imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Another Fake Terror Plot

by By Bill Van Auken Wednesday, Jun. 06, 2007 at 7:04 AM

The weekend’s news in the US was dominated by screaming headlines and sensationalist broadcast coverage of an alleged plot in New York to blow up John F. Kennedy International Airport’s jet fuel tanks and supply lines. The attack would have been, according to many accounts, “more devastating than September 11.” Four men were charged in an indictment [http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/nye/pr/2007/Defreitas.complaint.pdf] unveiled Sunday that included features that have become almost invariable in every such “terror” case brought by the government in recent years. First, the suspects had not only carried out no acts of terror, but they apparently lacked any means to realize such an attack. Second, a central figure in the alleged plot was a paid undercover informant of the FBI.



Broadcast networks spoke of the worst threat since the attacks on New York and Washington in 2001, while reporters were sent out to conduct random interviews with passengers passing through JFK as well as residents living near the pipelines, asking how they felt about their supposed near brush with death.

As usual, New York City’s tabloids excelled in this sensationalism. Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post Sunday referred to the alleged plot in its headline as an “inferno plan” and carried an editorial stating that the purported plan “to do calamitous damage to JFK International Airport and surrounding residential neighborhoods underscores yet again the overarching threat Islamist terrorism poses to America.”

The New York Daily News on Monday carried five pages on the “plot,” with a ludicrous front-page headline, “Evil Ate at Table Eight,” promoting an inside interview with the Brooklyn waitress who served a meal to Russell Defreitas, whom the paper describes as the “mastermind” of the alleged plot, just before he was picked up by federal agents and police.

Yet the profile of Defreitas, a 63-year-old US citizen who emigrated from Guyana 25 years ago, hardly suggests a terrorist “mastermind.” A former friend describes him as someone who, before becoming a Muslim, had declared himself a Rastafarian and grown dreadlocks. He recalled his involvement in various business schemes to ship air conditioners or refrigerators to Guyana, none of which ever came to anything.

“He couldn’t even fix brakes,” the former friend said. “He never built bombs.”

Other accounts described him as a retired worker living in an impoverished Brooklyn neighborhood, who on various occasions had been homeless. New York Newsday, for example, reported, “Since being laid off from his job as a cargo worker several years ago, Russell Defreitas has lived a meek existence—at times sleeping in trains and trying to eke out a living running two-bit scams, selling incense on street corners and collecting welfare, acquaintances said.”

Also charged in the indictment are Abdul Kadir, a citizen of Guyana and former member of the Guyanese Parliament, and Kareem Ibrahim, a citizen of Trinidad, both of whom are under arrest in Trinidad awaiting a hearing on a US extradition request. Lawyers for the two said that they would fight extradition, likely raising the US record of torturing terrorism suspects. A fourth defendant, Abdel Nur, also a citizen of Guyana, has yet to be arrested.

A key figure in the alleged plot, however, is named in the indictment only as “the source.” He is identified as a convicted drug trafficker who, in exchange for favorable consideration on a pending jail sentence as well as cash payments, agreed to infiltrate the supposed terrorist cell.

Much of the evidence contained in the indictment consists of recordings of conversations between “the source” and the defendants. What emerges clearly, however, is the leading role this “informant” played in the alleged plot. Defreitas is quoted as saying that they saw him as someone “sent by Allah” to lead them.

The indictment also refers to meetings and recorded conversations between both Defreitas and the source and individuals in Guyana, who are identified only as “Individuals A through F.”

These six unnamed men are quoted proposing a wide range of terrorist activity, including smuggling “mujahideen from Asia into Guyana and then into the United States,” blowing up US helicopters at the Guyanese airport and the plan to blow up the JFK fuel system. On this last proposal, these unnamed individuals also suggest the use of dynamite and chemical explosives and advise on how to obtain these materials. One of these individuals also proposes that the plotters seek the assistance of a Trinidadian Islamist group, Jamaat al Muslimeen. In the account of these conversations, Defreitas is not quoted as saying anything.

The obvious question is why these six unnamed “individuals” have not been charged. One likely explanation is that they too were, in one form or another, participants in an elaborate effort to ensnare a hapless and sometimes homeless retiree and others in a plot that was fundamentally staged by the US government for its own purposes.

The blood-curdling accounts in the media largely reflected the highly charged language of US prosecutors and police officials in presenting the indictment. Roslynn Mauskopf, the US attorney in Brooklyn, New York, in announcing the charges, said, “Had the plot been carried out, it could have resulted in unfathomable damage, deaths and destruction.” She added, “The devastation that would be caused had this plot succeeded is just unthinkable.”

The words “unfathomable” and “unthinkable” were undoubtedly chosen carefully, as the type of chain reaction of explosions described in the indictment was quite simply impossible.

Both airport security officials and pipeline experts dismissed the allegedly catastrophic disaster that supposedly would have been triggered by blowing up a fuel pipeline or storage tanks. While the federal indictment suggested that such an explosion could travel along the pipelines linking tanks in Linden, New Jersey into Brooklyn, New York and across the borough of Queens, this is impossible, both because the pipelines are equipped with safety valves that shut off the flow of fuel in event of a leak and because there is inadequate oxygen inside the pipes to sustain a fire.

The New York Times, whose skepticism about the federal indictment was clearly signaled by the newspaper placing stories on the JFK “plot” on its Metro pages, quoted Neal Sonnett, a defense lawyer and former federal prosecutor, as saying, “There unfortunately has been a tendency to shout too loudly about such cases.”

The Times article went on to say that Sonnett, also a former president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, “noted that there is a broader risk in overstating the sophistication of a terror plot. At a time when many Americans live in justified fear of an attack, the risk is that drumbeating creates a climate of fear and drives public policy.”

There is every reason to believe that the succession of “terror” cases, each one weaker than the last and virtually all of them driven by “informants” who seem to play more the role of agents provocateur, are aimed at achieving precisely this effect. They serve as a means of intimidating public opinion with fear, justifying attacks on democratic rights and diverting attention from the ongoing debacle in Iraq.

The problem faced by the government is that the public is growing increasingly skeptical about these cases, with a sizeable portion of the population having concluded that they are trumped up for political purposes.

Under these conditions, the danger is that those who now control the reins of power in Washington may be concluding that something more tangible is needed.

On the same day that the alleged JFK “terror plot” broke in the news, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette published a revealing interview with that state’s new Republican Party chairman, who described himself as “150 percent for Bush.”

“At the end of the day,” said state party chairman Dennis Milligan, the owner of a water treatment business, “I believe fully the president is doing the right thing, and I think all we need is some attacks on American soil like we had on [Sept. 11, 2001 ], and the naysayers will come around very quickly...”

The question is whether elements in the Bush administration are reaching similar conclusions and preparing to engineer or allow another round of terrorist attacks “on American soil” as a pretext for suppressing the overwhelming popular opposition to its policies.
Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 3 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
THE NUMBER ONE AL CIADA IN TEXAS ON JFK AIRPORT AL CIADA ANTICS THE NUMBER ONE AL CIADA IN TEXAS Wednesday, Jun. 06, 2007 at 10:03 PM

Local News

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A12 5:39PM

lausd whistle blower A10 11:58PM

Website Upgrade A10 3:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 1:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 11:58AM

Change Links April 2018 A01 11:27AM

Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018 M31 6:57PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 7:00PM

Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018! M29 6:38PM

Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! M19 2:02PM

Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A. M16 5:40PM

Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released M15 12:34AM

Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups M06 12:10PM

After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video M02 11:44AM

Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights M01 6:28PM

What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It M01 3:30PM

Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down F14 2:44PM

Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29 F13 12:51PM

Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf F13 11:04AM

Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development F12 8:51AM

Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine F09 10:25PM

Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents F09 7:14PM

Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters F07 9:50AM

City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre F04 3:17PM

Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling F04 12:42PM

Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present F04 10:52AM

Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police F03 11:11PM

LA Times Homicide Report F03 1:57PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée A20 11:22AM

The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion A20 7:14AM

Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service A19 5:52PM

The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally! A19 4:01PM

The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder A19 11:48AM

Neurogenèse involutive A18 9:21AM

Paraphysique de la dictature étatique A16 10:13AM

Book Review: "The New Bonapartists" A16 3:45AM

The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia A14 12:25PM

Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine A14 3:30AM

The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally! A12 3:50PM

“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize! A12 3:48PM

The World Dependent on Central Banks A12 4:43AM

Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine A11 9:40PM

March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update A10 10:52PM

Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel A10 3:33PM

ICE contract with license plate reader company A10 1:14PM

Palimpseste sisyphéen A09 11:23PM

Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes A09 5:32AM

Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges A09 4:18AM

Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes A08 10:33PM

Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety A08 10:29PM

Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man A08 9:50PM

Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes A08 9:48PM

Paraphysique de l'autorité A08 12:11AM

Two Podcasts on fbi corruption A06 10:13PM

Fbi assassins assault & try to kill DAVID ATKINS A06 7:29PM

EPA Head Scott Pruitt: Of Cages And Sirens A06 2:15PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy