Bu-lat-lat (boo-lat-lat) verb: to search, probe, investigate, inquire; to unearth facts
Volume 3, Number 36 October 12 - 18, 2003 Quezon City, Philippines
please, Mr Bush
have seven questions for you, Mr Bush. I ask them on behalf of the 3,000 who
died that September day, and I ask them on behalf of the American people. We
seek no revenge against you. We want only to know what happened, and what can be
done to bring the murderers to justice, so we can prevent any future attacks on
Is it true that the Bin Ladens have had business relations with you and your
family off and on for the past 25 years?
Americans might be surprised to learn that you and your father have known the
Bin Ladens for a long time. What, exactly, is the extent of this relationship,
Mr Bush? Are you close personal friends, or simply on-again, off-again business
associates? Salem bin Laden - Osama's brother - first started coming to Texas in
1973 and later bought some land, built himself a house, and created Bin Laden
Aviation at the San Antonio airfield.
Bin Ladens are one of the wealthiest families in Saudi Arabia. Their huge
construction firm virtually built the country, from the roads and power plants
to the skyscrapers and government buildings. They built some of the airstrips
America used in your dad's Gulf war. Billionaires many times over, they soon
began investing in other ventures around the world, including the US. They have
extensive business dealings with Citigroup, General Electric, Merrill Lynch,
Goldman Sachs, and the Fremont Group.
to the New Yorker, the bin Laden family also owns a part of Microsoft and the
airline and defence giant Boeing. They have donated $2m to your alma mater,
Harvard University, and tens of thousands to
the Middle East Policy Council, a think-tank headed by a former US
ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Charles Freeman. In addition to the property they
own in Texas, they also have real estate in Florida and Massachusetts. In short,
they have their hands deep in our pants.
as you know, Mr Bush, Salem bin Laden died in a plane crash in Texas in 1988.
Salem's brothers - there are around 50 of them, including Osama - continued to
run the family companies and investments.
leaving office, your father became a highly paid consultant for a company known
as the Carlyle Group - one of the nation's largest defence contractors. One of
the investors in the Carlyle Group – to the tune of at least $2m - was none
other than the Bin Laden family. Until 1994, you headed a company called
CaterAir, which was owned by the Carlyle Group.
September 11, the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal both ran stories
pointing out this connection. Your first response, Mr Bush, was to ignore it.
Then your army of pundits went into spin control. They said, we can't paint
these Bin Ladens with the same brush we use for Osama. They have disowned Osama!
They have nothing to do with him! These are the good Bin Ladens.
then the video footage came out. It showed a number of these "good"
Bin Ladens - including Osama's mother, a sister and two brothers - with Osama at
his son's wedding just six and a half months before September 11. It was no
secret to the CIA that Osama bin Laden had access to his family fortune (his
share is estimated to be at least $30m), and the Bin Ladens, as well as other
Saudis, kept Osama and his group, al-Qaida, well funded.
gotten a free ride from the media, though they know everything I have just
written to be the truth. They seem unwilling or afraid to ask you a simple
question, Mr Bush: WHAT IS GOING ON HERE?
case you don't understand just how bizarre the media's silence is regarding the
Bush-Bin Laden connections, let me draw an analogy to how the press or Congress
might have handled something like this if the same shoe had been on the Clinton
foot. If, after the terrorist attack on the Federal Building in Oklahoma City,
it had been revealed that President Bill Clinton and his family had financial
dealings with Timothy McVeigh's family, what do you think your Republican party
and the media would have done with that one?
you think at least a couple of questions might have been asked, such as,
"What is that all about?" Be honest, you know the answer. They would
have asked more than a couple of questions. They would have skinned Clinton
alive and thrown what was left of his carcass in Guantanamo Bay.
What is the 'special relationship' between the Bushes and the Saudi royal
Bush, the Bin Ladens are not the only Saudis with whom you and your family have
a close personal relationship. The entire royal family seems to be indebted to
you - or is it the other way round?
number one supplier of oil to the US is the nation of Saudi Arabia, possessor of
the largest known reserves of oil in the world. When Saddam Hussein invaded
Kuwait in 1990, it was really the Saudis next door who felt threatened, and it
was your father, George Bush I, who came to their rescue. The Saudis have never
forgotten this. Haifa, wife of Prince Bandar, the Saudi ambassador to the US,
says that your mother and father "are like my mother and father. I know if
ever I needed anything I could go to them".
major chunk of the American economy is built on Saudi money. They have a
trillion dollars invested in our stock market and another trillion dollars in
our banks. If they chose suddenly to remove that money, our corporations and
financial institutions would be sent into a tailspin, causing an economic crisis
the likes of which has never been seen. Couple that with the fact that the 1.5m
barrels of oil we need daily from the Saudis could also vanish on a mere royal
whim, and we begin to see how not only you, but all of us, are dependent on the
House of Saud. George, is this good for our national security, our homeland
security? Who is it good for? You? Pops?
meeting with the Saudi crown prince in April 2002, you happily told us that the
two of you had "established a strong personal bond" and that you
"spent a lot of time alone". Were you trying to reassure us? Or just
flaunt your friendship with a group of rulers who rival the Taliban in their
suppression of human rights? Why the double standard?
Who attacked the US on September 11 - a guy on dialysis from a cave in
Afghanistan, or your friend, Saudi Arabia?
sorry, Mr Bush, but something doesn't make sense.
got us all repeating by rote that it was Osama bin Laden who was responsible for
the attack on the United States on September 11. Even I was doing it. But then I
started hearing strange stories about Osama's kidneys. Suddenly, I don't know
who or what to trust. How could a guy sitting in a cave in Afghanistan, hooked
up to dialysis, have directed and overseen the actions of 19 terrorists for two
years in the US then plotted so perfectly the hijacking of four planes and then
guaranteed that three of them would end up precisely on their targets? How did
he organise, communicate, control and supervise this kind of massive attack?
With two cans and a string?
headlines blared it the first day and they blare it the same way now two years
later: "Terrorists Attack United States." Terrorists. I have wondered
about this word for some time, so, George, let me ask you a question: if 15 of
the 19 hijackers had been North Korean, rather than Saudi, and they had killed
3,000 people, do you think the headline the next day might have read,
"NORTH KOREA ATTACKS UNITED STATES"? Of course it would. Or if it had
been 15 Iranians or 15 Libyans or 15 Cubans, I think the conventional wisdom
would have been, "IRAN [or LIBYA or CUBA] ATTACKS AMERICA!" Yet, when
it comes to September 11, have you ever seen the headline, have you ever heard a
newscaster, has one of your appointees ever uttered these words: "Saudi
Arabia attacked the United States"?
course you haven't. And so the question must - must - be asked: why not? Why,
when Congress released its own investigation into September 11, did you, Mr
Bush, censor out 28 pages that deal with the Saudis' role in the attack?
would like to throw out a possibility here: what if September 11 was not a
"terrorist" attack but, rather, a military attack against the United
States? George, apparently you were a pilot once - how hard is it to hit a five-storey
building at more than 500 miles an hour? The Pentagon is only five stories high.
At 500 miles an hour, had the pilots been off by just a hair, they'd have been
in the river. You do not get this skilled at learning how to fly jumbo jets by
being taught on a video game machine at some dipshit flight training school in
Arizona. You learn to do this in the air force. Someone's air force.
Saudi air force?
if these weren't wacko terrorists, but military pilots who signed on to a
suicide mission? What if they were doing this at the behest of either the Saudi
government or certain disgruntled members of the Saudi royal family? The House
of Saud, according to Robert Baer's book Sleeping With the Devil, is full of
them. So, did certain factions within the Saudi royal family execute the attack
on September 11? Were these pilots trained by the Saudis? Why are you so busy
protecting the Saudis when you should be protecting us?
Why did you allow a private Saudi jet to fly around the US in the days after
September 11 and pick up members of the Bin Laden family and fly them out of the
country without a proper investigation by the
jets, under the supervision of the Saudi government – and with your approval -
were allowed to fly around the skies of America, when travelling by air was
forbidden, and pick up 24 members of the Bin Laden family and take them first to
a "secret assembly point in Texas". They then flew to Washington DC,
and then on to Boston. Finally, on September 18, they were all flown to Paris,
out of the reach of any US officials. They never went through any serious
interrogation. This is mind-boggling. Might it have been possible that at least
one of the 24 Bin Ladens would have possibly known something?
thousands were stranded and could not fly, if you could prove you were a close
relative of the biggest mass murderer in US history, you got a free trip to gay
Mr Bush, was this allowed to happen?
Why are you protecting the Second Amendment rights of potential terrorists?
Bush, in the days after September 11, the FBI began running a check to see if
any of the 186 "suspects" the feds had rounded up in the first five
days after the attack had purchased any guns in the months leading up to
September 11 (two of them had). When your attorney general, John Ashcroft, heard
about this, he immediately shut down the search. He told the FBI that the
background check files could not be used for such a search and these files were
only to be used at the time of a purchase of a gun.
Bush, you can't be serious! Is your administration really so gun nutty and so
deep in the pocket of the National Rifle Association? I truly love how you have
rounded up hundreds of people, grabbing them off the streets without notice,
throwing them in prison cells, unable to contact lawyers or family, and then,
for the most part, shipped them out of the country on mere immigration charges.
can waive their Fourth Amendment protection from unlawful search and seizure,
their Sixth Amendment rights to an open trial by a jury of their peers and the
right to counsel, and their First Amendment rights to speak, assemble, dissent
and practise their religion. You believe you have the right to just trash all
these rights, but when it comes to the Second Amendment right to own an AK-47 -
oh no! That right they can have - and you will defend their right to have it.
Mr Bush, is really aiding the terrorists here?
Were you aware that, while you were governor of Texas, the Taliban travelled to
Texas to meet with your oil and gas company friends?
to the BBC, the Taliban came to Texas while you were governor to meet with
Unocal, the huge oil and energy giant, to discuss Unocal's desire to build a
natural-gas pipeline running from Turkmenistan through Taliban-controlled
Afghanistan and into Pakistan.
Bush, what was this all about?
we have a problem," apparently never crossed your mind, even though the
Taliban were perhaps the most repressive fundamentalist regime on the planet.
What role exactly did you play in the Unocal meetings with the Taliban?
to various reports, representatives of your administration met with the Taliban
or conveyed messages to them during the summer of 2001. What were those
messages, Mr Bush? Were you discussing their offer to hand over Bin Laden? Were
you threatening them with use of force? Were you talking to them about a
What exactly was that look on your face in the Florida classroom on the morning
of September 11 when your chief of staff told you, 'America is under attack'?
the morning of September 11, you took a jog on a golf course and then headed to
Booker elementary school in Florida to read to little children. You arrived at
the school after the first plane had hit the north tower in New York City. You
entered the classroom around 9am and the second plane hit the south tower at
9.03am. Just a few minutes later, as you were sitting in front of the class of
kids, your chief of staff, Andrew Card, entered the room and whispered in your
ear. Card was apparently telling you about the second plane and about us being
it was at that very moment that your face went into a distant glaze, not quite a
blank look, but one that seemed partially paralysed. No emotion was shown. And
then ... you just sat there. You sat there for another seven minutes or so doing
what were you thinking? What did that look on your face mean?
you thinking you should have taken reports the CIA had given you the month
before more seriously? You had been told al-Qaida was planning attacks in the
United States and that planes would possibly be used.
were you just scared shitless?
maybe you were just thinking, "I did not want this job in the first place!
This was supposed to be Jeb's job; he was the chosen one! Why me? Why me,
... maybe, just maybe, you were sitting there in that classroom chair thinking
about your Saudi friends - both the royals and the Bin Ladens. People you knew
all too well that might have been up to no good. Would questions be asked? Would
suspicions arise? Would the Democrats have the guts to dig into your family's
past with these people (no, don't worry, never a chance of that!)? Would the
truth ever come out?
while I'm at it ...
- multi-millionaires at large
always thought it was interesting that the mass murder of September 11 was
allegedly committed by a multi-millionaire. We always say it was committed by a
"terrorist" or by an "Islamic fundamentalist" or an
"Arab", but we never define Osama by his rightful title:
multi-millionaire. Why have we never read a headline saying, "3,000 Killed
by multi-millionaire"? It would be a correct headline, would it not?
bin Laden has assets totalling at least $30m; he is a multi-millionaire. So why
isn't that the way we see this person, as a rich fuck who kills people? Why
didn't that become the reason for profiling potential terrorists? Instead of
rounding up suspicious Arabs, why don't we say, "Oh my God, a
multi-millionaire killed 3,000 people! Round up the multi-millionaires! Throw
them all in jail! No charges! No trials! Deport the millionaires!!"
US Patriot Act and the enemy combatant designation are just a hint of what Bush
has in store for us. Consider a brainchild of Admiral John Poindexter, an
Iran-contra perp, and the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa): the
"policy analysis market", which the government was to put up on a
Poindexter reasoned that commodity futures markets worked so well for Bush's
buddies at Enron that he could adapt it to predicting terrorism. Individuals
would be able to invest in hypothetical futures contracts involving the
likelihood of such events as "an assassination of Yasser Arafat" or
"the overthrow of Jordan's King Abdullah II". Other futures would be
available based on the economic health, civil stability and military involvement
in Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Syria and Turkey. All
proposed market lasted about one day after it was revealed to the Senate.
Senators Wyden and Dorgan protested the Pentagon's $8m request, and Wyden said,
"Make-believe markets trading in possibilities that turn the stomach hardly
seem like a sensible next step to take with taxpayers money in the war on
terror." As a result of the uproar over this, Poindexter was asked to step
Saddam the key to Detroit
Las Vegas, an armoured fighting vehicle was used to crush French yogurt, French
bread, bottles of French wine, Perrier, Grey Goose vodka, photos of Chirac, a
guide to Paris and, best of all, photocopies of the French flag. France was the
perfect country to pick on. If you're a cable news company, why spend priceless
reporting time on investigating whether Iraq really does have weapons of mass
destruction when you can do a story about how rotten the French are?
News led the charge of pinning Chirac to Saddam Hussein, showing old footage of
the two men together. It didn't matter that the meeting had taken place in the
1970s. The media didn't bother to run (over and over again) the footage from
when Saddam was presented with a key to the city of Detroit, or the film from
the early 1980s of Donald Rumsfeld visiting Saddam in Baghdad to discuss the
progress of the Iran-Iraq war. The footage of Rumsfeld embracing Saddam
apparently wasn't worth running on a continuous loop. Or even once. OK, maybe
once. On Oprah.
Moore fired his opening salvo against George Bush and his rightwing cronies
with his bestseller Stupid White Men. Now the president is in his sights again.
In this second extract from his new book he asks his old enemy seven awkward
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