“Ben, deception time again,” I said as I picked up the phone.
I called the dispatcher at Andrews, “When is the next flight to Gitmo?” I asked.
“What do you need to go? There are no passenger flights this week except by special orders,” the dispatcher replied.
“A top secret flight carrying a terrorist passenger. There is to be no manifest.”
“That will take special orders for sure Ma-am,” the dispatcher replied.
“Special orders from whom?” I asked.
“There is a list. I will have to check with the duty officer. Who is requesting the flight?”
“Ambassador Jones, chairperson of the Terrorist Task Force,” I replied.
“I will need to call you back; number please?” he asked.
“202-555-1600,” I replied.
“Thank you Ma-am, I will call you back as soon as he can check,” he replied.
Less than five minutes later the dispatcher called back.
“Ma-am, Admiral Hawkins added you to the approval list. The additional instructions are that you need to call Rear Admiral Rawlins at JTF-GTMO and make reservations for your victim. His number and other information should be in your inbox. The plane will be ready by the time you get your prisoner here,” he replied.
“Marty, keep Balthazar bagged, have him carried straight to Andrews and send several agents to stay with him for a few days. Your agents do carry GO bags; don’t they?” I asked.
“If they don’t now, they will if they want to get assigned as a primary work team for you. There have been requests within the department to develop a primary anti terrorist team assigned to the task force. The sub-directors are viewing the proposal as an advanced level of on the job training plus being connected to the success of the Task Force as a career booster,” he replied.
“Get everything collected at the site, such as all phones and computers, here ASAP, let’s find out how Iran knew so much so fast. Expedite searches at their homes as quickly as possible,” I added.
“All records are to show this individual as Balthazar Khamini and no one else and scrub all references to Gazi Asfour for the time being,” I said loudly.
I closed the door to my office and called Robert, “Find me everything you can on Gazi Asfour and his connection to Iran.”
Then I called Ben-David and asked him to do the same thing. I knew there should be more information than what was on Interpol and I was equally sure if there was, Israel would have it.
It took twenty minutes to fill out the online authorizations for me to be able to use Gitmo’s facilities from now on. Nowhere was there a place to put a name for the individual, only a number.
A number, a contact person and department. A number would not give hackers any real information. I was issued a block of twenty five active numbers; it was another check to confuse potential hackers.
All twenty five were shown with cell block and cell numbers, dietary requirements, schedules for exercise yard, interrogation and medical appointments. Everything to make it look like I had 25 individuals there.
After I had completed everything, I began to wonder at what point would I know too much and need to look over my shoulder from within?
Administrations in Washington always seemed to leave a body or two of officials in one of the parks who died under mysterious circumstances or so called self inflicted wounds.
By the time I had finished, Balthazar was being loaded onto a plane that was being held because of the FBI agents who had no go-bags. Marty sent them to the mall across from Andrews, giving them thirty minutes to put together a go-bag.
In the middle of all the confusion, Andy sent me a text, “The fifteen man team; one is leaving for Polokwane tonight on general aviation. They are going to take rooms in the hotel of interest. Their first camera hunt is in 10 days which will give them plenty of time to gather area Intel. Real hunt in the preserve the same day the person of interest is expected to arrive. Gun club is supplying necessary hunting weapons.”
“Understood, thanks,” I replied.
Troy and the President walked in and motioned me into my office, “Do you want to explain to me what is going on? I thought we had Balthazar? Who is Gazi Asfour?” the President asked.
“One and the same, apparently an Iranian terrorist trainer on US soil or else a high level spy. We need time to find out the when, how and soon. Whatever you do, don’t acknowledge that we have him; just the two who I named. Balthazar is on his way to Gitmo to cool his heels while we thoroughly investigate him,” I said.
“Balthazar nor Gazi is not on any custody or detainment list in case the Iranians are hacking the system,” I added.
That explanation seemed to satisfy the both of them and they left.
We waited while the collected items were brought to the lab for inspection. It took an hour for the items to show up. Among them were two Apple I-phones that were locked.
Marty Coeburn called with the news about the phones, “I am sending them to you by an agent. Please maintain the chain of custody on them so we can use it in court if needed,” he said.
“No problem,” I replied.
Things had just settled down when a report of a suspicious object had exploded on 495 in stop and go traffic. The device had been left in the stopped traffic by a masked individual who fled on foot and was later seen fleeing on a small motorcycle – possibly a dirt bike – towards the side of DC that had become home to many immigrants. An FBI and ATF team was in route to investigate.
DC was full of small mopeds and small dirt bikes, the mopeds under 50cc were legal. Dirt bikes were not. DC and Baltimore both were having serious problems with dirt bikes in the summer time. Gangs were wreaking havoc on many neighborhood streets on weekends and weekdays after dusk.
The dirt bikes could race between stopped cars and alleys where police cruisers could not go.
I was willing to bet that this event was connected to the arrest this morning. A new strategy was in the works; small explosives randomly placed to create a new level of fear among the public.
The rest of the day was details on the two incidents. There were a thousand questions and few answers. Stopping this new tactic was going to take help from the public. Tips helping us find the locations they were accessing the Interstate from, possibly any bike activity that could lead to where they were building the devices and the people involved were going to be the key.
By the normal 1400 White House press conference I decided it was time to go public with the phone numbers for a new tip line along with a plea for public awareness and requesting reporting of anything that may be helpful.
I walked in behind Harry and stood waiting for him to finish and my opportunity to speak. It came quickly; the next question and the next two dozen were directed to me.
I left at nearly my normal time; more of the keeping them guessing routine. We were on the Bay Bridge when Marty called to tell me another biker bomb had been detonated.
There was little I could do so we continued on to the office. Andy and Robert had updates for me and then of course our regular meeting.
Andy and Robert were the first stops I made. Andy had found forty more men and ladies he felt comfortable with temporarily adding to the OPS team. They were all arriving tomorrow with sessions with the doc for whatever shot they needed. Then there were the refreshers needed on the range and gym.
Robert, on the other hand, was excited; his group had broken all of the terrorists’ new codes. There were enough things to make the conversation last over an hour with Andy and me.
The makeup of teams two and three was decided with their objectives and leader. They would leave on Monday in one of our leased jets; this one owned by Capital Steel Corporation.
Teams four and five would leave the following Monday in the Accidental Petroleum jet. Our pilots flew the Accidental jet often to Africa and the Middle East with company executives, engineers and petroleum specialists.
Team six would consist of Andy, Ed, Bill, the four Mossad ladies, possibly Robert to take over control of the hotel computer systems, me and six of the OPS men. We would leave on Wednesday to get ready to greet the Crown Prince and the arms dealer. We now knew they were scheduled to arrive on Saturday and leave on Sunday night.
The next meeting was with Robert and Robert Alderman, our in-house tax man.
“The offshore secret bank account you wanted has been completed,” Alderman said.
“Abra and Ziva pulled it off without a hitch; the fake Saudi passport went through without a problem. I never dreamed that a woman in full burqa would pass all the security measures to get an account,” Alderman said.
“I started an account in all ten foreign banks like you wanted with a million in each and 10 million in the Caribbean bank; then I transferred money among all of the accounts. Here are the passwords and logins with the account numbers; I changed all of them twice to make sure they were clean. There is a Ukrainian email account as the primary contact, and a new laptop registered with the Ukrainian email,” Robert said.
“You keep a copy; you may be the one doing the work. Are your shots up to date?” I asked.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.