9/11 Mastermind Osama bin Laden: America’s Anti-Soviet 'Peace Warrior' and CIA 'Intelligence Asset'
Prof Michel Chossudovsky
“On September 11, 2012, let us not only renew our efforts to expose the truth, but also take our awareness a step further to understand that the wars launched since that fateful autumn day in 2001 - in the bitterly ironic name of “justice” and supposedly to combat “terrorism” - continue to take lives of people across the world. These wars are based on lies and their costs are staggering.”
The eleventh commemoration anniversary of 9/11 brings to the forefront the issue of 911 truth. The official story is that Al Qaeda, with the complicity of the Taliban government was behind the 9/11 attacks.
Both George W Bush and Barack Obama claim that the late Osama bin Laden was the architect of 9/11, responsible for overseeing the 9/11 hijackers.
And that is why, we are told, that America is waging a “Global War on Terrorism” (GWOT) under the Pentagon’s doctrine of “preemptive warfare”.
The Global War on Terrorism not only targets “non-State” terrorist entities including Al Qaeda, it is also directed against alleged “state sponsors” of terrorism. In this regard, several Western countries including the US, Britain and Canada consider that Iran is supportive of the “Sunni jihadist terror network”, an absurd proposition. In December 2011, a Manhattan court judgment (based on selected testimonies and fabricated evidence), accused the Islamic Republic of Iran of supporting the 9/11 Al Qaeda hijackers.
The investigation into Tehran’s alleged role was launched in 2004, pursuant to a recommendation of the 9/11 Commission “regarding an apparent link between Iran, Hezbollah, and the 9/11 hijackers”. The 91/11 Commission’s recommendation was that the this “apparent link” required “further investigation by the U.S. government.” (9/11 Commission Report , p. 241). (See Iran 911 Case).
In the December 2011 court judgment (Havlish v. Iran) “U.S. District Judge George B. Daniels ruled that Iran and Hezbollah materially and directly supported al Qaeda in the September 11, 2001 attacks and are legally responsible for damages to hundreds of family members of 9/11 victims who are plaintiffs in the case”. (See Michel Chossudovsky, the 9/11 Reader, Global Research, September 3, 2001)
Who was Osama bin Laden, the Alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks?
The US administration tacitly acknowledges that Osama bin Laden had been recruited by the CIA in the heyday of the Soviet-Afghan war. Osama bin Laden was the leader of Al Qaeda which was supported covertly by the CIA.
The Blowback: The official version is that “we supported” Al Qaeda’s jihadist crusade against the Soviet Union. “It was for a good cause.:
According to Washington’s narrative Osama bin Laden “turned against us” in the wake of the Soviet-Afghan war, which broadly coincided with the end of the Cold War (1946-1989), .
In intelligence parlance, “the blowback” refers to an “intelligence asset” which goes against its sponsors, namely the CIA.
In the immediate wake of the Cold War, bin Laden was said to have abandoned the jihad. He was portrayed with some hesitation as a “Peace Warrior” involved in humanitarian undertakings. The byline of this post Cold War photograph of Osama bin Laden published by the Independent in 1993, describes Bin Laden as an “anti-Soviet warrior” “on the road to peace”.
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Robert Fisk’s 1993 report, published at the outset of the post Cold War era. described Bin Laden as a former “freedom fighter”, “Saudi businessman” and philanthropist:
Osama Bin Laden sat in his gold- fringed robe, guarded by the loyal Arab mujahedin who fought alongside him in Afghanistan. Bearded, taciturn figures – unarmed, but never more than a few yards from the man who recruited them, trained them and then dispatched them to destroy the Soviet army – they watched unsmiling as the Sudanese villagers of Almatig lined up to thank the Saudi businessman who is about to complete the highway linking their homes to Khartoum for the first time in history.
With his high cheekbones, narrow eyes and long brown robe, Mr Bin Laden looks every inch the mountain warrior of mujahedin legend. Chadored children danced in front of him, preachers acknowledged his wisdom. ”We have been waiting for this road through all the revolutions in Sudan,” a sheikh said. ”We waited until we had given up on everybody – and then Osama Bin Laden came along.”
Al Qaeda in the 1990s
Did Bin Laden abandon the jihadist cause?
The evidence amply confirms that in the wake of the Cold War, Bin Laden maintained his links with the CIA –indirectly through Pakistan’s military intelligence (ISI)– and continued to perform the role of a US sponsored “intelligence asset”
Al Qaeda was directly involved in the US-NATO sponsored civil war is Bosnia, providing support to the Bosnian Muslim Army.
Ironically, the links of Al Qaeda to the Clinton administration are fully documented by a lengthy Congressional report of the Republican Party Committee (RPC) published in 1997.
The RPC Congressional report accuses the Clinton administration of having “helped turn Bosnia into a militant Islamic base” leading to the recruitment through the so-called “Militant Islamic Network,” of thousands of Mujahideen from the Muslim world.
Ironically, Osama bin Laden’s Sudan based NGO, alluded to in Robert Fisk’s 1993 article, is identified in the Republican Party Committee (RPC) as a “phoney humanitarian organization” linked up to with the Bosnia terror network, and directly supported by the Clinton administration:
… The role of one Sudan-based “humanitarian organization,” called the Third World Relief Agency, has been well documented. The Clinton Administration’s “hands-on” involvement with the Islamic network’s arms pipeline included inspections of missiles from Iran by U.S. government officials… the Third World Relief Agency (TWRA), a Sudan-based, phoney humanitarian organization … has been a major link in the arms pipeline to Bosnia. … TWRA is believed to be connected with such fixtures of the Islamic terror network as Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman (the convicted mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing) and Osama Bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi émigré believed to bankroll numerous militant groups. [Washington Post, 9/22/96] (The original document is on the website of the US Senate Republican Party Committee (Senator Larry Craig), at http://www.senate.gov/~rpc/releases/1997/iran.htm emphasis added)
The Republican Party accused president Bill Clinton and his National Security Adviser Anthony Lake (who subsequently headed the CIA) of abetting and supporting the recruitment of Mujahideen, who were then dispatched to Bosnia.
The unspoken objective was to destroy Yugoslavia as a nation state.
From Bosnia to Kosovo
In the late 1990s, Al Qaeda led by Osama bin Laden –acting in liaison with the Western military alliance– was involved in providing support to the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).
The “Bosnian pattern” described in the 1997 Congressional RPC report was replicated in Kosovo. With the complicity of NATO and the US State Department. Mujahideen mercenaries from the Middle East and Central Asia were recruited to fight in the ranks of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 1998-99, largely supporting NATO’s war effort.
Confirmed by British military sources, the task of arming and training of the KLA had been entrusted in 1998 to the US Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) and Britain’s Secret Intelligence Services MI6, together with “former and serving members of 22 SAS [Britain's 22nd Special Air Services Regiment], as well as three British and American private security companies”.7
The US DIA approached MI6 to arrange a training programme for the KLA, said a senior British military source. `MI6 then sub-contracted the operation to two British security companies, who in turn approached a number of former members of the (22 SAS) regiment. Lists were then drawn up of weapons and equipment needed by the KLA.’ While these covert operations were continuing, serving members of 22 SAS Regiment, mostly from the unit’s D Squadron, were first deployed in Kosovo before the beginning of the bombing campaign in March. 8
While British SAS Special Forces in bases in Northern Albania were training the KLA, military instructors from Turkey and Afghanistan financed by the “Islamic jihad” were collaborating in training the KLA in guerilla and diversion tactics.10
Bin Laden had visited Albania himself. He was one of several fundamentalist groups that had sent units to fight in Kosovo, … Bin Laden is believed to have established an operation in Albania in 1994 … Albanian sources say Sali Berisha, who was then president, had links with some groups that later proved to be extreme fundamentalists. (Michel Chossudovsky Osamagate, October 9, 2001 numerals refer to endnotes in the original article)
According to Ralf Mutschke of Interpol’s Criminal Intelligence division also in a testimony to the House Judicial Committee:
“The U.S. State Department listed the KLA as a terrorist organization, indicating that it was financing its operations with money from the international heroin trade and loans from Islamic countries and individuals, among them allegedly Usama bin Laden” . Another link to bin Laden is the fact that the brother of a leader in an Egyptian Jihad organization and also a military commander of Usama bin Laden, was leading an elite KLA unit during the Kosovo conflict.” (US Congress, Testimony of Ralf Mutschke of Interpol’s Criminal Intelligence Division, to the House Judicial Committee, 13 December 2000).
Macedonia: Al Qaeda and the US Military in the Months Preceding 9/11
On the 10th of September, eleven years ago, I published an article entitled Washington Behind Terrorist Assaults In Macedonia, which confirmed that the US military and Al Qaeda were collaborating in supporting a self-proclaimed National Liberation Army (NLA), involved in terrorist attacks in the FYR of Macedonia. This text was among the first articles posted by Global Research, which was launched on September 9, 2001.
The NLA was an offshoot of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). The NLA-KLA terrorists were trained and supported by a private mercenary company, Military Professional Resources International (MPRI), on contract to the Pentagon.
“Among the foreign mercenaries now [ June-July 2001] fighting with the KLA-NLA are Mujahedin from the Middle East and the Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union as well as “soldiers of fortune” from several NATO countries including Britain, Holland and Germany. Some of these Western mercenaries had previously fought with the KLA and the Bosnian Muslim Army.12
While Washington was arming the National Liberation Army (NLA) terrorists which included Al Qaeda mercenaries in its ranks, some 3000 heavily armed NATO troops were given the mandate to “disarm the rebels” and enforce the cease-fire. Code-named “Essential Harvest” this NATO endeavor was officially launched on August 22, 2001.
The actual NATO operation under a “humanitarian mandate” consisting of troop deployments started on August 27, two weeks before the September 11, 2001 attacks.
At the time, this bogus R2P “peacekeeping” operation under British command was intended to weaken the Macedonian Armed Forces and destabilize national institutions. In the words, of the Prime minister of FYR of Macedonia Ljubco Georgievski:
“As much as their text ["peace plan"] is brutal, more brutal and worrying is the fashion in which they are trying to break up Macedonian state institutions,’ … All of the terrorist actions in Macedonia have been supported by the Western democracies… all threats and blackmails have been presented so far, except that NATO will conduct an air-strike on us.” (Macedonian Prime Minister Mr. Ljubco Georgievski, quoted in Washington Behind Terrorist Assaults In Macedonia, emphasis added)
In a bitter irony, Washington was behind the terrorist NLA assault in Macedonia integrated by Al Qaeda mercenaries, which preceded the August 27 NATO intervention. The objective of Operation “Essential Harvest” was not disarm the NLA terrorists. The hidden agenda was twofold: coverup and regime change.
While Secretary of State Colin Powell had, at the time reaffirmed America’s resolve to “combat terrorism”, US military advisers were fighting alongside the NLA terrorists. The NLA was not only integrated by Al Qaeda mercenaries, the rebels were being supported by US special forces:
Among the rebels that were withdrawing were 17 “instructors” – former [MPRI] US officers that provided military training for the rebels. Not only that: the Macedonian security forces claim that 70% of the equipment that the guerrilla fighters took with them are of US production and the latter includes highly sophisticated third generation night vision devices.” (Ibid, See also Hamburger Abendblatt, Hamburg, 27 June 2001, English translation by OK-Macedonia, Skopje, 28 June 2001, at http://www.ok.mk/news/story.asp?id=1631. )
What is significant in these events is that barely a few months before 9/11, former US military officers, which had integrated the ranks of the terror brigades, were caught red-handed (June 2001) together with Al Qaeda mercenaries.
In other words, in the weeks preceding 9/11, there is evidence of active collaboration between Al Qaeda and US military officers on contract to the Pentagon in blatant contradiction with the 9/11 narrative.
The official 9/11 story is predicated on the “blowback”, namely that Al Qaeda, the alleged perpetrator of the 9/11 attacks “turned against us” in the wake of the Cold War (1989). The events in Bosnia, Kosovo and Macedonia confirm unequivocally that Al Qaeda was an intelligence asset throughout the 1990s up until June 2001, when NLA Al Qaeda operatives were arrested with their US military instructors.
The KLA-NLA terrorists are funded from US military aid, the United Nations peace-keeping budget as well as by several Islamic organisations including Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda. Drug money is also being used to finance the terrorists with the complicity of the US government. The recruitment of Mujahideen to fight in the ranks of the NLA in Macedonia is implemented through various Islamic groups.
US military advisers mingle with Mujahideen within the same paramilitary force, Western mercenaries from NATO countries fight alongside Mujahideen recruited in the Middle East and Central Asia. And the US media calls this a “blowback” where so-called “intelligence assets” have gone against their sponsors!
But this did not happen during the Cold war! It is happening right now in Macedonia. And it is confirmed by numerous press reports, eyewitness accounts, photographic evidence as well as official statements by the Macedonian Prime Minister, who has accused the Western military alliance of supporting the terrorists. Moreover, the official Macedonian New Agency (MIA) has pointed to the complicity between Washington’s envoy Ambassador James Pardew and the NLA terrorists. 17 In other words, the so-called “intelligence assets” are still serving the interests of their US sponsors. (Michel Chossudovsky, Osamagate, Global Research, October 9, 2001)
Throughout the post 9/11 era (2001-2012), there is ample evidence that Al Qaeda and Al Qaeda affiliated entities (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria), have continued to play a central role in US sponsored covert operations.
Macedonia versus Syria: Déjà Vu
Bosnia, Kosovo, Macedonia: The strategic objective of the US-NATO military operations was to destabilize and destroy the Yugoslav Federation using Al Qaeda terrorist operatives as a means to triggering sectarian strife and ethnic divisions within a socially and culturally diverse national society.
The Bosnia-Kosovo model was replicated in Libya and Syria.
The National Liberation Army (NLA) of Macedonia integrated by Al Qaeda terrorists versus the Free Syrian Army (FSA) integrated by Al Qaeda mercenaries recruited by NATO, Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
Macedonia’s Prime Minister Georgievski’s statement (above) `focusing on the threats of NATO airstrikes and the breaking up of state institutions,’ is remarkably similar to that of Syrian president Bashar Al Assad.
Al Qaeda Déjà Vu? The FSA terrorist attacks in Syria in 2012 bear a canny resemblance to those conducted in Macedonia in 2001. The Syrian FSA integrated by Al Qaeda operatives is supported by the same Western powers, which intervened in Bosnia, Kosovo and Macedonia.