Jihadism's dangerous liaisons
Analysts with MI6, Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, believe an elite force of Hamas fighters in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon will launch a coordinated attack against Israel within a few months, says author and espionage expert Gordon Thomas.
According to Thomas's report published at World Net Daily's G2 Bulletin:
"Iran's Revolutionary Guards are training hundreds of Hamas fighters to prepare for an all-out war this summer against Israel.
"The Gaza-based organization's elite Izzedine al-Qassam Brigade will form the southern front of an attack against the Jewish state while Hezbollah will launch its simultaneous assault from southern Lebanon, according to MI6."
Thomas contends the attacks would come at a time when the Bush White House is all but "spent," and the Democrat and Republican parties are "looking inward to their conventions."
No surprise there: Jihadists are patient opportunists. And terrorist allies like the Palestinian militant group, Hamas, and the Lebanon-based terrorist army, Hezbollah; as well as marginally – perhaps unlikely – connected terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and Hezbollah are increasingly coordinating their efforts in campaigns against the West.
Few Americans are talking about any this: Most understand the danger of international terrorism, but few grasp the exponentially increasing danger associated with terror alliances. Problem is it's not politically correct to discuss Islam's house of war. The two Democrat presidential contenders seem to be more concerned about who is calling whom names, or who is best able to answer a telephone at 3:00 a.m. And the mainstream media is too busy soft-soaping or completely ignoring the facts about Islamic terrorism. Either that, or MSM reporters are too busy cheering some distorted revelation they have confusingly gleaned in a recent Pentagon report that – the MSM contends – shows no Saddam-Al Qaeda link in pre-war Iraq, when in fact the report reveals stark evidence there was.
But that was then. This is now, and the connections today must be our focus.
Two weeks ago, a Jihadist gunman brutally murdered eight Israeli children at a Jerusalem seminary. Israel's Haaretz newspaper has since reported the gunman was "acting on instructions" from Hamas, with instructional dots connecting Gaza operatives to bosses in the Syrian capital, all "in coordination with Hezbollah."
Daniel Doron, writing for the Wall Street Journal, says, Hamas has been massively rearmed with "Iranian weapons, bought with Saudi money and transported into Gaza with the connivance of Egypt."
The mass killing in Jerusalem comes on the heels of the assassination of Hezbollah terrorist-mastermind Imad Mughniyeh, of which columnist Caroline Glick writes:
"Every Palestinian terror group - from Fatah to Hamas to Islamic Jihad, to the Popular Resistance Committees, the PFLP and DFLP - mourned Mughniyeh as a hero and martyr and called for revenge against Israel and the U.S."
True, and it wasn't just the Palestinians. Others mourning Mughniyeh's death and calling for revenge include likely and unlikely sorts from Somalia to Argentina to Indonesia all with common goals against the West. After all, Mughniyeh was respected by both the Iranian mullahs and Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants. Both Iraq's Shiia militia leader Muqtada al-Sadr and Sunni Al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Omar al-Baghdadi (Al Sadr's "supposed arch-foe," as Glick says) called for revenge killings. Syrian foreign minister Walid al-Moualem publicly referred to Mughniyeh as "a backbone of the Islamic resistance." And ranting in the wake of Mughniyeh's death, Hezbollah's secretary general Hassan Nasrallah declared that a state of "open war" exists with Israel.
In January, French counterterrorist commandos – Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure – raided a terrorist safe-house in Paris and nabbed six men, including two Lebanese and one Syrian. In doing so, the commandos disrupted a major Hezbollah plot to kill or kidnap international leaders in several European cities. A plan of this magnitude – to be carried out far beyond Lebanese borders – could never have been executed without the assistance of other Islamic fundamentalist groups and Jihadist sympathizers, not necessarily Hezbollah, operating in the region.
In a recent conversation with Human Events editor Jed Babbin, Gen. David Petraeus – commander of Multi-National Force—Iraq, who currently has his hands full fighting both Shiia insurgents and Al Qaeda in Iraq – said:
"We do, with a pretty high degree of confidence, we know that the Iranians continued to train militia extremists, the so-called ‘special groups' that are supported by the Iranian Qods Force, that are literally funded, trained, equipped, and directed by the Qods Force with help from Lebanese Hezbollah. And you may recall, we captured the deputy commander of Lebanese Hezbollah Department 2800. We captured the head of the special groups. We've captured other very senior leaders in those organizations in recent weeks."
Then there is the previously mentioned coordination between Al Qaeda and Hezbollah: Despite their differences, these two have been cooperating in varying degrees since at least the 1990's. They were discovered to be working together again last month when a 35-man terrorist sleeper cell was discovered and shut down in Morocco. The members of the cell had received tactical training by Al Qaeda operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan. They had received weapons and explosives training by Hezbollah based in Lebanon. Hezbollah, financed by Iran, also helped fund the North African cell. The cell-members – businessmen, politicians, a police official, a journalist, and others – were planning to assassinate senior civilian and military leaders, as well as Jewish Moroccans.
Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, their sponsors and subsidiaries (to include their allies, apologists, and sympathizers) are increasingly working together throughout the Middle and Far East, in Africa, in Europe, and, yes, even the Americas to recruit foot soldiers, probe Western defenses, and attack us at any weak point in those defenses.
"Different groups will coalesce and align against conventional wisdom," Dr. J. Peter Pham, a senior fellow at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, told me during a recent interview for Human Events. "What most analysts view as the Shiia-Sunni divide is papered over as militants and extremists will take money from anyone, and build alliances of convenience against their common enemy."
The most disturbing particular in all of this is that almost no one – not the MSM, nor Barack or Hillary, nor anyone hoping to gain or retain a Congressional seat – is talking about the threat, except to downplay the danger, or say that the threat is nothing more than a handful of bad apples who have hijacked the "noble religion" of Islam.
Most Americans I've spoken too say either the threat is not as great as counterterrorism experts say it is – that the threat is based on the so-called "politics of fear" – or that the threat is too complex and unwieldy to begin to understand.
The threat of Jihadist terrorism is huge and growing. The Jihadist groups – no matter what side of the Islamic ideological divide they hail from – are increasingly working together. And for the sake of our own existence we had best try to sever the lines that connect the dots, as we crush the dots.
— W. Thomas Smith Jr. – a former U.S. Marine rifle-squad leader, parachutist, and shipboard counterterrorism instructor – writes about military/defense issues and has covered conflict in the Balkans, on the West Bank, in Iraq and Lebanon. He has written six books, and his articles have appeared in USA Today, George, U.S. News & World Report, BusinessWeek, National Review Online, CBS News, The Washington Times, and many others.
W. Thomas Smith Jr. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2008 W. Thomas Smith Jr.
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