The USS Cole Bombing Cover Up - an October [No] Surprise?
by Thomas C. Mountain © Nov 6, 2000

The US government has admitted that the explosives used in the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen on Oct 12 was C-4, a US manufactured, plastic explosive. With their mobile labs the FBI knew with in a matter of days of the bombing of the USS Cole, that C-4 was used. Since all C-4 is made with a chemical "tracer" unique to each batch, the FBI quickly began a paper trail starting with the factory and exact date of its manufacture and leading just where no one, I mean, no one, is saying. Completely hush-hush.

It has been three weeks since they¹ve known this and the US investigators have just released the news that there was a US connection to the blast. Where are the questions from the press on the where, when and how US sailors were killed with supposedly tightly controlled US military supplies?

Could this be a case of an October [No]-Surprise? Remember,  the Reagan campaign manipulating the release of the  Iran Hostages to influence the US Presidential election of 1980? Hummm...?

Getting back to the USS Cole bombing/C-4 business. Where could this particular batch/batches of C-4 have come from and more importantly, why has this been so hush-hush?

We can pretty much rule out "the usual suspects" i.e; if any of the 44,000 lbs sent to Libya  in 1981 had been used we surely would already have heard about it.  So where could it have come from?  
I am going to speculate, but what choice do we have in this situation? So here goes; The C-4 used in the USS Cole bombing most likely came from the US Military or one of "our" military allies. It could have come from some civilian source but this is not as likely, for it is supposed to be pretty tough to get for civilians, especially in large quantities.

If it came from the US military, than some one must have sold it to some group and there must be some major players involved to have kept it out of the news. If it was some small potatoes, they would be in custody already, so it would seem to have to be some pretty serious players. Some major career damage, at least, for some top ranking brass? Or what is more likely, the CIA and its thugs doing a little free lancing?

If the C-4 used in the bombing was from some US ally then what does a list of "most likely" suspects look like? Starting with the US's largest and closest military ally, Israel,  a little research shows  past "bombings"  in which the Mossad, Israel's secret police, using C-4, both in large and small quantities (remember the cell phone assassination of the Hamas leader in Gaza?). So the Mossad belongs up there near, or at, the top of the list.

The next largest recipient of US military aid and close cooperation is...Turkey. Turkey is an "Islamic" country, yet their military is doing their best to suppress the Islamic movement, even dissolving a democratically elected government lead by the Islamicists. There is an ongoing war against the Kurds as well. The C-4 could have come from Turkey, but in such large quantity? Possible, but unprecedented.

Next would seem to be various Central and South American allies. This is an area I probably should leave to Al Giordano and the gang, along with a few crack CIA investigators. My initial suspicions would lie with  Cuban mafia types or death squad mercenaries in South America.  A case of Cash and Carry?

The remaining suspects would include who? I mean, who would the US allow to purchase, or supply to, over 1,000 lbs of C-4 to? Indonesia? Europeans (they have access to Eastern European plastique)? We may never know for sure.

One thing that is sure, is that this is an extremely tightly kept secret, with no leaks from anywhere on a major story right before the US presidential election. But then, no one seems to be even asking the right questions on this one.

Recently, I wrote an article which was published just before the C-4 story broke. In that article I speculated that Israel may have been responsible for the USS Cole bombing. Much of my theory was based on the timing of the blast being so favorable publicity wise, for Israel. In retrospect, I realize that the USS Cole bombing was a long term project, with the timing of the attack being more of a wait for the next US ship to arrive affair. Of course,  the fact that the USS Cole's fuel tanks were more than half full, and her destination could easily have been reached with the fuel she was carrying does raise the question of why the USS Cole even arrived in Yemen when she did? Was she ordered to refuel even when unnecessary, so as to insure her being where she was at a certain time?

This would still require a long term plan and how could they know that the Intifada was to erupt when it did? Unless, of course, the visit by Sharon of Israel to one of Islam's holiest sites, the Temple Mount, was deliberately planned to incite the Arab world and give Israel a pretext to forgo further implementation of what miserly concessions she was  required to make under the Oslo agreement. If Israel knew Sharon's visit would set off an uprising, requiring, necessarily, an increase in violence by the Israelis in response, wouldn't long term planning foresee a need to justify such barbarism (the shooting of unarmed children)?  What better way than having an American military target attacked. Maybe I am pushing things but...hmmmm?

It isn't like Israel is a willing participant in the so called "peace process". Not with the major escalation of settlement construction in the West Bank and all the new highways being built on land supposedly to be returned to the Palestinians. It was clear that Netanyahu was open about not implementing the Oslo agreement, but Barak is? Who okayed Sharon's visit to the Temple Mount accompanied by a major military presence, an act sure to cause a major problem?

There is a lot of cause for speculation, a lot of basis to be suspicious of coincidence. A lot of very tight lips in US Intel circles these days.

The question remains, as usual, "whose rear end is being covered?"  Maybe more accurately, just how much more of the iceberg remains under water? Or should we be wondering how they intend to hold the cover up together? Stay tuned.

Thomas C. Mountain is a long time political activist, anti-racist educator and cultural historian.