Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

For The Record  

FTR #657 Targeting the Centers of Finance

MP3: 30-Minute Seg­ment

Intro­duc­tion: While John McCain tout­ed him­self and the GOP as suc­cess­ful defend­ers of Amer­i­can secu­ri­ty against the ter­ror­ist threat, there were no major ter­ror­ist inci­dents dur­ing the U.S. pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. With the U.S. and the world beset with major eco­nom­ic prob­lems, the “ter­ror front” explod­ed with a major, head­line-gar­ner­ing attack on Mum­bai, Indi­a’s finan­cial and cin­e­mat­ic center–an inci­dent that occurred at the same time as the sur­fac­ing of a report of al-Qae­da tar­get­ing of the New York City sub­way sys­tem. (Osama bin Laden has explic­it­ly said that the destruc­tion of the U.S. econ­o­my is the key to bring­ing down the Unit­ed States.) Note­wor­thy is the fact that, short­ly after the elec­tion, al-Qaeda’s num­ber two man (Ayman al-Zawahiri) issued a racist com­mu­nique in which he labeled Oba­ma a “house negro” and said that Oba­ma’s plan to shore up the troop deploy­ment in Afghanistan would not result in vic­to­ry. In the wake of the Mum­bai attacks, strate­gic ana­lysts have not­ed that a rede­ploy­ment of Pak­istani troops to shore up posi­tions on the bor­der with India would weak­en Pak­istani forces polic­ing the trib­al areas adjoin­ing Afghanistan, a devel­op­ment that would help the Tal­iban and its Mus­lim Broth­er­hood allies! The Mum­bai inci­dent has also cre­at­ed a poten­tial diplo­mat­ic cri­sis for the incom­ing Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion.

The Mum­bai attacks have indeed height­ened ten­sions between India and Pak­istan. Of addi­tion­al sig­nif­i­cance in this con­text is the evi­dence of involve­ment of the ISI (Pak­istani intel­li­gence) with both the 9/11 attacks and the Lashkar-e-Taiba–the per­pe­tra­tors of the Mum­bai assault. In addi­tion to its strong links to the Pak­istani intel­li­gence ser­vice, Lashkar is asso­ci­at­ed with the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the Islam­ic fas­cist orga­ni­za­tion that par­ent­ed al-Qae­da, Hamas and Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad.

The attacks against Indi­a’s finan­cial cen­ter took place as India was falling prey to the glob­al eco­nom­ic cri­sis, mak­ing the attack all that more sin­is­ter. An eye to the future of the Indian/Pakistani con­flict must be a fear­ful gaze, under­stand­ing that Lashkar-e-Tai­ba is linked not only to Pak­istani intel­li­gence but also to the A.Q. Khan nuclear net­work. Also ter­ri­fy­ing is the fact that Lashkar has–according to Indi­an intelligence–targeted Indi­an nuclear facil­i­ties. Short­ly after the orig­i­nal­ly-sched­uled date for the Mum­bai assault (9/27), the broth­er of the head of Lashkar was deport­ed from the Unit­ed States.

Pro­gram High­lights Include: Reports that the Mum­bai attack­ers were high on coke and oth­er drugs; review of cred­i­ble reports that Mohamed Atta and the 9/11 hijack­ers in South­ern Flori­da were also fre­quent dope users; Pak­istani media reports blam­ing the attacks on-you guessed it-“the Jews” or, more pre­cise­ly, “Hin­du Zion­ists”; an attack on EU head­quar­ters in Koso­vo for which three Ger­man intel­li­gence were blamed.

1. Inves­ti­ga­tors have effec­tive­ly con­clud­ed that the Mum­bai mas­sacres were per­pe­trat­ed by Lashkar-e-Tai­ba, an Islamist ter­ror­ist group with strong links to the Pak­istani intel­li­gence ser­vice. Lashkar is also asso­ci­at­ed with the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the Islam­ic fas­cist orga­ni­za­tion that par­ent­ed al-Qae­da, Hamas and Pales­tin­ian Islam­ic Jihad.

“Ter­ror does leave a call­ing card. As the enor­mi­ty of the attack on Mum­bai sank in, it seemed like the arrival of al-Qai­da in India, aver­sion of 9/11 designed to attract a glob­al audi­ence giv­en the scale of vio­lence and the planned tar­get­ing of west­ern­ers. With the cap­ture of a ter­ror­ist, the actu­al authors were revealed. It was­n’t the al-Qai­da. But the jiha­di cre­den­tials were not much less impres­sive with Lashkar-e-Tai­ba named as the sus­pect. Giv­en the oper­a­tion’s obvi­ous plan­ning, few doubt­ed it was the dead­ly firm of LeT-ISI in action yet again.

“Yet the dif­fer­ence between LeT and al-Qai­da is not so sig­nif­i­cant as might have once been the case. In recent years, Lashkar has emerged as not only the sin­gle largest pan-Indi­an ter­ror threat, but also a part­ner with al-Qai­da in jiha­di bat­tle­grounds like Iraq, Chech­nya and Afghanistan. It has shared train­ing camps and cadre and used al-Qai­da-Tal­iban facil­i­ties for a ‘jihad’ against India. . . . Aligned with the Ahl-e-Hadees sect, Lashkar was found­ed in 1987 by Saeed, who inci­den­tal­ly was also trained as an engi­neer like Osama and many oth­er promi­nent jihadis, and who drew his inspi­ra­tion from the Egypt-based Mus­lim Broth­er­hood — an organ­i­sa­tion that saw Pales­tine as an Islam­ic cause way back in the 1930’s. In col­lab­o­ra­tion with ISI, Lashkar built up an impres­sive Kash­mir port­fo­lio with recruits chiefly drawn from Pak­istani Pun­jabis, Pash­toons, Bangladeshis, Arabs and south-east Asians. . . .”

“Qai­da in Part­ner­ship with Lashkar in India”; The Times of India; 11/29/2008.

2. Mum­bai is the eco­nom­ic cen­ter of India, as well as the epi­cen­ter of its grow­ing cin­e­ma and cul­tur­al pro­duc­tion. As a result, a blow at Mum­bai threat­ens Indi­an soci­ety as a whole.

” . . . Mum­bai is all about dhand­ha, or trans­ac­tion. From the street food ven­dor squat­ting on a side­walk, fierce­ly guard­ing his lit­tle busi­ness, to the tycoons and their dreams of acquir­ing Hol­ly­wood, this city under­stands mon­ey and has no guilt about the get­ting and spend­ing of it. I once asked a Mus­lim man liv­ing in a shack with­out indoor plumb­ing what kept him in the city. “Mum­bai is a gold­en song­bird,” he said. It flies quick and sly, and you’ll have to work hard to catch it, but if you do, a fab­u­lous for­tune will open up for you. The exec­u­tives who con­gre­gat­ed in the Taj Mahal hotel were chas­ing this gold­en song­bird. The ter­ror­ists want to kill the song­bird.

“Just as cin­e­ma is a mass dream of the audi­ence, Mum­bai is a mass dream of the peo­ples of South Asia. Bol­ly­wood movies are the most pop­u­lar form of enter­tain­ment across the sub­con­ti­nent. Through them, every Pak­istani and Bangladeshi is famil­iar with the wed­ding-cake archi­tec­ture of the Taj and the arc of the Gate­way of India, sym­bols of the city that gives the indus­try its name. It is no won­der that one of the first things the Tal­iban did upon enter­ing Kab­ul was to shut down the Bol­ly­wood video rental stores. The Tal­iban also banned, wouldn’t you know it, the keep­ing of song­birds. . . .”

“What they Hate about Mum­bai” by Suke­tu Mehta; The New York Times; 11/29/2008.

3. As the blow against Mum­bai was struck, the glob­al eco­nom­ic down­turn was affect­ing India, mak­ing the poten­tial fall­out from the 11/26 attacks even more severe.

“After years of being blamed for job loss­es in Amer­i­ca and else­where, India’s high-tech com­pa­nies and out­sourc­ing firms are going through a down­turn of their own. The glob­al slow­down is forc­ing them to reduce hir­ing, freeze salaries, post­pone new invest­ments and lay off thou­sands of soft­ware pro­gram­mers and call cen­ter oper­a­tors.

“While some indus­try insid­ers insist the glob­al cri­sis will actu­al­ly ben­e­fit com­pa­nies here, as West­ern busi­ness­es seek to cut costs by mov­ing jobs over­seas, right now the sec­tor is sud­den­ly gripped by an unfa­mil­iar sense of uncer­tain­ty.

“ ‘It’s cer­tain­ly not irra­tional exu­ber­ance,’ said Nan­dan Nilekani, co-chair­man of Infos­ys, one of India’s best-known tech­nol­o­gy out­sourc­ing firms. ‘There is a lot of intro­spec­tion about what does this mean and when does it end.’

“The down­turn is expos­ing a deep­er con­cern: India has become the world’s front office, han­dling cus­tomer ser­vice calls, and its back office, help­ing to process pay­ments and run account­ing and oth­er com­put­er sys­tems. But it has not yet become the head office — mak­ing major new prod­ucts, pio­neer­ing mar­ket­ing tech­niques or help­ing to shape cor­po­rate strat­e­gy. . . . ”

“Reces­sion Trick­les to India” by Jere­my Kahn; The New York Times; 12/04/2008; P. B1.

4. Augur­ing very, very poor­ly for the future is the fact that the Lashkar is close to A.Q. Khan and his nuclear net­work.

” . . . Worse yet, the Lashkar-e-Tai­ba is, as I dis­cov­ered while research­ing and report­ing my book on Daniel Pearl, a group of which A.Q. Khan, the inven­tor of Pak­istan’s atom­ic bomb, was a long­time friend. Mr. Khan, one may recall, spent a good 15 years traf­fick­ing in nuclear secrets with Lybia, North Korea, Iran and, per­haps, al Qae­da, before con­fess­ing his guilt in ear­ly 2004. Lat­er par­doned by Gen. Per­vez Mushar­raf, Mr. Khan remains per­fect­ly free to trav­el with­in Pak­istan, as he was just admit­ted this Mon­day, under the pro­tec­tion of the ISI, to the most elite hos­pi­tal in Karachi.

“No, this is not a dream — it is real­i­ty. Pak­istan is home to a man both father of his coun­try’s nuclear pro­gram and known sym­pa­thiz­er of an Islamist group whose lat­est demon­stra­tion has net­ted at least 188 dead and sev­er­al hun­dred wound­ed. . . .”

“Let’s Give Pak­istan the Atten­tion It Deserves” by Bernard-Hen­ry Levi; The Wall Street Jour­nal; 12/03/2008.

5. In addi­tion to the unap­pe­tiz­ing prospect of a Mus­lim Broth­er­hood affil­i­ate hav­ing access to nuclear weapon­ry cour­tesy of the A.Q. Khan net­work, Indi­an intel­li­gence believes that Lashkar intends to attack Indi­an nuclear instal­la­tions.

“India’s defense min­is­ter on Mon­day repeat­ed a warn­ing that Islam­ic mil­i­tants based in Pak­istan were tar­get­ing Indi­an nuclear, mil­i­tary and reli­gious sites, a news agency report­ed.

“Defense Min­is­ter Pranab Mukher­jee told law­mak­ers that mil­i­tants from Lashkar-e-Tayab­ba — a group believed to have links to al-Qai­da — “are plan­ning to car­ry out some strikes on crit­i­cal infra­struc­ture items, mil­i­tary tar­gets and reli­gious places,” accord­ing to the Press Trust of India.

“Pak­istan-Based Rebel Group Is Tar­get­ing Nuclear Facil­i­ties: India” [AP]; Khaleej Times Online; 7/31/2008.

6. Recall­ing Daniel Hop­sick­er’s research on Mohamed Atta and the 9/11 hijack­ers in South Flori­da, it is inter­est­ing-and pos­si­bly sig­nif­i­cant-that the Mum­bai attack­ers were appar­ent­ly fueled in part by cocaine and LSD. VERY un-Islam­ic. When inves­tiga­tive reporter and author Hop­sick­er inves­ti­gat­ed the activ­i­ties of the 9/11 perps, he found that they rou­tine­ly engaged in drug abuse.

“Did the jihadists who tore up Mum­bai last week rely on par­ty drugs usu­al­ly asso­ci­at­ed with West­ern deca­dence to stay awake and alert through­out their three-day killing spree? Britain’s Tele­graph news­pa­per sug­gests that they did, cit­ing uniden­ti­fied offi­cials claim­ing phys­i­cal evi­dence shows the assailants used cocaine and oth­er stim­u­lants to sus­tain their vio­lent fren­zy. And if the notion of self-anoint­ed holy war­riors on a coke binge sounds incon­gru­ous, the report also main­tains that the killers imbibed the psy­che­del­ic drug LSD while fight­ing advanc­ing secu­ri­ty forces. . . .”

“Were the Mum­bai Ter­ror­ists Fueled by Coke?” by Bruce Crum­ley; Time; 12/04/2008.

7. Some Pak­istani media out­lets are blam­ing the Mum­bai attacks on-you guessed it-“the Jews” or, more pre­cise­ly, “Hin­du Zion­ists.” This, and the tar­get­ing of Jews dur­ing the attacks them­selves, sug­gests the attack­ers had more on their minds than anti-Hin­du/an­ti-Indi­an sen­ti­ment.

“Mum­bai’s 26/11 was actu­al­ly a plan hatched by ‘Hin­du Zion­ists’ and ‘West­ern Zion­ists’, includ­ing the Mossad, said a self-styled Pak­istan secu­ri­ty expert on a Pak­istan news tele­vi­sion show . . .”

“Pak TV Chan­nel Says 11/26 Hatched by Hin­du Zion­ists” by Nan­di­ta Sen­gup­ta; The Times of India; 12/02/2008.

8. Anoth­er ter­ror inci­dent-sup­pos­ed­ly involv­ing Islamists-took place in the Balka­ns at the same time. In the imme­di­ate after­math of the rejec­tion by the [large­ly Alban­ian Mus­lim] Koso­var pop­u­la­tion of an EU pro­pos­al to intro­duce secu­ri­ty forces into Koso­vo, an EU admin­is­tra­tive build­ing was the tar­get of a bomb attack. Three agents of the BND–the suc­ces­sor to the Gehlen spy organization–were detained as sus­pects in the attack. Is there any con­nec­tion between this attack, the Mum­bai attack and the threat against the New York Sub­way sys­tem? The Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, like the Koso­vo Lib­er­a­tion Army, has his­tor­i­cal and polit­i­cal links to the Third Reich and its post­war under­ground incar­na­tion. (The Koso­vo Lib­er­a­tion Army incor­po­rat­ed many of the descen­dants of the 21st Waf­fen SS Divi­sion [Skan­der­beg].)

“A Koso­van judge has ordered three Ger­mans sus­pect­ed of throw­ing an explo­sive device at the EU head­quar­ters in Pristi­na to be held for 30 days.

“The three report­ed­ly deny involve­ment in the attack on 14 Novem­ber, say­ing they were detained while inves­ti­gat­ing it them­selves.

“Win­dows in the glass-front­ed build­ing were shat­tered but nobody was hurt. . . .”

“Ger­mans Held in Koso­vo over Blast”; BBC; 11/23/2008.

9. Short­ly before the Mum­bai attacks, the broth­er of the founder of Lak­shar was deport­ed from the Unit­ed States. Note the date of Octo­ber 4th–a week after the orig­i­nal sched­uled date for the Mum­bai attacks.

“Imam Muham­mad Masood, broth­er of Hafiz Muham­mad Saeed, founder of the banned Lashkar-e-Tayya­ba, was ordered deport­ed by a Boston, Mass­a­chu­setts court on Thurs­day on an immi­gra­tion vio­la­tion charge.

“Under an agree­ment with fed­er­al immi­gra­tion author­i­ties, the for­mer imam of the 1,500-member Islam­ic Cen­tre of New Eng­land agreed to vol­un­tar­i­ly leave the Unit­ed States on Fri­day night and return to Pak­istan rather than be deport­ed by the author­i­ties which would have tak­en months, a peri­od he would have spent in jail. He was accused of hav­ing lied to immi­gra­tion author­i­ties from 2002 to 2006 in a bid to obtain a Green Card. He plead­ed guilty in Feb­ru­ary to five fed­er­al crimes stem­ming from his actions, which led to his depor­ta­tion order. He will leave behind his wife and eight chil­dren. . . .”

“US Court Orders Depor­ta­tion of Hafiz Saeed’s Broth­er” by Khalid Hasan; Dai­ly Times [Pak­istan]; 10/04/2008.

10. Note that the orig­i­nal date of the Mum­bai attacks was sup­posed to take place on Sep­tem­ber 27th. Why the delay? Was the delay to avoid hav­ing them dur­ing the US elec­tion cam­paign?

“The gun­man cap­tured in last mon­th’s Mum­bai attacks had orig­i­nal­ly intend­ed to seize hostages and out­line demands in a series of dra­mat­ic calls to the media, accord­ing to his con­fes­sion obtained Sat­ur­day by The Asso­ci­at­ed Press. . . . He said the assault, which start­ed Nov. 26, was ini­tial­ly set for Sept. 27, though he does­n’t explain why it was delayed. The gun­men had been told by their han­dlers to car­ry out the attacks dur­ing rush hours when the sta­tion is teem­ing with com­muters. . . .”

“Mum­bai Gun­man’s Con­fes­sion Sheds Light on Mas­sacre” by Ramo­la Tal­war Badam [AP]; Yahoo News; 12/14/2008.

11. Short­ly before the 11/26 attacks against Indi­a’s finan­cial cen­ter, there was a threat against the sub­way sys­tem of New York’s finan­cial center–New York. Note that the ter­ror front was qui­et dur­ing the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign. It heat­ed up short­ly after­ward. In some of our dis­cus­sions with Robert Par­ry, we not­ed that the Islamist­s/al-Qaeda/­Mus­lim Broth­er­hood favor the GOP and–through the Grover Norquist/Karl Rove Islam­ic Insti­tute, are con­nect­ed to it. In addi­tion to points of ide­o­log­i­cal sim­i­lar­i­ty between the Broth­er­hood and the GOP, the Islamists know full well that the Bush admin­is­tra­tion’s policies–which McCain fig­ured to perpetuate–were good for its cause and bad for the Unit­ed States. With the “ter­ror front” qui­et dur­ing the cam­paign, the GOP’s pre­tense to being “strong” on terror/national secu­ri­ty had more cred­i­bil­i­ty.

“Police bol­stered secu­ri­ty in sub­ways and trains Wednes­day after the gov­ern­ment warned that al-Qai­da were con­tem­plat­ing an attack on New York’s mass-tran­sit sys­tems dur­ing the hol­i­day sea­son. An inter­nal memo obtained by The Asso­ci­at­ed Press says the FBI has received a ‘plau­si­ble but unsub­stan­ti­at­ed’ report that al-Qai­da ter­ror­ists in late Sep­tem­ber may have dis­cussed attack­ing the sub­way sys­tem.

“The inter­nal bul­letin says al-Qai­da ter­ror­ists “in late Sep­tem­ber may have dis­cussed tar­get­ing tran­sit sys­tems in and around New York City. These dis­cus­sions report­ed­ly involved the use of sui­cide bombers or explo­sives placed on subway/passenger rail sys­tems,” accord­ing to the doc­u­ment. . . .”

“NY Sub­way Ter­ror Threat Emerges on Busy Trav­el Day” by Devlin Bar­rett and Tom Hays [AP]; Yahoo News; 11/26/2008.


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