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November 15, 2007
CIA Agent with Family Ties to Hezb'allah Posted to Iraq (updated)
NBC has learned that Nada Prouty, the woman who has pled guilty to conspracy and unauthorized access to a classified computer played a larger role in American national security than either the FBI or CIA have let on:
There’s new information about the young Lebanese woman who pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges she lied about her background to get jobs at the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Central Intelligence Agency. It turns out that the FBI thought so highly of Prouty that the CIA asked to have her re-assigned to the agency in 2003. The question being asked is could she have passed on information to the terrorist group?
Current and former intelligence officials tell NBC News that Nada Nadim Prouty had a much bigger role than officials at the FBI and CIA first acknowledged. In fact, Prouty was assigned to the CIA’s most sensitive post, Baghdad, and participated in the debriefings of high-ranking al-Qaida detainees.
A former colleague called Prouty “among the best and the brightest” CIA officers in Baghdad. She was so exceptional, agree officials of both agencies, the CIA recruited her from the FBI to work for the agency’s clandestine service at Langley, Va., in June 2003. She then went to Iraq for the agency to work with the U.S. military on the debriefings.
Although no one claims Prouty worked for Hezbollah, her computer searches led U.S. officials to question her. The fact that she was able to access the information at all has the counterterrorism people scrambling for explanations.
She looked up files on her sister, Elfat El Aouar, and brother-in-law, Talal Khalil Chahine, both of whom attended a Hezbollah fundraiser in Lebanon — alongside Hezbollah spiritual leader Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Fadlallah, designated by the United States as a terrorist.
Chahine is currently a fugitive believed to be in Lebanon. He, along with Prouty’s sister and others, was charged in 2006 by the U.S. attorney in Detroit with tax evasion in connection with a scheme to conceal more than $20 million in cash received by La Shish restaurants in suburban Detroit and to route funds to persons in Lebanon with links to Hezbollah. Moreover, as she was moving between agencies in 2003,
Prouty accessed the FBI’s Automated Case Support system and obtained information on investigations into Hezbollah being conducted by the FBI’s Detroit Field Office.
This is turning into a nightmare for both the FBI and CIA. One hopes that they are going back and vetting people who came to the agency under similiar circumstances.
Hat Tip: Jihad WatchUpdate from Thomas Lifson and Clarice Feldman: Has there been a cover-up? Why was her role minimized at first?
This is already into scandal territory. Given the level of perfidy we have seen from the leaky CIA, this case demands a thorough investigation.
Debbie Schlussel has done some fantastic work gathering more information on Prouty. Among other revelations, she is from a non-Muslim Lebanese background: from a Druze family.
Read the whole thing.
FYI, contrary to my and other press reports, Prouty is not Muslim. She is Druze, a secretive offshoot of Islam, which has only one thing in common with Islam--the celebration of Eid Al-Fitr. In fact, her entire family, the El-Aouar a/k/a Al Aouar family is Druze. Her sister, Elfat, though, likely converted to Islam to marry Shia Muslim Hezbollah financier Talal Chahine.
And the sisters were active along with the entire Aouar family in Lebanon's Syrian National Socialist Party, whose goal is a greater Arabic nation joining Lebanon, Syria, Cyprus, "Palestine" (all of Israel), and even part of Turkey.
One of Prouty's and El-Aouar's relatives, Nidal El-Aouar trained in Syria, North Korea, and the-then Communist Soviet Union in booby-trapping cars for explosions on behalf of Syria. He was also involved in many roadside bombs, my Lebanese sources say.
If the FBI and CIA had only done their homework--not to mention, immmigration authorities--they would have discovered this as I did, and this whole mess could have been avoided. This should tell you something about their poor level of intelligence in Syria and Lebanon. Now Prouty can't be deported after her short jailstay, because she knows too much from her CIA stint, the feds claim.