Date: Wed, 11 Oct 2006 16:54:56 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: AFP's Statement on the Dismissal of Christopher Bollyn
Please circulate widely:
AFP's Statement on the Dismissal of Christopher Bollyn
AFP: As many people are already aware, we were recently put in
a difficult position and felt it had become necessary to distance ourselves
from Christopher Bollyn. This decision, made by the entire editorial board,
had to be made.
BOLLYN: What incident, article, or event put AFP's editorial
board in "a difficult position," and for that matter, who is the "entire
I really think that AFP has some explaining to do.
AFP: So far, we have tried to respect the privacy of Christopher
by not discussing our views on this matter with the general public, but
following a series of disclosures by Christopher himself, we felt it was
necessary to release to the public the details behind his termination.
BOLLYN: AFP's leading investigative journalist is fired
and they expect that I should keep it secret? Are these people thinking?
So what are the details about why I was fired? A solid newspaper and
professional journalists usually provide the evidence to prove their statements.
In this case, none is provided or documented. I would really like to
know what they have to substantiate their allegations, however, I was not
even sent a copy of this unsigned statement from the staff of the editorial
AFP: Recently it came to our attention that, on at least
three occasions — publicly and privately — Christopher has given credence
to a pernicious charge that American Free Press has been infiltrated and
controlled by “Zionists,” thus lending his support to attacks on the credibility
and integrity of American Free Press and its staff.
BOLLYN: The editorial board claims that I have "given
credence" to the charge that AFP is infiltrated by Zionists. Where have
I ever said or written anything of the sort?
AFP's editor, Chris Petherick, has failed to provide any evidence to
support this claim, which he made in his letter of dismissal dated 7 October
2006. I have repeatedly asked him to show me where I said anything of the
sort but he refuses to answer my questions.
AFP: Of course, this isn't the first time someone has attacked
us with baseless smears. However, the fact that they came from one of our
own meant we had to take these accusations very seriously and deal with
them directly, as our credibility is the foundation upon which this publication
has been built.
BOLLYN: Again, I ask: Show me where I have attacked
AFP publicly with baseless smears. AFP's intimate association with the
notorious Scott Makufka (a.k.a. Victor Thorn) and Lisa Guliani of WING
TV certainly should raise eyebrows and questions.
Makufka is a known writer of pornography and Ms Guliani is a woman who
abandoned her husband and three children to run away with Makufka in 2001.
Her little 8-year old son and two older boys in Minnesota were left to
wonder where their mother had gone in the fall of 2001.
Her three sons are all fathered by different men. I spoke with her former
in-laws and they were very willing to talk about how Lisa had "walked out"
on her three children. Contrary to what Scott Makufka has written, there
was no dishonesty in my discussion with Mr. and Mrs. Guliani.
For their part, they wondered why she was still using the Guliani name.
I repeatedly asked Willis Carto and the senior staff at AFP to explain
what kind of relationship the paper has with these shady characters who
are clearly speaking on behalf of AFP?
No answers were ever given.
When I started to look into who Lisa Guliani was, I revealed what I
had found on this website:
Within days, I was fired.
I certainly would not want to be associated with such characters and
there is no way that I can vouch for a newspaper that is associated with
people like Makufka and Guliani.
AFP: At first we stood by Christopher following his brutal
attack at the hands of the police. We published articles written by him
about the terrible incident — even going so far as to add supplementary
reports corroborating the view that the police assault could have been
provoked by Christopher's writings.
In addition, we offered to help him with legal bills by collecting money
for his defense. We even paid some medical bills related to the incident.
So far, we have given him $4,500 for his legal bills and $1,100 for doctors
fees. In addition, we have approximately $4,000 more we will be giving
him in the coming days.
BOLLYN: I am grateful for AFP's support but it should
be remembered that AFP is not "giving" money from its pocket, but it is
forwarding some of the money that readers and supporters have sent for
my legal defense.
There are other things here that need to be explained. First of all,
AFP has collected money on my behalf but has refused to provide the list
of names and amounts donated. How can I thank the many people who have
donated money for my defense if I don't know who they are. I would really
like to send each and every one a personal thank you note.
Secondly, Willis Carto offered to pay my medical expenses when I told
him that I could not afford to go see a doctor. In the six years that I
worked for AFP, neither I nor my family have had any medical coverage or
benefits of any kind. The initial treatment for my broken elbow was over
$800, which is more than my weekly salary from AFP.
While Michael Piper claims that I am America's best investigative journalist,
I must also be the lowest paid. My salary was cut 20 percent in the past
two years leaving me to raise my family with a salary smaller than what
I what I started at when I began with the Spotlight in 2000.
Furthermore, in June of this year, I was informed by Chris Petherick
that my travel allowance of $1,000 per month was to be terminated. This
effectively prevented me from doing any further significant 9/11 research
(or any other research for that matter) that would require traveling.
At the same time, I learned that AFP was not printing my articles about
Zionist involvement in 9/11 or the cover-up of the evidence from these
false flag terror attacks. There were several issues in a row in which
my articles did not appear.
AFP says that my mid-June article about Ehud Olmert's ties to 9/11 was
late, but it was certainly on time for the next week's paper. However,
it never appeared. This article about the Zionist leader's ties to 9/11
and his brutal crimes against Palestinians would have been a prescient
forewarning of what was to happen in Lebanon in July.
Unlike many other journalists, I do not sit at a desk and produce articles
from other's research and writings. I prefer to meet the people and see
the evidence. This also requires many telephone calls to speak with the
people involved. This is the only way I know to get real and up-to-date
AFP: We also approached the Foundation to Defend the First
Amendment (FDFA) to assist Christopher's legal defense. FDFA was willing
to provide a direct payment of $5,500 to any attorney retained by Christopher.
However, Christopher seemed hesitant to provide us the name of any attorney,
despite the fact that immediately after Christopher's arrest we gave him
at least three valuable contacts for legal assistance in the Chicago area.
BOLLYN: And who is this Foundation and its members?
I have been with AFP for more than 6 years and have no idea who is the
When I went to court one month after the attack, I had not received
one cent from any legal fund raised on my behalf. This meant that I was
forced to appear "pro se" and request a 30-day extension in order to raise
funds and find an attorney.
When asked about the missing funds, a senior editor at AFP told me,
"You don't expect us to keep track of your court dates, do you?"
AFP only recommended Mark Lane, who does not practice in Illinois. They
also provided the name of a woman who recommended a Mexican-American attorney
in Chicago named John DeLeon, who wanted a retainer of $10,000.
Mr. DeLeon did not inspire any confidence in me and I continued my search
for an attorney. Contrary to what Chris Petherick told Willis Carto, I
never refused any assistance from the FDFA. At the time he offered this
assistance, I told him that I simply had not found an attorney to whom
they could send any funds.
AFP: We have already engaged Christopher in constructive
dialogue, asking him to stand up for the integrity of the newspaper we
have all worked so hard to establish. Sadly, our talks came to nothing,
as we learned last week that Christopher published a story on the Internet
that had a direct link to another site that questioned our credibility,
honesty and integrity.
BOLLYN: Am I responsible for all the links on the Internet?
AFP: This same site has also published false and malicious
attacks on many other people and organizations in the alternative media
and 9-11 truth movement. For us, that was the straw that broke the camels
BOLLYN: Here AFP is referring to Eric Hufschmid, with
whom I have worked on 9/11 research. I am not responsible for what Hufschmid
says or puts on his website. It is his website and he has the right to
express his opinion.
Is this not what the First Amendment is all about?
The only person at AFP with whom I have discussed my being fired is
Willis A. Carto, the publisher. I had three phone conversations with Mr.
Carto on October 7 after I learned that I had been fired in an email from
Mr. Carto said he had approved the contents of Petherick's memo. I told
Mr. Carto that it seems very odd that AFP would fire their "star" reporter
after being attacked by local police thugs and the Anti Defamation League
of the B'nai B'rith.
The ADL came out with a press release on September 7, 2006, in which
I was their number one target for my 9/11 research revealing different
aspects of Israeli involvement in the false flag terror attacks. The Israeli
newspaper Ha'aretz has recently condemned me to a "special place in hell."
Mr. Carto suggested that I write a statement vouching for all of the
people involved with AFP. I was told that my statement should denounce
Eric Hufschmid and say that there is absolutely no evidence that AFP is
in any way compromised or infiltrated.
When I pointed out that newspapers are often infiltrated and that Michael
Piper has just written in his book "Judas Goats" about how the nationalist
movement has been infiltrated for years, Mr. Carto became livid.
I then asked Mr. Carto to clarify who is Scott Makufka and why is he
publishing books that say American Free Press on the spine? He was surprised
to hear this and when I told him that Makufka and Guliani are a "wrecking
crew" - he didn't even seem to care.
AFP: We all considered Christopher more than just a colleague;
he was our friend. So it was with heavy hearts that we had to make the
decision to terminate him. All of the money that has been collected so
far for Christopher will go to him. However, new donations that have recently
come in are being returned as we cannot continue to help someone who could
not stand up for us.
BOLLYN: Here there is a bold-faced lie. I have always
been an outsider at AFP. I have not been informed of any decisions made
until after they were made and I am not one of the employee owners, although
I was with the paper when it began.
While Piper announces publicly that he is a friend and supporter of
mine, his emails to me have been extremely nasty and insulting. After I
was attacked by the police, Piper sent me a dozen emails laced with the
most foul language and insults. This is a friend?
Furthermore, Piper gave Carto an ultimatum to keep me away from the
AFP conference held in Washington over the Labor Day weekend. Prior to
the conference I received the most disgusting emails I have ever received.
He was clearly provoking me to keep me away from the conference.
A person from AFP's inner circle told me that as soon as Piper heard
that I would not be attending the conference - he was relived. Mission
Thinking back to December 2001, I now realize that he used the same
tactics to keep me away from the Moscow conference where I was invited
to speak about 9/11. I had received an extremely nasty and threatening
email from Michael Piper's email box and just assumed that someone else
had sent it. Now, I understand that this is how he operates.
Piper, a senior member of the AFP staff, is clearly not honest and is
obviously labile. What or who is behind his behavior is not at all clear.
How could I possibly vouch for a person like Piper, who has shown himself
to be extremely hostile to me and the truth? He is an expert in deception.
He writes books (Dirty Secrets) with Makufka and Guliani and uses these
people to attack me. What is the connection here? Where is the much-touted
Michael Piper recently told me that my stock from AFP had been in his
drawer (in 2001) but that it "must have fallen of the table." Contrary
to what he has said about why I did not receive stock in AFP, it should
be noted that I was not abroad during the summer of 2001, when AFP was
founded - I was at home in Chicago.
The fact is that no stock ownership was ever offered to me, so I simply
assumed that this "employee-owned" label was a scam.
I know very well that all decisions at AFP go through Willis Carto.
I have no idea which employees own the stock of AFP. This has never been
transparent - like everything else at AFP.
AFP: The discussion with Christopher is now over, but that
does not mean we have closed the door forever on him. If Christopher wants
to come back to AFP, all we have asked of him is to give us the same support
that we have shown him by publicly stating he believes in AFP’s integrity
BOLLYN: At this point, I have no desire to work with
AFP: In addition, we ask that Christopher denounce these
absurd charges that we are “controlled by Zionists.” He knows they are
preposterous, because there is no evidence to substantiate this claim.
BOLLYN: I am sorry, but contrary to what AFP says, I
am an outsider and cannot vouch for the integrity and credibility of each
and every person working for AFP. As I have said above, there are very
suspicious and dubious characters at the highest levels of the American
Free Press, including Michael Piper, Scott Makufka, and Lisa Guliani.
How could I make a statement and generalize that AFP is not compromised
when I don't know who these people really are or who they are loyal to?
What is the agenda of Michael Piper, Scott Makufka and Lisa Guliani?
I certainly don't know and could never vouch for their character.
AFP: We invite anyone with any concerns to visit our office
in Washington to meet with us personally or to call us on the phone to
find out for themselves just how baseless these charges really are.
BOLLYN: I encourage all of you to do this and let us
know what you find. Please post it on this board if you are able or send
me an email.
AFP: (Signed) "The Editorial Board at American Free Press"
BOLLYN: And exactly who is this? Would you be so kind
to identify yourselves?