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Put Britain on the list of states sponsoring terrorism


Steven Gaal
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PUT BRITAIN ON THE LIST OF STATES SPONSORING TERRORISM

January 21, 2000.

Click headings below for shortcut to sections.

Put Britain on the list of states sponsoring terrorism

Criteria for evaluating whether Britain should be sanctioned

The case against Great Britain

Groups banned by the United States are headquartered in London

The 'fatwa'against American targets

Attacks on Yemen

Formal diplomatic protests to London

Put Britain on the list of states sponsoring terrorism

The following memorandum, dated Jan. 11, 2000, was prepared

for delivery to U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. It is

a request to launch an investigation, pursuant to placing Great Britain

on the list of states sponsoring terrorism.

To: Hon. Madeleine Albright, Secretary of State

From: The Editors, Executive Intelligence Review

C.C.: Hon. William Cohen, Secretary of Defense

Hon. Janet Reno, Attorney General

Hon. George Tenet, Director of Central Intelligence

Hon. Louis Freeh, Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation

Hon. Jesse Helms, Chairman, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Hon. Joseph Biden, Ranking Democrat, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Hon. Benjamin Gilman, Chairman, House International Relations Committee

Hon. Sam Gejdenson, Ranking Democrat, House International Relations Committee

This is a formal request for you to initiate a review of the role of the government of Great Britain in supporting international terrorism, to determine whether Britain should be added to the list of nations sanctioned by the United States government for lending support to international terrorist organizations.

This issue has been recently highlighted, as the result of the December 1999 Indian Airlines hijacking, and the response of the British government to the request of one of the freed Kashmiri terrorists, Ahmed Omar Sheikh, to be given safe passage to England. Mr. Sheikh, a British national, was tried and convicted in India, for his role in the kidnapping of four British nationals and an American in 1995. He was sentenced to five years in prison in November 1998. Initially, the British government announced that it would provide Mr. Sheikh with safe passage to Britain, and would not prosecute him or make any effort to extradite him back to India.

However, long before the Sheikh case,
Executive Intelligence Review
has documented a pattern of British involvement in harboring international terrorists, dating back to 1995. As of this writing,
no fewer than a dozen governments--many of them leading allies of the United States--have filed formal diplomatic protests with the British Foreign Office, over specific instances of British official support for terrorist groups, targetting those nations.

Criteria for evaluating whether Britain should be sanctioned

U.S. Government policy on sanctions against states sponsoring terrorism has been set by a series of Congressional acts, including, but not limited to: the Export Administration Act of 1979 (EAAA), the Anti-Terrorism and Arms Export Amendments Act of 1989 (ATAEAA), the Arms Export Control Act (22 U.S.C. 2780), the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 1996, and the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) of 1996.

It is our understanding that, while the Congress has given the Secretary of State broad discretion in designating a country as a state sponsor of terrorism, the legislative history of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has specified seven criteria which should guide the Secretary's action.

These criteria are:
  1. Does the state provide terrorists sanctuary from extradition or prosecution?

    • Does the state provide terrorists with weapons and other means of conducting violence?

      • Does the state provide logistical support to terrorists?

        • Does the state permit terrorists to maintain safehouses and headquarters on its territory?

          • Does the state provide training and other material assistance to terrorists?

            • Does the state provide financial backing to terrorist organizations?

              • Does the state provide diplomatic services, including travel documents, that could aid in the commission of terrorist acts?

As of this writing, the State Department currently designates seven countries as state sponsors of terrorism: Iraq, Iran, Libya, Syria, Sudan, Cuba, and North Korea. In the case of Syria, which is presently engaged in peace negotiations with Israel, the primary reason the regime remains on the list is that several designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs) are headquartered in Damascus.

In the State Department Authorization Act of October 1991, specific procedures were spelled out for the President to remove a country from the list of state sponsors of terrorism. Congress has a 45-day period to pass a joint resolution overriding such a Presidential decision to remove a state from the list, which carries with it a number of significant sanctions.

The case against Great Britain

The following documentary time line is intended to provide an outline of the evidence that we wish the appropriate officials at the U.S. State Department to review, to make a determination whether Great Britain should be added to the list of states sponsoring terrorism, according to the criteria outlined above.
  • In July 1998, a former British MI5 officer, David Shayler, revealed that, in February 1996, British security services financed and supported a London-based Islamic terrorist group, in an attempted assassination against Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi. The action, Shayler charged, in an interview with the British
    Daily Mail,
    was sanctioned by then-Foreign Secretary Malcolm Rifkind. The incident described by Shayler did, in fact, occur. Although Qaddafi escaped without injury, the bomb, planted along a road where the Libyan leader was travelling, killed several innocent bystanders. In an Aug. 5, 1998 interview with BBC, Shayler charged, "We paid £100,000 to carry out the murder of a foreign head of state. That is apart from the fact that the money was used to kill innocent people, because the bomb exploded at the wrong time. In fact, this is hideous funding of international terrorism." According to Shayler's BBC interview, MI6 provided the funds to an Arab agent inside Libya, with instructions to carry out the attack.

    In fact, in 1996, a previously unknown Libyan "Islamist" group appeared in London to claim responsibility for the attempted assassination of Qaddafi.

  • On June 25, 1996, a bomb blew up the U.S. military barracks in Dharan, Saudi Arabia, killing 19 American soldiers. The next day, Saudi expatriate Mohammed al-Massari, the head of the London-based Committee for the Defense of Legitimate Rights, was interviewed on BBC. He warned the United States to expect more terror attacks, which he described as "intellectually justified." The U.S. military presence in Saudi Arabia "is obviously not welcomed by a substantial fraction of the population there," he warned, "and they are ready to go to the execution stand for it." He concluded, "There are so many underground parties--so many splinter groups, many of them made up of people who fought in Afghanistan. . . . I expect more of the same."

    Despite the fact that al-Massari has repeatedly called for the overthrow of the House of Saud and the creation of an Islamic revolutionary state, he has been given "exceptional leave" to remain in Britain. In April 1996, the British Home Office granted al-Massari a four-year refugee permit to remain on British soil.

    Al-Massari is allied with the well-known Saudi expatriate Osama bin Laden, who, to this day, maintains a residence in the wealthy London suburb of Wembly. And London is the headquarters of bin Laden's Advise and Reform Commission, run by the London-based Khalid al-Fawwaz.

    Bin Laden has been given regular access to BBC and a variety of major British newspapers, to spread his calls for
    jihad
    against the United States. Thus, in July 1996, bin Laden told the London
    Independent,
    "What happened in Khobar [the U.S. Army barracks that was bombed on June 25] is a clear proof of the enormous rage of the Saudi population against them. Resistance against America will spread in many places through Muslim lands."

  • On Jan. 25, 1997, Tory Member of Parliament Nigel Waterson introduced legislation to ban foreign terrorists from operating on British soil. His "Conspiracy and Incitement Bill," according to his press release, would have for the first time banned British residents from plotting and conducting terrorist operations overseas. Waterson proposed the bill in the aftermath of a scandal over Britain providing safe haven for Saudi terrorist Mohammed al-Massari, who claimed credit for the bombing of U.S. military sites in Saudi Arabia in June 1996.

    On Feb. 14, 1997, Labour MP George Galloway succeeded in blocking Waterson's bill from getting out of committee. Galloway, in a speech before the committee that was printed in the House of Commons official proceedings, stated, "The Bill will change political asylum in this country in a profound and dangerous way. It will change a state of affairs that has existed since Napoleon's time. . . . We are all in favor of controlling terrorism in Britain. Surely not a single honorable Member has any truck with terrorism here, but we are talking about terrorism in other countries. . . . The legislation is rushed in response to a specific, and, for the government, highly embarrassing refugee case--that of Professor al-Massari, who was a thorn in the side of the government of Saudi Arabia. . . . By definition, a tyranny can be removed only by extraordinary measures. Inevitably, in conditions of extreme repression, the leadership of such movements will gravitate to countries such as ours where freedom and liberty prevail. The bill will criminalize such people, even though they have not broken any law in Britain or caused any harm to the Queen's peace in her realm. They will fall open to prosecution in this country under the Bill because they are inciting, supporting, or organizing events in distant tyrannies, which are clearly offenses under the laws of such tyrants."

  • On Nov. 17, 1997, the Gamaa al-Islamiya (Islamic Group) carried out a massacre of tourists in Luxor, Egypt, in which 62 people were killed. Since 1992, terrorist attacks by the Islamic Group have claimed at least 92 lives. Yet, the leaders of the organization have been provided with political asylum in Britain, and repeated efforts by the Egyptian government to have them extradited back to Egypt have met with stern rebuffs by Tory and Labour governments alike.

    On Dec. 14, 1997, British Ambassador to Egypt David Baltherwick was summoned by Egypt's Foreign Minister Amr Moussa and handed an official note, demanding that Britain "stop providing a safe haven to terrorists, and cooperate with Egypt to counter terrorism." In an interview with the London
    Times
    the same day, the Foreign Minister "called on Britain to stop the flow of money from Islamic radicals in London to terrorist groups in Egypt, and to ban preachers in British mosques calling for the assassination of foreign leaders." The
    Times
    added that Moussa "was outraged by reports that £2.5 million had come from exiles in Britain to the outlawed Gamaa al-Islamiya," and noted that the Egyptian government "has blamed the Luxor massacre on terrorists funded and encouraged from abroad, and identified Britain as the main center for radicals plotting assassinations."

    To substantiate the charges against Britain, the Egyptian State Information Service posted a "Call to Combat Terrorism" on its official web site. The document read, in part, "Hereunder, is a list of some of the wanted masterminds of terrorism, who are currently enjoying secure and convenient asylum in some world capitals." The "wanted list" consisted of photographs and biographical data on 14 men, linked to the Luxor massacre and other earlier incidents of terrorism. The first seven individuals listed were all, at the time, residing in London. They are:

    Yasser al Sirri: "Sentenced to death in the assassination attempt on the life of former Prime Minister Dr. Atef Sidqi; founded the Media Observatory in London as mouthpiece for the New Vanguards of Conquest."

    Adel Abdel Bari: "At present, heads Egyptian Human Rights Defense Office, affiliated to Media Observatory in London, the mouthpiece for the outlawed Jihad Organization."

    Mustafa Hamzah: "Commander of the military branch of the outlawed `Islamic Group.' "

    Tharwat Shehata: "Sentenced to death in the assassination attempt on Dr. Atef Sidqi, former Prime Minister; associated with, and in charge of financing extremist elements abroad; involved in reactivating the outlawed `Jihad Organization' abroad."

    Osama Khalifa: "Accused no. 1 in the case involving domestic and foreign activities of the outlawed Islamic Group."

    Refa Mousa.

    Mohamed el Islambouli: "One of the principal leaders of the Islamic Group; sentenced to death in the case of the outlawed organization of `Returnees from Afghanistan.' "

Groups banned by United States are headquartered in London

Shortly before the Luxor massacre, on Oct. 8, 1997, the U.S. State Department, in compliance with the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1996, released a list of 30 Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs), banned from operating on U.S. soil.

Of the 30 groups named, six maintain headquarters in Britain. They are: the Islamic Group (Egypt), Al-Jihad (Egypt), Hamas (Israel, Palestinian Authority), Armed Islamic Group (Algeria, France), Kurdish Workers Party (Turkey), and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (Sri Lanka).

The Islamic Group, and its subsidiary arm, Islamic Jihad, are headquartered in London. In February 1997, the British government formally granted permission to Abel Abdel Majid and Adel Tawfiq al Sirri to establish Islamic Group fundraising and media offices in London, under the names International Bureau for the Defense of the Egyptian People and the Islamic Observatory. Abdel Majid was implicated in the October 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, and he subsequently masterminded the escape of two prisoners jailed for the assassination. In 1991, he fled to Britain and immediately was granted political asylum. He has coordinated the Islamic Group's overseas operations ever since. In fact, he was sentenced to death
in absentia
for the bombing of the Egyptian Embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan in November 1995, in which 15 diplomats were killed.

Abdel Tawfiq al Sirri, the co-director of the movement, has also been granted political asylum in Britain, despite the fact that he was also sentenced to death
in absentia
for his part in the 1993 attempted assassination of Egyptian Prime Minister Atif Sidqi.

In September 1997, Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, who is in jail in the United States for his role in the Feb. 28, 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center in New York, issued an order, as the spiritual leader of the Islamic Group, calling for an immediate cease-fire. The six members of the ruling council of Islamic Group residing in Egypt endorsed the Sheikh's order, but the remaining six council member, living in London, rejected the order. Two months later, the massacre at Luxor took place.

Similarly, the Algerian Armed Islamic Group (GIA), which was responsible for the assassination of Algerian President Mohamed Boudiaf on June 29, 1992, has its international headquarters in London. Sheikh Abu Qatabda and Abu Musab communicate military orders to GIA terrorists operating in Algeria and France via the London-based party organ,
Al Ansar.
Sheikh Abu Qatabda was granted political asylum in Britain in 1992, after spending years working in Peshawar, Pakistan with various Afghani mujahideen groups. A third London-based GIA leader, Abou Farres, oversees operations targetted against France. He was granted asylum in Britain in 1992, after he was condemned to death in Algeria for acknowledging responsibility for a bombing at Algiers airport, which killed nine people and wounded 125. Farres was believed responsible, from his base in London, for the July-September 1995 string of blind terrorist acts in France, including bombings of three Paris train and subway stations and an open-air market.

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), known as the "Tamil Tigers," have carried out a decade-long terror campaign against the government of Sri Lanka, in which they have killed an estimated 130,000 people. In addition, LTTE was responsible for the suicide-bomber murder of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on May 21, 1991, and the similar assassination of Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa on May 1, 1993.

Since 1984, the LTTE International Secretariat has been located in London. The official spokesman for the Secretariat is Anton Balsingham, an Oxford University graduate and former British Foreign Office employee. The group's suicide-bomber division, the Black Tigers, which killed Rajiv Gandhi, is run by Pampan Ajith, out of LTTE London headquarters; another elite suicide-bomber cell, the Sky Tigers, which employs light aircraft, is coordinated by Dr. Maheswaran, also based in London.

Most of the marching orders for terrorist operations in the Indian subcontinent are delivered from London, via a string of LTTE publications, including
Tamil Nation
and
Hot Spring,
published in London, and
Network
and
Kalathil,
published in Surrey. The organization's chief fundraiser and banker, Lawrence Tilagar, is also based in London.

Similarly, the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, maintains its publishing operations in London, including its monthly organ,
Filisteen al-Muslima.
In 1996, this publication issued a
fatwa
(religious ruling), calling for terrorist attacks against Israel. On Feb. 25 and March 3, shortly after the
fatwa
was published, Hamas suicide bombers blew up two Jerusalem buses and a Tel Aviv market, killing 55 people. Funding of these terrorists, who are part of the military wing, Izeddin al Kassam, comes from London, where Interpal is the chief money arm of the group.

In the case of the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK), the British government played an even more direct role in supporting the 17-year war against the Turkish government by the Kurdish separatists. An estimated 19,000 people have been killed in Southeast Turkey since the PKK launched its terror war in 1983. In May 1995, after the PKK was expelled from Germany, for seizing control of Turkish diplomatic buildings in 18 European cities, the British government licensed MED-TV in London, through which the PKK broadcasts four hours a day into its enclaves inside Turkey, and all over Europe. In a March 1996 broadcast, PKK leader Apo Ocalan called for the execution of German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and his Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel. And when the PKK held its founding "parliament in exile" in Belgium in 1995, three members of the British House of Lords either attended or sent personal telegrams of endorsement. The three were Lord Hylton, Lord Avebury, and Baroness Gould.

The same Lord Avebury has been an active backer of the Peru Support Group in London, which has served as a major international fundraising front for the Peruvian narco-terrorist group Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso). When Adolfo Héctor Olaechea was dispatched by Shining Path to London in July 1992, to establish the "foreign affairs bureau," he received a letter of recognition from Buckingham Palace, which he circulated widely. The letter read in part, "The private secretary is commanded by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth to acknowledge receipt of the letter from Mr. Olaechea, and to say that it has been passed on to the Home Office."

In addition to the six FTOs who have their headquarters in Britain, an additional 16 groups on the State Department's 1997 list either receive funding from groups based in Britain, or receive military training and logistical support from groups operating freely from British soil. Those groups are: the Abu Nidal Organization (Palestinian Authority), Harkat ul-Ansar (India), Mujahideen e Khalq (Iran), Kach (Israel, Palestinian Authority), Kahane Chai (Israel, Palestinian Authority), Abu Sayyaf (Philippines), Hezbollah (Israel, Lebanon), Khmer Rouge (Cambodia), ELN (Colombia), FARC (Colombia), Shining Path (Peru), MRTA (Peru), Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (Israel, Palestinian Authority), Islamic Jihad-Shaqaqi (Israel, Palestinian Authority), Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (Israel, Palestinian Authority), PFLP-General Command (Israel, Palestinian Authority).

The 'fatwa' against American targets

On Feb. 10, 1998, a group of well-known London-based "Islamists" and Islamic organizations issued a
fatwa,
calling for terrorist attacks against American targets. It was signed by Saudi terrorist supporter Mohammed Al-Massari and Omar Bakri, head of the Al-Muhajiroon, and was endorsed by 60 organizations that are based in the United Kingdom. It instructed Muslims living in the United States: "You have first to renounce the residency or acquire citizenship, then start military activities if physically capable. You are then at liberty to fight them everywhere in the world or re-enter the realm clandestinely and wreak havoc, obviously facing charges as spy, terrorist, etc."

On Feb. 23, 1998, a second
fatwa
was issued, entitled "World Islamic Front's Statement Urging Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders." It called for killing Americans because of their "occupation of the holy Arab Peninsula and Jerusalem" and their "oppressing the Muslim nations," and concluded, "in compliance with God's order, we issue the following
fatwa
to all Muslims: The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies--civilian and military--is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque and the holy Mosque [Mecca] from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of the lands of Islam, defeated, and unable to threaten any Muslims. We--with God's help--call on every Muslim who believes in God and wishes to be rewarded to comply with God's order to kill the Americans."

The
fatwa,
which was widely reported in the London-based Arabic daily
Al Quds al Arabi,
was signed by Sheikh Osama bin Laden, who, despite his current residence in Afghanistan, continues to maintain a lavish mansion in London; Ayman al Zawahiri, head of the Islamic Group behind the November 1997 massacre at Luxor, Egypt; Abu Yasser Rifai Ahmad Taha, another leader of the Islamic Group, residing in London; and Sheikh Mir Hamza, secretary of the Jamiat ul Ulema e, of Pakistan.

The two
fatwas
were the subject of testimony by an official of the Central Intelligence Agency on Feb. 23, 1998, before the Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism, chaired by Sen. John Kyl (R-Ariz.). At Senator Kyl's request, the CIA Counterterrorism Center provided the subcommittee with a declassified memorandum, titled "Fatwas or Religious Rulings by Militant Islamic Groups Against the United States." The memorandum stated that "a coalition of Islamic groups in London, and terrorist financier Osama bin Laden, have issued separate
fatwas,
or religious rulings, calling for attacks on U.S. persons and interests worldwide, and on those of U.S. allies. . . . Both
fatwas
call for attacks to continue until U.S. forces retreat from Saudi Arabia and Jerusalem. The
fatwa
from the groups in london also calls for attacks until sanctions on Iraq are lifted. These
fatwas
are the first from these groups that explicitly justify attacks on American civilians anywhere in the world. Both groups have hinted in the past that civilians are legitimate targets, but this is the first religious ruling sanctifying such attacks."

Two days before the Aug. 7, 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya, the Islamic Jihad issued a declaration, targetting American interests all over the world. The communiqué accused the CIA of cooperating with Egyptian officials to capture three members of the group in Albania, and extradite them to Egypt where they faced prosecution on capital offenses.

Within hours of the two bombings, a number of London-based groups issued endorsements of the bombings. Supporters of Sharia, headed by Abu Hamza Al-Misri, an Egyptian who was convicted of a capital offense in Egypt, but who enjoys political asylum in London, issued one of the most virulent "endorsements." Omar Bakri, the head of Al-Muhajiroon, as well as the Islamic Observation Center, the Islamic Jihad organization's official propaganda and fundraising organization in London, also endorsed the bombings. The Islamic Observation Center was officially licensed by the British government in 1996 to carry out activities in Britain.

Attacks on Yemen

In the third week of December 1998, a London-based terrorist group was planning to launch operations to destabilize the Republic of Yemen. Members of the Ansar Al-Sharia, directed from London by Mustafa Kamel (a.k.a. Abu Hamza Al-Masri, a British citizen and former Afghansi "mujahid," who trains groups of young people for terrorist activities at his Finsbury Mosque in north London, were arrested on Dec. 23, 1998 in Yemen, as they were planning armed terrorist operations. These terrorists were in contact with the Islamic Army of Abeen-Aden (affiliated with the London-based Egyptian Islamic Jihad), which had kidnapped 16 British and Australian tourists a few days earlier.

A rescue operation on Dec. 29 by the Yemeni security forces resulted in the kidnappers killing three British hostages and one Australian; 12 tourists were freed. British press and, later, government officials, accused the Yemeni security forces of "provoking the murders," because they refused to negotiate with the terrorists.

In response, the Yemeni authorities did not mince words. In one day, Yemen kicked out the British Scotland Yard officers who had been invited to observe the investigations, withdrew its application to join the British Commonwealth, and announced that a group of British citizens had been arrested while attempting a massive terror-bombing campaign in Aden.

On Jan. 25, Yemen President Ali Abdullah Saleh demanded from British Prime Minister Tony Blair that Abu Hamza Al-Masri be handed over for trial in Yemen on charges of carrying out terrorist acts in Yemen and several other Arab states. This was expressed in an official message Saleh sent to Blair, conveyed by the British Ambassador to Yemen, Victor Henderson. The London-based daily
Al-Hayat
reported that, according to government sources in Sanaa, Yemen's capital, the message from President Saleh stressed that the Yemeni government has the right to demand that the British government hand over Abu Hamza, and evidence and documents which prove its description of Abu Hamza as a "terrorist" and "extremist."

However, British law does not consider it a crime for individuals and groups based in Britain to plan, incite, or conduct terrorist operations outside Her Majesty's domains.

Abu Hamza's case is even more complicated, because he is not only an asylum seeker, but has British citizenship. The Yemeni request came in the context of investigations conducted by the Yemeni security authorities into the group whose members were arrested on Dec. 23, including five British citizens (one of them the son of Abu Hamza) and one French citizen, who were in possession of weapons and explosives and were said to be involved in carrying out "terrorist and destructive plans which undermine Yemen's security and stability."

The Yemeni investigations found that Abu Hamza has relations with this group, in addition to his "firm links to the Islamic Army of Aden," led by Abu Hassan al-Muhdar, who is in custody. Al-Muhdar's group carried out the kidnapping of the tourists in December 1998. The Yemeni government sources added that the message of the Yemeni President to the British Prime Minister expressed Yemen's great regret over the "terrorist activities carried out by Abu Hamza al-Masri" and others from the British territories, acts which it said undermine Yemen's security and stability, as well as similar terrorist acts in several Arab states.

Eight days earlier, Abu Hamza called for killing Yemeni officials if the Yemeni authorities sentenced the kidnappers to death. Replying to a question from the Qatari al-Jazira satellite TV network on Jan. 14, he said: "If Zein al-Abidin al-Muhdar were to be executed, there will be revenge acts and massacres."

Abu Hamza stated in a televised debate on Jan. 18 that he had been contacted by the leader of the group that carried out the kidnapping before the rescue operation, "and asked me for advice." Abu Hamza accordingly issued a communiqué and threatened the Yemeni authorities.

The target of these operations has been the government of the Republic of Yemen itself. Abu Hamza made this clear in the televised debate, in which he said that the ultimate goal is to overthrow the secular regime in Sanaa, and that there are supporters in Yemen who are ready to fight for establishing an Islamic state. Al-Muhdar, during his trial in Yemen, confirmed that the objective of his group is to overthrow every secular government in the region.

Formal diplomatic protests to London

This British harboring of international terrorist groups has not gone unnoticed by the nations that have been the targets of this brutality. To date, the British Foreign Office has received formal diplomatic protests from at least ten victimized countries. These include:

EGYPT:

British asylum for the Islamic Group and Islamic Jihad has been a persistent reason for Egyptian complaints to the British government. In April 1996, Egyptian Interior Minister Hasan al-Alfi told the British Arabic weekly
Al-Wasat,
"All terrorists come from London. They exist in other European countries, but they start from London." On Aug. 29, the government daily
Al-Ahram
reported that the British chargé d'affaires in Cairo was summoned by the Deputy Foreign Minister, and given a letter for Foreign Minister Malcolm Rifkind, protesting Britain's "double standard policy" and "support for international terrorism." An official of the Egyptian Foreign Ministry was quoted in the paper, saying, "The asylum law in Britain has provided a safe-haven for terrorists."

Egypt has been particularly incensed that the British have allowed the Islamic Group/Islamic Jihad to use London as their home-base. Continual demands that Britain extradite Islamic Group leaders Adel Abdul Majid and Adel Tawfiq al Sirri back to Cairo, where they have been sentenced to death
in absentia
for terrorist crimes, have been rejected.

On Feb. 13, 1997, Egyptian officials told
Al-Hayat,
that the Egyptian government remains "troubled" and "astonished" by Britain's decision to allow Abdul Majid to establish officially recognized centers in London, especially after the Egyptian Supreme Court released admissions from several members of the group, at the beginning of 1997, that they had received money and marching orders from Abdul Majid, to carry out bombings and assassinations throughout 1996.

These same officials told the paper that "this only further supports Egypt's belief that London has become the most prominent center for anti-Egypt Islamic extremist groups," and that there will continue to be talks on the highest levels "to know the reasons that made the British government allow the establishment of that [islamic Group] office."

Following the Luxor massacre, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak launched a personal international crusade to spotlight the role of the British government in harboring and sponsoring the terrorists who have targetted Egypt.

ISRAEL:

On March 3, 1996, after a Hamas bomb exploded in a Jerusalem market, killing a dozen people, and a second bomb exploded in Tel Aviv, Israel's ambassador to London met with Foreign Minister Rifkind to demand that Britain stop protecting the group. In an account of that confrontation, the London
Express
reported the next day, "Israeli security sources say the fanatics behind the bombings are funded and controlled through secret cells operating here. Only days before the latest terror campaign began, military chiefs in Jerusalem detailed how Islamic groups raised £7 million in donations from British organizations. The ambassador, Moshe Raviv, yesterday shared Israel's latest information about the Hamas operations. A source at the Israeli embassy said last night, `It is not the first time we have pointed out that Islamic terrorists are in Britain.' "

The British Foreign Office officially responded to the Israeli ambassador: "We have seen no proof to support allegations that funds raised by the Hamas in the U.K. are used directly in support of terrorist acts elsewhere."

In early September 1997, Shin Bet chief Ami Ayalon travelled to Britain, according to the
Sunday Telegraph,
after investigations determined that the two Hamas suicide bombers who killed 15 people in a Jerusalem market on July 30, arrived in Israel on British passports: "Israeli officials are said to have become increasingly frustrated by what they see as British foot-dragging in curbing the activities of Palestinian hard-liners. The Israeli government has made repeated calls for action to be taken against militants, said to be operating freely in the British capital."

FRANCE:

In late 1995, the GIA's London headquarters ordered a terror war against France, leading France to loudly protest to the British government, according to the Nov. 6, 1995 London
Daily Telegraph,
in an article entitled "Britain Harbours Paris Bomber." On Nov. 3, 1995, the French daily
Le Figaro
wrote, under the headline "The Providential Fog of London," of the GIA's bombing spree: "The trail of Boualem Bensaid, GIA leader in Paris, leads to Great Britain. The British capital has served as logistical and financial base for the terrorists."

The next day,
Le Parisien
reported that the author of the GIA terror attack inside France was former Afghan mujahideen leader Abou Farres, who was given a residence visa in London, despite the fact that he was already wanted in connection with the bombing of the Algiers Airport. Farres's London-based organization, according to
Le Parisien,
recruits Islamic youth from the poor suburbs of Paris, and sends them to Afghanistan, where they are trained as terrorists.

ALGERIA also filed strong protests to the British Foreign Office over the harboring of the GIA in London.

PERU:

The Peruvian government has made repeated requests to the British government, since 1992, demanding the extradition of Adolfo Héctor Olaechea, the London-based head of overseas operations for Shining Path, as well as the shutdown of its fundraising and support operations there. Both requests have been refused to this day. Moreover, in 1992, during the worst of the Shining Path offensive in Peru, Channel 4, of the Independent Broadcasting Authority, a dependency of the British Home Office, coordinated with Olaechea to send two journalists to Peru, where they contacted Shining Path units, and filmed a highly favorable report. The film was broadcast throughout Britain by Channel 4 on July 10, 1992, despite an official protest from the Peruvian government.

TURKEY:

On Aug. 20, 1996, the Turkish government formally protested to the British government for allowing the Kurdish Workers Party to continue its London-based MED TV broadcasts into Turkey, despite documentation that the broadcasts were being used to convey marching orders to PKK terrorists there.

GERMANY:

The Bonn government issued a diplomatic note to London, too, following a March 1996 MED TV broadcast in which PKK leader Apo Ocalan called for murdering German Chancellor Kohl and Foreign Minister Kinkel. According to the German press, the Interior Ministry stated concerning the London station: "We have requested our colleagues in neighboring countries in Europe to put measures into effect in order to not compromise internal security in our own country."

LIBYA:

On Feb. 7, 1997, the Libyan Foreign Ministry submitted an official protest to the British government, over Britain's permitting of the Militant Islamic Group to operate on British soil. The letter cited the recent assassination attempt against Colonel Qaddafi by members of the London-headquartered group, and read, in part, "The decision by Britain, which is a permanent member state of the [uN] Security Council, to shelter elements of that terrorist group who are wanted to stand trial in Libya and to enable them to openly announce their destructive intentions against a UN member state, namely Libya, . . . contravenes international charges and treaties."

NIGERIA:

On Feb. 28, 1997, the British government issued a denial that it had refused to extradite three Nigerians suspected of a series of bombings in the major city of Lagos in January 1997. The three men were leaders of the National Democratic Coalition (Nadeco).

YEMEN:

I n January 1999, the government of Yemen filed formal diplomatic protests with Britain for the harboring of the terrorists who carried out bombings and kidnappings.

RUSSIA:

On Nov. 14, 1999, the Russian Foreign Ministry filed a formal protest to Andrew Wood, Britain's Ambassador in Moscow, after two Russian television journalists were brutally beaten as they attempted to film a London conference, where bin Laden's International Islamic Front, Ansar as-Shariah, Al-Muhajiroon, and other Islamist groups called for a
jihad
against Russia, in retaliation for the Russian military actions in Chechnya.

One of the victims of the beating, ORT cameraman Alexandr Panov, told
Kommersant
daily that he was "very surprised at the indifference of the British government. Some of the participants at the `charity' event were people wanted by Interpol, but Scotland Yard, although evidently aware of their residence [in Britain], does not react."

On Nov. 10, 1999, the Russian government had already filed a formal diplomatic démarche via the Russian Embassy in London, protesting the attacks on the Russian journalists, and also the admissions by Sheikh Omar Bakri Mohammed, the head of the "political wing" of the bin Laden organization, Al Muhajiroon, that the group was recruiting Muslims in England to go to Chechnya to fight the Russian Army. Bakri's organization operates freely from offices in the London suburb of Lee Valley, where they occupy two rooms at a local computer center, and maintain their own Internet company. Bakri has admitted that "retired" British military officers are training new recruits in Lee Valley, before they are sent off to camps in Afghanistan or Pakistan, or are smuggled directly into Chechnya.

On Nov. 20, 1999, the
Daily Telegraph
admitted, following the release of the U.S. State Department's updated list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations, that "Britain is now an international center for Islamic militancy on a huge scale . . . and the capital is the home to a bewildering variety of radical Islamic fundamentalist movements, many of which make no secret of their commitment to violence and terrorism to achieve their goals."

INDIA:

In December 1999, following the conclusion of the Indian Airlines hijacking, the Indian government protested the fact that British officials publicly stated that they would allow one of the freed Kashmiri terrorists, Ahmed Omar Sheikh, to return to London, because there "were no charges filed against him in Britain." The British government, facing growing international pressure, apparently has backed down from this decision.

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EIR companion piece post # 1 ,HEART OF DARKNESS one of my favorites

A century of British state-sponsored terror

In 1996, EIR's coverage of the genocide in Africa, orchestrated and manipulated by the British Empire, with assistance from its modern-day pirates of raw materials cartels, included an excerpt from Heart of Darkness, the most famous work by Polish-British novelist Joseph Conrad (1857-1924) (see " `Heart of Darkness': A Glimpse at Colonialism in Action," EIR, Jan. 3, 1997). Conrad's first-hand view of colonialism in Africa was based on his 1889 journey along the Congo River as master of the ship Otago, and is one of the most chilling indictments of colonialism that this author has ever read. It was this excerpt of Heart of Darkness that prompted me to look afresh at another of Conrad's books, The Secret Agent (New York: The Penguin Group, 1983 reprint), written in 1907 about terrorism, police agents, and imperial powers.

Conrad's powerfully written novel about political terrorism exposes the fact that for more than 100 years, the British have provided their territory as a haven for terrorists to plan attacks against other countries. As the accompanying dossier, delivered to U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, indicates, in the past several years, the British Crown, the Parliament, and the government have shunned requests for cooperation from 11 countries where brutal terrorist actions and mass murder have proven to have been planned in London. International pressure on Britain has led to attempts to change the laws in the British Parliament, but these efforts have been shot down in long-winded aristocratic rhetoric about Britain's tradition of providing a haven for victims of human rights violations. In Conrad's book, the central incident revolves around an international conference where the British were refusing to crack down against "political crimes." Such a conference did take place in 1898, in Milan.

The Secret Agent reminds us that terrorism is surrogate warfare, and a part of British imperial policy, which intelligence operatives call the "Great Game." Conrad focusses his plot, however, not so much on the British use of terrorism against other imperial powers, as on the attempt by the aristocratic "First Secretary" of another country's embassy to stage a spectacular terrorist act in order to give the British a taste of their own medicine, and shake them into signing an international convention against providing a haven for "political" criminals.

The bombing of the Royal Observatory

Conrad's story, though a work of fiction, is rooted in a real incident, the bungled bombing of the Royal Observatory in Greenwich Park, London in 1894, according to Martin Seymour-Smith, who wrote an Introduction in 1984 to one Penguin edition of The Secret Agent. According to Seymour-Smith, the facts behind the real incident, known as the "Greenwich Bomb Outrage," were these:

"A young man called Martial Bourdin was found in Greenwich Park, on a hill near the Royal Observatory `in a kneeling posture, terribly mutilated' on the evening of 15 February 1894. There had been an explosion; Bourdin had set it off, and in so doing had killed himself. He had blown off one of his hands, and his guts were spilling from his body; he died in hospital very soon afterwards. . . . Bourdin had a brother-in-law called H.B. Samuels, who edited an anarchist paper. Samuels was in fact, like Verloc [the main character in Conrad's book], a police agent and, again like Verloc, he accompanied his not very intelligent dupe to the park. Bourdin . . . in some way set off the explosive he was carrying, which was supplied by Samuels, acting as agent provocateur. . . . Anarchists were not responsible for the Greenwich Bomb incident; they were as frightened about it as they are in The Secret Agent."

Conrad's book captures the arrogant disdain that the oligarchy has, to this day, for the "common people." In his story, the retarded brother-in-law of the oligarchy's secret agent, Verloc, is killed in the bungled bomb incident. In grief, the victim's sister apparently dies in a suicide, after killing her police-agent husband.

Conrad wrote in 1920 that he received much criticism for writing such a "gloomy" piece, and came under suspicion as an anarchist sympathizer. No doubt, the secrets revealed in the book, even under the guise of fiction, were troublesome for the British and other countries which were facilitating terrorist acts. The tumultuous times in which the book was written included the assassinations of leaders who supported national sovereignty and republican ideas, including U.S. President William McKinley, gunned down by one of the British network's anarchists in 1901.

Preparing for the 1898 Conference of Milan

In the following excerpt, at the opening, Verloc is meeting his controller, the mysterious Mr. Vladimir, who lectures him:

" `You give yourself for an "agent provocateur." The proper business of an "agent provocateur" is to provoke. As far as I can judge from your record kept here, you have done nothing to earn your money. . . .'

" `Nothing!' exclaimed Verloc, stirring not a limb. . . . `I have several times prevented what might have been--'

" `. . . Don't be absurd. The evil is already here. We don't want prevention--we want cure. . . . Isn't your society capable of anything else but printing this prophetic bosh. . . ? Why don't you do something? Look here. . . . You will have to earn your money. . . . No work, no pay. . . . When you cease to be useful you shall cease to be employed. Yes. Right off. Cut short. . . . You shall be chucked. . . .

" `What we want is to administer a tonic to the Conference in Milan,' he [Vladimir] said airily. `Its deliberations upon international action for the suppression of political crime don't seem to get anywhere. England lags. This country is absurd with its sentimental regard for individual liberty. It's intolerable to think that all your friends have got only to come over to--'

" `In that way I have them all under my eye,' Mr. Verloc interrupted, huskily.

" `It would be much more to the point to have them all under lock and key. England must be brought into line. The imbecile bourgeoisie of this country make themselves the accomplices of the very people whose aim is to drive them out of their houses to starve in ditches. And they have the political power still, if they only had the sense to use it for their preservation. I suppose you agree that the middle classes are stupid? . . . What they want just now is a jolly good scare. This is the psychological moment to set your friends to work. I have had you called here to develop to you my idea.'

"And Mr. Vladimir developed his idea from on high, with scorn and condescension, displaying at the same time an amount of ignorance . . . which filled the silent Mr. Verloc with inward consternation. . . .

" `A series of outrages,' Mr. Vladimir continued, calmly, `executed here in this country; not only planned here--that would not do--they would not mind. Your friends could set half the Continent on fire without influencing the public opinion here in favour of a universal repressive legislation. They will not look outside their backyard here.' "

The pathetic plot to entrap British public opinion is a miserable failure. The British Home Secretary covers up the entire affair; it seems that more than one of the members of Verloc's anarchist cell are on the payroll of the British.

Seymour-Smith reports that in the real Conference of Milan in 1898, Britain refused to give up its role as "haven for the oppressed," continuing to serve as the planning ground for terrorism for the next 102 years.

--Michele Steinberg

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Crapola from Ladouche and his cult won't convince anyone not already in the choir. / END Colby

"Greenwich Bomb Outrage," gee FLASH FLAG ???????? Please direct your comments to John Simkin re the incident.

*******************************************

The Secret Agent [Paperback]

Joseph Conrad

(Author)

A tale of espionage and political treachery, Conrad s The Secret Agent is notable for anticipating many of the geopolitical trends of the twentieth century. The novel centers on Mr. Verloc, a secret agent commissioned to orchestrate acts of terrorism in the London area. Because of its heavy focus on government-sponsored terrorism, false flag tactics, and anarchism, The Secret Agent remains one of Conrad s most controversial works and continues to be discussed in reference to the Unabomber bombings, September 11th attacks, and other real-life tragedies.

Edited by Steven Gaal
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Yawn, if you have to cite an event that happened in the 19th century you might as well give up.

// END COLBY

DUMB PEOPLE DONT UNDERSTAND PAST IS PROLOGUE

Definition for anti intellectualism:

:

1) LEN COLBY

2) Anti-intellectualism is hostility towards and mistrust of intellect, intellectuals, and intellectual pursuits, usually expressed as the...

false flags operations that shaped our world

The leaders of smaller and less industrialised nations are not madmen (whatever the media claims). They also are generally better informed than their citizens. In a war an attacker does not need equal forces compared to the enemy. The attacker needs a 5-fold local superiority, or better. No one begins wars without very definite objectives and a quick victory in sight. If a war with more even military balance erupts, someone has been mislead and walked into a trap (usually arranged by third party).

After the American war of Independence (1776-1779), and an English challenge to that independence (1812-1814) no single nation has planned an offensive war against the USA. It is probable that a strong coalition of Anglo-French-led European nations planned to split the USA into two states through diplomatic recognition of the Confederate states possibly followed up by naval blockade embargoing the Union. At that time the British Empire was the strongest naval power, and the French the second strongest. The events led, however, into the Civil War (1860-1865) and due to the Russian intervention 1863 (1863) on the Union's side, those European plans were quietly abandoned.

Mexican wars 1819, 1846-48: Long series of operations, commencing with the annexion of Florida (1819) and followed by a declaration of independence of Texas from Mexico (1836). Provocative troop movements near the U.S. southern border caused an incident which led to war. (It is said the US built a fortification 150 km inside the Mexican border.) The annexation of Texas by the USA and the conquest of California, New Mexico, and nearby territories followed. Mexico had a weak government at that time, because after Napoleon conquered Spain (1809) their former colonies soon revolted. Mexico had been a colony of the Spanish kingdom but now they revolted and formed a republic. There were a series of revolts, not just one.

false flags operations that shaped our world

Joe Crubaugh provides an "all time greatest hits" of false flag operations, whereby one scenario is repeated... as the world keeps falling for the same lie.

The most commonly known false flag operations consist of a government agency staging a terror attack, whereby an uninvolved entity gets blamed for the carnage. As at least two millennia have proven, false flag operations, with healthy doses of propaganda and ignorance, provided a great recipe for endless war.

In "War is a Racket", Two-time Medal of Honor recipient Major General Smedley Butler wrote: "I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested."

===================================================================================

You may not have heard of these operations, but perhaps you have heard of these?

1. Nero, Christians, and the Great Fire of Rome

Rome, the night of July 19, 64 AD. The Great Fire burst through the rooftops of shops near the mass entertainment and chariot racing venue called Circus Maximus. The flames, whipped by a strong wind, rapidly engulfed densely populated areas of the city. After burning uncontrolled for five days, four of the 14 Roman districts were burned to the ground, and seven more were severely damaged.

It was no secret that Nero wanted to build a series of palaces which he planned to name "Neropolis". But, the planned location was in the city and in order to build Neropolis, a third of Rome would have to be torn down. The Senate rejected the idea. Then, coincidentally, the fire cleared the very real estate Neropolis required.

Despite the obvious benefit, there's still a good probability that Nero did not start the fire. Up to a hundred small fires regularly broke out in Rome each day. On top of that, the fire destroyed Nero's own palace and it appears that Nero did everything he could to stop the fire. Accounts of the day say that when Nero heard about the fire, he rushed back from Antium to organize a relief effort, using his own money. He opened his palaces to let in the homeless and had food supplies delivered to the survivors.

Nero also devised a new urban development plan that would make Rome less vulnerable to fire. But, although he put in place rules to insure a safer reconstruction, he also gave himself a huge tract of city property with the intention of building his new palace there.

People knew of Nero's plans for Neropolis, and all his efforts to help the city could not counteract the rampant rumours that he'd help start the fire. As his poll numbers dropped, Nero's administration realised the need to employ False Flag 101: When something - anything - bad happens to you, even if it's accidental, point the finger at your enemy.

Luckily, there was a new cult of religious nuts at hand. The cult was unpopular because its followers refused to worship the emperor, denounced possessions, held secret meetings and they were always talking about the destruction of Rome and the end of the world. Even more luckily for Nero, two of the cult's biggest leaders, Peter and Paul, were currently in town. Nero spread word that the Christians had started the Great Fire. The citizens of Rome bought his lie hook, line and sinker. Peter was crucified and Paul beheaded. Hundreds of others in the young cult were fed to the lions or smeared with tar and set on fire to become human street lamps.

2. Remember the Maine, to Hell with Spain

The Spanish Empire was the first truly global empire, reaching its territorial height in the late 1700s. By 1898, Spain was losing territories regularly. Cuba too was becoming increasingly hard to control and a minor revolution had broken out. This wasn't welcome news to people in the United States who owned Cuban sugar, tobacco and iron industry properties valued at over $50 million (worth ca. $1.2 billion today).

The main stream media, then dominated by newspaper magnates Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst, exaggerated - and outright fabricated - stories of horrible conditions under Spanish rule. Following the age-old maxim, "If it bleeds, it leads", the newspapers published stories about Spanish death camps, Spanish cannibalism and inhumane torture. The newspapers sent reporters to Cuba. However, when they got there, they found a different story. Artist and correspondent Frederick Remington wrote back to Hearst: "There is no war. Request to be recalled." Hearst's famous reply: "Please remain. You furnish the pictures, I'll furnish the war." And he did. His newspaper, continually screaming how Spanish Cuba was going to hell in a hand basket, convinced big business interests in the US to put pressure on anti-war President William McKinley to protect their Cuban investments. McKinley, in response, sent the USS Maine battleship to Havana Harbour as a calming show of force.

Three weeks after arriving, on the night of February 15, 1898, the USS Maine exploded, killing 266 men. There are two theories for the explosion: some believe the explosion was caused by an external mine that detonated the ship's ammunition magazines. Others say it was caused by a spontaneous coal bunker fire that reached the ammunition magazines. Currently, the evidence seems to favour the external mine theory.

Without waiting on an investigation, America's mainstream media blamed the tragedy on Spain and beat the drums for war. By April, McKinley yielded to public pressure and signed a congressional resolution declaring war on Spain. To help pay for the Spanish-American War, congress enacted a "temporary" tax of 3 percent on long-distance telephone bills. This was essentially a tax on the rich, as only about 1,300 Americans owned phones in 1898. Although the Spanish-American War ended in 1898, the temporary tax was only abolished in... 2005. Over its lifetime, the 107-year-old tax generated almost $94 billion - more than 230 times the cost of the Spanish-American War.

The Spanish-American War put a large nail in the coffin of Spain's global empire. And by the end of 1898, the United States, which was founded in opposition to imperialism, found itself in control not only of Cuba, but of the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Hawaiian Islands as well.

3. The Manchurian Incident

The economic slump following 1929's thorough and convincing near-obliteration of Wall Street hit Japan especially hard: exports fell, unemployment rose. Japan, not being rich in natural resources, needed oil and coal to make power to run machines to produce goods to sell to other countries to make money to buy food to have enough energy. Manchuria, a province of China, had its fair share of oil and coal.

After Japan decided it needed to invade Manchuria, they needed a pretext to justify the invasion. They chose to create a false flag attack on a railway close to Liutiao Lake... a big flat area that had no military value to either the Japanese or the Chinese. The main reason the spot was chosen was for its proximity (about 800 meters distant) to Chinese troops stationed at Beidaying. The Japanese press labelled the no-name site of the blast Liutiaogou, which was Japanese for "Liutiao Bridge." There was no bridge there, but the name helped convince some that the sabotage was a strategic Chinese attack.

Colonel Itagaki Seishiro and Lieutenant Colonel Kanji Ishiwara ordered officers of the Shimamoto Regiment to place a bomb beneath the tracks. The original bomb failed to detonate and a replacement had to be found. Then, at 10.20pm, September 18, 1931, the tracks were blown. Surprisingly, the explosion was minor. Only one side of the rail was damaged, and the damage was so light that a train headed for Shenyang passed by only a few minutes later. But it was a good enough excuse to invade...

The Japanese immediately charged the Chinese soldiers with the destruction, then invaded Manchuria. A puppet government known as Manchukuo was installed. The League of Nations investigated and in a 1932 report denied that the invasion was an act of defence, as Japan had advertised. But rather than vacate Manchuria, Japan decided to vacate the League of Nations, the precursor to the United Nations.

4. Secrets of the Reichstag Fire

In 1933, just a week before general elections that might place enough Nazis in office to make Hitler defacto dictator, the Reichstag, which housed the parliament of the German Empire, was set on fire. Adolf Hitler assured everyone that communist terrorists started the fire. Hitler's party member Hermann Göring stated that he had secret evidence that would soon be made public; evidence that proved communists did it. These proclamations came on top of weeks of Nazi-organized street violence designed to whip the public into a pathological fear of communists.

The next day, the Nazis convinced a senile President von Hindenburg to sign the Reichstag Decree. The decree, using defence against terrorism as an excuse, suspended just about every major civil liberty set forth in the Weimar Constitution: habeus corpus (the right to know why you're being put in jail)? Gone. Freedom of opinion? Gone. Freedom of the press? Not any more. Freedom to organise and assemble? Deported. The Reichstag decree even allowed the government to spy on its own citizens' personal mail and telephone conversations without a warrant... something most Americans today could hardly begin to fathom... a precursor to President George W. Bush secret order in 2002 ordering the National Security Agency to do just exactly the same thing.

So what about the fire? The only thing historians seem to agree on is that Marinus van der Lubbe, a former Dutch Communist and mentally disturbed arsonist hungry for fame, was found inside the building. Despite the Nazi attempt to blame the fire on a group of communists, the communists were later acquitted by the Nazi government itself. After years of extensive investigation, most historians believe the Hitlerites themselves set fire to the Reichstag using van der Lubbe as their patsy: they knew a nut was going to try to burn down the building and not only did they let him do it, but they may have befriended him, encouraged him and even helped the blaze spread by scattering gasoline and incendiaries.

Most Germans, feeling safe from terrorism again, didn't mind that their freedom and liberty had been stolen, or that so much of their life and work had become so strictly controlled. On the contrary, they felt very enthusiastic and patriotic about the new government because they ignorantly believed the new government cared about them. And as long as the average citizen worked hard, kept his mouth shut and let his kids take part in the Hitler Youth organization, he stayed out of the detention camps.

5. The Fake Invasion at Gleiwitz

In the late evening of Thursday, August 31, 1939, German covert operatives pretending to be Polish terrorists seized the Gleiwitz radio station in the German/Poland border region of Silesia. The station's music program came to an abrupt halt, followed by frantic German voices announcing that Polish formations were marching toward town. Germany was being invaded by Poland! Then, like a bad imitation of the previous year's infamous War of the Worlds broadcast, the transmission went dead for a moment of dramatic silence. Soon, the airwaves popped and crackled to life again, and this time Polish voices called for all Poles in the broadcast area to take up arms and attack Germany.

In no time, radio stations across greater Europe picked up the story. The BBC broadcast this statement: "There have been reports of an attack on a radio station in Gleiwitz, which is just across the Polish border in Silesia. The German News Agency reports that the attack came at about 8.00pm this evening when the Poles forced their way into the studio and began broadcasting a statement in Polish. Within quarter of an hour, says reports, the Poles were overpowered by German police, who opened fire on them. Several of the Poles were reported killed, but the numbers are not yet known." And thus, Hitler invented an excuse to invade Poland, which he did the next day: September 1, 1939. World War II began.

What really happened? Alfred Helmut Naujocks received the orders from Heinrich Müller, chief of the Gestapo, to put the staged terrorist attack together at the Gleiwitz station. At Naujock's disposal were what the Germans had codenamed "canned goods," which were dissenters and criminals kept alive in detention camps until the Gestapo needed a warm dead body. To add cogency to the Gleiwitz attack, Naujocks brought along one such canned good: Franciszek Honiok. Honiok, a German from the Silesian region, was a known Polish sympathizer. Before arriving at the station, the Gestapo gave him a lethal injection. Then, they dressed him up like a Polish terrorist and brought him to the front of the radio station. Naujocks later testified that the man was unconscious, but not dead yet, when he was shot full of pistol rounds. When the police and press found Honiok's body, they assumed he'd been one of the fictional Polish terrorists that attacked the station.

In all, there were 21 fake terror actions along the border that same night, many of them using "canned goods" from German prisons so there would be plenty of bodies in the morning: evidence of Polish attackers that had been shot in self defence. The next day, after a long night filled with fake terror, Hitler gave a speech to the German Army, complete with synthetic anger: "The Polish State has refused the peaceful settlement of relations which I desired, and has appealed to arms. Germans in Poland are persecuted with bloody terror and driven from their houses. A series of violations of the frontier, intolerable to a great Power, prove that Poland is no longer willing to respect the frontier of the Reich. In order to put an end to this lunacy, I have no other choice than to meet force with force from now on. The German Army will fight the battle for the honour and the vital rights of reborn Germany with hard determination. I expect that every soldier, mindful of the great traditions of eternal German soldiery, will ever remain conscious that he is a representative of the National-Socialist Greater Germany. Long live our people and our Reich!"

Had it not been for the Nuremberg trials in 1945, the real story behind the Gleiwitz attack might never have been uncovered. It was there that the operation's leader, Alfred Naujocks, spilled the beans in a written affidavit.

6. The Myth of Pearl Harbour

On Sunday morning, December 7, 1941, the Japanese launched a sneak attack at Pearl Harbor that decimated the US Pacific Fleet and forced the United States to enter WWII. That's what most of us were taught as school children... But, except for the date, everything you just read is a myth. In reality, there was no sneak attack. The Pacific Fleet was far from destroyed. And, furthermore, the United States took great pains to bring about the assault.

On January 27, 1941, Joseph C. Grew, the U.S. ambassador to Japan, wired Washington that he'd learned of the surprise attack Japan was preparing for Pearl Harbour. On September 24, a dispatch from Japanese naval intelligence to Japan's consul general in Honolulu was deciphered. The transmission was a request for a grid of exact locations of ships in Pearl Harbour. Surprisingly, Washington chose not to share this information with the officers at Pearl Harbour. Then, on November 26, the main body of the Japanese strike force (consisting of six aircraft carriers, two battleships, three cruisers, nine destroyers, eight tankers, 23 fleet submarines, and five midget submarines) departed Japan for Hawaii.

Despite the myth that the strike force maintained strict radio silence, US Naval intelligence intercepted and translated many dispatches. And, there was no shortage of dispatches: Tokyo sent over 1000 transmissions to the attack fleet before it reached Hawaii. Some of these dispatches, in particular this message from Admiral Yamamoto, left no doubt that Pearl Harbour was the target of a Japanese attack: "The task force, keeping its movement strictly secret and maintaining close guard against submarines and aircraft, shall advance into Hawaiian waters, and upon the very opening of hostilities shall attack the main force of the United States fleet and deal it a mortal blow. The first air raid is planned for the dawn of x-day. Exact date to be given by later order."

Even on the night before the attack, US intelligence decoded a message pointing to Sunday morning as a deadline for some kind of Japanese action. The message was delivered to the Washington high command more than four hours before the attack on Pearl Harbour. But, as many messages before, it was withheld from the Pearl Harbour commanders.Although many ships were damaged at Pearl Harbour, they were all old and slow. The main targets of the Japanese attack fleet were the Pacific Fleet's aircraft carriers, but Roosevelt made sure these were safe from the attack: in November, at about the same time as the Japanese attack fleet left Japan, Roosevelt sent the Lexington and Enterprise out to sea. Meanwhile, the Saratoga was in San Diego.

Why did Pearl Harbour happen? Roosevelt wanted a piece of the war pie. Having failed to bait Hitler by giving $50.1 billion in war supplies to Britain, the Soviet Union, France and China as part of the Lend Lease program, Roosevelt switched focus to Japan. Because Japan had signed a mutual defence pact with Germany and Italy, Roosevelt knew war with Japan was a legitimate back door to joining the war in Europe. On October 7, 1940, one of Roosevelt's military advisors, Lieutenant Commander Arthur McCollum, wrote a memo detailing an 8-step plan that would provoke Japan into attacking the United States. Over the next year, Roosevelt implemented all eight of the recommended actions. In the summer of 1941, the US joined England in an oil embargo against Japan. Japan needed oil for its war with China, and had no remaining option but to invade the East Indies and Southeast Asia to get new resources. And that required getting rid of the US Pacific Fleet first.

Although Roosevelt may have got more than he bargained for, he clearly let the attack on Pearl Harbour happen, and even helped Japan by making sure their attack was a surprise. He did this by withholding information from Pearl Harbour's commanders and even by ensuring the attack force wasn't accidentally discovered by commercial shipping traffic. As Rear Admiral Richmond K. Turner stated in 1941: "We were prepared to divert traffic when we believed war was imminent. We sent the traffic down via the Torres Strait, so that the track of the Japanese task force would be clear of any traffic."

7. Israeli Terrorist Cell Uncovered in Egypt

In July, 1954, an Israeli terrorist cell was activated inside Egypt. The ensuing attacks, cleverly designed to look like the work of Arabs, blasted and torched American and British targets. First, the Israeli terrorists firebombed the Alexandria Post Office. Then, they firebombed the US Information Agency libraries: one in Alexandria, and one in Cairo. Then, they firebombed a British-owned Metro-Goldwyn Mayer theatre, a railway terminal, the central post office, and a couple more theatres...

To smuggle their bombs inside the buildings, the terrorists used devices shaped like books, hiding them inside book covers. Once inside, bags filled with acid were placed on top of the nitroglycerin bombs. After several hours, the acid ate through the bags and ignited the nitroglycerin, causing explosions and blazing infernos.

In the early 1950s, the United States was making fast friends with Egypt, taking advantage of the new pan-Arab Egyptian government of Gamal Abdel Nasser. The warming relationship between the US and Egypt caused a very insecure Israel to feel threatened. Nassar also had plans to nationalize the Suez Canal, which had been controlled by the British for decades. Egypt had been known to blockade Israeli shipping through the canal and Israel feared Nassar would make a blockade permanent.

After US President Eisenhower began encouraging the British to leave the Suez Canal Zone, Israel started looking for a way to make the British stay, and a way to remain best buddies with America. And what better way to treat your best friend than to stab them in the back and tell them one of your other friends did it?

David Ben Gurion, Israel's founding prime minister, thought that Egyptian terrorist attacks against Americans would be a perfect way to cool the growing US/Egypt relationship. Since there were no Egyptians planning attacks against Americans, Ben Gurion's protégés did the next best thing: they recruited Israeli agents to pretend to be Egyptian terrorists.

The top-secret Israeli terrorist cell, Unit 131, had existed since 1948. In 1950, Israel's Directorate of Military Intelligence Aman was created and Israel sent an undercover agent, Colonel Avraham Dar (alias: John Darling, British citizen of the island of Gibraltar), to recruit more members to Unit 131. He also trained them in how to build bombs and terrify Americans and British civilians working and living in Egypt.

Before the terrorist cell was activated, another Israeli agent named Avraham (Avraham Seidenberg) was sent to take control from Avraham Dar. Seidenberg first went to Germany to establish an alias: he assumed the identy of Paul Frank, a former SS officer, complete with underground Nazi connections. By 1954, his new identity was in place and he went to Egypt to take command of Unit 131. Everything was going well for the Israeli terrorists it seemed. But, there was one thing the members of Unit 131 didn't know: their terrorist sleeper cell had itself been infiltrated by the Egyptian intelligence service. The new Unit 131 leader, Seidenberg, had betrayed them to the Egyptians. So, when Unit 131 member Philip Nathanson made his way to bomb the British-owned Rio theatre in Alexandria, not only was he being followed, the Egyptian intelligence service had a fire engine waiting to put out the flames. As Nathanson stood in the ticket line, his bad luck turned worse when one of the bombs in his pocket ignited and then exploded. Nathanson was burned but not killed. As nearby pedestrians shouted warnings and wondered if he was a suicide bomber, Egyptian policemen stepped in, calmed the crowd, and identified Nathanson as one of the terrorists who had been blowing up American and British buildings.

Nathanson was interrogated by Egypt's military intelligence and confessed the whole plot, which led to more arrests. When the Israeli spies were given a public trail, all the details of their terrorist training in Israel came to light.

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ben Gurion and Israel's Aman chief, Binyamin Gibli, tried to frame their own Defense Minister Pinhas Lavon. They even offered forged documents as proof. The frame-up worked for a while, so much so that the entire incident is still popularly known as the Lavon Affair. Lavon resigned and Ben Gurion came out of political retirement to replace him as Israel's Defense Minister. However, the truth did finally emerge. In 1960, a review of the inquiry discovered the fake documents, as well as perjury by Seidenberg. A committee of seven Cabinet members cleared Lavon. Although Ben Gurion never admitted fault, he did resign his post as Defense Minister.

8. Operation Northwoods

In 1962, the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff unanimously proposed state-sponsored acts of terrorism on American soil, against American citizens. The head of every branch of the US armed forces gave written approval to sink US ships, shoot down hijacked American planes, and gun down and bomb civilians on the streets of Washington, D.C., and Miami. The idea was to blame the self-inflicted terrorism on Cuba's leader, Fidel Castro, so the American public would beg and scream for the Marines to storm Havana.

The public learned about Operation Northwoods 35 years later, when the Top Secret document was declassified by the John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Review Board. Among other things, Operation Northwoods proposed:

- Faking the crash of an American passenger plane. The disaster was to be accomplished by faking a commercial flight from the US to Jamaica, and having the plane boarded at a public airport by CIA agents disguised as college students going on vacation. An empty remote-controlled plane would follow the commercial flight as it left Florida. The commercial flight's pilots would radio for help, mention that they had been attacked by a Cuban fighter, then land in secret at Eglin AFB. The empty remote-controlled plane would then be blown out of the sky and the public would be told all the poor college students aboard were killed.

- Using a possible NASA disaster (astronaut John Glenn's death) as a pretext to launch the war. The plan called for "manufacturing various pieces of evidence which would prove electronic interference on the part of the Cubans" if something went wrong with NASA's third manned space launch.

- Blowing up buildings in Washington and Miami. Cuban agents (undercover CIA agents) would be arrested, and they would confess to the bombings. In addition, false documents proving Castro's involvement in the attacks would be "found" and given to the press.

- Attacking an American military base in Guantanamo with CIA recruits posing as Cuban mercenaries. This involved blowing up the ammunition depot and would obviously result in material damages and many dead American troops. As a last resort, the plan even mentioned bribing one of Castro's commanders to initiate the Guantanamo attack. That deserves repeating: the Pentagon considered using our tax dollars to bribe another country's military to attack our own troops in order to instigate a full-scale war.

Operation Northwoods was only one of several plans under the umbrella of Operation Mongoose. Shortly after the Joint Chiefs signed and presented the plan in March, 1962, President Kennedy, still smarting from the Bay of Pigs fiasco, declared that he would never authorize a military invasion of Cuba. In September, Kennedy denied the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Lyman Lemnitzer, a second term as the nation's highest ranking military officer. And by the winter of 1963, Kennedy was dead... killed, apparently, by a Cuban sympathiser in the streets of an American city.

9. Phantoms in the Gulf of Tonkin

On August 2, 1964, three North Vietnamese torpedo boats attacked a US destroyer, the USS Maddox. The boats reportedly fired torpedoes at the US ship in international waters in the Gulf of Tonkin, about thirty miles off the Vietnam coast. On August 4, the US Navy reported another unprovoked attack on the USS Maddox and the USS Turner Joy.

Within hours, President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered a retaliatory strike. As the bases for North Vietnamese torpedo boats were bombed, Johnson went on TV and told America: "Repeated acts of violence against the armed forces of the United States must be met not only with alert defense, but with a positive reply. That reply is being given as I speak tonight." The next day, Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara assured Capital Hill that the Maddox had only been "carrying out a routine mission of the type we carry out all over the world at all times." McNamara said the two boats were in no way involved with recent South Vietnamese boat raids against North Vietnamese targets.

At Johnson's request, Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. The resolution pre-approved any military actions Johnson would take. It gave Johnson a free ticket to wage war in Vietnam as large as the President wanted. And, true to his large Texas roots, Johnson got a big war: by 1969, over half a million US troops were fighting in Indochina. Despite McNamara's testimony to the contrary, the USS Maddox had been providing intelligence support to South Vietnamese boats carrying out raids against North Vietnam. McNamara had also testified that there was "unequivocable proof" of an "unprovoked" second attack against the USS Maddox. In fact, the second attack never occurred at all.

At the time of the second incident, the two US destroyers misinterpreted radar and radio signals as attacks by the North Vietnamese navy. It's now known that no North Vietnamese boats were in the area. So, for two hours, the two US destroyers blasted away at nonexistent radar targets and vigorously maneuvered to avoid phantom North Vietnamese ships. Even though the second "attack" only involved two US ships defending themselves against a nonexistent enemy, the President and Secretary of Defense used it to coerce Congress and the American people to start a war they neither wanted nor needed.

After the Vietnam War turned into a quagmire, Congress decided to put limits on the President's authority to unilaterally wage war. Thus, on November 7, 1973, Congress overturned President Nixon's veto and passed the War Powers Resolution. The resolution requires the President to consult with Congress before making any decisions that engage the US military in hostilities. It is still in effect to this day.

Edited by Steven Gaal
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You once again stooping to personal insults is a direct reflection of your desperation. Past can be prologue but people frequently draw false conclusions from history. The Greenwich Park bomb incident isn't even a good example, many people believe(d) the bomber was set up by a supposed police informant but there seems to be little if any solid evidence that was the case. The distortions in the accounts of other incidents you posted aside none involved Britain.

Edited by Len Colby
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Saratoga was in San Diego, undergoing a long-planned refit and overhaul. Lexington and Enterprise were ferrying aircraft to (IIRC) Midway, and Enterprise returned to Pearl Harbor DURING the attack, and had to be warned to turn away, to the south, to escape the Japanese planes.

Joseph Grew's January 1941 warning came from the (again, IIRC) Peruvian ambassador to Japan (or it could have been Colombian....), and was just one of several score warnings routinely ignored by American Intelligence as being "unlikely, because Japan is too smart to attack us - they know we'd crush them in retaliation!".

Hell, even the USAAF's own Billy Mitchell declared at his 1925 courts-martial that Japan would end up attacking the US Fleet while it was in Pearl Harbor (this was LONG before it became a full naval base, instead of just a part-time anchorage), and probably early on a Sunday morning, without any warning.

He based that analysis on Japan's MO in the Pacific theatre. He was not much wrong.

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