ISIS Militants Eye Attacks on US Via Mexican Border

Inside a tunnel under the U.S.-Mexican border

Inside a tunnel under the U.S.-Mexican border

BY RYAN MAURO:

The Department of Homeland Security has confirmed reports that Islamic State (commonly known as ISIS) social media accounts are talking about infiltrating the U.S. through the Mexican border, but says it has no intelligence about a specific plot.

In late August, it was reported that a warning bulletin had been issued to security personnel near the U.S.-Mexico border about an impending attack by the Islamic State using car bombs. The report stated that the Islamic State had established a presence in Juarez, Mexico, a city near Texas devastated by drug cartels.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) reacted by denying the report, with a spokesperson saying, “We are aware of absolutely nothing credible to substantiate this claim.”

However, a Texas Department of Public Safety bulletin dated August 28 was then leaked that stated that the Islamic State’s social media accounts were discussing entering the U.S. through Mexico in order to carry out an attack.

“Social media account holders believed to be ISIS militants and propagandists have called for unspecified border operations, or they have sought to raise awareness that illegal entry through Mexico is a viable option,” it states.

It says that 32 Islamic State accounts on Twitter and Facebook discussed a possible attack via Mexico in a one-week period. One of those is an account operated by an Islamic State supporter in Mosul, Iraq.

Read more at Clarion Project

U.S. Hit on Al-Shabaab Terror Head Called ‘Game-Changer’

Ahmed Abdi Godane, left, leader of Al-Shabaab, who was killed in a U.S. airstrike

Ahmed Abdi Godane, left, leader of Al-Shabaab, who was killed in a U.S. airstrike

By Ryan Mauro:

The Pentagon has confirmed that a U.S. airstrike killed Ahmed Abdi Godane, the leader of Al-Shabaab, Al-Qaeda’s branch in Somalia. The affiliate is known for its recruitment of Americans. The group has chosen a new leader and reasserted its allegiance to Al-Qaeda.

Al-Shabaab is best known for the September 2013 attack on the Westgate shopping mall in Kenya, killing 63 people. The group is fighting to turn Somalia into a sharia-based state.

The new leader’s name is Sheikh Ahmad Umar Abu Ubaidah. In a statement, the group pledged to retaliate against the U.S. for the assassination of Godane, who has led the group since 2008 and was one of its founders.

“Avenging the death of our scholars and leader is a binding obligation on our shoulders that we will never relinquish nor forget, no matter how long it takes,” the statement read.

Al-Shabaab said he was chosen unanimously, likely to tamper down speculation that a previous internal rift in the organization would be revived. Last year, an important American member of Al-Shabaab named Omar Hammami (also known as Abu Mansur al-Amriki) was killed by the group after a public falling out.

The U.S. airstrike happened 105 miles south of Mogadishu outside the city of Barawe. The U.S. obtained specific intelligence about an Al-Shabaab meeting he was attending and the convoy he was traveling in. Ten other Al-Shabaab terrorists were killed, including five senior commanders.

Witnesses said U.S. commandos arrived after the airstrike and captured the bodies. After the attack, Al-Shabaab began carrying out mass arrests in search of a spy and reportedly beheaded some people found with cell phones.

Western and Somali officials sound optimistic that the killing of Godane will have a profound impact on Al-Shabaab operations.

The Pentagon described it as a “major symbolic and operational loss.” Abdi Aynte, head of the Mogadishu-based think tank Heritage Institute, explained that Godane centralized control of the group. He said his death “is definitely a game changer for al-Shabaab and probably a turning point for the organization.”

Read more at Clarion Project

Also see:

US targets Shabaab’s leadership in southern Somalia

Al Shabaab soldiers sit outside a building during patrol along the streets of Dayniile district in Southern Mogadishu, March 5, 2012. CREDIT: REUTERS/FEISAL OMAR

Al Shabaab soldiers sit outside a building during patrol along the streets of Dayniile district in Southern Mogadishu, March 5, 2012.
CREDIT: REUTERS/FEISAL OMAR

By

The US military is rumored to have targeted Shabaab emir Ahmed Abdi Godane and other senior leaders of al Qaeda’s branch in Somalia as they met at a training camp south of the capital. The US military confirmed it conducted an operation in Somalia yesterday, but did not detail the nature or outcome of the attack.

“We are assessing the results of the operation and will provide additional information as and when appropriate,” Rear Admiral John Kirby, the Pentagon’s press secretary, said yesterday.

Somali officials have said that an airstrike, possibly carried out by the remotely piloted Predators or Reapers, hit a training camp between the villages of Dhay Tubako and Haway along the Shabelle River south of Mogadishu.

The governor of Lower Shabeelle told a Somali-language news site that Godane, who is also known as Mukhtar Abu Zubayr, and Shabaab leaders Muhammad Abu Abdallah, the group’s shadow governor of Lower Shabelle; Muhammad Abu Sham, Godane’s aide; Ali Muhammad Gulled, a logistics officer; Muhammad Husayn Nur (a.k.a. Abu Hamza Al Ayman); Sheikh Muhammad Dulyaden; Iqri Ubayd, a Sudanese operative; and Mubarak Abdallah, a Yemeni, were all present at the camp during the strike.

Shabaab has not released a statement noting the recent death of any senior or mid-level leaders. But the group’s intelligence service, known as the Amniyat, is reported to have rounded up 15 people in the area who are suspected of spying on the group for the US. Shabaab has brutally executed US “spies’ in the past.

US has targeted top Shabaab and al Qaeda leaders in Somalia before

In the past, the US has targeted top Shabaab leaders in drone and conventional airstrikes, as well as special operations raids.

Most recently, on Jan. 26, the US killed Sahal Iskudhuq, a senior Shabaab commander who served as a high-ranking member of the Amniyat, in an airstrike in Barawe, a known stronghold of Shabaab.

The last confirmed US drone strike in Somalia took place on Oct. 29, 2013. The remotely operated US drones killed Anta Anta, also known as Ibrahim Ali Abdi, and two lower-level commanders. Anta Anta was a master bombmaker and suicide operations coordinator for the terror group.

Read more at Long War Journal

ISIS, AL-SHABAAB, AL-QAEDA, MUSLIM RADICALIZATION NETWORKS PROPEL SAN DIEGO TO #4

Douglas-McArthur-McCain-APby MICHELLE MOONS:

Recent discovery of terrorist ISIS fighter Douglas McAuthur McCain’s body in Syria has spurred investigation into the radicalization of Muslims within the United States.

San Diego is fourth on a list of five cities with the most “known or suspected terrorists,” according to recently leaked classified government documents. Following the 9/11 attacks, investigations in San Diego uncovered terrorists and their links to terrorist organizations al Qaeda, al-Shabaab, and ISIS, among others.

Classified government documents obtained by The Intercept include statistics on watch-listed individuals in the U.S. The 2013 document, prepared by the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), lists the top five cities with the highest number of known or suspected terrorists (KST) in the U.S. (in order): New York, New York; Dearborn, Michigan; Houston, Texas; San Diego, California, and Chicago, Illinois.

NCTC reports have noted the high level of terrorist activity in Somalia, as terrorist groupal-Shabaab has intermittently controlled various key regions of Somalia. A Center for Disease Control and Prevention document cites Office of Refugee Resettlement statistics that list Minnesota, California, Georgia, and Washington, D.C. as locations where the majority of Somalis have settled in the U.S. Thousands have come to the U.S. as refugees under the banner of fleeing war and persecution in their home country. Current population estimates of Somali-born individuals living in the U.S. range from 35,760 to 150,000.

In fiscal year 2014 so far, October 1-July 20, 290 Somalis either turned themselves in or were caught trying to sneak into the U.S. undetected through official ports of entry, according to a leaked U.S. Customs and Border Protection report obtained by Breitbart Texas. In 2010, KPBS reported on circuitous routes taken by Somalis looking to cross into the U.S. over the southwest border. Those routes would take Somalis through locations including Cuba and Tijuana, Mexico before crossing into the U.S.

In November, 2013, three Somali men in San Diego, cabdriver Basaaly Saeed Moalin, local mosque imam Mohamed Mohamed Mohamud, and money transmitter Issa Doreh were sentenced for crimes involving conspiring to or providing material support to the Islamic Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab. An FBI press release described jihadi group al-Shabaab as “a violent and brutal militia group that engages in suicide bombings, targets civilians for assassination, and uses improvised explosive devices.”

Somalia has been marked “a desirable haven for transnational terrorists, something al-Qaeda has tried to capitalize on before, and is trying again now,” according to a Council on Foreign relations analysis.

U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy said of the three men sentenced, “Months of intercepted phone conversations included discussion of suicide bombing, assassinations, and jihad,” according to the release. Evidence at trial showed that the defendants “conspired to transfer the funds from San Diego to Somalia through the Shidall Express.”

Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) and the U.S. Attorney’s office were commended by multiple people involved in the 2013 case for their tireless and effective efforts to dismantle the effort to provide support for terrorists.

A fourth man, San Diego cabdriver Ahmed Nasiri Taalil Mohamud, was also convicted for charges of conspiracy. “Moalin, a taxi driver, reportedly taught weekend classes at the local Somali mosque. Mohamud, an imam, has led prayer services at Masjid Al-Ansar for the past 10 years,” according to a 2010 post on the Anti-Defamation League website. Masjid Al-Ansar is located just over a block from Masjid Nur.

Breitbart recently reported that Masjid Nur is the mosque associated with Douglas McAuthur McCain, an American recently killed fighting for ISIS in Syria. McCain was from Minnesota, but worked and went to college in San Diego.

August 29, Breitbart Texas released a newly leaked document from the Texas Department of Public Safety, warning federal agents of ISIS’s active efforts to exploit weaknesses in the U.S. southwest border. The warning referred to “Outright calls for ISIS to infiltrate the southwestern border through Mexico to stage terrorist attacks.” Though the report focused on Texas, Breitbart Texas confirmed agents received the ISIS terror warning across the entire U.S.-Mexico border.

Read more at Breitbart

Also see:

Radicalization in US: First Americans Killed Fighting for ISIS

Facebook pictures of Abdirahmaan Muhumed (left) and Douglas McAuthur McCain taken before they were radicalized

Facebook pictures of Abdirahmaan Muhumed (left) and Douglas McAuthur McCain taken before they were radicalized

Jihad against the West cannot be attributed to policy disagreements; it is based on a doctrine of perpetual warfare.

By Ryan Mauro:

The U.S. government has confirmed that Douglas McAuthur McCain has become the first American to die fighting alongside the Islamic State. Now, a second American, Abdirahmaan Muhumed, has been killed in Syria. The two died in the same fighting near Aleppo against rival rebel forces.

Muhumed is a Somali-American from Minneapolis, Minnesota. A news outlet confirmed in June that he was in Syria fighting for the Islamic State (formerly known as ISIS, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). He said he was “happy” with being called a terrorist.

Muhumed began posting photos of himself with the Islamic State and holding weapons in January. His friends did not see any previous signs of extremism and said he was known as Abdifatah Afweyne. Muhumed told MPR News that the Islamic State is “trying to bring back the khilaffa [caliphate]” and “Allah loves those who fight for his cause.”

Minnesota Somali-American activist Abdirizak Bihi confirms that Islamic State members are reaching out to Somalis in the area. He has blamed the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) for inhibiting his anti-radicalization work and the subsequent U.S. government investigations into the matter.

“They [the Islamic State] are brainwashing them to marry them off to jihadists,” Bihi said. “They call them to help out as nurses, help out the wounded — but the real catch is they will be sexually exploited,” he explained.

Bihi’s information is reminiscent of the arrest of a Colorado woman, Shannon Maureen Conley, who was intercepted as she planned to go to Syria via Turkey to marry an Islamic State member she met online. Conley planned to live with him, work as a nurse and give military training to the group.

Muhumed’s death comes shortly after the U.S. government said that Douglas McAuthur McCain became the first American member of the Islamic State to die.

Read more at Clarion Project

Also see:

 

 

Al Qaeda in Afghanistan And Pakistan: An enduring threat

By 

Editor’s note: Below is Thomas Joscelyn’s testimony to the House Committee of Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade on al Qaeda’s network in Africa and the threat it poses to the US.

Chairman Poe, Ranking Member Sherman and members of the subcommittee, thank you for inviting me here today to discuss the enduring threat posed by al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan. It is widely assumed that al Qaeda’s presence in South Asia does not, in fact, pose an enduring threat to American interests. The slaying of top al Qaeda leaders, including Osama bin Laden, and more than a decade of war and other counterterrorism operations have supposedly hobbled the organization. However, while I have no doubt that al Qaeda has sustained heavy losses, I do not think that bin Laden’s heirs are a spent force. On the contrary, al Qaeda lives.

In the hearing today I am going to build on my previous testimony before this subcommittee last July. During that hearing (“Global Al Qaeda: Affiliates, Objectives, and Future Challenges”), we discussed the structure of al Qaeda and the challenges we face in the future. Today, I wish to emphasize five main points:

1. Al Qaeda is an international network that is comprised of a “general command,” regional branches, as well as various other organizations and personalities.

It may seem odd, but more than a dozen years after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, there is no commonly accepted definition of al Qaeda. The term “core” al Qaeda is often used, but this concept is a Western invention and imprecisely defined. And the way it is employed does not accurately convey how al Qaeda is structured. When analysts and officials speak of the “core” of al Qaeda, they are generally referring to Ayman al Zawahiri and the lieutenants who surround him in South Asia. Some go even further, arguing that Zawahiri is the only “core” al Qaeda leader left. Such arguments are not based on evidence.

Al Qaeda operates what it calls a “general command,” which consists of the organization’s senior leadership and their lieutenants, several committees, a Shura (advisory) council of the group’s most trusted advisers, as well as a supporting staff that includes, for example, couriers. We regularly see statements issued by al Qaeda’s “general command,” but few stop to ask what al Qaeda means by this. The “general command” performs various administrative functions, in addition to overseeing the organization’s international operations. For instance, al Qaeda’s amniyat is part of the group’s internal security and counterintelligence apparatus. The amniyat in northern Pakistan is notorious for hunting down suspected spies.

 Nasir al Wuhayshi,

Nasir al Wuhayshi,

This cohesive organization is not confined to South Asia. Jihadists who are, by any reasonable definition, “core” al Qaeda members are dispersed throughout the world. For example, Nasir al Wuhayshi, who heads al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), is as “core” as they come, having served as Osama bin Laden’s protégé and aide-de-camp. In addition to serving as the emir of AQAP, Wuhayshi is the general manager of al Qaeda, which is a “core” function in al Qaeda’s hierarchy, that is, within the “general command.” The general manager of al Qaeda is given broad powers to oversee the organization’s operations.

The “general command” of al Qaeda has designated several regions for waging jihad, and an emir is appointed to oversee the organization’s efforts in each of these regions. The emir of each region has much latitude in deciding how to organize his group’s day-to-day efforts, but he swears bayat, an oath of allegiance, to al Qaeda’s overall emir (currently Zawahiri). The emirs of each region report to al Qaeda’s senior leadership, including the general manager. What many refer to as al Qaeda’s formal “affiliates” are really branches of al Qaeda that have been assigned to fight in these regions. The formal branches of al Qaeda, each designated its own region, are: al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), AQAP, the Al Nusrah Front in Syria, and Al Shabaab. All of them have sworn loyalty to Ayman al Zawahiri. In addition to these regions, al Qaeda also maintains facilitation networks in countries such as Iran.

Thus, the brief sketch of al Qaeda I have drawn here is one of a much more cohesive international organization than is often assumed. Like all other human organizations, however, al Qaeda has faced obstacles in trying to hold this network together. For instance, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Sham (ISIS) was al Qaeda’s branch inside Iraq, but the group’s emir had repeatedly disobeyed orders from the “general command.” This led to ISIS being disowned by the group. ISIS is currently fighting the Al Nusrah Front and its allies in Syria.

In addition to the formal branches of al Qaeda, there are other organizations that are part of al Qaeda’s international network even though they have not publicly sworn bayat to the leadership. Indeed, al Qaeda has often hidden its precise organizational relationship with groups that are being groomed for an alliance. Both the Al Nusrah Front and Al Shabaab, now formal branches of al Qaeda, did not make their operational connections to al Qaeda’s senior leadership known at first. Al Qaeda also employs multiple brands so as to obfuscate the extent of its influence. In Yemen, for instance, AQAP adopted the name “Ansar al Sharia.” This brand name was intended to convey the idea that the group is the true protector and enforcer of sharia law. Other groups calling themselves Ansar al Sharia have been established in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia. There are still other groups that have adopted al Qaeda’s ideology, but are probably not operationally connected to the “general command” or al Qaeda’s branches.

I begin with this overview because the enduring threat of al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan extends far outside of the region.

2. Al Qaeda is, at its heart, a clandestine organization, but careful analysis reveals that it has a deep bench of talent from which it draws.

Since its founding in 1988, the organization has attempted to conceal its operations. This has made it difficult to assess some very basic aspects of al Qaeda. The group does not, for instance, publish an organizational chart or make its total roster known. If you watch al Qaeda carefully enough, however, you can see that the group has consistently replaced top leaders lost in the 9/11 wars. In some cases these replacements are not as competent, while in other cases they may even surpass their fallen comrades.

Nasir al Wuhayshi, the aforementioned general manager of al Qaeda, is a seasoned veteran who replaced others in that role after they were killed or captured. Wuhayshi is, by all appearances, an all too competent leader. Still, the American-led counterterrorism effort has certainly disrupted al Qaeda’s international network, delivering severe setbacks in some areas. Al Qaeda’s problems with ISIS stem, to a large degree, from the fact that the U.S. and its allies took out its predecessor organization’s top leadership in 2010. The leaders of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI) were loyal to al Qaeda’s “general command” but were replaced with leaders who had not been vetted by al Qaeda’s senior leaders.

Read more at Long War Journal

Recognizing the risks of Somali remittances

Somali HawalaBy  A.D. Kendall:

Last week, Bell State Bank in North Dakota announced that it would stop doing business with companies that remit money to Somalia.  The move follows decisions by Minnesota banks in 2011 to stop providing Somali remittance services, and an attempt by Barclays last year to cut off its partnership with Dahabshiil, a money transfer company with primary operations in Somalia.  The banks have been challenged in courts on both sides of the Atlantic, and advocacy groups have heavily criticized the banks’ decisions on humanitarian grounds.

Indeed, humanitarian considerations are of the utmost importance.  Unfortunately, money transferred to Somalia, particularly through Dahabshiil, all too often falls into the wrong hands and perpetuates the cycle of violence in Somalia.  Banks should stand fast in their original decisions, and here are five reasons why:

1.  The risks are real.  The frequency of cases involving Somalis in the West transferring funds to al-Shabaab over the last few years presents genuine concerns to financial institutions.  For instance, four men in California were found guilty last year of transferring money to al-Shabaab through Shidaal Express, a Somali hawala business.  Two Somali women in Minnesota were sentenced in 2013 for sending money to al-Shabaab through several remittance channels including local hawala dealers and Dahabshiil.  A Saudi-American was also indicted last year for wiring money to al-Shabaab.  In 2012, a man in London admitting transferring £8,900 to fighters in Somalia.  Danish intelligence revealed in 2012 that the equivalent of thousands of dollars a day is sent to terrorist organizations outside of Denmark—mostly to Somalia, and often unwittingly.

Apart from the risks on the ground in Somalia, Western banks have real reasons for concern that if they continue relationships with Dahabshiil, they could subsequently be fined by regulators at a future date if political winds change.  U.S. banks are surely aware, for example, that decisions on whether to fine, settle with, or prosecute banks with lax compliance programs have a great deal to do with the shifting political and prosecutorial priorities of whoever happens to be in charge at the Department of Justice and the financial regulatory agencies.  One official may take a very friendly view toward facilitating Somali remittances this year, but a different person will be calling the shots two years from now.

2. The risks are not decreasing.  Gone are the days of 2012 when al-Shabaab appeared to be on the ropes in 2012 both financially and militarily.  Al-Shabaab was able to turn around its financial situation after the fall of Kismayo by cutting deals with occupying forces.  Al-Shabaab continues to profit from imposing taxes on commodities such as charcoal and sugar, and their role as ivory trade middlemen between poachers and buyers appears to be growing.  Al-Shabaab is still capable of carrying out devastating strikes such as the Westgate Mall attack and the recent assault against Somalia’s presidential palace that left 11 dead.

Read more at The Terror Finance Blog

A.D. Kendall has been blogging about terrorist financing since 2009 at moneyjihad.wordpress.com Follow him on twitter @MoneyJihad

Congress Warned About Evolution of Jihadist Networks

download (73)By Rodrigo Sermeño:

WASHINGTON – Terrorism experts warned Congress last week that Islamist terrorist groups are expanding in complex networks across the Middle East, highlighting the evolving nature of the threat these organizations pose to the region.

Seth Jones, a national security analyst with the RAND Corporation, told the House Armed Services Committee that there has been an increase in the number of Salafi jihadist groups, particularly in North Africa and the Levant. Al-Qaeda is the largest one, and all emphasize the importance of returning to a pure Islam and believe that violent jihad is a religious duty.

He said that while about a half-dozen terrorist groups have sworn allegiance to al Qaeda’s core, led by Ayman al-Zawahiri, there now exists various Salafi jihadist groups that have not formally pledged allegiance to the militant group, and yet they share a common goal of establishing an extreme Islamic emirate.

“They are committed to establishing an Islamic emirate, and several of them have plotted attacks against the U.S., against U.S. embassies, against U.S. diplomats, against U.S. targets overseas,” Jones said.

Among these groups are also al-Qaeda-inspired individuals and networks, including the Boston Marathon bombers, who had no direct ties to the terrorist organization but listened to al-Qaeda’s propaganda and used it to plan attacks.

“I think there’s been a tendency among some journalists and pundits to lump all Sunni Islamic groups under the title al-Qaeda, which I think has clouded a proper assessment of the movement,” Jones said.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper told a Senate hearing recently there are at least five al-Qaeda franchises in 12 countries that “this movement has morphed into.”

According to data compiled by the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, more then 6,800 terrorist attacks killed more than 11,000 people in 2012, making it the most active year of terrorism on record.

Bill Braniff, a terrorism analyst at the University of Maryland, said the six most lethal groups in 2012 – the Taliban, Boko Haram, al-Qaeda in Iraq, Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and al-Shabaab – were responsible for approximately 5,000 deaths.

He noted that these groups are generally considered affiliates of al-Qaeda, and yet al-Qaeda itself has not been directly responsible for an attack since 2012.

Braniff said that a dozen of the 20 most lethal terrorist organizations and half of the 20 most active organizations had connections to al-Qaeda in 2012, suggesting that al-Qaeda remains a “central hub in a network of highly lethal and active terrorist groups.”

“What should we take from these seemingly contradictory developments?” he said. “Did al-Qaeda succeed by inspiring widespread jihadism, or has it lost to a variety of more parochial, albeit popular, actors?”

Braniff warned that it would be wrong to conclude that because al-Qaeda itself is not carrying out violent attacks that the group’s strategy has become ineffective.

“This has been the most active two years in the history of modern terrorism and al-Qaeda remains at the historical, organizational and ideological center of the most lethal terrorist threats of our time,” Braniff said.

Several Republicans have accused the Obama administration of downplaying the threat from al-Qaeda, its affiliates and the groups that it has inspired.

Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) said that while President Obama has declared that al-Qaeda was on a path of defeat, the organization currently controls over 400 miles of territory in the Middle East – the most in its history.

“While the president seeks an end to war on terrorism and is not providing the leadership necessary for our efforts in Afghanistan, al-Qaeda seeks a continued war against the United States and the west. This is the reality and this is what our policy and strategy must address,” McKeon said.

Read more at PJ Media

Global Terrorist Threat Set To Grow In 2014 – Analysis

By 

January 6, 2014

The past year has been the most violent since the beginning of the current wave of terrorism. Al Qaeda, though truncated, has become more influential globally via the web, guiding its associates to strike official and civilian targets. With the western withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2014 the Taliban-led terrorist sanctuary is likely to be revived to threaten stability and security worldwide.

By Rohan Gunaratna

SINCE September 11, 2001 the global terrorist threat has been growing exponentially. According to START, the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism, there were 5,100 terrorist attacks in the first six months of 2013, following the 8,400 attacks in 2012, which killed nearly 15,400 people. “The wave of violence shows few signs of ebbing,” reported the US-based START.

The western kinetic operations have failed to reduce the global threat. Indeed, the threat of international and national terrorism is projected to grow in 2014. With half of the countries in the world suffering from political violence and ideological extremism, terrorism will remain the Tier-One national security threat to the stability of most countries.

Hubs of global terrorism

Afghanistan and Syria are emerging as the two most important hubs of global terrorism that threaten the security of South Asia, West Asia and North Africa. Just as the anti-Soviet multi-national Afghan mujahidin campaign formed the foundation of contemporary terrorism, the blowback from the civil war in Syria is likely to produce the next generation of fighters – both guerrillas who attack government forces and terrorists who attack civilians.

The conflicts in Afghanistan and Pakistan, as well as India, are the most violent in South Asia. Next are the Middle East: Syria and Iraq; and Africa: Nigeria and Somalia. Since 9/11 over a million people, combatants and non-combatants, have been killed or injured, mostly Muslims, by terrorists and US-led coalition forces fighting insurgents and terrorists. According to START, Pakistan, Iraq and Afghanistan suffered more than half of the 2012 attacks (54%) and fatalities (58%). The next five most targeted countries were India, Nigeria, Somalia, Yemen and Thailand. The threat is projected to escalate in 2014 and grow even further following the US-led coalition’s withdrawal from Afghanistan at year end.

Counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism efforts since 9/11 have had mixed results. Al Qaeda has weakened but the Al Qaeda family has grown in strength, size and influence. About 30-40 threat groups in Asia, Africa, Middle East and the Caucasus are emulating the Al Qaeda ideology of global violence and methodology of suicide attacks.

While the core Al Qaeda led by Dr Ayman al Zawahiri has transformed from an operational to an ideological and training organisation, the associate groups carry out the bulk of the attacks. Although the death of Osama bin Laden demonstrated that any terrorist can be hunted down, the death of the Al Qaeda leader did not reduce the growing threat.

Threat landscape

SMOKE OVER NAIROBI, KENYA WESTGATE SHOPPING MALL ON 23 SEPTEMBER 2013. PHOTO BY ANNE KNIGHT, WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

SMOKE OVER NAIROBI, KENYA WESTGATE SHOPPING MALL ON 23 SEPTEMBER 2013. PHOTO BY ANNE KNIGHT, WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

The deadliest terrorist groups in the world belong to the Al Qaeda family with the Taliban (both Afghan and Pakistan) heading the list. Others are Al Nusra Front in Syria, Boko Haram in Nigeria, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and Al Shabaab in Somalia. The Al Qaeda ability to influence associate groups was brought to international attention by the brutal attack on the Westgate Mall in Kenya by Al Shabaab. With the decentralisation of the threat Northern Africa is emerging as a new epicentre of terrorism and extremism.

The “Arab Spring” has become a nightmare with multiple Al Qaeda-linked groups emerging throughout North Africa and the Middle East, including Al Nusra in Syria. With 12,000 Sunni and a comparable number of Shia foreign fighters in Syria the threat to the West and the rest of the world will grow.

Stemming from the developments in Syria, the Shia-Sunni conflict is threatening to break out into a regional conflict, involving Bahrain and Lebanon. Further afield in the Caucasus terrorists mounted year-end attacks in Volgograd, Southern Russia, hitting a railway station and a trolley bus. Shumukh al-Islam, the top forum for Al Qaeda-affiliated propaganda, praised the timing of the attacks. The SITE Monitoring Service reported the terrorists as saying Russians are not safe “since their country continues to supply arms to the malicious combatant regime of the doomed apostate Bashar”. From the Caucasus the terrorists are travelling through Turkey to Syria to fight against the Bashar al Assad regime.

Read more at Eurasia Review

Rohan Gunaratna is Head of RSIS’ International Centre for Political Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR), Singapore. He is author of “Inside Al Qaeda” published by Columbia University Press.

Steve Emerson interviewed on Sun News – Canadians leaving for Jihad

SunVideo at IPT:

Brian Lilley: We’ve told you in the past about Canadians joining foreign struggles. We’re talking about the international jihad. Now international media are taking note, Israel National News putting out a report the other day saying on Thursday reports were released that a Canadian citizen described only as Abu Abd Al-Rahman was killed in March in the city of Aleppo. Al-Rahman is one of many Canadian and other foreign jihadists journeying to Syria to join the bloodbath. Do we need to be concerned that our international allies are taking note of the growing jihadi movement in Canada? Steven Emerson is with the Investigative Project on Terrorism, joins us now from our studies in Washington. Mr. Emerson, we’ve been taking note of this global trend. How worried should we be that Israel, the United States other allies might be noticing it as well?

Steve Emerson: Well in Canada with the dubious distinction of your Mayor of Toronto with his exception –

Lilley: [Laughs.] Yeah.

Emerson: – Canada is probably the highest contributor of expatriates. That is Canadian citizens, to jihadist movements around the world, with the exception of the United States. There probably are at least 100 Canadians of Islamic origin or converts that have volunteered for the jihad in Syria over the past two years. And the reason that there is concern is that these jihadists not only acquire training overseas and engage in jihad, but are liable, are likely to become radicalized even more than they have been in terms of going over there when they return back to Canada, as we’ve seen in dozens of terrorist plots that have occurred in the last decade in Canada. As a Canadian intelligence report that was obtained under the Freedom of Information Act recently revealed, there are more terrorists per capita in Canada, Islamic terrorists, than there are any place in the world, with the exception of the United States.

Lilley: See and that part is shocking me, given what I read about in terms of a ghettoization of British culture, in terms of certain areas of London being referred to as Londonstan and the radicalization going on there, I would have thought the U.K. would have been far away ahead of both Canada and the U.S. So this is shocking news, not only to me but lots of other Canadians.

Emerson: Well what’s interesting here, you raise an interesting point, because in London and in other parts of Europe, there really has been a radicalization of the communities to the point where there are no-go areas that are Muslim areas only. And there are Muslim patrols that actually attack anybody who is a Westerner or somebody who is dressed in Western attire. This is something a little bit different than in Canada or the United States where you don’t have the same concentration within the communal structure of the radicals, but you do have a radical cultural ideology that is basically, that is proliferating from community, community, and ends up resulting in either lone-wolf plots, that is Islamic terrorist plots that are not directed from without but come from within, or you end up having people volunteer for jihad overseas, which has been dominating, shouldn’t be dominating, but actually has been proliferating in the last decade, particularly in the last three or four years as new jihad fronts have opened up in Al-Shabaab, you know that’s in Africa -

Lilley: Somalia.

Emerson: – in Somalia, that’s in Yemen, in Syria, in Iraq, even in other areas. Even in Europe you’ve seen Americans or North Americans, that is those with Canadian passports, volunteer to carry out plots with their European compatriots, which is a very troubling developing that only witnessed in the last three or four years.

Lilley: OK, so in Canada we have long had ministers, such as former Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, say we don’t have to be as worried about radicalization as they do in places like Europe, whether it’s Germany or Britain, because we’ve had a more successful integration of disparate communities. Should we be buying that line or does the fact that we are such a large contributor to the jihad put that, make that stand out as a bald-faced lie?

Emerson: Well I wouldn’t say it’s a bald-faced lie. There has indeed been more successful integration coupled with the fact that there’s been less of a concentration of jihadist immigration to North America, including Canada and the United States than let’s say in London or let’s say in Belgium or in Germany or Italy, where almost every week there’s a jihadist plot that’s interrupted. But the corollary of this is that there really is a cultural jihad that has not diminished but rather spread in different communities in Canada, in Toronto, in Montreal, in Ottawa, as well as in different parts of the United States. And you’ve seen that in the increase in number of lone-wolf attacks, these are attacks by Islamists who basically decide they’re gonna carry out jihad in the United States or in Canada for the sake of jihad. And if you look at the numbers, the numbers have been increasing actually in the last one-half decade than decreasing. So I think, look, the bottom line is, to the extent that these plots are interdicted and stopped, you know people don’t feel the threat. As soon as one plot is successful, I can guarantee you, all the complacency in the world will stop immediately in Canada or the United States.

Lilley: Alright, Steve great talking to you as always. The Investigative Project on Terrorism. You can find out more from their website. We’ll chat again soon my friend.

Islamist Terrorists Shifting from Web to Social Media

AP453232788832-540x360By Bill Gertz:

Social media giants Facebook and Twitter are grappling with terrorists who are moving from websites to microblogs as a way to spread propaganda, recruit members, and communicate.

U.S. officials familiar with efforts to monitor social media say Islamist terrorists have increased their use of social media in recent months.

Currently, numerous U.S. and allied intelligence agencies are engaged in large-scale efforts to monitor online activities by Islamists, jihadists, and terrorists.

Based on those agencies’ reports, the intelligence services are having a difficult time balancing the need to keep track of terrorist group members and their statements when the Twitter and Facebook accounts are shut down for advocating violence or otherwise promoting illegal activities.

On the one hand, spy agencies want social media to allow some of the terrorists’ Twitter and Facebook accounts to remain open to keep tabs on them. The postings often can provide clues to online friends’ and followers’ locations and in some cases they can be traced electronically.

In most cases, terrorists’ accounts that are closed or suspended for advocating violence are quickly re-opened using slightly different names.

But problems arise when social media accounts used by terrorists are taken offline, complicating real-time intelligence monitoring. In many cases it takes up to 18 hours to locate the new accounts that reappear under new names.

“They often come to us and say ‘do not take down these accounts,’” one social media executive said of the U.S. government.

The problem of counterterrorism monitoring of social media took center stage last month during the attack by the Somali al Qaeda Al Shabaab on the Westgate mall in Nairobi, Kenya. In the midst of the deadly attack, which killed 68 shoppers and storekeepers, Al Shabaab opened multiple Twitter accounts, each replacing one that was deactivated by the site.

In all, the group operated seven Twitter accounts that were closed before another was opened.

The social media communications by Al Shabaab were the first time a terrorist group made public statements during an ongoing attack. The messages by the group were mainly propaganda statements explaining the goals of the attack. But all were closely followed by international news media and security services for clues to the group’s plans and operations.

read more at Free Beacon

 

Somali Norwegian Al Shabaab Suspects Revealed in Nairobi Westgate Mall Attack

Al Shabaab attackers inside Nairobi Westgate Mall Source:  Reuters

Al Shabaab attackers inside Nairobi Westgate Mall
Source: Reuters

By Jerry Gordon:

Both the New York Times and CNN have new reports discussing Norwegian Somali émigrés, including the planner involved in the  Al Shabaab attack on the Nairobi Westgate mall, September 21, 2013. See our NER report in the current October 2013 edition, “Al Shabaab is a Threat to the World at Large.” These latest reports resulted from Norwegian  Intelligence  (PST) investigations in both Norway and Kenya.   As noted in our October 10 Iconoclast post of a Long War Journal report , one of the Norwegian suspects was the subject of a failed US Navy Seals Raid at Baraawe in Somalia. We noted:

The Norwegian intelligence agency PST today announced the launch of an investigation into reports that a Norwegian was involved in the Shabaab massacre at the Westgate Mall in Kenya. The suspect is a Norwegian of Somali origin, and may be an acquaintance of the al Qaeda affiliate’s external operations chief, Abdulkadir Mohamed Abdulkadir, also known as Ikrima.

According to the BBC, the PST has dispatched investigators to Kenya to determine the extent of the Norwegian suspect’s involvement and to help prevent new terror threats. The inquiry also aims to see if the suspect is linked to Shabaab. PST section leader Jan Glent also said he could not rule out “more Norway-linked suspects,” Reuters reported.

These latest reports also reflect the forensic remains  that were found of only four Al Shabaab fighters secured from the rubble of the Westgate Mall in the rampage that killed 67 and wounded hundreds.  More than 1,000 escaped the upscale Nairobi mall that sustained significant and extensive damage from the counter attack by Kenyan security forces.

Watch this latest Reuters footage of the Westgate Mall CCTV video from the attack that was released on Thursday, October 17, 2013.

Counterterrorism officials who follow Al Shabaab movements in the West warn about the al Qaeda affiliate group’s ability to range beyond war torn Somalia to hit targets in major émigré centers.  The  US and Scandinavia being illustrative of what we have discussed in several Iconoclast posts and a major NER article, Foot Soldiers of IslamOne expert quoted in the CNN report on these latest developments in Norway commented:

“What you have to look out for, also in the United States and the United Kingdom and all these other Scandinavian countries, are these small  networks that are in one sense detached also from the Somali community leaders — radicalized groups of youths and radical preachers, sheikhs, that go traveling around the various countries to try to incite,” he said. “That’s what we have to watch these days.”

CNN profiled  Shabaab commander, Ikrima, a Kenyan Somali Muslim who spent time in Norway:

Kenyan intelligence sources say that Ikrima, who speaks six languages and grew up in Kenya, is the main “point person” between al Qaeda in Somalia and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and that he has helped pinpoint Kenyan targets.

Morten Storm, a former informant who has worked for several Western intelligence agencies, has told CNN that he developed a close relationship with an Al-Shabaab figure called Ikrima between 2008 and 2012. He said he is confident that it’s the same person who was targeted by U.S. forces.

Read more at New English Review

Kenya mall attackers prayed, talked on cell phone between shootings:

The Growing Terror Threat From Radical Women Converts

by Abigail R. Esman:

Fundamental Errors

Bill Warner

Bill Warner

 Political Islam, By Bill Warner:

The article, Separating the Kafirs from the Muslims, drew a comment from a rabbi. His comments are prototypical of many apologists for Islam, so it is worth responding to. Let’s take it one point at a time:

[this article] takes a particular version of Islam and claims that the claims of those who follow it are representative of the entire faith. They claim this, but the claim is false. An analogy would be a non-Christian saying that the KKK is typical of Christianity and, as those in the KKK insist, this is the truest form of that faith. This is false logic.

Actually, the article does not say that the al Shabaab jihadists represent Islam. What the article says is the language of the jihadists comes from the Islamic doctrine of jihad. This mistake is the crux of the matter. No one Muslim represents Islamic doctrine since Islam has a dualistic ideology. Let’s take the Islamic attitude about Jews. In the early Koran written in Mecca, it is very favorable towards Jews, since Mohammed makes the claim to be of the Jewish lineage of prophets. But when he moved to Medina, which was half Jewish, the rabbis of Medina informed Mohammed that he was not a prophet in their linage and rejected him. The Koran takes a turn for the worse and calls the Jews apes and pigs. The shift in attitude can best be seen in a simple word count:

Meccan Koran 960 words 0.99% of Meccan Koran
Medinan Koran 9282 words 16.9% of Medinan Koran

Amount of Koranic Text Devoted to anti-Jew

So is the Koran pro Jew or anti Jew? Yes, it is both. That is the neat thing about dualism; you can get either answer. The point here is that there are always two choices in dualistic Islam. In the end, Mohammed annihilated all of the Jews in Medina in about three years. Medina was Judenrein. But in the beginning, he was friendly and charming about the Jews.

The point here is that Muslims can be friendly to Jews or Jew haters and in both cases be Islamic. It is the same with jihad. Islam is peaceful; Islam is jihad. So al Shabaab is based on the Medinan part of Islam; the Muslims at the Family of Abraham religious dialogue are following the Meccan Islam.

The word “Kefir” is cognate to the Hebrew “kofer” which means “apostate.” From the Muslim point of view they represent the true Abrahamic faith while Jews and Christians, in denying the validity of Islam, are apostates or infidels. I’ve met plenty of Christians who believe the same about Muslims and Jews. Jews do not need such a doctrine because we believe that all people who live an ethical life get a reward in the next world.

The rabbi brings up the very important aspect of ethics. Islam is the only “universal” religion that does not have Golden rule. Indeed, Islamic ethics are dualistic, with one set of rules for Muslims and a separate set of rules for Kafirs. I wonder if apostate Jews are under a death ruling as Muslim apostates are?

But, there is another ethical issue here. The worst human rights violation of today is the jihadic murder of nearly 100,000 Christians every year in the most horrible ways. I wonder if the rabbi ever brings up this issue to Muslims. If not then he is guilty of silence in the face of evil. Islamic law treats silence as consent, so in the eyes of Islam, the rabbi supports the oppressor, Islam, and abandons the victims—Christians, Jews, Hindus and Buddhists (Kafirs all).

The assertion that most of the Koran is about Kefirs and not about how to be a Muslim is plainly false as anyone who actually reads the Koran knows.

Not only is my count correct, here is the data for the Meccan Koran and the Medinan Koran Not only do I assert that the majority of the Koran is about the Kafir, but will go further and say that the majority of the Sira, 82%, (the canonic biography of Mohammed, a sacred text) is about Kafirs, as well.

The Meccan suras of the Koran discuss “peoples of the book” (Jews and Christians with the book being the Bible). They are not to be persecuted so long as those who live in the Muslim world follow the law of the land and respect Islam.

This deceiving statement puts a pleasant face on 1400 years of political and social subordination by Islam against all Kafir religions. The law of the land for Islam is the Sharia, a legal code of pure evil. Here are some details of respecting Islam taken from the Treaty of Umar written about Christians (Jews were under similar dhimmi laws):

We shall not build, in our cities or in their neighborhood, new monasteries, Churches, convents, or monks’ cells, nor shall we repair, by day or by night, such of them as fall in ruins or are situated in the quarters of the Muslims.
We shall keep our gates wide open for passersby and travelers. We shall give board and lodging to all Muslims who pass our way for three days.
We shall not give shelter in our churches or in our dwellings to any spy, nor bide him from the Muslims.
We shall not teach the Koran to our children.
We shall not manifest our religion publicly nor convert anyone to it. We shall not prevent any of our kin from entering Islam if they wish it.
We shall show respect toward the Muslims, and we shall rise from our seats when they wish to sit.
We shall not seek to resemble the Muslims by imitating any of their garments, the qalansuwa, the turban, footwear, or the parting of the hair. We shall not speak as they do, nor shall we adopt their kunyas.
We shall not mount on saddles, nor shall we gird swords nor bear any kind of arms nor carry them on our- persons.
We shall not engrave Arabic inscriptions on our seals.
We shall not sell fermented drinks.
We shall clip the fronts of our heads.
We shall always dress in the same way wherever we may be, and we shall bind the zunar round our waists
We shall not display our crosses or our books in the roads or markets of the Muslims. We shall use only clappers in our churches very softly. We shall not raise our voices when following our dead. We shall not show lights on any of the roads of the Muslims or in their markets. We shall not bury our dead near the Muslims.
We shall not build houses overtopping the houses of the Muslims.

The Koran says “there shall be no compulsion in religion.” That, of course, has been violated in some times and places. Also in practice, non-Muslims have a kind of second-class citizenship called dhimmi.

The “no compulsion in religion” is an early verse. The Koranic law of abrogation says that the later verse is stronger or better than the earlier verse. Verses written after the nice “no-compulsion” verse say that the Christians and Jews who do not submit to Islamic supremacy can be killed. The man who does not understand abrogation should not use the Koran.

Mohammed treated everybody well upon the first meeting. But when they did not submit to his ways, they were enslaved, murdered, raped and annihilated. The record is very clear. Mohammed, the perfect model of a sacred life, was a Jew killer, a pagan killer and a Christian killer. So says the Sira.

This brief essay is intentionally inflammatory and there are many other errors of fact in it as well as misuse of the terms cited. This is hate literature.

And now the rabbi fires his best shot—“this is hate literature”. Go back and read the article this is in response to. It addresses the actual language of the jihadist killers of Kafirs. It then shows that this language is taken directly from Islamic war doctrine. Next the article says that all people, not just Muslims, should use the correct naming and verbiage of the Islamic doctrine. Nowhere is any individual demeaned and not even the hateful doctrine even criticized. Show me the hate.

Muslim jihadist murder innocents, but I am the hater for talking about it. Go figure. What his term “hate” means is that the article violates the progressive multicultural dogma. The word “hate” no longer means immorality but political disagreement. This is an example of name calling, the weakest logical position.

I will give you an example of the falsity of this anti-Muslim literature. The practice of female genital mutilation is frequently cited. In fact this is not a requirement of any faith and it is practiced by ethnic groups that are Christian as well as Muslim. It is connected to ethnicity rather than religion, but Islamophobes frequently falsely claim it is a specifically Muslim practice.

Since the article makes no mention of female genital mutilation, where does this come from? It is a straw man. But now that the rabbi has brought the Islamic treatment of women up, let us take note of the fact that the Koran, 4:34, and the Sunna say that women can be beaten. Mohammed advises: Never ask a man why he beats his wife. Allah says that wives who do not obey the husband can be beaten. Wife beating is pure Islam. I would love to hold a talk with the rabbi about the treatment of women under the Sharia.

People like Warner use an academic disguise to give weight to their promotion of hate and fear. The problem, is not Islam, but fundamentalism, including Christian fundamentalism. Those who think they represent ultimate truth perversely often think they have a license to lie.

Let’s take these insults one a time. “academic disguise” is what he calls facts from the Koran, Sira, Hadith and Islamic political history.

“The problem is not Islam” Really? The Islamic doctrine is one of jihad, oppression of religious minorities, violence against women, enslavement and hatred of the Kafir. Islamic jihad has murdered 270 million over the last 1400 years and there have been over 22,000 jihad attacks since September 11, 2001. Islam is the problem.

In a discussion about Islam, we come to his crabbing about Christians. The rabbi’s comments have a slight flavor of Islamo-philia and Christo-phobia. Muslim jihadists kill Christians in the Westgate Mall (Kenya is about 90% Christian) which is owned by Jews and he speaks negatively about Christians.

I find that when a discussion about Islam turns to the Christians, it is because the person does not know enough about Islamic doctrine to carry forward. So they change the subject to one they know about.

What our rabbi does not seem to realize is that under Sharia law, Christians and Jews are in the same boat. After the Saturday people come the Sunday people.

As to “fundamentalism”, every Muslim believes the Koran is the exact, complete and perfect words of the only god. Every Muslim believes that Mohammed is the perfect model for all behavior. When Muslims say that they are believers that is what they mean. Every Muslim is a literalist; does that make every Muslim a fundamentalist? And why is being a fundamentalist bad? The case that a liberal interpretation is a better intellectual choice is not advanced, just assumed. It is not a matter of fundamentalism, but the truth of the Koran and the Sunna. Any scholar who reads the Koran and has studied world religious literature sees that the Koran is actually a derivative work that only advances two new ideas:

1. Mohammed is the prophet of Allah is the new truth introduced in Mecca.
2. The Medinan Koran introduces the new idea that if you do not accept Mohammed as the prophet of Allah, then you can be harmed.

The rabbi does not actually comment on whether he submits to the “truth” of the Koran. Rabbi, is the Koran true or false? Is Mohammed the divine human prototype? I hold that the Koran is a man made document and that Mohammed was deluded. That is why I am a Kafir.

L’shalom,

After calling me a hater and a liar, the rabbi signs off with peace.

There is a tragedy that goes far beyond his ignorance. Imagine that he is giving advice about the threat to Israel. Since he argues that jihadists are not real Muslims, he cannot understand the jihad against Israel as an expression of Islamic political doctrine. He cannot even use the jihad doctrine as a plan B to interpret political action on the ground to defend Israel.

What will this rabbi do when a woman of his congregation comes to him for advice about marrying a Muslim? Will he be able to tell her the facts about a Sharia marriage or will he give her his romantic fantasy about how we are all one happy family of Abraham?

Knowledge must come before wisdom. Rabbi, get yourself a copy of Mark Durie’s The Third Choice (he is an Anglican priest) or if you cannot read what a Christian writes about Mohammed, then read Andrew Bostom’s Islamic Legacy of Islamic Anti-Semitism (warning, it is a more difficult read) so that you can take the first step towards being a wise leader of the Jews. Or, if the rabbi can stand the vitriolic Jew hatred from Islamic clerics (yes, they are real Muslims practicing real Islam), check out the MEMRI website .

See The Counter Jihad Report’s Bill Warner youtube playlist 

Al Qaeda kingpin Abu Anas al-Libi belongs at Guantanamo, not in New York

RTR3EU03

By J.D. Gordon:

U.S. Commandos scored a tactical victory against Al Qaeda by swooping into Libya and capturing Abu Anas al-Libi earlier this month, a former Bin Laden confidant and terror kingpin. Now President Obama must follow through with a strategic win.

That means extracting valuable intelligence from al-Libi, whose name literally means “the Libyan,” about his two decades of terror insider experience as an Al Qaeda computer expert and co-conspirator of plots against U.S. interests. Al-Libi is believed to have been involved in plots across Africa and the Middle East, including against our Kenya and Tanzania Embassies in 1998 which killed 224 people.

But getting that treasure trove of information depends on our strategy to pry it from a hardened warrior.

And so far, the Obama administration is failing us.

Here’s why:

Instead of whisking al-Libi to Guantanamo where he could be interrogated by the military and CIA for as long as it takes to get actionable intelligence – and then try him by military commission as an enemy combatant, Mr. Obama first decided to hold him aboard the amphibious transport ship USS San Antonio, and later try him in a New York federal courtroom.

First, let’s look at the move to put him on the Navy ship.

While holding key terror suspects captured overseas on a Navy ship makes sense temporarily, therein lies the long term problem — everybody knows it’s just a temporary landing place, including the detainee. Al-Libi has likely been inclined to bide his time and wait till he arrived in the United States to speak with a civilian lawyer.

Second, about justice.

Obama’s counter-terrorism strategy often resembles a hybrid of police work and war. Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame, a leader of Somalia’s Al Qaeda ally, Al Shabaab was captured in 2011 and held aboard a Navy ship for two months.  But then Obama ordered his transfer to federal court in New York where he would be afforded a full range of Constitutional Rights.

Ironically, Obama champions a concept that gives foreign enemy combatants trying to kill Americans, with generous legal protections designed by our Founding Fathers to protect Americans.

What would George Washington would say?

Third, on the interrogations.

Let’s face it, al-Libi’s time on a ship likely didn’t require much toughness. Mr. Obama banned coercive interrogation techniques within 48 hours of his January 2009 inauguration. — Al-Libi could face rougher treatment from police departments across the country for robbing a liquor store.

Sure, he may decide to cooperate with investigators over a hamburger and fries. Some FBI agents have the knack of getting guys to reveal meaningful information via polite conversations, but that strategy can take considerable time as the interrogator-detainee form a tight bond. While that’s great to help prosecutors secure convictions in court, it could take years, and won’t stop imminent attacks.

So what’s wrong with sending al-Libi to Guantanamo?

Actually, nothing.

Mr. Obama’s resistance is entirely based on politics, which he is putting above national security.

Read more at Fox News