the people blown to bits from the millions they allowed to flow out of America into the hands of our sworn enemies?
Oh, and by the way, Julie Myers a/k/a “The ICE Princess” and those at the highest levels of ICE were made aware of this terrorism-financing money-laundering ring. They’re looking the other way, too.
And so, every single week, millions of dollars are transferred through bank accounts all over town–by at least two parties in Dearborn and 20 or more other parties nationwide–to what even one of Moskowitz’s top deputies admitted was the financing of terrorism, including to blow up American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. And the money flows unstopped, right under the government’s knowing nose, while Brian Moskowitz hangs out with Muslims in town who contribute to this “banking” effort.
And rumor has it that Moskowitz may get a promotion to head the Tampa ICE office, where there is also a lot of terrorist financing activity, which he will also likely ignore while he searches for new extra-marital girlfriends and man-crushes (a la Imad Hamad, who is now also Julie Myers’ man-crush) in that city’s extremist Muslim community. The dung rises to the top at ICE.
Meyer’s LA Times article is rife with endless excuses his fed buddies are giving for why the FBI and ICE have done almost nothing to stop terrorism financing in the 6.5 years since 9/11. As you’ll note, from the excerpts below, they use the “untraceable” Hawala excuse. But the fact is, as noted in the Abu Moskowitz episode above, many of these Hawala’s are very traceable and involve hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars with a huge paper trail of bank-reported Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs). It’s lazy top ICE officials, coupled with their PC-pander-to-Muslims ethos, that’s the real reason we are not stopping American dollars from going to finance Muslim terror. Same goes for the FBI (Famous But Incompetent):
The U.S.-led effort to choke off financing for Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups is foundering because setbacks at home and abroad have undermined the Bush administration’s highly touted counter-terrorism weapon, according to current and former officials and independent experts.
In some cases, extremist groups have blunted financial anti-terrorism tools by finding new ways to raise, transfer and spend their money. In other cases, the administration has stumbled over legal difficulties and interagency fighting, officials and experts say. . . .
“Al Qaeda, the Taliban and other terrorist groups continue to have access to the funds they need for active and expanded indoctrination, recruitment, maintenance, armament and operations,” said Victor D. Comras, a former United Nations terrorism finance official. [DS: Shukran (Thanks), Abu Moskowitz.] . . .
Also, the most deadly terrorist attacks since Sept. 11, 2001, have cost so little — often less than $10,000 — that they are virtually impossible to detect by following a money trail.
Terrorist networks need larger sums to travel, train operatives, bribe government officials, evade capture and expand support bases. Increasingly, however, they are moving funds below the radar of U.S.-led enforcement and intelligence-gathering efforts, officials and experts said.
Cash couriers use donkeys and camels in places like Pakistan and Afghanistan, for instance, and private jets are used in oil-rich Persian Gulf kingdoms to move cash, gold and jewels. The networks continue to rely on a centuries-old informal banking system known as hawala, which leaves virtually no trail. [DS: WRONG. See above.]
Overall, it is nearly impossible to distinguish funds meant for potential terrorism from legitimate transactions [DS: BS], said a senior State Department official, who, like some of the those interviewed, spoke on condition of anonymity because of prohibitions against commenting on the record on counter-terrorism.
Current and former U.S. officials acknowledge they are struggling, especially because much-needed allies are unwilling or unable to assist. [DS: More like U.S. officials are unwilling to do anything more than diddly-squat on our own soil. Nice that they expect others to not follow this example abroad.]
“It’s not as much that we’re not properly executing our strategy,” [DS: Um, yes, it is like that. "Strategy"? What strategy? There is no strategy, and that's the essence of the prob.] said Robert Grenier, a former senior CIA official. . . . .
Thirteen days after the attacks on New York and the Pentagon, President Bush announced “a major thrust of our war on terrorism . . . a strike on the financial foundation of the global terror network.” [DS: Like everything else Bush said post-9/11, total BS. Remember when he said "You're either on our side or the terrorists side," and then spent 6.5 years hanging with terrorists? Puh-leeze.]
“We will starve the terrorists of funding, turn them against each other, rout them out of their safe hiding places and bring them to justice,” Bush said in a Rose Garden speech, flanked by his secretaries of Treasury and State.
Please. Bush wouldn’t even force La Shish diners to starve on our own soil, even two years after the owner was indicted for sending millions to Islamic terrorists.
Desperate but not serious. And as for the L.A. Times, simply clueless . . . and the regurgitator of empty excuses for 6.5 years of many top federal law enforcement people NOT doing their jobs.
At least, Marcy Forman did do her job on this, and she was rewarded for it by having her successful operation “outsourced” to the failing FBI. But, for now, she is Moskowitz’s boss. So, why is she letting him allow his Muslim buds to send millions to terrorists?
Not a single FBI or CIA official was fired for 9/11 (and FBI agents like Harry Samit and Bob Wright who tried to stop this stuff were persecuted for it). So, like Alfred E. Neumann, why should they worry?
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