LONDON ’S JIHAD RAID
Here's the answer...
Euro-elite were wrong and Spanish and British masses paid the price.
The Jihadi decision to strike in Britain was made but put on hold: That was the equation broken on 7/7. What triggered the release of the button? It was a unilateral decision by al Qaida and its fluid nebulous. Before the September 11 attacks against the US, most Jihadi terror networks had developed support systems in the West, including inside the American mainland. A number of Arab commentators after the London bombings blamed Britain and indirectly others for hosting the terrorists for decades. For Arab ears and eyes have been accustomed to the omni presence of the Jihadi machine in Europe and the West for years. Organizing, training, recruiting, and publicizing for their causes, the radical Islamists have enjoyed Euro-freedoms for too long. While their counterparts have structured their presence modestly in the US, British and European Jihadists developed a strange arrogance in their public rhetoric. Out of today?s bleeding London, and for many decades, the Muhajirun led by Abu Hamza al Masri and many others, were openly fundraising for Terror worldwide, training cells in the United States and unbelievably, calling for attacks against British and other ally soldiers internationally.
But how did the Jihadists explain their cease fire on the British Isles? No secrets: Abu Hamza personally said on al Jazeera over Andover again that ?there is a non-aggression agreement between us and the British state: A Mu'ahada as known in Jihadi discourse. Ironically, the Salafists can develop these peculiar unilateral treaties with the enemy without the knowledge of the latter! Al Masri and many clerics often declared this sort of one way "cease fire" with the infidel. "We are in their lands" said al Masri in Arabic, and we have a "freedom of action." In English, his spokespersons called it "protected by English laws." It was easy to understand: Britain, although an ally of the US, was a pre 9/11 space. Its people were non-mobilized by most of its press and educators; its security services, among the best in the world, were bound by an aggressive so-called anti-War movement. The Jihadi presence in the UK resembled to pre-9/11 America's: under the wings of the Wahabi oil lobby. Furthermore the Terrorist groups were shielded politically by apologists such as pro-Saddam activist, MP George Galloway. Then something happened: The British "broke" the shield.
Slowly moving against the Jihadi networks, making arrests, dismantling financial interests and finally bringing chief recruiter al Masri to court, the Blair Government was encircling the Jihad headquarters of London. In response, on air and online, as of the early weeks of 2005, a Ghazwa was in the making. In al Ansar chat rooms, and even on al Jazeera's panels, the Salafi "sith lords" started to demonize Britain. "England is the mother of evil" postulated Sheikh Yusuf al Qaradawi, the network?s mentor, despite invitations to lecture in a city that was to be bled few months later.
The self established shield over London was removed by the Jihadists. The city was an open field again. Its fate was to resemble Madrid's in 2004. With al Masri in jail and the Islamists under a growing pressure, there was nothing else to ripe from the infidel nation. The dice were rolling since. As for its predecessor-cities of New York and Madrid, London was in the cross hair. And as for the American and Spanish cities, it is quasi impossible to escape the first strike. Dozens of British and other innocent civilians paid the price with their lives leaving another democracy in shock. This is the bottom line of the 7/7 Jihadi onslaught on her majesty's capital. The rest is technical.
Was it al Qaida? Strategically it was. Were the two press releases credible? The "Secret organization of al Qaida in Europe" that issued the first claim, is a manifestation of a "regional presence" of radical factions. These are the locals taking credit. The "Abu Hafs Brigades" issued the second claim. They are the equivalent of the SS within the nebulous. They are usually dispatched by the central command to perform a thrust on specific battlefields. But another reading from within al Qaida's mind is possible. Most likely the operation was carried out by British Jihadists. Practically, hundreds of UK citizens have been trained in Afghanistan by al Qaida. Potentially, they have trained at least two times their numbers. That would easily provide a couple dozens of urban assassins, able to plant and synchronize a basic bombing operation. From this reality on, the reconstruction of the operation and evidence building is of the resort of the investigation. But among the experts the consensus is clear: shocked yes, surprised no.
Politically, the motivation is also predictable. The Ghazwa planners want enough blood to incite against Blair's war on Terror, and unsettle him, but not as much blood to unleash a massive anti-Jihad mobilization in the country. Carefully designed to bring the Government down, and trigger a withdrawal from Iraq, the July 7 "holy raid" has been administered to the Londoners. Now it is up to the latter to respond.
Dr Walid Phares is a Senior Fellow with the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies in Washington and a Professor of Middle East Studies