By KATHERINE SHRADER, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 19 minutes ago
WASHINGTON - U.S. counterterror officials are warning of an increased risk of an attack this summer, given al-Qaida's apparent interest in summertime strikes and increased al-Qaida training in the Afghan-Pakistani border region.
Isn't it wonderful how they know so much, but can't seem to apprehend the mastermind, Osama bin laden. I'd like a list please of SUMMERTIME attacks, to support this claim. Also, while you're at it, please elaborate why it is that you know there is increased al-Qaida training in the Afghan-Pakistani border region.
On Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff told the editorial board of The Chicago Tribune that he had a "gut feeling" about a new period of increased risk.
Great, the Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff has based this increased terrorist risk on a GUT FEELING!!!!
He based his assessment on earlier patterns of terrorists in Europe and intelligence he would not disclose.
"Summertime seems to be appealing to them," Chertoff said in his discussion with the newspaper about terrorists. "We worry that they are rebuilding their activities."
He is actually TELLING the TERRORISTS to strike in summertime by repeating this ad naseum.
Other U.S. counterterrorism officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, shared Chertoff's concern and said that al-Qaida and like-minded groups have been able to plot and train more freely in the tribal areas along the Afghan-Pakistani border in recent months. Osama bin Laden and his top deputy, Ayman al-Zawahri, are believed to be hiding in the rugged region.
They are telling us that the terrorists are training more freely in the Afghan-Pakistani border. Obviously, they are VIEWING THEM. Obviously, THEY know what they're doing. Obviously, they know Osama bin Laden and his top deputy are believed to be hiding in the rugged region. They know so much and do so little!!!
"The threat coming out of there is very real, even if there aren't a lot of specifics attached to it," one of the officials said.
Chertoff's department has not made any move to increase the nation's color-coded terror alert system. Now, airlines are under orange — or high — alert, which is the second most serious level on a five-point scale. The rest of the country remains a step below at yellow, or elevated.
Chertoff said he is convinced that terrorists are regrouping. "Our edge is technology and the vigilance of the ordinary citizen," he said.
The secretary also urged Americans to be watchful for suspicious activities in the wake of recent terror incidents in England and Scotland. On June 29, two cars packed with gas cylinders and nails were discovered in London's entertainment district. The next day, two extremists smashed their flaming Jeep Cherokee into security barriers at Glasgow Airport's main terminal.
Al-Qaida and its sympathizers have shown an interest in summertime attacks. Some examples from recent years:
• In 2005, London faced two separate sets of transit attacks. The July 7 attacks on three trains and a bus killed 52. A second attack on July 21 was bungled when the detonators failed to light the explosives.
• Last summer, international counterterror authorities said they foiled a plot to use liquid explosives to take down roughly 10 U.S.-bound airliners leaving Britain.
Oh, here's that list I asked for. Really? One attack in the summer of 2005 and a FOILED attack involving a PLOT to take down roughly 10 U.S.-bound airliners leaving Britain. Was this really a plot or just a staged event to make them look like terrorist nabbers?
Global Warming Could Fuel War
By Andrea Thompson, LiveScience Staff Writer
posted: 09 July 2007 12:14 pm ET
Food and water shortages fueled in the future by global warming could spur conflicts and even wars over these essential resources, the authors of a new study warn.
History suggests the controversial idea might be on track.
A controversial idea? That's what this article is about. An IDEA???
Changes in climate, such as temperature and rainfall, can significantly alter the availability of crops, livestock and drinking water. Resource shortages could, in turn, prompt people to turn to war to get what they need to survive, several experts have warned.
A new study, detailed in the August 2007 issue of the journal Human Ecology, suggests this was the case in the past. The authors reviewed 899 wars fought in China between 1000 and 1911 and found a correlation between the frequency of warfare and records of temperature changes.
“It was the oscillations of agricultural production brought by long-term climate change that drove China’s historical war-peace cycles,” wrote lead author David Zhang of the University of Hong Kong.
Similarly, several top retired American military leaders released a report in April warning of the national security threat posed by global warming, predicting wars over water, refugees displaced by rising sea levels and higher rates of famine and disease.
Climate change could possibly improve growing conditions in some areas (particularly higher latitudes), while hurting them in others (especially the tropics), explained William Easterling of Pennsylvania State University.
“What that sets up is a sort of winners and losers situation,” said Easterling, who was not affiliated with the new study.
Easterling, a co-author of the most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on the potential impacts of climate change, told LiveScience that all-out war is unlikely unless international institutions and global markets completely fail, but the change in distribution of resources could cause “international tensions [to] intensify.”
As an example of these tensions, Easterling cited Israel’s control over regional water resources and its use of that monopoly in the conflict with the Palestinians.
“It became a huge political tool,” Easterling said.
Easterling also said that the correlation cited by the authors of the new study did not necessarily prove that temperature changes caused increased warfare, but that there could certainly be a relationship between the two.
Separately, other scientists have argued that a looming peak in oil production could potentially generate conflict on a global scale as industrialized nations fight over dwindling petroleum supplies in an era of soaring demand.
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The U.S. military expects al Qaeda in Iraq to strike back with "spectacular attacks" after major U.S.-led offensives that have disrupted its activities, a military spokesman said on Wednesday.
They just KNOW everything Al-Qaida is going to do before they do it. Almost as if they control this terrorist cell. Don't you love this? "Spectacular attack." Wonderful. Killing is spectacular to them. Like a 4th of July show.
Brigadier-General Kevin Bergner said 26 leaders of al Qaeda in Iraq had been killed or captured in operations in May and June across the country.
"Over the past two months our collective efforts against the al Qaeda leadership have begun to disrupt their networks and safe havens," Bergner told a news conference.
Don't you just love how Iraq is now a "terrorist" breeding ground since the US invaded?
"We fully expect al Qaeda in Iraq operatives to lash out and stage spectacular attacks to reassert themselves."
Here they are again repeating ad naseum and telling Al-Qaida what to do. "WE FULLY EXPECT."
In Berlin, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said a German woman who was kidnapped by militants in Iraq in February had been freed but her son remained in captivity.
Bergner's comments followed a weekend of bloodshed in Iraq in which nearly 250 people were killed, including 150 in a truck bombing in the northern town of Tuz Khurmato. Iraqi officials have blamed the Sunni Islamist militant group for that attack.
Some U.S. military officials have said they expect militants to strike hard in the next two months before a much-anticipated report on Iraq goes to the U.S. Congress in mid-September.
That report is being prepared by U.S. military commander General David Petraeus and U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and will assess Iraq's security and political progress.
Now, they're advising them to strike hard in the next two months. As if Al-Qaida cares about the US Congress and a report about Iraq's security and political progress.
It is being seen as a watershed given the mounting pressure on U.S. President George W. Bush from Democrats and increasingly from senior members in his own Republican Party for a shift in course in Iraq.
A new USA Today/Gallup poll showed more than seven in 10 Americans favor withdrawing nearly all U.S troops by April.
Does it really matter what the public wants? Attempting to assert that we have a voice in their decisions. If Congress doesn't? Do we?
U.S. officials blame al Qaeda for most of the major car bombings in Iraq, saying the group is trying to spark all-out civil war between majority Shi'tes and minority Sunni Arabs.
Bergner was pressed to explain the link between al Qaeda in Iraq and the global network led by Osama bin Laden, given the U.S. military's increasing focus al Qaeda in Iraq as the biggest threat to the country.
You instigated Civil War with your invasion of Iraq and have created a false threat of "Al-Qaida" in this region that did not exist before your entry. You are arming the so-called TERRORISTS.
"Al Qaeda senior leadership does provide direction to al Qaeda in Iraq. They do establish focus, they do establish and provide resources and support the network," Bergner said.
"Their numbers are relatively small (in Iraq), but their effect is very, very devastating to the Iraqi people because they are employed frequently as these suicide bombers."
CONCERN OVER GREEN ZONE
Bergner also expressed "serious concern" at mortar and rocket attacks on the heavily fortified Green Zone compound that houses the Iraqi government and the U.S. embassy.
A barrage on Tuesday killed three people including a U.S. military service member, the U.S. embassy said.
Iraqi militants had threatened to kill the German woman and her son, seized from their home in western Baghdad on February 6, unless Germany withdrew its troops from Afghanistan.
"After 155 days, Hannelore Krause's captivity is over. She has been free since yesterday afternoon," Foreign Minister Steinmeier told reporters in Berlin, declining to talk about the circumstances of her release.
In April, the Arrows of Righteousness group posted a video on the Internet showing Krause urging Germans to press their government to heed the demands of the militants.
Krause is married to an Iraqi physician and moved to Iraq 40 years ago. Her son, Sinan, is reported to be in his mid-20s and has dual German-Iraqi citizenship.
Tens of thousands of U.S. troops are engaged in a series of offensives in Iraq that aim to deny al Qaeda the opportunity to launch big car bomb attacks, especially in Baghdad.
Bush has sent 28,000 additional troops to Iraq, bringing total military personnel to 157,000.
157,000 American troops. How many Iraqi troops, ally troops? And, we cannot win against these so-called terrorists with their car bombs?
On Tuesday the president brushed aside the criticism of fellow Republicans over Iraq and demanded the U.S. Congress allow his troop buildup more time to work.
"Brigadier-General Kevin Bergner said 26 leaders of al Qaeda in Iraq had been killed or captured in operations in May and June across the country."
Add these 26 leaders of al Qaeda to the list of those previously captured or killed. Do they have a running total? How do they know these people they capture and/or kill are al Qaeda leaders or members? Do they wear identification tags?
Remember, the pictures and names of the terrorists involved in the 911 attack and how quickly they were released through the media?
They just happen to know WHO they are. They just happen to have their pictures. They just happen to know Bin Laden's whereabouts. They just happen to know al-Qaida's movements. They just happen to know when and what kind of attack they have planned next.
Sounds to me like THEY know everything about this terrorist cell. Almost as if they're a part of it. Almost as if they've infiltrated it.
By KATHERINE SHRADER, Associated Press Writer
36 minutes ago
WASHINGTON - Al-Qaida is stepping up its efforts to sneak terror operatives into the United States and has acquired most of the capabilities it needs to strike here, according to a new U.S. intelligence assessment, The Associated Press has learned.
Well, boys with all the intel you have about this terrorist group; what they're plotting, their whereabouts, their capabilities, perhaps, this time you'll be able to stop them.
The draft National Intelligence Estimate is expected to paint an ever-more-worrisome portrait of al-Qaida's ability to use its base along the Pakistan-Afghan border to launch and inspire attacks against the United States over the next several years.
Their base is along the Pakistan-Afghan border and, yet, we have 157,000 plus troops in Iraq. Yep, this war on terror is certainly a success. How many of our troops have you murdered thus far?
Yet, the government's top analysts concluded that U.S. soil has become a harder target for the extremist network, thanks to worldwide counterterror efforts since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
Among the key findings of the classified estimate, which is still in draft form and must be approved by all 16 U.S. spy agencies:
• The U.S. will face "a persistent and evolving terrorist threat" within its borders over the next three years. The main danger comes from Islamic terrorist groups, especially al-Qaida, and is "driven by the undiminished intent to attack the homeland and a continued effort by terrorist groups to adapt and improve their capabilities."
How can they possibly know that the U.S. will face "a persistent and evolving terrorist threat" within its borders over the next three years? Crystal ball? Why not five years?
• Al-Qaida is probably still pursuing chemical, biological or nuclear weapons and would use them if its operatives developed sufficient capability.
Al-Qaida's operatives or YOUR operatives?
The terror group has been able to restore three of the four key tools it would need to launch an attack on U.S. soil: a safe haven in Pakistan's tribal areas, operational lieutenants and senior leaders. It could not immediately be learned what the missing fourth element is.
What is the missing fourth element? The aid of the US government/CIA?
• The group will bolster its efforts to position operatives inside U.S. borders. In public statements, U.S. officials have expressed concern about the ease with which people can enter the United States through Europe because of a program that allows most Europeans to enter without visas.
Did they tell you this? You know, how they're going to position operatives inside the US borders?
The document also discusses increasing concern about individuals already inside the United States who are adopting an extremist brand of Islam.
On a positive note, analysts concluded that increased international efforts over the past five years "have constrained the ability of al-Qaida to attack the U.S. homeland again and have led terrorist groups to perceive the homeland as a harder target to strike than on 9/11."
Those measures helped disrupt known plots against the United States, the analysts found.
National Intelligence Estimates are the most authoritative written judgments that reflect the consensus long-term thinking of senior intelligence analysts.
Government officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the report has not been finalized, described it as an expansive look at potential threats within the United States and said it required the cooperation of a number of national security agencies, including the CIA, FBI, Homeland Security Department and National Counterterrorism Center.
National security officials met at the White House on Thursday about the intelligence estimate and related counterterrorism issues. The tentative plan is to release a declassified version of the report and brief Congress on Tuesday, one government official said.
Ross Feinstein, spokesman for National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell, declined to discuss the document's specific contents. But he said it would be consistent with statements made by senior government officials at congressional hearings and elsewhere.
The estimate echoes the findings of another analysis prepared by the National Counterterrorism Center earlier this year and disclosed publicly on Wednesday. That report — titled "Al-Qaida better positioned to strike the West" — found the terrorist group is "considerably operationally stronger than a year ago" and has "regrouped to an extent not seen since 2001," a counterterrorism official familiar with the reports findings told the AP.
On Thursday, news of the counterterrorism center's threat assessment renewed the political debate about the nature of the al-Qaida threat and whether U.S. actions — in Iraq in particular — have made the U.S. safer from terrorism.
At a news conference Thursday, President Bush acknowledged al-Qaida's continuing threat to the United States and used the new report as evidence his administration's policies are on the right course.
"The same folks that are bombing innocent people in Iraq were the ones who attacked us in America on Sept. 11," he said. "That's why what happens in Iraq matters to security here at home."
Yet Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., said Iraq has distracted the United States. He said the U.S. should have finished off al-Qaida in 2002 and 2003 along the Afghan-Pakistan border.
Instead, "President Bush chose to invade Iraq, thereby diverting our military and intelligence resources away from the real war on terrorism," Rockefeller said. "Threats to the United States homeland are not emanating from Iraq. They are coming from al-Qaida leadership."
Rockefeller, who voted in favor of toppling Saddam Hussein, called for the U.S. to end its involvement in what he called the Iraqi civil war.
In recent weeks, senior national security officials have been increasingly worried about an al-Qaida attack in the United States.
Appearing on a half-dozen morning TV shows Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff laid out a list of factors contributing to his "gut feeling" that the nation faces a higher risk of attack this summer: al-Qaida's increased freedom to train in South Asia, a flurry of public statements from the network's leadership, a history of summertime attacks, a broader range of attacks in North Africa and Europe and homegrown terrorism increasing in Europe.
"Europe could become a platform for an attack against this country," Chertoff told CNN, although he and others continue to say they know of no specific, credible information pointing to an attack here.
National security officials are frustrated by an agreement last year between Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and tribal leaders in western Pakistan, which gave tribes near the Afghan border greater autonomy and has led to increased al-Qaida activity in the region.
Nevertheless, Bush administration officials still view Musharraf as a partner.
Speaking to a congressional hearing, Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher said that Pakistan under Musharraf has captured more al-Qaida operatives than any other country and that several major Taliban leaders were captured or killed this year.
"There is a considerable al-Qaida presence at the border, but they are under pressure," Boucher told a House national security subcommittee.
Rep. Jim Cooper, D-Tenn., was skeptical, saying al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden and other terrorist leaders apparently feel safe there. "Is this a Motel 6 for terrorists?" he asked.
And, the terrorists are? The people putting out these reports? You know, those who speak under the condition of anonymity.
Bin Laden appears in new al-Qaida video 10 minutes ago
CAIRO, Egypt - A new al-Qaida videotape posted Sunday on a militant Web site featured a short, undated clip of a weary-looking Osama bin Laden praising martyrdom.
The bin Laden clip, which lasted less than a minute, was part of a 40-minute video featuring purported al-Qaida fighters in Afghanistan paying tribute to fellow militants who have been killed in the country. It was posted by the group's media production wing.
Bin Laden glorified those who die in the name of jihad, or holy war, saying even the Prophet Muhammad "had been wishing to be a martyr."
"The happy (man) is the one that God has chosen him to be a martyr," added bin Laden, who was shown outdoors wearing army fatigues and looking tired.
Who writes this stuff for the Boogey Man?
Look at this:
It was a 40-minute video FEATURING..
It was posted by the group's MEDIA PRODUCTION WING...
"The happy (man) is the one that God has chosen him to be a martyr,..."
Bin Laden is the "rogue" CIA's pet rat. He's out of his cage now. His message in this tape is for the militants within the network.
He is reinforcing their "brainwashed" belief that "The happy (man) is the one that God has chosen him to be a martyr,..."
Trained to die in the name of Allah; to wage Jihad against the great Satan, America.
This is cult-like, of course. The militants serve their masters, Bin Laden and his lieutenants, (the chain of command); and Bin Laden serves his masters, his mind controllers within the "rogue" CIA/Shadow government.
The recent deluge of information about Al-Qaida; Bin Laden's whereabouts from sources that speak under anonymity together with Chertoff's "GUT" instinct, and Bin Laden's video would lead ONE to believe that something is definitely in the works by the shadow government.
They seem to be SENDING messages back and forth to one another within the text of some of the news' articles I've posted in this thread and Bin Laden's message in this video.
Obviously, when a terror act is to take place, Bin Laden doesn't personally see each and every militant beforehand.
It can be construed that this tape is for that purpose. Support for the "brainwashed" terrorists who may in the near future play the role of a matyr.
By KATHERINE SHRADER and ANNE FLAHERTY, Associated Press Writers
16 minutes ago
Terror Threat Against the US Serious
WASHINGTON - The terrorist network Al-Qaida will likely leverage its contacts and capabilities in Iraq to mount an attack on U.S. soil, according to a new National Intelligence Estimate on threats to the United States.
Isn't it interesting how Iraq WAS NOT a HAVEN for Al-Qaida before the war, but now that the US is an occupier, it is?
The declassified key findings, to be released publicly on Tuesday, were obtained in advance by The Associated Press.
The report lays out a range of dangers — from al-Qaida to Lebanese Hezbollah to non-Muslim radical groups — that pose a "persistent and evolving threat" to the country over the next three years. As expected, however, the findings focus most of their attention on the gravest terror problem: Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network.
You realize that the threat of Al-Qaida would be very minimal had the US government not invaded Iraq, don't you?
The report makes clear that al-Qaida in Iraq, which has not yet posed a direct threat to U.S. soil, could become a problem here.
"Of note," the analysts said, "we assess that al-Qaida will probably seek to leverage the contacts and capabilities of al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI), its most visible and capable affiliate and the only one known to have expressed a desire to attack the homeland."
Who did Al-Qaida in Iraq express their desire to?
The analysts also found that al-Qaida's association with its Iraqi affiliate helps the group to energize the broader Sunni Muslim extremist community, raise resources and recruit and indoctrinate operatives — "including for homeland attacks."
Why are you referring to to the US as Al-Qaida's HOMELAND?
National Intelligence Estimates are the most authoritative written judgments of the 16 spy agencies across the breadth of the U.S. government. These agencies reflect the consensus long-term thinking of top intelligence analysts. Portions of the documents are occasionally declassified for public release.
Yes, of course, declassify portions of the documents to use as SCARE TACTICS!
The new report echoed statements made by senior intelligence officials over the last year, including the assessment of spy agencies that the country is in a "heightened threat environment." It also provided new details on their thinking and concerns.
For instance, the report says that worldwide counterterrorism efforts since 2001 have constrained al-Qaida's ability to attack the U.S. again and convinced terror groups that U.S. soil is a tougher target.
But, the report quickly adds, analysts are concerned "that this level of international cooperation may wane as 9/11 becomes a more distant memory and perceptions of the threat diverge."
Among the report's other findings:
_Al-Qaida is likely to continue to focus on high-profile political, economic and infrastructure targets to cause mass casualties, visually dramatic destruction, economic aftershocks and fear. "The group is proficient with conventional small arms and improvised explosive devices and is innovative in creating new capabilities and overcoming security obstacles."
Our "spy" network knows so much about Al-Qaida's capabilities. Almost as if they've trained and armed them.
_The group has been able to restore key capabilities it would need to launch an attack on U.S. soil: a safe haven in Pakistan's tribal areas, operational lieutenants and senior leaders. U.S. officials have warned publicly that a deal between the Pakistani government and tribal leaders allowed al-Qaida to plot and train more freely in parts of western Pakistan for the last 10 months.
_The group will continue to seek weapons of mass destruction — chemical, biological or nuclear material — and "would not hesitate to use them."
_Lebanese Hezbollah, a Shiite Muslim extremist group that has conducted anti-American attacks overseas, may be more likely to consider attacking here, especially if it believes the United States is directly threatening the group or its main sponsor, Iran.
_Non-Muslim terrorist groups probably will attack here in the next several years, although on a smaller scale. The judgments don't name any specific groups, but the FBI often warns of violent environmental groups, such as Earth Liberation Front, and others.
The publicly disclosed judgments, laid out over two pages, are part of a longer document, which remains classified. It was approved by the heads of all 16 intelligence agencies on June 21.
In the last week, reports on this document and another threat assessment on al-Qaida's resurgence have renewed the debate in Washington about whether the Bush administration is on the right course in its war on terror, particularly in Iraq.
The White House has used the reports as evidence that the country must continue to go after al-Qaida in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. But critics say the evolving threat is evidence of a policy gone wrong.
Who is supplying these so-called terrorists with arms/weapons? Convenient, isn't it? They've converged into Iraq and our mighty MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX is present.
The debate — and the underlying global problem — will not go away soon.
The high-level estimate notes that the spread of radical ideas, especially on the Internet, growing anti-U.S. rhetoric and increasing numbers of radical cells throughout Western countries indicate the violent segments of the Muslim populations is expanding.
"The arrest and prosecution by U.S. law enforcement of a small number of violent Islamic extremists inside the United States ... points to the possibility that others may become sufficiently radicalized that they will view the use of violence here as legitimate," the estimate said. "We assess that this internal Muslim terrorist threat is not likely to be as severe as it is in Europe, however."