The Command Post
Global War on Terror
February 28, 2005
Officials: Bin Laden Urges Zarqawi to Hit U.S.
Recent communications between Usama bin Laden and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi indicated that bin Laden has “encouraged Zarqawi and his group to focus on attacks inside the United State, multiple U.S. officials told FOX News on Monday.

The sources would not get into detail about how the communication was made or how it was intercepted by the United States and they pointed out that there is nothing specific in the message — such as maps, specific cities, or buildings — just a message encouraging a “focus” on attacks inside U.S. borders.

Read more…

Posted by Michele at 04:02 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
Winds of War: Feb 28/05

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. In addition, we also have our in-depth Iraq Report today.

Today’s Winds of War briefing is brought to you by Bill Roggio of the fourth rail and evariste of Discarded Lies.

Top Topics

Other Topics Today Include:
Iran is the greatest threat to peace; Iran to Europe: you can trust us to stay three months away from a nuclear weapon; Iran denies custody of bin Laden; Iran nuke threat has been fermenting for 20 years; terrorist recidivism shocka; Syria redeploying to Bekaa murmurs; Hezbollah, not IJ, behind latest suicide bombing; Trident submarines join the GWOT; more tidbits on brutal MS-13 gang; sting nabs 2 La. individuals untroubled by selling fake IDs to Abu Sayyaf; MANPAD attacks on airliners?; missing fuel rods found in Cali; cosmic rays detect nukes through shielding; smuggling tunnel from Mexico to US found; India a preeminent power within 15 years; China antisecession law brings repercussions; US ads in Pakistan may be paying off; Nepal blockade over-for now; NK wants six way talks resumption, has scary missiles in the pipeline; US to sell India arms; a look at the Philippines; Euros love wiretapping; Italian troubles and UK successes in combating terror; dumb IRA moves and tone-deafness; Jordanian Australian in chokey in Lebanon; Arab Bank ordered to cease wire transfers; Zarqawi’s inner circle shrinking; CIA recruiting at Guantanamo; Dutch upping Afghan commitment; Planespotters hurt CIA secrecy; maritime terrorism; and more.

Read the Rest…

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February 24, 2005
Thursday Winds of War: 2005-02-24

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. Thursday’s Winds of War briefings are given by me, Colt, of Eurabian Times.

TOP TOPICS

  • Confessions, confessions. Terrorists and Syrian officers on Iraqi TV spell out quite clearly that the war in Iraq is regional. Dan has the analysis here. Hammorabi has more.

Other Topics Today Include: diplomatic delusions with Iran; mass-release of terrorists; Lebanon as a model for retreat; NATO would send troops to Israel; A-Q may go for soft targets in Kuwait; successes in Yemen; American Muslim charged with plot to kill president; Saudis extradite American jihadi; Madrid tower fire - arson?; Dutch intelligence watch Saudi-funded mosques; Theo van Gogh revisited; FSB nails Beslan financier; GSPC more of a threat post-Hattab; Pakistani troops to fire on U.S. forces; Taliban to give in?; serious warning of attack in Aceh; Phillipines arrests thwart attacks; three arrested suicide bombers in Kenya; GSPC ambushes army; and much more.

Read the Rest…

Posted by Winds of Change at 11:21 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 21, 2005
The Muder of Theo Van Gogh, Part 2 (NDRE Report)

Back in November, I wrote on the murder of Theo Van Gogh and concluded that it was far more than the actions of a small group of misguided fanatics but was instead an act carried out by al-Qaeda as part of a far more sinister plot aimed at destabilizing the Netherlands. Now, courtesy of the Norwegian Defense Research Establishment, which are kind enough to publish their findings in English in marked contrast to some other countries I could name, we get a professional evaluation of the killing.

I told you so.

This is my summary of the Norwegian report, with their findings in bullet form and my comments (if any, since this is a really good report) beneath. I substitute “al-Qaeda” for “Islamist militants” at various points in my summary of the report since, as the report itself notes, this is who they are talking about.

Posted by Winds of Change at 02:45 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Monday Winds of War: Feb 21/05

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. In addition, we also have our in-depth Iraq Report today.

Today’s Winds of War briefing is brought to you by Bill Roggio of the fourth rail and evariste of Discarded Lies.

Top Topics

Other Topics Today Include:

Russia plans to continue aiding Iran’s nuke program; UFO/IFOs in Iran; Leaving Gaza; Tunnel war tech; Iraqi irregulars; CIA/FBI terror briefs; The PDB’s future; another Saudi “charity” indicted; Pakistani insecurity; India’s Patriot [missile] games; Deconstructing Theo’s murder; Projecting power; More claims against SEALs; and more!

Read the Rest…

Posted by Winds of Change at 02:37 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 20, 2005
Arab Network Airs Tape From Al Qaeda Deputy

FOX

Al-Jazeera television aired a videotape Sunday purporting to show Al Qaeda No. 2 Ayman al-Zawahri denouncing U.S. calls for reform in the region and urging the West to respect the Islamic world.

Al-Zawahri, who appeared sitting on the ground and in front of a brown background, said the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, “explains the truth about reforms and democracy that America is allegedly trying to impose in our countries.”

“Reform is based on American detention camps like Bagram, Kandahar, Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, it will be based on cluster bombs and imposition of people like Karzai and Allawi,” he said, referring to Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Interim Iraqi Prime Minister Ayad Allawi.

“Real security is based on mutual cooperation with the Islamic nation on the basis of mutual respect and the stopping of aggression.”

Posted by Michele at 02:01 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
February 18, 2005
Hatewatch Briefing 2005-02-18

Welcome! This briefing will be looking hard at the dark places the mainstream media sometimes seem determined to look away from, to better understand our declared enemies on their own terms and without illusions. Our goal is to bring you some of the top jihadi rants, idiotarian seething, and old-school Jew-hatred from around the world, leaving you more informed, more aware, and pretty disgusted every month. This Winds of Change.NET HateWatch briefing is brought to you by Lewy14, and zorkmidden of Discarded Lies. Past briefings and posts on related topics can be found here. Entil’zha veni!

HIGHLIGHTED TOPICS

  • Religious Hate: Freedom House report on Saudi religious hate; Saudi indoctrination in Germany; Saudi cleric: The Jews and Christians are enemies of God; A horrific murder of a 13-year-old Kuwaiti girl by her father; New preacher at Finsbury Park Mosque; in Pakistan, new cases of violence and torture against Christians; persecution of Assyrian Christians continues in Iraq; a young man with Down’s syndrome was used as a suicide bomber in Iraq; Rabbi: God caused tsunami to punish nations not supporting Israel; Christian “Reconstructionists”.

  • Idiotarian Seethings: Dutch schools ban students from displaying the flag as not to anger Muslim minorities; Bombed Israeli bus: rally and counter protest at UC Irvine; Rounding up Ward Churchill; Terrorist’s lawyer convicted of terrorism.

  • Race and Culture: European Roma are still facing discrimination and harassment; violent anti-Semitic attacks reaching alarming levels in Britain; London mayor calls a Jewish journalist “a concentration camp guard”; honour crimes in the E.U.; Kuwaiti article slanders Franklin, Jews; Neo-Nazis play victim, Wagner; American Nazi Party “adopts a road”; PA TV still advocating destruction of Israel.

  • A Hopeful Note: An Iranian professor suggests educating Muslims about the Holocaust will help achieve peace in the Middle East; a Yemeni judge engages in theological dialogue with terrorists with some surprising results.

Posted by Winds of Change at 08:58 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Special Analysis: The CIA's 2005 Briefing

[by Dan Darling]

CIA Director Porter Goss delivered his Global Intelligence Challenges testimony to the Senate Select Intelligence Committee today and while media reports have contained the basic gist of his statements, I think it’s best to view his relevant statements (and those of FBI director Mueller) in their entirety rather than in a sound-byte fashion.

One of the questions I’m often asked about these CIA statements is just how accurate several of these are. By way of contrast, let’s look at Tenet’s briefing on February 24, 2004 and see how what he said measured up. Then I’ll go on to Porter Goss’ 2005 comments, and add some thoughts of my own as we do a quick tour of the globe’s existing and emerging threats. I’ll conclude with some thoughts on intelligence reports, weather reports, and the growing dilemma of the modern age.

George Tenet Briefing, 2004
* Iraq
* Russia
* Iran

Porter Goss Briefing, 2005
* Al-Qaeda: Porter Goss’ Thoughts - And Mine
* Al-Qaeda’s Chemical/Biological Threat
* Afghanistan
* Iraq
* North Korea
* Iran
* Russia
* Other Threats and Areas of Concern

Some Closing Thoughts

Posted by Winds of Change at 08:39 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 17, 2005
Officials Warn of Future Terror Attacks
Top intelligence and military officials say the lack of attacks in the United States since 2001 does not mean terrorist groups are not planning new strikes, with weapons of mass destruction if they can get them.

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told a House hearing on Wednesday that it is reasonable to expect attacks and CIA Director Porter Goss told the Senate Intelligence Committee the Iraq war was giving terrorists experience and contacts for future attacks.

FBI Director Robert Mueller said a sleeper group may have been in place in the United States for years awaiting orders to attack.

“I remain very concerned about what we are not seeing,” Mueller said.

Read more…

Posted by Michele at 06:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Officials Warn of Future Terror Attacks
Top intelligence and military officials say the lack of attacks in the United States since 2001 does not mean terrorist groups are not planning new strikes, with weapons of mass destruction if they can get them.

Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told a House hearing on Wednesday that it is reasonable to expect attacks and CIA Director Porter Goss told the Senate Intelligence Committee the Iraq war was giving terrorists experience and contacts for future attacks.

FBI Director Robert Mueller said a sleeper group may have been in place in the United States for years awaiting orders to attack.

“I remain very concerned about what we are not seeing,” Mueller said.

Read more…

Posted by Michele at 06:20 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 16, 2005
Iranian TV: Explosion Near Nuke Plant - [Updated -7-- Several Theories On Cause]

Just breaking now [8:46am EST] on MSNBC and CNN (tv)- no link yet. Will update as soon as link is available.

Also notable in conjuction with this story:

Syria and Iran say to build ‘common front’


Iran and Syria, both locked in rows with the United States, said on Wednesday they will form a common front to face challenges and threats.

“We are ready to help Syria on all grounds to confront threats,” Iranian Vice-President Mohammad Reza Aref said in Tehran after meeting Syrian Prime Minister Naji al-Otari.

Otari told reporters, “This meeting, which takes place at this sensitive time, is important, especially because Syria and Iran face several challenges and it is necessary to build a common front.”

Update:

State TV: Powerful explosion in area with power plant

An unknown aircraft fired a missile on Wednesday in a deserted area near the southern city of Dailam in the province of Bushehr where Iran has a nuclear power plant, Iranian state television said.

“A powerful explosion was heard this morning on the outskirts of Dailam in the Bushehr province. Witnesses said that the missile was fired from an unknown plane 12 miles from the city,” Iran’s Arabic language Al-Alam said.

Sky News

Update: (Related)

Iran Threatens to Shoot Down U.S. Drones

Iran’s intelligence chief on Wednesday accused the United States of flying spy drones over its nuclear sites and threatened to shoot down the unmanned surveillance crafts.

Intelligence Minister Ali Yunesi comments backed a report in The Washington Post on Sunday that quoted unidentified U.S. officials as saying the drones have been flying over Iran for nearly a year to seek evidence of nuclear weapons programs.

“U.S. spying activities over Iranian airspace have been going since a long time ago,” Yunesi told reporters.

“Most of the shining objects that our people see in Iran’s airspace are American spying equipment used to spy on Iran’s nuclear and military facilities,” the minister told reporters

.

Related: Defense Tech: Drones Over Iran.

Update from Sky News:

Later reports suggested a fuel tank may have fallen off an Iranian plane.

Russia said there had been no attack on the plant.

The nuclear plant, being built with Russian help, is 90 miles from the port.

Local officials have been despatched to the site to identify the cause of the explosion, according to Arab-language television Al-Alam.

Iranian Interior Ministry spokesman said he could not confirm reports anti-aircraft fire had been shot off near the plant.

Israel said it was not involved.

More on Fox.

Update: Looks like there was no “bomb”


According to Iranian state television, an explosion that went off Wednesday not far from an Iranian nuclear plant may be the result of a fuel tank falling from a plane.

Few details were offered, but the broadcast cited local officials speculating that a falling part from an Iranian aircraft could be the cause.

Iran’s Interior Ministry said it is still investigating and cannot confirm any information. There had been earlier reports the blast might have been due to anti-aircraft fire in the region.

Two residents in the area, though, tell The Associated Press they didn’t hear any explosions.

However, Iranian officials are denying any reports of a fallen fuel tank. And some witnesses are claiming they saw a missile being fired.

More at the Guardian.

Update:

Pentagon Doubts Iran Under Attack

Update:

Friendly Fire?:

An Interior Ministery spokesman said “friendly fire” may have been the cause.

“We have no reason to say it’s a hostile attack,” he said.

“There is a big possibility that it was a friendly fire by mistake.

“Several such mistaken friendly fire has been reported there in recent days.”

Posted by Michele at 10:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
Fuel Tank May Have Caused Iran Blast
Iranian state television reported Wednesday that an explosion near the town of Deilam, about 60 miles from a nuclear facility, may have been caused by a fuel tank dropping from an Iranian plane.

The state-run television provided few details but said local officials had told it that may have been the cause of the unidentified explosion.

An Iran’s Interior Ministry said Wednesday he could not confirm earlier television reports there had been an explosion in the area nor confirm anti-aircraft fire in the region, which is about 60 miles north of the Bushehr nuclear facility.

AP

Michele is rounding-up.

Posted by Billy Beck at 09:48 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 15, 2005
USS Jimmy Carter?

Yep! The US Navy News reports:

The Navy will commission its newest nuclear-powered attack submarine Jimmy Carter on Saturday, Feb. 19, during an 11 a.m. EST ceremony at Naval Submarine Base New London, Groton, Conn.

Just another tool in the arsenal protecting our shores.

Read the whole story here.

Posted by at 08:52 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
U.S. Ambassador to Syria Recalled After Beirut Car Bombing

Fox News just reported that the U.S. Ambassador to Syria has been removed by the U.S. in response to the car bombing in Beirut.

AP

UPI

Reuters

CNN

Fox News

NYT

WaPo

Posted by Adam Harris at 12:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 14, 2005
Monday Winds of War: Feb 14/05

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. In addition, we also have our in-depth Iraq Report today.

Today’s Winds of War briefing is brought to you by evariste of Discarded Lies. Bill Roggio of the fourth rail returns to the briefing next week. He’s been doing yeoman’s work on a little matter called Easongate which you may have heard of. Happy Valentine’s Day! That’s your love quota for today, from here on out it’s all war.

Top Topics

Other Topics Today Include:
Iran UFO mania: now they’re IFOs!; Iran: we won’t give up the heavy waters; US using MEK to infiltrate Iran; Iran develops stealth torpedo; Iran guns down dissidents in Pak; Rafsanjani echoes North Korea and demands to deal directly with Uncle Sam; Germany calls on US to give Iran more carrots and make nicer; Hamas to be next Hezbollah?; Syria wants Russian antimissile system; UAE to receive first batch of F16s; Saudi minister says ideology not unemployment behind terrorism; angry Israelis slash Bibi’s tires; Saudi Arabia’s Grand Mufti says “just say No to terrorism”; Homeland Security study to unleash gases upon NYC; 9790 faith-based ghosts will patrol the border along with 210 new agents; Russia to sell Chavez 100000 AK-74s to use as flowerpots; Nevada after drivers to report fishy individuals; 17+ Colombians killed in FARC ambush; Halliburton’s Americium can’t be found in Americia; USS San Francisco cmdr relieved, reprimanded; Castro blusters; Somalia sucks; African regional groups come into their own?; Hutu guerrillas still causing mayhem; Al Qaeda’s chances in Ethiopia; Nigeria and (maritime, not mp3) piracy; what’s behind Rummy’s renewal of China military ties; Pakistan failed state by 2015; Indonesia cleans up money laundering act; North Korea freaks everyone out; Pakistani army pays Al Qaeda a half mil; India’s carrots are bland and undergrown, and its sticks are skinny and twiggy; Nepal chaos; Belgium nearonazis grow cos Islamist menace not being dealt with by mainstream parties; Binnie claimed to have nuke material, tried to get blueprints; Al Zawahiri issues B-side of blah, blah, blah; NATO realigns in Afghanistan; El Baradei ouster still on US agenda and more…

Read the Rest…

Posted by Winds of Change at 10:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Beirut Car Bomb Kills 9; Politician Targeted/Killed [Updated]
A bomb targeting the motorcade of Lebanon’s most prominent politician killed at least nine people on Monday along this city’s famed seafront boulevard.

Former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri was believed to have survived, but at least one of his bodyguards was among those killed, witnesses said.

Hariri was believed unhurt in the Monday blast, said Bassem Yammout, a Lebanese legislator who arrived at the scene and spoke to The Associated Press.

The private Lebanese Broadcasting Corp., however, said Hariri was taken to a hospital.

More…

Update:

New reports say that Hariri was killed in the attack:

Former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri was killed Monday in a massive bomb explosion that ravaged his motorcade, the country’s official news agency said.

The news agency, quoting a statement from American University Hospital, said Hariri arrived dead at the hospital, his body mutilated in the massive explosion.

Nine other people were also killed in the massive blast, and 100 injured, the news agency said.

Hariri’s official website is here, though it seems to be down at the moment.

Hariri’s bio here.

Posted by Michele at 07:37 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 11, 2005
Dutch anti-terror plans

Radio Netherlands reports:

The Dutch cabinet has announced a range of new measures, including plans to add hundreds of extra staff to the agencies involved in combating terrorism, hundreds of millions of euros in additional funding for equipment, and a whole series of preventative measures.
Posted by Oskar van Rijswijk at 11:51 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack
N.Y. Lawyer Convicted of Aiding Terrorists
A veteran civil rights lawyer known for representing radicals and revolutionaries in her 30 years on the New York legal scene has vowed to fight her conviction for smuggling messages of violence from one of her jailed clients to his terrorist disciples.

Lynne Stewart, 65, a firebrand, left-wing activist, was convicted Thursday of conspiracy, providing material support to terrorists, defrauding the government and making false statements.

[…]

Lawyers have said Stewart most likely would face a 20-year sentence. She will remain free on bail but must stay in New York until her July 15 sentencing.

Vowing to appeal, Stewart blamed the verdict on inflammatory evidence that included videotape of Osama bin Laden urging support for the jailed Abdel-Rahman, who prosecutors said communicated with the outside world with Stewart’s help.

“When you put Osama bin Laden in a courtroom and ask the jury to ignore it, you’re asking a lot,” she said.

More here

Editorial here

More here and here

Posted by Michele at 07:29 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack
February 09, 2005
31 Injured in Madrid Car Bomb
A car bomb has exploded outside a convention center on the outskirts of the Spanish capital, Madrid, injuring 31 people.

CNN’s Madrid Bureau Chief Al Goodman said there were no reported fatalities but police said 31 were hurt by the blast wave, with 21 of them taken to hospital.

Madrid Mayor Alberto Ruiz Gallardon told a reporter for CNN sister network CNN+ that most of injuries — many caused by flying glass — were light.

Members of the Spanish royal family were to inaugurate a major art show at the Ifema convention center later in the day, Goodman said.

A caller claiming to be with the Basque separatist group ETA warned of the bombing in phone call to the Basque newspaper Gara shortly before 9 a.m. (0800 GMT), the paper’s Web site reported. Gara then warned authorities. The bomb exploded at 9:30 a.m.

Read more…

Posted by Michele at 05:38 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack
February 07, 2005
The Counterterroism Blog

Now in the ‘sphere: The new Counterterroism Blog. I know I’ll be chekcing daily. Among today’s catch: that the UN may soon announce a new terrorism strategy. (Of course, the bigger headline may be that the UN is going to announce A terrorism strategy.)

Posted by Alan at 10:19 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack
Inside The MATRIX

Vanity Fair wonders why the cyber-genius who’s data mining ID‘d the 9/11 hijackers isn’t recognized as more of hero.

Posted by Alan at 10:12 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
Good News from Afghanistan: 7 February 2005

Note: Also available at the “Opinion Journal” and Chrenkoff. Thanks to James Taranto and Joe Katzman for the continuing support and to all of you who make this project worthwhile through your readership, feedback, linkage and publicity.

There are signs that the drought which has gripped Afghanistan for the past several years might be finally breaking. “In the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, about 3 1/4 inches of rain fell in Kandahar over a two-day period… Rainfall for December was four times the normal amount for the month… North of Kandahar Air Base, the Tamak River rose so high the water was nearly touching the bottom of the main bridge leading into town. Meanwhile, near Kabul, rainwater filled some smaller streams that are usually bone-dry this time of year.”

According to Khoshhal Murad, a United Nations interpreter in Kabul, Afghans are saying “this is a sign from God.”

“When the Taliban were in power, Murad said, some of its leaders grew so frustrated by the drought they randomly rounded up dozens of people, drove them into the desert and demanded they pray for rain. It didn’t come. ‘You can’t force people to pray,’ Murad said. ‘They should have gone out in the desert themselves.’

“Murad said his father told him this is the most rain he has seen in more than 30 years.”

The drought has broken throughout Afghanistan - both literally and metaphorically. As Kim Hart of the “American Journalism Review” writes, “with the establishment of a new government and building of infrastructure, a continuing U.S. military presence and the hunt for terrorists, Afghanistan is rife with stories of long-term consequence.” Unfortunately, as Hart notes, there’s hardly anyone left in Afghanistan to report it:

“Once a journalism hot spot, Afghanistan was all but left behind when the media’s spotlight turned to the conflict in Iraq. In June/July 2003, [the “American Journalism Review”] reported that only a handful of reporters remained in the struggling country on a full-time basis, while other news organizations floated correspondents in and out when time and resources permitted.

“A year and a half later, Afghanistan has become even more of an afterthought. Only two news organizations—Newsweek and the Washington Post—have full-time reporters stationed in Kabul, the capital. Other major newspapers, such as the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times, rely on stringers in Afghanistan and correspondents based in New Delhi, India, to cover the region, a stark contrast to the hundreds of reporters pouring into Iraq since the war began. The New York Times uses a stringer, albeit a full-time one. Television networks have nearly disappeared.”

As the old saying goes, all dressed up and nowhere to go. Just when after decades of bloodshed and despair Afghanistan is finally getting back on its feet the media has already moved off to cover another crisis and another quagmire somewhere else - perhaps in Iraq. But as citizens of countries whose servicemen and women have liberated Afghanistan from under the Taliban yoke and which continue to participate in rebuilding of the country, we deserve to be told when all that blood, sweat and money is bringing good results. Below are the last month’s stories from Afghanistan that you might have missed.

Posted by Winds of Change at 06:29 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
Monday Winds of War: Feb 7/05

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. In addition, we also have our in-depth Iraq Report today.

Today’s Winds of War briefing is brought to you by evariste of Discarded Lies. Bill Roggio of the fourth rail is working on Easongate with several other fine bloggers like Chester and Blackfive, Brian Scott and Charles Goggin this week; he returns to the briefing next week.

Top Topics

  • Tony Blair is setting up “tough tests” for immigrants to the UK, turning away those who do not bring professional skills or economic benefits to the UK, to preempt the Tories on an issue that’s very much in the public mind in the runup to the May 5th elections. Recently, Jane’s reported that the UK was rapidly becoming a base for members of Al Takfir wal Hijra due to lax asylum policies.

Other Topics Today Include:
US and Israel may be conducting surveillance into Iran; Halliburton, BP and GE will not do any more business with Iran; Rumsfeld says Iran is “years away” from a nuclear weapon; Iran not happy with Rice’s “threats”; Saudi Arabia trying to reform Islamists; Rice’s plans for a Palestinian “viable” state; Colorado seeks 4 illegal truckers; South Americans think local government is good government; 3rd world gangs, 4th generation warfare; fugitive Venezuelan general caught; Jacksonville security; Khartoum’s grip loosening further; More Beslans promised; Danger to India from Nepal developments; Singapore anti-maritime terrorism unit launched; Abu Sayyaf kidnapper caught; Madrid bombers sold drugs to pay for it; French jihadi cannon-fodder; Iranian terrorist infrastructure in the Balkans since the 90s; Communist informers and spies list leaked onto internet by Polish journalist; How the Euroblob will eat us all; NK gave Libya uranium; US troops get training in counterterrorism in India; lessons learned from eavesdropping on terrorists and more…

Read the Rest…

Posted by Winds of Change at 06:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
9/11 hijacker used bypass code to obtain California [driver's] license

SACRAMENTO The terrorist believed to have flown a hijacked airliner into the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, obtained a California driver’s license without providing the required Social Security number for identification, officials are acknowledging for the first time.

Nawaf Alhazmi then used that license when he registered for the flight training that enabled him to pilot the doomed airliner.

Alhazmi used a loophole, since closed, in California law that allowed hundreds of thousands of foreign drivers without Social Security numbers to use a generic number in its place. Even some foreign citizens with Social Security numbers skirted the identity check required of U.S. citizens.

Although the process changed a year ago, some of the drivers still have their original licenses… …a 1994 court decision required the state to also give driver’s licenses to qualified applicants, such as foreign students, who had no Social Security number…

184,000 such licenses were issued between 12/2000 and 2/2002.

There are various bills being proposed in other states to tighten or loosen the rules regarding driver’s licenses. Rep. Sensenbrenner [R-WI] has authored a bill that would set nationwide standards.

In California, state Sen. Gil Cedillo [D] recently continued his multi-year attempt to give driver’s licenses to illegal aliens: “Actors, writers and musicians push for [illegal] immigrant drivers licenses” (commentary here, picture of the ad here.) Security checks would supposedly be performed. Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed the last such Cedillo bill that was passed, saying the security safeguards weren’t stringent enough.

The 9/11 hijackers reportedly had a combined total of 63 driver’s licenses from various states, although the exact number is disputed, albeit without providing direct contradictory evidence. Various DMVs across the country have had scandals where employees issued licenses to those without the proper ID; the AP offers a roundup here. Other 9/11 terrorists had driver’s licenses from Virginia or Florida. The procedure they used to obtain some licenses is detailed here.

(Same AP report here and here.)

Posted by Lonewacko at 01:03 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 04, 2005
Possible Hijacking of Delta Planes in NY - Updated - Planes Landed Safely
Two incoming Delta flights declared in-flight emergencies.

A senior government official tells NBC Flight 119 from Amsterdam received phoned-in hijack threat and was being taken to an isolated location at JFK, being met by Port Authority Police, using the same procedures as hijacking.

Flight 81, coming from Paris, has also landed, after a phoned-in hijack threat.

Cockpits are secure, and operations are normal on the airplanes.

Officials are not sure if this was two threats from one phone call.

More as we get it…

Update:


Two Delta Airlines flights received hijacking threats on Friday, but both landed in New York without incident, federal authorities said.

Delta Flight 119 from Paris and Delta Flight 81 from Amsterdam were both bound for John F. Kennedy International Airport, said spokesmen for the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

At least one of the threats was called into an embassy, the Homeland Security official said, and the caller claimed there were hijackers on board.

It was unclear how the other threat was made.

Port Authority police and the FBI met the planes in New York.

No arrests were immediate, but no one was being allowed off the planes until everyone could be questioned, authorities said.

Posted by Michele at 02:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
Rice Says Iran Attack 'Not on Agenda'
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said a U.S. attack on Iran “is simply not on the agenda,” despite the United States’ continued criticism of Iran’s human rights record and suspected nuclear weapons ambitions.

Rice would not say whether the United States supports a change of government in Iran, although Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage has expressly said that regime change is not the U.S. goal.

Speaking in London, first stop on a weeklong tour of European capitals, Rice said there is broad international agreement that Iran cannot be allowed to use a civilian nuclear power project to conceal a weapons program.


More…

Posted by Michele at 08:45 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack
February 03, 2005
Winds of War: Feb 3/05

Welcome! Our goal at Winds of Change.NET is to give you one power-packed briefing of insights, news and trends from the global War on Terror that leaves you stimulated, informed, and occasionally amused every Monday & Thursday. Thursday’s Winds of War briefings are given by me, Colt, of Eurabian Times.

TOP TOPICS

  • Freedom House has released an 89-page report on the extent of Saudi jihadist literature in the United States, a summary of which can be found here. The PDF can be found here.
  • In an interview with U.K. Channel 4, Shamil Basayev says “We are planning more Beslan-type operations in the future because we are forced to do so.”
  • The U.S. is informing its allies that some of Libya’s nuclear material - namely 8,000 spent fuel rods worth of weapons-grade plutonium - may have come from North Korea.
  • Be sure to read this interview with Omar Bakri Mohammed, a Britain-based al-Qaeda supporting imam.
  • Prepare yourselves for a farce. The world’s first anti-terror summit will be held in Saudi Arabia.

Other Topics Today Include…
Iran will never scrap their nukes; Russia boosts ties with Iran; Bush to give more cash to PA; Egypt preps for war with Israel; Israel to allow Egyptian armour and troops in eastern Sinai; jihadis use Down syndrome teen for bombing; Kuwait shoot-out; Saudi intel problems; Bush: Iran world’s biggest terror source; U.S. works with Syria to stop cash to terrorists; Feith visits Pakistan; Al-Takfir wa al-Hijra arrives in Britain; cash raised in Britain still going to Hamas; Russian troops can fight terror anywhere; Beslan arrest; Chechen ‘ceasefire’; French lessons for imams; Bonn Koran school under scrutiny for jihad indoctrination; A-Q still looking at Australia; Kashmir murders; Filipinos’ hands tied by Oslo-esque agreement; al-Qaeda’s plan for Africa; and much more.

Posted by Winds of Change at 01:04 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack
February 02, 2005
Inkgrrl on Israel & its Neighbourhood: 2005-02-02

Winds of Change.NET Regional Briefings run on Tuesdays & Wednesdays, and sometimes Fridays too. This Regional Briefing focuses on Israel and its neighbours, courtesy of Inkgrrl.

NB: Monday’s Winds of War has done a fabulous job of covering some of the big scaries in the region, so this briefing will concentrate on regional events of less immediately violent global import.

TOP TOPIC

  • It’s been 60 years since the survivors of Auschwitz were liberated from hell on earth. Every year we are further away from that painfully bittersweet event is a celebration of mankind’s possibilities. There’s plenty of documentation and literature available to those who remain ignorant, or to those who think that Bosnia in our generation’s lifetime was an original idea; a good place to start is Yad Vashem.

Other Topics Today Include:
Falashas Coming Home, Social Justice Aborning, Beautiful Irony, Palestinian Welfare, Pups For Peace, Contrarian Fundamentalists, Ancient Dialogues, Hezbollah’s Got No Excuse, Syrian-Flavored Peace, We Are The Lebanese World, Egypt Busy On The Peace Front, and Free Speech In Jordan.

Posted by Winds of Change at 02:52 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack
February 01, 2005
FBI Nabs Saudi Al Qaeda

The New York Daily News reports that the FBI nabbed a Saudi military official with ties to al Qaeda. The Saudi was arrested just after he finished training with the U.S. Air Force:

FBI agents stopped and quizzed the suspect and his family at a U.S. airport as they were leaving the country. The military man was allowed to return to Saudi Arabia, where he was detained and interrogated further, sources said.

As a result, arrests of other Al Qaeda operatives were made overseas, sources said.

From California Yankee.

Posted by Dan Spencer at 01:17 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack