Thursday, June 28, 2007

Detained Aussie cabbie may have al-Qaeda link

by Martin Chulov and Richard Kerbaj from The Australian

A Tripoli car dealer who rents a shop next to a shed owned by Australian man Omar Hadba - where almost 500kg of military weapons were allegedly found hidden ... Mr Chawk said his neighbour, who had moved from Sydney eight years ago, was a committed follower of the Salafi strand of Islam who kept a low profile in Tripoli with his wife and five children ... As revealed in The Australian yesterday, weapons in the workshop were allegedly seized by the Lebanese army on Saturday night, hours before soldiers stormed a nearby apartment building, killing six alleged terrorists who were believed to be members of a Fatah al-Islam cell.

Somalia: The Questionable Moral Arbiters

by Mohamed Jibrell from Garowe Online

What is more striking about the cyber Transitional Federal Government (TFG) bashers is how nearly all ignore the reality of the courts introducing an autocratic rule of terror based on a foreign Islamic Salafi ideology compounded by criminal acts of suicide bombs, roadside explosions, and dragging of dead bodies in the streets of Mogadishu. Those evil deeds never cross the TFG bashers’ editorial desks. For the last 17 years they have changed colors many times: clan rights supporters; nationalists; and religious purists defending the faithful, among others. What make their arguments inane are the multiple portraits they provide as critics adrift from moral bearings.

The snake in the grass

by Don Rogers from the Vail Trail

The United States gives Saudi Arabia aid in the billions of dollars atop buying enough oil to help make their princes the richest people on Earth. This mystified all the speakers at the seminar. Ken Jowitt, a Berkeley political science professor, called Saudi Arabia “the largest family gas station in the world. We genuflect to the Saudis ... We protect this family,” he said, shaking his head. “We could lay the law down.” Vali Nasr, a professor at the Naval Postgraduate School in San Diego, said the U.S. should just ask the Saudis to stop funding Wahhabi evangelism. “We don’t have to stop driving SUVs to talk tough to the Saudi Arabia,” he said.

The Rupture

by Robert J. Avrech from the Jewish Press

Iran has been financing Hamas in Gaza. Most of the Hamas leadership has gone to the mattresses in Tehran, terrified of being kidnapped, tortured horribly and then maybe put out of their misery by the “moderate” Fatah – or assassinated by an Israeli drone. Make no mistake about it – Gaza is now a proxy Iranian state. The Shia Persians want to be big players in the region, push out the hated Sunni/Wahhabi Saudis and humble the big boys on the block, the Egyptians.

Chitral now on the jihadi radar screen

by Philip Smucker from Asia Times Online

While the Islamabad government has promised to preserve Chitral as a model of religious and ethnic tolerance, radical - often Salafist and Wahhabi-funded schools - are making rapid inroads in the remote valleys of the region. "We have already seen what little has happened in the last several years of President [General Pervez] Musharraf's rule to stop these groups," said Dr Fazal Marwat, a professor at the Pakistan Study Center of Peshawar University. "If he cannot even implement minimal madrassa reform, what can be expected to stop further radicalization?" Officials in Chitral said they closed down several radical madrassas recently, though, they admit, many more remain active.

A lawsuit without merit

by Jeff Jacoby from the Boston Globe

The Islamic Society of Boston abandoned the sweeping defamation lawsuit it had filed in 2005 against 17 defendants who had expressed concerns about the Islamic Society's leaders, some of whom had ties to jihadist extremism, and about the land the city of Boston sold it at a cut-rate price in order to build a mosque ... Documents acquired during discovery revealed that some $4.2 million had been wired to an Islamic Society bank account in New Hampshire between April 2004 and May 2005 -- nearly all of it from Saudi Arabia. Another $1 million came from the Saudi-based Islamic Development Bank in late 2005 ... But in its lawsuit, the Islamic Society had denied any Saudi connection to the mosque it was building in Boston. Repeatedly, the Islamic Society sought court orders blocking the release of such evidence.