10 Years After 9/11: A Degraded Yet Dangerous Al Qaeda Adapts & Evokes
The news of a particular, credible, but uncorroborated terrorist threat to coincide with the tenth anniversary period of the 9/eleven assaults highlights the amorphous nature of the contemporary danger landscape. This alert involving possible unnamed Pakistani U.S. residents armed with vehicular bombs focusing on metropolitan New York or Washington, DC highlights one of two types of potential threats. Around the time of the 9/eleven attacks the primary terror danger involved a extra centralized and offensively oriented al Qaeda organization that had a cadre of skilled and overseas directed assailants. Whereas al Qaeda would still wish to dispatch their own operatives and should have a harmful capability to take action, al Qaeda inspired plotters, somewhat than al Qaeda directed plotters have really turn into extra numerous during the last several years.
Though far less potent at the moment, Al Qaeda, even in a diminished kind, or some of its regional affiliates like al Qaeda within the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) or Somalia’s al Shabaab might have the capacity to direct and dispatch a small number of terrorists to the American homeland to efficiently undertake fatal mass attacks. That is despite the group’s vital degradation and the United States authorities’s noteworthy, although incomplete improvements. Many have noted that al Qaeda property and management have been degraded to some extent that its leadership is in a fierce battle for its personal survival. Amy Zegart acknowledged this point, but appropriately maintained in a Los Angeles Occasions OpEd that to describe Al Qaeda as defeated is misleadingly harmful:
Sure, the United States has made nice strides in the final decade to harden targets, enhance intelligence and degrade the capabilities of violent Islamist extremists. Osama bin Laden’s demise was a major accomplishment. However the battle is nowhere close to being received, and America’s most perilous instances might lie forward.
Whereas al Qaeda has not been in a position to replicate the 9/11 attacks or even smaller mass casualty occasions such because the 2004 Madrid prepare bombings or the 2005 London terror assaults, it would be foolhardy to recommend that a diminished organization interprets right into a concomitant eradication of the Salafist mass terror risk to the West, either by the organization itself, or alternatively by those that it evokes.
Al Qaeda’s most acute ongoing menace to America, could not simply be in it’s persevering with need or capacity to orchestrate its personal to commit assaults right here, however quite in its means to get its supporters to recruit and attack for them. Ten years in the past a much more potent al Qaeda group nonetheless had a just about full inability to harness the Web to reach disaffected youth within the United States in English in a compelling method that truly introduced a tangible threat. That has now modified, and has made extra autonomous small cells and loners more of a risk than they’ve beforehand been.
UK Seeds of Hate Take Root In America
Certainly one of the important thing pioneers in harnessing a dangerous, however very small sliver of American youth to religious extremism is a notorious English speaking hate cleric named Omar Bakri Mohammed, fifty two. Bakri has consistently praised Osama bin Laden, as properly because the “Magnificent 19” 9/eleven terrorists, blamed the 2005 London tube bombings on the British government and other people and has stated Tony Blair and George Bush must be condemned somewhat than Bin Laden. He has additionally preached: “The jihad is halal [permissible] for the Muslims wherever they’re, the entire ummah [Muslim group] wherever they’re. Ok brothers – wherever you’re, do it.”
In August 2010, Paul Cruickshank wrote in West Level’s Counter Terrorism Sentinel:
An emerging community of radical preachers, demagogues, bloggers, and activists are trying to disseminate extremist ideas amongst Muslim youth in the United States. Largely excluded from the nation’s mosques, they unfold their message on the streets, outside the mosque, in small gatherings in non-public residences, on campuses and above all on-line, taking full advantage of latest social media platforms to maximize their attain. They are a loose constellation of individuals, however have a transparent heart of gravity in two extremist groups that function freely and overtly in New York Metropolis.
The groups in question–the Islamic Thinkers Society (ITS) and Revolution Muslim (RM), each affiliated with the British extremist organization al-Muhajiroun–are increasingly appearing in counterterrorism investigations.
Bakri’s banned British group al Muhajiroun’s tiny American affiliate was a precursor to a few small New York extremist teams, the Islamic Thinker’s Society, the now-defunct Revolution Muslim, and its successor Islampolicy. Two members of the unique New York affiliate of al Muhajiroun, Syed Hashimi and Mohammed Junaid Babar, whose mom was practically killed in the 9/11 assaults, were sentenced to federal prison within the United States for their position in traveling overseas to aid al Qaeda. Along with numerous postings, Bakri has appeared as a important speaker over in 2010 and 2011in no less than two main stay world extremist American directed Internet internet conferences.
Born in Syria in 1958 the “Totenham Ayatollah,” was considered Al Qaeda’s most prominent spiritual supporter within the United Kingdom. In 2005 he was banned from returning there after he made a trip to visit his mom in Lebanon. Al Muhajiroun, which was disbanded in 2004 following a authorities pronouncement of its upcoming prohibition, was relaunched by followers and banned underneath completely different names, until getting banned once more in 2010. Bakri was crucial within the empowerment of other notorious British radicals, together with Abu Hamza al Masri, the previous Imam at the Finsbury Park Mosque and vigorous bin Laden supporter who held 9/11 commemorative celebrations and preached that killings of non believers “kafirs” is justifiable.
Whereas Bakri has been confined to Lebanon, his seeds of radicalism sprouted without him
on each sides of the Atlantic. Apparently, considered one of his most influential ideological progeny in the United States is a converted Orthodox Jew named Yousef al-Khattab. Al-Khattab, formerly referred to as Joseph Leonard Cohen, is a forty three 12 months old who cofounded the influential, but now defunct radical Revolution Muslim website with one other convert and Columbia College grad named Younes Abdullah Muhammad in 2008.
Small Revolution Muslim Group Attracted Harmful Sliver of Radicals
He was additionally active in another New York extremist group, Islamic Thinkers Society, earlier than coming to Revolution Muslim. The Islamic Thinker’s Society started in August 2004 when Omar Bakri Muhammad requested his American followers drop the title Muhajiroun as a result of its British sister group was under fire there and about to be disbanded. Based on a Might 13, 2011 FBI affidavit Revolution Muslim was formed “with the publicly stated goals of establishing Islamic regulation in the U.S.destroying Israel, and taking al-Qaida’s message to the lots.” Al-Khattab’s website “humor” included tasteless skits with him laughing over the violent death of an American serviceman in Iraq whereas holding an American flag or staging a puppet present depicting the beheading of Wall Road Journal reporter Daniel Pearl. He additionally lavished praise Osama bin Laden and on “officer and gentleman” alleged Fort Hood Shooter Nidal Hasan.
Revolution Muslim cofounder Younes Abdullah Muhammad shared a standard history.
Each had been converts who had previous affiliations with the Islamic Thinkers Society. Mohammad is a former Brooklyn resident and Grateful Useless fan beforehand often called Jesse Curtis Morton. He reportedly holds a masters diploma from Columbia College’s School of Worldwide and Public Affairs. In Mid Might 2011 while in Morocco, Muhammad was charged within the United States with making threats over the Web in the direction of South Park producers Matt Stone and Trey Parker in April of the earlier year. In “By All Means Necessary,” a 27 page mission statement launched on December 7, 2008 he lays out the organization’s vision for the institution of an Islamic state and waging a response to the West’s “Conflict on Islam.” In it he not only praises deceased Muslim Brotherhood icon Egyptian Sayyid Qutb and al Qaeda’s Osama bin Laden, but additionally the “19 blessed souls [who on September 11] sacrificed their selves in a preemptive and retaliatory assault on America’s navy, financial and authorities capitals.”
In October 2010, NPR reported, “Of the 2-dozen homegrown plots in the United States in the past year, Revolution Muslim was linked to one-third of them.” Harmful Jihadists linked to both al-Khattab or Revolution Muslim embrace:
– Pennsylvania convert “Jihad Jane” Colleen LaRose, forty eight, who plead responsible to the attempted murder of Dutch cartoonist Lars Vilks.
– Virginia convert Zachary Chesser, 21, aka Abu Talhah al-Amrikee, a Samir Khan affiliate, who was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison in February for posting threats referring to the cartoon South Park and for his support of and tried membership in Somalia al Qaeda affiliate al-Shabab. He was arrested as he was leaving on a flight to Africa.
– Convert Antonio Martnez, 21, aka Muhammad Hussain, charged in January for a plot to bomb an Armed Forces recruiting station in Cantonsville, Maryland.
– Bryant Michael Vinas, 28, aka Bashir al-Ameriki, truck driver, converted Catholic and former Boy Scout pleaded responsible to 3 expenses in connection to an al Qaeda plot to bomb the Long Island Rail Street
– Tarek Mehana, 28, an Egyptian Massachusetts pharmacist arrested by federal authorities on October 21, 2009 for plotting jihad assaults towards U.S. procuring malls and troopers in Iraq.
American Born Hate Evokes
Anwar al Awalki, forty, is an influential English talking New Mexico born radical Yemeni cleric who additionally has harnessed the web to advertise violent Jihad, most just lately on behalf of his terrorist group, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), which was formed in January 2009. Because of his command of English, his wonderful rhetorical abilities and his ubiquity on-line Al Awalki is arguably an important inspirational determine to a small, however growing new breed of web savvy disaffected young adults in the North America and Britain. As FBI director Robert Mueller told the Senate in September 2010, “The Web has expanded as a platform for spreading extremist propaganda, a instrument for online recruiting, and a medium for social networking with like-minded violent extremists, all of which could also be contributing to the pronounced state of radicalization contained in the United States.”
Along with al Awalki’s uncontroversial earlier lectures on religion, an array of his radical English language jihadist exhortations have been obtainable on-line including on Youtube videos, on the own defunct web sites anwar-awlaki.com and Revolution Muslim, the Web essay compilation Jihad Recollections, the internet magazine Inspire and in essays just like the 2009 44 Ways to Support Jihad and may Our Souls Be Sacrificed for You. DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano informed the Senate in Febrauary 2011, “The menace continues to evolve and in some methods the threat at this time could also be at its most heightened state because the attacks almost 10 years in the past.” Now former National Counter Terrorism Center director Michael Leiter also advised congress throughout those same hearings that AQAP was the biggest menace and that the its violence embracing Inspire magazine “is spiffy.” But dangerous. stone island combat jeans He contended “It’s got nice graphics and in some sense we think most likely speaks to individuals who’re prefer to be radicalized.”
The journal appears to be the work of Al Awalki and Samir Khan, an American techno whiz who wrote on the Revolution Muslim and different radical websites earlier than allegedly fleeing North Carolina for Yemen to help AQAP in the Fall of 2009. Authorities believe Khan is behind al Qaeda’s new slick online English magazine, Inspire that debuted in the summer of 2010. The magazine’s professional production values and youth oriented focus make it a cause for concern for federal authorities. There have been six editions that include such content material as an interview with Anwar Awalki and an article entitled “Methods to make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom,” as well as different articles encouraging readers to “mow down” individuals with vehicles and the right way to destroy buildings. The bomb making instructions had been allegedly hacked not too long ago by British spies who replaced it with a recipe for cupcakes. It is believed that a federal grand jury is meeting in North Carolina to analyze whether there is enough proof to indict Khan for aiding al Qaeda. Another Texas Fort Hood area plotter from earlier this summer time is reported to have had Inspire Journal supplies in his possession.
Al Awalki, who called the alleged 2009 Fort Hood shooter a “hero” has additionally denounced his beginning nation:
I, for one, was born within the U.S. I lived within the U.S. for 21 years. America was my dwelling. I was a preacher of Islam concerned in nonviolent Islamic activism. Nonetheless, with the American invasion of Iraq and continued U.S. aggression in opposition to Muslims, I could not reconcile between dwelling within the U.S. and being a Muslim, and that i eventually came to the conclusion that jihad towards America is binding upon myself, simply as it’s binding on every other ready Muslim.
The U.S. is main the struggle in opposition to terrorism, which in actuality is a battle against Islam.
Al Awlaki has been tied to no less than fifteen terrorist plots including the Might 2010 attempted car bombing of new York’s Instances Sq. by Pakistani American Faisal Shahzad, the December 2009 attempted plane “underwear” bombing over Detroit by Umar Abdul-Mutallab, and November 2009 Fort Hood, Texas capturing by Nidal Hassan that left 13 dead and 30 injured. The London Day by day Telegraph stated, “Alwaki’s lectures have been found in possession of nearly every radical Islamist who has executed, or attempted to execute, attacks on Western targets.” Al Alwaki’s contacts additionally embody at the least two of the 9/11 hijackers who crashed a 757 into the Pentagon on September 11 killing 184 individuals. Saudi Arabians Khalid al-Midhar and Nawaq Alhazmi, were followers of Awlaki in each California, the place they took flying classes, and Virginia previous to 9/11.
As new FBI Assistant Director for Counterterrorism Mark F. Giuliano instructed an audience at the Washington Institute for Close to East Coverage in April:
AQAP leaders reminiscent of Anwar Awlaki and Samir Khan have published articles on the internet detailing their intent to strike the United States. A number of key AQAP figures were born or educated within the United States and perceive our culture, our limitations, our security protocols, and our vulnerabilities. They use this understanding to develop and refine new ways and methods to defeat our safety measures and assault us. AQAP also understands and expertly exploits social media to share their knowledge with others of similar mindsets. They notice the importance and worth of reaching English talking audiences and are utilizing the group’s advertising and marketing expertise to inspire people to attack inside the homeland. In lots of instances they’re trying to offer them with the data to take action, with out having to journey or prepare abroad….I don’t suppose this nation has ever confronted a extra fluid, more dynamic, or extra advanced terrorism threat.
Worst Terrorist Incidents Directed In the direction of People by U.S. Deaths
1. 9/11 Assaults, Incendiary Bombing by Aircraft, NY, DC, PA 2973 killed, 9/11/ 2001
2. U.S. Marine Barracks, Truck Bombing , Beirut, Leb.241killed (US) 10/23/1983
3. Pan Am Fl. 103, Aircraft Bombing, Lockerbie, Scotland, 270 killed (189 US), 12/21/ 1988
4. Murrah Fed. Bldg.Truck Bombing, Oklahoma Metropolis, Okay, 168 killed four/19/1995
Anti-authorities extremists Timothy McVeigh/Terry Nichols
5. Wall Avenue Bombing, Horse cart Bomb, NY, 35 killed, 9/sixteen/1920
Socialists/Anarchists Supsected (unsolved)
6. Los Angeles Times Bldg.Bombing,Los Angeles, CA, 21killed, 10/01/ 1910
7. Khobar Towers, Truck Bombing, Khobar, Saudi Arabia, 20 Killed (19 US), 6/26/ 1996
8. USS Cole, Boat Bomb, Aden, Yemen, 17 killed, 10/12/ 2000
9. Lod Airport Assault, Grenades/Guns, Tel Aviv, Israel, 26 killed (16 US est.), 5/30/1972
Japanese Crimson Military/Common Front for the Liberation of Palestine
10. Fort Hood Massacre, Gun, Texas, thirteen Killed, 29 wounded, 11/5/2009 Nidal Hasan(alleged)
eleven.TIE U.S. Embassies, Truck Bombing, Kenya/Tanzania, 224 killed (12 US), eight/07/ 1998
11. TWA Fl.
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