Loved ones of 9/11 victims are livid over FBI Director Christopher Wray’s comparison of the recent ransomware hacks to the hijackings that killed nearly 3,000 people in a matter of hours.
Wray told the Wall Street Journal “there are a lot of parallels” between the recent cyberattacks of a meat plant and an oil and gas pipeline and the al-Qaeda terror strikes.
That, says a spokesman for families trying to compel the FBI to share all they know of Saudi Arabia’s involvement in Sept. 11, 2001, is disheartening.
“It’s disgusting and tone-deaf,” said Brett Eagleson of Connecticut, who was 15 years old when his dad died while working at the Twin Towers on 9/11. “Director Wray makes a disgusting comparison between the rising price of beef and gas to those blown away on 9/11.”
Wray kept up the comparison in the Journal article, adding “realizing it can affect (Americans) when they’re buying gas at the pump or buying a hamburger — I think there’s a growing awareness now of just how much we’re all in this fight together.”
As the Herald reported this week, the ransomware attacks also hit the Steamship Authority ferry service to Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.
This latest cyberattack comes in the wake of an attack on the world’s largest meat producer, just weeks after a similar incident shut down a U.S. oil pipeline. The Russians are most likely behind the cyber hacks.
But, says Eagleson, Wray and too many others forget too easily.
“People in the 9/11 community have been texting me asking ‘How is this real?’ and ‘He’s tone-deaf,'” said Eagleson. “He’s comparing us to the rising cost of beef and gas to our world changing in an instant.”
Plus, this all hits as lawyers for the 10,000 9/11 plaintiffs prepare to question three officials from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia beginning next week — including two the 9/11 Commission cleared but FBI veterans say remain highly suspect.
This showdown has been 20 years in the making and the spotlight will be on the former Southern California al-Qaeda cell.
The first two 9/11 hijackers in the U.S. — Nawaf Al-Hazmi and Khalid Al-Mihdhar — arrived in Los Angeles on Jan. 15, 2000, without being able to speak English. Yet, records show, they made it to San Diego where they took flying lessons — and flunked out — rented an apartment, and attended a mosque.
They were both Saudi nationals. But how did they afford it all?
That’s what lawyers will ask Saudi officials Omar al-Bayoumi, up first June 9-11; Musaed al-Jarrah, next to be questioned June 17-18; and, last but not least, Fahad al-Thumairy, June 28-30. The interviews will take place by video with Saudi officials checking in from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
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