Posts Tagged ‘terrorism’

 

Yesterday another band of terrorists was destroyed in Kazakhstan. On the same day, another man with an arsenal of explosives and ammunition was detained. Such cases have become so frequent in Kazakhstan that they are no longer seen as something extraordinary. Yet not so long ago reports of an emerging terrorist underground were seen as conspiracy theory nonsense. Let’s look at the situation one year after the wave of terror began in Kazakhstan.

Minus five

The Atyrau region yesterday was roiling with unrest. Law enforcement officials have discovered a band of terrorists in one of the apartment of a residential high-rise building. The area was cordoned off, residents evacuated, and the bandits were ordered to surrender. But the bandits responded with gun fire and detonated several explosives, injuring one special ops trooper. In the resulting assault five terrorists were killed and another wounded and taken to hospital.

Interestingly, detectives discovered this group while investigating another terrorist cell. A week earlier in Atyrau a Kazakh citizen blew himself up, having apparently mishandled an explosive device. Three more home made bombs were later found in his apartment. The dead man’s associates, discovered as a result of the investigation, let the police to the group which was subsequently destroyed yesterday.

Also yesterday, a resident of the Alma-Ata region was seized with a fully fledged military arsenal: three sticks of TNT, one RGD-5 hand grenade without a fuse, a fuse to the hand grenade, a fully loaded Makarov magazine, 153 rounds of 9mm cartridges and an EDP-1 electronic detonator.

News from the Front

The fact of the matter is that something terribly wrong is going on in Kazakhstan that even the blind can see. This is a partial list of recent high-profile incidents in Kazakhstan:

– August 17, 2012. Nine terrorists were killed in the course of a special operation near Alma-Ata;

– August 14, 2012. 11 people slaughtered in the Ile-Alatau National Park by unknown attackers;

– July 11, 2012. Self-explosion in Tuasamaly. Weapons and extremist literature were found on the scene. According to some reports the bomb was intended for Nazarbayev;

– May 31, 2012. Unidentified attackers shot 12 people from NATO-standard weapons on the border of  the Alma-Ata region;

– May 25, 2012. Police raided a resident of Ridder, seizing an arsenal of explosives and ammunition. On the same day another weapons cache was found;

– December 16, 2011. Oil workers strike in Zhanaozen. Unexpectedly stiff resistance from the police and the professional organization of the protest suggests participation of foreign coordinators;

– December 3, 2011. A band of 5 terrorists was destroyed in the Alma-Ata region in a special operation;

– November 12, 2011. Bandits made a real show of shooting grenade launchers, pursuing and killing  police officers in Taraz;

– November 8, 2011. In Alma-Ata gunmen attacked a patrol unit, killing two police officers;

– October 31, 2011. Two explosions in Atyrau, one of which was a suicide bombing.

Again, this is not a complete list of events. Most experts agree on the idea that the Kazakh secret services were unprepared for such a rapidly deteriorating situation. As a result the country is taking urgent steps to increase the powers of the National Security Committee (analogue of the Russian FSB, the Federal Security Service).

Me, worry?

That was the question asked by many of our Russian readers when the wave of terror began in Kazakhstan and, unfortunately, continue to ask now. Recall that Russia and Kazakhstan share the longest land border (7000 km), which in many areas is not controlled or monitored in any meaningful way. Destabilization of Kazakhstan will lead to a stream of refugees, drug traffic, terrorism and arms exports to Russia. Take a look at what is happening in Syria and its neighbors, and then compare the extent of their borders and ours. Get the picture?

Of course, this is the worst case scenario. But let us remember where destabilize began in Kazakhstan. It started with the adoption of a law on religion, which was condemned by the West as anti-democratic, and which caused various extremist groups to issue statements of jihad to the Kazakh authorities. In one such statement the band calling themselves Jund al-Khalifa, commented a series of explosions in Kazakhstan: “The two explosions were a warning to the government … if in the future we will not see that they listened to our requirements, we swear … that the next attack will bring rivers of blood. ”

President Nazarbayev himself at the time gave a very accurate description of what was happening: “The experience of recent years proves against and again that terrorism is a product of very particular forces having a very specific purpose. Historically, modern terrorism has its roots in political and economic issues. It is strongly associated not only with transnational crime, drug trafficking and arms smuggling. Unfortunately, it also has geopolitical origins.”

So far, the situation in Kazakhstan is developing along a negative scenario and the trend is worsening. Ahead is the withdrawal of the international coalition forces from Afghanistan, with possible transfer of US military bases to other Central Asian republics, which will lead to the spread of extremism across the region. In this situation, it would be logical for Russian anti-terrorism experts to provide maximum support to Kazakh law enforcement forces, and indeed, this is taking place. However, Russia has its own set of problems with two carefully fueled regions – Dagestan and Tatarstan. This means that all of us are in for some very unsettling times.

 

 

A wave of American pogroms swept through countries of the victorious Arab revolution. In Libya, the Islamists seized the US embassy, ​​killing an official and wounding several staff. In Egypt, a crowd of protesters stormed the US consulate and burned the Stars and Stripes. All this occurred against the background of renewed attempts at negotiations between the US and the Islamic terrorist groups. What was the reason for such aggravation this time?

No “Wow!”

In the Libyan city of Benghazi, known as the capital of the recent revolution, the unthinkable happened – a crowd of angry Islamists attacked the US consulate. The attack started with a shot from a grenade launcher, which hit one of the embassy’s windows. Islamists then broke into the consulate and sacked it. As a result, a U.S. embassy official was killed in the skirmish and another suffered burns. Police failed to counter the attack, and the diplomatic mission was looted. At the time of this writing the material unrest continues in Benghazi, clashes with security forces are held in different parts of the city.

Hillary Clinton, speaking to reporters, “condemned such acts of violence,” saying that “there is no excuse for such cruelty.” Recall that Mrs. Clinton is known for many statements justifying cruelty around the world, from the famous «Wow!», uttered on the murder of Gaddafi, to concealment of facts surrounding the slaughter of innocent civilians by the Syrian militants.

A day earlier, the American consulate in Egypt was besieged by a crowd of about 3,000 people. Protesters tore down and burned the American Stars and Stripes, hoisting in its place a black flag with the Shahada (the creed – a inscription in Arabic: “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger”). According to some evidence, to restore order police were forced to open fire on the Islamists. Victim data has not been released yet.

Another provocation

What caused the wrath of Islamists this time? It is reported that protesters in Cairo rioted against the upcoming film “Muhammad, the Muslim prophet,” which ​​contained, in their view, offensive slander. Supposedly the infamous Pastor Terry Jones of Florida was involved in the creation of the film. The same one who had previously deliberately burned the Quran outside his church. Recall that this trick of his caused a wave of protests in Afghanistan that resulted in over 100 people dead, including several staff members of the UN mission, who were literally torn apart by the angry mob.

The film has not been released yet, and only its trailer is available on the Internet, translated into Arabic. Creators of the film said that they were not involved in the translation. They allegedly regret what happened, but do not give up plans to release 200-hour series of “Muhammad, the Muslim prophet.”

As for the massacre in Libya, its cause is still unclear. Some media also links it with the release of the trailer, but there is no evidence to support this yet.

Interestingly, this provocation took place in the wake of wide spread reporting by mass media of a truce proposal, made by Islamic terrorists to the United States. Thus, our earlier suggestion that such offers will be sabotaged has proved correct even faster than we expected.

 

 

English: Obama Taliban

English: Obama Taliban (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Note: The original of this article appeared on 11 September 2012, but its translation into English was delayed for technical reasons.

 

 

 

On the anniversary of the 9-11 terrorist attack in the US, Al-Qaeda, in the words of its leader’s brother, offered a truce to Western countries. A little earlier, a similar proposal was made by the representatives of the Taliban movement. Thus, America’s worst enemies, as if by agreement, have decided to present Barack Obama with a generous gift on the eve of the November 6th presidential election. Will the Democratic candidate accept?

 

“Bury the hatchet,” suggested Muhammad Ayman al-Zawahiri,  brother to the current leader of Al-Qaeda. He is voluntarily willing to take on the role of mediator in negotiations and has even proposed an action plan. It fits nicely on six pages and contains information about how to completely resolve all disputes with the US within a decade. According to CNN, the mediator wants the US to stop invasion of Muslim countries, free imprisoned Muslims and not to interfere with the imposition of Sharia law. In turn, the radicals will say no to terror and will support the USA and other Western states in their countries.

 

Let’s face it, the proposed conditions seem to be quite acceptable for the United States. The continuation of wars is a painful drain on the US budget, while releasing convicted terrorists is a minor technical problem. Where imposition of Sharia law is concerned, the US no longer interferes anyway.

 

The Taliban provided an almost identical proposal. Recently it became known that some of its leaders  would like to negotiate peacefully and offered to cease fire as a sign of good will. The Taliban demands that the US does not interference in the political and religious life of Afghanistan, and in return the Taliban will be ready to cooperate with the US in all other areas. To the point that they would even be willing to allow all major US military bases to remain on its territory. Oh and another condition – absolutely no cooperation with Karzai.

 

It would seem that on the eve of presidential elections President Obama should be happy to receive these offers, as they would allow him to go down in history as the winner of two wars (in Afghanistan and against terrorism). But this will not happen. Firstly, because Obama simply does not have the time to solve global issues until the 6th of November. Secondly, because it is absolutely unnecessary. Remember, this is not the first attempt to negotiate. For some reason, every time it looked as if some sort of accord was eminent, something ended up happening that completely destroyed any further progress. Either Al-Qaeda would blow something or someone one up, or the Marines would piss on corpses of the dead Taliban, or someone would burn the Quran.

 

And in any case, frankly, the terrorists’ true intentions are highly questionable. For example, in the case of the Taliban, the Western media refer to some “moderate members of the movement,” of whom no one knows anything. We also have doubts about this Muhammad Ayman al-Zawahiri character. There is absolutely no evidence of him having any influence over his brother. In addition, he spent the last 14 years in Egyptian prisons, and was released only recently, after the overthrowing of Mubarak. It is likely that he had contacts with the intelligence agencies of the West.

 

Thus, the whole story of “solutions you can’t refuse” looks more like Obama’s pre-election PR, rather than anything solid. Its purpose is to demonstrate Obama’s success in the fight against international terrorism, because its leaders appear to be literally on their knees, begging for peace. However, if we are wrong and the talks do take place and lead to eventual peace between the West and the Islamic world, for us it will be a very disturbing fact.

 

 

 

U.S. troops, who have recently burned the Quran and mocked dead bodies of Taliban soldiers, will be setenced. Details of the punishment are not known, however we do know that it will be a disciplinary action and not a criminal prosecution. Most likely, they face reduction in pay or reduction in rank. Meanwhile, foreign troops and Afghans continued to be killed in Afghanistan, while reports of bombings and other attacks come almost daily. Yet, there are some new trends in this conflict.

Lets review what we know so far.

It is known that the American justice system is very kind to its soldiers. For the burning of hundreds of copies of the Quran and mockery of Taliban corpses the guilty American soldiers will get a minimum sentence. Recall that earlier this year similar actions led to mass protests by the Afghan population, resulting in 30 dead, including two US soldiers. Following this, the Taliban began their traditional spring offensive, which this time was surprisingly extensive and effective. Among the most high profile attacks were the April attacks on foreign facilities across the country, including foreign embassies and the NATO mission in Kabul.

Against this background, foreign forces continue to leave Afghanistan. To date, 202 military bases have been closed, and a further 282 bases were transferred under the control of government security forces. Although the term “military base” includes conventional control points, some of which were not designed for more than 300 soldiers. However, active withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan continues, and until the end of the year another 200 bases will be closed.

Reduction of the number of ISAF employees increases casualties of the Afghan military and police. The tally this year is about 600 Afghan police dead on a monthly basis, and about 50 foreign troops. Civilian casualties can not be numbered, but basic estimates show a rising trend.

The Taliban is also incurring losses. The spring offensive reduced their number by over 2,000 militants, forcing them to abandon outright assault in favour of guerrilla tactics. Among the most popular – widespread explosive booby traps and burning of fuel trucks in NATO supply trains.

The new trend of the conflict is the Afghan people’s militia. Ordinary people, seeing the helplessness of the authorities, took up arms to defend their lands from the Taliban. The first such spontaneous uprising in one of the provinces was met with unexpected success and became a model for other areas of the country. However, implications of this movement are difficult to estimate. On the one hand, it is a threat to the Taliban, and on the other – to the government, as the militia does not have any love for either side. Many forces will be tempted to take the lead in this movement and use it for their own political purposes.

Another growing trend is the sabotage attacks carried out militants who have successfully infiltrated the ranks of Afghan police. Their number and impact this year has increased dramatically. Thus 32 such attacks this year claimed the lives of 40 troops of the international coalition. This tactic has a major demoralizing effect on the foreign military as literally every minute they are forced to expect a shot in the back from their Afghan colleagues.

It is noteworthy that President Karzai blamed such acts of sabotage on foreign intelligence services. And even though no one was mentioned directly, it was clear that he was referring to Iran and Pakistan. Americans do not agree with such an assessment, but it does not make a difference – foreigners soldiers continue to die at the hands of militants in disguise.

Thus, the situation in Afghanistan after 11 years of Operation Enduring Freedom is a total disaster. And we have no illusions about the fact that after departure of the foreigners troops the Karzai administration would be able to resolve the situation.