The Doc did a physical on Balthazar Monday night and deemed him fit enough for questioning.
Tuesday was more of the same at Section 12. Tuesday night Ben, Frank, Agents Croft, Doyle and I questioned Balthazar while Vicky and Ching Lee looked on and learned. The session lasted three hours.
In a concession to Frank and Ben we video recorded the interrogation. But only Balthazar appeared in the video along with Ben’s voice.
Balthazar recognized me immediately. “You are one lucky infidel bitch. You are going to die a horrible death very soon at the hands of Allah’s servants,” he said just before the Doc hit him with the first dose.
Doc Burns used smaller doses, varying the doses and chemical mixture so as not to damage the heart or brain. Balthazar spent three hours in intense pain when he did not answer questions. It took the first 90 minutes to convince him he needed to be more forthright with his answers. We left him in the cell with the last meal of the day.
Tomorrow night we would do it again after dissecting his answers, comparing them to what we knew and what the men had learned at Gitmo. What we did know was that more arrests and search warrants would be in the works for tomorrow.
He also began to give us the military secrets of the IRG. Ben and Frank both wanted a foreign military intelligence person from the Pentagon to help in the questioning.
I was opposed and let it be known loudly. The more involved, the much greater the chance of leaks and fallout. After much discussion I finally relented with conditions.
The limit would be two. I needed to be careful about how many knew about Camp Smith and the goings on here other than the training we did there. Agents Croft and Doyle I trusted. They trained at Camp Smith and had worked the MSU attack and the raids on the learning centers. They knew the rules were bent as the situation called for it.
The Pentagon two would be checked for wires and they would be allowed no phones or other devices. They would eventually receive the edited tape of the questions they asked. They would be given a ‘what if’ scenario thirty minutes before they were picked up. What If we captured an Iranian military individual? What questions would they ask him?
Ben, Frank and I would use the connections we had within the Joint Chief of Staff to pick two tomorrow.
I spent more time in the tanning booth. I needed to be dark as if I had spent years in the sun; so did the Mossad ladies. Vicky and I were in there every night, after hitting the mats with the Mossad ladies. After three days I was able to hold my own against any of them, at least for a little while.
Wednesday morning, Tamim the cycle bomber was deemed well enough to be moved. He was going to the Federal Prison in Virginia for a short stay and isolation. The special terrorist judge agreed that he could be held as an enemy combatant; without counsel and no chance of bail pending a full review of all the evidence the various agencies had collected.
At 0900 Ben, Frank and I had a meeting with the joint chiefs. I thought they would take the lead in the discussion; I was wrong. I laid it out as a scenario and asked for names.
Major John Hoytman and Major Earle Brown were the two intelligence specialists that were finally chosen. They were ordered to be at the office at 1700 as were all the participants.
At 1730 we were all in the medical building where Balthazar was strapped to the table and the Doc was waiting.
“You must be so disappointed; I’m still breathing so no one has collected the bounty yet,” I said to Balthazar.
“Tonight’s session is going to be military questions. Do you need me to translate them to Persian or are we going to continue in English?” I said in Persian.
“I will do English,” he replied.
For the next three hours he answered questions only needing a few doses to keep him talking. Hoytman and Brown used maps, diagrams and other props to question him. At times they contradicted him when they knew he was trying to feed them lies.
The Doc finally ended the session; Balthazar was getting too weak according to his equipment. The military men were vocal that they needed to do another session after they had time to cross check what they had learned.
I needed a session to learn all I could about the Prince’s connections so Balthazar was going to live at least a couple more days.
After the session finished Balthazar was allowed to shower and clean up before he was carried back to the jail. At the jail I gave him his prayer mat and Quran that had been collected from his apartment. The Doc had x-rayed both of them to make sure there were no hidden weapons or suicide pills.
Thursday morning I was in Section 12 early; Andy picked the times he wanted things to happen. I just was along for the ride.
The second pot of coffee had stopped perking and I was on my second cup when the President, Troy, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs (who was a Marine), the Army Chief of Staff and the Commandant of the Marine Corps. Neither of the Chiefs looked happy. They did follow the lead of the President and Troy by getting a big cup of coffee before sitting down.
“You are on your own,” Troy replied.
General Jack Ingram Chairman JCS spoke first, “Yesterday when you talked with us the meeting was to be a scenario; this morning we find out that you have Guardian Colonel Faaz Fayeez Mohammad IRG in your custody and have apparently had him and been questioning him for more than a few days. Can you please tell me why the DOD is just finding out?”
“Sure; first you have to know and understand the operations were conducted under ‘The need to know protocol’ that is so often prevalent in matters of this level. He was arrested under the name of Balthazar Khamini as a terrorist in possession of remote controlled IEDs that were in the trunk of his car. Fingerprints and other evidence from Interpol said he was Gazi Asfour. We interrogated him as a terrorist.”
“With more in-depth investigation we found out he was Guardian Colonel Faaz Fayeez Mohammad. Our interrogations were beginning to be productive and moving towards the military arena. That is when we asked for your men yesterday,” I replied.
“Majors Hoytman and Brown indicated that you were going to allow them one more session with him. They think they need more,” General Ingram said.
“The drugs and tactics we are using take a terrible toll on the body and brain. The Doc has said that two or three more sessions and he will be dead. That said, I need one more session to clear up odds and ends for the task force; that leaves one for you; there may not be a third,” I replied.
“Just what the hell are you using on him?” Marine General Berger asked.
“Whatever mix and dosage it takes to make him talk; anything other than that is ‘Need to Know’ and you don’t need to know,” I replied.
“Mr. President; I protest. The military aspect of the interrogation is just too important to be limited to one more session,” the General said.
“I would not protest too loudly unless you intend to turn in your resignation, the Colonel is her prisoner and a terrorist; she is in control of the situation and out on the limb. She successfully argued her position and has been given carte blanche. Try negotiating; split the sessions up, work out something with her,” the President replied as he stood to leave.
The chairman went to the coffee pot and poured two cups; placed one in front of me and sat in the chair across from me.
“Where do we start? What can I offer you for a little more time with your prisoner?” he asked.
I called the Doc, “How many sessions are left in the Colonel before we kill him?”
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.