Today, it seems the print media are finally catching up. (After all, they could have Googled back in May and basked in the glory all summer, but..) US magazine Mother Jones is running a comprehensive story on the involvement of the US with Air Bas, in which they quote Bout's financial advisor, Texan accountant Richard Chichakli, as confirming the existence of US-Bout contracts. Richard tends to give good quote, as anyone who fossicks through my comments threads on the Bout issue will discover, and he was no different for Mother Jones:
"Victor said if anybody calls you, unless it’s Jesus himself, with an ID, don’t bring him to me"Hmm...not at all rattled, then. Farah, for his part, has produced a long post giving detail of the TBTC-series fuel contracts (but no new information compared to my original posting, here) and, interestingly, claiming to have other documents placing Bout aircraft at various locations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The rest of the Bout posts are: 1st June, 4th June, 7th June, 8th June, 1st July, 24th July, 6th August, 9th August, 13th August, 21st August, 20th September and 26th September. Don't I wish this blog had a categorisation function like the Movable Type boys.
Despite further efforts and the valuable aid of several readers, I still have not been able to clarify why the US needed Viktor Bout's services. Interestingly, though, I have recently found a photo placing one of British Gulf's Antonov 12s in Kabul in July, 2003. (Edit: links restored)