Questions for Michael Chertoff; Bernie Kerik’s Not Looking So
- By Allan P. Duncan
- January 30, 2005
- President George W. Bush nominated Michael Chertoff to be
the new Secretary of Homeland Security several weeks ago and I have
some serious questions about this nomination.
- On September 7, 2004, I published a four part series of
articles titled, New
Jersey and Terrorism…Perfect Together, in which I exposed Chertoff’s
link to a New Jersey man who was accused of having ties to Osama Bin
Laden and whose name had also come up in a federal
weapons sting called Operation
- Since the story is so complicated, I have tried to distill
the entire article to make it a bit easier to understand since many
people just don’t have the patience to read a 34 page story. I have
also added some new information that was not in the original.
- I have been trying to get this story out there for two
years and it is finally spreading on the internet and several
mainstream sources are currently investigating my claims. I have also
been trying to contact Senators and Congressmen since the confirmation
hearings are this week and time is of the essence.
- The full article can be read by clicking the link below.
- In my article, I reported that in 1998, Dr. Magdy Elamir, a
prominent neurologist who lives and practices in North Jersey, was
named in a foreign intelligence report as having had ties for years to
Osama Bin Laden. This document went on to say that Dr. Elamir owned an
HMO in New Jersey that was funded by Bin Laden and that Dr. Elamir had
skimmed money from the HMO to fund terrorist activities.
- In a Dateline NBC story titled On the trail of arms merchants, dated
August 2, 2002, it states that the
foreign intelligence report was obtained by Congressman Ben Gillman,
when he was Chairman of the House International Relations Committee:
- “Last fall, “Dateline” obtained information about Magdy
Elamir. He’s a prominent doctor, a neurologist with a practice in
Jersey City. Born and educated in Egypt, he moved to this country about
20 years ago and since then has built a fortune. He lives in a mansion,
is generous to local charities and is an active supporter of both
- Should counterterrorism
investigators take an interest in Dr. Elamir? Well, “Dateline”
obtained a document last fall — foreign intelligence report, that makes
a startling allegation about the doctor — that he has had financial
ties with Osama bin Laden for years. The report was given to a senior
member of Congress, Ben Gilman, back in 1998, when he was Chairman of
the House International Relations Committee.
- “We have a former FBI person
on our staff and I asked him to look it over,” says Congressman Gilman.
“He thought it was credible enough to turn it over to the intelligence
people. And we turned it over to the FBI practically immediately.”
- This was in 1998.
- The report alleges that an
H.M.O. owned by Dr. Elamir in New Jersey was “funded by ben [sic]
Laden” and that in turn Dr. Elamir was skimming money from the H.M.O.
to fund “terrorist activities.”
- Has the FBI answered those
questions? Not to Congressman Gilman’s satisfaction. But what
“Dateline” found intriguing is that less than a year after the
congressman says the FBI received the report, Dr. Elamir’s HMO
was taken over by the state of New Jersey, which opened a fraud
investigation. Why? Because, according to sources close to the
investigation, more than $15 million is unaccounted for. Where
did the money go? “Dateline” has reviewed documents that show
at least some of it went into hard-to-trace offshore bank accounts.” (1)
- The date of the 1998 foreign intelligence report is very
important, because an article in The Record, dated December 11,
1998, documents the fact that Michael Chertoff was Dr. Elamir’s lawyer
in the fraudulent HMO case in the same year that Elamir was named in
the foreign intelligence report:
- “Elamir, who has been accused by insurance
department officials of
diverting state Medicaid funds to other businesses he owns, did not
oppose the state's takeover. No criminal charges have been filed against
But in a hint of the gravity of his legal predicament, he was
represented in court by Michael Chertoff, the former U.S. attorney
Newark and counsel to U.S. Sen. Alfonse D'Amato's Whitewater
- The Record also reported on December 18, 1998 that
Michael Chertoff had access to Dr. Elamir’s financial records for the
fraudulent HMO and presented them personally in court:
- “Chertoff presented a thick document from
Mohammed Hanafy, offering explanations for the money transfers
to other Elamir-controlled corporations.”
- Further on the article states:
Keupper says the state is not satisfied with Hanafy's explanations,
noting that officials have been unable to obtain a full accounting of
services provided by Elamir's corporations to APPP.” (3)
- Michael Chertoff apparently represented Dr. Elamir in the
fraudulent HMO case from 1998 through December 2000 according to
articles and records I have compiled.
- The Dateline NBC story from August 2, 2002
also revealed that in 1999, Dr. Elamir’s brother in Egypt, Mohamed El
Amir, tried to secure false paperwork for a warehouse full of weapons
in Italy that he wanted to ship:
- “Dateline” has found another
reason why federal investigators might want to pay close attention to Dr.
Elamir and his family. It’s something we learned when we
interviewed Randy Glass, the con-man turned undercover operative who
helped the government break up an illegal weapons ring allegedly tied
to terrorist groups. It turns out that one of the people recorded
trying to arrange an arms deal with Randy Glass was Dr. Elamir’s own
brother, Mohamed, an engineer, also a U.S. citizen now living in Egypt.
And just listen to what he was interested in.
“There was a warehouse full of weapons in
Italy that they needed shipped,” says Glass.
It was the spring of 1999. Mohamed
Elamir explains that he wants false papers that would identify a
shipment of weapons — as vegetables.
Randy Glass: “ But you’re talking about,
they’re saying they wanna ship vegetables, right? Is what they want —
is what they want on the paperwork, correct?”
Mohamed El Amir: “Yep.” (1)
- This information now documents the fact that in the Spring
of 1999, while Michael Chertoff was representing Dr. Magdy Elamir in
his fraudulent HMO case, that Dr. Elamir’s own brother, Mohamed El
Amir, tried to secure false paperwork for a warehouse full of weapons. Dateline
NBC also revealed that Mohamed El Amir also had alleged ties to
Osama Bin Laden since he was named in the same foreign intelligence
report that Congressman Gilman received in 1998:
“Did Mohamed give Glass any indication as to who was going to get
“Never got a chance to ask him,” says Glass.
Glass says federal agents told him to
drop the matter.
So, what happened to the case? “Nothing,”
There was no follow-up. “No,” says Glass.
Was this a missed opportunity? “Hundred
percent,” says Glass.
And Randy Glass doesn’t know the half of it,
because that same intelligence report that talks about Dr.
Elamir also names his brother Mohamed as having ties to Osama bin Laden.”
- The Dateline story also revealed that the same
intelligence report stated that Dr. Elamir had financially supported
the Al Salam Mosque in Jersey City, the same city where Dr. Elamir has
caught up with Dr. Elamir recently outside his office. He said
he couldn’t talk about his HMO and the missing money. But he had this
to say about allegations he’s connected to bin Laden and terrorism.
Dr. Elamir: “That’s preposterous. Never.”
Chris Hansen: “Why would somebody say
something like that about you?”
Dr. Elamir: “I have no idea. I have no idea.”
But the intelligence report suggests one
thing that he doesn’t deny. That he has donated money to the mosque
where the blind sheik once preached, Omar Abdel Rahman, who is now in
prison for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.” (1)
- Here’s a bit of history about
- “It is nearly a straight
shot from the Jersey City waterfront overlooking the rubble of the twin
towers up to Al Salam, the third-floor mosque here that for more than a
decade has been tainted with suspicions of terrorism.
- First there was the 1990
murder of a militant rabbi, linked to an Al Salam regular. Then there was the 1993 bombing of the
World Trade Center, spurred, prosecutors said, by the incendiary
sermons of blind Egyptian cleric Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman and
carried out by his followers.”
- “Al Salam had a
tradition of passionate preaching against the Egyptian government,
which is supported by the United States. Journal Square has a large
Egyptian population, and many worship at Al Salam.
- The mosque's most famous
scholar, Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, was convicted in 1995 along with
nine followers of conspiring to bomb the United Nations headquarters in
Manhattan and several other buildings, bridges and tunnels in New York.
- Prosecutors also said Abdel
Rahman had galvanized his followers to carry out the 1993 World Trade
Center bombing, which killed six and wounded 1,000.
- Three years later, Ramzi
Ahmed Yousef, who prosecutors said masterminded the 1993 bombing, was
also convicted. Abdul Rahman Yasin, another suspect in the 1993 bombing
who lived in Jersey City, fled the country.
- In 1990, Al Salam regular
El Sayyid Nosair was charged with murdering Rabbi Meir Kahane during a
speech in New York.” (5)
- Ramzi Yousef, by the way, is
the nephew by marriage of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, acknowledged as the
architect of the 9-11 attacks.
- Michael Chertoff served as Assistant
United States Attorney and then United States Attorney for New Jersey
from 1987 to 1994. He would have been in office when “In 1990, Al Salam regular El Sayyid Nosair was
charged with murdering Rabbi Meir Kahane during a speech in New York”
and would also have been in office when “Abdel
Rahman had galvanized his followers to carry out the 1993 World Trade
Center bombing, which killed six and wounded 1,000.” Chertoff
was also in office when “Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, was convicted
in 1995 along with nine followers of conspiring to bomb the United
Nations headquarters in Manhattan and several other buildings, bridges
and tunnels in New York.”
- I am sure that Michael Chertoff
must have had a role in investigating these cases and I’m quite sure he
knew quite a bit about the Al Salam Mosque’s members and supporters. It
is certainly ironic that he ended up representing Dr. Magdy Elamir who
financially supported the Al Salam Mosque, the same mosque that planted
the seeds for terrorist attacks within Michael Chertoff’s own
- Michael Chertoff was appointed Assistant Attorney General,
under John Ashcroft, in early 2001 and was placed in charge of the
Criminal Division. Since Operation Diamondback was an active
case when he took office, and culminated in arrests in the Summer of
2001, the case would have fallen under his pervue since it was handled
as a criminal case and not as a counterterrorism case. This means that
one of his former clients, Dr. Magdy Elamir, along with his brother
Mohamed El Amir, were now suspects in a case under his supervision.
- Operation Diamondback ran from the Fall of 1998 through the
Summer of 2001. As I reported above, Michael Chertoff represented Dr.
Elamir in his fraudulent HMO case from sometime in 1998 through
December 2000. We also know that Dr. Elamir had been named in the
foreign intelligence report in 1998 as having ties to Osama Bin Laden
for years and that his HMO had been funded by Bin Laden and that
millions of dollars had been siphoned from the HMO to fund terrorist
acts. This means that Michael Chertoff had access to the financial
records of an HMO, which was allegedly a front for and funded Bin
Laden, for at least two years after his client Dr. Magdy Elamir was
named as having ties to Bin Laden.
- Neither Dr. Magdy Elamir, nor his brother Mohamed, were
ever arrested by US authorities when Operation Diamondback ended.
Michael Chertoff had represented Dr. Elamir for two of the three and a
half years that the investigation spanned and had also overseen the
case for a number of months after he was appointed Assistant Attorney
General in 2001.
- Operation Diamondback dealt with much more than what I have
presented in regards to Dr. Elamir and his brother. The case also
involved other Middle Eastern men operating in Jersey City with ties to
Dr. Elamir and his brother. Three of these men attempted to secure
components for nuclear Dirty Bombs and also wanted to secure Plutonium.
They also tried to buy 500 Stinger Missiles. In one instance one of the
men who was named as a member of the Pakistani ISI, pointed towards the
World Trade Center and stated “Those towers are coming down.” The
conversation was recorded by the FBI’s Terrorism Task Force and yet
nothing was done with the information as we found out the hard way on
- The suspects named
in Operation Diamondback are now known to have had ties to AQ
Khan’s nuclear weapons network operating out of Pakistan. This
info was not known during the operation by the ATF and FBI Agents who
worked on the case. Dateline NBC revealed this information on January
14, 2005. ATF Agent Dick
Stoltz who supervised Operation Diamondback had this to say:
- “In the summer of 1999, a group of illegal weapons
dealers were meeting at a warehouse in Florida, their conversations
recorded by federal investigators. One of the men, from Pakistan, was
seeking technology for nuclear weapons. Who did he say he was working
- Dick Stoltz: “Dr. Abdul Khan.”
- Chris Hansen: “A.Q. Khan.”
- Dick Stoltz: “A.Q. Khan.”
- Former federal undercover agent Dick Stoltz was posing
as a black market arms dealer.
- Hansen: “Did you realize what you had at
- Stoltz: “No. We didn't.”
- But now he does -- because A.Q. Khan is considered, by
some, to be the most dangerous man in the world. Why? Because Dr. Khan
has peddled nuclear weapons technology to some of the countries the
United States considers most dangerous, and some accepted his offers.”
- Further on:
- “Undercover federal agent Dick Stoltz says there's
evidence Khan's operatives were at work here in the U.S., like a man
who asked if Stoltz could supply heavy water, an ingredient used
to make plutonium for nuclear bombs.
- Stoltz: “He said that Dr. Khan was
handling the negotiations behind the scene, as far as-- the heavy
- Only two of the men I am referring to were arrested and
only one of them spent time in prison after he had been sentenced to 30
months. Today all of the players involved in Operation Diamondback are
walking the streets of North Jersey even though we now know they tried
to secure Plutonium and components for a nuclear weapon and were
working on behalf of AQ Khan.
- When the attacks on 9-11 occurred, Michael Chertoff was
placed in charge of the investigation. On Oct. 25, 2001, CBS
reported that the Feds had launched Operation Green Quest in an
attempt to stop the financing of terrorism. Here’s what Dr. Magdy
Elamir’s former attorney had to say on the subject:
"The lifeblood of terrorism is money, and if we cut the money we
cut the blood supply," said assistant attorney general Michael
Chertoff, the head of the Justice Department's criminal division.
- The next day, on October 26, 2001, Michael Chertoff
testified before Congress and had this to say:
- “As an integral part of this national effort, the
Department of Justice and the FBI have established an interagency
Financial Review Group to coordinate the investigation of the financial
aspects surrounding the terrorist events of September 11th
and beyond. All members of this Committee recognize the importance
of understanding the financial components of terrorist and criminal
organizations. These financial links will be critical to the larger
criminal investigation, while also providing a trail to the sources of
funding for these heinous crimes. The importance of "following the
money," in this instance, as well as in the investigation of all
criminal enterprises, cannot be overstated.
- The members of this Committee are also well aware that money
laundering constitutes a threat to the safety of our communities, to
the integrity of our financial institutions and to our national
- On March 25, 2002, CNN reported:
- “Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff is
the Dick Cheney of the Justice Department. Brainy, intense and well
connected, the former federal prosecutor can usually be found at
Attorney General John Ashcroft's elbow as the department's top
counterterrorism tactician. And last week Chertoff vanished to
an undisclosed location.
- With no deputies along and no publicity, Chertoff
was on a stealthy swing through France, Belgium and the Netherlands.
His mission: sell Western European governments on a new Bush
Administration plan to post U.S. Justice Department prosecutors
overseas in unprecedented numbers. "The sinews that hold a terrorist
network together are money, communications and transportation,"
Chertoff told TIME before his trip. To help sever those sinews, Chertoff
wants to have American prosecutors stationed in key capitals, where
they can work behind the scenes with their counterparts to overcome the
legal and cultural obstacles to shipping evidence to the U.S. for use
in court.” (9)
- I find it very interesting that Michael Chertoff, the man
tapped to cut off the flow of finances to known terrorists, had in fact
represented a man from 1998-2000 who allegedly had ties to Osama Bin
Laden and may have sent millions of dollars to him.
- I also find it interesting, that while Michael Chertoff
served as Assistant United States Attorney and then United States
Attorney for New Jersey from 1987 to 1994, that terrorist acts,
including the first World Trade Center bombing, were perpetrated under
his watch and were fueled from a mosque in Jersey City that was never
shut down and still exists today. Chertoff’s former client, Dr. Magdy
Elamir, is known to have supported the mosque financially while having
suspected ties to Osama Bin Laden. Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind of the
1993 bombing, just happens to be the nephew of the 9-11 mastermind, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed.
- If you read my entire four part article you will discover a
wealth of information about terrorist activities in the North Jersey
area from before the 1993 bombing through 9-11 with a lot of evidence
that many of the 9-11 hijackers spent time in North Jersey before the
- Questions for Michael
- If I could question Michael Chertoff during his
confirmation hearing set for this Wednesday, I would ask him if he knew
of any of his former clients who may have had ties to terrorists or
- I’m sure he would say no.
- I would then ask him if he had knowledge of any civil case
that he had handled that might have involved an entity that had been
funded by a terrorist or been used to fund terrorism.
- I’m sure he would also say no.
- I would then ask him if he had ever represented Dr. Magdy
Elamir in a case involving a fraudulent HMO.
- At this, he would most likely answer yes, but maybe not
though if he cited attorney client privilege. I’m not a lawyer so I’m
not sure how much he has to say about a case.
- If he said no, I would then tell him that I know he had
represented Dr. Magdy Elamir and would spell out my evidence.
- I would then ask him if he had knowledge that Dr, Magdy
Elamir had been named in a foreign intelligence report in 1998 as
having had ties for years to Osama Bin Laden.
- If he said no I would then ask him if he was aware that the
HMO that his former client Dr. Elamir owned and operated may have been
funded by Osama Bin Laden and that millions of dollars may have been
siphoned from the HMO to finance terrorist activities.
- If he said no I would ask him if he had ever had access to
the financial records of the HMO in question.
- If he cited attorney client privilege I would then ask him
if he knew what happened to the nearly 6 million dollars that were made
in wire transfers from the HMO’s funds to unknown people.
- He would most likely cite attorney client privilege again
so having made several points I would move on to another subject.
- I would then ask him if he was aware that his former client
had been named in a weapons sting run by the ATF and FBI while he was
representing his client in his fraudulent HMO case.
- If he said no I would then ask him if during his tenure as
Assistant Attorney General was he aware that his former client Dr.
Magdy Elamir had been named as a suspect in a federal weapons sting
investigation that fell under his pervue.
- If he said no I would then ask him why he didn’t know this
since he was the head of the Criminal Division and the case would have
fallen under his supervision.
- If he said he was aware that his former client had been
named as a suspect while the case was under his supervision I would
then ask him if he took any actions to guarantee that there was no
conflict of interest.
- After his answer I would then ask him if he knew why his
former client had never been arrested for operating an HMO that may
have been funded by Osama Bin Laden, for skimming millions from the HMO
that supposedly went to Bin Laden or for having been a suspect in Operation
- If he said he didn’t know I would then make the point that
he should have known since he was the Assistant Attorney General at the
- I would also ask him if he was aware of historical terror
ties to the Al Salam Mosque in Jersey City.
- I’m sure he would then try to talk up the rest of my time
by telling stories about the mosque so I couldn’t ask him any more
questions but I’d cut him off after a few minutes and ask him if he was
aware that his former client Dr. Magdy Elamir had financially supported
the Al Salam Mosque.
- If he said no then I would tell him that he doesn’t seem to
know a lot about what has been happening in his own home state,
especially since one of his own personal clients has been accused of
being up to his neck in terror ties that could jeopardize our national
- I would then close by asking Michael Chertoff how he thinks
he can protect our homeland when he failed to shut down terrorism with
roots in New Jersey while he was Assistant United States Attorney and
then United States Attorney for New Jersey from 1987 to 1994, and then
failed to cut financial ties to terrorism that might have involved one
of his own former clients after he became Assistant Attorney General
and was put in charge of Operation Green Quest.
- I know that I won’t be able to ask these questions of
Chertoff on Wednesday, but I’m hoping that at least one Senator on the
confirmation committee will have received this information by then and
has the intestinal fortitude to actually pose some of these questions
- In my opinion, Michael Chertoff has no business becoming
our Secretary of Homeland Security until these questions are answered.
If he can’t secure his own backyard…there’s no way possible he can
secure our entire country.
- (1) Dateline NBC, On the
trail of arms merchants, August
- (2) The Record (Bergen County, NJ), Judge Orders
State to Take Over Newark-Based Medicaid HMO, By Linda Washburn,
December 11, 1998
- (3) The Record (Bergen County, NJ), Judge
Orders Bond, Freezes Assets of Failing HMO's Owner, By Randy
Diamond, December 18, 1998
- (4) Dateline NBC, Stinger
missile sting operation, March
- (5) The Seattle Times, New
Jersey mosque's faithful stung by its alleged ties to terrorists, By William Yardley
- (6) Dateline NBC, The most
dangerous man in the world?,
January 14, 2005
- (7) CBS News, Feds Launch 'Operation Green Quest',
Oct. 25, 2001
- (8) Prepared Testimony of the Honorable Michael
Chertoff Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division United States
Department of Justice, 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, September 26, 2001
- (9) CNN, Ashcroft's
man on a mission, By Elaine Shannon, May 25, 2002