New York Times
Sunday Book Review
November 14, 2004

The Iraqi Connection

To the Editor:

In his review of ''The Connection: How Al Qaeda's Collaboration With Saddam
Hussein Has Endangered America,'' by Stephen F. Hayes (Sept. 19), Gideon
Rose dismisses my work. It is far more substantial than Rose suggests.

Fundamental anomalies exist in the official United States explanation for
the mega-terrorist plots, starting with the 1993 World Trade Center bombing
and culminating in 9/11. Above all, the masterminds of those attacks are
said to be a family: Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and at least four nephews
(including Ramzi Ahmed Yousef, mastermind of the 1993 bombing).

These individuals are Baluch, a Sunni Muslim people living along the
Iranian-Pakistani border. The United States has had virtually nothing to do
with them, and they have no evident motive for these assaults -- save that
Iraq had extensive ties with the Baluch, using them as spies and saboteurs
in its earlier conflict with Iran's Shiite regime.

No other major terrorist group has a family at its core. This family was
supposedly born and raised in Kuwait. Their identities are based on Kuwaiti
documents that predate Kuwait's liberation in 1991. It is at least possible
that these identities were falsified, as Iraq had custody of those
documents, while it occupied Kuwait.

Following the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, senior officials in the New
York office of the F.B.I. believed Iraq was behind the attack. Reports in
The New York Times hinted at an Iraqi connection. Rose (and others) might do
well to review that material, before cavalierly dismissing the possibility
of Iraq's involvement with this family that twice attacked the Trade Center

Laurie Mylroie

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