Skip to comments.Bosnia: The Birthplace of Al-Qaeda
Posted on 07/09/2005 11:35:19 AM PDT by Doctor13
Stella L. Jatras details jihadist activity in Bosnia and some of its implications:
A series of bombs devasted London; the number of casualties numbered more than 40, 13 of whom died in a bus attack. An al-Qaeda group is linked to the London blasts: AP reports, "A group calling itself 'Secret Organization al-Qaeda in Europe' has posted a claim of responsibility for the series of blasts in London according to a report in Der Spiegel."
Evan F. Kohlmann, author of Al-Qaeda's Jihad in Europe: The Afghan-Bosnian Network, argues that the "key to understanding Al Qaidas European cells lies in the Bosnian war of the 1990s. Using the Bosnian war as their cover, Afghan-trained Islamic militants loyal to Osama bin Laden convened in the Balkans in 1992 to establish a European domestic terrorist infrastructure in order to plot their violent strikes against the United States. As the West and the United Nations looked on with disapproval, the fanatic foreign 'mujahideen', or holy warriors, wreaked havoc across southern Europe, taking particular aim at UN peacekeepers and even openly fighting with Bosnian Muslims at times. Middle Eastern religious and charitable organizations, largely based in and funded from the Arabian Gulf, were responsible for bankrolling this effort, and providing travel documentation for would-be mujahideen recruits." Kohlmann adds that "many of the cell members responsible for some of the most notorious terrorist attacks of the past decade spent their formative years waging jihad in the unlikely Muslim land of Bosnia."
Therefore, it is safe to say that the birth of al-Qaeda as a force on the world stage can be traced directly back to 1992, when the Bosnian Muslim government of Alija Izetbegovic issued a passport in the Vienna embassy to Osama bin Laden. The Wall Street Journal reported in 2001 that "for the past 10 years, the most senior leaders of al Qaeda have visited the Balkans, including bin Laden himself on three occasions between 1994 and 1996. The Egyptian surgeon turned terrorist leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri has operated terrorist training camps, weapons of mass destruction factories and money-laundering and drug-trading networks throughout Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Turkey and Bosnia. This has gone on for a decade. Many recruits to the Balkan wars came originally from Chechnya, a jihad in which Al Qaeda has also played a part."
THE BOSNIA/911 CONNECTION
An AP article of 2002 entitled, "U.N.Lawyer Turns Over Hijacker Info," reported that "the chief U.N war crimes prosecutor has turned over information about one of the Sept. 11 hijackers to the United States, France and the Netherlands, the U.N. spokesman said Wednesday...The war crimes prosecutor, Carla Del Ponte, said last October that information concerning people with connections to terrorist groups, primarily in Bosnia, was provided to Pierre Prosper, the U.S. ambassador at large for war crimes.
"On Wednesday, [UN Spokesman] Eckhard confirmed for the first time that the information included material related to 'one of the named terrorists said to have been on one of the hijacked aircraft' on Sept. 11. Eckhard refused to name the hijacker but said the information was also shared with the French and Dutch governments."
The report further states that "following the terrorist attacks on the United States, Del Ponte was approached by the U.S. Embassy in The Hague, Netherlands and asked for information in identifying those responsible, Eckhard said. The office of the prosecutor did in fact have some information in relation to one of the named terrorists said to have been on one of the hijacked aircraft, he said. An electronic version of some of the information was then given to Prosper as well as French and Dutch officials, Eckhard said.
"Florence Hartmann, the spokeswoman for Del Ponte, said U.N. investigators may have had information about some Muslim fighters who stayed on in Bosnia after the civil war ended in 1995."
Moreover, Gregory R. Copley, editor of Defense & Foreign Affairs, writes: "The Islamist-dominated Government of Bosnia & Herzegovina (B-H) is proposing as its new Ambassador to the United States a woman who was one of the founders of the radical Islamist Muslim SDA Party (Party of Democratic Action [Stranka Demokratske Akcije]), which has had, since its foundation, strong links with al-Qaida and a variety of other Islamist terrorist organizations, and to the intelligence and terrorist-training arms of the Iranian Government."
In his commentary, "We bombed the wrong side?" former Canadian UNPROFOR Commander Lewis MacKenzie wrote, "The Kosovo-Albanians have played us like a Stradivarius. We have subsidized and indirectly supported their violent campaign for an ethnically pure and independent Kosovo. We have never blamed them for being the perpetrators of the violence in the early '90s and we continue to portray them as the designated victim today in spite of evidence to the contrary. When they achieve independence with the help of our tax dollars combined with those of bin Laden and al-Qaeda, just consider the message of encouragement this sends to other terrorist-supported independence movements around the world."
I repeat these words of General MacKenzie: "Just consider the message of encouragement this sends to other terrorist-supported independence movements around the world." (My emphasis)
WE HAD HIM!
In his book, Dereliction of Duty, Lt. Col. Robert "Buzz" Patterson, chief military aide to President Clinton writes: "The White House Situation Room was buzzing. It was fall 1998 and the National Security Council (NSC) and the 'intelligence community' were tracking the wehereabout of Osama bin Laden, the shadowy matermind of terrorist attacks on Americn targets overseas. 'They successfully triangulated his location,' yelled a 'Sit Room' watch stand. 'We've got him.' Beneath the West Wing of the White House, behind a vaulted steel door, the Sit Room staff sprang into action. The watch officer notified National Security Advisor Sandy Berger, 'Sir, we've located bin Laden. We have a two-hour window to strike'. Characteristic of the Clinton administration, the weapons of choice would be Tomahawk missiles. After several attempts to first locate President Clinton to receive permission to get Osama bin Laden, Presindent Clinton was nowhere to be found. When the President finally accepted Berger's call, there was discussion, there were pauses -- and no decision. 'We studied the issue until it was too late -- the window of opportunity closed'."
On 11 March 2004, 190 people were killed at the Madrid Train Station. One of the main terrorists was born in Bosnia yet very little was made of this important connection. However, whenever or if ever information is uncovered of a possible connection of the London terrorists to Bosnia, it will be played down as was the Bosnia connection to the Madrid bombing. It wouldn't be prudent.
Clinton Legacy bump.
clinton Legacy Bump!
But... the geniuses at DU always insisted the CIA created Al Qaeda. Wasn't it once a business unit of Halliburton, too? ;^)
"...if you look at it historically, certainly in the UK, it's been western dithering that has actually radicalized more Muslims than anything else. For example, the big thing that British Muslims got radicalized over was Bosnia, where the British and the Europeans sat on their hands as Muslims were slaughtered in the hundreds of thousands, in the heart of Europe, until the Americans demanded some action on it. And what happened was that a whole generation of essentially non-observant westernized Muslims re-connected with the most ferocious version of their faith."
Mark Steyn, Friday July 08, 2005 www.marksteyn.com
What a load of garbage. "Hundreds of thousands?" Isn't that what that idiot Stalinist, Clarke said?
Of course, it wasn't true. And if it was, I could care less. Bosnian Muslims were working with Al Qaeda. They weren't the victims of anything. They deserved to be wiped out.
The point is basically that hardly any Bosnian Muslims ever saw the inside of a Mosque before 1991, and that there weren't any towelheads in Bosnia before then either. Cause and effect.
Well, we did find those mass graves that Clinton and his kneepad wearers used to go on and on about.
Of course, we found them in Iraq and they were all full of Arabs...
And the story said: Afghan-trained Islamic militants loyal to Osama bin Laden convened in the Balkans in 1992 ... it is safe to say that the birth of al-Qaeda as a force on the world stage can be traced directly back to 1992
Bush was President in 1992. And the author's premise about Al Qaeda and the Balkans is ridiculous. Al Qaeda was conceived in the Arabian shield countries of Saudi Arabia & Yemen, was born in Afghanistan, grew up in the Sudan, reached maturity back in Afghanistan again and is fed by Wahabbi propaganda and radicalized North Africans and Middle Easterners.
Bosnia attracted some mujahadeen a decade ago and some of them were certainly Al Qaeda, but they were radicalized already--that's why they went. And the Balkans wars of seccession from Yugoslavia/Serbia were the result of nationalist tensions that pre-existed bin Laden & Al Qaeda by centuries.
If you are interested in something more about Al Qaeda than Serb propaganda intended to either distract from or justify their own crimes, Chapter 2 will help.
Anything I've ever read about the origins of Al Qaeda is that it was started by OBL when he was fighting off the communists in Afghanistan.
Bosnia never entered into the picture.
Thank you for your response. I'm afraid that I must say it would appear your anti-Serb blinders cloud your thinking. You need to realize that we are fighting the war on terror, not re-fighting the Balkan wars.
You will see that the Commission references Al-Qaeda's Jihad in Europe: The Afghan-Bosnian Network, the very book the author of the article references!
It would appear that you picked up on this line...
Therefore, it is safe to say that the birth of al-Qaeda as a force on the world stage can be traced directly back to 1992, when the Bosnian Muslim government of Alija Izetbegovic issued a passport in the Vienna embassy to Osama bin Laden.
I guess that line was too nuanced for you. the author is not claiming Al Qaeda was born in Bosnia, but rather that the Bosnian War provided the platform to "...establish a European domestic terrorist infrastructure in order to plot their violent strikes against the United States". Perhaps you think that doesn't qualify as the "world stage"!
Yes, Bush was President in 1992 and should be rightly condemned for his dealing with Bosnia. However, without clinton's support the Croats and Serbs may have prevented the cesspool from surviving.
Exactly. And the nationalist wars of seccession in the former Yugoslavia were not part of that war. That's why during the war on terror the USA has reduced troops in the Balkans from over 30,000 to less than 2,000 (mostly in Kosovo) while deploying most of our Army & Marine corps to fight the actual enemy in places like Iraq, Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa; sending special ops trainers throughout North Africa & Central Asia, and fielding advisers in the Phillipines. We're taking the fight to where the enemy is, not where he ain't.