Chapter 541

I listened while Robert explained all EIT had been doing with the information from the two Princes and the two arms dealer’s computers.

The list of customers on the arms dealer’s computers was eye opening. I was sure that both Bens would be very interested in some of those countries and groups and what they had acquired.

I was more interested in the locations of the sales and deliveries. And then, what was sold and delivered there.

Small arms rifles and pistols were everywhere. Hundreds of millions made, sold, lost, captured all over the world. With every war, every skirmish, there was always a flood of rifles and ammo to both sides.

The Taliban was using rifles against the Russians that were left over from the WW1 and WW2 and later; American, British, Spanish, German and Russian bolt action, semiautomatic and machine guns. There were warehouses all over Europe and the world that were filled with crates of weapons and pallets of ammunition in case a new world war appeared overnight.

The Chinese and the Russians were the worst for selling old weapons to any group; the AK47 was a third world favorite. It was easy to disassemble and clean, and worked well in all environments. Nearly every rifle we had burned in the La Jarita raid had been an AK47.

As long as it was kept dry, ammunition could last a century or more. There was ammunition from the Spanish American war still showing up on the net. The weak spot was the primer. Some chemical mixtures used to make the primer to make the round to go bang deteriorated with time and would not fire.

The UN even tried to force ammo manufactures to come up with primer materials that had a life a shelf of no more than two years as a way to end so many conflicts and put an end to so many stockpiles. It was a foolhardy thought with billions of rounds already in warehouses.

Black powder used in Civil War and cannon balls were still as deadly as the day they were made, even if it had been wet and dried. Hikers were still finding stacked up cannon balls that has been left along the trails and battlefields during the Civil War and they were still deadly.

Just a few years ago a Virginia Civil War enthusiast blew himself and his house apart trying to remove the fuse and black powder in some he had found on the Appalachian Trail.

It was an arms cycle; every time armies were issued newer, more modern weapons, the older weapons went into the warehouses. A few were transferred to civilians while most sat in the warehouses until the next potential ally needed weapons for self defense; that is where the arms dealers came in.

They were the middle men. Governments let them handle the transactions, “You are to sell them to this group but not that group or country.” It allowed the politicians to deny direct involvement.

It was weapons from those arms dealers that had killed my men in Morocco and tried to kill them in Kampala and Windhoek.

It was one more reason I had a bad taste for politics, especially international politics – the worst of the bunch.

I looked over the sales closely for heavy weapons that could be used against the embassies; RPGs, mortars, shoulder fired rockets and Stingers. Those were all bad news and I wanted to know if they had been sold to any anti-American groups in those areas.

As Robert continued, things got worse. EIT had maintained surveillance of all the people who were in the contact list of the Princes, the arms dealers, Balthazar, and Saif’s computers. As with all things on the internet, when one link opened it led to dozens more. Over time they had been able to break the passwords.

The Prince’s email contained several leaders of Hezbollah; proxies of Iran.

Iran now knew I was responsible for the aggressive interrogation of Balthazar and that information was making the rounds. They were plotting revenge. They were planning to bring it up at the UN that the US and the task force was using torture and afterwards organizing a protest in Washington. They had operatives emailing sympathetic members of Congress as though they were US citizens.

I sent the list of operatives to my task force email. If these operatives were in direct contact with the Hezbollah terrorists, was there a possibility they were committing treason? It was certainly grounds for them to be deeply investigated.

I was even more surprised to see email chains from Hezbollah leaders to ACLU lawyers planning a defense strategy for several of the terrorists we had arrested.

In one case they were speculating what their clients could be arrested for – before the planned activities – and were actively planning alibis and cover stories for them. I had lots of questions to ask my new Federal Prosecutor tomorrow.

But first I ran all the emails by Jenny for another opinion. I ended up with lots of ideas to work with tomorrow.

We finished out the day in the gym then spent time in the basement playroom very carefully with Lorrie. She and Ching Lee both were just a month from delivering.

More cribs and baby clothes had been bought; Lorrie was having a girl so it had to be new clothes. Ching Lee was having a boy and we had plenty of hand-me-downs from little Robert and Jacob so only a few were bought.

Mindy was also having a girl; at least there would be two girls to play together and hold their own against their brothers when play got too rough. We had long ago decided it would be private schooling for the kids.

Even with all the new information that should have kept me awake, I slept well. Lorrie and I held each other close. Several times I felt the baby move against me. It was as close to that feeling as I would ever get.

I arrived at Section 12 at the normal start time on Tuesday and in time to start the coffee today. While I waited, I sorted all the emails Robert had pulled for me.

Alyssa Cotton was going to get her first challenge on her first day with the task force. I wanted to know if the lawyers working with the terrorists had committed treason and conspiracy. Was a grand jury needed to decide?

There were pros and cons to a grand jury. The part that interested me was that once convened the media would be reporting every day on the jury, especially if there were certain beneficial leaks. They would never leave it alone trying to land the next scoop. Just maybe put a little fear in some of those that think they are above the law and hide behind ‘I have a law degree’.

All the members looked at the emails and made my argument and then I left the debate to them. I went to the hill for another Spanish inquisition; this time on the scope of the powers of the new task force.

Two hours later I testified behind closed doors to the Senate intelligence committee on terrorism. It was the second update this month and my last before I left the post. The chairman wanted to schedule another in two weeks.

“Sorry Senators, six days to go,” I replied. “You will have to schedule it with the new chairperson.”

“You have not been asked to stay on?” Senator Knotts asked, very surprised.

“There have been no discussions. The term was for six months. I made that pretty clear in the beginning,” I replied.
After that, the closed session ended.

“Ambassador, there are ads in the noon media that feature you and your family. They imply that you have made a significant investment in a vacation resort. Is that true?” Senator Knotts asked.

“Yes, I made the statement at last week’s news conference; I was going to take some time off with my family. What better way to relax the body, rest the mind and refresh the spirit than sand, salt water, eighty degree days and sun mixed in with the occasional exceptionally chilled brew and the companionship of family. All of that will ease the fears and stress I and we have been under,” I replied.

“The threats against me and my family are still active. By buying the island we can better control the security. We had little choice,” I replied.

“That should certainly do that,” he replied.

Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.

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