Welcome to the May 2016 issue of our Geopolitical Tracker!
America is Bankrupt: How Are You Preparing?
Presentation by: Jerry Robinson
If you are still unconvinced that the U.S. economy is heading straight towards a brick wall, do yourself a favor and watch this video. Filled with stories, stunning images and unusual facts, you will learn exactly why America is completely bankrupt from Christian economist/author Jerry Robinson. (The presentation begins around the 7:00 minute mark, right after the plug for the 2016 FTMDaily Financial Liberty Summit this May 20, 21 in beautiful Estes Park, CO.)
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Release the 28 Pages: A Conversation with Sen. Bob Graham
Last month, Jerry Robinson sat down with Senator Bob Graham to discuss his knowledge of a Saudi government connection to the events of 9/11. Sen. Bob Graham has been a leading voice in the movement to declassify the classified 28 pages, which may reveal foreign government financing of 9/11. Graham is one of the handful of officials who have read the 28 pages (he helped write them), and he is working tirelessly to educate the public on the importance of the release of these 28 pages.
In this interview, we ask Senator Graham several penetrating questions:
- Did you or any of your colleagues in the Senate ever feel pressured to be “pro-Saudi” against your better judgment?
- Will you be satisfied with a partial release of the 28 pages?
- Should families of 9/11 victims be allowed to pursue damages from foreign governments through the legal system?
- How valuable is Saudi intelligence in protecting our national interests, and is it worth protecting Saudi Arabia in its alleged involvement in 9/11?
Plus, Sen. Graham tells a chilling story about how he and his wife came face-to-face with the FBI asking him to stand down in his message about 9/11. Despite the threat, he refuses to back down. Sen. Graham shares his compelling message in the above video. Read the full interview transcript below.
Jerry Robinson, Host: Joining me on the line today is Senator Bob Graham. He is an American politician and author, the 38th governor of Florida and a former United States senator that left Washington in 2005. During his time in Washington, Senator Graham was able to serve as the chairman of the Senate’s select committee on intelligence from 2001 through 2003. He also co-chaired the congressional inquiry into the attacks on 9-11, and most recently has been seen in the news, for example, on 60 Minutes, calling for the release of the secret 28 pages from the 9-11 Commission report. Senator Graham, welcome to Follow The Money radio.
Senator Bob Graham: Thank you very much, Jerry. I appreciate the invitation.
JR: It’s our honor completely, Senator Graham. Since you have left office in 2005, you have been tireless in your crusade to wake up the American people to the truth of the events that happened on 9-11. You have written books about your concerns over Saudi Arabia’s role in financing global terror. And now, you have been pushing for many, many years for the release of the secret 28 pages that have been withheld from the public’s view within the 9-11 Commission report, which you say does document, and of course you have to be very careful how you say it because it is classified material, but you have alluded to the fact that it does talk about Saudi Arabia playing a role in the financing of 9-11. Why do you believe, Senator Graham, that all of this that we’ve known about for 15 years, is just coming out right now?
BG: I think there are a number of factors, Jerry. One is that it has been 13 years that these 28 pages have been locked up out of public view. People are beginning to ask what aspect of national security or any other reason for initially holding these could still be true? Another factor is that that our relations with Saudi Arabia have started to go south. We’re less dependent on Saudi Arabia for oil as a result of the development of our own domestic capabilities. Saudi Arabia has continued to support terrorists financially and through their Mosques and schools called madrasas, training young Saudis to be the next generation of terrorists. All those things have contributed to a new environment for the relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia, and increased the public’s desire to know the truth about what happened back at 9-11, and what that proof might say about our current experiences with Saudi Arabia.
JR: Senator, you have read the secret 28 pages as have other government officials who share your clearance level, and obviously, it motivates you. Those who have read the 28 pages and have stated something about it afterwards have stated that basically, it’s a paradigm shifting read, that, in essence, the history that we understand about 9-11 is different when you have access to these 28 classified pages that the Bush administration classified back in 2002 from the eyes of the American people. So, we know that it motivates you, it motivates your efforts. But, we as the American people, we have never been able to see those pages. Now, we’re hearing that we may get a release of them by June, and the rumors that I’m beginning to hear from my sources are that they will be very heavily redacted releases, or parts of it, in essence. So, my question to you is, would you be satisfied, Senator, with parts of the report being released while some other crucial details within those pages may remain classified? And those redactions, of course, would be determined by the present executive branch. How does that sit with you? Are you satisfied with that?
BG: Jerry, it’s hard to answer that question without knowing what they redacted. If there were items that appeared to be clearly sensitive that might affect US foreign policy or military relationships, sure. There were lots of redactions in the other 820 pages of the final report. But, if it’s just an attempt to continue to cover up the involvement of individuals in assisting the 19 hijackers, then that would be just as unacceptable as the 13 year delay in releasing this information to the American people has been unacceptable.
JR: You’re listening to the voice of Senator Bob Graham. He’s a former US Senator from Florida who co-chaired the congressional inquiry into the attacks on 9-11, and he has been calling for the release of the 28 pages that are now classified under lock and key that detail great amounts of information about the financing of the attacks on 9-11. Senator, this information blackout by the executive branch has driven some Americans to challenge the government narrative or the official story of the events of 9-11. Many, like myself, have long believed that 19 jihadis living in a cave who didn’t speak English and who could barely fly a plane, could never have pulled off such a sophisticated terror attack without some form of state sponsorship. Some have even gone further and claimed that the state support could have come from Washington itself. What do you think of those claims, of those we would call 9-11 truthers who believe that Washington or the United States played a role in orchestrating the attacks on 9-11? Do you believe that those are legitimate concerns based upon all the evidence that you have seen and been privy to?
BG: It’s not a legitimate concern in terms of what I think people will read from the 28 pages. But, the very fact of withholding this information for 13 years has fed into the idea that there was something fundamentally different, that people put bombs inside the buildings or the United States was responsible for the planes flying into the buildings. I reject those. I think the basic story of 9-11 is accurate. What’s missing is the big question of did the 19 hijackers do this alone, or did they have a support network? It’s been interesting to me that right after Paris, right after Brussels, after San Bernardino, the first question that was asked is, “Who assisted these people in carrying out this plot?” There was no such question asked and aggressively pursued after 9-11, or at least, if it was pursued, the results of that inquiry have been withheld. I think it’s time to answer that fundamental question of, “Did they do it alone or did they do it with outside support?” As I have said several times, to me it’s implausible that these 19 people, most of whom could not speak English, had never been in the United States before, and were not well educated, could have carried out a plot as technically sophisticated as 9-11.
JR: I do not know how robust the Saudi lobby or the Arab lobby was in the lead up to 9-11 or even in the wake of it during your tenure in Washington, but I do know that it is fairly heavy today. During your tenure in Washington, though, Senator, did you ever feel pressured at any point by your peers or by those you considered to be your superiors in the Senate, to be pro-Saudi Arabia against your better judgement?
BG: I can’t think of an instance where there was an attempt to change my attitudes towards Saudi Arabia. There were some attempts, one rather dramatic attempt to get me to shut up and get a life, as the man said. When my wife and I had come to Washington to have Thanksgiving with our daughter and her family, and we were met by two FBI agents who took us into an FBI office near the airport where I spent an hour and a half being persuaded that all the information about 9-11 was already known, and that I was wasting my time, and basically, to forget it and get a life. That’s the closest to any attempt at intimidation that I’ve experienced.
JR: Wow! So, basically, they took you from the airport into an FBI interrogation room to tell you to stop questioning the official story of 9-11. That must have been intimidating, even for someone of your stature as a US Senator.
BG: It was intended to be pretty intimidating. It didn’t have that effect. It added to my questions that if this is so sensitive that they are now intimidating a former chairman of the intelligence committee who, in that position, was involved in writing the 28 pages, not to pursue their public release, there must be more to this than even I had thought.
JR: Senator, have you ever heard similar stories from your colleagues? Have you ever heard of your colleagues being pressured? Can you share any stories?
BG: There are a lot of sources of influence. Saudi Arabia has the world’s, I think still, largest reserves of petroleum. So, people who are interested in energy policy and energy economics have an interest in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia is also, one of if not the largest purchaser of US made defense materials. So, if you’re in that business, you have an interest in the relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia. But, as to a direct attempt to misstate or misrepresent the Saudi role, I can’t think of a specific incident when that has been done.
JR: Senator, we have recently heard President Obama say that we cannot allow US citizens to sue foreign governments for their role in financing and even orchestrating terror plots. Yet, the US Supreme Court just recently upheld US terror victims rights to sue the Iranian government, claiming they have no such sovereign immunity. So, a two part question. Why this disconnect between the executive branch and the legislative branch? Perhaps, maybe that’s common. Maybe you can inform us about that. And, secondly, what is your opinion? Should 9-11 victims’ families be allowed to pursue foreign governments through the legal system?
BG: Before I answer that question, Jerry, let me go back to last one that you asked because, frankly, I’ve never been asked that question before, and I’m thinking through it. But, using your example, there has been a very aggressive effort, both at the executive branch level and in Congress, to avoid changing the US judicial standard as to when can a US citizen who has been injured or had one of their loved ones killed by a terrorist group with the assistance of a foreign government, sue that foreign government as essentially being a co-conspirator in the murder. Apparently, there had been some efforts to do that including the Saudi government saying that they were going to sell their $750 billion worth of assets in the United States if the Congress were to pass such a change in the judicial standards for an American suing a foreign government, I guess that could be entitled an act of intimidation. There were some 3000 Americans murdered on 9-11. Their families, husbands, wives, sons, daughters, had been suing for several years in federal court to try to get some compensation from Saudi Arabia. They have been frustrated because the current law makes it very difficult to get into a federal court to bring such a suit. One of the reasons for that is the doctrine of sovereign immunity. You can’t sue the king, even the king of a foreign government. And, the second is the lack of sufficient quantity and quality evidence establishing that linkage, and that gets back to the 28 pages. The very type of evidence that the families would need to support their claims in court is the evidence that is under lock and key in a federal office in Washington. So, releasing this information not only is respectful of the American people and their right to know what the government is doing in their name, but it’s also in the cause of justice that these families might, with this additional information, be able to bring their claim and have an open court examination of the evidence that Saudi Arabia was a co-conspirator in 9-11.
JR: Senator, a little bit more about this disconnect here between the executive and legislative branch. I’m just curious, from your knowledge of history, from your knowledge of being in Washington, is this just politics? Are we just seeing politics, or is something fundamentally different happening here?
BG: I wouldn’t say it’s normal. In fact, for many years, up until probably around World War I, the United States was almost a fully transparent government. Very few things were withheld from the American people. Beginning with WWI and war secrets that were felt to be important to keep away from Americans and our enemies, we’ve been down a slippery slope of more and more information being concealed from the people. These 28 pages are an example of that slippery slope and what its consequences would be. I hope that we’re about to pour some hot water on that slope and cause the slide to end, and the American people’s enlightenment to begin.
JR: The voice that you’re listening to is that of Senator Bob Graham. He’s a former US Senator from Florida who co-chaired the congressional inquiry into the attacks on 9-11. He’s read the secret 28 pages and, in fact, helped write them, and has spent his time out of Washington since 2005 attempting to get them released for public consumption. Senator Graham, one of the primary reasons most commonly given in the West’s defense of its relationship with Saudi Arabia and similar rogue regimes is that it provides the West with vital intelligence about the region that keeps Westerners safe by foiling attacks. Your opinion on this is very, very weighty because you, of course, have sat where very few men have sat. You have sat at the head of the Senate intelligence committee. So, you have certainly seen a lot. Based upon what you have seen, how valuable is the intelligence that we receive from the Saudis, and does its value trump the current efforts to expose Saudi Arabia’s role in 9-11?
BG: Let me say I have been off the intelligence committee since December of 2002, and I retired from the Senate in 2005. Much of this discussion about the Saudis assistance with intelligence has come since I was directly involved. So, I can’t evaluate just how valuable it was, but assuming that it was credible and assisted our understanding of our enemies and allowed us to develop strategies to resist them, those are no excuse to allow people who have murdered 3000 Americans to go scott free. Frankly, allies are supposed to share intelligence. In the modern world, that’s one of the things that binds nation states together in alliances, and it is not a shield that you can do anything you want to, including mass murder, without any sanction.
JR: We are in our final moments now with our guest, brave guest I should say, Senator Bob Graham, who has called for the secret 28 pages from the 9-11 commission report to be released so that the public can see who financed and who was backing 9-11. Senator, how do we help you? What can we do? How can we help you in your crusade to get these pages released to the public? What do we have to do?
BG: Jerry, thank you for asking that question because I think it’s important that American citizens recognize that they have some ability to influence this. There are, in both the Senate and the House, resolutions asking the President who has the ultimate authority to do so, to declassify these 28 pages. Send an email or a letter or a phone call to the office of your Senators and your Congressperson asking that they sign on to that resolution to make the 28 pages available to the public. That would be very helpful. I think, if this resolution had a strong majority of members of Congress signing on, that would increase the awareness of the President that this is something that the American people care about, and with that increase the chances that when he does make a decision in a few weeks, that it will be to respect the American people and give them the opportunity to know what this ally of the United States did during 9-11.
JR: Senator Graham, we sure do appreciate your insights. We appreciate your time today. We know you’re very busy. In conclusion, I noticed that now in your post-Senate career, in addition to writing books and trying to get the message out about the 28 pages, you’re also, now running the newly established Bob Graham Center for Public Service. Tell us about that, in conclusion. What are you doing now in your post-Senate career?
BG: That’s located at the University of Florida. It’s devoted to increasing the civic engagement of Floridians of all ages. I also have continued to write books. I’ve actually written two books about the 9-11 events. One was a nonfiction called “Intelligence Matters” and the other is a novel called “Keys to the Kingdom” which provides some information that I couldn’t provide in a nonfiction because it would have been censured. And, then, I’ve written a book called “America, The Owner’s Manual” which is about the skills of effective civic engagement. So, I’m staying very busy, and I have eleven grandchildren. In fact, they were at our house last night. My wife and I are having a very good period of our lives right now.
JR: What a blessing. Great to hear. Well, thank you so much, Senator Bob Graham. We do appreciate you. Keep up the hard work, and we will do whatever we can to support you in getting these 28 pages released. God bless you, my friend.
BG: Thank you very much, Jerry. Thank you.
BOOK: Intelligence Matters: The CIA, the FBI, Saudi Arabia, and the Failure of America's War on Terror by Senator Bob Graham
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