Friday, September 18, 2009

Al-Shabab of Somalia pursue jihad to African Union's "Peace-keeping" base.

Death toll rises to 21 in Somalia suicide attack

NAIROBI, Kenya – The death toll from twin suicide car bombings at the African Union's main peacekeeping base in Somalia rose to 21 Friday, including 17 peacekeepers, an AU spokesman said. It was the deadliest single attack on AU peacekeepers since they arrived in 2007.

Islamic insurgents posing as U.N. personnel detonated suicide car bombs Thursday at the peacekeepers' main base to avenge a U.S. commando raid on Monday that killed a key al-Qaida operative, Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan. Al-Shabab, a powerful Islamist group with foreign fighters in its ranks, claimed responsibility.

About 40 others were wounded in attack, said Gaffel Nkolokosa (en-koh-loh-KOH-sah), the spokesman for the African Union Mission for Somalia. He said the toll could rise.

A counterstrike from the AU base killed at least seven people.

France said Friday it has evacuated 17 wounded people to Nairobi, Kenya, where they were hospitalized. It did not indicate the nationalities of the injured or the nature of their injuries.

Thursday's suicide attack underscored links between al-Qaida's terror network and Somalia's homegrown insurgency. Many fear this impoverished and lawless African nation is becoming a haven for al-Qaida — a place for terrorists to train and plan attacks elsewhere.

Suicide attacks were virtually unknown in Somalia before 2007, even though the nation has been wracked by war for almost two decades.

Al-Shabab controls much of Somalia and operates openly in the capital, confining the government and peacekeepers to a few blocks of the city. The U.S. and the U.N. both support Somalia's government and the African peacekeeping force.

The AU force has long lamented that it is undermanned. Out of a planned 8,000 troops, there are about 5,000 troops from Uganda and Burundi.

Somalia has been ravaged by violence and anarchy since warlords overthrew dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991 and turned on each other. Piracy has flourished off the Somali coast, making the Gulf of Aden one of the most dangerous waterways in the world.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Until the West understands Shaykh Osama's (may Allah protect him) message, they will continue to bleed.

Six Nato soldiers killed in Kabul suicide blast.
Thursday, 17 Sep, 2009

KABUL: A massive suicide car bomb ripped into a Nato convoy killing six Italian soldiers and three Afghan civilians on the airport road in the heavily fortified Afghan capital on Thursday, officials said.

The explosion struck just after midday about 1.5 kilometres from the gates of the US embassy on the busy airport road, destroying one vehicle with the Nato-led International Security Assistance Forces (Isaf).

Six Italian soldiers were killed and another three wounded, the Italian defence ministry announced after the Taliban claimed one of the worst single attacks on the more than 100,000 Nato and US-led troops serving in Afghanistan.

‘It was a suicide car bomb attack. Up to now two civilians were killed and nine were wounded, but the number may increase,’ said the chief of criminal investigations for Kabul police, Sayed Abdul Ghapar Sayed Zada.

‘It was against Italian forces. They had casualties,’ he added.

Ahmad Farid Raaid, health ministry spokesman, said three civilians were killed and 38 wounded. Witnesses put the death toll from the blast, which was claimed by the Taliban, at six.

Armoured vehicles showing the Italian flag and clearly marked with the Isaf logo were damaged, with vehicle parts strewn over the blood-stained road and shops destroyed by the power of the blast, witnesses said.

An AFP reporter said he saw the body of one Isaf soldier lying by the roadside and remains of three more bodies pulled from an armoured vehicle, although it was unclear if they were all foreign soldiers.

He confirmed at least two civilian bodies were also removed from the scene, where the blast created a crater in the dusty road.

‘I was walking to my shop when I heard a huge blast and then thick black smoke,’ said Sawad, who lives near the blast site.

‘I thought that day had become night. When I came back, for minutes I couldn't see anything. Then I saw one man lying on the tarmac without a head. I saw around 10 people, civilians killed, 40 to 50 wounded.’

Television footage and photographs clearly showed the Italian flag on the Isaf armoured vehicles, one of which was destroyed in the blast.

Kabul has been hit recently by several suicide blasts claimed by Taliban militants bent on toppling the western-backed government. Once such attack killed three civilians outside the city's military airport on September 8.

In August, a massive suicide car bomb attack on Isaf's Kabul headquarters killed seven Afghan civilians, underscoring the increasingly brazen nature of the Taliban threat as the militia wages a fierce insurgency.

There are about 100,000 US and Nato-led forces in Afghanistan helping the government battle a Taliban insurgency, at its worst since the Islamist hardliners were overthrown in a US-backed invasion in late 2001.

Another reason why Pakistan murders & tortures practicing Muslims for its master, the U.S.

Pakistan ordered arms worth $4.5bn from US
Thursday, 17 Sep, 2009

WASHINGTON: Pakistan placed its largest ever arms purchase orders worth $4.5 billion with America between 2005 and 2008 and its weapons shopping list included more F-16 fighters and over hundred 155 MM artillery guns, a latest Congressional report has said.

The orders included thirty-six latest block 50/52 F-16C jets and their air-to-air missiles and bombs worth a whopping $640 million. The arms deal also provided for mid-life modification of its earlier F-16 A/B fighters.

Under the arms deal, Islamabad also sought 115 M109A5 155 MM self propelled howitzers worth $52 million, the guns it did not have during the Kargil conflict in 1999.

According to ‘US Arms Sales to Pakistan’ report, the major arms purchase agreement by Pakistan signed in 2006, was in excess of $3.5 billion, ranking Pakistan first among all arms clients of the US during that calendar year.

The report informs the US lawmakers that America can suspend or terminate any arms sales agreement with Pakistan or the delivery of weapons previously ordered, if the president determines that the actions taken by Islamabad are against the national security interests of the United States.

‘The Congress can also pass legislation that would suspend, modify, or terminate any arms sale contract should it choose to do so,’ said the report prepared by the Congressional Research Service (CRS), a bipartisan and independent research wing of the US Congress, which prepares reports on various issues for Congressmen.

According to the report dated August 24, the deal has been cleared with stiff conditions which include if the US government chooses; it can stop the transfer of defence articles and services to Pakistan for which valid contracts exist.

This clause can be applied without finding if the arms deal is in violation of an applicable agreement with the US relating to permissible uses of weapons previously sold.

The authority for suspension of deliveries or defence items or cancellation of military sales contracts is found in various sections of the Arms Export Control (AECA).

‘All government-to-government agreements or licensed commercial contracts for the transfer of defence articles or services may be halted, modified or terminated by the executive branch should it determine that it is advisable to do so,’ the report said.

The total value of Pakistan’s 2006 arms purchases from the US nearly matches the total value of all Foreign Military Sales (FMS) programme purchases by Pakistan from the US for the entire period from 1950 to 2001.

When the Bush administration signed the contract in 2006 for sale of 36 aircrafts and associated equipment, it cited: ‘Given its geo-strategic location and partnership in the Global War on Terrorism, Pakistan is a vital ally of the US... This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of America by helping an ally meet its legitimate defence requirements.’

However, the report said apart from the major 2006 F-16 sales and related equipment, no additional major weapon systems have been sold to Pakistan.—Online

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pakistani Murtad Forces continue bombing their way to Hell.

Official: Pakistani jets kill 5 insurgents

By HABIB KHAN, Associated Press Writer - Sept. 15th, 2009

KHAR, Pakistan – Fighter jets pounded suspected militant hide-outs Tuesday and killed five insurgents in a tribal region where the Pakistani military declared victory over insurgents six months ago following an offensive, an official said.

The bombings occurred in the Salarzai area of the northwest Bajur tribal region, local government official Zahid Khan said.

Pakistan's army launched an intense offensive that left more than 1,700 alleged militants dead in Bajur just over a year ago. In February, the military said it had defeated al-Qaida and Taliban fighters there, but pockets of resistance remain.

Pakistan is in the midst of multiple army operations against militants in its northwest regions bordering Afghanistan, but security throughout the country has deteriorated.

On Monday, three burqa-clad men tried to attack a major oil terminal in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi but were foiled by security forces, police said.

A guard died in the attack on the terminal, where oil supplies arrive for the country's largest oil refinery.

Three suspects tried to enter the oil terminal in the western Keamari area dressed as women, police said. The security guard on duty tried to intercept them, but was shot by the attackers.

A police vehicle patrolling nearby heard the gunshots and responded. The attackers managed to escape, but left behind 10 hand grenades, three Kalashnikov rifles and bullets stuffed in a lady's purse.

"It was a big attempt at terrorism averted by the police with the help of the brave guard," city police chief Waseem Ahmed said.

Police later found rocket-propelled grenades, explosives, suicide vests, burqas and other items apparently dumped by the suspects near a sewer in the Saeedabad area, also in western Karachi, senior investigator Raja Umar Khattab said.

"The bullet cartridges and the burqas found today suggests they threw their weapons when on the run after their foiled attempt on the oil terminal," Khattab told The Associated Press.

Karachi has a population of more than 16 million and a history of political, religious and ethnic violence. It is also Pakistan's commercial capital, and Taliban fighters are believed to use it as a place to rest and raise money.

Tortured for the right of freedom of Expression.

Iraqi shoe thrower released; says he was tortured

BAGHDAD – The Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at former President George W. Bush was released Tuesday after nine months in prison, and he said Iraqi security forces tortured him with beatings, whippings and electric shocks after his arrest.

Muntadhar al-Zeidi, whose stunning act of protest last December made him a hero around the Arab and Muslim worlds, said he now feared for his life and believed that U.S. intelligence agents would chase after him.

"These fearsome services, the U.S. intelligence services and its affiliated services, will spare no efforts to track me as an insurgent revolutionary ... in a bid to kill me," he told a news conference at the TV station where he works.

"And here I want to warn all my relatives and people close to me that these services will use all means to trap and try to kill and liquidate me either physically, socially or professionally," he said, wearing a scarf in the colors of the Iraqi flag draped around his neck.

The 30-year-old reporter's act of protest deeply embarrassed Iraq's prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, who was standing beside Bush at a Dec. 14 news conference when al-Zeidi suddenly shot up from his chair had hurled his shoes toward the podium.

Bush, who was on his final visit to Iraq as American president, was unhurt but had to duck twice to avoid being hit.

Al-Zeidi was wrestled to the ground by journalists and al-Maliki's security men.

The reporter said Tuesday that he was abused immediately after his arrest and the following day. He said he was beaten with iron bars, whipped with cords and was electrocuted in the backyard of the building in the Green Zone where the news conference was held.

"In the morning, I was left in the cold weather after they splashed me with water," he said.

He promised to reveal the names of senior officials in the Iraqi government and army who he said were involved in mistreating him.

An unrepentant al-Zeidi explained that his actions were motivated by the U.S. occupation and said that while he is now free, his country is still "held captive."

"Simply put, what incited me toward confrontation is the oppression that fell upon my people and how the occupation wanted to humiliate my homeland by placing it under its boots," he said.

In January 2008, al-Zeidi was arrested by U.S. soldiers who searched his apartment building and released him the next day with an apology.

The year before that, al-Zeidi, a Shiite, was kidnapped by gunmen while on an assignment in a Sunni district of north Baghdad. He was freed unharmed three days later after Iraqi television stations broadcast appeals for his release.

Those experiences, his family has said, helped mold his resentment of the U.S. military's presence in Iraq.

Outside his home in central Baghdad, celebrations erupted at the news of his release, with women crying out and breaking into traditional Iraqi dances.

"I congratulate the Iraqi people and the Muslim world and all free men across the world on the release of Muntadhar," his brother Uday told a crowd of dozens of journalists and others. "Every time Bush turns a new page in his life he will find Muntadhar's shoes waiting for him."

Al-Zeidi's brother said the reporter will travel to Greece on Thursday for medical checkups and because he had concerns about his safety.

"He fears for his life," Uday said, adding that he would sleep at an undisclosed location Tuesday night.

Al-Zeidi's protest stirred millions across the Arab world who have been captivated and angered by images of destruction and grieving since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

"This is your farewell kiss, you dog!" he shouted at Bush in Arabic as he hurled the shoes. "This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq," he continued.

For days, the scene was played endlessly on regional and international TV channels.

Al-Zeidi was to have been freed Monday, but the release was held up for a day because of delays in processing paperwork.

After his release, al-Zeidi was driven first to the offices of Al-Baghdadiya, the TV station where he works. Later, he is expected to rejoin his family at their apartment in a rundown two-story building in central Baghdad.

His relatives have been preparing for days to welcome him, hanging balloons and posters of the reporter.

Several children from the family gathered outside the home, carrying posters of al-Zeidi that said: "Release the man who restored national unity."

There were also about a dozen sheep and a butcher standing by to slaughter some of them upon al-Zeidi's return in a traditional practice on celebratory occasions.

His protest was widely celebrated and even inspired Internet games and T-shirts and led some to try to offer their daughters to him in marriage. There were also reports that a Saudi man wanted to pay $10 million for one of the shoes.

Shortly after his arrest, a charity run by the daughter of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi bestowed a medal of courage on al-Zeidi.

Al-Zeidi, who turned 30 in prison, was convicted of assault in March. His three-year prison sentence was reduced to one because he had no criminal record before the shoe-throwing incident. He was released three months early for good behavior.

The family says al-Zeidi might use his celebrity status to promote humanitarian causes such as the rights of orphans and women.

His employer, Al-Baghdadiya TV, expects he will return to work as a television reporter for the station, though some have questioned how he would be able to work again as a journalist in Iraq.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Shaykh Bin Laden (may Allah protect him) calls Obama 'powerless' in Afghan war


By MAAMOUN YOUSSEF, Associated Press Writer
Sept. 14th, 2009

CAIRO – Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden described President Barack Obama as "powerless" to stop the war in Afghanistan and threatened to step up guerrilla warfare there in a new audiotape released to mark the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States.

In the 11-minute tape, addressed to the American people, bin Laden said Obama is only following the warlike policies of his predecessor George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney and he urged Americans to "liberate" themselves from the influence of "neo-conservatives and the Israeli lobby."

The tape was posted on Islamic militant Web sites two days after the eighth anniversary of the 2001 suicide plane hijackings. The terror leader usually addresses Americans in a message timed around the date of the attacks, which sparked the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan the same year, and then in Iraq two years later.

Bin Laden said Americans had failed to understand that al-Qaida carried out the attacks in retaliation for U.S. support for Israel. If America reconsiders its alliance with the Jewish state, al-Qaida will respond on "sound and just bases."

The Saudi construction magnate's son-turned "holy warrior" and his deputies have frequently sought to wrap al-Qaida in the Palestinian cause, seeking to draw support in the Arab world, where the issue is one of the public's top concerns.

Al-Qaida has also sought to depict Obama as no different from Bush, who was widely despised in the Arab world for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and his close support of Israel. Obama has won greater popularity in the region, giving a landmark speech in Cairo in June, moving to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq and taking a somewhat harder stance on Israel in the peace process.

"If you end the war (in Afghanistan), so let it be," bin Laden said. "But if it is otherwise, all we will do is continue the war of attrition against you on all possible axes."

"You are waging a hopeless and losing war for the benefit of others, a war the end of which is not visible on the horizon," he said, according to a translation of the tape Monday by SITE Intelligence Group, a terrorist-monitoring firm, and by The Associated Press.

Bin Laden, who is believed to be in hiding in the Afghan-Pakistan border region, said the current White House is merely following the Bush-Cheney strategy to "promote the previous policies of fear to market the interest of big companies."

When Obama retained the Bush administration's Defense Secretary Robert Gates, "reasonable people knew that Obama is a powerless man who will not be able to end the war as he promised," bin Laden said.

Bin Laden devoted much of his address to discussing U.S. connections with Israel and castigated Americans for failing to understand that the issue was behind al-Qaida's animosity. As he often does in his addresses, he cited books by American scholars and others that he said support his claim. Such citations also serve to show he keeps close watch on current events and media despite being a fugitive in a war zone.

"The delay in your knowing those causes has cost you a lot without any result whatsoever," he said. "This position of yours, combined with some other injustices, pushed us to undertake the events of (Sept. 11)."

"Ask yourselves to determine your position: Is your security, your blood, your children, your money, your jobs, your homes, your economy, and your reputation dearer to you than the security of the Israelis, their children and their economy?" he said.

If Americans realized the extent of the suffering "suffering from the injustice of the Jews ... you will realize that both our nations are victims of the policies of the White House," which he described as "a hostage" to interest groups and companies.

The message was issued late Sunday by al-Qaida's media wing, Al-Sahab, in a video in which the audiotape plays over a still picture of bin Laden. IntelCenter, another company that monitors terrorist propaganda, said the message is the 49th release by Al-Sahab in 2009. Al-Sahab is averaging one release every five days so far in 2009, IntelCenter said.