BAGHDAD, Iraq – The leader of Al-Qaida in Iraq's, released a chilling audiotape Thursday, calling for nuclear scientists to join his group in Jihad and urged insurgents to kidnap Westerners so they could be traded for a blind Egyptian sheik who is serving a life sentence in a U.S. prison.
The terrorist chief said experts in the fields of "chemistry, physics, electronics, media and all other sciences - especially nuclear scientists and explosives experts" should join his group's jihad, or holy war, against the West. "We are in dire need of you," said the speaker, who identified himself as Abu Hamza al-Muhajir - also known as Abu Ayyub al-Masri. "The field of jihad can satisfy your scientific ambitions, and the large American bases (in Iraq) are good places to test your unconventional weapons, whether biological or dirty, as they call them.”
We addressed this very scenario beginning in March of 2006 in comments in a news article entitled: US Intel Al Qaeda Plotting Big Bang in Iraq.
And in comments in a second article in April of 2006: The Frightening Truth of Why Iran Wants a Bomb,
And in comments in a third article also in April of 2006: Iranian Group Signing Up Potential Martyrs,
And in comments of a fourth article Also in April of 2006: Islamists Protest in NY -- Mushroom Cloud on the Way.
We point to these articles for two reasons, first that the desire for nukes by terrorists is not new, they probably sought them from the Russians and Chinese as back as the 1970’s. What is new is that their people for over a generation now have been attending western collages in the US and in Europe and have received training in the fields that are listed above. The Leader of Al-Qaida that we took out with a 500 pound bomb some three months ago was a US trained doctor and surgeon and had he had any training in biological or nuclear warfare he would have used it to destroy us. As we have discussed Islam has been using our own weapons and technology to destroy us.
And we need not remind our readers that “The day of fire” will occur before the great and terrible day of the Lord.
The 20-minute audio was posted to a Web site that frequently airs al-Qaida messages. The voice could not be independently identified, but it was thought to be al-Masri's. He is believed to have succeeded Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who died in a U.S. airstrike north of Baghdad in June, as head of the al-Qaida-linked organization. Thursday's message focused attention on Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman, a 68-year-old Egyptian cleric who was convicted in 1995 of seditious conspiracy for his advisory role in a plot to assassinate Egypt's president and blow up five New York City landmarks including the United Nations. Abdel-Rahman is considered the leader of Egyptian Islamic militants, and the 1993 World Trade Center conspirators were known to have attended his lectures
"I appeal to every holy warrior in the land of Iraq to exert all efforts in this holy month so that God may enable us to capture some of the Western dogs to swap them with our sheik and get him out of his dark prison," said al-Masri, who is also Egyptian. He also said more than 4,000 foreign militants have been killed in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 - the first known statement from the insurgents about their death toll. It was unclear why al-Masri would advertise the loss of the group's foreign fighters, but martyrdom is revered among Islamic fundamentalists, and could be used as a recruiting tool.
Analysts said the announcement was likely a boast aimed at drumming up support. "It's showing the level of dedication to their cause, the level of sacrifice jihadists are making," said Ben N. Venzke, director of the Washington-based Intel Center, which monitors terrorism communications. "In a strange kind of way, it's almost showing a sense of strength and purpose in their cause to other people around world who might be thinking about joining the fight," Venzke said in a telephone interview.
The statement followed the release of a U.N. report Wednesday that said fewer foreign fighters have been killed or captured in Iraq in the last few months, "suggesting that the flow has slackened." The report also said some fighters had expressed dissatisfaction they were asked to kill fellow Muslims rather than Western soldiers and that the only role for them was to be suicide bombers. Still, the report said al-Qaida "has gained by continuing to play a central role in the fighting and in encouraging the growth of sectarian violence; and Iraq has provided many recruits and an excellent training ground.
"On the tape, al-Masri (An Egyptian) offered amnesty to Iraqis who cooperated with their country's "occupiers," (There is a real resentment if not outright hatred of foreigners tell even when they are Arabs or Persians discating to the citizens of another country what they can and can’t do.) calling on them to "return to your religion and nation" during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which Sunnis began observing in Iraq on Saturday and Shiites on Monday. "We will not attack you as long as you declare your true repentance in front of your tribe and relatives," he said. "The amnesty ends by the end of this holy month.
"The audio message came on a day that saw the killings of at least 23 people and the discovery in the capital of 40 apparent victims of sectarian death squads. (These death Squads are run by Al-Qaida – and are doing what many of their recruits detest the killing and torture of fellow Muslims – and the threat in this message is to turn it on after Ramadan to levels Iraqi’s have never seen unless they submit to the decrees [fatwas] of this “foreign” non-cleric.)
To stem the violence, the government announced it will soon lock down traffic access to Baghdad. Thursday's attacks in the capital included a car bombing that killed five and wounded 34 near a restaurant in the city's center, and a suicide car bombing on a military checkpoint that killed two Iraqi soldiers and wounded 10.One person was killed and 24 were wounded in two mortar attacks on residential areas in northern Baghdad. The 40 bodies found all showed signs of torture, had been shot, and had their hands and feet bound.
Police Lt. Thayer Mahmoud said. The violence comes amid reports from senior coalition military officials that a militia run by radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has been breaking apart into freelance death squads and gangs. Al-Sadr's Mahdi Army is one of the largest and most powerful militias in Iraq, along with the Badr Brigades - which was once the military wing of the country's largest Shiite political group, the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq. "There are fractures politically inside Sadr's movement, many of whom don't find him to be sufficiently radical now that he has taken a political course of action," a senior coalition intelligence official told reporters in Baghdad, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to speak publicly on intelligence issues. The official added that "I can think of about at least six major players who have left his organization because he has been perhaps too accommodating to the coalition.
"Last Friday, al-Sadr urged his followers not to use force against U.S. troops, saying "I want a peaceful war against them and not to shed a drop of blood. As part of the Baghdad security plan crackdown on sectarian militias, known as Operation Together Forward, U.S. and Iraqi troops have been going neighborhood-by-neighborhood clearing buildings. The operation has not yet reached Sadr City, a sprawling Shiite slum of about 2 million where al-Sadr draws much of his support, but it will not be left out, the intelligence official said. "The Baghdad security plan will cover Baghdad," the official said. "I didn't say Baghdad minus; I said Baghdad. "Government spokesman Ali al-Dabagh indicated that another part of the plan would begin soon: funneling all vehicular traffic into Baghdad through 28 checkpoints. "The gaps between natural barriers such as Tigris river and canals will be filled with artificial barriers in order to control and observe any threats against Iraqis," he said. "This thing would lead to traffic jams for people entering Baghdad, we hope that our people will understand the reasons behind this act designed to protect them."