Dubai - al Qaeda’s Logistics Hub

By Anthony C Heaford, 11 February 2021 

After my unwitting meetings with al Qaeda and 9/11’s Engineer Khalid Sheikh Mohammed’s terror cell in Yemen in September 1997, I was sent on four more suspicious business trips by my employer at the time - my Father’s engineering company. All four visits were in locations normally covered by other technicians and where al Qaeda is now known to have operated - Jakarta, Manila and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). 

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Two of the visits were to a factory inside Dubai’s Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZ) in the UAE, at the address PO Box 16797, the first in December 1997 and the second in March 1998. 

Seven months after my final visit to the JAFZ in Dubai, Ammar al-Baluchi (the nephew of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed) opened a bank account in the United Arab Emirates and listed his employer's address as PO Box 16958, Jebel Ali Free Zone. The numbering difference between my customer’s address, PO Box 16797, and the address used by Ammar al-Baluchi,  PO Box 16958 suggests these two locations were in very close proximity - possibly in the same block or even the same building complex.

Ammar al-Baluchi is currently in Guantanamo Bay prison with his Uncle KSM, charged with transferring money from Dubai to the 9/11 hijackers in the USA. Could it be a coincidence that three months after meeting Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Yemen I visited a location that was within a few hundred metres of a business address used by KSM’s nephew Ammar al-Baluchi in relation to the 9/11 attacks? I very much doubt that.

Other than my being requested by name to attend that first customer visit to Dubai in December 1997 I noticed nothing unusual about the factory, the customer or my machine installation. My second visit there in March 1997 was highly unusual. Firstly it was arranged by my recently retired Father; he returned from a family holiday in Dubai to tell me he had met with the customer in the JZFZ, had seen “operator problems"  and determined they needed additional operator training, and asked me to complete that. I was perplex by this because it implied I’d not done my job properly on my first visit and because my normally profit driven Father said it would be at our expense. I protested, stressing that the training I’d given in December 1997 was perfectly adequate and that any further training should be done at the customers cost. My Father breezily dismissed my protests, appearing disinterested in the technical or cost aspect of the request and even telling me to ’treat it as a holiday’ - a casual attitude I’d never seen him display in twenty-years of watching his business dealings. 

As with my first visit to this customer I noticed nothing unusual about the factory or the customer other than my completely unnecessary task of re-training the operators. What was very unusual was the level of attention and interest the customer’s management seemed to show in me - it felt a little bit like celebratory status to me, especially the way they all insisted on giving their names and job titles to me for my customer database. Those names are redacted in the image above but an unredacted copy is already with attorneys in the USA.

British MI6 Knowledge?

Shortly after my final visit to Dubai my Father came out of retirement once more to arrange a business meeting for me - this time with a "Mr Jones” in central London. I was on a prearranged business trip in Scotland when my Father called me from his home and said a person he knew had called him wanting to buy a machine and that I should visit that customer the next day.

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I did as I was told, changed my schedule and drove the length of the country to attend my Father’s contact’s factory. That factory was a large almost empty warehouse that looked more like a movie set that a production facility to me. Mr Jones was a distinguished looking grey haired man wearing the smartest of grey suits. He showed no interest whatsoever in the machine he was about to spend £40,000 on but appeared to take great interest in me. This was not a regular business meeting - it felt more like an interview of me and one which I admit I took objection to - I wasn’t there to play games, I was there to sell him a machine. The meeting was cut short it seemed but not before I had obtained a signed contract for the machine sale. 

I never met Mr Jones again and a few weeks later my Father made me redundant. Eighteen months earlier he’d asked me to leave a contract job I had with British Petroleum (BP) at Manchester Airport to work for him instead; BP responded by offering me a permanent job with full benefits. Despite that incredible job offer from BP I took up my Father’s offer when he claimed he’d offer me better job security. In the eighteen months I worked for him, the first customers I met were al Qaeda’s financiers in Chicago; he sent me to terrorist infested Yemen on a business trip setup by his CIA contracting US sales agent and I believe that meeting with “Mr Jones” in London was my Father introducing me to British ‘Military Intelligence’ - MI5 or MI6.

Truly, for some of us nothing is written, unless we write it 
© Anthony C Heaford - The Quiet Mancunian