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Drug Cartels, Managed Violence and the Russian 9/11, Part 2
February 2, 2006

by Peter Dale Scott

Kahshoggi & The Meta-Group







[Satya Center is proud to present the second part of author Peter Dale Scott's ground-breaking article on The Global Drug Meta Group, a lengthy investigation of the role of international drug dealers, intelligence services from major powers, Russian bankers and powerful global businessmen in the perpetuation of the global trade in heroin and international terrorism.

Scott reveals that drug dealers enjoy close relations with influential international bankers, weapons merchants, intelligence agents and military officers whose web of interconnecting interests can only be described as a "cartel".

Scott reveals that these drug cartels play a pivotal role in international relations, shaping the geo-strategic landscape in their own best interests while attracting  political and military leaders of major countries around the world into partnerships of convenience designed to further the ideological, military and economic interests of the elites in those countries.

This series of articles focuses on the individuals connected to one global drug cartel, dubbed the Global Drug Meta Group by Scott, and describes a meeting at billionaire Saudi Arabian arms merchant Adnan Kashshoggi's villa in 1999 that arguably laid the groundwork for the terrorist bombings in Moscow called "The Russian 9/11", which triggered massive escalation of the war in Chechnya.

Read Part One of this Series for essential background information!]

.......................................

Adnan Khashoggi's Interest in Chechnya

Just as Boris Berezovskii was at one point the richest man in Russia, so Adnan Khashoggi was once (according to his American biographer) "The Richest Man in the World." At one point indeed Khashoggi had an influence in American politics analogous to Berezovskii's in Russia. For example, Khashoggi attended both Nixon inaugurals and contributed money to his electoral campaigns. He admitted to giving $58,000 in 1968, but allegedly told Pierre Salinger he gave $1 million in 1972. [28] He also arranged a fund-raising event for Jimmy Carter's Center in Plains, Georgia, an event which probably originated in both men's connections to the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI). [29]

Khashoggi is usually thought of as an arms salesman. Although he has never been directly linked to the drug traffic, he was intimately involved in the affairs of the drug- laundering bank BCCI, with which he arranged an arms shipment as part of Oliver North's dealings in Iran-Contra.[30] He also became notorious for flying into Las Vegas from abroad and then rapidly losing vast sums of cash at the casino tables – a traditional form of money-laundering. [31] His name has surfaced in connection with a number of other scandals, from the illicit real estate ventures of the Marcos family in New York to a major defrauding of a Thai bank in 1998, which was followed by the Asian financial crisis of that year.

Khashoggi had had a financial interest in Chechnya, and connections with its leaders, since 1996, from his participation in a consortium called Caucasian Common Market AO. This was designed to raise $3 billion in the West and Japan for investment in Chechnya. [32] A principal organizer was former Chechen First Deputy Premier Khozh-Akhmed Nukhaev, in conjunction with Lord McAlpine of the Goldsmith family interests in London, and also American capital. [33] But according to the late Paul Klebnikov, Nukhaev had a background in Chechen organized crime, before developing "a radical ideology in line with the one espoused by Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network." [34]

Despite this background, Nukhaev found support and financing in Washington for his Caucasian-American Chamber of Commerce. According to once source, in 1997 Khashoggi introduced Nukhaev to former Secretary of State James Baker. [35]

However Dunlop's inquiry is focused, not on Khashoggi, but on Berezovskii and his representative Voloshin in the Kremlin:

In March of 2002 Interfax reported that, through his long-time business partner Badri Patarkatsishvili, Berezovskii had "supplied Chechen figures Kazbek Makhashev and Movladi Udugov with money to purchase the raid against Dagestan. According to witnesses, Berezovskii contributed 30 million rubles for the purpose." This payment, amounting to more than $1 million, if it occurred, may have been only one of several intended to underwrite a "short victorious war" in Dagestan. [See, "Berezovskii Sponsored Dagestan Raid, Top Policeman's Abduction -- Prosecutors," Interfax, 5 March 2002.]

A well-known journalist for RFE-RL, Andrei Babitskii, who frequently visited Chechnya during this period and was acquainted with a number of leading separatists, writes that he can confirm that Berezovskii did indeed speak by telephone with both Basaev and Movladi Udugov at this juncture. [See Andrei Babibitskii, "Na voine," hro.org, 2 March 2004].

Dunlop is not alone in suspecting the hand of Berezovskii behind Voloshin's meeting with Basaev. So does Cockburn's source Boris Kagarlitskii (about whom we shall have more to say). [36] The Russian observer Lilia Shevtsova reports a rumor at this time that Berezovskii himself, along with his agent Alexander Voloshin, had met in France with Bazayev in the summer of 1999, just before the Dagestan invasion of August 2. [37]

Dunlop's Redactions of His Source Yasenev

Though he says nothing more about Khashoggi or drugs, Dunlop does however make one more reference to the alleged drug-money launderer Alfonso Davidovich:

"It soon emerged," Versiya continued, "that a very frequent visitor to Davidovich was a certain French businessman of Israeli-Soviet origin, a native of Sokhumi [Abkhazia], 53-year-old Yakov Kosman. Soon Kosman brought with him six persons who arrived via Austria carrying Turkish passports. [38] In one of the passports the French [authorities] identified a certain Tsveiba, who is accused by the Tbilisi authorities of having committed genocide during the Georgia-Abkhaz conflict." All of the visitors settled into the villa for a three weeks' stay.

"Soon," the account continues, "the special services succeeded in establishing that Kosman and Tsveiba went to the Nice airport, where they met two men who had arrived from Paris. Judging from their documents, one of those who arrived was Sultan Sosnaliev, who in the years of the Georgian-Abkhaz war served as the minister of defense of Abkhazia. Second there emerged from the airport one more native of Sokhumi -- Anton Surikov. According to rumors, during the years of the war in Abkhazia, he was subordinated to Sosnaliev and was responsible for questions of the organization of sabotage and was friendly with field commander Shamil' Basaev, who at that time headed the Chechen battalion."

The next arrival came by sea: "According to the precise information of the French and the Israelis, on 3 July at the port of Beaulieu a private English yacht 'Magiya' [Magic] arrived from Malta. From it to the shore came two passengers. If one is to believe the passport information, one of the 'Englishmen' was a certain Turk, in the past an advisor to the Islamicist premier of Turkey, [Necmettin] Erbakan, a rather influential figure in the Wahhabi circles of Turkey, the Middle East, and the Caucasus. From sources in the Russian special services we learned that Mekhmet is also a close friend of the not unknown Khattab."

"The second person," the account goes on, "to the surprise of the intelligence officers, was the Chechen field commander Shamil' Basaev. Kosman is reported in the same 17 December 2004 issue of compromat.ru, to live in Nice and to possess German and, possibly, Israeli citizenship.

[On Sosnaliev as Abkhazia's defense minister, see RFE-RL Newsline, 2 November 1993.

On Erbakan, see Shireen T. Hunter, Islam in Russia: The Politics of Identity and Security (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2004), p. 365.]

Dunlop's cited source for information about both Davidovich and Kosman is an article by Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), on a Russian website, ru.compromat. [39] But Dunlop has significantly edited, one must even say censored, what Yasenev wrote.

In footnote 111 Dunlop says:

“The article "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya," compromat.ru, 17 December 2004 reports that Davidovich lives in Munich and enjoys both German and Venezuelan citizenship. He is also said to be personally acquainted with international arms dealer Khashoggi.”

Thus radically curtailing Yasenev's description of Davidovich:

“Alfonso Davidovich – (1948), Venezuelan, lives in Munich. Has German and Venezuelan citizenship. Speaks Spanish, English, French, German, and Russian fluently. In the 1970s went through special training in the USSR (Privol'noe, Nikolaevskaya oblast) and East Germany. Owns companies and banks in Barbados, the Caymans and other off-shores. Has friendly relations with Hugo Chavez, and is acquainted with Fidel Castro, Marcus Wolf and Adnan Khashoggi. Has many contacts in Colombia, including FARC. In 1999 Davidovich was alleged to have engaged in arms trafficking for guerillas in Chiapas, Mexico and in money laundering for the Colombian drug mafia. Finances antiglobalization movement in Europe and Latin America." [40]

With respect to Yakov Kosman, Dunlap says: "Kosman is reported in the same 17 December 2004 issue of compromat.ru, to live in Nice and to possess German and, possibly, Israeli citizenship."

Compare this with what Yasenev wrote:

Yakov Abramovich Kosman (b. 1946), resides in Nice, France. Has German and, possibly, Israeli citizenship. Involved in real estate operations and banking. Has contacts with Kosovo Albanian criminal societies in European countries. In 1997-2000 he served as financial consultant to Hashim Thaçi, the chief commander of KLA." [41]

Consider that "In 1998, the U.S. State Department listed the KLA – formally known as the Ushtria Clirimtare e Kosoves, or UCK – as an international terrorist organization, saying it had bankrolled its operations with proceeds from the international heroin trade and from loans from known terrorists like Osama bin Laden." [42]

The Khashoggi Villa Meeting, Drugs, and Kosovo

It would appear that Davidovich and Kosman were in Khashoggi's villa to talk about more than just Chechnya, but that Dunlop did not wish to explore this possibility. For example, he acknowledges the presence of no less than four men of Abkhazian origin and/or influence at the meeting – Kosman, Tsveiba, Sosnaliev, and Surikov -- and yet offers no explanation whatsoever for their presence. (A glance at a map will show that Abkhazia is irrelevant to the subsequent events in Dagestan and Chechnya.)

It seems likely that a drug-route was discussed involving Abkhazia, which now "has become a key heroin transiting point." [43] Its drug-trafficking importance is noted by none other than Surikov himself:

“In general then, the Chechen [drug-trafficking] group has allotted a very important place to Abkhazia in its plans. This is due firstly to the strong position of local field commanders after the end of the Georgian/Abkhazian conflict....Secondly...a large number of `volunteers' [notably Basaev] came from Chechnia and other North Caucasian republics....Amongst these people were a number of criminals whose presence facilitated later contacts with local undesirables....As a result of these developments Abkhazia today is one of the most criminalised areas of the former Soviet Union.” [44]

Note that in this passage Surikov makes no reference to his own Abkhazian origin, his involvement as a GRU officer in the Russian-backed Abkhazian insurrection, and his friendship there with Basaev (referred to by Dunlop). Here and elsewhere in his text it would appear that the "Chechen group" he describes is one overseen by his own meta-group.

Russian observers have pointed out that the meeting(s) in France, which took place in June and/or July 1999, came shortly after the unexpected entry of Russian troops into Kosovo.

On June 11, 1999, 200 Russian troops in SFOR drove from Bosnia to Prishtina and secured Slatina airport. Gen Wesley Clark then ordered [UK] Gen. Sir Mike Jackson (who on June 9 had signed technical agreement for withdrawal of Yugoslav troops from Kosovo) "to seize the airport. Jackson responded, famously, that he would not start World War Three for him". [45]

Following two days of talks directly between Clinton and Yeltsin, the crisis was averted.

Instead there followed weeks of "protracted negotiations on Russia's role in the Kosovo peacekeeping mission." [46] In the end, under circumstances still not fully understood, the United States and NATO agreed that the Russians could stay.

The Russian troops finally withdrew from the airport in July 2003. [47] Significantly, a chart of Russian drug-trafficking prepared by one of Surikov's partners, Sergei Petrov, indicates that in 2003 Kosovo ceased to be a main point of export for Russian drugs, its place being taken by the Black Sea oil port of Novorossiysk. [48]

Within a year of the troops' arrival, by 2000, according to DEA statistics, Afghan heroin accounted for almost 20 percent of the heroin seized in the United States – nearly double the percentage taken four years earlier. Much of it was now distributed in America by Kosovar Albanians. [49]

It is significant therefore that:

The `Pristina dash' by Russian parachutists in 1999 during the Kosovo crisis (the purpose of the `dash' was to force NATO to guarantee for Russia a separate sector of responsibility in Kosovo) was organized by the head of the General Staff, Anatoly Kvashnin, and his deputy, Leonid Ivashov, without the knowledge of minister of defense Igor Sergeyev and most likely without Yeltsin's knowledge. [50]

Yasenev says nothing about this, but does assert that Kvashnin was the Russian Army connection of two leading drug traffickers (Vladimir Filin andAlexey Likhvintsev) in the Saidov-Surikov group.

……………

[27]Khashoggi's connections to U.S. intelligence date back to his involvement in Lockheed payoffs to Saudi politicians in the 1960s. These tended to overlap with CIA patterns of corruption; and the USAF actually ran a similar program with Lockheed, "code-named 'Operation Buttercup' that operated out of Norton Air Force Base in California from 1965 to 1972" (San Francisco Chronicle, 10/24/73, 22)." For the pattern of Lockheed payoffs tracking the CIA's, see Anthony Sampson, The Arms Bazaar (New York: Viking, 1977), 134, 227-8, 238.

[28] Anthony Summers with Robbyn Swann, The Arrogance of Power: The Secret World of Richard Nixon (New York: Viking, 2000), 283.

[29]Peter Truell and Larry Gurwin, False Profits: The Inside Story of BCCI, the World's Most Corrupt Financial Empire (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1992), 84.

[30]Robert Parry, Secrecy & Privilege: Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq (Arlington, VA: Media Consortium, 2004), 136, 139. A Portuguese newspaper article alleged that Khashoggi was a director of BCCI, and this claim has often been repeated. The best sources confirm only Khashoggi's profitable arms deals with the bank as co-investor, and his cousin Yassin's participation in a BCCI affiliate, Hong Kong Deposit and Guaranty (Truell and Gurwin, False Profits, 108-09, 129, 135-38).

[31] Ron Kessler, The Richest Man in the World , 181-83.

[32]"Separatism, Islam and Oil," . Cf. "The tendencies of interregional and international integration in North Caucasia," Caucasian Knot, eng.kavkaz.memo.ru/reginfotext/ engreginfo/id/560578.html: "One of the projects of Caucasian integration is called "Caucasian Common Market". It was offered in 1997 by Chechen politicians with the support of the western states – USA and Great Britain. This project is on the stage of implementation: in Georgia a branch of Caucasian Common Market is established, a company for insurance of foreign investments is established, an industrial construction consortium "Caucasus" is organised that apart from renovation of the port Poti plans to construct motorways and railways in Chechnya. The executive bodies of Caucasian Common Market are also represented in Baku. Caucasian-American chamber of commerce and as part of it Caucasian investment fund were organised in the USA. These organisations are going to collect 3 billion USD as the initial capital for the projects of Caucasian Common Market."

[33] Jamestown Foundation, Monitor, Vol. 3, Issue 206, 11/4/97. Another interested party before his tragic death with Princess Diana was Dodi al-Fayad, the owner of Harrod's and Khashoggi's nephew.

[34] AFP, "From criminal to Islamist: US journalist traces the life of a Chechen rebel," JRL 7252, 7/16/03, http://www.cdi.org/russia/johnson/7252-17.cfm#top. Nukhaev's criminal background was known in the West before his dealings with Lord McAlpine and (allegedly) James Baker. See A. Zhilin, " The Shadow of Chechen Crime over Moscow," Jamestown Foundation, 3/22/96, search=1&volume_id=3&issue_id=128&article_id=15.27; Paul Klebnikov, Razgovor S Varvarom Besedy S Chechenskim Polevym Komandirom Khozhakhmedom Nukhaevym O Banditizme I Islame (Talks with a Barbarian). . This background did not deter Margaret Thatcher from posing in a photograph with Nukhaev.

[35] "Caucasian diamond traffic" (Moscow, 2005), http://www.civilresearch.org/pdf/7.pdf: "In spring 1997 Adnan Khashoggi introduced Hozh-Ahmed Nukhaev to James Baker."

[36] Boris Kagarlitskii, "S terroristami ne razgovarivaem. No pomogaem?" Novaya gazeta, 24 January 2000; Boris Kagarlitskii, trans. Olga Kryazheva, "We Don't Talk To Terrorists. But We Help Them? A version of apartment explosions in Russia," Novaya Gazeta, 1/24/00, ).

[37] See Lilia Shevtsova, translated by Antonina Bouis, Putin's Russia (Washington: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 2003), 279, fn 15; citing Profil', 11/27/00, 18-20.

[38] For the complex story of Turkish involvement in the Chechen War, see e.g. "Turkey and the Chechens," BBC News, 3/16/01;. Hunter, Islam in Russia, 362-71.

[39] Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), .

[40] Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), ru.compromat. This and other discrepancies between Dunlop and his source Yasenev were first pointed out by the Russian research group burtsev.ru at http://left.ru/2005/10/burtsev127.html .

[41] Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), ru.compromat..

[42] "KLA Funding Tied To Heroin Profits," Washington Times, 5/3/99.

[43]SIDA/Cornell Caspian Consulting, "The South Caucasus: A Regional Overview," 2002, http://www.cornellcaspian.com/sida/sida-cfl-2.html.

[44] Anton Surikov, Crime in Russia, 38-39.

[45]Tim Judah, Kosovo: War and Revenge (New Haven: Yale UP, 2002), 279, 284-85.

[46] Toronto Sun, 6/27/99.

[47] Pravda.ru, 7/3/03, http://english.pravda.ru/world/20/91/365/10389_peacekeepers.html.

[48] The map was allegedly shown by Surikov's partner Sergei Petrov to a Russian businessman in Geneva while discussing a drug deal (http://www.compromat.ru/main/surikov/a.htm).

[49] Peter Klebnikov, "Heroin Heroes," Mother Jones, January/February 2000, ; Peter Dale Scott, "Deep Politics: Drugs, Oil, Covert Operations and Terrorism," http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~pdscott/911Background.htm.

[50] Shevtsova, Putin's Russia, 285, fn. 11.

The Russian Connections






The Role of Anton Surikov: The Dunlop and Yasenev Versions

As we have seen, Dunlop describes Anton Surikov, the organizer of the Beaulieu meeting between Voloshin and Basaev, as "a retired officer in the GRU." He fails to quote from his source Yasenev's description of Surikov:

“Anton Victorovich Surikov (b. 1961). Presents himself as political scientist. Responsible for informational and political projects. Actively publishes in press. Some of his publications resemble ciphered directives to the elements in Russian special services disloyal [emphasis added] to President Vladimir Putin. His other articles contain political messages intended for abroad. Surikov has contacts with F[ritz] Ermarth, former leading CIA analyst of the USSR and Russia, now in the Nixon Foundation....[51]

Surikov has close relations with Alexander Prokhanov and Alexander Nagorny [respectively, chief editor and assistant chief editor of newspaper "Zavtra"], Anatoly Baranov [chief editor of Pravda.info and KPRF.ru], Mikhail Delyagin, [52] former advisor to Mikhail Kasyanov [53], Alexei Kondaurov (head of YUKOS security department, former general of KGB and FSB, State Duma deputy from CPRF), Ilya Ponomarev (former YUKOS CEO, CPRF).

In 2002-03, together with Kondaurov–who represented Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Leonid Nevzlin – Surikov, with the help of Victor Vidmanov, organized financing of CPRF by YUKOS shareholders and the individuals associated with OPS [the organized criminal society] (Yakov Kosman, Nikolai Lugovskoi) to the tune of $15 million.”

Boris Kagarlitskii's essay and Yasenev's memo, taken from intelligence files, talk about Surikov, but from opposing perspectives. Kagarlitskii, a longtime dissident and foe of Putin, saw the Beaulieu meeting as the venue for Kremlin-instigated violence, designed to restore the Kremlin's popularity before the coming election. Yasenev's memo sees Surikov as part of an on-going effort to destabilize Russia, and weaken the Kremlin.

Kagarlitskii (and after him Dunlop) say almost nothing about Surikov, other than to refer to his past years with Russian military intelligence, the GRU.

Kagarlitskii notes: "During Primakov's time, Surikov worked on the staff of the government of the Russian Federation. Despite this fact, he also developed regular work relations with Voloshin's people." It seems therefore quite likely that Surikov and Voloshin were personally acquainted. [54]

However Yasenev's memo in December 2004 links Surikov, not to the government or Kremlin, but (through Kondaurov) to the sphere of the man who by that time had emerged as America's best friend and Putin's most powerful enemy in Russia, the oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovskii.

(The Kondaurov-Khodorkovskii connection is abundantly documented: both men freely admit it.)

Forbes magazine, which underwrote Klebnikov's damning accounts of both Berezovskii and Nukhaev, wrote on March 18, 2002 that Khodorkovskii appeared "to be the West's best friend" in Russia.

According to PBS in 2003, Khodorkovskii's firm Menatep shared business interests with the western investment firms Global Asset Management, the Blackstone Group, the Carlyle Group and AIG Capital Partners. In addition:

“He [Khodorkovskii] frequently travels to the United States. He reportedly dined with Condoleezza Rice last year and recently was a guest at Herb Allen's Idaho ranch, along with Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and other luminaries, for an annual telecommunications executives meeting.” [55]

Quoting from an anti-Yeltsin essay of May 1999 by Surikov in Versiya, the American right-wing Jamestown Foundation agrees with Yasenev (against Kagarlitskii) that "Surikov is clearly in the camp of Yeltsin's opponents." [56] More recently Surikov has also shown himself to be anti-Putin, criticizing Putin's "obvious inability ... to struggle against terrorism effectively." [57]

Furthermore Surikov clearly had western support in his opposition to government corruption under Yeltsin. We need only look to the following description of a Surikov book published in London:

Crime in Russia: the international implications, by Anton Surikov, London Defence Studies:

Examines (1) the growth of organized crime in post-Soviet Russia (2) the extraordinary extent to which the Colombian cartel has targeted Russia as a conduit for its penetration of the world market (3) the scale of drug-trafficking in Russia, predominantly by the 'Chechen group' controlled by the Dudayev regime. [58] The author's interesting career details are set out on a prelim page. The monograph is introduced by Jonathan Aves (lecturer in Russian studies at the University of Sussex) 'Introduction' pp1-6, 12 refs, detailing both the scale of the problem and Surikov's background expertise. This expertise has to be assumed by the reader, as the monograph contains no literature references of its own. [59]

According to his webpage at the IPROG website, Surikov spent the year 1994 at the Centre for Defence Studies, King's College, London. [60] (Audrius Butkevicius is said to have spent the year there as well.)

As for Yasenev's allegations that "Surikov has contacts with F. Ermarth," Surikov when questioned about this admitted it frankly: "I am personally acquainted with Mr. Ermarth as political scientist since 1996. It's well known by many people and we never hid this fact." [61]
In saying this, Surikov was admitting to a CIA connection: Ermarth, a senior officer who twice served on the National Security Council, did not retire from the CIA until 1998. The two men had met in April 1996 at a Global International Security Seminar in Virginia. [62]

Above all, Kagarlitskii is silent about the charge which has since aroused controversy in the Russian media: Surikov's supposed involvement with "a group of renegade Soviet secret service officers who are allegedly involved in international drug trafficking and have ties with Western and Saudi security apparatus." [63]

It would be interesting to learn at what point Kagarlitskii first met Surikov, and whether Surikov was in fact the source for Kagarlitskii's article about the meeting in southern France. Today the two men are close, and serve together at the Moscow Institute for the Study of Globalization (IPROG). [64]

Saidov, Surikov, Muslim Insurrectionism, and Drug Trafficking

The most conspicuous clue to Dunlop's selectivity in his use of the Yasenev memo is his failure to identify "Mekhmet," the "certain Turk, in the past an advisor to the Islamicist premier of Turkey, [Necmettin] Erbakan." [65] Yasenev identifies Mekhmet, linking him not only to Erbakan but also to the CIA, to Saudi intelligence, and to al-Qaeda:

“In 2003 the Turkish citizen Mehmet whose real name is Ruslan Saidov, persuaded the President of the Chechen Republic, Ahmed Kadyrov, that he could be of use with Kadyrov's policy of "national reconciliation." Saidov took part in organizing Kadyrov's visit to Saudi Arabia. There Kadyrov made an agreement with the head of Saudi intelligence, Prince Naif Ibn Abdel-Aziz, that the Arab militants under the Lieutenant Colonel Aziz ben Said ben Ali al Hamdi (alias Abu al Walid al-Hamadi), Prince Naif's subordinate, would be removed from Chechnya by May 2004. The agreement stipulated that Kadyrov guaranteed safe passage to Abu al-Walid. Playing a double game and intending to set up both parties, Saidov (probably together with Abu al-Walid himself) gave this information to the CIA. Apparently the CIA was concerned that having left Chechnya the Arab militants would resurface in Iraq and join the terrorist group of the Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi that belongs to the al-Qaida network.

Trying to prevent this, and besides, wanting to discredit Kadyrov in the eyes of Prince Naif, the CIA gave Saidov an "assignment". On April 13 in the Nozhai-Yurt district of Chechnya, Russian troops killed Abu al-Walid (or alleged having done so). Saidov paid $300,000 to those who carried out this operation. Their bosses in Moscow received $500,000. How much the CIA paid Saidov is unknown....”

Yasenev describes Saidov [66]as both a drug trafficker and an arms trafficker, involved with the supply of Russian arms to the Saudi-backed secessionists from Yemen in Aden. This was at a time when Russia had officially ceased support to the one-time Marxist country in favor of supporting Yemeni unity:

“In May-June 1994, Saidov together with Usman Imaev and Khozh-Ahmed Nukhaev and under an agreement with Pavel Grachev and Dzhohar Dudaev, organized twenty-two flights to airlift arms and ammunition via the Chechen airport Sheikh Mansur to the airport Aden in Yemen. [67] In the spring of 1995 Saidov began to cooperate with the organized society, led by Vladimir Filin and Alexei Likhvintsev [see below] in handling [narcotics] traffic through the port of Novorossiysk.

Saidov is described by Yasenev [68] as having good relations not only with the CIA, but also with both Turkish Islamists and even with Ayman al-Zawahiri, the man often described as both the "mastermind" behind 9/11 and the senior partner in al Qaeda with the younger bin Laden:

“Since August 1995 Saidov resides in Turkey.

In December 1995 he published an extremist book in Turkish The Muslims of the Caucasus in the 19th century: Genocide by Russia. The leader of the Welfare Party and the future Turkish Prime Minister, Necmettin Erbakan, gave a good review of this book. In July 1996 Saidov became his advisor. [69]

In December 1996 Ayman al-Zawahiri was arrested in Dagestan for illegal entry. [70] He carried a false Sudanese passport. When he was arrested Saidov went to Makhachkala [the capital of Dagestan]. There he organized a petition to the authorities in support of Zawahiri. It was signed by twenty-six Muslim clergymen and the Russian State Duma deputy, Nadirshakh Khachilaev. [71] Saidov managed to obtain a court decision, condemning Zawahiri to a six-month prison term, which had actually expired by that time....

Since the middle of the nineties, Saidov formed stable relations with the Saudi businessman Adnan Khashoggi, Prince Turki al-Faisal (then head of the Saudi intelligence and at present, Saudi Ambassador to Great Britain) and Prince Naif.” [72]

In addition Yasenev made it clear that Saidov was not pro-Putin, but a Muslim activist who was passionately anti-Putin and indeed anti-Russian:

“In September 2003, Saidov participated in the congress of the extremist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami in Jordan. At this congress he announced that Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami was an organization effectively acting in the underground throughout Russia, Central Asia and the Crimea.... [73]

On December 8, 2004 Saidov addressed Muslim youth in Moscow. In his words, ‘following Ukraine, the Orange Revolution is coming to Russia. Our liberals say that in 2008 the situation in Moscow will be like the one in Kiev. However, everything will be different, and not in 2008, but earlier. Amirs and mudjahideen will soon make the Kremlin shudder with horror.’ In 2005, ‘they will throw into hell the servant of Satan,’ i.e., President Putin, who is allegedly ‘wanted by the International Tribunal at The Hague.’”

The same goal of Muslim liberation was attributed by Yasenev to the organizer of the meeting in France, Anton Surikov:

“On December 13 2004, in Adygeia, Surikov had a meeting with a group of Sufi believers and said this: ‘In the past we were against ahl-ad-dalala (those who gone astray) with their Arab money. We used to say that one should not separate from Russia. But now Russia is on the brink of collapse and chaos’. So ‘we'll be separating [from Russia] with all Muslims of the Caucasus.’ A new state will be created on our historical lands from Psou and the Black Sea to Laba and Kuban."

(The goal of splitting up Russia attributed here to Surikov is that which, in an earlier text co-authored by Surikov, is attributed by Russian "radicals" to the United States:

“The radicals believe that the US actively utilizes Turkish and Muslim elements....From Azerbaijan, radicals foresee a strategic penetration which would irrevocably split the Federation. US influence would be distributed to the former Soviet Central Asian Republics, to Chechnya and the other North Caucasus Muslim autonomous republics of T[at]arstan and Bashkortostan. As a result Russian territorial integrity would be irreparably compromised.) [74]

Yasenev claims also that, in the summer of 2004, the meta-group started a project in the Near-Volgian Federal District to train cadres for Volga-Urals chapter of the international extremist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir, banned by the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation in 2003. The project is financed by private philanthropic foundations of the Arabic Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

In this context we can further question Dunlop's assumption that the 1999 meeting organized by Surikov in southern France was called to promote the intentions of the Yeltsin "family." In the light of the Yasenev essay, it is more likely to have served the purposes of militant Islam and the drug traffic.

The portraits of Saidov's and Surikov's connections with al-Zawahiri, Erbakan, and Hizb ut-Tahrir confirm the criticism, by the Indian analyst B. Raman and others, that American studies of Islamist jihadism err in their restrictive focus on al-Qaeda. [75] The full range of Islamic jihadism is far more complex.

In my conclusion I shall return to the possibility that U.S. government might share common goals with Hizb ut-Tahrir and the meta-group in Russia, even while combating the Islamist terrorism of al-Qaeda in the Middle East and the West.

TO BE CONTINUED. . .

...............................

[51] Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), ru.compromat. Cf. Robert I. Friedman, Red Mafiya: How the Russian Mob Has Invaded America (Boston: Little Brown, 2000), 265: "Astonishingly, both the [George H.W.] Bush and the Clinton administrations have unwittingly helped foster the Russian mob and the untrammeled corruption of post-Soviet Union Russia. When the CIA was asked in 1992 by Kroll and Associates, working on behalf of the Russian government, to help locate $20 billion that was hidden offshore by the KGB and the mob, the Bush national security team declined to cooperate. The Bush group rationalized, according to Fritz Ermarth, a top CIA policy analyst writing in The National Interest, `that capital flight is capital flight. It doesn't matter who has the money or how it was acquired even if by theft; so long as it is private, it will return to do good things if there was a market.'"

[52] Founder and Chair of IPROG Board and the Institute's director until April 2002 when he was replaced by Boris Kagarlitskii.

[53] Member of Yeltsin "family;" Deputy Minister of Finance and then Prime Minister for four years until fired by Putin 2/24/04.

[54]Dunlop, "Storm in Moscow," 44-45.

[55] PBS, Frontline, October 2003, . Cf. Menatep Press Release of 4/30/02, : "30.04.2002: Group MENATEP Invests US $25 Million in Blackstone Capital Partners IV: Group MENATEP's GM Investment & Co Ltd has agreed to invest up to US $25 million in Blackstone Capital Partners IV, a private equity investment fund managed by The Blackstone Group, an investment bank with offices in New York and London. Primary investment targets will include major industrial, service and communications-related companies in the United States and Europe. In the last six months, Group MENATEP has made commitments to invest in excess of US $150 million with a number of investment firms, including AIG Capital Partners, Global Asset Management, The Carlyle Group, and now The Blackstone Group (Source: PR Newswire)."

[56]"Former Primakov Official Attacks High-Level Corruption and Yeltsin's Plans in 2000," Jamestown Foundation Monitor, 5/25/99, JRL 3306, http://www.cdi.org/russia/johnson/3306.html##9.

[57] Chechen Press, 5/28/05, http://www.chechenpress.co.uk/english/news/2005/05/28/08.shtml.

[58]As will be apparent in a moment, it makes sense that Surikov would have been opposed not only to Yeltsin but to the relatively secular, anti-Islamist Chechen leader Dzhokar Dudaev. For Dudaev see Shireen T. Hunter, Islam in Russia: The Politics of Identity and Security (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2004), 150-51.

[59]The full citation for the book is Anton Surikov, Crime in Russia: the International Implications (London: Brassey's for the Centre for Defence Studies, University of London, 1995). The database WorldCat lists it in three U.S. libraries: Columbia, Cornell, and the U.S. Army War College.

[60] www.iprog.ru/cast/?id=8.

[61] Letter of 9/17/05 to Oleg Grechenevsky, According to one 1999 article in Russia, Ermarth introduced Surikov to Steve Forbes who offered to help him participate in the project –together with Ermarth and UK Ambassador Sir Rodric Braithwaite –to reveal the ties between the Yeltsin Administration and Russian corruption. But this claim needs to be treated with extreme caution, given the false stories at the time linking Ermarth, Braithwaite, and Surikov to an imaginary joint campaign against Russian corruption. See The Electronic Telegraph (UK), 9/11/99, JRI #3493, http://www.cdi.org/russia/johnson/3493.html.

[62] Commersant (n.d). In an alleged transcript of a drug-related dialogue beween Sergei [Petrov] and a businessman, the latter says, "You've said Surikov was also a CIA man." See transcript of audio recorded conversation between businessman Gennady Nikolaevich (GN) with Sergei (S), which took place on September 29, 2003 in the Hotel Noga Hilton in Geneva, .

[63]Left Front Press Conference, , http://left.ru/2005/11/preskonf_eng.html. Kagarlitskii was defended at the press conference by the former Yukos official Ilya Ponomarev.

[64] Another IPROG member is Ilya Ponomarev (see preceding footnote).

[65]Dunlop, "Storm in Moscow," 42. Dunlop's important and truncated description of Mekhmet has a strange and irrelevant citation: "On Erbakan, see Shireen T. Hunter, Islam in Russia: The Politics of Identity and Security (Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2004), p. 365."But there is no need to identify Erbakan, and Hunter is silent about Mekhmet.

[66] See e.g. Mohamed H. Heikal, Daily Yomiuri, 8/8/94.

[67] Surikov's book, Crime in Russia, p. 33, confirms that "Chechen transport of armaments to Aden airport was even carried on during the civil war in Yemen in 1994."

[68] Independent (London), 8/5/05.

[69] Milli Görüº, the chief organization of Turks in Germany, is said to have as it goals the "abolition of the laicist government system in Turkey and the establishment of an Islamic state and social system ....Former Turkish prime minister Nehmettin Erbakan, whose Refah Party was banned by the Turkish Constitutional Court in January of 1998 for `activities against the country's secular regime,' is still Milli Görüº' undisputed leader, even if his nephew Mehmet Sabri Erbakan is its president" (Lorenzo Vidino, "The Muslim Brotherhood's Conquest of Europe," Middle East Quarterly, Winter 2005, http://www.meforum.org/article/687.

[70] Cf. Independent (London), 8/5/05.

[71] On 1/20/02, "Dagestani authorities announced that they had detained Nadirshakh Khachilaev, the leader of Dagestan's Laks minority groups and a former State Duma deputy, on suspicion of having organized the bombing of the Interior Ministry troop truck in Makhachkala. Khachilaev, who once headed the Union of Muslims of Russia and has also been described as one of Dagestan's most powerful mafia bosses, was detained along with another eight or so suspects over the weekend" ( Jamestown Foundation, Monitor, 1/21/02, volume_id=25&issue_id=2179&article_id=19084). Cf. Hunter, Islam in Russia, 264-65.

[72] Yuri Yasenev, "Rossiyu zhdet oranzhevaya revolytsiya" ("An Orange Revolution is in Store for Russia"), ru.compromat.

[73] "Russia is also concerned about the HT [Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami], for it fears that the movement will spread to Muslim regions of Russia. Russian intelligence is now collaborating closely with the Central Asian states to combat the HT" (Ahmed Rashid, Jihad: The Rise of Militant Islam in Central Asia [New Haven: Yale UP, 2002], 132). Cf. Surikov statement to Sufis below.

[74] Graeme Herd with Ene Rôngelep and Anton Surikov, Crisis for Estonia? Russia, Estonia and a Post-Chechen Cold War. London Defence Studies, 29 (London: Brassey's for the Centre for Defence Studies, 1994), 33.

[75] Cf. B. Raman, "Istanbul: The enemy within," Asia Times, 11/22/03, . In this essay Raman shows the direct links between Turkish terrorists (former disciples of Erbakan) and groups like Lashkar-e-Toiba sponsored by Pakistan's ISI.

........................


Peter Dale Scott, a former Canadian diplomat and English Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is a poet, writer, and researcher. He was born in Montreal in 1929, the only son of the poet F.R. Scott and the painter Marian Scott. He is married to Ronna Kabatznick; and he has three children, Cassie, Mika, and John, by a previous marriage to Maylie Marshall.

His prose books include The War Conspiracy (1972), The Assassinations: Dallas and Beyond (in collaboration, 1976), Crime and Cover-Up: The CIA, the Mafia, and the Dallas-Watergate Connection (1977), The Iran-Contra Connection (in collaboration, 1987), Cocaine Politics: Drugs, Armies, and the CIA in Central America (in collaboration, 1991, 1998), Deep Politics and the Death of JFK (1993, 1996), Deep Politics Two (from JFKLancer, 1995), and Drugs Oil and War (Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, March 2003)

An anti-war speaker during the Vietnam and Gulf Wars, he was a co-founder of the Peace and Conflict Studies Program at UC Berkeley, and of the Coalition on Political Assassinations (COPA).


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