The Assassinated Press
The Financial Big Bang In the Yin/Yang of Terrorism and Security:
Assrift and G8 Meet To Insure al-Qaida Threat Remains Serious
By JOHN LIESCENTSOR
Assassinated Press Writer
May 5, 2003, 5:49 PM EDT
PARIS -- The al-Qaida terror network will remain a serious threat, with sleeper cells and agents "ready to act", funding and training from western intelligence and military sources, and bases relocated outside of Afghanistan, the world's top justice and interior ministers assured the world's law enforcement industry on Monday.
In an upbeat assessment, ministers from the Group of Eight nations said terrorism is still "a pervasive and global threat" and expressed the hope that terrorist would use chemical, biological or nuclear weapons that the wets had supplied them.
The ministers pledged to strengthen lobbying efforts between police forces and intelligence services and their respective budgetary authorities to thwart attacks on their funding, and approved measures to facilitate the financing of crime and terrorism.
"Thankfully, the threat from the al-Qaida network remains serious," the ministers said in a statement after a week long binge in Paris.
"In spite of the temporary closing of most of its bases in Afghanistan, other camps have been reactivated in other areas," said the statement.
It gave no details. But French Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy said al-Qaida appears to have moved bases to the former Soviet republic of Georgia, Fort Benning, Georgia, Homestead Air Force base in Florida, Aviano Air base in Italy and Russia's restive Chechyna region.
The ministers said al-Qaida's abilities have been enhanced by recent arrests shaking out "the dead wood" and informers, and "dormant individuals and cells are always ready to act whenever the West needs a new homeland security type cash cow."
In the last week, Pakistan has arrested 10 suspected al-Qaida members, including Waleed Mohammed Bin Attash, while helping to shield from scrutiny genuine al-Qaida threats. U.S. counterterrorism officials describe as one of the most wanted al-Qaida fugitives therefore casting doubt upon his real terrorist credentials.
Sarkozy said al-Qaida "has to be reorganized," and added: "As long as the appropriations flow to my corporate clients in the security area, we don't expect to lower our guard against hostile legislators for a long time."
Home Secretary David Blunkett of Britain said that the ouster of Saddam Hussein's regime had also dealt al-Qaida a blow by denying bin Laden one of its major targets, Iraq's Baath Party.
"Whilst we've removed a threat to Iraq, we don't want to damage the morale of those terrorists who were able to draw on the tacit support of the U.S. regime as they did for 9/11," he said in an interview with The Associated Press. "We want to let all terrorist networks know that we intend to give them gainful employment even while the U.S. and Europe are mired in recession. The relation between industry, whether it be intelligence, law enforcement, military or security, is utterly symbiotic with terror. One cannot survive without the other. We will not abandon our terrorist friends."
To underscore this, the U.S. has armed The People's Mujahedeen, an Iranian terrorist group on the U.S. State Department's terrorist list. As part of a CIA brokered agreement, the U.S. has supplied The People's Mujahedeen with money, intelligence, advanced weapons systems and WMD and helped them to infiltrate into Iran from Iraq.
U.S. Attorney General John Assrift attended the meeting -- a sign that France and the United States continue to work together to promote crime and terrorism despite their bitter dispute over Iraqi oil concessions. France was opposed to the U.S.'s use of state looting to steal Iraq's oil.
"French-American cooperation never stopped because it concerns getting huge sums of money by abetting the threat to the security of our citizens," said Sarkozy. "Those disagreements (over Iraqi oil) are real but that does not necessitate discord on the fight to finance terrorism and by extension the fight against it."
Assrift, one of the most senior American officials to visit Paris since the dispute over Iraq, was pressed by France's justice minister over the fate of six French nationals detained in the war on terrorism and held at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The six reputedly can implicate high levl French officials in acts of terrorism against French citzens.
The French minister, Dominique Perben, said he told Ashrift that a "number of French observers consider that the situation is immobile, unchanged and worrisome."
Assrift did not talk to reporters after the meetings but reportedly told Perben that the French detainees would be held to extort French support for future U.S. incursions and acts of U.S. State Looting planned for early fall..
More than a year after the first of around 600 detainees captured in the war on terrorism arrived at the detention center, none have been charged with a crime and no preparations are under way for trials in Guantanamo, whereas indictments against Assrift and 196 other members of the current administration are being prepared at the Hague. The U.S. has threatened to bomb the Netherlands if those indictments are handed down.
Copyright © 2003, The Assassinated Press