Al Qaeda importing Chechens, Saudis, and Yemenis to Afghanistan
A "new species" of well-trained terrorist has infiltrated Afghanistanâs capital, posing an increasing threat to the already shaky security situation in the country, the head of an international peacekeeping force said.
How is that different from the old one?
According to intelligence reports, the militants come from Saudi Arabia, Yemen or the Russian republic of Chechnya, Lt. Gen. Goetz Gliemeroth, commander of the 5,000-strong NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Kabul, said on Tuesday.
The usual suspects, from the looks of things, though there arenât any Pakistanis for local flavor or Algerians for ruthlessness.
He said many already have been caught or killed in operations along the rugged, mountainous border region between Pakistan and Afghanistan, where Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida operatives are believed to be hiding.
"Apart from, if I may say so, the typical terrorist, weâve got a new species," Gliemeroth said at a regular briefing. They are "excellently trained and ... they also have improved technique at hand."
There were reputed to have been al-Qaeda camps set up in Sudan and Georgia right after the Riyadh bombings, plus whatever MILF can churn out in Mindanao and the Kashmiri Killers in Azad Kashmir. Though given the aftermath of the Battle of Zabul, I would say that they still have a long ways to go. The addition of more Yemenis to the mix could be another effect of recent merger between them and al-Qaeda.
Yemen and Saudi Arabia have conducted anti-terrorist raids following repeated calls by the United States to do more to curb Islamic militancy after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in America.
With varying degrees of willingness and success ...
Gliemeroth said it was unclear if the terrorists were working in tandem with a particular group.
"Whether al-Qaida or special envoys from (renegade warlord) Gulbuddin Hekmatyar or representatives of al-Qaida, I guess itâs a mixture," he said. "Against suicide bombs, there is no waterproof protection."
The German general said their intention was to bring the international terrorist campaign to Afghanistan. "Apart from doing harm to the integrity of the country ... they will try to infiltrate Kabul because it is the capital."
They might been behind the bus bomb earlier this summer then. I wonder if al-Qaeda plans on taking another shot at Karzai?
Gliemeroth refused to say what countermeasures had been taken against the terrorists or how many had infiltrated the Afghan capital. "If there are only 15, the damage could be tremendous."
Posted by: Dan Darling 2003-10-22