Saturday, December 3, 2016

Al Qaeda

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pentagon

An earth-shattering report by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism found proof that the Pentagon paid a half a billion dollars to fake Al-Qaeda videos.

The BIJ found that the Pentagon paid a business in a foreign country to do the work.

U.K. based public relations firm, Bell Pottinger worked with the military to create fake news segments that looked and sounded like insurgents filmed them.

One employee of the company said that General David Petraeus signed off on a lot of the work, but occasionally approval came from the White House as well.

The operation to make the fake videos employed nearly 300 Iraqi and British workers all paid by the US government.

$540 million is a lot of money that could have been spent in America.

The PR firm claims that it only kept $15 million annually and the rest went to expenses and distribution.

One disturbing piece of information that came out in the report is that the PR firm helped to make propaganda videos and put them on discs that would be handed out in cities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Those discs were coded in a way that Google Analytics could help figure out who is watching the video, where and the users IP address.

Not only is the government paying a foreign company to make fake propaganda video to be distributed in the Middle East, but they are tracking each person that views it.

The fact that Google is involved is another example how the tech giant has morphed into an important military asset.

What is still unclear is the president’s involvement. Was this his idea or did he just sign off on it and not really know what was going on?

If things were going really well in the Middle East nobody would question these kind of tactics, but things are not going well.

The money could have been spent better, obviously, but it wasn’t and now the Middle East is a bigger mess now than it was when Obama took office. Clearly he and the Pentagon need to come up with a new plan.

What do you think about Obama paying to make fake Al-Qaeda propaganda videos?

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Guantanamo Bay

Surprise, surprise; one of the suspects arrested in connection with last week’s terrorist attacks in Turkey spent time at the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The U.S. released him to his native Russia along with six other detainees who subsequently became known as the “Russian Taliban,” according to an alarming report published by a Washington D.C. think-tank that studies totalitarian societies of Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union.

One of the members of the so-called Russian Taliban, Airat Vakhitov, is among 30 people arrested by Turkish authorities in connection with the attack at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport that killed dozens and injured more than 100, a U.S. government-funded news service reports. Vakhitov spent two years at Gitmo after being captured by U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2001, the news report says, and he’s one of 11 Russian citizens arrested in the last few days in connection with the Turkey attack, which was carried out by ISIS. “Russia’s security services have accused Vakhitov of fighting in Syria and Iraq alongside terrorist groups, as well as recruiting foreign fighters for IS and other groups, and raising funds for terrorists,” the news story says.

Judicial Watch tracked down Vakhitov’s Department of Defense (DOD) Gitmo file and it says he was born in Naberyozhnyj and traveled by train to Afghanistan where he was eventually arrested by the Taliban on suspicion of espionage. He was taken to Gitmo in mid-June, 2002 and was “cooperative” during his two-year stay. “Because of the Russian government’s agreement to incarcerate this detainee upon his transfer, and provided that he remains incarcerated under the control of the Russian government, the detainee poses no future threat to the U.S. or its allies,” the DOD file states. “In addition, the Russian government has agreed to share with the United States all intelligence derived from this detainee in the future.”

It’s not clear when Russia freed Vakhitov or if he was ever really incarcerated there after leaving Gitmo. An international human rights organizations claims Vakhitov and his fellow countrymen were tortured in Russia after leaving Gitmo in 2004. “Access to the ex-detainees is limited because three of them are in prison and the rest have either managed to leave the country or are in hiding,” the group writes in an announcement promoting a report blasting the U.S. for relying on Russia’s “diplomatic assurances” of fair treatment to justify sending Gitmo captives.

If Vakhitov was involved in the Turkey attack, he’s simply the latest of many Gitmo captives to reengage in terrorism after leaving the top security compound at the U.S. Naval base in southeast Cuba. Judicial Watch has reported on this for years, documenting specific cases based on intelligence reports. Earlier this year the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) disclosed that dozens have joined terrorist causes after begin released, including seven of the 144 captives freed by the Obama administration.

Of the 532 released under the George W. Bush administration (this includes Vakhitov), 111 eventually reengaged in extremist causes, the ODNI revealed. Just a few weeks ago Judicial Watch reported that a veteran Al Qaeda operative released from Gitmo to Uruguay in late 2014 has gone missing and authorities in Latin America believe he sneaked into Brazil after being denied legal entry. Keep in mind the summer Olympics are just weeks away in Brazil.

In one embarrassing case an Al Qaeda operative freed from Gitmo was subsequently placed by the U.S. government on a global terrorist list where a $5 million reward was offered for information on his whereabouts. The Saudi national, Ibrahim al-Rubaysh, was repatriated by the Bush administration in 2006 under a Saudi Arabian “rehabilitation” program that supposedly reformed Guantanamo Bay jihadists but instead serves as a training camp for future terrorists.

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al qaeda

For more than a decade the U.S. government has known that “Arab extremists” are entering the country through Mexico with the assistance of smuggling network “cells,” according to State Department documents obtained by Judicial Watch that reveal among them was a top Al Qaeda operative wanted by the FBI. Some Mexican smuggling networks actually specialize in providing logistical support for Arab individuals attempting to enter the United States, the government documents say. The top Al Qaeda leader in Mexico was identified in the September 2004 cable from the American consulate in Ciudad Juárez as Adnan G. El Shurkrjumah. The cable was released to Judicial Watch under the Freedom of Information Act.

The new intelligence records were released as a result of an ongoing JW investigation into the critical national security threats on the southern border, specifically those created by Islamic terrorists teaming up with Mexican drug cartels to infiltrate and attack the U.S. In response to JW’s reporting in the last two years the Obama administration—through various spokespeople, including FBI Director James Comey—has vehemently denied that Islamic terrorists are operating in Mexican towns near American cities or entering the U.S. through the famously porous southern border.

The State Department documents, which include substantial redactions supposedly to protect classified and personal information, contradict this. JW obtained them as part of an investigative series into Shukrijumah, an Al Qaeda operative also known as Javier Robles. In December, 2014 Shukrijumah was killed by the Pakistan Army in an intelligence-borne operation in South Waziristan. But before he died Shukrijumah helped plan several U.S. attacks, including plots to bomb Oprah Winfrey’s studio and detonate nuclear devices in multiple American cities. For years Shukrijumah appeared on the FBI’s most wanted list and, despite being sought by the agency, he crossed back and forth into the U.S. from Mexico to meet fellow militant Islamists in Texas. JW has reported that, as one of the world’s most wanted terrorists, Shukrijumah piloted an aircraft into the Cielo Dorado airfield in Anthony, New Mexico.

The new State Department records show that U.S. authorities knew Shukrijumah was in Mexico because they say that the Regional Security Office (RSO) at the consulate in Ciudad Juárez used newspapers to distribute information throughout Sonora and Chihuahua, Mexico about the Al Qaeda operative at the request of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in El Paso. This appears on page 17 of the documents, which are linked above in their entirety. Of interesting note is that the government uses an exemption that applies to classified information to continue to withhold some of the records when the entire file was already declassified back in September, 2014.

Information about Middle Eastern terrorists entering the U.S. through Mexico appears in a September 2, 2004 cable—declassified 10 years later—titled “CONFIDENTIAL INFORMANT, A PROVEN CI TO USG IN THE PAST, REPORTS ARAB CELLS WITHIN MEXICO.” It explains that a reputable government informant went to the U.S. Consulate in Ciudad Juárez and provided information pertaining to suspect Arab extremists who have been smuggled into the U.S. through the Mexican border. “The confidential source (SUBJECT) stated his family member, who is a human trafficker, knows the exact whereabouts of three Arabs who are currently being hidden in Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico,” the State Department cable reads. “Although not absolutely positive, one of the three is likely Adnan G. El Shukrijumah, alleged to be a Saudi Arabian terrorist cell leader thought to be in Mexico. SUBJECT also provided information on two smuggling networks, “cells,” that specialize in providing logistical support for Arab individuals attempting to enter the United States.”

Many questions remain about the U.S. government’s relationship with Shukrijumah, but last spring JW obtained records from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) that indicate he was a Confidential Source/Informant for the government. Shukrijumah lived in South Florida’s Broward County and graduated from Broward Community College with a degree in computer engineering. Four months before the 9/11 terrorist attacks Shukrijumah fled the U.S. He was one of the suspected actors in a number of planned terror attacks in the U.S., including a plot to simultaneously detonate nuclear devices in several U.S. cities. Convicted terrorist Jose Padilla claimed to have trained with Shukrijumah to blow up U.S. apartment buildings using natural gas explosions.

In 2010 Shukrijumah was indicted in the Eastern District of New York for his role in a terrorist plot to attack targets in the United States—including New York City’s subway system—and the United Kingdom, according the FBI. The plot against New York City’s subway system was directed by senior Al Qaeda leadership in Pakistan, the FBI says, and was directly related to a scheme by Al Qaeda plotters in Pakistan to use Western operatives to attack a target in the United States.

A year earlier Shukrijumah helped plan a terrorist truck-bomb targeting Winfrey’s Harpo Studios in Chicago as well as the iconic Sears Tower. Two of his fellow conspirators—Emad Karakrah and Hector Pedroza Huerta—were arrested in 2014 for unrelated state crimes in different parts of the country. Karakrah got busted in Chicago on charges of making a false car bomb threat after leading police on a high-speed chase with an ISIS flag waving from his vehicle. Huerta, an illegal alien twice convicted for driving intoxicated, got nabbed in El Paso for drunk driving. Both Karakrah and Pedroza were released from custody in 2015 under highly unusual plea deals.

The men formed part of a sophisticated narco-terror ring, exposed in a JW investigative series, with connections running from El Paso to Chicago to New York City. The operation includes an all-star lineup of logistics and transportation operatives for militant Islamists in the United State, drug and weapons smugglers for the Juarez drug cartel in Mexico, an FBI confidential informant gone rogue and two of the FBI’s most wanted terrorists. Shukrijumah was one of them and, though he’s dead, he is an important part of the puzzle and extremely relevant when connecting the dots in the narco-terror ring.

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Al-Qaeda

Republicans are getting quite an “I told you so” moment—because one of the dangerous terrorists that Obama released from Guantanamo Bay is now the leader of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

According to the Long War Journal, which first broke the story last week, former Guantanamo Bay inmate Ibrahim Qosi has been quite active in terrorism circles since he was released by Obama in 2012:

“Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) released a new video featuring a former Guantanamo detainee, Ibrahim Qosi, who is also known as Sheikh Khubayb al Sudani.”

“In July 2010, Qosi plead guilty to charges of conspiracy and material support for terrorism before a military commission. His plea was part of a deal in which he agreed to cooperate with prosecutors during his remaining time in US custody. Qosi was transferred to his home country of Sudan two years later, in July 2012.”

“Qosi joined AQAP in 2014 and became one of its leaders. Qosi and other AQAP commanders discussed their time waging jihad at length in the video, entitled ‘Guardians of Sharia.’”

Qosi was first captured in 2001, and spent nearly thirteen years in U.S. military custody at Guantanamo Bay.

His 2010 guilty plea was instrumental in getting him out of prison, and back on the battle field—in part because of President Barack Obama’s ambitions to shut down the infamous terrorist prison.

At the time, Qosi was being released into a Sudanese “re-integration program” that the Obama White House believed would keep him from slipping back into terrorism.

“One of the main reasons the United States was willing to return him to [his native] Sudan was the U.S. confidence in the government of Sudan’s program and its confidence that Mr. al-Qosi would not represent any kind of threat to the United States.” said Qosi’s lawyer. “If they had considered him a threat, they would not have released him.”

Now, he’s following directly in Osama bin Laden’s footsteps—and leading the influential and lethal terrorist group.

Worse, Qosi may not be the last terrorist to “re-offend.” Obama’s Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, is considering the release of as many as 17 terrorists from Guantanamo Bay—and it’s likely that they could all take up arms against the United States, as soon as their allowed.

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amnesty

Just when it seemed like President Obama’s immigration policies couldn’t possibly get worse, the administration is offering “temporary” amnesty to nationals of an Islamic Middle Eastern country well known as an Al Qaeda breeding ground.

You can’t make this stuff up! The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is offering Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to illegal aliens from Yemen, headquarters of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). In its latest Country Reports on Terrorism, the State Department reveals that AQAP militants carried out hundreds of attacks including suicide bombers, vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs), ambushes, kidnappings and targeted assassinations. The media has also documented this for years with one in-depth report confirming that “Yemen has emerged as the breeding grounds for some of the most high-profile plans to attack the U.S. homeland.”

Why would the U.S. extend to a humanitarian measure designed to temporarily shield illegal immigrants from deportation during emergencies to citizens of this notorious terrorist hub? A stunned Homeland Security official told Judicial Watch that this creates “obvious dangers” because the U.S. government has a “total inability to screen, ID or verify the records” of Yemeni nationals. Remember that the convicted terrorist who planned to blow up an American passenger jet over Detroit on Christmas in 2009 trained in Yemen and the plot was organized by Al Qaeda leaders in Yemen. Also of interest is the fact that at least a dozen terrorists freed from the U.S. military compound in Guantanamo have joined Al Qaeda in Yemen. Last year a study published by the RAND Corporation concluded that the most significant threat to the United States comes from terrorist groups operating in Yemen, Syria, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

None of this seems to matter to the officials running DHS, the monstrous agency created after 9/11 to prevent another terrorist attack. Obama’s DHS Secretary, Jeh Johnson, cites the “ongoing armed conflict” in Yemen for deciding to grant the country TPS. “Yemen is experiencing widespread conflict and a resulting severe humanitarian emergency, and requiring Yemeni nationals in the United States to return to Yemen would pose a serious threat to their personal safety,” states the DHS announcement made public this month. It assures that individuals with certain criminal records or who pose a threat to national security are not eligible for TPS, though JW’s government source maintains there’s no reliable way to check this. The TPS supposedly expires in 18 months, but we’ve all seen that these temporary amnesty measures get extended indefinitely.

Just a few weeks ago Judicial Watch reported that the Obama administration extended TPS for Haitians for the fifth time since an earthquake hit the Caribbean island in 2010. When Obama’s first DHS Secretary, Janet Napolitano, granted the first Haitian TPS, she stated that it was intended to provide a “temporary refuge for Haitian nationals who are currently in the United States and whose personal safety would be endangered by returning to Haiti is part of this Administration’s continuing efforts to support Haiti’s recovery.” Five years later DHS stated that “following consultations with other federal agencies” it had determined that “current conditions in Haiti support extending the designation period for current TPS beneficiaries.”

Haitian illegal immigrants aren’t the only ones who have enjoyed the long-term benefits of the special measure intended to grant only temporary reprieve. Last year the Obama administration extended TPS for tens of thousands of Hondurans and Nicaraguans. The order was originally issued more than a decade and a half ago after a hurricane (Mitch) hit the Central American countries and has been renewed over and over again, illustrating that there’s nothing temporary about these measures. Less than a year ago the Obama administration created an 18-month TPS for African Ebola nations, including Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.

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team-terrorism

Al-Qaeda’s leader, Ayman al-Zawahri, had some big news in a recently-released audio message.

He called on young Muslims to attack the United States with so-called “lone wolf” attacks–and possibly extended an invitation to work together with ISIS.

“I call on all Muslims who can harm the countries of the crusader coalition not to hesitate,” Zawahri said, referring to Western nations like the United States.

“We must now focus on moving the war to the heart of the homes and cities of the crusader West and specifically America.”

Al-Zawahiri also offered an olive branch to ISIS. While calling their “caliphate” illegitimate, he also offered to work together to further their collective mission of damaging the United States and other Western countries.

Al-Qaeda has been in a public battle with ISIS since early 2014, over their differing tactics. ISIS was once part of the Al-Qaeda network, known as “Al-Qaeda in Iraq,” but were publicly disowned by the parent group after they invaded Syria.

Jabhat al Nusra, Al-Qaeda’s existing Syrian wing, is also hostile towards ISIS.

Al-Qaeda, which had been seen as declining since the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as the death of one-time leader Osama bin Laden, has been somewhat resurgent recently–and it’s clear that they’re now ramping up their rhetoric towards the United States.

However, it’s also clear that Al-Qaeda remains a shadow of their former self–but, in teaming up with ISIS, that marriage could change the entire balance of power in the Middle East.

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