French Al Qaeda man tells all to interrogators
The Advertiser, an Austrialian newspaper, has come out with some startling revelations about an Al Qaeda man, a French national, captured in Australia and now being interrogated by the French. According to a report published by the newspaper on 18 October, Willie Brigitte, the captured man, has told French investigators of his extraordinary journey from failed butcher to linchpin in an Al Qaeda plan to launch a terror attack on Australia.
"M'sieur Brigitte, it is time we talked!"
"Are those... ummm... pliers?"
"Would you be so kind as to tell us where you were trained?"
"Legume! Get off his head!"
He has detailed the high-altitude paramilitary training he undertook in a vast camp overlooking the Himalayas in which he and thousands of jihad warriors were schooled in terrorism.
"Yes, yes. Lovely, no doubt. But we were looking for more detail, M'sieur Brigitte."
"I can't talk with these underwear on my head!"
"Those are crotchless. Legume, would you be so kind as to arrange them for our... guest?"
He has told of how Osama Bin Laden's allies have penetrated the Pakistani Army to thwart US efforts to crack terrorist training operations in the remote Pakistani mountain regions that border Afghanistan.
"Legume? You are writing all this down?"
"Yes, Inspector!"
"Be careful not to let your notes fall into the hands of Australian newspapers!"
A year after the French national was captured in a western Sydney apartment with documents indicating he was planning to launch an attack on Australian targets, his interrogation transcripts are said to have come into the possession of the Australian newspaper.
"M'sieur Brigitte, I am always curious to know how the network of people prepared to join the Islamist jihad against the West function. Perhaps you could provide some insight?"
"You can let go of his nose now, Legume."
The transcripts are said to give a rare insight into how the networks of people prepared to join the Islamist jihad against the West function. Brigitte told investigators the camp where he was trained in the use of explosives, small arms and terrorism tactics was a sophisticated three-tiered mountain complex close to the Indo-Pakistani border.
"Ahah! In Kashmir, then?"
He was grouped with foreign recruits, including American and British citizens of Pakistani origin. "There were between 2,000 and 3,000 mujahideens," Brigitte told French anti-terror judge Jean-Louis Bruguiere.
"Pfeh! That many? Are you sure you remember the numbers correctly?"
"I remember it was very impressive because we gathered every morning and shouted Allah Akbar. What was more, the site was imposing since one could see the outline of the Himalayas."
"Yes, yes. You keep coming back to that. I am sure it was lovely. But I am more interested in who was doing the training. Hit him again, Legume!"
The camp was run by Lashkar e-Taiba (LET).
"A terrorist organization? I thought they were primarily interested in Kashmir? Or is there more there than meets the eye, M'sieur Brigitte?"
Brigitte said LET was filled with soldiers from the Pakistan Army who worked to sabotage efforts by the West to fight bin Laden and his allies.
"And the Pakistani army tolerated this state of affairs? They had nothing to say about it?"
"There was complete complicity between Lashkar e Taiba and the Pakistani Army," Brigitte said in a secret interrogation in the Paris judicial chambers of Judge Bruguiere on 3 December 2003.
"I believe he feels like talking now, Legume. You may take your thumb out of his eye."
"Yes, your honor!"
"So where did these weapons come from, M'sieur Brigitte?"
"Furthermore, the weapons were provided by the army. The munitions were brought in by night between the first and second levels (of the camp). There was everything — munitions, arms and food. We had the feeling that these weapons came from the Pakistani Army."
"And what type of weapons were there? No... French weapons, of course?"
"There were American M16s, French FAMS, Kalashnikovs and Makarovs."
"You are sure they were French, M'sieur Brigitte?"
"Ow! Owwwww! I may have been mistaken about those!"
"All the identification numbers had been removed."
"But surely someone must have noticed military activity in the area? If such a thing got out..."
Brigitte said on several occasions he was ordered to remove any evidence of military activity. The camp leaders had been warned that a raid by a coalition of CIA agents and Pakistani soldiers was imminent.
"There was this guy, they called him Mahmoud the Weasel..."
"Ah! I understand!"
"I can remember four raids by the Pakistani Army," Brigitte said. "They always asked the foreign volunteers, of whom I was one, to clean up the camp and particularly to collect the cartridge cases and cartridges. There were no more than 15 Pakistani soldiers who came to carry out these checks with the same number of Americans. We were told that they were CIA agents who had come to check for the presence of foreign mujahideens."
"And rather than a military camp, they saw nothing but 3,000 men with turbans, yelling 'Allahu Akbar'? Was it very cold where you were? They must have been numb! And you were there for how long?"
Brigitte stayed at the camp for six weeks before returning to Paris early in 2002.
"You returned to Paris early in 2002? In the spring?"
"I love Paris in the springtime!"
"Quiet, Legume!"
"And why did you return to Paris, M'sieur Brigitte?"
"I was lonely. I missed my... my lover."
"Perhaps we should ask her what your intentions were?"
"I assure you, my intentions were purely honorable!"
His lover flatmate in Paris, Ibrahim Keita, said Brigitte had returned under orders to organise a sleeper cell there.
"Ibrahim! You have betrayed me!"
"Quiet, M'sieur Brigitte! Legume! Hit him again!"
"Brigitte did explain to me he had been sent back to France in order to make contact with a certain number of people," Keita told Judge Bruguiere.
"Thank you, M'sieur Keita. Legume, let go of his ears."
"They were individuals who had either already fought or who had taken training in camps like him, as I understood it."
"And who was his controller?"
Brigitte was acting under orders from his mentor at the LET camp, known as Sajid Abu Braa, a 30-year-old Pakistan Army soldier in charge of foreign recruits. Abu Braa, who travelled with two personal bodyguards, was a close associate of the camp's leader, known only as Zakerahmane.
"I am not familiar with that name. He sounds like he may be an Algerian. Can you perhaps tell me a little more about him?"
In Afghanistan, he was Bin Laden's right-hand man.
"Pfeh! Aren't they all? Bin Laden must have dozens of right hands!"
Brigitte was arrested at his Sydney flat on 9 October 2003 and officials found maps of Australian nuclear sites, and the Perth headquarters of Australia's elite SAS unit. He was repatriated to France on October 17, where he remains imprisoned in Paris's Fleury Merogis Jail.
Posted by: Destro 2004-10-21