On his August 19, 1995 radio address, President Clinton complained that Congress still had not passed “his” Anti-Terrorism Bill. “It’s hard to imagine what more must happen to convince Congress to pass that bill,” Clinton warned, in the manner of an ominously veiled threat.
Then just two months later, on October 9, the nation witnessed its first attack on a passenger train, when Amtrak’s “Sunset Limited” was derailed while enroute from Phoenix to San Diego. The derailment, caused by sabotage, resulted in over 100 injuries, including one death.
The terrorists left behind a cryptic note, calling themselves the “Sons of the Gestapo.” The mainstream press quickly jumped on this latest “terrorist” attack, coming as it did only six months after the Oklahoma City bombing. While no one, including law-enforcement officials, had ever heard of the “Sons of the Gestapo,” the purveyors of deception immediately played it up as the obvious work of a “Right-wing” militia group.
FBI officials were more cautious however, speculating that the attack may have been the result of a “disgruntled employee.” Exhaustive searches through numerous data-bases revealed no group called “Sons of the Gestapo,” and only someone with the technical knowledge necessary to disable a warning system on a railroad track would be capable of executing such a stunt.
It may not have mattered however. In the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing, any such attack on American citizens would be excuse enough to push the Anti-Terrorism Bill through Congress. And the press and anti-militia activists such as the ADL and the SPLC were eager to jump on the militia connection. “Sons of the Gestapo,” they asserted, could only be the pseudonym for a Right-wing hate-group.
Yet law-enforcement officials had only an enigmatic message to guide them. The note left behind by the saboteurs rallied against the ATF and FBI for their actions at Waco and Ruby Ridge, and stated, “This is not Nazi Germany.”
Why anyone would attack a passenger train to exact revenge on government officials for killing innocent civilians (or blow up babies as revenge for killing children) is beyond credulity. Yet, as in the Oklahoma City case, this was the message that the saboteurs — and the government-controlled press — wanted us to believe. America was filled with hateful Right-wing extremists who would do anything — kill anyone, women, children, babies — to pursue their violent anti-government agenda.
As Attorney General Janet Reno announced in the Oklahoma City case, so the local U.S. Attorney, Janet Napolitano would declare: “We are going to pursue every bit of evidence and every lead very thoroughly… until we find the person or persons who committed this crime.”
While the FBI swarmed through Maricopa County, interrogating local residents and harassing the few isolated “desert rats” who inhabited the surrounding countryside, a real investigation was being conducted by a lone Maricopa County Sheriff. With the assistance of Craig Roberts, a retired Tulsa police officer with military intelligence experience who worked on the Oklahoma City investigation, the Sheriff was able to uncover some amazing information.
What they found was that other than rescue vehicles, there were no vehicle tracks entering or exiting the crash site. Moreover, the site itself was extremely remote, being near the summit of the rugged Gila Bend Mountains, which surrounded the site to the east, north, and west. It was there, along a sharp S-curve, that the perpetrators had pulled 29 spikes from the tracks, causing the fatal crash.
Why had the perpetrators chosen such a remote location, Roberts wondered? Had they picked a more accessible spot, he reasoned, it would have surely lessened their chances of being caught, as all they would have had to do was drive to the nearest highway. In this case, the nearest road was Highway 8, 38 miles away, necessitating a difficult drive over rugged terrain, at the same time as law-enforcement officers would surely be on a heightened state of alert.
What Roberts and his sheriff partner also discovered was that 90 minutes away by air, in Pinal County, was a mysterious air-base known as Marana. The locked-down facility was owned by Evergreen, Inc., a government contractor reportedly involved in drug smuggling during the Iran-Contra period. The base, located off of Highway 10 between Phoenix and Tucson, was the site of strange night-time training maneuvers involving black and unmarked military-type helicopters. Passersby had also witnessed black-clad troops dropping into the desert en mass, using steerable black “Paracommander” parachutes.
This began to raise some interesting possibilities. Had the perpetrators been dropped into the site by air, then picked up by chopper? Both Roberts and his colleague at the Sheriff’s Department were experienced military pilots. They observed that it would have been easy for a helicopter to fly low through the mountain passes, avoiding radar, and insert and extract a team. As Roberts noted, “A full moon, wind out of the south at 8 knots, and a clear sky… would be an ideal night for air operations.”
The possibilities of a covert paramilitary commando team being responsible for the attack raised more than a few eyebrows at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department, until they began investigating a lead provided by a sympathetic FBI agent that several hikers had seen a small group of parachuters drop into the desert that night. They also discovered the following information:
…a VFR target squawking 1200 that left Tri-City airfield in Albuquerque on a southwest course, climbed to 10,500 feet, then, when it was exactly due east of the Amtrak site, turn due west and flew a course line that took it one mile south of the site. But just before arriving over the site, it dropped to 8,500 feet. After crossing the target zone, it turned on a southwesterly course towards California at 8,500 feet. Albuquerque contacted the Los Angeles Center which tracked the aircraft to a landing at Montgomery Field in San Diego.… It crossed the valley south of the bridge at 1940 hours (7:40 p.m.)
Since the winds that night were at 8 knots out of the south, a drop one mile from the target site would compensate for wind drift. Moreover, such a flight is not required to file a flight plan listing its passengers, and an aircraft flying out of Albuquerque, squawking on transponder 1200 wouldn’t look particularly suspicious.
When they checked with the refueler at Montgomery Field, the records indicated that the “N” number checked to a Beachcraft, registered to Raytheon. Raytheon owns E-systems. Like Evergreen, E-Systems, based in Greenville, Texas, is a covert government contractor, reportedly involved in drug-running. The NSA contractor allegedly developed sophisticated systems to create electronic “holes” which would allow planes to cross the border without tripping the NORAD Early Warning Systems. E-Systems, which is reputed to have “wet-teams” (assassination teams), was directed by former NSA Director and CIA Deputy Director Bobby Ray Inman.
While it is possible a jump was made from the twin-engine Beechcraft, a plane commonly used for such purposes, it still left the problem of the team’s extraction. With the radar track information, the Maricopa Sheriff then went to the Air Force at Yuma, who monitor the Aerostat radar drug balloons. The DEA balloons have “look-down” capability for detecting low-flying aircraft. The Master Sergeant at Yuma agreed to help out. A short time later he called back.
“Sorry,” he said. “We can’t help you out.”
“What? Why?” asked Jack.
“The plug’s been pulled.”
“What does that mean?”
The sergeant sounded very uncomfortable when he replied. “We really wanted to check this out, but all I can say is the balloons were down that night.”
“Why?” asked Jack.
“All of them?” asked Jack, incredulously.
“Yes, sir.” The sergeant sounded very nervous.
“All I can tell you is that they were ordered down for maintenance. It came from above my pay grade.”
One has to wonder what “above my pay grade” means. Why would all the balloons be ordered down for maintenance? Obviously, a cover-up was in progress.
It was beginning to sound suspiciously like the hurried demolition of the Oklahoma Federal Building, to prevent any independent forensic analysis of the bomb site. Or the Secret Service removing President Kennedy’s protective bubble from his limousine; failing to secure the windows and rooftops along the parade route; and changing the route at the last minute.
Like the two foregoing examples, only the government — or shadow elements within the government — had the capability of pulling that off. No “lone nut” or criminal syndicate could order such last-minute changes, or orchestrate such a massive and well-executed cover-up. Moreover, no militia group could order all the radar balloons down on the night of the attack.
As a Maricopa County resident stated to the Arizona Republic regarding the FBI’s so-called militia theory, “Buddy, you can’t get three people out here to get together on what kind of pickup to drive, and you think we’re going to form a militia?”
Obviously, no militia would benefit from such an attack. And what about the “Sons of the Gestapo?” As Roberts wrote: “…as an old Southeast Asia hand (a marine sniper during Vietnam), I remember that one of the terms used by Phoenix Program assassins working under MACV-SOG (Military Advisory Command, Studies and Observations Group) was a twisted bar-room version of the last acronym. “Yeah,” a drunk trooper would mention. “I’m SOG… a son of the Gestapo.”
The Phoenix assassination program, as previously discussed, was organized by the CIA’s William Colby, Ted Shackley, and fielded by General John Singlaub. Singlaub commanded Second Lieutenant Oliver North. Shackley, Singlaub, and North would go on to orchestrate the secret and illegal Iran-Contra operation, smuggling drugs into this country at such places as Mena, Arkansas… and Marana.
Curiously, whenever Iran-Contra drug shipments came in for the California run, the drug balloons under “Operation Watchtower” were shut down. Could this be the same mechanism that shut them down the night of the attack?
Then, in September of 1997, a confidential FBI memo intended for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Phoenix was accidentally faxed to the Arizona Republic, the Associated Press, and other news media. The memo states that the FBI’s prime suspect is “a man with law enforcement and firefighting experience who recently moved out of Arizona.”
Apparently, the “Sons of the Gestapo” note left behind was a “false flag,” a distraction designed to serve a political purpose. In this case, that purpose — like the Oklahoma bombing which preceded it — was to connect the Amtrak attack with the Patriot/Militia movement. Considering the reaction of the mainstream press, it appears they have largely succeeded.