"Weapons of Mass Deception"


Continuing FBI Investigations Mean Potentially Serious Trouble for Israel

By Andrew I. Killgore

Two ongoing FBI investigations could cause serious problems for Israel. One concerns Larry Franklin, an Iranian analyst who worked at the Pentagon under neocon/Zionist Douglas Feith, under secretary of defense for policy. According to press reports, Franklin—who cooperated with the FBI, initially at least—is suspected of having passed to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) a classified National Security Presidential Directive (NSPD) on Iran. AIPAC, Israel’s principal American lobby, then passed the NSPD to Israel, news accounts say.

AIPAC has been under FBI investigation for at least two years for being a conduit for U.S. intelligence to Israel. In fact, according to a Nov. 2 Associated Press report, National Security Advisor and Secretary of State-designate Condoleezza Rice was briefed about the investigation “shortly” after the Bush administration took office, which means the investigation has been under way for close to four years, not two.

Time magazine reported that Franklin made a series of FBI-scripted and -monitored telephone calls to get possible evidence on others, including allies of Ahmad Chalabi, “a favorite of the Pentagon neoconservatives”—the two most prominent of whom are Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Feith. Chalabi, the exiled Iraqi who provided much of the disinformation used by Pentagon neocons to promote the U.S. war on Iraq, is thought to have informed Tehran that the U.S. had broken Iran’s diplomatic code. Not only has Chalabi lost Washington’s support because of his role in the matter, but whoever provided that information to Chalabi is guilty of serious espionage.

Moreover, according to an independent expert on Israeli espionage who was interviewed by the FBI in June and in several follow-up interviews, the investigators’ questioning was broad and extremely detailed. It appears that the various FBI investigations may have become one overlapping investigation centered on AIPAC and its neocon fellow travelers.

In mid-September, however, the press went silent on Franklin. London’s Financial Times wrote that the White House had ordered the leaker to stop—which the White House denied. But coverage resumed temporarily, with the New York Sun story that Franklin had fired his court-appointed attorney. The Los Angeles Times reported on Oct. 6 that Franklin had hired to represent him high-priced Washington, DC attorney Plato Cacheris, who had earlier defended CIA spies Adrich Ames and Robert Hanssen. Franklin supposedly has rejected as “too onerous” a proposed plea agreement.
Since the Pollard case, at least six sealed indictments have been issued against individuals alleging espionage on Israel’s behalf.

Law enforcement and intelligence sources told the American Prospect Online that, since the Jonathan Jay Pollard case, at least six sealed indictments have been issued against individuals alleging espionage on Israel’s behalf. None of these were prosecuted, but instead were handled “through diplomatic and intelligence channels.” Justice Department and intelligence officials expressed frustration that cases that could have been made successfully against Israeli spies never were brought to trial. This has led to informed speculation that the FBI leaked the Franklin story to keep it in the public eye and give it a fighting chance.

AIPAC and neoconservatives—“fighting for their political lives,” according to the Nov. 1 Prospect article, written by Laura Rozen and Jason Vest—apparently decided that the best defense was a good offense. In the Rozen and Vest version of the FBI investigation, the AIPAC and Franklin probes had nothing to do with Chalabi and the Iran-related leaks. Rather, according to Michael Rubin, a former desk officer in Feith’s notorious Office of Special Plans, the investigators were going after Jews.

Several questions come to mind: Why did Franklin stop cooperating with the FBI? Who pays the high-priced Cocheris’ fees? What if not the FBI but AIPAC and/or the neocons leaked the investigators’ story? They might reason that they stand a better chance that way of avoiding prosecution.

Not only Israel, but many Americans are waiting to see what happens.

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Milton Frihetsson, 17:41


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