Making politicians and media accountable to ordinary citizens since 2000.

Home | Unconservative Listening | Links | Contribute | About

Join the Mailing List | Contact Caro

What Did They Know Page

What have been the Bush administration’s prior dealings
with The Taliban and with Bin Laden?

Most of the links below no longer work, but there is enough
information in each excerpt to find the article
at the Internet archive's WayBack Machine or in LexisNexis.


Bush's Faustian Deal With the Taliban, Robert Scheer, Los Angeles Times, May 22, 2001 (archived on

“Enslave your girls and women, harbor anti-U.S. terrorists, destroy every vestige of civilization in your homeland, and the Bush administration will embrace you…  That's the message sent with the recent gift of $43 million to the Taliban rulers of Afghanistan, the most virulent anti-American violators of human rights in the world today…  Never mind that Osama bin Laden still operates the leading anti-American terror operation from his base in Afghanistan, from which, among other crimes, he launched two bloody attacks on American embassies in Africa in 1998…  Sadly, the Bush administration is cozying up to the Taliban regime at a time when the United Nations, at U.S. insistence, imposes sanctions on Afghanistan because the Kabul government will not turn over Bin Laden.”

India in anti-Taliban military plan,, June 26, 2001:

“India and Iran will ‘facilitate’ US and Russian plans for ‘limited military action’ against the Taliban if the contemplated tough new economic sanctions don’t bend Afghanistan’s fundamentalist regime.”

US 'planned attack on Taleban', George Arney , BBC News, September 18, 2001:

“Niaz Naik, a former Pakistani Foreign Secretary, was told by senior American officials in mid-July that military action against Afghanistan would go ahead by the middle of October.”

Threat of US strikes passed to Taliban weeks before NY attack, Jonathan Steele, Ewen MacAskill, Richard Norton-Taylor and Ed Harriman, The Guardian of London, September 22, 2001:

“Osama bin Laden and the Taliban received threats of possible American military strikes against them two months before the terrorist assaults on New York and Washington, which were allegedly masterminded by the Saudi-born fundamentalist, a Guardian investigation has established.”

Anti-Terrorism Questions for Bush, Martin A. Lee,, September 30, 2001

Bin Laden Met With CIA Agent in July, Radio France International - Le Figaro (translated by and archived at, October 31, 2001:

According to information's collected by Radio France International, and Le Figaro, Oussama Ben Laden met with an American CIA agent last July while he was being treated for a kidney ailment at the American Hospital of Dubai.

Ben Laden et la CIA: les détails de la rencontre (Bin Laden and the CIA: details of the meeting), Richard LaBeviere, Radio France International, November 1, 2001



FBI and military intelligence officials in Washington say they were prevented for political reasons from carrying out full investigations into members of the Bin Laden family in the US before the terrorist attacks of September 11.”

FBI claims Bin Laden inquiry was frustrated, Greg Palast and David Pallister, The
Guardian of London, November 7, 2001

US agents told: Back off bin Ladens, Sydney Morning Herald, November 7, 2001:

“US special agents were told to back off the bin Laden family and the Saudi royals soon after George Bush became president.”  

Oil Diplomacy Muddled U.S. Pursuit of bin Laden, New Book Contends, Ethan Bronner, The New York Times, November 12, 2001:

“A former F.B.I. antiterror official [John P. O'Neill] who was killed at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 complained bitterly last summer that the United States was unwilling to confront Saudi Arabia over Osama bin Laden and that oil ruled American foreign policy, according to a new book published in France…  Mr. O'Neill's frustrations with the State Department were not secret.”

U.S. Policy Towards Taliban Influenced by Oil – Say Authors, Julio Godoy, Inter Press Service, November 15, 2001 (archived at

“‘At one moment during the negotiations, the U.S. representatives told the Taliban, “either you accept our offer of a carpet of gold, or we bury you under a carpet of bombs”,’ [Jean-Charles]Brisard [co-author of the just-published book, Bin Laden, the forbidden truth] said in an interview in Paris.” [This threat was made in July of 2001.]

US planned war in Afghanistan long before September 11 , Patrick Martin, World Socialist Web Site , November 20, 2001  


“The blundering and cynical U.S. diplomatic scheme may actually have set the stage for September 11, says co-author Jean-Claude Brisard in an interview from Paris.”

Did bin Laden have help from U.S. friends?, Thomas Walkom, Toronto Star, Nov. 27, 2001:

“What are we to make of all of this? One possible conclusion is that the bin Laden terror problem was allowed to get out of hand because bin Laden, himself, had powerful protectors in both Washington and Saudi Arabia. If that's true, no wonder the Bush administration prefers that he be killed rather than allowed to testify in open court.”  

U.S. ties to Saudi elite may be hurting war on terrorism, Jonathan Wells, Jack Meyers and Maggie Mulvihill, Boston Herald, December 10, 2001:

“A steady stream of billion-dollar oil and arms deals between American corporate leaders and the elite of Saudi Arabia may be hindering efforts by the West to defeat international Islamic terrorism.”

Bush advisers cashed in on Saudi gravy train, Maggie Mulvihill, Jack Meyers and Jonathan Wells, Boston Herald, December 11, 2001:

“Many of the same American corporate executives who have reaped millions of dollars from arms and oil deals with the Saudi monarchy have served or currently serve at the highest levels of U.S. government, public records show. 

“Those lucrative financial relationships call into question the ability of America's political elite to make tough foreign policy decisions about the kingdom that produced Osama bin Laden and is perhaps the biggest incubator for anti-Western Islamic terrorists.”  

Bin Laden book banned, From AFP (archived at, Australia), December 31, 2001:

“A FRENCH book about Osama bin Laden, called The Forbidden Truth, had been banned in Switzerland at the request of one of bin Laden's half brothers, Yeslam Binladin, his lawyer, Jurg Brand, said.

Hey, it only takes a few months for instantaneous worldwide communications to sink in with America’s media elite:
Explosive New Book Published in France Alleges that U.S. Was in Negotiations to Do a Deal with Taliban, CNN, Aired January 8, 2002 - 07:34   ET

PAULA ZAHN: "An explosive new book published in France alleges that the United States was in negotiations to do a deal with the Taliban for an oil pipeline in Afghanistan ... If these charges are true, this is really big news."

Saudi-Backed Web Supports Terrorism, Book Asserts, Sebastian Rotella, Los Angeles Times, January 13, 2002:

“The book asserts that Saudi Arabia has played as big a role in the spread of Islamic terrorism as has Afghanistan. But according to the authors, geopolitical concerns--chiefly oil--have led U.S. and European governments to go soft on Saudi rulers and even prompted the Bush administration to negotiate secretly with the Taliban before Sept. 11.”

A Strategy's Cautious Evolution , Barton Gellman, Washington Post, January 20, 2002:

[During June and July of 2001] “At least twice, Bush conveyed the message to the Taliban that the United States would hold the regime responsible for an al Qaeda attack.”

Did President Bush Pass Up an Attempt to Get Bin Laden Before 9-11?, Thomas Spencer, History News Network, February 11, 2002:

“Wouldn't these revelations, if true, … mean that Bush's administration was partially responsible for September 11th?…

“The fact that our corporate media doesn't even appear to be looking into these stories is, at the very least, highly irresponsible. And that may end up being the biggest scandal of all.”

Ashcroft's poor judgment is catching up with him, Douglas Turner, Buffalo News, May 27, 2002:

“There is mounting evidence that field office warnings about hijackings and attacks were not buried in the FBI's far-flung bureaucracy last summer, but came directly to the FBI's headquarters right across Pennsylvania Avenue from Ashcroft's office.”

Global Eye -- Prior Engagement, Chris Floyd, Moscow Times, May 24, 2002:

“Absolutely nothing must be allowed to interfere with the achievement of Central Asian dominance: the Holy Grail of the energy elite and its corporate outriders. Nothing -- not democracy, not morality and certainly not the safety of the suckers back home -- is more important.

“The death of 3,000 innocent people in the United States was an unintended consequence of this ruthless Grail quest. But like everything else, it was fair game to be exploited…

It's all about priorities -- not ‘incompetence.’ The regime is very competent in pursuing its priorities. It's just that these priorities don't include the preservation of innocent lives. It's just that these priorities are -- what's the word we're looking for, Mr. Bush? -- evil.”

Pakistan hosts trilateral summit to kick off huge gas pipeline project, Associated Press, May 29,2002:

“The leaders of Turkmenistan and Afghanistan arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday to participate in a landmark summit and sign an agreement to build and maintain a 1,460-kilometer (907-mile) gas pipeline.”

What Did They Know Page

Last changed: December 13, 2009