Mosque Bombings Bring Iraq
to Brink of Civil War
Times of London - The revenge attacks started within
minutes of the devastating dawn blast that wrecked the Golden Mosque in Samarra, one of the
holiest Shia shrines in Iraq. By the end
of the day, as thousands of Iraqis spilt out on to the streets in protest and more than 90 mosques lay damaged or destroyed,
Iraq’s political and religious leadership was struggling to avert a full-blown civil war. At least eighteen Sunnis,
including three clerics, were reported murdered. The reprisal attack on al-Quds Sunni mosque in western Baghdad was typical. Residents ran for cover as more than a dozen masked Shia gunmen raked
the building with bullets. The firing halted as suddenly as it had begun. The men stepped back into their six saloons and
pulled away slowly, singing and waving jubilant V-signs from the windows. They were ushered from the scene by soldiers from
an Iraqi National Guard checkpoint , who cheered and waved. Such scenes were repeated across the country as thousands of people,
many calling for revenge, massed in cities throughout the south of Iraq
demonstrating against the desecration of the Golden Mosque.
Al Aqsa Brigades Terror Stronghold
Interest Alert/AP - Israeli troops
killed five Palestinians, including three fugitive gunmen, and seriously wounded a sixth man during an arrest sweep in this
militant stronghold. The three gunmen from the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, a violent offshoot of Palestinian leader Mahmoud
Abbas' Fatah Party, were killed during a shootout in their hideout in the Balata refugee camp. Since the Balata sweep began
Monday, eight Palestinians have been killed by army fire, including the five shot dead Thursday. More than 50 Palestinians
have been injured by live rounds and rubber-coated steel pellets, Palestinian hospital officials said. On Thursday, dozens
of jeeps patrolled Balata and sealed off the refugee camp from the adjacent city of Nablus.
Balata is a stronghold of the Al Aqsa Brigades and a hideout for weapons dealers.
Israel Warns of ‘Evil
Axis’ World War
Ynet.com - Israel’s ambassador
to the United Nations, Danny Gillerman, on Tuesday warned of a new “terror axis” between Iran, Syria and Hamas,
which could kick start the first world war of the 21st century. “Imagine al-Qaeda or the PKK running in elections? A
dictator’s democracy is a dangerous false impression,” Gillerman told the Council. Gillerman warned of Hamas’
venture in politics, saying “the world is witnessing a new alliance between Iran,
Syria and Hamas, which constitutes an
axis of terror.” Gillerman evoked Iranian President Mahmoud Ahamadinejad’s January visit to Syria and the warm welcome in Tehran of Hamas leaders this
week. Political leader Khaled Mashaal led a Hamas delegation to Iran where
he said Iran will play a more central
role in Palestinian affairs after guarantees for financial backing to the Palestinian government from the Islamic Republic.
“This new terror axis poses a big threat to regional and world stability, and is a recipe for the worst ever plague.
If we ignore this imminent threat, the axis of evil will be the seeds of the first world war of the 21st century,” Gillerman
US Seeks Zandani's Extradition
UPI - Washington has officially requested
Yemen to hand over a senior member of
an Islamist opposition party included on a U.N. list of suspects financing terrorism. The pro-government daily September 26
said Thursday Washington wants Sheikh Abdel Majid Zandani, politburo chief of the opposition Reform Party, to be deported
in line with U.N. resolutions on combating international terrorism. It said the U.S.
presented a harsh protest to the Yemeni government for including Zandani in the official delegation led by President Ali Abdullah
Saleh to the Organization of Islamic Conference summit in Saudi Arabia
last year. "The protest was included in a letter by U.S. President George Bush to President Saleh," the paper said. In the
letter, Bush said Zandani is on a U.N. list of persons accused of financing terrorism and should be barred from traveling.
He said, moreover, that including him in an official delegation contradicts U.N. resolutions and harms bilateral efforts and
partnership in combating terrorism. The paper said "Washington
made an official request to arrest Sheikh Zandani, to freeze his assets and bar him from leaving the country in view of the
accusations made against him in financing terrorism." Yemen retorted by
asking Washington for clear incriminating evidence against
Zandani to be able to take legal measures against him in accord with Yemeni laws.
3 Charged in Plan to Attack
US Military in Iraq
FOX News - A federal grand jury on
Tuesday indicted three Ohio men for their role in assisting terrorism on U.S. targets overseas, specifically American military
personnel and their allies in Iraq. The indictment said the men plotted to kill U.S.
and coalition military personnel in Iraq
and other countries. On at least two separate occasions, among other charges, at least one of the men verbally threatened
to kill or inflict bodily harm on President Bush, the indictment says. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales announced the five-count
indictment during a press conference Tuesday. "These defendants have been living in the United States, where they have been engaging in weapons training and seeking help
in order to kill people abroad, including our troops," Gonzales said. The men named in the indictment are: Mohammad Zaki Amawi,
26, who was a citizen of Jordan and the United States who lived in Toledo until August 2005; Marwan Othman El-Hindi, a 42-year-old
naturalized U.S. citizen born in Amman, Jordan who lives in Toledo; and Wassim Mazloum, a 24-year-old legal U.S. resident
who operated a car business with his brother in Toledo after entering the United States from Lebanon.
Ex-Official: Russia Moved
NewsMax - A top Pentagon official who
was responsible for tracking Saddam Hussein's weapons programs before and after the 2003 liberation of Iraq, has provided
the first-ever account of how Saddam Hussein "cleaned up" his weapons of mass destruction stockpiles to prevent the United
States from discovering them. "The short answer to the question of where the WMD Saddam bought from the Russians went was
that they went to Syria and Lebanon," former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense John A. Shaw told an audience Saturday at a
privately sponsored "Intelligence Summit" in Alexandria, Va. "They were moved by Russian Spetsnaz (special forces) units out of uniform, that were
specifically sent to Iraq to move the weaponry and eradicate any evidence of its existence," he said. Shaw has dealt with
weapons-related issues and export controls as a U.S.
government official for 30 years, and was serving as deputy undersecretary of defense for international technology security
when the events he described today occurred. He called the evacuation of Saddam's WMD stockpiles "a well-orchestrated campaign
using two neighboring client states with which the Russian leadership had a long time security relationship."
Shrine Attack Brings Reprisals
Interest Alert/US - A large explosion
Wednesday heavily damaged the golden dome of one of Iraq's
most famous Shiite shrines, sending protesters into the streets and triggering reprisal attacks against Sunni mosques. It
was the third major attack against Shiite targets in as many days. Shiite leaders called for calm, but militants attacked
Sunni mosques and a gunfight broke out between Shiite militiamen and guards at a Sunni political party in Basra. Army Capt. Jassim al-Wahash said about 500 soldiers were sent to Sunni neighborhoods
in Baghdad to prevent clashes between Shiites and Sunnis.
A leading Sunni politician, Tariq al-Hashimi, told reporters 29 Sunni mosques had been attacked nationwide. He urged clerics
and politicians to calm the situation 'before it spins out of control.' No group claimed responsibility for the early morning
attack on the Askariya shrine in this city 60 miles north of Baghdad.
But suspicion fell on Sunni extremist groups such as al-Qaida in Iraq of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Iranian Fatwa Approves Use
London Telegraph - Iran's hard-line spiritual
leaders have issued an unprecedented new fatwa, or holy order, sanctioning the use of atomic weapons against its enemies.
In yet another sign of Teheran's stiffening resolve on the nuclear issue, influential Muslim clerics have for the first time
questioned the theocracy's traditional stance that Sharia law forbade the use of nuclear weapons. One senior mullah has now
said it is "only natural" to have nuclear bombs as a "countermeasure" against other nuclear powers, thought to be a reference
to America and Israel.
The pronouncement is particularly worrying because it has come from Mohsen Gharavian, a disciple of the ultra-conservative
Ayatollah Mohammad Taghi Mesbah-Yazdi, who is widely regarded as the cleric closest to Iran's new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Nicknamed "Professor Crocodile" because
of his harsh conservatism, Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi's group opposes virtually any kind of rapprochement with the West and is
believed to have influenced President Ahmadinejad's refusal to negotiate over Iran's
Iranian Leader Rallies Islamic
Support for Hamas
- Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, called on Muslim nations
Monday to fund the Palestinian government after Hamas takes control of the cabinet, praising the radical Islamic movement
for ignoring international pressure to recognize Israel,
according to Iranian state television. "The only way to succeed is to continue resistance against the occupier regime," Khamenei
told Khaled Mashal, leader of Hamas's political wing, during his visit to Tehran.
The Palestinians "knew that their vote for Hamas meant the fight against the Zionist occupier regime," he said. Hamas, formally
known as the Islamic Resistance Movement, won a large parliamentary majority in elections last month. But Israel and Western donors are moving to isolate the Palestinian Authority financially as Hamas,
designated a terrorist organization by the United States
and the European Union, begins work to form the next cabinet, expected to be complete in about five weeks.
Gitmo Detainees Linked to
The Australian - Inmates at the US detention camp at Guantanamo Bay
had contact with the London bombers, a British newspaper reported yesterday, citing Guantanamo interrogation officials. The Daily Telegraph said detainees
who were campaigning for their release at the High Court in London
had knowledge of the terror cell that killed 56 people, including the four presumed Islamist suicide bombers, on July 7 last
year. US officials at the camp in Cuba claimed that "dozens" of the 500-odd
inmates who were not British nationals had previously lived or worked in Britain
before their capture in Afghanistan in
2001, the paper said. Three detainees, who describe themselves as British residents in papers served at the High Court, were
last week given a green light to seek a court order requiring Foreign Secretary Jack Straw to petition Washington for their release. The case is expected to be heard in mid-March.
Joe Kaufman: CAIR's Looney
Magazine - CAIR has been in operation since mid-1994, when three
individuals from a Hamas-related advocacy organization received $5000 from a Hamas-related charity to start up a Hamas-related
civil liberties group. Indeed, the group’s pedigree is derived from none other than the person who is today the second
in command of Hamas, Mousa Abu Marzook.
Joseph Puder: It Is About
New Media Journal -
European guilt over colonialism has made its people accommodate
and appease those who seek their destruction. The Muslim Jihadists have recognized the weak moral position of the Europeans
and have mustered enough confidence to launch their Jihad.
A.M. Siriano: America - Islam’s
Only Hope for Reform
New Media Journal -
Legendary radio commentator and writer, Barry Farber, in
a recent editorial called “12th Century Thinking,” asks an important question: Can the 21st century live with
the 12th century?” It is very clear that there are only three answers to our problem of modern Muslims; they are, simply
put; appease them, reform them, kill them.
Karl Vick: A Bomb-Builder,
'Out of the Shadows'
Post - Right up to the hot August night his apartment exploded,
Louai Sakka's neighbors took him for a newlywed. The lanky Syrian was not seen much in the corridors of the high-rise residential
complex where he lived in this sunny resort city, but he spent time nuzzling an attractive young brunette and sipping beer
beside the pool. His real identity began to emerge shortly after 3 a.m. on Aug. 4, when the windows of Apt. 1703 blew out, showering the parking lot with the contents of the kitchen and bits
and pieces of the massive bomb Sakka had been painstakingly assembling in the living room.