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OfflineEd1
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Registered: 07/03/04
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Last seen: 12 years, 3 months
France Expels Muslims
    #3006072 - 08/15/04 07:12 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Title: France Moves Fast To Expel Muslims Preaching Hatred
Source: The Washington Times
URL Source: http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB109200641757786030,00.html? mod=home%5Fpage%5Fone%5Fus
Published: Aug 9, 2004
Author: JOHN CARREYROU
Post Date: 2004-08-09 18:02:09 by ktjr
1 Comments




Fighting Words


France Moves Fast To Expel Muslims Preaching Hatred

In Bid to Pre-Empt Terror, Nation Targets 8 Imams; Law Hits Legal Residents


Sent to Turkey After 28 Years


COURTRY, France -- Mihdat Guler was 17 years old when he moved here from his native Turkey to find work in 1976. Over time, he saved enough money to buy a tidy house in this middle-class Paris suburb, where he lived a quiet life as a legal immigrant with his wife and five children.

One afternoon three months ago, Mr. Guler learned he had overstayed his welcome. Police stopped his van as he was returning from selling sewing supplies at an outdoor market and arrested him. Within a few weeks, he was on a flight to Istanbul, unsure when he would see his family again.

The French government's accusation: Mr. Guler was preaching hatred and violence against the West at a Muslim prayer room in Paris. It also alleges that he belongs to a group that seeks an Islamic state in Turkey. Mr. Guler denies the government's allegations.


If Mr. Guler had been French, he would have had the chance to defend himself at a trial. But as a foreigner, he fell under a 1945 law that allowed the government to deport him as an urgent security threat.

France has taken one of the hardest lines of any Western country in fighting Islamic extremism. Other democracies, including the U.S., have been criticized for excessive methods, such as holding prisoners in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. But few have been as systematic and zealous as France in attempting to stamp out Islamic militancy.

Mr. Guler is one of eight Muslim men France has expelled this year on the ground that they are preachers who foment anti-Western sentiment and violence in their sermons. These imams often have little religious education but a big influence over Muslim youths, the French government says.

"Today, one can no longer separate terrorist acts from the words that feed them," Interior Minister Dominique de Villepin recently told the French Council of the Muslim Faith, an organization created last year to represent the interests of France's Muslims.

Earlier this year, France passed a law that bars Muslim girls from wearing head scarves at public schools. Its counterterrorism magistrates often round up suspects in broad sweeps and detain them for years without trial. With its new practice of expelling Muslim preachers, France is taking its campaign against extremism one step farther.

France's hardball approach comes as Europe faces stark questions about how to integrate its surging Muslim population. Once tiny, it has grown exponentially, fueled by immigration from North Africa and the Middle East and from countries such as Turkey and Pakistan, as well as by higher birth rates in Muslim families. France, with a population of about 60 million, is now home to an estimated five million to seven million Muslims, the most in Western Europe.

Other Western European countries with large Muslim communities, such as the United Kingdom and Germany, haven't gone as far as France for fear of undermining basic civil liberties. But the U.K. has recently begun threatening to hold Islamic preachers accountable for their words. In Germany, expulsions require court orders, and courts have been unwilling to send radicals back to countries with questionable human-rights records. Some of the preachers France has deported have challenged their expulsions in court, but only one has had tentative success.

France argues that its tough stance pays off: There has been no terrorism on French soil since Algeria's Armed Islamic Group conducted a wave of bombings in Paris in 1995. And France harbored none of the cells that plotted the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the U.S. or the March 11 train bombings in Spain.

Yet France's expulsions of preachers raise thorny questions about how far Western democracies should go in trying to pre-empt Islamic terrorism. Some of the men, like Mr. Guler, who is 45, have legally lived in France for decades. Their families are integrated in French society and many of their children are French citizens.

The first contingent of Muslims arrived in France in the 1950s and 1960s from Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. They helped fill France's demand for cheap factory labor amid the country's post-World War II economic boom.

A turning point came in the late 1970s when the government of President Valery Giscard d'Estaing allowed those workers to bring their families to France. That took away an incentive for them to return to their impoverished home countries. Many settled in France for good, sending the number of Muslims soaring.

France became aware it had an integration problem in the late 1980s when Muslim girls started coming to school wearing head scarves. That sparked a 15-year debate about whether the country's secular society should tolerate obvious signs of religious affiliation at its public schools, culminating in this year's ban. The new law also prohibits wearing large Christian crosses, Jewish skullcaps and other visible religious symbols.

With hundreds of mosques springing up across the country, the government took to promoting the notion of a "French Islam," in harmony with France's republican ideals and devoid of foreign theological influences. As a rule, France wants its immigrants to leave their languages and cultural origins behind and become primarily French.

But this French Islam has been a difficult concept to put into practice. Of the more than 1,500 imams who lead Friday prayers across France, fewer than 300 have formal religious educations, according to the National Federation of French Muslims. Many hail from countries such as Algeria that are hotbeds of extremism. Schools created in the past decade to educate French imams have produced few graduates. The government has become increasingly concerned that the poorly trained foreign imams are radicalizing people with their virulent sermons.

The Madrid train bombings, the first massive Islamist attack in the heart of Europe, convinced Mr. de Villepin, the interior minister, that drastic measures were needed to root out preachings that could spark terrorism, aides say. He ordered a crackdown, building on a few expulsions already carried out by his predecessor, Nicolas Sarkozy.

Expulsion has been legal in France since 1945. But the procedure is usually used against illegal immigrants. Last year, France sent home more than 11,000 illegal aliens. Since the Muslim men it was now targeting were mostly legal residents, the Interior Ministry invoked another part of the 1945 legislation.

'Absolute Emergency'

That clause allows the state to expel "in absolute emergency" any foreigner deemed a threat "to the security of the state or public safety." In the past, the clause was mainly used to expel foreigners convicted of violent crimes such as rape or murder who had finished serving their prison terms.

The eight preachers France has expelled this year hail from four countries: Algeria, Turkey, Morocco and Egypt.

In April, the Interior Ministry expelled Abdelkader Yahia Cherif, a 35-year-old Algerian who preached at a prayer room in Brest, a port city on France's northwestern coast. France alleged that Mr. Cherif was recruiting young Arab men to a radical brand of Islam known as Salafism, which advocates a literal, inflexible interpretation of the Quran. The government contended Mr. Cherif had incited violence in his neighborhood since arriving four years earlier, including a fire at a town hall.

The order justifying his expulsion said Mr. Cherif had rejoiced over the Madrid bombings in sermons, and cited an interview he gave to a newspaper in which he said there was "no absolute proof" Islamists had been involved in either the Sept. 11 or the Madrid attacks.

David Rajjou, Mr. Cherif's lawyer, says his client acknowledges being a Salafist but denies the other accusations. Mr. Cherif didn't intend to excuse the Sept. 11 or Madrid attacks but only to question whether Islamists were really behind them, the lawyer says.

The Beating of Women

As the expulsions accelerated, one drew special notice: that of Abdelkader Bouziane, an Algerian from Lyon. Mr. Bouziane, who has fathered 16 children by two Algerian wives, triggered a public uproar by endorsing polygamy and the beating of women in an interview with a French magazine shortly after the Madrid attacks.

Mr. Bouziane, 52, was already the subject of a pending expulsion order for allegedly issuing a religious order on March 28, 2003, calling on Muslims to target U.S. interests in France, and for having links to suspected terrorists. After the interview, the government rushed his expulsion, sending him out of the country in April. But within a few weeks he was back, after a French court deemed the reasons for expelling him as too vague.

Mr. Bouziane's lawyer, Mahmoud Hebia, says his client denies the government's allegations. He adds that Mr. Bouziane, who remains in France, maintains his comments were distorted in the magazine and doesn't personally condone beating women.

Angered by his return, France's parliament has since amended the 1945 law to allow expulsion of any foreigner who incites "discrimination, hatred or violence against a certain person or group of persons."

In the absence of trials, it's hard to determine the danger posed by the expelled men. After ordering the expulsion of another Algerian imam from Lyon in January, the Interior Ministry appeared vindicated when, within days, he was arrested by counterterrorism magistrates for allegedly aiding a plot to stage a chemical attack. That imam, Chellali Benchellali, is now in prison in France.

The expulsion of Mr. Guler, the Turkish sewing-supply salesman, was a "very efficient and expedient tactic" for the government compared with prosecuting a case, says his lawyer, Thierry Meurou.

Prayer and Caliphate

Mr. Guler declined to comment for this article. He is one of 400,000 Turks who live in France. Though he immigrated 28 years ago, he never sought French citizenship. Instead, he obtained a residency card renewable every 10 years. All five of his children were born and raised in France. "France is our country," says his oldest son, Abdurrahman, 22.

In 1988, the elder Mr. Guler became president of an organization that rents a prayer room in central Paris. The prayer room, in a rundown building in a racially mixed neighborhood, initially catered to Turkish immigrants. It now draws a diverse crowd that includes Arabs.

On Saturday, May 1, policemen pulled over Mr. Guler's white Ford van and jailed him. He soon learned that the Interior Ministry had ordered his expulsion. With help from a lawyer, he filed a request for political asylum. Though denied, it delayed the government's plans by forcing a review of his case.

On May 19, Mr. Guler appeared before a judge in an administrative court. There, the Interior Ministry laid out its case. It rested on a 10-page memo by the Renseignements Generaux, a domestic intelligence service. There were no wiretaps, pictures, witness testimony or other evidence in the case file. Such memos are called note blanches, or white notes, because they aren't signed or dated and don't cite their sources.

The memo didn't implicate Mr. Guler in terrorist acts or plots but made a number of accusations, including: that he incited hatred of Western societies and Israel in sermons; that he allowed to be distributed at the prayer room Islamist newsletters that glorified jihad; and that he is a member of the Caliphate State, a group that seeks to overthrow Turkey's secular government and replace it with an Islamic state.

Mr. Meurou and Mr. Guler's son, Abdurrahman, deny that Mr. Guler ever preached at the prayer room. He didn't consider himself knowledgeable enough to be an imam, they say. Mr. Meurou acknowledges jihad newsletters made their way around the prayer room but says Mr. Guler can't be held responsible for everything that went on there. He says Mr. Guler admits knowing the Caliphate State's leader, Metin Kaplan, as a family friend, but denies any involvement in his group.

Based in Cologne, Germany, the Caliphate State calls for the restoration of Turkey's Caliphate, the Islamic theocracy that ruled much of the Muslim world until the Ottoman empire collapsed after World War I. It is banned in Turkey and Germany. Its leader, Mr. Kaplan, was arrested by German police in 1999 for inciting the killing of a rival Islamic cleric. He served four years in prison.

Since his release last year, Turkey has been seeking Mr. Kaplan's extradition on charges that he masterminded a failed 1998 terrorist plot, but Germany's courts have balked.

At the hearing, the judge asked Mr. Guler whether French law took precedence over Islamic law. Mr. Guler gave an ambiguous answer, according to people present. "There's a polemic there, Your Honor," he said. "In Quranic law, God is higher than French law but, if I say that, I know I'll be punished by French law."

The judge ruled in the government's favor. Mr. Guler made plans to return to Turkey on his own, but the Interior Ministry moved faster. Three days after the hearing, policemen seized him at his house and put him on a flight to Istanbul.

Upon arrival, Mr. Guler was briefly questioned by Turkish police, then released. He now lives in his native town of Yozgat. A representative of the Turkish embassy in Paris says Mr. Guler wasn't a wanted man in Turkey and hadn't been convicted of any crime in France, so there was no basis to detain him.

Mr. Guler's wife and children remain in France and hope he will be able to return. He missed Abdurrahman's wedding in June, but the family called him on a cellphone during the reception. The son has taken over his father's sewing-supply business to help support the family and pay the mortgage on their house. Mr. Meurou has gathered 50 affidavits from friends, neighbors and customers and plans to fight the government's decision. The appeal process could take years.

Write to John Carreyrou at john.carreyrou@wsj.com


http://www.libertypost.org/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=61407



Also see this about Britain:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2829059.stm


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OfflineEd1
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Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3008165 - 08/16/04 06:27 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Two men arrested in missile sting operation

WASHINGTON, D.C. (CNN) -- The imam and the founder of an Albany, New York, mosque are being held after an FBI sting operation in which the suspects believed they were helping a terrorist launder money, federal law enforcement sources said Thursday.

The suspects are Yasin Aref, a 34-year-old Iraqi with asylum status who is the imam at the Masjid As-Salam mosque, and founder Mohammed Hossain, 49, a native of Bangladesh and a U.S. citizen.

They were apprehended when they allegedly agreed to launder the money from the sale of a shoulder-fired missile, the criminal complaint says.

The men are charged with money laundering and conspiring to conceal support and resources "knowing and intending that they are to be used in preparation for, and in carrying out a violation of" a U.S. law banning unlawful use of weapons of mass destruction.

Community to hold rally
At an arraignment Thursday, both were ordered held without bail. Hossain requested his own attorney; Aref, through an interpreter, said he wanted a court-appointed lawyer.

About a dozen family and friends were in the courtroom. Several cried.

The mosque's president, Shamshad Ahmad, released a statement decrying "all forms of terrorism" and expressing concern about anti-Muslim backlash and hate crimes. He called on people not to draw conclusions from the arrests.

The Muslim community planned to hold a rally Thursday evening.

Federal law enforcement sources said the men are believed to be connected with Ansar al-Islam, a terrorist organization with links to the Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. U.S. officials suspect al-Zarqawi has links to al Qaeda.

Investigators suspected Aref of shipping money from the United States to Islamist radicals overseas, so they came up with the sting operation, a federal law enforcement source said.

The complaint says an undercover FBI informant told the two men he would use a missile against Pakistan's ambassador to the United Nations in retaliation for that country's support of the U.S.-led war on terrorism.

The informant gave the men thousands of dollars in checks and cash, saying the funds to be laundered were proceeds from the purported importation of a missile and that they could keep some money in exchange for their help, according to the complaint.

The informant told the two men that the attack would take place at an address that fronts the U.N. headquarters in New York, the complaint said.

At a news conference, federal officials would not say what information led them to suspect Aref and Hossain.

The investigation began a year ago, and was conducted by the Joint Terrorism Task Force, which includes federal, state and local authorities.

The informant had previously pleaded guilty to document fraud, a felony, and agreed to work with authorities, the complaint said.

Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Comey told reporters the undercover informant struck up a relationship with the two men, and Hossain asked the informant's help in fraudulently securing a New York driver's permit for his brother.

Hossain told the informant that he believed now is not the time for "violent jihad," Comey said.

But when the informant proposed the laundering scheme, Hossain agreed, and suggested that Aref assist, Comey said.

The FBI has audio and video recordings of various conversations, he said. The informant told the two men he wanted to provide arms to his "brother mujahedeen," according to the complaint.

The men received about $40,000 in cash and returned $25,000 in cash, Comey said. Under the scheme, they were allowed to keep some of the money.

"This is not a case where the defendants were plotting terrorist violence," Comey said.

Raids on mosque, homes
After the arrests, authorities spent about seven hours at the mosque and two houses, a government official said.

Aref's wife, Zuhur, 33, said that the FBI took her and her three children at 2 a.m. to a hotel for questioning. She declined to say what officials asked her about and said she was unaware of what charges her husband faces.

After the charges were described to her, she responded, "I have no idea about that. I don't think so."

Hossain's wife, Mossammat, told the Albany Times Union that her husband had returned home at 1:30 a.m. from a trip to New York City when the FBI arrived at the couple's apartment above the Little Italy pizzeria they operate.

The newspaper said agents took $6,000 in cash, a computer hard drive and assorted personal records.

In June, Hossain told the paper, "I'm proud to be an American," calling the country a "great land."

Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings said city and state police worked together with the FBI.

"It's been an ongoing investigation, and obviously the results are good," he said. "This is something we've anticipated. People shouldn't be concerned because we've been on top of this for quite awhile."

Albany was one of 50 U.S. cities to be appropriated several million dollars by the Department of Homeland Security in late 2003. The New York capital was earmarked for $6.8 million, according to the Times Union.

In August 2003, a British citizen was arrested for allegedly attempting to smuggle shoulder-fired missiles into the United States. In that case, Hemant Lakhani, 69, is accused of buying a fake missile from undercover Russian agents and trying to sell it to a man claiming to represent a Somali group. The man instead was a cooperating witness for the United States.

Lakhani is scheduled to go to trial November 3. Two other men already have pleaded guilty to transferring money illegally.


http://www.cnn.com/2004/US/08/05/ny.missile.sting/index.html


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OfflineEd1
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Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3008169 - 08/16/04 06:29 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)



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OfflineZahid
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Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3008427 - 08/16/04 11:20 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Special investigation

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The spies who pushed for war

Julian Borger reports on the shadow rightwing intelligence network set up in Washington to second-guess the CIA and deliver a justification for toppling Saddam Hussein by force

Thursday July 17, 2003
The Guardian

As the CIA director, George Tenet, arrived at the Senate yesterday to give secret testimony on the Niger uranium affair, it was becoming increasingly clear in Washington that the scandal was only a small, well-documented symptom of a complete breakdown in US intelligence that helped steer America into war.
It represents the Bush administration's second catastrophic intelligence failure. But the CIA and FBI's inability to prevent the September 11 attacks was largely due to internal institutional weaknesses.

This time the implications are far more damaging for the White House, which stands accused of politicising and contaminating its own source of intelligence.

According to former Bush officials, all defence and intelligence sources, senior administration figures created a shadow agency of Pentagon analysts staffed mainly by ideological amateurs to compete with the CIA and its military counterpart, the Defence Intelligence Agency.

The agency, called the Office of Special Plans (OSP), was set up by the defence secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, to second-guess CIA information and operated under the patronage of hardline conservatives in the top rungs of the administration, the Pentagon and at the White House, including Vice-President Dick Cheney.

The ideologically driven network functioned like a shadow government, much of it off the official payroll and beyond congressional oversight. But it proved powerful enough to prevail in a struggle with the State Department and the CIA by establishing a justification for war.

Mr Tenet has officially taken responsibility for the president's unsubstantiated claim in January that Saddam Hussein's regime had been trying to buy uranium in Africa, but he also said his agency was under pressure to justify a war that the administration had already decided on.

How much Mr Tenet reveals of where that pressure was coming from could have lasting political fallout for Mr Bush and his re-election prospects, which only a few weeks ago seemed impregnable. As more Americans die in Iraq and the reasons for the war are revealed, his victory in 2004 no longer looks like a foregone conclusion.

The White House counter-attacked yesterday when new chief spokesman, Scott McClellan, accused critics of "politicising the war" and trying to "rewrite history". But the Democratic leadership kept up its questions over the White House role.

The president's most trusted adviser, Mr Cheney, was at the shadow network's sharp end. He made several trips to the CIA in Langley, Virginia, to demand a more "forward-leaning" interpretation of the threat posed by Saddam. When he was not there to make his influence felt, his chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, was. Such hands-on involvement in the processing of intelligence data was unprecedented for a vice-president in recent times, and it put pressure on CIA officials to come up with the appropriate results.

Another frequent visitor was Newt Gingrich, the former Republican party leader who resurfaced after September 11 as a Pentagon "consultant" and a member of its unpaid defence advisory board, with influence far beyond his official title.

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An intelligence official confirmed Mr Gingrich made "a couple of visits" but said there was nothing unusual about that.

Rick Tyler, Mr Gingrich's spokesman, said: "If he was at the CIA he was there to listen and learn, not to persuade or influence."

Mr Gingrich visited Langley three times before the war, and according to accounts, the political veteran sought to browbeat analysts into toughening up their assessments of Saddam's menace.

Mr Gingrich gained access to the CIA headquarters and was listened to because he was seen as a personal emissary of the Pentagon and, in particular, of the OSP.

In the days after September 11, Mr Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul Wolfowitz, mounted an attempt to include Iraq in the war against terror. When the established agencies came up with nothing concrete to link Iraq and al-Qaida, the OSP was given the task of looking more carefully.

William Luti, a former navy officer and ex-aide to Mr Cheney, runs the day-to-day operations, answering to Douglas Feith, a defence undersecretary and a former Reagan official.

The OSP had access to a huge amount of raw intelligence. It came in part from "report officers" in the CIA's directorate of operations whose job is to sift through reports from agents around the world, filtering out the unsubstantiated and the incredible. Under pressure from the hawks such as Mr Cheney and Mr Gingrich, those officers became reluctant to discard anything, no matter how far-fetched. The OSP also sucked in countless tips from the Iraqi National Congress and other opposition groups, which were viewed with far more scepticism by the CIA and the state department.

There was a mountain of documentation to look through and not much time. The administration wanted to use the momentum gained in Afghanistan to deal with Iraq once and for all. The OSP itself had less than 10 full-time staff, so to help deal with the load, the office hired scores of temporary "consultants". They included lawyers, congressional staffers, and policy wonks from the numerous rightwing thinktanks in Washington. Few had experience in intelligence.

"Most of the people they had in that office were off the books, on personal services contracts. At one time, there were over 100 of them," said an intelligence source. The contracts allow a department to hire individuals, without specifying a job description.

As John Pike, a defence analyst at the thinktank GlobalSecurity.org, put it, the contracts "are basically a way they could pack the room with their little friends".

"They surveyed data and picked out what they liked," said Gregory Thielmann, a senior official in the state department's intelligence bureau until his retirement in September. "The whole thing was bizarre. The secretary of defence had this huge defence intelligence agency, and he went around it."

In fact, the OSP's activities were a com plete mystery to the DIA and the Pentagon.

"The iceberg analogy is a good one," said a senior officer who left the Pentagon during the planning of the Iraq war. "No one from the military staff heard, saw or discussed anything with them."

The civilian agencies had the same impression of the OSP sleuths. "They were a pretty shadowy presence," Mr Thielmann said. "Normally when you compile an intelligence document, all the agencies get together to discuss it. The OSP was never present at any of the meetings I attended."

Democratic congressman David Obey, who is investigating the OSP, said: "That office was charged with collecting, vetting and disseminating intelligence completely outside of the normal intelligence apparatus. In fact, it appears that information collected by this office was in some instances not even shared with established intelligence agencies and in numerous instances was passed on to the national security council and the president without having been vetted with anyone other than political appointees."

The OSP was an open and largely unfiltered conduit to the White House not only for the Iraqi opposition. It also forged close ties to a parallel, ad hoc intelligence operation inside Ariel Sharon's office in Israel specifically to bypass Mossad and provide the Bush administration with more alarmist reports on Saddam's Iraq than Mossad was prepared to authorise.

"None of the Israelis who came were cleared into the Pentagon through normal channels," said one source familiar with the visits. Instead, they were waved in on Mr Feith's authority without having to fill in the usual forms.

The exchange of information continued a long-standing relationship Mr Feith and other Washington neo-conservatives had with Israel's Likud party.

In 1996, he and Richard Perle - now an influential Pentagon figure - served as advisers to the then Likud leader, Binyamin Netanyahu. In a policy paper they wrote, entitled A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm, the two advisers said that Saddam would have to be destroyed, and Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Iran would have to be overthrown or destabilised, for Israel to be truly safe.

The Israeli influence was revealed most clearly by a story floated by unnamed senior US officials in the American press, suggesting the reason that no banned weapons had been found in Iraq was that they had been smuggled into Syria. Intelligence sources say that the story came from the office of the Israeli prime minister.

The OSP absorbed this heady brew of raw intelligence, rumour and plain disinformation and made it a "product", a prodigious stream of reports with a guaranteed readership in the White House. The primary customers were Mr Cheney, Mr Libby and their closest ideological ally on the national security council, Stephen Hadley, Condoleezza Rice's deputy.

In turn, they leaked some of the claims to the press, and used others as a stick with which to beat the CIA and the state department analysts, demanding they investigate the OSP leads.

The big question looming over Congress as Mr Tenet walked into his closed-door session yesterday was whether this shadow intelligence operation would survive national scrutiny and who would pay the price for allowing it to help steer the country into war.

A former senior CIA official insisted yesterday that Mr Feith, at least, was "finished" - but that may be wishful thinking by a rival organisation.

As he prepares for re-election, Mr Bush may opt to tough it out, rather than acknowledge the severity of the problem by firing loyalists. But in that case, it will inevitably be harder to re-establish confidence in the intelligence on which the White House is basing its decisions, and the world's sole superpower risks stumbling onwards half-blind, unable to distinguish real threats from phantoms.


--------------------


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OfflineEd1
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Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Zahid]
    #3015405 - 08/17/04 09:47 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Case Closed
From the November 24, 2003 issue: The U.S. government's secret memo detailing cooperation between Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden.
by Stephen F. Hayes
11/24/2003, Volume 009, Issue 11


Editor's Note, 1/27/04: In today's Washington Post, Dana Milbank reported that "Vice President Cheney . . . in an interview this month with the Rocky Mountain News, recommended as the 'best source of information' an article in The Weekly Standard magazine detailing a relationship between Hussein and al Qaeda based on leaked classified information."

Here's the Stephen F. Hayes article to which the vice president was referring.

-JVL



OSAMA BIN LADEN and Saddam Hussein had an operational relationship from the early 1990s to 2003 that involved training in explosives and weapons of mass destruction, logistical support for terrorist attacks, al Qaeda training camps and safe haven in Iraq, and Iraqi financial support for al Qaeda--perhaps even for Mohamed Atta--according to a top secret U.S. government memorandum obtained by THE WEEKLY STANDARD.

The memo, dated October 27, 2003, was sent from Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas J. Feith to Senators Pat Roberts and Jay Rockefeller, the chairman and vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. It was written in response to a request from the committee as part of its investigation into prewar intelligence claims made by the administration. Intelligence reporting included in the 16-page memo comes from a variety of domestic and foreign agencies, including the FBI, the Defense Intelligence Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Agency. Much of the evidence is detailed, conclusive, and corroborated by multiple sources. Some of it is new information obtained in custodial interviews with high-level al Qaeda terrorists and Iraqi officials, and some of it is more than a decade old. The picture that emerges is one of a history of collaboration between two of America's most determined and dangerous enemies.

According to the memo--which lays out the intelligence in 50 numbered points--Iraq-al Qaeda contacts began in 1990 and continued through mid-March 2003, days before the Iraq War began. Most of the numbered passages contain straight, fact-based intelligence reporting, which in some cases includes an evaluation of the credibility of the source. This reporting is often followed by commentary and analysis.

The relationship began shortly before the first Gulf War. According to reporting in the memo, bin Laden sent "emissaries to Jordan in 1990 to meet with Iraqi government officials." At some unspecified point in 1991, according to a CIA analysis, "Iraq sought Sudan's assistance to establish links to al Qaeda." The outreach went in both directions. According to 1993 CIA reporting cited in the memo, "bin Laden wanted to expand his organization's capabilities through ties with Iraq."

The primary go-between throughout these early stages was Sudanese strongman Hassan al-Turabi, a leader of the al Qaeda-affiliated National Islamic Front. Numerous sources have confirmed this. One defector reported that "al-Turabi was instrumental in arranging the Iraqi-al Qaeda relationship. The defector said Iraq sought al Qaeda influence through its connections with Afghanistan, to facilitate the transshipment of proscribed weapons and equipment to Iraq. In return, Iraq provided al Qaeda with training and instructors."

One such confirmation came in a postwar interview with one of Saddam Hussein's henchmen. As the memo details:


4. According to a May 2003 debriefing of a senior Iraqi intelligence officer, Iraqi intelligence established a highly secretive relationship with Egyptian Islamic Jihad, and later with al Qaeda. The first meeting in 1992 between the Iraqi Intelligence Service (IIS) and al Qaeda was brokered by al-Turabi. Former IIS deputy director Faruq Hijazi and senior al Qaeda leader [Ayman al] Zawahiri were at the meeting--the first of several between 1992 and 1995 in Sudan. Additional meetings between Iraqi intelligence and al Qaeda were held in Pakistan. Members of al Qaeda would sometimes visit Baghdad where they would meet the Iraqi intelligence chief in a safe house. The report claimed that Saddam insisted the relationship with al Qaeda be kept secret. After 9-11, the source said Saddam made a personnel change in the IIS for fear the relationship would come under scrutiny from foreign probes.
A decisive moment in the budding relationship came in 1993, when bin Laden faced internal resistance to his cooperation with Saddam.


5. A CIA report from a contact with good access, some of whose reporting has been corroborated, said that certain elements in the "Islamic Army" of bin Laden were against the secular regime of Saddam. Overriding the internal factional strife that was developing, bin Laden came to an "understanding" with Saddam that the Islamic Army would no longer support anti-Saddam activities. According to sensitive reporting released in U.S. court documents during the African Embassy trial, in 1993 bin Laden reached an "understanding" with Saddam under which he (bin Laden) forbade al Qaeda operations to be mounted against the Iraqi leader.
Another facilitator of the relationship during the mid-1990s was Mahmdouh Mahmud Salim (a.k.a. Abu Hajer al-Iraqi). Abu Hajer, now in a New York prison, was described in court proceedings related to the August 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania as bin Laden's "best friend." According to CIA reporting dating back to the Clinton administration, bin Laden trusted him to serve as a liaison with Saddam's regime and tasked him with procurement of weapons of mass destruction for al Qaeda. FBI reporting in the memo reveals that Abu Hajer "visited Iraq in early 1995" and "had a good relationship with Iraqi intelligence. Sometime before mid-1995 he went on an al Qaeda mission to discuss unspecified cooperation with the Iraqi government."

Some of the reporting about the relationship throughout the mid-1990s comes from a source who had intimate knowledge of bin Laden and his dealings. This source, according to CIA analysis, offered "the most credible information" on cooperation between bin Laden and Iraq.


This source's reports read almost like a diary. Specific dates of when bin Laden flew to various cities are included, as well as names of individuals he met. The source did not offer information on the substantive talks during the meetings. . . . There are not a great many reports in general on the relationship between bin Laden and Iraq because of the secrecy surrounding it. But when this source with close access provided a "window" into bin Laden's activities, bin Laden is seen as heavily involved with Iraq (and Iran).
Reporting from the early 1990s remains somewhat sketchy, though multiple sources place Hassan al-Turabi and Ayman al Zawahiri, bin Laden's current No. 2, at the center of the relationship. The reporting gets much more specific in the mid-1990s:


8. Reporting from a well placed source disclosed that bin Laden was receiving training on bomb making from the IIS's [Iraqi Intelligence Service] principal technical expert on making sophisticated explosives, Brigadier Salim al-Ahmed. Brigadier Salim was observed at bin Laden's farm in Khartoum in Sept.-Oct. 1995 and again in July 1996, in the company of the Director of Iraqi Intelligence, Mani abd-al-Rashid al-Tikriti.
9 . . . Bin Laden visited Doha, Qatar (17-19 Jan. 1996), staying at the residence of a member of the Qatari ruling family. He discussed the successful movement of explosives into Saudi Arabia, and operations targeted against U.S. and U.K. interests in Dammam, Dharan, and Khobar, using clandestine al Qaeda cells in Saudi Arabia. Upon his return, bin Laden met with Hijazi and Turabi, among others.

And later more reporting, from the same "well placed" source:


10. The Director of Iraqi Intelligence, Mani abd-al-Rashid al-Tikriti, met privately with bin Laden at his farm in Sudan in July 1996. Tikriti used an Iraqi delegation traveling to Khartoum to discuss bilateral cooperation as his "cover" for his own entry into Sudan to meet with bin Laden and Hassan al-Turabi. The Iraqi intelligence chief and two other IIS officers met at bin Laden's farm and discussed bin Laden's request for IIS technical assistance in: a) making letter and parcel bombs; b) making bombs which could be placed on aircraft and detonated by changes in barometric pressure; and c) making false passport [sic]. Bin Laden specifically requested that [Brigadier Salim al-Ahmed], Iraqi intelligence's premier explosives maker--especially skilled in making car bombs--remain with him in Sudan. The Iraqi intelligence chief instructed Salim to remain in Sudan with bin Laden as long as required.
The analysis of those events follows:


The time of the visit from the IIS director was a few weeks after the Khobar Towers bombing. The bombing came on the third anniversary of a U.S. [Tomahawk missile] strike on IIS HQ (retaliation for the attempted assassination of former President Bush in Kuwait) for which Iraqi officials explicitly threatened retaliation.

IN ADDITION TO THE CONTACTS CLUSTERED in the mid-1990s, intelligence reports detail a flurry of activities in early 1998 and again in December 1998. A "former senior Iraqi intelligence officer" reported that "the Iraqi intelligence service station in Pakistan was Baghdad's point of contact with al Qaeda. He also said bin Laden visited Baghdad in Jan. 1998 and met with Tariq Aziz."


11. According to sensitive reporting, Saddam personally sent Faruq Hijazi, IIS deputy director and later Iraqi ambassador to Turkey, to meet with bin Laden at least twice, first in Sudan and later in Afghanistan in 1999. . . .
14. According to a sensitive reporting [from] a "regular and reliable source," [Ayman al] Zawahiri, a senior al Qaeda operative, visited Baghdad and met with the Iraqi Vice President on 3 February 1998. The goal of the visit was to arrange for coordination between Iraq and bin Laden and establish camps in an-Nasiriyah and Iraqi Kurdistan under the leadership of Abdul Aziz.

That visit came as the Iraqis intensified their defiance of the U.N. inspection regime, known as UNSCOM, created by the cease-fire agreement following the Gulf War. UNSCOM demanded access to Saddam's presidential palaces that he refused to provide. As the tensions mounted, President Bill Clinton went to the Pentagon on February 18, 1998, and prepared the nation for war. He warned of "an unholy axis of terrorists, drug traffickers, and organized international criminals" and said "there is no more clear example of this threat than Saddam Hussein."

The day after this speech, according to documents unearthed in April 2003 in the Iraqi Intelligence headquarters by journalists Mitch Potter and Inigo Gilmore, Hussein's intelligence service wrote a memo detailing coming meetings with a bin Laden representative traveling to Baghdad. Each reference to bin Laden had been covered by liquid paper that, when revealed, exposed a plan to increase cooperation between Iraq and al Qaeda. According to that memo, the IIS agreed to pay for "all the travel and hotel costs inside Iraq to gain the knowledge of the message from bin Laden and to convey to his envoy an oral message from us to bin Laden." The document set as the goal for the meeting a discussion of "the future of our relationship with him, bin Laden, and to achieve a direct meeting with him." The al Qaeda representative, the document went on to suggest, might provide "a way to maintain contacts with bin Laden."

Four days later, on February 23, 1998, bin Laden issued his now-famous fatwa on the plight of Iraq, published in the Arabic-language daily, al Quds al-Arabi: "For over seven years the United States has been occupying the lands of Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian Peninsula, plundering its riches, dictating to its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing its neighbors, and turning its bases in the Peninsula into a spearhead through which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples." Bin Laden urged his followers to act: "The ruling to kill all Americans and their allies--civilians and military--is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it."

Although war was temporarily averted by a last-minute deal brokered by U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, tensions soon rose again. The standoff with Iraq came to a head in December 1998, when President Clinton launched Operation Desert Fox, a 70-hour bombing campaign that began on December 16 and ended three days later, on December 19, 1998.

According to press reports at the time, Faruq Hijazi, deputy director of Iraqi Intelligence, met with bin Laden in Afghanistan on December 21, 1998, to offer bin Laden safe haven in Iraq. CIA reporting in the memo to the Senate Intelligence Committee seems to confirm this meeting and relates two others.


15. A foreign government service reported that an Iraqi delegation, including at least two Iraqi intelligence officers formerly assigned to the Iraqi Embassy in Pakistan, met in late 1998 with bin Laden in Afghanistan.
16. According to CIA reporting, bin Laden and Zawahiri met with two Iraqi intelligence officers in Afghanistan in Dec. 1998.

17. . . . Iraq sent an intelligence officer to Afghanistan to seek closer ties to bin Laden and the Taliban in late 1998. The source reported that the Iraqi regime was trying to broaden its cooperation with al Qaeda. Iraq was looking to recruit Muslim "elements" to sabotage U.S. and U.K. interests. After a senior Iraqi intelligence officer met with Taliban leader [Mullah] Omar, arrangements were made for a series of meetings between the Iraqi intelligence officer and bin Laden in Pakistan. The source noted Faruq Hijazi was in Afghanistan in late 1998.

18. . . . Faruq Hijazi went to Afghanistan in 1999 along with several other Iraqi officials to meet with bin Laden. The source claimed that Hijazi would have met bin Laden only at Saddam's explicit direction.

An analysis that follows No. 18 provides additional context and an explanation of these reports:


Reporting entries #4, #11, #15, #16, #17, and #18, from different sources, corroborate each other and provide confirmation of meetings between al Qaeda operatives and Iraqi intelligence in Afghanistan and Pakistan. None of the reports have information on operational details or the purpose of such meetings. The covert nature of the relationship would indicate strict compartmentation [sic] of operations.
Information about connections between al Qaeda and Iraq was so widespread by early 1999 that it made its way into the mainstream press. A January 11, 1999, Newsweek story ran under this headline: "Saddam + Bin Laden?" The story cited an "Arab intelligence source" with knowledge of contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda. "According to this source, Saddam expected last month's American and British bombing campaign to go on much longer than it did. The dictator believed that as the attacks continued, indignation would grow in the Muslim world, making his terrorism offensive both harder to trace and more effective. With acts of terror contributing to chaos in the region, Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait might feel less inclined to support Washington. Saddam's long-term strategy, according to several sources, is to bully or cajole Muslim countries into breaking the embargo against Iraq, without waiting for the United Nations to lift if formally."


INTELLIGENCE REPORTS about the nature of the relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda from mid-1999 through 2003 are conflicting. One senior Iraqi intelligence officer in U.S. custody, Khalil Ibrahim Abdallah, "said that the last contact between the IIS and al Qaeda was in July 1999. Bin Laden wanted to meet with Saddam, he said. The guidance sent back from Saddam's office reportedly ordered Iraqi intelligence to refrain from any further contact with bin Laden and al Qaeda. The source opined that Saddam wanted to distance himself from al Qaeda."

The bulk of reporting on the relationship contradicts this claim. One report states that "in late 1999" al Qaeda set up a training camp in northern Iraq that "was operational as of 1999." Other reports suggest that the Iraqi regime contemplated several offers of safe haven to bin Laden throughout 1999.


23. . . . Iraqi officials were carefully considering offering safe haven to bin Laden and his closest collaborators in Nov. 1999. The source indicated the idea was put forward by the presumed head of Iraqi intelligence in Islamabad (Khalid Janaby) who in turn was in frequent contact and had good relations with bin Laden.
Some of the most intriguing intelligence concerns an Iraqi named Ahmed Hikmat Shakir:


24. According to sensitive reporting, a Malaysia-based Iraqi national (Shakir) facilitated the arrival of one of the Sept 11 hijackers for an operational meeting in Kuala Lumpur (Jan 2000). Sensitive reporting indicates Shakir's travel and contacts link him to a worldwide network of terrorists, including al Qaeda. Shakir worked at the Kuala Lumpur airport--a job he claimed to have obtained through an Iraqi embassy employee.
One of the men at that al Qaeda operational meeting in the Kuala Lumpur Hotel was Tawfiz al Atash, a top bin Laden lieutenant later identified as the mastermind of the October 12, 2000, attack on the USS Cole.


25. Investigation into the bombing of the USS Cole in October 2000 by al Qaeda revealed no specific Iraqi connections but according to the CIA, "fragmentary evidence points to possible Iraqi involvement."
26. During a custodial interview, Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi [a senior al Qaeda operative] said he was told by an al Qaeda associate that he was tasked to travel to Iraq (1998) to establish a relationship with Iraqi intelligence to obtain poisons and gases training. After the USS Cole bombing in 2000, two al Qaeda operatives were sent to Iraq for CBW-related [Chemical and Biological Weapons] training beginning in Dec 2000. Iraqi intelligence was "encouraged" after the embassy and USS Cole bombings to provide this training.

The analysis of this report follows.


CIA maintains that Ibn al-Shaykh's timeline is consistent with other sensitive reporting indicating that bin Laden asked Iraq in 1998 for advanced weapons, including CBW and "poisons."
Additional reporting also calls into question the claim that relations between Iraq and al Qaeda cooled after mid-1999:

27. According to sensitive CIA reporting, . . . the Saudi National Guard went on a kingdom-wide state of alert in late Dec 2000 after learning Saddam agreed to assist al Qaeda in attacking U.S./U.K. interests in Saudi Arabia.

And then there is the alleged contact between lead 9/11 hijacker Mohamed Atta and an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague. The reporting on those links suggests not one meeting, but as many as four. What's more, the memo reveals potential financing of Atta's activities by Iraqi intelligence.





The Czech counterintelligence service reported that the Sept. 11 hijacker [Mohamed] Atta met with the former Iraqi intelligence chief in Prague, [Ahmed Khalil Ibrahim Samir] al Ani, on several occasions. During one of these meetings, al Ani ordered the IIS finance officer to issue Atta funds from IIS financial holdings in the Prague office.
And the commentary:


CIA can confirm two Atta visits to Prague--in Dec. 1994 and in June 2000; data surrounding the other two--on 26 Oct 1999 and 9 April 2001--is complicated and sometimes contradictory and CIA and FBI cannot confirm Atta met with the IIS. Czech Interior Minister Stanislav Gross continues to stand by his information.
It's not just Gross who stands by the information. Five high-ranking members of the Czech government have publicly confirmed meetings between Atta and al Ani. The meeting that has gotten the most press attention--April 9, 2001--is also the most widely disputed. Even some of the most hawkish Bush administration officials are privately skeptical that Atta met al Ani on that occasion. They believe that reports of the alleged meeting, said to have taken place in public, outside the headquarters of the U.S.-financed Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, suggest a level of sloppiness that doesn't fit the pattern of previous high-level Iraq-al Qaeda contacts.

Whether or not that specific meeting occurred, the report by Czech counterintelligence that al Ani ordered the Iraqi Intelligence Service officer to provide IIS funds to Atta might help explain the lead hijacker's determination to reach Prague, despite significant obstacles, in the spring of 2000. (Note that the report stops short of confirming that the funds were transferred. It claims only that the IIS officer requested the transfer.) Recall that Atta flew to Prague from Germany on May 30, 2000, but was denied entry because he did not have a valid visa. Rather than simply return to Germany and fly directly to the United States, his ultimate destination, Atta took pains to get to Prague. After he was refused entry the first time, he traveled back to Germany, obtained the proper paperwork, and caught a bus back to Prague. He left for the United States the day after arriving in Prague for the second time.

Several reports indicate that the relationship between Saddam and bin Laden continued, even after the September 11 attacks:


31. An Oct. 2002 . . . report said al Qaeda and Iraq reached a secret agreement whereby Iraq would provide safe haven to al Qaeda members and provide them with money and weapons. The agreement reportedly prompted a large number of al Qaeda members to head to Iraq. The report also said that al Qaeda members involved in a fraudulent passport network for al Qaeda had been directed to procure 90 Iraqi and Syrian passports for al Qaeda personnel.
The analysis that accompanies that report indicates that the report fits the pattern of Iraq-al Qaeda collaboration:


References to procurement of false passports from Iraq and offers of safe haven previously have surfaced in CIA source reporting considered reliable. Intelligence reports to date have maintained that Iraqi support for al Qaeda usually involved providing training, obtaining passports, and offers of refuge. This report adds to that list by including weapons and money. This assistance would make sense in the aftermath of 9-11.
Colin Powell, in his February 5, 2003, presentation to the U.N. Security Council, revealed the activities of Abu Musab al Zarqawi. Reporting in the memo expands on Powell's case and might help explain some of the resistance the U.S. military is currently facing in Iraq.


37. Sensitive reporting indicates senior terrorist planner and close al Qaeda associate al Zarqawi has had an operational alliance with Iraqi officials. As of Oct. 2002, al Zarqawi maintained contacts with the IIS to procure weapons and explosives, including surface-to-air missiles from an IIS officer in Baghdad. According to sensitive reporting, al Zarqawi was setting up sleeper cells in Baghdad to be activated in case of a U.S. occupation of the city, suggesting his operational cooperation with the Iraqis may have deepened in recent months. Such cooperation could include IIS provision of a secure operating bases [sic] and steady access to arms and explosives in preparation for a possible U.S. invasion. Al Zarqawi's procurements from the Iraqis also could support al Qaeda operations against the U.S. or its allies elsewhere.
38. According to sensitive reporting, a contact with good access who does not have an established reporting record: An Iraqi intelligence service officer said that as of mid-March the IIS was providing weapons to al Qaeda members located in northern Iraq, including rocket propelled grenade (RPG)-18 launchers. According to IIS information, northern Iraq-based al Qaeda members believed that the U.S. intended to strike al Qaeda targets during an anticipated assault against Ansar al-Islam positions.

The memo further reported pre-war intelligence which "claimed that an Iraqi intelligence official, praising Ansar al-Islam, provided it with $100,000 and agreed to continue to give assistance."


CRITICS OF THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION have complained that Iraq-al Qaeda connections are a fantasy, trumped up by the warmongers at the White House to fit their preconceived notions about international terror; that links between Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden have been routinely "exaggerated" for political purposes; that hawks "cherry-picked" bits of intelligence and tendentiously presented these to the American public.

Carl Levin, a senior member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, made those points as recently as November 9, in an appearance on "Fox News Sunday." Republicans on the committee, he complained, refuse to look at the administration's "exaggeration of intelligence."

Said Levin: "The question is whether or not they exaggerated intelligence in order to carry out their purpose, which was to make the case for going to war. Did we know, for instance, with certainty that there was any relationship between the Iraqis and the terrorists that were in Afghanistan, bin Laden? The administration said that there's a connection between those terrorist groups in Afghanistan and Iraq. Was there a basis for that?"

There was, as shown in the memo to the committee on which Levin serves. And much of the reporting comes from Clinton-era intelligence. Not that you would know this from Al Gore's recent public statements. Indeed, the former vice president claims to be privy to new "evidence" that the administration lied. In an August speech at New York University, Gore claimed: "The evidence now shows clearly that Saddam did not want to work with Osama bin Laden at all, much less give him weapons of mass destruction." Really?

One of the most interesting things to note about the 16-page memo is that it covers only a fraction of the evidence that will eventually be available to document the relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda. For one thing, both Saddam and bin Laden were desperate to keep their cooperation secret. (Remember, Iraqi intelligence used liquid paper on an internal intelligence document to conceal bin Laden's name.) For another, few people in the U.S. government are expressly looking for such links. There is no Iraq-al Qaeda equivalent of the CIA's 1,400-person Iraq Survey Group currently searching Iraq for weapons of mass destruction.

Instead, CIA and FBI officials are methodically reviewing Iraqi intelligence files that survived the three-week war last spring. These documents would cover several miles if laid end-to-end. And they are in Arabic. They include not only connections between bin Laden and Saddam, but also revolting details of the regime's long history of brutality. It will be a slow process.

So Feith's memo to the Senate Intelligence Committee is best viewed as sort of a "Cliff's Notes" version of the relationship. It contains the highlights, but it is far from exhaustive.

One example. The memo contains only one paragraph on Ahmed Hikmat Shakir, the Iraqi facilitator who escorted two September 11 hijackers through customs in Kuala Lumpur. U.S. intelligence agencies have extensive reporting on his activities before and after the September 11 hijacking. That they would include only this brief overview suggests the 16-page memo, extensive as it is, just skims the surface of the reporting on Iraq-al Qaeda connections.

Other intelligence reports indicate that Shakir whisked not one but two September 11 hijackers--Khalid al Midhar and Nawaq al Hamzi--through the passport and customs process upon their arrival in Kuala Lumpur on January 5, 2000. Shakir then traveled with the hijackers to the Kuala Lumpur Hotel where they met with Ramzi bin al Shibh, one of the masterminds of the September 11 plot. The meeting lasted three days. Shakir returned to work on January 9 and January 10, and never again.

Shakir got his airport job through a contact at the Iraqi Embassy. (Iraq routinely used its embassies as staging grounds for its intelligence operations; in some cases, more than half of the alleged "diplomats" were intelligence operatives.) The Iraqi embassy, not his employer, controlled Shakir's schedule. He was detained in Qatar on September 17, 2001. Authorities found in his possession contact information for terrorists involved in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the 1998 embassy bombings, the 2000 attack on the USS Cole, and the September 11 hijackings. The CIA had previous reporting that Shakir had received a phone call from the safe house where the 1993 World Trade Center attacks had been plotted.

The Qataris released Shakir shortly after his arrest. On October 21, 2001, he flew to Amman, Jordan, where he was to change planes to a flight to Baghdad. He didn't make that flight. Shakir was detained in Jordan for three months, where the CIA interrogated him. His interrogators concluded that Shakir had received extensive training in counter-interrogation techniques. Not long after he was detained, according to an official familiar with the intelligence, the Iraqi regime began to "pressure" Jordanian intelligence to release him. At the same time, Amnesty International complained that Shakir was being held without charge. The Jordanians released him on January 28, 2002, at which point he is believed to have fled back to Iraq.

Was Shakir an Iraqi agent? Does he provide a connection between Saddam Hussein and September 11? We don't know. We may someday find out.

But there can no longer be any serious argument about whether Saddam Hussein's Iraq worked with Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda to plot against Americans.


Stephen F. Hayes is a staff writer at The Weekly Standard.



? Copyright 2004, News Corporation, Weekly Standard, All Rights Reserved.



http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/003/378fmxyz.asp


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OfflineEd1
member
Registered: 07/03/04
Posts: 150
Last seen: 12 years, 3 months
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3015410 - 08/17/04 09:50 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)



General Hawley's Politically Incorrect Message:

General Hawley,is a newly retired USAF 4 star general. He commanded the
Air Combat Command [our front-line fighters and bombers] at Langley AFB, VA. He is now retired and no longer required to be politically correct. A true patriot.
"Since the attack [9-11], I have seen, heard, and read thoughts of such
surpassing stupidity that they must be addressed. You've heard them too.

Here they are:

1) "We're not good, they're not evil, everything is relative."

Listen carefully: We're good, they're evil, nothing is relative. Say it with me now and free yourselves. You see, folks, saying "We're good" doesn't mean, "We're perfect." Okay? The only perfect being is the bearded guy on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The plain fact is that our country has, with all our mistakes and blunders, always been and always will be the greatest beacon of freedom, charity, opportunity, and affection in history. If you need proof, open all the borders on Earth and see what happens.

2) "Violence only leads to more violence."

This one is so stupid you usually have to be the president of an Ivy
League university to say it. Here's the truth, which you know in your heads and hearts already: Ineffective, unfocused violence leads to more violence. Limp, panicky, half measures lead to more violence. However, complete, fully thought through, professional, well executed violence never leads to more violence because, you see, afterwards, the other guys are all dead. That's right, dead. Not "on trial," not reeducated," not "nurtured back into the bosom of love." Dead.

3) "The CIA and the rest of our intelligence community have failed us."

For 25 years we have chained our spies like dogs to a stake in the
ground, and now that the house has been robbed, we yell at them for not
protecting us. Starting in the late seventies, under Carter appointee Stansfield Turner, the giant brains who get these giant ideas decided that the best way to gather international intelligence was to use spy satellites. "After all, (they reasoned,) you can see a license plate from 200 miles away." This is very helpful if you've been attacked by a license plate. Unfortunately, we were attacked by humans. Finding humans is not possible with satellites. You have to use other humans. When we bought all our satellites, we fired all our humans, and here's the really stupid part. It takes years, decades to infiltrate new humans into the worst places of the world. You can't just have a guy who looks like Gary Busey in a Spring Break '93 sweatshirt plop himself down in a coffee shop in Kabul and say "Hiya, boys. Gee, I sure would like to meet that bin Laden fella. "Well, you can, but all you'd be doing is giving the bad guys a story they'll be telling for years.

4) "These people are poor and helpless, and that's why they're angry at
us."

Uh-huh, and Jeffrey Dahmer's frozen head collection was just a desperate cry for help. The terrorists and their backers are richer than Elton John and, ironically, a good deal less annoying. The poor helpless people, you see, are the villagers they tortured and murdered to stay in power. Mohammed Atta, one of the evil scumbags who steered those planes into the killing grounds is the son of a Cairo surgeon. But you knew this, too. In the sixties and seventies, all the pinheads marching against the war were upper-middle-class college kids who grabbed any cause they could think of to get out of their final papers and spend more time drinking. It's the same today.

5) "Any profiling is racial profiling."

Who's killing us here, the Norwegians? Just days after the attack, the
New York Times had an article saying dozens of extended members of the
gazillionaire bin Laden family living in America were afraid of reprisals
and left in a huff, never to return to studying at Harvard and using too
much Drakkar. I'm crushed. Please come back. Let's all stop singing
"We Are the World" for a minute and think practically. I don't want to be
sitting on the floor in the back of a plane four seconds away from
hitting Mt.Rushmore and turn, grinning, to the guy next to me to say, "Well, at
least we didn't offend them."

SO HERE'S what I resolve for the New Year: Never to forget our murdered
brothers and sisters. Never to let the relativists get away with their
immoral thinking. After all, no matter what your daughter's political
science professor says, we didn't start this. Have you seen that bumper
sticker that says, "No More Hiroshimas"? I wish I had one that says, "No
More Pearl Harbors."

THIS NEEDS TO STAY IN CIRCULATION FOR THOSE WHO HAVE OR WILL FALL FOR THE
STUPIDITY GOING AROUND. PLEASE PASS IT ON!

"If you can read this, thank a teacher....
If you are reading it in English, thank a soldier."


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Invisiblesilversoul7
Chill the FuckOut!
 User Gallery

Registered: 10/10/02
Posts: 27,301
Loc: mndfreeze's puppet army
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3015453 - 08/17/04 10:00 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

Quote:

Ed1 said:


General Hawley's Politically Incorrect Message:

General Hawley,is a newly retired USAF 4 star general. He commanded the
Air Combat Command [our front-line fighters and bombers] at Langley AFB, VA. He is now retired and no longer required to be politically correct. A true patriot.
"Since the attack [9-11], I have seen, heard, and read thoughts of such
surpassing stupidity that they must be addressed. You've heard them too.

Here they are:

1) "We're not good, they're not evil, everything is relative."

Listen carefully: We're good, they're evil, nothing is relative. Say it with me now and free yourselves. You see, folks, saying "We're good" doesn't mean, "We're perfect." Okay? The only perfect being is the bearded guy on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. The plain fact is that our country has, with all our mistakes and blunders, always been and always will be the greatest beacon of freedom, charity, opportunity, and affection in history. If you need proof, open all the borders on Earth and see what happens.

2) "Violence only leads to more violence."

This one is so stupid you usually have to be the president of an Ivy
League university to say it. Here's the truth, which you know in your heads and hearts already: Ineffective, unfocused violence leads to more violence. Limp, panicky, half measures lead to more violence. However, complete, fully thought through, professional, well executed violence never leads to more violence because, you see, afterwards, the other guys are all dead. That's right, dead. Not "on trial," not reeducated," not "nurtured back into the bosom of love." Dead.

3) "The CIA and the rest of our intelligence community have failed us."

For 25 years we have chained our spies like dogs to a stake in the
ground, and now that the house has been robbed, we yell at them for not
protecting us. Starting in the late seventies, under Carter appointee Stansfield Turner, the giant brains who get these giant ideas decided that the best way to gather international intelligence was to use spy satellites. "After all, (they reasoned,) you can see a license plate from 200 miles away." This is very helpful if you've been attacked by a license plate. Unfortunately, we were attacked by humans. Finding humans is not possible with satellites. You have to use other humans. When we bought all our satellites, we fired all our humans, and here's the really stupid part. It takes years, decades to infiltrate new humans into the worst places of the world. You can't just have a guy who looks like Gary Busey in a Spring Break '93 sweatshirt plop himself down in a coffee shop in Kabul and say "Hiya, boys. Gee, I sure would like to meet that bin Laden fella. "Well, you can, but all you'd be doing is giving the bad guys a story they'll be telling for years.

4) "These people are poor and helpless, and that's why they're angry at
us."

Uh-huh, and Jeffrey Dahmer's frozen head collection was just a desperate cry for help. The terrorists and their backers are richer than Elton John and, ironically, a good deal less annoying. The poor helpless people, you see, are the villagers they tortured and murdered to stay in power. Mohammed Atta, one of the evil scumbags who steered those planes into the killing grounds is the son of a Cairo surgeon. But you knew this, too. In the sixties and seventies, all the pinheads marching against the war were upper-middle-class college kids who grabbed any cause they could think of to get out of their final papers and spend more time drinking. It's the same today.

5) "Any profiling is racial profiling."

Who's killing us here, the Norwegians? Just days after the attack, the
New York Times had an article saying dozens of extended members of the
gazillionaire bin Laden family living in America were afraid of reprisals
and left in a huff, never to return to studying at Harvard and using too
much Drakkar. I'm crushed. Please come back. Let's all stop singing
"We Are the World" for a minute and think practically. I don't want to be
sitting on the floor in the back of a plane four seconds away from
hitting Mt.Rushmore and turn, grinning, to the guy next to me to say, "Well, at
least we didn't offend them."

SO HERE'S what I resolve for the New Year: Never to forget our murdered
brothers and sisters. Never to let the relativists get away with their
immoral thinking. After all, no matter what your daughter's political
science professor says, we didn't start this. Have you seen that bumper
sticker that says, "No More Hiroshimas"? I wish I had one that says, "No
More Pearl Harbors."

THIS NEEDS TO STAY IN CIRCULATION FOR THOSE WHO HAVE OR WILL FALL FOR THE
STUPIDITY GOING AROUND. PLEASE PASS IT ON!

"If you can read this, thank a teacher....
If you are reading it in English, thank a soldier."




http://www.snopes.com/rumors/hawley.htm


--------------------


"It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."--Voltaire


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OfflineEd1
member
Registered: 07/03/04
Posts: 150
Last seen: 12 years, 3 months
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: silversoul7]
    #3015483 - 08/17/04 10:08 PM (12 years, 3 months ago)

4) Poverty is the breeding ground for terrorists: No, it isn't; but religious extremism is. The Mullahs fear our wealth and power because it shows that a secular society with democratic institutions and a free market economy can do a better job of taking care of its peoples' needs, both spiritual and physical, than the oppressive Islamic regimes that they aspire to lead. The Mullahs are the problem, not poverty, but poverty does make it easier for the Mullahs to spread their evil - as do governments that tolerate and even reinforce their hateful message.

5) Profiling: We are at war here! We are not talking about traffic stops. If we were at war with Iceland, I would expect those charged with our defense to pay very close attention to any Icelander who ventured near our shores. In this war I expect them to pay very close attention to Muslims with ties to the places that spew hatred against us. Random checks when there are no such obvious targets available are a good way to keep the evil ones guessing, but let's not make small children and grandmothers take their shoes off while we watch far more likely candidates walk aboard unchecked.


http://www.snopes.com/rumors/hawley.htm


Still good advice.


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OfflineBaby_Hitler
Errorist
 User Gallery

Folding@home Statistics
Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 22,840
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Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Ed1]
    #3016847 - 08/18/04 04:05 AM (12 years, 3 months ago)

I think you should have to fly naked, and not be allowed to take anything on the plane with you.


--------------------


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InvisibleGreat_Satan
prophet of God
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Registered: 09/05/04
Posts: 953
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Baby_Hitler]
    #3123432 - 09/11/04 09:18 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)



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Offlinemonoamine
umask 077(nonefor you)

Registered: 09/07/02
Posts: 3,095
Loc: Jacksonville,FL
Last seen: 11 years, 2 months
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Baby_Hitler]
    #3123610 - 09/11/04 09:59 PM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Quote:

I think you should have to fly naked, and not be allowed to take anything on the plane with you.




I think you should have to cut off your penis because it could potentially be used as a weapon.But then we're left with fists...

I know! Everybody should have to fly in a drugged,comatose state.


--------------------
People think that if you just say the word "hallucinations" it explains everything you want it to explain and eventually whatever it is you can't explain will just go away.It's just a word,it doesn't explain anything...
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OfflineMushmonkey
shiftlesslayabout
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Registered: 09/26/03
Posts: 10,378
Last seen: 2 years, 2 months
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: monoamine]
    #3125136 - 09/12/04 06:06 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

"I know! Everybody should have to fly in a drugged,comatose state."


UMMMMMMMM



seriously that sounds good to me

>:D


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Offlinehound
newbie
Registered: 09/08/04
Posts: 154
Loc: NAPTOWN
Last seen: 12 years, 1 month
Re: France Expels Muslims [Re: Baby_Hitler]
    #3125230 - 09/12/04 07:35 AM (12 years, 2 months ago)

Quote:

Baby_Hitler said:
I think you should have to fly naked, and not be allowed to take anything on the plane with you.





Or how about passing out guns to everybody?


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