Friday, July 22

The devil is in the details: getting the story straight about al Qaeda operations in Europe

Here are rough notes taken by a reader with regard to Yossef Bodansky's 7/20 report to John Batchelor's audience on the "Thirty Day Warning." Clearly, yesterday's terrorist attack does not respect the 'grace period' of 30 days. I stress that the notes are incomplete and typed during the broadcast; i.e., made without checking them against any record of the conversation. But for those who missed the report, they are helpful. Thanks, MP, for your efforts:

The Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigade is a group of Muslim leaders oriented toward incitement who have prepared threats against Europe and the US and issued the thirty-day ultimatum against Europe; these are also for the consumption of the younger intellectual Muslims in Western Europe, who by now constitute the most important population to join the jihadist movement in Europe and Iraq as operations move forward.

Al Qaeda is telling European leaders what it will do; European leaders are listening. Concurrent activities in Milan and other cities. Proximity to Bosnia: reinforcement of al Q cadres in Italy from Bosnia.

Earlier messages stressed that Italy was next in line after Spain and the UK. The Italians are taking a lot of precautions.

Europe is now awash in separate cells, redundant networks. It's up to the bosses of the terrorist groups to decide which cell is next to be activated. The level of terrorist cell activity in Italy shows that someone has been listening to the instructions that led to the ultimatum against the Europeans, is getting ready for the next phase in the jihad against the West.

The current threat is specifically to Western capitals, unless they pull all troops out of the entire ummah, including Afghanistan. The Europeans have thirty days in which to comply.

The attacks on Europe are a major component of the new strategic Plan 2020: to establish a new caliphate by the year 2020. To implement this grand strategic plan of the jihadist movement, al-Zawahiri has set up a new, forward-based command center (in Iran?) from which he can better control activities in the West, and which will allow greater safety to Osama bin Laden and the theological leadership of the movement.

As they increasingly strike into the heart of the West, there's a greater likelihood of Western reaction; the West's reactive attacks are a component of the al Q plan.

The al Q apparatus throughout the ummah and now into Europe is confident, strong, well financed, ruthless, well organized, and extremely prepared with their plan for the next fifteen years. They probably have all the cadres and networks they believe they need.

Goal is to win in the political drama: Al Q goal is to separate the European peoples from their governments, put Europe on the defensive, to induce the leaders to make unacceptable deals with Islamic communities in their midst. Jihadists are convinced that these will lead to a dominance of Islam over Europe.

Blair's new laws cracking down on terrorist activities -- rounding up imams, closing websites -- will tend to strengthen al Q. They'll also create an irreconcilable confrontation between Muslims in the West and their secular, democratic local governments; by this means, Muslims will be persuaded to flock to the ranks of jihadist networks.

European deals to appease al Q will thus lead to Islamic dominance over Europe. In the short run, government crackdowns will disrupt al Q communications, but in the long run, the crackdowns will strengthen al Q. They'll be able to resurrect their networks outside of Europe and continue the traffic.
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It's come to my attention that many people have fallen under the impression that the bombs used in the 7/7 London massacre are "homemade" -- made from materials that could be found in a chemist's shop. To the best of my understanding, the most reliable unclassified data currently available, and which has been presented repeatedly over a period of several days on the John Batchelor show, indicates that it is almost certain this could not be the case with regard to the stabilizer used in the bombs. The stabilizer is almost certain to be of East European manufacture.

Yet making this argument and understanding it completely would require knowledge of bombs and bomb making techniques, as anyone who has tried to follow the technical aspects of the discussions on Batchelor knows.

It's also come to my attention that many people are unaware of the role that Bosnia plays as a major terrorist training ground. Perhaps that's because Bosnia's role puts the NATO operations in Yugoslavia in a poor light. Whatever the reason the major media have ignored the story, it helps to understand al Qaeda present operations in Europe if you familiarize yourself a little with the history of Bosnia's development as a major base of terrorist operations.

Toward this end, I recommend you click on this link to the Global Terror Alert website (also shown on Pundita blogroll under GWOT) to learn about Evan F. Kohlmann's exhaustively researched book, Al-Qaida's Jihad in Europe: the Afghan-Bosnian Network.

There's no use trying to go forward with our eyes closed. Time to learn some things the enemy knows.

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