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In a little-noticed blurb in yesterday's London Times, India sentenced an al-Qaeda operative for his participation in the 9/11 attacks. Mohammed Afroze got seven years for plotting attacks overseas on 9/11 to coincide with the attacks on America. However, Afroze's choice of targets certainly bears review, as Melanie Phillips and RattlerGator point out:
AN INDIAN man was jailed in Bombay yesterday for plotting to fly passenger jets into the House of Commons and Tower Bridge in London on September 11, 2001.
Mohammed Afroze was sentenced to seven years after he admitted that he had a role in an al-Qaeda plot to attack London, the Rialto Towers building in Melbourne and the Indian Parliament. ...
Afroze admitted that he and seven al-Qaeda operatives planned to hijack aircraft at Heathrow and fly them into the two London landmarks. The suicide squad included men from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan, Afroze said. They booked seats on two Manchester-bound flights, but fled just before they were due to board.
Let's take another look at that target list for 9/11. The British had allied with the United States in our work in Iraq, of course, and helped us enforce the no-fly zones over the northern and southern parts of the country. That would fit in with the supposition that AQ intended on doing nothing more than forcing infidels off the Arabian peninsula, the current meme that blames the string of bombings in London this month on the Coalition presence in Iraq.
However, Australia didn't have troops in Saudi Arabia in 2001, although they supported the US and UK diplomatically. The Aussies had not even sent troops in the first Gulf War, sending a support contingent instead. However, in 1999 they did help liberate East Timor from the grip of a military occupation, which inexplicably caused the inclusion of Melbourne on the al-Qaeda hit list.
But the final target raises the most questions about the supposed causality between American/Western interference in Southwest Asia and AQ operations. Afroze, an Indian, had targeted the Indian Parliament. Why India? India opposed the American intervention in Iraq later, and before 2001 had not maintained terribly friendly relations with the United States. India also had no troops in the Middle East, especially in the Arabian Peninsula, where US troops supposedly provoked the AQ response.
So why plot to attack India -- a plot only subverted by the failure of the "courage" of the terrorists assigned to strike it?
India has a long history of Hindu-Muslim tension. Pakistan and Bangladesh owe their existence to a British partition of the Asian subcontinent when it pulled out in 1947. Ever since the split and massive relocations in the period that followed, the mainly Hindu India has disputed the borders it shares with Muslim Pakistan, which resulted in a nuclear standoff not long before 2001. Both nations claim the Kashmir province, and radicals on both sides provoked both governments into several bouts of brinksmanship.
AQ targeting of India shows quite clearly (as does its attempt to strike Australia) that the analysis of American causality as the origin of the 9/11 attacks and the London bombings clearly do not make sense. If anything, India's targeting shows that AQ doesn't just dream of an Arabian peninsula under its tyrannical control, but an Asian and African continent ruled by a new Caliphate. That has nothing to do with American interest in the Middle East, but rather an old dream of world conquest that has haunted the consciousnesses of lunatics for centuries.
And here's a good question for our media -- why haven't we heard about Mohammed Afroze? Why hasn't his conviction for targeting India and Melbourne made headlines in the United States? Could it be that the media understands all too well what Afroze's conviction means for its meme of American provocation of al-Qaeda and have chosen to remain quiet rather than prove itself tragically wrong?
BUMP: To top.
UPDATE: India sentenced Afroze, not Britain. (h/t: Robbie) East Timor had been occupied by Indonesian paramilitary forces. (h/t: Anthony). I would point out that this latter correction makes the point even more clear that al-Qaeda does not need "provocation" to recruit and attack.Sphere It View blog reactions
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» Who is Mohammed Afroze? from The Defiance, Colorado Democrat
In Why India, Captain Ed explores whether Mohammed Afroze's conviction has less to do with American interest in the Middle East than a Muslim dream of a world-wide caliphate. He also wonders, quite correctly, why we've heard nothing of Afroze on the U.... [Read More]
Tracked on July 25, 2005 12:51 AM
» Begging questions from Short Attention Span
Captain’s Quarters asks: Why India? AN INDIAN man was jailed in Bombay yesterday for plotting to fly passenger jets into the House of Commons and Tower Bridge in London on September 11, 2001. Mohammed Afroze was sentenced to seven years after... [Read More]
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» Poor Tom Friedman from Weapons of Mass Destruction
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» A 9/11 Conviction in India from MartiniPundit
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