Able Danger Blog


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Thursday, May 18, 2006

Slade Gorton at it again

Reader JM writes:

Hi, I'm a big fan of your blogsite and try to stay current on the Able Danger story (with the common hope that past wrongs will be righted and an effective intelligence tool will be re-constituted). Yesterday (5/16), I was listening to the John Carlson radio show on KVI 570, here in Seattle, and the guest was Slade Gorton. During the course of the interview he was asked a question about Able Danger and why it wasn't pursued more in the 911 report.

He immediately proceeded to marginalize Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer with the dismissal that 'he only worked on Able Danger for a few weeks' and that it may have been an interesting program but that it didn't reveal any useful information. Gorton said that, at the initial briefing Shaffer made when he was overseas, that nothing very compelling was discussed and that nobody who was there remembers seeing any pictures of Atta. He also dismissed Scott Philpott by simply saying that he didn't even work on the Able Danger program. He said that Able Danger never identified any of the 9/11 terrorists.

Gorton just didn't seem to have many facts straight.

Gorton said that Congressman Weldon claimed to have given 'the chart' to Stephen Hadley and that he later recanted and said that he wasn't sure what he gave Hadley. He said a number of other things that really seemed intended to make Weldon sound like a crackpot. Gorton sounded very defensive and seemed to really resent being questioned/contradicted.

It is just amazing to me that someone who is supposed to have been part of a comprehensive and 'open minded' investigation can so thoroughly dismiss something out of hand.

Gorton was also asked why Jamie Gorelick was allowed to stay on the committee considering the obvious conflict of interest. He mentioned that when the committee was being formed, Democrats insisted that Gorelick and Ben-Veniste be on it.

I wonder how he would try to explain Shaffer's tenacity in getting this story out at the expense of his career. Given Lt. Col. Shaffer's apparent honor and courage, would it have hurt for Gorton to just sit down with him and discuss the details? Even after the release of the report.

Really frustrating to hear someone who has been paid to get to the very bottom of things and is selling the American people short.

Anyway, thanks for all you do on your site to help keep this alive and have a great week,

[JM]


Ha! Now Scott didn't even work on Able Danger! I'm sure he would love that one, considering he was second in command of the task force under Col. Worthington....