Today's Stock Market News & Analysis

 

Revenue in the holiday quarter will be $84 billion, or a 5% decline year over year.

Sater resides in Port Washington, New York. Did the company die of natural causes, or did miscreants orchestrate its destruction? Many other powerful hedge fund managers operating today got their start in the s working for Milken-financed brokerages with ties to organized crime. On the positive side, the underage teams and the reserves developed well under the Jonas style of football.

Mission Statement

DealBook Briefing: What Could Go Wrong in ? Plenty. Wall Street’s top stock pickers are expecting gains this year. But those forecasts could be upended.

Wynn, however, denies any relationships with the Mafia, and he has won a defamation lawsuit against a Las Vegas newspaperman who published a book title: Every law enforcement agency has always vouched for me that any suggestion of me and organized crime is preposterous.

I know one thing: It is true that law enforcement agencies other than Scotland Yard have vouched for Wynn. Meanwhile, Wynn has won multiple other defamation lawsuits against people and journalists who have accused him of having ties to the Mafia. The takeaway, we must conclude, is that Wynn has no ties to the Mafia. Phillips operated and still does operate an outfit called Southmark Corporation, which was the largest recipient of Milken junk bond finance in the s. In , Phillips was arrested and charged with manipulating stock prices in league with other leading figures in La Cosa Nostra.

Among the defendants, aside from Phillips, were: The DOJ charged that Phillips, in league with various members of La Cosa Nostra, had manipulated the stock of one of his companies, an outfit called Transcontinental.

Aside from Phillips, the largest shareholder in that company was Michael Milken. In addition, most of the other people who were arrested as part of Operation Uptick got off with nothing worse than small fines, though this was the biggest Mafia bust in history, according to then FBI director Louis Freeh who, of course, is now employed by Wynn and Millennium Management.

Also linked to that money laundering was a brokerage called Sinex Securities, which was a subsidiary of Sinex Bank. Sinex Securities was controlled by Gene Phillips, though it was registered in the name of his son, Brad Phillips Sinex changed its name to National Alliance Securities when it was linked to the Bank of New York scandal.

That is to say, a chunk of the cash that went through Sinex was delivered, as collateral, to Transcontinental shareholders. However, neither Sinex nor Phillips were charged with any crime related to the Bank of New York scandal. Investors Overseas had been founded by a financier named Bernard Cornfield, and later involved a criminal named Robert Vesco, who subsequently fled to Cuba and became involved according to CIA reports in trafficking drugs with Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.

Castro later claimed that Vesco had been imprisoned in Cuba. Among the miscreants who manipulated stocks in league with Blinder Robinson were according to various indictments Thomas Quinn and Arnold Kimmes, both of whom as we know from earlier chapters had operated a number of brokerages linked to BCCI.

When Kimmes was arrested, he escaped prison by ratting on Meyer Blinder, who did not escape prison though he was quickly released. Baron, and many others — that were tied to organized crime.

Blair was particularly close to Milken. Blair was charged on multiple counts of stock manipulation and forced to shut its doors. To describe the full extent of D. But to give you just a small sampling, I will mention that the people indicted in just one of the hundreds of stock manipulation schemes perpetrated by D. After Milken got out of prison, he hooked up again with D. Many other powerful hedge fund managers operating today got their start in the s working for Milken-financed brokerages with ties to organized crime.

SEC filings and other evidence compiled by DeepCapture show with perfect clarity that all of the hedge fund managers in this network regularly trade in unison, investing in or, more often, attacking the same companies. There were just a few other traders who had special partnership agreements with Gruntal, and who effectively ran the place.

I will name most of them, beginning with Maurice Gross , who handled the accounts of the Gambino Mafia family.

While still at Gruntal, Sater was charged with stabbing a Wall Street trader in the face with the broken stem of a wine glass actually, it was martini glass, according to a man who witnessed the attack. While still at Gruntal, Sater and several other former Gruntal traders founded a brokerage called White Rock Partners. In , White Rock renamed State Street Capital Partners was indicted for orchestrating stock manipulation schemes in league with the above-mentioned D.

It should not be surprising that Felix Sater, a member of the Mogilevich organization, would have ties to Russian intelligence, and it is equally unsurprising that he would be capable of cutting a deal with Al Qaeda. A classified FBI report since made public noted that the Mogilevich organization was involved in everything from major league market manipulation to prostitution, Afghan heroin, and trafficking in nuclear weapons materials.

But, of course, Mogilevich has a good lobbyist i. Many of them are residents of the United States, and we will see that many of them, including Sater, remain active in the U. Multiple reports from law enforcement, the United Nations, non-governmental organizations in Russia, and the mainstream media in London distinct from the mainstream media in the United States, which has a peculiar reluctance to publish anything interesting state unequivocally that members of the Mogilevich organization have been selling conventional weapons to Al Qaeda for many years.

On at least one occasion, the Mogilevich organization tried to sell highly enriched nuclear bomb grade uranium to Al Qaeda. Nonetheless, Felix escaped doing jail time, and some of his other associates say that this is because he and his Russian intelligence associates promised that their relationship with Al Qaeda would eventually be put to use for the U.

However, if American officials believe Felix is helping the U. Indeed, it is a bit unsettling that this dangerous criminal is still on the loose.

Not only was Felix once charged with stabbing a Wall Street trader in the face with the broken stem of a wine glass actually, a martini glass , but Felix has also threatened to kill multiple other people. In later years, Felix co-founded a real estate and mortgage outfit called Bayrock.

In , Kriss filed a lawsuit to this effect, and noted that Felix had once threatened to have him Kriss tortured and then murdered. It is unclear why the commandos raided the yacht; the media has reported that Arif was charged only with illegally hiring prostitutes, a crime that does not usually result in commando raids.

Another Bayrock partner was Tamir Sapir, a billionaire real estate investor whose real estate portfolio was managed by a man named Frederick Contini , whom the government has named as an associate of the Genovese Mafia family.

In , Contini entered a secret plea to racketeering. He has also faced charges for stabbing a man in the face with the stem of a broken wine glass. It seems to be the thing to do. As Tamir Sapir himself has admitted, he spent his formative years running a company that specialized in selling high-tech electronics equipment to KGB operatives in New York.

In , Ivankov was assassinated on a Moscow street, but not before admitting that his organized crime syndicate which had close ties to the Mogilevich organization had long been employed by the Russian intelligence services. Cohen presumably would deny this, and he has not been charged with any wrongdoing. Leon Black is the son of Eli Black, who was, in the s, the head of United Brands, formerly known as United Fruit, a company that was accused of everything from bribing tin-pot dictators to dealing with La Cosa Nostra and funneling money to Latin American narco-terrorists.

In the midst of this takeover, Eli Black crashed through a plate glass window on the 44 th floor of the Pan Am Building in New York, and fell to his death the death was reported as a suicide.

After leaving Gruntal, Icahn started his own investment outfit, funded mostly by Michael Milken and Zev Wolfson Wolfson being the guy who funded Mulheren and the above-mentioned Mafia-tied brokerages, which were indicted for schemes they perpetrated with La Cosa Nostra and Felix Sater. As soon as he launched his investment fund, Carl Icahn hired several key employees: The business associate was asked to leave before he could hear what was discussed at this meeting, but the businessman knows who was in attendance — namely, Alan Umbria, a collection of Genovese Mafia thugs, and Louis Micelli, who was a stock broker until his untimely death in In addition to being a stock broker, Micelli was a major league narco-trafficker with deep connections to the drug cartels of Colombia, and to a Paraguay cell of Hezbollah, the jihadist outfit that takes its directions from the regime in Iran.

As we know, there were just a few traders who had special partnerships with Gruntal, and who effectively ran the place. In addition, we know, all of these traders had close ties to Milken. Another was the Russian crime figure Evgeny Klotsman. After leaving Gruntal, Redleaf invested in Sun Country Airlines in partnership with Tom Petters, who was arrested in and indicted for orchestrating a massive Ponzi scheme in cahoots with Michael Catain, the son of a famous Genovese Mafia enforcer named Jack Catain.

Redleaf currently runs a large hedge fund called Whitebox Partners, another of the hedge funds that regularly trade in unison with SAC Capital and others in the network. Neither Whitebox nor its principals has been charged with any crime. Another one of the hedge funds in this network is the massive and eminently powerful Cerberus Capital, run by Stephen Feinberg and Ezra Merkin.

Mafrici was a Genovese Mafia capo who allegedly ordered the assassination of another Mob boss named Albert Anastasia. After that, Israel had second thoughts and decided to turn himself in.

Back in the s, Nichols had been involved with BCCI, and he was tied to a big scandal surrounding a software program called Promis. The developers of Promis alleged that the software was stolen from them by the U. At the time, the media gave considerable credence to this story, and suggested that the U. What has not been widely reported is that Mafia-tied Robert Booth Nichols also managed to gain rights to sell Promis software, and Nichols handed those rights to the famous Saudi arms dealer and market manipulator Adnan Khashoggi, who had been a key figure in the larger BCCI enterprise.

As a document obtained by DeepCapture shows, Khashoggi, in turn, licensed the software to Sheikh Khalid bin Mahfouz, then the largest shareholder of BCCI and executive director of the bank. Mahfouz proceeded to sell this software to major banks around the world, raising the question of whether he used its back-door feature to obtain confidential information from the computer systems of banks that used the software.

The book, of course, casts doubt on the notion that the 13 families actually control a secret market, much less the whole world, and the book reports further that Israel was scammed by Nichols into paying a large sum of money to get his hands on U. Treasury notes with a face value worth billions. This, too, seems an unlikely proposition, but there might, in fact, be more to this story than a tale of a hapless hedge fund manager Sam Israel who lost millions to a clever con-man Nichols.

Which is not to say that 13 families actually control the world though, of course, anything is possible , but as court documents obtained by DeepCapture show, Nichols and Israel had, in fact, obtained U.

In fact, physical gold in this quantity was not sitting with the Federal Reserve, but Nichols and Israel said the Atlanta Federal Reserve had issued a serial number in confidence that the gold would be forthcoming, much of it from the Philippines. According to Nichols, Adnan Khashoggi who was once indicted for laundering money on behalf of Imelda Marcos, then widow of the former dictator had reported that this gold was now in the possession of the Abu Sayyaf terrorist group on Mindanao, and that his associates were traveling to the Philippines to retrieve the gold.

Treasury bonds were related to long-standing U. Specifically, Nichols said the obligations had been confirmed by Tansri Teong, a representative of the Maiwah family, descendents of Chiang Kai-shek who lived in Luxembourg. In either case, while Khashoggi had spoken of this gold in the past, many considered the story to be rather implausible.

Nonetheless, according to journalist Cheryl Seymour who first reported parts of this story, though not the information about the gold in the Philippines , bankers around the world were convinced that the Treasury notes were real.

Moreover, Nichols and Israel circulated the story about this supposed massive obligation just as the U. That is, just as the system was weakening in , Israel and Nichols claimed that they were going to cash in notes that would if it they were real effectively bankrupt the U. After Israel was arrested, he and Nichols filed lawsuits against each other. Soon after, in , reports emerged that Nichols had been found dead in Switzerland. People close to Nichols insist that Nichols faked his own death, but the truth remains unknown.

It is also unlikely that we will learn whether the U. Treasury notes were fake because soon after Nichols and Israel filed their lawsuits, the notes vanished. They had been briefly entered into the public record, but they are not there anymore.

There is no doubt, though, that the notes whether they were counterfeit or not did exist. And some bankers apparently did take them seriously. No doubt I will be ridiculed as a conspiracy theorist simply because I have told this true albeit weird story, but I have been accused of worse, and I will note that an almost precisely similar story though with a different set of protagonists was recently discussed on the floor of the British parliament.

In that capacity, Israel helped Steinhardt corner the market for U. Treasuries, posing a threat to economic stability until the government threatened to press criminal charges, convincing Steinhardt to back off. Nothing wrong with that marriage is a wonderful thing , but the interesting development in this case was that the lovers quarreled , Lattanzio wanted his ring back, and the prospective wife told the judge that Lattanzio had big-time Mafia connections.

In his book, Steinhardt admitted that the first and most important investors in his first hedge fund were: Although Rich was pardoned, he still owes the U. Rich was not charged in the Bank of New York affair, and nor were any of the other oligarchs many of them previously linked to the BCCI enterprise who were implicated in the Bank of New York affair.

Steinberg used Milken junk bonds to seize Reliance, a giant insurance and financial services firm, which was subsequently looted and destroyed i. Steinberg was not charged with any crime.

Chanos is also a favorite source for the New York financial media, one reason why the media no longer publishes stories about short-side market manipulation which does not occur, according to the lobby headed by Chanos. Indeed, as was revealed in the Wall Street Journal story, Chanos got his big start by shorting a company called Baldwin United. As a result, Baldwin went bankrupt, and Milken got himself named as the advisor to the bankruptcy.

This success brought Chanos to the attention of Michael Steinhardt. At the time, Chanos who is now revered by The Journal was working for a Mafia-tied brokerage called Gilford Securities. In , five Gilford brokers were arrested along with Phillips in Operation Uptick, which was, of course, then the biggest Mafia bust in the history of the FBI. SEC filings make it clear that Chanos regularly trades in league with other hedge funds in the Milken network, and in they were attacking Fairfax Financial, one of the largest financial institutions in Canada.

A judge has ruled that SAC Capital should be dropped from the suit, but Sigma and Exis are still in litigation, and Fairfax has appealed the ruling. Kalikow is also a former owner of The New York Post. Soon enough, the New York Post delivery fleet began transporting cargos of smuggled weaponry and cocaine, in addition to newspapers.

Kalikow was not charged with any crime, and it is possible he was unaware that his delivery trucks were controlled by the Mob. In his speech and subsequent media tour, Einhorn cited data from a strange firm called The Markit Group to support his exaggerated contention that Lehman had improperly accounted for the value of its property and collateralized debt obligation holdings.

It was, in , run by two former Canadian bankers and a developer of Bulgarian property, and seemed to cherry-pick its data, which was provided by a few investment banks that are passive investors in the company. The Markit Group is wholly without transparency, and yet it essentially dictates perceptions of market prices for collateralized debt obligations and other instruments including credit default swaps that are important barometers of health in the banking sector.

That attack was akin to the launch of a new Ipod, with much-hyped speeches and a whirlwind media tour handled by a public relations firm, which presented Einhorn as the boy-wonder fraud-buster who had proved his mettle in an earlier battle with a financial services firm called Allied Capital. While Einhorn was on his media tour, most of the other hedge funds in his network initiated a short selling attack on Lehman.

To be continued…Click here to read Chapter 7. This is Chapter 2 of a multi-chapter series. On your right is a Table of Contents to all chapters so far published. This investigation yielded some interesting facts. Alamoudi, a member of a wealthy family in Saudi Arabia, had been a long time resident of the United States, where he was among the most prominent members of the Muslim community.

In addition, he counted among closest friends and business associates people like Sami al Arian, a leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and Mousa Abu Marzook, political chief of Hamas.

Some people believe that groups like Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hamas, and the Muslim Brotherhood are focused on faraway lands, but all of these groups we will see have ties to Al Qaeda, and all of them are united in their hostility to the United States. Moreover, they pay close attention to the U. Muslim Brotherhood leader Hamud bin Uqla al-Shuaibi implied as much when he stated in that jihadis must resist the West, but do not necessarily need to do so with violence. Although Osama bin Laden is dead, his words remain important.

And the jihad is bigger than bin Laden. It is a global movement that has clearly articulated its goals, and remains intent upon achieving them. Al Qaeda and many other outfits have repeated over and over that jihadis should wage economic warfare any way they can. Then there is the Muslim Brotherhood document, which is quoted all too frequently, and often to the wrong purposes. When I say that the document is quoted to the wrong purposes, I am referring to those who point to it as evidence that radical Islamism is taking over America, which it is not.

Osama bin Laden, meanwhile, liked to brag as he did in the statement with which I opened this chapter that his supporters understand the weaknesses in the American financial system. Which brings us back to Mr. Operation Green Quest led to few indictments and was disbanded in , but its findings remain relevant. Alamoudi served as a trustee. Sami al-Arian was also suspected of providing support to the hijackers, but he was never charged for doing so.

Sheikh DeLorenzo and Mr. Department of Defense to screen and hire Muslim Army chaplains, some of whom accompanied U. That, however, was before Mr. The investigation that ensued revealed that Mr. Alamoudi had received the cash from Libyan dictator Moammar Qaddafi, and that he planned to use it to finance a plot that he had hatched to assassinate then Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. In , the Treasury Department issued a press release stating that Mr.

After it became clear that Mr. Alamoudi who is now serving a year prison sentence had ties to Al Qaeda, the U. Alamoudi, a key funder of Al Qaeda had managed to insert spies into the U. Traders who engage in legal short selling as opposed to naked short selling first borrow stock, then sell it, hoping the price will fall.

This is a legitimate practice when it is not meant to intentionally manipulate the markets. The stock that is borrowed and then sold is real stock; it is not phantom stock that artificially increases supply and drives down prices. When Sheikh DeLorenzo set up Al Safi Trust, however, he explained that Muslim traders cannot borrow stock because shariah law prohibits paying interest.

This claim is, to begin with, not entirely true. Shariah law by a strict reading of the Koran does not ban interest. This is about politics, not religion. Regardless, the interest problem could have been resolved in any number of ways.

For example, Al Safi Trust could have worked out a fee structure whereby the prime broker, rather than the traders themselves, paid the interest on the borrowed stock. Instead, Al Safi Trust provides an altogether novel service, known as Arboon , the amazing feature of which is that nobod y locates or borrows any real stock. The clients of Al Safi Trust can simply sell as much stock as they like even if there is no stock available to sell.

Of course, if there is no stock available, they are not selling actual stock. But by that time, the phantom stock that was sold would have already done its damage to the markets.

In short, Al Safi Trust is nothing more than a cloak for another form of naked short selling, embroidered in Islamic jurisprudence so that regulators will not see through it.

I shudder to think who the clients of Al Safi Trust might be, but we should probably consider the possibilities. At the age of twenty, he dropped out of Cornell University, and converted to Islam. Soon after, he moved to Pakistan, gradually making his way to Karachi, where he spent several years receiving religious training at Jamiah Ulum Islamia, a maddrassah led by scholars who, like the Taliban, subscribe to the strict Deobandi school of Islam.

All of these groups have close ties to Al Qaeda, and Jaish-e-Mohammed, along with the intimately affiliated Lashkar-e-Tayiba, have become, for all intents and purposes, Al Qaeda subsidiaries. As evidence of this, investigators note, as just one example, that Omar Sheikh, a leading member of Jaish-e-Mohammed, wired money to Mohammed Atta, the ring-leader of the Al Qaeda hijackers who carried out the attacks.

Omar Sheikh was also responsible for kidnapping Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, who was subsequently killed, his head sliced off with an ornate, Yemeni knife and held up to be filmed for a jihadi propaganda video. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the September 11 attacks, has said that he committed the murder himself. This was a great tragedy because Daniel Pearl was one of the few journalists to understand the threat to the United States is not just Al Qaeda, but a much larger, complex web of interlinking jihadist groups, shady financiers, agents of rogue states, narcotics smugglers, nuclear weapons traffickers, and Mafia kingpins.

This is not to suggest that Sheikh DeLorenzo himself is a terrorist. Ibrahim himself is a serious threat. Aside from being involved in multiple violent terrorist attacks, he is reportedly the biggest trader on the Karachi stock exchange. Forbes Magazine ranks Ibrahim as one of the 50 most powerful people in the world. The extent to which Sheikh DeLorenzo remains part of the Pakistani nexus is unclear, but his experience in Pakistan might be less worrying than his time in America, where he came to be on close terms not only with Sami al-Arian a leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Mr.

Indeed, though Sheikh DeLorenzo has never been charged with any crime, he held key positions with multiple SAAR Network organizations, and it should be stressed that all these organizations were operated by the Muslim Brotherhood, and all were said by U.

Again, Sheikh DeLorenzo himself has not been implicated in terrorism, but his relationships with some terrorists might be pertinent. Sheikh DeLorenzo was also a top executive and continues to serve as a consultant for a large SAAR Network investment fund called the Amana Trust, which is interesting on several levels.

Mirza, but also at least three other Amana Trust officials because they and Amana Trust were suspected of funding terrorism. Mirza nor any other Amana Trust officials were ever charged with any crime, and nor were most of the other key figures in the SAAR Network who were targeted by Operation Green Quest investigators. Again, no convictions were forthcoming, and Mr. Mirza is innocent until proven guilty, but I will report the allegations of government investigators, and let readers make up their own minds.

Mirza has also been named by FBI investigators and terrorism experts as the principal U. In the late s, Yasin al-Qadi was a major investor , along with a man named Sulaiman al-Ali, in a Chicago company called Global Chemical, which was ostensibly involved in warehousing chemicals for the manufacturing of soap. But when Global Chemical was raided in , government experts said that the chemicals were likely for use in manufacturing explosives or even chemical weapons.

Again, Yasin al Qadi was not charged. The president of Global Chemical was Mohammed Mabrook, who used the alias Mohamed Elhazeri, and who was, in the s, the director of an outfit called Mercy International. Mirza handled affairs in the U. Bahfazallah of having contacts with a Chechen organized crime and terrorism syndicate that was trying to obtain nuclear bombs for Al Qaeda.

I do not know whether Yasin al-Qadi, Mr. Mirza and the other alleged terrorist financiers are clients of Al Safi Trust, but they have been in other lines of business with Sheikh DeLorenzo, and their relationships deserve scrutiny, just as we should scrutinize business relationships between gun dealers and the mentally disturbed. They are sophisticated hedge fund managers with experience in the U. Both Sheikh DeLorenzo and Mr. Mirza were also involved with an outfit called Saturna Capital, and tax returns show that Saturna Captital was a funder of the Holy Land Foundation, named by U.

The mosque was also a contributor to the Holy Land Foundation, according to those tax returns. Salam was not directly implicated in those investigations, but there is no doubt that Dickinson was a dubious brokerage. Several of its leading traders left to found MB Trading, which never bothered to register itself with the authorities until it became the first brokerage ever sanctioned by the U. Siddiqi has since been named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorist financing case.

There are many other reasons to be concerned about the brokerages and other financial outfits operating under the ISNA banner, one of which is that ISNA was co-founded by Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Sami al Arian, who we know has been accused of though never charged for providing support to the hijackers, and was according to court documents taking directions from agents of the Iranian regime operating out of the UN headquarters in New York.

According to United Press International, U. He was, before his arrest, also a sophisticated financial operator, and he had co-founded several major financial institutions.

For example, he was a co-founder with Mr. To be sure, al-Zawahiri and the Blind Sheikh had their differences when it came to tactics and strategy especially with regard to Egypt , but they were nonetheless united in their hatred for the United States. Meanwhile, many jihadis including Mr. Moreover, his fatwahs are bolder than those of any cleric, and they have a particular ring to them.

And kill them wherever you find them. Take them hostage…Kill these infidels! Until they witness your harshness. In his most famous fatwah, the Blind Sheikh was the first to call for the use of airplanes as weapons.

The lengthy fatwah is worth a read, but one line can give you a general idea. He then specified how this could be done: At the press conference where Osama bin Laden announced his declaration of war against the United States, the Al Qaeda leader gave the assembled journalists laminated cards printed with a photo of the Blind Sheikh and a few words of his famous fatwah — namely, the words that I quoted above.

That was in the s, and nobody paid much attention. The point is not that Sheikh DeLorenzo himself is a terrorist. The leaders of the jihad are often portrayed as primitive bumpkins who live in caves and are armed with nothing more dangerous than a few maniacs willing to blow themselves up.

This is to ignore the power of the jihadist ideology, which is articulated with great eloquence by countless people who are eminently learned scholars of both Islam and global politics. The jihadis have done much more than dispatch a few terrorists here and there.

They have organized and commanded insurgent armies with thousands of soldiers. They have more than enough firepower to inflict damage on the U.

Some highly regarded authors, such as Steve Coll, who is otherwise reliable, have suggested that the Golden Chain members funded Al Qaeda only in its early years. Most of them continued to support Al Qaeda after bin Laden declared war against the United States, and there is evidence that at least one of them was funding Al Qaeda as of this writing in Regardless of the degree to which they continue to fund Al Qaeda today, it can be safely assumed that the Golden Chain billionaires remain hostile to the United States.

There is something in the wiring of American brains that makes it impossible for even the smartest people in this nation to accept surprising or unpleasant realities. But Simpson has left The Journal, and the newspaper has since failed to investigate Saudi ties to terrorism.

In fact, it has failed to investigate much of anything at all. For starters, we must understand that these extremely wealthy financiers are bound together by the sorts of relationships that many Americans do not understand.

These are not mere business relationships. They are the bonds of brotherhood and blood. They are the bonds of fervor and ancient grievances. Sheikh Mahfouz, who passed away in , had also founded National Commercial Bank, which is the single largest financial institution in the Middle East.

Meanwhile, some American pundits claimed that Saudi billionaires like Sheikh Mahfouz had donated to Al Qaeda only to avoid being attacked, like frightened shop owners paying protection money to the local Mafia thug.

These pundits misunderstand the nature of Saudi society, the two most important features of which are Salafi Islam one of the foundations of the jihadist ideology and the inviolability of personal relationships. When Sheikh Mahfouz filed lawsuits against the few journalists who sought to expose his ties to Al Qaeda, the families of the victims of the attacks filed lawsuits against Sheikh Mahfouz for providing financial support to the people who killed their loved ones.

The new Hamas financial institution, which is called al-Aqsa Bank , quickly formed a joint venture with Citibank. That joint venture was quite lucrative for Citibank, which may have been willing to turn a blind eye to illicit financial transactions.

In , the U. Treasury Department advised Citibank that it was operating a joint venture with a bank controlled by Hamas, and the U. Treasury Department advised Citibank that it might want to disband this joint venture.

Citibank, however, ignored the advice. Neither Sheikh Kamel nor any other Golden Chain billionaire has been charged with any crime related to the financing of terrorism. Sheikh Faqeeh also had a joint venture business with the above-mentioned Sheikh Mahfouz. Indeed, each Golden Chain member has some sort of business partnership with each of the other Golden Chain members — one reason why I say that these people need to be viewed as not just a club, but as a family.

I will not bore the reader with a long recitation of every financial transaction that ties these jihadist financiers together, but I will mention a few, just to erase any question as to whether the relationships exist.

For example, National Commercial Bank, owned until recently by Sheikh Mahfouz, is a partner in a multi-billion dollar investment outfit called the Middle East Capital Group, which is partly controlled by Sheikh Rahman Hassan Sharbatly — who was another member of Golden Chain club.

This brings to mind the report that I mentioned at the outset of this story — the one commissioned by the U. That report speculates that one component of the possible financial attack on the U. Sheikh Taher, in addition to being a Golden Chain member and the former governor of the Saudi state oil company Petromin, has also served as director of Saudi European Bank, a big financial institution that is important to the stability of global economic order.

He is also a former director of Saudi Aramco, which is the largest oil company in the world. In addition, Sheikh Yamani presides over Investcorp, an investment firm that he founded.

Investcorp has made a deep imprint in the American markets, and has been involved in everything from short selling to the trading of self-destruct CDOs. Investcorp has not been implicated in any crime related to its PIPEs deals, and I am not suggesting that Ivestcorp has done anything technically illegal, but PIPEs deals generally are considered to have been a major scourge on the American markets.

But PIPEs investors often end up destroying the company to which they are supposedly serving as benefactors. When this happens, short sellers often naked short sellers who are colluding with the outfit that provided the PIPEs finance attack the company, causing its stock price to drop.

The more it drops, the greater the number of shares are owed to the PIPEs financier. Once the stock price of a PIPEs victim is mauled, the finance is cut off, and the company goes bankrupt, delivering big profits to the short sellers i. Again, this is not to suggest that Investcorp has necessarily done anything illegal, and we cannot say with certainty that its PIPEs business follows the same modus operandi of most other PIPEs dealers. But the emergence of the PIPEs industry has, without doubt, been a scourge on the markets.

As numerous court cases attest, it has destroyed countless companies and countless jobs. Sheikh Sulaiman Abdul Aziz al-Rajhi is not miserable. He is jolly and well. Maybe because the twenty members of the Golden Chain club are the most prominent people in Saudi Arabia, the U. It does not take steps to shut down their bank accounts or bar them from trading in the U. It does not even dare utter their names, perhaps because to do so would embarrass the Saudi government, which is ostensibly a U.

But when the report was released to the public, the 28 pages about the Saudis were censored, so ordinary people could not read them. A full 28 pages — with no words; nothing but big blocks of black ink.

Thus, it is left to independent jihad experts to sort out many of the connections. Some former top government officials have said that Emerson is better informed about the jihad than the government itself. But Emerson and other people who have done excellent research are largely ignored by the media, which will not report the facts unless they have been stated explicitly by some official spokesman. And the official spokesmen have nothing bad to say about Saudi billionaires, regardless of whether they fund terrorism.

When the BCCI scandal broke, it was widely reported that Sheikh Mahfouz and other Saudis some, such as Kamal Adham, with links to Saudi intelligence had invested with prominent figures of the American political establishment in order to gain influence over American government policy. But nothing was done about it, and the influence increased exponentially in the years that followed.

Also a board member of Sana-Bell, you will recall, was Mr. Bahfzallah, head of Benevolence International, the outfit that was dealing with people who were shopping for nukes. Given his important role in the jihad, it is fair to assume that Sheikh al-Rajhi harbors some disdain for not just Western civilization, but also the prevailing economic order.

At the same time, Sheikh al-Rajhi is one of the most important players in the global financial order, a person who is perfectly capable of transforming or even undermining it. Said to be a whiz with numbers, Sheikh Rajhi directs multiple hedge funds that manage many billions of dollars, several stock brokerages, and the massive Al Rajhi Bank, which is the most venerable of the elite financial institutions that control the Stock Exchange of Saudi Arabia, also known as the Tadawul.

A report issued by a U. Senate investigative committee revealed that Al Rajhi Bank was still as of dealing with Al Qaeda, and that it was laundering Al Qaeda money through HSBC, the prestigious British bank, but, of course, Al Rajhi has been charged with no crime on that account HSBC paid a relatively small fine for this and other money laundering infractions. All told, the financial fire power of the Golden Chain exceeds that of most mid-sized nations. Worse yet, they — and the theo-political-legal doctrine, Shariah, from which they spring — pose a real threat to our society and form of government.

On the surface, it seems that there is nothing wrong with people creating shariah compliant financial products, even if they cater to a radical interpretation of Islam.

People have a right to be radical and to create radical financial products. Indeed, it took me a long time to believe that shariah finance posed any threat whatsoever. My instinct was to believe that it was merely an effort to cater to people who are devoutly religious, no more dangerous than Halal beefsteak. However, it is prudent to consider whether there is more than religion behind the astounding growth of shariah compliant finance in recent years.

That outfit was funded almost entirely by Sheikh Al Maktoum and his family until it was implicated by authorities for having ties to violent jihadists. Despite their accusations, authorities did not file charges against the organization.

Ibrahim had the full protection of Sheikh Al Maktoum until Dubai was pressured by the international community to send him packing. Ibrahim was no ordinary mobster. Former ABC News journalist Gretchen Peters, a friend and work colleague of mine when we both lived in Cambodia, has published an excellent book about the nexus between jihadists and the heroin trade.

Viktor Bout, like Dawood Ibrahim, operated with the full support and protection of the Dubai government until Interpol put out an arrest warrant for him. Then he moved to Moscow, where he enjoyed the protection of Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin until he was lured to Thailand and arrested by the FBI. Some cargo planes that Bout used to smuggle weapons to Afghanistan were registered as belonging to a company called Flying Dolphin, which was owned by Sheikh Mansour Al Nayan, the present ruler of Abu Dhabi.

Then there is the famous story widely reported by U. The Al Qaeda leader and his friends were spending their days hiking in the mountains and hunting with falcons, then retreating to an Al Qaeda training camp to drink tea and perhaps talk of subversive notions.

Figuring that there would not be much time before Osama would vanish again, the U. The generals were ready to pull the trigger, but Clinton and his cabinet stopped them. They aborted the mission because Osama bin Laden and his friends were having a party. And these friends were all from Dubai. At any rate, the CIA watched the satellite images.

The generals asked Bill Clinton if they should fire the missile. What matters is the end result. And it is probably safe to assume that the Dubai royals who went on hunting expeditions in Afghanistan with Osama bin Laden may be at least to some extent sympathetic to the jihad.

Before we discuss our present predicament, however, we need to understand more about the nexus. And to do that, we must first go back in history. We must, for starters, further examine the BCCI enterprise.

We must, in addition, consider what occurred after BCCI collapsed in One thing that occurred soon after BCCI collapsed in , of course, was that BCCI was revealed to be the biggest banking fraud in the history of world finance. More important, that same year, , a Muslim Brotherhood leader named Hasan al Turabi then also a top official in the government of Sudan founded an outfit called the Islamist International, appointing Osama bin Laden to serve as chairman.

The purpose of the Islamist International was to unite the Muslim Brotherhood, affiliated terrorist organizations, and their state sponsors behind a common mission. Turabi had always known the importance of a reliable financial system to support and sustain Islamist activities. By then Osama bin Laden was the most qualified individual in Khartoum to untangle this financial mess. In late summer , Turabi approached bin Laden and asked for help.

What, exactly, was BCCI, and why was it so important? And why has this story never appeared in The Wall Street Journal? What lines of business is it pursuing today? And is this good news for the American economy? To be continued…Click here to read Chapter 3 of this series. They said it simply did not exist, that only wild-eyed conspiracy theorists believed in naked short selling.

That was before , when the CEOs of some big banks started hollering that naked short selling was causing the stock prices of their banks to nosedive. With the CEOs of the big banks hollering, the SEC, in June, , issued an Emergency Order banning naked short selling that previously did not exist in the stocks of 19 big financial institutions i. But the SEC did nothing about the naked short selling of other stocks because, apparently, that naked short selling existed only in the fevered imaginations of people who believed that their savings were being wiped out by little green men.

Their stocks which had increased in value while the Emergency Order was in place once again nosedived, and one of them, Lehman Brothers, saw its stock go into a classic death spiral i. Almost immediately after Lehman collapsed, the SEC issued another Emergency Order, this time banning all short selling in financial stocks, and in this new Emergency Order, the SEC stated in plain English that naked short selling can cause stocks to go into death spirals, making it difficult for the targeted companies to raise new capital, and thereby result in bankruptcy.

Which, of course, was what had just happened to Lehman, as the SEC knew full well. Some weeks later, the SEC lifted that Emergency Order and put into effect some new rules governing naked short selling. So once again, the conventional wisdom is that only wild-eyed conspiracy theorists believe that naked short selling occurs, and only UFO abductees with tin foil hats believe that naked short selling occurs in massive volumes, causing damage to the markets.

It has long since been forgotten that CEOs of big banks were, back in , hollering that naked short selling had caused their stock prices to nosedive, and it has long been forgotten that the SEC issued two Emergency Orders in to save the banks from naked short selling, suggesting in one of those Emergency Orders that naked short selling had contributed to the collapse of Lehman Brothers. And now we know why it has been forgotten. As in too big a number for a calculator to handle?

Meanwhile, of course, the captured media continues to pretend that naked short selling i. According to Brickman, the report proves that Einhorn was right about Allied being a massive fraud.

The report, which I gladly post below, does nothing of the sort. I will discuss the report in further detail, but first a little history. Eight years ago, Michael Milken, the famous financial criminal, appeared in the offices of a top Allied Capital executive.

It appeared to the Allied executive that Milken was fishing for inside information about Allied and threatening an attack. For a variety of reasons, short-side stock manipulators in the Milken network often accumulate large numbers of shares in the companies that they seek to destroy.

For the next eight years, Einhorn led a vicious campaign against Allied, loudly and publicly pronouncing that the company was a massive Ponzi scheme and an all-around fraud that could be as big as Enron. Rather, Einhorn was just doing his duty as a concerned citizen — or so his slick public relations operation would have us believe.

I will give Einhorn credit. He is a master of spin. Could this investment have been a bribe? Was Einhorn seeking inside information about Allied? The investment was purely incidental, Einhorn assures us. Centrals closed the season in a blaze of glory, winning 7 of its last 10 games and Window captured the Magarey Medal. Disappointment followed and in the next 4 years two under Eustice and two under Dennis Jones , the Club was unable to win more than five games in a season.

His aim was to develop the youth of the district and lifted the Club to its first finals showdown. During his tenure a number of players rose to prominence: Sonny Morey was also transformed by Jones from a wingman into an rebounding back pocket, later winning State selection in his tenth season and becoming the first Bulldog to reach games in Sonny was the first of a strong Aboriginal heritage that has blessed this Club.

Casserly was appointed Club Captain in , his second season, was Captain-Coach for the next three seasons and then continued as a playing Coach in after relinquishing the Captaincy to Bill Cochrane.

His fast running and handball game got Centrals to within a whisker of the Grand Final but then saw the Club slide to sixth and seventh position. In the ebullient but highly volatile Gary Window took the Coaching helm. His enthusiasm helped the Bulldogs stage a great recovery in the second half of his first season. Centrals then collected the dreaded wooden spoon the following year, which precipitated another change to the man at the top.

Five time Sturt Premiership player Daryl Hicks came to Centrals with a wealth of experience and, with his forceful and articulate guidance, lifted the side to a minor Premiership in only his second year. In Duckworth was injured in the opening round and the club was unable to maintain the momentum due to the lack of key positional players.

Hicks' run and reflex football allowed players to gain possession but too many opportunities were wasted on the flanks.

The loss of Duckworth and Jonas interstate complicated the opening of the season. Then in , with goal-kicking youngster Greg Edwards, Centrals bounced back into the finals only to go down to Glenelg only three weeks after hammering the Tigers by 18 goals! Despite the Elimination Final disappointment, the future looked very good with developing talent.

Unfortunately spelled the end of the Hicks' reign with an eighth spot finish. To say that Neale had an immediate impact would be an understatement as the team won a record 16 games to grab the double chance before bowing out to Glenelg in a spiteful game which resulted in 3 Centrals players being suspended , and Norwood.

A couple of near misses in the next two years and then a slump to eighth in saw the "Cowboy's" reign end and the "King's" reign begin. Neil Kerley had an inspirational coaching record as an SANFL Coach and the Club responded with two finals appearances in his first two seasons but, alas, two losses in each series continued the Club's dismal finals record. The season also saw a change to the coaching spot with the appointment of long time Club stalwart Alan Stewart. Stewart played only two league games for the Club in and played in the Reserves Premiership side in He also had success coaching Central's Under 17's to two flags in the late '70's and was a successful Teal Cup Coach.

Stephen Wright, brother of former Bulldog Michael and an accomplished footballer with the Swans, took over in and did not miss a beat, leading Central District to its second straight minor premiership and grand final. A first ever finals victory over Port Adelaide in the second semi the fourth victory over the Magpies for the year was soured by a shock loss in the grand final.

Wright left to coach in the National under 18 competition in , and was replaced with the clubs first All-Australian Peter Jonas as coach. Supporters were also heartened with the news that Magarey Medallists and favourite sons John Platten and Gilbert McAdam were returning to the club. Despite the Bulldogs making the finals, it was a poor year soured by injuries.

Central did not win a finals game for the first time in five years although it extended its finals appearances to six consecutive years. Another shocking run with injuries in the season further handicapped Jonas as coach, with a no-finals appearance the downside. On the positive side, the underage teams and the reserves developed well under the Jonas style of football. Three of the Clubs four grades were to contest the finals.

Already blessed with the likes of Daniel Hulm, Marco Bello and Stuart Dew the Club now possessed a potent rotating midfield that would prove decisive in the finals series. His appointment and the start of the season was soured by the tragic death of Premiership Captain Daniel Hulm in London. If the season was any good, was to be much better. With a strong league squad strengthened by the arrival of Simon Arnott, Tyson Hay and Martin McKinnon the Bulldogs won all but four games the entire season.

The favouritism tag for the flag was well founded and the club went to win its second consecutive premiership dubbed "bark to bark". If Central District was destined to only win one Premiership in , it won the wrong flag, as its league side lost to Sturt by 47 points and the reserves defeated Port Adelaide by points in the SANFL grand finals.

Having lost only 2 games for the season and defeating the Blues four times from four encounters, the Bulldogs chose the wrong day to put in their worst performance of the year.

There could be many excuses, like too many weeks off without competitive footy, losing key backman Damian Hicks early in the game but, at the end of the day, Sturt was too good. Central's score of 6. The game would rank alongside the grand final as one of the club's darkest hours. At the start of the club and Clarkson went their separate ways after a contractual dispute and Reserves Premiership Coach Roy Laird, 33, was thrown into the deep end.

Drawing on his first-hand experience with the developing culture at Centrals under Wright, Jonas and Clarkson, Laird was able to continue with the Bulldog work and development ethos. No club in the history of the SANFL has won the trifecta of unders, reserves and league in the one season, earning Central District a unique place in history. Other record-breaking facts from the grand final included the Bulldogs kicking their highest score in a grand final, Eddie Sansbury's five-goal haul - the most by a Central player in a premiership decider.

And for the first time a pair of brothers have won the Jack Oatey Medal - James Gowans took out the club's inaugural medal in and now brother Chris has made it a twin victory, with his best-on-ground performance. Elizabeth Oval was rocking on the Sunday night after the game as supporters came out in force to celebrate with the players, proving Central District is the top community club in the SANFL, with fans from Elizabeth, Gawler and the Barossa revelling in the success.

Most of the league squad stuck with the club after the success of giving coach Roy Laird plenty to work with to defend the flag. Two wins started the year well before finals rival, the Eagles, gatecrashed Central's birthday celebrations in round 3 at Elizabeth Oval. Centrals were to lose just two more games finishing on top of the minor round ladder with a The Bulldog's form leading into the finals looked ominous after securing its fourth consecutive minor premiership.

The 2nd Semi Final against the Eagles was a nail-biter, the Dogs securing a 2-point win at AAMI Stadium and their first win over the Eagles that season to advance straight into the grand final. A week later the club learnt that again the Eagles would front up to contest the Dogs in a grand final for a third time after and Sunday October 3 was a day for the record books. While sentimental favourites it was the Eagles who were to have a dog of a day at the hands of a ruthless Central District who piled on Schell and Healy kicked 6 and 5 goals respectively and Nathan Steinberner collected the Jack Oatey Medal for his best-on-ground performance.

The club also collected its fourth consecutive Stanley H. Lewis Memorial Trophy for best performing club through all four grades while the Under 17's worked hard for the club's 12th Under 17's flag. Club stalwarts Brian Haraida games , Damian Hicks and Damian Arnold announced their retirements after the season and the signs looked ominous for with injuries to numerous key players. A slow start to the season, two extremely hot game days and the Bulldogs were languishing in 7th spot on the ladder and looked vulnerable at 3: Was the dynasty over?

It was the Round 11 home game against Sturt and the Dogs had their backs to the wall.