leaves egg on U.S. faces
Book says Ali Mohamed engaged in terrorism for two decades
By THANE BURNETT
Sun" -- -- Those who want a chilling
account of a killer who slipped through the hands of a daft
justice system shouldn't bother to read the tripe now being
peddled by O.J. Simpson.
As a murderer, his record of terror just can't compare with
How the al-Qaida superspy manipulated FBI intelligence
watchdogs, as well as one of America's most respected U.S.
attorneys, is a chilling bedtime story. Those few people who
still believe the West has been told all there is to know
about intelligence bungling that led up to 9/11 -- a recent
poll found 80% of Americans think their administration is
not being fully truthful -- should trace the blood-timeline
of Ali Mohamed with utter alarm.
Which is what Peter Lance (
www.peterlance.com ) -- an Emmy-award
winning investigator -- has done in his book,
Triple Cross .
The 600-plus-page opus -- released by Regan publishing next
week but given an exclusive Canadian advance here -- is a
detailed account of how Mohamed worked worry-free under the
gaze of U.S. watchdogs.
In the al-Qaida camps, he was known as Abu Mohamed al Amriki
-- "Father Mohamed the American." And, until he was finally
arrested and convicted in 2000 -- after two decades of high
profile terrorism, including helping to plan attacks on
American troops in Somalia and U.S. embassies in Africa --
Ali Mohamed roamed free and even protected.
He was so untouchable, he was taken from quick-thinking
Canadian officials, who suspected he may have been a threat.
In the most intimate and thorough way possible, Triple Cross
chronicles one of the most vicious spies of our time.
Mohamed was a U.S. Army sergeant, FBI operative and possible
CIA asset, who, on the side, was a friend to Osama bin
Laden, trained the leader's bodyguards, was instrumental in
killing Americans and was the middle-man in an historic and
vile union between bin Laden's forces and the Lebanese
Hezbollah. His fingerprints can be traced to those who
assassinated Jewish militant Meir Kahane and blew up the
first truck bomb to hit the World Trade Centre.
He made no real secret about being a die-hard jihadi. But
the U.S. refused to accept him for what he really was.
"In the annals of espionage, few men have moved in and out
of the deep black world between the hunters and the hunted
with as much audacity as Ali Mohamed," Lance, a former ABC
News producer, writes in his book.
Mohamed worked his triple-cross as U.S. authorities were --
Lance argues -- distracted with inner-politics, their own
lives, the mob and even a horiffic murder. But more than he
does with anyone else, Lance points an accusing finger at
celebrated U.S. attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, who directed
the FBI's elite bin Laden squad, which, Lance argues,
allowed Mohamed to remain an active al-Qaida agent.
Lance writes Fitzgerald and other top officials ignored
important al-Qaida-related evidence, including proof in 1996
of a liquid-based airliner bomb -- a precursor to last
August's plot revealed by British intelligence.
Lance pinpoints how, in 1991, the FBI, knowing of a New
Jersey mail box store with direct links to al-Qaida, failed
to keep it under watch. Just six years later, two of the
9/11 hijackers got their fake IDs at the same location.
Mohamed himself had come to the FBI's attention in 1989,
when the agency's Special Operations Group photographed a
cell of his trainees firing AK-47s at a Long Island shooting
range. The bureau would drop that investigation -- as it
would in many other cases involving the terror spy.
It would also keep him safe. Even in Canada. Lance connects
all the dots, including how Mohamed came, in 1993, to be
questioned by suspicious RCMP officers in Vancouver. Lance
says he was set free after handing the RCMP a phone number
that connected them with his FBI handler.
"The Canadians placed the call," Lance writes. "Whatever
(the special FBI agent) said, caused the Mounties to let
Mohamed go... . Al-Qaida's master spy was free."
The incident happened when Mohamed -- a Californian of
Egyptian origin -- went to Vancouver International Airport
to check on Assam Marzouk. Marzouk, also an Egyptian who's
now in prison there, arrived from Damascus with two forged
Saudi passports. The RCMP scooped him up.
Mohamed would even come back to testify in Marzouk's refugee
hearing. Mohamed was perhaps the highest ranking al-Qaida
member to walk the streets of Canada and show up to help get
another terrorist free.
"I don't blame the RCMP -- they were doing what they were
supposed to be doing," Lance tells me, while on the phone
from California. "They were counting on the FBI.
"(But) if the RCMP had their way and perhaps held onto
Mohamed back then...the 224 people who lost their lives in
(1998 terrorist attacks) in Kenya and Tanzania...might still
be alive. That's my opinion, but you can quote me on it."
Lance, who wrote two previous best-selling FBI investigative
books -- 1,000 Years for Revenge and Cover Up -- is so
detailed that Cover Up led to an indictment of second-degree
murder being brought against a former FBI agent. This time,
he continues to put the federal bureau -- and the system
that continues to watch over North America -- on trial.
If you want to stay awake at night, don't bother looking to
O.J. Simpson, who wants to live life around two past
murders. Look to the case of Ali Mohamed, who once boasted
of having hundreds of sleeper cells at his command.
Yet, not one of them has ever been uncovered.
Copyright © 2006, Canoe Inc. All