Friday, March 13, 2009

al-Qaeda-Israel Axis (Not!)

In a strange twist on the conspiracy theory that holds Israel responsible for the September 11 attacks, some Islamic militants allege significant operational ties between Israel and al-Qaeda:
"Since Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh announced the arrest of an al-Qaeda cell connected with Israel on October 6, 2008, many Islamist forum members have continued to speculate on al-Qaeda’s possible links to Israel (Al-Arabiya, October 6, 2008; AFP, October 7, 2008). Moderate Islamists questioned al-Qaeda’s ability to perpetrate massive attacks such as 9/11 without the help of a powerful country such as Israel or the United States. Others believe al-Qaeda is being manipulated by these countries, which also explains why al-Qaeda is incapable of attacking Israel (, January 10). Pro-al-Qaeda jihadi internet forums responded to these speculations by posting instances of al-Qaeda generated attacks on Israeli targets (, February 14).

"Those speculating on al-Qaeda’s possible links to Israel question the chances of a group of Islamists being able to penetrate US defenses, especially those of the U.S. Department of Defense (as in the Pentagon attack), unless they have inside collaborators. A forum member, nicknamed Sarhan, points to the Islamic terrorist cell arrested in Yemen in 2008 as proof of al-Qaeda’s ties to Israel. Sarhan alleges that Israel, in an attempt to divert attention from its secret links with al-Qaeda on the eve of the arrest of the Yemeni terror cell, sowed confusion in Yemen’s international waters by encouraging simple Somalis to disrupt international maritime traffic in the narrow strait between Somalia and Yemen. As evidence, Sarhan cites the use of high tech weapons and equipment that Somalis do not usually possess nor could operate unless trained by a highly capable country. The other diversion Israel tried to create, Sarhan alleges, involved accusing Yemen of supplying Hamas with Chinese-made rockets. Another forum member agreed with Sarhan’s hypothesis: 'You said the right thing. Al-Qaeda is simply a Zionist organization set up to dismantle Islam and invade the Arab world. All the sectarian violence we are witnessing today is the work of the Jewish lobby' (, January 10)."

Needless to say, I don't actually believe this.

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