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Introduction: The program presents analysis of the “mystery”  surrounding the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370.
Never have we seen the news media–The Ministry of Truth in the most literal, Orwellian sense–behave more shamefully. (We admit that their whitewashing of the outright fascists and Nazi/OUN/B heirs in the Ukraine might equal the cover-up of the apparently willful destruction of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370.)
The program also takes a highly speculative look at the recent stowaway by a young Somali Muslim in the wheel well of a jet airliner at San Jose Airport. A strange story, the Muslim Brotherhood figures prominently in the background of the event. (We emphasize that we are NOT casting aspersions on the young fellow, but asking if he may have been cynically manipulated by jihadist/Muslim Brotherhood elements testing a “dry run” for a possible attack.)
Program Highlights Include:
- The Malaysian Airlines plane was piloted  by Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a committed follower and political associate of Anwar Ibrahim, a key Malaysian Muslim Brother.
- The plane was almost certainly diverted from within , by someone with considerable expertise.
- The flight simulator in Shah’s home had data erased from it.
- Anwar Ibrahim–Shah’s political idol–was a founder  of the International Institute of Islamic Thought, a Muslim Brotherhood front that was investigated in connection with the Operation Green Quest  raids of 3/20/2002.
- Ibrahim is part of the political milieu  of GOP bigwig Grover Norquist.
- Key Bin Laden associate Tarik Hamdi was employed  by IIIT.
- The day the plane disappeared , pilot Shah’s mentor and idol was sentenced to five years in prison for sodomy.
- The New York Times , among others, has obfuscated the sinister political reality and connections of Shah and Ibrahim.A
- Among the passengers was a Uighur professor  who had taken flight training and was working in Turkey.
- Links of Suhaib Webb –the former Imam of the Mosque in Santa Clara to which the Somali wheel well boy belonged –to the Muslim Brotherhood  and Anwar al-Awlaki.
- Evidentiary tributaries linking Webb to the milieu of the Tsarnaevs and the Boston Marathon bombing.
- The role of CAIR –a Muslim Brotherhood front organization–in public representation of the wheel well stoway and his family.
- Review of the positive view of the Muslim Brotherhood  held by members of the intelligence and corporate communities.
1. The plane was piloted  by Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a committed follower and political associate of Anwar Ibrahim, a key Malaysian Muslim Brother.
Malaysia’s opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, dismissed speculation that the pilot of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet, a supporter of his movement for democratic change, might have hijacked the plane for political reasons, in an interview with Britain’s Channel 4 News on Friday.
As The Lede explained on Wednesday, the pilot, Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah, was reportedly described by an unnamed government official as a “fanatical” supporter of Mr. Ibrahim, a remark that was widely misinterpreted by journalists and bloggers.
Speaking to the Channel 4 correspondent Jonathan Rugman, Mr. Ibrahim criticized the Malaysian government’s handling of the investigation into the missing Flight 370 as “clear incompetence” and said that any attempt “to cast aspersions on the pilot purely on the basis of political leanings is absurd.” Captain Zaharie was, according to Mr. Ibrahim, “very passionate about freedom and democracy,” and “a good professional pilot,” who simply did not fit the profile of an Islamist radical. . . .
2a. The plane was almost certainly diverted from within , by someone with considerable expertise.
. . . . As the possible break in what had been a fruitless search was being pursued, the Malaysian authorities were seeking help from the F.B.I. to help retrieve deleted computer data from a homemade flight simulator belonging to the captain of the Malaysia Airlines jet that vanished 11 days ago, their first request for high-level American assistance in solving the mystery of the missing plane. . . .
. . . . Investigators have said the plane’s extraordinary diversion from its intended course was probably carried out by someone who had aviation experience. The Malaysian police, who found that Mr. Zaharie had built a flight simulator at his home, said Wednesday that some data had been erased from the simulator on Feb. 3, more than a month before the ill-fated flight.
Evidence suggests that whoever diverted the plane knew how to disable its communications systems and program course changes, and the data recorded in the pilot’s flight simulator may shed light on whether he was involved.[This can only be done from within the plane’s cockpit.–D.E.] . . .
2b. More about the deliberate diversion of the plane from within the cockpit:
. . . . American officials said on Monday that the sharp turn to the west that took the plane from its planned northeastward flight path was achieved using a computer system on the plane, and that the turn was most likely programmed into it by someone in the cockpit who was knowledgeable about airplane systems. . . .
3. Anwar Ibrahim–Shah’s political idol–was a founder  of the International Institute of Islamic Thought, a Muslim Brotherhood front that was investigated in connection with the Operation Green Quest  raids of 3/20/2002.
Here is reality: “Anwar Ibrahim’s ties to the Muslim Brotherhood run deep. Ibrahim helped establish the International Institute for Islamic Thought, or IIIT, a Muslim Brotherhood front group in the United States. IIIT has come under fire for their connections with terrorist organizations.
In 2002, Anwar Ibrahim’s IIIT was included in a lawsuit by victims of 9/11 seeking damages from organizations linked to ‘rendering material support to radical Islamism.’ In 2003, US government prosecutors ‘submitted court documents detailing financial support (PDF) from the IIIT for convicted Palestinian Islamic Jihad fundraiser Sami al-Arian.’ They also found that Taha Jaber al-Alwani, the president of IIIT had once stated via a fatwa that ‘jihad is the only way to liberate Palestine.’ A US Customs official said that the government is also looking into the possibility that IIIT was involved in ‘terrorism-related money laundering activities.’” . . . .
4. The IIT employed Tarik Hamdi, an operational associate of Osama bin Laden.
. . . . Tarik Hamdi came to the United States and applied for citizenship providing false information. Hamdi worked for Sami Al-Arian, who confessed to providing assistance to the PIJ (Palestinian Islamic Jihad) and later worked for IIIT.
In May 1998 ABC News in pursuit of an interview with Bin Laden had communicated with Mohammad Atef and were directed to Tarik Hamdi as a person who could connect them to Osama Bin Laden. ABC connected with Tarik Hamdi at his place of employment at IIIT. ABC was able to get the interview. Hamdi was able to deliver a Satellite phone battery pack that according to federal agents was used three months later in the bombing of American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
It took until 2005 for Tarik A. Hamdi, who was employed as a publisher at IIIT, to be charged in a federal affidavit of having been the “American contact” for one of Osama bin-Laden’s front organisations. . . .
5. Ibrahim was jailed just hours before the plane “disappeared.”
. . . . Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a father-of-three, was said to be a ‘fanatical’ supporter of the country’s opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim – jailed for homosexuality just hours before the jet disappeared.
It has also been revealed that the pilot’s wife and three children moved out of the family home the day before the plane went missing.
…Captian Shah was an ‘obsessive’ supporter of Ibrahim. And hours before the doomed flight left Kuala Lumpur it is understood 53-year-old Shah attended a controversial trial in which Ibrahim was jailed for five years.
Campaigners say the politician, the key challenger to Malaysia’s ruling party, was the victim of a long-running smear campaign and had faced trumped-up charges.
Police sources have confirmed that Shah was a vocal political activist – and fear that the court decision left him profoundly upset. It was against this background that, seven hours later, he took control of a Boeing 777-200 bound for Beijing and carrying 238 passengers and crew.
Zaharie’s co-workers have told investigators the veteran pilot was a social activist who was vocal and fervent in his support of Ibrahim.
‘Colleagues made it clear to us that he was someone who held strong political beliefs and was strident in his support for Anwar Ibrahim,’ another investigation source said. ‘We were told by one colleague he was obsessed with politics.’
In their interviews, colleagues said Zaharie told them he planned to attend the court case involving Anwar on March 7, just hours before the Beijing flight, but investigators had not yet been able to confirm if he was among the crowd of Anwar supporters at court.
…Malaysian officials initially appeared keen not to direct any suspicion towards Zaharie or his co-pilot, 27-year-old Fariq Abdul Hamid, who was last week revealed to have invited two women passengers into the cockpit and smoked on an earlier flight to Phuket.
But evidence of the way the plane’s transponder and communication systems were disabled and the way the plane was expertly flown over the Indian Ocean apparently using navigational waypoints meant only a skilled aviator could have been at the controls. Investigators were also baffled by why, if hijackers took over the plane, there was no Mayday call or signal from the two pilots to say the cockpit had been breached. . . . .
6. Ibrahim was networked with Janus-Merritt Strategies, founded by Grover Norquist , who founded the Islamic Free Market Institute . Norquist’s milieu  is inextricably linked with the institutions  targeted by the Operation Green Quest  raids of 3/20/2002.
. . . . Janus-Merritt Strategies was a lobbying firm founded in 1997 by conservative activist Grover Norquist and then-lawyer David Safavian, who later became better known as the chief of staff in the General Services Administration and for his conviction in the Abramoff-Reed Indian lobbying scandal. . . .
. . . . On December 17, 2001, eleven months after Safavian’s departure, Janus resubmitted its disclosure forms. This time the name of [convicted terrorist Abdurahman] Alamoudi had been replaced by the name of Dr. Jamal al Barzinji, who is also notable as a vice president of the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT). Norquist has refused to release tax records of the firm for the period during which he and Safavian owned the company.
Safavian told the Senate that al Barzinji, not Alamoudi, was his client. “Al Barzinji,” he said, “should have been listed as the client retaining the firm for work related to Malaysian political prisoner Anwar Ibrahim,” referring to the deposed prime minister of Malaysia, who also was a co-founder of the IIIT. . . .
7. We’ve heard suspicions about possible Uighur involvment  in the plane’s disappearance. With a recent knife attack on Han Chinese and the number of Chinese onboard, a detail stands out. A Uighur who was a professor in Turkey AND took flight simulation courses is an interesting suspect, to say the least… Wonder if he was uninterested in the “how to take off and land” portions of the course? For more about the use of Uighurs as jihadist proxy-warriors in the oil and mineral rich Xinjiang province, see–among other programs–FTR #’s 348 , 550 , 635 , 636 .
Police investigating the backgrounds of all 239 people aboard the missing Malaysia Airlines flight are paying “special attention” to a 35 year-old Chinese Uighur man who undertook flight simulation training, according to a report in a leading Malay language newspaper in Kuala Lumpur.
The Uighurs Muslim ethnic minority group from the north-western Chinese province of Xinjiang have been battling for independence since they were brought under Chinese control in 1949, claiming they are oppressed by China’s authoritarian government and face religious restrictions and widespread discrimination.
Earlier this month the Uighurs, who make up 45 percent of the population of Xinjiang, were blamed for a violent attack at a Chinese train station.
At least 100 people have been killed in the past year in violent clashes between Uighurs and Chinese security forces.
The Harian Metro newspaper quoted an unnamed source as saying the man is not a suspect over the plane’s disappearance but that investigators were delving into his background.
According to the source the man has a PHD from a university in Britain was recently worked as a lecturer at a university in Turkey.
The source said he undertook flight simulation training in Sweden in around 2006. . . .
8. A speculative element concerns a young Somali refugee who snuck into the wheelwell of a jet at San Jose Airport. Pining to return to his mother in a camp in Ethiopia, the young man is a Muslim who attends a Brotherhood-connected mosque in Santa Clara. Communications on behalf of the family have been conducted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations , revealed in court documents as a Muslim Brotherhood  front organization. Note: we are not necessarily impugning the integrity of the boy–we are wondering if this apparently vulnerable and impressionable young fellow was being manipulated by Islamists, perhaps doing “testing” for a future incident. We wonder if the disappearance of the Malaysian plane may also have been a “test” or a “dry run.”
- There are a number of strange aspects to the story: The boy was ostensibly trying to get to Ethiopia to visit his mother. Stowing away on a plane bound for Hawaii seems to be “the long way ’round” for such a journey.
- Many who have stowed away in a wheel well have died of cold and/or lack of oxygen. How did this young fellow survive?
- Was he, perhaps, a “dry run” for a future incident, in which a terrorist wearing an explosive belt might bring down an airliner?
. . . . A spokeswoman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations in San Francisco who had been speaking for the family declined comment beyond reiterating a statement earlier this week that Yusuf wanted to see his son soon.
Abdi survived a 5½-hour flight from San Jose, Calif., to Maui after hopping an airport fence and climbing into the wheel well of a Boeing 767. He has not spoken publicly about the ordeal that raised questions about airport security and revealed the personal family drama of a Somali immigrant struggling to adjust to life in the United States.
Abdi, who lives in Santa Clara, Calif., with his father, stepmother and siblings, had been unhappy in California and desperately missed his mother, according to those who know his family. . . . .
9. Abdi worshipped at Muslim Community Association Islamic Center in Santa Clara, the Imam of which  was associated with the Islamic community in Boston to which the Tsarnaev brothers belonged. Suhaib Webb was also an associate of Anwar al-Awlaki, an al-Qaeda associate.
. . . . He said he saw his son Friday afternoon while the family prayed together. They worship at the Muslim Community Association Islamic Center in Santa Clara, which has been buzzing with the news of the stowaway. . . .
10. More about the Suhaib Webb/Anwar al-Awlaki/Tsarnaev milieu:
. . . . Prior to the Boston Marathon attack, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who attended the Islamic Society of Boston mosque in Cambridge, downloaded radical Islamic propaganda from the Internet, including materials authored by Anwar al-Awlaki, the senior al Qaeda operative who was killed in a U.S. drone strike in Yemen on September 30, 2011. Tsarnaev also downloaded a summer 2010 edition of the al Qaeda magazine “Inspire,” which included bomb-making instructions and which is thought to have been the work of al-Awlaki.
Al-Awlaki lived in the United States between 1990 and 2002, when he moved to the United Kingdom before eventually relocating to Yemen, where he where worked for al-Qaeda and produced propaganda tapes and other materials urging Muslims to commit terrorist attacks against the United States.
Suhaib Webb, imam of the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center in Roxbury, spoke alongside al-Awlaki at a September 9, 2001 fundraiser at the University of California at Irvine, according to FBI surveillance documents. The fundraiser was intended to raise money for the legal defense of H. Rap Brown, an Atlanta-based Islamic radical who shot and killed two Georgia police officers. Webb and al-Awlaki helped raise $100,000 to defend Brown, who was eventually convicted for his crimes.
“Webb and Aulaki may be associated with the Muslim American Society,” according to the surveillance documents, which were prepared to investigate the unconfirmed possibility that al-Awlaki purchased plane tickets for some of the 9/11 hijackers. . . .
. . . . The Islamic Society of Boston (ISB) in Cambridge, which Tsarnaev attended, and its 2009 expansion the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center (ISBCC) in Roxbury, where Webb is imam, are both part of the same entity under the same ownership and decision-making authorities, according to close observers of the Boston Muslim community and deeds obtained by TheDC.
“The deeds to both mosques are owned and held by the same exact group, the Islamic Society of Boston Trust, which is the official owner of those mosques and has final say in the decisions of both. They try to put difference between the two, because when one gets in trouble they try to shield the other one, but in reality they are both the same entity,” said Ilya Feoktistov, research director of Americans for Peace and Tolerance, which flagged the connection between Webb and al-Awlaki.
The ISBCC is run by the Muslim American Society, which counts ISB imam Sheikh Basyouny Nehela as a member of the board of directors of its Boston chapter.
The Muslim American Society was founded in 1993 after secret regional meetings of underground Muslim Brotherhood members across the United States. The U.S. Muslim Brotherhood reportedly “operated under the name Muslim American Society.”
Muslim American Society leaders were instructed to state, if asked about the group’s views on terrorism, that the Society was anti-terrorism but that jihad was one of a Muslim’s “divine legal rights” for both self-defense and for the spreading of Islam. . . .
11. In FTR #773 , we looked at the relationship between “ex” CIA officer Graham E. Fuller and the Tsarnaev family, as well as “ex” CIA officer Brian Glyn Williams and Dzokhar Tsarnaev. It appears that the Tsarnaevs may well have been involved with a Western intelligence operation  in the Caucasus.
12. In addition to the apparent use of Muslim Brotherhood/Islamist elements as proxy warriors against Russia and China, the Brotherhood’s corporatist economics  are beloved to Graham Fuller, as well as corporate elements cdhampioned by Grover Norquist.
. . . Fuller comes from that faction of CIA Cold Warriors who believed (and still apparently believe) that fundamentalist Islam, even in its radical jihadi form, does not pose a threat to the West, for the simple reason that fundamentalist Islam is conservative, against social justice, against socialism and redistribution of wealth, and in favor of hierarchical socio-economic structures. Socialism is the common enemy to both capitalist America and to Wahhabi Islam, according to Fuller.
According to journalist Robert Dreyfuss’ book “Devil’s Game,” Fuller explained his attraction to radical Islam in neoliberal/libertarian terms:
“There is no mainstream Islamic organization…with radical social views,” he wrote. “Classical Islamic theory envisages the role of the state as limited to facilitating the well-being of markets and merchants rather than controlling them. Islamists have always powerfully objected to socialism and communism….Islam has never had problems with the idea that wealth is unevenly distributed.” . . . .
13. Fuller has long been an advocate of a “turn to the Brotherhood.”
. . . Some federal agents worry that the Muslim Brotherhood has dangerous links to terrorism. But some U.S. diplomats and intelligence officials believe its influence offers an opportunity for political engagement that could help isolate violent jihadists. ‘It is the preeminent movement in the Muslim world,’ said Graham E. Fuller, a former CIA official specializing in the Middle East. ‘It’s something we can work with.’ Demonizing the Brotherhood ‘would be foolhardy in the extreme’ he warned.” . . .
14. More about the corporatist economic philosophy of the Muslim Brotherhood follows. Note that Khairat el-Shater was alleged by Egyptian intelligence to have been running Mohamed Morsi. (We covered this in FTR #787 .) In turn, he was reported  to be serving as a liaison between Morsi and Mohamed Zawahiri, the brother of Al-Qaeda leader Ayman Zawahiri. Shater was also networked with: Anne Patterson, U.S. ambassador to Egypt, GOP Senator John McCain and GOP Senator Lidsay Graham. In turn, Shater was alleged to have transferred $50 million from the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood to Al-Qaeda at the time that he was networking with the Americans and Morsi. Hey, what’s $50 million between friends.
While Western alarmists often depict Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood as a shadowy organization with terrorist ties, the Brotherhood’s ideology actually has more in common with America’s Republican Party than with al-Qaida. Few Americans know it but the Brotherhood is a free-market party led by wealthy businessmen whose economic agenda embraces privatization and foreign investment while spurning labor unions and the redistribution of wealth. Like the Republicans in the U.S., the financial interests of the party’s leadership of businessmen and professionals diverge sharply from those of its poor, socially conservative followers.
The Brotherhood, which did not initially support the revolution that began a year ago, reaped its benefits, capturing nearly half the seats in the new parliament, which was seated this week, and vaulting its top leaders into positions of power.
Arguably the most powerful man in the Muslim Brotherhood is Khairat Al-Shater, a multimillionaire tycoon whose financial interests extend into electronics, manufacturing and retail. A strong advocate of privatization, Al-Shater is one of a cadre of Muslim Brotherhood businessmen who helped finance the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party’s impressive electoral victory this winter and is now crafting the FJP’s economic agenda.
At Al-Shater’s luxury furniture outlet Istakbal, a new couch costs about 6,000 Egyptian pounds, about $1,000 in U.S. currency. In a country where 40 percent of the population lives on less than $2 a day, Istakbal’s clientele is largely limited to Egypt’s upper classes.
Although the Brothers do draw significant support from Egypt’s poor and working class, “the Brotherhood is a firmly upper-middle-class organization in its leadership,” says Shadi Hamid, a leading Muslim Brotherhood expert at the Brookings Institution in Washington.
Not surprisingly, these well-to-do Egyptians are eager to safeguard their economic position in the post-Mubarak Egypt. Despite rising economic inequality and poverty, the Brotherhood does not back radical changes in Egypt’s economy.
The FJP’s economic platform is a tame document, rife with promises to root out corruption and tweak Egypt’s tax and subsidies systems, with occasional allusions to an unspecific commitment to “social justice.” The platform praises the mechanisms of the free market and promises that the party will work for “balanced, sustainable and comprehensive economic development.” It is a program that any European conservative party could get behind. . . .