After 20 Years of Pressure, Biden Declassifies FBI Report Revealing New Saudi-9/11 Connections

Interview with Kristen Breitweiser, 9/11 widow, co-founder September 11 Advocates, conducted by Scott Harris

Kristen Breitweiser lost her husband Ron, a money manager working on the 94th floor of the World Trade Center South Tower, on Sept. 11.  As one of the “Jersey Girls,” a group of 9/11 widows, later known as September 11th Advocates, she’s tirelessly demanded transparency and answers from the U.S. government that she charges has yet to hold accountable the senior CIA and FBI officials who failed to prevent the attacks or the officials of the Saudi government she believes were complicit in assisting the hijackers.
More recently Breitweiser, a lawyer, and other 9/11 victims’ families opposed President Joe Biden’s participation in 20th anniversary memorial events unless he declassified government documents that they contend will show Saudi Arabian leaders supported the attacks. Late in the evening on Sept. 11thm\, Joe Biden issued an executive order declassifying a long-suppressed 2016 FBI report on Saudi Arabia’s connections to the 9/11 plot revealing that Saudi religious officials stationed in the US had more significant connections to two of the hijackers than had been previously known.
Between The Lines’ Scott Harris spoke with Kristen Breitweiser, who discusses the contents of this highly redacted FBI report, her ongoing demand for full government transparency, and why she believes both Republican and Democratic presidents have failed to release this material over the past two decades.
KRISTEN BREITWEISER: I want to be clear that the document is still heavily redacted. Redacted means, you know, blacked out. You know, it’s not like we’re getting to read the full document to understand what it’s really saying and all the nitty-gritty of it. But you’re able to sort of read it and kind of if you know the history of the situation, you can kind of put things together. And, the litigation team has done that. They were able to through all of their investigative work kind of make sense of the document. And of course, the attorneys have clearance. So they’ll read the documents that we’re not able to see. So they’ll have a better understanding, you know, while they’re in court. But of course, all of that is secretive. What the document shows to me clearly is that there was a lot of contacts between certain Saudi officials and the hijackers.

And that’s something that the U.S. government has spent an awful lot of time trying to deny, whether you want to look at the 28 pages of Congress that President Obama ultimately released at the last few months of his administration, or you want to look at these documents. You know, it’s quite clear that there were an enormous amount of contacts between the hijackers and the Saudi officials.

The hijackers had a support network inside the United States that helped them navigate being in the U.S. They didn’t speak very good English. They had no idea what they were doing here. Some of the hijackers were very naive Saudis. And having said that, there were other key hijackers that were known lethal Al-Qaeda operatives and killers. All of the hijackers though had a support network. And so our quest in the last 20 years has been to try to prove that in court so that we could hold those people, that support network accountable, because at the end of the day, that is a support network that supported terrorists that killed innocent people on Sept. 11th.

So to us, it would seem a no-brainer that you would want to kind of investigate that support network, find out who all those people were that financially and logistically supported those terrorists, and certainly hold them accountable. For whatever reason, the U.S. government has never been interested in doing that. They never criminally prosecuted any of the people inside the conspiracy of 9/11, the co-conspirators per se, within that support network, it’s been left to the families. In our pursuit of that rather than helping us providing the evidence that they have in their files, the U.S. Government has kept it all secret. They’ve covered it up. President Biden has taken a nice first step. He’s given us this one set of documents. He’s promised to do a full review so that we can get more documents, and we’re hopeful that that will happen.

But when you’re dealing with the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, they’re very wealthy. They’re very powerful. They’re very influential inside the beltway. And so they are able to, in my opinion, very often get away with murder. It’s a tough fight, and we’re trying our best because at the end of the day, we do believe that it’s not only in our best interests, but it’s in the interest of the entire American public to know the truth and to know who supported the attacks of 9/11 so that we can ensure that the nation is safer and that these people are held accountable and that terrorists are not given free license to just wantonly murder people in broad daylight inside the United States.

SCOTT HARRIS: As our listeners, well know, Saudi Arabia is one of the most wealthy and powerful nations given their fossil fuel wealth. What are the reasons you think U.S. Officials all these years have kept this information secret?

KRISTEN BREITWEISER: I think you, you know, you kind of put it in a nutshell. They’re very powerful. They’re very influential. They’re very wealthy and they’re deeply embedded in Washington. You know, people are afraid of them. And when news stories come out, journalists are reluctant to do stories on them. And Congress is reluctant to pass legislation to hold them accountable. And the intelligence agencies are reluctant to release evidence that proves their complicity with terrorists. It just goes on and on and on. And again, it’s not a Democrat or Republican issue. It’s either side of the aisle. And I think some of that centers also not only on just the fact that there are so wealthy, but, you know, the United States has a very large footprint in the kingdom. We have basis there because it’s in the Middle East. And so that’s part of the reason like our government doesn’t want to upset the Saudis.

And then on top of it, we sell an awful lot of weapons to the Saudis, for the Saudis to fight their proxy wars over in the Middle East. And, you know, government contracts make an awful lot of money off those weapons. And then, you know, beyond that, there’s a lot of business deals, frankly. Saudi’s throw money around. And unfortunately, when you’re a victim of terrorism in a pursuit of justice and accountability, when you’re up against the other side, that’s in you’re outgunned and out monied, literally, it’s a pretty hard fight and it would have been nice for the government to help us. They just haven’t. And so we’re alone and it’s, it’s a pretty daunting 20-year odyssey. I’ll tell you that.

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