Following the money

During the 1970's: The Bush family began a long-term business relationship with the Bin Ladin and Mahfouz families which continues to this day. The two families invested in G.W. Bush's Harken Energy and Caterair; the Bin Ladens later invested in the Carlyle Group.

In 1979: Osama Bin Laden went to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets. He had the support of Pakistan's ISI, and that ISI operation was funded by the CIA.

During the 1980's: Osama Bin Laden formed the Makhtab Al Khidimat (MAK), precursor to Al-Qaeda.

Between 1986 and 1988: Many think tank reports were published that called for a larger U.S. presence in the Persian Gulf -- to protect American oil and gas interests in the Middle East and stressing the need to increase the U.S. presence in Saudi Arabia.

In 1988: The Soviets pulled out of Afghanistan. They were defeated by the Mujeheddin and Bin Laden's MAK -- after more than $6 billion was spent by the CIA.

In 1989: Bin Laden returned to Saudi Arabia (where the U.S. was looking to expand its military presence) and began stirring up political dissent. At the same time, the Sudanese government began dealing with Canadian, Russian and Chinese oil and gas interests, refusing to deal with U.S. interests. U.S. oil interests wanted their state department to apply pressure on Sudan, but there was no pretext for the U.S. to apply sanctions against the Sudan.

In 1990: Kuwait began slant drilling at its border with Iraq. Saddam Hussein was tricked into attacking Kuwait after his cousin was told, by a high-ranking U.S. official, that the U.S. would "not get involved" in a Middle Eastern domestic dispute. That summer, doctored satellite photos were shown to King Fahd by the U.S. State Department that falsely showed an Iraqi military presence near the Saudi border. (The photos have been proven fake by comparing them to other satellite images of the same locations during the same time period.) Former CIA/ISI asset Bin Laden went to King Fahd, offering to bring his Mujeheddin to Saudi Arabia to defend the Holy Land against Iraqi attack. Fearing a coup by this politically active man, King Fahd rejected his offer, jailed him and asked the Americans to come protect Saudi Arabia. The American bases set up in Saudi Arabia in 1991 are still active today.

On Sept. 11, 1990: G.H.W. Bush made his "Toward a New World Order" speech.

Jan. 16, 1991: The U.S. invaded Iraq, along with a United Nations coalition. Later in that year, Bin Laden somehow escaped from his Saudi prison and ended up settling in the Sudan -- where, coincidentally, the U.S. has been looking for a pretext for sanctions or invasion since the 1980's. Bin Laden set up Al-Qaeda training camps there. Elsewhere that year, India allowed privatization of energy suppliers; and heavy U.S. interest began in the Caspian Basin's oil and gas reserves where major oil companies began negotiating exploitation deals. American companies, also interested in uranium mining in Somalia, have been unable to make headway there. 1992: G.H.W. Bush began planning for a "humanitarian" operation in Somalia.

In January, 1993: The Clinton administration went ahead with the Somalia operation. That spring, Clinton escalated the operation to oust the warlords.

That same year, Enron signed a controversial deal with India for the Enron Dhabol project, amidst charges (against Enron) of bribery, thuggery and all manner of corrupt coercion. The World Bank said that, with no energy source cheap enough to power the plant profitably, the deal made no economic sense. The project's success would require an energy source close to India, perhaps a source from the Caspian Basin, but no such pipeline existed. The World Bank refused to participate or sign off on the project. Despite the terrible financial realities then existing, Enron proceeded with the project.

October, 1993: Following casualties and terrible media coverage of American troops being dragged through the streets of Mogadishu, Clinton began pulling out of Somalia. No uranium exploitation deals were signed, and there was no exploitation by U.S. companies.

In 1994: Exxon, Chevron, BP, Unocal, Lukoil and others signed deals and explored for oil and gas reserves in the Caspian Basin.

In 1995: A number of Caspian exploration and pipeline consortiums were formed between Exon, Chevron, BP, Unocal, Lukoil, Delta Oil, and other other players in oil and gas. Unocal signed a deal with Turkmenistan for gas exploitation, but had no way to get the product to market. It began negotiations with Uzbekistan for oil and gas rights. U.S. military aid to the Uzbeks began just two months after Unocal signed its deal with Turkmenistan and began negotiating with the Uzbeks. Unocal's Afghan-American employee, Zalmay Khalilzad, began negotiating with the Taliban on behalf of Unocal to secure a pipeline deal through Afghanistan to Pakistan. On the Afghan side, ethnic Pashtun, Hamid Karzai, worked as an advisor for Unocal and wooed the Taliban on behalf of Unocal.

In 1996: The Taliban wanted a better deal than the U.S. conglomerates were willing to give, so negotiations went badly. They refused to take a pittance in tax revenues while Unocal and the Centgas consortium were poised to make billions. In June, after the Khobar bombing in Saudi Arabia (blamed on Al-Qaeda), the Clinton Administration set up a sanctions regime against the Sudan where the U.S. oil companies were stymied. The Sudanese government offered to share information on Bin Laden's whereabouts, and operations in the Sudan, with the Clinton Administration. Because Clinton refused to accept the information, Bin Laden remained at large. During that summer, the former CIA/ISI asset, Osama Bin Laden, left the Sudan after the sanctions had been put in place. He ran to Afghanistan where the pipeline negotiations with U.S. companies had stalled.

In 1997: Unocal invited members of the Taliban for dinner in Houston and took them on a tour of NASA's space center. Wooed heavily by U.S. oil and gas interests, fronted by Khalilzad and Karzai, the Taliban refused to sign a deal with Unocal. Later in the year, Unocal gave up on pipeline negotiations. Khalilzad left Unocal and joined the Rand Corporation, a Skull-and-Bones connected think tank with great influence in Washington. Doing an about face, Khalilzad turned on the Taliban, labelling them a blight on humanity that would have to be forcibly removed from power.

In 1998: Unocal vice-chair John Maresca made a speech to Congress Feb. 12. It has become the outline for the current war. With respect to oil and gas pipelines, "a second option is to build a pipeline south from Central Asia to the Indian Ocean." An obvious option across Iran is not possible due to U.S. sanctions legislation. The only other possibility is across Afghanistan, having its own unique challenges: a war-ravaged country controlled by the Taliban, not recognized as a government by most other nations. (A proposed pipeline requires a recognized government with the confidence of other governments, lenders and the U.S. companies.) Despite these problems, Afghanistan appears to be the best option with the fewest technical obstacles, having the shortest route to the sea. It would bring Central Asian oil closest to Asian markets with the cheapest transportation costs.

Unocal wants to create a Central Asian Oil Pipeline Consortium. The pipeline would be an integral part of a regional oil pipeline system that will gather oil from existing infrastructure in Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Russia. The 1,040-mile-long pipeline would begin near Chardzhou, in northern Turkmenistan, and run 440 miles through Afghanistan to an export terminal on the Pakistan coast on the Arabian Sea. Estimated to cost US$2.5 billion (similar to the Trans-Alaska Pipeline), the 42-inch pipeline would have a shipping capacity of one million barrels of oil per day.

This pipeline would provide resource diversity for Japan, provide better markets for Central Asian countries, and provide revenues and encourage economic developoment for Afghanistan. It would also provide more favorable netbacks to oil producers through access to higher value markets. (That this project will succeed -- along the route proposed by Unocal in 1998 -- was confirmed by the "coincidental" announcement in December 2002 of the construction of 10 new military bases in Afghanistan.)

Also in 1998: The Carlyle Group made a number of telling purchases: EG&G, a support company for government installations with a monopoly on live HAZMAT training for government personnel; Sprayway, a pro cold weather clothing company (the kind that airborne and mountain division soldiers might need in Afghanistan); Sprayway's subsidiary, Claire Manufacturing, which makes aerosols and has the milling equipment to do things like mill anthrax; Medpointe, a medical database company; and Empi, makers of a new hi-tech vaccine delivery system.

Still in 1998: The Delta Hess Alliance was formed, a partnership between Delta Oil of Saudi Arabia and Amerada Hess Corporation of the USA, for Caspian oil and gas exploration. At the time, former New Jersey governor, Thomas Kean, was a director and shareholder of Amerada Hess. (Delta Hess is currently a major player in the Caspian, with interests in many oil and gas projects.)

Saudi oil company Delta Oil is partly owned by Khalid Bin Mahfouz, business partner of the Bin Ladin and Bush families. Mahfouz was involved in the BCCI banking scandal (reported in the Kerry Commission report on BCCI). Lead investigator Robert Mueller steered around any possible laundering activities of BCCI's clients, although there was evidence to implicate many, including the Bush family. Mueller was also the lead prosecutor in the Noriega case and he ensured Noriega could not mention the CIA, or any evidence he worked for them, at his trial. Mahfouz, also one of Amerada Hess' partners in Delta Hess and therefore a partner of Thomas Kean, is brother-in-law of Osama Bin Laden (testified to by James Woolsey in 1998).

1998 was a busy year: Bill Clinton came under heavy pressure to invade Afghanistan. The corrupt Indonesian government of U.S. puppet Suharto failed in May. The U.S. no longer had the leverage to force the Natuna deal through. The Exxon Natuna deal for Spratly Gas officially went bust in July (according to the U.S. Dept. of Energy).

It was during this year that Osama Bin Laden released his Fatwah -- a declaration of war on America and Americans.

August, 1998: The Rand Corporation and other Republican think tanks put heavy pressure on Clinton to invade Afghanistan after the U.S. Embassy bombings in Africa. Rather than do so, he authorized missiles be fired at Sudan and Afghanistan. The only pharmaceutical factory in the Sudan was destroyed.

Because Clinton would not invade Afghanistan, the Enron Dhabol project (which required natural gas pipelines from the Caspian to be profitable) officially failed. Thus began a massive fraud by Enron, to cover their losses, that continued until December 2001.

Impeachment pressure and scandals started hitting Clinton harder than ever before in an effort to get him removed from office -- a step towards saving Enron and the oil companies.

May, 2000: The CIA began operating in Afghanistan. In the 17 Nov. 01 issue of the Washington Post, the man who broke Watergate, Bob Woodward, wrote: "In addition to its paramilitary units, the CIA's Special Activities Division has inserted into Afghanistan specialized CIA case officers from the agency's Near East Division who know the local languages and had previous covert relationships with the Northern Alliance going back years. For the last 18 months, the CIA has been working with tribes and warlords in southern Afghanistan, and the division's units have helped create a significant new network in the region of the Taliban's greatest strength."

Also in 2000: Project for a New American Century published a report that cited the need to secure Caspian and Iraqi oil. They said a "Pearl Harbour type event" was needed to sway public opinion toward an aggressive U.S. foreign policy. The Rand Corporation, the Brookings Institution and others are reported to have put forth similar suggestions.

January 2001: In their book, Bin Ladin: La Verite Interdite, French journalists Brisard and Dasquie said that FBI New York Counter-Terrorism Chief John O'Neill was ordered by the White House to back off all investigations of Al-Qaeda and the Bin Laden family while pipeline negotiations were underway with the Taliban.

Also in January, the Brookings Institute published a paper on the need for Homeland Defense. The next month, the Carlyle Group's subsidiary, EG&G, set up a Homeland Defense page on their website (since deleted) that stressed the importance of homeland defense against weapons of mass destruction and terrorism.

In June 2001: Saudi Aramco signed preliminary agreements with Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon for gas exploration in Saudi Arabia.

In July 2001: The Bush Administration broke off pipeline negotiations with the Taliban and told them, "Accept our carpet of gold or you will receive a carpet of bombs." (Reported by Agence France Presse and also told to Brisard and Dasquie by John O'Neill after he was ordered to back off investigations into Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda.)

Phoenix FBI agent Kevin Williams wrote a memo warning of Al Qaeda operatives seeking flight instruction in the U.S. The warning was ignored.

U.S. Attorney John Ashcroft stopped flying on commercial airlines at this time. He pulled 200 FBI agents off counter-terrorism duty and assigned them to drug and child pornography cases.

Washington told India that U.S. troops would be in Afghanistan "before the snow falls." (This was reported, after the unexpected 9/11 tragedy, by several news sources, including the BBC.)

August 2001: Robert Mueller, known as the cover-up artist of BCCI, BNL and the Noriega prosecution, became head of the FBI -- a Bush appointment.

Coleen Rowley of the Minnesota FBI office warned her superiors of the activities of Zacarias Moussaoui and his possible Al-Qaeda connections. She requested a FISA warrant for surveillance on Moussaoui. Her superior removed all references to Al-Qaeda before passing the report on to the FISA court and the warrant was refused -- an unprecedented action. (Following Sept. 11, Moussaoui was alleged to be the "20th hijacker".)

September 11, 2001: Almost 3,000 people were killed in the horrific events that occurred in New York City, Washington and Pennsylvania. John O'Neill, who quit the FBI out of frustration with the Bush Administration, died in the World Trade Centre where he was working as head of security. The original files of the investigation into Enron Dhabol were also destroyed in the WTC. The events were at once called "a Pearl Harbour".

Throughout that month, U.S. oil and gas interests continued negotiations with the Saudis to renew deals with Saudi Aramco. The U.S. companies sought rights to new and unexploited gas reserves, but the Saudis refused to put the mineral rights on the table.

September 28, 2001: The United Nations lifted sanctions against the Sudan. Immediately, the U.S. companies began negotiating oil and gas rights with the Sudanese government.

October 2001: John Ashcroft asked for more power for FBI surveillance work -- using the court's rejection of the warrant request initiated by Coleen Rowley as proof of its necessity.

The U.S. invaded Afghanistan on schedule, before the snow fell, as they had promised two months earlier. Former Unocal employee Zalmay Khalilzad was appointed Special Envoy to Afghanistan by Pres. Bush.

The anthrax attacks began with mail delivery of the material to key news people and Democrats. (Although speculation was that it was the work of terrorists abroad, it has since been determined to be Fort Detrick/Battelle anthrax. Carlyle Group subsidiary EG&G had access to it through their service contract with Battelle, but apparently Robert Mueller and the FBI have not, to date, seen fit to investigate EG&G.

While the focus was on the anthrax attacks, EG&G was given a one-billion-dollar Hazmat Disposal contract by the White House. Meanwhile, EG&G employees at Area 51 (where EG&G has had the security contract since Area 51 opened) went on strike because they hadn't had a raise in pay since the 1970s.

November 2001: Somalia was accused of having terrorist training camps connected to Osama Bin Laden.

December 2001: Enron officially went broke, after bankrupting their employees' 401k's, while executives cashed out for $650 million.

The "war" in Afghanistan ended, but Bin Laden mysteriously disappeared. Again. Just as he did in 1991 after the U.S. got their military presence in Saudi Arabia -- and just as he did in 1996 after the U.S. achieved their sanctions regime against the Sudan.

After their first vote in decades, Afghan warlords chose Berhanudeen Rabbani as president of Afghanistan. The U.S. vetoed this choice and forced another vote. Under duress, and with controversy over whether or not a legitimate vote had taken place, former Unocal employee Hamid Zarzai was approved by Bush as the new Afghan president.

Both the U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan and the new Afghan president are now former Unocal employees.

Between October 2001 and June 2002: The Bush Administration refused to set up a proper investigation of the events of 9/11. Finally, under public pressure, they agreed to set up a commission.

In January 2002: Thomas Kean, Director of Amerada Hess, bought an additional 500 shares in Amerada Hess. During the rest of that year, Delta Hess, a subsidiary of Amerada Hess and Delta Oil, finalized several Caspian exploration deals, primarily in Azerbaijan.

In June 2002: Pres. Bush refused to sign the Homeland Security Bill. He warned that he would veto any such bill that didn't include strong anti-union legislation giving the White House the ability to fire any government employees under Homeland Security's jurisdiction.

In July 21, 2002: The Carlyle Group sold EG&G, which had union problems the previous year, for a good profit.

August 2002: RAND Corporation analyst Laurent Murawiec spoke at a Defense Policy Board meeting, a think tank for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfield. He called on the Bush Administration to launch an all-out war on the House of Saud. He called Saudi Arabia "the kernel of evil, the prime mover, the most dangerous opponent" of the U.S. in the Middle East.

September 2002: Bush published the new National Security Strategy for the USA. He adopted the aggressive pre-emptive stance suggested by the PNAC in 2000.

After 15 months of go-nowhere negotiations with Exxon and Royal Dutch Shell, and demonization by U.S. think tanks, U.S. media and the White House, Saudi Arabia reopened bidding on the Saudi Aramco project, beginning talks with French companies and others.

October 2002: After a year of negotiations that had resulted in no new oil and gas deals for U.S. companies in the Sudan, Bush signed new legislation threatening new sanctions against the Sudan.

November 2002: Bush signed HR5170, the Homeland Security Bill, with the anti-union legislation intact. It provides protection from lawsuits to all insurance, pharmaceutical, defense and security contractors, while taking away the public's ability to sue for injury or death.

December 2002: The White House announced 10 new bases in Afghanistan, their locations coinciding with the route proposed by Unocal in 1998 for a gas pipeline from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan to Pakistan.

Thomas Kean, director and shareholder of Amerada Hess and partner with Osama Bin Laden's brother-in-law Khalid Bin Mahfouz in the Delta Hess Caspian oil and gas consortium, was appointed by G.W. Bush to head the 9/11 investigation.

Following Kean's appointment, shares in Amerada Hess moved from a low of $49.68 in November to $54.66 as of Dec. 27.

Lockheed Martin (of which Lynn Cheney is a director) has moved from $16.63 in March 2000 to $57.70 as of Dec. 27.

Northrop Grumman moved from $43.56 in March 2000 to $97.92 as of Dec. 27. During the same time period, Raytheon moved from $17.75 to $30.47.

Wyeth, formerly American Home Products, moved off a 52-week low of $28.25 to $37 as of Dec. 27, thanks to Pres. Bush ordering 500,000 mandatory smallpox vaccine inoculations and millions of doses of smallpox vaccine, as well as Bush's Homeland Security Bill having taken away the public's right to sue Wyeth for any injuries or deaths caused by the vaccine.

Avon (maker of specialty fuel and water bladders, tires, submarine parts, and HAZMAT suits for both domestic and military government use -- with tens of thousands of them proven faulty) moved from $25.38 in March 2000 to $53.61 as of Dec. 27. Avon made those suits you saw during Desert Storm and the Pentagon has ordered them by the hundreds of thousands since gearing up for Iraq. (Yes, this is the Avon Lady -- who also happens to produce chemicals used in U.S. bio-weapons programs and by U.S. Special Forces snipers!)

The rich and powerful continue to get richer while, at the same time, the Dow has tumbled from 11,000 to 8,303 and the NASDAQ has crashed from 5,000 to 1,348.

Also in December 2002: Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan announced to the world the finalization of a deal for oil and gas pipelines from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan to Pakistan.

Colleen Rowley's superior at the FBI -- the one who in August 2001 tampered with Rowley's warrant request report by removing all references to Al-Qaeda -- was paid a "performance bonus" equal to about 20 to 35 per cent of her salary.

Osama Bin Laden's whereabouts remains a mystery. One wonders if he is helping to secure more U.S. oil interests in Africa and the Middle East for the U.S., the Bin Laden and the Mahfouz families.

Looking down on all these events as they happened, one cannot but be shocked at some of the conclusions they lead to. Wherever Osama Bin Laden's activities have taken him since 1979, the U.S. has soon after achieved its goals. They got the bases in Saudi Arabia, the Sudan under sanctions and the pipeline through Afghanistan.

And where is Osama Bin Laden now? Busy at another project with like goals? His actions so far appear to have served the interests of his own family, the Mahfouz family and the Bush family very well indeed.

The information for this article was found at the following websites: (Nov.17, Nov.22)