Thursday, October 7
Euro terrorists unhappy with life in N. Waziristan: biz opportunity for Starbucks, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and Comfort Inn franchises
After a hard day's work making suicide vests and being treated like a slave by smelly natives, European terrorists could relax in comfort
A senior Pakistani security official said the two missile strikes near the town of Mir Ali in the North Waziristan tribal area followed intelligence passed on by Rami Mackenzie, 27, during interrogation following his arrest in the middle of this year by Pakistani security officials in Bannu, the principal city of Bannu district in Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa province.Quotes are from Syed Saleem Shahzad's report today for Asia Times Online titled Afghan war moves deeper into Pakistan.
At the time of his capture, Pakistani authorities said they believed Mackenzie, who had been disguised in a traditional woman's burqa, was an expert in manufacturing suicide vests.
Mackenzie was recruited in Germany this year and sent to North Waziristan for training. However, after spending only a few months he became disillusioned.
"The Europeans who were recruited by al-Qaeda are in really bad shape. They converted to Islam or even if they were Muslims born in Europe, they were reared in a comfortable atmosphere," the security official told Asia Times Online.
"The rugged terrain of North Waziristan and then the ruthless behavior and treatment of the local Wazirs and Mehsuds made most of the Europeans disillusioned. Rami was among one of those who decided to go to Islamabad and surrender himself to the German Embassy. But to his bad luck he was spotted and arrested by the security agencies in Bannu."
History note: Today the Afghan War entered its tenth year. Happy anniversary, War on Terror!
In other news from AToL, they took a screen shot of Google News to make sure everyone knows that Syed scooped by almost a month reports today on the Western and Kabul backchannel negotiations with the Haqqani Network. Yuppers, that he did; I remember it well because it was posted on September 11.
AFPAK Channel's daily brief for today has more on the talks that nobody wants to officially acknowledge (See the website for links to all the press sources):
Talks about talks about talks
Pakistani and Arab sources tell The Guardian that the Afghan government held tentative direct talks with senior members of the Haqqani insurgent group, and the U.S. has made indirect contact via a "Western intermediary" with the Haqqanis (Guardian). Al Jazeera reports that members of the Haqqani network will be present at a meeting in the Maldives later this month, where the Taliban and Afghan government officials have reportedly had conferences in the past (AJE). The Serena Hotel in Kabul is said to be hosting meetings right now sponsored by the United Arab Emirates between Afghan officials, former Taliban leaders, and retired Pakistani security officials on the topic of peace talks (WSJ). The meetings do not include insurgents or members of Afghan President Hamid Karzai's official 'peace council, which had its inaugural meeting today (AP).