The Investigation: On the Trail of the Paymaster: New Details on the Ties between Bin Laden's CFO and Atta

By Klaidman, Daniel; Hosenball, Mark | Newsweek, November 19, 2001 | Go to article overview

The Investigation: On the Trail of the Paymaster: New Details on the Ties between Bin Laden's CFO and Atta


Klaidman, Daniel, Hosenball, Mark, Newsweek


Byline: Daniel Klaidman and Mark Hosenball

On the surveillance video, he looked like any Saudi businessman, dressed in traditional white robes and headdress. On Sept. 8, three days before the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks, Mustafa Ahmed walked into a Federal Express office in Dubai to retrieve a package mailed from Hollywood, Fla. The sender was Mohamed Atta, the man investigators believe to be the lead hijacker. In the days before the attacks, NEWSWEEK has learned, Atta and the other hijackers were in constant contact with Ahmed, wiring money to him and placing many calls to his phone in the United Arab Emirates. The last calls were made just hours before the 19 men boarded their flights. Later that day Ahmed himself took a flight, to Pakistan. He hasn't been seen since.

Investigators tracking Osama bin Laden had long suspected that Ahmed, a 33-year-old Saudi, had close connections to bin Laden's network, Al Qaeda. But his exact role was unclear. In the weeks following the attacks, the Feds concluded he was the operation's paymaster--the "financial guru," in the words of one top FBI official, who sent money to the hijackers for living expenses, flight-school tuition and plane tickets. But law-enforcement sources tell NEWSWEEK that they now believe Ahmed may have played a far more central role than they first realized. Ahmed is bin Laden's "chief financial officer," says one official. As the Feds traced bin Laden's worldwide money trail, Ahmed's name kept popping up on documents and bank records. Investigators have also linked him to a key component of Al Qaeda's operation: Saudi charities that the Feds believe secretly funnel millions of dollars to fund bin Laden's operatives.

The paper trail that first led investigators into Ahmed's shadowy financial world began at the bottom of a motel trash can. On the night of Sept. 10, Atta hunkered down in room 233 at the Comfort Inn in Portland, Maine. The next morning he would take a flight to Boston's Logan airport. At the motel, Atta tore up a FedEx Air Waybill and threw it away. Days later, federal agents searching the motel found the receipt, from a package mailed in Florida, where Atta and several other hijackers had lived until days before the bombing. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

The Investigation: On the Trail of the Paymaster: New Details on the Ties between Bin Laden's CFO and Atta
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.