Discussions, news, analysis and thoughts on terrorism.
Another alleged terror plot involving sensational sounding Red Mercury has come to a fizzle.Three suspects in London have been freed today after the trial. The culprit here is not the security apparatus of governments trying to boost their image and lobby for more budget, nor is it politicians trying to instill a sense of fear in the public.This time it is yellow journalism in the form of News of The World, a tabloid, and its 'investigations reporter" called Mazher Mahmood, known as the "fake sheikh".
On Google Video, there is a documentary called Peace, Propaganda and the Promised Land.An interesting aspect of this documentary is that the interviewees include US Jews as well as Israeli academics, defense forces and others.Although it is 1 hour 19 minutes, it is worth watching carefully.
From the "yet another terrorism plot" department we have today the claim that another terror plot aimed against New York's mass transit system and tunnels.After the recent Miami terror arrests, I am more skeptical than ever about these frequent claims of "foiling a terror plot" that is in the "early stages".
What is common between London, Toronto and Miami? If we are to trust various government agencies, the three had terror acts committed or planned by young youth who were born and raised.
The London case seem to be very plausible in that who the authorities claim to be the suicide bombers are indeed those who executed the operation. They are young British born Muslims.
Although I am a bit skeptical on the Toronto and the Miami cases, it is too early to reach a conclusion.
Seven black people have been arrested in a poor area in Miami, Florida yesterday. The plot allegedly invovled bombing the Sears tower in Chicago, as well as FBI offices in Miami and elsewhere. An FBI agent posing as an Al-Qaeda operative gave them money, supplies and weapons. You can read the full indictment.
The accused are mostly of Haitian descent. Although reports initially said they are Muslims, it later became obvious that this is not the case. They are members of something called the "Seas of David". Most of the suspects have non-Muslim nicknames which are more Biblical, e.g. Levi, although others were said to have names like "Brother Sunni". The one called "Brother Levi" is also called Brother Levi-El", the -El suffix being a Moorish Science Temple mark from Noble Drew Ali.
The Calgary Sun had an article by Licia Corbella, where her premise is that Multiculturalism threatens Canada.
She quotes one Dr. Mahfooz Kanwar of Mount Royal College in Calgary, whom she describes as a "devout Muslim" and "Pakistani-born". He says: "Multiculturalism has been bad for unity in Canada. It ghettoizes people, makes them believe, wrongly, that isolating themselves and not adapting to their new society is OK". Kanwar justified alleged mistreatment in prison because "for accused terrorists, this should be expected". Kanwar also advocates that covering one's face should be illegal.
The recent arrests in the Greater Toronto Area have netted 17 accused person. Five of them are youth.
The accused are a very diverse bunch. Two of them, troubled youth of Somali descent, were already in prison for pleading guilty for having guns when crossing the border from the USA. One of them told his mother that "they are changing my story around". One is a widower over 40. A recent graduate of health sciences and the son of a medical doctor. A really "calm and religious" good basketball shooter.
In a recent speech, US President George W. Bush stated that his policy in Iraq is to "stay the course" and not "allow the terrorist to break our will" and "not permit Al Qaeda to turn to Iraq to what Afghanistan was under the Taliban, a safe haven for terrorists and a launching pad for attacks on America". One should remember that none of these "terrorists" were in Iraq before the USA invaded in 2003. Al Qaeda had no presence before that time. These "terrorists" flocked to Iraq as a direct result of the invasion: mainly fuelled by the mere presence of invading forces inflaming emotions by the invasion, but also by the instability and power vacuum in the country that insued after the Saddam regime fell.
The Washington Post has a good article by David Luban, professor at Georgetown University Law Center, and visiting professor at Stanford University Law School. The article is titled Torture, American Style. NPR also has Luban as a guest on "The Debate Over Torture", with the other side represented by neo-conservative ideologue Charles Krauthammer, who is a member of the Project for the New American Century, and a columnist for the Weekly Standard.
The Pentagon has finally stated that the old rules on prisoners no longer apply. They continue to use the term "detainees" for those in Guantanamo, Bagram and Abu Ghraib as opposed to the term "prisoners". From the start, those prisoners had the label "enemy combatants", so as to deprive them from the Geneva Conventions.This continuous rewriting of the rules as the game progresses will only cause more resentment towards the USA, and damage to its image worldwide.
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