Why the Ghost of A.Q. Khan Still Walks the Earth
by Paul & Phillip D. Collins ©, June 13th, 2007
On February 11, 2004, President George W. Bush told the world that it could sleep easy. According to the President, the nuclear black-market network of Abdul Qadeer Khan had been dismantled and the threat of nuclear proliferation had been brought to and end (Isenberg, no pagination). The Bush administration gave itself a pat on the back and Bush apologists gushed with praise. However, new developments have caused the cheerleaders to go silent. A study released by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) shows that the Khan network is anything but dead and gone. Entitled Nuclear Black Markets: Pakistan, A Q Khan and the Rise of Proliferation Networks, the report states the following:
some of Khan’s associates appear to have escaped law-enforcement attention and could, after a period of lying low, resume their black-market business. Decapitating the nodes of non-hierarchical networks does not necessarily eradicate the enterprise. (No pagination)
Many people let out a victory shout when Khan was replaced as head of Kahn Research Labs and placed under house arrest (Isenberg). However, the (IISS) report’s editor, Mark Fitzpatrick points out that Pakistan’s involvement with Khan’s network has guaranteed its longevity. David Isenberg elaborates:
Ironically, as Fitzpatrick pointed out, while Pakistan has stripped Khan of his former responsibilities and power, they are still very much dependent on the network he set up, since the countries producing and exporting nuclear technology and raw materials were obliged not sell such materials to Pakistan because it had not yet entered international agreements on nuclear non-proliferation. Thus Islamabad had no alternative but to fall back on the networks Khan and his associates had created. (No pagination)
Could Bush’s premature proclamation that Khan’s network was dead be considered a mistake? Unfortunately, the evidence does not work in Bush’s favor. A November 7, 2001 BBC report presented evidence that Bush actually protected Khan’s network instead of hunting it down (Palast, no pagination). This report was not the stuff of conspiracy theory. The BBC’s information came from sources within the American intelligence community. Greg Palast shared some their revelations concerning A.Q. Khan:
I probed our CIA contact for specifics of investigations that were hampered by orders to back off of the Saudis. He told us that the Khan Laboratories investigation had been effectively put on hold. You may never have heard of Khan Laboratories, but if this planet blows to pieces this year, it will likely be thanks to Khan Labs’ creating nuclear warheads for Pakistan’s military. Because investigators had been tracking the funding for this so-called “Islamic Bomb” back to Saudi Arabia, under Bush security restrictions, the inquiry was stymied. (The restrictions were lifted, the agent told me without a hint of dark humor, on September 11.) (No pagination)
Given the fact that the Bush White House protected the Khan network, it is possible that the administration merely wanted people to think the network was dead. A deeper investigation of the Khan network reveals that it’s the bastard child of the power elite.
The Safari Club
The power elite birthed the Khan network through an alliance known as the Safari Club. The Safari Club was a partnership between the American elite and the Saudi elite. According to investigative reporter Joseph Trento, this partnership switched the CIA’s “reliance, for regional intelligence, from Israel to Saudi Arabia” (99). In 1974, the pro-Israel elements within the CIA lost dominance when Counterintelligence chief James Angleton was fired (99). The Agency resented Angleton for his “special relationship with Israel” (99).
In 1976, with the Israel sympathizer out of the way, the Agency turned to the Saudi royal family for help. Times were tough for CIA. America’s ground involvement in Vietnam ended in 1973. Two years later, Saigon fell. 1974 had seen the emergence of the Watergate scandal. Finally, in 1976, America was fed up. It was the infamous “Year of Intelligence.” The Church and Pike Committees began exposing crime and corruption within the intelligence community. Congress was not going to give a nickel to intelligence operations anywhere in the world. With money being tight, the Agency turned to the Saudis for the cash it needed. Through the Safari Club, “the Saudi royal family had taken over intelligence financing for the United States” (102). The pretext for this unholy union was the fight against communism.
Prince Turki gave a detailed description of the Safari in a 2002 speech to the Georgetown University alumni. Joseph Trento relates this oration:
“And now I will go back to the secret that I promised to tell you. In 1976, after the Watergate matters took place here, your intelligence community was literally tied up by Congress. It could not do anything. It could not send spies, it could not write reports, and it could not pay money. In order to compensate for that, a group of countries got together in the hope of fighting Communism and established what was called the Safari Club. The Safari Club included France, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and Iran. The principal aim of this club was that we would share information with each other in countering Soviet influence worldwide, and especially in Africa. In the 1970s, there were still some countries in Africa that were coming out of colonialism, among them Mozambique, Angola, and I think Djibouti. The main concern of everybody was that the spread of Communism was taking place while the main country that would oppose Communism was tied up. Congress had literally paralyzed the work not only of the U.S. intelligence community but of its foreign service as well. And so the Kingdom, with these countries, helped in some way, I believe, to keep the world safe at the time when the United States was not able to do that. That, I think, is a secret that many of you don’t know. I am not saying it because I look to tell secrets, but because the time has gone and many of the actors are gone as well.” (Qutd. in Trento 102)
Afghanistan Enters the Equation
In 1978, Islamic fighters backed by the Safari Club began taunting the Soviet Union into invading Afghanistan (167). The Safari Club’s Islamic fighters began conducting cross-border raids into Soviet territory (167). It was not too long before the United States got into the action. A Soviet invasion of Afghanistan would provide the power elite with a pretext for several different projects. First of all, the dialectic rivalry that the elite had facilitated between the East and West called for the Soviet’s having their equivalent to Vietnam. Second, the power elite needed to create enemies for future Hegelian activism. In the name of fighting communism, the Islamic people could be radicalized with a violent form of their religion. When blowback finally came from that radicalization campaign, the elite would be there to take advantage of it. Carter’s National Security Advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, admitted to luring the Soviet Union in the Afghanistan trap during an interview with the French magazine Le Nouvel Observateur:
Q: The former director of the CIA, Robert Gates, stated in his memoirs [“From the Shadows”], that American intelligence services began to aid the Mujahadeen in Afghanistan 6 months before the Soviet intervention.
In this period you were the national security adviser to President Carter. You therefore played a role in this affair. Is that correct?
Brzezinski: Yes. According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality, secretly guarded until now, is completely otherwise: Indeed, it was July 3, 1979 that President Carter signed the first directive for secret aid to the opponents of the pro-Soviet regime in Kabul. And that very day, I wrote a note to the president in which I explained to him that in my opinion this aid was going to induce a Soviet military intervention.
Q: Despite this risk, you were an advocate of this covert action. But perhaps you yourself desired this Soviet entry into war and looked to provoke it?
B: It isn’t quite that. We didn’t push the Russians to intervene, but we knowingly increased the probability that they would. (No pagination)
Brzezinski presented this idea to Carter in a 1979 memo (Trento 318). In this memo, Brzezinski informed Carter that the downside to the plan was that efforts to prevent nuclear proliferation in Pakistan would have to be abandoned (318). After all, Pakistan’s cooperation in the anti-Soviet effort in Afghanistan was an absolute must. The National Security Advisor had provided the excuse needed for the United States government to look the other way while the Islamic bomb was being created.
It was not difficult for observers to look at Carter and Brzezinski and determine who was the puppet and who was the puppeteer. Carter’s campaign advisor Hamilton Jordan had warned about Brzezinski prior to the election when he stated: “If, after the inauguration [of Jimmy Carter] you find… Zbigniew Brzezinski as head of National Security, then I would say we failed and I’d quit” (Epperson 232). While Jordan did not quit, he had recognized that Brzezinski was an agent for the power elite (232). When forming the Trilateral Commission, Brzezinski turned to America’s consummate oligarch, David Rockefeller, for assistance (235). Rockefeller was chairman of the elitist Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) at the time (232). According to Ralph Epperson: “all eight American representatives to the founding meeting of the Commission were members of the CFR” (232).
Also of importance was Brzezinski’s tie to the intelligence community. None other than the infamous Blond Ghost, Ted Shackley, had recruited Brzezinski into the CIA when Shackley was in the Agency’s East European Division (Trento 166). Shackley was also a close friend of Edwin Wilson (58). It was with Wilson’s help that Shackley was able to create “a private intelligence network beyond the reach of official accountability” (52). Ed Wilson’s associate, Congressman Charlie Wilson, “acting in concert with the CIA, repeatedly blocked Congressional efforts to halt American funding of Pakistan” (316). Charles Wilson would even tell Pakistan’s President Zia, “Mr. President, as far as I’m concerned you can make all the bombs you want” (316). Much of the money going to Pakistan was making its way into A.Q. Khan syndicate (313). Carter was being manipulated. The President, simple-minded as he was, did not have a ghost of a chance.
Initially, the American elite did not want Pakistan to go nuclear. According to Dr. John Coleman (who many believe to be a former British intelligence operative), Kissinger threatened Pakistani President Ali Bhutto when he expressed the desire for Pakistan to go nuclear (28). In 1979, Bhutto was executed by General Zia ul Haq, who Coleman characterizes as “a Council on Foreign Relations representative” in Pakistan (28). When President Zia made it known that Pakistan would continue work on the “Islamic Bomb,” Carter cut off military and economic aid to Pakistan (315). With the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, everything changed. Carter cut a deal with President Zia to use Pakistan as a base of operations for the mujahideen (315-16). In the name of repelling the Soviet horde, money began to flow into Pakistan. Much of it would make its way into the hands of A.Q. Khan and his efforts to create a nuclear bomb. Key to this all was the Safari Club and the Saudi royals. Joseph Trento states:
The same leadership that promulgated the Safari Club-the Saudi royals-also strongly funded and supported the Islamic Development Bank. Begun in 1973, the IDB now has 55 member states, with Saudi Arabia dominating, with 27.33 percent of the bank’s funding. As a comparison, Egypt contributes 9.48% and Pakistan just 3.41% of the bank’s total capital. It was through the bank’s scientific and economic development efforts that huge amounts were funneled into Pakistan, which ended up in the hands of A.Q. Khan and his now-infamous nuclear bomb-building syndicate. (313)
Using the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan as a pretext, the Safari Club cut a deal with Pakistan that allowed for the creation of the “Islamic Bomb.” Joseph Trento gives the details of that deal:
Pakistani intelligence would handle all the money going to facilitate the proxy war against the Soviets. That meant hundreds of millions of dollars from the United States and Saudi Arabia were being run through Pakistan with no accountability. “Unfortunately,” said [CIA liaison to the corporate world] Robert Crowley, “the Pakistanis knew exactly where their cut of the money was to go.” Where the money went was into an Islamic nuclear-weapons program supported by Saudi Arabia and accepted by the United States. (314)
By the 1990s, this nuclear network drew the attention of British Customs (314). Employing an Arabic-speaking Muslim agent, British Customs began looking into A.Q Khan’s bomb-making syndicate (314). What the British investigation uncovered was that the United States “had no interest in shutting down the network, which had been operating for years” (314). The French also learned that the United States was intentionally looking the other way. Trento elaborates:
A top French Intelligence official, who asked that his name be withheld from publication, described the U.S. – Pakistani cover-up of the Khan network as having “an important precedent. Just as the U.S. allowed Israel to develop nuclear weapons, under pressure from the Saudis, the U.S. allowed Pakistan to be Saudi Arabia’s proxy as the first Islamic nuclear state. The Saudis put up the cash and have clean hands as Pakistan builds the bomb for its supposed defense against India over Kashmir . . . but my country and the British received no cooperation starting in the 1980’s when we discovered traces of Khan’s network. The U.S. did not want to discuss it.” (314-15)
However, the United States was not just looking the other way. The United States was actually contributing to Khan’s network. Trento explains:
A senior source in the British government, who asks not to be named, confirms that Khan ran the network and that parts for the nuclear-weapons program came from the United States. Khan’s daughter, attending school in England, was being tutored, and at the ends of faxes dealing with logistics for her education, Khan would sometimes write, in his own hand, items he needed for the nuclear program. (315)
With protection and support from the Saudi elite and the American elite, the Khan nuclear network swept the globe. Khan’s syndicate supplied Libya, Malaysia, Iran, and North Korea with weapons equipment. When one hears individuals such as Dick Cheney, Joe Lieberman, and President George W. Bush rattling their sabers at Iran for their nuclear program, one needs to remember that the United States is, in part, responsible for that threat.
Would the power elite really create a nuclear enemy America would have to confront later? Historically, there is a precedent. There is a body of evidence that the United States government began transforming Russia into a nuclear power as far back as 1943, using the Lend Lease program (Epperson 330). Major George Racy Jordan was a witness to this treason. Jordan “was the officer in charge of the transfer of the Lend Lease supplies through the Great Falls, Montana, air base” (Epperson 330). The transferable goods brought to this base were finding their way to Russia (330). Researcher Ralph Epperson gives us Jordan’s story:
Major Jordan, curious by nature, opened various briefcases and cartons, and saw various words he was not familiar with on various papers: uranium, cyclotron, proton, neutron, cobalt, and plutonium. In addition, Jordan discovered various reports from “Oak Ridge, Manhattan District” (it was the “Manhattan Project” in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, where the American scientists were developing the plans for the atomic bomb) containing phrases like “energy produced by fission.” Jordan also discovered “… at least three consignments of uranium chemicals… nearly three quarters of a ton. Confirmed also was the shipment of one kilogram, or 2.2 pounds, of uranium metal at a time when the total American stock was 4.5 pounds.”
These findings meant little to Major Jordan until 1949, when Russia exploded their first atomic bomb. It was then that he realized that he had been witness to the transfer of the materials and plans for construction of Russia’s atomic bomb. And this occurred in 1943. (330)
Why would the power elite arm hostile nations? For many years now, the power elite have been erecting a system of world government along oligarchic lines. This world government is being presented as the cure to many ills. One of those ills is nuclear-proliferation.
Thanks to the power elite, the world has become a haunted house. The oligarchs’ past sins have become ghosts that come back to disturb us all. The Khan network is one such ghost. Will the ghost of A.Q. Khan burn the house down? Only time will tell.
- Coleman, Dr. John. The Conspirators’ Hierarchy: The Committee of 300. Nevada: Joseph Publishing, 1994.
- Epperson, Ralph. The Unseen Hand: An Introduction to the Conspiratorial View of History. Arizona: Publius Press, 1985.
- “Interview of Zbigniew Brzezinski.” Online posting. 15-21 January 1998. Konformist Yahoo Discussion Group July 2002 [NB: posted here as well]
- Isenberg, David. “A Q Khan nuclear network alive and kicking.” Asia Times 15 May 2007
- Palast, Greg. “Khan Job: Bush Spiked Probe of Pakistan’s Dr. Strangelove, BBC reported in 2001” Gregpalast.com 9 February 2004
- Trento, Joseph. Prelude to Terror: Edwin P. Wilson and the Legacy of America’s Private Intelligence Network. New York: Carroll and Graf Publishers, 2005.
About the Authors
Phillip D. Collins acted as the editor for The Hidden Face of Terrorism and co-authored the book The Ascendancy of the Scientific Dictatorship with his brother Paul Collins. Both books are available at www.amazon.com. Phillip has also written articles for News With Views, Conspiracy Archive, and the Vexilla Regis Journal.
In 1999, Phillip earned an Associate degree of Arts and Science from Clark State Community College. In 2006, he earned a bachelor’s degree with majors in communication studies and liberal studies along with a minor in philosophy from Wright State University.
Phillip worked as a staff writer for a weekly news publication, the Vandalia Drummer, between late 2007 and 2011. During his tenure with the paper, he earned several accolades.
In 2011, he was inducted into the Media Honor Roll by the Ohio School Board Association for his extensive coverage of the Vandalia-Butler School District. That very same year, the Ohio Newspaper Association bestowed an Osman C. Hooper Newspaper Award upon Phillip for Best Photo. In addition, the City of Vandalia officially proclaimed that November 7, 2011 would be known as “Phillip Collins Day.” This honor was bestowed upon Phillip for his tireless coverage of the City and community.
Shortly after bringing his journalism career to a close, Phillip received another Osman C. Hooper Newspaper Award in the category of In-depth Reporting. This award was given to Phillip for his investigative work over the death of U.S. Marine Maria Lauterbach and the resultant Department of Defense reforms concerning sexual assault and rape. The case drew national attention and received TV coverage by major media organs.
Phillip currently works for the Wyoming Department of Corrections, where he earned the distinction of Employee of the Quarter for the third quarter of 2013. Phillip still works as a freelance journalist and is currently collaborating with his brother on a follow-up to The Ascendancy of the Scientific Dictatorship.
Paul David Collins is the author of The Hidden Face of Terrorism and the co-author of The Ascendancy of the Scientific Dictatorship. In 1999, he earned his Associate of Arts and Science degree from Clark State Community College. In 2006, he received his bachelor’s degree with a major in Liberal Studies and a minor in Political Science from Wright State University. He worked as a professional journalist for roughly four years.
From 2008 to 2012, Paul covered local news for several Times Community News publications, including the Enon Messenger, the New Carlisle Sun, the Tipp City Herald, the Kettering/Oakwood Times, the Beavercreek News Current, the Vandalia Drummer, the Springboro Sun, the Englewood Independent, the Fairborn Daily Herald, and the Xenia Daily Gazette.
Paul also wrote for other local papers, including the Enon Eagle, the New Carlisle News, and the Lusk Herald. In addition to his work in the realm of mainstream, Paul has published several articles concerning the topics of deep politics and elite deviancy. Those articles have appeared in Terry Melanson’s online Conspiracy Archive, Paranoia magazine, Vexilla Regis Journal, and Nexus magazine. He currently works as a correctional officer with the Wyoming Department of Corrections.