Hayes: Obama Admin Ignored Proof of Iran-Al Qaeda Link After UBL Raid
Steve Hayes joined Martha MacCallum this morning to discuss his new piece in The Weekly Standard, which accuses the Obama administration of ignoring proof of a link between al Qaeda and Iran.
Hayes reports that this link is contained in a trove of documents, now declassfied, that were seized in the 2011 raid that killed Usama bin Laden.
More striking is Iran’s support for al Qaeda. Last week, for the first time in nearly three years, the public saw new information from the bin Laden raid. Documents released as part of a terror trial in New York City show, in the words of the al Qaeda leaders themselves, Iran’s availability for training and safe haven. One letter from a senior al Qaeda operative to bin Laden in June 2010 lays out the plans of a core al Qaeda leader to travel to Iran. The letter notes that “Sheikh Yunis” is ready to travel and “the destination, in principle, is Iran. And he has with him six to eight brothers that he chose. I told him we are waiting for final complete confirmation from you to move and agree on this destination (Iran). His plan is: stay around for three months in Iran to train the brothers there then start moving them and distributing them in the world for their missions and specialties.”
This comes on top of what we already know about Iran and al Qaeda. As Thomas Joscelyn reported here last week, at least three al Qaeda plots targeting Western interests were hatched in Iran since Obama took office. As the administration pined for Iran to rejoin the community of civilized nations, the Treasury was churning out reports showing Tehran had no such interest. In its designation of Yasin al-Suri, “a prominent Iran-based al Qaeda facilitator,” Treasury wrote in December 2011: “Operating under an agreement between al Qaeda and the Iranian Government, al-Suri moves money and al Qaeda recruits from the Middle East through Iran and on to Pakistan and Afghanistan.”
According to the report, the administration has only analyzed 10 percent of the more than one million documents they recovered.
On "America's Newsroom," Hayes argued that the Obama administration does not want this information to come out as it seeks a deal with Tehran on its nuclear program.
He said the president wants to "decouple" the negotiations on Iran's nuclear program from the regime's support for terrorist organizations.
Hayes said the initial "scrub" of the bin Laden documents by the CIA was very successful, producing 400 intelligence reports and leading to U.S. actions around the world against al Qaeda.
"Then it all stopped. The CIA basically sat on the documents. ... I think it's because the Obama administration didn't want to know what was in them," said Hayes, adding that the documents would have had "tremendous implications" for U.S. foreign policy overall.
"Once you've exposed these documents in al Qaeda's own hand, it requires the administration to act on them. And the president's argument all along has been that the war on terror is ending," said Hayes.
Watch the full discussion above.