FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The CIA Wanted Me Killed

by Jo Dillon The Independent

Yvonne Ridley, the British journalist captured by the Taliban, this week makes the extraordinary claim that Western intelligence agencies tried to get her killed to bolster public support for the air strikes on Afghanistan.

In her new book, In The Hands of the Taliban, published tomorrow, Express journalist Ms Ridley, 43, says despite her release from captivity she still has “unfinished business” surrounding her time in Afghanistan.

She claims that on her return to Pakistan she found her hotel room had been searched. In London, the locks on her Soho flat had apparently been tampered with. A journalist on the Arab TV station Al Jazeera then showed her a collection of as yet unverified documents. They purported to be copies of a dossier of personal and financial papers and pictures.

When told they had been handed to the Taliban, Ms Ridley asked: “Who the hell was trying to get me shot?”

With the help of prominent QC Michael Mansfield, the Al Jazeera journalist, Nacer Bedri, and contacts in the security and intelligence services, Ms Ridley is now trying to piece together what happened.

She says the documents were photocopies of genuine-looking Inland Revenue tax returns and the title deeds to a previous London home owned by her. There was also a copy of an Israeli passport belonging to her third husband, Hermosh, along with a Mossad code number and ID card also said to belong to him. The figures in the financial documents were exaggerated, Ms Ridley said. Also in the bundle was a photograph of Ms Ridley, Hermosh and her daughter Daisy, now aged nine, “taken on a river in Iran when you entered the country illegally”.

Ms Ridley’s book says: “I looked at the picture again and initially laughed, when I realised it had been taken in October 1998 in Stratford-upon-Avon. Then an awful feeling came to my stomach and I wanted to vomit. I remembered where I had last seen that picture–in my top drawer at my new flat in Soho. I had kicked out Husband No 3 a couple of weeks after those pictures were taken; they weren’t developed until later–after he had gone. So who had been in my flat?”

Ms Ridley is convinced the intelligence services must have somehow been involved–and has vowed to prove it. “Without giving too much away, I can say the matter isn’t going to rest,” she said yesterday.

The publication of her book and the claims it makes are certain to throw Ms Ridley back into the spotlight–a place that has not been particularly comfortable for her since she was captured by the Taliban on 28 September and after her release on 8 October.

Ms Ridley was lambasted for making a “foolhardy” decision to go into Afghanistan with a number of commentators accusing her of being “selfish” for taking such a risk as a single mother.

Others raised questions about Ms Ridley’s time in Afghanistan, one report claiming that rather than being captured in the country where she was carrying out a newspaper investigation; she was picked up over the border in Pakistan and had never entered Afghanistan.

On her return, Ms Ridley was criticised for failing to pay enough attention in her account of her ordeal to the two guides–then still in prison–captured helping her or the aid workers held alongside her. Early reviews of her book were far from flattering. But Ms Ridley is determined to get to the bottom of her own story.

Weekend Edition
April 29, 2016
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
What is the Democratic Party Good For? Absolutely Nothing
Roberto J. González – David Price
Anthropologists Marshalling History: the American Anthropological Association’s Vote on the Academic Boycott of Israeli Institutions
Robert Jacobs
Hanford, Not Fukushima, is the Big Radiological Threat to the West Coast
Ismael Hossein-Zadeh
US Presidential Election: Beyond Lesser Evilism
Dave Lindorff
The Push to Make Sanders the Green Party’s Candidate
Ian Fairlie
Chernobyl’s Ongoing Toll: 40,000 More Cancer Deaths?
Pete Dolack
Verizon Sticks it to its Workers Because $45 Billion isn’t Enough
Richard Falk
If Obama Visits Hiroshima
Margaret Kimberley
Dishonoring Harriet Tubman
Deepak Tripathi
The United States, Britain and the European Union
Eva Golinger
My Country, My Love: a Conversation with Gerardo and Adriana of the Cuban Five
Peter Linebaugh
Marymount, Haymarket, Marikana: a Brief Note Towards ‘Completing’ May Day
Moshe Adler
May Day: a Trade Agreement to Unite Third World and American Workers
Vijay Prashad
Political Violence in Honduras
Paul Krane
Where Gun Control Ought to Start: Disarming the Police
David Anderson
Al Jazeera America: Goodbye to All That Jazz
Rob Hager
Platform Perversity: More From the Campaign That Can’t Strategize
Pat Williams
FDR in Montana
Dave Marsh
Every Day I Read the Book (the Best Music Books of the Last Year)
David Rosen
Job Satisfaction Under Perpetual Stagnation
John Feffer
Big Oil isn’t Going Down Without a Fight
Murray Dobbin
The Canadian / Saudi Arms Deal: More Than Meets the Eye?
Gary Engler
The Devil Capitalism
Brian Cloughley
Is Washington Preparing for War Against Russia?
Manuel E. Yepe
The Big Lies and the Small Lies
Robert Fantina
Vice Presidents, Candidates and History
Mel Gurtov
Sanctions and Defiance in North Korea
Howard Lisnoff
Still the Litmus Test of Worth
Dean Baker
Big Business and the Overtime Rule: Irrational Complaints
Ulrich Heyden
Crimea as a Paradise for High-Class Tourism?
Ramzy Baroud
Did the Arabs Betray Palestine? – A Schism between the Ruling Classes and the Wider Society
Halyna Mokrushyna
The War on Ukrainian Scientists
Joseph Natoli
Who’s the Better Neoliberal?
Ron Jacobs
The Battle at Big Brown: Joe Allen’s The Package King
Wahid Azal
Class Struggle and Westoxication in Pahlavi Iran: a Review of the Iranian Series ‘Shahrzad’
David Crisp
After All These Years, Newspapers Still Needed
Graham Peebles
Hungry and Frightened: Famine in Ethiopia 2016
Robert Koehler
Opening the Closed Political Culture
Missy Comley Beattie
Waves of Nostalgia
Thomas Knapp
The Problem with Donald Trump’s Version of “America First”
Georgina Downs
Hillsborough and Beyond: Establishment Cover Ups, Lies & Corruption
Jeffrey St. Clair
Groove on the Tracks: the Magic Left Hand of Red Garland
Ben Debney
Kush Zombies: QELD’s Hat Tip to Old School Hip Hop
Charles R. Larson
Moby Dick on Steroids?
David Yearsley
Miles Davis: Ace of Baseness
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail