Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Meanwhile in Iraq

On the face of it, this story is maddening, as if there must be something more. Looking a bit deeper, it's still maddening. A fat lip on a wanted terrorist now equals discipline and a court marshall yet we can blow them away with Hellfires all day? Color me confused. But this upholding values stuff is confusing, especially when it comes to our military brass.

Googling around on this is particularly frustrating because other than the immortal Kos "Screw 'Em" post most of the other stories link to Blackwater hate posts. But who is the alleged perp Ahmed Hashim Abed? The Fox story is vague:
Intelligence sources identified Abed as the ringleader, but he had evaded capture until September
Scant little exists on the web about this guy, such as whether he's a Ba'athist, AQ, or someone else. Being in Falluja it's likely he was an ex-Saddam goon, as the city was a stronghold for those types.

Changing pace a bit, this story never got the legs it deserved but it seems to keep quietly coming back up. Background--in the 80s a terrorist named "Abu Ibrahim" had a terror outfit called 15th of May and he plotted to blow up numerous US airliners around the world on the same day. They succeeded with one--Pan Am 830, a 747 that exploded en route from Japan to Hawaii, killing a Japanese teenager but not crashing the plane. Sound familiar?

An accomplice, Mohammed Rashid, is chilling right now for that crime at the Supermax alongside another 747 plane bomber Ramzi Yousef. There seem to be similarities between Ibrahim's small airplane bombs and Yousef's, who tested his on a Philippines airline 747 in 1994. Fortunately that plane only killed one person but landed safely, and fortunately Ibrahim's bombs were found and defused after the 830 crash. Otherwise we would have had an operation Bojinka during the Reagan years, the same thing KSM was under indictment for prior to 9/11.

This guy operated from Iraq with blessings from Saddam's Iraqi Intelligence Service and was being given a stipend in Baghdad before the invasion. Gee, another terrorist last seen in Iraq was one who helped mix the first WTC bomb, Abdul Yasin, who was also being coddled by the IIS before 9/11. Evidently they didn't meet the fate of another coddled and notorious terrorist who pumped three bullets into himself around the same time according to IIS. But of course Iraq had never attacked the US.

Now the State Dept has upped the reward on Ibrahim from 200,000 to as much as 5 million. Why they are doing this is unclear, although it might not necessarily be good news if they think he might be actively passing along his bomb expertise, although surely he's passed along a lot already throughout his 70+ years.

IN BRITAIN... 11/25/09

They are still trying to investigate the Iraq war, while others fault Obama for dithering. Sounds like they're just as screwed up as we are. I say the right needs to get behind Obama's troop decision once it's made and forget the dithering comments. We are in this together, just as we were in Iraq (or were supposed to be). Perhaps Obama will show up tomorrow in Kabul to slice some turkey.

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