May 12, 2011

Hero or Madwoman: Susan Lindauer Faced with Indefinite Detention for Speaking Out

Have just finished reading Palestinian poet, Mourid Barghouti's heartbreaking memoir, I Saw Ramallah,  which describes his return to Ramallah on the West Bank in 1996 after many years in exile. The book is a cri de coeur filled with the most haunting images of Palestine as it once was and as it now is, in it's present demoralized and deteriorated state. Barghouti remarks that it is not the loss of the olive trees, the orchards and the hillsides that have been most devastating for the Palestinians. It is the absence of bookstores, of libraries, of schools, of theaters. It is the absence of culture and the means for creating one's one self conscious, literate, informed future.  I picked the book up in Munther Fahmy's wonderful bookstore in the American Colony Hotel in Jerusalem during Holy Week. The book itself and my immersion in Palestinian, Arab, Muslim culture while in Israel has stirred me deeply and keeps me preoccupied with the terribly destructive 'myth' of 911 which has caused such damage to the image of Muslims everywhere. This does not mean I am without sympathy for the Israelis, but it is a sympathy for the misguided and the deluded who are trapped in the destructive national myths of their leaders' own creation and which keep them imprisoned in falsehood and violence. The fear in Israel is palpable and real, combined with the national xenophobia, and of course things are not so simple as I'm making out. Heroic Israeli's like Uri Avery of Gush Shalom, Gideon Levy of Haaretz, the fearless workers of the human rights group B'Tselem, noted Israeli historian Ilan Pappe (driven out of Israel by death threats towards his family) and many others have been attempting to deconstruct the myth of Israel's founding (see Ilan Pappe's groundbreaking The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine). Yet such is the power of myth that when it takes hold of the collective consciousness of a nation that it is well nigh impossible to break through its defenses. To read some of the featured articles in Haaretz, one would think none of these great 'new' Israeli historians had written a word. (The great thing about Haaretz is that it prints an extraordinarily wide range of viewpoints and opinions, and sticks by its more 'radical' journalists, like Gideon Levy, in the face of ferocious attacks from the right.)

These musings and concerns always lead me back to the defining myth of American consciousness and identity in our times, 911, when twelve Muslim suicidal Jihadists supposedly orchestrated a brilliant attack of the WTC, and from these musings I'm led to admire the true American heroes who continue to 'blow the whistle' on this myth, even in the face of threats of imprisonment.

As Goebbels rightly said, repeat a lie often enough and the public will believe it. Iraq & Weapons of mass destruction, Iraq & weapons of mass destruction, Iraq & weapons of mass destruction - Osama Bin Laden, Al Quaida & 911/ Osama Bin Laden, Al Quaida & 911/ Osama Bin Laden, Al Quaida & 911. This leads me to one of our most noteworthy whistle-blowers, Susan Lindauer, the only non-Arab to be indicted under the  Patriot Act. Susan is a former CIA asset who was tasked (or so she claims) with warning high ranking Iraqi officials in the summer of 2001 that the US had intelligence that Al Quaida and Iraqi forces were together planning an attack on the World Trade Center in New York in the Fall of 2001. Her CIA handlers are now denying her claims, make of that what you will. Her specific task, she says,  was to threaten these Iraqi officials that if they did not uncover the Iraqi connection with Al Quaida, or any information having to do with hijackings and these immanent attacks, the US would bomb Baghdad back to the stone age. Susan now believes this was a complete disinformation campaign in which she and other assets were used to disseminate false information and rumors, in order to prepare the way for the 'myth' of 911 and the subsequent war with Iraq. She also makes the connection between 911 and Israel's Mossad, and with such accusations we are getting into dangerous waters. However, for myself this makes the connection with Mourid Barghouti's poignant memoir, I Saw Ramallah. Why was Susan indicted and then sentenced to one year of detention -without a trial or a hearing - at Carswell Air Force Base, in Fort Worth, Texas? Because she approached two US senators and requested to testify about Iraq and 911. The government claims she was suffering from paranoid delusions.

But is this the whole story? Wikipedia says that Susan was incarcerated for 'psychological evaluation,' then released in 2006 because the judge concluded she was mentally unfit to stand trial. This decision was reaffirmed in 2008, mentally unfit, troubled by delusions of grandeur and paranoia, with psychotic episodes going back to her childhood, including delusions she could predict bombings before they happened. All charges were dropped against her in 2009, the DOJ maintaining that it would not be in the interest of justice for her to stand trial. It goes without saying that Susan herself has a very different take on the government's decision not to try her. I have to say a chill went through me when I read these 'accusations,' because they sound so much like the treatment meted out to dissidents in the Soviet Block, including right here in Czechoslovakia  during the worst years of the Cold War. And it also goes without saying that her story has been picked up by the most radical sites on the web, including Truth Jihad. Com, which has an explosive interview with her, which you can read here, followed by the very interesting comments, some of which urge caution. If only these sites were not so garish and sensational, though to be fair, Truth Jihad is run by, Dr. Kevin Barrett, who has respectable credentials.  

(Kevin Barrett, an American Muslim and PhD Arabist-Islamologist, is one of America's best-known critics of the War on Terror. Dr. Barrett has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS, Unavision, Russia Today, Press TV and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, Chicago Tribune, etc. A leading alternative radio host, Dr. Barrett is lead editor of the book 9/11 and American Empire (Volume II) and author of the books Truth Jihad: My Epic Struggle Against the 9/11 Big Lie (2007) and Questioning the War on Terror: A Primer for Obama Voters (2009).)

 Back to Susan, do all of these suspicions make her story untrustworthy? I have followed this story closely for some time and listened to her video interviews, and she seems perfectly sane to me, as well as highly intelligent and informed. But then what do I know? This whole area becomes so murky, twisted, and convoluted that one could be forgiven for throwing up one's hands and saying, "Enough. I give up."

Susan has just started a series of articles at The Intel Hub (Yes, one of those sites). Here is what she has to say about her situation.

Thirty days after I spoke with top staffers for Senator Trent Lott and Senator John McCain, the FBI showed up with a warrant for my arrest.

My 5 year indictment on the Patriot Act nicknamed me “Symbol Susan.” It was not subtle. The viciousness I suffered was purposefully designed to scare off on anybody else who might consider talking. The cover ups of 9/11 and Iraq distinguished the Patriot Act as the premiere weapon to take down whistle blowers.

To those others I say, they cannot silence us if we refuse to give up our voice. I challenge Congress to put our country on the right track by holdings hearings on 9/11 to take our testimony. I will gladly swear to all of the following under oath.


The truth is that our team, which triangulated the CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency, discussed the 9/11 attack in its exact scenario and time frame throughout the summer of 2001.

We talked about it practically every week at our meetings. We also discussed it on the telephone, pointedly joking “Hello NSA! Pick up the phone—” knowing the National Security Agency had wire tapped my lines.

There’s no question that the story of the 9/11 conspiracy was planted months in advance to prep the intelligence community for the government’s reaction. And it unfolded exactly as they told us it would—with a little help from an orphan explosives team. That will be explained in a second article. The two are not contradictory.

Before we get to that, Americans must first accept the motivation for 9/11, and why the U.S. government allowed it to happen. This was a Pearl Harbor Day. And it achieved an agenda, which was already well defined.

From the first moment that I was told about 9/11 in April and May of 2001, I was informed that the United States planned to declare War on Iraq immediately when 9/11 happened. The two were already linked as cause and effect.

Read Susan's entire article here (the first in a series).

In the video below, Susan details the warning she made to the Bush staff in early August about an imminent attack on the WTC. Her handler Richard Fuisz told her in August 2001, "Do not go to New York, stay out of New York, we are expecting mass casualties, the attack is imminent."The video interview is chilling for many reasons, not least of which is her exchange with Iraqi diplomat Saleh Amoud just minutes after the attacks. "Susan, we learned of this attack from you. Why didn't you stop it? I will tell you. You didn't stop it because the United States had decided to start a war with Iraq. So you were willing to let your own American people die. You should ask God for forgiveness." Powerful, but is it fabricated and delusional? The ramblings of a paranoid schizophrenic or the testimony of a genuine American hero? Or something in-between?