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Commentary Last Updated: Jan 10th, 2007 - 00:27:07

Chain Rudy�s �presidential campaign plan� to his wrist
By Jerry Mazza
Online Journal Associate Editor

Jan 10, 2007, 00:22

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When notified that a copy of his 140-page campaign plan for the presidency had been sent to the New York Daily News, Hizzoner, the Mayor of America, was heard to say �that�s the kind of thing that should be chained to somebody�s wrist.� Well, Rudy, your advisers say the document was stolen by someone who had infiltrated your campaign. The News said an anonymous source obtained it after it was left behind on a campaign trip. Maybe it should have been chained to your wrist.

Or was it as one astute viewer of our NewYork1TV emailed the station: Rudy probably leaked it. That is to let everyone know upfront the keg of personal dregs he hauls around from past days. This includes two broken marriages, one to his cousin no less, the second to newswoman Donna Hanover (a truly class act who bore his two kids) only to be dumped for a third marriage to Upper Eastside divorcee Judith Nathan. That alone should bury Rudy in the red white and blue states.

In fact, if I�ve heard correctly the plan is the staff�s way of telling Rudy by the time America reaches page 139, he may need to pack a bag for Palermo. After all, first we have the Giuliani family connections to the mob. Rudy�s first cousin Lewis D�Avanzo was killed by the FBI in a shootout. Lewis was the leader of a stolen car ring in Long Island, as reported in Wayne Barrett�s new book �Grand Illusion: the Untold Story of Rudy Giuliani and 9/11.� Rudy may have received his first FBI background check about that time, in the 70s.

Documentary filmmaker of Giuliani Time, Kevin Keating, found some footage of Rudy denying that he ever had been vetted by the FBI back then and was covering up family ties to crime. Even though Rudy won notoriety pursuing the Mafia, as Barrett points out in an earlier book, Rudy! An Investigative Biography of Rudolph Guiliani, Rudy had �D�Avanzo, son of the mayor�s uncle and a guest at [his] first wedding. D�Avanzo was described as a �ruthless and widely feared mob associate� who headed a massive stolen car ring . . ."

Rudy�s father Harold was described as a hothead and the �muscle� behind a brother-in-law�s loansharking operation run out of a Brooklyn saloon. Along with cracking heads, Barrett�s book says, �the mayor�s father served time in state prison [Sing Sing] for a stickup, rarely had an on-the-books job and once was a gunman in a mob shootout in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn.�

Cousin Lewis, known as �Steve the Blond� was listed as armed and dangerous in FBI bulletins. His rap sheet included a 10-year federal sentence for the armed hijacking of a truck loaded with $240,000 worth of mercury. Barrett�s book alleges Lewis was suspected of taking part in several murders as well. He was gunned down by the FBI in 1977, when he attempted to run down an agent after being stopped on a warrant that accused him and two associates of transporting 100 stolen luxury cars. Real pussycats.

Then there�s the 1962 shootout, Barrett reports, pitting a local mobster against papa Harold and Leo D�Avanzo, Lewis�s dad. Leo was later sanctioned by mob bosses for shooting a Mafia member. But Leo, known in the family as a black sheep, ran loansharking and gambling operations from a Brooklyn bar where pops worked as a bartender. In his gig as debt collector, he �broke legs, smashed kneecaps, crunched noses . . ." And like that, a guy does what a guy�s gotta do. Everybody�s gotta eat.

The second family, the Republican Party

Aside from the fact that Rudy�s family could make The History Channel with its tales, there�s the other family, the Republican Party, probably even tougher, meaner, and more unforgiving. It seems that the front-runner there is Senator John McCain, no piece of cake himself, exchanging Judas kisses with Bush. This makes the Godfather look like Leave It To Beaver. Yet, though John may be the touted front-runner, according to the numbers of McCain�s gombahs, Rudy�s the man, winning nine out of 10 of their polls -- yes, America�s Mayor. This based on what the media fashioned into his so-called stellar performance on 9/11/01. We�ll deal with that in a minute.

For now, consider that one of Giuliani�s major supporters of past days, Henry Kravis, has switched over to the McCain camp. Kravis, a major Republican supporter, is the middle name in the highly successful investment firm, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.

Paul Singer, a major hedge fund force, who backs Giuliani was, according to Barrett, supposed to be rounding up 9/11 families to back Rudy, although many of them remain outraged by his performance at the 9/11 Commission hearings.

Tom Kean and Lee Hamilton, the co-chairmen of the 9/11 Commission of Omission, are backtracking on Rudy, reporting in their book how they gave Rudy a pass on every question and let him lapse into his anecdotal speech that he delivers by rote now at $100,000 a pop. In fact, they say hundreds of 9/11 families cancelled buses for the final DC meeting of the commission, because they were so incensed at said �pass� Giuliani was given on those questions.

Also Federal Express CEO Fred Smith remains uncommitted as well as Paramount CEO Brad Grey, Giuliani�s talent agent after 9/11. Grey produced a 9/11 HBO special and practically gifted to Rudy his so-called sainthood. Grey was to be Rudy�s man in Hollywood, the leading celebrity fundraising arm. At this point, Grey remains in the gray area.

Then there is former Vikings quarterback Fran Tarkenton, targeted to raise money from major pro athletes, still not heard from. Not to mention notoriously neocon News Corp CEO Rupert Murdoch, PepsiCo chief Dawn Hudson, Goldman Sachs president Lloyd Blankfein.

All these business leaders are being counted on to help raise the desired $100 million war chest for election. So, why are members of this family sitting on the fence?

Disenchantment with Rudy�s reality?

Start with former Republican, Jersey Girl Kristen Breitweiser, whose husband perished in the North Tower. She says this about Rudy on her website, under �Giuliani�s Deadly Impact,� quoted in my Online Journal article, Rudy Giuliani slavering witness for Moussaoui prosecution, �Can someone please explain to me why Rudy Giuliani gets to give a victim�s impact statement at the Moussaoui penalty phase hearing? Which family member did Giuliani lose in the attacks?

�Forgive me, but Giuliani is the person responsible for deciding to locate NYC�s emergency center in the World Trade Center [23rd floor, Lucky Larry�s Tower 7] along with a diesel tank (against the advice of the FDNY officials) before 9/11.

�Locating the city�s emergency command center in a known al Qaeda target (the towers were struck in 1993 and al Qaeda publicly promised to return to finish the job) was a colossal failure in judgment on his part that cost hundreds of lives on 9/11.� [The al Qaeda itals are mine.]

�During the attacks, because the command center was rendered inoperable, NYC had no clear chain of command and no physical command structure in place to coordinate the emergency response. Frankly, the whole reason Giuliani was on television all day and available for interviews was because he was scrambling around the streets trying to set up a command post since the one he had designed and located [against the advice of past and old friend Police Chief Howard Safer and many others] was paralyzed during the attacks.�

In fact, Rudy was out of Tower 7 by 9:15 AM, before it was pulled eight hours later by its owner, Larry Silverstein. Did he have some foreknowledge it might be going down? Returning to Breitweiser . . .

�Anyone who wants to witness the results of NYC�s abysmal emergency response to the attacks need only listen to the recently released 911 tapes that chillingly reveal a total lack of coordination and flow of vital life-saving information plaguing the city and its emergency response apparatus that day. . . .

�Furthermore, Giuliani is also responsible for giving the FDNY inoperable Motorola radios. This, too, cost hundreds of lives when firemen did not hear the order to evacuate th towers prior to their collapse. (By the way, those radios are still not fixed . . . )� In fact, they had not been fixed since 1993, the year of first WTC attack.

Mrs. Breitweiser continues, �How is a man who is responsible for such horrific and deadly judgments invited to give a victim�s impact statement as to how 9/11 impacted him?�

Ah well, Kristen, he�s not a good listener. He�s a better talker, taking full credit for the non-direction of activities on 9/11 to a na�ve America who know him only as a TV icon, present in the void of the goat-boy Bush.

In fact, as Barrett comments in an interview with Amy Goodman and filmmaker Kevin Keating for Democracy Now, �I�d say that his speech [at the Republican National Convention] �was the lowest point in his public life.� This is when Giuliani quotes Bush again as saying, �The people who brought down these towers are going to hear from us.� Well, they haven�t heard from us, but Rudy goes on to say. �They heard from us in Afghanistan.� Barrett points out, �Well, you could make an argument that people who brought down the towers were based in Afghanistan.�

But then Rudy goes on to say �They heard from us in Iraq.� Now, Barrett, points out �even Dick Cheney has admitted that the people who brought down the towers had absolutely nothing to do with Iraq.� Barrett adds that at that point, �[Rudy] crystallized for the American public [that untruth], because he can speak about 9/11 with greater authority than any other American figure. It�s a myth that he should be able to speak with such authority about that, and that�s the myth that the book deals with.�

As Barrett comments, Rudy �hit all the right chords with the American public, he said all the right things, but we examine how he did all the wrong things between the 1993 bombing -- he was running for mayor in 1993 when that bombing occurred -- [and 2001].�

More negative memories

In addition to the Breitweiser critique, Barrett points to �a five page memo from Jerry Hauer, who was the head of Emergency Management [under Giuliani]. He wanted it [the command center] to be located in Brooklyn in the Metrotech complex. That happens to be roughly where Mike Bloomberg has since put it . . ."

Nevertheless, Hizzoner wanted to be within walking distance of City Hall, even though Hauer pointed out the center could not be built underground to be better protected because all the land in that area was located beneath the floodplain of the Hudson River. This left the undesirable option of being in the nearest tower, Tower 7 in the World Trade Center.

Barrett also points out that the 23rd floor of Tower Seven had never been rented. It had been built with high ceilings as a trade floor for an investment banking firm, and then remained vacant for two years. Nevertheless, the private landlord (who would be Lucky Larry Silverstein) threw two big fundraising events on his yacht for Rudy and became a giant donor himself. And the rest is the history, Breitweiser painfully recalled, which was reiterated by former and present Police Chief Raymond Kelly.

Kelly said, �It was just unwise. . . . If Giuliani had any sense of threat, he would have gotten out of the City Hall area.� He told Barrett that Giuliani put the command center �right next to the target.� Kelly echoed the shock that Giuliani and his staff never put together a unified command post with top brass from the NYPD, FDNY and Office of Emergency Management (OEM), which would have facilitated the flow of information and certainly have saved many lives. In fact, Giuliani was aware that FEMA was in New York City the night of September 10, 2001, for one of the many �terror hijacking drills.� What an amazing coincidence.

As to the since disgraced, imprisoned 9/11 Police Chief Bernard Kerik, Kelly commented that he spent so much time by Giuliani�s side that Kelly had no idea who was really directing the NYPD response that day. Perhaps that�s why after Tower 1 was hit; workers in Tower 2 who had exited the building were told to go back to their desks. And many did and died for it.

The FDNY, as stated, described their radios as �obsolete,� �totally inadequate,� as early as 1990, but they were still in use in 2001. So where�s the forethought, the vision, the leadership that qualifies America�s Mayor to be America�s President?

In fact, once the mud begins to be slung and the smiles slide away, how durable will Rudy be in the face of these facts, the outrage of 9/11 families, the reticence of old allies? Perhaps if that campaign plant were chained to his wrist, he could take a look at the other side of his lamp-lit mythology and envision how quickly the limelight could be blown out.

This might also revive the memory of Giuliani�s atrocious record with minorities, capped by the brutal Amadou Diallo slaying by New York Police on Rudy�s watch: 40 shots fired at the black man reaching for no gun it turned out. All he carried was his keys, a wallet and a pager. I don�t think black voters will have forgotten this.

On the other side, you have the heads of the police and firefighters unions themselves openly condemning Giuliani on NewYork1 for his 9/11 negligence. These are not union leaders sounding off over a contract dispute, but rather expressing the voices of enraged constituencies.

Add to those first responders, the thousands of rescue workers working without respirators on 9/11, exposed to dangerous toxins, now exhibiting signs of cancer and other severe illnesses. I reported on their plight in No money to treat 9-11 workers, $3 billion a week to fight Iraq.

Barrett�s take from talking to these people is that all Giuliani cared about was the public relations aspect of getting the site cleared up as quickly as possible, itself a huge mistake, because it was the scene of the greatest crime ever committed against America, and on our own soil. Forensic scientists should have been allowed ample time to investigate all materials of the ruins and the true causes of the incredibly powerful explosions that literally pulverized the buildings into hard dust.

Taking it to the bank

In addition, recently I reported in an Online Journal article, Rudy Giuliani opens his own bank, that Hizzoner has been trading once again on his name and 9/11 �experience� to build his own fortune via his private investment bank, Giuliani Capitol Advisers: ��Court papers and other filings offer a glimpse at the [Giuliani) banking business,� reported the Daily News, �in which Giuliani Partners has a controlling stake.� In fact, GCA�s numero uno banking client seems to be Delta Air Lines. They hired the boyz last September (the cruelest month) at a monthly fee of $400,000. That�s a lot of scharola (escarole, green stuff) as we used to say in the old neighborhood. It�s supposedly an industry standard-fee but it still pissed off pilots who had to take pay and retirement cuts. . . . But that�s life they say. And Giuliani asked for $20,343 in lodging and $9,471 in business meals for his crew. That�s living large, I say, on OPM (other people�s money).

�Banco GCA also nipped Aloha Airlines for about $3 million for work on restructuring, and ditto for U.S. Airways creditors' committee. Jesus, if I were cynical I�d say these looked almost like disguised campaign contributions . . .

�GCA in fact has 36 deals on its website with midsize companies, too. And other clients and its own investments, like 20 percent of a company selling energy-efficient lights to cities, with a $150 grand retainer for the deal. That�s about what Rudy earned a year as mayor. And the White House gig pays $400,000 a year, the monthly fee for Giuliani Capital Advisors. Anything wrong with this picture?�

What�s wrong is that beneath Giuliani�s incompetence, which somehow continues to reap huge financial gains, rest the larger sins of incompetence and the gains of the Bush administration itself. Giuliani must have been driven from on-high to get rid of the 9/11 evidence ASAP. For after all is said and done, who had most to gain from destroying the evidence but the Bush administration and Rudy himself. Also, accomplishing that task could facilitate his stepping from Mayor of America to President of America. That shadowy legacy is chained to Giuliani in perpetuity. He might want to take a fresh look at it and run for the hills instead.

Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York City. Reach him at

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