Chapter 489

I was on the phone the entire trip back to Washington. Because of the others in the Suburban I used the ear piece. First Eric called back, “Tamerl El-Hassan is on his way to camp Smith; I decided we should question him first.”

“OK, no problem,” I replied.

Then the Secretary of State called, “Mexico’s raid went badly; the terrorists had been tipped off and were waiting. They shot down a chopper with 10 aboard and took heavy causalities in the initial assault. The place was everything you thought it was and worse.”

“The Federal Police Commissioner is going to hand deliver a complete report and a copy of all evidence collected. He wants to meet with you, me and the President about better cooperation between our two countries in light of events of the last few weeks,” he said.

“Set it up and let me know when,” I replied. I didn’t think I would have much choice about it.

Then Attorney General Dunne called; we talked about the 180 who were arrested today on a variety of charges. Twenty were on the run or hiding behind the union and lawyers.

It had been a productive and disturbing day all in one. It still was not over; as soon as we reached Washington there was a news conference in the White House media room.

The raids and arrests had been leaked by someone on the President’s staff after they started a normal procedure, it seemed.

The TV reporter figured out who I was as I drove away. The liberal network his station was associated with was screaming about my trampling of the public’s first amendment right to know. They were more pissed that their reporter did not know who I was and let get me away without asking any questions.

Sometimes life passes you by when you don’t pay attention to the details of the business you are in.

The self-propelled IEDs were troubling. Tonight when the Suburban was in the garage I was going to crawl under it and measure the clearance under the rear axle. I was pretty sure it was more than eight inches. If it was, one could bet all SUVs were the same. I needed to find several brands of limos to find out the same information. I would bet the six
inch model they were making was for lower cars.

I was thinking of ways to prevent the devices from getting under SUVs. Although, nine sticks detonated beside the door would not be good either. The armor would certainly help but would you survive? It made me wonder what kind of testing the armor installer did on the SUVs we bought.

There were several things for sure; when all this was released, there would be no more parked limos waiting for the client. The client would wait on the limo and it would be moving as soon as the door closed behind them.

There would be a different attitude among security personnel. They would have a lot more to look out for now, including JBG embassy security.

I went directly to the Oval Office for an update on today. The AG had the latest numbers on the arrests. After much prodding from the prosecutor in my department, the charges were much stronger than in the past.

Aiding and abetting terrorism, conspiring with terrorists, accepting bribes, treason, and the list went on; there were over a dozen charges to be applied.

I followed the group to the media center and stood in the back. The President spoke first.

“Today has been a very busy day for multiple federal law enforcement agencies. I believe great strides were made today in the war on terrorism. Agents within the United States along with the Mexican Federal Police – with information supplied by the terrorist task force – arrested hundreds of individuals and raided terrorist training camps.”

“The Sectary of State and Attorney General Dunne worked closely with the Mexican authorities and have updates on that. Mr. Dunne, the podium is yours.”

AG Dunne spoke for ten minutes about the Mexican raid, the difficulties they had and the results, then he covered all the arrests across the nation.

“The information that led to those arrests was supplied by the task force.”

He finished with, “The Commissioner of the Mexican Federal Police will be here on Monday to share information on the training camp they raided today in Monclova Mexico with the task force and other federal agencies. They will meet with Ambassador Jones and be a visitor at the news conference.”

“Ambassador Jones, you’re next. Why do you always hide in the back?” he asked when I got to the podium.

“Out of sight, out of mind,” I replied.

“Well, you might be out of sight but you can be sure you are never out of mind,” the President replied.

“Today the task force ordered three raids; all three were connected to the raids last week and Saif Alawai al-Jawfi. Two were training camps and one was the apartment complex they used to house and hide the terrorists.”

“Weapons, bombs, suicide belts and vests and an IED manufacturing shop that had various types of IED in all stages of manufacture were all seized along with computers and records,” I said .

“It has been a good day in the fight against terrorism. We also learned the terrorists had progressed to a new level in weapons development against unsuspecting civilians and political leaders,” I said.

“These new weapons will be evaluated immediately by experts and we hope to have information distributed to all police agencies early next week,” I said.

“The podium is yours Mr. President,” I said as I started to walk away.

“You just as well stand here. You know questions are going to be directed to you,” he replied.

He looked at an agent, “Keep time; ten minutes and that is it.”


“Ambassador Jones, according to one of our media partners you were at the Moorefield raid site, what were you doing there and why did you keep the reporters out?”

“Several members of the task force and I were there as observers. DHS Director Eric Robinson and others went to NY as observers.”

“The access road to the site was a 3 mile narrow one lane dirt and rock road in bad condition, getting worse with each vehicle. There were more individuals there than expected; that required more officers and ambulances than expected. On top of that, there was unexploded ordnance and ammunition in a lot of places. In other words, it was not safe,” I said.

“Many of you missed it. I don’t think any local stations carried the reports but the site in Minnesota where Saif made the belts and vest was raided on Monday. There were over 40 IEDs and other explosive devices there as booby traps. We have to assume the same with every site now,” I said.


“Can you tell us more on terror weapons?’

“Until we fully evaluate the effectiveness, danger and counter measures; no. Hopefully by Monday’s news conference there will be answers,” I replied.

“However, evidence of the testing they did indicates the weapon is going to be very dangerous. I do believe they are solely going to be directed at our leaders, bankers and other high value targets because of the cost and method of delivery,” I added.


“What do you consider other high value targets Ambassador?”

“Public transportation including school buses would be a big one, fuel tankers and there are thousands of them on the road every day,” I replied.

“Time’s up,” the agent announced.

“Hopefully on Monday the task force will have a lot more information to present at the news conference at the FBI proving grounds,” I replied.

On the way home I called Robert and Howie, “I hate to ask as busy as everyone has been, but I have some things I need you to do tomorrow so I can have them on Monday. I will be on the Island in thirty minutes”

Thirty minutes later I was in the garage loading the computers onto a cart sitting in the elevator. Robert was in his office when I pushed the cart in. I explained that I need all the files copied so Robert would have his own copy. Then a look at the files to see what they were and how urgent the information was.

I took the box of DVDs into the house to look at them tonight. Howie was coming in the morning to look at the mobile IED setup. The last thing I did was to print off all the pictures on my phone that I had taken today, then send the picture file to my email.

I was just walking through the door to the kitchen when my phone rang one more time.

“I have Tamerl El-Hassan in cuffs and will be at Camp Smith in 15 minutes; can you meet me there to help restrain him to your standards?” Eric asked.

Vicky, Ching Lee and I went and helped secure Eric’s prisoner. Ching Lee picked up supper for him at the restaurant.

“When did you want to meet the Doc to do his thing?” I asked.

“Try to set it up for Monday evening. Has Marcy got some kind of accounting code for this?” Eric asked.

“I’m sure she has, I think she uses facilities rental with special accommodations,” I replied.

Friday night after supper and family time, the girls and I watched all the DVDs I had brought from the Moorefield site numbered 1-10. They were recording the progress they were making as if it would a propaganda movie.

There was no surprise that Saif was involved with the IED manufacture. The quality of those on the workbench told me someone was a perfectionist. He wasn’t bashful; he was in a lot of the pictures and video.

Of all the questions we had asked him, I guess we had overlooked asking what he was working on. Then again, he may have felt it was so important to the cause he would take it to his grave before giving it up.

The surprise was he had two people he was training; hopefully we had them in the raid or were among the dead. A couple of the DVDs were on the manufacture. The rest were on the testing with audio descriptions about each one tested.

Saif and the two came up with the right amount of TNT to send the titanium cutter through the floor of the car. I was distressed watching video of a test as the three removed and held up a piece of ½ inch armor plate they had placed in one of the test cars. The titanium plug had gone through and come out the roof of the car.

Somewhere in the area there was a very advanced machine shop making the threaded plugs for them. There had been a box of them on the assembly bench. There were no machines in the workshop capable of working with titanium.

Titanium is extremely hard to work with and expensive. I wondered if the 155 shells and the titanium both came from a military base. Most large military bases had advanced machine shops with the best machines money could buy. More things to check into on Monday.
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Chapter 488

I followed along behind the units. As we got closer to the site I understood how they were able to carry out training here. There were high mountains that were covered in big trees that were close together.

There were no roads with lanes on either side of the main road, not even logging roads. Google earth had shown that the site was in a valley three or four miles from the main road. Across the ridge line 10 miles to the right there were strip mines.

The combination of heavy tree cover and being in the valley would absorb most gunfire and heaver explosions would be considered from the mining area, unless they were really excessive.

Special Agent Pine had given us one of the 800 MHz radios they were using so I could listen. They were in sight of the other team with the MRAP. A few minutes later the MRAP turned off the main road followed by its SWAT and the West Virginia state police SWAT team.

Then the team I was following fell in behind them. It was a narrow winding road full of potholes and minor wash outs to navigate through and around.

The MRAP had crashed the gate and all of the teams were inside the compound. There was gunfire, a lot of it. I stopped the Suburban at the gate and told everyone to get out. At the back of the truck I handed each of them one of the body armor suits and helped them put it on.

I unlocked the gun rack and handed Ben and Lisa each one of the shotguns, and an M16 to Armie and Wayne.

“I would not want someone to jump out of a hole and you not be able to defend yourself,” I replied.

I was concerned about Ben but put those concerns away when I saw him and Lisa both check the chamber to see if there was a round in it.

“870 riot gun; very nice,” Lisa said. Then she added, “I miss being able to go the range; the desk job takes that away.”

The gunfire slowly died out and there was only one explosion. As we made our way into the building, other SWAT members were checking everything outside.

Ambulances were on the way; I could hear the sirens in distance. There were three that had come with the Petersburg group and they were not enough.

My interest in being here was a firsthand look at the operation that was going on here. I had real questions about the unusual set up of the rows of cars that had been burned and shot up outside in the training area. But first, I needed to check out the inside to see what was going on in there.

Pine informed me that there were ten dead and twenty wounded, none of them SWAT team members. They had twenty prisoners.

“The explosion was a suicide vest. The individual had set it off trying to put it on in a hurry in an office; it only killed him,” Patrick said.

“I have more ambulances and police officers coming. I did not expect this many people to be here. Each of the wounded needs an officer assigned to them through the complete hospital process,” Patrick said.

I nodded my understanding as I watched the last of the healthy ones get searched then secured with flex cuffs on their hands and legs.

The aerial pictures did not do this place justice; it was huge! We started on the left side breaking down locked doors. The first one was an armory holding dozens of shotguns, rifles including AR15s, AK47s, and pistols. There were crates of ammunition.

I wondered how many pictures I could take with my phone as I snapped away.

Under a tarp were 155mm artillery shells; I counted ten and they were missing the fuse. How in the hell did they get these and what were they using them for?

The next room sent chill down my spine. It was a machine shop and they were making Improvised Explosive Devices. On a table were several models that were clearly marked IRGA1 (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Armory #1) they were using as basic models.

There was a crude brass lathe with a 155 shell mounted on it. They were using brass tooling to remove the solidified TNT paste that was the explosive force of the shell. The brass tooling made no sparks to ignite the TNT. There were four empty shells on the floor.

On another bench were a dozen of their copy of the IED but it was heavily modified. One was eight inches in diameter, six inches tall and tapered to a point like a tepee with a titanium plug. The top of the plug was shaped like a cutter. There were two wires protruding out the lower side of it. Another was shorter and not as large in diameter.

On the bench was a pile of blasting caps with the wires lengthened. There were several of these devices in different stages of assembly. In one of these the blasting cap had been installed and fastened with epoxy to the center of the bottom. There was a precision scale with a plastic picture and a tub of the same kind that was by the lathe.

Another very large bench was covered with a sheet and when I removed the sheet, the chills returned.

On the bench were a dozen of those battery powered remote control trucks you see kids playing with. They had been modified with a small cart fastened back of the toy with a little set of wheels to support the very back of it. On the cart was mounted one of the IEDs with a mini camera.

The assembled unit was less than eight inches tall. The antenna for the truck had been bent to trail off to the side. I knew then what this was; a totally new kind of terror that would be used to target our leaders by remote control.

Any SUV, limousine or an airplane parked for even a few minutes would be a death trap for it occupants. The remote control truck could be lowered through a hole cut in the floor of any van or large car and maneuvered into position under its target. Even a car parked on the side of the street would be easy. It could be placed under a car in a parking garage for hours and lie in wait.

I now understood why the titanium plug looked like a shear. It was designed to cut its way through the car floor above it and leave a hole large enough for the explosive force, massive searing heat and deadly gases to blow the car and anyone inside apart.

I doubted my armored Suburban would survive such an attack, or even the presidential limo. The scale had been set to balance at 2 kilos; 4.4 pounds is equal to nine sticks of TNT.

The 155 shell held almost thirty pounds of TNT; that meant that each shell could make seven IEDs. With ten shells still on the crate that was seventy more they could make; how many had they made? Better yet, the 4 empty shells meant that they had made twenty-eight; twelve were on the bench, but where were the rest? Had they used them in testing?

They had played with the threads retaining the plug to allow the TNT to develop just right pressure before blowing the plug out and not blowing the device apart, not that it would make any difference with 9 sticks.

They must have had an engineer design the thing and they certainly had a professional welder or a computer controlled welder that we had not found yet. The welds were that perfect.

This was clearly an advance bomb making shop. No official was safe if these had been sent out to active cells or sleeper cells.

The ATF had a lot of work to do and fast. This was truly a new level of terror. It was going to take careful and complete analysis of all the computers, emails and anything else that could be found to see if any of these had been sent out.

In a box on the wall were DVDs that were marked testing. Hopefully, we could learn from them who made the bombs and how effective they were.

In another room there were several suicide vests. I wondered if Saif had made them or were they a product of this shop? Only time and close analysis would tell. I made sure I took a lot of close up pictures to send to Ben-David.

With the prisoners and injured gone, the evidence collection began in earnest. All the computers were going to Washington with me. As soon as they were loaded, we were heading east. The loading had already started and we would be ready to leave in a few minutes.

I also took one of each IED that was not filled with explosives yet and a couple of the trucks with their controllers. Some in Congress were complaining about the cost of the task force operations. A little shock and awe at the Monday Congressional briefing might change their minds.

Outside I walked down the burnout row of cars and looked closely at them. There were multiple holes in the floor where the devices had been tested. There were even holes in the roof where the titanium plug went through both the floor and the roof.

The lane was so narrow and there was only one or two places that the ambulances could meet and get by that Patrick set up traffic control at the gate and road.

The officer at the road called in, “I have media out here wanting to get in,” he said.

“No media is to be allowed back here,” I replied.

I started receiving reports from Eric; his team had raided the training site and the apartment complex. Tamerl El-Hassan was wounded but in custody. He was already screaming for his lawyers who he had at Camp Delta. If I had my way he would be back at Camp Delta tomorrow.

Who knows, when I get back to Washington I may very well have my way with him.

“Eric, how bad is Tamerl El-Hassan?” I asked.

“Shrapnel, not bad,” he replied.

“He is former Gitmo, here illegally and returned to terrorism; put him on a plane for Gitmo,” I said.

“Can you do that?”

“Nobody told me I couldn’t. You know the story; easier to ask for forgiveness than get permission,” I replied.

“Although it may be wiser to let the Doc act before he goes there; he was the chosen replacement,” I replied then I added.

“Do we have any questions to ask him that may give us any new information?” I asked.

“I can’t think of a single one,” Eric relied.

“There is your answer; send him to Gitmo unless you think him being dead is better,” I replied.

“Agent Pine, photograph everything, bag it, tag it and send it to the FBI forensics lab. Send me a copy of the pictures as soon as you finish.” I said.

We left the site dealing with the road that was in worse shape due to all the heavy trucks.

At the highway the road was blocked by a TV truck, with the reporter giving the officer a hard time.

“Lisa, step out with the shotgun while I see what the problem is,” I said. Lisa was sitting behind me and next to the vertical gun rack.

“What’s the problem?

“WKLA news, there has been dozens of police car and ambulances going in and out, this agent will not let us back there. The public has a right to know,” the reporter said.

“No, you are misinformed; the public does not have the right to know until there is something factual to tell them. When we have that we will call a news conference and you can pass it along. Now move the truck out of the way; you are interfering with a federal officer. Or, I can arrange for you to have a more current story with real life effects,” I said as I pulled my cuffs out.
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After our meeting, Ching Lee insisted she wanted to participate in the interrogation. I warned against it but she insisted.

Vicky and I walked Gamal Ameen over to the medical building in a double arm lock. He was resisting as if he knew what was coming.

Ching Lee was picking the Doc’s brain asking all kinds of questions about his equipment and the drugs. I think he liked the attention because he was more talkative than he usually was, almost giddy.

Strapped down and hooked up, the questions began. When we finished, there was very little new information. The only piece we had gained was Rafi Quastri’s choice to replace him if something happened. The first one was Saif Alawai al-Jawfi – who was now dead.

Rafi’s second choice was Tamerl El-Hassan who had spent 4 years at Camp Delta Guantanamo Bay. According to both, he was giving training at the Marion NY site and living in the apartment complex across from the college.

We were done in two hours; I let the Doc off him and then Ching Lee, Vicky and I helped load him into the furnace and watch the flames engulf the body. Frank, Eric and Ben left for Washington.

I was glad this part of the mess was over; there was going to be serious consideration before bringing any more terrorists to any JBG site.

Tomorrow I was going to have a conversation with Robert on all the things he had found on all the computers we had gained out of this. It was time for all the computers to be turned over to the FBI or DHS – whoever wanted them. I was sure Robert had cloned every piece of information on them.

I wondered why the government guys seemed to be so far out of the tech loop compared to Robert’s group. The good thing – and I was damn happy – Marcy was billing the FBI for all ten of Robert’s people at a very high rate; we seemed to be doing all the real work.

I wanted Robert to ease many of the questions I had that I did not feel comfortable asking my task force members. I still felt at times they were playing department favoritism and being selective.

Thursday morning good news was coming from all over. All the officers who had been on the critical list had finally been moved over to the serious column. Dozens of those that had been admitted for lesser injuries had been released.

Today was the last day of the services for the officers killed in the raids. I would be glad when they were finished; it was tough enough without the continuous reminders on the news loop.

Mexico had agreed to assault the training camp at Monclova at the same time we hit the ones in NY and West Virginia. Mexico was not going to play nice. They were sending a crack army team to raid the camp with choppers and armored vehicles. The agreed upon time for the raids were 1100.

We planned the raids differently this time; there would only be federal agents involved and the list had been double checked against the Raif’s payoff list.

DHS, FBI, ATF and the INS SWAT teams were going to handle it. I was going to the West Virginia site and Eric to the New York site as observers.

The FBI and DHS had been through the list and tomorrow at 1100 – the same time as the raids – all 200 names on it were going to be arrested, if they could be found.

The White House and federal agencies were going for another blow-out media weekend. They would finish it off with a big media event on Monday at the FBI facilities, displaying all the captured items from all the raids.

They had decided part of that media blast was to be me. The President and Troy came to me shortly after the first round of coffee.

“ZNN Sunday Morning Washington is having an extended program on terrorism and they have made a special request that you appear. I would like you to appear as a representative of the administration. You are the head of the task force and the most qualified on the latest developments,” the President said.

“I would rather have the time with my family, but I can make that work. We can have lunch at the Steak House and do some shopping afterwards,” I replied.

Troy dialed the number and then handed me the phone, “Arthur Kennedy.”

“Hello Arthur; BJ Jones. I hear you would like to have me on your show Sunday,” I said.

“BJ, good to hear from you. Yes, I am looking forward to having you on the show. Is this a confirmation call?” Arthur asked.

“Same arrangement as before; 5 front row seats,” I replied.

“I don’t know if we can do that,” he said.

“It’s your call; I have plenty of other things I can do,” I replied. Then I added, “Call Troy back when you make up your mind.”

“The producer is shaking his head that we can do that. Same time as before; here by 0930 for makeup and to get wired up,” Arthur said.

I finished out the day planning for tomorrow. The SWAT teams were dividing up and some spending the night in Petersburg, others in Moorefield.

I left on time and made good time going home. It was the first full evening with my mates and the boys since Saturday. We made the best of it; first came a nice quiet supper. Then time in the hot tub and when the boys were asleep and in the crib, we spent two hours in bonding time filled with intimacy. Touching and feeling all the right places, making sure all of us were satisfied. I wished I could have spent the night with all of them. But I was with Marcy tonight and there was no talk of business or Washington.

Over breakfast I explained Sunday’s plans. The question was to take the boys or let Mindy babysit them? First Jenny was going to call the parents to see if they wanted to go be in the audience. If they didn’t, then they would be asked to babysit.

Friday morning I went over to Vicky’s storage in the basement. She had taken two of the rooms for all the new equipment she was ordering for the security division and us.

I picked out three universal vests that could be worn over clothing; I was wearing mine under my blouse. I included 4 SWAT style universal helmets.

At Section 12 I gathered up Ben, Lisa Smack (the FBI liaison assigned to the task force), Armie Ratcliff, (the DHS assistant director assigned to the task force) and Wayne Platt of the ATF.

I drove 495 to 66 and was running almost 80; traffic on 495 had made us a little late. On 66 just before Front Royal, I met a Virginia State Police officer going the opposite direction. It was a four lane road with a medium strip with a guard rail. Just as I met him he flipped the lights.

“He has got you,” Ben laughed.

I kept watching the mirror. I didn’t remember seeing a break in the guard rail for an emergency vehicle turn around but there must have been one. Just as the lights started out of sight I saw them make the turn and cross the highway into the west bound lanes.

“Going to be interesting to see you talk your way out of this one,” Ben said.

I turned on the light package and checked the mirror again. The police car was still coming slowly closing the distance.

I used the State Department phone and called 911. I knew it would either come up as US Government or blocked on their phone display.

“Warren County 911 call center – what is your emergency?” the operator replied.

“This is Ambassador Jones of the terrorist task force, I am on a high speed run to participate in a raid over the state line; I am 3 miles from Front Royal, one of your cars made a u-turn in the road. I believe he is coming after me. I really don’t have time for this; I’m late as it is. Can you call him off or do I need to call the Governor?”

“Front Royal; that has to be Buzz. Let me try to call him. Car 29 dispatch; car 29 this is dispatch please respond. Buzz, answer the damn radio.”

“Let me try his cell phone; no answer on that either,” the dispatcher said.

“You will just have to pull over for him if you’re the one he is after. Tell him to call Duke at dispatch. I will keep trying,” the dispatcher said.

I never backed off the throttle. In fact, I dogged it to see what the GMC Duramax diesel actually had now that the shop had added a power chip in the computer. Just maybe it would it would overcome the drag that the 6000 pound armor upgrade did to the performance.

A couple more miles and the lights went off on the police car; he faded away as the distance opened up.

The place we were going to raid was just about halfway between Moorefield and Petersburg. At 1030 I pulled into the Moorefield police station where this part of the SWAT teams was assembling.

The teams were already behind the station checking out their gear, getting ready to go.

“Damn! The bosses from Washington came; this must be important,” someone said.

“I’m Patrick Pine of the Charleston DHS office. I’m really pleased to meet you Ambassador Jones. I understand you are going to follow the teams in,” he replied.

“That’s correct, we will be right behind you – the last vehicle in,” I said.

“We are going to drive an MRAP through the gate and pile in. The unit from Petersburg has already left. Let’s go; we need to be there in 15 minutes,” Patrick replied.

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Chapter 486

We moved Rafi Quastri from the jail to the medical building and the Doc began his work. It took just one big dose to make him talk and talk he did; about everything.

He answered every question and the dozens more that his answers caused us to ask. When he finished we had an outline of how the operation was run. We had the connections in the Middle East and Africa and also who was pulling the strings. The names of all we already had were also included.

He even gave us the backup communications, plans and emergency phone numbers to reach the Princes.

Even more important, we had the contingency planning along with names of who was to step up to take over if Rafi Quastri and Gamal Ameen – his assistant – were to be arrested or die.

The surprise was the camps – they had been operating prior to 9-11- and the sheer numbers that had been through them. Even more surprising was who some of the instructors were. Several had spent time at Gitmo and were now teaching at the camps.

Just how in the hell did a terrorist who spent years at Gitmo end up teaching his trade at terrorist camps in the USA?

Frank and Eric were as surprised as I was. To make matters worse, Eric and Frank’s agencies had been watching the apartment complex for years. All of the instructors for the NY camp were living in the apartment complex – according to Rafi Quastri – and he was proud of it.

I cornered both Frank and Eric “You need to do a complete investigation of your agents assigned to the college and the Rochester office. Something is drastically wrong!” I said.

“It’s going to take years to sort through all the information gathered in the last few days,” Eric replied.

“We don’t have years, just the size and scope of the information should tell you weeks or a month or two at best before the next attack. If they had been able to carry out the games attack, we would have had a terrorist attack every month for the last six months, either at home or abroad against the US,” I said.

“Let’s ask him again when and where the next attacks are planned and then end this. We have been at it six and a half hours as it is. All of us have to work tomorrow,” Eric replied.

“I told you the football game attacks were the only thing planned for the next few months. They were the Prince’s big push and then everything was going back into the training-planning stage for a while along with lying low.”

“All the communications were going to be restructured; new phones and computer programs for the web. Then we were going to start a lot of new groups in different cities. Your way of life is doomed! Admit it; it is only a matter of time. You cannot win,” he said.

We had walked off a distance to talk; the Doc was with us.

“His statement about having a break of a couple months went out the window with the raids. There will be a power struggle as soon as they get organized. Someone will want to prove they are capable of leading the groups. New attacks will be carried out soon,” I replied.

“I think we are finished. Doc, take your equipment off; we need to call it a night. I wanted both of them done but that is not going to happen,” I said.

Just then there was a moan then a groan. Alarms started ringing on the Doc’s equipment. We ran in to see what was going on. Doc Burns worked on him for ten minutes.

“He is dead; he must have had an aneurysm,” he said as he was shutting down all the alarms and was removing equipment.

“He was going to die anyhow, saved us the trouble. All we have to do now put him in the chipper,” I replied.

“You do know I own 80% of the crematorium down the road, don’t you?” the Doc said. Then he added, “A hundred dollars worth of gas and it’s guaranteed no trace ever and nothing to clean up but a little ash.

“Sounds good to me; all that chlorine can’t be doing the pond any good,” I replied.

Vicky and I helped load the corpse in the back of Doc’s SUV, he was going to leave the equipment until we finished with it tomorrow night. Then we followed him to the crematorium.

Once there, Doc showed and explained to Vicky and me step by step how to load the corpse into the furnace and the settings. We watched through the window as the flames surrounded the corpse, the temperatures went past 1000 degrees and kept climbing.

“It’s automatic; it will shut off when there is nothing left. Here is a key if you need it and I’m not around. If there is heat coming from the stack, it is in use and you will have to wait a while,” Doc said.

Even though it was near midnight, Vicky and I both headed for the hot tub. We were soon joined by Marcy, Jenny, Ching Lee and Lorrie. For 30 minutes we had fun in the tub.

At Section 12 I was waiting – with the information on the Mexico terrorist training site – for the President and Troy to walk in. They did not disappoint; the second pot of coffee was just finishing up.

I went through the pictures and all the information on the training camp in Mexico.

The President asked me to stop until the Assistant Secretary of State Steven Crowley could join us. It would only be few minutes.

The delay was not an issue; I just changed to the two that were located in the US. The federal prosecutor Devon Cass joined in on the discussion after I asked him if we could get search and arrest warrants for the two sites.

It was agreed that we would watch the sites until Friday morning, then execute the searches.

“I would really like for all three to be hit the same day and time. If we hit the two here the one in Mexico will be a ghost camp in a matter of hours,” I said.

I got a text from Robert to call him immediately.

“I’m sending you a file, it was password locked and encrypted differently. You are not going to like it. You may want to review it privately first,” he said just as my phone dinged that I had email.

I had my laptop with me and looked at the files, “Oh crap.”

The files spelled a disaster; it was 200 names long. Names from the FBI, DHS, INS, TSA, CIA, Coast Guard and State department, they were all taking bribes, payoffs or being blackmailed from the terror group and the cartel. The files had dates, places, and amounts of the bribes; some files even had pictures of the individuals and other notes.

I called Frank, Eric and Marty, “You need to come to the White House, ASAP as in Now. You are not going to like what has been found.”

Then I called Dave Carmine director of the TSA and Stu Abrams director of the INS and gave them the same message.

“Are you going to tell us what is so bad?” Troy asked getting impatient.

“I am printing you off a copy. While I am doing that, call the Commandant of the Coast Guard and the director of the CGIS. Tell them to come here now. Tell them it is not a request but a direct order from the President, if that is what it takes,” I said.

I printed off ten copies and placed one in front of Troy and the President.

“What am I looking at?” the President asked.

“This is a list of US security personnel by agency who are taking bribes from the terrorist and cartels,” I replied, then added.

“This list came from a captured computer that was used by the controller that Saif reported to.”

I started checking every name against the GSA employees list. Every employee of the United States government – past and present – was in their files.

Troy called in a couple of his aides to do the same thing. I had done three pages to find all of them were indeed active government employees. I quit looking and let Troy’s clerks do the work.

As the officials came in I gave them a copy of the files. Those in law enforcement knew immediately what they were looking at. The commandant of the Coast Guard needed it explained to him twice.

Steve Crowley joined the group as I explained what I needed him for and when I was hoping to put it together.

The President left to call the President of Mexico and Steve went to summon the Mexican ambassador to the White House.

To me it was critical that all the arrests and raids happened as close together as possible. As soon as it hit the news – and it would almost immediately – they would scatter and disappear.

In my office I opened a VCATS with Andy; Bob and all the carpenters should have recovered from the jet lag and had a full day of work.

When I flipped through the surveillance cameras, carpenters were still working on both the Ambassador residence and the embassy, even though it was 8 PM there.

The control room paged Andy and when he came on, Bob Short was with him. We talked for thirty minutes about the repairs. The security night shift was complaining about the noise with them trying to sleep during the day.

There was a simple solution to that problem. I called Marcy and Vicky and had them call the two hotels to arrange ten rooms for those men to sleep in during the day. The hotel would just have to make other arrangements to clean those ten rooms.

I was certain that for ten rooms for four to six weeks, they would make the necessary changes. If the managers there would not cooperate I was sure I could torque up on the corporate ladder and get something done. But I was sure Marcy would beat me to it.

I left Section 12 early so I could get in a few minutes on the office meeting and then going to Camp Smith to do the last interrogation.

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Chapter 485

I had made both pots of coffee when Troy and the President walked in.

“I was just getting ready to come see you as soon as I refilled my mug. How are things upstairs today?” I said.

“First the coffee then we will talk,” the President replied.

Of course he pulled up a chair by the pastries.

“I received a call from General Fillmore thanking me for your assistance yesterday at Minnesota. He explained that the Army personnel were ready to abandon the site after losing that much equipment right out of the gate. As usual, I hear that one of your teams supplied a solution to the problems,” the President said.

“Always be prepared, hope for the best, expect the worst; good rule to live by,” I replied.

“Speaking of being prepared, we were not prepared for your appearance at Columbia yesterday. We had discussed what would be the appropriate response, then it was put aside and forgotten in the rush to respond to everything else with the raids,” the President said.

“We were reminded after ZNN did two hours of the live coverage that the administration should have done more. You pulled our ass out of the fire on that one,” Troy said.

Ben had arrived just in time to join the conversation, “The world knows what every medal on your uniform was awarded for. The salute to that officer and the conversation must have played a hundred times. Even the news people were commenting about it. Then there was that statement to the reporter on the way out. Are you sure you are not a politician?”

“I have already answered that several times,” I replied.

“You better practice on that; there are at least a dozen Senate and House committees that have sent notification of subpoenas for you to testify,” Troy said.

“I thought they were going to adjourn for Christmas break,” I replied.

“They are soon so there may not be enough time until January,” Troy replied.

“There was nothing on Saif’s phone; his computer is heavily encrypted and may take a few days,” I said.

“Keep us informed,” Troy replied as they left.

My group was making their way in. It was time to start giving orders. I sent an email to the federal attorney and now a federal prosecutor had been assigned to my group.

“Please begin the legal process to immediately seize the six learning center properties, the farm in Minnesota and the New Jersey center. We have connected it to the attacks. I understand through third party contacts that Federal Judge Walter Haynes is receptive and supportive of the move and it is suggested that the writs be completed as soon as possible and processed through his court.”

Curtis Warren had sent me an email describing the procedure for getting the property and his contact with the judge.

Even though there were more memorial services going on today, I sent an email to the DHS and FBI directors for the six areas.

“Please expedite the forensic processing of the sites. Notify me immediately when you are finished. The centers are to remain crime scenes and in your control until the task force completes legal filings for final determinations,” I said in the email.

Seizing the Baltimore center was going to cause a fire storm. It was a large active center and only about half of it was damaged. They already wanted to get back into it and wanted their computer equipment and records back.

Friday morning – before the news conference – I had asked the legal team about seizing the financial assets of the six centers and the one that owned the Minnesota farm.

I found out that all that needed to be done was for me to sign the request and forward it to the Justice Department. That made it easy because now there were two Justice Department officials on my team. Their accounts had been placed in escrow by noon on Friday. I was surprised that there had been no screaming yet.

I called Ben into my office and closed the door behind him. For the next three hours we went through the questions that had been asked of Saif and the answers.

As we went through the information a second and third list was put together. When we finished, these lists were going to the DHS and FBI guys to see if the names were on any watch list.

Then I made a list of questions to ask Rafi Quastri tonight. Ben was working on his own list.

To help things along, Robert sent me the complete set of files after the codes had been broken and translated from Rafi Quastri’s desktop computers. It would take days to go through all of it.

There were several files that stood out; one was a ledger of all the payments to various groups and individuals detailing what the payments were for, including addresses.

Another file detailed payments from the Prince to Rafi Quastri along with account numbers and banks and the money laundering sequence they used from foreign banks.

One file was a whopper; it detailed the training camps with layouts and plans. Better yet, it included the location of the one in New York along with the ones in West Virginia and Monclova, Mexico.

It even included a list of people who had attended and were going to attend, the instructors and the classes they were going to teach. All the classes were terror driven. From kitchen explosives, how to make homemade igniters and detonators to manufacturing bombs using readily available gunpowder extracted from rifle and pistol ammunition.

I had to wonder why so much information about their activities would be in one place. Even though it was encrypted, they had to know sooner or later it would be hacked and broken. I guess they never expected anyone to simply take it as we had done.

I sent Frank and Eric the folders, “Review for tonight’s question and answer session. I would like satellite imagining of those three sites 24/7 for a few days if possible.”

“Where did these files come from?” Ben asked.

“Rafi Quastri’s office computer,” I replied.

“How did you get the computer? Never mind, I don’t need to know,” Ben replied.

I sent the files to my CIA and IRS members; between them they could run down money and international connections. The CIA could seize the international funds and the IRS and the justice department any terrorist connected funds in the US.

I directed the DHS, INS and the FBI men to run down every name on the files, create an active file for each that did not have a file and assigned anyone that was free to help them. I wanted our prosecutor to be able to generate arrest warrants by the end of the week.

Some of the files had videos attached of the individuals while they were training and making motivational videos to send to the fighters in Syria and Iraq.

I started at the beginning of the files and speed reading added more questions for tonight. Ben was doing the same thing.

I went to the State Department fancy GPS and looked at the location for the New York site by the directions in the files.

The training site was in Marion, just 15 miles from Rochester; how interesting I thought. That explained all the special things the group across from the college was doing and raised questions. Were they a welcoming center, way station or supplying rooms for them to stay in while they were at the training center, or maybe all of the above?

I kept blowing the image up looking for anything that would give the place away. The only thing that was out of the ordinary was concrete buildings. Every building was concrete, almost like a military base.

When I looked at the one near Moorefield West Virginia, it was clearly made in outdoor training mode. There were exercise areas with an obstacle course, a clearly defined target range and what looked to be a range for throwing or testing explosive devices.

The site in Monclova, Mexico was very large with multiple firing ranges and buildings. There were also images that indicated they were practicing assault on cars and other cars that looked like they had been used for explosive training.

The Mexico training site was going to be a major problem. I already knew the terrorists were working with the cartel. The world knew a lot of the police and military were looking the other way when it came to the cartel, except when they needed a PR op. The real diplomats were going to have to work on this one.

The numbers I had estimated for the terrorist pipeline had not been revised since I found out about the three ships. My original estimate had been 200; my thinking now was more like 400 had made the trip.

How had that many been able to get into the country and not set off any flags? The fact that so many were not missed as part of the ship crew meant that all the captains were in on pipeline. That did explain the higher number of terrorists killed in the raids.

Ben and I were leaving at three. We were meeting Frank and Eric at Morton field at 1630.

Vicky and I were in Lorrie’s office when Earl Conway of the Baltimore DEA office and Wayne Platt of the Washington ATF office asked for us at the counter. Before we made the counter, Frank and Eric were there. Ben walked in as we were walking out.

The seven of us took two box trucks and went to the locked hangar. We loaded 200 2 kilo bricks of cocaine into the DEA box truck.

“Where did you get this?” Earl asked.

“There are some questions that if answered may jeopardize your health and well being; that is what happened to the people we took it away from,” I replied. Then I added.“Your director has agreed to display this as part of big joint news conference on Monday; before then someone will come up with a statement,” I said.

There was one big news conference planned for next Monday; an entire unexploded vest, guns, ammunition and anything else to further political careers would be there.

Then we loaded up the sixty heavy machine guns and the thousands of rounds of ammunition in the ATF truck. I looked at one of the guns, I thought they would be of Venezuelan manufacture; they were Iranian.

Years ago when Hugo Chavez ran the country, Iran built a factory to build AK47 rifles to supply Central America revolutionaries as part of an aid and exchange deal. I had assumed that the heavy machine guns were built there.

The ATF was under the same agreement; the weapons would be displayed at the news conference.

I was glad to see the guns and drugs leave. JBG had been responsible for the stuff longer than I wanted. Now the only thing left of this caper was to get rid of the trucks.

As far as I was concerned, they could be carried back to the camp for Howie to use for project testing. There could never be any titles to make them worth anything or usable on the highway.

It was time to question Rafi Quastri.

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Chapter 484

Monday was going to be one busy day for all of us. Vicky and I were at Morton Field at 0600 leaving for Minnesota in one G5. When I was finished there, we were flying on to Columbia SC. I carried my dress blues and portable office on the plane.

Howie and four of his helpers were going in another G5 carrying two of the new bigger drones and upgraded devices.

Both C5s were flying to Windhoek; Bob’s Construction and crews were ready to go with the cargo split up between the two planes. Included this time were six Army surplus Humvees that had been checked out and upgraded by the mechanics.

With so many cars, trucks and equipment at the office and Morton Field, Marcy had finally given into Jason and Dad’s prodding to start our own repair shop for our own equipment. Too much time was being wasted moving things to the repair shop and then waiting for our turn to be repaired.

There were six more Humvees at Morton for whatever we would need them for. I was afraid that they were going to be grabbed. Dad, Jason, Jenny and Vicky had already expressed interest in one for traveling in bad weather.

Two man lifts and a flat bed truck were also making the trip this time, along with a dozen Job boxes of tools and supplies.

A replacement Suburban was also loaded to replace the one that was destroyed. Bob was confident he had all the supplies he needed. As Marcy had done at other places, she had rented a hangar at the airport to store things in.

We landed at Minneapolis St Paul International general aviation section at 0730. Suburban from the MAAR site were waiting on us. Traffic was a mess that made us half an hour late getting to the farm site.

There was a pair of army guards posted at the lane entrance with M16s who stopped us. I showed them my Federal ID and badge, then asked, “Who is in command here?”

“Major Carl Betts, he is up there by the house. He said to send you there when you came. There is also Len Zimmerman from the DHS waiting for you,” Corporal Hayes replied.

I drove to the command vehicle. When I stepped out it was obvious they were not having a good day. There were two of those British invented open field mine clearing machines parked in disarray. One was near the house and the other on the side of the lane. Both had been damaged by an IED.

A third one was still operating and was nearly finished making the final pass around the buildings.

We walked up to where the Major, Len and Kent Dalton (commander of the MSP) and his group were standing. They were watching a tracked robot bomb disposal unit start up the steps towards the door. The steps were concrete and it looked that the porch floor was a solid concrete pad.

The robot had mastered the steps and was slowly making its way across the pad to the door. There was an explosion; when the dust and smoke settled, the quarter million dollar robot was upside down in the yard mangled and burning.

“Do you have another one you want to send in?” I asked the Major.

“The equipment said that was concrete; if he doctored the concrete, what did he do in the house? No and we are not sending teams in the house either. We have to think this thing out,” he replied.

“What is your opinion Kent?” I asked.

“I’m glad we decided to follow the Army in on this one,” Kent replied.

“Well, I don’t have all day for debates. Howie, do your thing,” I said.

“Ten-four Boss,” he replied.

“No pictures – and that includes everyone – unless you want me to use your phone for target practice,” I said loud enough for everyone to hear.

Howie’s group began unloading the drones, devices, and laptops to control them. I listened as Howie explained the new equipment. This was the first time I had seen the new drones set up. The audience was as captivated as I was.

Howie said, “They are capable of carrying 200 pounds and more with additional motors installed. It also carries more batteries and can fly higher and the targeting cameras are improved models that give a more precise clear video.”

“The devices are also new. For one thing they are bigger, 150 pounds compared to 100 of the old ones. They are longer because the drone was rectangle instead of circular.”

“The nose has been hardened to give better penetration, the fins are designed to tear away at impact to allow better penetration of hardened structures,” Howie said.

I came close to asking how one hardened aluminum but thought better of asking in public.

With both devices checked out and armed, Howie waited for me to give authorization.

“Mission approved,” I replied.

The first device was dropped from 500 feet into the east end of the house. While the second drone was positioned there were a dozen explosions from within the house.

The second device was dropped into the west end of the house and more explosions followed.

I had Howie drop one more onto an addition built off the end of the house. Within minutes the house was a raging inferno driven by even more explosions.

Then I ordered devices dropped on both separate out buildings. The results were the same. Fire and explosions, with the biggest building where we thought the truck was stored caused a massive explosion. It was a good thing we were well away.

All together there were 40 secondary explosions after the devices exploded. Saif had booby trapped the place well, not caring who he killed with them. I wondered how many were placed around the farm waiting for victims.

“Major, when you get those two machines repaired I want the whole area run over with them, if you can,” I said.

The Major was interrupted by a call from the two guards, “There is fire equipment wanting to put the fires out?” one of them radioed.

“Negative on putting the fire out, I want it to burn out,” I replied. Then to emphasize my point there was another explosion.

“Kent, tomorrow when this mess has burned out, get a contractor with an excavator and dozer to dig a big hole and bury the remains deep. Tell him to stay on the equipment and not to be wandering around picking up souvenirs. Send me the bill,” I said.

The drones had just been put away when a news chopper made several low slow passes over head.

“If you get any calls, divert them to the task force,” I said to Kent and Len.

Howie and the crew went back to Morton as Vicky and I headed to South Carolina. I changed into my dress blues in flight. There was one more medal on the Blues since I had worn them in public last time.

The Presidential Medal of Freedom was presented to me in a ceremony for the Kampala Embassy attack, while I was in Washington for the Senate investigation and hearings. It was a civilian award for both military and non military individuals.

I had plenty of time left so I took a quick look at my emails, taking care of those marked as important or urgent.

Then I read the questions we had asked Saif and his answers. Vicky had taken everything down in her unique shorthand. It had taken a while for me to learn how to read it but now I had it mastered. There were 60 pages for me to read.

As I read I made my own set of notes on the margins, things I needed to direct others to follow up on.

Saif had been far more helpful than he intended. It would take days to investigate the data and the new leads.

There had been three ships participating in the terrorist pipeline. The Exxon Val Diageo that Saif had used: the Amoco Sea Voyager and the Majestic Sea Horse.

The Exxon and the Amoco were modified while they were getting engine upgrades in Surat India in 2013. That meant that this operation had been going on for 4 years. The Majestic Sea was the new kid on the terrorist pipeline modified in December. She was to replace the Exxon Val Diageo.

The Exxon Val Diageo was to be scrapped after its current voyage due to serious structural problems so bad that it could break apart in a major storm.

The CIA had seized a floating time bomb and it was at anchor off the New Jersey coast. I wondered if the oil had been off loaded. I understood why the owner was not contesting the seizing of the ship by the CIA.

The owner was free and clear of all liability if it broke apart now, free of all salvage cost and free of the cost to transport it to Alang India or Chittagong Bangladesh – the favored scrap yard for dying ships.

Chittagong was the favored site because of the huge tidal changes, as much as 30 feet with a full moon. The wreckers anchored the ships offshore, waiting for a spot on the beach to become open.

When a spot was open, they pumped off all the ballast and ran the lightened ship aground at full speed during high tide, driving it well up on the beach. At low tide hundreds of workers – for pennies a day – with nothing more than sledge hammers and chisels would go about the task of tearing it apart.

Accidents that killed or maimed the workers were often. Several years ago dozens were killed when a cloud of ammonia from a refrigerant line was severed, filling several compartments with the deadly gas. Explosions were a major problem.

I called Frank and asked him if the oil had been off loaded and if he understood what Saif had said.

He did not and was going to call the Coast Guard and Marine engineers to evaluate the ship.

“Frank, you better not waste any time. We are still in hurricane season and a winter nor-easterner could blow up at any time. If that thing breaks apart with a million barrels of crude, you are in big trouble from Virginia to Newfoundland.”

“The hell with the courts and rules! Off load the oil under an emergency directive then fill that thing with ballast and put the money in escrow. The courts can decide what to do with it later. And find someone who knows what they doing so the thing does not break apart in the unloading process,” I said then ended the call.

We were in the landing pattern at the Columbia Metropolitan Airport – just a few minutes from landing – when my phone rang.

Parker Stoddard was the local DHS director for the region. “The SUV is at the airport waiting. After this is over a couple agents that assisted in the raid want the four of us to meet a few minutes. They would not say why,” he said.

“OK, that is no problem,” I replied.

The SUV carried us to one of those Mega churches you see on TV that could seat thousands and park thousands of cars. The SUV dropped us off at the long covered walkway into the church. Parker and other dignitaries were waiting on us as we stepped out of the SUV.

This was a major news day for Columbia; the local and national media was out in force. Reporters, TV cameras and still photographers were everywhere. There were plenty of introductions and handshakes

Without the crowd control tape and the officers lining the walkway, I felt sure we would have been mobbed as we made our way.

The reporters were following along outside of the tape as we walked when one the Columbia police officers snapped to attention and saluted.

I stopped, executed a right face and came to attention and returned the salute.

After wards he said, “ Semper Fi, Ma-am,”

“Semper Fi, Soldier; hang tough, it is going to be a long hard day,” I replied.

“Yes it is Ma-am. Yes it is,” he replied.

We continued into the church and after a few introductions I joined the officers waiting their turn at the standing guard positions. Vicky found a seat in the reserved section. The six flag draped coffins were in a row.

At the head and foot of each coffin was a standing guard. Every three minutes a bell rang and the guard stepped to the next coffin. The process was going to take 40 minutes. Every three minutes a new officer joined the standing guard and one left.

After my turn Parker and the minister escorted me back to see the families. It was the hardest hour emotionally that I had in a long time.

The memorial service was short – all things considered – but there had been one this morning and one in the afternoon to help with the massive crowds.

After the memorial Parker, Vicky, Oliver Hamilton, Skip Brace and I went into a private room for the meeting they wanted.

“Ambassador Jones, Skip and I were the two that captured Saif and put him on a plane alive and well, yet 12 hours later you made a public announcement that he was dead. What gives with that – it looks shady,” Oliver said as serious as he could be.

“You have to understand and agree that this discussion is classified,” I said, to which they agreed.

“Due to the seriousness of the raids and connected events, Saif was subjected to aggressive and enhanced interrogation methods. We just did not feel we could wait weeks and months to get information from him.”

“Those methods were conducted by a handpicked team of specialist from four federal agencies. The interrogation yielded 60 pages of names, dates, places of other terrorist bomb plots, leaders and other valuable leads in the fight to end terrorism,” I said then continued.

“Saif gave up his controller, that’s right; his controller who we believe is over other terror cells and groups in the United States, Mexico and Canada. That controller and his second in command are in custody as we speak.”

“Saif also confirmed who is providing financing for US terrorist operations; a so called respected political figure in the Middle East. A special OPS team is on standby – if the opportunity presents itself – to eliminate that individual.”

“Saif did not survive the interrogation. His body was disposed of and that disposal was witnessed by the individuals of the four agencies. His ashes were sent down the flush. There will be no grave to draw and motivate other terrorists or the media blood-thirst; the same as with the disposal of Bin Laden.”

“Does that answer your concerns?” I asked.

“Yes Ma-am.”

“Good. There shall never be a word, not even a whisper about this conversation ever again. Understood?” I said.

“Yes Ma-am, thank you for clearing that up for us,” Oliver said.

“You may or may not see it on the news tonight but the place where Saif made the suicide vests and bombs was destroyed in a joint operation. It was led by the Army demolition team from Fort Riley, along with the DHS and Minnesota State Police this morning.”

“The Army lost 3 pieces of equipment to IEDs; Saif had planted over 40 at the site,” I said.

“Gentleman, I hate to run but my day is far from over. I hope to get back in a few weeks and hold a formal combined meeting with all the teams that raided the building,” I said.

It still took an hour to get away from the church. So many officials were playing the game of politics, even at a funeral.

Even I didn’t get to escape without a question from the media, “Ambassador Jones, when you stopped on the way in to salute the police officer you addressed him as ‘soldier’. Why?”

“The six men under the flags were all former soldiers. Today in mourning we are all fellow soldiers as I have been and in my heart, shall be forever,” I replied.

The flight was quiet. I was mentally and emotionally exhausted and Vicky must have been too. But then there were still urgent emails to deal with.

My trip must have opened eyes at the White House; there was a lengthy email detailing the administrations involvement in the rest of the memorials and funerals. The Vice President and the Attorney General were going to the rest of them. That suited me just fine.

The hot tub, several Buds, the boys and quiet time together with my mates and a good night’s sleep was what I needed, and was what I got.

Morning still came too early but I was energized and anxious to get to Washington. There was a lot to do with Saif’s information.

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Chapter 483

The games were over by 1700 when we left to go home. There had been a few arrests for weapons and other incidents, but the events finished off a bad day with no new problems.

At Morton Field I picked up the package from the DHS then went to the jail at Camp Smith.

As soon as Saif saw me, it was obvious he knew who I was.

“I demand to see the Saudi Ambassador and to speak to a lawyer under the rules of the Geneva Convention,” he demanded.

“Crimes of terrorism are NOT covered under the amended Geneva Convention charter that was modified after 9-11,” I replied.

“I’m sure you are aware that a tribunal at Gitmo will make those decisions if you live long enough to get there. You could be three years getting a lawyer. You are going to start answering questions for me in a day or two,” I said.

“I will answer no questions. You are wasting your time,” he replied.

“We shall see,” I replied.

I turned to the cell Rafi Quastri was in, “Are you ready to answer questions?”

“Why should I? You have nothing on me.” he replied.

“I know a lot more about you than you think; all of it is bad enough for you to die. How well do you stand in with the Crown Prince Sultan al-Zahab? You took a lot of orders from him; will he bail you out or watch you die one little piece at a time?” I asked.

“He will negotiate; I am a blood relative,” he replied.

‘That offers all kinds of possibilities’ I thought as I turned and walked away.

At home I walked through the tunnel to the command center and then to Robert’s office. I placed Saif’s computer and phone on his desk with a note. Robert was coming in for a while in the morning to look and see what was on them.

The hot tub and several bottles of cold beer, a late supper was what it took to relax me and then precious time with my mates and little boys.

Tomorrow we were going to have our family Thanksgiving dinner. Because of all the activity, Lisa and Mom has agreed to postpone it on Thursday.

I had a bothered sleep. My mind just would not stop turning; so many things that had happened in the last few days. Also there was the loss of so many of the SWAT team members.

Breakfast was a modest affair; after all, there was going to be enough food to feed an army in a few hours. I helped the girls set up the garage with tables and chairs.

There were already a dozen crock pots on tables cooking all kinds of delicious things, according to the scents.

After everything was set up and cooking, there was no more that I could do. Mom had run me out of the kitchen twice as it was.

I went to the Morton restaurant and picked out breakfast for the inmates, apples, oranges and bananas. I also had the cook fix them eggs and steak. I also placed a clean orange jump suit, underwear, socks, towel and washcloth.

Back home I went to the office and tried to catch up on emails – and there were plenty.

I had a list of the services for the agents killed in the raids; the list had the complete information. The first one was Columbia Monday afternoon. The four DHS agents and the Columbia PD officers memorial service was going to be a joint service.

Two were Tuesday- one mid-morning and the other mid-afternoon – and two on Wednesday with the final one on Thursday.

I was saddened at all the officer deaths. But to read that all six at Columbia had been former military and were younger than 35, hit me especially hard. From the DHS side, two were Air Force and two were Marines. The two from the PD were Army.

There was a contact number for more information; I called and talked with the DHS agent who was handling the formalities and asked if I could participate in the standing guard.

I spent a few minutes with Robert and Burt; they were both working on the phone and laptop.

There were eight numbers in Saif’s phone; the six leaders, Rafi Quastri and Crown Prince Sultan al-Zahab. There were no text messages.

Robert was working on the computer, “It’s going to take a while, there is a lot of encryption.”

“Quit whenever you are ready, take a break; you have been busting ass for weeks. Take the rest of the weekend off, come join us for turkey. We have plenty, this will wait.

Our delayed Thanksgiving meal was superb as all the special meals were when the Moms had done the cooking. And then there were the deserts that had to be put off for at least an hour.

I made three plates and took them to Camp Smith with plastic utensils. This would be Saif’s last meal. The Doc, Eric, Frank and Marty Coeburn were coming at 9. I had told them to have all their questions written down, that this was the one time and only interrogation session there would be.

Men from the Rapid Response team were in the camp to make sure nothing happened.

The family outing together lasted until after dark. Jake and Mindy were the last to go home.

Mindy, Lorrie and Ching Lee were comparing baby craving symptoms and making plans. Jenny was leading on with the things to come.

The three were working out in the gym with an exercise program approved by the baby doc to keep the weight gains within reason and were comparing notes. There was no doubt that fun times were coming with those three girls.

With all of us on the floor in the living room, including the two little boys, we had an evening of family bonding. Of course the two little boys were more interested in finding Jenny’s nipples. Sometimes any visible nipple was fair game.

They were hungry all the time even though they devouring baby food by the case. They were also active, always on the move and into something.

I slept much better of course with Jenny’s arms wrapped around me holding me so tight I could barely breathe. That may have had something to do with it. We both woke up early, managed to get dressed and sneak out without waking the boys.

We would know immediately when they were up; they had learned that aggressively rattling the sides of the crib brought someone or everyone quickly.

Breakfast was well under way when they started shaking the crib. Clean diapers and in high chairs, breakfast became an experience. We were putting pieces of fried eggs, bacon, sausage and sugar smacks on their little plates.

As always it was a spectacle with the different faces and expressions with the different foods. Then there was always the clean up after the fun.

At 0845 Vicky and I went to Camp Smith to help the Doc get the equipment set up. We had barely finished when the rest of the group arrived.

Eric, Frank, Marty, and Ben Smith walked into the medical building.

“Why in the world did they bring squeamish Ben Smith?” I wondered.

Eric, Vicky and I carried Saif to the medical building; he was resisting all the way. Stripped down and an adult diaper on, it took all of us to strap him tightly to the table.

It took the Doc 10 minutes to get all the monitoring equipment hooked up. Then I started with my questions after Saif got the first dose.

It took two more doses before Saif decided it was better to answer questions. For the next six hours we took turns asking questions from our notes. Then we compared notes and asked more.

It took one more dose to finishing off the questions. The last dose took all the fire out of Saif; one more dose would have killed him. I didn’t want him to die that way.

I opened the bag of tools I had brought. When I was a teenager I had worked one summer at a dairy/feedlot where they grew beef cows. Dad and Jake had talked me into it.

Dad had grown up on a big working farm; Grandpa sold the farm when I was little. I had a few memories of it.

One of the things I had to do was to help castrate the males for beef; they grew faster and lost their meanness.

The tools allowed the testicles to be removed and the steer not to bleed to death. They were stainless steel and looked a little like over grown tree pruners, only one side had vein crushers with two different angles of serrations that had to be positioned towards the bull’s body. The serrations crushed and crimped the veins to stop bleeding.

The process went like this, the soon-to-be steers was herded into a corral and then locked into a portable stanchion one at a time. The farmer and his son arched the tail over the steer’s back. That position of the tail paralyzed the rear legs so the steer could not kick – or so they said and I had not seen one kick while held that way.

Crouched behind the steer while they held the tail, I had to cut the bottom of the scrotum to allow drainage as the castration healed. I used a scalpel called a little beaver.

Once the bottom was cut off, I pulled one testicle down – and making sure the tool was in the right direction – squeezed the handles tight and held it for 30 seconds to make sure the crimps did their job. The testicles went into a bucket. Then the process was repeated with the other testicle. The final thing was to splash a mixture of disinfectant on the cuts.

The testicles were thrown into a bucket. The farmer said they would be soaked in salt water for a while. They would then be sliced and batter dipped, then fried for supper. I never believed him but made sure I was gone by supper time.

When I was in an Afghanistan village, the women were talking when no men were around about how to destroy a man that was vile and mean to the village women. This was a village that was women dominate; the men were greatly out numbered because the men were with the Taliban and off fighting or killed. The men also rotated out to the mountain training camps.

They would drug his food with poppy mush; it that was a form of raw heroin that made him sick. The few men in the village would leave to go work the poppy fields or corn fields.

The women would castrate and remove his cock making him useless. He would be delirious under the drug that he would be fed for several days. The first thing it did was made them mellow, it also meant that he would be denied his virgins if he died without those body parts. It was the promise of Mohammad that a man was to get at death.

With the tools I removed Saif’ testicles and put them in a mason jar to go on my office shelf with the jar from the Prince. With a newer style castration tool and a hot knife, he lost his cock and it joined the testicles in the jar to be filled with alcohol. Every time he passed out an ammonia capsule brought him back.

“No virgins for you,” I told him. The look in his eyes told me he understood.

A capsule did not help Ben; he needed a trash can.

All of us went back to the chipper; I wanted to make sure that Ben helped to guarantee he kept quiet about what went on.

Before Saif was put in the feeder trough I put a large nylon tie strap at crotch level on each leg and pulled them as tight as I could to act as tourniquets.

It took two capsules to bring him around again as I lifted his head and shoved a log under it so he could see the chipper feed rolls.

“This is for all the innocent people you have killed,” I said and then started the chipper.

I pushed the feed lever until his feet were gone, then reversed it, showing him no feet. Two more capsules brought him back again and then he went in to the waist.

Ben was dry heaving off to the side.

Four more capsules this time to wake him, and then I pushed the auto feed button and watched as Saif disappeared.

The water was churning in the pond as the catfish were in a feeding frenzy.

“Saif is dead. Does everyone agree on that?” I said.

All of us loaded the trough with gallons of bleach and firewood. By the time we were finished, the catfish had finished and were gone.

Thirty minutes later twenty gallons of bleach and 10,000 gallons of water finished the clean up.

“I am not going to be in the office tomorrow. I will be in Minnesota in the morning and Columbia, South Carolina after lunch,” I told the group then added, “the Doc will be here Tuesday at 5 to interrogate the assistant and Rafi Quastri.”

“The four of you should be here,” I replied then added, “Ben, the second time will be easier on your stomach.”

Edit by Alfmeister

Proof read by Bob W.

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