The Usual Suspects: The Heroin Connection

It’s been nearly two years since I first posted my series, The Usual Suspects I, II, III, IV, and V, but a recent diary by lukery has inspired me to revisit this subject.  New info has come forth that demands examination.  Is the White House involved in heroin trafficking?  Are The Usual Suspects up to more than just what they’ve put forth in the PNAC?  The evidence seems to say so.  The evidence seems to put The Usual Suspects right at the heart of a drug smuggling operation that supplies 93% of the worlds heroin and funnels money right to Al Queda.

As I originally posted in The Usual Suspects Part I: Richard Perle, Prince of Darkness, there has always been a suspected link between The Usual Suspects and heroin trafficking:

By 1986, Perle had completed negotiations on the Defense and Economic Cooperation Agreement with Turkey.  This put Turkey as the third largest recipient of US military aid after Israel and Egypt.  Then he establishes a high-level US-Turkish consultation group co-chaired by the Pentagon and Turkish general staff.  Perle is the American co-chair for this group.  It is at this time that Richard Clarke is assigned by the State Department to “keep an eye on” Perle when he takes a trip to Turkey.

In 1987, Richard Perle resigned as Assistant Secretary of Defense under allegations he’d leaked classified information.

In 1989 Perle negotiated with Turkey an $800,000 contract for his own company, International Advisors Inc. (IAI), which he started with Douglas Feith.  He received $48,000 annually.  IAI is registered as Turkey’s foreign agent with the Justice Department.  In all, IAI receives $3.8 million dollars from Turkey over the next 6 years.

In 1995 Perle, along with Douglas Feith, illegaly act as advisors to the government of Bosnia during the Dayton peace talks without registering with the Department of Justice, as required by law.  Perle goes on to serve as military advisor to Bosnia.  Within months, Perle is lobbying to get Turkey to arm and train Bosnian muslims, which he claims is of vital interest to the United States.

It is soon after this that it becomes apparent to Interpol that the KLA has taken over heroin trafficking from Turkish criminal elements and that the KLA is also receiving protection from the US.  Intercepted messages speak of the desire to drown the western infidels in drugs.  Interpol realizes that Turkish-Albanian drug smuggling and political activities are deeply intertwined and that Osama bin Ladin is involved.
Perle was a signatory on the PNAC letter sent to President Clinton in 1998 calling for him to use military force against the Serbs.  They urge Clinton to support the KLA.

I’ll get back to the KLA in a moment, but let’s further establish Richard Perle’s drug trafficking credentials.  Let’s go back to the Iran-Contra affair.  Doesn’t everything about The Usual Suspects eventually lead back to that?

According to this article, the Pentagon lists a close Perle associate with drug trafficking:

Even Adnan Khashoggi has financed wars with drug profits, the gist of a report written in 1991 at the Pentagon – declassified in July 2004 by the National Security Archives in Washington – of 104 “more important Colombian narco-terrorists contracted by the Colombian narcotic cartels for security, transportation, distribution, collection and enforcement of narcotics operations in both the U.S. and Colombia.”

Remember, the word used by the Pentagon to describe the traffickers listed in the report, including Khashoggi, was “narco-terrorist.” So Richard Perle, assistant secretary of defense under Bush, a business partner of Khashoggi’s at TriReme Corp., was in business with a narco-terrorist, according to the Pentagon’s own records.

In 1999, the Washington Post detailed the link between the KLA and Al Queda:

Some members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, which has financed its war effort through the sale of heroin, were trained in terrorist camps run by international fugitive Osama bin Laden.  The KLA members…were trained in secret camps in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina and elsewhere, according to newly obtained intelligence reports.

The intelligence reports document what is described as a “link” between bin Laden, the fugitive Saudi millionaire, and the KLA –including a common staging area in Tropoje, Albania, a center for Islamic terrorists. The reports said bin Laden’s organization, known as al-Qaeda, has both trained and financially supported the KLA.

The KLA’s involvement in drug smuggling as a means of raising funds for weapons is long-standing. Intelligence documents show it has aligned itself with an extensive organized crime network in Albania that smuggles heroin to buyers throughout Western Europe and the United States.
Drug agents in five countries believe the cartel is one of the most powerful heroin smuggling organizations in the world.
The documents show heroin and some cocaine is moved over land and sea from Turkey through Bulgaria, Greece and Yugoslavia to Western Europe and elsewhere. The circuit has become known as the “Balkan Route.”

So what we have here is the neocons supporting the KLA, which in turn is supported by Al Queda and financed through heroin smuggling.  This same pattern emerges again in Chechnya.  The Washington Post once again weighs in on the subject:

American officials said that several hundred Chechen fighters were trained at al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan and that bin Laden sent “substantial amounts of money” to equip Chechen rebels in 1999.

And do the neocons support the Chechens as well?  Ya sure ya betcha!

in the US, the leading group which pleads the Chechen cause is the American Committee for Peace in Chechnya (ACPC). The list of the self-styled “distinguished Americans” who are its members is a rollcall of the most prominent neoconservatives who so enthusastically support the “war on terror”.

They include Richard Perle, the notorious Pentagon adviser; Elliott Abrams of Iran-Contra fame; Kenneth Adelman, the former US ambassador to the UN who egged on the invasion of Iraq by predicting it would be “a cakewalk”; Midge Decter, biographer of Donald Rumsfeld and a director of the rightwing Heritage Foundation; Frank Gaffney of the militarist Centre for Security Policy; Bruce Jackson, former US military intelligence officer and one-time vice-president of Lockheed Martin, now president of the US Committee on Nato; Michael Ledeen of the American Enterprise Institute, a former admirer of Italian fascism and now a leading proponent of regime change in Iran; and R James Woolsey, the former CIA director who is one of the leading cheerleaders behind George Bush’s plans to re-model the Muslim world along pro-US lines.  Coming from both political parties, the ACPC members represent the backbone of the US foreign policy establishment, and their views are indeed those of the US administration.

It looks like a literal Who’s Who of The Usual Suspects.

So once again the neocons are supporting a group which is in turn supported by Al Queda.  And is there a heroin connection?  According to Healthhaven:

Chechen criminal groups and guerrilla factions reportedly play a significant part in the narcotics trade in Central Asia, Russia and the Caucasus region. In the First Chechen War guerrillas used funding from a variety of rackets as well as the sale of oil. However in the Second Chechen War the fighters received huge financial backing from Jordanian militant Ibn Al-Khattab, who joined with guerrilla leader Shamil Basayev and became a prominent figure in the war. This marginalized some figures such as Ruslan Gelayev, who turned to the drugs trade full time.

The Chechen mafia appears to dominate the traditional Russian mafia organizations in the drugs trade

Osama bin Laden and Chechen rebel leader Ibn Khattab are, as a CIA officer puts it, “intricately tied together” in a number of ways.

Neocons, Al Queda, Heroin.  And then it all ties together from Chechnya to Al Queda to Turkey:

On the other side of the globe, to finance their separatist movement, Islamist leader Shamil Basayev and his Chechen followers transported Afghani heroin through Abkhazia to the Black Sea or through Turkey to Cyprus and then on to Europe.

lukery helps tie the neocons and their CIA operatives into the overall operation:

The operation includes propaganda and indoctrination in the form of financing, building and operating madrassas, control of media outlets and publishing houses, financing of terrorist groups, and heroin trafficking, as well as facilitating the requisite money-laundering apparatus. It is this operation that is at the heart of the gagging of former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds, and many of the names on Sibel’s State Secrets Privilege Gallery are associated with this operation.

So now let’s take a closer look at The Usual Suspects and see what kind of direct involvement we can find.

Back in October 2000, Michael Ruppert, who first broke Peak Oil, had this to say about Dick Cheney, whom I covered in Part IV of The Usual Suspects:

The success of Bush Vice Presidential running mate Richard Cheney at leading Halliburton, Inc. to a five year $3.8 billion “pig-out” on federal contracts and taxpayer-insured loans is only a partial indicator of what may happen if the Bush ticket wins in two weeks. A closer look at available research, including an August 2, 2000 report by the Center for Public Integrity (CPI) at http://www.public-i.org, suggests that drug money has played a role in the successes achieved by Halliburton under Cheney’s tenure as CEO from 1995 to 2000. This is especially true for Halliburton’s most famous subsidiary, heavy construction and oil giant, Brown and Root. A deeper look into history reveals that Brown and Root’s past as well as the past of Dick Cheney himself, connect to the international drug trade on more than one occasion and in more than one way.

The CPI report entitled “Cheney Led Halliburton To Feast at Federal Trough” written by veteran journalists Knut Royce and Nathaniel Heller describes how, under five years of Cheney’s leadership, Halliburton, largely through subsidiary Brown and Root, enjoyed $3.8 billion in federal contracts and taxpayer insured loans. The loans had been granted by the Export-Import Bank (EXIM) and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). According to Ralph McGehee’s “CIA Base ©” both institutions are heavily infiltrated by the CIA and routinely provide NOC to its officers.

One of those loans to Russian financial/banking conglomerate The Alfa Group of Companies contained $292 million to pay for Brown and Root’s contract to refurbish a Siberian oil field owned by the Russian Tyumen Oil Company. The Alfa Group completed its 51% acquisition of Tyumen Oil in what was allegedly a rigged bidding process in 1998. An official Russian government report claimed that the Alfa Group’s top executives, oligarchs Mikhail Fridman and Pyotr Aven “allegedly participated in the transit of drugs from Southeast Asia through Russia and into Europe.”

These same executives, Fridman and Aven, who reportedly smuggled the heroin in connection with Russia’s Solntsevo mob family were the same ones who applied for the EXIM loans that Halliburton’s lobbying later safely secured. As a result Brown and Root’s work in Alfa Tyumen oil fields could continue – and expand.

After describing how organized criminal interests in the Alfa Group had allegedly stolen the oil field by fraud, the CPI story, using official reports from the FSB  (the Russian equivalent of the FBI), oil companies such as BP-Amoco, former CIA and KGB officers and press accounts then established a solid link to Alfa Tyumen and the transportation of heroin.

In 1995 sacks of heroin disguised as sugar were stolen from a rail container leased by Alfa Echo and sold in the Siberian town of Khabarovsk. A problem arose when many residents of the town became “intoxicated” or “poisoned.” The CPI story also stated, “The FSB report said that within days of the incident, Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) agents conducted raids of Alfa Eko buildings and found ‘drugs and other compromising documentation.’

“Both reports claim that Alfa Bank has laundered drug funds from Russian and Colombian drug cartels.

“The FSB document claims that at the end of 1993, a top Alfa official met with Gilberto Rodriguez Orejuela, the now imprisoned financial mastermind of Colombia’s notorious Cali cartel, ‘to conclude an agreement about the transfer of money into the Alfa Bank from offshore zones such as the Bahamas, Gibraltar and others. The plan was to insert it back into the Russian economy through the purchase of stock in Russian companies.

“É He [the former KGB agent] reported that there was evidence ‘regarding [Alfa Bank’s] involvement with the money laundering ofÉ Latin American drug cartels.”

It then becomes harder for Cheney and Halliburton to assert mere coincidence in all of this as CPI reported that Tyumen’s lead  Washington attorney James C, Langdon, Jr. at the firm of Aikin Gump “helped coordinate a $2.2 million fund raiser for Bush this June. He then agreed to help recruit 100 lawyers and lobbyists in the capital to raise $25,000 each for W’s campaign.”

The heroin mentioned in the CPI story, originated in Laos where longtime Bush allies and covert warriors Richard Armitage and retired CIA ADDO (Associate Deputy Director of Operations) Ted Shackley have been repeatedly linked to the drug trade. It then made its way across Southeast Asia to Vietnam, probably the port of Haiphong. Then the heroin sailed to Russia’s Pacific port of Valdivostok from whence it subsequently bounced across Siberia by rail and thence by truck or rail to Europe, passing through the hands of Russian Mafia leaders in Chechnya and Azerbaijan.  Chechnya and Azerbaijan are hotbeds of both armed conflict and oil exploration and Brown and Root has operations all along this route.

It is perhaps not by coincidence again that Cheney and Armitage share membership in the prestigious Aspen Institute, an exclusive bi-partisan research think tank,

That last sentence I couldn’t help but notice.  The Aspen Institute.  And where have I heard aspens mentioned in relation to Dick Cheney before?  Oh yeah, it was when Judith Miller sat in jail rather than testify and possibly link Dick Cheney to the outing of Valerie Plame.  Libby sent that infamous letter:

Out West, where you vacation, the aspens will already be turning.  They turn in clusters because their roots connect them

Probably nothing, but then, everyone’s always wondered what the hell that meant.

There are many roots out there connecting The Usual Suspects to heroin, Al Queda and terrorism.  The FBI was actually busily pursuing links to Turkish drug traffickers and the buying out of American politicians when Bush came into office and immediately squashed the investigation.  Again, as reported by lukery:

Here’s Sibel:

“…What happened was, FBI had this information since 1997. In 1999, the Clinton Administration actually asked the Department of Justice to appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate Hastert, and certain other elected officials that were not named in this (VF) article, to be investigated formally. And the Department of Justice actually went about appointing this prosecutor, but after the Administration changed they quashed that investigation and they closed it despite the fact they had all sorts of evidence, again I’m talking about wiretaps, documents- paper documents- that was highly explosive and could have been easily used to indict the Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert. That investigation was closed in 2001, and this was around the time I started reporting my cases to the Congress.”

Vanity Fair reported the same thing, from a different source

“One counter-intelligence official familiar with Edmonds’s case has told Vanity Fair that the F.B.I. opened an investigation into covert activities by Turkish nationals in the late 1990’s. That inquiry found evidence, mainly via wiretaps, of attempts to corrupt senior American politicians in at least two major cities—Washington and Chicago.
[…]
[I]n December 2001, Joel Robertz, an F.B.I. special agent in Chicago, contacted Sibel and asked her to review some wiretaps. Some were several years old, others more recent; all had been generated by a counter-intelligence that had its start in 1997. “It began in D.C.,” says an F.B.I. counter-intelligence official who is familiar with the case file. “It became apparent that Chicago was actually the center of what was going on.”

Its subject was explosive; what sounded like attempts to bribe elected members of Congress, both Democrat and Republican. “There was pressure within the bureau for a special prosecutor to be appointed and take the case on, “the official says. Instead, his colleagues were told to alter the thrust of their investigation – away from elected politicians and toward appointed officials. “This is the reason why Ashcroft reacted to Sibel in such an extreme fashion,” he says “It was to keep this from coming out.”

In her secure testimony, Edmonds disclosed some of what she recalled hearing. In all, says a source who was present, she managed to listen to more than 40 of the Chicago recordings supplied by Robertz. Many involved an F.B.I. target at the city’s large Turkish Consulate, as well as members of the American-Turkish Consulate, as well as members of the American-Turkish Council and the Assembly of Turkish American Associates.

Some of the calls reportedly contained what sounded like references to large scale drug shipments and other crimes…. One name, however, apparently stood out – a man the Turkish callers often referred to by the nickname “Denny boy.” It was the Republican congressman from Illinois and Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert.”

The ATC was formed by AIPAC.  As you’ll already know if you’ve read my series, AIPAC is a nexus around which all The Usual Suspects revolve.  Around and around it goes, but in the end it always comes back to…The Usual Suspects.

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