Plum City – (AbelDanger.net). United States Marine Field McConnell has linked Chris Hyman, CEO of Serco U.K., to the time-sliced ambush of Pat Tillman in 2004 after Brigadier General Gina Farisee had apparently issued common access cards to Serco’s Stratum Zero agents, allegedly hired to cover up the crime scenes.
McConnell claims Hyman appeared before the National Futures Association on the 47th Floor of WTC#1 on 9/11 to explain Serco’s role in fraudulent spot fixing for hedge fund managers; McConnell goes on to allege that Hyman and Farisee procured Serco access cards for use on 9/11 by ADT Security and MoD Police‘al-Qaeda’ crews to ambush and kill nearly 3,000 Americans, including 343 members of the Fire Department of New York.
Army ordered Tillman’s uniform burned within hours of death [Spoliation inference of time-slicing of facts by Serco agents – including MOD Police – having special ‘Wag the Dog’ privileges associated with Farisee access cards for pre- and post-ambush crime scenes]
SAN FRANCISCO – Within hours of Pat Tillman’s death, the Army went into information-lockdown mode, cutting off phone and Internet connections at a base in Afghanistan, posting guards on a wounded platoon mate, and ordering a sergeant to burn Tillman’s uniform.
New investigative documents reviewed by The Associated Press describe how the military sealed off information about Tillman’s death from all but a small ring of soldiers. Officers quietly passed their suspicion of friendly fire up the chain to the highest ranks of the military, but the truth did not reach Tillman’s family for five weeks.
The clampdown, and the misinformation issued by the military, lie at the heart of a burgeoning congressional investigation.
“We want to find out how this happened,” said Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., chairman of the House oversight committee, which has scheduled a hearing for Tuesday. “Was it the result of incompetence, miscommunication or a deliberate strategy?”
It is also a central issue as the Army weighs punishments against nine officers, including four generals, faulted in the latest Pentagon report on the case of the NFL star-turned-soldier. Military offocials said those recommendations could come in the next several weeks.
It is well known by now that the circumstances of Tillman’s April 22, 2004, death were kept from his family and the American public; the Army maintained he was cut down by enemy bullets in an ambush, even though many soldiers knew he was mistakenly killed by his own comrades. The nearly 1,100 pages of documents released last month at the conclusion of the Army Criminal Investigation Command’s probe reveal the mechanics of how the Army contained the information.
For example, the day after Tillman died, Spc. Jade Lane lay in a hospital bed in Afghanistan, recovering from gunshot wounds inflicted by the same fellow Rangers who had shot at Tillman. Amid his shock and grief, Lane noticed guards were posted on him.
“I thought it was strange,” Lane recalled. Later, he said, he learned the reason for their presence: The news media were sniffing around, and Lane’s superiors “did not want anyone talking to us,” he said.
Inside Forward Operating Base Salerno, near Khowst, Afghanistan, a soldier heard the dreaded call come across the radio: “KIAs.” There were two killed in action, one allied Afghan fighter and one Army Ranger, identified only by his code name.
The soldier checked a roster and discovered the fallen American was Tillman. He rounded up four others and broke the news but withheld Tillman’s name.
Had this soldier wanted to share the news outside the tactical operations center, it would have been difficult. “The phones and Internet had been cut off, to prevent anyone from talking about the incident,” he told investigators.
Nearby on the same base, a staff sergeant was in his tent when a captain walked in and told him to burn Tillman’s bloody clothing.
“He wanted me alone to burn what was in the bag to prevent security violations, leaks and rumors,” the staff sergeant testified. The superior “put a lock on communications” in the tent, he testified. Other Army officers said this was probably a directive to the staff sergeant to keep the conversation to himself.
Then he left the staff sergeant to his work: placing Tillman’s uniform, socks, gloves and body armor into a 55-gallon drum and burning them.
Several Army officers who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan said pulling the plug on base phones and e-mail was routine after a soldier died. The practice was meant to ensure the family was notified through official channels, said Army Maj. Todd Breasseale, chief spokesman for ground forces in Iraq until last August.
xxxxBut the truth was quickly becoming evident to a small group of soldiers with direct access to the evidence.
Two other sergeants who examined Tillman’s vest noticed the bullet holes appeared to be from 5.56-caliber bullets — signature American ammunition. An awful realization dawned on the sergeants, whose names, like those of others who testified in the investigation, were deleted from the recently released testimony.
“At this time was when I had realized Tillman may have been killed by friendly fire,” one of them said.
The other sergeant, who was higher-ranking, told him to “keep quiet and let the investigators do their job,” the subordinate sergeant testified. He was not to go “informing unit members that Spc. Tillman was killed by friendly fire.”
This was the same reason top-ranking officers cited in trying to explain why they waited to tell the Tillman family: They wanted to have the definitive investigation results. Army regulations, however, dictate that the next of kin be informed of additional information about a service member’s death as it becomes available.
Then-Col. James C. Nixon, Tillman’s regimental commander, ordered an investigation but directed that the information gathered be shared with as few people as possible until the results were finalized, acting Defense Department Inspector General Thomas Gimble found in a separate probe also completed last month.
Nixon, now a brigadier general and director of operations at the Center for Special Operations at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, said that he was not aware of all regulations governing such a case, and that his missteps were unintentional.
Among the top brass at the Pentagon, Lt. Gen. Philip Kensinger, a now-retired three-star general in charge of special operations, represented the Army at Tillman’s memorial service almost two weeks after the soldier’s death. “He decided to withhold notification from family members until all facts concerning the incident could be verified,” Gimble found.
Kensinger denied that he knew on the day of the memorial service that friendly fire was suspected. But investigators dismissed his claim as not credible and Kensinger could be punished under military law for making false official statements.
Congressional investigators will try to determine how high up the chain of command the information lockdown went. The Army delivered several thousand pages of new documents on Thursday, military officials said.
Gen. John Abizaid, then chief of Central Command, in charge of all American forces in the Middle East and Central Asia, testified that he did not learn of the likelihood of friendly fire until sometime between May 6 and May 13 — two or three weeks after Tillman died — because he was traveling in the Middle East.
And a lieutenant colonel testified that he delayed briefing Central Command lawyers until more than a month after Tillman had died, in part because he feared leaks and did not want to be blamed as the source.
But Abizaid visited Afghanistan within a week of Tillman’s death and spoke to Tillman’s platoon leader, then-Lt. David Uthlaut. Uthlaut has testified he did not suspect friendly fire until later.
Abizaid’s trip to Afghanistan was not examined by Gimble’s investigators, according to spokesman Gary Comerford.
Abizaid had no immediate comment.
The new testimony and other documents do not identify who, if anyone, orchestrated the clampdown. Nor do they address whether there was a concerted effort to conceal the truth about the best-known casualty in the war on terrorism.
Gimble said last month he found no evidence of such a cover-up. But when asked by a reporter whether he probed why the Army had not told the family in a timely fashion, Gimble said no.
One soldier carried a particularly heavy burden of secrecy.
Ranger Spc. Russell Baer had witnessed Rangers shooting at Rangers. Afterward, he was directed to travel from Afghanistan to the United States with his friend Kevin Tillman. But he was ordered not to tell Pat Tillman’s brother and fellow Ranger that friendly fire was the likely cause of the former football player’s death.
He kept the secret, fearing he did not know the whole story. But in a personal protest, Baer later went AWOL and was demoted as punishment.
“I lost respect for the people in charge of me,” Baer testified in an earlier Tillman investigation. He had gleaned “part of the puzzle” of Tillman’s death, but lamented that “I couldn’t tell them about it.”
Five investigations and three years later, that information gap is what’s driving the congressional probe, which is also looking into misinformation surrounding the capture and rescue of Pvt. Jessica Lynch in Iraq.”
“The MT Interview: Chris Hyman
By Chris Blackhurst Saturday, 01 December 2007
Resolutely fit, abstemious, religious, the CEO of service-supply firm Serco – 4th in our Most Admired Companies list – is an unusual businessperson in an unfashionable sector. Surviving 9/11 reinforced his belief in ‘people first, profits second’. Just don’t call it outsourcing.
Clearly, he is able to transfer that considerable energy and focus to Serco. Its growth has been phenomenal. It’s the company that operates prisons and organises the prison vans, runs traffic control centres, manages trains, looks after schools, maintains the aircraft of the Queen’s Flight at Northolt, and sets the time for the speaking clock and the BBC’s pips, using the signal from the National Physical Laboratory’s atomic clock.
Serco’s most recent contract wins include: the running of Business Link London, an information and support service for the capital’s 600,000 small and medium-sized firms; the provision of services to the new NHS Forth Valley Acute Hospital in Falkirk; the operation of the Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre in Bedfordshire for the Home Office; and a £50m, five-year deal to help with the running of the Ministry of Defence’s facilities in Gibraltar.
Those are just UK public-sector contracts. In the US, it has recently received a boost to an order to supply IT and engineering management to the US Postal Service. Serco has also just picked up two projects for the US Navy and Army. In Dubai, it has been declared the preferred bidder to manage the new Metro system.
One of the few non-whites to make it to the University of Natal, Hyman went on to join accountant Arthur Andersen, before moving to London in 1989 to be with Ernst & Young. After South Africa, he says, the UK was a breath of fresh air and he claims never to have found his race to be an issue. ‘My parents brought us up in a certain way. They told us that God created everyone. You do the best you can and you will be spotted.’
In 1994, he was head-hunted by Serco to be its European finance director, although, as he puts it: ‘I found Serco – the company fitted everything I was looking for.’ When he joined, annual turnover was £238m. In 2006, it was £2.5bn.
On 11 September 2001, he was in the World Trade Center. He was on the 47th floor when the plane hit, talking to Serco shareholders [self-regulating (?) hedge fund / private equity members of the National Futures Association]. They got out – but not the people in his previous meeting [who presumably walked into the ambush set by people carrying time-sliced common access cards for Gina Farisee and Lynne Cheney’s 9/11 continuity of government exercise]. He does not like talking about that terrible day. ‘It confirmed my faith. It renewed my zest for getting the balance right and made me realise that time is not always your own. It made me think about my family and my health more – and about putting the balance back. You know, it’s not a bad thing, to step back sometimes.'”
“Definition of ‘National Futures Association – NFA’ The independent self-regulatory organization for the U.S. futures market. NFA membership is mandatory for all participants in the futures market, providing assurance to the investing public that all firms, intermediaries and associates who conduct business with them on the U.S. futures exchanges must adhere to the same high standards of professional conduct. The NFA operates at no cost to the taxpayer, as it is financed exclusively by membership dues paid by members and assessment fees paid by users of futures markets. The national headquarters is in Chicago and there is an office in New York … The NFA began operating in 1982, subsequent to the establishment of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in 1974; this legislation also authorized the creation of registered futures exchanges, thereby facilitating the creation of a national self-regulatory organization. In addition to regulation of the U.S. futures market, the NFA’s duties and functions include registration, compliance and arbitration. It combats fraud and abuse in the futures markets through a combination of rigorous registration requirements, stringent compliance rules, strong enforcement authority and real-time market surveillance.”
“Specialized security integrators also are finding a role in FIPS 201 implementation. ADT Security Systems provides access security services to about 40 military bases throughout the United States, according to Mike Flannery, an operations/ sales manager with ADT Federal Systems Division.
“As an integrator, ADT has been certified and qualified by GSA as an approved HSPD-12 service provider,” Flannery said. “There are a number of categories that they evaluate and certify so that a government agency can be sure that we have passed a vetting process, we are familiar with the standards and requirements and that we have some quality assurance measures in place.”
ADT provides physical access control systems (PACS) to its military base clients. Those PACS systems will require upgrades to meet HSPD-12 requirements in order to read the new CAC cards compliant with FIPS 201.
ADT anticipates large-scale use of the new cards within 12 to 18 months. The company is currently an HSPD-12 upgrade to the system of a civilian government agency.
“The card technology between CAC and the civilian government is so similar because they are converging on the FIPS 201 standard,” Flannery observed. “That physical access system by definition will need to be HSPD-12 compliant to understand the credentials being presented to it.”
In many cases, defense agencies and installations could salvage prior investments by re-using some pieces of their legacy personal identity verification systems, even if those systems require firmware upgrades. However, in some cases, organizations will have no choice but to make the investment in new infrastructure, Flannery predicted.
“On the back end, much of that hardware can be saved. It depends on the age of the system. We are seeing that many of the computer platforms can be reused. Most manufacturers require updating of the software on those platforms. In most cases, the access control field panels can be saved. They may need firmware updates. But all of the readers have to be replaced, unfortunately,” Flannery said.
The ADT Sure Pass Identity-Access Management Platform consists of a package that uses a card management system produced by SETECS. ADT integrates that product with other components, such as CrossMatch identity vetting software and Aware biometrics software.
The company’s goal is to provide an HSPD-12 system that works seamlessly along a client’s IT backbone and that meets the FIPS 201 standard.
“Interoperability is the reason for any standard in the first place, and certainly the reason for this standard,” Flannery stated. “The FIPS model ensures interoperability of the technology that creates the credential but also it assures that the credential that adheres to the standard can be used across multiple government agencies and across multiple enterprises.”
“What do I need to access password protected areas of OASIS? In addition to a Northrop Grumman issued OASIS User ID and password, all users who access password controlled information will be required to hold a medium level of assurance (MLOA) hardware digital certificate. There are several types of MLOA hardware certificates. The majority of OASIS users will be using CertiPath certs issued by Exostar. We also accept US Government issued CAC (Common Access Card) and certificate issued to Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Raytheon employees [and Kristine Marcy’s SBA protégées companies].”
“[How Farrisee infiltrated and subverted Army chain of command by issuing access cards to sexual entrapment and extortion experts] with In 2003, she [Flowers] was mobilized in support of Operation Noble Eagle/Enduring Freedom and has spent the last six years of her career on active duty. Her parent command is the U.S. Army Reserve Command Headquarters at Ft. McPherson, Georgia. While mobilized to active duty, she served in the G-1 Directorate in support of Operation Noble Eagle as a Crisis Action Team Leader, Equal Opportunity Officer, Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program Manager, and Staff Action Officer.
Major Flowers was assigned to directly support Operation Enduring Freedom upon her transfer to OARDEC in November 2007. She has performed myriad tasks with ease including ARB Case Research Officer, CRO, Lead Case Research Officer, and Tribunal Recorder.
Major Flowers’ professional military education includes the Adjutant General Officer Advance Course, Combined Arms and Services Staff School, and Command and General Staff College. She has applied to the Naval War College. Her military decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal and the Army Achievement Medal.
In keeping with one of the tenets that sustains the Reserve Component, Major Flowers serves her community as a member of a 100 year old service organization, the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. She is an 18-year employee of Lockheed Martin Corporation [erstwhile director Lynne Cheney developed CAC cards with Serco for MOD Police (SA80 equipped) Atomic Weapons Establishment]. She is married to LTC Eric Flowers, who is currently deployed to the Horn of Africa, and they have one daughter.
Major Shelia Flowers is being promoted to Lieutenant Colonel today, and I would like to extend her my congratulations on the floor of the United States Congress and thank her for an exemplary record of service to our nation. The United States–and my home state of Georgia–are proud of Lieutenant Colonel Flowers’ commendable professional competence, sound judgment, and total dedication to duty. She has reflected great credit upon herself and upholds the highest traditions of the United States Army Reserve. I wish Shelia and her husband all the best in their future endeavors, and I thank them once again for their leadership in serving our nation.”