It was a quiet ride home; I gave a sigh of relief as I stepped out of the Suburban into the garage. Tonight was Thursday night and I intended it to be a busy one.
First stop was Roberts’s group; Robert had sent a text wanting me to stop by as soon as I could.
“I got my foot in the door a little today; I found a back door access into the Prince’s email accounts, he has several. One he is using strictly to communicate with terrorists. Another is used for banking transactions; Burt is following that one,” Robert said.
“It looks like the Prince is playing a shell game with the funds. Billions are moved from one account to another in different countries, only to come back full circle in a day or two.”
“When deposits are made to the account from the Royal Treasury, part of the funds stay in an account that is used to sponsor terrorists. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been sent around the world in the last few months. I have a list of account numbers in the US that suspicious deposits have been made to,” Burt said.
“His accounts are not very secure; just a simple passwords that he keeps in a file on the computer,” Robert added.
“Keep all the information you find on the Prince and his connections close; don’t send any more to the Task Force. If they go checking the numbers and get careless, we could lose it all again. It’s too close to the Africa safari for that,” I said.
After the normal office meeting and supper the girls, their dance partners and I met in the gym. Marcy carried a DVD player with her for the music. We were going to practice the dances that we were likely to do at the embassy party on Saturday night.
I wanted to know if I had recovered enough to be able to dance. Tonight I would find out and have Friday to recuperate.
It was the final embassy party and get together for Ambassador Schmitt and family before they went back to Uganda next Wednesday. They had done everything on their wish list, all the museums, monuments, the Washington zoo, several universities; they even spent two days in New York City.
There was a long list of officials who were invited; a who’s who in the Washington State Department circle and there where were plenty of officials in town. The State Department was having an official meeting after the Baines affair.
New rules and protocol were going to be explained and there was training for them. Every ambassador and director was in town. Even I was to be in attendance for the morning and afternoon meetings.
We practiced the various dances for two hours. At the end I was sore but relieved. I could handle Saturday night without a problem.
Our dancing partners were leaving next week; they were part of the two teams leaving for Africa.
The Friday morning commute was quiet. Things at Section 12 were not. Iran was trying desperately to find out where Balthazar had disappeared to. The Egyptian Ambassador had called Troy again, then tried the State Department route.
We had the phone and had disabled its GPS features and were just letting it ring, collecting the calling numbers. The more they pushed the more apparent we had someone important to the Iranians; but why? Just who was Gazi Asfour aka Balthazar?
After a MTAC conference to the Gitmo command center I ordered the agents to begin questioning Balthazar and record the sessions for me. I would use them to develop the questions list when the doc and I took our turn with him.
At 1000 I was carried to the State Department building for the Ambassador’s conference. It took until noon for them to explain the new policies and procedures.
My place for the five-star lunch was at the table with the Secretary of State Richard James, Amy Lockerman and Victor Edmondson, Eric Roberson, Frank Love and Marty Coeburn. I no longer felt terribly out of place in settings like this.
Besides, Dick James was a comedian; he kept us entertained throughout the meal. He told several off color jokes that I had heard before, cleaning them up as he told them because of my presence – I was sure.
“You know you don’t have to clean them up; I was a Marine. There is not much I haven’t heard or repeated. I am fine with the raw version,” I replied with a laugh. I knew Amy could handle off color jokes. She had forwarded me some rough ones.
It broke the ice; the rest of the lunch was relaxed and hilarious. Secretary James asked if I would give an overview of the Task Force fight on terror. I was surprised it had not come up sooner. I had a mental speech that I could give.
“You have an hour block,” James said.
“Crap,” I thought, fifteen minutes would have been enough.
I spoke for thirty minutes, took questions and then gave closing arguments.
Back at Section 12 I had answers to some of the questions. Robert had sent me two files; one that he had found and another that Officer Ben-David had a courier deliver to the office.
Balthazar Khamini aka Gazi Asfour had another name, Guardian Colonel Faaz Fayeez Mohammad, IRGC Intelligence division. Colonel Faaz had been the chief interrogator and torturer of the six US Navy personnel who had strayed into Iranian waters several years ago.
No wonder Iran was worried about his whereabouts; if he turned, he could reveal a lot of information and a major disaster on everything Iran. If we caught him as a terrorist it would be a major political setback in their attempts to fool the liberal politicians and sympathizers.
It was standard procedure that any visits by that class of individuals had to be approved by State Department, DHS and CIA months in advance and they were limited in their travels. None of that had been done.
Frank and Eric had been in a meeting with the President’s intelligence team. They walked in the door just as I finished reading the files and after I had asked Ben to come to my office.
I printed off the pages and passed the reports to them. After they finished reading, there was a heated debate about what to do with him. Then I fed the reports into the shredder.
“If Iran finds out we have him, they will arrest every American business-man and those of our allies there under fake charges to use as pawns to get him back,” I said.
I sent an emergency page to Mike Doyle and William Croft, the senior FBI and DHS agents in the group that had gone to Gitmo with the prisoner.
“MTAC NOW,” I sent.
Less than five minutes later they were on line.
“Hey Boss, what’s up? Must be important,” Mike said.
“Have you made any progress with the questioning?” I asked.
“No, not a bit,” Mike replied.
“That’s because you are dealing with a professional interrogator,” I said.
I filled them on who we actually had and all the consequences.
“You have two days to interrogate him; take the gloves off, get rough. Work in shifts, do not let him sleep. The only restriction is you cannot kill him or break any bones. At the end of the two days, he will be brought back to a secret facility here for a final and extremely advanced interrogation,” I said.
“I know your men did not disobey orders but if any of you have accidentally taken any video or pictures, totally destroy the equipment including the SIM cards. There is an industrial shredder that feeds an incinerator at the base maintenance area; use it for everything,” I added then closed the window.
Ben, Frank and Eric were staring intensely at me.
“Do you have a better idea?” I asked.
“No, not really. What are you going to tell the President? You know he or Troy will ask?” Frank asked.
“I guess I will have to think of something,” I replied as I picked up my jacket to leave.
“Do want to go with me when I have that meeting?” I asked.
Three heads shook no, “Not on your life,” was the reply.
“Are you going to tell us where you got that information from?” Frank asked.
“No! Well, maybe in a month I will be able to,” I replied.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.