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Location: Takoma Park, Maryland, United States

I'm now a 52-year-old American male raised as an Episcopalian, veteran of submarines, Peace Corps, and State Department. I like teaching people about what they can do with computers and have gotten by as an independent Microsoft trainer teaching networking, but I really hope to someday find a way to make a living traveling on my motorcycle, camping, and writing about places and people I meet along the way.

Friday, May 26, 2006


Well, I'm about done with Susan, myself. Just got my cell phone bill, must have missed it for last month. Susan knows that I have free nights and weekends, and she knows that I teach on Monday and Wednesday nights from six until ten. I can't tell you how many times I've received calls during classroom hours when the phone has been silent all day, and it now dawns on me that she never calls after 9:00 when the time is free. Of course, this would have been easier when she was still in Texas.

Bottom line, I have a bill that exceeds $700 and need to come up with about $300 to keep the phone from being turned off. Probably, I'll take that out of the rent that I pay to her.

The demands to do things to call people to go on her computer and look up who else....

When I do call folks, who she is so urgent for me to call, such as Mrs. Berlin, who is wealthy enough to pay for Susan's care in a private facility, the word I get back is that they don't want to talk to her.

Someone asked me what Susan had done to get into trouble, and it wasn't just that she wrote letters. She accepted money from Iraq. The prosecution says they have video tapes of her accepting money from Iraq Intelligence. That would be an illegal transaction. Iraq was on the list of nations that supported terrorism, and as I understand it Sadaam Hussein funded some of the rewards to families of suicide bombers.

Iraq Intelligence had a habit of filming such things. She claims the money was reimbursement for expenses.

It is likely that there was some corruption in the Iraq government, and that the narration of the tapes says something different in their language than what Susan thought was going on. It seems feasable, in my mind, that Iraq Intelligence Service members were padding their expense accounts and bolstering their status reports by claiming that Susan was a spy for them, or that they were recruiting her.

I will also say that she had a lot emotionally invested in her peace efforts. Her anger over the invasion was emmense. The prosecution claims that she agreed with an undercover agent, posing as a Lybian intelligence officer, to assist Iraq troops behind their lines after the American invasion. Now, I'm pretty sure that she wasn't taken in by the undercover agent. Her friend, Park Godfrey, has told me that he remembers her describing the agent as a flake, wondering what his real game was, and saying that there was half a chance that he was FBI.

There is a part of me that lives in tension. Knowing that our invasion was a breach of international law, I must respect even enemies who defend the opposing position. At the same time, the need for loyalty to ones own country should not necessarily be cast off with every mistake.

Nonetheless, Susan is entitled to a trial. Even if she is guilty, she did not trade in secrets and contributed nothing substantial. Neither was she in a position to do so. It may be argued that the FBI's intervention prevented further crimes, but one of the roles of law enforcement is to intervene early when citizens are headed down an illegal road.

Maybe they did.


Blogger Gamine said...

Interesting. My falling out with Susan was largely over huge long distance bill she charged up on my phone while staying over at my place.

I sent you an email a week ago, btw-- did you get it? It was to your hotmail account. I can't do much to help, but I might be able to offer you some perspective.


7:07 AM  
Blogger Gamine said...

Now, I'm pretty sure that she wasn't taken in by the undercover agent. Her friend, Park Godfrey, has told me that he remembers her describing the agent as a flake, wondering what his real game was, and saying that there was half a chance that he was FBI.

Here is what does not make sense to me: If she really thought this guy was possibly FBI, what in the world would possess her to say that she would be willing to help out behind the lines in Iraq? She might as well post a sign on her chest saying "Take me a way in handcuffs now!"

7:11 AM  
Blogger JB said...

I think she really thought she was working for the CIA and DIA and was just trying to find out more about who the guy was. Nothing he asked for was actually illegal, and it wasn't like she was under oath if she made him any promises, either.

That's the best face that I can put on it.

12:22 PM  
Blogger Gamine said...

Out of all of the accusations made against Susan, that is the one that seems the most preposterous. I really hope she at least gets her day in court. Whatever her falws, I am positive that her intent was always to do good.

10:19 AM  

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