Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

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Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Amitava » 22 Nov 2011 04:18

PBS Frontline and ProPublica will air a documentary on Headley tomorrow

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/

Today, Terry Gross interviewed ProPublica’s Sebastian Rotella, you can listen to the interview here
http://www.npr.org/2011/11/21/142589280/the-american-behind-the-2008-attack-on-mumbai?sc=tw&cc=freshair

Here's the ProPublica link http://www.propublica.org/article/the-perfect-terrorist-investigation-debuts-tomorrow

Rotella will be on an online chat tomorrow 11AM US/Eastern time, please see the ProPublica link above.

also, there's this e-book from this journalist

http://www.amazon.com/Pakistan-Mumbai-A ... B004JU0QIS

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby chaanakya » 22 Nov 2011 09:53

IB4TL
There is a thread already on this topic. I am x-posting your post to this.
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5288&p=1182034#p1182034

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 22 Nov 2011 10:12

Ordinarily, I would agitate for a thread lock for such a topic as this, but this time I'm going to advocate for keeping this thread, at least until after the PBS/Pro Publica program airs (in 20 hours or so).

I think that FRONTLINE is one of those few programs on American TV that sets opinions. Most other TV programs, even news specials, they just reflect an opinion that's already popular, whereas FRONTLINE has a proven track record of changing the discourse, and there can be no doubt, there is still a need to change the discourse on the TSP's activities.

I think it would be helpful for Rakshaks to monitor this program and to make sure no opportunities are missed to bring the darkness into the light, so to speak.

If I can manage it, I plan to observe the program at 11am with Rotella. I am now going to frame the question I'd most like to ask of him -- let's see how that pans-out.

In less than 24 hours, this thread will have naturally expired, but in that time, I think having a place of focus on this particular topic, would pay dividends to "the cause".

Just my two paise.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby JE Menon » 22 Nov 2011 17:40

I agree with Ravi. Maybe the thread can be consolidated later into the other one... I suspect a lot of detail is going to be rehashed, and perhaps some new details and nuances are going to emerge...

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby CRamS » 22 Nov 2011 18:01

I have heard Rotella many times. He lays it out. But except for reinforcing what we know, I am not sure much will come out of this. Is US going to punish its munna just because scores of us SDREs were slaughtered? Is MMS going to stop his love making with TSP? Will traitors like MSI and MKB be convinced; after all on every show I see those pukes, they join TSP RAPE in dismissing Headley's testimony as not worth the piece of paper its written on. I am not going to watch this because except for raising my BP, and impotent rage, nothing else will come out of it.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 23 Nov 2011 02:14

X-posting link by rangarajan:

Did the US know more than it let on about Mumbai suspects?


>>>>
New information about the case comes partly from the DEA. After months of silence, DEA officials recently granted an interview with a ProPublica reporter and went over a timeline based on records about their former informant. The DEA officials said Headley’s relationship with the anti-drug agency was more limited than has been widely described.

The DEA officially deactivated Headley as a confidential source on March 27, 2002, according to a senior DEA official. That was weeks after he began training in Lashkar terror camps in Pakistan and six years before the Mumbai attacks. The senior official denied assertions that Headley had worked for the DEA in Pakistan while he trained with Lashkar in 2002 and beyond.

“The DEA did not send David Coleman Headley to Pakistan for the purpose of collecting post-9/11 information on terrorism or drugs,” the senior DEA official said.

The denial adds another version to a murky story. Officials at other U.S. agencies say Headley remained a DEA operative in some capacity until as late as 2005. Headley has testified that he did not stop working for the DEA until September 2002, when he had done two stints in the Lashkar camps.

Some U.S. officials and others involved say the government ended Headley’s probation for a drug conviction three years early in November 2001 to shift him from anti-drug work to gathering intelligence in Pakistan. They say the DEA discussed him with other agencies as a potential asset because of his links to Pakistan — including a supposed high-ranking relative in the ISI. :?:

A senior European counterterror official who has investigated Headley in recent years thinks the American became an intelligence operative focused on terrorism.

“I don’t feel we got the whole story about Headley as an informant from the Americans,” the official said. “I think he was a drug informant and also some other kind of an informant.”

The transition from registered law enforcement source to secret counterterrorism operative would help explain the contradictory versions. But the duration and nature of intelligence work by Headley, if it was done, remain unknown.
>>>>>

So conflicting accounts of his DEA service and later.

...
Headley enrolled at Valley Forge Military Academy & College but did not last long there. He studied at a community college and slid into heroin addiction. His first encounter with the law happened during a visit to Pakistan when he was 24. He used his friend Rana, then a Pakistani army medical student, as an unwitting shield.

The two drove to the tribal areas, where Headley bought half a kilogram of heroin and smuggled it back to Lahore, according to the DEA and Headley’s testimony. He thought Rana’s military ID card would prevent a police search if they were stopped, according to his testimony.

Days later, police in Lahore arrested Headley for drug possession, according to his testimony and U.S. officials. He somehow beat the charges.
{he became a Paki asset then itself....}

In 1988, police caught him at the Frankfurt, Germany, airport en route to Philadelphia with two kilos of heroin hidden in a suitcase. The DEA took over, :?: and he made a deal on the spot. His partners in Philadelphia got eight and 10 years in prison. He got four years.

{Crime was in Germany and DEA gets to deal with him! He then uses Prisoner's Dilemma and gets reduced sentence.}

It would become a pattern, said former CIA officer Marc Sageman, a respected terrorism expert who was a consultant for Rana’s defense. :rotfl:

“He just turns around immediately and betrays everybody when it’s convenient for him,” said Sageman.

Struggling with addiction, Headley spent six months in prison for a probation violation in 1995. He moved to New York, where he bought and operated video stores. Despite his criminal record, he managed to avoid prosecution a year later when police on Long Island arrested him for allegedly assaulting and threatening the former boyfriend of his new Canadian girlfriend, according to Nassau County authorities. :(


In early 1997, the DEA arrested him in a sting at a Manhattan hotel. He signed up as a confidential DEA informant and was out on bail by August. In January 1998, the DEA sent Headley to Pakistan to dispel suspicions among traffickers about his absence. He used his wealthy father’s house in Lahore to meet with suppliers, and gathered useful intelligence during his first and only DEA-funded mission in Pakistan, the senior DEA official said.

“This was the only trip at the DEA’s behest,” the senior official said.

During his first 16 months as an informant, Headley infiltrated Pakistani heroin trafficking networks, generating five arrests and the seizure of 2½ kilos of heroin, the DEA says.

There were warning signs, however. He broke the rules by trying to set up dealers with jailhouse phone calls that were not monitored by agents, according to court records. He angled for leverage with his handlers, according to a close associate from that period.

“The DEA agents liked him,” the associate said. “He would brag about it. He was manipulating them. He said he had them in his pocket.”

One defendant was acquitted on grounds of entrapment, a rare finding in a drug case. Ikram Haq was a mentally impaired Pakistani immigrant. His lawyer, Sam Schmidt, convinced the jury that Headley conned his client into a heroin deal.

“My impression of him was a person who was in many ways a sociopath,” Schmidt said, “that he would be able to say anything that he thought would work to his benefit.”

Headley served another eight months in prison. He became a more devout Muslim behind bars, according to his associate. Soon after his release in 1999, probation officials permitted him to travel to Pakistan for a few weeks for an arranged marriage. His new wife remained in his family hometown of Lahore.

Headley returned to New York and resumed work for the DEA in early 2000. That April, he went undercover in an operation against Pakistani traffickers that resulted in the seizure of a kilo of heroin, according to the senior DEA official.

At the same time, Headley immersed himself in the ideology of Lashkar-i-Taiba. He took trips to Pakistan without permission of the U.S. authorities. And in the winter of 2000, he met Hafiz Saeed, the spiritual leader of Lashkar.

Saeed had built his group into a proxy army of the Pakistani security forces, which cultivated militant groups in the struggle against India. Lashkar was an ally of Al Qaeda, but it was not illegal in Pakistan or the United States at the time.

Saeed made a statement that was Headley’s epiphany: “One second spent in jihad is superior to 100 years of worship and prayer.”

In New York, Headley recruited for Lashkar, prayed intensely and studied Arabic, according to his associate and other sources. Headley talked about getting ready for jihad overseas. He prepared to sell his stores, underwent laser eye surgery and took horseback riding lessons, which he said would be useful for mountain training camps.

“He was living on the Upper West Side,” the associate said, “sleeping on the floor, eating rice and beans, acting really weird. He started collecting money for Lashkar, saying how great it was.”

Headley later testified that he told his DEA handler about his views about the disputed territory of Kashmir, Lashkar’s main battleground. But the senior DEA official insisted that agents did not know about his travel to Pakistan or notice his radicalization.
....


On Sept. 6, 2001, Headley signed up to work another year as a DEA informant, according to the senior DEA official.



Mission in Pakistan
On Sept. 12, Headley’s DEA handler called him.

Agents were canvassing sources for information on the Al Qaeda attacks of the day before. Headley angrily said he was an American and would have told the agent if he knew anything, according to the senior DEA official.

Headley began collecting counterterror intelligence, according to his testimony and the senior DEA official. He worked sources in Pakistan by phone, getting numbers for drug traffickers and Islamic extremists, according to his testimony and U.S. officials. He visited a mosque in Queens at the direction of the DEA, according to his testimony and officials.

But there was a dark side. A former girlfriend of Headley’s told a bartender named Terry O’Donnell that he wanted to go to Pakistan to fight alongside Islamic militants, according to law enforcement officials. She said he had praised the Sept. 11 attacks, recalled O’Donnell, now a New York firefighter.

“And then she went on and said he was happy to see it happen,” O’Donnell said in interview. “And he got off on watching the news over and over again.”

O’Donnell contacted an FBI-led task force that was investigating 9/11 — and an avalanche of tips. Residents of the traumatized city were reporting everything from people who spoke Arabic to neighbors who put out the garbage at odd hours. Investigators interviewed Headley’s mother and the girlfriend, who described his ideological support for militants in Kashmir, according to officials.

It would be the only warning about Headley that resulted in an interrogation. On Oct. 4, two Defense Department agents working for the task force questioned him in front of his DEA handlers at the drug agency’s office, according to the senior DEA official.

Headley denied the accusations and cited his counterterror work, according to U.S. officials. He told the agents he had a distant Pakistani relative who was an Army general and the deputy director of the ISI, that nation’s powerful intelligence service, according to U.S. and Indian officials.

Today, U.S. intelligence believes the relative may have been Gen. Faiz Gilani, the ISI’s deputy director at the time, according to a U.S. counterterror official. The suspected family connection has not been confirmed, the counterterror official said. But it was a portentous detail.

The investigators cleared Headley. Although their informant had been interviewed by the FBI task force, the DEA handlers did not write a report, the senior DEA official said. In addition, he said the DEA has no record that agents looked into Headley’s claim about the ISI relative to determine whether it had intelligence value or, conversely, might show he was a liar.

Six weeks later, another unusual thing happened. A federal judge ended Headley’s probation three years early so he could travel to Pakistan. A transcript and accounts of participants show the hearing was rushed. Headley’s lawyer told the judge he had “just been handed all sorts of material.” A supervisory probation officer, Luis Caso, apologized because he had not had time to dress appropriately for court.

“Having a probation terminated early is rarely done. It’s usually reserved for someone who’s very ill,” Caso said in an interview. “It was a last-minute thing.”

The government was in a hurry, said Caso, who is now retired.

“From what I remember, it’s basically he was a very good cooperator at that time, working with the DEA, and he was going to do more of the same but overseas in Pakistan,” he said. “It was shortly after 9/11 occurred, and at that time, all the federal law enforcement agencies were doing their very best to investigate the terrorist activity, and whoever they had under their control for information purposes they had utilized to the maximum.”

Headley’s lawyer has a similar recollection. Howard Leader said prosecutors called him a few days earlier to tell him the hearing would take place.

“The fact that this was coming from the government, that was, frankly, highly unusual,” Leader said. “It’s the only occasion I can recall it ever happening.”

Leader said he believed the DEA had made the request and that Headley would continue working for the agency in Pakistan.

“My recollection is, basically, it’s a twofold mission,” Leader said. “There would be drug-related work specifically. But also, in light of the then-very-recent events on September the 11th, I think that he was going to go back to Pakistan with a view towards meeting with or gathering whatever information he could that might be useful to the U.S. government regarding certain extremist elements there.”

An excited Headley told friends and family that he was leaving on a mission. He explained that “the FBI and DEA had joined forces” and he would work for them in Pakistan, according to his close associate.

The DEA gives a far different account. The senior DEA official said Headley told his handlers he wanted to return to Pakistan for family reasons. The senior official said the DEA agreed to support ending his probation because of his past cooperation. The DEA provided a letter to the judge describing his work on drugs and counterterrorism, according to U.S. officials and others familiar with the case.

The DEA then deactivated him as a law enforcement informant, a process that became official on March 27 of the next year, according to the senior DEA official. Headley was paid a total of $3,925 while an informant, the senior official said. DEA agents did not work with him again after the hearing, the senior official said.
....



Epilogue: Questions And Contradictions
The epilogue has been like the prologue: a trail of impunity and mystery.

In addition to Major Iqbal, Mir and two other accused Lashkar masterminds were indicted this year by U.S. federal prosecutors. Despite abundant evidence, Pakistan has not arrested or charged them — or half a dozen other top suspects, officials say.

The targeting of the West in Mumbai and Denmark has raised fears that Lashkar could become a more formidable threat than a diminished Al Qaeda.

“Now we wonder if they think about the political ramifications of an attack on the U.S. or the West,” a U.S. counterterror official said. “The presumption has been that they did, or that ISI did and controlled their targeting with this mindset. Is it really a constraint now? Do they really worry about a crackdown if they do another attack on the West? What would be going too far for them?”

Pakistan’s Federal Investigative Agency, the equivalent of the FBI, is in charge of the investigation. But in reality, no one in Pakistan is trying to arrest Major Iqbal, Sajid Mir or the others, U.S. and Indian officials say.

Pakistani officials deny that Major Iqbal was an ISI officer. That only makes it harder to understand why he has not been arrested. It raises questions about the potential knowledge and involvement of ISI chiefs.

The director of the ISI during the period in which the Mumbai plot developed, Gen. Nadeem Taj, stepped down two months before the 2008 attacks as the result of pressure from foreign governments concerned that he was soft on militants, according to Western officials. Taj previously was the top military officer in the garrison city of Abbottabad during the period that Osama bin Laden established himself in hiding there, officials say.

“We, as a government, want to say that the Pakistanis are in our corner,” said Faddis, the former CIA counterterror chief. “Obviously, it’s way more complicated than that. And there are a whole bunch of folks in Pakistan and in the ISI who are not at all on the same sheet of music with us here. So even when they have cooperated with us over the years, it is often basically because they’ve been forced to. …Then we have a number of individuals within ISI who are very sympathetic to the folks that we are targeting.”

The official U.S. version of the case presents contradictions as well.

In response to ProPublica stories last year detailing the 2005 tip about Headley, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence led a multiagency review of Headley’s contacts with the U.S. government. But the DNI has declined to discuss the findings or any consequences. During the review process, agencies pointed fingers at each other, according to knowledgeable officials.

Although the litany of warnings about Headley paints a grim picture, officials at the FBI and other agencies assert that the allegations lacked specificity. They say Lashkar was not seen as a major threat before Mumbai. They cite the sheer volume of terror-related leads, especially after the Sept. 11 attacks. And they say some problems in tracking threats revealed by the case have been corrected as systems have improved.

But the questions linger. And the man at the center of the labyrinth is fittingly contradictory and enigmatic.

Headley slid among personas and cultures with ease, not completely at home in any of them. He spouted hateful anti-Semitic and anti-Indian rhetoric but loved the films of the Coen brothers and Bollywood. He veered from caring and generous to cold and treacherous. He washed out of military schools and clashed with authority figures, yet saw himself as a warrior and hoped his son would become a special forces commando.

Investigators and experts suggest a variety of motivations driving him: ideology, money, women, glory and, above all, an appetite for adrenalin.

“The pattern is risk-taking,” said Sageman. “He wants to live for the moment. He is not above taking crazy risks. … He just likes the adventure. He loves the game.”



Bigger question is was he on some other mission that his Mumbai caper was allowed in order to keep the other mission going? IOW was his Mumbai role a down payment to get closer to the Pak intel machine?

Did he know Raymond Davis?

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Rishi » 23 Nov 2011 07:40

On Air

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby shaardula » 23 Nov 2011 08:04

the bhatt-ling asked for money to talk to the show. what a sob!

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ManuT » 23 Nov 2011 08:53

Look out for another one "Secrets of the dead" which are the stories of the hostages.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Sushupti » 23 Nov 2011 09:02

Documentary showed an airport pic of Headley arriving in Mumbai airport to do final recce.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Pranay » 23 Nov 2011 09:14

The documentary glossed over many details .... below,

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline ... s-suspect/

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Pranay » 23 Nov 2011 09:17

shaardula wrote:the bhatt-ling asked for money to talk to the show. what a sob!


I'm glad that it was mentioned in the show... shows the low life in his true colors...

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Rishi » 23 Nov 2011 09:23

http://to.pbs.org/synkZp. Viewable online

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby CRamS » 23 Nov 2011 09:35

I am watching even though I didn't want to. The colonial angle stinks on 2 counts:

1) Uncle cozying up with a vile terrorist as along as he was targeting SDREs, but nailed him once Uncle's Denmark cousins were being targeted
2) Headely's gora looks getting him so easily into the upper echelons of Mumbai elite.

Diabolical it is no doubt, but the single-minded obsession and the precision with which ISI hit Mumbai is something.

I was struck by the professionalism of Sebastian Rotella. I don't know whats in it for him, after all, nobody in US gives a s!it about SDREs getting slaughtered by US's own munna TSP, I guess its only his passion to get to the truth. This should have been the job of an Indian journalist, but not most of them are busy ogling Hina duckling, and admiring MMS for 10% economic growth.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 23 Nov 2011 10:02

Can expect a spate of articles in Indian media leaching of this Frontline report as if they did the original investigation.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby pgbhat » 23 Nov 2011 10:06

ramana wrote:Can expect a spate of articles in Indian media leaching of this Frontline report as if they did the original investigation.

Watching it now. Rotella is brilliant.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Anant » 23 Nov 2011 10:28

The documentary made me furious. It made me realize (again) how people were butchered and how those culpable in that butchering have not experienced that searing pain. If there is such a thing as revenge and retribution then Pakistanis deserve it. In spades. I also wonder how many more American jihadis or complicit Islamic terrorists are there in the US. When I visit Chicago and visit Devon Street, I have often wondered how many cells are there thinking along the same lines as Tawahur Ranna (who did not get convicted for Mumbai) and Headley. I am assuming with all the heat on Pakistan these days that American intelligence agencies have infiltrated these mosques within the US and Indian intelligence agencies do the same. Off topic but please hang Kasab. There is no reason why that idiot needs to be alive. RIP Mumbai victims.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby partha » 23 Nov 2011 12:02

Good documentary. Notice how the Paki neighbor of Headley in Pakistan called Chand Bhai justifies what Headley did.
Well researched. G K Pillai says Headley was a double agent working for both US and ISI, LeT. US officials denied this claim.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby svinayak » 23 Nov 2011 12:28

CRamS wrote:I am watching even though I didn't want to. The colonial angle stinks on 2 counts:

1) Uncle cozying up with a vile terrorist as along as he was targeting SDREs, but nailed him once Uncle's Denmark cousins were being targeted
2) Headely's gora looks getting him so easily into the upper echelons of Mumbai elite.

Diabolical it is no doubt, but the single-minded obsession and the precision with which ISI hit Mumbai is something.

There are few things which needs to be taken into account. The nature of the global coverage in the media about the Mubai attack and what was the expectation.

Few of my Amir khan friends told me few things and they wanted to see reaction of the Indian govt and also general Indians. THis is India's 911 now, Now India has to retaliate, One company during a software implemention asked if they want to cancel the project/go live since the vendor was in Pune, :roll: ,
one amir khan even suggested that now Indian troops must be in the border and now must negotiate with TSPA (totally oblivous of people dead), one person even said TSP people must be jealous of Indians etc.

They wanted to see the same kind of shock in the eyes of the Indians and were disapponited. Once they were told that Indians have suffered for more than 20 years they could still not comprehend.

But one Vietnamese was strange and was thrilled that Mumbai was attacked.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby RajSingh » 23 Nov 2011 12:48

Just watched the documentary online . It just filled me with rage on how spineless our government is and is still trying out CBM's with Pakiland while the TSPA/ISI plot next bloodbath in India.

I lost one of my friends from IIT kgp in the Pune german bakery blast. he was one of the smartest person in our batch , an electronics engineer of top quality and had already published papers while he was undergrad and was also a great football player. Poor guy died with his sister in Pune just 23 years of age and what we do is talk about CBM's .

I am all for peace with neighbours but we need to uphold law and punish people who kill our citizens.

and when chand bhai talked about how their school was attacked in 71 by Indian AF and they need to take revenge it just brought me the thoughts of my friend and thousand others who have died because of porki perfidy !!

Damn made me emotional !!

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby pran » 23 Nov 2011 14:13

At one point the paki handlers sajid and iqbal took headley off the roster before the denmark recon. What feedback could have caused this ? It seems there a possibility of another channel identifying headley on the radar and informing ISI.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby chaanakya » 23 Nov 2011 14:59

ramana wrote:
Bigger question is was he on some other mission that his Mumbai caper was allowed in order to keep the other mission going? IOW was his Mumbai role a down payment to get closer to the Pak intel machine?

Did he know Raymond Davis?

Do you mean that somehow , Headly was connected to Davis and Davis was instrumental in Mission OBL? Does it imply that Mumbai was the price paid by India so that Unkil could get to OBL? These are some ideas which have been hinted in the other thread as well. The Documentary , probably , did not bring anything new on the table that Indian Intel had no knowledge of or BRF did not anticipate except for one or two facts. But still a large data is not made available to public. This documentary might be Unkil's way of putting Pak on notice, to be very optimistic.
It would also make Resident Indians feel hapless and citizens angry, if they ever see it.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby CRamS » 23 Nov 2011 18:09

Anant wrote: American intelligence agencies have infiltrated these mosques within the US and Indian intelligence agencies do the same.


This is a tragic joke. If Indian intelligence were even a fraction as obsessed and capable of destroying TSP as ISI is of destroying India, I would say the India == TSP and pigLeTs == "Hindu extremists" are tags well deserved and worthy. Need I remind you of ex RAW chief B. Raman wants to invite the chief perpetrator of Mumbai, Kiyani, on a royal state visit to India.

RIP Mumbai victims.


Ditto.

But lack of that from many Indians and the leadership is the sad part. It was particularly poignant to me when one ordinary gora in Manhattan took immense offense at Headely when the latter apparently suggested to one of the many women he was sleeping with that US deserved 9/11. The Manhattan guy was so outraged that he wanted to turn Headley over to the authorities. Thats nationalism for you.

But little do ignorant self-obsessed joe-six packs in US and their UK puppy dogs realize that they did pretty much the same thing to India post Mumbai and to this day, asking India to make piss with a terrorist entity and giving military aid to this TSP abomination. Recall LeT spokesman Miliband suggesting India "resolve Kashmir" just days after 26/11. Can you imagine the plight of someone who would have the temerity to suggest US resolve Israel-Palestinian conflict days after 9/11 or even today in the face of the never ending 9/11 victim SOB stories that continue unabated. It would be considered treason.

Hack thoo. India was pissed on by all and sundry including her own leaders. I think 26/11 will go down as the singular event that punctured this myth of India as an emerging power.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Yogi_G » 23 Nov 2011 20:08

I remember way back in 2009, PBS had published a documentary on India and had the usual Aryan Invasion Theory rubbish to it. My Irish boss came to office gleaming and told me how he saw the program and was astonished to know that Europeans "peopled" the subcontinent. I subtly told him how much of a nonsense the theory was and how science has disproved it. Somehow have a bad taste for these PBS documentaries.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 23 Nov 2011 20:42

Anant, The purpose of the documentary is to make one furious and not see the weeds in the forest. You have looked at the shrubs. Think over this and come back.
Chanaakya you too.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby nvishal » 23 Nov 2011 22:31

PBS FRONTLINE will bring live online "The Perfect Terrorist", the investigation into the mysterious rise of David Coleman Headley. Two PBS journalists involved in the report - Sebastian Rotella and Tom Jennings - will take questions from viewers during the hour-long chat. Praveen Swami of The Hindu will be the guest questioner.

Happening now. Click here - http://www.thehindu.com/news/article264 ... epage=true

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Charlie » 23 Nov 2011 22:45

nvishal wrote:PBS FRONTLINE will bring live online "The Perfect Terrorist", the investigation into the mysterious rise of David Coleman Headley. Two PBS journalists involved in the report - Sebastian Rotella and Tom Jennings - will take questions from viewers during the hour-long chat. Praveen Swami of The Hindu will be the guest questioner.

Happening now. Click here - http://www.thehindu.com/news/article264 ... epage=true



Rotella is clearly saying that this Documentary was necessary three years after Mumbai just because of the current flux in US- Pak relations. So they are using this as a stick to poke at Pakis. SDRE slaughter be dammned.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby nvishal » 23 Nov 2011 22:53

^Indeed. I think the US knew that headley was scouting in india to gather information for a lashkar attack. They only nabbed him until he turned his attention to the west. Else his uneven representation with different intel agencies makes no sense. It is foolish for us to assume that the US will let our boys have a real one-on-one with this guy. However, this fiasco alone should tell us that the US is looking around in india and it does so primarily for its own interest. So much for joint counter-terrorism.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 23 Nov 2011 23:05

Rakshaks,

I have not yet seen the PBS/Pro Publica documentary "The Perfect Terrorist", but I have just finished monitoring that IM Chat session that was mentionned by 'nvishal' and others, above. Here is the transcript of that IM Interview... (with my comments to follow in a subsequent post)....

http://www.propublica.org/article/the-p ... s-tomorrow


FRONTLINE:
We'll be getting underway in just a few minutes.
11:03


FRONTLINE:
Good morning everyone, thanks for coming. We're here with ProPublica reporter Sebastian Rotella and FRONTLINE producer Tom Jennings.
11:04


Tom Jennings:
Hello, Tom Jennings here. I directed "A Perfect Terrorist."
11:05


Sebastian Rotella:
Hello. I'm Sebastian Rotella, the correspondent.
11:05


FRONTLINE:
The Hindu's Praveen Swami is our guest questioner today.
11:07


Praveen:
Tom, Sebastian, I guess my first question is: why, three years after the Mumbai attacks, is the story of David Headley still important?
11:08


FRONTLINE:
One note on time -- Sebastian is here until 11:45, but we'll stay on with Tom and Praveen until noon.
11:12


Sebastian Rotella:
Praveen, I think this case remains urgently important because of its impact on the US-Pakistani relationship and the very topical question of alleged links between the Pakistani security forces and terrorist groups. The Rana trial in Chicago this year aired unprecedented evidence about the links between elements of the ISI and Lashkar and the role of the ISI in a terror attack intended to kill Americans, Westerners and Jews in addition to Indians. The US even indicted an ISI officer in the case. This has only intensified the tension and suspicion in the vital US-Pakistani relationship along with the discovery of bin Laden's hideout and other recent cases.
11:12


Comment From Aditya Nad
There is talk about Major Iqbal being one of the main planner, but he must have been a proxy for other senior officers in ISI or Army, did any of the investigations reveal any Pakistani Generals names?
11:16


Sebastian Rotella:
This is one of the most crucial questions in the case. The evidence shows that Headley had contact with other ISI officers, including colonels. And he talked about a symbiotic relationship between Lashkar chiefs and higher-ranking ISI officers, including a brigadier who has been named. Headley testified that he believed Iqbal's commanding officer and others in their unit knew about the plot. But the vital question remains: how high and wide did involvement or knowledge of the plot go in the ISI? Is this the cases of a few rogue officers, as some assert? Or were the top brass implicated?
11:18


Praveen:
The big unresolved question, is the issue of whether Headley was also working for the United States; whether this in some way facilitated his operations. I know you've done a great deal of work on this, and had a new insights
11:24

Twitter
frontlinepbs:
Did the U.S. Know More Than It Let On About #Mumbai Attacks Suspect? http://t.co/ov9V4byL w/ @ProPublica [via Twitter]
11:25


Sebastian Rotella:
The question remains unresolved. One of the main things we established is that the DEA deactivated Headley as an official law enforcement informant by early 2002. This only heightens the mystery, though, because we found even more evidence that the government was behind his probation being ended early so he could rush to Pakistan in late 2001. This would suggest a transition from anti-drug work, as a registered official informant, to some kind of secret intelligence work. And strong US and foreign sources insist he was still some kind of US intelligence operative until as late as 2005. The problem is that agencies are pointing fingers at each other and refusing to tell the whole story. There's also another scenario that we point out: he may well have stopped working for the US government, but some sources say there was more continuing awareness and monitoring of his activities than has been revealed.
11:26


Tom Jennings:
In India there does seem to be a presumption that Headley was working for the US long after his DEA contract expired. The speculation too exists in America, but what I've discerned is that the emphasis on the Headley case is how he slipped through the cracks after repeated warnings to federal law enforcement and intelligence officials. I think as people in the US become more acquainted - and even, like in India, impassioned about the case - this central question will be raised more and more.
11:27


Comment From Don
Since the DEA by its admission did not employ and therefore pay Headley after March 2002, all they (or any US law-enforcement) ever needed to do to unravel this man was to ask him to show how he was paying for his expenses. Right? Also, how does the US Embassy in Islamabad explain why they didn't act when his 3rd wife complained to them? Lastly, how does the FBI explain disinterest in a person whose own mother is telling on his terrorist activities and all this is well after 9/11/2001 when billions have been spent and thousands hired to 'connect the dots' ?
11:32

Twitter
frontlinepbs:
Dig deeper into Headley’s story with Sebastian Rotella’s extensive reporting for @ProPublica: http://t.co/B3gJXzkn #Frontline #ProPublica [via Twitter]
11:35


Sebastian Rotella:
If you look at our companion story on the ProPublica site, we get into more detail about each of the warnings and how the authorities responded. It's a troubling issue. In fairness, US officials point out that they are inundated with tips and warnings and manpower is limited; this was especially true after 9/11. The system has improved since early in the decade. One of the recurring defenses has been that the warnings were not specific enough and that angry spouses and relatives often give bogus warnings. But the key point about the wife's embassy warnings is this: did US officials know about the three previous FBI inquiries? Because if they did, that should have given the tip much more credibility. And if they didnt, it's a real breakdown in the system.
11:36


Praveen:
Tom, I'm curious about how you set about researching a man no-one wants to talk about: not his wives; not his children; not the terrorists he worked with, for obvious reasons. Its a film-maker's nightmare, surely, working on this kind of story?
11:40


Tom Jennings:
Like any project, this one started with a wide horizon of possibility and presumption on my part. I simply assumed I’d get all the big gets and have no problem with access. That horizon quickly narrowed as the toxicity of David Headley became apparent, and the fact that most people who ever knew him wanted nothing to do with us. But what was not apparent in the film is that we actually did talk to many people on background – all of whom I of course cannot identify. Our sourcing was wide, expansive and complete vis a vis officialss in intelligence, law enforcement and people close to Headley at different points in his life.
11:41


Comment From Seth
is there a chance David is handed over to India? India keeps asking for this, but the US won't agree. Is there a reason for this?
11:43


Praveen:
Looking forward, Sebastian, what does David Headley's story tell us about the Lashkar-e-Taiba's global capabilities; about its capacity and intention to inflict harm worldwide and not just on India?
11:44


Sebastian Rotella:
To Seth - Headley gave unprecedented evidence and intelligence to US prosecutors about Lashkar, the ISI and al Qaeda. As a result, he got a plea bargain in which he avoided the death penalty and extradition to India by pleading guilty to serious charges, including his role in the murder of six Americans. He faces a long time in prison. There is disappointment in India about this outcome and a continuing Indian effort to investigate and charge him. But the bottom line is that the plea bargain is done and he now awaits sentencing in the US. So extradition is very unlikely.
11:46

Twitter
frontlinepbs:
Watch Confessed Terrorist David Coleman Headley Scramble to Save Himself http://t.co/xIS12iQF via @azmatzahra @shankman [via Twitter]
11:49


Tom Jennings:
I think Lashkar's global intentions are now more apparent and are a source of concern to intelligence officials around the world. It does seem to have been highly specialized in the development of operatives like Headley and others - such as the New Zealander, Charles Wardle, who we interviewed in the film. Most intelligence officials we talked to believe the threat of these individual operatives still exists. To the question,"are there other David Headley's?," the categorical response from intelligence experts on Lashkar was, simple. "Yes."
11:49


Sebastian Rotella:
This story shows that Lashkar was always more involved in the global jihad than many Western counter-terror agencies realized. The targeting of Westerners in Mumbai and then Denmark has raised great concern among US and European agencies and made Lashkar a top priority. Especially because of the failure of pakistani authorities to arrest most of the masterminds. There is fear of Lashkar itself and of its offshoots. Some experts still feel Lashkar will be restrained from striking the West by the ISI because of concern about backlash against Pakistan. Others feel that is no guarantee and that Lashkar, with its strong funding, training and global networks, could be a worse threat than al Qaeda, which is seriously diminished. I think the case shows the militant groups are blurring together in Pakistan and that is a bad sign in terms of cranking up the global threat.
11:50


Sebastian Rotella:
I have to finish up now, but I want to thank everyone for their interest, insight and supportive comments.
11:52


Comment From Dan
How was Headley able to change his name to Headley? Seemed the program glossed over exactly how he got it done and maybe why this was a big mistake for the intelligence community. Maybe they acquiesced even.
11:52


FRONTLINE:
Thanks Sebastian! Tom Jennings and Praveen Swami will be here for a bit longer.
11:53


Tom Jennings:

The name change was indeed an event that we were curious about for the very reason you mention, ie this seems to be another moment where the US anti terror surveillance system might have been able to stop him. What was of special interest to me was that at the time of the name change Headley had two federal felony convictions in his background. How could this have escaped notice? What appears to have happened though is that a name change is a state-authorized function and background checks are often incomplete. Many lawyers told us that this is a common failure and not related specifically to the Headley case. But I agree – this remains a moment ripe with possibility.
11:54


Praveen:
Tom, telling a story like this visually must have been extraordinarily difficult. Can you tell us a little about the challenges of filming in so many countries, and of trying to make a complex story comprehensible?
11:58


Tom Jennings:
This film was indeed complex but for me as a filmmaker that only provides inspiration and opportunity. That we did film around the world allowed the viewers to be taken on a Le Carre- like ride – at least that was the intent. And to reference your earlier question about not getting people on camera, the sweep of the journey and the amazing cinematrography of the camera person, Timothy Grucza, provided a sense that we were moving into and out of locations and people’s lives, mitigating somewhat the fact that I was not able to get someone like David Headley on camera for an interview.
11:59


Comment From Sri
Why is the mainstream media in the US virtually silent on this issue?
12:04


Tom Jennings:
That's a really good question, one that I've asked myself repeatedly. In some ways I'm happy that's the case -- more for me to break as a filmmaker, more opportunities to explore untrammeled ground. I think that part of the question has to do with the fact that this story is so India-based, and the US media's lack of attention to international events other than wars and revolutions. There's the issue of resources -- media outlets simply don't have much money these days to do expansive international investigative reporting. There is also the issue of complexity, which I too had to wrestle with on this film. But one thing that I can't help but wonder about is how US federal agencies have clamped down so thoroughly on the Headley affair and how this very effectively discourages coverage. This story moved a bit during the Rana trial in May - when David Headley sat on the witness stand for five days - but beyond a few hard-bitten investigative reporters in the US, few are willing to explore this amazing realm.
12:04


Praveen:
Based on everything you know about the Headley case, Tom, do you see the Chicago trial as the end of of the story, or do you think the questions still unanswered are going to haunt in months and years to come?
12:07


Tom Jennings:
Praveen, I know that you're haunted by questions. I know Sebastian is too. I certainly am. This story will only continue to develop. The Chicago trial only opened a small window into the murky world of David Coleman Headley's past, present and future. I really do hate saying this - much less ending on it - but really there is no better time to suggest, "stay tuned."
12:08


Tom Jennings:
Thanks everyone for the wonderful questions. Sorry we couldn't get to them all.
12:10


FRONTLINE:
That will have to be our last question for today. Thanks so much for coming everyone, and for all your fantastic questions. As always, we wish we had time to get to more of them. A special thanks to our panelists and to our guest questioner Praveen Swami.


[NOTE TO RAKSHAKS: I tried twice to ask the pointed question I wanted to, but apparently my question didn't make the cut. I wonder why? :| ]

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby nvishal » 23 Nov 2011 23:16

AzmatZahra
I love Rahul Bhatt telling Rotella, "You've gotta do something for me Sebastian," refusing to talk abt #Headley unless he was paid!

The gupshups look encouraging.

@Ravi Karumanchiri
The chat session happened 15 hours ago from now. I thought it was ongoing. Saarry.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 23 Nov 2011 23:25

And what was your question?

Praveen Swamis' questions are time waste and inane. More likey Larry King's softballs to his favored guests. Why did he bother to be onthe program? :(

Let me say it out as its troubling me quite a bit since the arrest story broke.

At a bare minimum, Daoud Gilani with his family connections and social circle, his drugs convictions was a covert agent to infiltrate TSPA sponsored terrorist groups. The fact that the two main agencies deny any links to him and the third totally claims to have broken off contact in 2002 means he was being run by some unknown group.

At the worst he was an agent provacatuer trying to bring Indian sub-continent into the war on terrorism as a way out for the US. Recall all this is in 2008 by which time the extent of the mess was well known atleast to top officials.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Rony » 23 Nov 2011 23:26

Instead of asking pointed questions about US incompetence at best and complicity at worst, Praveen Swami was asking BS questions like ' How difficult was it to make this film' etc etc.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 24 Nov 2011 01:39

First, nvishal, follow that ProPublica link at the top of my post timestamped 23 Nov 2011 23:05. Scroll-down on that page and read the text chat script named “A Perfect Terrorist Chat”. Look closely at the timestamps there, and you’ll see that particular chat was at 11am EST today, which is what explains the fact that I watched the thread grow “live” (the “Live” indicator was flashing too). Indeed, the first post in that thread indicates the chat session was for today (Wednesday).

Second, I’ll have to again reiterate my disclaimer that I have not yet watched the PBS/ProPublica documentary “The Perfect Terrorist”, but I have followed this story very closely, and I did monitor that “Live Chat” with Sebastian Rotella on the FRONTLINE/ProPublica site, earlier today (see transcript above, in this BRF thread).

Third, I’d like to explain why I am utterly disappointed with ALL of the media coverage of this “Curious Case of Daood Gilani/David Coleman Headley”:

ramana, Rony, et al., I am not very familiar with the work of Praveen Swami at the Hindu. From what I’ve read that he’s written in that ‘Live Chat’, I’d have to agree that he comes-off as a hack of the highest order. But, that may not be entirely his fault, or to his detriment, in the grand scheme of things (perhaps). Let me explain that (to see what you think of my thinking)…

A lot of people, myself included, are keen to laud Sebastian Rotella for “telling it like it is”, and for “showing the TSPs true colours”. To a certain extent, that’s all true and valid, and Mr. Rotella deserves his kudos. At the same time, these kudos demand qualification, because the praise for (so-called) “crusading journalists” is not ‘blanket praise’, by any means, particularly when the lines blur and the praise is for a (so-called) “celebrity journalist”. Consider the work of journalists like Rotella (and Swami?); they depend entirely on having “access” and “sources”, and so they are dependent on elements of officialdom for interviews, quotes, information, rumours, (so-called) leaks, peaks, tips, hints, winks, suggestions, et cetera.

This illustrates a social phenomena known as “capture”, wherein the journalist, ostensibly the watchdog of government agencies, is heavily dependent on government agents/sources for so very, very much.

With a system such as this, being the supposed embodiment of a “free press”, is it any wonder that the public story reflects the official line – as far as they dare to draw it – and what they dare not draw, well, those “facts remain murky”.

I have to believe there are questions that Rotella has asked, which he has not had answered, and that he's been fed some lies and disinfo, some of which he may not have recognized, some of which he may be obliged to report, if he still wants his phone calls answered. Keep in mind, that Rotella has carved-out a certain niche for himself, and so he's now "on the circuit". When a Washington DC think-tank has a lecture series on security or terrorism or AfPak or the like, he's now an automatic invite, whether as speaker or moderator, and all of this is good for his career (and who could blame him for that?). But at the same time, he is being 'co-opted' by 'the machine' and that makes him a part of it, at least to a certain extent.

I dunno... maybe his ability to shape opinions gives him leverage over those (elite interests) who need opinions shaped. Or maybe, thinking more cynically, he's just the latest incarnation of a mouthpiece, made more credible by his attachment to the (so-called) "alternative press".

For the time being, it would seem that the entire American and Indian “body politic”, as well as the entirety of the press around the whole world, are satisfied with this state of affairs. It’s disappointing. If anyone reading this wants “satisfaction”, they’ll have to get used to eating $H1T, and learn to like it. If you thirst for the truth about Daood Gilani/David Coleman Headley, you’d better develop a taste for P1SS.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Sushupti » 25 Nov 2011 22:01

PBS documentary on air at Timesnow right now.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby rohitvats » 25 Nov 2011 22:04

The documentary is being shown on Times Now as of now...

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 05 Dec 2011 01:20

So, by now, I've actually watched that documentary 'The Perfect Terrorist'. (Streaming from www.pbs.org)

Sadly, and as expected, I was not overly impressed. Essentially, the documentary simply rehashed the very superficial telling, according to the 'official line'. Nothing new at all.

I was particularly "miffed" (if that's the right word), that the explanation of the attack simply stated that they used GPS equipment to navigate by ship from Karachi to Mumbai, without mentioning that that sea voyage was preceeded by an act of murderous piracy that seized the Indian fishing vessel that was used in the assault insertion.

QUESTION: Why are those dead fishermen not counted in the official 'body count'?
ANSWER: Because that would more directly lead to a problematic line of questioning. It's more "convenient" to forget the fishermen and not mention the piracy.
RESULT: MY CONTINUED DISGUST WITH THE PATHETIC PRESS COVERAGE OF Gilani/Headley et al.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 06 Dec 2011 01:11

pandyan, Where I disagree is that he wasnt acting in his individual capacity. At that deep level no one does.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby Ravi Karumanchiri » 08 Dec 2011 04:41

^^^ I think the producers of the documentary went out of their way not to ask certain questions or imply certain lines of reasoning. It is clear to me that Rotella is obligated to tow a certain line and not shine too much light into certain corners (where you will find an elephant with an American accent saying nothing).

Let's be clear about how the world works: It is simply inconceivable that Gilani/Headley went about his terrorist business on the down-low while fooling the DEA/CIA all along about what he was up to, where he was going, what he was doing, who he met with, what they said (word for word). In the process, everything about what was going to happen next, became clear to certain people "in the know", who chose not to say anything about it either.

The best efforts of those motivated to stop the attacks (Mumbai cops and the IA et al.) resulted in them being able to eavesdrop on the terrorist's cell phone calls back to HQ in the TSP. No doubt, in between those motivated to carry out the attacks, there were a collection of "interested parties" whose interests didn't exactly require the ringing of any alarm bells to prevent the attacks.

Sounds like CT?

It's only logical.

Consider this: The Anglo-American system of global electronic surveillance referred to as "Echelon" is able to pin-point a caller using any phone in the world, using voice-recognition technology and an all-encompassing constellation of space-based and land-based antennae and supercomputers. It would not have been a problem for the Khans to follow an identified target like Gilani/DCH. To the contrary, they would have heard every conversation that occured in his presence, every moment he had his cell phone on him. If he picked up a stolen cell phone in some back alley, or a pay phone in some back-gate call box, they would have automatic recordings of all those calls. This isn't fiction, it's reality; but to protect its capabilities, they have to actively play dumb about certain things, lest the true extent of the capabilities of Echelon be discovered by its most serious targets.

Seriously, read about "Echelon", in particular the formal report to the European Parliament which describes the system as a threat to European commercial and political interests (on big-ticket dealings like fighter-jet sales).

Then ask yourself, in a world where "Echelon" is installed and running, does any part of the official line add-up?

So what about dead fishermen? Is the official line that an Indian fishing boat mistakenly docked in Karachi, where it was boarded by Kasab and his 'merry men'? Does that make sense? Or was there some kind of dinghy-borne assault on the fisherman's boat? (Yeah.... right... sure there was :lol: ) Or, more likely, was a Pakistani :oops: submarine involved? In which case, it would be important to know where the fishermen where attacked, exactly by who, where (if anywhere) the boat was taken afterward, where the attackers boarded and precisely who did all that and at who's behest; et cetera, et cetera.

I was offended by the facile telling which simply showed a GPS route with maritime tacks indicating navigation from Karachi to Mumbai, which begs sooooo many questions, it's just not funny.

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Re: Documentary on Headley, PBS on Tue Nov 22

Postby ramana » 09 Dec 2011 09:26

I was reading a commentary on US Criminal Law and read that its all about justice for the victim since English Common Law origins.

The thing that strikes you, is the DCH case was all about protecting the perpetrator DCH with the plea bargain and has stood the US criminal law on its head and left the victims without justice.


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