CIA releases 9/11-related internal documents

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Five documents assessing CIA conduct earlier than and instantly after the 9/11 terror assaults have been launched Friday. The redacted information embody the beforehand unavailable 2005 evaluation of the CIA, in addition to reactions by related officers.

In response to FOIA requests for the total 2005 OIG report, CIA and different companies carried out an intensive evaluation of the practically 500-page doc so as to launch data that not wanted to be protected within the pursuits of nationwide safety,” the company mentioned in a statement.

One of the documents launched on Friday is the redacted model of the 2005 report by the CIA Office of Inspector General (OIG), analyzing the company’s accountability and intelligence group actions earlier than and after the September 2001 terrorist assaults. The CIA had beforehand launched solely a closely redacted government abstract of that report.

Among the brand new documents are two internal memos by CIA Director on the time, George Tenet, responding to drafts of the OIG report in February and June 2005. Versions of the August 2001 OIG report concerning the DCI Counterterrorism Center (CTC), and a July 2005 memo from 17 CTC officers responding to the 2005 OIG report, have been made public beforehand. Friday’s launch, nevertheless, has disclosed a number of the data beforehand redacted, “in mild of the latest declassification of knowledge on CIA’s counterterrorism operations,” the CIA mentioned.

The 5 documents will be learn on the agency’s FOIA page.

Fears the CTC could miss one thing

The August 2001 report on the CTC calls it a “well-managed part that efficiently carries out the company’s counterterrorist tasks to gather and analyze intelligence on worldwide terrorism and to undermine the capabilities of terrorist teams.

However, the report heard from some officers that the “calls for positioned on the CTC don’t enable it to use all the knowledge it receives. As a consequence, the chance exists {that a} potential warning will go unidentified.”

Pushback from Director Tenet, CTC

Covert motion shouldn’t be profitable within the absence of laborious international intelligence,” George Tenet wrote within the first response to the OIG report, in February 2005. “It was clear to me on the time that whereas we had been considerably profitable in pursuing a regulation enforcement method in battling Al-Qaeda, we didn’t have satisfactory SIGINT protection and didn’t have sufficient human penetrations of Al-Qaeda.”

We wanted extra and higher fundamental intelligence,” the previous CIA director wrote. “Covert motion in opposition to Bin Laden and his key operatives was not potential with out it.”

By June 2005, Tenet was nonetheless displeased the OIG was accusing him of “not devoting professionalism, ability and diligence in countering terrorism.”

I object to and reject these accusations,” he wrote.

Tenet wrote that the National Security Council and the Attorney General of the US, quite than himself, had written the directions despatched to brokers within the discipline that “made clear the Government’s coverage desire was to seize Bin Laden and his principal lieutenants and render them to the United States.”

A July 4 memo, signed by 17 CTC officers, complains that the OIG was “concentrating its efforts on searching for people responsible.

OIG report from June 2005

Concerning sure points,” the Inspector General Team “concluded that the company and its officers didn’t discharge their duty in a passable method.”

The staff discovered no occasion by which an worker violated the regulation, and not one of the errors mentioned herein contain misconduct.” The investigators found that the CIA “labored laborious” in opposition to Al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden, however “didn’t at all times work successfully and cooperatively.”

Basically, there was no coherent, functioning watchlisting program,” the OIG report argues, citing the instance of Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Midhar. The two have been suspected Al-Qaeda terrorists whom the CIA tracked to Malaysia in January 2000.

However, not one of the 50-60 CIA officers who had learn the documents regarding the 2 males shared any data with different companies. The CIA knowledgeable the State Department so late, the 2 males have been solely placed on a terrorist watch record in August 2001. By that point, they have been already contained in the US, and would participate within the 9/11 hijackings.

The Saudi connection: Still redacted

As for the rumored “Saudi connection,” that part of the OIG report stays principally redacted. The one half that was launched quantities to the OIG admitting it “encountered no proof that the Saudi Government knowingly and willingly supported Al-Qaeda terrorists.

Individuals in each the Near East Division (NE) and the Counterterrorist Center [REDACTED] advised the Team that they had not seen any dependable reporting confirming Saudi Government involvement with and monetary help for terrorism previous to 9/11, though a couple of additionally speculated that dissident sympathizers throughout the authorities could have aided Al-Qaeda,” the report notes.

A January 1999 Directorate of Intelligence (DI) Office of Transnational Issues Intelligence Report on Bin Laden’s funds indicated that ‘limited’ reporting urged that ‘a few Saudi Government officials’ could help Osama Bin Laden however added that the reporting was ‘too sparse to determine with any accuracy’ such help,” the un-redacted portion of the doc concludes.

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