“During the Olympics, Australia has six planes in the sky at all times ready to intercept any wayward aircraft.”
Is Australia playing down terrorism, again? I suspect they did so in regards to Al Queda targeting the Lucus Heights nuclear plant during the Sydney Olympics. A year before 911 officials were looking at this possibility;
“A fully loaded, fueled airliner crashing into the opening ceremony before a worldwide television audience at the Sydney Olympics is one of the greatest security fears for the Games.”
Below is my letter from Gary M. Bald who assured me there were no arrests or trial in regards to terrorist threat to Olympics in Sydney in 2000, a year before 911.
May 28, 2004
“Dear Mr. Presco
By letter dated April 22nd,
Congressman Peter DeFazio forwarded your April 9th. e-mail regarding an alleged threat to the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, to the FBI’s Office of Congressional Affairs. Your inquiry was referred to my office because your concerns fall within the purview of the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division. We appreciate the interest which prompted you to write. Regarding your concerns that members of “Al-Qaeda were released after being caught with plans to blow up a nuclear plant, “near the site of the 2000 Summer Olympic Games, I can assure you that the Australian and U.S. authorities aggressively investigated initial report of this potential threat. However, it was later determined that no threat existed.
Additionally, contrary to media accounts, no arrests were made because no crime was committed. The security for the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games was very well organized and communication with the U.S. Government was unprecedented. I hope this information is helpful to you and will serve to allay some of your concerns.
Gary M. Bald
Assistant Director Counterterrorism Division.
1 -Honorable Peter DeFazio U.S.
House of Representatives Washington, DC 20515
March, 2000: Possible Plot Against Sydney Olympics Foiled; Afghan Suspects May Be Linked to Bin Laden
During a raid on a suspected people-smuggling ring in Auckland, New Zealand, police stumble upon evidence of an apparent plot to blow up a nuclear reactor during the upcoming Sydney Olympics (see also September 15-October 1, 2000). A house used by Afghan refugees contains a map of Sydney highlighting a nuclear reactor in the suburb of Lucas Heights and detailing access and exit roads. In another house, police find a notebook with information relating to the counterterrorism tactics used by New Zealand police. [CNN, 8/26/2000; BBC, 8/26/2000; New Zealand Herald, 8/26/2000] The New Zealand Herald reports that some suspects may be linked to Osama bin Laden. [New Zealand Herald, 9/9/2000] However, no one is charged with terror-related crimes and a later report will find that immigration fraud charges against two Afghan refugees have been dropped. [New Zealand Herald, 5/25/2002; New Zealand Herald, 5/27/2002]
Olympics officials later reveal, “A fully loaded, fueled airliner crashing into the opening ceremony before a worldwide television audience at the Sydney Olympics is one of the greatest security fears for the Games.” During the Olympics, Australia has six planes in the sky at all times ready to intercept any wayward aircraft. In fact, “IOC officials [say] the scenario of a plane crash during the opening ceremony was uppermost in their security planning at every Olympics since terrorists struck in Munich in 1972.” bin Laden is considered the number-one threat. [Sydney Morning Herald, 9/20/2001] These security measures are similar to those used in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and other events, including Clinton’s second inauguration. Similar planning is already underway before 9/11 for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Utah. [Wall Street Journal, 4/1/2004]
vi) You are a nation that exploits women like consumer products or advertising tools calling upon customers to purchase them. You use women to serve passengers, visitors, and strangers to increase your profit margins. You then rant that you support the liberation of women.
“The trial had earlier been told how Hambali provided Roche with access to al-Qaeda officials including Osama bin Laden, and how he travelled to Afghanistan via Pakistan to meet them. The notes of these meetings described how al-Qaeda had agreed to have three white Australian Muslims undertake firearms and explosives training in Afghanistan, while Roche co-ordinated operations in Australia.”
“Gary M. Bald Named Executive Assistant Director for Counterterrorism and Counterintelligence
Al-Qaeda targeted Olympics, By Martin Daly in Perth May 20, 2004
Al-Qaeda planned an attack during the Sydney Olympics and to target the Jewish community, according to notes revealed during the trial of an Australian man accused of plotting to bomb the Israeli embassy in Canberra. A notebook seized from Jack Roche’s Perth home in 2002 describes in Indonesian how al-Qaeda leaders in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Malaysia planned the attacks. The Melbourne Jewish leader, businessman and football identity Joseph Gutnick was identified as an
The notebook says the goal is to have a “heavy” impact on the Jewish community in hit-and-run attacks.Roche, 52, has pleaded not guilty in Perth District Court to conspiring with senior al-Qaeda figures Mukhtar, Abu Hafs and Saifto plant a
truck bomb outside the Canberra embassy in 2000, shortly after returning from explosives training at an al-Qaeda camp near Kandahar.
Indrawati Zifirdaus, an interpreter from Curtin University, yesterday read out an English translation she made from the 20-page notebook. In it, Roche describes meetings with al-Qaeda officials and Jemaah Islamiah figurehead
Hambali, and how they wanted the problems in Palestine to “be submitted again in the minds of the people of theworld”.
“I met Hambali and we discussed about the possibility to do something in Sydney, during the Olympic Games there, this year,” the notes read.”The main objective here is that this operation will not only bedone once but . . . we will do
something again and disappear. Their decision is two important targets in Australia – Israel embassyand/or Jews named Joe Gutnick.””I also need to find other Jewish targets . . . for example when there is a meeting of a lot of
The trial had earlier been told how Hambali provided Roche with access to al-Qaeda officials including Osama bin Laden, and how he travelled to Afghanistan via Pakistan to meet them. The notes of these meetings described how al-Qaeda had agreed to have three white Australian Muslims undertake firearms and explosives training in Afghanistan, while Roche co-ordinated operations in Australia.
The conspiracy between Roche and al-Qaeda is alleged to have occurred between February 15 and September 30, 2000. Earlier, Jacqueline Anne Wood, the former partner of Roche’s son, told the court that while staying in Roche’s Sydney flat, she found two books, one titled Terrorist Handbook and the other
How to make a bomb.
The trial continues
Australian prime minister an enthusiastic promoter of the WMD fraud By Nick Beams5 June 2003;While the spotlight has been focused on the Bush and Blair regimes for their role in weaving the web of lies over Iraq’s “weapons of mass
destruction”, attention should also be directed to the Howard government in Australia. When it came to promoting bogus threats and circulating outright lies no one was more vociferous than the Australian prime minister. The New York Times columnist Paul Krugman recently remarked that “misrepresentation and deception
are standard operating procedure” for the Bush administration. The same could
equally besaid of the Howard government. After a campaign of lies and deception
targeting refugees during its re-election campaign in 2001—the Tampa crisis and
the so-called “children overboard” affair—the government eagerly joined the Bush
administration’s war drive against Iraq, initiated in July-August 2002.On July
16 last, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer proclaimed that the world should be
worried about Iraq’s ability to build a nuclearbomb, as well as its developing
chemical and biological weaponscapacity. Defence Minister Robert Hill said he
was “not surprised”by claims that Iraq was less than three years away from
In September 2002, Mr. Bald was named Special Agent in Charge of the Baltimore Division, where he had responsibility for all FBI activities in the states of Maryland and Delaware. In that assignment he oversaw the FBI’s efforts in the Washington-area sniper investigation in the fall of 2002.
Washington, D.C. October 29, 2004
FBI National Press Office (202) 324-3691
Washington D.C. – Director Robert S. Mueller, III, is pleased to announce the appointment of Gary M. Bald as Executive Assistant Director (EAD) for Counterterrorism and Counterintelligence. Mr. Bald currently serves as Assistant Director of the Counterterrorism Division and previously served as the Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Baltimore field office.
Director Mueller said, “Gary Bald has led our counterterrorism efforts through two periods of heightened threat. He has moved forward our reengineering efforts to improve our ability to prevent terrorist attacks. And under his leadership, our counterterrorism efforts have become more proactive, intelligence driven, and integrated with our partners than ever before. I look forward to working with Gary as he continues the important work of our top two priority programs.”