The lynchpin of the group was Mohammed Chowdhury, a 21-year-old from east London, who pleaded guilty at Woolwich crown court on Wednesday to preparing to commit an act of terrorism.
He and eight other young men from London, Cardiff and Stoke on Trent were due to face trial this week, but in a last-minute change of plea they admitted the terror plot, but denied the intention was to cause death or injury.
Undercover detectives had followed Chowdhury and his right-hand man, Shah Rahman, observing Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, the London Eye and the Houses of Parliament on 28 November 2010, during a massive surveillance operation which eventually led to the arrest of the terror gang.
There should be no ambiguity about their intentions and how they have been radicalised. Anwar al-Awlaki and Inspire magazine are all namechecked:
In a U.S. Department of Defense memorandum released by WikiLeaks, I have uncovered another, especially devastating source who spoke out against Mr. Aamer in Guantanamo. “UK558″ described Mr. Aamer as a “recruiter” for al Qaeda. He outlined how Mr. Aamer and he traveled to meet members of a European al Qaeda cell in 2000, and how Mr. Aamer fought in Bosnia under the leadership of Abu Zubayr al-Haili, a senior al-Qaeda figure. “UK558″ talked of the training in AK-47s and rocket-propelled grenades Mr. Aamer received.
The Pakistani ISI and its parliamentary lapdogs are responsible for tens of thousands of Afghan and ISAF/NATO deaths over the past decade. Everybody knows now. But the depths of duplicity, mendacity and barbarism to which the Pakistani elites have stooped, and the enthusiasm with which they have devoted themselves to the care and feeding of some of the world’s most savage and lumpen jihadi gangsters, are not so well known.
As of last Wednesday, the BBC World News has been blocked by Pakistan’s cable channels as a “protest” against this two-part BBC documentary, Secret Pakistan. Watch this, and you will see what the Pakistani establishment does not want the people of Pakistan to know. The people of the “west” need to know these things, too, no less.
In the years to come, the history of the so-called “war in Afghanistan” will be little more than a footnote in a chapter about the lies successive American governments told themselves and the world about Pakistan – that American-subsidized, nuclear-armed, military-industrial crime syndicate with a bribe market for a parliament that masquerades as a UN member state. All we can hope is that chapter won’t be in a book about a nuclear holocaust that ended a sickening, paranoid hoax of a country that had held most of its 170 million “citizens” hostage and barely alive on less than $2 a day in the final years before it all went up in flames.
Here’s a rare and horrifying glimpse of the reality behind the lies: The Ally From Hell. Excellent journalism from Jeffrey Goldberg and Marc Ambinder.
Babar Ahmed should not be extradited to the USA. He should be tried here in the UK. Hannah Stuart reads him the Terrorism Act:
Regular readers of HJS will know it’s not often I find myself in agreement with either the Federation of Student Islamic Societies (FOSIS), the umbrella group for Islamic societies that in the words of the Prevent strategy, “has not always fully challenged terrorist and extremist ideology within the higher and further education sectors”; or even CagePrisoners, former Guantanamo inmate Moazzam Begg’s advocacy group with a history of supporting radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki killed in a US-drone strike in September.
But this morning I found myself becoming the 120,748th person to sign an e-petition calling for Babar Ahmad, currently fighting extradition to the US on terrorism offences, to be tried in the UK, a campaign which both groups strenuously support. Ahmad, who’s been held in maximum security prisons for seven years without trial, is waiting for a final ruling on his case from the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
What’s most striking about this is not that the U.S. Government has seized and exercised exactly the power the Fifth Amendment was designed to bar (“No person shall be deprived of life without due process of law”), and did so in a way that almost certainly violates core First Amendment protections (questions that will now never be decided in a court of law). What’s most amazing is that its citizens will not merely refrain from objecting, but will stand and cheer the U.S. Government’s new power to assassinate their fellow citizens, far from any battlefield, literally without a shred of due process from the U.S. Government.
Afghan President, Hamid Karzai, supported engagement and negotiations with the Taliban for years. Not anymore:
KABUL – President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan, who for years pushed for reconciliation with the Taliban, now says attempts to negotiate with the insurgent movement are futile and efforts at dialogue should focus instead on neighboring Pakistan.
Karzai explained in a videotaped speech released by his office yesterday that he changed his views about trying to talk to the Taliban after a suicide bomber, claiming to be a peace emissary sent by the insurgents, killed a former Afghan president, Burhanuddin Rabbani, at his home on Sept. 20. Rabbani was leading Karzai’s effort to broker peace with the Taliban.
“Their messengers are coming and killing. . . . So with whom should we make peace?” Karzai said Friday to a gathering of the nation’s top religious leaders that was videotaped.
Al-Qaida has sent a message to the Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, asking him to stop spreading conspiracy theories about the 9/11 attacks.
Iranian media on Wednesday reported quotes from what appears to be an article published in the latest issue of the al-Qaida English language magazine, Inspire, which described Ahmadinejad’s remarks over the 11 September attacks as “ridiculous”.
In his UN general assembly speech last week, Ahmadinejad cast doubt over the official version of the 2001 attacks.
“The Iranian government has professed on the tongue of its president Ahmadinejad that it does not believe that al-Qaida was behind 9/11 but rather, the US government,” the article said, according to Iranian media. “So we may ask the question: why would Iran ascribe to such a ridiculous belief that stands in the face of all logic and evidence?”
It wasn’t Pakistan but the CIA that created the savage Haqqani Taliban network that U.S. Joint Chiefs Chairman Mike Mullen has been belatedly fingering as the chief culprit in Afghanistan’s agonies, Rehman Malik, Pakistan’s Interior Minister, declared on Sunday. It is an outrageous lie, as anyone even vaguely familiar with the terrorist savageries visited upon the people of South Asia over the past three decades will know. But I don’t expect that this will matter in the least to fashionable “left-wing” opinion among the world’s rich white people, where the consensus has for some long while served with remarkable precision as an echo of the lumpen view incited by right-wing Pakistani chauvinists.
Terry Glavin offers an insight into the history of the Haqqani Network, that Taliban stronghold in Pakistan, nurtured and funded by Pakistan’s secret police, the ISI.