Thursday, September 18, 2008

'Move along, nothing to see here,' says FBI on anthrax attacks

Pat Leahy, one of the US senators targeted in the 2001 anthrax attacks, made this shocking declaration yesterday that he doesn't believe Bruce Ivins, the scientist blamed for the attacks who committed suicide earlier this year, acted alone:
"If he is the one who sent the letter, I do not believe in any way, shape or manner that he is the only person involved in this attack on Congress and the American people," Leahy told FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III at a hearing yesterday. "I believe there are others involved, either as accessories before or accessories after the fact. I believe that there are others who can be charged with murder."
Noting that GOP senator and former prosecutor Arlen Specter joined Leahy in aggressively discounting the FBIs claims, telling Mueller that the case wouldn't pass muster in a criminal trial, Glenn Greenwald at Salon summed up the import of the hearing:

The bottom line is that it is quite extraordinary that the FBI has claimed it has identified with certainty the sole culprit in the anthrax attacks, but so many key Senators, from both parties, simply don't believe it, and are saying so explicitly. Leahy's rather dark suggestion that there were others involved in these attacks -- likely at a U.S. Army facility or key private CIA contractor -- is particularly notable. It has been crystal clear from the beginning that the FBI's case is filled with glaring holes, that their thuggish behavior towards their only suspect drove him to commit suicide and thus is unable to defend himself, and yet, to this day, the FBI continues to conceal the evidence in its possession and is stonewalling any and all efforts to scrutinize its claims.

It takes a lot for Senators from both parties to so openly and explicitly say they don't believe the FBI's definitive accusations in such a high-profile case.
Indeed, it does!

These matters can get particularly dicey for the FBI when a primary crime victim is also the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee! Rightly or wrongly, Leahy's in a position to insist that they show their work when otherwise, clearly, they'd rather call the case closed and forget about it.

See prior, related Grits posts:


Anonymous said...

When are they going to investigate Philip Zack?

Anonymous said...

The truth be told the FBI had to do something. The Bush administration is leaving office and it would be unfair to toss the problem in the lap of the next one, when so many senior people will be gone. No one seriously believes this guy did it but the FBI had to come up with something and this is what they got.

What were they supposed to do? Admit defeat? Get real.