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Time to acknowledge the master planners for their skill and cleverness, however flawed and diabolical

Douglas Herman

You have to admire such chutzpah (Yiddish word for audacity). You have to admire, grudgingly, such cold-blooded, calculating cruelty, such amazing vision, however sadistic and criminal.

911 remains a master plan ridden with obvious flaws. The master planners stood to gain TRILLIONS in profits, (although paid in blood money), for their skillful concept carried out like the climax of a suspenseful Hollywood movie. And so five years later, that masterful crime, what I call The Greatest Unsolved Crime of The Century, remains a magician's trick worthy of Satan himself.

Consider the targets chosen. The WTC complex was an enormous architectural white elephant filled with asbestos and with far too few tenants. But because the WTC had been built much too big and much too well, the cost of deconstruction, an estimated 15 billion, far outweighed whatever profit an owner might gain from years of ownership. But suppose a buyer stepped forward and purchased the property, with the foresight to realize the towers were targets? And suppose that buyer, possessed insider information about an attack and insured them against such a fate? And suppose that buyer collected when those white elephants crashed to the ground within months? In fact that is exactly what did happen, to the extent of 3.5 billion dollars.
Now suppose one of the collapsed structures hadn't even been hit? Instead the nearby 47-story, WTC-7 burst into flame, a suspicious, haphazard fire that raged hours through several key floors long after the twin towers fell. Several of the floors housed Security & Exchange records pertaining to multi-billion dollar investigations. The Los Angeles Times reported on September 17, 2001 that an estimated 3,000  to 4,000 cases were destroyed. They included SEC's major inquiry into the manner in which investment banks divided up hot shares of initial public offerings (IPOs) during the high-tech boom.

By destroying the building, the fire and subsequent collapse destroyed the records forever and meant a huge net savings for CEOs and corporations being investigated. Add several hundred millions, perhaps billions to our crime spree so far. 

Suddenly you realize why 911 occurred. For a twisted sense of globalism certainly, but for greater personal profit assuredly. The master planners, and one need look no further than the PNAC signers and whom they represented, realized that great crimes required great rewards.

Not surprisingly, many 911 skeptics focused unnecessarily on those United and American airline Put options. Yet, had they been collected, only a few millions would have been gained. Very likely, some rogue, low level co-conspirator, with pre-knowledge of the master plan, made those Put options but without top level approval. Just one of the many flaws that day. 

Likewise, the heist of gold bars from vaults far below the WTC complex during the massacre occurring above may have yielded several hundred million more. No one knows. The New York city media, once again as complicit as co-conspirators, chose to ask few embarrassing questions about that crushed truck found weeks later below the WTC or who had loaded it. Once again this may have been another subsidiary operation, another unauthorized plundering by an insider group, like a lone looter who smashes a storefront window and grabs a handful of jewelry during a major earthquake. 

While hundreds of millions, perhaps billions of dollars, changed hands as nearly 3,000 unlucky Americans died at the WTC bombardment, TRILLIONS of dollars went missing over at the Pentagon. How? Easy. A simple sleight of hand, a sudden explosion and presto, 2.3 trillion of missing money was magically forgotten. Two Trillion. Just like that. 

Only a day before 911, on September 10, 2001, kindly Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of Defense, admitted, during the last peaceful day of terror-free living, that 2.3 trillion of Pentagon money was missing and unaccounted for.  

What a fortunate thing to happen---a wonderful thing, this 911 attack---wonderful indeed for those who stole/ embezzled/ purloined/ pocketed those trillions. Suddenly "Arab terrorists" had provided a Godsend (Allah be praised), provided a perfect distraction, for generals and general contractors and Fortune 500 corporations and the Pentagon comptroller and the Sec-Def and everyone else it seems---everyone, that is, but the average American or the average Muslim.

Imagine if you owned a bank and an investigation determined that you and your relatives had embezzled two trillion dollars from your bank. Newspapers blared the headline: "Two Trillion Missing." But--BUT---before the ink had dried on the tabloids, a nasty group of Islamofascists blew your bank ( or at least the records section) to smithereens. What a lucky break for you and your relatives. What an unlucky break for all those employees killed.  

But wait! In the following weeks, government inspectors (without investigating further) allowed your bank, encouraged your bank, to collect MORE funds---500 billion more per year---to squander or spend however you felt.  

Because that is EXACTLY what happened in the 24 hours between the time Rumsfeld admitted the money went missing from the Pentagon and the 911 "terror" attack on the five-sided fortress.  

Flight 77, or the remote controlled aircraft that blew concentric holes through six walls (airplane parts indicate the latter), slammed into the newly remodeled Army financial management/audit area and the Army personnel offices, one of two main west section offices heavily destroyed in the Pentagon attack. The other section being the Naval Command Center. Casualties were heavy.  

"Were the auditors who could 'follow the money,' and the computers whose data could help them do it, intentionally targeted, asked Jim Marrs and Barbara Honegger in her Pentagon Attack Papers? "It is worth noting that the Pentagon's top financial officer at the time, Dov Zakheim, who also acknowledged the 'missing' trillions, had a company that specializes in aircraft remote control technology."  Curiously, like many top level civilians working at the Pentagon on 911, Zakheim held duel citizenship, US and Israel.

When following the money trail, you realize the incalculable billions gained with the conquest of war-torn and impoverished Afghanistan, which depended on a manufactured attack. But rather than find and capture a CIA--created mastermind allegedly responsible for nearly 3,000 deaths, the sole purpose of the attack on Afghanistan appeared to be control of a country for the benefit of an oil pipeline. In the book, "Bin Laden: the Forbidden Truth" by Jean-Charles Brisard and Guillaume Dasique, the authors claim the U.S. tried to negotiate a trans-Afghanistan pipeline deal with the Taliban as late as August, 2001. "We'll either carpet you in gold or carpet you in bombs," negotiators reportedly said. When the pipeline deal fell through, the carpet of bombs followed---beginning with the WTC.   

If you follow the trillion-dollar money trail throughout 911, you easily see that those who stood to profit the most also occupied key places----military and civilian security systems, oil and gas consortiums, intelligence agencies, US Department of Justice and the US media/ propaganda systems--to make 911 happen and, just as important, to conspire to conceal the crime. The master planners pulled off a perfect plan, despite the obvious flaws. 

The blood money still flows, overflows, into their vaults and accounts. The planners remain masters of the known universe, unafraid of anyone or anything except perhaps a shadow. Because somewhere, perhaps in the depths of the Pentagon, honorable US officers, patriots like Colonel Bob Bowman, who realize EXACTLY what happened on 911, realize how the USAF was used as an unwitting accomplice on 911, simmer with shame, with resentment, with rage and frustration. One day these honorable men, together with other honorable men throughout this nation, will take legal steps to right the monstrous wrong that was done on September 11, 2001. Godspeed that day. 


God forbid Why was the cashing out of billions of dollars just before 9/11 never investigated?

Jim Hogue

Had an investigation been done into the crime of failing to file the “currency transaction reports” in August 2001, then we would know who made the cash withdrawals in $100 bills amounting to the $5 billion surge.

When reviewing the record of July and August of 2001, Bill Bergman noticed a $5 billion surge in the currency component of the M1 money supply—the third largest such increase since 1947. Bergman asked about this anomaly—and was removed from his investigative duties.

It's been over six years since 9/11, but U.S. regulatory entities have been slow to follow through with reports about the complex financial transactions that occurred just prior to and following the attacks. Such research could shed light on such questions as who was behind them—and who benefited—and could help lay to rest the rumors that have been festering. Warning bells about anomalies in the fiscal sector were sounded in the summer of 2001, but not heeded.

Among those who has since raised questions was Bill Bergman. As a financial market analyst for the Federal Reserve, he was assigned in 2003 to review the record of July and August of 2001. He noticed an unusual surge in the currency component of the M1 money supply (cash circulating outside of banks) during that period. The surge totaled over $5 billion above the norm for a two-month increase.

The increase in August alone was the third largest single monthly increase since 1947, even after a significantly above-average month in July.

Surges in the currency component of M1 are often the result of people withdrawing their cash to protect themselves lest some anticipated disaster (such as Y2K) befall the economy. In January of 1991 a surge was recorded (the then second-largest since ’47), which could be attributed to “war-time hoarding” before the Iraq I invasion, but could also be attributed to financial maneuverings and liquefying of assets relating to the BCCI enforcement proceedings.

Bergman points out that the August 2001 withdrawals may have been, to a large extent, caused by the Argentinian banking crisis that was occurring at the time. However, he raises the point that no explanation has yet fully answered the important question: Why was the cashing out of billions of dollars just before the 9/11 attacks never investigated?

It’s possible that the answer to this question is also the answer to the other follow-the-money questions surrounding 9/11; and despite an embarrassing heap of evidence, neither the press, nor Congress, nor any agency with investigative responsibility has done its job on our behalf. On the contrary, their inaction might reasonably be construed as a cover-up.

Bergman "followed the money," including developing a framework for working with money-laundering data and “suspicious activity” reports for monitoring and investigating terrorism. The questions he asked about what happened during the summer of 2001 should have led to investigations, which should have resulted in the prosecution of those with foreknowledge of the attacks.

Those who follow the history of the 9/11 fact-finding movement know that there is a laundry-list of unanswered questions that are just as compelling as those put forth by Bergman.

And there is also a laundry-list of whistle-blowers who have been fired and subsequently ignored. So it is not at all surprising that Bergman was removed from his investigative duties, and that his concerns were not publicly addressed.

Bergman's supervisor instructed him to follow up on an unanswered question he had raised pertaining to an August 2, 2001 letter from the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve to the 12 Reserve Banks. This letter urged scrutiny of suspicious activity reports. Bergman learned of the pervasiveness of the warnings of the 9/11 attacks, and wondered how thoroughly these warnings had permeated the financial system.

In this capacity as Federal Reserve investigative point-man, and with his money-laundering portfolio being guided by his supervisor's directive, he asked the Board why they had issued their August 2, 2001 directive, and whether this related to any heightened intelligence of a terrorist threat. His position was then eliminated, and a crucial investigation was terminated before it could even begin.

Another 9/11 Commission Misrepresentation

Footnote 28 of the Staff Monograph on Terrorist Financing from the official 9/11 Commission Report states that the National Money-laundering Strategy Report for 2001 “didn’t mention terrorist financing in any of its 50 pages.”

True? No. The NMLS Report mentions it 17 times.

One gets the impression that the commission staff (under Philip Zelikow) was trying to paint the picture that there wasn’t a lot of co-operation between those involved in counterterrorism and the banking regulators in 2001.

Why do they paint this picture, inasmuch as the contrary is the case? In fact, anti-terrorism was an important element of the National Money Strategy, and it was included and emphasized in its Report annually. It may have been part of the reason why the August 2, 2001 letter urging scrutiny of suspicious activity reports was issued in the first place.

In turn, the billions in currency shipments of July and August 2001 are completely omitted in the 9/11 Commission Report.

I make bold to point out that the official story-line is that the attacks were accomplished by "the evil-doers" on a shoe-string budget with little money changing hands. Therefore, according to Zelikow et al., it is pointless to look at large flows of money in an investigation of the attacks. That makes perfect sense—unless you happen to have a brain.

To state the obvious, there are two reasons why Zelikow et al. made the false statement regarding there having been no references to terrorism in the National Money-laundering Strategy Report.

One reason could be to justify and encourage more scrutiny (legal or otherwise) of small transactions generally, e.g. via USAPA, and the other could be to establish (read: invent) a reason for missing the evidence pertaining to the attacks. ('Transactions too small. No one could find.') And since the real money trail points to foreknowledge within the financial community at large, and, possibly, the Federal Reserve specifically, the "low-budget terrorism" story-line that the 9/11 Commission had established needed to be protected.

If such a lack of attentiveness to a financial transaction of $5 billion goes unnoticed in August 2001, then a reason had to be established for this lack of attention. And Bergman’s attentiveness to the Board of Governor’s August 2 letter was the fly in the ointment, as this letter proves that the Board was indeed attentive to suspicious transactions, even very, very large ones. Bergman’s question of “Why” is therefore key to yet another avenue of inquiry.

All the News that’s Permissible to Print

Note that a few dollars sent to an Islamic charity could warrant arrests, investigations, front-page stories, and, sometimes, torture and many years in jail. That's Propaganda 101: 'Large amounts of money do not fund major acts of terrorism. Small amounts do. Small amounts covered the 9/11 tab, therefore large amounts didn’t.' The news coverage, creating high-profile prosecutions for relatively small transactions, reinforces this scenario.

With this in mind, we suggest that the reader follow the story of Mark Siljander (major coverage) on the one hand, and also follow the Times UK reports from Sibel Edmonds (verboten in the US mainstream press) on the other hand. Edmonds told me recently of the major foreign media outlets that had offered to report her story. Not one major outlet did so in the US.

R.T. Naylor suggests, in his wonderful book Satanic Purses, that any major terrorist event that involves a lot of money is 'state terrorism,' and this is independently confirmed by Sibel Edmonds’ statements as to the enormous sums changing hands at the time of the 9/11 attacks. I suggest that her testimony to the Senate Intelligence Committee (Leahy and Grassley) gave the lie to the official financial myth of 9/11.

If Bergman had been allowed to continue his investigation, I suggest that he would have uncovered the same thing. Note that the drug money and other illicit transactions described by Edmonds occurred during the same time period, and the amounts in the billions are comparable.

The Law

To members of the constabulary: the operable statutes are

1) The 1970 Bank Secrecy Act that imposed new financial reporting requirements to facilitate the tracing of questionable transactions and

2) the 1986 Money Laundering Control Act that criminalized the act of money-laundering.

Also operable, and of particular relevance in a historical context, is the 1917 Trading With the Enemy Act that was relied upon in October of 1942 to seize the assets of “Hitler’s Bankers in America,” Union Banking, (involving bank vice president Prescott Bush under his father-in-law and bank president, George Walker).

The law is not always followed, and the required “currency transaction reports” are sometimes not filed. The 9/11 Commission Report and the National Money-laundering Strategy Report for 2001 did not identify those who are involved with large cash transactions. Had the paperwork been done in August of 2001, or an investigation done into the crime of failing to file the “currency transaction reports,” then we would know who made the cash withdrawals in $100 bills amounting to the $5 billion surge.

Information about what transpired took years to develop after the fact. For example,
the Federal Reserve fined United Bank of Switzerland and Riggs Bank in 2004.

Mr. Bergman states that he doesn’t want to be a dog barking up the wrong tree, but the authorities, apparently under orders from our top officials, are preventing a standard investigation and the most obvious prosecutorial methodology from going forth. Congress
could step in; a prosecutor could step up. But don’t hold your breath.


EIR SPECIAL REPORT Executive Intelligence Review
Waseem Shehzad

Eight years after the spectacular attacks of September 11, widespread skepticism continues
to exit regarding the official version put out by the US government. And this is not confined to Muslims alone who never bought into the US allegation that Muslim hijackers, working for Osama bin Laden had carried out these attack. Western academics in the US, Canada and Europe, many of them leading scientists have expressed grave doubts about what the US has claimed about the perpetrators. Such skepticism is not based merely on the fact that 19 Arabs who could not even fly a single-engine plane properly commandeered jetliners and flew them into the World Trade Centre (WTC) buildings with pinpoint accuracy that would be the envy of highly trained air force pilots. Any questioning of the official version is immediately dismissed as “conspiracy theory” but serious doubts are being raised about US claims.

Several other questions also remain unanswered. Why no air force planes were scrambled to intercept the ‘hijacked’ aircraft once they went off their assigned flight path? This is standard operating procedure and followed globally. In the year before 9/11, US air force planes were scrambled at least 69 times within 20 minutes of a civilian airliner going off its assigned flight path to investigate why. In the early morning of 9/11 when the sky over Eastern United States was crowded with hundreds if not thousands of planes, such lack of res-ponse is unexplainable. On September 16, when then US Vice President Dick Cheney was asked about this on Meet the Press TV program, he deflected the question by saying, “Only the President could authorize the shooting down of a civilian airliner.” But the question was not about shooting a plane; it was about air force planes being scrambled to check why civilian airliners had strayed off their assigned flight path. There were also stories, now debunked, about passengers and aircrew making calls from cell phones from 35,000 to 40,000 feet when such technology does not exist. Canadian Professor A.K. Dewdney has debunked such claims. He said cell phones do not operate above 2,000 feet. A Japanese television crew was so intrigued by this that they came to Canada, chartered a small plane to investigate the professor’s claim. No cell operated above 1,000 feet!

But it is the collapse of three, not two buildings that has aroused the greatest degree of skepticism. After all, only two planes hit the World Trade Centre Towers; so how did Building No. 7, a 47-storey building collapse, the way it did when no plane had slammed into it? The “official” explanation that fire caused so much damage that it collapsed, does not stand up to scrutiny.

On April 6, 2009 Copenhagen’s Channel-2 News interviewed a Danish Scientist, Niels Harrit, professor of Chemistry at the University of Copenhagen, regarding a well-researched article he and eight other scientists had just published in the respected peer-reviewed Open Chemical Physics Journal. Through their research, the scientists offered incontrovertible proof that the dust from the Twin Towers and Building-7 of the World Trade Centre contained small intact samples of un-reacted nanothermite. Professor Harrit referred to it as the “loaded gun” as opposed to merely the “smoking” gun, insisting that their work was based on scientific evidence compiled over a period of two years and not on speculation or “conspiracy” theories. Traces of nano-thermite were discovered when molten steel from the three buildings, collected within 10 minutes of one building’s collapse, was retrieved and later examined under microscope. To their astonishment, the scientists discovered traces of nanothermite.  

Thermite is a highly explosive agent consisting mostly of aluminum and iron oxide, and is used to cut steel in controlled demolition of buildings, and is also used in welding and military applications. Nano-thermite has been used since 1893, but mostly for military purposes. In the Channel-2 News interview, Professor Harrit explained that molten steel had poured out of the South Tower several minutes before its collapse. This could not have been caused by aircraft fuel burning because that generates at best 285 degree centigrade temperature whereas Thermite can achieve temperatures up to 3500 degree centigrade, hence the molten steel (His interview can be viewed on Youtube using the following link:

Using optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy, and differential scanning calorimetry, the scientists were able to determine that the Thermite present was of a specialized type called Nanothermite or Superther-mite. It burns hotter and has a lower ignition temperature than normal Thermite, and is produced in laboratories such as Lawrence Livermore (It is thought to be the same lab that produced the anthrax sent out shortly after 9/11. That too, was blamed on Muslims!)

The scientists also ruled out the accidental presence of Nanothermite because dust samples were collected from four different sites. Further, it could also not be the result of clean-up operations at ground zero because one of the samples was retrieved a mere ten minutes or so after the collapse of the Second Tower. All samples showed the same consistency.

When asked how much nanothermite might have been used to demolish all three buildings, Professor Harrit said between “10 tonnes to 100 tonnes.” When pressed to explain how such huge quantities could be taken into various buildings without anyone noticing it, he said they would have had to use pallets mounted on trucks and it would have taken them several weeks to place these explosives in strategic locations. He was emphatic that this would not be possible without the security personnel at the WTC giving clearance. There have been confirmed reports that workers were involved in “repair” work inside various buildings throughout the weeks preceding the 9/11 attacks. Who were these “workers” and what were they doing?

All three buildings collapsed in a manner that indicated controlled demolition. This is a sophisticated operation and not many companies have the capability to achieve the desired results. Building-7 in particular, the 47-storey, 186-meter high building was not hit by any plane. It collapsed in 6.5 seconds and imploded inward. This could only be the work of controlled demolition with explosives placed at strategic points. Fire fighters and others that were in the Twin Towers and survived the ordeal have reported hearing explosions before the buildings collapsed. These reinforce the controlled demolition allegation. Not surprisingly, a clear majority of people outside the US does not subscribe to the official version of 9/11. Nor indeed do many families of the victims of 9/11.

The US government has a lot of explaining to do. It can no longer dismiss such evidence by branding it as “conspiracy theories”.

Olive Branch Press, 2009 by David Ray Griffin

At 5:20 in the afternoon on 9/11, Building 7 of the World Trade Center collapsed, even though it had not been struck by a plane and had fires on only a few floors. The reason for its collapse was considered a mystery. In August 2008, NIST (the National Institute of Standards and Technology) issued its report on WTC 7, declaring that "the reason for the collapse of World Trade Center 7 is no longer a mystery" and that “science is really behind what we have said.”
Showing that neither of these claims is true, David Ray Griffin demonstrates that NIST is guilty of the most serious types of scientific fraud: fabricating, falsifying, and ignoring evidence. He
also shows that NIST’s report left intact the central mystery: How could a building damaged by fire—not explosives—have come down in free fall?

“A definitive study of what happens when political concerns are permitted to override science and the scientific method. With intellectual finesse worthy of a scientist, Griffin shows that NIST’s WTC 7 report has no scientific credibility. A must read for all concerned with the restoration of science to its ‘rightful place’ in our democracy.”—John D. Wyndham, Ph.D., Physics, Cambridge University; former Research Fellow at the California Institute of

“David Ray Griffin has written a powerful book that asks disturbing questions and seeks to debunk myths about September 11. It is provocative, well-researched, and beyond convincing.”—Rosie O’Donnell

"David Ray Griffin has provided a comprehensive dismantling of NIST's theory about WTC 7, according to which it suffered global collapse because of ordinary building fires. Besides showing that NIST committed massive scientific fraud, Griffin also points out that NIST
was able to complete its theory only by affirming a miracle: a steel-framed high-rise building coming down in free fall even though explosives had not been used to remove its columns."—Richard Gage,
member of American Institute of Architects; founder of Architects and
Engineers for 9/11 Truth

“During my 33 years as a research physicist at the Naval Research Laboratory, it was my great joy to be able to contribute to the advancement of science without the slightest interference by NRL officials. So I was sickened to read in David Ray Griffin’s massiduously researched book of unequivocal evidence for massive scientific fraud committed by a politicized NIST. I implore President Obama to end the subversion of science at NIST and open a new, unfettered, investigation of the 9/11 attacks.” —David L. Griscom,
Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and
of the American Physical Society

“If you consider it important that the US government’s science agencies provide truthful information to the public, this book by David Ray Griffin is a must read. It shows beyond a shadow of doubt that NIST’s report on the ‘collapse’ of WTC 7 did not tell us the truth.”—Dwain Deets, former Director for Research Engineering at NASA
Dryden Flight Research Center

“Once again, David Ray Griffin has taken on a complicated piece of the 9/11 story and made it understandable. Whether you are a novice about 9/11 or have been following the inconsistencies of the government's story closely, you will find Griffin's new book enlightening.” —Lorie Van Auken, widow of Kenneth Van Auken, who was killed at WTC 1 on 9/11, and member of the Family Steering Committeefor the 9/11 Commission

"Based on my engineering knowledge and experience, I fully agree with Dr. Griffin's conclusion that NIST’s report on the collapse of WTC 7 is pseudo-science, containing claims that are misleading and even outright false. Numerous contradictions exposed by outside experts during the public review process were completely ignored, because they did not fit NIST’s contrived explanation.” —Jack Keller, Fellow
of the American Society of Civil Engineers; member of the National
Academy of Engineering

“In 2004, over 15,000 scientists charged that the Bush administration had engaged in persistent ‘distortion of scientific knowledge for partisan political ends.’ In this book, David Ray Griffin shows that NIST’s report on the destruction of WTC 7 is plagued throughout with various forms of scientific fraud, all of which point to a deliberate effort to avoid the extensive evidence that WTC 7 was brought down by controlled demolition.”—Earl Staelin, attorney in Denver, Colorado

“Professor Griffin’s meticulous dissection of NIST’s WTC 7 report shows just why its theory of fire-induced progressive collapse is wholly inadequate and essentially fraudulent, and why the actual demise of this huge building could have been brought about only by intentional demolition, which could have been set up and carried out only by domestic forces.”—Tony Szamboti, mechanical engineer andformer member of the US Navy

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad accused the United States on Tuesday of using the September 11, 2001 attacks as a "pretext" to launch invasions and cast doubt on the accepted version of the terror strikes.

"On the pretext of this incident a major military operation was launched and oppressed Afghanistan was attacked. Tens of thousands of people have been killed until now," he said in a speech broadcast on state television.

"Poor Iraq was attacked. According to official figures... one million people have been killed," he said in the speech marking Iran's day of nuclear technology.

He appeared to cast doubt on the official version of the attacks, saying the names of those killed had never been published and questioning how the planes had hit the towers of the World Trade Centre in New York.

"An event was created in the name of the attack against the twin towers. We were all sad. It was said that 3,000 people were killed," Ahmadinejad said.

"But the names of the 3,000 people were never published and nobody was able to respond to the main question, which is how is it possible that with the best radar systems and intelligence networks the planes could crash undetected into the towers."

This is the first time that Ahmadinejad has spoken publicly about his interpretation of the attacks of September 11, 2001.

The government of Iran's then reformist president Mohammad Khatami was quick to condemn the airborne attacks on New York and Washington carried out by Al-Qaeda militants which killed nearly 3,000 people.

However hardline newspapers have on occasion described the attacks as a conspiracy that was devised by the White House to justify its attacks on Iraq and Afghanistan.

Iran and the United States have had no diplomatic relations since the seizure of the US embassy in Tehran in the wake of the 1979 Islamic revolution and remain at loggerheads over the Islamic republic's nuclear programme.

"Discrimination has been applied in the world and the lie has become the rule. Threat and pillage is something that has become acceptable," Ahmadinejad added.

The controversial president has previously provoked outrage by describing the Holocaust as a "myth" and raising doubts over the scale of the mass slaughter of Jews in World War II.

In his speech to Iranian dignitaries and some foreign diplomats, he also predicted the "demise" of the major powers which emerged victorious in World War II and have since dominated the international system.

He said Iran's nuclear achievements mark the "acceleration of the trend to the destruction of major powers and with God's help this will become reality. World powers are struggling to survive."

The UN Security Council, whose permanent veto-wielding members are the victorious Allied powers from World War II, has imposed three sets of sanctions against Iran for refusing to suspend sensitive nuclear work.

Ahmadinejad described the Iranian nuclear programme as the "most important political event in the contemporary era."


Larry Chin

Global Research, August 20, 2010

Exemplified by the furor over the so-called “Ground Zero mosque” in New York, and rumors of a new Al-Qaeda “mastermind”, 9/11 “war on terrorism” propaganda has been ramped up to deafening levels by various political factions.Nearly a decade since Bush/Cheney’s 9/11 false flag deception, a fearful, self-destructive American mass public remains fully brainwashed by “war on terrorism”  deception--- ignorant of history, and militantly oblivious to facts.

“Ground Zero mosque”: the art of missing the point

The ludicrous uproar over plans to build a Muslim community center in New York, the so-called “Ground Zero mosque” has dominated mainstream corporate news headlines. Political players from all sides, including President Barack Obama have joined the fray, attempting to prove themselves the superior “anti-terrorist”, or the better “commemorator of 9/11, when 3,000 people were killed by Muslim terrorists”. The right-wing is going berserk, gleefully.

Heated arguments have exploded around religion, tolerance, democracy, etc.---everything except the only fact that matters: 9/11 was a false flag operation, courtesy of the Bush-Cheney administration, carried out by an elite consensus, in order to justify the “war on terrorism”, and everything that came with it. Mass murder. Unending resource conquest.  A police state within US borders. Open criminality.

The perpetual threat posed by a fabricated outside enemy, and a militarized, fearful populace, remain the centerpieces of elite policy, and they have been consistently maintained by both Bush/Cheney and Obama administrations. The demonization of Muslims continues to facilitate pillage.

While violent hatred continues to be directed at Muslims (and all “foreigners”), the criminals who truly massacred 3,000 people in the World Trade Center continue to enjoy power, wealth, and high positions of world “leadership” and remain in control of virtually every aspect of society. Those who perpetuate the cover-up (including the Obama administration) still “run the world”, to mass public enthusiasm.

As the “Ground Zero mosque” mushrooms into a full-blown election year battle cry by one faction or another, not whisper of truth appears in any corporate media coverage. Meanwhile, the exhaustive and available information thoroughly exposing and destroying the official “war on terrorism” narrative is unknown to a minority of people whose critical faculties remain intact.

Mike Ruppert’s Crossing the Rubicon exposed why and how 9/11 was likely carried out by Bush/Cheney. Michel Chossudovsky’s America’s “War on Terrorism” thoroughly exposed the 9/11 deception, as well as the fact that 1) the “war on terrorism” is a fabrication that serves as the eternal pretext for global war, and that 2) “Al-Qaeda” and other “Islamic jihad” front are military-intelligence assets that have been continuously supported, managed and “run” by the CIA and affiliates such as Pakistan’s ISI on behalf of Anglo-American geostrategic interests (notably oil) going back to the Cold War. A vast number of researchers (all derided as “9/11 truthers”) such David Ray Griffin continue to detail various aspects of the case including physical evidence.

Oblivious to the availability of this mountain of “conspiracy fact”, the vast majority of the population chooses to embrace the Big Lie.

New “Al-Qaeda” mastermind named

In recent weeks, mainstream corporate news headlines have exploded with the “revelation” that “Al-Qaeda” has a new leader of global operations “in charge of planning future attacks”: Adnan Shukrijumah

According to Miami-based FBI counterterrorism agent Greg LeBlanc, whose Associated Press interview in early August is the single source for the new spate of repeated headlines, Shukrijumah is alleged to be a 15-year resident of the US “intimately familiar with American society”, and is the son of a Muslim cleric trained in Saudi Arabia. He have lived in Miramar, Florida before joining terror training camps in Afghanistan in the 1990s, in order to fight the persecution of Muslims in Bosnia, Chechnya and elsewhere.

Tagged by LeBlanc as the successor to his former boss Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM), and taking orders directly from Osama bin Laden. A clip of Shukrijumah posted by the FBI is gibberish.

There is nothing new about the Shukrijumah narrative. It is an intelligence “legend” years in the making.

Chaim Kupferberg, whose classic analysis of post-9/11 “terror” propaganda (Part 1 and  Part Two) are definitive, offered the following thoughts on Shukrijumah in 2004 in a piece titled The "Official" Operative Clique for the Next 9/11.

To quote Kupferberg at length [my emphasis in bold]:

    “I'm sure many of you out there are noticing a unified narrative taking shape in advance of the next expected attack. In calibrated drips and dollops, the mainstream media, in partnership with the 9/11 panel, are laying the evidentiary trail pointing to the next "Atta" and his insular cell, which apparently already seems to be "in place" stateside.

    “Having no access at all to any insider reports, one can almost foretell the Official Legend that will follow in the wake of this clique's first big explosion into the public consciousness - just by reading the mainstream news.

    “Certainly, three of these major operatives - Adnan Shukrijumah, Abderrouf Jdey, and Aafia Siddiqui - are already being linked together. But Shukrijumah and Jdey are the ones to watch, for they are being intimately seeded into the Padilla/dirty bomb and Ahmed Ressam/Canadian clique/West Coast threads of 9/11.

    “Recently, Shukrijumah was mentioned as the guy likely doing surveillance of the New York buildings in the latest terror alert. But that was supposed to be old information. Yet Shukrijumah has been showing up all over the radar in the past year alongside Jdey and Siddiqui.

    “When Abu Musab Zarqawi was publicly unveiled by Colin Powell before the UN in February 2003, he had yet to make his very public splash as the next Khalid Shaikh Mohammed. But in the opening months of 2004 - as I surmised back in October 2003 - Zarqawi would lay his own foundation in the public mind (particularly by way of the Daniel Pearl-like Berg killing) as the guy tagged to head up the next ‘big one’.

    “If the Ressam-connected Canadian clique is involved, the likely target is the U.S. West Coast. I suspect this is the case due to three items: the bulletin last May that alerted the public to Shukrijumah, Jdey, Siddiqui, Gahdan, el-Maati, and others; a reported sighting the next day of Shukrijumah and Jdey at a Denny's in Colorado (they stated that they were "from Iran" and were en route to the West Coast from New York); the release, two weeks later, of the official 9/11 staff report that now placed Jdey (in cahoots with Moussaoui) as an original member of an aborted 9/11 "second wave" attack on the West Coast; and a reported sighting of Shukrijumah at a nuclear research facility in Ontario (while el-Maati had previously been reported casing nuclear facilities near Ottawa).

    “...Shukrijumah (aka "the next Atta") apparently seems to be threaded into the 1993 bomb plots by way of his father's connection to Clement Hampton-El. But more strangely, it seems that Shukrijumah will make his way into the Oklahoma City Bomb thread by way of his Florida connection with "dirty bomb" guy Jose Padilla. To shore up the Oklahoma thread, we also have the Zarqawi/Moussaoui/ Nick Berg connection.

    “But let's step back and take a stab at guessing at what is happening here. The new legends will be used to strengthen the foundations of the old ones. In parallel to the official account, however, the existing counter-legends will also be beefed up. In short, the narratives are getting all too muddled with the growing interlinking chains. The growing complexity of these new interlinking legends will operate to turn off a good portion of those who might be seriously interested in examining the truth behind 9/11.

    “And what of the rest of us? Will we be locked in a never-ending cycle of polarized argument - with each of us picking his favorite conspiracy thread? How many of us will look at Shukrijumah and see the fingerprints of Iran? How many of us will look at the Canadian clique and sense the hand of Syria behind it all? And if they find that the next operation was pulled off with forged New Zealand passports, how many of us will dig up the newspaper account of the Mossad/ New Zealand passport scandal and go ‘Aha! Once again the Israelis!’

    And what about the anthrax thread? In recent months, a writer by the name of Ross Getman has been posting accounts that read like excerpts from a future Official 9/11 Sequel Report. Going by Getman's writings, it would appear that a possible Boston connection would involve anthrax by way of Aafia Siddiqui's connection to Brandeis University and its anthrax facility. Also note that a first sighting of Shukrijumah and Jdey a year ago occurred in Maine, where they were spotted driving with a Massachusetts license plate.

    So, to sum up: Shukrijumah seems to be part of a "dirty bomb" or radiological thread, while Siddiqui seems to be part of an anthrax thread. Perhaps the Shukrijumah/Jdey/Siddiqui clique is planning a bi-coastal attack involving radiological materials (or perhaps an attack on a nuclear facility) and a simultaneous attack involving anthrax. Shukrijumah has been marketed as an "Atta-level" pilot.

    “Whatever the case, a definite evidentiary trail seems to be clearly laid so as to give the impression of the dots connecting up. Shukrijumah was also spotted recently in the Honduras, but I wouldn't give that one much credence. The Denny's item seems the most likely to be resurrected post-facto as an example of institutional incompetence and blindess. Perhaps the Honduras item was meant to give the impression that Shukrijumah was not yet in the U.S.

    “...In the aftermath of this next one, there will be those who will point to new instances of incompetence and blindness - who will say that the dots couldn't be connected. Hopefully, perhaps none of the above will ever come to pass. Perhaps Shukrijumah, Jdey, and Siddiqui will never make their "historical" mark - and we've all been treated to nothing more than a cunningly orchestrated campaign of fear-mongering by the government.

    “Whatever the case, it seems that a very clear narrative - with accompanying threads - is being built up for potential use. In the event this particular chapter of the narrative ever goes "operational" ... well, at least you'll all know that the mainstream media had put the dots in place beforehand.”

In the years since Kupferberg’s dead-on prediction, Shukrijumah has indeed “emerged” gradually. Attorney General John Ashcroft labeled Shukrijumah a “clear and present danger” in 2004. In 2009, authorities named Shukrijumah as a co-conspirator in the highly questionable New York subway bomb plot.

Shukrijumah has over the years been picked up as a cause célèbre by right-wing hacks such as Michelle Malkin, and the infamous Gerald Posner, who has built an entire malodorous career helping cover-up government crimes as a favored “anti-conspiracy” media shill.

There are many reasons for Shukrijumah to explode to official prominence now. President Barack Obama has declared an end to “combat operations in Iraq”, while maintaining the permanent US military presence in the country and a continuous “anti-terror” operation against “Al-Qaeda” in Iraq. The administration shift forces to Afghanistan, and continue to ramping up its long-promised goal of escalating  the “war on terrorism” throughout Afghanistan, Pakistan, etc., With this in the works, along with congressional mid-term elections looming in the fall, all of Washington, from the White House and the FBI to the congressional nominees are refreshing the “terrorism” pretext.

It should be noted that no analysis was done by the various media organs to corroborate the details of LeBlanc’s story before it was repeated verbatim across the media. LeBlanc has also not been vetted as a credible, unbiased source.

Whether Shukrijumah is a intelligence “legend”, a low-level intelligence asset, or the “mastermind” that FBI agent LeBlanc claims, the discussion still collapses when viewed against the backdrop of known historical and post-9/11 fact. “Terrorism” is still a red herring.  

As amply documented over the years by Michel Chossudovsky and others, “Islamic terrorism”, including “Al-Qaeda”, the Taliban, etc. are assets of the CIA a myth designed to obscure a vast covert operation and war plan. The “Militant Islamic Network” was created by the CIA, and has continued to operate on behalf of Anglo-American military-intelligence interests. “Terrorists” were key Washington CIA assets during the wars in Kosovo, Chechnya, etc.. Shukrijumah’s boss, Osama bin Laden is a product of the CIA, is a military-intelligence asset who may be dead, or a myth.

Covert Action Quarterly featured the following summation box in many of its post-9/11 issues:

“9/11 cover-up continues:

*Carter administration=CIA-Islamists of Afghanistan

*Carter administration=CIA=Islamists of Iran

*al-Qaeda=Saudi=CIA-=Reagan administration collaborations in Afghanistan and Sudan

*al-Qaeda=CIA=Clinton administration collaborations in Albania, Algeria, Bosnia, Chechnya, Iraq, Libya, Sudan”

We can now add to this:

*Bush/Cheney and Obama administrations=CIA=Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan

Put succinctly by Mike Ruppert in Crossing the Rubicon:

    “Given the degree of documented intelligence penetration of  al Qaeda; the fact that Osama bin Laden had been a CIA asset during the first Afghan conflict against the Soviets; the fact that a number of the so-called hijackers and/or al Qaeda members had been trained in CIA training camps in Chechnya; had fought in CIA/US-sponsored guerrilla conflicts (e.g. in Kosovo with the KLA in 2000), or had received military training at US installations; given all that, it is reasonable to assume that one or more top al Qaeda officials were in fact double or triple agents. They worked to further an agenda originating out of Washington, strongly influenced by Tel Aviv, rather than out of some ill-defined Muslim hatred of the US. In this class I would include people like Khalid Sheikh Muhammad (KSM), Ramzi bin al-Shibh, and Mohammad Atta.”

    “...In covert operations, the best kind of an asset is one that has no idea who is really “running” him. That is not to say that I don’t believe there are terrorists out there who would do any kind of damage they possibly could to the United States. Even if there weren’t any before 9/11 (and there were), the US has gone out of its way to create animosity against this country that is in full flower all over the globe. What is clear is that the government’s assertions that 19 hijackers, funded from caves in Afghanistan, were able to excecute what happened on September 11th is beyond ludicrous. It is also that case that the government has never proven to anybody by any standard other than that used by Randolph Hearst.”

What about Shukrijumah’s link to the  New York subway bomb plot? That incident has been linked to Jaish-e-Muhammad, a CIA front. Therefore, any Shukrijumah connection to this event also points to way to the CIA.

It is amusing that a USA Today article about Shukrijumah notes how the hunt for “Al-Qaeda” always comes back to Florida. If the writer of this piece had truly dug into Florida’s long history of covert operations, dirty politics (the Bushes), narcotrafficking, etc. the writer would not have to ask why.

Investigative journalist Dan Hopsicker exposed the Florida links to the so-called 9/11 hijackers, including their military training, and connections to Floridians with military-intelligence and the Bush family, in a series of articles, and in the video Mohammad Atta and the Venice Flying Circus. From a propaganda perspective, placing Shukrijumah into this same framework simply makes sense, as Kupferberg notes.

According to Shukrijumah's mother, her son is “not a mastermind, but a nice boy” who last contacted her right after 9/11, allegedly from Afghanistan. If Shukrijumah’s radicalization was triggered by 9/11 itself, one could argue that (assuming that he is a real terrorist) he is yet another by-product of Bush/Cheney’s violence.

The Big Lie redux

Both the “Ground Zero mosque” and Shukrijumah stories have gone “viral”. The noise surrounding both is certain to be even more deafening, even more outrageous, as election season intensifies, and Obama ramps up its war. Another anniversary of 9/11 approaches, complete with tear-soaked howling over the official lies.

The “terror” threat---perpetual fear of a fabricated outside enemy--- is central to Anglo-American geostrategy. It is being strenuously nurtured. Insanity continues to prevail.

Shaykh Dr. Abdalqadir as-Sufi


The first Empire with world hegemony was the British Empire. The British Empire began when Disraeli persuaded Queen Victoria to claim India as Imperatrix. She was declared Empress in 1877. The Empire lasted precisely 70 years.

It came to an ignominious end under Viceroy Lord Mountbatten, whose wife, daughter of the notorious banker Sir Ernest Cassel, during the partition settlement carried on an adulterous affair with the Hindu leader Nehru. The disastrous and illegal partition cost the lives of millions of Muslims. The populace was never consulted by ballot or referendum. It was 1947.

The second Empire with world hegemony was the American Empire. The American Empire began following the nuclear devastation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki - which ended World War Two. The assumption of power was founded on three events.

One: the settlement of the U.N.O. in New York.

Two: The establishment of Israel through the instrument of the U.N.O.

Three: The Bretton Woods Agreement which defined the dollar-based capitalism which collapsed in 2007 when the Bear Sterns Hedge Fund declared a bankruptcy which heralded the 2008 absolute failure of the B.W. dual power-system of banking and democracy.

The Empire lasted only 50 years. It began when the war-time leader General Eisenhower was elected President and took office in 1952. It came to an end when, ignoring Eisenhower’s famous warning of the military-industrial complex, Congress gave authority to the invasion of Iraq. The ‘free-world’ project was over. It was 2002.


The political construct that posits a secret-cell system of a militant Islam that is in Schmidt-ian terms, ‘The Enemy’ suits lots of people from President to Pope. Of course, with the help of TV media, and the new academic breed of ‘Experts’ – it is convincing to the IPod masses. Intellectually, it does not play.

Firstly – its leadership. Bin Laden is scarcely convincing. As a son of a Saudi billionaire family, as a former C.I.A. operative, as someone who bought his way into Afghan society – he fails to take on the mantle of Islamic leadership.

As head of a secret society which drives adolescent youths to suicide and stays hidden out of danger in the mountains he can be at least recognised as a perfect copy of the Shi’a Ismaili leader who fought Salahud-din, the Old Man of the Mountain with his gang of corrupted youths, the assassins (or Hashishiyin).

As dead, which every tea-house in Peshawar knows, he is very interesting politically. It is the US leadership which ‘needs him’ alive. His second-in-command only talks Marxist anti-US polemics. Never an ayat of Qur’an. Never a Salat-an-Nabei. Never a judgement of Fiqh. In short ignorant of Islam.

Secondly – Its bizarre targets. If the World Trade Centre is a target because it represents world-market capitalism – as such it can be defined as an enemy stronghold, but, but, but! If you destroy it – you strengthen world capitalism, plus the insurance system of capitalism will more than double its value. Strengthen, because, as Ernst Jünger has demonstrated, destruction of capitalist entities by ‘The Enemy’ is necessary for its own survival. Why the Marriot Hotel in Islamabad? Why the Taj Hotel in Bombay? Why trains in London and Madrid? No strategy, if such a militant approach could offer success, could bring Islamic success any closer, no strategy such as the terrorists have elected to perpetrate.

Thirdly - who are they? There is a world-wide elite in the Muslim-world of Ulama’, scholars and social activists. We know each other across schools and movements, rejoicing in the variety and energy of our local approaches. Nobody, neither modernist nor traditionalist, had ever heard of those secretly appointed assassins drawn from the under-class of Arabs and Asians, ending with semi-idiots like the infamous and absurd shoe-bomber!

The realities of terror and their exponents do however point to zones of extreme injustice, oppression and poverty. There is a point when the sons of Adam turn against their degradation. When they strike it is, unsurprisingly, violent.

The four zones of inhuman and unaccounted for savagery and oppression are:

The Uighur nation and the evil Chinese occupation.

Afghanistan and its wars of occupation.

The Indian sub-continent and its endemic persecution of Muslims.

Palestine and its persecution by Israel.

Now the root of disorder in 1 and 4 goes back to the political reality from which they came. The Uighur was a linked province to the Osmanli Dawlet. Palestine was a linked and protected province of that same Osmanli Dawlet. 2 and 3 are the unified provinces of the Mughal Dawlet. The last legal frame of India was dominated by the Mughal centres of a mighty civilisation based in Delhi, Lahore, Srinigar, Agra and Lucknow.

Since the exploitation of discontent – not to remove the cause but to keep it down- is the known policy of capitalism, deeper questions must be asked. To banish the conspiracy- theory of Al- Qaeda and its assassins we must ask the questions of real-politique.


The Uighur. A ‘colonial’ conflict in East Turkestan and Tibet is an inexpensive but brilliant diversion of foreign attention from the full - scale commercial and cultural invasion by China (the top three hotels of Cape Town no longer sell Indian tea at teatime, but china tea, timers, cups and pots!)   

Darfur and Congo are now part of a military take-over with paid surrogate armies.

Palestine. Terrorism assures that the massive subsidy of the U.S. without which the Israeli State cannot survive, continues, a one-party (coalition) state since its inception!

Afghanistan. The last bastion of bankrupt U.S. global policy, it is needed as the southern base on Russian Asia’s network of oil and gas. It is under NATO command to avoid any accusation of torture and killing pointing to the U.S. NATO forces are above all state laws.

India/Pak/Bangla. The potential awakening of sub-continental wealth, firstly in its brilliant people, secondly in its communities, thirdly in its industries. Bollywood menaces Hollywood! If the U.S. is bankrupt, India is massively rich – when it breaks free of the dying dollar hegemony.

The Bombay incident is a last futile attempt to halt Indian domination of the U.S. and its markets. It also assures that an Indo - Pak conflict - along with a continued matriarchy in Bangladesh - will allow a few years more before the completion of the Mexican take-over of a failed U.S.A.

The constructive Islamic response to the horror of the Bombay siege should be the foundation of a pan-Indian Muslim union- uniting all Muslims of the sub - continent to take an oath of loyalty to fellow Muslims and a vow to refuse to fight fellow Muslims across the three countries.


(1) Blackwater's Secret War in Pakistan

Inside sources of American journalist Jeremy Scahill reveal that the

Xe Services (Blackwater USA) mercenary firm illegally works with the

U.S. military and the U.S. CIA in Pakistan to plan targeted

assassinations, drone bombings and terrorism operations against

innocent Pakistanis, Afghans and Muslims.




(2) Blackwater's Secret War in Pakistan - America's Investigative

Journalist Jeremy Scahill Reveals U.S. Private Military Firm

Unlawfully Operating in Pakistan Under U.S. Covert Assassination and

Kidnapping Program.


(3) Why Justice Sharif Failed to Issue Contempt of Court Notices to

Rehman Malik and Kaleem Imam?


(4) Read the Blackwater Book






(6) PPP Corrupt Traitors Asif Ali Zardari, Yousaf Raza Gilani, Qamar

Zaman Kaira, Sumsam Ali Shah Bukhari, Zaheeruddin Babar Awan, Shah

Mahmood Qureshi, Fauzia Wahab and Farhatullah Babar illegally Shut

Down Dr. Shahid Masood's Geo New TV Program in Pakistan






(7) The Nation Exposes 35.5 Million Corruption Bribe Scandal of PPP

Corrupt Traitor Zaheeruddin Babar Awan

(8) The USA is Colonizing the Pakistani Nation Through Corrupt Puppet

Traitors of Pakistan

(9) War Between Pakistani Citizens and the Ruling PPP-ANP-MQM-JUIF-

PMLF Corrupt Tyranny Spreads Across Pakistan



(10) U.S. Congressman Sold his Soul to the Israel Lobby and Became a

Zionist Slave of the Terrorist Mafia Tyranny of Israel


Shaykh Dr. Abdalqadir as-Sufi

Allah the Exalted declares in Ash-Shura (42:11-12):

What you call the mushrikun to follow is very hard for them.
Allah chooses for Himself anyone He wills and guides to Himself those who turn to Him.
They only split up after knowledge came to them, tyrannising one another.

The present world situation is marked by the pessimistic unity of all its commentators who confirm that a whole system once seriously flawed has now collapsed utterly. The dual pillars that upheld world trade and political order have fallen in on each other. With the disintegration of the financial system, its instruments and institutions, has come the disgrace of the despised political class.

Hidden behind the false complexities of macro-economic models and modalities the political class, obedient to their remit, tried to conceal the reality that the system had collapsed. Their task was to assure the masses that it could be put together again. It took one simple financial event and person to expose to the public what had been so brilliantly veiled from them. One little criminal revealed the true nature of the global crime. When, overnight, the investment banker Bernie Madoff confessed that his 50 billion dollar investment company had collapsed, it suddenly became clear. Mr Madoff had not stolen the money. It was not hidden away. It had not been expropriated by other financial entities. It had disappeared. No, not even that, unless it is seen as a Houdini trick. It first is made to seem to be there. Then it is made to seem to disappear. It began to dawn on people. The ‘money’ had never been there in the first place.

It was the historical, demonstrated, end of a deception.

Money ex nihilo, the product of the usury principle. Capitalism.

It had now become necessary to take urgent and powerful actions to hold down the masses, lest post-Madoff, they finally become enraged at the democracy-system of finance and call for an end to it.

The system had only one set of cards left to play – to distract the awakening billions of the world’s poor. Terror. The terror-event as instrument of removing civic freedoms (which can lead to protest and change of regime) and of enslaving the masses in obedience to the State, not seen as tyranny, which it is, but as the necessary protection of the endangered civic arena.

Long after the one and only, properly speaking, terrorist act, the destruction of two New York skyscrapers, it had been necessary to posit the political theory that it was an on-going process requiring protective, socially inhibiting regulations.

First came the shoe-bomber. An idiot with explosives hidden in his shoes, utterly incapable of exploding it, the apparent world-terror-organisation had trained the youth to board the plane and immolate himself and a planeload of innocents.

No one pointed out that the so-called world-terror-organisation must in fact be inept, comic, and utterly, as was proved, ineffective.

Second, came the next competitor in keeping the whole world trembling in terror. This time it was the Nigerian lad with the exploding Y-fronts. He, like his shoe exploder before him, simply could not ignite his own underpants.

Now, body scanners at every airport.

Third, the code red alert technique. Britain was put on a ‘terrorist attack imminent’ warning. Nothing happened, of course. We have entered the age of State tyranny by cyclical false alarms.

Ron Paul, the politically sophisticated republican presidential candidate, openly declared that the U.S. stood in no danger from terrorist attack and the function of body-scans and name vetting is in order to create an utterly subservient populace too afraid to challenge the State.

In the same time-frame as the exploding underpant terror attack another incident took place in Pakistan. A young Jordanian had been recruited as an agent to be planted among radicals as an agent provocateur. The young man then declared himself a double-agent and ended his life killing several American operatives. Since this recruitment is a modus operandi of U.S. security personnel, may we not deduce that the two young men, shoes and underwear, were also planted, given enough explosive material for flash and bang without endangering the plane? Are we not now in the final classical terrorist stage as recorded by Dostoevsky in Czarist Russia in which the terrorist is now the police-programmed innocent or idiot?

The State’s intended result, intimidation of the masses to prevent civil unrest, is then assured by another raft of legislated social inhibitions.

In Ancient Rome Tacitus warned:

“Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges.”

When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous.In the 1945 post-War election, Churchill warned the electorate of the danger inherent in socialism. His criticism raised a cry of outrage from the exhausted nation. No one listened. The socialists swept to power. Half a century later Churchill’s warning proves to have been as prescient as his warning against fascism. He had said:

“No socialist government conducting the entire life and industry of the country could afford to allow free, sharp, or violently worded expressions of public discontent. They would have to fall back on some form of Gestapo, no doubt very humanely directed in the first instance. And this would nip opinion in the bud; it would stop criticism as it reared its head, and it would gather all the power to the supreme party and the party leaders, rising like stately pinnacles above their vast bureaucracies of civil servants, no longer servants and no longer civil.”

In 2010, after the evidence of Minister Claire Short to the Iraq Enquiry, who could argue with his words?

John Buchan wrote: “The Roman Empire fell in the end because of the pressure of the barbarians on its frontiers, and because of the ruin of the middle classes within by insensate burdens, and the degradation of the proletariat into a frivolous impoverished rabble.”

Let us apply this to today: pressure of the barbarians – the Chinese.

Ruin of the middle classes – the burdens of tax and anti-terrorist laws.

Degradation of the proletariat – vampire movies, football and de-valued currency.

It is time for the enslaved billions of our world today to fear no more the exploding shoes and underpants of the idiot agents of capitalism and to learn what Islam really is. It has two parts encapsulated in our declaration of faith.

“I declare that there is no god but Allah (that is, the Creator of the Universe) and, I declare that our Master Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.”

Thus, the first half of the religion is all the science of worshipping the Divine, by prostrations, an annual fast and payment out of one’s wealth, and Pilgrimage. The second half of the religion is following the Messenger in all trade and contracts with honour and without usury or increase inside the exchange, along with real-value instruments of exchange like gold and silver.


Shaykh Dr. Abdalqadir As-Sufi

Because of the terrible suffering and grief that the practitioners of suicide have brought on their families and loved ones, in the first instance, and because of the damage this has done to the honour of the Muslims in the second instance, and because of its being a cause of rendering some kuffar deaf to the call of Islam in the third instance, many brothers and sisters have come to us asking for clear guidance in this matter.

In the tradition of the Fuqaha of the Mother of the Madhahibs, the School of the People of Madinah, when judgments are required concerning a matter the first question to be asked is, "What is this matter, and what is its origin?" On examining this we find that the term suicide has acquired two connotations. Firstly, what it is in itself, and secondly, a conjoining of what it is with its effects. It is the transference from the legal and actual reality of what it is to this second state, which is in fact an evaluation, that has proved part of the confusion for our Muslim nation.

The act itself has no ambiguity in meaning or evaluation. Suicide is the act of taking one's own life, that is to say it is the act of killing oneself. It is an act of murder perpetrated on oneself. Since this in itself is in the words of the great German writer Ernst Jr, "Part of the patrimony of mankind," it follows that it is something any one of the human race can perform. Of course, in the eyes of the humanists, and therefore atheists, the body is the person's property and thus the act of suicide is the highest spiritual confirmation of the practice of human rights. Since this is an awesome human prerogative, it therefore requires that we first look at it in the widest terms.

Firstly we note that among the people of Fitra, and by that we mean those who live in a primal, pre-industrial and non-money economy, the practice is, according to those who study such societies, basically unheard of. Thus, in the Fitra the act of suicide is virtually unthinkable to such a degree that the exception would prove the rule. In the advanced societies which have evolved a social system, and which are referred to in the Qur'an as 'the People of the Cities', suicide does become manifest. In so-called civilised society, as we have just defined it, the record of suicide begins to emerge. The main general group of suicides in every society is put down among the community of the insane. It follows from this that one of the categories of the suicide enactor is madness. There seem to be two types of madness which end in the act of the sick person taking their life, and they could be seen as representing two extremes. One form of suicide is the result of a state of frenzy, that is hyper-activity. The other form of suicide is its opposite, and is a result of the depressive and catatonic state of the ill person, that state representing an opposite condition of non-action. As a further category of mental disturbance one would also subsume those who commit suicide while in the throes of sexual passion, itself often categorised as, or perpetrated in the name of, love. This pathetic and tragic condition was described in detail by the great writer William Shakespeare in his famous 'Romeo and Juliet'.

A further category of suiciders which is yet a further result of the state system, can be found in the prison suicide. While this particular syndrome goes back in time over hundreds of years, as the epochs have darkened, so the prison suicide syndrome has increased. For this reason it can be found in detail in the writing of Dostoevsky and later in the evidence of Solzhenitsyn, this latter writer discoursing on the subject at length in his study of the communist prison system, 'The Gulag Archipelago'. It would appear that the greater number of these particular suicides stemmed from a despair arising from the nihilistic conviction that there was no escape.

Nevertheless it is important to put on record that having examined the issue in great detail we find that in the late stages of advanced capitalism, which is the dominant culture in which we now all live, there has been an increasing attraction for an indulgence in the act of suicide, to such an extent that it could be characterised as an important and significant political act of nihilism performed among the intellectual elite who have embraced the nihilist and thus atheist philosophy, politique and economique. Significantly, this act of suicide in the modern age has taken on a increasingly jewish identity. Jewish communities have experienced collective suicide, either through despair or refusal to surrender, in their history. The suicides of the jews of Masada, when surrounded by the Roman army, is famous. So too are recorded events of suicide under christian persecution in the cathedral towns of York and Norwich, and in many places in France and Germany. In the modern age a positive rash of suicides seem to have beset the jewish intellectual elite. To name but a few, the poet Mayakovski, and the novelists Italo Calvino and Stefan Zweig, in varying circumstances killed themselves. The child psychologist Bruno Bettelheim, having survived the concentration camps, committed suicide by tying a plastic bag over his head. Both the philosopher, Wittgenstein, and the Marxist theorist, Althusser, killed themselves, and the philosopher Otto Weininger killed himself in Beethoven's house. The phenomenon, however, is far from being reserved for the judentum, and many of the christian elite followed the fashion-among writers, from Virginia Woolf to Ernest Hemingway and Montherlant.

A final category would be added to the varied groupings defined by motive, and that would be those who fall into a very modern category and one which has been on a continual curve of increase since the first collapse of capitalism in 1930, and that is suicide by debt anxiety. From the spectacular leaping out of skyscrapers during the crash in the 1930s, to the unnumbered dead who have evaded the unpayable debt by having it written off on the deposit of a handful of sleeping pills, thus and thus the usury system has claimed a community of the self-destroyed.

From all of this it follows that the act of suicide, the philosophy of suicide and the clinical character of the suicider are inseparable parts of a dominant culture whose character is nihilist in every aspect-the destruction of the biosphere precedes the self-destruction of the biological entity-and who grants no value or importance to the act of suicide or the one performing it, and by that extension grants no possible significance to the rest of its surviving society. The planet is valueless, the society is valueless, the person is valueless, and human actions are valueless. The suicider makes no protest against the valueless society, but offers a confirming equation of nihilism. The distinguished psychiatrist R. D. Laing defined it as an act of defiance and insult against the loved ones in order to punish them, as if to demonstrate, "There you are! You did not love me!" Francoise Sagan, in a famous text attacking suicide, accused the suicider of throwing his corpse in one's face, saying, "You see? Nothing you could do could stop me!"

It is inescapable from all of this that suicide represents an experience of the absence of love, and by self-definition an ultimate act of hatred of oneself as the unloved object, whether the context be political, or personal, or madness.

Our next responsibility is to examine suicide within the ethos of the Muslim Ummah. There is simply no reference to suicide for whatever motive in the social life of the Muslims, apart from those aberrational phenomena as defined above. However, suicide does emerge as a social phenomenon among one sect of Muslims whose deviation in fact does not allow us to categorise them as Muslims, but only as emerging out of Islam in a desperate attempt to reach over to the powerful community of the kuffar, and in the process subvert the Muslims into defecting from their Deen. These are the Isma'ili. It is important to recognise the position of the Isma'ili in a political sense, for their dialectic is a movement, or rather a moving, from the confines of the Fara'id of Islam into a wild and abandoned release from the moral and civilising strictures of Divine Revelation. Not insignificantly, the Isma'ili geographically were situated in that zone that is now Lebanon, Israel and Palestine. It will be seen that we can derive a direct line from historical Isma'ilism to the contemporary practice of a political Isma'ilism. The ruined castles of the Isma'ili sect can still be seen on the skyline of the now doomed Middle-East. They are the result of the deviation of a deviation. The first deviation from our point of view is Shi'ism, which in its central form still locates itself within adherence to the Five Pillars. However, what in the viewpoint of the great body of Muslims represents a vital omission, the denial of Khilafa until the end of time, opened the door for one sect of their people to extend the deviation as follows.

Having denied Sultaniyya, which by its power constricts the Muminun to obey the known Shari'at, it then activates that denial of Amr not by a refusal of Amr but by the substitute of an unappointed Amir, a kind of surrealist Amir as opposed to a real one, an Amir that nobody knows. An Amir that nobody chose. A wild man who offers a wild release from how things are. Isma'ilism begins by simply ignoring Islamic rule, governance and Amr. In its place it offers a wild resistance both to Muslim authority and kafir authority. Answerable to no Muslim leader, it pulls the ground from under the known Muslim structures while claiming its glory for apparently attacking the enemies of Islam. The christians and the Muslim leader Salahuddin were both targets of Isma'ili fury. The first significant aspect of Isma'ilism, and this has to be recognised in the modern context, is a mocking rejection of Islamic fiqh and Fuqaha, and the replacing as we have said of real Amr with a quite unreal or surreal leadership. The Old Man of the Mountains was self-appointed, and so an opposite to the way that Khilafa based itself on an appointment confirmed by a known Jama'at. Just as he hid in the Lebanese mountains, with a cohort unknown to the Muslim community, so Bin Laden hides in his mountains with his unknown cohort, a secret society without acclamation of its leader or public bayat to him. Similarly, a secret junta manages the affair in Palestine, its only public acclamation the funeral takbirs of its victims.

The leader of the Muslims can only be a leader of their community. In that sense, the Isma'ili leader is not a leader of anything or anyone. He does not rule in any sense, but he does activate the irrational dynamics of destruction and self-destruction. In that sense he is a macabre activator of the Mahdi image. He is an anti-Mahdi. This is why it can be understood that the Shi'a cast them out as kuffar. The secret doctrine of Isma'ilism was the abolition of the Shari'at and its replacement with a magical haqiqat and angelology. Thus everything is permitted-which is the nihilism of the kuffar. The assassins who were sent to murder were given drugs to prepare them for the violent acts. The perpetrators of the hijacking and destruction of the Twin Towers, on the night before their crime, were witnessed drinking vodka sours and going off with prostitutes. Drugs and permitted sex were the rewards of the suicide-assassins of the Isma'ili. Among the Isma'ili special gardens of remembrance were prepared for the corpses of the so-called martyrs. Their graves were marked with portraits and garlands of flowers. Young men were sent into these gardens to meditate on the glory that had been won by their martyrs as part of their preparation to follow in their footsteps. Identical graveyards can be seen in Palestine today.

It follows from this that a closer look must be taken at the ethos from which the modern suicide bombers have emerged. First of all the Palestinian state, or pseudo-state as presently constituted, does not have an Islamic leader. From an Islamic point of view President Arafat would be legally dead if an Islamic trial were held, since this person, at Oxford and on television, openly insulted Sayedeta 'Aisha, a crime which the Fuqaha of the School of Madinah consider to merit capital punishment because of its affront to the blessed exonerating Ayats in the Qur'an. This is clearly stated in the Shifa of Qadi 'Iyad.

The so-called governing councils of Palestine have over the years had less and less possibility of being identified with the Deen of Islam, either by their character or social practice. The purpose of their battle, the creation of a national state, is itself abhorrent. While fighting to restore land taken from its people has Qur'anic sanction, Jihad fisabillillah is an entirely different matter. In order that Jihad takes place the Banner of Islam has to be raised high, and that implies in turn that it is under an open and declared Amir fulfilling the significantly restrictive rules of Jihad itself.

When the Mufti of Jerusalem set out to attend an Islamic Conference in Johannesburg two years ago, three entities tried to prevent his appearance at the Conference: the Israelis, the Saudis and the PLO. This is because his message was that Al-Aqsa is not the property of the Palestinian state, but of all the Muslims. Since there is no Islamic governance in Palestine, the people there find themselves in the same position as that earlier community which soon became the prey of a deviant anti-leadership. With the collapse of the capitalist/communist dialectic it became clear that there was no power support for the kafir-nationalist doctrine of self-determination. At that point they entered into the struggle against the supremely ruthless kafir-nationalism of the jews. There then began the adoption of a political Isma'ilism clearly derived from its historical ancestor and clearly hoping to move to an end result which was one defined by the Israeli Nobel prize-winner as being "Two states but one economy!" From the analysis that we have been pursuing to allow us to reach a clear judgment, a new set of questions emerge.

1. Who orders the suiciders to act?

2. By what macabre and false ijtihad are these acts justified as being part of Islam?

3. Who are these false Fuqaha, and where have they declared themselves to the Muslim Ummah?

Let us therefore examine those men and perhaps now even women who prepare the suicider for his act of violence. Firstly, is it his own son he is sending to his death? Secondly, is he sending another's son to his death in preference to his own? Thirdly, what sort of man, presumably of a certain maturity, would prefer to send a young man to his death rather than perform the act himself? These are questions to which the answers must have bitter and terrible resonance. The final question that must be asked is, what can the possible outcome be to a policy based on the annihilation of your own future? These young men and women are the future-after these grizzly events-that future has been annihilated.

When we look at the Book of Allah we find one reference to suicide. Surat Al Baqara, Ayat 53 in the Riwayat of Warsh:

And when Musa said to his people, 'My people,

You wronged yourselves by adopting the Calf

so turn towards your Maker and kill yourselves.

That is the best thing for you in your Maker's sight.'

And He turned towards you.

He is the Ever-Returning, the Most Merciful.

This is the only sanctioned permission for the human creatures to commit suicide in the Book of Allah, and it is to those jews who have turned from the authority of Allah and embarked on the worship of wealth.

The other Ayat which stands as an unarguable proof against those who destroy themselves and by that token reject the mercy and the love of Allah, glory be to Him, is in Surat Az-Zummar. In the 50th Ayat, Allah says,

Say: 'My slaves, you who have transgressed against yourselves,

do not despair of the mercy of Allah.

Truly Allah forgives all wrong actions.

He is the Ever-Forgiving, the Most Merciful.'

Allah has also stated in His Book that he loves those who fight in lined-up ranks. Allah sanctions battle but Allah does not sanction acts of despair which in themselves indicate an abandoning of that powerful confidence in Allah, that powerful trust in Allah, that powerful love of Allah on which the Deen is based and without which the Muslim nation cannot thrive.

Nafeez Ahmed - Part 1/3

Nafeez Ahmed is the author of The War on Freedom and most recently, The War on Truth

This text was presented in part as a speech on December 15th, 2005 at the Perdana Global Peace Forum and is re-presented here with permission by the author.

International terrorism has routinely been understood as a phenomenon integrally linked to radical Islamism. After 9/11, this trend of thought, already prevalent in official circles, became the defining discourse of Western international relations, now permanently configured within the paradigm of the “War on Terror”.

So widespread is this notion, that it has penetrated even the discourse of mainstream Islam itself. Thus, the respected moderate American Muslim cleric Hamza Yusuf declared after 9/11 that: “Islam has been hijacked by a discourse of anger and a rhetoric of rage1”.

Consequently, much of the debate on the roots of international terrorism both among Western policymakers and among Muslims themselves, concerns the role of Islam as an exploited ideological facilitating factor in the intensification of terrorist attacks around the world. Prominent Muslim commentators such as Ziauddin Sardar lamented after 9/11 that:

“Muslims everywhere are in a deep state of denial. From Egypt to Malaysia, there is an aversion to seeing terrorism as a Muslim problem and a Muslim responsibility. ... Terrorism is a Muslim problem … Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Algeria, Bangladesh, Lebanon, Iran – there is hardly a Muslim country that is not plagued by terrorism.
... Muslims have stubbornly refused to see terrorism as an internal problem. While the Muslim world has suffered, they have blamed everyone but themselves. It is always ‘the West’, or the CIA, or ‘the Indians’, or ‘the Zionists’ hatching yet another conspiracy. This state of denial means Muslims are ill-equipped to deal with problems of endemic terrorism2”.

A number of salient points can be derived here. Sardar, articulating a narrative very much supportive of Western officialdom’s perspective of international terrorism, sees terrorism as ultimately a question of Muslim responsibility. The consequence of this for Muslims is that they should firstly lend their wholehearted support in principle to the West’s fight against international terrorism, and secondly that they should manifest such support by routing out extremism within their own midst. Moreover Sardar, once again echoing officialdom’s perspective, supports President Bush’s resounding a priori condemnation of “outrageous conspiracy theories concerning the attacks of September the 11th; malicious lies that attempt to shift the blame away from the terrorists, themselves, away from the guilty3”. By implication, the guilty, then, are not merely the terrorists themselves, but Muslims as such for whom terrorism is an “internal problem” regarding which they persist in “denial”.

This paradigm, however, is not based in an objective analysis of international terrorism itself. Indeed, it is devoid entirely of meaningful historical and empirical content. As such, it generally tends to generate two conventional forms of rebuttal, both of which are equally devoid of relevant historical and empirical analysis of the very phenomenon under discussion. The first comes from within Islam itself, and attempts to challenge the idea using Islamic scripture—namely the Qur’an (considered to be the Word of God revealed to the Prophet Muhammed) and Ahadith (historical records of the Prophet’s life, sayings and actions)—that terrorism can be justified on its basis. Thus, it is argued that an authentic understanding of Islam delegitimizes terrorism. The second rebuttal comes from what might be amorphously described as the antiwar movement, and attempts to explore the dynamics of precisely why Muslims have developed the “internal problem” of terrorism. Those dynamics are found to be located precisely in a series of devastating historical conjunctures between the West and the Muslim world, proceeding for several centuries, whereby Western imperialism has subjugated predominantly Muslim regions of the Middle East and Central Asia. Events such as the 2003 Iraq War are considered to be merely extensions of this world-historical process.

The content of these rebuttals, on their own terms, is well-documented and highly persuasive. However, in one simple way, they are exactly similar to the very argument which they attempt to refute, by failing to comprehend the reality of the phenomenon of international terrorism itself. As such, by refusing to confront this phenomenon directly, they inadvertently perpetuate the defactualization of analytical discourse which supports Western officialdom’s bold equation of international terrorism with radical Islamism, and henceforth as a distinctly Muslim problem which needs to be dealt with by finding some sort of Muslim solution, even if that be a peaceful one4.

Therefore, my approach here will not be to pursue the arguments of conventional rebuttals to the paradigmatic perspective of the underpinnings of international terrorism, but rather to critique this paradigm on its own terms using a historical and empirical analysis.

My argument is not that there are no violent interpretations of Islam within the Muslim world that might be seen to endorse terrorism. Of course there are. And my argument is not that the West’s imperial role in the Muslim world should be ignored. Certainly, it should not. Rather, my argument is that when international terrorism is scrutinized impartially, scientifically, the conventional understanding of its supposed inextricable origination in the dynamics of radical Islamism is fundamentally weakened in surprising ways.

The evidence that 9/11 was the result of a distinctly radical Islamist plan is highly questionable. The nature of “al-Qaeda” as a distinctly radical Islamist organization is also questionable. Finally, compelling evidence that identifiable groups involved in terrorist activity around the world are, in fact, manipulated on behalf of entirely non-Islamist Western geostrategic interests challenges the entire official narrative of the “War on Terror”.

Deconstructing the al-Qaeda 9/11 Mythology 9/11 and the Myth of Islamic Suicide Bombers

According to the official narrative, 19 Muslim fundamentalists belonging to Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda terrorist network, hijacked four civilian planes on the morning of 9/11 and flew them into the World Trade Center and Pentagon. But this narrative, widely accepted by both proponents and critics of US imperial foreign policy, is problematic at its core: the very identities of the alleged hijackers.

It is now known that at least 10 of the 19 alleged hijackers are alive according to multiple, credible news accounts by the BBC, CNN, the Telegraph, the Independent, and other international media. As Jay Kolar observes, “at least ten of those named on the FBI’s second and final list of 19 have turned up and been verified to be alive, with proof positive that at least one other ‘hijacker’, Ziad Jarrah, had his identity doubled, and therefore fabricated”. Reviewing video evidence furnished by the government to support its narrative—including alleged footage of the hijackers at Dulles Airport and the infamous Osama bin Laden confession tape—Kolar finds them to be riddled with impossibilities and anomalies, and concludes that they are utterly unreliable at best, and downright forgeries at worst5.

The abject failure of the Bush administration and its key allies to substantiate its narrative of what happened on 9/11 with regards to the most basic issue of who perpetrated the terrorists attacks, obviously raises fundamental questions about the official narrative as such. Why has such a failure not been rectified, if the evidence exists? There are a number of possible explanations, the simplest of which is that the alleged hijackers were not, in fact, hijackers at all; or rather, that there were no Arab hijackers on board the planes. Another explanation is that there were hijackers, but that disclosing their real identities and the extent of the evidence of their connection to 9/11 might inevitably disclose a large number of related connections that would be deeply embarrassing, to say the least, for the US government. So we will not attempt to answer this question here. Suffice it to say that with the identities of the alleged hijackers not only in dispute, but essentially unknown, the core underpinning of the official narrative is vacuous; it is merely an unknown, a question.

Such questions extend to the very activities of the alleged hijackers as conventionally identified prior to 9/11. A variety of reports based on journalistic investigations and eye-witness testimonials provide a bizarre picture at odds with the conventional portrayal of the alleged hijackers as Islamic fundamentalists. Two of them, Mohamed Atta and Marwan al-Shehhi, visited the popular Woodland Park Resort Hotel in the Philippines several times between 1998 and 2000 according to numerous local residents and hotel workers who recognized them from news photographs. They reportedly “drank whiskey with Philippine bargirls, dined at a restaurant that specializes in Middle Eastern cuisine and visited at least one of the local flight schools.” Al-Shehhi threw a party with six or seven Arab friends in December 2000 at the Hotel according to former waitress Gina Marcelo. “They rented the open area by the swimming pool for 1,000 pesos,” she recounts. “They drank Johnnie Walker Black Label whiskey and mineral water. They barbecued shrimp and onions. They came in big vehicles, and they had a lot of money. They all had girlfriends.” But one big mistake they made was that unlike most foreign visitors, “[t]hey never tipped. If they did, I would not remember them so well.” Victoria Brocoy, a chambermaid at the Woodland, recalls: “Many times I saw him let a girl go at the gate in the morning. It was always a different girl6.”

According to US investigators, five of the hijackers including Atta, Al-Shehhi, Nawaq Alhamzi, Ziad Jarrah, and Hani Hanjour visited Las Vegas at least six times between May and August 2001. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that here, they “engaged in some decidedly un-Islamic sampling of prohibited pleasures in America’s reputed capital of moral corrosion,” including drinking alcohol, gambling, and visiting strip-clubs7. As the South Florida Sun Sentinel observed, the hijackers’ frequent debauchery was at odds with the most basic tenets of Islam:

“Three guys cavorting with lap dancers at the Pink Pony Nude Theater. Two others knocking back glasses of Stolichnaya and rum and Coke at a fish joint in Hollywood the weekend before committing suicide and mass murder. That might describe the behavior of several men who are suspects in Tuesday’s terrorist attack, but it is not a picture of devout Muslims, experts say. Let alone that of religious zealots in their final days on Earth”.

For instance, specialist in Islamic and Middle East studies Mahmoud Mustafa Ayoub, Professor of Religion at Temple University in Philadelphia, noted that the prohibition of alcohol, gambling, and sex outside marriage are Islam’s most fundamental precepts: “It is incomprehensible that a person could drink and go to a strip bar one night, then kill themselves the next day in the name of Islam. People who would kill themselves for their faith would come from very strict Islamic ideology. Something here does not add up8.”

Similar reports abound regarding other al-Qaeda terrorists connected to 9/11. Even alleged 9/11 mastermind, al-Qaeda icon Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, reportedly “met associates in karaoke bars and giant go-go clubs filled with mirrors, flashing lights and bikini-clad dancers,” according to evidence collected by Philippine investigators:

“He held meetings at four-star hotels. He took scuba-diving lessons
at a coastal resort. When he wasn’t engaged with the go-go dancers, he
courted a Philippine dentist. Once, to impress her, he rented a helicopter
and flew it over her office, then called her on his cell phone and told her
to look up and wave”.

Mohammad’s al-Qaeda associates engaged in much the same behavior. They had local girlfriends and held a drinking party “to celebrate the anniversary of the 1988 Pan Am Flight 103 explosion over Lockerbie, Scotland9.”

Clearly, this pattern of debauchery is not by any standard commensurate with the strict requirements of al-Qaeda’s brand of Islamic fundamentalism. As Professors Quintan Wiktorowicz and John Kaltner point out, al-Qaeda is “a radical tendency within a broader Islamic movement known as the Salafi movement…

“The term Salafi is derived from the Arabic salaf, which means ‘to precede’ and refers to the companions of the Prophet Muhammed. Because the salaf learned about Islam directly from the messenger of God, their example is an important illustration of piety and unadulterated religious practice. Salafis argue that centuries of syncretic cultural and popular religious rituals and interpretations distorted the purity of the message of God and that only by returning to the example of the prophet and his companions can Muslims achieve salvation. The label ‘Salafi’ is thus used to connote ‘proper’ religious adherence and moral legitimacy, implying that alternative understandings are corrupt deviations from the straight path of Islam”.

Thus, although there are various schools of thought within Salafism—including al-Qaeda’s violent jihadist interpretation—they all emphasize and indeed attempt to derive their legitimacy from the Salafist goal of “piety and unadulterated religious practice” based directly on the piety and practice of the Prophet10. In this context, the depraved conduct of the alleged 9/11 hijackers in terms of their routine violation of the most basic Islamic precepts contradicts al-Qaeda’s strictly puritan Salafist philosophy.

The Takfir Paradigm
How to explain this anomaly? Time Magazine reports that intelligence officials claim many al-Qaeda terrorists are “followers of an extremist Islamic ideology called Takfir wal Hijra (Anathema and Exile). That’s bad news: by blending into host communities, Takfiris attempt to avoid suspicion. A French official says they come across as ‘regular, fun-loving guys—but they’d slit your throat or bomb your building in a second.’” Another French official says that the goal of Takfir “is to blend into corrupt societies in order to plot attacks against them better. Members live together, will drink alcohol, eat during Ramadan, become smart dressers and ladies’ men to show just how integrated they are11.”

However, this depiction of al-Qaeda and Takfir wal Hijra is thoroughly inaccurate. Takfir wal Hijra was the title given to a radical Islamic movement known as the Society of Muslims. The latter was founded in Egypt by Muslim Brotherhood member Shukri Mustafa after his release from prison in 1971. The group disintegrated after Mustafa was arrested and executed by the Egyptian government, but some of its followers went on to join other radical groups such as al-Jihad and/or fled to North Africa. Rather than attempting to integrate into modern society to carry out attacks as intelligence officials now claim, Takfiri ideology advocated the very opposite: “As contemporary society was infidel, he argued, Takfir would set up its own alternative community that would work, study and pray together…. Takfir declared that not only the regime but the society itself was infidel and under excommunication. This entailed… a personal withdrawal from society.” Even Takfir’s rival radical Islamic group in Egypt, Jama’at al-Jihad, known as the Society of Struggle, espoused such a harsh perspective of Islamic practice that it advocated as Islam’s top priority “jihad against unbelievers—including ‘Muslims’ who did not observe the religion’s requirements properly”—let alone endorsing in any manner a violation of those requirements12.

So extreme is Takfir’s ideology, that it sees bin Laden as not sufficiently Islamic in his violent approach. The Sunday Times reported a month after 9/11 that Takfir “regards Osama bin Laden as an infidel who has sold out.” The group’s members “have embarked on killing sprees in mosques against fellow Muslims in the belief that a pure Islamic state can be built only if the corrupt elements of the last one are wiped out.” Takfir’s enmity toward al-Qaeda is based on the perception that Osama bin Laden is “excessively liberal.” In 1995, four Takfir members attempted to assassinate bin Laden at his home in Khartoum. Takfiris continue to be “angered” at bin Laden’s leadership of a “compromised jihad.” According to the Times, “Takfir denounces all but those who copy the behaviour of the prophet Muhammad as infidels and promises to kill them.” One senior Sudanese government source confirmed that Takfir “regard [bin Laden] as a sellout… the Takfir think that everything in contemporary Muslim society is corrupt and should be destroyed13.”

Djamel Beghal and Kamel Daoudi—alleged UK-based terrorists arrested in September 2001 for plotting a series of spectacular terrorist assaults on Europe—were both supposed to be members of Takfir wal Hijra. But according to one Algerian in London who knew Beghal, integrating into Western culture by engaging in various acts of debauchery in violation of Islamic tenets was the last thing this alleged Takfiri would ever do: “Believe me, you do not want these people in your country… they will kill anybody, including their own family, if they are caught smoking or drinking14.”

Thus, the new scenario being proposed by Western intelligence officials to explain the patently un-Islamic behavior of the 9/11 hijackers is largely incoherent. Despite claims to the contrary, Takfir wal Hijra is aggressively opposed to al-Qaeda and its strict ideology is fundamentally incommensurate with the prospect of permitting defiance of Islamic rules under any circumstances. Furthermore, al-Qaeda is in turn staunchly opposed to Takfir. Therefore, the anomaly of the 9/11 hijackers persists: They clearly did not possess the conduct of hardened Islamic fundamentalists connected to al-Qaeda. So, who were they?

Agents of the US Military?
According to reports in Newsweek, the Washington Post, and the New York Times, US military officials confirmed to the FBI “that five of the alleged hijackers received training in the 1990s at secure US military installations15.” Knight Ridder news cited defense sources confirming that Mohamed Atta had attended International Officers School at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama; Abdulaziz Alomari had attended Aerospace Medical School at Brooks Air Force base in Texas; and Saeed Alghamdi had been to the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California. ( New York Times, September 16, 2001) The Washington Post revealed that as many as “four of 19 suspected hijackers may have participated during the 1990s” in a “flight training program for foreign military trainees” at Pensacola Naval Air Station. “Two of 19 suspects named by the FBI, Saeed Alghamdi and Ahmed Alghamdi, have the same names as men listed at a housing facility for foreign military trainees at Pensacola. Two others, Hamza Alghamdi and Ahmed Alnami, have names similar to individuals listed in public records as using the same address inside the base16.” Among these, Abdulaziz Alomari, Saeed Alghamdi and Ahmed Alnami are reportedly alive (Kolay), proving that whoever these US military trainees were, they were using fraudulent aliases.

Not long after these embarrassing reports of US military ties to al-Qaeda terrorists, the US Air Force issued an official statement of denial, arguing that “the name matches may not necessarily mean the students were the hijackers because of discrepancies in ages and other personal data.” Although some terrorists “had similar names to foreign alumni of US military courses,” these biographical discrepancies “indicate we are probably not talking about the same people.” But the government has refused to substantiate the denial, by preventing the publication of the relevant biographical data that would actually prove the discrepancies. On September 16, 2001, news reports asserted that: “Officials would not release ages, country of origin or any other specific details of the three individuals”—and have refused to do so to date. ( Washington Post, 22 September 2001)

By October 30, 2001, journalist Daniel Hopsicker—who has been a producer at PBS Wall Street Week, an executive producer of NBC TV’s Global Business, and an investigative reporter for NBC News—queried a major in the US Air Force’s Public Affairs Office who “was familiar with the question.” She explained: “Biographically, they’re not the same people. Some of the ages are 20 years off.” But when questioned to substantiate the specific discrepancy, she was forced to admit that there was no discrepancy. According to Hopsicker: “‘Some’ of the ages? We told her we were only interested in Atta. Was she saying that the age of the Mohamed Atta who attended the Air Force’s International Officer’s School at Maxwell Air Force Base was different from the terrorist Atta’s age as reported? Um, er, no, the major admitted.” Hopsicker asked if he could contact the other alleged “Mohamed Atta” at the International Officer’s School at Maxwell Air Force Base, who was purportedly confused with the chief 9/11 hijacker, so that he could confirm that they were indeed two different individuals. The major declined without explanation, stating that she did not “think you’re going to get that information17.”

In a separate interview, Hopsicker was told by a spokesman for the US Defense Department that some terrorists did attend US military installations, but declined to release any further details:

“Despite earlier denials, terrorists in the Sept. 11 attacks received training at secure US military bases, a Defense Department spokesman admitted.… the Defense Dept spokesman was asked to explain the particulars of fuzzy statements in which officials said … ‘we are probably not talking about the same people.’
“Pressed repeatedly to provide specifics, the spokesperson finally admitted, ‘I do not have the authority to tell you who (which terrorists) attended which schools.’ So it appears certain that at least some of the previous denials have been rendered inoperative, and that a list exists in the Defense Dept which names Sept 11 terrorists who received training at US military facilities, a list the Pentagon is in no hurry to make public18”.
In other words, it can now be confirmed that individuals identified by the FBI as al-Qaeda’s 9-11 terrorists, whether or not those identities were aliases, were connected to US military operations.

Al-Qaeda and the Myth of a Radical Islamist International Terrorist Organization
I will not attempt to answer the preceding question here. It suffices to point out that firstly, the connection of the alleged 9/11 hijackers to the actual events of 9/11 is deeply questionable at best, and secondly, even assuming the validity of such a connection, the notion that the alleged hijackers were Islamist fundamentalists is simply unsustainable.

The problem is not isolated to these individuals believed to be members of bin Laden’s international al-Qaeda terrorist network. The same questions can be addressed to al-Qaeda itself. Given that according to the official narrative, these individuals were members of an elite al-Qaeda cell, what does their un-Islamic conduct reveal about the real character of al-Qaeda? Two alleged hijackers, Mohamed Atta, who was reportedly leader of the cell, and Khalid Almidhar, another elite member, were reportedly members of the Islamic Jihad group led by bin Laden’s deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri19. According to intelligence sources, “Atta and several others in the group” responsible for the attacks, “met with senior Al Qaida leaders, most notably Ayman al-Zawahiri” in Afghanistan shortly before 9-1120. Thus, these distinctly un-Islamic characters had very close relationships to the senior leadership of al-Qaeda.

Other prominent members of al-Qaeda also reportedly behave in distinctly un-Islamic ways. The example of Syrian al-Qaeda leader Laui Sakra provides a case in point. Suspected of involvement in the November 2003 bombings of UK and Jewish targets in Istanbul which killed 63 people, Sakra was arrested in Diyarbakir, southeast Turkey21.

Turkish officials said that Sakra is “one of the 5 most important key figures in Al Qaeda”. By his own off-the-record account to police, “he knew Mohamed Atta” and had aided the 9/11 cell, providing money and passports.” He also claimed involvement in the July 7th 2005 London bombings22, confessed to be in frequent contact with bin Laden, and admitted involvement in terrorist activity in the US, Britain, Egypt, Syria and Algeria23.

Citing further official revelations, the Turkish daily Zaman revealed that Sakra, like many of the alleged 9/11 hijackers, did not act in accordance with basic Islamic edicts. When Turkish Security Directorate officials told him that “he might perform his religious practices to have a better dialogue with him and to gain his confidence”, Sakra responded: “I do not pray. I also drink alcohol.” Curiously, his fellow al-Qaeda detainees and underlings, Adnan Ersoz and Harun Ilhan, did “perform their religious practices.” Police officials admitted that “such an attitude at the top-level of al-Qaeda was confusing24.”

Sakra’s story confirms the bizarre mixture of un-Islamic conduct penetrating the elite membership of al-Qaeda and the radical puritan exterior apparent in the use of Islamist language and symbols by its members. It is impossible to explain this within the parameters of the official narrative, which views al-Qaeda as one of the most militant elements of a radical Islamist tendency. In fact, the evidence perused so far fundamentally challenges the idea that al-Qaeda can be properly categorized as a genuinely Islamist entity. Other statements by Sakra further challenge the very idea of al-Qaeda as constituting an international organization in any meaningful sense, and throw further light on what might explain its duality between apparent fundamentalist Islamist and patently un-Islamic conduct. In his own words:

“Al-Qaeda organizes attacks sometimes without even reporting it to
Bin Laden. For al-Qaeda is not structured like a terrorist organization. The
militants have the operational initiative. There are groups organizing
activities in the name of al-Qaeda. The second attack in London was
organized by a group, which took initiative. Even Laden may not know
about it25”.
Sakra’s description of al-Qaeda contradicts entirely the official narrative. But he went even further than that. Zaman reported incredulously the most surprising elements of Sakra’s candid revelations during his four-day interrogation at Istanbul Anti-Terror Department Headquarters: “Amid the smoke from the fortuitous fire emerged the possibility that al-Qaeda may not be, strictly speaking, an organization but an element of an intelligence agency operation.” As a result of Sakra’s statements:

“Turkish intelligence specialists agree that there is no such organization as al-Qaeda. Rather, Al-Qaeda is the name of a secret service operation. The concept ‘fighting terror’ is the background of the ‘lowintensity- warfare’ conducted in the mono-polar world order. The subject of this strategy of tension is named as ‘al-Qaeda’.
... Sakra, the fifth most senior man in Osama bin Ladin’s al-Qaeda… has been sought by the secret services since 2000. The US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) interrogated him twice before. Following the interrogation CIA offered him employment. He also received a large sum of money by CIA… in 2000 the CIA passed intelligence about Sakra through a classified notice to Turkey, calling for the Turkish National Security Organization (MIT) to capture him. MIT caught Sakra in Turkey and interrogated him…
Sakra was [later] sought and caught by Syrian al-Mukhabarat as well. Syria too offered him employment. Sakra eventually became a triple agent for the secret services… Turkish security officials, interrogating a senior al- Qaeda figure for the first time, were thoroughly confused about what they discovered about al-Qaeda. The prosecutor too was surprised26.”
According to Sakra then, himself a paid CIA recruit, al-Qaeda is less a coherent centralized organization than a loose association of mujahideen often mobilized under the influence of Western secret services. His own lack of traditional Islamic piety at a senior level within al-Qaeda further discredits the widespread perception of al-Qaeda as a truly Islamist Salafist group.

Two key issues arise here – firstly the question of the manner in which al- Qaeda exists; and secondly, the question of Turkish intelligence’s interpretation of al-Qaeda as integral to a “secret service operation” within a wider “strategy of tension”.

As for the first issue, it is indeed difficult to identify any way in which al-Qaeda genuinely exists as a concrete international terrorist organization—or at all—as conventionally promulgated by Western government and security sources.

Award-winning film maker Adam Curtis in his series of BBC documentaries The Power of Nightmares, went so far as to argue that al-Qaeda does not even have members, a leader, “sleeper cells”, or even an overall strategy. As a concrete international organization “it barely exists at all, except as an idea about cleansing a corrupt world through religious violence.”27 Dr Andrew Sike, a criminologist and forensic psychologist at the University of East London serving on the UN Roster of Terrorism Experts, similarly notes that al-Qaeda lacks “a clear hierarchy, military mindset and centralised command”. At best, it constitutes a loose network of “affiliated groups sharing religious and ideological backgrounds, but which often interact sparingly”. Al-Qaeda is less an organization than “a state of mind”, encompassing “a wide range of members and followers who can differ dramatically from each other28.”

Numerous other experts have thus questioned conventional portrayals of al-Qaeda, concluding that there is no solid evidence that it exists, let alone that it might function as an organized network. Conversely, mainstream studies that have endorsed such a perspective in support of the official narrative are profoundly flawed. Rohan Guranatna’s Inside Al-Qaeda, for instance—widely acclaimed as the most comprehensive, authoritative and well-documented analysis of al-Qaeda available—is consistently unreliable and inconsistent, to the point that the book’s British publishers inserted a disclaimer in its edition cautioning readers to avoid interpreting its content as factual, but rather as “nothing other than a suggestion29”.

This, of course, raises yet another question. If al-Qaeda does not exist in the conventional sense, then how does this fit with Sakra’s description of al-Qaeda as a “secret service operation” operating within the parameters of a “strategy of tension”? The answer to this can be best sought in an examination of precisely what is denoted by what Turkish officials describe as “a strategy of tension”. And to answer this, we must delve deeper into history to discover the roots of international terrorism in the Cold War.

International Terrorism: Ideological Framework, Covert Reality
International Terrorism as Ideological Construct

In the summer of 1979, a group of powerful elites from various countries gathered 
at an international conference in Jerusalem to promote and exploit the idea of “international terrorism.” The forum, officially known as the Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism (JCIT), was organized by Benjamin Netanyahu – now a former Israeli Prime Minister and Minister of Finance – on behalf of the Jonathan Institute. 
The Institute was established in honor of the memory of Netanyahu’s brother, Lt. Col. Jonathan Netanyahu, an Israeli officer killed by a stray bullet during an IDF raid in the Occupied Territories.

Over two decades ago, the JCIT established the ideological foundations for the “War on Terror.” The JCIT’s defining theme was that international terrorism constituted 
an organized political movement whose ultimate origin was in the Soviet Union. All terrorist groups were ultimately products of, and could be traced back to, this single source, which—according to the JCIT—provided financial, military, and logistical assistance to disparate terrorist movements around the globe. The mortal danger to Western security and democracy posed by the worldwide scope of this international terrorist movement required an appropriate worldwide anti-terrorism offensive, consisting of the mutual coordination of Western military intelligence services. The JCIT’s findings served as the basis of the worldwide publication of hundreds of newspaper, think-tank and academic accounts of Soviet involvement in orchestrating an international terrorist network.

But as Philip Paull documents extensively in his Masters thesis at San Francisco State University, the JCIT’s own literature and use of source documentation was profoundly flawed. It heavily cited, for instance, statistics purporting to demonstrate a drastic ten-fold increase in incidents of international terrorism between 1968-78—but as Paul shows, these figures were deliberately concocted and inflated, contradicting original CIA data illustrating a decline in terrorist incidents for the same period. It also routinely relied on techniques of blatant disinformation, misquoting and misrepresenting Western intelligence reports, as well as recycling government
sponsored disinformation published in the mainstream media. Paull thus concludes that the 1979 JCIT was:

“… a successful propaganda operation… the entire notion of ‘international terrorism’ as promoted by the Jerusalem Conference rests on a faulty, dishonest, and ultimately corrupt information base…. The issue of international terrorism has little to do with fact, or with any objective legal definition of international terrorism. The issue, as promoted by the Jerusalem Conference and used by the Reagan administration, is an ideological and instrumental issue. It is the ideology, rather than the reality that dominates US foreign policy today.”

The new ideology of “international terrorism” justified the Reagan administration’s shift to “a renewed interventionist foreign policy,” and legitimized a “new alliance between right-wing dictatorships everywhere” and the government. “These military dictatorships and repressive governments have long used the word ‘terrorist’ to characterize the opposition to their rule.” Thus, the administration had moved to “legitimate their politics of state terrorism and repression,” while also alleviating pressure for the reform of the intelligence community and opening the door for “aggressive and sometimes illegal intelligence action,” in the course of fighting the international terrorist threat.

The primary architects of the JCIT’s “international terrorism” project were, reports Paull, “present and former members of the Israeli and United States governments, new right politicians, high-ranking former United States and Israeli intelligence officers, the anti-détente, pro-cold war group associated with the policies of Senator Henry M. Jackson, a group of neoconservative journalists and intellectuals…, and reactionary British and French politicians and publicists36.” Individuals who participated included:

Menachem Begin, then Prime Minister of Israel and former Irgun “terrorist”
Benjamin Netanyahu, then Cornell University Professor Emeritus
Shimon Peres, then leader of the Israeli Labor Party
Gen. Chaim Herzog, former Israeli military intelligence chief
Maj. Gen. Meir Amit, former Israeli military intelligence chief
Lt. Gen. Aharon Yariv, former Israeli military intelligence chief
Maj. Gen. Schlomo Gazit, former Israeli military intelligence chief
Paul Johnson, former editor of New Statesman
Honourable Sir Hugh Fraser, Conservative MP and former British Undersecretary of State for Colonies
Henry M. Jackson, influential right-wing Senator from the State of Washington
Richard Pipes, a professor and Russian expert in President Reagan’s National Security Council
Ray S. Cline, former Deputy Director for Intelligence at the CIA
Maj. Gen. George J. Keegan, former US Air Force Intelligence chief
George Bush Sr., former CIA Director and then Presidential candidate who later became President.

It is perhaps no coincidence that Bush Sr.’s son, President George W. Bush, has most effectively overseen the enforcement of an entire domestic and international American political program based principally on the ideology of “international terrorism.” Noting the instrumental influence of the JCIT on US policy during the Reagan administration, re-emerging with the Bush Jnr. Administration, Diana Ralph rightly concludes that the new “War on Terror” is “modelled on Islamophobic myths, policies, and political structures developed by the Israeli Likkud in 1979, to inspire popular support for US world conquest initiatives”.

Soviet Threat as Negligible
If the target of the US government’s anti-terrorist program was not real, what was the government targeting? According to the late Richard Barnet, former State Department aide to Assistant Secretary for War John McCloy, the inflation of Sovietsponsored “international terrorism” was useful precisely for demonizing threats to the prevailing US-dominated capitalist economic system:

“Even the word ‘communist’ has been applied so liberally and so
loosely to revolutionary or radical regimes that any government risks being so characterised if it adopts one or more of the following policies which the State Department finds distasteful: nationalisation of private industry, particularly foreign-owned corporations, radical land reform, autarchic trade policies, acceptance of Soviet or Chinese aid, insistence upon following an anti-American or non-aligned foreign policy, among others.”

This view is supported by the fact that there was no tangible, imminent Soviet threat to any of the regions subjected to aggressive US and western military interventionism during the Cold War. Recently declassified top secret British Foreign Office files, among other documents, establish this case decisively. These have been extensively examined by British historian Mark Curtis, former Research Fellow at the Royal Institute of International Affairs. A selection of the documents unearthed by Curtis is reviewed below40.

A December 1950 Foreign Office paper pointed out that “only three Middle Eastern countries… are exposed to direct Soviet attack.” It went on to illustrate that such an attack was inconceivable. “Short of general war… an attack on Turkey is unlikely owing to the Western guarantees which she enjoys.” As for Iran (Persia), “the Soviet government must be aware that any attack on her would carry a grave risk of general war, and it is more likely that Soviet efforts to gain control of Persia will be confined to propaganda, diplomatic and subversive activity.” Regarding Afghanistan, “there is little danger of attack41”.

Another document noted that “the Arab states are all orientated towards the West in varying degrees, opposed to communism and generally successful at present in minimizing or suppressing existing communist activities through restrictive measures.” Rather, “ultra-nationalist elements may exercise greater influence and form a greater threat to maintenance of a pro-Western orientation42.”

Regarding Africa, the State Department observed during 1950 that “‘Black’ Africa is orientated towards the non-Communist world. Communism has made no real progress in the area43.” To the contrary, nationalism “constitutes the real force of the future in this area” according to Assistant Secretary of State McGhee44.

Concerning Asia, Kennan, then head of US Policy Planning Staff, affirmed that “the problem is not one primarily of Russians but of basic relations of Americans with Asiatics45.” The State Department commented in 1950 that “in most of Southeast Asia there is no fear of communism as we understand it46.”

The stark contrast between western national security discourse and reality during the Cold War was also noted by the London Guardian reporting on newly declassified British government documents from 1968, including a pertinent analysis by the Foreign Office Joint Intelligence Committee summarized as follows:

“The Soviet Union had no intention of launching a military attack on the West at the height of the Cold War, British military and intelligence chiefs privately believed, in stark contrast to what Western politicians and military leaders were saying in public about the ‘Soviet threat’. ‘The Soviet Union will not deliberately start general war or even limited war in Europe,’  a briefing for the British chiefs of staff – marked Top Secret, UK Eyes Only, and headed The Threat: Soviet Aims and Intentions – declared in June 1968.”

The primary threat to western interests was described in a 1952 Foreign Office study as “The problem of nationalism”, which consisted of five key components parading themselves as ‘Communism’: “(i) insistence on managing their own affairs without the means or ability to do so, including the dismissal of British advisers; (ii) expropriation of British assets; (iii) unilateral denunciation of treaties with the UK; (v) ganging up against the UK (and the western powers) in the United Nations48.”

All this fundamentally contradicted western national security discourse throughout the Cold War period. Indeed, this data suggests that there was negligible Soviet/Communist threat to the Middle East, ‘Black’ Africa, North Africa, the Far East, South Asia and Southeast Asia. This does not preclude that the Soviet Union posed a potential threat explaining the dynamics of the bipolar system. But countering Soviet expansionism was not the central galvanizing factor in western national security strategy. The bipolar system functioned as a convenient framework for both superpowers to command and mobilize domestic politics and resources in the service of powerful vested interests49.

International Terrorism as Covert Operations Construct
International terrorism was not merely a construct of ideology, framed around the Soviet Union. It swiftly became a very real construct of western covert operations. It is now well-documented and no longer disputable that during the Cold War, highlevel sections of the American, British and western European secret services, participated in a sophisticated NATO-backed operation to engineer domestic terrorist attacks to be blamed on the Soviet Union. The objective was to galvanize public opinion against leftwing policies and parties, and ultimately to mobilize drastic anti- Communist policies at home and abroad, most of which were in fact designed to legitimize interventionism against nationalist independence movements throughout the South. The most authoritative study of this ‘Strategy of Tension’, NATO’s Secret Armies, is authored by Dr. Daniele Ganser, Senior Researcher at the Center for Security Studies in the Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich. Ganser’s sources are unimpeachable: the transcripts of European parliamentary inquiries; the few secret documents that have been declassified; interviews with government, military and intelligence officials, and so on.

The process was begun on the order of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who in July 1940 called for the establishment of a secret army to “set Europe ablaze by assisting resistance movements and carrying out subversive operations in enemy held territory50.” By 4th October 1945, the British Chiefs of Staff and the Special Operations branch of MI6 directed the creation of a “skeleton network” capable of expansion either in war or to service clandestine operations abroad: “Priority was given in carrying out these tasks to countries likely to be overrun in the earliest stages of any conflict with the Soviet Union, but not as yet under Soviet domination51.” In the ensuing years, Col. Gubbins’ Special Operations branch of MI6 cooperated closely with Frank Wisner’s CIA covert action department Office of Policy Coordination (OPC) on White House orders, and in turn coordinated US and UK Special Forces, to establish stay-behind secret armies across western Europe52.

The programme soon developed into a dangerous conglomerate of unaccountable covert operations controlled largely by clandestine structures operating as parallel sub-sections of the main intelligence services. Among the documents Ganser brings to attention is the classified Field Manual 30-31, with appendices FM 30-31A and FM 30-31B, authored by the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) to train thousands of stay-behind officers around the world. As Ganser observes: “FM 30-31 instructs the secret soldiers to carry out acts of violence in times of peace and then blame them on the Communist enemy in order to create a situation of fear and alertness. Alternatively, the secret soldiers are instructed to infiltrate the left-wing movements and then urge them to use violence.” In the manual’s own words:

“There may be times when Host Country Governments show passivity or indecision in the face of Communist subversion and according to the interpretation of the US secret services do not react with sufficient effectiveness… US army intelligence must have the means of launching special operations which will convince Host Country Governments and public opinion of the reality of the insurgent danger. To reach this aim US army intelligence should seek to penetrate the insurgency by means of agents on special assignment, with the task of forming special action groups among the most radical elements of the insurgency… In case it has not been possible to successfully infiltrate such agents into the leadership of the rebels it can be useful to instrumentalise extreme leftist organizations for one’s own ends in order to achieve the above described targets… These special operations must remain strictly secret. Only those persons which are acting against the revolutionary uprising shall know of the involvement of the US Army53…”

The existence of this secret operation exploded into public controversy in August 1990 when Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti admitted the existence of ‘Gladio,’ a secret sub-section of Italian military-intelligence services, responsible for domestic bombings blamed on Italian Communists. Ganser documents in intricate detail how this subversive network created by elements of US and UK intelligence services orchestrated devastating waves of terrorist attacks blamed on the Soviet Union, not only in Italy, but also in Spain, Germany, France, Turkey, Greece, and throughout western Europe. Despite a number of European parliamentary inquiries; an European Union resolution on the Gladio phenomenon; NATO’s close-doors admissions to European ambassadors; confirmations of the international operation from senior CIA officials; and other damning documentary evidence; NATO, the CIA and MI6 have together consistently declined to release their secret files on the matter.

This secret history demonstrates that in the absence of an existing mobilizing factor legitimizing the militarization of Western societies, military intelligence services took it upon themselves to manufacture, ideologically and operationally, a projected external threat of monolithic proportions. This was, then, the elemental ideological and operational structure of the Cold War:

1. predominance of western interests in the expansion and consolidation of a US-dominated capitalist world system

2. lack of a real Soviet threat sufficient to legitimize the militarization necessary to pursue those interests

3. ideological and operational construction by western military intelligence services and policymakers of a projected external threat consisting of Soviet directed “international terrorism”

The collapse of the Soviet Union entailed the collapse of this self-reinforcing structure that was intrinsic to the policing of world order under US hegemony during the Cold War. Yet it for the first time opened the way for the projection of military power in theatres previously prevented by the possibility of Soviet reprisals. But to sustain such force projection required a new sort of threat projection, in which al-Qaeda was to play a crucial strategic role. Sakra’s testimony as a leading al-Qaeda insider to the effect that al-Qaeda is a tool of a post-Cold War strategy of tension points to a startling and radical departure from the official narrative, and suggests that al-Qaeda plays a far more functional role in Western geostrategic imperatives than we are conventionally permitted to believe.

The Post-Cold War Strategy of TensionThe New Destabilization Doctrine
As early as June 1979 – the same year the JCIT had established “international terrorism” as a defining ideological framework legitimizing the militarization of western societies – the United States had already commenced covert operations in Afghanistan to exploit the potential for social conflict. According to Zbigniew Brzezinski, former National Security Adviser under the Carter Administration, US involvement began long before the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan on 27th December 197954. According to Janes Defence Weekly, “al-Qaeda” was created in 1988 “with US knowledge” by Osama bin Laden, a “conglomerate of quasiindependent Islamic terrorist cells” spanning “at least 26 countries55.”

But the conventional wisdom dictates that after the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union beginning in 1989, there was no longer any need for an alliance with the mujahideen. As such, Western military-intelligence services broke away from their former proxies and severed their relationship with Osama bin Laden.

This is simply false. The CIA had never envisaged that the operational scope of bin Laden’s international al-Qaeda network would be restricted to Afghanistan alone. On the contrary, as one CIA analyst told Swiss television journalist Richard Labeviere – chief editor at Radio France International and author of Dollars for Terror:

“The policy of guiding the evolution of Islam and of helping them against our adversaries worked marvellously well in Afghanistan against the Red Army. The same doctrines can still be used to destabilize what remains of Russian power, and especially to counter the Chinese influence in Central Asia56.”
Al-Qaeda operations were seen as integral to a new doctrine of covert destabilization, to be implemented in new theatres of operation strategically close to Russian and Chinese influence, namely, Eastern Europe, the Balkans, the Caucasus and Central Asia.

A number of studies confirm in substantial detail this overarching trajectory of al-Qaeda sponsorship in these regions in the post-Cold War period. Shortly after 9/11 for example, Michel Chossudovsky, professor of economics at the University of Ottawa, published a number of detailed analyses documenting US sponsorship of al-Qaeda in the Balkans and Caucasus, in relation to a number of conflicts, including Bosnia, Kosovo, and Macedonia. “The ‘blowback’ thesis is a fabrication”, he concludes. “The evidence amply confirms that the CIA never severed its ties to the ‘Islamic Militant Network’. Since the end of the Cold War, these covert intelligence links have not only been maintained, they have in fact become increasingly sophisticated”, with new covert operations initiated in “Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Balkans”, financed by “the Golden Crescent drug trade57”.

Focusing on Central Asia, Peter Dale Scott, professor emeritus of English at the University of California, Berkeley, has unearthed considerable evidence of US sponsorship of al-Qaeda to accelerate the fragmentation of the Soviet Union and its successor Republics, particularly in Azerbaijan. In his testimony in US Congress in July 2005, Scott noted that for more than “two decades the United States has engaged in energetic covert programs to secure US control over the Persian Gulf, and also to open up Central Asia for development by US oil companies…

“To this end, time after time, US covert operations in the region have used so-called ‘Arab Afghan’ warriors as assets, the jihadis whom we loosely link with the name and leadership of al Qaeda. In country after
country these ‘Arab Afghans’ have been involved in trafficking Afghan heroin.
In short, the al Qaeda terror network accused of the 9/11 attacks was supported and expanded by U.S. intelligence programs and covert operations, both during and after the Soviet Afghan War58”.
Ahmed Rashid, correspondent for the Far Eastern Economic Review, Daily Telegraph, and Wall Street Journal, documents the consistent US sponsorship of the Taliban—which was essentially equivalent to al-Qaeda’s state-support infrastructure—throughout the late 1990s through allies Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, to make the country safe for a UNOCAL pipeline project59. Rashid quotes a US diplomat commenting in 1997 on the new “free Afghanistan”: “The Taliban will probably develop like the Saudis… There will be Aramco [consortium of oil companies controlling Saudi oil], pipelines, an emir, no parliament and lots of Sharia law. We can live with that60.”

In all such cases, the operational imperative was to secure access routes to lucrative energy resources based largely in Central Asia and the Caspian basin. My own research has attempted to extend these analyses worldwide, focusing on the detailed dynamics of American, British and European connections with al-Qaeda in the Balkans, Central Asia, the Caucasus, the Middle East, North Africa, and the Asia-Pacific.
New Frontiers in Conflict Management:
A “Grand Strategy” to Wage Jihad Against Terrorist Muslims who would Hijack Islam

Dr. Robert Dickson Crane

On September 3rd, 2004, nationalist extremists from the Caucasus region of Russia demonstrated their demonic hatred of everything sacred by taking a thousand teachers, parents, and children hostage in a school and then shot children in the back when they tried to escape. This has been called Russia’s 9/11, but this act of terrorism was perhaps worse than 9/11 in its sheer evilness because the terrorists did not first dehumanize their targets by lumping them all as unknown ciphers in a group condemned by collective guilt. Instead, they knew many of the victims as individual persons. They had taken these innocent people hostage with the precise purpose to kill them as an act of war.

The moral issue here is not merely whether suicide bombing can be justified, because only those who have lost even the rudiments of civilized values can possibly think that it is. A larger issue is whether the terrorists’ actions can be categorized as war. If so, what limits does the “just war doctrine” impose as recognized universally by the classical scholars in all the world’s religious traditions.
The larger challenge to global civilization in the twenty-first century is how does one manage conflict with hate-filled extremists who are immune to all tactics of conflict resolution? Can such extremists be marginalized by marshaling spiritual and intellectual powers against which they have no defenses? If so, is there a “grand strategy” to do so?


II. Arguing Cause and Effect

All terrorists justify their actions based on cause and effect. All terrorists are alienated in one way or another and they pursue a cycle of escalating violence by claiming that the other guy started it all. This begs the question whether their response to their perceived grievance meets the standards of “just war.”

The terrorists who committed the atrocity in Beslan justified their crime as an act of self-defense against the Russian military, who four years earlier at the turn of the century had flattened an entire city of a half a million inhabitants, Grozny, because it was the capital of Chechnya and had become a symbol of resistance throughout the Caucasus at a time when the disintegration of the old Soviet Empire into sixteen independent countries still threatened to spread into Russia proper.

Over the previous five years, since the Russian invasion of 1994, Chechnya was collapsing toward the status of a “failed state.” The last freely elected president of Chechnya, Aslan Maskhadov, was losing control to a radical coalition of foreign Arab fighters, led by the Saudi Emir Ibn al Khattab, an Omar bin Laden protégé, and the followers of the Chechen war hero, Shamil Basayev. When these two radicals invaded neighboring Dagestan on August 7th, 1999, in order to launch a general uprising throughout the entire Caucasus and install a Caliphate “from sea [Black] to sea [Caspian],” the fate of Chechnya was sealed.

Two days later, Vladimir Putin, the head of the Russian secret police, succeeded Boris Yeltsin as Prime Minister and immediately declared that Russia must annihilate the Chechens or the resulting domino effect would cause Russia, as he put it, “to cease to exist as a state.” He summarized his general formula for conflict management as preemptive intervention: “You have to hit first and hit so hard that your opponent will not get to his feet.”

On New Year’s Eve, Year Two Thousand (YK2), Yeltsin appointed Putin acting President pending his election three months later as a war hero. His first act was to launch a preemptive war against Chechnya by effectively wiping out its capital. American officials, who advocated a political solution under the anti-war Chechen president, Aslam Maskhadov, and still do, nevertheless felt bound to give limited support to Putin by lamenting only “the excess use of force.” American officials described Putin as a pragmatic, can-do leader, a “man with whom we can do business.” President Clinton, based on his advisers’ political calculations, characterized the conquest of Grozny as “liberation.” On January 6th, 2000, William Safire declared in the New York Times that Clinton’s characterization was an abomination.

This history, which is well-known throughout both the Caucasus and the entire Muslim world, linked America with almost three centuries of imperialistic repression. Russia first invaded Chechnya in 1722 and by 1864, when the uprising had finally been temporarily surpressed, Russia had killed seventy-five percent of the Chechen population. The last resistance hero, the martyred Imam Shamyl, has been a sacred icon throughout the entire Caucasus ever since and is an inspiration for tens of millions of Muslims everywhere in the world today.

The second liquidation came in February, 1944, when Stalin ordered the deportation of all Chechens to Siberia and in a bloodbath killed the half of the population that resisted. Khrushchev finally permitted what was left to return in 1957.

After the Soviet Union collapsed, and a year and a half before the Russian Federation was established on March 31, 1992, the Chechens exercised their felt right to national independence, along with all the other nations of the Caucasus, the Dagestanis, Ingush, Abkhazians, and Azeris, and led the way in reviving the North Caucasus Federation of May 11, 1918, working toward a larger regional identity. The Chechens held national elections, but the new Russia opposed this as insurrection and initiated the third major liquidation from 1994 to 1996.[3]

The past four years since Putin’s occupation from 2000 to 2004 may be considered a failed effort at a fourth liquidation. The specific Great Russian objective toward the Chechens today is not merely to counter an aggressive offensive by Al Qa’ida professionals, but to Russify the Chechens, whose myths date back 26,000 years, in a counter-offensive in order to destroy them as a nation with a common sense of the past, common values for the present, and common hopes for the future.

The terrorist attack in Beslan a week before the third anniversary of 9/11 is now debated both in Russia and America as a possible lesson on the limits of force in countering terrorism without addressing its causes.


III. When Muslims Are No Longer Islamic

More important even than the causes of terrorism is its legitimacy. Do ends justify means without limits? A sign of civilizational rise is when limits are not only recognized but applied, and the sure sign of civilizational collapse is when they are not. This would apply both to terrorism and to terroristic counter-terrorisn.
It can be a fatal mistake to over-emphasize the causes of terrorism of whatever kind at the expense of appreciating the extent of the evil inherent in the terrorist mentality itself.

There is perhaps merit in the argument that, after Communism imploded, Muslims provided a convenient target for Cold Warriors who needed a new enemy. But, the spread of religious exclusivism and extremism, which had been funded for two decades by the Saudi government for its own political purposes, clearly stoked the terrorist paradigm of thought and the nihilism of suicide bombing. This led inevitably to what amounted to a new Fourth World War against the traditions of all world religions and against the civilizations built upon them.The clash of which Samuel Huntington has spoken has taken place primarily within civilizations rather than between them.

This clash within the Muslim world is clearly shown by President Aslam Makhadov of Chechnya, who stated on September 7th that, “There cannot be any justification for people who raise their hand against what is most sacred to us – the life of defenseless children! And there are no words able to express the full depth of our indignation at what happened.” For a decade he has been a voice of traditionalist Islam in Chechnya, as well as in much of the rest of the Muslim world. I had the honor to introduce him at the Plenary Session of the Second International Unity Conference sponsored on August 8th to 10th, 1998, by the Islamic Supreme Council of America in Washington, D.C., when he was battling to overcome the extremists who were committing crimes against their own religion under the guise of defending i

t.Maskhadov is widely recognized as one of the greatest leaders of the twentieth century for his work in resolving disputes between emerging nations and declining empires. He is a Sufi, like most of the people in the Caucasus, and a follower of Mahatma Gandhi’s doctrine of passive resistance. Although no Muslim is a doctrainaire or absolute pacifist, Maskhadov has led the way in opposing violence as a means to secure human rights.

Maskhadov has been supported by authoritative Muslims throughout the world, who have become increasingly appalled by those who are trying to hijack Islam, as well as every other religion, in a global war of hatred. They were incensed at the vicious sadism of the kidnappers in Beslan who denied the children food and water and forbid them even to go to the bathroom. Egypt’s top cleric, Grand Mufti Mohammed Sayed Tantawi, declared at the Friday Prayer on September 3rd that, “Those who carried out the kidnappings are criminals, not Muslims.”

The General Manager of the popular TV station, Al Arabiya, Abdel Rahman al-Rashed, commented after the Beslan massacre, “It is a certain fact that not all Muslims are terrorists, but it is equally certain, and exceptionally painful, that most terrorists are Muslims.” He called them “Neo-Muslims,” perhaps in reference to the Neo-Conservatives in America. The traditionalist Muslim leaders are asking who these Arabs and Muslims are who pray, fast, grow beards, demand that women wear veils, call for the defense of Islamic causes, and then slash the throats of hostages, behead them, and indiscriminately blow up innocent people.

The committed Muslims have been forced to distinguish sharply between the religion of Islam and those Muslims who violate all its principles and then call their actions Islamic. There is no Islamic world, because no country observes the human responsibilities and human rights laid out over the course of centuries in classical Islamic jurisprudence. But, there is a Muslim world, where individual persons and governments claim to be Muslim, regardless of whether they are Islamic or not. And there are Islamists who have tried to turn the religion of Islam into a political ideology and thereby cut it off from its classical traditions. Like the suicide bombers, these are Muslims but not Islamic.

Clearly there is a “culture war” developing within the Muslim communities around the world in response to the extremists who once were tolerated but after the 9/11 experiences of America and Russia can be tolerated no more. The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), which is the leading Muslim civil liberties group in the United States and an influential part of the global Muslim Brotherhood, is collecting signatures on a petition entitled “Not in the Name of Islam.” This reads: “We, the undersigned Muslims, wish to state clearly that those who commit acts of terror, murder, and cruelty in the name of Islam are not only destroying innocent lives, but are also betraying the values of the faith they claim to represent. No injustice done to Muslims can ever justify the massacre of innocent people, and no act of terror will ever serve the cause of Islam. We repudiate and disassociate ourselves from any Muslim group or individual who commits such brutal and un-Islamic acts. We refuse to allow our faith to be held hostage by the criminal actions of a tiny minority acting outside the teachings of both the Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.”

Easier said than done. The question is, what are the teachings of these two sources of the Islamic faith? This question forms the core of the clash within the Muslim world. The problem is largely one of vincible ignorance. The success of re-education efforts by Islamic scholars in marginalizing the extremists within the Muslim communities during the coming century will determine the future of civilizational clash and perhaps even the continued existence of civilization itself.


IV. Two Paradigms of Thought that Produce Terrorism

The key premise or paradigm of thought that almost inevitably must lead to war and terrorism in the modern world is Syed Qutb’s teaching that, “There is only one place on earth which can be called the House of Islam (Dar al Islam), and it is that place where an Islamic state is established and the Shari’ah is the authority and God’s laws are observed. … The rest of the world is the House of War (Dar al Harb).” Modern extremists may use different words, like Dar al Zulm, the land of evil, or Dar al Kufr, the land of those who are going to hell because they deliberately reject the truth, but the substance of their war to exterminate entire civilizations is the same.

This confrontational view of reality and the destructiveness that derives from it have been around ever since some hadith scholars collected and interpreted the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad to justify war against the Byzantine Empire in the second and third Islamic centuries more than a thousand years ago. The concept of a war of extinction between the East and the Beast as a mirror image of the alleged war between the West and the Rest is older than the Crusades.

All except a few Muslims except in that early period and during the past century, however, have rejected such malignant concepts as grossly un-Islamic. They may use dichotomies, but they are benign, such as dar al taqwa, the land of those who stand in loving awe of God, contrasted with dar al da’wa, the land of those who still need enlightenment, or dar al ijaba, the land of those who have accepted Islam, contrasted with dar al ahd, the land of those with whom one has treaties of friendship and cooperation.

Radical puritanical reformism, whether anti-establishment like the Salafis in Saudi Arabia, or pro-establishment like the fascist Wahhabis, represents a complete break with traditional Islamic teachings. The same is equally true of those Islamists who would reduce Islam de facto to a political movement, modeled perhaps unconsciously after the Bolsheviks of Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin, designed oxymoronically to establish an “Islamic state.”

Traditional Islam has always derived from reliance on a transcendent reality as the source of truth and justice, rather than from reliance on oneself as the ultimate power. Desperate resort to war or terrorism in the pursuit of justice is nothing other than worship of oneself as a false god.Traditional Islam values thought before action, principles more than slogans, and addresses the root of all ignorance, namely, what the Qur’an calls diseases of the heart, which infect Muslims as well as Christians and Jews. Puritanical religious reductionism, as well as the covertly secular movement of ideological Muslims, are caused by pressures on the ignorant to become secularized by denying the spiritual sovereignty of person and community. Once one denies one’s higher identity and purpose and therefore fails to recognize the same identity and purpose in every other person, the entire world is de-humanized. The basis of right versus wrong becomes the relativistic reduction of justice to one’s own narrow self-interest in a clash with everyone else. Aborting fetuses or blowing up Jewish babies can be easily justified.

This is why Joseph E. B. Lumbard, the editor of perhaps the best book ever published on the distinction between Islam and Muslims, entitled Islam, Fundamentalism, and the Betrayal of Tradition: Essays by Western Muslim Scholars, World Wisdom Books, 2004, states that Muslims must set their own house in order, because no-one else can do it. He writes, “Though others may blame Islam for the spread of wanton violence, such violence is a defining, if not the, defining feature of the twentieth century.”

The second paradigm or premise of thought, other than dichotomizing the world, that necessarily leads to war and terrorism is the restriction of the concept of jihad to defeating the enemy. Muslim bashers like to restrict the term jihad to the totally un-Islamic concept of “holy war,” perhaps because there are so many Muslims who stereotypically do the same. No war can be “holy,” but every distortion of terms has its Muslim supporters.

The Arabic term jihad has three classical meanings. The first two are found only in the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad. These are: 1) jihad al akbar or “greatest jihad,” which is the effort or struggle to understand the true word of God and to control one’s human impulses in order to achieve real peace by submitting to the will of God; 2) and jihad al saghrir or the lesser jihad, which is the community approved joint struggle using armed force to defend the seven universal principles of human rights, established over the course of centuries in classical Islamic law, against attack by armed aggressors.

The third form of jihad, which is mentioned by name only in the Qur’an (Surah al Furqan 25:52), is the jihad al kabir or simply the “great jihad.” This is the intellectual jihad, which requires respect for knowledge (haqq al ‘ilm), including freedom of thought, publication, and assembly. It calls for concerned citizens and those in leadership positions to bring the wisdom of divine revelation to bear on all issues of conscience. This third form of jihad recognizes the legitimacy of “just war” doctrines, but calls for “just peace.”


V. The Mother of All Black Sheep

What Bishop Richard John Neuhaus calls Osama bin Laden’s “monistic fanaticism” is mild compared to the messages that were distributed by the Saudi Embassy in the form of a new Qur’an to hundreds of mosques in America immediately before 9/11. This official Saudi version of the Qur’an calls not only for war against the infidel, meaning also Americans, but for their enslavement.
This Qur’an, known as the Hilali/Khan translation or merely as the Khan Qur’an, employs the spurious technique of abrogation to eliminate passages that recognize the legitimacy of diverse religions and that call for interfaith cooperation. The official Wahhabi scholars are troubled by such passages as Surah al Ma’ida 5:69, which reads, “Surely, those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah and His Messenger Muhammad and all that was revealed to him from Allah), and those who are Jews and Christians – whosoever believes in Allah and the Last Day and works righteousness, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.”

The Saudis invoke the doctrine of abrogation, which has been rejected by most Islamic scholars throughout history, by asserting that God changed His mind and overruled this passage by a later one in Imran 3:85, which reads, “Whoever seeks a religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted of him and in the Hereafter he will be among the losers.” The authors of the Khan Qur’an interpret this by asserting that Islam means submission to the official Saudi view rather than submission to God, Who in Surah al Ma’ida 5:69 above explicitly spells out the only three requirements for submission to God, namely, belief in God, belief in divine justice, and the practice of good works. Through resort to the doctrine of abrogation more than two hundred times, which feeds on itself, and by means of such circular reasoning the Saudi clerics have managed to gut the Qur’an and harness what is left of it to their own political agenda.

Once the basic principles of Islam are conveniently eliminated, the Saudi commentators in this Khan Qur’an are free to advocate the enslavement of non-Muslims. They cite Surah Ali Imran 3:110 and translate it as: “You [true believers in Islamic monotheism and the real followers of Prophet Muhammad and the Sunnah] are the best of peoples ever raised up for mankind.” Then comes the official comment, which reads, “This means the best for the people, as you bring them with chains on their necks till they embrace Islam (and thereby save them from the eternal punishment in the Hell-fire and make them enter Paradise in the Hereafter).”

Their scholarly support for this interpretation is a sahih hadith from Abu Huraira. This prolific reporter of hadith was known as a misogynist who put his own spin on whatever he remembered or thought he remembered from the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, regardless of whether this spin was consistent with the Qur’an.

Ancient spin leads to modern spin which has led in Saudi Arabia to the creation of a reigning pseudo-religion that mocks everything Islamic. In no century of Muslim history and in no Muslim culture have self-proclaimed Muslims preached and proselytized such a bizarre distortion of divine revelation. For their own political purposes, the leaders of Saudi Arabia have produced the mother of black sheep among religions, which in turn has given birth to raging lions that threaten to devour their creators.


VI. Exposing Extremists on their Own Grounds

In their efforts to expose the extremists among Muslims, the counter-terrorists run the risk of buying into the same distortions of the Qur’an that feed terrorism. They interpret the Qur’an just as the terrorists do and thereby lend them support, when they should be attacking the terrorists’ distortion of their own religion.

For example, terrorists like to deny that they are terrorists by claiming that the word terrorism is subjective. They claim that the term is used indiscriminately by their enemies to attack political opponents. It would be more effective to accuse the terrorists of hiraba, which is the classical Arabic word for terrorism and has a precise definition.

The term hiraba refers to public terrorism in a war against society and civilization. In legal terminology it is defined as “spreading mischief in the land,” but its precise meaning, as defined by Professor Khalid Abou el Fadl, is “killing by stealth and targeting a defenseless victim in a way intended to cause terror in society.” This is the Islamic definition of terrorism. It is the very opposite of jihad. A cognate word, from the common root hariba meaning enraged, is harb, which means enemy or war, as in Syed Qutb’s Dar al Harb.

In order to counter the extremists, one must hoist them by their own petards by using classical Islamic terminology to show that they are frauds. There is no such thing as Islamic terrorism, but there have always been muharibun or Muslim terrorists. And there is no such thing as “holy war,” certainly not as a translation of jihad, but there are extremists who claim that their extremism is holy, when in fact they are only exhibiting the supreme sin in Islamic thought, which is arrogance. Arrogance is incurable, because arrogance denies itself.

The Muslim terrorists are muharibun, guilty of hiraba. Classical jurists state there can be no greater evil and no greater sin, other than blaspheming against God. If there is to be a clash both within and among civilizations, the major cause will be not Islam or any religion, but the extremists in every religion who commit hiraba. They have a name, and to name an evil is to expose it for what it is.

The extremist Muslims recite and distort various portions of the Qur’an to support their extremism, of which three are their favorites.

The first is Surah al Ma’ida 5:51, which has been translated by the six major translations of the Qur’an into English, namely, Arberry, Pickthall, Dawood, Yusuf Ali, Ahmad Ali, and now El-Halali/Khan, as follows: “O, you who believe [in the message of Muhammad], do not take Jews and Christians as friends. They are friends to one another, and the one among you who turns to them is of them. Truly, God does not guide wrongdoing folk.”

The extremists like to give the term awliya the meaning of friends, when, in fact, it means much more than that. The singular, wali, means guardian, one to whom one entrusts one future and one’s faith. Wali is one of the 99 names of God that Muslims often recite. A cognate meaning of wali, with emphasis on the first syllable, and also one of the names of God, is “ruler,” one to whom one submits.

The extremists support their favorite distortion of this text by ignoring the circumstances of this particular revelation. According to one of the earliest and most famous historians and commentators, Al-Tabari, who died in the third Islamic century, this verse was revealed shortly after the Makkans had driven the Muslims out because Muhammad opposed the profitable pilgrimage of neighboring tribes to visit the many gods set up in and around the Ka’aba. Although the Makkans were much more powerful militarily than the small group of Muslims who emigrated to Madina, the Makkans feared their growing popularity. Therefore the Makkans attacked Madina with a relatively overwhelming force.

Since it was the practice then to secure one’s own personal survival and the survival of one’s tribe or clan by making alliances with other tribes, many Muslims started to seek such alliances with Jewish and Christian tribes. This would have split the umma or community in Madina and caused the annihilation of the Muslims. In this case, the proper translation of awliya would be protectors or guardians.

The extremists among the Muslims today, however, like the translation of “friends” because this supports their ghetto mentality of confrontation with the outside world and suspicion of every Christian and Jew as a enemy. This is the perfect justification for demonizing entire civilizations and even one’s next door neighbor as part of the Dar al Harb. From this it is not a great step to 9/11.

The second favorite distortion by the Muslim extremists, and one pounced upon by those who confuse Islam with extremist Muslims, is Baqara 2:191: “And slay them wheresoever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out.” This is a favorite of the suicide bombers in the Holy Land, whose ultimate aim is to drive the Jewish population into the sea.

This selection out of context ignores the immediately preceding verse, 2:190, which reads: “Fight in the way of God against those who fight you, but transgress not the limits. Truly, God does not love the transgressors [of limits].”

Again, the historical context is also necessary to put the “slay them” verse in perspective. It does not refer to all non-Muslims and very specifically not to Jews and Christians. The object of the verse are the mushrikun or polytheists who were driving the Muslims out of their homes in Makkah. By universal definition in Islamic law, Christians and Jews are not polytheists but People of the Book, with whom Muslims are free to intermarry.

In fact, these two verses, 2:190-191, are often cited by Islamic jurists as the first instance in which the Qur’an forbid all war and violence except in self-defense and within strict limitations, which were spelled out in other parts of the Qur’an and in the whole body of later scholarship during the classical period of Islamic civilization.

As David Dukake points out in his chapter, “The Myth of a Militant Islam,” in Lumbard’s edited book, Islam, Fundamentalism, and the Betrayal of Tradition: “Al-Tabari gives many accounts detailing the limits placed upon the muhajidun [wagers of jihad]. He says, for instance, that the cousin of the Prophet of Islam, Ibn ‘Abbas, commented upon Verse 190 as follows: ‘Do not kill women, or children, or the old, or the one who greets you with peace, or the one who restrains his hand from hurting you, and if you do this then you have transgressed.’ Another tradition related by Al-Tabari comes from the Ummayad Caliph ‘Umar ibn ‘Abd al ‘Aziz or ‘Umar II [at the end of the first Islamic century], who explained the meaning of 2:190 as:’Do not fight he who does not fight you, that is to say women, children, and monks’.”

The hadith that prohibit exactly what the suicide bombers are doing to innocent Jews in the Holy Land and the suicide bombers did to the Christian women and children in the North Ossetian village of Beslan in the year 2004 are much too numerous to detail, but many are quoted in Dukake’s chapter on “The Myth of Militant Islam.”

Most Muslims are familiar with these many hadith, which is one reason why they are so horrified that any self-proclaimed Muslims would support suicide bombers in the name of Islam. The best way to marginalize Muslim extremists is to turn the tables on them and show that in their ignorant rage they are trying to hijack their own religion.

The third favorite distortion of the Qur’an by those who allegedly base their crimes upon it is Surah al Taubah 9:73: “O Prophet, perform jihad (jahid) against the unbelievers (kafirin) and the hypocrites (munafiqin), and attack them (akhlu).” The Muslim extremists rightly believe that this is directed against Muslims as the hypocrites, but they are clearly distorting the meaning when they say that this verse requires war against all Christians and Jews as unbelievers. The Qur’an does often refer to Christians and Jews as unbelievers, but it distinguishes usually (only a few verses from each other) between those who have a disease in their hearts and those who don’t. In verses 2:105, 5:78, 98:1, and 98:6, for example, it clearly prefaces the term unbelievers referring to the People of the Book with the preposition min, which means “among” the People of the Book. Extremists, like the Hisb al Tahrir, whose reason for existence is to institute a global Caliphate to rule the world, deliberately leave out the qualifying adjective “among” when translating this verse, thereby deliberately corrupting the Qur’an.

The extremists simply overlook other verses that talk about the Christians and Jews who do not have a disease in their hearts or else they claim that they were abrogated. Especially embarrassing for the extremist Jew haters are verses 113-115 of Surah Ali Imran: “Not all of them are alike. Of the People of the Book are a group that stand (in prayer), rehearse the signs of God throughout the night and prostrate. They believe in God and the Last Day; they enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong, and they hasten in (all) good works. These are among the righteous. Of the good that they do, nothing will be rejected of them, and God knows the God-fearing ones.”

The distortion by the extremists goes even further. They insist on translating the imperatives jahid “wage jihad” and ahklut “attack or cause pain” in the sense of offensive military warfare. Perhaps the best translation of the Qur’an, by Muhammad Asad, renders Surah al Tauba 9:73 as: “O Prophet! Strive hard against the deniers of the truth and the hypocrites, and be adamant with them.” Asad comments, “The imperative jahid is obviously used here in its spiritual connotation, implying efforts at convincing both the outspoken believers and the waverers, including the various types of hypocrites spoken of in the preceding passages.” He adds that the word akhlut means, “Do not compromise with them in matters of principle.”

The historical context is important in understanding the meaning of such key terms as umma or “community” and jihad. Extremists interpret the term community exclusively in reference to Muslims and jihad exclusively in reference to non-Muslims. The Prophet Muhammad first used the term umma in reference to all the citizens of Madina, who were Muslims, Christians, and Jews. Perhaps the first reference in the Qur’an to jihad in Surah al Hajj 22:39-40 was to defend Jews and Christians, as well as Muslims.

Prior to the revelation of this verse in Surah al Hajj, the Muslims were told to avoid all violence even in self defense, because their initial task was to purify themselves and not yet to transform society by promoting justice. Verses 39-40 were revealed as the Muslims were leaving Makkah in the migration to Madinah in the expectation that they would be attacked militarily. They read: “Permission [to fight] is given to those against whom war is being wrongfully waged – and, verily, God has indeed the power to succour them, that is, those who have been driven from their homelands against all right for no other reason than their saying, ‘Our Sustainer is God!’ For, if God had not enabled people to defend themselves against one another, [all] monasteries and churches and synagogues and mosques – in [all of] which God’s name is abundantly extolled – would surely have been destroyed [ere now].” The call to jihad was not for the destruction of other faiths and peoples, but to preserve places of worship for all the People of the Book, including Muslims.

The Constitution of Madina, which governed the first Muslim civil community together with the Jews and Christians, spells out the permanent state of common identity as follows: “In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate! This is a writing of Muhammad, the prophet, between the believers and Muslims of Quraish and Yathrib and those who follow them and are attached to them and who fight along with them. They are a single community distinct from other people. … Whosoever of the Jews follows us has the (same) help and support … so long as they are not wronged [by Muhammad] and he does not help [others] against them. … Between them [Muslims and Jews] there is help (nasr) against whoever wars against the people of this document. Between them is sincere friendship (nas’h wa nasiha) and honorable dealing. …”

Christians were prominent in the jihad waged against the enemies of Islam, because, as Lumbard puts it, the point of the jihad was not to establish a world populated only by Muslims; it was to create a social order in which the freedom to practice the worship of God was guaranteed for all Muslims as well as for the People of the Book.” He concludes, “Traditional Muslims saw all of life in terms of balance. … It has primarily been certain modernized Muslims, whose influences are not the traditional teachings of the faith, but the attitudes and excesses of modernity (only cloaked with turbans and beards), who have transgressed all limits and discarded the Balance that is true Islam.”


VII. The Challenge of Transcendent Justice

The paradigm of radicalism and resulting resort to violence as a solution of first resort has passed from the twentieth century, the most violent in human history, into the present one, like a hurricane mutating from a Category Four to a Category Five or beyond the scale to a Category X. In order to address this monumental threat, Muslims, as well as everyone else, need what the British called a “grand strategy” that orchestrates all dimensions of civilizational dynamics. The followers of every religion can best address the impending dissolution of civilization by reviving the core vision of their classical past. This is the vision of a transcendent justice that derives from an ultimate truth beyond the power and authority of human beings.

Among all the legal systems of the world, the principles of transcendent justice have been most beautifully articulated in classical Islamic thought. These constitute a sophisticated code of human responsibilities and corresponding human rights.

Unfortunately, in the Muslim world, especially in its Sunni portion, this enlightened legal system has been dead for six hundred years. Probably not one Muslim extremist in a thousand has ever even heard of the Islamic code of human rights. The task of Muslims in the world today is to revive the best of this classical Islam, just as it is the task of Americans, including American Muslims, to revive the equivalent in traditionalist or classical America. If there is to be a future for civilization, this project of recovering the best of the past in order reliably to build a better future must be a joint venture.

The starting point in reviving transcendent justice and applying it should be recognizing that the transcendent sources in revelation, natural law, and human reason (known in Islamic philosophy as haqq al yaqin, 'ain al yaqin, and 'ilm al yaqin) can be the starting point. The transcendent approach looks upon the details of the law, known in Arabic as the ahkam or rules and regulations, from the starting point of the whole. The details can be understood and intelligently applied only as applications of higher principles. The opposite approach looks at the whole, if at all, from the starting point of the details. In the transcendent approach, analysis takes precedence over synthesis. In its opposite, synthesis takes precedence over analysis, often without any principles whatsoever.

Many centuries of the best Islamic scholarship developed Islamic jurisprudence into an elaborate and sophisticated holistic framework of human responsibilities and rights. The holistic system of Islamic philosophy and its expression in shari’ah thought is primarily educational and inspirational, focused on transcendent justice, in contrast to the positivist systems of tyrannical and totalitarian governance which serve primarily to consolidate the status quo with all of its injustices. The holistic regards the use of any force to assure compliance as a failure of the system, and it reveres non-violence though not to the extent of absolute pacifism. The positivist system, on the other hand, tends to regard the monopoly of violence and its application by the power of established government as rule by law and as the very definition of justice. As some Muslims use the term, justice can even mean revenge.

According to some classical Islamic scholars, seven universal principles of law, known variously as kulliyat or universals, maqasid or purposes, and dururiyat or essentials, best reflect the architectonics of human rights and constitutional law in Islamic thought. The art of these maqasid as part of the science of 'usul al fiqh (especially in the form of istislah) was initiated by the Prophet Muhammad but was first systematically developed by Imam Jafar and Abu Hamid al Ghazali. It reached its zenith in the writings of Abu Ishaq al Shatibi in the later 1300s and then suddenly died out. These universal principles finally were revived again toward the end of the twentieth century, among others, by Sa’id Ramadhan of Geneva, Switzerland, who married the daughter of Hassan al Banna, and by their son, Tariq Ramadhan, at the beginning of the twenty-first century as part of a movement to marginalize the extremist movements that threatened to hijack religion in all of the world's traditions.

The first universal principle is haqq al din, which provides the framework for the next six in the form of respect for a transcendent source of truth to guide human thought and action. Recognition of this absolute source of truth and of the responsibility to apply it in practice are needed to counter the temptations toward relativism and the resulting chaos, injustice, and tyranny that may result from the de-sacralization of public life.

The next six can be viewed as pairs. The first pair deals with human sovereignty. The first of this pair is haqq al nafs, which is the duty to respect the human person as the source of all sovereignty, subject only to the higher sovereignty of God.

A second order principle or subordinate goal of the first purpose in this pair is known as haqq al haya, which is the duty to respect life. This provides the framework for the third-order principles or hajjiyat of the just war doctrine. It also provides that the human embryo is sacred from the moment of conception, regardless of when the soul is breathed into the body.

The second maqsud of this first pair is haqq al nasl, which is the duty to respect the nuclear family of husband and wife as the basic building bloc of society and to respect the community at every level all the way to the community of humankind as important expressions of the person.

The next pair deals with the institutional means to maintain the sovereignty of the person and of communities. The first maqsud of this pair is haqq al mal. This is the duty to respect the right of private property in the means of production, a right that Muslim socialists during the era of the Cold War did their best to eliminate. This maqsud requires respect for institutions that broaden access to capital ownership as a universal human right. This requires reform in the sense of perfecting the institutions of the global financial system in order to improve access to credit based on future, not merely on past, wealth.

The second maqsud of this second pair in the Islamic framework of human rights is haqq al hurriyah. This requires respect for self-determination of persons and communities through political freedom, including the concept that economic democracy through expanded capital ownership is a precondition for the political democracy of representative governance. All the great Islamic scholars were imprisoned, often for many years, for teaching this Islamic code of human rights, but particularly for insisting on this principle of freedom and its four subsidiary or second-order principles or hajjiyat of khilafa, shura, ijma, and an independent judiciary.

The third set of universal principles of justice deals with the means to promote human dignity through social justice. The first of this pair is haqq al karama or respect for personal dignity, especially through two hajjiyat or subsets of legal guidance, namely, religious freedom and gender equity.

The last of this third pair is haqq al 'ilm or respect for knowledge. The second-order principles of this universal principle of justice require freedom of thought, press, and assembly, so that all persons can fulfill their purpose to seek knowledge wherever they can find it.

These basic principles of human responsibilities and rights are universal. They form the core of human aspirations and they provide the basis for a global traditionalist movement led by enlightened Muslims, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, and all others who acknowledge an ultimate source of transcendent truth, who accept the accountability of each person and community for one's deeds in this life, and who perform good works out of love for the Infinite, whether known as Allah, God, Jehovah, or other word, and out of love for its finite expression in every human being.


VIII. Applying Transcendent Justice in Chechnya

American foreign policy has advocated a political solution to the warfare in the Caucasus. This could apply both to the former republics that became independent states and in the autonomous regions that were smaller and lower in rank in the Leninist formula of power to the people and therefore did not qualify for independent statehood when the Soviet Union imploded. Since the peoples of this region are both Christian and Muslim, the political solution might be an Abraham Federation, as has been advocated for decades as a one-state solution to the dilemmas of the Holy Land.

This might obviate the political embarrassment that compromise might cause the Russian leadership in addressing the currently insoluble dilemma of terrorism emanating from Chechnya and from other peoples of the Caucasus that aspire to greater self-determination. If it were based on the Islamic code of human rights, this would undercut the Muslim extremists who are even more unwilling than the hard-line Russian leaders to “surrender.”

The solution must be more than merely political, because often economics is an unspoken but influential factor in conflict resolution. The terrorists claim that Russia is interested in Chechen oil, just as similar terrorists in Iraq insist that the United States wants to occupy Iraq permanently in order to steal its oil. There is a simple answer to these conspiratorial extremists. Privatize the oil resources in individual voting shares to every citizen of the federation, whether it is a federation of the Caucasus or of Iraq, with provision that the shares cannot be sold for twenty years until a true ownership mentality has taken hold.

Since ideas shape history over the long-run, the framework for such ambitious undertakings must be rooted in the ideas of transcendent justice. The basis for both these political and economic solutions to the conflict highlighted by Chechen terrorism must be respect for the sovereignty of the person as the source for all higher political sovereignty. This would give rise to the principle of subsidiarity, taught especially in classical Roman Catholic moral theology, whereby problems are solved at the lowest level of human society wherever possible and only then at ascending higher levels. This reduces the role and importance of state sovereignty, which is more of a cause than a cure for much conflict in the world.

This revolutionary approach, if advocated by the spiritual leaders of the world as mediators and supported by the United States, would make the terrorists of the world irrelevant. Our task is not to stop evil, which can't be done, but to promote good, which can marginalize evil and overcome it.
[1] Presented on September 26, 2004, at the Center for Global Studies, George Mason University, Arlington, Virginia, as part of the 33rd Annual Conference of the Association of Muslim Social Scientists (AMSS). This presentation introduced Panel 8, entitled “Dialogue, Peacemaking, and Justice,” in support of the conference theme: Revisioning Modernity: Challenges and Possibilities for Islam.
[2] Dr. Crane is Scholar in Residence and Executive Director of the Peace Institute associated with the Islamic Society of Central Florida. He earned a Doctor of Laws (J.D.) from Harvard Law School in 1959 in international investment. President Nixon appointed him Deputy Director of the National Security Council in January 1969, and President Reagan appointed him in 1981 as U.S. Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates responsible for two-track diplomacy with the Islamist movements of the Middle East and North Africa.
[3] See the author’s position paper, Kosovo and Chechnya: Products of the Past, Harbingers of the Future, Islamic Institute for Strategic Studies, February 2000, 32 pp.

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Executive Summary

The Muslim community in Britain has been under a continuous spotlight since the events of 9/11 and 7/7 in particular. The bombings triggered a wide-ranging debate that sought to understand the processes at work within the Muslim community, map its changes, scrutinise the influences it is subject to and identify events in its recent history that may explain why Muslim British citizens would want to turn on Britain.

This debate to date has blamed a number of different factors for contributing to this heightened terror threat, but has been offset by sensationalist claims and alarmist comments that have only acted to obscure an accurate picture and to entrench stereotypes in an already polarised debate. It has sought to discredit legitimate Islamic political ideas by suggesting they increase the Muslim community’s susceptibility to using violence. To date, the debate has lacked an honest, dispassionate assessment of the forces at play within the Muslim community. The impact of which has been dangerous characterisations of Islam and the Muslim community, misinformed public fear and misguided government policy.

This report by Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain aims to expose the many inconsistencies in the 'War on Terror' narrative and the manipulation of security fears to attack political ideas that carry considerable support in the Muslim world. Our report challenges misconceptions about radicalisation, 'extremism' and political violence, explains Islam’s political tenets and maps a way forward for the future.

The report describes how the language used in the security debate has become politicised to counter dissenting voices, particularly to falsely claim Islamic political ideas are at the part of the problem. It challenges the view that the association between Islam and contemporary politics – often termed ‘Islamism’ - is part of a process that increases the Muslim community’s vulnerability to the use of violence. It is an assumption that it is built on a false characterisation of the relationship between Islam and politics in general. The report argues that there has, over many years, been a process that first saw a general ‘politicisation’ of the Muslim community and subsequent ‘Islamicisation’ of Muslim politics in Britain, rather than ‘radicalisation’. The false labelling reflects a failure to understand Islam and therefore to position its ideas within a secular political system.

The report goes on to cite credible research that calls into question the Bush-Blair argument that Islamic political ideas inherently cause violence and insecurity. The trend towards greater Islamic political practice, far from being a precursor to violence, often provides people with an alternative. The report argues that politically motivated violence is a broader issue often occurring as a response to political oppression and injustice rather than because of ideology or theology. Hence, the association of Islamic political ideas with violence is misleading. Importantly, recent poll evidence shows there is little support for violence as a means of change in the Muslim world, polls which simultaneously show increasingly levels of support for Islamic politics. The report also highlights the need to separate goals from means so as to not to link widely held legitimate political ideas with violence.

The report challenges attempts to discredit one of the central goals of current Islamic political activity in the Muslim world: the establishment of an independent Islamic political system in the Muslim world, or Caliphate. Just as with Islamic politics more generally, a host of arguments have been forwarded to suggest such the Caliphate would be unwelcome prospect and that its emergence should be opposed, including attempts to link its reality with violence. The report address failures in the Western discourse on the Caliphate, explains the position of the Caliphate in Islamic orthodoxy and describes how the Caliphate is a distinct and alternative political system. Crucially, it argues the Caliphate will be a stabilising force for the Muslim world.

In discussing a way forward, the report highlights how attempts at reforming Islam itself have been discredited and gained little traction amongst Muslims - Islamic orthodoxy has won the opinion in the Muslim world. As part of diagnosing the problem, the report argues Western colonialism not Islam has been at the heart of the political instability and crises of the Muslim world. The onset of colonisation also disrupted indigenous efforts at modernising the Muslim world. Importantly, Islam played a historic role in preventing political excess, tyranny and totalitarianism in the Muslim world and its absence has allowed these to go unchecked, as has been acknowledged by senior academics. Importantly, the Muslim world should be allowed to determine its own political future, not the West.

Through examining the statements of senior politicians, the report demonstrates the primary concern of many has, and still remains, preventing Islamic political change so as to protect the US and Britain’s unrivalled influence over events in the Muslim world. In the corridors of Washington and Westminster, Islam's political ideas are seen as a potential threat - not to security - but to the control, exploitation and interference that has continued for decades. Yet on the 'Muslim street' these ideas mean liberation from tyranny and oppression, a connection to their beliefs and history and the ability to shape their own political destiny.

‘Jihadi John’ was able to join IS for one simple reason: from Quilliam to al-Muhajiroun, Britain’s loudest extremists have been groomed by the security services. Every time there’s a terrorist attack that makes national headlines, the same talking heads seem to pop up like an obscene game of “whack-a-mole”. Often they appear one after the other across the media circuit, bobbing from celebrity television pundit to erudite newspaper outlet.

A few years ago, BBC Newsnight proudly hosted a “debate” between Maajid Nawaz, director of counter-extremism think-tank, the Quilliam Foundation, and Anjem Choudary, head of the banned Islamist group formerly known as al-Muhajiroun, which has, since its proscription, repeatedly reincarnated itself. One of its more well-known recent incarnations was "Islam4UK".

Both Nawaz and Choudary have received huge mainstream media attention, generating press headlines, and contributing to major TV news and current affairs shows. But unbeknown to most, they have one thing in common: Britain’s security services. And believe it or not, that bizarre fact explains why the Islamic State’s (IS) celebrity beheader, former west Londoner Mohammed Emwazi – aka “Jihadi John” - got to where he is now.

A tale of two extremists

After renouncing his affiliation with the Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT), Maajid Nawaz co-founded the Quilliam Foundation with his fellow ex-Hizb member, Ed Husain.

The Quilliam Foundation was set-up by Husain and Nawaz in 2008 with significant British government financial support. Its establishment received a massive PR boost from the release of Ed Husain’s memoirs, The Islamist, which rapidly became an international bestseller, generating hundreds of reviews, interviews and articles.

In Ed Husain’s book - much like Maajid Nawaz’s tome Radical released more recently to similar fanfare - Husain recounts his journey from aggrieved young Muslim into Islamist activist, and eventually his total rejection of Islamist ideology.

Both accounts of their journeys of transformation offer provocative and genuine insights. But the British government has played a much more direct role in crafting those accounts than either they, or the government, officially admit.

Government ghostwriters

In late 2013, I interviewed a former senior researcher at the Home Office who revealed that Husain’s The Islamist was “effectively ghostwritten in Whitehall”.

The official told me that in 2006, he was informed by a government colleague “with close ties” to Jack Straw and Gordon Brown that “the draft was written by Ed but then ‘peppered’ by government input”. The civil servant told him “he had seen ‘at least five drafts of the book, and the last one was dramatically different from the first.’”

The draft had, the source said, been manipulated in an explicitly political, pro-government manner. The committee that had input into Ed Husain’s manuscript prior to its official publication included senior government officials from No. 10 Downing Street, the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, the intelligence services, Foreign & Commonwealth Office and the Home Office.

When I put the question, repeatedly, to Ed Husain as to the veracity of these allegations, he did not respond. I also asked Nawaz whether he was aware of the government’s role in “ghostwriting” Husain’s prose, and whether he underwent a similar experience in the production of Radical. He did not respond either.

While Husain was liaising with British government and intelligence officials over The Islamist from 2006 until the book’s publication in May 2007, his friend Nawaz was at first in prison in Egypt. Nawaz was eventually released in March 2006, declaring his departure from HT just a month before the publication of Husain’s book. Husain took credit for being the prime influence on Nawaz’s decision, and by November 2007, had joined with him becoming Quilliam’s director with Husain as his deputy.

Yet according to Husain, Nawaz played a role in determining parts of the text of The Islamist in the same year it was being edited by government officials. “Before publication, I discussed with my friend and brother-in-faith Maajid the passages in the book,” wrote Husain about the need to verify details of their time in HT.

This is where the chronology of Husain’s and Nawaz’s accounts begin to break down. In Radical, and repeatedly in interviews about his own deradicalisation process, Nawaz says that he firmly and decisively rejected HT’s Islamist ideology while in prison in Egypt. Yet upon his release and return to Britain, Nawaz showed no sign of having reached that decision. Instead, he did the opposite. In April 2006, Nawaz told Sarah Montague on BBC Hardtalk that his detention in Egypt had “convinced [him] even more… that there is a need to establish this Caliphate as soon as possible.” From then on, Nawaz, who was now on HT’s executive committee, participated in dozens of talks and interviews in which he vehemently promoted the Hizb.

I first met Nawaz at a conference on 2 December 2006 organised by the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities (CAMPACC) on the theme of “reclaiming our rights”. I had spoken on a panel about the findings of my book, The London Bombings: An Independent Inquiry, on how British state collusion with Islamist extremists had facilitated the 7/7 attacks. Nawaz had attended the event as an audience member with two other senior HT activists, and in our brief conversation, he spoke of his ongoing work with HT in glowing terms.

By January 2007, Nawaz was at the front of a HT protest at the US embassy in London, condemning US military operations in Iraq and Somalia. He delivered a rousing speech at the protest, demanding an end to “colonial intervention in the Muslim world,” and calling for the establishment of an Islamic caliphate to stand up to such imperialism and end Western support for dictators.

Yet by his own account, throughout this very public agitation on behalf of HT from mid-2006 onwards, Nawaz had in fact rejected the very ideology he was preaching so adamantly. Indeed, in the same period, he was liaising with his friend, Ed Husain – who at that time was still in Jeddah – and helping him with the text of his anti-HT manifesto, The Islamist, which was also being vetted at the highest levels of government.

The British government’s intimate, and secret, relationship with Husain in the year before the publication of his book in 2007 shows that, contrary to his official biography, the Quilliam Foundation founder was embedded in Whitehall long before he was on the public radar. How did he establish connections at this level?

MI5’s Islamist

According to Dr Noman Hanif, a lecturer in international terrorism and political Islam at Birkbeck College, University of London, and an expert on Hizb ut-Tahrir, the group’s presence in Britain likely provided many opportunities for Western intelligence to “penetrate or influence” the movement.

Dr Hanif, whose doctoral thesis was about the group, points out that Husain’s tenure inside HT by his own account occurred “under the leadership of Omar Bakri Mohammed,” the controversial cleric who left the group in 1996 to found al-Muhajiroun, a militant network which to this day has been linked to every major terrorist plot in Britain.

Bakri’s leadership of HT, said Dr Hanif, formed “the most conceptually deviant period of HT’s existence in the UK, diverting quite sharply away from its core ideas,” due to Bakri’s advocacy of violence and his focus on establishing an Islamic state in the UK, goals contrary to HT doctrines.

When Bakri left HT and set-up al-Muhajiroun in 1996, according to John Loftus, a former US Army intelligence officer and Justice Department prosecutor, Bakri was immediately recruited by MI6 to facilitate Islamist activities in the Balkans. And not just Bakri, but also Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was recently convicted in the US on terrorism charges.

When Bakri founded al-Muhajiroun in 1996 with the blessings of Britain’s security services, his co-founder was Anjem Choudary. Choudary was intimately involved in the programme to train and send Britons to fight abroad, and three years later, would boast to the Sunday Telegraph that “some of the training does involve guns and live ammunition”.

Historian Mark Curtis, in his seminal work, Secret Affairs: Britain’s Collusion with Radical Islam, documents how under this arrangement, Bakri trained hundreds of Britons at camps in the UK and the US, and dispatched them to join al-Qaeda affiliated fighters in Bosnia, Kosovo and Chechnya.

Shortly before the 2005 London bombings, Ron Suskind, a Wall Street Journal Pulitizer Prize winning investigative reporter, was told by a senior MI5 official that Bakri was a longtime informant for the secret service who “had helped MI5 on several of its investigations”. Bakri, Suskind adds in his book, The Way of the World, reluctantly conceded the relationship in an interview in Beirut - but Suskind gives no indication that the relationship ever ended.

A senior terrorism lawyer in London who has represented clients in several high-profile terrorism cases told me that both Bakri and Choudary had regular meetings with MI5 officers in the 1990s. The lawyer, who works for a leading firm of solicitors and has regularly liaised with MI5 in the administration of closed court hearings involving secret evidence, said: “Omar Bakri had well over 20 meetings with MI5 from around 1993 to the late 1990s. Anjem Choudary apparently participated in such meetings toward the latter part of the decade. This was actually well-known amongst several senior Islamist leaders in Britain at the time.”

According to Dr Hanif of Birkbeck College, Bakri’s relationship with the intelligence services likely began during his “six-year reign as HT leader in Britain,” which would have “provided British intelligence ample opportunity” to “widely infiltrate the group”. HT had already been a subject of MI6 surveillance abroad “because of its core level of support in Jordan and the consistent level of activity in other areas of the Middle East for over five decades."

At least some HT members appear to have been aware of Bakri’s intelligence connections, including, it seems, Ed Husain himself. In one passage in The Islamist (p. 116), Husain recounts: “We were also concerned about Omar’s application for political asylum… I raised this with Bernie [another HT member] too. ‘Oh no’, he said, ‘On the contrary. The British are like snakes; they manoeuvre carefully. They need Omar in Britain. More likely, Omar will be the ambassador for the khilafah here or leave to reside in the Islamic state. The kuffar know that - allowing Omar to stay in Britain will give them a good start, a diplomatic advantage, when they have to deal with the Islamic state. Having Omar serves them well for the future. MI5 knows exactly what we’re doing, what we’re about, and yet they have in effect, given us the green light to operate in Britain.”

Husain left HT after Bakri in August 2007. According to Faisal Haque, a British government civil servant and former HT member who knew Ed Husain during his time in the group, Husain had a strong “personal relationship” with Bakri. He did not leave HT for “ideological reasons,” said Haque. “It was more to do with his close personal relationship with Omar Bakri (he left when Bakri was kicked out), pressure from his father and other personal reasons which I don’t want to mention.”

Husain later went on to work for the British Council in the Middle East. From 2003 to 2005, he was in Damascus. During that period, by his own admission, he informed on other British members of HT for agitating against Bashar al-Assad’s regime, resulting in them being deported by Syrian authorities back to Britain. At this time, the CIA and MI6 routinely cooperated with Assad on extraordinary rendition programmes.

Husain then worked for the British Council in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, from late 2005 to the end of 2006.

Throughout that year, according to the former Home Office official I spoke to, Husain was in direct contact with senior Whitehall officials who were vetting his manuscript for The Islamist. By November, Husain posted on DeenPort, an online discussion forum, a now deleted comment referring off-hand to the work of “the secret services” inside HT: “Even within HT in Britain today, there is a huge division between modernisers and more radical elements. The secret services are hopeful that the modernisers can tame the radicals… I foresee another split. And God knows best. I have said more than I should on this subject! Henceforth, my lips are sealed!”

Shortly after, Maajid Nawaz would declare his departure from HT, and would eventually be joined at Quilliam by several others from the group, many of whom according to Nawaz had worked with him and Husain as “a team” behind the scenes at this time.

The ‘ex-jihadists’ who weren’t

Perhaps the biggest problem with Husain’s and Nawaz’s claim to expertise on terrorism was that they were never jihadists. Hizb ut-Tahrir is a non-violent movement for the establishment of a global “caliphate” through social struggle, focusing on the need for political activism in the Muslim world. Whatever the demerits of this rigid political ideology, it had no relationship to the phenomenon of al-Qaeda terrorism.

Nevertheless, Husain and Nawaz, along with their government benefactors, were convinced that those personal experiences of  “radicalisation” and “deradicalisation” could by transplanted into the ongoing “war on terror” - even though, in reality neither of them had any idea about the dynamics of an actual terrorist network, and the radicalisation process leading to violent extremism. The result was an utterly misguided and evidence-devoid obsession with rejecting non-violent extremist ideologies as the primary means to prevent terrorism.

Through the Quilliam Foundation, Husain’s and Nawaz’s fundamentalist ideas about non-violent extremism went on to heavily influence official counter-terrorism discourses across the Western world. This was thanks to its million pounds worth of government seed-funding, intensive media coverage, as well as the government pushing Quilliam’s directors and staff to provide “deradicalisation training” to government and security officials in the US and Europe.

In the UK, Quilliam’s approach was taken up by various centre-right and right-wing think-tanks, such as the Centre for Social Cohesion (CCS) and Policy Exchange, all of which played a big role in influencing the government’s Preventing Violent Extremism programme (Prevent).

Exactly how bankrupt this approach is, however, can be determined from Prime Minister David Cameron’s efforts to express his understanding of the risk from non-violent extremism, a major feature of the coalition government’s Orwellian new Counter-Terrorism and Security Act. The latter establishes unprecedented powers of electronic surveillance and the basis for the “Prevent duty,” which calls for all public sector institutions to develop “risk-assessment” profiles of individuals deemed to be “at-risk” of being drawn into non-violent extremism.

In his speech at the UN last year, Cameron explained that counter-terrorism measures must target people who may not “encourage violence, but whose worldview can be used as a justification for it.” As examples of dangerous ideas at the “root cause” of terrorism, Cameron pinpointed “conspiracy theories,” and most outrageously, “The idea that Muslims are persecuted all over the world as a deliberate act of Western policy.”

In other words, if you believe, for instance, that US and British forces have deliberately conducted brutal military operations across the Muslim world resulting in the foreseeable deaths of countless innocent civilians, you are a non-violent extremist.

In an eye-opening academic paper published last year, French terrorism expert and Interior Ministry policy officer Dr Claire Arenes, noted that: “By definition, one may know if radicalisation has been violent only once the point of violence has been reached, at the end of the process. Therefore, since the end-term of radicalisation cannot be determined in advance, a policy intended to fight violent radicalisation entails a structural tendency to fight any form of radicalisation.”

It is precisely this moronic obsession with trying to detect and stop “any form of radicalisation,” however non-violent, that is hampering police and security investigations and overloading them with nonsense “risks”.

Double game

At this point, the memorable vision of Nawaz and Choudary facing off on BBC Newsnight appears not just farcical, but emblematic of how today’s national security crisis has been fuelled and exploited by the bowels of the British secret state.

Over the last decade or so - the very same period that the British state was grooming the “former jihadists who weren’t” so they could be paraded around the media-security-industrial complex bigging up the non-threat of “non-violent extremism” - the CIA and MI6 were coordinating Saudi-led funding to al-Qaeda affiliated extremists across the Middle East and Central Asia to counter Iranian Shiite influence.

From 2005 onwards, US and British intelligence services encouraged a range of covert operations to support Islamist opposition groups, including militants linked to al-Qaeda, to undermine regional Iranian and Syrian influence. By 2009, the focus of these operations shifted to Syria.

As I documented in written evidence to a UK Parliamentary inquiry into Prevent in 2010, one of the recipients of such funding was none other than Omar Bakri, who at the time told one journalist: “Today, angry Lebanese Sunnis ask me to organise their jihad against the Shiites… Al-Qaeda in Lebanon… are the only ones who can defeat Hezbollah.” Simultaneously, Bakri was regularly in touch with his deputy, Anjem Choudary, over the internet and even delivered online speeches to his followers in Britain instructing them to join IS and murder civilians. He has now been detained and charged by Lebanese authorities for establishing terror cells in the country.

Bakri was also deeply involved “with training the mujahideen [fighters] in camps on the Syrian borders and also on the Palestine side." The trainees included four British Islamists “with professional backgrounds” who would go on to join the war in Syria. Bakri also claimed to have trained “many fighters,” including people from Germany and France, since arriving in Lebanon. Was Mohammed Emwazi among them? Last year, Bakri disciple Mizanur Rahman confirmed that at least five European Muslims who had died fighting under IS in Syria had been Bakri acolytes.

Nevertheless in 2013, it was David Cameron who lifted the arms embargo to support Syria's rebels. We now know that most of our military aid went to al-Qaeda affiliated Islamists, many with links to extremists at home. The British government itself acknowledged that a “substantial number” of Britons were fighting in Syria, who “will seek to carry out attacks against Western interests... or in Western states”.

Yet according to former British counterterrorism intelligence officer Charles Shoebridge, despite this risk, authorities “turned a blind eye to the travelling of its own jihadists to Syria, notwithstanding ample video etc. evidence of their crimes there,” because it “suited the US and UK’s anti-Assad foreign policy”.

This terror-funnel is what enabled people like Emwazi to travel to Syria and join up with IS - despite being on an MI5 terror watch-list. He had been blocked by the security services from traveling to Kuwait in 2010: why not Syria? Shoebridge, who was a British Army officer before joining the Metropolitan Police, told me that although such overseas terrorism has been illegal in the UK since 2006, “it’s notable that only towards the end of 2013 when IS turned against the West’s preferred rebels, and perhaps also when the tipping point between foreign policy usefulness and MI5 fears of domestic terrorist blowback was reached, did the UK authorities begin to take serious steps to tackle the flow of UK jihadists.”

The US-UK direct and tacit support for jihadists, Shoebridge said, had made Syria the safest place for regional terrorists fearing drone strikes “for more than two years”. Syria was “the only place British jihadists could fight without fear of US drones or arrest back home… likely because, unlike if similar numbers of UK jihadists had been travelling to for example Yemen or Afghanistan, this suited the anti-Assad policy.”

Having watched its own self-fulfilling prophecy unfold with horrifying precision in a string of IS-linked terrorist atrocities against Western hostages and targets, the government now exploits the resulting mayhem to vindicate its bankrupt “counter-extremism” narrative, promoted by hand-picked state-groomed “experts” like Husain and Nawaz.

Their prescription, predictably, is to expand the powers of the police state to identify and “deradicalise” anyone who thinks British foreign policy in the Muslim world is callous, self-serving and indifferent to civilian deaths. Government sources confirm that Nawaz’s input played a key role in David Cameron’s thinking on non-violent extremism, and the latest incarnation of the Prevent strategy; while last year, Husain was, ironically, appointed to the Foreign Office advisory group on freedom of religion or belief.

Meanwhile, Bakri’s deputy Choudary continues to inexplicably run around as Britain’s resident “terror cleric” media darling. His passport belatedly confiscated after a recent pointless police arrest that avoided charging him, he remains free to radicalise thick-headed British Muslims into joining IS, in the comfort that his hate speech will be broadcast widely, no doubt fueling widespread generic suspicion of British Muslims.

If only we could round up the Quilliam and al-Muhajiroun fanatics together, shove them onto a boat, and send them all off cruising to the middle of nowhere, they could have all the fun they want “radicalising” and “deradicalising” each other to their hearts content. And we might get a little peace. And perhaps we could send their handlers with them, too.

Nafeez Ahmed PhD, is an investigative journalist, international security scholar and bestselling author who tracks what he calls the 'crisis of civilization.' He is a winner of the Project Censored Award for Outstanding Investigative Journalism for his Guardian reporting on the intersection of global ecological, energy and economic crises with regional geopolitics and conflicts. He has also written for The Independent, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Scotsman, Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Quartz, Prospect, New Statesman, Le Monde diplomatique, New Internationalist. His work on the root causes and covert operations linked to international terrorism officially contributed to the 9/11 Commission and the 7/7 Coroner’s Inquest.

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Eye.



As reports identify ‘Jihadi John’ to be Londoner Mohammed Emwazi, concern is being raised over the effects of his treatment at the hands of the British security services, prior to his alleged transformation to ISIS poster-boy. This comes as it is revealed that Emwazi contemplated suicide as a direct result of his ordeal in shocking email exchanges with a Mail on Sunday journalist, where he states, “Sometimes i feel like im a dead man walking, not fearing they (MI5) may kill me…Rather, fearing that one day, I’ll take as many pills as I can so that I can sleep for ever!! I just want to get away from these people!!!’

David Cameron has condemned “reprehensible” comments by campaign group Cage after it blamed MI5 for radicalising Jihadi John.

The campaign group was criticised after accusing the British security services of “systematically” harassing young Muslims, leaving them with no legal avenue to redress their situation.

However, when historical and contemporary cases are observed, we see that disproportionate and heavy handed tactics of security forces consistently ferments anger, unfortunately a key contributor to further criminal violence. The government and mainstream media’s attempt to provide cover for institutional misconduct and divorce the connection between state harassment and violence simply fails to account for the available information.

If lasting security is to be achieved, a sincere study must be conducted to understand whether the aggressive approach by security forces solves the problem of  “radicalisation” or exacerbates it.

Irish ‘Troubles’ and Internment

Blowback from individuals and communities who suffered from unjust policies is not new. During the early hours of August 9,1971 British authorities launched “Operation Demetrius”, marking the reintroduction of internment to Northern Ireland. Internment was the imprisonment or confinement of enemy citizens in wartime or of terrorism suspects. In a statement made to the BBC later that day, Prime Minister of Northern Ireland Brian Faulkner said that the government was “quite simply at war with the terrorist…the terrorists’ campaign continues at an unacceptable level and I have to conclude that the ordinary law cannot deal comprehensively or quickly enough with such ruthless violence. I have therefore decided…to exercise where necessary the powers of detention and internment vested in me as Minister of Home Affairs.”

Throughout Northern Ireland, police and members of the military rounded up 342 men suspected of being republican terrorists.  Those arrested could be held indefinitely without trial.  According to Faulkner, who explained that the decision to reintroduce internment to Northern Ireland was in response to the “escalating violence and increased bombing in the province and the threat to Northern Ireland’s economy,” the main focus of Operation Demetrius was the Irish Republican Army.  The action, however, would prove to be a complete and total failure.

Internment sparked four days of violence in which 20 civilians were killed and thousands were forced to flee their homes. Seventeen civilians were killed by British soldiers – 11 of them in the Ballymurphy Massacre. No loyalists were included in the sweep and many of those arrested were ordinary Catholics with no IRA links. Many also reported that they and their families were assaulted, verbally abused and threatened by soldiers. The operation led to mass protests and a sharp increase in violence over the following months. Internment lasted until December 1975 and during that time 1,981 people were interned.

The New York Times called the level of violence “the worst in the miserable recent history of Northern Ireland,” saying “the factors that produced the gunmen are all still there – and probably made worse by the new security measures.”

‘Jihadi John’

Despite such a tragic period in recent British history, it is peculiar to see that in the new “War on Terror”, the contributing factors between oppressive security measures and violence by Muslim individuals is disregarded.

In a damning indictment of the mass surveillance measures and policy to criminalise Islamic ideas, years of MI5 monitoring of Emwazi failed to identify him as a potential threat. As with any study in criminology, how can the trajectory of events prior to Emwazi’s radicalisation be ignored?

Emwazi first came to CAGE in 2009 after being detained, interrogated with attempts to recruit him by MI5 on what was meant to be a safari holiday to Tanzania. Thereafter, the harassment continued and intensified which led to him losing two fiancée’s, his job and new life in Kuwait. The harassment and abuse he suffered, was all without criminal charges ever being brought against him, with the legal remedies available to him failing, he attempted to start a new life abroad in Kuwait only to be blocked by the UK security agencies continually.

He was told: “You’re going to have a lot of trouble …you’re going to be known…you’re going to be followed…life will be harder for you.” In 2013 he was missing, suspected of being in Syria.

While making it clear that “nobody is apologising or trying to make an excuse” for Emwazi’s alleged beheadings, Cage’s Cerie Bullivant said it was important to debate the causes of radicalism. He added that British discourse on the issue had “failed to look at the causes of radicalisation in an honest manner” for years, and said perpetrators of attacks often quote foreign policy as “the key pushed“, as well as harassment and domestic policy.

“We keep on ignoring that, it’s not about justify it, its about looking at the causes of it so we can make everybody safer, both here and abroad,” he said.

However, we are being presented with a picture of the world which continues to defend and inculcate the economic, social and political agendas of the privileged groups that dominate the domestic economy, and who therefore also largely control the government.

In her response, Mr Cameron’s official spokeswoman attacked the comments by Cage in the strongest possible terms. Effectively shutting out any room for criticism or accountability of the intelligence services, she said: “It is completely reprehensible to suggest that anyone who carries out such brutal murders – they are the ones responsible and we should not be seeking to put blame on other people, particularly those who are working to keep British citizens safe.

“The people responsible for these murders are the people we are seeing in the videos.””

Road to Radicalisation

Unfortunately, Emwazi’s story is not unique.

A case which has been cited frequently in the press and groups representing Muslims is that of a Muslim man who was detained by police in London. He was forced to prostrate with his arms in his cuffs, and asked ‘where is your God now?’ It is alleged that the detainee suffered over forty injuries including a black eye and severe bruising. Such treatment has the potential to push certain individuals to react unjustly through acts of violence.

Reports often point to MI5 officers falsely accusing Muslims of links to Islamic extremism. On each occasion the agents said they would lift the travel restrictions and threat of detention in return for their co-operation. When the men refused some of them received what they say were intimidating phone calls and threats. Some cases were brought to British MP Frank Dobson whereupon he concluded, “…it seems that from what I have seen some of their (security services’) methods may be counter-productive.”

More prominently, after Lee Rigby was killed in Woolwich, it was soon revealed that the murderer Michael Adebolajo had already been known to MI5 for eight years! Claims were made that “Michael Adebolajo was tortured in Kenya and harassed by MI5 – who asked him to spy for them” as reported by the Guardian Newspaper 25/5/13

The recent revelations have also led senior Conservative MP David Davis to accuse the British intelligence agencies of using “ineffectual” tactics.

He said,“Given the numbers who appear to have slipped through the net, it is legitimate to ask: how many more people must die before we start to look more closely at the strategy of our intelligence services?

“The problem is not new. The fact is that the intelligence services have long utilised tactics that have proved ineffective.

“The issue dates back at least to the Troubles in Northern Ireland, where the intelligence agencies relied on disruption and interference more than prosecution and imprisonment.”

Mr Davis went on to say that the parliamentary Intelligence and Security Committee, which will look into MI5’s handling of the case, had “shown itself incapable of holding the intelligence agencies to account“.

This understanding was compounded by a major study on the link between community relations and counterterrorism published in December 2006. In it the think-tank Demos concluded that the, “growing sense of grievance, anger and injustice (among British Muslims) inadvertently legitimises the terrorists’ aims”.

If the security services are blackmailing, bullying and alienating British Muslims who are then found engaging in brutal acts in Woolwich or Syria, it is counter-productive for British society to neglect the contribution and not prevent it.


Of course there are those who would prefer not to talk or even think about such things; who would rather continue with the divisive and dangerous policies like Prevent, anti-toddler radicalisation programs and Trojan horses; who only want to work with opportunists like the government’s pet Muslim think-tanks; who would prefer to talk about ‘death cults’ and ‘preachers of hate’ rather than consider that the actions of the British state may have contributed to the mess it is in.

With the anti-terror policy under fresh scrutiny, frenzied reactions and statements from the politicians and the media alike amounts to little more than the establishment absolving itself of any blame – whether they are foreign policy disgraces or the oppressive and unaccountable actions of their security services. Sincere attempts to analyse the events leading up to Emwazi’s alleged transformation is depicted as empathy for ISIS. When reviewing the actions of the authorities it is claimed that only the people in the videos are responsible.

Yet how much time, energy and resources have been spent studying and dissecting the causes of radicalisation through government officials and self-styled ‘experts’ as long as the blame was fixed onto Muslims and Islamic values. It is the dominance of this discourse that has materialised into David Cameron’s much espoused “conveyor-belt” theory and draconian legislation which collectively punishes an entire community; a duplicitous approach, tied only to political expediency.

Unless a serious investigation is not undertaken to acknowledge the empirical data, the establishment will continue to have a role – intended or unintended – in the unsavoury paths of many would-be Jihadis. Any calls for perpetuating heavy handed security measures only echo the disastrous policies of Northern Ireland, which is widely recognised to have alienated communities and only promoted support for paramilitarism.

Sean Rayment, Sunday Telegraph

Deep inside the heart of the "Green Zone", the heavily fortified administrative compound in Baghdad, lies one of the most carefully guarded secrets of the war in Iraq. It is a cell from a small and anonymous British Army unit that goes by the deliberately meaningless name of the Joint Support Group (JSG), and it has proved to be one of the Coalition's most effective and deadly weapons in the fight against terror.

The JSG was formed in the '80s to tackle the IRA

Its members - servicemen and women of all ranks recruited from all three of the Armed Forces - are trained to turn hardened terrorists into coalition spies using methods developed on the mean streets of Ulster during the Troubles, when the Army managed to infiltrate the IRA at almost every level. Since war broke out in Iraq in 2003, they have been responsible for running dozens of Iraqi double agents.

Working alongside the Special Air Service and the American Delta Force as part of the Baghdad-based counter-terrorist unit known as Task Force Black, they have supplied intelligence that has saved hundreds of lives and resulted in some of the most notable successes against the myriad terror groups fighting in Iraq. Only last week, intelligence from the JSG is understood to have led to a series of successful operations against Sunni militia groups in southern Baghdad.

Information obtained by the unit is also understood to have inspired one of the most successful operations carried out by Task Force Black, in November 2005, when SAS snipers shot dead three suicide bombers.

The killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq up until his death in June last year, followed intelligence obtained by the JSG, as did the rescue of the kidnapped peace campaigner, Norman Kember.

advertisement"The JSG is the coalition's secret weapon," revealed one defence source. "Their job is to recruit and run covert human intelligence sources or agents - we never use the term informer. The Americans are in awe of the unit because they have nothing like them within their military."

During the Troubles, the JSG operated under the cover name of the Force Research Unit (FRU), which between the early 1980s and the late 1990s managed to penetrate the very heart of the IRA. By targeting and then "turning" members of the paramilitary organisation with a variety of "inducements" ranging from blackmail to bribes, the FRU operators developed agents at virtually every command level within the IRA.

The unit was renamed following the Stevens Inquiry into allegations of collusion between the security forces and protestant paramilitary groups, and, until relatively recently continued to work exclusively in Northern Ireland.

The JSG recruits men and women of any rank from all three services up to the age of 42. Volunteers attend a two week pre-selection course where those not in possession of the unique set of skills required to handle agents successfully are weeded out.

Candidates who get through pre-selection then spend the next four months at the Intelligence Corps headquarters at Chicksands, Bedfordshire, being taught driving and close-quarter battle skills - operators must be capable of using a wide variety of weapons but must be expert shots with a pistol.

But most important of all, -volunteers must be able to befriend people they may actually despise, win their trust and persuade them to become agents, which in some cases will mean getting them to inform on friends and relatives. Those who eventually pass the course can expect to be posted to Baghdad, Basra and Afghanistan.

Sources have told The Sunday Telegraph that in Baghdad intelligence is obtained in a variety of ways. Some of it comes through phone calls to a confidential hot-line where callers can either talk to a member of the JSG or arrange a meeting inside the "Green Zone". It is too dangerous for operators to meet agents at a secret rendezvous in other parts of the city.

With so many Iraqis entering the zone every day, those who want to pass on information can do so with a certain amount of anonymity. But a risk still remains. All potential agents are warned that anyone suspected of being a coalition spy will be tortured before being murdered. If he is married, his wife will be gang-raped in front of their children, who will in all probability also be murdered, they are told. Despite the risks, JSG operators deal with dozens of Iraqis every week who are -prepared, for a variety of reasons, to become informers.

"Some Iraqis come to us because they are simply fed up with the violence," said one source. "They may have had -members of their families -murdered, tortured or kidnapped. Unlike much of the middle class which has already fled the country, they may be too poor to leave and so they come to us to see if they can make a difference.

"They may have a little bit of information or detailed knowledge of a planned attack. We also have to deal with terrorists and that presents us with a difficulty. We are happy for them to pass us information but it is made absolutely clear to them that as a member of a terrorist group they are criminals and they should cease all activity immediately - we have had cases where Shia or Sunni men have provided us with information and as part of the debriefing process we have discovered that they are terrorists themselves. We warn them that they are running the risk of being killed or captured and that they should get themselves into a position within the organisation where they will not be directly involved in murder."

To senior American officers in Baghdad, the JSG is playing a vital role in the most important theatre of the war on terror.

"In many respects, Afghanistan is a side issue and that is something the Americans understand better than British politicians," said a source. "Ask any senior officer in Baghdad, given a choice, which war would they be prepared to lose and they will say the war in Afghanistan.

"In many respects the war in Iraq has redefined insurgent warfare. Think of the very worst of Northern Ireland combined with the very worst of the Balkans and you are coming close to life on a daily basis in Baghdad. The situation is chaotic and bordering on being hopeless. The Iraqis have absolutely no faith in their army or police force because they are all or nearly all linked to militias.

"Only the coalition forces can bring real security - if the war is lost chaos will reign and the whole of the region will be dragged into a bloody and catastrophic ethnic war."


This joint statement expresses a position with respect to the ongoing demonisation of Muslims in Britain, their values as well as prominent scholars, speakers and organisations.

We, the undersigned Imams, sheikhs, advocates, activists, community leaders, community organisations and student bodies of the Muslim community, make the following points in this regard:

1) We reject the exploitation of Muslim issues and the ‘terror threat’ for political capital, in particular in the run up to a general election. Exploiting public fears about security is as dishonourable as exploiting public fears about immigration. Both deflect attention from crises in the economy and health service, but are crude and divisive tactics, where the big parties inevitably try to outdo each other in their nastiness.

2) We deplore the continued public targeting of Muslims through endless ‘anti-terror’ laws. There have been around ten pieces of legislation since the year 2000, all giving huge powers to the state, which have fuelled a media hysteria even though in most cases no crime was committed. This has created a distressing and harmful backlash towards Muslims, especially women and children.

3) We reject the portrayal of Muslims and the Muslim community as a security threat. The latest Act of Parliament, the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act, threatens to create a ‘McCarthyite’ witch-hunt against Muslims, with nursery workers, schoolteachers and Universities expected to look out for signs of increased Islamic practice as signs of ‘radicalisation’. Such a narrative will only further damage social cohesion as it incites suspicion and ill feeling in the broader community.

4) The expedient use of undefined and politically charged words like ‘radicalisation’ and ‘extremism’ is unacceptable as it criminalises legitimate political discourse and criticism of the stance of successive governments towards Muslims domestically and abroad. We strongly oppose political proposals to further ‘tackle’ and ‘crack down’ on such dissenting voices in the Muslim community despite their disavowal of violence and never having supported terrorist acts.

5) Similarly, it is unacceptable to label as ‘extremist’ numerous normative Islamic opinions on a variety of issues, founded on the Quran and Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), implying there is a link between them and violence, using such labels as an excuse to silence speakers.

6) We affirm our commitment to robust political and ideological debate and discourse for the betterment of humanity at large. The attempts by the state to undermine this bring into question its commitment to its very own purported values and liberal freedoms.

7) We affirm our concern about peace and security for all. We, however, refuse to be lectured on peace-building and harmony by a government that plays divisive politics and uses fear to elicit uncertainty in the general public, whilst maintaining support for dictators across the Muslim world, who continue to brutalise and legitimate political opposition to their tyranny.

8) We affirm our intention to hold on to our beliefs and values, to speak out for what is right and against what is wrong based on our principles, whether that be on matters such as the securitisation of society, corporate hegemony, war and peace, economic exploitation, social and moral issues in society, nationalism and racism. Not to do so would be dangerous and leave our community unguided.

9) We call on all fair minded people in Britain – including politicians, journalists, academics, bloggers and others concerned about fairness for all – to continue to scrutinise the scare tactics, fear-mongering and machinations of politicians, which do not bode well for societal harmony and only increase the alienation felt and experienced by Britain’s Muslim community.

It is time that politicians stop diverting the attention of the British public away from its domestic crises and disastrous foreign policies by repeatedly playing the ‘Muslim’ or ‘national security’ card.


Abdurraheem Green, iERA
Anjum Anwar, Teacher/Chair of Woman’s Voice
Arzu Merali, Islamic Human Rights Commission
Dr Abdul Wahid, Hizb ut-Tahrir, Britain
Dr Musharraf Hussain, CEO and Chief Imam, Karimia Institute
Dr Reza Pankhurst, Author and academic
Dr Saeed Al-Gadi, Presenter at Islam Channel
Dr Shahrul Hussain, Birmingham
Dr Uthman Lateef, Hittin Institute
Hodan Yusuf, Journalist
Ibrahim Hewitt, Leicester
Ibtihal Bsis, Barrister, Broadcaster, Hizb ut-Tahrir
Imam Abdul Wahhab, East London
Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh, Imam & Khatib, London
Imam Abdul Mateen, East London
Imam Aziz Ibraheem, Iman Trust Community Centre, St Helens
Imam Irfan Patel, Jamiah Masjid, Gillngham
Imam Shakeel Begg, Lewisham Islamic Centre
Jahangir Mohammed, Centre for Muslim Affairs
Lauren Booth, Journalist
Mahmud Choudhury – Secretary Poplar Shahjalal Masjid
Massoud Shadjareh, Islamic Human Rights Commission
Moazzam Begg, Director of Outreach for CAGE
Muhammad Mustaqeem Shah, Al Mustaqeem Centre, Bradford
Shaikh Abu Abdissalam, London
Shaikh Haitham Haddad, London
Shaikh Haitham Tamim, Chairman of the Utrujj Foundation
Shaikh Khaled Fekry, Imam, London
Shaikh Omer Hamdoon, Muslim Association of Britain
Shaikh Sulaiman Gani, South London
Shaikh Zuber Karim, Intelligence Finance Consultancy
Shaikh Tauqir Ishaq, CEO Hijaaz College
Ustadh Kamal Abu Zahra, Lecturer on Islamic studies, London
Yusuf Chambers – Freelance community activist
Yusuf Patel, SRE Islamic
Azad Ali, Muslim Safety Forum
Asghar Bukhari, Muslim Public Affairs Committee, UK
Roshan Muhammad Salih, Broadcaster and journalist
Ghulam Haydar, Director of Myriad Foundation
Shoaib Khalid Bhatti, Muslim Lobby, Scotland
Dr Daud Abdullah, British Muslim Initiave
Shaikh Chokri Majoli, Imam, London
Yvonne Ridley, Vice President European Muslim League
Muhammad Shafique, Ramadan Foundation, Rochdale
Hasan Alkatib, Journalist
Mazhar Khan, Manchester Muslim Forum
Saaqib Abu Ishaaq, Project Medinah, Rochdale
Omar Ali, Chair of Brighton and Hove Muslim Community
Sofia Ahmed, Activist & founder of Muslim Women Against Femen
Nalini Naidoo,  Newham Muslim Women’s Association
Irfan Hussain, Bradford Dawah Centre
Leyla Habibti,  humanitarian activist
Tasmin Nazeer, freelance journalist
Ali Anees, Eccles Mosque
Saeed Akhtar, Cheadle Mosque
Yousef Dar, Community Safety Forum, Manchester
Dr Shameel Islam-Zulfiqar, Humanitarian campaigner
Majid Freeman, Humanitarian aid worker, friend of Alan Henning
Laura Stuart, Humanitarian aid worker, journalist and activist
Fatima Barkatula, Scholar and Director of Seeds of Change
Salman Sayyid, Author and Academic
Shezana Hafiz, Humanitarian Activist
Abdus Samad, IQRA TV / TV Producer
Alomgir Ali, MDRF, London
Shamsuz zaman, CYCD Chairperson, Luton
Tahir Talati, Imam Zakariya Academy, London
Abdul Razaq, Principal Iqra Academy, Peterborough
Fahad Ansari, Human Rights Solicitor
Adullah al Andalusi, Muslim Debate Initiative
Yusuf Shabbir, Blackburn Muslim Association
Suhail Akubat, Imam, Masjid e Salaam, Preston
Bilal Toorawa, Imam, Blackburn
Councillor Salim Mulla, Blackburn
Mohammed Alsheikh Mousa Attari Alhijazy, Alhuda Prophetic Medical Centre, London
Haji Mohammed Walayat, Sunni Council of Mosques, Luton
Edris Seth, Political Activist, Bolton
Ali Ahmad, Imam, East London
Zahid Akhtar, Founder Documenting Oppression Against Muslims, Walsall
Shirajul Haque, Imam, London
Ismail Rawat, Preston Muslim Forum, Preston
Khaleel Ur Rahman, The Deen Project / Activist, Derby
Ilyas Abu Yusuf, Imam, Bolton
Yaseen Ahmedabadi, General Secretary, Nuneaton Muslim Society
Munir Aya, Volunteer, Zakaria Mosque, Bolton
Raheema Bux, Community Worker, Blackburn
Nasima Begum, Solicitor, Luton
Mustafa Mustafa, Youth Worker, South London
Amanpaul Dhaliwal,, London
Khaleel Ur Rahman, The Deen Project / Activist, Derby
Tahir Alam, PHD Student, SOAS, London
Dr Ajmal Hussain, GP, Stoke on Trent
Hafiz Kasim Javed, Community Activist, Rochdale
Ahmed Desai, Imam, Bradford
Muhammad Hansrot, Imam, Croydon, London
Muhammad Rahman, Teacher, Ilford, London
Rizwan Ahmed, Imam, Sheffield
Abdul Rehman Saleem, Khateeb / Activist, London
Inamul Hussain Yusuf, Teacher, Bolton
Dr Suhel Ahmed, GP, Bolton
Nasar Khan, Quran Project Volunteer, Birmingham
Asad Zaman, Imam & Chair Inter-Mosque Sports Association, Cheadle
Dr Siema Iqbal, GP, Manchester
Professor Yasin Patel, Senior Professor and Academic, London
Mohammed Makeen Salloo, Imam, Walsall
Qasim Asad, Community Voice, Blackburn
Ibrahim Bismillah, Director of Darul Ihsan Academy, Bradford
Faisal Mahmood, President, UKIM Peterborough

Joint UK Muslim Statement



A Monthly Newsmagazine from Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought 

Manchester, Friday May 26, 2017 
While the Theresa May regime in Britain has put the country on maximum alert with armed troops patrolling the streets following the Manchester terrorist bombing of Monday (May 23) night, news has emerged that the alleged bomber, Salman Abedi was known to the authorities. 

The British Home Secretary Amber Rudd has also confirmed this saying British-born Abedi of Libyan parents, was known “up to a point” to the British intelligence services and police. 

Her “up to a point” remark is misleading. Muslims in Britain had warned the British anti-terrorism hotline, not once but twice and as early as 2011, about Abedi’s radical views and behavior, according to Mohammed Shafiq of the Ramadan Foundation in Manchester. 

In a May 25 interview with CBC’s ‘As it Happens’ program, Shafiq told the host Carol Off that on two separate occasions Muslim leaders in Manchester contacted the anti-terrorism squad hotline warning them about Abedi. Why the British authorities took no action against him raises serious questions. 

Shafiq’s revelation also puts to rest the scandalous allegation that Muslims do not condemn terrorist attacks and that they do not cooperate with the authorities. Several terrorist acts in Britain have been thwarted as a result of information provided by Muslims, according to Shafiq. 

Interestingly, a day after Shafiq’s interview, a search of the CBC website found no link to his interview. Instead, the ‘As it Happens’ lead story is about a pregnant teenage girl at an American school who has been barred from participating in the graduation ceremony to receive her diploma because she broke the school rule by indulging in immoral activity and becoming pregnant. Immoral conduct, according to the student, Maddi Runkles, is quite common at the Maryland school, indeed the norm. She just happened to be unfortunate to get pregnant. 

The British regime has said that MI5, the domestic intelligence agency, was aware of Abedi’s extremist views as early as 2011, according to the New York Times (May 25, 2017). The regime, however, insisted, he was “only a peripheral figure, and not someone whose behavior would have warranted immediate action.” 

There is clearly more to the Abedi story than the regime in London is admitting. As Tony Cartalucci, writing on his landdestroyer blog [May 24, 2017] ( rists.html) pointed out: “As suspected and as was the case in virtually all recent terror attacks carried out in Europe - including both in France and Belgium - the suspect involved in the recent Manchester blast which killed 22 and injured scores more was previously known to British security and intelligence agencies.” 

Quoting from the Rupert Murdoch-owned right wing daily, The Telegraph, “Salman Abedi named as the Manchester suicide bomber - what we know about him,” Cartalucci points out: “Salman Abedi, 22, who was reportedly known to the security services, is thought to have returned from Libya as recently as this week.” 

The same Telegraph article would also admit (emphasis added), according to Cartalucci: “A group of Gaddafi dissidents, who were members of the outlawed Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), lived within close proximity to Abedi in Whalley Range [in Manchester]. 

“Among them was Abd al-Baset Azzouz, a father-of-four from Manchester, who left Britain to run a terrorist network in Libya overseen by Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama bin Laden’s successor as leader of al-Qaeda. 

“Azzouz, 48, an expert bomb-maker, was accused of running an al-Qaeda network in eastern Libya. The Telegraph reported in 2014 that Azzouz had 200 to 300 militants under his control and was an expert in bombmaking. 

“Another member of the Libyan community in Manchester, Salah Aboaoba told Channel 4 news in 2011 that he had been fund raising for LIFG while in the city. Aboaoba had claimed he had raised funds at Didsbury mosque, the same mosque attended by Abedi.” 

While the British regime had placed the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) on its list of terrorist organizations as early as 2005 (it is listed on the UK government website as a terrorist group: Proscribed terrorist groups or organisations) as had the US State Department, the group continued to operate freely in Manchester, even fund-raising. 

The fact is, Western regimes have for a long time used terrorist groups and organizations to advance their nefarious agendas worldwide. Al Qaeda, al Nusra Front and ISIS/ISIL are all part of this, as was LIFG that was used to overthrow the government of Muammar Qaddafi. 

But terrorists can also go their own way, as happened with al Qaeda and LIFG. The terrorists rampaging in Iraq, Syria and a number of other places have all had close links with the LIFG and with the Western regimes. Weapons taken from Libyan army depots have also been used in Syria, courtesy of the American CIA. 

The Manchester bombing, while tragic, shows once again the sordid conduct of Western regimes and their intelligence agencies in using groups and patsies to carry out their criminal agendas. 

It is ordinary people—in this case the people of Manchester—that end up paying the price for such policies. 

While visiting injured teens in a Manchester hospital, Queen Elizabeth said what the terrorist did was “very wicked”. 

Perhaps, her Majesty should also have said what her own government, led by Teresa May and her predecessors have done over the years is not just wicked, it is absolutely criminal. 

But who should hold these war criminals to account? 


The truth is that the tragic deaths in Manchester only serve to remind us of the bloodshed and insecurity that wreaks havoc across this chaotic world dominated by capitalist states. What had seemed to afflict the Muslim world daily for the past 17 years, now sadly seems to occur periodically in Britain and Europe. The numbers may not be as great but the sense of fear is nonetheless apparent. 

Politicians may escalate security measures but sadly nothing will change whilst they are unwilling to admit the causes of terror in the world – whether the oppression of rulers who are courted for their petrodollars; or the interventionist policies of the colonial powers that have destabilised whole regions of the world for decades. 

Muslims in Britain can speak out strongly against such violence, but should not let it change our Islamic way of life, that is targeted by politicians every time such events happen, ironically exposing the contradictions in the rights and values they pretend to be upholding. 

Muslims should present Islam as a solution and not to allow this beautiful deen to be put in the dock. When Islam was the basis of intellectual and political life in the Muslim world, the world witnessed a phenomenal civilisation, able to create a society where justice and security was for all citizens, and where technology and education flourished. And since the colonisation of that part of the world, it has seen nothing but instability, insecurity and despair. 

Muslims should hold firmly to their deen (way of life) and always speak out for what is right and against all terror – not selectively according to what the media highlights. 

Muslims should interact with the wider society and explain Islam – its beliefs and values – and its alternative political vision for the Muslim world. A vision that will actually break the political mould of this world as it currently is. That is so badly needed, and without it, anarchy and vigilantism like this is unlikely to cease. 

We have a message for those Muslims who may be angry and frustrated at the oppression and injustice they see created by western states. Unlike western states, we do not take innocent human lives in order to achieve political objectives. The carnage created by western states angers Muslims and non-Muslims across the globe. However, any action a Muslim does must be in accordance with the Shariah – and Islam does not advocate that such indiscriminate killings are the way to change the situation. Rather the Messenger ? gave a method for change – which was a political and intellectual struggle based on his model, that led to the establishment of a righteous Islamic Khilafah state, that looked after people’s affairs by Islam and carried the light of Islam to the world. That is the only way to success in this world and the next. Any alternative, whether adopting a secular method, or the way of indiscriminate killing, can only lead to the Hellfire. 


In the aftermath of tragedies like Manchester – when Islam becomes part of the causal narrative – media interviewers are adamant that Muslim leaders and personalities do more to ‘condemn’ such events. 

Even to question a Muslim to condemn such an incident is insulting, as it questions their human concern towards others, expecting them to prove it more than others. 

Muslim do not need to join in that sort of condemnation, that is part of a political agenda to demonise their community, their deen and distract from the real issues – especially when our own creed, which demands we follow only what Allah Azza wa Jall and what the Prophet (saw) commanded, has made it clear that the action of taking innocent lives is explicitly forbidden. 

No community should feel the need to apologise for tragedies that they did not initiate, encourage, or carry out. Expecting Muslim families, colleagues and individuals to apologise is unfair and unjust, and implies a collective blame. 

When the MP for Batley, Jo Cox was murdered by a man radicalised by far right/fascist ideas, the media did not call on all white British men to apologise. 

When a woman is assaulted, no one expects all men to apologise. 

When Western governments waged wars across the Middle East with tens of thousands of people losing their life, or leaving them with horrendous life changing injuries, no government has offered an apology for such inhumane activities- even though they have been directly involved. 

So it is nonsense to expect Muslims to apologise for what happened in Manchester. 

What needs to be examined is the cause of this global chaos and bloodshed. 

It is not Islam that is dominant in the world, it is global capitalism and two hundred years of a colonial foreign policy that has brought us to this sorry state. 

This is where the narrative needs to begin and end. 


Upon the tragic deaths of children in Manchester, as expected, the media and politicians have once again turned their head towards the Muslim community. Whilst we may never know what caused Salman Ramadan Abedi to murder and maim so many young people at Manchester Arena on Monday night, the conclusions have already been implied by the politicians and media, that due to his connections with war-torn Libya and Syria, he was likely to have been “radicalised by an extremist ideology.” There is now a debate taking place once again about the effeciveness of the Government’s PREVENT strategy which is based upon the theory of radicalisation. 

Since the time of Tony Blair where he infamously stated that the ‘rules of the game have changed’, the British government has pinned the actions of a very few to an entire community. The strategy has been heavily criticised throughout the last few years for discriminating against Muslims and viewing them as a suspect community, but now it is being given vindication by some in light of the Manchester attacks. Ironically, what the attacks show is that the PREVENT strategy has failed to prevent such attacks. 

Preventing violent extremism has been the mantra but it has not been able to ‘prevent’ horrors in mainland Britain. Instead it has focused on law abiding Muslims in every town and city in England. It has questioned Muslim children in Schools and Colleges, leaving them psychologically damaged by the experience. It has integrated draconian legislation into statutory services, where normal Muslim families have not been able to travel without disclosing their entire family makeup and political views. Mosques have been ordered to curtail legitimate Islamic opinions and integrate their views with British values. 

An entire community has been viewed with suspicion and contempt, because of deficient narratives engineered by a government that is adamant to change Islam, not to prevent violence. 

The Muslim community in Britain has endured a torturous journey of villification from the media and the government, for actions it did not commit. 

Whilst Islamic values have been criticised and British values celebrated, Muslims have been at the receiving end of endless violation of their core Islamic ideas. This has included indisputable beliefs around world politics, segregation, caliphate, marriage and many other aspects. 

However the time has now arrived to question the government in these difficult times- what has the Prevent agenda and anti- radicalisation agenda actually achieved? It did not stop the murder of Lee Rigby. Neither did it stop the dreadful killing of children in Manchester. 

So what has it acheived, apart from marginalizing the Muslim community, instilling fear and creating discord between Muslims and non Muslims? Absolutely nothing. 

The Muslims in Britain have exhausted themselves, by making it explicitly clear that Islam does not allow the killing of innocent men, women and children. However the British government still throws out the narrative that there is a problem with Islam and that the community needs to do more to tackle ‘extremism’.

The very few committing violent atrocities is not because of Islam. It is not because Muslims encourage these actions. It is not because of Mosques preaching hate to people. It most definitely is not because Muslim women cannot speak English, as indicated by the poorly articulated Casey Report. 

Indeed Islam does not associate itself to any of these crimes – therefore it is the apt time for the government to take a deep look at itself and ask another question – why do these violent actions take place?

British foreign policy will be a good starting point. It’s actions in Iraq and Afghanistan will provide an insight. Propping up tyrants in the Middle East and the rest of the Muslim world will give a perspective. 

An attempt to answer these questions will provide an understanding of the reason why the very few engage in physical violence. The Prevent agenda does not even attempt to answer or engage the real narrative, rather it completely misses the point and as one critic described “barking up the wrong tree.” 

Muslims will continue to challenge the perverse government narratives of extremism and question draconian policies- especially as they have achieved no outcome whatsoever. 

“O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, be he rich or poor, Allah is a Better Protector to both (than you). So follow not the lusts (of your hearts), lest you may avoid justice, and if you distort your witness or refuse to give it, verily, Allah is Ever Well-Acquainted with what you do” {An-Nisa: 135} 

Critical questions - such as why the security service MI5 maintained terrorist "assets" in Manchester and why the government did not warn the public of the threat in their midst - remain unanswered, deflected by the promise of an internal "review".

The alleged suicide bomber, Salman Abedi, was part of an extremist group, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, that thrived in Manchester and was cultivated and used by MI5 for more than 20 years.

The LIFG is proscribed by Britain as a terrorist organisation which seeks a "hardline Islamic state" in Libya and "is part of the wider global Islamist extremist movement, as inspired by al-Qaida".

The "smoking gun" is that when Theresa May was Home Secretary, LIFG jihadists were allowed to travel unhindered across Europe and encouraged to engage in "battle": first to remove Mu'ammar Gadaffi in Libya, then to join al-Qaida affiliated groups in Syria.

Last year, the FBI reportedly placed Abedi on a "terrorist watch list" and warned MI5 that his group was looking for a "political target" in Britain. Why wasn't he apprehended and the network around him prevented from planning and executing the atrocity on 22 May?

These questions arise because of an FBI leak that demolished the "lone wolf" spin in the wake of the 22 May attack - thus, the panicky, uncharacteristic outrage directed at Washington from London and Donald Trump's apology.

The Manchester atrocity lifts the rock of British foreign policy to reveal its Faustian alliance with extreme Islam, especially the sect known as Wahhabism or Salafism, whose principal custodian and banker is the oil kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Britain's biggest weapons customer.

This imperial marriage reaches back to the Second World War and the early days of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. The aim of British policy was to stop pan-Arabism: Arab states developing a modern secularism, asserting their independence from the imperial west and controlling their resources. The creation of a rapacious Israel was meant to expedite this. Pan-Arabism has since been crushed; the goal now is division and conquest.

In 2011, according to Middle East Eye, the LIFG in Manchester were known as the "Manchester boys". Implacably opposed to Mu'ammar Gadaffi, they were considered high risk and a number were under Home Office control orders - house arrest - when anti-Gadaffi demonstrations broke out in Libya, a country forged from myriad tribal enmities.

Suddenly the control orders were lifted. "I was allowed to go, no questions asked," said one LIFG member. MI5 returned their passports and counter-terrorism police at Heathrow airport were told to let them board their flights.

The overthrow of Gaddafi, who controlled Africa's largest oil reserves, had been long been planned in Washington and London. According to French intelligence, the LIFG made several assassination attempts on Gadaffi in the 1990s - bank-rolled by British intelligence. In March 2011, France, Britain and the US seized the opportunity of a "humanitarian intervention" and attacked Libya. They were joined by Nato under cover of a UN resolution to "protect civilians".

Last September, a House of Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee inquiry concluded that then Prime Minister David Cameron had taken the country to war against Gaddafi on a series of "erroneous assumptions" and that the attack "had led to the rise of Islamic State in North Africa". The Commons committee quoted what it called Barack Obama's "pithy" description of Cameron's role in Libya as a "shit show".

In fact, Obama was a leading actor in the "shit show", urged on by his warmongering Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and a media accusing Gaddafi of planning "genocide" against his own people. "We knew... that if we waited one more day," said Obama, "Benghazi, a city the size of Charlotte, could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world."

The massacre story was fabricated by Salafist militias facing defeat by Libyan government forces. They told Reuters there would be "a real bloodbath, a massacre like we saw in Rwanda". The Commons committee reported, "The proposition that Mu'ammar Gaddafi would have ordered the massacre of civilians in Benghazi was not supported by the available evidence".

Britain, France and the United States effectively destroyed Libya as a modern state. According to its own records, Nato launched 9,700 "strike sorties", of which more than a third hit civilian targets. They included fragmentation bombs and missiles with uranium warheads. The cities of Misurata and Sirte were carpet-bombed. Unicef, the UN children's organisation, reported a high proportion of the children killed "were under the age of ten".

More than "giving rise" to Islamic State - ISIS had already taken root in the ruins of Iraq following the Blair and Bush invasion in 2003 - these ultimate medievalists now had all of north Africa as a base. The attack also triggered a stampede of refugees fleeing to Europe.

Cameron was celebrated in Tripoli as a "liberator", or imagined he was. The crowds cheering him included those  secretly supplied and trained by Britain's SAS and inspired by Islamic State, such as the "Manchester boys".

To the Americans and British, Gadaffi's true crime was his iconoclastic independence and his plan to abandon the petrodollar, a pillar of American imperial power. He had audaciously planned to underwrite a common African currency backed by gold, establish an all-Africa bank and promote economic union among poor countries with prized resources. Whether or not this would have happened, the very notion was intolerable to the US as it prepared to "enter" Africa and bribe African governments with military "partnerships".

The fallen dictator fled for his life. A Royal Air Force plane spotted his convoy, and in the rubble of Sirte, he was sodomised with a knife by a fanatic described in the news as "a rebel".

Having plundered Libya's $30 billion arsenal, the "rebels" advanced south, terrorising towns and villages. Crossing into sub-Saharan Mali, they destroyed that country's fragile stability. The ever-eager French sent planes and troops to their former colony "to fight al-Qaida", or the menace they had helped create.

On 14 October, 2011, President Obama announced he was sending special forces troops to Uganda to join the civil war there. In the next few months, US combat troops were sent to South Sudan, Congo and the Central African Republic. With Libya secured, an American invasion of the African continent was under way, largely unreported.

In London, one of the world's biggest arms fairs was staged by the British government.  The buzz in the stands was the "demonstration effect in Libya". The London Chamber of Commerce and Industry held a preview entitled "Middle East: A vast market for UK defence and security companies". The host was the Royal Bank of Scotland, a major investor in cluster bombs, which were used extensively against civilian targets in Libya. The blurb for the bank's arms party lauded the "unprecedented opportunities for UK defence and security companies."

Last month, Prime Minister Theresa May was in Saudi Arabia, selling more of the £3 billion worth of British arms which the Saudis have used against Yemen. Based in control rooms in Riyadh, British military advisers assist the Saudi bombing raids, which have killed more than 10,000 civilians. There are now clear signs of famine. A Yemeni child dies every 10 minutes from preventable disease, says Unicef.

The Manchester atrocity on 22 May was the product of such unrelenting state violence in faraway places, much of it British sponsored. The lives and names of the victims are almost never known to us.

This truth struggles to be heard, just as it struggled to be heard when the London Underground was bombed on July 7, 2005. Occasionally, a member of the public would break the silence, such as the east Londoner who walked in front of a CNN camera crew and reporter in mid-platitude. "Iraq!" he said. "We invaded Iraq. What did we expect? Go on, say it."

At a large media gathering I attended, many of the important guests uttered "Iraq" and "Blair" as a kind of catharsis for that which they dared not say professionally and publicly.

Yet, before he invaded Iraq, Blair was warned by the Joint Intelligence Committee that "the threat from al-Qaida will increase at the onset of any military action against Iraq... The worldwide threat from other Islamist terrorist groups and individuals will increase significantly".

Just as Blair brought home to Britain the violence of his and George W Bush's blood-soaked "shit show", so David Cameron, supported by Theresa May, compounded his crime in Libya and its horrific aftermath, including those killed and maimed in Manchester Arena on 22 May.

The spin is back, not surprisingly. Salman Abedi acted alone. He was a petty criminal, no more. The extensive network revealed last week by the American leak has vanished. But the questions have not.

Why was Abedi able to travel freely through Europe to Libya and back to Manchester only days before he committed his terrible crime? Was Theresa May told by MI5 that the FBI had tracked him as part of an Islamic cell planning to attack a "political target" in Britain?

In the current election campaign, the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has made a guarded reference to a "war on terror that has failed". As he knows, it was never a war on terror but a war of conquest and subjugation. Palestine. Afghanistan. Iraq. Libya. Syria. Iran is said to be next. Before there is another Manchester, who will have the courage to say that?

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