FBI mistake exposes ‘third man’ of 9/11 attack

One of the most brutal attacks remembered in the West continues to keep many secrets, although the last one has come to light after a gross and unexpected mistake.

FBI mistake exposes 'third man' of 9/11 attack
the Twin Towers, on September 11, 2001 (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

The 9/11 attack continues to run rivers of ink in the US. The FBI continues investigations to unravel what really happened in that attack on the Twin Towers, some investigations that follow and about which the families of the deceased, through their lawyers, continue to ask for information on an ongoing basis. And, precisely in one of those records, it is where the United States has made a mistake: unintentionally revealing who is the so-called ‘third man’.

Overall these years, the FBI has carried out different lines of investigation to try to find out what happened that day. And one of these routes is the one that links Saudi Arabia’s hypothetical involvement, giving key support to some of the terrorists. To date, U.S. intelligence services had released the name of two people, indicating that a third party related to the Saudi embassy in Washington DC might be related to the case.

However, the sensitivity of this information could create a major diplomatic conflict, so the FBI has always kept a lot of communication. In fact, only the lawyers of the families who suffered the 9/11 attack were made known under the oath that they would never make it public. And, now, in an absurd turn of events, it was the FBI itself that mistakenly revealed the name, a discovery made by ‘Yahoo News’.

This part of the investigation focuses on the hijacking of the American Airlines plane that crashed into the Pentagon, killing 125 people. According to the research, Fahad al-Thumairy, a radical cleric who served as the imam of King Fahd’s mosque in Los Angeles, and Omar al-Bayoumi, a habitual suspect in American forces, would have helped the two terrorists during the 9/11 attack. But the line of inquiry also pointed to a third person, whose name had never come to light, and who could be related to the Saudi Arabian embassy.

After a request for information from the lawyers of the 9/11 victims’ families, the FBI filed a statement last month, but which was revealed at the end of last week, explaining how that routes of the investigation was going. It was not until this Monday that a ‘Yahoo News’ reporter realized that there was a man crossed out five times in the document – as had usually been done – but that one of the time it had not been covered: “In all the records that refer or relate to Jarrah” was the key phrase.

Mussaed Ahmed al-Jarrah was a mid-level official of Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry, assigned to his country’s embassy in Washington DC between 1999 and 2000. It would be the third man associated with that part of the 9/11 investigation, which American authorities and the FBI suspect have information related to the bombing that has never been seen in light.

Once ‘Yahoo News’ noticed the error, they contacted the FBI to explain the situation: just a few hours later, that public document was removed from the database, leaving a simple message behind: “The document has been filed incorrectly.” The Saudi government has repeatedly denied any involvement and, moreover, self-proclaims itself with a basic U.S. ally against terrorism. An absurd mistake that has revealed a name that may be key in the FBI’s investigations into what happened on 9/11.