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Posts Tagged ‘9/11’

One World Trade Center Becomes New York City’s Tallest Skyscraper, Floors Still Being Added (VIDEO)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 29, 2012


NEW YORK — One World Trade Center, the monolith being built to replace the twin towers destroyed in the Sept. 11 attacks, claimed the title of New York City’s tallest skyscraper on Monday, as workers erected steel columns that made its unfinished skeleton a little over 1,250 feet high, just enough to peek over the roof of the observation deck on the Empire State Building.

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US could put Assange to death if it gets him – former senior NSA official

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 10, 2012

If America gets its hands on the WikiLeaks founder, they may go as far as execute him, a known National Security Agency whistleblower Thomas Andrews Drake told RT, adding that in the US, security has become a state religion.

An expert on electronic eavesdropping, Drake sacrificed his career to blow the whistle on perceived wrongdoings within the NSA. He was charged under the Espionage Act, though the charges were dropped only last year.

He told RT that in America’s ‘soft tyranny’, everyone is subject or suspect in terms of surveillance.

RT: What was the potential harm of the program that you challenged while working with the NSA?

Thomas Drake: There was a very large flagship program called Trailblazer that was designed to catapult the NSA into the twenty first century to deal with the vast amounts of data generated by the digital age. Given the massive fraud and abuse that the NSA had created with the Trailblazer program, as well as the super secret surveillance program, the NSA completely violated the Constitution and the Fourth Amendment. In particular, the stature called the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which was the first commandment at the NSA: you did violate Americans’ privacy without a warning, and if you did – there is a criminal penalty for doing so. And I found this out to my horror and shock, that shortly after 9/11, the NSA entered a secret agreement with the White House in which the NSA would become the executive agent for this secret surveillance program. Read the rest of this entry »

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FBI And CIA ‘Turf War’ Scuppered Secret Plan That Could Have Thwarted 9/11, David Davis Claims

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 28, 2012

Is this just politics within politics or another drama? Otherwise why has it taken so long to come out?:

Infighting between US intelligence agencies delayed a secret plan to tap every phone in Afghanistan that could have helped prevent the September 11 attacks, a senior Conservative MP has claimed.

Speaking in the House of Commons on Wednesday evening, David Davis, the former shadow home secretary, said the American government then attempted to cover up its embarrassment by shutting down a series of court cases, including one in London, that arose from the intelligence operation.

Davis was using the case to provide a warning against proposals by the British government to bring in similar powers in courts that would suppress any embarrassing intelligence failures.

He told MPs that in 1998, the Taliban decided Afghanistan needed a new phone network. As no domestic companies had the necessary expertise, they invited foreign companies to bid for the rights to build the network. The company they chose was called Telephone Systems International.

Based in New Jersey, TSI was owned by one Ehsanollah Bayat, a Kabul-born American citizen – who unknown to the Taliban was also an FBI informer. Read the rest of this entry »

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Romania CIA Prison: Central Intelligence Agency Used Secret Makeshift Prison For Its Most Valuable Detainees (VIDEO)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 8, 2011

WASHINGTON — One of the CIA’s most important secrets in the war on terrorism was hiding in plain sight, on a leafy residential street along a busy set of train tracks in Romania’s capital. There, tucked in the basement of a government building, the CIA ran a clandestine prison, former U.S. intelligence officials said.

For years, the building – codenamed Bright Light – housed some of the CIA’s most important terror suspects, including Khalid Sheik Mohammad, the mastermind of 9/11. Even after the detainees were shipped off to Guantanamo Bay in 2006 and reports about the prison began to surface, the Romanian government repeatedly denied any knowledge of its existence.

A joint investigation by The Associated Press and German public television, ARD Panorama, however, located the former prison and unearthed details of the facility where harsh interrogation tactics were carried out.

The Romanian prison was part of a network of so-called black sites that the CIA operated and controlled overseas in Thailand, Lithuania and Poland. All the prisons were closed by May 2006, and the CIA’s detention and interrogation program ended in 2009.

Unlike the CIA’s facility in Lithuania’s countryside or the one hidden in a Polish military installation, the CIA’s prison in Romania was not in a remote location. The building is used as the National Registry Office for Classified Information, which is also known as ORNISS. Classified information from NATO and the European Union is stored there. Former intelligence officials both described the location of the prison and identified pictures of the building.

Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Al Qaeda Should Be Assessed $9.3 Billion For Damage Caused By 9/11 Attacks, New York Judge Recommends

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 15, 2011

What’s the point to decide that never implements­?
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Honoring the Memory of 9/11 By Honoring the Memory of 9/12

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 12, 2011

What does honoring the memory of 9/11 actually mean? This actually does mean to attempting not to repeat this kind of incident in the future and that is only possible through conversion­. The basis of any problem and solution is the individual­. The present world situation is the result of our way of thinking. Some people are using their maximum effort to divide people and to control others to be so called powerful. If everybody thinks about each other we would not have problems, but we are habitual in our thinking and define everything according to ourselves or group or community or country. Religious persons are also dividing people in the name of religion. The basic of every religion is the same – love. Religion is religion if it unites people and not if divides people. We therefore, need conversion from leaders to masters, religious persons to spiritual persons to achieve a level of World Peace. http://ram­kshrestha.­wordpress.­com/2011/0­3/27/overc­oming-new-­decade-cha­llenges/
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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9/11 The day America, and the world, changed forever

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 11, 2011

9/11 Terror attacks: Aerial images taken by the NYC Police Aviation Unit and show the aftermath of the terror attack from the sky (Pic: Rex Features)

It was the day that changed America, and the world. ­A shocked America suddenly discovered it was under ­attack, not by a foreign ­power but by Al Qaeda terrorists, some of whom had lived and worked in the United States.

Unable to fly to America because all transatlantic flights were cancelled, I was called in to present emergency news bulletins on BBC television channels.

We immediately showed the ­unforgettable images of aircraft fully loaded with fuel slicing into the Twin Towers and ­exploding, reducing two of the world’s tallest ­buildings to dust.

Then in the next few hours we were to hear of the astonishing heroism of New York City firefighters and others who risked their lives at the heart of an unimaginable catastrophe.

President George W Bush declared a “Global War on Terror” and promised to fight “the Axis of Evil”. It proved to be a conflict without end. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Price of Lost Chances

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 11, 2011

A survey by The New York Times puts a stark price tag on the cost of reacting — and overreacting — to the Sept. 11 attacks. An even more difficult question is how much Americans paid in “opportunity costs.”


In 2004, when he was arguably still capable of initiating another devastating attack on the United States, Osama bin Laden released a videogloating about his plan of “bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy.”

As usual, Bin Laden’s vow was overblown — but, as it turned out, not entirely crazed. A survey by The New York Times, detailed in the accompanying chart, puts a stark price tag on the cost of reacting — and overreacting — to the defining event of the past decade. America’s bill for fighting a 21st-century “asymmetric war” comes to at least $3.3 trillion. Put another way, for every dollar Al Qaeda spent to pull off the Sept. 11 attacks, the cost to the United States was an astonishing $6.6 million.

Today, Al Qaeda in Pakistan is crippled and Bin Laden is dead. But the $3.3 trillion figure suggests that the unanticipated costs of how we managed a grim decade — money already spent or committed in the future — amount to a little more than one-fifth of America’s currentnational debt.

Some of those were unavoidable, direct costs of responding to the attack. Some, like the Iraq war, were expenditures of choice. But there is also the more difficult, less quantifiable question of what we paid in “opportunity costs.”

Less than a trillion dollars of the $3.3 trillion was for direct responses — including toppling the Taliban. But what if at least some of the remaining $2 trillion plus had been spent on other, longer-range threats to American national security? Rebuilding a broken education system? Finding more imaginative ways to compete with China? Reducing the national debt? Or delivering on promises, by President George W. Bush and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton alike, for “Marshall plans” to rebuild societies at risk of letting the next Al Qaeda flourish? Read the rest of this entry »

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10th Anniversary: All about 9/11

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 11, 2011

For the tenth anniversary of 9/11:

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How 9/11 Provoked the U.S. to Hasten its Own Decline

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 9, 2011


The twin towers of the World Trade Center burn behind the Empire State Building in New York, September 11, 2001. (Photo: Marty Lederhandler / AP)

During his first year in office, President George W. Bush was confronted by the key strategic challenge facing the United States in the new century, in an incident that began with the diversion of a U.S. aircraft — by Chinese fighter planes, which forced a U.S. Navy spy plane to land on the island of Hainan after a collision that downed a Chinese jets, killing its pilot. What followed was a tense 11-day standoff between Washington and Beijing, serving an early warning that China’s emergence as an economic superpower would inevitably alter the geopolitical balance of power in Asia, and globally.

But then came 9/11 — a mass-casualty terrorist provocation on an unprecedented scale — and the Bush Administration convinced itself, and much of America, that the world had changed. The new president had found his “calling” in a campaign to “rid the world of evil doers”, declaring a “war on terrorism” that would become the leitmotif and singular obsession of U.S. foreign policy for the remainder of his presidency — a presidency that despite massive, kinetic displays of military force, left the U.S. strategically weaker at its close than when Bush entered the Oval Office.

“We’d always treated terrorist attacks before primarily as a law enforcement problem… going after and finding the guilty party, bring them to trial and put them in the slammer,” Vice President Dick Cheney told TIME in an interview published in this week’s edition. “After 9/11, you couldn’t look on those as just law enforcement problems anymore. It was clearly an act of war. And that’s a significant shift. You’re going to use all of the means available…”

But while the scale and brutality of the attacks might have been akin to an act of war, 9/11 was the work of a tiny network of transnational extremists, founded on the remnants of the Arab volunteers who’d fought in the U.S.-backed Afghan jihad against the Soviet Union. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ten Years After 9/11, Is It Now Time to be Afraid of China?

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 9, 2011


As the commentaries, retrospectives and meditations pile up ten years after 9/11, expect quite a few in their closing paragraphs to look toward the next grand geo-political challenge facing the U.S. A decade of costly adventurism in the Middle East and Afghanistan, many will argue, distracted U.S. policy making from the new realities of Asia, where some of the world’s main economies and rising powers are shaping the future decades of the 21st century.

The bogeyman here is not an ideology or some shadowy terrorist threat, but, to be blunt, China. Beijing’s rise as an economic and military power raises understandable concerns. The modernization of its navy and army seem calculated to directly challenge the preeminence of American power. As an authoritarian state, China has shown a penchant for a cold-blooded foreign policy, happy to support troublesome regimes from Khartoum to Pyongyang. A raft of pundits have already issued grim warnings about the future of the global liberal, democratic order — one which emerged during the 20th century’s Pax Americana — as it gets pressured by the new imperatives of a Chinese hegemon.

Tapping into this sense of alarm, an essay published last week in the National Review by Michael Auslin, the resident East Asia scholar at the right-of-center American Enterprise Institute, offers up a vision for American strategy in the Pacific. Though Auslin claims his proposal is more “pro-Asia” than it is “anti-China,” it’s hard to see how the two in his formulation are all that different.

Auslin’s essay —  entitled “Build, Hold and Clear: An American Strategy for Asia” —  is a re-invention of the U.S.’s “counter-insurgency” doctrine invoked in Iraq and Afghanistan of “clear, hold and build,” now applied across the wide tableau of the Asia-Pacific. Given the profound doubts hanging over U.S. operations in those two war-blighted countries, questions ought to immediately arise. Auslin shrugs off any concerns of U.S. decline or failure, and calls for policymakers to focus on “the next American era today.” This involves, ostensibly, reasserting U.S. interests across Asia by “building a larger community” of like-minded allies and confronting China more directly. Auslin writes: Read the rest of this entry »

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Manhattan memory project: How 9/11 changed our brains

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 7, 2011

You’ll probably remember exactly where you were and what you were doing when you first learned that passenger jets had crashed into the World Trade Center. People tend to form exceptionally vivid memories of highly consequential news, and it doesn’t get much bigger than 9/11.

Recollections of that day have given researchers a unique window into how the brain forms memories of shocking events. “It’s as if a flashbulb goes off and you take a mental picture of your surroundings,” says psychologistWilliam Hirst of the New York School for Social Research.

Flashbulb memories, as they are known, are tricky to study as people are seldom keen to talk to researchers just after hearing or seeing emotionally charged news. It can also be difficult to know how accurate a person’s memory of the event is, since there is usually no way to be sure what actually happened. Read the rest of this entry »

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George W. Bush Explains Slow Reaction To September 11 Attacks

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 30, 2011

In his Autobiogra­phy he mentioned that his press adviser asked him not to give reaction immediatel­y.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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110 Stories Project Promises To Show Twin Towers From Anywhere (VIDEO)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on July 21, 2011

A full rebuilding of the site is still several years away, and if demand for office space improves. Here is a progress report on the main features of the new center: http://ram­kshrestha.­wordpress.­com/2011/0­5/08/a-wor­ld-trade-c­enter-prog­ress-repor­t/
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Hillary Clinton Arrives In Pakistan To Repair Frayed Relations

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 27, 2011

Best of luck!!!
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