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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

West Africa: "the next Afghanistan" 

Having been driven into the caves in Afghanistan and western Pakistan and having learned the the Sunni Triangle of Iraq is less a "haven" than a killing field, al Qaeda is looking for a new base of operations from which it can operate free of Western entanglements. There is growing evidence that Al Qaeda is embedding itself into the slums and villages of West Africa.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote this long post about al Qaeda's "investments" Mauritania. Now we have this report, which claims that Liberia's revolting former president Charles Taylor was on al Qaeda's payroll.
Liberia's exiled former president, Charles Taylor, received money recently from an al-Qaida operative and is trying to destabilize west Africa, prosecutors for Sierra Leone's U.N.-backed war crimes tribunal said Tuesday.

Chief prosecutor David Crane said Taylor harbored members of al-Qaida including those who allegedly took part in the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1997, and was allegedly in contact with a member of the terrorist network as recently as last month.

"Al-Qaida has been in west Africa. It continues to be in west Africa, and Charles Taylor has been harboring members of al-Qaida," Crane said, adding that he believes west Africa is going to become the next Afghanistan.

Taylor counts among his various sordid colleagues a Middle Eastern businessman named Mohamed Mustafa Fadhil. Fadhil has long been on the FBI's "most wanted" list of terrorists, and has been indicted in the Southern District of New York for his alleged involvement in the bombings of the American embassy bombings in Tanzania and Kenya in August, 1998.

This is going to be a long war.

4 Comments:

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed May 25, 07:52:00 AM:

U.S. leads global attack on human rights -Amnesty International
http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/L23119557.htm

"The so-called 'war on terror' appeared more effective in eroding the international framework of human rights principles than in countering the threat of international 'terrorism'."
- from the report, http://web.amnesty.org/report2005/intro-index-eng  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed May 25, 07:54:00 AM:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_cave  

By Blogger Screwy Hoolie, at Wed May 25, 08:41:00 AM:

Good morning, Hawk. I see you've already had one raving troll over here, so I'll be mild as meek as Daschle, as concise as Dean.

"A new report by the New York-based World Policy Institute finds that a majority of U.S. arms sales to the developing world go to regimes defined as undemocratic by our own state department. Furthermore, U.S.-supplied arms are involved in a majority of the world’s active conflicts."
[...]
"Perhaps no single policy is more at odds with President Bush’s pledge to ‘end tyranny in our world’ than the United States’ role as the world’s leading arms exporting nation, "
[...]
"as in the case of recent decisions to provide new f-16 fighter planes to pakistan while pledging comparable high tech military hardware to its rival india, u.s. arms sometimes go to both sides in long brewing conflicts. and the tens of millions of u.s. arms transfers to uzbekistan exemplify the negative consequences of arming repressive regimes."

If Al Qaeda is training in West Africa, they're likely raising money through the Saudis and using American weapons. How long will we provide the fuel for the fire?  

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