Yemeni authorities arrested last week two people from al-Eman university affiliated to Sheikh Abdulmajeed Al-Zindani of the Islah Party. Reliable sources said that the intelligence arrested Wednesday a student at al-Eman university named Abduljabar al-Marwani. Two days earlier, the authorities arrested Dr. Ahmad al-Daghshi, a professor at Sana'a and al-Eman universities. The two persons were detained as their names were mentioned during interrogations with the killers of Jarallah Omar and the US doctors. That's two more off the street, at least for awhile...
Investigations with the detainees have proven they were all from a fundamentalist Jihad movement headed by Ali Jarallah, assassin of Jarallah Omar. According to the investigators, the cell members were planning to carry out terrorist operations and assassinations targeting several foreign interests as well as politicians, writers and journalists for allegedly adopting and calling for secularism. Omigawd! Secularism! How awful!
The list is said to have included over 30 persons. Investigations are reported to have proved a link between the cell and the Yemeni Jihad movement whose members were educated at the hands of the Egyptian Jihad movement members who were deported from Yemen some years ago. The Yemeni authorities have also launched an arrest campaign against the Yemeni Jihad members since 1998, which coincided with a similar campaign against Aden-Abyan Islamic Army members after the Abyan fiasco in which some foreign tourists were killed. The government announced in late 1999 the execution of the army chief , Abu Al-Hasan al-Mihdar. Note that was two years before 9-11. Saleh's regime doesn't screw around with these guys â and since 9-11 they've become serious...
Observers believe that the discovery of the Ali Jarallah's cell and making sure that it has links with Jihad indicates that there are sleeper cells of Jihad, Aden army and others which might find a match with al-Qaeda whose members are still being hunted down by the authorities, mainly those people whose names were mentioned in the FBI's lists like Abu Assem al-Ahdal and Fawaz al-Rabee.
To meet the challenges of these groups, the Interior ministry announced last week that it is going to launch the second phase of the electronic monitoring on some important places and streets in the capital. It will install cameras that are connected to an operation room in the ministry which will make it easier for the security people to monitor any terrorist activities and thwart them. This phase will target 15 important places. The ministry announced earlier this month that a new security plan to fight terrorism and control outlaws will be initiated. If I was Bush and/or Powell, I'd become better friends with Saleh. I remember how surprised I was, November a year ago, when Yemen started rounding up Bad Guys. I thought at the time it was because we were tromping the Talibs in Afghanistan, and may have been partly right. They were downright uncooperative in the Cole investigation. But since then, Saleh's regime has been doing what it can to clean up the kidnap industry and to break up the terror sympathizers. Unlike a lot of other Arab regimes, he's been as good as his word. The U.S. should recognize that fact, and probably does â though behind the scenes. It's still dangerous to be pro-American in that part of the world. As a side benefit, a secure partnership between Yemen and the U.S. would strike a certain amount of fear in the hearts of the Bad Guys. Yemenis on the Qaeda side are vicious, merciless killers. I have nothing against having some vicious, merciless Good Guys on our side. Who's got moustachios more magnificent than a Yemeni?
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 07:03 pm ||
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Suprised me to,a Fundimentally Muslem country cracking down on the wackos.
They deserve a pat on the back,bet it a no fun in a Yemeni prison.
Kuwait will place itself on a war footing as of Saturday, heightening security to curb the possibility of terrorist attacks in the event of a US-led war on Iraq. From February 1, special security units will be placed along major roads and highways in Kuwait, which since last October has witnessed three serious attacks, two of them fatal, against US forces and civilians, Sheikh Mohammed Khalid al-Sabah told newspaper editors. Al-Qabas newspaper cited the minister as saying Kuwait will be a safe country from where there will be no evacuation of foreigners.
The units will be comprised of Kuwaiti Army, National Guard and interior ministry personnel, raising the country's level of alert to the "fourth degree", in anticipation of any possible terrorist attacks should the US launch a military campaign against Iraq. OK, the entire country of Kuwait just became invisible.
Some 35,000 US troops are currently based in Kuwait and 80,000 more will pour in until mid-February, when the deployment should be completed, said Sheikh Mohammed, who stressed Kuwait was passing through a "difficult phase". Since a January 21 highway ambush that killed US civilian contractor Michael Rene Pouliot and seriously wounded a second American David Caraway, the interior ministry has tightened security along roads leading to the scene of the attack, which occurred close to Camp Doha. Security authorities also rounded up scores of suspects, namely Kuwaitis who had allegedly been in Afghanistan, about time and have since announced the arrest of Kuwaiti Sami Mohammed Marzook al-Mutairi who confessed to the attack and that he "embraced the ideas of al-Qaeda." Truncheons"R"Us had a two for one sale.
A joint letter signed by eight European leaders backing the United States on the crisis with Iraq highlighted the European Union's divisions on Thursday, rubbing salt into the wounds of its stumbling foreign policy. The European Parliament deepened that disarray by declaring that Iraq's response to U.N. weapons inspectors so far did not justify military action and warning against a unilateral U.S.-led war. In an article published in a dozen newspapers, the leaders of EU members Britain, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Denmark, plus future members Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, called time on Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and appealed for unity. But they failed to consult most EU partners and candidates about the initiative, launched just two days after the bloc's foreign ministers tried to paper over their cracks with a joint statement backing the U.N. arms inspection effort in Iraq.
Indeed British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, two of the prime movers, kept the EU's Greek presidency in the dark during telephone calls with Prime Minister Costas Simitis on Wednesday. Asked whether Athens was told, Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Panos Beglitis said: "No, we were not informed about this move. We were informed...late last night during Mr. Simitis' meeting with his Hungarian counterpart. But there was no previous information or coordination." Simitis had conversations with both Blair and Berlusconi on Wednesday and neither raised the matter, he said. "Simple common courtesy would have dictated early advice," one furious Greek official said. EU officials said neither the bloc's foreign policy chief, Javier Solana, nor its external relations commission, Chris Patten, were informed of the letter. "We don't live yet in a perfect world," European Commission spokesman Jonathan Faull commented, adding: "We are all agreed that there is still much to be done to reinforce the mechanisms of our common foreign and security policy, but I will not be drawn into comments on divisions and that sort of thing." One senior official said the initiative had wrecked a week of EU damage control spent trying to build a consensus in favor of the weapons inspections and respect for the primacy of the U.N. Security Council in deciding on war or peace. The chairman of the European Parliament's foreign affairs committee, German Christian Democrat Elmar Brok, said any chance of Europe's voice being heard had been undone. "The race of the vassals has begun," he said in a statement.
Parliament adopted 287-209 with 26 abstentions a non-binding resolution saying: "Breaches of U.N. Security Council resolution 1441 currently identified by the inspectors with regard to weapons of mass destruction do not justify military action."
EU diplomats said the "Gang of Eight" letter seemed to be an attempt to isolate France and Germany, which have warned Washington against a rush to war, and to strengthen Blair's hand in talks with President Bush this weekend. "The transatlantic relationship must not become a casualty of the current Iraqi regime's persistent attempts to threaten world security," the leaders' open letter said. But the fact that only five of the 15 leaders of the existing EU signed the text, while one -- Dutch Prime Minister Jan-Peter Balkenende -- refused, showed how evenly the bloc is divided, at least tactically, on the Iraq crisis. Dutch Foreign Ministry spokesman Bart Jochems confirmed that Balkenende, a keen Atlanticist, had been approached to sign the text but had declined. "What we are aiming for is one European voice and we are trying to achieve that by bridging gaps and that is why the prime minister did not sign," Jochems told Reuters.
Spokesmen for Sweden, Austria, the Baltic states, Slovakia and Slovenia said their leaders had not been contacted.
While only Germany has opposed military action under any circumstances, France, Belgium, Austria, Sweden, Greece and Finland have all urged giving the U.N. inspectors more time and insist on exploring all avenues for a peaceful solution.
In a further example of European cacophony, Denmark's center-left opposition parties accused Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen of undermining European unity by signing the text, while Germany's conservative opposition said the letter showed how isolated Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder was. "The result of this policy will be an irreversible damage to Germany's position in the community of common values of the West," said Michael Glos, parliamentary leader of the opposition Christian Social Union. Vassals vs Weasels, the new reality series!
"Simitis had conversations with both Blair and Berlusconi on Wednesday and neither raised the matter, he said. "Simple common courtesy would have dictated early advice," one furious Greek official said."
Simple common courtesy would mean that Germany and France would have consulted with their partners before they did their little number on the US. Hats off to the Vassels! Fie to the weasels!
Posted by: Alaska Paul ||
01/30/2003 12:36 Comments ||
If they were "vassals", we'd be getting this sort of conversation over the White House - Dowling Street line right about now:
I also saw that Alain Madelin, my favorite French politician (don't laugh! He's a real, committed conservative libertarian in the US mode), spoke in favor of US policy today.
The nations asked were basically the center-right governments in Europe. The Dutch and French center-right governments didn't want to go along. The Baltics would have been eager to speak up for us, decent chance from the Slovenians.
Posted by: John Thaker ||
01/30/2003 17:46 Comments ||
This letter, signed by the leaders of seven European countries appeared in the London Times. Thank you.
THE real bond between the United States and Europe is the values we share: democracy, individual freedom, human rights and the Rule of Law. These values crossed the Atlantic with those who sailed from Europe to help create the USA. Today they are under greater threat than ever.
The attacks of 11 September showed just how far terrorists â the enemies of our common values â are prepared to go to destroy them. Those outrages were an attack on all of us. In standing firm in defence of these principles, the governments and people of the United States and Europe have amply demonstrated the strength of their convictions. Today more than ever, the transatlantic bond is a guarantee of our freedom.
We in Europe have a relationship with the United States which has stood the test of time. Thanks in large part to American bravery, generosity and far-sightedness, Europe was set free from the two forms of tyranny that devastated our continent in the 20th century: Nazism and Communism. Thanks, too, to the continued cooperation between Europe and the United States we have managed to guarantee peace and freedom on our continent. The transatlantic relationship must not become a casualty of the current Iraqi regimeâs persistent attempts to threaten world security.
In todayâs world, more than ever before, it is vital that we preserve that unity and cohesion. We know that success in the day-to-day battle against terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction demands unwavering determination and firm international cohesion on the part of all countries for whom freedom is precious.
The Iraqi regime and its weapons of mass destruction represent a clear threat to world security. This danger has been explicitly recognised by the United Nations. All of us are bound by Security Council Resolution 1441, which was adopted unanimously. We Europeans have since reiterated our backing for Resolution 1441, our wish to pursue the UN route and our support for the Security Council, at the Prague Nato Summit and the Copenhagen European Council.
In doing so, we sent a clear, firm and unequivocal message that we would rid the world of the danger posed by Saddam Husseinâs weapons of mass destruction. We must remain united in insisting that his regime is disarmed. The solidarity, cohesion and determination of the international community are our best hope of achieving this peacefully. Our strength lies in unity.
The combination of weapons of mass destruction and terrorism is a threat of incalculable consequences. It is one at which all of us should feel concerned. Resolution 1441 is Saddam Husseinâs last chance to disarm using peaceful means. The opportunity to avoid greater confrontation rests with him. Sadly this week the UN weapons inspectors have confirmed that his long-established pattern of deception, denial and non-compliance with UN Security Council resolutions is continuing.
Europe has no quarrel with the Iraqi people. Indeed, they are the first victims of Iraqâs current brutal regime. Our goal is to safeguard world peace and security by ensuring that this regime gives up its weapons of mass destruction. Our governments have a common responsibility to face this threat. Failure to do so would be nothing less than negligent to our own citizens and to the wider world.
The United Nations Charter charges the Security Council with the task of preserving international peace and security. To do so, the Security Council must maintain its credibility by ensuring full compliance with its resolutions. We cannot allow a dictator to systematically violate those Resolutions. If they are not complied with, the Security Council will lose its credibility and world peace will suffer as a result.
We are confident that the Security Council will face up to its responsibilities.
Posted by: Frank G ||
01/30/2003 9:04 Comments ||
It was time.
I am European, a Permanent Resident in the USA and I have been ashamed by the French and German words and behavior.
The document is good but still it is prudent and diplomatic, it speaks softly, as if words could kill or poison the speakers. The idea behind the words remains the wrong one: the United Nations must be at the center of international relationships, not the values, not the facts. Yes, I can't ask them to speak as Oriana Fallaci does, but it would be nice (and the dangers for peace and democracy would disappear in thin air instantly if we were strongly united...).Thank you and have a nice day.
It is true that the the document is prudent and diplomatic. It was written by polite and refined Europeans, not by us "in-your-face" and results-oriented 'Mericans. But it is a great show of support for us and is much appreciated by this 'Merican.
Posted by: Alaska Paul ||
01/30/2003 12:44 Comments ||
Prudent and diplomatic or not, the Axis of Weasels and their sycophants don't like it one damn bit - the EU bureaucracy has been squawking all day and the European Parliament huffed and puffed and passed (narrowly) a resolution scolding the Eight "Vassals" for the letter. What I thought when I saw it was that Tony & company really spat a nice juicy one into the metaphorical eye of Schroeder & Chirac, it's hard to see how a statement at this level of international discourse could be more direct and explicit.
Matter of fact, Steven den Beste over at USS Clueless thinks that this letter is a sign that a new bloc is forming within the EU to counteract the aforesaid Axis, and I wouldn't be surprised if he's right.
The United States has designated a banned Pakistani Islamic group a terrorist organisation. Secretary of State Colin Powell accused Lashkar-e-Jhangvi of close links with al-Qaeda. He said the group was also guilty of numerous bus and church bombings. Lashkar-e-Jhangvi was banned in Pakistan 18 months ago as part of President Musharraf's clampdown on Islamic extremists. State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said the group was involved in the kidnapping and subsequent murder a year ago in Karachi of US journalist Daniel Pearl. What the hell took so long? If the State Department needs somebody to track these bloodthirsty goobers, I'm available at very reasonable rates...
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 08:09 pm ||
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SARGODHA (NNI): Commander Bakht Zamin Khan, the chief of Al-Badr Mujahideen, has said jihad is the only way towards solution of all problems and his men would never withdraw from the frontlines. Addressing a gathering at the funeral of Zamir Khan Shaheed, who has been martyred in Indian Held Kashmir, recently, he warned that if he couldn't have his way Kashmir is not liberated, the war clouds would continue to hover over Pakistan and peace would remain a far cry. Commander Bakht Zamin urged the rulers not to bow before pressure on Kashmir solution other than under the UN resolutions. He called upon the people to forge unity against infidel forces and pressure government not to follow pro-America policy on Kashmir, Palestine and other issues. Bakht Zamin said his mujahideen would spare every effort for the liberation of Kashmir. I think they mean "spare no effort." Or maybe "expend all their ammunition." Something like that...
He said that the ban on religious and jihad organizations by the government has posed a great threat to Kashmir cause. He asked to Arab world to stop oil supply from the reservoirs to put pressure on India and Israel for Kashmir and Palestine. Pretty free with other people's money, isn't he?
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 07:35 pm ||
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Chief of defunct Sipah-e-Sahaba and Member of National Assembly Maulana Azam Tariq has expressed his confidence in the superior courts and hoped that his party would be exonerated. Talking to newsmen, he said that the previous governments had filed baseless cases against the party leaders. "Ignore those dead guys. It'd all lies..."
He vowed to continue struggle for the implementation of Islamic system in the country. But natch. Cutting off people's heads is essential to have a well-governed, modern state...
He announced to launch a new political party soon and the workers will be activated to work for the welfare and betterment of the country. "It'll be something along the lines of Sipah, only not indicted..."
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 07:20 pm ||
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Iraq has invited the chief UN weapons inspectors back to Baghdad as the US builds a coalition for a possible military strike. Chief inspector Hans Blix said there was no sign of increased Iraqi co-operation with the inspectors searching for evidence of weapons of mass destruction. The Iraqi Government says it has invited Mr Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei - the head of the UN's nuclear watchdog - for talks before 10 February in an effort to boost "co-operation and transparency". The two men are due to present their next report to the UN Security Council on 14 February. "We wuz just a-funnin' you! You know that!"
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 07:52 pm ||
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Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, the spiritual leader of the Hamas resistance group, said yesterday the United States was planning war on Iraq to perpetuate Israeli control of "the Palestinian homeland". "It's all about me..."
"America is implementing Zionist Israeli policy to serve the Zionist project in Palestine," Yassin told Reuters at his Gaza Strip home. "The battle America is undertaking is designed to allow Israel to remain in the Palestinian homeland." "It's got nothing to do with Iraq..."
Yassin said Bush wanted to launch a "war of crusaders against Muslims that began in Afghanistan (after the Sept. 11 attacks on New York and Washington) and today in Iraq and tomorrow in another country." Yes... It's another crusade... "Pope Urban II, call your office!"
He said a US offensive would reduce the threat to Israel from Iraq, which fired 39 Scud missiles at the Jewish state during the 1991 Gulf War and is said by Israeli officials to have funded Palestinian suicide bombing campaigns. "Zionist Israeli and Jewish policy is to strike every power emerging in the Arab and Muslim world because it would pose a danger to the existence of Israel on Muslim land," he said. "Therefore, they want to strip the Arab and Muslim world of any (real) power. Any country that develops power threatening to this entity (Israel), they want to smash it." "An' for no reason! I mean, who's ever done anything to them?"
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 04:22 pm ||
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A group of UN arms experts on their 61st day of field inspections Thursday were gifted, for the first time, 12 bottles of whisky at a suspect distillery. The manager of Al-Awali distillery in Baghdad's eastern outskirts gave the case of "Canari special whisky" to a team from the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) after it had inspected stills and assembly lines. "Yes, they offered them a gift: a case of 12 bottles. It shows the generosity of the Iraqi people," inspectors' spokesman Hiro Ueki said. "It was a generous sign and the inspectors did not refuse the gift because they want to be nice also," Ueki said. Guess UN inspectors don't have any of those messy conflict of interest rules they have to follow.
The factory, which also produces arak and gin, had already been visited twice since UN inspections resumed on November 27 after a four-year break. Can't find any weapons, but they sure know where to find a drink. Memo to Air Combat Command, you might want to mark this distillery down as a "No Bomb" zone. Our guys will want a drink to toast Sammy's lynching.
Washington will announce the decision to hold a military operation against Iraq within the next three weeks, the Russian military command believes. "The American administration will make a formal decision to hold a military operation in Iraq right after the U.S. Armed Forces and their allies have formed battle groups in the region. This will take about another two or three weeks," a high-ranking source in the Russian Armed Forces General Staff told Interfax on Thursday. It's high level thinking like this that gets you on the General Staff. That, or he's been reading Rantburg.
"Thus, the possible war in Iraq could begin after February 20," he remarked. Yup
"Judging from recent military conflicts involving the United States, the American authorities will inform the Russian administration about their decision on the eve of the war, and strikes on Iraq from the air and the sea will follow in a day of two. Land units will invade Iraqi territory later," the source said. Truely a millitary genius
The United States has actually stopped the anti-terrorist campaign in Afghanistan in order to concentrate forces in the Persian Gulf, the source noted. Ah, maybe he isn't reading Rantburg
"More than 100,000 American servicemen have been amassed in the region, and the group is being enlarged further," he said. Global Security.com sez 70,000
"As far as we know, nothing concrete has been done to expose and destroy the terrorist infrastructure of the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan for at least several weeks. Washington does not even mention the fight against terrorism in Afghanistan any more. Nope, he isn't reading this.
All the propaganda, reconnaissance, information and purely military resources of the United States are now pointed at Iraq," the Russian military said. Well, a lot maybe, but not all.
Jordan, a key ally of Washington, was given six F-16 fighter-bombers ahead of an imminent deployment of U.S. anti-missile batteries on its borders to down any Iraqi missiles, officials and diplomats said on Thursday. Diplomats said the multirole F16s were delivered days before Washington installs the Patriot air defence system in Jordan to help intercept Iraqi Scud missiles that may be launched at Israel across Jordanian airspace during a possible war."Washington seeks to beef up Jordan's defences to strengthen the ability to intercept Iraqi Scud missiles fired against Israel before they enter Jordanian airspace and ideally on Iraqi soil," said one diplomat on condition of anonymity. Officials said the six aircraft were handed over on Wednesday to Jordan's Air Force at the country's main Mufaq Salti air base in a ceremony attended by U.S. Lieutenant General Buzz Mosley, Commander of U.S. Central Command Air Forces. Officials said the six aircraft were the first batch of a full F-16 squadron expected in coming months and would reinforce an existing squadron of F-16s given to the kingdom in 1997 to reward it for its pro-U.S. policies as well as a peace accord with Israel in 1994. Sniff, sniff, smell a payoff, anyone? Guess we'll have no problem getting permission for those overflights.
Eleven teenage boys have been rescued from an Islamic correction centre in Nairobi where they were chained, tortured, and indoctrinated with violent anti-Christian ideas. Armed police raided the school in a rundown Nairobi neighbourhood after Guleed Ahmed, a 16-year-old from Leicester, faked an illness to escape and raise the alarm. Inside they found 10 other boys, from Kenya, Sweden and Ethiopia, chained by their hands and feet and confined to a dark, foul-smelling room.
"It was really terrible," Guleed said yesterday. "They locked my hands and legs like this" â he clasped his ankles and wrists together â "all day, every day, even when I sleep. It lasted eight months."
Abdi Noor, a wiry 13-year-old from northern Kenya, nodded furiously. "Even when we go to the toilet, we go jumping," he said. "They would only unlock us at the door."
The school, the Khadija Islamic Institute of Discipline and Education, was in Eastleigh, a rough and dangerous neighbourhood dominated by ethnic Somalis. As police led the boys out last Monday, an angry crowd pelted them with stones, forcing officers to fire warning shots in the air.
But senior Muslims have expressed their abhorrence at the way the school was run, stressing it was an anomaly among thousands of well-run Islamic schools. The headteacher, named by students as Mowlid Abdi Ahmed, has been arrested and is expected to be charged with cruelty. Fourteen other staff are believed to have fled. Guleed, whose family lives in Britain but who holds a Dutch passport, is being looked after by the Dutch embassy. He had no documents with him and Dutch authorities are trying to trace his mother.
Relatives had sent the teenagers to Khadija Institute to learn about Islam. Schooling involved study of the Koran, with some lessons in English, Arabic and maths, always with their arms bound in chains. Sport was impossible. Meals were spartan and usually accompanied by a thrashing. "They cane you on the head, back, legs, bottom, everywhere," Guleed said. "How many times, it was impossible to know many. They called it 'the medicine'."
He had been attending Babington Community College in Leicester before his mother took him to Nairobi last summer, he said. But when she called every month, the teachers would stand over the phone. "They told me if you say something bad, we will beat you up. You tell her you love the school and you're learning to be a good Muslim." He finally escaped by faking a heart ailment and forcing teachers to take him to a medical centre, where doctors alerted police.
Hashim Ali, 16, who lived in Stockholm for 12 years before an uncle enrolled him in Khadija last June, said the killing of Christians was glorified in the school. "They told us it's called jihad," he said. "They said if you enter a church with bombs and kill yourself, you will go to heaven." Sometimes al-Qa'ida was mentioned during lectures, he added, but because they were in Arabic he did not understand the meaning. He once tried to write a letter to the Swedish embassy. Scars on his chin, forehead and back testified to the beating he suffered after being discovered. "There is nothing wrong with Islam; it's just these people," he said.
Kenya has a long tradition of Muslim tolerance and senior religious figures expressed their abhorrence at the reports. "This is just as shocking for us Muslims as anyone else," said Saad Khairallah of the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims. "Children and women are respected in Islam." A council official was investigating the circumstances under which the school operated, he added. Think we'll hear about this story in the US press? Me neither.
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (CNN) -- Former South African president Nelson Mandela has slammed the U.S. stance on Iraq, saying that "one power with a president who has no foresight, who cannot think properly, is now wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust." Not the whole world nelson baby, just the foolish idiots who think they can kill us in our homes without expecting to be punished for it.
Speaking at the International Women's Forum, Mandela said "if there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America." Hey - I know an 'international woman', she didnt even get an invite, how exclusive is this party?"
Mandela said U.S. President George W. Bush covets the oil in Iraq "because Iraq produces 64 percent of the oil in the world. What Bush wants is to get hold of that oil." In fact Iraq contributes to only 5 percent of world oil exports. Man, That cat has whiskers on it.
The Bush administration is threatening Promisingmilitary action if Iraq does not account for weapons of mass destruction and fully cooperate with U.N. weapons inspectors.
Receiving applause for his comments, Mandela said Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair are "undermining" past work of the United Nations. And I say, good for them!What has the U.N. Done for anyone ,ever? The U.N. couldnt even get Nelson out of jail! The record of success for the U.N. is hardly something to tout on its resume.
"They do not care. Is it because the secretary-general of the United Nations is now a black man?" said Mandela, referring to Kofi Annan, who is from Ghana. Dr. Rice and Secretary Powell are also, if I may say so, "black", although Im not sure what this means or how it changes anything. Its an inconvienient fact, but its there just the same. My guess is that Mr. Mandella prefers to judge people by skin pigmentation rather than content of character. (tsk tsk)
Blair is expected to discuss the issue of Iraq when he meets with South African President Thabo Mbeki in London Saturday, a day after the British leader's meeting with Bush. Thanks Tony for carrying the ball.
Mandela said he would support without reservation any action agreed upon by the United Nations against Iraq, which Bush and Blair say has weapons of mass destruction and is a sponsor of terror groups, including Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda network. Oh sure, I believe you Nelson. I really do. (eyes rolling, face mocking...)
Nobel Peace Laureate Mandela, 84, Well there it is! , the " badge of the moron"has spoken out many times against Bush's stance, and South Africa's close ties with Libya and Cuba irked Washington during Mandela's own presidency. He manages to overlook their problems with artrocities committed by 3rd world dictators, but seems to have a problem with ours. I smell favoritism.
In reaction to Mandela's comments, White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said Bush was grateful to the many European leaders who "obviously think differently."
"The president will understand there are going to be people who are more comfortable doing nothing about a growing menace that could turn into a holocaust. He respects people who differ with him. He will do what he thinks is right and necessary to protect our country," Fleischer said.
Thats the same "ari-speak" response you get when Helen Thomas shoots a spittle and oatmeal filled rant from the front row of the White House Press Corp. Perhaps Helen and Nelson should consider dating.
Posted by: Frank Martin ||
01/30/2003 12:27 pm ||
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Actually, I think the motivation behind Mandala's idiotarian view is different than that which motivates Helen Thomas (she hates Jews and people who agree with Jews) and Carter (he hates Republicans who bluntly speak truth). In Mandala's case, it is a matter of hating globalism/capitalism.
The United States has evidence of an orchestrated Iraqi attempt to spy on UN weapons inspectors using hidden microphones and agents, allowing Baghdad to stay one step ahead of the search for banned weapons, US sources said. One intelligence source in Washington said the Iraqi secret police had infiltrated the inspectors' offices in Baghdad and Mosul, and that intercepted communications proved that the Iraqis often knew in advance exactly where the inspectors planned to mount a search. "There is very good intelligence that Iraqi intelligence has penetrated the UN compounds. There are Iraqis inside those compounds and there are microphones in there, and so before the inspectors arrive, they move the stuff out of the back door," the source said. He said that the US also had satellite photographs of suspect sites showing Iraqi activity in advance of the inspectors' visits. However, these pictures were "not decisive" because it was not clear from them whether anything was being removed from the sites. "Much of this stuff is smaller than the size of a sink. That's the problem. You can't see it from the air," he said.
President George Bush referred to the Iraqi attempt to thwart inspections in his state of the union speech on Tuesday night, when he said: "From intelligence sources, we know, for instance, that thousands of Iraqi security personnel are at work hiding documents and materials from the UN inspectors - sanitising inspection sites, and monitoring the inspectors themselves."The US defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, would not give details of US claims but noted: "The inspectors have a difficult time arriving anywhere that is not expected, and they have a difficult time talking to anyone who hasn't been told what to say."
There is now a debate within the Bush administration about how much of this evidence the secretary of state, Colin Powell, should take with him next Wednesday when he is due to meet the UN security council in New York in an attempt to convince other member states of Saddam Hussein's bad faith, and the pointlessness of prolonging the inspections. Making public some of the US intercepts, one US official said, would make it clear which telephones or computer communications were being intercepted. We're far enough along now so it matters less. The more details Powell shows, the closer we are.
A senior source at the security council said that Mr Powell will present material on Wednesday that the UN's chief weapons inspector, Hans Blix, has not seen before. He said the presentation was likely to relate further examples of concealment rather than actionable intelligence that would constitute a smoking gun. The presentation may also provide evidence of other claims of Iraqi deception Mr Bush made on Tuesday night. He said: "Iraqi intelligence officers are posing as the scientists inspectors are supposed to interview. Real scientists have been coached by Iraqi officials on what to say. And intelligence sources indicate that Saddam Hussein has ordered that scientists who cooperate with UN inspectors in disarming Iraq will be killed, along with their families."
The UN monitoring, verification and inspection commission could not be reached for comment. It is unclear what the status of Wednesday's meeting will be, diplomatic sources said. In his speech, Mr Bush said the US would ask the security council to convene and consider the facts of Iraq's ongoing defiance. Those precise words are used in the UN resolution as a precursor to a possible trigger for war. Tick...tick...tick...
To my way of thinking, there's a point at which holding intelligence information too closely becomes counterproductive. It doesn't do anyone any good if nobody knows about it because it's being hidden for fear of revealing sources and methods. I think we're at the point where we _have_ to exhibit some of this information. Don't get me wrong - it should be carefully sanitized first so nothing that _shouldn't_ be revealed is exposed. But if we're going to have a real "Stevenson moment" next week, Colin Powell needs to have something real good for show and tell.
Edited for length...
Jordan has decided to allow the discreet stationing of U.S. troops to man air defenses, the launch of search-and-rescue missions from its airfields and the passage of allied planes across its airspace in any war with neighboring Iraq. The Jordanian willingness to cooperate marks a dramatic reversal of the neutrality proclaimed by the late King Hussein in the 1991 Persian Gulf War. It could prove important to any U.S. attack if it means warplanes could overfly Jordan from aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean Sea on the way to bombing runs over Iraq. Jordanian officials have said no invasion can originate from Jordan, which borders western Iraq. But in interviews, they said all assistance would be provided short of "the apparent physical presence of troops."
"Definitely, we will be helpful," said a senior Jordanian official. "But we cannot say bring 10,000 troops and march from Jordan to Iraq. That could be disastrous, and the Americans appreciate this."
The tacit agreement culminates a growth in U.S.-Jordanian military cooperation, buttressed by increases in military aid, joint training and personal contacts. Those relationships are underpinned by King Abdullah, a former soldier who, according to officials, made a decision in August after visiting Washington not to repeat his father's decision, one widely denounced in the United States then as a tilt toward Iraq.
At the time, Jordan was overwhelmingly dependent on Iraq for trade and oil. Popular sympathies rested with Iraq and its president, Saddam Hussein. While Jordan today is less dependent on Iraq economically, the kingdom still imports all its oil from Iraq -- half of it free, half of it subsidized -- and the mood remains distinctly in Iraq's corner even if sympathy for Hussein is markedly less pronounced.
But most Arab governments are loath to alienate the United States, despite almost universal opposition to a war and popular resentment of U.S. policy in the Middle East. Another senior official acknowledged that the country is "walking a tightrope," but he and others made clear they would risk some backlash in pursuit of closer ties with the United States. "The Jordanians, with the alliance, have put themselves in a position where they basically have no other choice," said Mustafa Hamarneh, director of the Center for Strategic Studies in Amman, the Jordanian capital.
A senior Jordanian official said his country expects the United States to deliver two, and possibly three, Patriot antimissile batteries to defend against any Iraqi attack. A foreign diplomat said hundreds of U.S. troops would be needed to run them. The government's fears, made public over the past week, seem to stem from a sense of vulnerability left from 1991. Of the 39 Scud missiles that Iraq fired at Israel then, the U.S. military believes eight fell in remote regions of Jordan.
But to protect Amman against an attack or an errant missile, the government must place the batteries to the east of the city, making the presence of U.S. troops "relatively visible," a diplomat said. Diplomats and officials said they doubted Jordan would officially acknowledge granting U.S. forces permission to fly over Jordanian territory. Officials said, however, that they would permit a military hospital and search-and-rescue missions in eastern Jordan, where the country's border with Iraq runs through desert.
"I don't think it's difficult to conceal," a diplomat said. "We're talking about a small footprint." Search-and-rescue missions would require the presence of U.S. Special Forces troops, along with helicopters and planes. One Jordanian official would not say whether the units' responsibilities could be broadened to include missions inside western Iraq. But he did not rule it out. "We'll cross that bridge when we come to it," he said. "Special Forces, what Special Forces? Those are rescue workers, very heavily armed rescue workers."
A diplomat said the number of such troops could be kept in the dozens. About the size of a couple of A teams.
The United States has told Israel that, at the start of any war with Iraq, it would deploy Special Operations forces in western Iraq to destroy facilities that could be used to launch Scud missiles, U.S. and Israeli officials have said. Last October, more than 1,000 U.S. Special Operations troops trained in Jordan with troops from Jordan, Oman, Kuwait and Britain. The exercise, called Early Victor, focused on covert missions such as operating behind enemy lines. Just a training exercise, doesn't mean a thing. Heh heh.
The head of a Muslim charity in Palos Hills was so close to Osama bin Laden that he was allowed to sign letters for the terrorist leader, federal prosecutors allege in new documents unsealed Wednesday. The files show how prosecutors plan to link Bin Laden with Enaam Arnaout, head of the Benevolence International Foundation, when Arnaout stands trial for racketeering, money laundering and providing support to terrorists next month. The documents--released in response to a lawsuit--include government filings chronicling the formation of bin Laden's terrorist group al-Qaida, photographs supposedly showing Arnaout with bin Laden and a list of high-profile contributors like Microsoft. The government charges that while Benevolence claimed to be a charitable organization, it "spent a significant amount of money in support of groups engaged in violence and concealed that fact from the public."
BIF got some of its financial support through a "matching gift program," where corporations including Microsoft and Houston-based Compaq matched contributions from employees, the government states. The filings also describe a handwritten list of people referred to within al-Qaida as the "Golden Chain"--wealthy donors to militant Muslim causes. We'd really like to see that list, please?
The list was found at Benevolence's Bosnia office, where investigators also discovered "a treasure trove of electronically scanned documents and photographs, including many with the defendant Arnaout," according to government documents. One file was labeled "Tareekh Osama," which means "Osama's History," according to prosecutors.
Included in the file is a letter to a former Benevolence leader named Mohamed Loay Bayazid. The letter states that although it is from bin Laden, it is signed by Arnaout, using bin Laden's alias Abu Mahmoud. "He [bin Laden] is far away from me and he authorized me through a communication to sign on his behalf, my apology," Arnaout writes in the letter according to the proffer. Bet he was real proud of that letter. Kind of shoots down the "I didn't know him" argument.
One file contains minutes of an Aug. 11, 1988, meeting between Bayazid and bin Laden "regarding the establishment of a new military group," the documents state. Al-Qaida "commenced" on Sept. 10, 1988, with "15 brothers," according to notes from a report in the file. There is no allegation linking Arnaout to either meeting. Arnaout, 40, has been in jail since his arrest last April. His attorneys were not available for comment Wednesday, but they have previously accused the government of prosecuting a case based heavily on circumstantial evidence. Circumstantial evidence has put away many a bad guy.
Edited for length...
To prosecutors, Richard Reid is a terrorist who shows no remorse for trying to blow up a jetliner with 197 people aboard. Defense lawyers contend he is a troubled man who was trying to defend his religion. He faces 60 years to life in prison. U.S. District Judge William Young was expected to determine Reid's sentence and rule on a motion filed Wednesday by defense lawyers asking the judge to postpone sentencing on seven of the eight charges until Reid is given access to classified information they say could help him. In the meantime, Reid's lawyers have asked that he receive the mandatory minimum sentence of 30 years on the charge of using a destructive device during a crime of violence. The other counts include attempted murder and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. Prosecutors are asking for life in prison. At Thursday's sentencing hearing, both Reid and people who were on board the plane were expected to be allowed to testify.
Young earlier had turned down Reid's request to declassify certain unspecified documents in the case after prosecutors expressed concern he might somehow use the information to send coded messages to other terrorists. Defense attorney Owen Walker has argued the documents could help explain Reid's motivation and give his family some peace of mind. Walker asked that Reid be allowed to present the documents publicly at his sentencing hearing.
"To a certain extent, it's a fishing expedition," said CBS News Legal Analyst Andrew Cohen. During a separate discussion in a hearing last week, Walker said Reid, who converted to Islam about eight years ago, "is convinced that (the United States), by sanctions on Iraq, has killed two million children in Iraq." I really am tired at hearing that we have to "understand his reasons". No, we don't. He tried to blow up the plane, he got caught, he admitted it, that's it. Put him away forever.
He faces a minimum of 60 (50 with time off for being a good little cell-bitch) and a maximum of life. He supposed to be sentenced today at 2, but his weasels attorneys want to try and delay sentencing to disclose more sensitive intelligence data - not that it would prove him innocent, just mitigate his sentence
Posted by: Frank G ||
01/30/2003 13:14 Comments ||
Thanks to Arthur for the link...
An unexpected new front in the "war on terrorism" has opened this week in Trinidad after an announcement by a local Islamic group that it is manufacturing chemical and biological weapons and might use them against British and American targets on the island. The announcement, made through two reporters for Trinidad's leading newspaper, who were blindfolded and taken to a plausibly alarming secret chemical laboratory, has caused ferment on the island, alarmed authorities in London and Washington and prompted at least one foreign company, the P&O shipping line, to keep tourists away. "With our weapons we are going to reach you," the group said in its statement. "We will reach you where you sleep, we will reach you where you take your baths, we will reach you where you take your meals and have your drinks, even a glass of water you hold in your hand to drink may not be safe." "We are not insignificant nutbags of no particular accomplishment! We are powerful terrorists!"
The group claimed it had been manufacturing and storing chemical and biological weapons for two years. It said it hoped not to have to use them, but was deadly serious about stopping Britain and the United States "persecuting Muslims worldwide". How 'bout if we only persecute them in some places? Will that get us off the hook?
It is not clear who the Islamic group is, although it is likely to be related to Jamaat al-Muslimeen, a radical sect that launched an unsuccessful coup attempt in Trinidad and Tobago in 1990. The group told the Trinidad Express it sympathised with Osama bin Laden and the Bali bombers, and harboured ambitions to stage an Islamic revolution on the island, even though Muslims make up only 6 per cent of the local population. And not the upper six percent, either...
Since the story, American and British officials have been cautious in public on how much credence to lend to the group. Patrick Manning, Trinidad and Tobago's Prime Minister, is treading a careful line, trying not to harm the tourist industry, a mainstay of the local economy, while ordering Special Branch officers to investigate the threat as thoroughly as possible. "Cummerbund, round up the usual suspects!"
"Oh, hell. Them again. Hand me my rubber gloves, would you, sah?"
Posted by: Fred Pruitt ||
01/30/2003 09:43 am ||
Top|| File under:
It is becoming more and more apparent that this old world is going to require a strong enema.
Posted by: Alaska Paul ||
01/30/2003 9:57 Comments ||
...and then they smoked another joint and fell asleep. You check it out but it sounds like wannabe bullshit. Should do wonders for the tourist trade.
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.