Skip to comments.Bosnia: the Birthplace of Al-Quaeda
Posted on 09/14/2006 8:37:59 AM PDT by kronos77
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
(Excerpt) Read more at helleniccomserve.com ...
Tell me you've read Kolhmann's book Andy.
The main issue is that A.Q. was able to use parastate of Bosnia to legally expand terrorist business throughout the world and safely launder the funds to terrorist activities. A.Q. operatives were able to safely enter U.S. because it was believed they train for the activities outside of U.S. soil. Also the fact that U.S. intellingence assisted establishment of A.Q. springboard in Europe has enabled A.Q. operatives to learn firsthand how American three letter agencies operate within.
Last but not least, A.Q. political supporters in Washington, D.C. have so much on their hands that they hope that if they keep mum, it will go away.
Like unwanted pregnancy, it will get visible, sooner or later.
Even here on FR, Neocons are suspiciously silent when it comes to Bosnia and A.Q. They would lose some sleep if the Douglas Feith activities became a public knowledge.
During Bosnian war, Clinton administration, A.Q. Iranians and neocon individuals worked in concert.
America Used Islamists To Arm The Bosnian Muslims
The Srebrenica Report Reveals The Pentagon's Role In A Dirty War
By Richard J Aldrich
The official Dutch inquiry into the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, released last week, contains one of the most sensational reports on western intelligence ever published. Officials have been staggered by its findings and the Dutch government has resigned. One of its many volumes is devoted to clandestine activities during the Bosnian war of the early 1990s. For five years, Professor Cees Wiebes of Amsterdam University has had unrestricted access to Dutch intelligence files and has stalked the corridors of secret service headquarters in western capitals, as well as in Bosnia, asking questions.
His findings are set out in "Intelligence and the war in Bosnia, 1992-1995". It includes remarkable material on covert operations, signals interception, human agents and double-crossing by dozens of agencies in one of dirtiest wars of the new world disorder. Now we have the full story of the secret alliance between the Pentagon and radical Islamist groups from the Middle East designed to assist the Bosnian Muslims - some of the same groups that the Pentagon is now fighting in "the war against terrorism". Pentagon operations in Bosnia have delivered their own "blowback".
In the 1980s Washington's secret services had assisted Saddam Hussein in his war against Iran. Then, in 1990, the US fought him in the Gulf. In both Afghanistan and the Gulf, the Pentagon had incurred debts to Islamist groups and their Middle Eastern sponsors. By 1993 these groups, many supported by Iran and Saudi Arabia, were anxious to help Bosnian Muslims fighting in the former Yugoslavia and called in their debts with the Americans. Bill Clinton and the Pentagon were keen to be seen as creditworthy and repaid in the form of an Iran-Contra style operation - in flagrant violation of the UN security council arms embargo against all combatants in the former Yugoslavia.
The result was a vast secret conduit of weapons smuggling though Croatia. This was arranged by the clandestine agencies of the US, Turkey and Iran, together with a range of radical Islamist groups, including Afghan mojahedin and the pro-Iranian Hizbullah. Wiebes reveals that the British intelligence services obtained documents early on in the Bosnian war proving that Iran was making direct deliveries.
Arms purchased by Iran and Turkey with the financial backing of Saudi Arabia made their way by night from the Middle East. Initially aircraft from Iran Air were used, but as the volume increased they were joined by a mysterious fleet of black C-130 Hercules aircraft. The report stresses that the US was "very closely involved" in the airlift. Mojahedin fighters were also flown in, but they were reserved as shock troops for especially hazardous operations.
Light weapons are the familiar currency of secret services seeking to influence such conflicts. The volume of weapons flown into Croatia was enormous, partly because of a steep Croatian "transit tax". Croatian forces creamed off between 20% and 50% of the arms. The report stresses that this entire trade was clearly illicit. The Croats themselves also obtained massive quantities of illegal weapons from Germany, Belgium and Argentina - again in contravention of the UN arms embargo. The German secret services were fully aware of the trade.
Rather than the CIA, the Pentagon's own secret service was the hidden force behind these operations. The UN protection force, UNPROFOR, was dependent on its troop-contributing nations for intelligence, and above all on the sophisticated monitoring capabilities of the US to police the arms embargo. This gave the Pentagon the ability to manipulate the embargo at will: ensuring that American Awacs aircraft covered crucial areas and were able to turn a blind eye to the frequent nightime comings and goings at Tuzla.
Weapons flown in during the spring of 1995 were to turn up only a fortnight later in the besieged and demilitarised enclave at Srebrenica. When these shipments were noticed, Americans pressured UNPROFOR to rewrite reports, and when Norwegian officials protested about the flights, they were reportedly threatened into silence.
Both the CIA and British SIS had a more sophisticated perspective on the conflict than the Pentagon, insisting that no side had clean hands and arguing for caution. James Woolsey, director of the CIA until May 1995, had increasingly found himself out of step with the Clinton White House over his reluctance to develop close relations with the Islamists. The sentiments were reciprocated. In the spring of 1995, when the CIA sent its first head of station to Sarajevo to liaise with Bosnia's security authorities, the Bosnians tipped off Iranian intelligence. The CIA learned that the Iranians had targeted him for liquidation and quickly withdrew him.
Iranian and Afghan veterans' training camps had also been identified in Bosnia. Later, in the Dayton Accords of November 1995, the stipulation appeared that all foreign forces be withdrawn. This was a deliberate attempt to cleanse Bosnia of Iranian-run training camps. The CIA's main opponents in Bosnia were now the mojahedin fighters and their Iranian trainers - whom the Pentagon had been helping to supply months earlier.
Meanwhile, the secret services of Ukraine, Greece and Israel were busy arming the Bosnian Serbs. Mossad was especially active and concluded a deal with the Bosnian Serbs at Pale involving a substantial supply of artillery shells and mortar bombs. In return they secured safe passage for the Jewish population out of the besieged town of Sarajevo. Subsequently, the remaining population was perplexed to find that unexploded mortar bombs landing in Sarajevo sometimes had Hebrew markings.
The broader lessons of the intelligence report on Srebrenica are clear. Those who were able to deploy intelligence power, including the Americans and their enemies, the Bosnian Serbs, were both able to get their way. Conversely, the UN and the Dutch government were "deprived of the means and capacity for obtaining intelligence" for the Srebrenica deployment, helping to explain why they blundered in, and contributed to the terrible events there.
Secret intelligence techniques can be war-winning and life-saving. But they are not being properly applied. How the UN can have good intelligence in the context of multinational peace operations is a vexing question. Removing light weapons from a conflict can be crucial to drawing it down. But the secret services of some states - including Israel and Iran - continue to be a major source of covert supply, pouring petrol on the flames of already bitter conflicts.
Richard J Aldrich is Professor of Politics at the University of Nottingham. His 'The Hidden Hand: Britain, America and Cold War Secret Intelligence' is published in paperback by John Murray in August.
Why Hoppy, you hoping that he can help you with the big words?