THE OCTOPUS - THE TENTACLES OF CORRUPTION http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3691e2526c13.htm .Title: The Octopus, Inslaw, PROMIS, Systematics and The Tentacles of Corruption - The Links Topic: White Water
The Octopus, Inslaw, PROMIS, Systematics and The Tentacles of Corruption - The Links
Various Authors, Publications and Media Not for commercial use. Solely to be fairly used for the educational purposes of research and open discussion.
January 4, 1999 Various Authors
Not for commercial use. Solely to be fairly used for the educational purposes of research and open discussion.
By Joel Bleifuss
For more than a year, Danny Casolaro, a Washington D.C. - based freelance investigator, had been sorting through a web of intrigue--the S & L debacle, BCCI, Iran-Contra, the contra-connected Wackenhut Corp., the Wackenhut-connected Inslaw case, and the Inslaw-connected "October Surprise."
According to one of his close friends, who asked not to be named, Casolaro began receiving death threats eight or nine months ago. "Brother, just make it quick," Casolaro is reported to have told one of these midnight callers. The last threat came on Monday, August 5, according to his brother, Anthony.
How quick death came we may never know. On Saturday, August 10, Casolaro was found dead in Room 517 of the Martinsburg, W. Va., Sheraton. His body was discovered with 12 incisions in his arms in a bathtub of bloody water 17 hours after he had called his mother's house at 6 p.m. Friday to say he was heading home but that he would not make it to his niece's birthday party. On the following Monday Martinsburg authorities notified the family of Casolaro's death, but by then the body had been embalmed and the motel room had been sanitized by a cleaning contractor. Officials are calling the incident an "unattended death" while they continue their investigation. Family and friends say that suicide is out of the question. They maintain that Casolaro was not a depressive type, and that while he did have financial problems, he did not dwell on them.
According to family and friends, before leaving for Martinsburg, Casolaro had been ecstatic. The pieces of the puzzle were finally fitting together. He had told them he was going to West Virginia to meet a source who was to help him nail down a last piece of evidence in his investigation into the Inslaw software-theft case.
Those close to Casolaro want many questions answered. Where is his ever-present briefcase? It was not in the motel room. Where is his tape deck? It is missing. Where were his notes and the outline of his proposed book, "Behold a Pale Horse," which he had shown to friends days before his death? The documents were not found in the Sheraton motel room or in the four boxes of his papers that the family turned over to ABC News. Why did authorities wait so long to notify the family of his death? His driver's license said he lived in Falls Church, Va., and all the Casolaros listed in the 703 area code are his relatives. Why was his body embalmed before the family was notified? West Virginia law requires family approval prior to embalming. Who was the man who telephoned Casolaro's house on Saturday evening? When a housekeeper picked up the phone, a voice said, "You're dead, you bastard."
MOTIVE FOR MURDER? What was Casolaro investigating that could have put his life in such danger? David MacMichael is a former CIA analyst who now directs the Washington office of the Association of National Security Alumni, a watchdog group. MacMichael had talked to Casolaro on the phone on Thursday, the day he left for Martinsburg. Casolaro had made an appointment to meet with him.
Says MacMichael, "providing the death was not a suicide, one can examine three scenarios. First, Casolaro was developing a theory that a group of former intelligence officers were members of a for-profit cabal that Casolaro called "The Octopus." According to his theory, over the past 25 years the Octopus had its tentacles in a number of international scandals." MacMichael doesn't think such a far-fetched sounding theory would get Casolaro killed. "If you published their names, pictures and documents, what kind of book would you have?" asks MacMichael. It would be dismissed, according to Macmichael, like "a UFO crank book."
Second, Casolaro was looking into the October Surprise, the alleged deal between the 1980 Reagan presidential campaign and Iranians. That his death would be connected to this investigation is "nonsense" says MacMichael, who explains that many journalists are now investigating the 1980 deal, making it unlikely that Casolaro had information significant enough to endanger his life.
Which leads to the third scenario, that Casolaro was on his way to collect the final evidence needed to wrap up his investigation of a scandal that, as MacMichael put it, involves "real crimes, real people and real money"--the Inslaw case.
INSLAW MEETS THE LAW: For eight years, Inslaw Inc, has been battling the Justice Department for possession of Promis, an innovative case-management software program developed by company owner Bill Hamilton. In 1986 Inslaw filed suit against the department in federal court, claiming the department had stolen the program.
In September 1987, Judge George Bason, the federal bankruptcy judge from Washington, D.C., ruled, "The Department of Justice took, converted, stole Inslaw's enhanced Promis by trickery, fraud and deceit." He also charged, "The failure even to begin in investigating these charges is outrageous and indefensible and constitutes an institutional decision by the Department of Justice at the highest level simply to ignore charges of impropriety."
The Justice Department appealed the ruling, and in November 1989, Judge William B. Bryant of the U.S. District Court in Washington affirmed the lower court's decision. He ruled, "The government acted wilfully and fraudulently to obtain property that it was not entitled to under contract.
The Justice Department then appealed Bryant's ruling to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C. On May 7 that court overturned the previous court decisions, saying the federal bankruptcy court lacked jurisdiction to hear the case. However, the Court of Appeals left the findings of fact undisturbed.
Earlier this year, the case took a new twist. Inslaw went public with allegations that the Reagan Justice Department, after it had stolen the Promis software, turned it over to Earl Brian, a friend of both former President Ronald Reagan and former Attorney General Edwin Meese. In 1974, Brian left then-California Gov. Reagan's cabinet.
Inslaw alleges that its software was given to Brian as a payback for Brian's help in arranging the arms-and-hostages deal between the 1980 Reagan-Bush campaign and representatives of the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (see "In These Times," July 24, 1987, Oct. 12, 1988, and April 27, 1991). According to Inslaw owner Bill Hamilton, Brian, who runs United Press International, allegedly then marketed Promis to the intelligence agencies of Israel, Jordan, Iraq, Canada, South Korea, Libya, Great Britain, Germany, France, Australia, Thailand, Japan, Chile, Guatemala and Brazil. According to Inslaw's scenario, once the software was in use by foreign intelligence services, the U.S. National Security Agency would then be able to infiltrate the computerized intelligence files of these countries. Modifications on the pirated software were allegedly carried out by the Wackenhut Corp. of Coral Gables, Fla.
WHERE IS JUSTICE?: Inslaw's attorney, Elliot Richardson, the Nixon attorney general who resigned rather than participate in the Watergate cover-up, has long asked for the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the Justice Department's handling of the case. But to no avail.
The House Judiciary Committee has been investigating the scandal since August 1989. After months of foot-dragging, Attorney General Richard Thornburgh, under subpoena by the committee, finally released Inslaw-related files. However, according to a source in the House, 15 to 20 files are missing.
Washington Post columnist Mary McGrory is one of the few mainstream journalists to give the Inslaw case serious attention. She wrote on August 18, "The man who could have resolved the Inslaw case, Dick Thornburgh, resigned as attorney general on the day the West Virginia police came forward with their autopsy on Casolaro. Excess was the hallmark of the Thornburgh's farewell ceremony: an honor guard, a trooping of the colors, superlatives from subordinates. William P. Barr, his deputy and possible successor, spoke of Thornburgh's "leadership, integrity, professionalism and fairness"--none of which Thornburgh displayed in his handling of Inslaw. What was merely sinister has now turned deadly. Thornburgh calls Inslaw "a little contract dispute" and refused to testify about it to the House Judiciary Committee. Richardson thinks it could be "dirtier than Watergate," and, as a victim of the scandal, he should know. Thornburgh's conduct is the most powerful reason for believing that Danny Casolaro really saw an Octopus before he died."
And in the wake of Casolaro's death, Richardson has repeated his call for a special prosecutor. He told the Boston Globe's John Aloysius Farrell, "It's hard to come up with any reason for his death other than he was deliberately murdered because he was close to uncovering sinister elements in what he called 'The Octopus.' This simply strengthens the case for an in-depth, hard-hitting, thorough investigation."
But will there be one? The FBI is treating the death lightly. According to a spokesman in the Pittsburgh office, which has jurisdiction over West Virginia, "There is no federal investigative interest in the matter."
As for former Attorney General Thornburgh, he is now running for the Senate in Pennsylvania. If Justice is served, perhaps he will also run for cover.
END OF ARTICLE
THE OCTOPUS/CASOLARO FILES
THE INSLAW SCANDAL
THE TENTACLES OF SYSTEMATICS
NUGAN HAND BANK
THE FIFTH COLUMN - CHARLES HAYES
THE BCCI AFFAIR
ARKANSAS DEVELOPMENT FINANCE AUTHORITY - (ADFA)
WHITE HOUSE DATA BASE
THE MENA SCANDAL
THE KILLING MACHINE
THE OCTOPUS/PROMIS/INSLAW DEAD:
Ian Spiro, His Wife and Three Children
Fred Alvarez, His Girlfriend and another friend
Alan Michael May
Arnold Raphel Mohommed Rajai
Security Guard (unnamed) - at Heller, Ehrman White & McCauliffe
Flight 103 - Mckee Team, American Intelligence Agents
THE ROGUES GALLERY
THERE IS NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA!
THERE IS NO JUSTICE IN AMERICA!