December 15, 2011
last edits May 24, 2012
<<The Tripoli Massacres
First, an Associated Press Article by Vanessa Gera, December 10, explains al Farjani's relevance in "liberated Libya" as a big wheel in the NTC's search for the war's missing and unidentified. He's to specialize in the names without bodies and bodies without names, anonymous corpses in mass graves, from both sides but especially rebel people, since Gaddafi loyalists were the evil killer side. In part, his job will likely be to help the NTC put acceptable identities on the victims of massacres carried out by their own forces - disappearing loyalists, replacing them with more martyrs, made-up if need be, and more black paint for the past.
The governing National Transitional Council has founded a national commission to deal with the matter [of the thousands reported missing]. It is headed by al-Farjani, a cardiac surgeon, and a DNA specialist, Othman Abdul-Jalil [sic].The DNA part of this "National Missing Persons Commission" can be quite helpful if done right, and I have no cause to doubt the credibility of his co-chair, actually named Dr. Mohamed Othman. But Dr.al Farjani, as we'll see, has known issues.
Dr. Salem's audition for his part of the job, as Gera describes it, was an insurgency-long, life-and-family-endangering, one-man fact-finding mission. On about February 20, “bodies of protesters that were brought to his sprawling 1,200-bed Tripoli Medical Center were seized by Gadhafi forces before their families could recover them." This fiendish behavior has been widely alleged, but never well illustrated. The doc plans to change that, and has for nearly a year now been taking careful note of the cartoonish villainy, even going outside the hospital on "fact-finding missions to the sites of suspected massacres or mass graves."
Did he take one of these trips, on August 27, to the Yarmouk military base south of town, site of a likely rebel massacre a few days earlier?
Now for what the guy looks like, which-aside from the "Dr." part and "Salim" part, and proximity to massacres part, is what caught Eddie's attention: The photograph used in that article was also cited in a news blurb: “In this Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2011 photo, Dr. Salem al-Farjani, 43, speaks to a militia member as they stand in front of photos of men who went missing during Libya's civil war.” The photograph (cropped view below) shows a man who looks rather similar to another Tripoli-based Dr. Salim/Salem, who spoke to several media outlets in late August about a massacre he treaveled to the site of - though not far, he says.
The largest mass-killing allegation of all, over 150 people killed with guns and grenades, the alleged Khamis Brigade shed massacre with too many witnesses including himself, was right by this doctor's house south of Tripoli, he says. He saw it all happen, he told Agence France-Presse (AFP), Sky News, Anthony Loyd, Human Rights Watch, Liberation, perhaps the New York Times and even more, depending.
Faces aside, recall that both men shown above are massacre-obsessed or massacre-witnessing, rebel-assisting Tripoli doctors named Salim/Salem (as given, anyway). What stands in the way of linking the two as one is the different last name, and that we have no reason to believe that Dr. Salim al-Farjani, one of the NTC's top massacre-solving and ID-deciding people, is such a total faker. Other than the fact that he may have been caught faking, known reason or not.
But faces not aside, two further images from between his Fat Elvis and Thin Elvis pahses show the transition. Felix found a valuable Youtube video that sinks it.
لقاء مع الدكتور سالم الفرجاني عضو اللجنة الوطنية للتعرف على هويات ضحايا حرب التحرير
[auto-translate: "A meeting with Dr. Salem Ferjany member of the National Committee to get to know the identities of the victims of the war of liberation"]
It was posted October 1, so presumably from shortly before that date. I had hoped a video would reveal enough of his voice to make a clear match, but in fluent Arabic Dr. Salem sounds little like Dr. Salim in his halting, funny-sounding English. The raw video is a bit too dark to be sure, but with enhancement (adjustment of "levels" in Photoshop - is that "gamma?" -may have over-done it, sorry), the man's face is uncanny in its similarity to Rajip's, as opposed to his own about two months later.
As a nail in the coffin goes, contributor Petri Krohn notes (in the comments here), and the image above confirms, both men have a distinctive gap in their lower teeth, apparently just left of center (our right). I suspect that upon seeing something, perhaps the October video, someone alerted the doctor how much he resembled the guy on the news. It was perhaps this that spurred him to start jogging heavily and to stop shaving, in the hopes no one else would notice.
More images: Dr. Rajub speaking to AFP, late in the afternoon, from a Spanish-dubbed broadcast. Tooth gap visible here too. Note the blue alligator shirt Dr. Rajub wears here, as when speaking to Sky News earlier (above).
Interesting then, as if we needed it at this point, is Dr. al-Farjani wearing the same shirt, when speaking about the "more than 1,700" prison massacre, on September 26. From an Al Arabiya video. He's starting a mustache it seems, suggesting the October 1 video was some days or weeks old as it was posted.
The Gera article metions how with even his wife out of the loop, the doctor's "only confidant was his father, who would travel with him on fact-finding missions to the sites of suspected massacres or mass graves. He hoped the presence of a 70-year-old man would make him seem less suspicious to Gadhafi’s men."
|Survivor Fathallah Abdullah |
- the doctor's dad?
It is noteworthy that among the too-many alleged miraculous escapees, there is one rather toothsome 70-year-old man who turned up at the massacre site and spoke with Bild (Germany) and BBC. This was on August 27, as "Dr. Salim Rajub" was there. He was named Fathallah Abdullah al Ashter, as given, and said he escaped but lost his three sons in the onslaught, none of them named Salem or Salim. It could be true, I suppose.
Further Adventures of See-Through Salem
See-Through Salem: "Dr.Salim" Speaks, Coach Salem Manages
The man called Rajub, on Aug. 27: What he said, to whom, and how he interacted with the other "witnesses," as seen on camera. Plenty of speculation, but no shortage of decent evidence to support it. Was he the puppet master here?
A "Dr. Salim," a "Mr. al Farjani, and a Key Escapee.
The link "Dr. Rajub" showed in apparently coaching escapee witness Atiri/el Hitri brings to point the question whether the Dr. is also Mr. Ahmed al Farjani, who says he sheltered the escapee. This, the el Hitri link, and their teamwork on getting this story to the International Criminal Court are explored here.
See-Through Salem: Rise of a Massacre Masseuse
Government service, fact-finding about loyalist crimes tasked to the fact-seeding, fact-finding team of Dr. al Farjani and himself.
Al Farjani Hits the Big Time
Ramsay and Loyd and perhaps Worth were only the start for Dr. al Farjani's clandestine "fact-finding" missions at the Yarmouk shed. Within a month he was in the government's committees to solve massacres, and by November he was returning again and again to the massacre site with more influential people yet. On November 3, it was UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon. On the 23rd, it was ICC chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo. The last has a video finally with the tour guide, wearing a jacket if not a tie, speaking in Dr, Rajub's English.
Amnesty By Way of Fakery
A video, a good one (youtube link), covering all the above plus faker Bashir and another faker working with him in a team effort. Please note as the video wasn't able to that the confronted soldier therein is also apparently fake.
Al-Farjani's "Premature Dissolution"
So it seems he's now NOT working for the NTC, but still remains relevant.
See-Through Salem Arrested?
It seems so, at Tripoli Medical Center, and he was carrried away by armed men. The details of why, by whom, and what next remain unclear.
Standing Questions / Troubling Implications
If he's not able to skate through with arguments that he didn't lie, what are the proper charges for the Libyan people to file for this crime against reality? Because behind this apparent deceit is a likely rebel massacre it was designed to conceal, and in front of it is the very real danger that the good doctor was hired to do much more of the same.
So ... Dr. Salem al-Farjani wants to help since “people are suffering. They want to know the fate of their loved ones.” There are families attached to the approximately 150-180 government soldiers and/or civilian others, many alleged "mercenary" types, who were apparently slaughtered at or near the Yarmouk military base. They never turned up acknowledged as captive, dead, or alive, though some said they "fled like rats" to nowhere in particular. From the timeline clues, one could fairly surmise that they were killed at their stations by NATO bombs and/or the Misrata Brigades, before the latter started burning their corpses after capturing the brutalized base late on the 23rd - the specified date of the massacre (see the link, entry "Wednesday, 6:15 am").
Will Dr. Farjani be helping solve that one, after fire has erased the best direct clues who the victims really were? After Dr. Rajub went there and pretended to see the vanishing soldiers themselves kill the same number of perhaps invented 'rebular' Libyan guys? After two dozen uninjured escapees, partly shepherded by the doctor, swore they escaped somehow from as many different versions of the massacre?
Our subject alleged regime use of acid to erase clues - fire was known to be used to erase clues at Yarmouk, and the rebels were apparently in control when the fire was set. Dr. al-Farjani might have been there when the cover-story was inserted in the place of those lost clues. He may have helped seed the lie himself, in a fact-making mission to a massacre site. And he even says Libya "won’t have reconciliation" until his work is enshrined in the nation's new legal history.
I must say this closing line from from the Gera piece is extremely reassuring as to how his commission will perform:
Officials stress that they want to help find the missing on all sides.
“We don’t discriminate,” said Hatem el-Turki, the head of the Libyan Society of the Missing.