Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Rapid Reaction: The Shattered Myths of Al-Qaeda

by Alexis Y. Debat from the National Interest Online

Even though much remains to be learned from the past few days’ investigation, initial reports from UK security sources indicate that this terrorist cell was not built in Britain but that at least some of the 8 men arrested so far (including Dr. Muhammad Asha from Jordan) had been sent to the UK separately and linked up there. This indicates that the plot was likely coordinated from somewhere outside of London. This is not to say, of course, that these “instant generation” terrorist cells do not exist, and/or that this phenomenon will not grow in the future–it will, and not just to serve Violent Neo-Salafism–but simply that this is still a fairly rare occurrence.

Reports blame Salafis for attack on peacekeepers

from The Daily Star, Lebanon

A Salafi extremist group carried out the June 24 bomb attack in South Lebanon that left dead six UN peacekeepers serving with the Spanish contingent, media reports said on Tuesday. The reports, citing European intelligence sources, said a Salafi group "plotted" the attack on the Spanish contingent of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) ... Media reports said the Salafi cell had infiltrated deep into the South from another part of the country in order to carry out attacks. Reports added, however, that the Salafi group was likely assisted by "members of local terrorist groups during the preparatory stages of the operation, way ahead of the assault."

Why should Al Qaeda be interested in India?

by B. Raman from Rediff News

Pro-Al Qaeda jihadi organisations from Pakistan (Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami, and Lashkar-e-Tayiba) have been active in Indian territory since 1993. Among other members of the International Islamic Front are the Taliban, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, and Abu Sayyaf of southern Philippines ... All of these organisations are Wahabbi in orientation. All are strongly anti-US and anti-Israel. All emphasise the right of the Ummah (the Muslim community at large) to develop military nuclear capability. All practise mass casualty terrorism. All rely more on improvised explosive devices -- than on handheld weapons -- and on suicide terrorism for their operations. All recruit members from the Muslim communities in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh as well as in the Muslim diaspora in the Gulf, Europe, North America and Australia. All of them support the creation of a global Islamic Caliphate. All of them oppose Western-style liberal democracy and advocate an Islamic democracy, which, according to them, will be governed by the will of Allah as interpreted by the clerics.

Sir Salman Rushdie Hypocrisy

by Leslie J. Sacks from the Bangladesh Blitz

When the Wahabi version of the Word of God is absolute, when the radical Muslim world (now dominant and in ascendance) countenances no alternative views, no variations of subjective interpretation and mandates death for such apostasy, then the recent knighting of Sir Salman Rushdie does indeed smack of provocativeness ... The raison d’etre of the West was founded on a plurality of opinions, a profound respect for religious and cultural differences, and the right to express them, however it may bother sectors in our community. It is exactly this ability to tolerate dissent, diversity and individuality that defines our freedom as it also encourages the hate of every Jihadist, every Wahabi fundamentalist whose sole purpose seems to be to extinguish that freedom and expunge that diversity.

Born in Aylesbury, shaped in Baghdad, the would-be bomber

by Ian Cobain and Alexandra Topping from The Guardian

Although raised in Baghdad, Dr Abdulla was born in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, where his father, also a doctor, worked. He has several relatives in Cambridge, some of them associated with the university. In Baghdad, however, he is remembered as a figure from whom classmates kept their distance. "By high school he was known as a Wahhabi," said one former classmate. "He was a Sunni extremist." ... He was in the flaming Jeep which rammed Glasgow airport on Saturday and sources said police also suspect he was one of the men who brought the failed car bombs into central London on Friday.

Sitting Down With A Saudi Dissident

by Joseph Puder from The Philadelphia Bulletin

Ali Alyami Alyami was recently honored by the Endowment for Middle East Truth, a pro-Israel think tank in Washington, D.C. Alyami is the founder and executive director of the Center for Democracy and Human Rights in Saudi Arabia:

The Saudi ruling family could never have been, is not currently and will never be a genuine friend of the U.S. Saudi Arabia is an absolute monarchy that does not recognize the rule of law, civil constitution, empowerment of individuals or freedom of religion and thought. It has no civil society, freedom of speech, free press, transparency or accountability. It disregards public opinion regarding the royal family's squandering of public wealth. Violators who pose such questions incur serious punishment, including the loss of life. Conversely, the U.S. is one of the most tolerant nations in the world. People's rights are protected by the Bill of Rights. America has checks and balances and an independent judicial system. The U.S.-Saudi relationship is based on the wrong foundation: The U.S. protects the totalitarian monarchy in exchange for cheap oil. This arrangement contributed to the development of a deadly religious ideology that spawned the 9/11 terrorist attack on America, with 15 of the 19 hijackers being Saudis.