Seymour Hersh: Saudis Paid Pakistan to Hold bin Laden To Prevent U.S. Interrogation

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

In the aftermath of the most signifiant geopolitical event of my lifetime, the attacks of September 11,2001, the U.S. government proceeded to concoct a fairytale for public consumption in order to advance imperial ambitions overseas and a implement a domestic surveillance state at home. This should be obvious to everyone by now.

The official 9/11 story has been filled with holes since the very beginning, but a traumatized American public was too gullible and emotionally damaged to see them. Those of us who saw such inconsistencies and pointed them out have been derided as “conspiracy theorists” for years, yet fifteen years later, the biggest “conspiracy theory” in modern American history is rapidly becoming conspiracy fact.

At the very least, we now know there was Saudi involvement far beyond just the 15 of 19 hijackers who were Saudi nationals, but that’s still just scratching the surface. Once people come to terms with the fact the tale they’ve been told was completely invented, other obvious questions will have to be asked. Most critically, the question of World Trade Center 7.

As I wrote in the recent post, 60 Minutes Explores the Saudi Links to 9/11 Attacks:

I still haven’t seen a convincing explanation for how a 47-story tower that wasn’t hit by a plane imploded on itself. The very serious experts tell us that WTC7 collapsed due to fires caused by debris from the collapse of the nearby North Tower of the World Trade Center. So not only are we supposed to believe a massive office building came down demolition style without being hit by a plane, here’s the real kicker. A study from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) admits that the collapse of WTC 7 is the first known instance of a tall building brought down primarily by uncontrolled fires.

Yes, it’s true, and we desperately need to get to the bottom of this.

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But I digress. The main thrust of this article is to highlight some new revelations from Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh. Last May, he published a blockbuster article challenging the entire government story surrounding the death of Osama bin Laden, something I highlighted in the post: U.S. Officials Panic About Seymour Hersh Story; Then Deny His Claims Using Jedi Mind Tricks.

Well he’s back, and he recently shared more groundbreaking information in a fascinating interview with AlterNet. Here are some choice excerpts:

Ken Klippenstein: In the book you describe Saudi financial support for the compound in which Osama Bin Laden was being kept in Pakistan. Was that Saudi government officials, private individuals or both?


Seymour Hersh: The Saudis bribed the Pakistanis not to tell us [that the Pakistani government had Bin Laden] because they didn’t want us interrogating Bin Laden (that’s my best guess), because he would’ve talked to us, probably. My guess is, we don’t know anything really about 9/11. We just don’t know. We don’t know what role was played by whom.

Bingo. We don’t know anything, except that the U.S. government has been lying to the public for 15 years.

KK: So you don’t know if the hush money was from the Saudi government or private individuals?


SH: The money was from the government … what the Saudis were doing, so I’ve been told, by reasonable people (I haven’t written this) is that they were also passing along tankers of oil for the Pakistanis to resell. That’s really a lot of money.


KK: For the Bin Laden compound?


SH: Yeah, in exchange for being quiet. The Paks traditionally have done security for both Saudi Arabia and UAE.


KK: Do you have any idea how much Saudi Arabia gave Pakistan in hush money?


SH: I have been given numbers, but I haven’t done the work on it so I’m just relaying. I know it was certainly many—you know, we’re talking about four or five years—hundreds of millions [of dollars]. But I don’t have enough to tell you.


KK: Why didn’t they apprehend Bin Laden? Can you imagine the intelligence we could have gotten from him?


SH: The Pakistani high command said go kill him, but for chrissake don’t leave a body, don’t arrest him, just tell them a week later that you killed him in Hindu Kush. That was the plan.


Many sections, particularly in the Urdu-speaking sections, were really very positive about Bin Laden. Significant percentages in some areas supported Bin Laden. They [the Pakistani government] would’ve been under great duress if the average person knew that they’d helped us kill him.


KK: In the book you quote a Joint Chiefs of Staff adviser who said that Brennan told the Saudis to stop arming the extremist rebels in Syria and their weapons will dry up—which seems like a rational request—but then, you point out, the Saudis ramped up arms support.


Seymour Hersh: That’s true.


KK: Did the U.S. do anything to punish the Saudis for it?


SH: Nothing. Of course not. No, no. I’ll tell you what’s going on right now … al Nusra, certainly a jihadist group… has new arms. They’ve got some tanks now—I think the Saudis are supplying stuff. They’ve got tanks now, have a lot of arms, and are staging some operations around Aleppo. There’s a ceasefire and even though they’re not part of it, they obviously took advantage of the ceasefire to resupply. It’s going to be bloody.


KK: Just to be clear, the U.S. hasn’t done anything to punish or at least disincentivize the Saudis from arming our enemies in Syria?


SH: Quite the contrary. The Saudis and Qatar and the Turks put money into those arms [sent to Syrian jihadis].


You’re asking the right questions. Do we say anything? No. Turkey’s Erdogan has played a complete double game: for years he supported and accommodated ISIS. The border was wide open—Hatay Province—guys were going back and forth, bad guys. We know Erdogan’s deeply involved. He’s changing his tune slightly but he’s been deeply involved in this.


Let me talk to you about the sarin story [the sarin gas attack in Ghouta, a suburb near Damascus, which the U.S. government attributed to the Assad regime] because it really is in my craw.  In this article that was this long series of interviews [of Obama] by Jeff Goldberg…he says, without citing the source (you have to presume it was the president because he’s talking to him all the time) that the head of National Intelligence, General [James] Clapper, said to him very early after the [sarin] incident took place, “Hey, it’s not a slam dunk.”


You have to understand in the intelligence community—Tenet [Bush-era CIA director who infamously said Iraqi WMD was a “slam dunk”] is the one who said that about the war in Baghdad—that’s a serious comment. That means you’ve got a problem with the intelligence. As you know I wrote a story that said the chairman of the Joint Chiefs told the president that information the same day. I now know more about it.


The president’s explanation for [not bombing Syria] was that the Syrians agreed that night, rather than be bombed, they’d give up their chemical weapons arsenal, which in this article in the Atlantic, Goldberg said they [the Syrians] had never disclosed before. This is ludicrous. Lavrov [Russia’s Foreign Minister] and Kerry had talked about it for a year—getting rid of the arsenal—because it was under threat from the rebels.


The issue was not that they [the Syrians] suddenly caved in. [Before the Ghouta attack] there was a G-20 summit and Putin and Bashar met for an hour. There was an official briefing from Ben Rhodes and he said they talked about the chemical weapons issue and what to do. The issue was that Bashar couldn’t pay for it—it cost more than a billion bucks. The Russians said, ‘Hey, we can’t pay it all. Oil prices are going down and we’re hurt for money.’ And so, all that happened was we agreed to handle it. We took care of a lot of the costs of it.


Guess what? We had a ship, it was called the Cape Maid, it was parked out in the Med. The Syrians would let us destroy this stuff [the chemical weapons]… there was 1,308 tons that was shipped to the port…and we had, guess what, a forensic unit out there. Wouldn’t we like to really prove—here we have all his sarin and we had sarin from what happened in Ghouta, the UN had a team there and got samples—guess what?


It didn’t match. But we didn’t hear that. I now know it, I’m going to write a lot about it.


Guess what else we know from the forensic analysis we have (we had all the missiles in their arsenal). Nothing in their arsenal had anything close to what was on the ground in Ghouta. A lot of people I know, nobody’s going to go on the record, but the people I know said we couldn’t make a connection, there was no connection between what was given to us by Bashar and what was used in Ghouta. That to me is interesting. That doesn’t prove anything, but it opens up a door to further investigation and further questioning.

Now watch his interview with Democracy Now, taped earlier today:

And just like that, conspiracy theory once again becomes conspiracy fact.

As I tweeted the other day:


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