Al Qaeda spokesman convicted on terrorism charges

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Osama bin Laden, and Ayman al Zawahiri, from an al Qaeda propaganda tape. Image from BBC/AP

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Osama bin Laden, and Ayman al Zawahiri, from an al Qaeda propaganda tape. Image from BBC/AP

By 

Osama bin Laden’s son-in-law and spokesman after the 9/11 attacks, Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, has been convicted on terrorism charges by a New York jury.

Years before his conviction for supporting al Qaeda and conspiring to kill Americans, Abu Ghaith garnered international infamy after his appearance with bin Laden and other al Qaeda leaders in a video that was filmed on Sept. 12, 2001. In the weeks that followed, his threats of additional attacks were seen as an ominous indication of things to come.

Additional attacks were averted, but Abu Ghaith continued to threaten Americans.

Threats against America

In a June 2002 statement, Abu Ghaith argued that “Al Qaeda has the right to kill four million Americans, including one million children, displace double that figure, and injure and cripple hundreds and thousands.”

In his memoir, At the Center of the Storm: My Years at the CIA, former CIA director George Tenet says that an alarmed US government “had to consider the possibility that Abu Ghaith was attempting to justify the future use of weapons of mass destruction that might greatly exceed the death toll of 9/11.”

In an audio recording that was also released in June 2002, Abu Ghaith claimed credit on behalf of al Qaeda for the April 11, 2002, truck bombing of a Tunisian synagogue. NBC News and the Associated Press reported that the cell responsible for the bombing had been in touch with al Qaeda leaders inside Iran.

After he was captured in 2013, Abu Ghaith told the FBI that he had been smuggled into Iran that same month.

copy of Abu Ghaith’s statement to the FBI can be found at Downrange, a publication launched by Kronos Advisory.

Between June 2002 and April 2003, when Abu Ghaith says he was placed under house arrest by the Iranians, the al Qaeda spokesman continued to make provocative statements.

In July 2002, Abu Ghaith threatened more bloodshed. “Al Qaeda will organize more attacks inside American territory and outside, at the moment we choose, at the place we choose and with the objectives that we want,” he said, according to an account published at the time by the Associated Press.

On Oct. 8, 2002, an al Qaeda cell that was reportedly recruited and indoctrinated by Abu Ghaith opened fire on US Marines stationed on Kuwait’s Faylaka Island. One Marine was killed and another was seriously wounded.

Then, in November 2002, al Qaeda terrorists attacked an Israeli hotel, killing 13 people, and tried to down an Israeli jetliner in Mombasa, Kenya. Abu Ghaith claimed credit for that operation on behalf of al Qaeda the following month.

Also in December 2002, Abu Ghaith threatened additional attacks against the United States and Israel. Bin Laden’s spokesman warned the Muslim world of the “danger of what America and its allies are preparing against Iraq and its people,” which “is not limited to overthrowing the infidel regime and its dictator but is aimed at … Balkanizing this great country.”

In his statement to the FBI, Abu Ghaith claimed that his statements in the latter half of 2002 were unconnected to al Qaeda’s operations. But his claim does not ring true.

Al Qaeda has strict protocols for claiming responsibility for its attacks. That Abu Ghaith trumpeted the organization’s culpability in Tunisia and Kenya strongly suggests he was coordinating with al Qaeda’s most senior leaders at the time.

Read more at Long War Journal

Face the Truth: Pakistan Is Not An Ally

pak

The U.S. government is in dire need of an intervention: its friends need to get it to seek professional help for its addiction to shoveling huge amounts of money to old Cold War allies that aren’t really allies at all. The problem is that the only friends who could stage such an orchestrated effort are just as far gone themselves.

By Robert Spencer:

Journalist Carlotta Gall, who reported from Afghanistan for the New York Times for twelve years, reported Wednesday that

“soon after the Navy SEAL raid on Bin Laden’s house, a Pakistani official told me that the United States had direct evidence that the ISI chief, Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, knew of Bin Laden’s presence in Abbottabad. The information came from a senior United States official, and I guessed that the Americans had intercepted a phone call of Pasha’s or one about him in the days after the raid. ‘He knew of Osama’s whereabouts, yes,’ the Pakistani official told me. The official was surprised to learn this and said the Americans were even more so.”

He shouldn’t have been. It has been obvious for years that the Pakistanis have been aiding the same jihadists that the U.S. government has been giving them billions of dollars to fight. The New York Times reported on that at length back in 2008. And now we learn that not only did Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the head of the Pakistani government’s spy service, knew the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden, but also that so did many other top officials in the Pakistani government.

Those who are genuinely surprised by this news probably also think that Islam is a Religion of Peace that has been hijacked by a Tiny Minority of Extremists. After all, this is the country where the jihad terror leader Hafiz Saeed, on whom the U.S. has placed a $10 million bounty, lives openly and comfortably. International Business Times reported in early March that Saeed “lives as a free man in Lahore,” even though he is “chief of Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JUD), a parent organisation of banned Lashkar-e-Taiba (LET). The organization was implicated in the 2008 attacks on Mumbai in India, which claimed 166 lives.” Not only that, but “Pakistan had twice placed Saeed under house arrest since 2001, but had let him go under suspicious circumstances.” And today, “JUD operates quite visibly in parts of Pakistan, with its own website and a twitter page.”

Meanwhile, Sky News reported in January that “Pakistani officials have reportedly used a secret counter-terrorism fund to buy wedding gifts, luxury carpets and gold jewellery for relatives of ministers and visiting dignitaries.” This is better than funneling to the terrorists themselves the money that the Pakistani government received from the U.S. to fight terror, but it shows how seriously the Pakistani authorities have taken their role in the “war on terror”: not seriously at all.

Read more at Front Page

See also:

  • Video - Documentary: Pakistan Double Cross on Terrorism - includes two part article by written Patrick Poole in 2012 exposing a 20 year influence operation by the Pakistani ISI and Ghulam Nabi Fai that may explain US foreign policy towards Pakistan

Osama Bin Laden sickly boasted he’d get away with 9/11 attacks

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith took the stand at his Manhattan terror trial Wednesday. UNCREDITED/ASSOCIATED PRESS

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith took the stand at his Manhattan terror trial Wednesday. UNCREDITED/ASSOCIATED PRESS

BY :

Osama Bin Laden thought he was going to get away with it.

When Sulaiman Abu Ghaith on the night of 9/11 predicted that the United States would track Bin Laden down and kill him, the monster replied, “You’re being too pessimistic.”

That was the testimony Wednesday from Abu Ghaith, who later married Bin Laden’s eldest daughter and who is on trial in Manhattan Federal Court for terrorism.

Bin Laden had summoned Abu Ghaith to a mountain cave in Afghanistan just hours after the 9/11 attacks, said the defendant, whose decision to take the witness stand Wednesday was a surprise twist.

“He said, ‘We are the ones who did it. What do you expect to happen?’” testified Abu Ghaith, 48, who is charged with supporting terrorists and conspiring to kill Americans.

“I said, ‘Politically, America … will not settle until it has accomplished two things: to kill you and topple the state of the Taliban.’ He said, ‘You’re being too pessimistic.’”

Abu Ghaith’s prediction came true in May 2011 when Navy SEALs launched a daring raid into Bin Laden’s fortress in Pakistan and killed the Al Qaeda leader.

Abu Ghatih said Bin Laden had asked him to deliver a filmed propaganda speech about the attacks and, after some hesitation, the defendant agreed, he said Wednesday through an Arabic interpreter.

Abu Ghaith told the jury in his case that Bin Laden put words in his mouth and that he was in Afghanistan on a “humanitarian mission.”

“I want you to deliver a message to the world,” Bin Laden said, Abu Ghaith testified. “I’m going to give you some points and you will build around them.”

Read more at New York Daily News

Operative details al Qaeda plans to hit planes in wake of 9/11

Saajid Badat

Saajid Badat

By CNN Terrorism Analyst Paul Cruickshank:

Within weeks of the September 11, 2001, attacks, Osama bin Laden was planning follow-up operations to bring down airliners in the United States and south-east Asia, according to a convicted al Qaeda operative testifying in a terror trial in New York.

Saajid Badat was speaking via a video deposition from the United Kingdom, where he is serving a jail sentence for his role in plotting to blow up a U.S. bound aircraft in December 2001.

It’s the first time that an al Qaeda operative has provided such detail about plans to bring down airliners in the wake of 9/11.

Badat testified that a few weeks after the 9/11 attacks, he met with Abu Hafs al Masri, then bin Laden’s right hand man, in the Jalalabad-Kabul area in Afghanistan.

“Abu Hafs asked me to take an explosive device onboard an airplane, a domestic airline [in the United States] and then detonate it,” Badat testified. He was then called to meet bin Laden himself.

“It was just the two of us in the room and he explained to me his justification for the mission,” said Badat.

“He said that the American economy is like a chain. If you break one link of the chain, the whole economy will be brought down. So after September 11th attacks, this operation will ruin the aviation industry and in turn the whole economy will come down,” he added.

Badat was then told to pick up two explosive shoes from an al Qaeda bomb-maker named Fathi. The explosives, he said, were concealed in the soles.

The idea was for him and Richard Reid, a British operative who came to be known as the “Shoe Bomber,” to blow up different planes simultaneously.

Reid tried to blow up an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami on December 22, 2001.

Before leaving Afghanistan in late November, Badat said he and Reid met with 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

“It was as if he was giving me final orders,” Badat testified.

“He just gave us advice on how to interact with each other, how to contact each other,” he said, adding that the communication between him and Reid was to be via e-mail.

When Badat arrived in the United Kingdom in December he said he got cold feet, fearing going through with the operation and the possible implications for his family. He described how he dismantled the shoe bomb he had brought with him and stored it in his parents’ house.

On December 14, 2001, he e-mailed his Pakistani handler to tell him he was backing out.

Badat now feels he and others were manipulated by al Qaeda’s top leadership.

During his video deposition he stated he was ready to testify against Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and other top leaders to expose the hollowness of what he called their “bulls**t cause.”

Badat, who joined al Qaeda in Afghanistan in 2000, was testifying at the trial in New York of Adis Medunjanin, an American of Bosnian descent charged with involvement in a plot to explode bombs on the subway in September 2009. Though the two never met, Badat met at least one al Qaeda member Medunjanin is alleged to have encountered.

**********

Badat described meeting several times in Afghanistan with Adnan Shukrijumah, an American al Qaeda operative. At the time he knew the American as “Jaffar.” Shukrijumah, he stated, never had any knowledge of the shoe bombing plot.

 Adnan Shukrijumah

Adnan Shukrijumah

U.S. authorities allege that Shukrijumah helped orchestrate the 2009 plot to attack New York subways and met Medunjanin in a camp in South Waziristan in September 2008. They say Shukrijumah has emerged as a senior operational planner for the network and is still believed to be at large in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region.

Read more at CNN

Also see:

FBI had human source in contact with bin Laden as far back as 1993

blBy Guy Taylor and John Solomon:

In a revelation missing from the official investigations of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the FBI placed a human source in direct contact with Osama bin Laden in 1993 and ascertained that the al Qaeda leader was looking to finance terrorist attacks in the United States, according to court testimony in a little-noticed employment dispute case.

The information the FBI gleaned back then was so specific that it helped thwart a terrorist plot against a Masonic lodge in Los Angeles, the court records reviewed by The Washington Times show.

“It was the only source I know in the bureau where we had a source right in al Qaeda, directly involved,” Edward J. Curran, a former top official in the FBI’s Los Angeles office, told the court in support of a discrimination lawsuit filed against the bureau by his former agent Bassem Youssef.

Mr. Curran gave the testimony in 2010 to an essentially empty courtroom, and thus it escaped notice from the media or terrorism specialists. The Times was recently alerted to the existence of the testimony while working on a broader report about al Qaeda’s origins.

Members of the Sept. 11 commission, congressional intelligence committees and terrorism analysts told The Times they are floored that the information is just now emerging publicly and that it raises questions about what else Americans might not have been told about the origins of al Qaeda and its early interest in attacking the United States.

“I think it raises a lot of questions about why that information didn’t become public and why the 9/11 Commission or the congressional intelligence committees weren’t told about it,” said former Rep. Peter Hoekstra, Michigan Republican, who chaired the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence from 2004 through 2007 when lawmakers dealt with the fallout from the 9/11 Commission’s official report.

“This is just one more of these examples that will go into the conspiracy theorists’ notebooks, who say the authorities are not telling us everything,” Mr. Hoekstra told The Times in an interview last week. “That’s bad for the intelligence community. It’s bad for law enforcement and it’s bad for government.”

Former Rep. Lee Hamilton, an Indiana Democrat who co-chaired the 9/11 Commission with former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, said that as far as he can remember, the FBI never told the commission that it had been working a source so close to bin Laden that many years before 9/11.

“I do not recall the FBI advising us of a direct contact with Osama bin Laden,” Mr. Hamilton told The Times in a recent interview.

Exactly how the information was omitted from the various congressional reviews and the 9/11 Commission report is a mystery. FBI officials and staff involved in the review said they couldn’t determine definitely so many years later whether the information was kept from the various investigations or whether it was simply overlooked by staff in the thousands of pages of documents and electronic records made available during the exhaustive reviews of al Qaeda’s history.

“Both the commission and the U.S. government compiled a fair amount of evidence about the activities of the set of groups later best known as al Qaeda during [the early-1990s], when the group was settling into Sudan. We did not delve as deeply in this period because it was so distant from the plotting that led directly to the 9/11 attack,” said Philip Zelikow, who served as the 9/11 Commission’s executive director and now teaches history at the University of Virginia.

Like Mr. HamiltonMr. Zelikow said he does not recall ever being told by the FBI about the 1993 source and that Mr. Curran’s disclosure appeared to involve “valuable intelligence gathered in 1993 and 1994.”

But Mr. Zelikow cautioned against reading too deeply into the revelation, asserting that bin Laden’s activities that long ago would be viewed as “pretty attenuated in relation to 9/11.”

FBI officials told The Times that the bureau could not say for certain that its agents specifically briefed the 9/11 Commission about the 1993 asset or plot but was proud that it gave unfettered access to its records to the various investigators.

Read more at Washington Times

Uncovered by JW: Top Pentagon Leader Ordered Destruction of bin Laden Death Photos

lie(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that on January 31, 2014, it received documents from the Department of Defense (Pentagon) revealing that within hours of its filing a May 13, 2011, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit seeking photos of the deceased Osama bin Laden, U.S. Special Operations Commander, Admiral William McRaven ordered his subordinates to “destroy” any photos they may have had “immediately.” Judicial Watch had filed a FOIA request for the photos 11 days earlier.

The McRaven email, addressed to “Gentlemen,” instructs:

One particular item that I want to emphasize is photos; particularly UBLs remains. At this point – all photos should have been turned over to the CIA; if you still have them destroy them immediately or get them to the [redacted].

According to the Pentagon documents, McRaven sent his email on “Friday, May 13, 2011 5:09 PM.”  The documents do not detail what documents, if any, were destroyed in response to the McRaven directive. The Judicial Watch FOIA lawsuit seeking the documents was filed in the United States Court for the District of Columbia only hours earlier. Judicial Watch also announced the filing at a morning press conference.

On May 2, Judicial Watch had filed a FOIA request with the Defense Department seeking “all photographs and/or video recordings of Usama (Osama) Bin Laden taken during and/or after the U.S. military operation in Pakistan on or about May 1, 2011.”  Federal law contains broad prohibitions against the “concealment, removal, or mutilation generally” of government records.

The records containing the McRaven “destroy them immediately” email were produced as a result of a June 7, 2013, FOIA request and a subsequent lawsuit against the Defense Department for records relating to reports of the 2011 McRaven purge directive. McRaven’s order was first mentioned at the end of a 2011 draft reportby the Pentagon’s inspector general (IG) examining whether the Obama administration gave special access to Hollywood executives planning the film “Zero Dark Thirty.”  According the draft report, “ADM McRaven also directed that the names and photographs associated with the raid not be released. This effort included purging the combatant command’s system of all records related to the operation and providing these records to another Government Agency.”  The reference to the document purge did not appear in the final IG report.

The move by McRaven to purge the photos appears to have come, at least in part, in response to aggressive efforts by Judicial Watch to obtain images of the deceased bin Laden that President Obama, in a rewrite of federal open records law, had refused to disclose. In addition to its May 2, 2011, FOIA request with the Pentagon Judicial Watch filed an identical request on May 3, 2011, with the CIA. When neither the Defense Department nor the CIA complied with the FOIA requests, Judicial Watch, in June 2011, filed FOIA lawsuits against both agencies.  In the course of the litigation, the Pentagon claimed that it had “no records responsive to plaintiff’s request.”

On April 26, 2012, District Court Judge James Boasberg accepted the Obama DOD and CIA arguments, ruling that the images could remain secret while conceding: “Indeed, it makes sense that the more significant an event is to our nation – and the end of bin Laden’s reign of terror certainly ranks high – the more need the public has for full disclosure.” On May 21, 2013, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed the District Court decision while conceding that the documents may not have been properly classified. The Supreme Court of the United States subsequently denied Judicial Watch’s petition for a writ of certiorari seeking a review of the issue.

“The McRaven ‘destroy them immediately’ email is a smoking gun, revealing both contempt for the rule of law and the American’s people right to know,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The Obama administration has tried to cover this scandal up – and our lawsuit exposed it.  We demand further investigation of the effort to destroy documents about the bin Laden raid.”

SISTER OF 9/11 PENTAGON PILOT BLASTS RELEASE OF LYNNE STEWART

LynneStewart2

 

by WILLIAM BIGELOW:

On Thursday, Fox’s Megyn Kelly interviewed a furious Debra Burlingame about the release from prison of Lynne Stewart, the attorney who conspired with the blind cleric Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman. The “Blind Sheik” was convicted of planning to wage a “war of urban terrorism” against the United States, of which the 1993 WTC bombing killing six people was assumed to be a part. Burlingame is director and co-founder of 9/11 Families for a safe and strong America and the sister of Captain Charles Burlingame, the pilot of the jet that crashed into the Pentagon.

After the “Blind Sheik” was sentenced to life in prison he was banned from any communication with the outside world. Stewart, who represented him, violated that that edict, and was convicted in 2005 of helping to smuggle messages from him to his terrorist groups abroad. She was supposed to be in jail until 2018, but U.S. District Judge John Koeltl granted a motion filed by federal prosecutors and the Federal Bureau of Prisons to reduce her sentence.

Kelly: This is unbelievable. She had stage-4 breast cancer, and she said she didn’t want to die in a strange, loveless place. So, pursuant to a request by the Administration, the judge said, “Off you go,” and now she is a free woman. Supposed to be released in 2018.

Burlingame: That’s right. She’s been campaigning, trying to get out on “compassionate release” for some time; she’s had cancer for a number of years, and she was actually in remission at one point. They expect her to live another 18 months, maybe less. She looked pretty hale and hearty when she came out at LaGuardia yesterday, giving interviews to the press again. She is a remorseless woman. She calls the blind sheik, whose followers have maimed, mutilated, killed dozens and dozens of people in an effort to get him released; she calls him the hero of the mujahadeen. And she did more than get messages out; she facilitated actual meetings between the blind sheik and his lieutenants, if you will, impersonating a translator inside the maximum prison where he was being held. She pretended to be listening to the translation and… they even joked, she even joked in the middle of one of these settings, that she should get an Academy Award for how well she was doing at pretending to have a lawyer client meeting.

Kelly: After one of those messages was sent out, over 60 people were slaughtered in Luxor, Egypt, by members of the blind sheik’s organization and the bodies of many of the victims were mutilated by machetes, the torso of one of the female victims was slit by the terrorists and a leaflet calling for the blind sheik’s release was inserted. This was after she was helping him smuggle messages out to his followers.

Burlingame: It was in 1997, he was imprisoned in ’96, you have to remember; she was on his defense team right from the get-go. He was arrested in ’93, tried in ’95, sentenced in ’96. She knows perfectly well what he’s done, and that he, in fact, was the spiritual inspiration for Osama bin Laden. Bin Laden said in September of 2000, a year before 9/11, that he was the honorable Omar, Sheik Rahaman and later said he gave the fatwa for 9/11. So he has bloody hands and she was convicted of material support.

Read more at Breitbart

Also see Obama Frees a Terror Lawyer by Daniel Greenfield

 

Benghazi – The Signs of Al Qaeda

Jihadist-Hand-Sign-366x350By Dawn Perlmutter:

The latest version of the Benghazi cover up is being argued with semantics of whether the jihadist group that attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi on September 11, 2012 was part of the “core” al Qaeda network. State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said,

“…at this point, we have no indications that core al-Qaida, which I think is what most people are referring to when they talk about, quote, al-Qaida, directed or planned what happened in Benghazi. …..So it is not the U.S. Government’s assessment or position that Ansar al-Sharia is an affiliate of core al-Qaida. We don’t recognize them as an affiliate of core al-Qaida… These folks don’t carry ID cards. They don’t come out and wear a t-shirt that says, ‘I belong to al-Qaida,’ right?”

I beg to differ. In addition to the tremendous amount of evidence and statements by members of the House Intelligence Committee claiming that intelligence indicates al Qaeda was involved and that Ansar al Shariah is widely believed to be affiliated with al Qaeda, there are simpler, more obvious indicators. Ms. Harf is correct, they don’t carry ID cards or wear T-shirts that say “I belong to al Qaeda,” but they do throw hand signs and leave graffiti behind in the same manner as gangbangers that just marked their territory after murdering their rival.

The quintessential image that is used in almost every news report about the Benghazi attacks depicts one of the assailants in a white T-shirt with an assault rifle posing with his index finger pointing up in front of the burning consulate. The man is seen in several photos making this gesture using both his left and right hands. This does not signify that he is number one. This gesture is one of the most prevalent Salafi jihadist hand signs. There are images of every al Qaeda leader, including Osama bin Laden, Abu Musab al Zarqawi and others, with their index fingers pointing skywards. Ayman al Zawahiri, the current leader of al Qaeda, is often seen in images making the hand sign. His former top lieutenant Mohammed al Jamal, of the Jamal Network, is believed to have had fighters in the assault on the U.S. diplomatic compound and they would be familiar with this gesture. In October, the State Department designated the Jamal Network as a terrorist group tied to al Qaeda.

The hand gesture also appears on jihadist forums, protest posters, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and in almost every form of al Qaeda propaganda. It is also a favorite gesture among Chechen jihadists, members of the Caucasus Emirate, those most likely responsible for the recent suicide bombings that killed at least 31 people in the city of Volgograd, Russia. Their leader, Doku Umarov, has also been photographed making the jihadi hand sign. For Salafi jihadists groups, the hand gesture of the index finger pointing up represents one God and their willingness to die for Islam, thus attaining martyrdom and entrance into paradise. This Islamist hand sign is also commonly used by radical Imams around the globe while they are recruiting young men to join the global jihad and murder soldiers in their own countries. Although this hand gesture is one of the most recognizable signs of al Qaeda-affiliated jihadist groups, the Obama administration either overlooked, or worse, were unaware of the identifier when they portrayed the attack as a spontaneous protest against an anti-Islam film.

Read more at Front Page

Dawn Perlmutter Director and founder of Symbol & Ritual Intelligence and Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum is considered one of the leading subject matter experts (SME) in the areas of symbols, unfamiliar customs, ritualistic crimes and religious violence.

Yes, Al-Qaeda ‘Infiltrated’ Libya

ben4by :

The New York Times’ conclusion that Al-Qaeda was not involved in last year’s attack on Ambassador Stevens in Libya—or even “infiltrated” Libya to begin with—is an example of a misleading game of semantics. The definition of “enemy” and even “Al-Qaeda” is becoming narrower and narrower, moving us closer to a more comforting (but incomplete) picture of the danger the West faces from Islamism.

The Times writes that an Islamist militia leader named Ahmed Abu Khattala is the almost certain culprit behind the Benghazi attacks, even if he denies it. This fact is used to deny Al-Qaeda’s role, along with the premise that there are two distinctly separate groups named Ansar al-Sharia and the one linked to Al-Qaeda cannot be implicated.

Khattala denies that he and his Obeida Ibn Al-Jarra militia are tied to Al-Qaeda. To the Times, the lack of an operational link is equivalent to no link at all, but the two are connected ideologically. Khattala is openly anti-American and approved of the Benghazi attacks. Both agree in violent retribution for mockery of their faith because of their common Sharia doctrine.

According to the Times’ own previous reporting, an Islamist group named Ansar al-Sharia is suspected of involvement. The Times confirms, “Witnesses at the scene of the attack identified many participants associated with Ansar al-Shariah.

Its leader, Mohammed Ali al-Zahawi, said he disagrees that Western diplomats in Libya are legitimate targets and, “If it had been our attack on the U.S. Consulate, we would have flattened it.”

There are two groups named Ansar al-Sharia in Libya, one in Benghazi that may share responsibility, and one in Derna, led by Sufian bin Qumu.

Qumu was once a driver for a company owned by Osama Bin Laden. He was captured in Pakistan and spent six years in Guantanamo Bay before returning to Derna. His Al-Qaeda links are solid, but the Times reports that his Ansar al-Sharia was uninvolved in the Benghazi attacks.

Thomas Joscelyn persuasively argues that this is not the case. The two have a common name, branding and propaganda publisher. The Times also fails to answer an important question: If the two groups are truly separate, why wouldn’t one avoid the confusion by changing its name?

Even the use of the name “Ansar al-Sharia” is rooted in Al-Qaeda. The name first appeared in Yemen as a front for Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. We know from Osama Bin Laden’s records that were captured in Pakistan that he planned to change Al-Qaeda’s name and wanted affiliates to portray themselves as wholly independent.

study by the American Federation of Scientists in August 2012, one month before the Benghazi attacks, confirmed that Al-Qaeda had a “core network” in Libya “but it remains clandestine and refrains from using the Al-Qaeda name.” It predicts that Al-Qaeda will continue to “mask its presence under the umbrella of the Libyan Salafist movement.”

Read more at Front Page

America Takes Down Osama bin Laden’s Lawyer

stan_edited-1By Daniel Greenfield:

Osama bin Laden’s lawyer didn’t live in a cave in Afghanistan. Like so many terrorist lawyers, he was a New Yorker. His law office, which has seen more terrorists and their files pass through it than an Afghan cave, sits above a Muslim 99 cent store that offers discounted napkins, sandals and toasters, and is a four-minute drive away from the World Trade Center.

Stanley Cohen has never been shy about fighting what he believes in. And what he believes in is murder.

“If I don’t support the politics of political clients, I don’t take the case,” he once said. A few weeks after September 11, he said, “If Osama bin Laden arrived in the United States today and asked me to represent him, sure I’d represent him.”

Osama bin Laden never did arrive in the United States, though perhaps one day pieces of him will wash up on a California beach, and his wannabe lawyer had to settle for representing his son-in-law, who, after September 11, had appeared in a video threatening that “the storm of planes will not stop.”

Neither Stanley Cohen nor his client were able to make good on their threats. And in a twist, Stanley Cohen may end up with a prison sentence before the Al Qaeda spokesman whom he represents.

Al Capone didn’t go down for any of the murders he committed. Instead he was put away for tax fraud. Now Stanley Cohen faces a maximum of twenty-five years locked away in prison with the terrorists, murderers and rapists whom he has spent a lifetime defending both in and out of court.

Like so many leftists, Cohen began as a community organizer. Then he joined forces with another terrorist lawyer, Lynne Stewart, to defend Kathy Boudin, a member of the Weather Underground. Stewart was put away for passing messages from the Blind Sheikh, the leader of a Muslim Brotherhood splinter group, whose followers carried out the World Trade Center bombing and plotted further attacks.

Cohen became Stewart’s lawyer but couldn’t save his partner from a ten-year jail sentence for providing material support to terrorists. Now he may end up joining her behind bars.

Read more at Front Page

 

The Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham

Jawad-Figure-7by Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
MERIA
December 11, 2013

PDF version available here

This article examines the rise of the al-Qa’ida-aligned group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) since its announcement in April 2013 until September 2013. It focuses in particular on its military operations and its relations with other rebel groups. The article concludes by examining what the future holds for ISIS on the whole.

INTRODUCTION: THE IDEOLOGY

The group under consideration in this paper–like al-Qa’ida central under Usama bin Ladin and subsequently Ayman al-Zawahiri, the Tehrik-e-Taliban of Waziristan, and others–is part of what one might term the “global jihad” movement. This movement is not a coherent whole organized by a strict central hierarchy, but rather one defined by a shared ideology. This ideology aims firstly to reestablish a system of governance known as the Caliphate–an Islamic form of government that first came into being after Muhammad’s death under Abu Bakr and saw its last manifestation in the Ottoman Empire–across the entire Muslim world. From there, the intention is to spread the Caliphate across the entire world.[1]

This worldview is one of many answers formulated to answer a question posed in the wider Muslim world: Namely, what has been the cause of decline of the Muslim world–and the Arab world in particular–in contrast to the apparent success of the West since the nineteenth century? The answer formulated by ideologues of the global jihad movement is that the cause of this decline is rooted in the Muslim world’s deviation from the path of Islam by not applying Islamic law to governance in its totality. This is to be contrasted with the “Islamic Golden Age” in Islam’s first five centuries or so–idealized in different ways by others not of this orientation–when the Muslim world was supposedly uncontaminated by foreign influences. Of course, given that era’s exploitation of the classical Greek heritage through the translation movement under the Abbasids- the global jihad movement’s portrayal of this era is blatantly unhistorical. Nonetheless, the perception is what matters.

In light of the ISIS’ ambitious goals, it is imperative to consider the group’s fortunes in Syria, which in turn will allow policymakers to assess what threat, if any, the group poses to the wider international order in the long-term.

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The Genocidal Axis

hate_america_crush_israel-viBy Frontpagemag.com

Editor’s note: Below is the transcript to the panel discussion, “The Genocidal Axis,” which took place at the Freedom Center’s 2013 Restoration Weekend. Restoration Weekend was held November 14th-17th at The Breakers resort in Palm Beach, Florida.

Erick Stakelbeck: I just want to say a few words about why we’re here today. And we talk about the Genocidal Axis.

To me, the two pillars of that axis are the global Muslim Brotherhood movement and the Iranian regime.

Robert Spencer: That’s correct.

Erick Stakelbeck: And we’ve talked about the Muslim Brotherhood. I just wrote a book about the Brotherhood. And in my research — look, I knew these were bad guys. This is the granddaddy of all Islamic terrorist groups. In the modern era, it spawned from the Muslim Brotherhood. Our good friends, the moderates, as the Obama Administration tells us, spawned al-Qaeda, created Hamas.

Without the creation of the Muslim Brotherhood way back in 1928 in Egypt, 9/11 would’ve never happened. Everyone behind that attack, from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri — before they formed al-Qaeda, they belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood is the gateway drug to Islamic terrorism.

They’re also the gateway drug, in this era, to Islamic anti-Semitism. And we talk about the Genocidal Axis. We talk about the efforts of jihadists to wipe Christians and Jews from the face of the planet. In writing my book — again, I knew these were bad guys. This is the granddaddy, the Brotherhood — but the depths of their anti-Jewish, anti-Semitic ideology shocked even me, to a degree.

In 1933 — you may be shocked to learn this — there were some 80,000 Jews living in Egypt, mainly in Cairo and Alexandria. Always, as Robert could tell you, under dhimmi status, but they were there. Eighty thousand Jews. There were even anti-Hitler rallies in 1933 in Cairo.

Then, along came the Muslim Brotherhood. Founded in 1928, gradually gained strength throughout the 1930s, and established a working relationship, folks, with the Nazis. The Muslim Brotherhood worked hand-in-glove with Hitler’s war machine to extend the Final Solution from the Jews of Europe to the Jews of the Middle East and North Africa.

So by 1937, 1938, just five years after those anti-Nazi rallies in Egypt, we have synagogues being burnt to the ground. We have pogroms against the Jews of Egypt, spurred by the Muslim Brotherhood, using Nazi literature and Nazi propaganda.

By 1948, as the State of Israel in my view was being miraculously reborn, we had legions of Arab armies closing in on the fledgling Jewish state. The Muslim Brotherhood sent battalions to assist in the invasion of Israel.

This is who they are. We should not be surprised when, a few months ago, the not-so-dearly departed Egyptian president, Mohamed Morsi, was captured on video tape calling Jews the sons of apes and pigs. And as Robert will tell you, there was some theological ammo, to say the least, behind that statement.

There can never be peace with Israel or, as they call it, Palestine. I’ve interviewed Muslim Brotherhood operatives face-to-face. I’ve been in their offices, their mosques, their homes. One thing that galvanizes them more than any other issue is a hatred of the Jewish people. The word “Israel” does not exist in their lexicon. It is only “the Zionist entity.”

And I have to say these people look like you and I. They wear suits and ties, they speak — they’re very charming. They speak fluent English, they’re Western-educated — designer suits. This is the Brotherhood strategy. Stealth. And it works.

What we have right now, ladies and gentlemen, playing out in the Middle East, in real time, before your very eyes, is the old adage in the world of jihad and Islamism. First, the Saturday people. Then, the Sunday people.

Look, the Saturday people have been emptied, the Jewish people have been emptied, from the nations of the Middle East and North Africa. One million Jewish refugees fled countries like Iran, Yemen, Morocco, Libya in the 1930s, ’40s, ’50s, ’60s. Sometimes with only the clothes on their backs. One million Jewish refugees.

Number one, where is their right of return?

(Applause)

Not that they’d want it.

(Laughter)

Number two, we’re seeing this scenario played out again, folks. Christians right now, in places like Egypt. Churches are being burnt to the ground. In August, there were 70 to 80 churches, according to some estimates, burnt to the ground by the Muslim Brotherhood and its minions in Egypt. Sometimes with worshippers inside, in places like Nigeria. We’re seeing this repeat itself across the Muslim world.

First came the Saturday people. Now the bull’s eye is on the backs of every Christian, every Sunday person, in the Middle East and North Africa.

(Applause)

This is who they are. You cannot negotiate with these people. Dialogue and diplomacy do not work. On the Sunni side, you have the Brotherhood; on the Shia side, you have Iran and Hezbollah. It’s not a coincidence that Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah — who’s probably hiding in an underground bunker as we speak right now, hiding from the IDF — he was quoted a few years ago as saying — it’s good that the Jews have gathered in one nation, the land of Israel. Because that’ll save us the trouble of pursuing them around the world and killing them. They’re all in one place, this is great.

This is the mindset of this regime. Nasrallah is an acolyte of the Iranian regime, an appendage of the Iranian regime. This is who we want to strike a grand bargain with, folks, and allow to have nuclear weapons. What a comforting thought, especially for Israel.

You have Sheikh Yusuf Al Qaradawi, the Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader, who wrote a book a few years ago, in 2003, saying the war is not just between Israel and the Arab nations; it’s between every Jew and every Muslim. Folks, the goal is not just the liquidation of the Jewish state; it’s the liquidation of the Jewish people.

So, without further ado, we’re going to start with Caroline Glick.

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The Taliban: America’s Enemy

Obama and KarzaiBy Brigitte Gabriel:

The Taliban have recently published the autumn edition of their magazine, Azan.

This is the fourth issue of the magazine and is significant in that it calls for Muslims in the West to launch attacks at home or fight in foreign battlefields, urging recruits to even leave behind their children or elderly parents (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/al-qaeda/10503925/Taliban-magazine-urges-jihad-and-profiles-the-Honda-125.html)

Surely such calls to Jihad are nothing new, so why is this particular publication important?

Because it has been released just a few days after the Obama administration was quoted saying that “the Taliban are not our enemies and we don’t want to fight them.” (http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2013/11/27/Karzai-Will-Sign-Agreement-with-U-S-Says-Obama-Administration-Claimed-Taliban-Not-Our-Enemy)

Such statements about the Taliban are nothing new from the Obama administration. Vice President Joe Biden toldNewsweek magazine the same thing almost exactly two years ago (http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2011/12/vp-biden-says-that-the-taliban-per-se-is-not-our-enemy/).

Not only are these statements from the administration disheartening because our brave troops have been fighting Taliban Jihadis for a decade, they also demonstrate a profound ignorance about Jihadist doctrine.

Jihadist doctrine does not regard nationalities or international borders as significant. Under their doctrine, Jihad is to be waged to make Allah’s law and religion supreme around the entire world. With their latest magazine, the Taliban clearly demonstrate adherence to that doctrine with their call for Muslims in the West to launch attacks at home.

What’s more this is not something new from the Taliban. When they seized power in Afghanistan in 1996, they announced that Afghanistan was to be a launching pad for global Jihad and invited Jihadi fighters to come to their country. Jihadis from all over the Islamic world and even parts of the West and the Pacific Rim heeded that call and gravitated to the new Shariah-ruled outpost established by the Taliban regime.

Among those who relocated to Afghanistan was Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda. We know the rest: Al Qaeda launched its attack on America from Afghanistan and the Taliban harbored Al Qaeda from the US when America sought to bring justice down on them.

How anyone can look at these facts and conclude that the Taliban are not our enemy is mind-boggling. The idea that the Taliban want to strictly limit their evil designs to Afghanistan is absurd.

Read more at ACT! For America

 

Georgetown Univ. Interfaith Center Welcomes Islamists

Esposito

The Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center is led by Dr. John Esposito, one of the strongest defenders of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network.

BY RYAN MAURO:

Georgetown University’s Saudi-funded interfaith center found itself in hot water, but it won’t be for long.

A speaking engagement with an Egyptian Nazi was cancelled, but Islamists need not worry: Muslim Brotherhood supporters and 9/11 Truthers are still welcome, as is a senior Obama Administration official allied with the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.

The Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown is led by Dr. John Esposito, arguably the strongest non-Muslim defender of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network. The center receives significant Saudi funding, such as a $20 million donation in 2005 alone.

On November 21, the center held its 20th annual conference themed, “Muslim-Christian Relations in the 21st Century: Challenges and Opportunities.” The chairman of the first panel was Natana DeLong-Bas, a known 9/11 Truther.

In 2006, DeLong-Bas said, “I do not find any evidence that would make me agree that Osama Bin Laden was behind the attack on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.” DeLong-Bas is also a defender of Wahhabism, one of the most tyrannical practices of Islam, and disagrees that it bears responsibility for inspiring the 9/11 attacks.

Further, she says that the Hamas terrorist group is a better promoter of democracy and human rights in the Middle East than the U.S. government, and that American efforts do “not rise to the level of what Hamas has achieved,” complimenting their work in health care and education.

One of the speakers on DeLong-Bas’ panel was Dalia Mogahed, a former senior advisor to President Obama. She is the executive director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies.

Mogahed has been described as possibly “the most influential figure guiding the Obama Administration’s Middle East oureach.” One of the reasons she supports the Syrian rebels is because Bashar Assad “cannot deliver…resistance to Israel.”

Mogahed and Esposito authored the 2007 paper that downplayed the extent of extremist beliefs in the Muslim world. She spoke at the 34th annual convention of the Islamic Circle of North America (ISNA) and was booked as a speaker for 15thannual fundraiser for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). Both groups are part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network.

Mogahed said in 2008 that the criticism of groups like CAIR is part of a “concerted effort to silence, you know, institution-building among Muslims. And the way to do it is [to] malign these groups. And it’s kind of a witch hunt.” She also believes that “[Islamophobia] presents a grave danger to America as a whole.”

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), the first Muslim congressman, was invited to speak on the panel but did not attend. He is a close friend of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network. His pilgrimage to Mecca was sponsored by the Muslim American Society.

The Georgetown center also scheduled an event on December 5 named “Egypt and the Struggle for Democracy.” It has been postponed to January 30 because of delays in getting visas for some Egyptian speakers.

Balance isn’t the event’s objective. None of the speakers are opponents of the Muslim Brotherhood. Mogahed and Rep. Ellison are both scheduled to speak.

*******

It was discovered two years ago that in 2006-2007, the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) planned to donate $325,000 to the center to put on an event about “Islamophobia.” The OIC is pushing hard for laws that restrict freedom of speech to stop alleged anti-Muslim sentiment. The money was to be routed through CAIR, specifically its executive director, Nihad Awad.

The Muslim chaplain of Georgetown University is Imam Yahya Hendi. In 2003, Hendi testified on behalf of Sami al-Arian, who was convicted for being a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group. Hendi stated that suicide bombings are permissible under Islam during his questioning.

The center’s conferences often bring together Islamists from around the world. It has also jointly sponsored events with the International Institute for Islamic Thought, a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity.

One of the center’s Common Word Fellows is Louay Safi, the executive director of IIIT from 1995 to 1997 and the IIIT Director of Research from 1999 to 2003. He was also the President of the Associaiton of Muslim Social Scientists from 1999 to 2003, another U.S. Muslim Brotherhood front that shares an address with IIIT.

Safi was also the Director of Leadership Development for the Islamic Society of North America. He was designated an unindicted co-conspirator in the trial of Sami Al-Arian. He is also intimately involved with Syrian Islamists.

In 1988, the FBI had a spy inside the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network that explicitly warned about the IIIT’s plans to infiltrate the U.S. government and universities to “institute the Islamic Revolution in America.” A Clarion Project research report shows that IIIT has had success in that endeavor.

This latest event at Georgetown University’s Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding shows that the Muslim Brotherhood never gave up on its plan to influence American academia.

Read more at Clarion Project

Karen Armstrong’s 9/11 British Empire Blowback Thesis

armstrong_karenFront Page, by Andrew Harrod:

“We did this,” popular British religion writer Karen Armstrong said in a November 21, 2013, keynote address at Georgetown University in reference to her country’s imperial history and Al Qaeda’s September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.  Speaking to Georgetown’s Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) Armstrong clearly showed with bizarre, anti-Western self-accusatory explanations for jihadist violence how “I like to turn the finger against myself first.”

“We have all done terrible things,” Armstrong stated at ACMCU’s 20th anniversary conference on “Muslim-Christian Relations in the 21st Century:  Challenges & Opportunities.” Armstrong in particular was “very conscious as a person of the British Empire” about how “we are all implicated” in problems afflicting Muslims globally.  Armstrong referenced Anglo-French involvement during World War I in determining Middle Eastern borders and Pakistan’s “almost impossible” borders derived from Indian partition in 1947.  Armstrong also considered “our Palestinian mess” as a British sin inciting Muslim violence today.

American drone strikes around the world and “new images of Muslim suffering” following America’s military regime change in Iraq added to Armstrong’s anti-Western litany.  “Disgraceful” also for Armstrong was global poverty such as the “people in the world who do not have clean water.”  Reverently referencing “Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him,” Armstrong cited an Islamic hadith about the immorality of sleeping while others hunger.  In light of all this suffering, Armstrong rejected making Islam a “scapegoat” for the “violent sins of the 20th century.”

“Muslim pain, Muslim suffering” and the “desire to do something about it” were thus Armstrong’s explanation for violence from groups like Al Qaeda.  Al Qaeda videos, for example, presented a “collage of pain” and yet “we don’t see the half of it.”  “Self-interested policies have blown up in our face,” Armstrong concluded, and demanded that people “look at these images of pain.”

“Hiroshima and 9/11” result from deficient personal reflection, Armstrong concluded.  Armstrong compared impersonal killing from the “high altitudes” of World War II bombers to “killing from a helicopter” and criticized Westerners for being a “privileged caste” removed from the world.  In contrast, “weeping together creates bonds between human beings.”  Armstrong argued that the world should have wept for Muslims following 9/11 just as the Greek playwright Aeschylus mourned for his enemies slain at the Battle of Salamis in The Persians.

Armstrong perceived no threat in any given religion such as Islam, for all faiths according to her have a “version of the Golden Rule.”  Armstrong saw religious fundamentalisms “rooted in a profound fear of elimination,” not any aggressive ideology, such that they became “more extreme” under attack by military force and media.  The tearing off of women’s veils by Iranian troops under the Shah, for example, incited a backlash of Shiite fundamentalism.  The present Islamic Republic of Iran, meanwhile, elicited from Armstrong merely the comment that the “Iranian revolution is still continuing.”

None of Armstrong’s mea culpas make any sense upon examination.  Arab state borders are not by any stretch of the imagination the world’s most haphazardly drawn, particularly in comparison to Africa’s colonial borders.  Yet no global terrorism has resulted from sub-Saharan Africa.  Armstrong’s criticism of Pakistan’s borders likewise does not answer why only Pakistan’s Muslims, and not India’s Hindus, engage in cross-border terrorism.  Muslims have also been historically both colonized and colonizers.  Poverty is similarly ecumenical, but individuals in China and elsewhere have responded to deprivation with work, not warfare.

Echoing the various hostilities of the ACMCU’s namesake, Prince Alaweed bin Talal, his Saudi compatriot Osama bin Laden, and others against Israel, Armstrong seems to see causality for 9/11 in the British “Palestinian mess” supporting Zionism. Yet support for Israel’s right to exist is simply incompatible with the destruction of Israel sought by rejectionist Islamic ideologues like bin Laden or the Iranian ayatollahs.  Presented with this analysis, Armstrong during a coffee break criticized my being “obsessed with Israel…the word never crossed my lips,” as if Britain’s “Palestinian mess” was a reference to Zimbabwe.

Armstrong does not explain why Muslims in Gulf States like Saudi Arabia, never colonized, engage in terrorism and Boko Haram’s Nigerian Muslims massacre Christian Nigerians sharing the same British colonial history.  Sectarian agendas of jihad and sharia, the Golden Rule’s very antithesis, are invisible to her befuddled thinking.  Many “images of Muslim suffering” in places like Iraq, meanwhile, derive precisely from the application of these agendas to intra-Islamic divisions.

In Armstrong’s relativistic reasoning, pilots Paul Tibbets, who ended a war over Hiroshima, and Mohammad Atta, who began a war in New York, are equal.  Not a vigorous fight for freedom, but guilty mourning for Muslims should result from 9/11.  Such is the analysis of Armstrong, a member of the High Level Group at the United Nations’ Alliance of Civilizations.