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Archive for July 10th, 2007

Israelis Caught Red Handed Planning ‘Arab’ Terrorism

Posted by musliminsuffer on July 10, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Israelis Caught Red Handed Planning ‘Arab’ Terrorism

The Voice of the White House

8-12-6


WASHINGTON, DC — “Here, as promised, is an interesting conversation that somehow accidentally got intercepted and transcribed. There are lots more where this came from!”

Transcription of telephone conversation on August 3, 2006

from
Israeli Embassy, Washington D.C. Telephone Number (202) 364-5582.
to
unidentified individual at AIPAC , Washington D.C., Telephone Number (202) 639-5201
Commenced 1821 hrs, concluded 1826 hrs.
Speaker A: Reuven Azar – Counselor for Political Affairs, Embassy of Israel
Speaker B: Unidentified individual located at AIPAC headquarters

A. Well, things are going as well as expected, better perhaps than expected. There is military progress there (Lebanon) and we have wonderful cooperation here.

B. For sure, but don’t forget the dangers in having too much cooperation. All right for this moment but in the long run, this can certainly backfire on us. You know, we are seen as being too much influential with the Bush people.

A. I wouldn’t worry too much about that. The media is certainly not to worry about and most Americans really do not care about things there (Lebanon) The main point is that by the time the U.S. makes itself felt at the UN, we will have accomplished our goals and established the buffer we need.

B. Absolutely butthere is still the future to think about.

A. Who cares? Once we establish the buffer, the rest is just shit. It will all be hidden soon in the coming press reports of Arab ‘attacks’ on the U.S. This is for the voting in November. You know, ‘many Arab groups will for sure attack American targets.’ They (the U.S. Government) will choose so-called target areas where they need the most support. We don’t need to worry about Miami, Skokie or Beverly Hills after all. (Laughter) and this is a little crude but the public here is terribly stupid and the warning color days worked before, didn’t they?

B. Yes, but there are second thoughts on all of that. If you go to the well too often, there are problems. People lose interest.

A. The British are being such swine about this, aren’t they? They are causing trouble about the bombs these days.

B. Just a few troublemakers. The press here does not cover that and who reads the foreign media? Most Americans can’t read anyway. But there is danger that the U.N. might be motivated to move a peace keeping force into Lebanon and this might negate our purposes. Hesbollah must be utterly wiped out and Syria must be made to realizewith force if necessarythat it cannot supply the terrorists with more Iranian rockets. Maybe an accidental airstrike on Syrian military units could say to them to mind their own business. We have done this before.

A. It is too bad that we cannot teach Tehran a lesson. The ultimate goal would be to have America attack Iran but I am afraid the American military is dead set against this

B. They are all Jew-haters up there.

A. For sure, but we know that Americans can bomb the shit out of Tehran and hopefully kill off a number of the militants, probably disrupt their atomic program and teach all of the area that the U.S. means business. We support them, they support us. But they cannot send in ground troops and if we did that, our losses would not be borne at home. As it is, there are the usual malcontents bleating about the Lebanon business.

B. They are just afraid they will get a rocket on their house and there are the same ones here. The Lieberman business is not that good, after all. Yes, of course he is a liberal Democrat but his support of us is too obvious. He could be a little critical too. We see the Bush people doing this, just to keep the people quiet. Yes, they say, see, we too are actually critical of Israel.

A. But not too critical, right?

B. No, never that. Too many pictures of dead jerks for example. We need to see more pictures of grieving Israelis, mourning lost sons and children. Can’t we get more of those? Fuck the Arabs.

A. I feel sorry for the American media. Their instincts are to defend dead Arab children

B. But nits make lice, don’t they? Who mourns dead Israeli children?

A. I’m sure there would be more on this but not enough children are dead.

B. Not yet, anyway. But if they rocket Tel Aviv

A. Well, then, for sure.

B. We should have pictures all ready if that happens. Do you think it will?

A. Tehran directs that part of the business. We don’t have as much inside gen on them there

B. The fucking Russians are on their side.

A. We have always had trouble with those Slavic pricks. First weapons

B. The Chinese assholes also do this, don’t forget.

A. No one around here will forget that, be assured. The time will come when we get them too. Say we cut off their oil from the Gulf? What then? They will dance to our tunes then, not Tehran’s.

B. If we had oil

A. But we do not. The filthy Putin has the oil. They should get rid of him while they are at it. Our people almost had it but he forced them out.

B. They can always come back. The people here would really support this. We put our people back in after we get rid of Putin and then a guaranteed flow of oil to America.

A. And Russia is off the chessboard too.

B. They all want that badly here, too. Cheney is the strongest supporter of cutting the nuts off of Russia. The military here are against fishing in troubled waters.

A. They can’t be replaced, Bush can’t sack them all.

B. Set an example. Sack a few more of the assholes and the rest will shut up. They always do. So, send me your latest list and I’ll see what I can do here.

A. Send someone to pick it up. The mail here is awful. It will take a week if some black doesn’t steal it, throw it away or wipe his ass with it.

B. Tomorrow for sure.

A. OK. And one other matter. We feel very strongly that if the current people get kicked out in November, as it looks like they might, we owe them to help them stay right where they are. It has taken a long time and much money to get all the ducks lined up and we don’t want to have to start in again. We can generally rely on sympathy from the Democrats but they will not support any more military ventures over there. That’s for sure.

B. Then what do you suggest?

A. The terrorism card works wonders. We were going to release a statement that Arabs were going to attack an El Al plane on takeoff, with rockets.

B. Probably leftovers from the CIA businesses in Afghanistan.

A. Let’s not get into that now. But this scare would only affect flights to Israel and we don’t think it would have any impact on the election.

B. Well then, why not have these attacks aimed at American aircraft? Where would they attack from?

A. Say at the perimeter fence lines at airports. Or better still, why not a plan cooked up to smuggle explosives on board transatlantic flights to or from America? Something clever that will catch the public imagination.

B. That stupid bomb in the shoe routine?

A. Don’t knock it. It worked, didn’t it? We can always find some suckers with a bent to this we can fill up with real enthusiasm and then turn them in, complete with plans. They actually believe they are going to paradise and fuck virgins and we have another propaganda coup. Let’s give this some effort. You know, a terrified public will not want to change horses in mid stream. So far, the Rove people have a good line: If you’re against the Republicans, you’re encouraging the evil terrorists sthick.

B. Well, they did that with the alert warnings and it workedmore or less.

A. Face it, they aren’t too bright here. They ran it into the ground, had to fire Ridge and Ashcroft, one of our very best friends ever, and put those things on ice. They need to discover a huge plot but in America

A. You know, as you said, infiltrate a group of crazies, plant things on them, call the FBI

B. Oh, they do that themselves. That business in Florida was pathetic

A. But it worked, didn’t it?

B. For about ten minutes at six o’clock for about three days.

A. Well, think about it and get back to me.

B. Right.

A. What’s the situation with your two people? Are they going to be tried or not?

B. Probably not, as far as the Bush people are concerned. But it is up to the courts and we are very careful not to fuck with them. They are expected to have the charges thrown out soon

A. Well, I’ll pray for them. I have to go now so I’ll get back to you later. Don’t forget to send someone for the list

B. OK.

(Conversation terminated)

This is just the tip of a very large iceberg. Other inside information will be published in upcoming editions. On Monday, August 14, I will put up a complete listing of all members of Congress who have received money from AIPAC, state by state, amount by amount.

Dear old crazy, and defeated, Lieberman, shrieking with rage at seeing all his extra income flowing down the drain, has received over $227,758 so far from AIPAC . Tell me, children, what did he do for all that money? There are many more names and amounts to entertain you as well as to give you a concrete guide as to your voting in November next.

As far as the recent stories about “terrorist attacks” coming from England, don’t believe them. It is well known around the White House that this invented story is designed to offset the crushing defeat of the Administration’s darling liberal, Lieberman. This theme, by the way, according to position papers circulating here, is the main theme of the November elections. The thesis? Why the Iron Trio of Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld have protected, and will continue to protect, innocent America from evil terrorist threats.

Of course, if you vote Democratic, all bets are off and armies of rabid Muslim (read non Christian) fascists will at once invade America, to rape, loot and pillage while setting off bombs in the Des Moines Public Library. Please note that in spite of all the shit the Bush people have spread around about “proctecting America” there has not been one proven incident of any real terrorist group caught or no attack thwarted. The WMD lies were the father and the “terrorist threats” and the illegitimate child of this corrupt and dangerous gang.”

source:
http://www.rense.com/general73/red.htm

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Zionism Pimping Jewish girls out to America’s young men

Posted by musliminsuffer on July 10, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Zionism Pimping Jewish girls out to America’s young men

Khalid Amayreh, thepeoplesvoice.org


maxim_israel.jpg

Zionism lies and steals and murders. This is Zionism’s unholy trinity.

Occupied Jerusalem, July 8, 2007

In a brazen effort to make Israel’s Nazi-like oppression of Palestinians look romantic, seductive and sexy, the quasi- pornographic American magazine, Maxim, has featured a photo-spread of topless and semi-nude Israeli female soldiers, apparently in order to show Israel’s “human side.”

On the magazine’s on-line edition, the following introductory phrase ” Are the women of the Israeli Defense Forces the world’s sexiest? Yes, ” is printed next to a semi-naked IDF female soldier.

According to the BBC, the Israeli consulate in New York came up with the idea “as part of a public relations drive to improve the image of the country within the US.”

Maxim targets young American men and is believed to attract as many as 200,000 readers. Hence the obscene feat of utilizing the naked bodies of young Israeli women to trick young Yankees to “fall in love” with the Wehrmacht and Gestapo of our time, the Israeli occupation army.

According to Israeli officials in charge of hasbara (propaganda) efforts, the message behind the pornographic advertisement is to show America’s youngsters that the “Jewish” state is not only about violence, death and conflict.

Defending the undignified feat, David Saranga, Israel’s consul for media and public affairs in New York, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Maxim was a “serious magazine,” and that his job was “to promote Israel as a normal country, particularly among the magazine’s young male readership.”

Another Israeli official said “we have to be frank about this. In America, sex sells.”

Well, maybe it does, for a brief moment. But in the long run, an act that only cheapens one’s people will undoubtedly boomerang.

The Nazi blondes, after all, were probably sexier and far more beautiful than their Israeli counterparts. But they failed to save the Third Reich. The same thing can be said about Israeli sex objects, whose evil state and evil army are no less than a reincarnation of Nazi Germany and its army.

Apart from the depravity of Zionist mentality, it is hard to understand how pimping young Jewish girls out to American “studs” will improve Israel’s image in the US and convince Americans, young and old, men and women, that Israel is “a light upon nations” and “the apple of God’s right eye,” as the Kookians of Gush Emunim keep telling us.

This is a question for Jews to answer and reflect upon.

Furthermore, it is well known that Americans have been breathing and consuming Zionist hasbara for many generations. So what has really happened to Zionism’s media empire in North America to necessitate the cheap utilization of Jewish women’s bodies to sell Israel?

The public selling of Israeli women’s flesh for political expediency is, of course, by no means a new invention. Israel and Zionism resorted to this cheap tactic from the very inception of Zionism.

During the two decades preceding the creation of the “Jewish” state, the Zionist movement relied heavily on the “whores of Zion” to trick Arab landowners into selling or ceding their land to the Jewish Agency.

The trick was simple. A young and extremely beautiful East European Jewish female would seduce an Arab mukhtar (clan notable) into sleeping with her, and in the process, she would ask him for a “small favor,” namely to cede some of his land as “proof” of his love for her.

In some cases, the usually intoxicated or sedated mukhtar would oblige and put his seal at the bottom of the previously carefully- prepared document.

The sleazy but effective tactic continues to be used by the Israeli state, especially the Shin Beth, Israel’s domestic security agency.

Indeed, since 1967, when Israel occupied the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, the Shin Beth used “Iskat” or sexual blackmail to recruit informers, middle-men whose main job is to purchase land and property from Arabs in order to transfer it later to Jewish ownership.

The mechanism has not changed much since the pre-state days when trickery and seduction were the main tools. Now, a third element has been added, namely “coercion.”

The “operation” starts with identifying a target, mostly an elderly Palestinian landowner who often happens to be conservative and unsophisticated.

Then the Shin Beth would arrest the man, give him sedatives, strip him of his clothes, and then bring in a prostitute who would play with him while “everything” was being filmed.

And when the “encounter” is over, and the man wakes up, a Shin Beth officer will try to blackmail him: either you sell us the land or we will expose you.!!!

Some, usually a few, victims, fearing being put to shame in their respective community, would succumb to the blackmail.

Others prove really defiant, preferring shame and disrepute over treason.

I personally know a man in the Hebron region who was arrested, sedated and filmed with a whore, and when the Israeli Shin Beth officer eventually sought to blackmail him into selling his land, the man stood bravely, telling the officer, ” do what you may, expose me, I don’t care, but I won’t give you my land.”

Of course, Zionism’s moral cheapness doesn’t stop at using the bodies of women to reap propagandistic and other benefits.

Zionism lies and steals and murders. This is Zionism’s unholy trinity. This is why it is very difficult, if not impossible, to make peace with Zionism. This is why Zionism must be dismantled before we can even dream of real peace in Palestine and the Middle East.

-###-

July 8, 2007 © 2007 Khalid Amayreh

source:
http://www.thepeoplesvoice.org/cgi-bin/blogs/voices.php/2007/07/08/p18158#more18158

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

History of the Car Bomb

Posted by musliminsuffer on July 10, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

History of the Car Bomb

New-generation car bombers are graduates of CIA terrorism schools

Mike Davis, Globalresearch.ca


July 8, 2007

In a column on March 23, 2006 (A Vision, Bruised and Dented), David Brooks of the New York Times’ wrote about “the rise of what Richard Lowry of the National Review calls the ‘To Hell With Them’ Hawks.” In part, Brooks characterized these hawks as being conservatives who “look at car bombs and cartoon riots and wonder whether Islam is really a religion of peace.” One of the advantages of history is that you have to check such thoughts at the door. If Islam can’t be considered a “religion of peace,” thanks to what Mike Davis calls “the quotidian workhorse of urban terrorism,” then at least its jihadists join a roiling crowd of less-than-peaceful car-bombers that has included Jews, Christians, Hindus, anarchists, French colonials, Mafiosos, members of the Irish Republican Army, and CIA operatives among others.

The car bomb seems such a weapon of the moment that who even knew it had an 80 year-long, tortured history. But Mike Davis, whose most recent projects include the only significant book on the Avian flu, The Monster at Our Door, and Planet of Slums, a startling analysis of the way significant parts of our planet have been rapidly urbanizing and de-industrializing all at once, almost invariably produces the unexpected. This week, Tomdispatch offers his two-part history of the car bomb, a series that puts one of the more terrifying phenomena of our moment into a new perspective and shines a dazzling light into any number of dark corners of our recent past. It will, at some future point, be expanded into a small book and so Davis would like to hear from anyone with information on other car bomb campaigns of the last half century. (Tomgram)

Part I The Poor Man’s Air Force: History of the Car Bomb

“You have shown no pity to us! We will do likewise. We will dynamite you! — Anarchist warning (1919)

On a warm September day in 1920, a few months after the arrest of his comrades Sacco and Vanzetti, a vengeful Italian anarchist named Mario Buda parked his horse-drawn wagon near the corner of Wall and Broad Streets, directly across from J. P. Morgan Company. He nonchalantly climbed down and disappeared, unnoticed, into the lunchtime crowd. A few blocks away, a startled postal worker found strange leaflets warning: “Free the Political Prisoners or it will be Sure Death for All of You!” They were signed: “American Anarchist Fighters.” The bells of nearby Trinity Church began to toll at noon. When they stopped, the wagon — packed with dynamite and iron slugs — exploded in a fireball of shrapnel.

“The horse and wagon were blown to bits,” writes Paul Avrich, the celebrated historian of American anarchism who uncovered the true story. “Glass showered down from office windows, and awnings twelve stories above the street burst into flames. People fled in terror as a great cloud of dust enveloped the area. In Morgan’s offices, Thomas Joyce of the securities department fell dead on his desk amid a rubble of plaster and walls. Outside scores of bodies littered the streets.”

Buda was undoubtedly disappointed when he learned that J.P. Morgan himself was not among the 40 dead and more than 200 wounded — the great robber baron was away in Scotland at his hunting lodge. Nonetheless, a poor immigrant with some stolen dynamite, a pile of scrap metal, and an old horse had managed to bring unprecedented terror to the inner sanctum of American capitalism.

His Wall Street bomb was the culmination of a half-century of anarchist fantasies about avenging angels made of dynamite; but it was also an invention, like Charles Babbage’s Difference Engine, far ahead of the imagination of its time. Only after the barbarism of strategic bombing had become commonplace, and when air forces routinely pursued insurgents into the labyrinths of poor cities, would the truly radical potential of Buda’s “infernal machine” be fully realized.

Buda’s wagon was, in essence, the prototype car bomb: the first use of an inconspicuous vehicle, anonymous in almost any urban setting, to transport large quantities of high explosive into precise range of a high-value target. It was not replicated, as far as I have been able to determine, until January 12, 1947 when the Stern Gang drove a truckload of explosives into a British police station in Haifa, Palestine, killing 4 and injuring 140. The Stern Gang (a pro-fascist splinter group led by Avraham Stern that broke away from the right-wing Zionist paramilitary Irgun) would soon use truck and car bombs to kill Palestinians as well: a creative atrocity immediately reciprocated by British deserters fighting on the side of Palestinian nationalists.

Vehicle bombs thereafter were used sporadically — producing notable massacres in Saigon (1952), Algiers (1962), and Palermo (1963) — but the gates of hell were only truly opened in 1972, when the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) accidentally, so the legend goes, improvised the first ammonium nitrate-fuel oil (ANFO) car bomb. These new-generation bombs, requiring only ordinary industrial ingredients and synthetic fertilizer, were cheap to fabricate and astonishingly powerful: they elevated urban terrorism from the artisanal to the industrial level, and made possible sustained blitzes against entire city centers as well as the complete destruction of ferro-concrete skyscrapers and residential blocks.

The car bomb, in other words, suddenly became a semi-strategic weapon that, under certain circumstances, was comparable to airpower in its ability to knock out critical urban nodes and headquarters as well as terrorize the populations of entire cities. Indeed, the suicide truck bombs that devastated the U.S. embassy and Marine barracks in Beirut in 1983 prevailed — at least in a geopolitical sense — over the combined firepower of the fighter-bombers and battleships of the U.S. Sixth Fleet and forced the Reagan administration to retreat from Lebanon.

Hezbollah’s ruthless and brilliant use of car bombs in Lebanon in the 1980s to counter the advanced military technology of the United States, France, and Israel soon emboldened a dozen other groups to bring their insurgencies and jihads home to the metropolis.

Some of the new-generation car bombers were graduates of terrorism schools set up by the CIA and Pakistani intelligence (the ISI), with Saudi financing, in the mid-1980s to train mujahedin to terrorize the Russians then occupying Kabul. Between 1992 and 1998, 16 major vehicle bomb attacks in 13 different cities killed 1,050 people and wounded nearly 12,000. More importantly from a geopolitical standpoint, the IRA and Gama’a al-Islamiyya inflicted billions of dollars of damage on the two leading control-centers of the world economy — the City of London (1992, 1993, and 1996) and lower Manhattan (1993) — and forced a reorganization of the global reinsurance industry.

In the new millennium, 85 years after that first massacre on Wall Street, car bombs have become almost as generically global as iPods and HIV-AIDS, cratering the streets of cities from Bogota to Bali. Suicide truck bombs, once the distinctive signature of Hezbollah, have been franchised to Sri Lanka, Chechnya/Russia, Turkey, Egypt, Kuwait, and Indonesia. On any graph of urban terrorism, the curve representing car bombs is rising steeply, almost exponentially. U.S.-occupied Iraq, of course, is a relentless inferno with more than 9,000 casualties — mainly civilian — attributed to vehicle bombs in the two-year period between July 2003 and June 2005. Since then, the frequency of car-bomb attacks has dramatically increased: 140 per month in the fall of 2005, 13 in Baghdad on New Year’s Day 2006 alone. If roadside bombs or IEDs are the most effective device against American armored vehicles, car bombs are the weapon of choice for slaughtering Shiite civilians in front of mosques and markets and instigating an apocalyptic sectarian war.

Under siege from weapons indistinguishable from ordinary traffic, the apparatuses of administration and finance are retreating inside “rings of steel” and “green zones,” but the larger challenge of the car bomb seems intractable. Stolen nukes, Sarin gas, and anthrax may be the “sum of our fears,” but the car bomb is the quotidian workhorse of urban terrorism. Before considering its genealogy, however, it may be helpful to summarize those characteristics that make Buda’s wagon such a formidable and undoubtedly permanent source of urban insecurity.

First, vehicle bombs are stealth weapons of surprising power and destructive efficiency. Trucks, vans, or even SUVs can easily transport the equivalent of several conventional 1,000-pound bombs to the doorstep of a prime target. Moreover, their destructive power is still evolving, thanks to the constant tinkering of ingenious bomb-makers. We have yet to face the full horror of semi-trailer-sized explosions with a lethal blast range of 200 yards or of dirty bombs sheathed in enough nuclear waste to render mid-Manhattan radioactive for generations.

Second, they are extraordinarily cheap: 40 or 50 people can be massacred with a stolen car and maybe $400 of fertilizer and bootlegged electronics. Ramzi Yousef, the mastermind of the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center, bragged that his most expensive outlay was in long-distance phone calls. The explosive itself (one half ton of urea) cost $3,615 plus the $59 per day rental for a ten-foot-long Ryder van. In contrast, the cruise missiles that have become the classic American riposte to overseas terrorist attacks cost $1.1 million each.

Third, car bombings are operationally simple to organize. Although some still refuse to believe that Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols didn’t have secret assistance from a government or dark entity, two men in the proverbial phone booth — a security-guard and a farmer — successfully planned and executed the horrendous Oklahoma City bombing with instructional books and information acquired from the gun-show circuit.

Fourth, like even the ‘smartest’ of aerial bombs, car bombs are inherently indiscriminate: “Collateral damage” is virtually inevitable. If the logic of an attack is to slaughter innocents and sow panic in the widest circle, to operate a “strategy of tension,” or just demoralize a society, car bombs are ideal. But they are equally effective at destroying the moral credibility of a cause and alienating its mass base of support, as both the IRA and the ETA in Spain have independently discovered. The car bomb is an inherently fascist weapon.

Fifth, car bombs are highly anonymous and leave minimal forensic evidence. Buda quietly went home to Italy, leaving William Burns, J. Edgar Hoover, and the Bureau of Investigation (later, to be renamed the FBI) to make fools of themselves as they chased one false lead after another for a decade. Most of Buda’s descendants have also escaped identification and arrest. Anonymity, in addition, greatly recommends car bombs to those who like to disguise their handiwork, including the CIA, the Israeli Mossad, the Syrian GSD, the Iranian Pasdaran, and the Pakistani ISI — all of whom have caused unspeakable carnage with such devices.

The members of the Stern Gang were ardent students of violence, self-declared Jewish admirers of Mussolini who steeped themselves in the terrorist traditions of the pre-1917 Russian Socialist-Revolutionary Party, the Macedonian IMRO, and the Italian Blackshirts. As the most extreme wing of the Zionist movement in Palestine — “fascists” to the Haganah and “terrorists” to the British — they were morally and tactically unfettered by considerations of diplomacy or world opinion. They had a fierce and well-deserved reputation for the originality of their operations and the unexpectedness of their attacks. On January 12, 1947, as part of their campaign to prevent any compromise between mainstream Zionism and the British Labor government, they exploded a powerful truck bomb in the central police station in Haifa, resulting in 144 casualties. Three months later, they repeated the tactic in Tel Aviv, blowing up the Sarona police barracks (5 dead) with a stolen postal truck filled with dynamite.

In December 1947, following the UN vote to partition Palestine, full-scale fighting broke out between Jewish and Arab communities from Haifa to Gaza. The Stern Gang, which rejected anything less than the restoration of a biblical Israel, now gave the truck bomb its debut as a weapon of mass terror. On January 4, 1948, two men in Arab dress drove a truck ostensibly loaded with oranges into the center of Jaffa and parked it next to the New Seray Building, which housed the Palestinian municipal government as well as a soup-kitchen for poor children. They cooly lingered for coffee at a nearby café before leaving a few minutes ahead of the detonation.

“A thunderous explosion,” writes Adam LeBor in his history of Jaffa, “then shook the city. Broken glass and shattered masonry blew out across Clock Tower Square. The New Seray’s centre and side walls collapsed in a pile of rubble and twisted beams. Only the neo-classical façade survived. After a moment of silence, the screams began, 26 were killed, hundreds injured. Most were civilians, including many children eating at the charity kitchen.” The bomb missed the local Palestinian leadership who had moved to another building, but the atrocity was highly successful in terrifying residents and setting the stage for their eventual flight.

It also provoked the Palestinians to cruel repayment in kind. The Arab High Committee had its own secret weapon — blond-haired British deserters, fighting on the side of the Palestinians. Nine days after the Jaffa bombing, some of these deserters, led by Eddie Brown, a former police corporal whose brother had been murdered by the Irgun, commandeered a postal delivery truck which they packed with explosives and detonated in the center of Haifa’s Jewish quarter, injuring 50 people. Two weeks later, Brown, driving a stolen car and followed by a five-ton truck driven by a Palestinian in a police uniform, successfully passed through British and Haganah checkpoints and entered Jerusalem’s New City. The driver parked in front of the Palestine Post, lit the fuse, and then escaped with Brown in his car. The newspaper headquarters was devastated with 1 dead and 20 wounded.

According to a chronicler of the episode, Abdel Kader el-Husseini, the military leader of the Arab Higher Committee, was so impressed by the success of these operations — inadvertently inspired by the Stern Gang — that he authorized an ambitious sequel employing six British deserters. “This time three trucks were used, escorted by a stolen British armored car with a young blond man in police uniform standing in the turret.” Again, the convoy easily passed through checkpoints and drove to the Atlantic Hotel on Ben Yehuda Street. A curious night watchman was murdered when he confronted the gang, who then drove off in the armored car after setting charges in the three trucks. The explosion was huge and the toll accordingly grim: 46 dead and 130 wounded.

The window of opportunity for such attacks — the possibility of passing from one zone to another — was rapidly closing as Palestinians and Jews braced for all-out warfare, but a final attack prefigured the car bomb’s brilliant future as a tool of assassination. On March 11, the official limousine of the American consul-general, flying the stars and stripes and driven by the usual chauffeur, was admitted to the courtyard of the heavily-guarded Jewish Agency compound. The driver, a Christian Palestinian named Abu Yussef, hoped to kill Zionist leader David Ben Gurion, but the limousine was moved just before it exploded; nonetheless, 13 officials of the Jewish Foundation Fund died and 40 were injured.

This brief but furious exchange of car bombs between Arabs and Jews would enter into the collective memory of their conflict, but would not be resumed on a large scale until Israel and its Phalangist allies began to terrorize West Beirut with bombings in 1981: a provocation that would awake a Shiite sleeping dragon. Meanwhile, the real sequel was played out in Saigon: a series of car and motorcycle bomb atrocities in 1952-53 that Graham Greene incorporated into the plot of his novel, The Quiet American, and which he portrayed as secretly orchestrated by his CIA operative Alden Pyle, who is conspiring to substitute a pro-American party for both the Viet-Minh (upon whom the actual bombings would be blamed) and the French (who are unable to guarantee public safety).

The real-life Quiet American was the counterinsurgency expert Colonel Edward Lansdale (fresh from victories against peasant Communists in the Philippines), and the real leader of the ‘Third Force’ was his protégé, General Trinh Minh The of the Cao Dai religious sect. There is no doubt, writes The’s biographer, that the general “instigated many terrorist outrages in Saigon, using clockwork plastic charges loaded into vehicles, or hidden inside bicycle frames with charges. Notably, the Li An Minh [The’s army] blew up cars in front of the Opera House in Saigon in 1952. These ‘time-bombs’ were reportedly made of 50-kg ordnance, used by the French air force, unexploded and collected by the Li An Minh.”

Lansdale was dispatched to Saigon by Allen Dulles of the CIA some months after the Opera atrocity (hideously immortalized in a Life photographer’s image of the upright corpse of a rickshaw driver with both legs blown off), which was officially blamed on Ho Chi Minh. Although Lansdale was well aware of General The’s authorship of these sophisticated attacks (the explosives were hidden in false compartments next to car gas tanks), he nonetheless championed the Cao Dai warlord as a patriot in the mould of Washington and Jefferson. After either French agents or Vietminh cadre assassinated The, Landsdale eulogized him to a journalist as “a good man. He was moderate, he was a pretty good general, he was on our side, and he cost twenty-five thousand dollars.”

Whether by emulation or reinvention, car bombs showed up next in another war-torn French colony — Algiers during the last days of the pied noirs or French colonial settlers. Some of the embittered French officers in Saigon in 1952-53 would also become cadres of the Organisation de l’Armé Secrete (OAS), led by General Raoul Salan. In April 1961, after the failure of its uprising against French President Charles de Gaulle, who was prepared to negotiate a settlement with the Algerian rebels, the OAS turned to terrorism — a veritable festival de plastique — with all the formidable experience of its veteran paratroopers and legionnaires. Its declared enemies included De Gaulle himself, French security forces, communists, peace activists (including philosopher and activist Jean-Paul Sartre), and especially Algerian civilians. The most deadly of their car bombs killed 62 Moslem stevedores lining up for work at the docks in Algiers in May 1962, but succeeded only in bolstering the Algerian resolve to drive all the pied-noirs into the sea.

The next destination for the car bomb was Palermo, Sicily. Angelo La Barbera, the Mafia capo of Palermo-Center, undoubtedly paid careful attention to the Algerian bombings and may even have borrowed some OAS expertise when he launched his devastating attack on his Mafia rival, “Little Bird” Greco, in February 1963. Greco’s bastion was the town of Ciaculli outside Palermo where he was protected by an army of henchmen. La Barbera surmounted this obstacle with the aid of the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. “This dainty four-door family saloon,” writes John Dickie in his history of the Cosa Nostra, “was one of the symbols of Italy’s economic miracle — ‘svelte, practical, comfortable, safe and convenient,’ as the adverts proclaimed.” The first explosive-packed Giulietta destroyed Greco’s house; the second, a few weeks later, killed one of his key allies. Greco’s gunmen retaliated, wounding La Barbera in Milan in May; in response, La Barbera’s ambitious lieutenants Pietro Torreta and Tommaso Buscetta (later to become the most famous of all Mafia pentiti) unleashed more deadly Giuliettas.

On June 30, 1963, “the umpteenth Giulietta stuffed with TNT” was left in one of the tangerine groves that surround Ciaculli. A tank of butane with a fuse was clearly visible in the back seat. A Giulietta had already exploded that morning in a nearby town, killing two people, so the carabinieri were cautious and summoned army engineers for assistance. “Two hours later two bomb disposal experts arrived, cut the fuse, and pronounced the vehicle safe to approach. But when Lt. Mario Malausa made to inspect the contents of the boot, he detonated the huge quantity of TNT it contained. He and six other men were blown to pieces by an explosion that scorched and stripped the tangerine trees for hundreds of metres around.” (The site is today marked by one of the several monuments to bomb victims in the Palermo region.)

Before this “First Mafia War” ended in 1964, the Sicilian population had learned to tremble at the very sight of a Giulietta and car bombings had become a permanent part of the Mafia repertoire. They were employed again during an even bloodier second Mafia war or Matanza in 1981-83, then turned against the Italian public in the early 1990s after the conviction of Cosa Nostra leaders in a series of sensational “maxi-trials.” The most notorious of these blind-rage car bombings — presumably organized by ‘Tractor’ Provenzano and his notorious Corleonese gang — was the explosion in May 1993 that damaged the world-famous Uffizi Gallery in the heart of Florence and killed 5 pedestrians, injuring 40 others.

The first-generation car bombs — Jaffa-Jerusalem, Saigon, Algiers, and Palermo — were deadly enough (with a maximum yield usually equal to several hundred pounds of TNT), but required access to stolen industrial or military explosives. Journeymen bomb-makers, however, were aware of a homemade alternative – notoriously dangerous to concoct, but offering almost unlimited vistas of destruction at a low cost. Ammonium nitrate is a universally available synthetic fertilizer and industrial ingredient with extraordinary explosive properties, as witnessed by such accidental cataclysms as an explosion at a chemical plant in Oppau, Germany in 1921 — the shock waves were felt 150 miles away and only a vast crater remained where the plant had been — and a Texas City disaster in 1947 (600 dead and 90% of the town structurally damaged). Ammonium nitrate is sold in half-ton quantities affordable by even the most cash-strapped terrorist, but the process of mixing it with fuel oil to create an ANFO explosive is more than a little tricky as the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) found out in late 1971.

“The car bomb was [re]discovered entirely by accident,” explains journalist Ed Maloney in his The Secret History of the IRA, “but its deployment by the Belfast IRA was not. The chain of events began in late December 1971 when the IRA’s quartermaster general, Jack McCabe, was fatally injured in an explosion caused when an experimental, fertilizer-based homemade mix known as the ‘black stuff’ exploded as he was blending it with a shovel in his garage on the northern outskirts of Dublin. [Provisionals’] GHQ warned that the mix was too dangerous to handle, but Belfast had already received a consignment, and someone had the idea of disposing of it by dumping it in a car with a fuse and a timer and leaving it somewhere in downtown Belfast.” The resulting explosion made a big impression upon the Belfast leadership.

The “black stuff” — which the IRA soon learned how to handle safely — freed the underground army from supply-side constraints: the car bomb enhanced destructive capacity yet reduced the likelihood of Volunteers being arrested or accidentally blown up. The ANFO-car bomb combination, in other words, was an unexpected military revolution, but one fraught with the potential for political and moral disaster. “The sheer size of the devices,” emphasizes Moloney, “greatly increased the risk of civilian deaths in careless or bungled operations.”

The IRA Army Council led by Sean MacStiofain, however, found the new weapon’s awesome capabilities too seductive to worry about ways in which its grisly consequences might backfire on them. Indeed, car bombs reinforced the illusion, shared by most of the top leadership in 1972, that the IRA was one final military offensive away from victory over the English government. Accordingly, in March 1972, two car bombs were sent into Belfast city center followed by garbled phone warnings that led police to inadvertently evacuate people in the direction of one of the explosions: Five civilians were killed along with two members of the security forces. Despite the public outcry as well as the immediate traffic closure of the Royal Avenue shopping precinct, the Belfast Brigade’s enthusiasm for the new weapon remained undiminished and the leadership plotted a huge attack designed to bring normal commercial life in Northern Ireland to an abrupt halt. MacStiofain boasted of an offensive of “the utmost ferocity and ruthessness” that would wreck the “colonial infrastructure.”

On Friday, July 21st, IRA Volunteers left 20 car bombs or concealed charges on the periphery of the now-gated city center, with detonations timed to follow one another at approximately five-minute intervals. The first car bomb exploded in front of the Ulster Bank in north Belfast and blew both legs off a Catholic passerby; successive explosions damaged two railroad stations, the Ulster bus depot on Oxford Street, various railway junctions, and a mixed Catholic-Protestant residential area on Cavehill Road. “At the height of the bombing, the center of Belfast resembled a city under artillery fire; clouds of suffocating smoke enveloped buildings as one explosion followed another, almost drowning out the hysterical screams of panicked shoppers.” A series of telephoned IRA warnings just created more chaos, as civilians fled from one explosion only to be driven back by another. Seven civilians and two soldiers were killed and more than 130 people were seriously wounded.

Although not an economic knockout punch, “Bloody Friday” was the beginning of a “no business as usual” bombing campaign that quickly inflicted significant damage on the Northern Ireland economy, particularly its ability to attract private and foreign investment. The terror of that day also compelled authorities to tighten their anti-car-bomb “ring of steel” around the Belfast city center, making it the prototype for other fortified enclaves and future “green zones.” In the tradition of their ancestors, the Fenians, who had originated dynamite terrorism in the 1870s, Irish Republicans had again added new pages to the textbook of urban guerrilla warfare. Foreign aficionados, particularly in the Middle East, undoubtedly paid close attention to the twin innovations of the ANFO car bomb and its employment in a protracted bombing campaign against an entire urban-regional economy.

What was less well understood outside of Ireland, however, was the enormity of the wound that the IRA’s car bombs inflicted on the Republican movement itself. Bloody Friday destroyed much of the IRA’s heroic-underdog popular image, produced deep revulsion amongst ordinary Catholics, and gave the British government an unexpected reprieve from the worldwide condemnation it had earned for the Blood Sunday massacre in Derry and internment without trial. Moreover, it gave the Army the perfect pretext to launch massive Operation Motorman: 13,000 troops led by Centurion tanks entered the “no-go” areas of Derry and Belfast and reclaimed control of the streets from the Republican movement. The same day, a bloody, bungled car bomb attack on the village of Claudy in County Londonderry killed 8 people. (Protestant Loyalist paramilitary groups — who never bothered with warnings and deliberately targeted civilians on the other side — would claim Bloody Friday and Claudy as sanctions for their triple car bomb attack on Dublin during afternoon rush hour on May 17, 1974 which left 33 dead, the highest one-day toll in the course of the “Troubles.”)

The Belfast debacle led to a major turnover in IRA leadership, but failed to dispel their almost cargo-cult-like belief in the capacity of car bombs to turn the tide of battle. Forced onto the defensive by Motorman and the backlash to Bloody Friday, they decided to strike at the very heart of British power instead. The Belfast Brigade planned to send ten car bombs to London via the Dublin-Liverpool ferry using fresh volunteers with clean records, including two young sisters, Marion and Dolours Price. Snags arose and only four cars arrived in London; one of these was detonated in front of the Old Bailey, another in the center of Whitehall, close to the Prime Minister’s house at Number 10 Downing Street. One hundred and eighty Londoners were injured and one was killed. Although the 8 IRA bombers were quickly caught, they were acclaimed in the West Belfast ghettoes and the operation became a template for future Provisional bombing campaigns in London, culminating in the huge explosions that shattered the City of London and unnerved the world insurance industry in 1992 and 1993.

Never in history has a single city been the battlefield for so many contesting ideologies, sectarian allegiances, local vendettas, or foreign conspiracies and interventions as Beirut in the early 1980s. Belfast’s triangular conflicts — three armed camps (Republican, Loyalist, and British) and their splinter groups — seemed straightforward compared to the fractal, Russian-doll-like complexity of Lebanon’s civil wars (Shiite versus Palestinian, for example) within civil wars (Maronite versus Moslem and Druze) within regional conflicts (Israel versus Syria) and surrogate wars (Iran versus the United States) within, ultimately, the Cold War. In the fall of 1971, for example, there were 58 different armed groups in West Beirut alone. With so many people trying to kill each other for so many different reasons, Beirut became to the technology of urban violence what a tropical rainforest is to the evolution of plants.

Car bombs began to regularly terrorize Moslem West Beirut in the fall of 1981, apparently as part of an Israeli strategy to evict the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) from Lebanon. The Israeli secret service, the Mossad, had previously employed car bombs in Beirut to assassinate Palestinian leaders (novelist Ghassan Kanfani in July 1972, for example), so no one was especially surprised when evidence emerged that Israel was sponsoring the carnage. According to Middle Eastern schoalr Rashid Khalidi, “A sequence of public confessions by captured drivers made clear these [car bombings] were being utilized by the Israelis and their Phalangist allies to increase the pressure on the PLO to leave.”

Journalist Robert Fisk was in Beirut when an “enormous [car] bomb blew a 45-foot-crater in the road and brought down an entire block of apartments. The building collapsed like a concertina, crushing more than 50 of its occupants to death, most of them Shia refugees from southern Lebanon.” Several of the car bombers were captured and confessed that the bombs had been rigged by the Shin Bet, the Israeli equivalent of the FBI or the British Special Branch. But if such atrocities were designed to drive a wedge of terror between the PLO and Lebanese Moslems, they had the inadvertent result (as did the Israeli air force’s later cluster-bombing of civilian neighborhoods) of turning the Shias from informal Israeli allies into shrewd and resolute enemies.

The new face of Shiite militancy was Hezbollah, formed in mid-1982 out of an amalgamation of Islamic Amal with other pro-Khomeini groupuscules. Trained and advised by the Iranian Pasdaran in the Bekaa Valley, Hezbollah was both an indigenous resistance movement with deep roots in the Shiite slums of southern Beirut and, at the same time, the long arm of Iran’s theocratic revolution. Although some experts espouse alternative theories, Islamic Amal/Hezbollah is usually seen as the author, with Iranian and Syrian assistance, of the devastating attacks on American and French forces in Beirut during 1983. Hezbollah’s diabolic innovation was to marry the IRA’s ANFO car bombs to the kamikaze — using suicide drivers to crash truckloads of explosives into the lobbies of embassies and barracks in Beirut, and later into Israeli checkpoints and patrols in southern Lebanon.

The United States and France became targets of Hezbollah and its Syrian and Iranian patrons after the Multinational Force in Beirut, which supposedly had landed to allow for the safe evacuation of the PLO from that city, evolved into the informal and then open ally of the Maronite government in its civil war against the Moslem-Druze majority. The first retaliation against President Reagan’s policy occurred on April 18, 1983, when a pickup truck carrying 2,000 pounds of ANFO explosives suddenly swerved across traffic into the driveway of the oceanfront U.S. embassy in Beirut. The driver gunned the truck past a startled guard and crashed through the lobby door. “Even by Beirut standards,” writes former CIA agent Robert Baer, “it was an enormous blast, shattering windows. The USS Guadalcanal, anchored five miles off the coast, shuddered from the tremors. At ground zero, the center of the seven-story embassy lifted up hundreds of feet into the air, remained suspended for what seemed an eternity, and then collapsed in a cloud of dust, people, splintered furniture, and paper.”

Whether as a result of superb intelligence or sheer luck, the bombing coincided with a visit to the embassy of Robert Ames, the CIA’s national intelligence officer for the Near East. It killed him (“his hand was found floating a mile offshore, the wedding ring still on his finger”) and all six members of the Beirut CIA station. “Never before had the CIA lost so many officers in a single attack. It was a tragedy from which the agency would never recover.” It also left the Americans blind in Beirut, forcing them to scrounge for intelligence scraps from the French embassy or the British listening station offshore on Cyprus. (A year later, Hezbollah completed their massacre of the CIA in Beirut when they kidnapped and executed the replacement station chief, William Buckley.) As a result, the Agency never foresaw the coming of the mother-of-all-vehicle-bomb attacks.

Over the protests of Colonel Gerahty, the commander of the U.S. Marines onshore in Beirut, Ronald Reagan’s National Security Advisor, Robert McFarlane, ordered the Sixth Fleet in September to open fire on Druze militia who were storming Lebanese Army Forces positions in the hills above Beirut — bringing the United States into the conflict brazenly on the side of the reactionary Amin Gemayel government. A month later, a five-ton Mercedes dump truck hurled past sandbagged Marine sentries and smashed through a guardhouse into the ground floor of the “Beirut Hilton,” the U.S. military barracks in a former PLO headquarters next to the international airport. The truck’s payload was an incredible 12,000 pounds of high explosives. “It is said to have been the largest non-nuclear blast ever [deliberately] detonated on the face of the earth.” “The force of the explosion,” continues Eric Hammel in his history of the Marine landing force, “initially lifted the entire four-story structure, shearing the bases of the concrete support columns, each measuring fifteen feet in circumference and reinforced by numerous one and three quarter inch steel rods. The airborne building then fell in upon itself. A massive shock wave and ball of flaming gas was hurled in all directions.” The Marine (and Navy) death toll of 241 was the Corps’ highest single-day loss since Iwo Jima in 1945.

Meanwhile, another Hezbollah kamikaze had crashed his explosive-laden van into the French barracks in West Beirut, toppling the eight-story structure, killing 58 soldiers. If the airport bomb repaid the Americans for saving Gemayal, this second explosion was probably a response to the French decision to supply Saddam Hussein with Super-Etendard jets and Exocet missiles to attack Iran. The hazy distinction between local Shiite grievances and the interests of Tehran was blurred further when two members of Hezbollah joined with 18 Iraqi Shias to truck-bomb the U.S. embassy in Kuwait in mid-December. The French embassy, the control tower at the airport, the main oil refinery and an expatriate residential compound were also targeted in what was clearly a stern warning to Iran’s enemies.

Following another truck bombing against the French in Beirut as well as deadly attacks on Marine outposts, the Multinational Force began to withdraw from Lebanon in February 1984. It was Reagan’s most stunning geopolitical defeat. In the impolite phrase of Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward, “Essentially we turned tail and ran and left Lebanon.” American power in Lebanon, added Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, was neutralized by “just 12,000 pounds of dynamite and a stolen truck.”

[This article — a preliminary sketch for a book-length study — will appear next year in Indefensible Space: The Architecture of the National Insecurity State (Routledge 2007), edited by Michael Sorkin.]

Mike Davis is the author most recently of The Monster at Our Door: The Global Threat of Avian Flu (The New Press) and Planet of Slums (Verso). He lives in San Diego.

Part II. Car Bombs with Wings: The CIA’s Car Bomb University (the 1980s)

“The CIA officers that Yousef worked with closely impressed upon him one rule: never use the terms sabotage or assassination when speaking with visiting congressmen.” — Steve Coll, Ghost Wars

Gunboat diplomacy had been defeated by car bombs in Lebanon, but the Reagan administration and, above all, CIA Director William Casey were left thirsting for revenge against Hezbollah. “Finally in 1985,” according to the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward in Veil, his book on Casey’s career, “he worked out with the Saudis a plan to use a car bomb to kill [Hezbollah leader] Sheikh Fadlallah who they determined was one of the people behind, not only the Marine barracks, but was involved in the taking of American hostages in Beirut… It was Casey on his own, saying, ‘I’m going to solve the big problem by essentially getting tougher or as tough as the terrorists in using their weapon — the car bomb.'”

The CIA’s own operatives, however, proved incapable of carrying out the bombing, so Casey subcontracted the operation to Lebanese agents led by a former British SAS officer and financed by Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar. In March 1984, a large car bomb was detonated about 50 yards from Sheikh Fadlallah’s house in Bir El-Abed, a crowded Shiite neighborhood in southern Beirut. The sheikh wasn’t harmed, but 80 innocent neighbors and passersby were killed and 200 wounded. Fadlallah immediately had a huge “MADE IN USA” banner hung across the shattered street, while Hezbollah returned tit for tat in September when a suicide truck driver managed to break through the supposedly impregnable perimeter defenses of the new U.S. embassy in eastern (Christian) Beirut, killing 23 employees and visitors.

Despite the Fadlallah fiasco, Casey remained an enthusiast for using urban terrorism to advance American goals, especially against the Soviets and their allies in Afghanistan. A year after the Bir El-Abed massacre, Casey won President Reagan’s approval for NSDD-166, a secret directive that, according to Steve Coll in Ghost Wars, inaugurated a “new era of direct infusions of advanced U.S. military technology into Afghanistan, intensified training of Islamist guerrillas in explosives and sabotage techniques, and targeted attacks on Soviet military officers.”

U.S. Special Forces experts would now provide high-tech explosives and teach state-of-the-art sabotage techniques, including the fabrication of ANFO (ammonium nitrate-fuel oil) car bombs, to Pakistani intelligence service (or ISI) officers under the command of Brigadier Mohammed Yousaf. These officers, in turn, would tutor thousands of Afghan and foreign mujahedin, including the future cadre of al-Qaeda, in scores of training camps financed by the Saudis. “Under ISI direction,” Coll writes, “the mujahedin received training and malleable explosives to mount car-bomb and even camel-bomb attacks in Soviet-occupied cities, usually designed to kill Soviet soldiers and commanders. Casey endorsed these despite the qualms of some CIA career officers.”

Mujahedin car bombers, working with teams of snipers and assassins, not only terrorized uniformed Soviet forces in a series of devastating attacks in Afghanistan but also massacred leftwing intelligentsia in Kabul, the country’s capital. “Yousaf and the Afghan car-bombing squads he trained,” writes Coll, “regarded Kabul University professors as fair game,” as well as movie theaters and cultural events. Although some members of the National Security Council reportedly denounced the bombings and assassinations as “outright terrorism,” Casey was delighted with the results. Meanwhile, “by the late 1980s, the ISI had effectively eliminated all the secular, leftist, and royalist political parties that had first formed when Afghan refugees fled communist rule.” As a result, most of the billions of dollars that the Saudis and Washington pumped into Afghanistan ended up in the hands of radical Islamist groups sponsored by the ISI. They were also the chief recipients of huge quantities of CIA-supplied plastic explosives as well as thousands of advanced E-cell delay detonators.

It was the greatest technology transfer of terrorist technique in history. There was no need for angry Islamists to take car-bomb extension courses from Hezbollah when they could matriculate in a CIA-supported urban-sabotage graduate program in Pakistan’s frontier provinces. “Ten years later,” Coll observes, “the vast training infrastructure that Yousaf and his colleagues built with the enormous budgets endorsed by NSDD-166 — the specialized camps, the sabotage training manuals, the electronic bomb detonators, and so on — would be referred to routinely in America as ‘terrorist infrastructure.'” Moreover the alumni of the ISI training camps like Ramzi Yousef, who plotted the first 1993 World Trade Center attack, or his uncle Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who allegedly designed the second, would soon be applying their expertise on every continent.

Cities under Siege (the 1990s) “The hour of dynamite, terror without limit, has arrived.” — Peruvian Journalist Gustavo Gorritti, 1992

Twenty-first century hindsight makes it clear that the defeat of the U.S. intervention in Lebanon in 1983-84, followed by the CIA’s dirty war in Afghanistan, had wider and more potent geopolitical repercussions than the loss of Saigon in 1975. The Vietnam War was, of course, an epic struggle whose imprint upon domestic American politics remains profound, but it belonged to the era of the Cold War’s bipolar superpower rivalry. Hezbollah’s war in Beirut and south Lebanon, on the other hand, prefigured (and even inspired) the “asymmetric” conflicts that characterize the millennium. Moreover, unlike peoples’ war on the scale sustained by the NLF and the North Vietnamese for more than a generation, car-bombing and suicide terrorism are easily franchised and gruesomely applicable in a variety of scenarios. Although rural guerrillas survive in rugged redoubts like Kashmir, the Khyber Pass, and the Andes, the center of gravity of global insurgency has moved from the countryside back to the cities and their slum peripheries. In this post-Cold-War urban context, the Hezbollah bombing of the Marine barracks has become the gold standard of terrorism; the 9/11 attacks, it can be argued, were only an inevitable scaling-up of the suicide truck bomb to airliners.

Washington, however, was loath to recognize the new military leverage that powerful vehicle bombs offered its enemies or even to acknowledge their surprising lethality. After the 1983 Beirut bombings, the Sandia National Laboratory in New Mexico began an intensive investigation into the physics of truck bombs. Researchers were shocked by what they discovered. In addition to the deadly air blast, truck bombs also produced unexpectedly huge ground waves.

“The lateral accelerations propagated through the ground from a truck bomb far exceed those produced during the peak magnitude of an earthquake.” Indeed, the scientists of Sandia came to the conclusion that even an offsite detonation near a nuclear power plant might “cause enough damage to lead to a deadly release of radiation or even a meltdown.” Yet the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 1986 refused to authorize the emplacement of vehicle barriers to protect nuclear-power installations and made no move to alter an obsolete security plan designed to thwart a few terrorists infiltrating on foot.

Indeed, Washington seemed unwilling to learn any of the obvious lessons of either its Beirut defeat or its secret successes in Afghanistan. The Reagan and Bush administrations appeared to regard the Hezbollah bombings as flukes, not as a powerful new threat that would replicate rapidly in the “blowback” of imperial misadventure and anti-Soviet escapades. Although it was inevitable that other insurgent groups would soon try to emulate Hezbollah, American planners — although partially responsible — largely failed to foresee the extraordinary “globalization” of car bombing in the 1990s or the rise of sophisticated new strategies of urban destabilization that went with it. Yet by the mid-1990s, more cities were under siege from bomb attacks than at any time since the end of World War Two, and urban guerrillas were using car and truck bombs to score direct hits on some of the world’s most powerful financial institutions. Each success, moreover, emboldened groups to plan yet more attacks and recruited more groups to launch their own “poor man’s air force.”

Beginning in April 1992, for example, the occult Maoists of Sendero Luminoso came down from Peru’s altiplano to spread terror throughout the cities of Lima and Callao with increasingly more powerful coche-bombas. “Large supplies of explosives,” the magazine Caretas pointed out, are “freely available in a mining nation,” and the senderistas were generous in their gifts of dynamite: bombing television stations and various foreign embassies as well as a dozen police stations and military camps. Their campaign eerily recapitulated the car bomb’s phylogeny as it progressed from modest detonations to a more powerful attack on the American embassy, then to Bloody-Friday-type public massacres using 16 vehicles at a time. The climax (and Sendero’s chief contribution to the genre) was an attempt to blow up an entire neighborhood of “class enemies”: a huge ANFO explosion in the elite Miraflores district on the evening of July 16 that killed 22, wounded 120, and destroyed or damaged 183 homes, 400 businesses and 63 parked cars. The local press described Miraflores as looking “as if an aerial bombardment had flattened the area.”

If one of the virtues of an air force is the ability to reach halfway around the world to surprise enemies in their beds, the car bomb truly grew wings during 1993 as Middle Eastern groups struck at targets in the Western Hemisphere for the first time. The World Trade Center attack on February 26 was organized by master al-Qaeda bomb-maker Ramzi Yousef working with a Kuwaiti engineer named Nidal Ayyad and immigrant members of the Egyptian group, Gama’a al-Islamiyya, headed by Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman (whose U.S. visa had reputedly been arranged by the CIA). Their extraordinary ambition was to kill tens of thousands of New Yorkers with a powerful lateral blast that would crack the foundations of one WTC tower and topple it on its twin. Yousef’s weapon was a Ryder van packed with an ingenious upgrade of the classic IRA and Hezbollah ANFO explosive.

“The bomb itself,” writes Peter Lange in his history of the bombing, “consisted of four cardboard boxes filled with a slurry of urea nitrate and fuel oil, with waste paper as a binder. The boxes were surrounded by four-foot tanks of compressed hydrogen. They were connected by four 20-foot-long slow-burning fuses of smokeless powder wrapped in fabric. Yousef balanced on his lap four vials of nitroglycerine.” The conspirators had no difficulty parking the van next to the load-bearing south wall of the North Tower, but the massive explosive proved too small — excavating a four-story deep crater in the basement, killing 6 and injuring 1,000 people, but failing to bring the tower down. “Our calculations were not very accurate this time,” wrote Ayyad in a letter. “However we promise you that next it would will [sic] be very precise and the Trade Center will be one of our targets.”

Two weeks after the WTC attack, a car bomb almost as powerful exploded in the underground parking garage of the Bombay Stock Exchange, severely damaging the 28-story skyscraper and killing 50 office workers. Twelve other car or motorcycle bombs soon detonated at other prestige targets, killing an additional 207 people and injuring 1,400. The bombings were revenge for sectarian riots a few months earlier in which Indian Hindus had killed hundreds of Indian Moslems. The attacks were reputedly organized from Dubai by exiled Bombay underworld king Dawood Ibrahim at the behest of Pakistani intelligence. According to one account, Dawood sent three boats from Dubai to Karachi where they were loaded with military explosives. Indian customs officials were then bribed to look the other way while the “black soup” was smuggled into Bombay.

Corrupt officials were also rumored to have facilitated the suicide car bombing of the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on March 17, 1993 which killed 30 and injured 242. The next year, a second “martyr,” later identified as a 29-year-old Hezbollah militant from southern Lebanon, leveled the seven-story Argentine-Israel Mutual Association, slaughtering 85 and wounding more than 300. Both bombers carefully followed the Beirut template; as did the Islamist militant who drove his car into the central police headquarters in Algiers in January 1995, killing 42 and injuring over 280.

But the supreme acolytes of Hezbollah were the Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka, the only non-Moslem group that has practiced suicide car bombings on a large scale. Indeed, their leader Prabhaakaran “made a strategic decision to adopt the method of suicide attack after observing its lethal effectiveness in the 1983 suicide bombings of the US and French barracks in Beirut.” Between their first such operation in 1987 and 2000, they were responsible for twice as many suicide attacks of all kinds as Hezbollah and Hamas combined. Although they have integrated car bombs into regular military tactics (for example, using kamikazes in trucks to open attacks on Sri Lankan army camps), their obsession and “most prized theater of operation” in their struggle for Tamil independence has been the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo, which they first car-bombed in 1987 in a grisly attack on the main bus terminal, burning scores of passengers to death inside crowded buses.

In January 1996, a Black Tiger — as the suicide elite are called — drove a truck containing 440 pounds of military high explosives into the front of the Central Bank Building, resulting in nearly 1,400 casualties. Twenty months later in October 1997 in a more complex operation, the Tigers attacked the twin towers of the Colombo World Trade Center. They managed to maneuver through barricades and set off a car bomb in front of the Center, then battled the police with automatics and grenades. The following March, a suicide mini-bus with shrapnel-filled bombs affixed to its sideboards was detonated outside the main train station in the midst of a huge traffic jam. The 38 dead included a dozen children in a school bus.

The Tamil Tigers are a mass nationalist movement with “liberated territory,” a full-scale army and even a tiny navy; moreover, 20,000 Tiger cadres received secret paramilitary training in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu from 1983 to 1987, courtesy of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and India’s CIA — the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). But such sponsorship literally blew up in the face of the Indian Congress Party leadership when Indira’s son and successor Rajiv was killed by a female Tiger suicide bomber in 1993. Indeed, the all-too-frequent pattern of surrogate terrorism, whether sponsored by the CIA, RAW, or the KGB, has been “return to sender” — most notoriously in the cases of those former CIA “assets,” blind Sheik Rahman and Osama bin Laden.

The Oklahoma City bombing in April 1995 was a different and startling species of blowback, organized by two angry U.S. veterans of the Gulf War rather than by Iraq or any Islamist group. Although conspiracy theorists have made much of a strange coincidence that put Terry Nichols and Ramzi Yousef near each other in Cebu City in the Philippines in November 1994, the design of the attack seems to have been inspired by Timothy McVeigh’s obsession with that devil’s cookbook, The Turner Diaries. Written in 1978, after Bloody Friday but before Beirut, neo-Nazi William Pierce’s novel describes with pornographic relish how white supremacists destroy the FBI headquarters in Washington D.C. with an ANFO truck bomb, then crash a plane carrying a hijacked nuke into the Pentagon.

McVeigh carefully followed Pierce’s simple recipe in the novel (several tons of ammonium nitrate in a parked truck) rather than Yousef’s more complicated WTC formula, although he did substitute nitro racing fuel and diesel oil for ordinary heating oil. Nonetheless, the explosion that slaughtered 168 people in the Alfred Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995 was three times more powerful than any of the truck-bomb detonations that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and other federal agencies had been studying at their test range in New Mexico. Experts were amazed at the radius of destruction: “Equivalent to 4,100 pounds of dynamite, the blast damaged 312 buildings, cracked glass as far as two miles away and inflicted 80 percent of its injuries on people outside the building up to a half-mile away.” Distant seismographs recorded it as a 6.0 earthquake on the Richter scale.

But McVeigh’s good-ole-boy bomb, with its diabolical demonstration of Heartland DIY ingenuity, was scarcely the last word in destructive power; indeed, it was probably inevitable that the dark Olympics of urban carnage would be won by a home team from the Middle East. Although the casualty list (20 dead, 372 wounded) wasn’t as long as Oklahoma City’s, the huge truck bomb that, in June 1996, alleged Hezbollah militants left outside Dhahran’s Khobar Towers — a high-rise dormitory used by U.S. Air Force personnel in Saudi Arabia — broke all records in explosive yield, being the equivalent perhaps of twenty 1,000-pound bombs. Moreover, the death toll might have been as large as the Marine barracks in Lebanon in 1993 save for alert Air Force sentries who began an evacuation shortly before the explosion. Still, the blast (military-grade plastic explosive) left an incredible crater 85-feet wide and 35-feet deep.

Two years later, on August 7, 1998, al Qaeda claimed the championship in mass murder when it crashed suicide truck bombs into the U.S. embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, in a replay of the simultaneous 1993 attacks on the Marines and the French in Beirut. Located near two of the busiest streets in the city without adequate setback or protective glacis, the Nairobi embassy was especially vulnerable, as Ambassador Prudence Bushnell had fruitlessly warned the State Department. In the event, ordinary Kenyans — burnt alive in their vehicles, lacerated by flying glass, or buried in smoldering debris — were the principal victims of the huge explosion, which killed several hundred and wounded more than 5,000. Another dozen people died and almost 100 were injured in Dar-es-Salaam.

Sublime indifference to the collateral carnage caused by its devices, including to innocent Moslems, remains a hallmark of operations organized by the Al-Qaeda network. Like his forerunners Hermann Goering and Curtis LeMay, Osama bin Laden seems to exult in the sheer statistics of bomb damage — the competitive race to ever greater explosive yields and killing ranges. One of the most lucrative of his recent franchises (in addition to air travel, skyscrapers, and public transport) has been car-bomb attacks on Western tourists in primarily Moslem countries, although the October 2002 attack on a Bali nightclub (202 dead) and the July 2005 bombing of hotels in Egypt’s Sharm el-Sheikh (88 dead) almost certainly killed as many local workers as erstwhile “crusaders.”

Form Follows Fear (the 1990s)

“The car bomb is the nuclear weapon of guerrilla warfare.”

— Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer

A “billion-pound explosion”? One meaning, of course, is the TNT yield of three or four Hiroshima-size atomic weapons (which is to say, only a smidgen of the explosive power of a single H-bomb). Alternately, one billion (British) pounds ($1.45 billion) is what the IRA cost the City of London in April 1993 when a blue dump-truck containing a ton of ANFO exploded on Bishopsgate Road across from the NatWest Tower in the heart of the world’s second major financial center. Although one bystander was killed and more than 30 injured by the immense explosion, which also demolished a medieval church and wrecked the Liverpool Street station, the human toll was incidental to the economic damage that was the true goal of the attack. Whereas the other truck bomb campaigns of the 1990s — Lima, Bombay, Colombo, and so forth — had followed Hezbollah’s playbook almost to the letter, the Bishopsgate bomb, which Moloney describes as “the most successful military tactic since the start of the Troubles,” was part of a novel IRA campaign that waged war on financial centers in order to extract British concessions during the difficult peace negotiations that lasted through most of the 1990s.

Bishopsgate, in fact, was the second and most costly of three blockbuster explosions carried out by the elite (and more or less autonomous) South Armagh IRA under the leadership of the legendary “Slab” Murphy. Almost exactly a year earlier, they had set off a truck bomb at the Baltic Exchange in St. Mary Axe that rained a million pounds of glass and debris on surrounding streets, killing 3 and wounding almost 100 people. The damage, although less than Bishopsgate, was still astonishing: about 800 million pounds or more than the approximately 600 million pounds in total damage inflicted over 22 years of bombing in Northern Ireland. Then, in 1996, with peace talks stalled and the IRA Army Council in revolt against the latest cease-fire, the South Armagh Brigade smuggled into England a third huge car bomb that they set off in the underground garage of one of the postmodern office buildings near Canary Wharf Tower in the gentrified London Docklands, killing two and causing nearly $150 million dollars in damage. Total damage from the three explosions was at least $3 billion.

As Jon Coaffee points out in her book on the impact of the bombings, if the IRA like the Tamil Tigers or Al Qaeda had simply wanted to sow terror or bring life in London to a halt, they would have set off the explosions at rush-hour on a business day — instead, they “were detonated at a time when the City was virtually deserted” — and/or attacked the heart of the transport infrastructure, as did the Islamist suicide bombers who blew up London buses and subways in July 2005. Instead, Slab Murphy and his comrades concentrated on what they perceived to be a financial weak link: the faltering British and European insurance industry. To the horror of their enemies, they were spectacularly successful. “The huge payouts by insurance companies,” commented the BBC shortly after Bishopsgate, “contributed to a crisis in the industry, including the near-collapse of the world’s leading [re]insurance market, Lloyds of London.” German and Japanese investors threatened to boycott the City unless physical security was improved and the government agreed to subsidize insurance costs.

Despite a long history of London bombings by the Irish going back to the Fenians and Queen Victoria, neither Downing Street, nor the City of London Police had foreseen this scale of accurately targeted physical and financial damage. (Indeed, Slab Murphy himself might have been surprised; like the original ANFO bombs, these super-bombs were probably a wee bit of serendipity for the IRA.) The City’s response was a more sophisticated version of the “ring of steel” (concrete barriers, high iron fences, and impregnable gates) that had been built around Belfast’s city center after Bloody Friday in 1972. Following Bishopsgate, the financial press clamored for similar protection: “The City should be turned into a medieval-style walled enclave to prevent terrorist attacks.”

What was actually implemented in the City and later in the Docklands was a technologically more advanced network of traffic restrictions and cordons, CCTV cameras, including “24-hour Automated Number Plate Recording (ANPR) cameras, linked to police databases,” and intensified public and private policing. “In the space of a decade,” writes Coaffee, “the City of London was transformed into the most surveilled space in the UK and perhaps the world with over 1500 surveillance cameras operating, many of which are linked to the ANPR system.”

Since September 11, 2001, this anti-terrorist surveillance system has been extended throughout London’s core in the benign guise of Mayor Ken Livingstone’s celebrated “congestion pricing” scheme to liberate the city from gridlock. According to one of Britain’s major Sunday papers:

“The Observer has discovered that MI5, Special Branch and the Metropolitan Police began secretly developing the system in the wake of the 11 September attacks. In effect, the controversial charging scheme will create one of the most daunting defence systems protecting a major world city when it goes live a week tomorrow. It is understood that the system also utilizes facial recognition software which automatically identifies suspects or known criminals who enter the eight-square-mile zone. Their precise movements will be tracked by camera from the point of entry… However, civil liberty campaigners yesterday claimed that millions had been misled over the dual function of the scheme, promoted primarily as a means of reducing congestion in central London.”

The addition in 2003 of this new panopticon traffic scan to London’s already extensive system of video surveillance ensures that the average citizen is “caught on CCTV cameras 300 times a day.” It may make it easier for the police to apprehend non-suicidal terrorists, but it does little to protect the city from well-planned and competently disguised vehicle bomb attacks. Blair’s “Third Way” has been a fast lane for the adoption of Orwellian surveillance and the usurpation of civil liberties, but until some miracle technology emerges (and none is in sight) that allows authorities from a distance to “sniff” a molecule or two of explosive in a stream of rush-hour traffic, the car bombers will continue to commute to work.

The “King” of Iraq (the 2000s)

“Insurgents exploded 13 car bombs across Iraq on Sunday, including eight in Baghdad within a three-hour span.”

— Associated Press news report, January 1, 2006

Car bombs — some 1,293 between 2004 and 2005, according to researchers at the Brookings Institution — have devastated Iraq like no other land in history. The most infamous, driven or left by sectarian jihadists, have targeted Iraqi Shiites in front of their homes, mosques, police stations, and markets: 125 dead in Hilla (February 28, 2005); 98 in Mussayib (July 16); 114 in Baghdad (September 14); 102 in Blad (September 29); 50 in Abu Sayda (November 19); and so on.

Some of the devices have been gigantic, like the stolen fuel-truck bomb that devastated Mussayib, but what is most extraordinary has been their sheer frequency — in one 48-hour-period in July 2005 at least 15 suicide car bombs exploded in or around Baghdad. The sinister figure supposedly behind the worst of these massacres is Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the Jordanian arch-terrorist who reportedly criticized Osama bin Laden for insufficient zeal in attacking domestic enemies like the “infidel Shias.” Al-Zarqawi, it is claimed, is pursuing an essentially eschatological rather than political goal: a cleansing of enemies without end until the Earth is ruled by a single, righteous caliphate.

Toward this end, he – or those invoking his name — seems to have access to an almost limitless supply of bomb vehicles (some of them apparently stolen in California and Texas, then shipped to the Middle East) as well as Saudi and other volunteers eager to martyr themselves in flame and molten metal for the sake of taking a few Shiite school kids, market venders, or foreign “crusaders” with them. Indeed the supply of suicidal madrassa graduates seems to far exceed what the logic of suicide bombing (as perfected by Hezbollah and the Tamil Tigers) actually demands: Many of the explosions in Iraq could just as easily be detonated by remote control. But the car bomb — at least in Al-Zarqawi’s relentless vision — is evidently a stairway to heaven as well as the chosen weapon of genocide.

But Al Zarqawi did not originate car bomb terrorism along the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates; that dark honor belongs to the CIA and its favorite son, Iyad Allawi. As the New York Times revealed in June 2004:

“Iyad Allawi, now the designated prime minister of Iraq, ran an exile organization intent on deposing Saddam Hussein that sent agents into Baghdad in the early 1990s’s to plant bombs and sabotage government facilities under the direction of the CIA, several former intelligence officials say. Dr. Allawi’s group, the Iraqi National Accord, used car bombs and other explosives devices smuggled into Baghdad from northern Iraq… One former Central Intelligence Agency officer who was based in the region, Robert Baer, recalled that a bombing during that period ‘blew up a school bus; schoolchildren were killed.'”

According to one of the Times’ informants, the bombing campaign, dead school kids and all, “was a test more than anything else, to demonstrate capability.” It allowed the CIA to portray the then-exiled Allawi and his suspect group of ex-Baathists as a serious opposition to Saddam Hussein and an alternative to the coterie (so favored by Washington neoconservatives) around Ahmed Chalabi. “No one had any problem with sabotage in Baghdad back then,” another CIA veteran reflected. “I don’t think anyone could have known how things would turn out today.”

Today, of course, car bombs rule Iraq. In a June 2005 article entitled, “Why the car bomb is king in Iraq,” James Dunnigan warned that it was supplanting the roadside bomb (which “are more frequently discovered, or defeated with electronic devices”) as the “most effective weapon” of Sunni insurgents as well as of Al Zarqawi, and thus “the terrorists are building as many as they can.” The recent “explosive growth” in car ownership in Iraq, he added, had made it “easier for the car bombs to just get lost in traffic.”

In this kingdom of the car bomb, the occupiers have withdrawn almost completely into their own forbidden city, the “Green Zone,” and their well-fortified and protected military bases. This is not the high-tech City of London with sensors taking the place of snipers, but a totally medievalized enclave surrounded by concrete walls and defended by M1 Abrams tanks and helicopter gunships as well as an exotic corps of corporate mercenaries (including Gurkhas, ex-Rhodesian commandos, former British SAS, and amnestied Colombian paramilitaries). Once the Xanadu of the Baathist ruling class, the 10-square-kilometer Green Zone, as described by journalist Scott Johnson, is now a surreal theme park of the American way of life:

“Women in shorts and T-shirts jog down broad avenues and the Pizza Inn does a brisk business from the parking lot of the heavily fortified U.S. Embassy. Near the Green Zone Bazaar, Iraqi kids hawk pornographic DVDs to soldiers. Sheik Fuad Rashid, the U.S.-appointed imam of the local mosque, dresses like a nun, dyes his hair platinum blond and claims that Mary Mother of Jesus appeared to him in a vision (hence the getup). On any given night, residents can listen to karaoke, play badminton or frequent one of several rowdy bars, including an invitation-only speakeasy run by the CIA.”

Outside the Green Zone, of course, is the ‘Red Zone’ where ordinary Iraqis can be randomly and unexpectedly blown to bits by car bombers or strafed by American helicopters. Not surprisingly, wealthy Iraqis and members of the new government are clamoring for admission to the security of the Green Zone, but U.S. officials told Newsweek last year that “plans to move the Americans out are ‘fantasy.'” Billions have been invested in the Green Zone and a dozen other American enclaves officially known for a period as “enduring camps,” and even prominent Iraqis have been left to forage for their own security outside the blast walls of these exclusive bubble Americas. A population that has endured Saddam’s secret police, U.N. sanctions, and American cruise missiles, now steels itself to survive the car bombers who prowl poor Shiite neighborhoods looking for grisly martyrdom. For the most selfish reasons, let us hope that Baghdad is not a metaphor for our collective future.

This article — a preliminary sketch for a book-length study — will appear in Indefensible Space: The Architecture of the National Insecurity State (Routledge 2007), edited by Michael Sorkin.

Mike Davis is the author most recently of The Monster at Our Door: The Global Threat of Avian Flu (The New Press) and Planet of Slums (Verso). He lives in San Diego.

source:
http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=6257

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Liberties lost

Posted by musliminsuffer on July 10, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Liberties lost

Besides all his other gifts, Thomas Jefferson appears to have been prophetic

Originally published July 4, 2007

In his first presidential inaugural address in 1801, he ticked off a long list of essential principles of government, featuring highlights of the Bill of Rights, and called preservation of the government “in its whole constitutional vigor” the “anchor of our peace at home and safety abroad.” These principles “should be the creed of our political faith,” he said. “Should we wander from them in moments of error or of alarm, let us hasten to retrace our steps and to regain the road which alone leads to peace, liberty and safety.”

Such moments of error or alarm have sent the government off on dangerous tangents from time to time over the years – but rarely with more wide-ranging consequences than the course embarked upon after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. On this 231st anniversary of Jefferson’s eloquent Declaration of Independence from British rule, the United States is desperately in need of restoring the rights and freedoms surrendered in a false bid for security that has perversely put the nation at greater risk.

Consider what has been lost.

Sweeping federal measures, most of them heavily cloaked in secrecy, have robbed Americans of privacy, due process of law, even freedom of movement. Warrantless wiretaps, e-mail surveillance, national security letters secretly demanding information on thousands of citizens and, soon to come, the equivalent of national ID cards – all would be abominations to Jefferson.

America’s suspected enemies have fared worse. They have been tortured, held indefinitely without charge and spirited away to secret prisons abroad so no one knows who they are or what has happened to them.

The United States has been fortunate to have suffered no terrorist attacks since 9/11, but there’s little evidence that any of these extraordinary measures have had anything to do with that. What they have done is to further isolate the United States at a time when the war in Iraq has left America with no global good will to spare. And Iraq has now become a proving ground for development of terrorist weaponry, such as the roadside bomb, and tactics.

In the weeks and months after 9/11, when the Bush administration was paring back civil liberties through the cynically named Patriot Act and travelers were coping with what would become increasingly burdensome restrictions, fearful Americans were persuaded to accept the sacrifice in return for a greater measure of safety.

But Jefferson would argue that was a false choice. Liberty is the source of security. An open, accountable government is the best protection against tyranny and incompetence. Travel restrictions in the form of identity papers – aimed not at terrorists but at illegal immigrants – represent the cost of unchecked power on the quality of American life.

The portrait now emerging of Vice President Dick Cheney as the unseen hand behind many of the more outrageous violations of civil liberties, aided in part by Alberto R. Gonzales, the lapdog of an attorney general, powerfully underscores Jefferson’s point that the time has come to retrace these missteps and get back on the road to peace, liberty and safety.

Congress, now in Democratic hands partly because of a backlash at these heavy-handed tactics, should begin the process by getting out all the facts. Americans have a right – and a responsibility – to know what’s being done in their name and what effect it’s having.

Some might argue that such a public review would allow America’s enemies to learn its secrets. Experience suggests, though, that secrecy often shields abuse and simple bungling. For example, Justice Department auditors reported in March that the FBI had misused, sometimes illegally, the national security letters through which it demands, with no prior court approval and no notice to the individual involved, personal information about Americans. The FBI acknowledges perhaps 1,000 such instances.

America’s history of violating constitutional restraints in times of perceived peril is a long one. Abraham Lincoln suspended habeas corpus protections against unlawful detention during the Civil War. Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered Japanese-Americans confined to camps during World War II. The FBI’s history of misdeeds has roots that predate its creation, when J. Edgar Hoover, who would later become the bureau’s first director, used a Justice Department perch to send federal agents on a brutal crackdown of more than 10,000 suspected communists in 1919.

During the Cold War and turmoil of the Vietnam War era, Mr. Hoover’s FBI would direct its anti-subversive energies at alleged spies, war protesters and civil rights activists as well as suspected communists.

Records released last week detail a similarly sordid history of the CIA’s stepping over constitutional hurdles to plot the assassination of foreign leaders, spy on American journalists and political dissidents, and confine a Soviet defector for three years before he was released without charges.

Public outrage at the discovery of such clandestine abuses has typically resulted in the sort of corrective action Jefferson recommended. Such a process may be under way soon again as Congress and the courts begin to apply some restraints on an administration that as much as or more than any other has considered itself above the law. There’s little time to waste before Americans become so accustomed to their lost liberty that the loss becomes acceptable.

A government that spies upon its citizens, evades the courts and feels no compulsion to explain itself beyond vague warnings of security threats must be brought into check. The damage caused by terrorists on 9/11 begins to pale against the havoc wreaked upon America by America itself.

source:
http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/bal-ed.fourth04jul04,0,3171162.story

===

-muslim voice-
______________________________________
BECAUSE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

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Iraqi Resistance Report for events of Sunday, 8 July 2007

Posted by musliminsuffer on July 10, 2007

bismi-lLahi-rRahmani-rRahiem
In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful

=== News Update ===

Iraqi Resistance Report for events of Sunday, 8 July 2007


Translated and/or compiled by Muhammad Abu Nasr, member, editorial board, the Free Arab Voice.

8unday, 8 July 2007.


  • Resistance bomb blasts US Humvee near al-Hadithah early Sunday afternoon.
  • Resistance car bomber targets US troops, puppet army recruits in Abu Ghurayb.
  • Resistance bomb kills US soldier Pentagon admits Sunday.
  • Two US embassy employees found dead.
  • American troops capture, murder two men in Samarra’ Saturday night.
  • Sunni mosques in Samarra’ mobilize population as word spreads of impending Shi‘i sectarian rampage to be coordinated by puppet regime troops and sectarian militias in keeping with US strategy of partitioning Iraq on sectarian lines.
  • Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq blames US occupation and Iraqi puppet regime for Amirli massacre.
  • American troops bulldoze fields, blow up shops and stores near al-Miqdadiyah to punish villagers for Resistance raids on US troops.
  • Death toll approaches 150 in Saturday’s truck bomb attack on village market.
  • London admits death of one more of its soldiers in al-Basrah.

Al-Anbar Province.
Al-Hadithah.

Resistance bomb blasts US Humvee near al-Hadithah early Sunday afternoon.

In a dispatch posted at 7:54pm Makkah time Sunday evening, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that an Iraqi Resistance bomb exploded by a US patrol in the Barwanah area, near al-Hadithah, 280km northwest of Baghdad, at 2pm Sunday afternoon.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported eyewitnesses as saying that a bomb that the Resistance had planted beside a road in the al-Hadbah neighborhood in Barwanah – which is 3km east of al-Hadithah – blew up by a passing American patrol.

One witness reported that the bomb exploded directly by a US Humvee, setting in on fire and probably inflicting casualties among the Americans aboard it.

The witnesses, however, had no precise information on the nature or extent of the American losses because the US troops immediately closed off the area to conceal such information, as is their policy. After the attack, the Americans pulled the crew out of the burning vehicle and evacuated them to a nearby base.

Abu Ghurayb.

Resistance car bomber targets US troops, puppet army recruits in Abu Ghurayb.

In a bulletin posted at 1:29pm Baghdad time Sunday afternoon, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that an Iraqi Resistance car bomb exploded by a US military vehicle near a recruiting station for the puppet army in Abu Ghurayb, 30km west of Baghdad. Dozens of recruits were killed in the attack.

The AMSI reported eyewitnesses as saying that a car bomber drove into US Humvees that were parked near the recruiting station and blew up, killing and wounding many collaborators. No information on the nature or extent of US casualties was available, though the Americans were in the direct path of the blast.

Life in Abu Ghurayb has been largely brought to a standstill after the local markets have shut down as a result of the numerous US restrictions imposed on the local population in addition to the many check points that control traffic in and out of their area. Abu Ghurayb also suffers from a lack of health care facilities and other municipal services because the local population is known to be opposed to the US occupation and its stooges.

Earlier, in a dispatch posted at 1:10pm Makkah time Sunday afternoon, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that an Iraqi Resistance bomb exploded by a truckload of puppet army recruits coming from al-Anbar Province to Baghdad .

Mafkarat al-Islam reported sources in the puppet police and puppet army as saying that the blast killed 17 of the collaborators and wounded 20 more. The sources said that the volunteers were new Sunni recruits from al-Anbar Province who where on their way into Baghdad when the explosion ripped through their truck.

Baghdad.

Resistance bomb kills US soldier in Salah ad-Din Province, US admits Sunday.

In a dispatch posted at 6:47pm Makkah time Sunday afternoon, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that the US military had admitted that an Iraqi Resistance bomb had killed one more of its soldiers and wounded four more of them in an attack somewhere in the 24,751 square kilometers of Salah ad-Din Province.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported the American communiqué as saying that a member of an American special force unit had been killed when a Resistance bomb went off by his vehicle. Four other American troops were wounded in the Resistance attack, further details of which were concealed by the American military, in keeping with the US policy of hiding facts regarding its losses in Iraq.

In a dispatch posted at 2:54pm Baghdad time Sunday afternoon, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that two car bombs exploded in Baghdad’s al-Karradah district before noon on Sunday, killing seven and wounding 20 more people.

The AMSI reported a source in the puppet police reported that one of the car bombs went off near the al-Hamra’ Hotel, killing one person and wounding five. The other carbomb exploded by the al-Julud Company in al-Karradah, killing six and wounding 15.

Another bomb went off near the ash-Shurjah Market on al-Jumhuriyah Street, killing one civilian and wounding three more.

Two US embassy employees found dead.

In a dispatch posted at 12:52pm Makkah time Sunday afternoon, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that a US official announced that the body of an Iraqi and his wife – employees at the US embassy in occupied Baghdad – had been found. The pair had been reported kidnapped in an attack for which the al-Qa‘idah in Iraq organization had taken credit.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported US Ambassador Ryan Crocker as issuing a statement announcing the death of the two employees who were abducted in May. Another US official who declined to be identified, said that the bodies of the employees, Hazim Hanna and Anil Miskuni, were identified by their fingerprints. The official said that apparently Hazim disappeared first and then his wife was abducted when she went to search for him. Al-Qa‘idah in Iraq announced that it had killed the two in an announcement published on the Internet on 31 May 2007.

Salah ad-Din Province.
Samarra’.

American troops capture, murder two men in Samarra’ Saturday night.

In a dispatch posted at 9:08pm Baghdad time Sunday evening, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that US troops executed two men in the as-Sikak neighborhood of Samarra’, 120km north of Baghdad on Saturday night.

The AMSI reported Ahmad Hamid as-Samarra’ia resident of Samarra’, one of those who witnessed the American atrocity, as saying that the Americans entered as-Sikak on Saturday night and arrested two men, one of them aged 61 and the other aged 50 as they sat near their houses in the middle of the neighborhood. A short while later, the Americans unleashed a hail of bullets at the two captive men, killing them on the spot.

Sunni mosques in Samarra’ mobilize population as word spreads of impending Shi‘i sectarian rampage to be coordinated by puppet regime troops and sectarian militias in keeping with US strategy of partitioning Iraq on sectarian lines.

In a dispatch posted on its website Sunday, Quds Press reported that Sunni mosques throughout the city of Samarra’ used loudspeakers to announce on Sunday that puppet “Iraqi Interior Ministry Shock Troops (Maghawir)” and puppet police, all of them concurrently Shi‘i sectarian militia members – had entered Samarra’ with the aim of carrying out “revenge attacks” on Sunnis and generally committing acts of sectarian murder.

A source in the Iraqi puppet police told Quds Press that in many parts of the city Shi‘i sectarian Jaysh al-Mahdi militiamen and Shi‘i sectarians from other militias, all dressed in the puppet “Shock Troop” and “police” uniforms – had begun to prepare to enter the city. Mosques throughout the predominantly Sunni city of Samarra’ called on the population to prepare to defend themselves and their holy places against the Shi‘i sectarian gunmen backed up by puppet regime troops.

The source, who asked not to be identified, said that dozens of local residents had deployed in the various neighborhoods and districts of Samarra’ and begun armed preparations that had been coordinated beforehand for the defense of the city against the sectarian gunmen. Mosques, with their loudspeaker systems would play the role of “warning sirens” should the impending Shi‘i sectarian attack actually begin.

On 13 June bombs destroyed the minarets of the Shi‘i Shrine of the Two Imams – an act of sabotage for which the US, its puppet regime allies, and the Shi‘i sectarian militias could only have been responsible, as no other parties had access to the shrine. The western and puppet regime media have been using the incident to attempt to stir up sectarian violence, and Shi‘i sectarian gang leader Muqtada as-Sadr threatened a march on the city by his gunmen in order to take “revenge” for the suspicious attack.

Behind the effort to ignite sectarian violence in Iraq are the plans hatched by US and Zionist strategists to partition the country along sectarian lines, making the Arab region that much easier to dominate.

The idea of “the dissolution of Iraq into a Shi‘ite state, a Sunni state and the separation of the Kurdish part” was voiced by veteran Zionist military correspondent Ze’ev Schiff in Ha’aretz on 2 June 1982 and was a part of the divide-and-rule strategy laid out by Zionist writer Oded Yinon in his “Strategy for Israel in the 1980s,” published in Kivunim (Directions), A Journal for Judaism and Zionism, published by the World Zionist Organization in occupied Jerusalem in February 1982. (It was translated by the late anti-Zionist writer and activist Israel Shahak and is widely available.)

The idea of splitting the Shi‘ah in Iraq from the rest of the country was a cornerstone of the neo-Conservative strategy laid out in “A Clean Break” a paper drawn up by American Zionist government officials Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, David Wurmser, and Paul Wolfowitz in 1996 for the then Zionist Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Then in 2000 the neo-Conservative Project for a New American Century wrote Rebuilding America’s Defenses on the basis of the “Clean Break.”

The American version of the strategy for a partition of Iraq appeared in the article “The Three-State Solution” published in The New York Times on 25 November 2003 by Leslie Gelb (President Emeritus of the US Council on Foreign Relations). The same idea was reiterated, this time with “bi-partisan support” in the article by Gelb and US Democratic Senator Joseph Biden in “Unity through Autonomy in Iraq,” in The New York Times on 1 May 2006.

Then on 8 October 2006 the London Sunday Times reported that the partition of Iraq along religious and ethnic lines was one of the suggestions that the Baker-Hamilton commission was advancing.

Amirili.

Death toll approaches 150 in Saturday’s truck bomb attack on village market.

In a dispatch posted at 10:35am Makkah time Sunday morning, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that puppet officials in Tuz Khurmatu, the nearest large city to the town of Amirli, reported Sunday that the death toll from Saturday’s car bombing at the Amirli market was likely to top 150 people.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported Muhammad Rashid, the puppet president of the Tuz Khurmatu municipality, as saying that the number of confirmed deaths was already 130 in addition to 250 more who were wounded. The puppet police, however, have declared that there are still 20 people listed as missing and it is believed that they too were killed in the deadly attack.

Rashid noted that the booby-trapped truck that caused the explosion destroyed 50 small shops and 50 homes of local residents, burying many people in the rubble. Many hours were required to extract the bodies from the debris. It was the most deadly single bombing in Iraq since the US occupied the country in 2003.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported that observers believe that there are efforts being made by the US occupation to carry out more such bombing attacks in order to ignite more sectarian strife in occupied Iraq. Sectarian civil war would help promote long-cherished American and Zionist plans to split Iraq on sectarian lines.

Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq blames US occupation and Iraqi puppet regime for Amirli massacre.

In a statement published on its website Sunday the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) the supreme Sunni religious authority in occupied Iraq blamed the US-installed puppet “government” for the carnage caused by the bombing in the Amirli market, near Tuz Khurmatu, Saturday.

“Time after time these criminals continue to carry out their destructive policies aimed at achieving their sick goals of partitioning our country, spreading chaos and strife among us, taking control of our resources, and promoting their narrow sectarian interests, even though that be at the expense of the killing, violation, and maiming of our people,” the AMSI statement declared.

“Saturday morning a car bomb exploded in the midst of a popular market in Amirli in the district of Tuz Khurmatu in Salah ad-Din Province, leaving hundreds of civilian victims killed or wounded and inflicting heavy damage on dozens of their homes, commercial shops, and cars. And following the explosion individuals have been subjected to confinement and expulsion by the police agencies in accordance with their policy of racial discrimination,” the AMSI statement continued.

“The area of Sulayman Bak in the same district was the scene of a similar attack 10 days earlier in which 15 people were killed and 90 wounded,” AMSI noted.

”These crimes follow months of criminal bomb attacks in the city of Tall ‘Afar that resemble what happened yesterday and that also left hundreds of innocent civilians dead and wounded. Then just hours later there were the mass executions of civilians in their homes and on the streets on the pretext of revenge for the victims of those bombings. It later was revealed that the government agencies controlling Tall ‘Afar and Ninwa Province were the ones behind the crimes. But as usual the government did not do what was incumbent upon it, instead it failed to carry out a real or fair investigation leading to punishment for the criminals that could have recompensed them regardless of their official posts, stopped them where they were, and deterred others from doing more of the same,” the AMSI noted.

“The Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq condemns these criminal acts that add one more bloody day to the Iraqis’ history in the midst of an intense escalation of political tensions, and it also hold the occupation and the current government fully responsible for them. AMSI calls on all Iraqis to exercise restraint and rising above the hurt until God grants His release in the near future,” the AMSI statement declared.

Diyala Province.
Al-Miqdadiyah.

American troops bulldoze fields, blow up shops and stores near al-Miqdadiyah to punish villagers for Resistance raids on US troops.

In a dispatch posted at pm Baghdad time Sunday afternoon, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that since dawn Sunday, US vehicles had been busy bulldozing gardens and destroying shops and stores in the villages of ‘Arab Jabbur to the north of al-Miqdadiyah, 85km northeast of Baghdad.

The AMSI reported local residents as saying that the Americans bulldozed more than 5 dunams of land planted to groves and gardens, and destroyed 20 stores and shops belonging to residents of the village of al-Jazirah. The Americans’ campaign of destruction was intended to punish the village for Resistance attacks on American occupation troops based in the Shaqarraq area there.

Babil Province.
Al-Mahmudiyah.

Jaysh al-Mahdi murder Sunni, kidnap residents at checkpoint in al-Mahmudiyah, continuing sectarian partition effort.

In a dispatch posted at 12:48pm Baghdad time midday Sunday, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that Shi ‘ sectarian gunmen killed a man in front of the al-Mahmudiyah fuel station, about 25km south of Baghdad, on Sunday morning. Meanwhile other sectarian militiamen set up a fake checkpoint where they abducted a number of individuals as their drive to purge central and southern Iraq of Sunnis, in keeping with US and Zionist partition plans, continues.

The AMSI reported eyewitnesses as saying that pro-Iranian Jaysh al-Mahdi Shi‘i sectarian gunmen sprayed a man with bullets, killing him after a check of his identity revealed that he was a Sunni.

Meanwhile other members of the Jaysh al-Mahdi set up a check point in the al-‘Askari neighborhood of al-Mahmudiyah and kidnapped several people. The incident came one day after 25 people were kidnapped in the same area, following searches and house seizures carried out by the Jaysh al-Mahdi in full view of their US-backed puppet army allies.

Al-Haswah.

Unexplained attacks reported.

In a dispatch posted at 11:29am Baghdad time Sunday morning, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that 13 mortar rounds landed in various parts of northern Babil province to the south of Baghdad on Saturday night and Sunday morning.

The AMSI reported a source in the puppet “Scorpion Brigade” of the US-backed “Interior Ministry” as saying that six mortar rouns landed in the ‘Adayi area of al-Haswah, 33km south of Baghdad inflicting material damage only.

Three Katyusha rockets blasted into the residential neighborhoods in the ‘Ajrash area of Jablah, to the north of al-Hillah – about 100km south of Baghdad on Saturday night, the source said, adding that that attack wounded two civilians in addition to damaging houses.

Finally, unknown armed men opened fire on a local man by the name of Muhammad al-Jannabi near the asphalt works in al-Haswah, wounding him.

Al-Qadisiyah Province.
Ad-Diwaniyah.

Bombs explode by US troops in ad-Diwaniyah after midnight Sunday.

In a dispatch posted at 9:37am Baghdad time Sunday morning, the Association of Muslim Scholars of Iraq (AMSI) reported that six bombs exploded by US forces as they entered the as-Sadr neighborhood in ad-Diwaniyah, 180km south of Baghdad, before dawn on Sunday.

The AMSI reported a source in the puppet security forces as saying that the bombs went off in succession after fighting broke out between unknown armed men and the Americans together with their puppet army allies in the as-Sadr neighborhood at 2am local time.

The blasts completely burned two Humvees but no information on US casualties was available.

Al-Basrah Province.
Al-Basrah.

London admits death of one more of its soldiers in al-Basrah.

In a dispatch posted at 11:40pm Makkah time Sunday night, Mafkarat al-Islam reported that the British Ministry of Defence announced on Sunday that one more of its soldiers had died of severe wounds he received during a violent attack in southern Iraq.

Mafkarat al-Islam reported the British communiqué as saying that the soldier was one of three wounded when attacked by fighters who threw grenades, and fired light machine guns and rockets in al-Basrah.

http://www.albasrah.net/pages/mod.php?mod=art&lapage=../en_articles_2007/0707/iraqiresistancereport_080707.htm

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-muslim voice-
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