In 2004 in this space, Gabriel Syme noted some disturbing revelations from an FBI translater, Sibel Edmonds. It turns out that Edmonds had, in fact, plenty more to say, but had kept her own counsel. Until now.
A WHISTLEBLOWER has made a series of extraordinary claims about how corrupt government officials allowed Pakistan and other states to steal nuclear weapons secrets.
Sibel Edmonds, a 37-year-old former Turkish language translator for the FBI, listened into hundreds of sensitive intercepted conversations while based at the agency’s Washington field office.
She approached The Sunday Times last month after reading about an Al-Qaeda terrorist who had revealed his role in training some of the 9/11 hijackers while he was in Turkey.
Edmonds described how foreign intelligence agents had enlisted the support of US officials to acquire a network of moles in sensitive military and nuclear institutions.
Among the hours of covert tape recordings, she says she heard evidence that one well-known senior official in the US State Department was being paid by Turkish agents in Washington who were selling the information on to black market buyers, including Pakistan.
The allegations, to say the least, are explosive. The FBI has denied everything, as you might expect. But a disturbing picture is emerging, and given the fairly dodgy reputation of American government officials to start with, it is not hard to believe that Edmonds, if anything, understates the scale of the dirty dealings going on between the United States and various regimes.