Bob Graham: Issue of 28 Pages Isn’t Past History: It’s U.S. Policy Toward Saudi Arabia Today

In a hard-hitting interview with a London YouTube program called TruthLoader, former U.S. Senator Bob Graham declared that the issue of the suppressed 28 pages on the 9/11 attacks is not a question of “past history.” Graham said this could lead to a re-assessment of U.S. policy regarding Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Iran today, particularly “if we knew that Saudi Arabia had been a collaborator with the 19 hijackers.” In the Dec. 19 interview, Graham also blamed Barack Obama for carrying out a cover-up even beyond that initiated by the George W. Bush Administration.

Graham stated that the two primary reasons why the 28 pages and other classified documents regarding the Saudis should be released are

  • justice for the victims of 9/11 and their families, and
  • national security.

He pointed out that the U.S. has assumed that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a loyal ally, and in fact, he said, the Saudis have been helpful to the U.S. in certain areas. But this is not sufficient reason not to disclose information “which might indicate that Saudi Arabia was perfidious, and played a critical role in the most significant attack against the United States — in the United States itself — since Pearl Harbor.”

Asked about the implications that would flow from the release of the 28 pages, Graham said this could cause a re-evaluation of U.S. policy, at a time when several Saudi officials have been “publicly and stridently” critical of the U.S. He pointed to one official, whom he identified as a high-ranking member of the royal family and a former head of the Saudi intelligence service (he was probably referring to Prince Turki bin-Faisal), as having been very publicly critical of U.S. policy toward Syria, and of the U.S. role in the agreement concerning Iran’s nuclear program.

Graham said that the three questions to be answered are

  • Did the 19 hijackers carry out the 9/11 attacks on their own, or did they have outside assistance?
  • Was the government of Saudi Arabia or related entities involved, and why did they provide such support? and
  • Why has the U.S. government gone to such lengths to cover it up?

He suggested that in light of the Bush family being close to the House of Saud, and the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia around oil and defense going back to World War II, it was not hard to understand why George W. Bush would have protected the Saudis. But, he continued, it’s more difficult to understand why the Obama Administration has essentially continued the policies of the Bush Administration, and in some ways even gone beyond what the Bush Administration did in terms of classification of documents. “That is an even more intriguing question,” Graham said. He said he cannot fathom Obama, who, during his 2008 campaign, had reportedly promised the 9/11 victims’s families that he would release the 28 pages and other classified documents. “That hasn’t happened.”

When asked how this investigation has been so contained, Graham pointed out that the President and those responsible to him, have almost complete control over what information to release to the public, and what information to withhold. In this case, they have withheld information “aggressively, and extensively,” and thus have kept the public from fully knowing what happened. And because there has not been a flow of information, they have contributed to the fact that this issue “is increasingly being treated as one of past history, not one that has effect on current decisions and actions.”

In the interview, Graham called for:

  • Release of the 28 pages from the Congressional Joint Inquiry;
  • Disclosure of FBI documents concerning the Saudi family in Sarasota, Florida, who were tied to the Saudi royal family, and who were in contact with three of the hijackers who were taking flight training; and,
  • Re-opening the 9/11 investigation, to assess the importance of the 28 pages, etc., and to find out what happened in other places — such as Paterson, NJ; Falls Church, VA; and southeast Florida — where there was a substantial hijacker presence prior to the 9/11 attacks, and to determine whether they were getting support similar to that provided in San Diego and Sarasota.
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