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Thread: Palestinian strategy (stratfor)

  1. #31
    cerulean
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    What, no bin Laden video yet?

    I seem to remember reading there would be a new bin Laden video on July 4. This doesn't seem to have happened. I have to wonder why. Production problems? Has the courier been waylaid?

  2. #32
    sikanderhind
    Guest

    laden video

    He is probably sitting now with General Musharaaf and laughing at US on how it paying $$$ to pakistan for anti al queda war money.

    Pakistan is the master in fleecing uncle sam under terrorism excuse. Rigth hand of paki is on US wallet. Left hand is inside Al Queda pockets.

    IF laden is caught, it is gonan be in pakistan and in a city, not a mountain cave.

    That, only if he is alive in the first case

  3. #33
    cerulean
    Guest

    ArabNews on bin Laden

    http://www.arabnews.com/Article.asp?ID=16637
    Bin Laden no longer exists: Here is why
    By Amir Taheri, Arab News Staff

    Remember you first read it here: Osama Bin Laden is dead.
    [...]
    With an ego the size of Mount Everest, Osama Bin Laden would not have, could not have, remained silent for so long. He had always liked to take credit even for things he had nothing to do with. So, would he remain silent for nine months during which his illusions have been shattered one after another? If his adjutants can smuggle a video to Al-Jazeera in Qatar, why couldn’t he?
    [...]
    (referring to the elements that made bin Laden possible )
    The fourth element was the cynical attitude of many Western powers that sheltered the terrorists in the name of freedom of expression and dissent. We now know that London was the world capital of Al-Qaeda and that New York was its financial nerve center.

    The murder of the Afghan resistance leader Ahmad Shah Masood, for example, was planned in the British capital. Al-Qaeda militants operated in Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy, among other democracies, without any restraint.

    The fifth element that made Bin Ladenism possible was the West’s, especially America’s, perceived weakness if not actual cowardice. A joke going round the militant Islamist circles until last year was that the only thing the Americans would do if attacked was to sue the attackers in court. That element no longer exists. The Americans, supported by the largest coalition in history, have shown that they are prepared to use force against their enemies even if that means a long war with no easy victory in sight.
    ...
    ======
    I realize that a paper that calls itself Saudi Arabia's first English daily is probably designed to have some propaganda reasons to establish itself as a "moderate" voice, but I found the analysis interesting.

  4. #34
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    ...that sounds like the John Derbyshire article from National Review; he said pretty much the same thing.

  5. #35
    cerulean
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    Al-Qaeda's floating web site

    This article, from June 30, ends the discussion with a mention of with www.drasat.com, the last appearance that I have heard regarding this al-Qaeda web site.

    http://www.news-journalonline.com/2002/Jun/30/TEK2.htm

    ...
    A federal law enforcement official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, speculated the site was being used by al-Qaida to spread low-priority information.

    The site may also be a way for operatives to contact and direct each other toward other, more secure methods of communication, the official said.
    [...]
    Setting up a Web site can be done without the business and the customer ever meeting, thanks to e-mail, online registration and remote payment. Host companies rarely know whether a false registration identity has been used.

    The site was originally registered in Malaysia using a phony address in Venezuela and a Yahoo e-mail address. ...

  6. #36
    cerulean
    Guest
    I wasn't clear in the last post. The article mentions Liquid Web, which was the host, for a short time, of the last incarnation of this web site that I know of, drasat.com.

  7. #37
    cerulean
    Guest

    Where’s Osama?

    Nothing much new here, but the analysis touches on several important points.

    ====
    July 8, 2002 8:45 a.m.
    Where’s Osama?
    The video that never surfaced.
    On June 23, Sulyman Abu Ghaith, a Kuwaiti expatriate, former teacher and official spokesman of al Qaeda, posted an audio file on the terrorist website alneda.com (currently down) claiming that Osama bin Laden "is well and in good health" and that "reports that Shaykh Osama is ill or was wounded in Tora Bora are completely unfounded." Furthermore, he stated that bin Laden would soon appear in a televised interview. On that same day the website posted a 105-minute video produced by al-Sahab productions entitled "Destroying the Destroyer Cole," which contains images of the attack, and old footage of bin Laden praising the attackers. The website promised that he would appear on television before July 4.
    ...
    Controlling the money must be another important concern. This is an organization composed of criminals with vast amounts of untraceable funds, and no accountability. A multimillion-dollar enterprise like this would have a natural propensity to loot itself. The Wall Street Journal's recent revelations of infighting in al Qaeda number-two man Ayman al-Zawahri's Egyptian Islamic Jihad is illustrative. He chastised an underling for buying a $470 fax machine, and the junior terrorist basically responded, "Take this jihad and shove it." My guess is the fax machine went with him. It is reasonable to suspect that some intermediaries in the al Qaeda network who have access to much larger sums of money would abscond with them the moment they knew the CEO had been forced into early retirement.

    ...

  8. #38
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    Osama is in reruns already? Damn summer television is the same all over the world!

  9. #39
    cerulean
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    Identity theft

    Earlier on in the thread, Mediocrates mentioned how the scam of registering web sites with stolen credit cards works. Here's an article about that sort of thing being used to fund terrorism:

    Identity theft increasingly used to fund terrorism, official says
    By DAVID HO, Associated Press

    WASHINGTON (July 10, 2002 1:31 a.m. EDT) - The rapidly growing crime of identity theft is a "key catalyst" behind the funding of terrorist groups like al-Qaida, a law enforcement official said Tuesday.

    Terrorists use stolen credit cards, passports and Social Security numbers to pay for their operations and create false identities to hide behind, Dennis Lormel, chief of the FBI's financial crimes unit, told a Senate subcommittee.

    Lormel said 14 pending FBI terrorism investigations involve some form of identity theft.

    "The methods used to finance terrorism range from the highly sophisticated to the most basic," Lormel said. "There is virtually no financing method that has not at some level been exploited by these groups. Identity theft is a key catalyst fueling many of these methods."

    Lormel said an al-Qaida terrorist cell that was broken up in Madrid, Spain, used stolen credit cards in sales scams and for small purchases that did not require other identification. The group also used fake passports to open bank accounts, which were used to send money to and from countries such as Pakistan and Afghanistan.

    ...

  10. #40
    cerulean
    Guest

    and the September 11 hijackers too

    Sept. 11 Hijackers Said to Fake Data on Bank Accounts

    http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/10/national/10TERR.html
    WASHINGTON, July 9 — The Sept. 11 hijackers were able to open 35 American bank accounts without having legitimate Social Security numbers and opened some of the accounts with fabricated Social Security numbers that were never checked or questioned by bank officials, a senior F.B.I. official said today.
    [...]
    The SunTrust accounts and the financial transactions made through them provide strong evidence of links between hijackers from different groups, he added. In fact, Mr. Lormel said the bureau of investigation had discovered direct financial connections between members of the four hijacking groups involved in the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, providing some of the most concrete evidence yet uncovered that the 19 men involved closely coordinated their actions.

    Since the attacks, American investigators have found relatively few direct links among the four groups who each hijacked a different airliner, and officials have said they have been impressed by the strict security procedures that the hijackers seem to have practiced to avoid detection. Telephone, travel and e-mail records strongly indicate that Mohamed Atta played a central coordinating role among the four groups, and the financial records would appear to provide compelling evidence of ongoing links among the groups.
    ...

  11. #41
    Vic
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    Talk about McJihad...

    Militants wire Web with links to jihad
    By Jack Kelley, USA TODAY
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2...rror-cover.htm

    Looks like they are using "neutral" sites too.
    Lately, al-Qaeda operatives have been sending hundreds of encrypted messages that have been hidden in files on digital photographs on the auction site eBay.com. Most of the messages have been sent from Internet cafes in Pakistan and public libraries throughout the world. An eBay spokesperson did not return phone calls.
    Better read the whole article, the details are stunning. Ever heard of a site called "Jihad unspun"?

  12. #42
    Senior Member Mediocrates's Avatar
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    That's called steganography - embedding a message inside another file. It doesn't even have to be encrypted. You merely have to know where to look for it.


    BTW one of the most secure types of electronic messaging is a handwritten fax. Unless it's intercepted and read by a person there is no way to tell what's being sent. No machine on earth can pluck it. That is you have to run an active tap, just like a phone line. This is commonly known in all circles of electronic interception.

  13. #43
    cerulean
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    Interesting article. One of the sites mentioned, azzam.com, has the following article (and many other interesting ones):

    http://66.197.135.110/~azzam/html/articlesabstain.htm

    It looks to me like it's good brainwashing material for would-be reluctant martyrs. The parts in which a jihadi is urged in detail to not let ties of affection to children, friends, and wives stop him is chilling.

  14. #44
    cerulean
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    steganography research

    http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99992543

    Hunt for hidden web messages goes on
    18:13 12 July 02

    NewScientist.com news service
    Computer enthusiasts have been searching for messages hidden in web site images following new claims that the al-Qaeda terrorist network is using this technique - steganography - to communicate.

    However, one expert in the field warns the images that have been flagged up as suspicious after initial examination are almost certain to be cleared after full analysis. Peter Honeyman, at the University of Michigan, told New Scientist: "You get a lot of these. We call them false positives."

    ...

    ======
    The article mentions that some recent research has been posted on the email list Politechbot.

    It seems to me still that any serious communication is probably going on in a site we don't know about.

  15. #45
    cerulean
    Guest

    The American Foreign Policy Council

    The American Foreign Policy Council
    http://www.afpc.org

    It has three relevant articles this month, linked from the front page.
    One is on the new links between al-Qaeda and Hezbollah in Lebanon, one is on the renaissance of Iran, and the third is about long-term American engagement in Afghanistan.

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