Wednesday, June 14, 2006

[political-research] An Abramoff Link to Plame and Karni Cases


Valerie Plame Wilson and her Brewster Jennings & Associates cover LEAK

WMR has learned from informed sources of a link between those who "outed" CIA counter-proliferation covert agent Valerie Plame Wilson and her Brewster Jennings & Associates cover firm and convicted GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff. The link centers around convicted Israeli-South African nuclear components smuggler Asher Karni, a former officer in the Israeli Defense Force and Orthodox Jew who illegally smuggled 66 U.S.-made triggered spark gap nuclear detonators, via Cape Town, South Africa, where his company was located, to the Pakistan-based network of Abdul Qadeer ("A Q") Khan, a major target of Plame Wilson's CIA team. The A Q Khan network sold nuclear materials to Libya, North Korea, and most importantly, Iran. Karni's end-user client for the nuclear triggers in Pakistan was Humayun Khan's import-export Pakland Corp. Humayun Khan is no relation to A Q Khan.

Convicted Israeli nuclear smuggler to Pakistan Asher Karni linked to convicted GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff

In a inexplicable development, after his arrest in Denver on Jan. 1, 2004, Karni was granted, over federal prosecutors' objections, $100,000 bail by US District Judge for the District of Columbia Thomas Hogan. The government did not appeal Hogan's bail decision and Karni was released to the custody of the Hebrew Sheltering Home in Silver Spring, Maryland. After pleading guilty to smuggling charges, Karni was sentenced on August 4, 2005 to three years in prison by US Judge Ricardo Urbina. Karni's Turkish Jewish intermediary for the procurement of the nuclear triggers, Zeki Bilmen, owner of Giza Technologies of Secaucus, New Jersey, apparently died under suspicious circumstances in 2004 after Karni's arrest by Federal agents. However, Giza Technologies remains in operation to this day.

WMR has learned of a link between Karni and Abramoff. Rabbi Herzel Kranz, the head of the Hebrew Sheltering Home in Silver Spring where Karni was housed after his bail, is also a colleague of Abramoff's. The January 12, 2006 issue of The Forward contained an article citing praise of Abramoff by Kranz. At the time, Abramoff had just pleaded guilty to federal fraud and racketeering charges. Kranz praised Abramoff for donating to Jewish projects and, referring to Abramoff's conviction, said, "people make mistakes."

The Turkish nexus of the Karni-Bilmen-Humayun/A Q Khan smuggling network was of primary interest to both the CIA and FBI. It is also noteworthy that Judge Hogan, who dealt with the Karni case, was also the judge who ordered the FBI raid of Louisiana Democratic Representative William Jefferson's congressional office. House Speaker Dennis Hastert, who has reportedly been under investigation for receiving Turkish campaign donations and his ties to Abramoff, strongly condemned the FBI raid of Jefferson's office. After Hastert's protests, the Justice Department leaked word to the media that the Abramoff scandal extended to include Hastert. Essentially, Abramoff money was being used by the Justice Department as a weapon against Bush administration critics. WMR has also learned that Abramoff's money was also used to blackmail other members of Congress who were investigating the Israeli connection to nuclear smuggling and the A Q Khan network.

There is also evidence that some of the highly classified CIA information convicted Pentagon analyst Larry Franklin passed through American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) staffers Steve Rosen and Keith Weisman to Israeli agents attached to the Israeli embassy in Washington dealt with Iranian nuclear development and that CIA sensitive sources and methods not disclosed by the outing of Plame Wilson/Brewster Jennings were discovered in the leak of the CIA documents to AIPAC and the Israelis.

In any case, Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is now dealing with a much larger case with the same limited budget and relatively small staff of prosecutors and FBI agents, in addition to a Justice Department that is dangerously using evidence gathered in the Abramoff money and influence-peddling probe as a political weapon against GOP opponents of Bush-Cheney policies. It is clear that the Justice Department is being politically manipulated and one effect of the high-level interference is likely today's early morning announcement that Fitzgerald has decided that he does not plan to indict Karl Rove, one of the chief suspects in the Plame/CIA leak.

WMR is pursuing additional angles in this case.



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