Quick reminder about the Tora Bora bin Laden thing

For those of you who keep bringing up the “fact” that President George W. Bush screwed up and missed bin Laden back in Tora Bora after Sept. 11, Uncle Jimbo over at Blackfive has a not so long ago history lesson for you.

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Obama Afghanistan speech recap – skepticism, doubt and uncertainty

We never had time to post some thoughts about President Obama’s Afghanistan speech before the big radio show today and we’ve been pretty busy with other items this afternoon. So here is a recap and some thoughts about Obama’s decision to surge troop strength by 30,000 and then start leaving in July 2011. Read more

9/11 Terrorists to be tried in Federal Court – Update: Giuliani – America on trial

Editor’s Note: The author is a former Federal prosecutor, an Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, the first woman law partner at the Florida law firm of Shutts & Bowen, and former Law Professor at the University of Miami School of Law where she also received her JD. Read more

Intellegence community: 10 to 20 e-mails between Hasan and Islamic cleric

Not just any Islamic cleric, we’re talking about the radical Anwar al-Aulaqi, who once served as imam in a Falls Church, Va. mosque attended by traitor and terrorist Nidal Hasan. Speculation is al-Aulaqi counseled Hasan after the spiritual leader bolted for Yemen.

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US negotiations with Taliban in Afghanistan not going well

In March, Vice President Binden stated the United States and coalition forces would need to negotiate with the Taliban, since 70 percent were not all that bad and just in it for the money. The negotiations are not going well, with the Taliban refusing a power-sharing agreement in recent days.

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Taliban not the enemy after all – Obama willing to deal

Shall we take a stroll back in time – not too far mind you – and look at who the Taliban are, what they do, and how they supported and encouraged al-Qaida terrorists in the past? No. President Obama is now giving up on those who harbor and support terrorists. To win it turns out, is probably not possible.

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Obama failure: Guantanamo Bay not closing – time to blame someone

President Obama never had a plan to close Camp Delta, the detainee facility for the worst of the worst terrorists in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Like many liberals, he felt it was the right thing to do, made a big deal about the issue during the campaign, and kicked off his term by committing to close the facility in one year. Epic Fail.

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Which terrorists may be released in the USA?

Several of the detainees the Obama administration is considering releasing into the United States are Chinese Muslims that were trained by al-Qaida in Tora Bora, Afghanistan.

This is an update to last weeks post, Guantanamo detainees in the US and enhanced interrogation techniques.

Gateway Pundit brings us the video, and more, from Fox News anchor Eric Shawn interviewing guest USMC Lieutenant Colonel (Ret.) Bill Cowan.

The Obama Administration announced on Friday that they were planning on releasing “non-threatening” Gitmo detainess (sic) inside the US. Team Obama even wants to give these terrorists financial assistance.

The main group of terrorists in question are the 17 Uighur Muslim separatists from China. Team Obama says they are not a threat. But, who are they then and what are they doing in Gitmo?

The video from Fox News…


As a second item, Paul at Power Line Blog digs into the statement made by the director of National Intelligence referring to the possible within-the-USA option.

Dennis Blair, the Director of National Intelligence, held his first press conference last week. Scott wrote about it here, focusing on the first portion of this comment by Blair:

If we are to release them in the United States, you can’t just sort of, as you said, put them on the street and there, but we need some sort of assistance to them to start a new life and not return to some of the conditions that may have inspired them in the first place.

I would like to focus on the last part of the sentence – the reference to detainees “return[ing] to some of the conditions that may have inspired them in the first place.” Rarely have so few words betrayed so much confusion.

Blair did not explain what conditions he was afraid might replicate those that “inspired” released detainees to become terrorists in the first place, but he must have been talking about conditions in the U.S. (since, astonishingly, the discussion was about releasing the detainees here) and he must have been talking about economic conditions (since, astonishingly, he was talking about providing the terrorists with material assistance).

Does our DIA really believe that economic conditions in the U.S. inspire people to engage in terrorism? …

We’re giving al Qaeda the moral high ground

I am not sure how an American, even one who works for Human Rights Watch, can believe that an organization that beheads, burns and otherwise brutally murders women and children, not to mention any soldier they capture, could possible think America is ceding the “high ground” by not closing Gitmo.


My soldier friends assure me that people like this will eventually cost America lives. Oops, I guess I just ceded the moral high ground again.

Cause Lord knows, if we just let them out of Gitmo American will be safer and more loved.

Speculating about recent al Qaeda plague outbreak

Although nothing official has been released, on Jan. 19 The Sun (UK) posted news of a small, but possibly significant plague outbreak in Algeria. The first victim found was a member of a powerful al Qaeda group based outside of the Middle East.

From The Sun’s article

The killer bug, also known as the plague, swept through insurgents training at a forest camp in Algeria, North Africa. It came to light when security forces found a body by a roadside.

The victim was a terrorist in AQLIM (al-Qaeda in the Land of the Islamic Maghreb), the largest and most powerful al-Qaeda group outside the Middle East. …

The al-Qaeda epidemic began in the cave hideouts of AQLIM in Tizi Ouzou province, 150km east of the capital Algiers. The group, led by wanted terror boss Abdelmalek Droudkal, was forced to turn its shelters in the Yakouren forest into mass graves and flee.

The extremists supporting madman Osama bin Laden went to Bejaia and Jijel provinces — hoping the plague did not go with them.

Reports that dozens of al Qaeda members were killed are unproven, but the rumors are filling plenty of news stories and blogs around the world. But if as many as 40 men were killed in a short period of time, AJStrata over at Strata-Sphere brings up some interesting points.

… my first and last feelings have been blaring alarm bells. I have a BS in biology and I must say I find it hard to believe the plague could knock out 40 people so quickly. At least the naturally occurring variety. The natural plaque (which still roams the Earth) is from flea bites from infected fleas.

What happens in some cases, which causes an acceleration of the spreading, is the virus transforms into an air borne version called pneumonic plague. It is this version of the plague causing bacteria which could make a lethal WMD. And it is this version I worry about …

… the reporting in the article seems to claim the deaths in the al Qaeda camp were close together in time and took out a good percentage of the people. The plague can be battled with antibiotics, but they clearly have to be administered within the first 24 hours. All this seems to point to an extremely virulent form – a weaponized form.

A report in the Washington Times has the following, read the full story.

An al Qaeda affiliate in Algeria closed a base earlier this month after an experiment with unconventional weapons went awry, a senior U.S. intelligence official said Monday.

The official, who spoke on the condition he not be named because of the sensitive nature of the issue, said he could not confirm press reports that the accident killed at least 40 al Qaeda operatives, but he said the mishap led the militant group to shut down a base in the mountains of Tizi Ouzou province in eastern Algeria.

He said authorities in the first week of January intercepted an urgent communication between the leadership of al Qaeda in the Land of the Maghreb (AQIM) and al Qaeda’s leadership in the tribal region of Pakistan on the border with Afghanistan. The communication suggested that an area sealed to prevent leakage of a biological or chemical substance had been breached, according to the official.

Update: Ed over at Hot Air notes…

Yesterday, I cautioned readers to take the report from The Sun about plague deaths among al-Qaeda terrorists with considerable skepticism, both because of the source and the rare nature of the disease. The Washington Times, with considerably more credibility, picks up the thread and posits a plausible explanation — that AQ attempted to create a biological weapon that infected its own crew by mistake.