Middle East Strategy at Harvard, March 22, 2009
Earlier this month, the United Kingdom announced that it is reopening dialogue with the political wing of Hezbollah. Unlike the United States, the United Kingdom has only banned Hezbollah's terrorist (External Security Organization) and military wings. The ban on the terrorist wing came in 2000, while the ban on the military wing only came in June 2008 in response to Hezbollah's "providing active support to militants in Iraq who are responsible for attacks both on coalition forces and on Iraqi civilians, including providing training in the use of deadly roadside bombs," for plots to kidnap British security workers in Iraq, and for its support for terrorist activity in the Palestinian Territories.
The British government’s announcement to open a dialogue with “the political wing of Hizballah” is most troubling. In a statement to a parliamentary committee, Bill Rammell, the British foreign office’s minister for Middle East affairs, rationalized the decision on the grounds of what his office perceives to be “more positive developments within Lebanon.”
This British declaration underscores a pervasive failure to properly understand the structure of the Iranian-backed terrorist organization. At worst, the call to distinguish between the group's political and military wings (in terms of decision-making) may be driven by a desire to construct imaginary facts for diplomatic and political purposes. Are officials selling a false image of what Hizballah is so that they join the foray of the “sitting, talking and listening” with Iran and Syria's regimes now underway?
By Walid Phares
Agence France Presse and the Associated Press are reporting that Belgian authorities have arrested 14 suspected Al Qaeda terrorists including a jihadi who was allegedly planning a suicide attack. Sixteen raids were executed by 242 police officers in Brussels and in the eastern city of Liege. Security and judicial sources described the arrests as the “most important anti-terrorism operation in Belgium.” Citing the Federal prosecutor’s office, AFP reported that the move was targeting “a Belgian Islamist group involved in training as well as fighting on the Pakistan-Afghan border in cooperation with important figures in Al Qaeda.”
- U.S. Treasury Department Press Release: Specially Designated Global Terrorist (Added 11/20/08) The U.S. Treasury Department designated "Redouane El Habhab, a Germany-based terrorist financier and facilitator who has provided financial support and other services to al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI)." As Treasury explained, "El Habhab has supported AQI financially, through payments to the group, and logistically, by facilitating the smuggling of 'violence prone activists' into Iraq. On January 24, 2008, the Schleswig-Holstein Higher Regional Court in Germany convicted Habhab of having provided support to a foreign terrorist organization and sentenced him to a five year, nine month prison term. Habhab initially appealed his sentence; however, he subsequently withdrew this appeal."
By Roderick Jones
A report entitled ‘International Terrorism’ drawn up by the intelligence branch of the Ministry of Defence in the UK, was leaked to the Sunday Telegraph newspaper in the UK. The document outlines the continued high threat to the UK from international terrorists aligned with al-Qaeda and in particular the severe threat to the Government Security Zone (GSZ) in the center of London, which covers the Houses of Parliament, Whitehall and Buckingham Palace. The report also highlights the continued presence of extremist 'enclaves' in the UK within Birmingham, Luton and South East England.
What is particularly interesting about this report is how little the extremist human and geographical terrain has changed within the UK over the past ten years. Similarly, the core actions of extremist networks have remained consistent in spreading their message, training, funding and procuring non-lethal military equipment to support Jihadi’s in Pakistan - this report really could have been written in 1998. What has of course changed is the explicit domestic targeting of the UK, which was less apparent ten years ago. The UK government’s response to extremism and international terrorism has also drastically shifted - I just hope they aren’t fighting the battle they should have fought in 1998.
By Walid Phares
In the Western debate on how best to counter the rise and expansion of the Jihadi movement, particularly the Salafists, within liberal democracies, European experiences are important because of the sheer numbers of militants and the dissemination within many urban areas. France's counter terrorism experiences are one among these learning processes for all other European Govenrment but also for North American CT planning as well. In an article I published in the Middle East Times today I commented on France's Interior Minister remarks on the state of confrontation with the Jihadists. In a recent series of seminars in Paris, which I will report about on CTB, I also interacted with a number of French legislators and CT officials dealing with the French involvement in Afghanistan and the Sahel. In short, France is heading towards "increasing engagement with al Qaeda on two continents, Asia and Africa, as well as at home. Below is the article:
Evan F.. Kohllmann
Presentation before the III International Course on "Jihad Terrorism: Contingency Plans and Response" organized by Pablo Olavide University and the Granada University; July 10, 2008
Since the very early days of the Soviet-Afghan war of the 1980s, Pakistani territory has unquestionably served as a major base for fundamentalist Islamic clerics, schools, and militant training camps, including for Al-Qaida. In 1988, one such facility inside Pakistan, known as "Al-Sadda", was described in the founding documents of Al-Qaida as an "open camp" from which the best "brothers" would be selected to join the new terrorist organization.1 With the emergence of the Taliban movement in the late 1990s along the Pakistani-Afghan border, increasingly larger swaths of northwestern Pakistan have become dominated by forces sympathetic to Al-Qaida and willing to host terrorist guesthouses and training camps.
LONDON — A 45-year-old Algerian described by American prosecutors as the mastermind of an abortive plot to bomb Los Angeles International Airport during millennium celebrations in 1999 has been released on tight bail conditions after seven years in British jails, court officials said Thursday.
The release of the unnamed Algerian is the second time in a little more than two weeks that a suspect named by prosecutors as having close ties to Osama bin Laden, but not charged, has been let out on bail in Britain pending a final court ruling on government deportation proceedings.
Two testimonies by young men who went to Iraq to wage jihad were published recently. In the first testimony, a young Saudi named Ahmad bin 'Abdallah Al-Shayi' said that he regretted his actions, and accused Al-Qaeda of exploiting young men by tempting them to join the organization and then sending them to carry out martyrdom operations. He warned all young men, and Muslims in general, to learn from his mistake, and not to join the jihad in Iraq or in other regions of conflict.
The second testimony was that of an individual calling himself "the noble mujahid Muhibb Al-Sunna Al-Iraqi." Unlike Al-Shayi', he described his experience in very positive terms, and praised the Al-Qaeda commanders, particularly the late Al-Qaeda in Iraq commander Abu Mus'ab Al-Zarqawi.
Arabs in Europe have launched a public campaign to stop Al-Jazeera TV broadcasts in Europe. In a petition, they accuse the channel of fostering extremism among European Arab youth and of supporting terrorism.
While the petition's initiators have not provided their names, it seems likely that they are Iraqi expatriates; although various Arab news websites, such as Elaph,  have reported on the campaign, the petition itself has been posted primarily on Iraqi websites. These sites include the Iraqi news site Sotaliraq;  the Iraq of Tomorrow news site;  the Al-Najaf News site;  the website of Al-Fayhaa TV, a liberal Iraqi station;  the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan website;  Bahzani, a news and opinion website focusing on the Yazidi community and other Iraqi minorities;  the Yezidi Community website;  the website of the GilgamishCenter for Kurdish Studies and Research;  and the Kurdistan Times e-journal. 
Reactions on youtube:
Nazgul the Mormon Bee?
They're still repeating the lie that the Jews were the killers of the prophets, as if the non-Jews were listening to the prophets through those centuries!
It's funny that they couldn't even hire a new voice actor to play the role of the "heroic" Nahoul. Quality programming here.
As long as they continue this kind of hatred-fueled garbage, they can expect the world to treat them as the scum they are.
By Matthew Levitt
A two-year counterterrorism and drug investigation culminated earlier this week with the arrest of a dozen individuals in Los Angeles. Authorities reportedly seized 30 kilograms of cocaine and counterfeit merchandise valued at hundreds of thousands of dollars. According to the LA Times, at least one of the suspects is tied to Hezbollah and was referenced - though not by name - in 2005 congressional testimony by an official with the LA County Sheriff’s Department.
I testified at that hearing as well. As I noted then, Hezbollah depends on a wide variety of criminal enterprises, ranging from smuggling to fraud to drug trade to diamond trade in regions across the world, including North America, South America, and the Middle East, to raise money to support Hezbollah activities.
By Jeffrey Imm
Three weeks after the arrest of suspected Jihadists in Austria, today the U.S. Embassy in Vienna foiled an apparent nail bomb attack by a 42 year old Bosnian man. The Bosnian man, who lives in Austria, was stopped with a backpack with hand grenades, nails, and Islamic literature as he tried to enter the U.S. Embassy in Vienna today. The Daily Telegraph reports that Doris Edelbacher, of Austria's counterterrorism office stated "There were a lot of nails in that bag. Had it exploded, it would have had an enormous shrapnel effect". The Bosnian man was detained after the metal detector stopped him and he attempted to flee, and the man is now being questioned.
Today's apparent attempted nail bomb attack on the U.S. Embassy in Vienna is one of a series of disturbing Jihadist activity growing in Austria.
By Olivier Guitta
As The Croissant just reported citing 2 reports in the Algerian press, Abdelmalek Droudkel, aka Abu Mussab, was allegedly kicked out of his position of emir of Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) by his peers.
I had mentioned on this site the dissension inside the ranks of AQIM since the ex GSPC changed his name in January and pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda. In fact after the triple suicide bombings in Algiers on 4/11, many AQIM members did not approve of the use of suicide bombings targeting civilians.
To go on a limb, this news could mean the death of AQIM per se and a return of the ex GSPC to a more guerilla style terrorism approach.
By Lorenzo Vidino
My colleague Andrea Morigi and I have a piece in the latest issue of the Jamestown Foundation's Terrorism Monitor describing the links between Italy's so-called "New Red Brigades" and radical Islam:
Last February, in the quiet of a secluded northern Italian country house, three Italian far left militants brainstormed, unaware that counter-terrorism officials were listening to their every word. The men were known members of the so-called "New Red Brigades," discussing new strategies for the group. Alfredo Davanzo, the ideologue of the group who had just returned from France using a forged passport, spoke about the need to overcome the organization's isolation, caused by its secrecy and the waves of arrests it had suffered (ironically, the three would be arrested the following Monday). The group, said the men, should find new venues for their recruitment efforts and pointed to Italian mosques, described as "propellers of protests and struggles," as one of the most obvious choices. The conversation is just another indication of what Italian intelligence officials have warned about for the last few years: some of the most militant segments of the Italian extreme left have displayed an increasing interest in and admiration for radical Islam. What has been only purely moral support up to now could possibly develop into a dangerous cooperation.
By Douglas Farah
Thanks to my colleague Jeff Breinholt's new post we have new insights into the long-standing, clandestine nature of the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States. A 1959 court case, a public record that had remained unexamined for decades, reprints the Muslim Brotherhood's constitution, found in a prison locker.
The rare document of the Ikhwan in the United States, sitting in musty but public court records since 1959, explains much about the Brotherhood and much about some of the enigmas that, to my mind, still surround the Northern Virginia Safa case and other issues.
It is important, but often forgotten, that the Brotherhood arrived here decades ago, contemporaneously with the efforts to spread Islam in Western Europe. While their activities have been successfully traced to the early 1960s, with the formation of numerous Islamist groups here at that time, this document pushes the launch date of the efforts back by several years, especially as an organized political/religious movement embedded here.
Los Angeles Times
, July 3, 2007
Military insurrections cost money. To take over the Gaza Strip last month, Hamas had to pay salaries, procure weapons, manufacture rockets, buy help from local crime families, bribe opponents, print leaflets and banners, produce media propaganda and even order up Hamas hats and bandanas.
How did Hamas fund this Gaza coup? What of the international "economic siege" that Hamas complained of against its government? Wasn't Hamas so strapped for funds that its leaders resorted to smuggling suitcases of Iranian cash into Gaza across the border with Egypt?
Part of the answer lies in -- or rather under -- the city of Rafah, on the Egyptian border. Smuggling tunnels, operated primarily by Gaza clans more interested in profit than ideology, run between houses on either side of the border. Egyptian and Israeli authorities have discovered tunnels dug as deep as 98 feet below ground in an effort to avoid sonar detection. Some tunnels include air ducts, electricity and lighting, and even rails and wagons to help smuggle heavy objects. Even when the mouths to the tunnels are found and sealed, the midsections remain intact and new openings are dug to reconnect them.
By Douglas Farah
The Drug Enforcement Administration's arrest last week in Spain of Monzar al Kassar, a major-league weapons trafficker, shows how closely connected the worlds of organized criminal activity and terrorism have become.
Al Kassar is a creature of the Cold War, tolerated in his multiple criminal activities because state sponsors, including the United States, needed his services. He built a fortune, lived in a mansion in Marbella in southern Spain and seemed to be set for life.
But, as with Viktor Bout and others, the end of the Cold War opened new opportunities that proved hard to resist. And al Kassar's hatred for Americans seems to have grown, although, given his long ties with organizations killing Americans, perhaps it is just now more overt.
By Victor Comras
The EU Justice and Home Affairs Council decided, June 11th to finally implement their agreement last January to expand cross border police and judicial cooperation on an operational and information-sharing basis to combat terrorism, cross-border crime and illegal migration. (See my January 15, 2007 blog). The plan originally called for setting up an EU-wide network of national data bases accessible by participating countries with regard to the investigation, prevention and prosecution of terrorism, cross border crime, and illegal immigration It envisaged a broad range of cross border cooperation including information exchange, sky marshals, counter-terrorism cooperation, illegal immigration, repatriation, joint cross-border policing operations, and civil crisis management.
But the Council has only agreed to move ahead now with one phase of this program. This involves the community wide application of so-called Prum Treaty measures which provide for close police co-operation and information exchange on DNA-profiles, fingerprints and vehicle number-plates. Each EU member country must now designate specific contact points within their law enforcement and investigative agencies through which they can each have gain access to each other’s DNA, fingerprint and vehicle-registration information.
But, not everyone is happy with this agreement. EU privacy advocates have indicated they intend to challenge the new measures in the EU Parliament, national parliaments, and in the EU court system. Nevertheless, these new measures should go a long way toward improving cross border cooperation in Europe and may eventually be extended to assist in closer cooperation with other like minded countries, including the United States and Canada.
By Evan Kohlmann
On May 9 and 10, Al-Qaida's Committee in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM)--formerly known as the Algerian Salafist Group for Prayer and Combat--issued two significant new video releases, including a recorded speech from AQIM leader Abu Musab Abdel Wadoud and footage of its suicide bombing attacks on April 11 in the capital Algiers. In his message, Wadoud explained, "we have decided from now on to execute suicide attacks as our strategic weapon in our confrontation with the enemies. Therefore, in order to carry out this decision, we have sent our orders to the various leaders across different regions, the commanders of our soldiers and the leaders of the brigades and fighting units, to open the door for those who wish to volunteer to become martyrs. Also, we are trying to motivate Muslims and encourage them to the sacrifice themselves in the cause of Allah. We have also asked them to supply any necessary supplies required by the martyrs, and also to help us in choosing precise targets which will help us to achieve our jihadi goals."
Separately, a new report is available for download from the Nine Eleven Finding Answers (NEFA) Foundation website, titled "Two Decades of Jihad in Algeria: the GIA, the GSPC, and Al-Qaida". The report examines the rise of the jihadist movement in Algeria and endeavors to trace its evolution in tactics, ideology, and its developing relationship with Al-Qaida. It includes separate chapters on the following subjects: The Afghan Theater, The Founding of the Armed Islamic Group (GIA), Collapse of the GIA, Arrival of the Salafist Group for Prayer and Combat (GSPC), The GSPC and the "War on Terrorism", The GSPC's Transformation into Al-Qaida, and The GIA/GSPC Operational Presence in Europe.
- English Transcript: Abu Musab Abdel Wadoud - "Where are Those Who Are Committed to Die?"
- Video: Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb - "The Battle of Badr in Algeria"
- NEFA Report: "Two Decades of Jihad in Algeria: the GIA, the GSPC, and Al-Qaida"
Door Uri Rosenthal
Uri Rosenthal (1945) is voorzitter van het COT Instituut voor Veiligheids- en Crisismanagement in Den Haag, hoogleraar bestuurskunde aan de Universiteit Leiden en voorzitter van de VVD-fractie in de Eerste Kamer
Het is nu dertig jaar geleden dat Zuid-Molukse terroristische acties in een basisschool in Bovensmilde en in een trein bij De Punt met geweld werden beëindigd. Premier Den Uyl noemde het gebruik van geweld door de overheid een nederlaag – overigens precies dezelfde formulering die hij een jaar eerder had gebruikt bij de ontruiming van de psychiatrische inrichting Dennendal. Alsof het om vergelijkbare gebeurtenissen ging. In die tijd konden veel Nederlanders moeilijk accepteren dat de overheid de harde hand moest gebruiken tegenover terroristen. Het feit dat de autoriteiten de militairen vóór de bestorming van de trein de vanzelfsprekende opdracht shoot to kill hadden meegegeven, leverde her en der protesten op. In de media werden de Zuid-Molukse terroristen gijzelnemers genoemd. We konden het eenvoudigweg niet verdragen dat het gewoon om terroristen ging.
Tegenwoordig wordt in ons land nog steeds schichtig omgesprongen met het terrorisme. Dit land is het land van de goede bedoelingen. Het kost de mensen veel moeite te beseffen dat niet iedereen het goede met de mensheid voorheeft en dat velen kwaad willen. Ze neutraliseren het terroristische kwaad door het uitvoerig te hebben over de achtergronden en de oorzaken van het terrorisme. Ze voelen zich thuis bij de gemeenplaats dat de terrorist van de één de vrijheidsstrijder van de ander is. Ze wijten de intensivering en expansie van het internationale terrorisme aan de armoede in de wereld of het Amerikaanse imperialisme. Josef Joffe heeft het over een vicieuze cirkel waarin de schuld uiteindelijk verlegd wordt naar de slachtoffers van het terrorisme – onschuldige burgers en filmmakers met een provocerende pen (NRC Handelsblad van 11 september 2004).
By Lorenzo Vidino
A British court today sentenced to life in prison the five “Fertiliser Plot” men, mostly British-born and Pakistani-trained militants who were planning to blow up targets in London (including a nightclub, power plants and shopping mall) with half a ton of ammonium nitrate and other substances. As a consequence today the MI5, finally free to disclose its information without jeopardizing the case, released new information about the links (some of them already known) between the Fertiliser Plot and the 7/7 bombers.
The information is quite detailed, but, in a nutshell, the MI5 revealed that two of the 7/7 bombers, Mohammed Siddique Khan and Shehzad Tanweer, had been seen with Omar Khyam and other Fertiliser Plot members in early 2004. Khan and Tanweer were taped discussing ways to raise money through fraudulent schemes but, since no specific mention of an attack was made, the MI5 decided not to investigate them. As the Intelligence and Security Committee’s Report into the London Terrorist Attacks has already pointed out, “in light of the other priority investigations being conducted and the limitations on Security Service resources, the decisions not to give greater investigative priority to these two individuals were understandable." Given its limited resources, MI5’s decision not to divert human resources to investigate individuals that, while clearly interested in jihadi activities and intentioned in committing crimes to support them, did not constitute an immediate threat, was probably a sound one and second guessing it today is as easy as useless.
By Daveed Gartenstein-Ross
By 1931, Al Capone was a celebrity criminal with a litany of offenses that included murder, bribery, and running illegal breweries. But the government would have had trouble proving his guilt beyond a reasonable doubt for his most notorious activities, and charged him with tax evasion. Although the mobster swore that the government couldn't collect legal taxes from illegal money, he proved to be wrong -- and entered prison on May 5, 1932. This was the most famous example of a model that law enforcement adopted to deal with the unique problem of the mob, a model that placed a higher priority on neutralizing mob leaders and their activities than on winning the heaviest sentence. Thus, mob leaders were often prosecuted for, and convicted of, lesser offenses discovered by investigators. Because of the difficulty of convicting terrorists and their supporters of their most serious offenses, the "Al Capone model" of prosecuting for applicable lesser offenses has also been used frequently in terrorism cases.
By Andrew Cochran
I'm trying to determine why senior U.S. government officials or Congressmen continue to entrust their precious time to those with an extremist or Islamist agenda when they're searching for "moderate Muslims" with whom to hold a dialogue. It still happens all too often, even years after the 9-11 attacks (I have another example about which to post soon). And I have to conclude that too many government officials around the world and experts are still trusting what they hear from a foreign leader or long-standing Islamist, instead of watching what they actually do. My golden rule, probably due to my experience as a CPA and consultant, is simple: see how the Islamists and their supporters (or their opponents, for that matter) spend their money, and stop trusting what they say.
By Andrew Cochran
Here are the transcripts of the interviews by the Defense Department of the three most senior Al Qaeda leaders in custody in the world, provided to us by Jean Charles Brisard. The Defense Department has posted more information at a special website.
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed: "I was responsible for the 9/11 operation from A to Z"
Abu Faraj al-Libi (who did not attend his session)
Ramzi Binalshibh (who refused to attend the session)
KSM claimed responsibility for planning up to 28 attacks, some of which were never carried out, and complained of torture while in custody. Al-Libi reportedly masterminded two bombings in Pakistan in December 2003 targeting President Pervez Musharraf for his support of the U.S.-led war on terror. Binalshibh is suspected of helping Mohammed with the 9-11 attack plan and is linked to a plot to crash aircraft into London's Heathrow Airport.
By Olivier Guitta
In fact, Kuwaiti daily Al Seyassah believes that Paris and London have reinforced security measures after the Israeli Mossad provided them with reliable information on the terrorist threat represented by Hezbollah cells helped by Iranian Services based in the Iranian embassies and consulates in Europe. The targets would be the Israeli diplomatic and consular representations as well as Israeli nationals and Israeli interests in Europe in general. According to British sources quoted by the newspaper, “some Lebanese Shiites living legally in Great Britain, and other clandestine ones, are being monitored since last Tuesday, whereas other Arab nationals infiltrated clandestinely in the United Kingdom were stopped and expelled”. The daily newspaper adds that “hundreds of Lebanese Shiites who own small restaurants and taxis, use their businesses to to spy and smuggle goods. From now on, they are monitored by Scotland Yard and MI-5”. According to the analysis of Mossad, quoted by the newspaper, “Hezbollah feels encircled and choked since its expulsion of South Lebanon. The disappearance of the Iranian general Asghari could represent an excuse for Hezbollah to attack Israel abroad through terrorism”. The daily newspaper believes that “ militants of Hezbollah recently entered French territory through northern neighboring countries and settled in cities with a strong Moroccan and Algerian community. Two lawyers of Maghrebi descent would have helped the Hezbollah commandos to enter French territory”.
If this latest info were to be confirmed, it would be quite worrisome since French intelligence do not have a good grasp on Shiite sleeping terror cells operating inside the country, compared to their outstanding knowledge of Sunni terrorism. Keep in mind that Hezbollah already successfully orchestrated a wave of terror attacks in France killing over a dozen and injuring 300 in public places in particular in Paris.
This past week has been interesting for the sudden re-emergence of the high-profile al Qaeda/salafist propaganda machine, showing a broad range of Islamist actions to demonstrate the movement is alive and well, and triumph is inevitable.
The different fronts in the propaganda war are interesting and seem to have some coordination, at least the timing if not the entire scope of all the messages.
We get the publishing a slick web zine, the “Voice of Jihad,” after a two-year hiatus, including directions from Osama bin Laden to attack oil facilities; a Zawahiri interview blasting Bush for fairly current events; the release of videos by al Qaeda in Afghanistan, supposedly showing attacks on Coalition forces; and, as Evan Kohlmann finds
new video releases by Al Qaeda in Iraq, including the biographies of foreign troops killed there.
From Expatica, with thanks to Fjordman, who keeps an eye on the international reporting on Dutch affairs. Something we at KV should be doing a lot more, instead of relying on internal MSM reporting. Because this bit of news should have made headlines in the Netherlands, but didn't. Not by a long shot. One wonders why not...
MP Geert Wilders was threatened with a suicide attack last week. Two young men reportedly planned to shoot the politician down and detonate a van full of explosives next to the politician. “Many innocent people were to die in the chaos.”
This has emerged from the report Wilders filed with the Haaglanden police. A warning of the attack planned for either The Hague or Amsterdam came via the anonymous hotline for crime tips. A similar, but less detailed, death threat came in via the hotline this week. It is unusual for this hotline to be used to announce death threats.
The initial, very concrete warning spoke about an attack planned for early February. Wilders would first be shot, and then a man would drive a white delivery van into the victim and detonate the 500 to 600 kilos of explosives in the vehicle.
The person who called the hotline said that the perpetrators were not fundamentalists, but “just wanted revenge.”
Helft euren Brüdern in Somalia!
Scheich Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri (möge Allah ihn beschützen)
Im Namen Allahs, alles Lob gebührt Allah, und Frieden und Segen auf Seinen Gesandten, seiner Familie, seinen Gefährten und auf jene, die ihm behilflich sind.
Muslimische Brüder allerorts: Frieden, Gnade und Segen Allahs sei auf euch. Was das folgende betrifft:
by Ali Alfoneh
Middle East Quarterly
More than five years after President George W. Bush's declaration of a global war against terrorism, the Iranian regime continues to embrace suicide terrorism as an important component of its military doctrine. In order to promote suicide bombing and other terrorism, the regime's theoreticians have utilized religion both to recruit suicide bombers and to justify their actions. But as some factions within the Islamic Republic support the development of these so-called martyrdom brigades, their structure and activities suggest their purpose is not only to serve as a strategic asset in either deterring or striking at the West, but also to derail domestic attempts to dilute the Islamic Republic's revolutionary legacy.
Such strategy is apparent in the work of the Doctrinal Analysis Center for Security without Borders (Markaz-e barresiha-ye doktrinyal-e amniyat bedun marz), an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps think tank. Its director, Hassan Abbasi, has embraced the utility of suicide terrorism. On February 19, 2006, he keynoted a Khajeh-Nasir University seminar celebrating the anniversary of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's fatwa (religious edict) calling for the murder of British author Salman Rushdie. As Khomeini often did, Abbasi began his lecture with literary criticism. He analyzed a U.S. publication from 2004 that, according to Abbasi, "depicts the prophet of Islam as the prophet of blood and violence." Rhetorically, he asked, "Will the Western man be able to understand martyrdom with such prejudice? [Can he] interpret Islam as anything but terrorism?" The West sees suicide bombings as terrorism but, to Abbasi, they are a noble expression of Islam.
"What Goes Around Come Around". Article & cartoon from Cox and Forkum:
Some interesting images from Maan News, the first three with identical hilarious captions:
By Andrew Black
In the first week of January 2007, the Moroccan government announced the dismantling of an alleged 62-person terrorist cell (Gulf Times, January 5). According to statements made by the government, this cell had "ideological links with and financial and logistical support for international terrorist groups" including al-Qaeda and the Salafist Group for Call and Combat (GSPC). Although details are still emerging about the cell and its connections with the GSPC and al-Qaeda, its alleged activities are emblematic of the new paradigm in the Maghreb. As a result of two mergers, one among the various Maghrebi groups and the other between the GSPC and al-Qaeda, the terrorist threat to the region has become an increasingly unified system that provides substantial support to the Iraqi jihad and which will increasingly challenge local security services as mujahideen return from Iraq.
BRUSSEL (ANP) - De HSBC-bank rekent de Europese Unie elke maand meer dan een miljoen euro aan transactiekosten voor het verwerken van salarissen en uitkeringen voor meer dan 140.000 Palestijnse arbeiders
(Six months ago, before the election of Hamas, the World Bank urged donors to temporarily cease funding the Palestinian Authority (PA). The cause? Continuous and flagrant breaches of Palestinian promises to reform the PA’s bankrupt budget. Wage increases had amounted to around 15%. The number of employees had leaped through all targets, including employment of the terrorist Al-Aksa Martyrs Brigades. The International Monetary Fund had identified thousands of security personnel as "non-performing"..read more here)
Dat heeft de internationale organisatie Oxfam berekend. Oxfam wil dat de EU deze 'hulpflater' zo snel mogelijk stopzet. De geldverspilling is ontstaan doordat de EU geen contacten wil met de Hamas-regering binnen de Palestijnse Autoriteit. Daarom treedt HSBC op als tussenpersoon.
An update on Wesam al-Delaema, who was indicted in 2005. "Home court vantage - Insurgency suspect faces raps in U.S.," from Associated Press:
WASHINGTON - An Iraqi-born Dutch citizen who preened for the cameras in a jihadist video was hauled into a U.S. courtroom yesterday to face charges that he plotted to kill Americans in Iraq with roadside bombs.
Wesam al-Delaema, 33, is the first suspect to face charges for insurgent violence against Americans in Iraq, the Justice Department said.
Delaema has been wanted by the United States since 2003, when he and his fellow "mujahedeen from Fallujah" videotaped themselves planting explosives along an Iraq road used by U.S. troops. The explosives did not result in any deaths.
MSNBC reports on a nationwide raids and arrests of 48 suspects across Turkey:
Turkish police have detained 46 people with alleged Al Qaeda links in simultaneous operations in five provinces, the Anatolia news agency reported.
Twenty-five people were taken into custody in the central province of Konya, while the others were detained in Istanbul, neighbouring Kocaeli, the western province of Izmir and Mardin, in the south-east.
Special forces participated in the early morning operation but no other details were immediately available.
The operation follows the indictment last week of three people, one of them an Izmir lawyer who presented himself as the Al Qaeda commander in Turkey and was allegedly planning bomb attacks.
A Turkish cell of the network is blamed for four suicide bombings in Istanbul - at two synagogues, the British consulate and a British-owned bank - in November 2003, which claimed 63 lives, left hundreds injured and caused massive destruction.
This article appeared earlier today in Family Security Matters and is reproduced with their permission. Part One can be found here
How The UK Threatens US Security - Part Two
by Adrian Morgan
It is well-established that Britain contains a greater proportion of radical Islamists than any other Western country. These radicals have been allowed to openly preach and in many cases, to flout the law. Where European Muslims tend to be less contemptuous of the countries they live in, Muslims in Britain are the least adjusted within Europe.
A survey by Populus in July 2006 found that 7% of UK Muslims thought that, in some circumstances, it was justifiable to have suicide attacks against British civilians. 13% felt that the suicide bombers who killed 52 people on 7 July 2005 should be viewed as "martyrs". 16% thought the 7/7 attacks were wrong but happened for right reasons. 16% said that if a family member joined Al Qaeda they would be "indifferent".
When the 9/11 Commission issued its final report (PDF) in December 2005, it assigned letter grades to rate the federal government’s progress on its various recommendations. Of the forty-one areas considered, combating terrorist financing received the highest mark, an A-. But as he unveiled the latest revision of his National Strategy for Combating Terrorism, President Bush noted that “al-Qaeda continues to adapt in the face of our global campaign against them.” Sue Eckert, an expert in terrorist finance from Brown University, says in this CFR.org Podcast that the U.S. approach to terrorist finance “has not fundamentally changed” since shortly after 9/11. In order for the United States to continue its success in disrupting clandestine financial networks, she says, it must reevaluate its approach.
The Wall Street Journal has a fascinating story (viewable for free for a few days) on the criminal tax investigation launched by the Justice Department into the activities of one of the largest Islamist banking entities-Dar al-Maal Al- Islami Trust (DMI).
The case centers on investments made through a company called Overland Capital Group Inc. Two of Overland’s offices in Boston were searched last week by IRS officials, according filings by federal prosecutors.
No one has been charged with any offense and the search warrant remains under seal. What is interesting is that the motion disclosing the investigation was filed by a prosecutor from the DOJ’s Counterterrorism division.
Might this be the Al Capone method of getting at opaque Islamist financial structures in the United States?
) Iran’s Revolutionary Guards threatened to kidnap American soldiers and hinted at intentions to kidnap American citizens in Europe and South America as well.
The threat was apparently in response to President George W. Bush’s instruction to American soldiers in Iraq last week to target Iranian agents.
“The kidnapping of American citizens in the Middle East, Europe and South America is not difficult and can happen at any moment,” said an article printed in the weekly Subah Sadak, which is considered the mouthpiece of the Revolutionary Guards in Iran.
The article, entitled “Easier and cheaper than Chinese merchandise”, was printed in response to the United Nations Security Council’s Resolution 1737
, setting sanctions on Iran due to its refusal to suspend its nuclear program.
The threat may also be linked to the operation in which American forces kidnapped five Iranians from the Consulate General in Erbil in northern Iraq.
“The US prepared a most-wanted list, which includes senior Iranian officials whom they intend to kidnap to learn details about national, nuclear and military operations,” the article claimed. [...
Ridiculous right? Can you see Heinrich Himmler, Joseph Goebbels, Hermann Goering and Martin Bormann holding a conference in
New York to plan the next phase of the Nazi plan to take over the world and the FBI doing nothing to stop it – or the mains stream media even reporting it?
I say again, ridiculous right?
But that’s what’s happening in
Australia . Hizb ut-Tahrir Australia, a Sunni group with terrorist ties that openly advocates overthrowing the Democratic Australian Government and replacing it with an Islamic caliphate is hosting a 'Khilafah Conference Program' on the 28th of January. ‘Khalîfah’ or Caliph is the term or title for the Islamic leader of the Ummah, or community of Islam. Khalîfah’ means "successor", that is, successor to the prophet Muhammad. Hat tip to the 910 Group.
There we go - another open call to arms from the devout followers of the Religion of Peace™
(NEWS.com.au) AN extremist Islamic group has called on Australian Muslims to prepare for jihad against anyone standing in the way of an "Islamic superstate".
Radical clerics from the militant Hizb ut-Tahrir group converged on Sydney yesterday to deliver their message -- kill Muslims and non-Muslims who threaten the unification of the world's 57 Islamic countries under the one leader.
"If two people are united and a third person comes along and tries to incite disunity . . . kill him," Palestinian Sheik Issam Amera said.
größte islamistische Terrororganisation in Algerien bekennt sich durch einen neuen Namen eindeutig zu dem Netzwerk Al Qaeda.
Die bisherige GSPC (Salafistische Gruppe für Predigt und Kampf) heiße künftig "Al-Qaeda-Organisation des islamischen Maghreb", berichteten Zeitungen in Algier.
Im Internet erklärte die GSPC demnach, sie habe Al-Qaeda-Chef Osama bin Laden wegen der Namenswahl zu Rate gezogen und auch entscheiden lassen.
Die islamistische Organisation, die auch mit Entführungen von Ausländern in Verbindung gebracht wird, hatte sich strategisch schon vor einiger Zeit enger an Al Qaeda. Ziel war die gemeinsame Vorbereitung von Anschlägen im Maghreb und auch in Europa. (N24.de, nz)
By Reuven Paz
On January 14, 2007, one of the leading Jihadi-Salafi scholars, the Kuwaiti Sheikh Hamed bin Abdallah al-Ali, published a new and interesting document on his website t titled “The Covenant of the Supreme Council of Jihad Groups (Mithaq al-Majles al-A`la li-Fasael al-Jihad). The document was immediately circulated in Jihadi forums and as expected received enthusiastic support. The document is the first of its kind since Osama bin Laden and his colleagues issued the declaration of the founding of the World Islamist Front against the Crusaders and the Jews in February 1998. That declaration had symbolized the formation of the organizational framework that had in fact formed Al-Qaeda or Qa’idat al-Jihad as a front. Although, Al-Qaeda has emerged in several forms ever since, it is perhaps best understood as a front organization.
Al-Qaeda has been compelled to mutate into an umbrella front for various local Jihadi-Salafi groups due to a number of developments. These include the fall of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan in December 2001, the U.S. occupation of Iraq in March-May 2003, and the subsequent emergence of the Sunni Jihadi insurgency there. Although the local Jihadi-Salafi groups have managed to carry out many terrorist attacks, all over the world, acting under a variety of local and global targets, they have been directed according to a rather unified strategy. That strategy has been directed by several elements:
By Gustavo Coronel and Venezuelatoday.net
September 1, 2006 | On the Venezuelan side of the Guajira Peninsula, a territory shared with Colombia, the members of the tribe of the Wayuu walk across political boundaries without restrain. They were there before Venezuela and Colombia existed and they think of themselves as a nation. Recently a disturbing group has appeared, as alien visitors, in their desert landscape: Hezbollah. The Islamic fanatics of Hezbollah are rapidly infiltrating the tribe of the Wayuu. They are indoctrinating the members of this tribe, to convert them into Islamic fanatics in charge of disseminating the terrorist message that has already created chaos, death and misery in the Middle East. The Hezbollah group invading Venezuela is doing its work openly in the Venezuelan side of the Guajira Peninsula. They are disseminating, via Internet, a strategy "to change Venezuela," including:
By Patrick Devenny
FrontPageMagazine.com | August 3, 2005 The July terror attacks in
London were a prime example of how an evidently ragtag team of local jihadis, possessing little funding and skill, could successfully kill dozens of their fellow citizens while plunging one of
Europe ’s great cities into chaos. If recent reports are to be believed, the motley group, relatively unskilled in the ways of mass terrorism and guerilla warfare, were able – using explosives mixed in a Tupperware container – to send political shockwaves across the entire continent. Their attack was the perfect practical realization of the “new terrorism,” a decentralized, low cost operation using anonymous operators resulting in maximum casualties and panic.
Europe certainly has sufficient reason to fear its restive ranks of homegrown militants who utilize simple terrorist techniques, such a threat pales in comparison to the so-far hypothetical one posed by Hezbollah. The deadly terrorist organization - operating behind the protective aegis of
Iran - has meticulously constructed an extensive and professional network of agents and terrorists that has metastasized all across
Europe . What Hezbollah brings to the threat level in
Europe is more dangerous than anything wielded by local extremist groups, organizational attributes such as professional training, military grade explosives, well placed spies, and centralized coordination. While the indigenous European jihadis may be the West’s current threat du jour, it would be a serious miscalculation to overlook the power of Hezbollah’s European-based terrorist enterprise.