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Please note: All other events of interest in the time frame treated in this file on 9/11 can be found on other Lost Worlds' files for The Present. Please see other files indicated above.
New York World Trade Centre, 11 September, 2001 or so: The
chilling picture below went right around the world within about two
days! It came to Lost Worlds via e-mail between
photolabs from New York to Australia - so it was said. Unfortunately,
the identity and fate of the tourist shown are unknown. It is amazing
that a camera's film survived the drop to the streets below, where
the film was retrieved and developed.
Or, has the picture been digitally-enhanced, or faked? If so, what does this say about the capacity of the Internet for giving false impressions, for mischief-making? -Ed
From the editor -
Abu Bakar Bashir caused this website page a problem, due to quickly-arising allegations that his organisation, Jemaah Islamiah, may have been connected with the Bali bombing. The bombing surprised and amazed Lost Worlds, and the editor felt it wise to stop posting items on the resulting problems till matters concerning Bashir had been sorted out. (He was by late January 2003 reportedly arrested in Indonesia on charges of treason against that state.) For these reasons, this webpage on matters related to the 11 September 2001 attacks on the US finishes with items dated October 2002 (the file was getting overlarge anyway). All other relevant items dated from October 2002 will be posted on the ordinary chronology files of this website. -Ed
20 October 2002: National Day of Mourning for Australia due to the 12 October car-bombing attack near Kuta Beach, Bali. (And very heartfelt too - Ed)
Bali and Australian outrage: A very worrying aspect of the
car-bomb terror attack on the Sari Club near Kuta Beach, Bali, is a
report fed from Washington Post that by late September, US
intelligence via intercept(s) had reports ("precise
warnings") of threat(s) to a major tourist destination (perhaps
in South East Asia?), which was not passed on to Australia. Bali was
mentioned as a "possibility". All Australia heard of was
the possibility of "something" happening in South East
Meantime, Australian prime minister John Howard has told parliament that he wants the UN to officially list Indonesian Islamic activist group, Jemaah Islamiah, led by Abu Bakar Bashir, as a terrorist organisation. Jemaah Islamiah was named as having at least indirect links to al-Qa'ida (and possibly to the Bali bombing) by late Monday 14 October 2002 by Indonesian defence minister Matori Abdul Djalil. (Jemaah Islamiah aims for "an Islamic state covering most of southeast Asia".)
(Newspapers and evening TV news in Australia, 15 October 2002)
4 October 2002: Reports arise that US desires help of Australia's SAS troops (who are rather admired) early in phases of any US action in Iraq. President Bush today is said to be "toning down" war rhetoric. (Australian midday TV news)
US government has mistakenly given 48 classified documents to 9/11 accused terrorist, Zacarias Moussaoui in what a judge has called "a grave security breach". Moussaoui, with little background knowledge of the US legal system, is conducting his own defence. (Reported 28 September 2002)
Propaganda Wars: A German TV station says it has examined
450 photographs of Saddam Hussein and concluded that at least three
lookalikes have been posing as the Iraqi leader.
(Reported 28 September 2002)
Claims by Bush administration of intelligence detailing links between Iraq/Hussein and al-Qa'ida terrorist networks have been met with scepticism. (Reported newspaper weekend editions 28-29 September 2002 in Australia)
Israel: Fears rise that Hezbollah militants in Southern Lebanon have stocked thousands of surface-to-surface missiles, with range enough to strike cities in northern Israel. Intelligence is that many such missiles have been supplied by Iran. Delf was lately promoted to replace former Hamas figure Salah Shedadeh, killed last July. (Reported 28 September 2002)
Israel: Israeli had failed in a bid to make an attempted assassination using helicopters on the life of a commander and top bomb maker of militant group Hamas, Mohammed Delf, though two lesser members of Hamas were killed. (Reported 28 September 2002)
22 September 2002: Israel almost demolishes HQ of Yassar Arafat on West bank, where 200 people remain with Arafat in his building.
Tyrannicide: What does "regime change" mean regarding Iraq? In the view of international human rights lawyer, Geoffrey Robertson, it means "assisted tyrannicide". Though Robertson would rather there be an international convention against tyranny, not just action against a regime which appears to "stiff" the US. Saddam Hussein's regime as it persecutes Kurds in Northern Iraq killed more than 100,000 in the 1980s, ending with the mustard gas massacre of 5000 with 9000 wounded at Halabja in 1988. (Robertson has an article in Inquirer section of Weekend Australian, 21-22 September 2002).
Australia: Nation's most experienced military leaders warn against any unilateral US action against Iraq, with risk of jeopardising international security. (Reported in Weekend Australian 21-22 September 2002)
For details on suggestions that US interests since before the Gulf War of 1991, had supplied the basis of Iraq's chemical/nuclear weapons systems to Iraq, see the below citation. The cited newspaper this date has an article with map indicating that Iraq has about 17 "suspect weapons depots". It is not exactly clear just what biological and chemical weapons, Iraq actually possesses. (Reported Sydney Morning Herald weekend edition, 21-22 September 2002, article by columnist Alan Ramsey)
"If you look at these matters, you will come to the
conclusion that the attitude of the United States of America is a
threat to world peace." Nelson Mandela:
(Reported in a comment column from The Guardian reported in Sydney Morning Herald 21-22 September 2002)
UN told to get tough with Iraq or Bush will. (Headline and p. 15. Sydney Morning Herald, 21-22 September 2002)
Bush: How I'll rule the world. (Enough said already, -Ed) (Front page headline, Sydney Morning Herald, 21-22 September 2002)
21 September 2002: US pre-emptive strike: Possible invasion of Iraq by US set for next January/February - probably preceded by ferocious air strikes. (Australian evening TV news)
19 September 2002: Allegations arise in US that the US intelligence community had warnings re a 9/11-type attack with hijacked planes bombing a WTC-like target as far back as 1995 or 1997 - with Al-Qa'ida named as attacker. (Australian evening TV news)
UK: Acting in Britain, a Moslem activist group is Islamic Hizb ul-Tahrir (Liberation Party), which is banned in many Moslem countries and recommends removal of corrupt rulers of Moslem countries and their regimes, and implementation of Islam. Problems with Iraq are an opportunity for this sort of action, says a UK spokesman for the group, Imran Waheed. His group sees unfolding crises as "a precursor to a clash of civilizations driven by Anglo-Saxon capitalist interests." "British soldiers and American soldiers are going to die to fatten up the balance sheets of oil companies." The group was founded in Jerusalem in 1953 by scholar Taqiuddin an-Nabhani, and considers violence and armed struggle to be a violation of Islamic Law. (Reported 17 September 2002)
Australian Government believes there is no sign of any change in Iraq's attitude to weapons inspections and expects further steps to military action. (Reported 17 September 2002 in Australia)
Axis of Evil: Rumour surfaces that in the original draft of President Bush's "axis of evil" speech, the evil three were first named as Iraq, Iran and Syria. (Lost Worlds does recall a time when Reagan was US president, regarded by some outside US borders as "the great Satan". Has the world grown into one huge schoolyard wracked by name-calling?) (Reported in Weekend Australian, 14-15 September, 2002, see column by Greg Sheridan )
US expects to go to war over Saddam Hussein's refusal to comply
with UN resolutions requiring him to prove that he has destroyed
Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. Weekend Australian asks,
will this make US safer or produce "more instability, Moslem
hatred and terrorist recruits?" (It is said by 28 September that
Iraq could deploy biological weapons on 45 minutes' notice.)
Russia meantime has recently announced a £26 billion investment program in Iraq, which owes Russia US$8 billion loaned during former Soviet times. (Might this help explain any current Russian attitudes to Middle East problems?) (Reported 14 September 2002 in Australia)
"I wish you would [replace me], and give me a rest" - Yassar Arafat, to the Palestinian Parliament about possibility he might step down. (Reported 14 September 2002)
New York Times article as reprinted in Australia feels US has still not heard from President Bush any compelling case for a war-path course of action. (Reported 14 September 2002)
Questions on the Net :
Is Osama bin-Laden (or, al-Qa'ida) a reincarnation of The Old Man of the Mountains? See below!
The Assassins: http://www.silent-arrows.com/
See also Iraq Daily: http://www.iraqdaily.com
Iraq Net (broken link?): http://www.iraq.net
11 September 2002: Question: US is on its second-highest possible
security alert. Citizens are told to be vigilant but not to panic.
What has the war against terrorism done to the US justice system?
Will there be car bombings in South-East Asia, or suicide bombings in
the Middle East, against US interests, conducted by al-Qa'ida cells?
Possible terror attacks timed to coincide with the anniversary. Where
is Osama bin-Laden, is he still alive? (Jim Lehrer's News Hour on SBS
TV Australia and other TV reports)
This night on Australian TV, it is notable that estimates from various commentators of the membership of al-Qa'ida varies from 3000 to 10,000 to 20,000 - you decide! -Ed
11 September 2002: For views of militant US commentator on current world problems, Daniel Pipes, regarding not a war on terrorism, as much as the problem of "militant Islam" as a radical utopian ideology, somewhat totalitarian, a mostly urban middle-class phenomenon devised by intellectuals alienated from their societies, which began in Egypt in the 1920s. Check website: danielpipes.org
Latest "terror video release" in US of 9/11 hijackers at training, and discussing tactics, obtained in Kandahar, according to al-Jazeera, Arabic TV news station, though it is not known when it was filmed, or where. A "chilling view", it is said. (Australian TV news on 10 September 2002)
As of 10 September 2002, a US poet, Stazja McFayden, advises Lost Worlds that... Wednesday marks one year since the 9/11 disaster. Many communities are holding commemorative events. I won't dwell on it beyond referring you to this week's eleven featured poems at http://www.poetrysuperhighway.com/, and drawing your attention to an item in Section V. Announcements, which links to the text of US Poet Laureate Billy Collins' poem "The Names," presented last Friday to a special joint session of Congress in New York City.
Invasion of Iraq?: Newspaper headlines read: Scuds turned on Israel as Saddam girds for war. And, Bush calls for use of Australian troops. US says Saddam Hussein is on a global quest for materials to make an atomic bomb. On 12 September, President Bush is expected to tell the UN that the US and Britain "will take whatever steps are necessary to destroy Iraq's weapons of mass destruction if the UN fails to act". (9 September 2002)
Invasion of Iraq?: 9 September 2002: US by now is also fearful that Iraq has developed radar which can now detect its formerly radar-invisible Stealth bombers.
US closes its embassy in Jakarta/Malaysia after specific threats have been made, and security cordons are thrown around New York and Washington (F16 jets and radar planes patrol skies over six or so major cities), as tension rises with the onset of the first anniversary of 11 September. Security has also been stepped up for Australian embassies in Indonesia and East Timor due to "unspecified threats". (TV news of 10 September 2002)
New Afghan hero: 8 September 2002: About now is burial of Afghanistan's newest hero, Azimullah Muhammad, an 18-year-old seller of plastic water jugs, who intervened in the attempted assassination of President Hamid Karzai at cost of his own life in Kandahar last Friday. An Afghan army guard, an ex-Taliban man, Abdul Rahman, began shooting at Karzai and the governor of Kandahar, Gul Agha Shirzai. Karzai had just left the governor's compound. Some blame for the attack is being laid at the feet of remnants of the al-Qa'ida network and the Taliban. Suspicion is also given to a former prime minister, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar Meantime, criticism arises due to US failure to provide enough peacekeepers to stabilise Afghanistan and begin proper reconstruction of the country.
Headline: US seeks to bridge West-Islam divide: "The
Bush administration conceded yesterday that a 'dangerous gap had
opened between the West and the Islamic world since the September 11
attacks on the US, putting at risk the war on terrorism.' ... ' The
US is hoping a post-Taliban Afghanistan built on freedom and
modernity will be a victory for the West and example for moderate
Moslems, and a defeat for extremists.' ... 'What we have before us
today is less a clash of civilizations, as some have theorised, than
a collision of understanding between the Moslem and Western world,'
said deputy Defence secretary Paul Wolfowitz. ... 'This is a debate
about Moslem values that must take place among Moslems.' ... (But Mr.
Wolfowitz' speech ignored tensions over specific locations, Iraq and
(Reported in Weekend Australian, 7-8 September 2002, story by Roy Eccleston in Washington)
US President Bush promises to share US intelligence on Iraq's alleged development of terror weapons with the world. (Reported 7 September 2002)
Invasion of Iraq? Prediction: "It [would] open the gates of hell" [in the Middle East]... if the US make a strike against Iraq, the view of Arab League spokesman, Amr Moussa. (Quoted week ending 7 September 2002)
US congressional leaders are now being given secret briefings on the US case against Iraq in response to calls to the US government for hard evidence on any threat posed by Iraq, and in respect of views which may be held by the UN Security Council. (Reported 7 September 2002)
Al-Jazeera, Arabic news TV, said this Thursday that it now has confessions from two men identified as members of al-Qa'ida claiming their group was responsible for the 11 September attacks. One man is Yemen-born Ramzi bin al-Shaibah, a former room-mate of Mohamed Attar. Another is Khaled al-Sheikh Mohammad, noted on a US FBI list of "most-wanted terrorists". (Reported 6 September 2002)
Iraq: About 100 US and British aircraft have helped an attack on the main air-defence command centre for Western Iraq - the H3 airfield, 386km west of Baghdad - the biggest single western operation of its kind in four years. Iraq has allegedly made 130 attempts to shoot down coalition aircraft this year. (Reported 6 September 2002)
Australia warned: Headline: "We'll send Australians home in bags, says Iraq". An adviser to the regime of Saddam Hussein, Dr. A. K. Al-Hashimi, has warned of the hatred with which Iraqis will kill Australians or the troops of any other invading country. "They don't understand the Moslem mentality; God help those soldiers when they face our anger. etc" (Goodbye, Australian wheat sales to Iraq - Ed.) (Reported 30 August 2002)
UK rabbi despairs of corruption of Israel: Britain's chief rabbi Jonathan Sacks, has warned Israel that its stance is "incompatible" with the deepest ideals of Judaism, and that the conflict with Palestinians is "corrupting" Israeli culture. (Reported 28 August 2002)
US anti-Iraq talk toughens: US vice-president Cheney has toughened
talk against Iraq by calling for a pre-emptive strike, to block
Hussein from dominating Middle Eastern oil supply, and possibly
attacking the US with a nuclear weapon. (Reported 28 August
Consider, for example, the US atomic bombing of Japan! In what sense is a strike "pre-emptive" if it has earlier been discussed in the world press for months"? Why can't the world media use words properly anymore, a sign of the times? - Ed
US Intelligence hits brick wall: "Some of these guys literally don't know the world is round". As US intelligence men tend to find when interrogating some of its 600 suspects from Afghanistan held (under cloudy legal circumstances) at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. (Quote of the Week column, Sydney Morning Herald, 24-25 August 2002)
Israel now fears a new stage in terrorism, with targets such as an oil depot north of Tel Aviv, or buildings in that city. Reports have been received from Britain of Iraq passing biological weapons agents to anti-Israeli terrorist groups. This is according to an interview between Israel's Minister for Transport, former dep-Defence Minister, As-Ephraim Sneh, and journalist Greg Sheridan. (Reported in The Weekend Australian, 24-25 August 2002, p. 29)
Pakistan: A militant Islamic leader in Pakistan has warned of more terrorist attacks if the military government of Pakistan blocks guerrillas from crossing into Kashmir to confront Indian forces. (Reported 24 August 2002)
US: A senior US general, Gen. James Jones, has said that plans by leading US hawks to topple the regime of Saddam Hussein with tactics of the type lately used in Afghanistan as "foolish". (Reported 23 August 2002) By 20 August, the US general who led allied forces during the Gulf War, Norman Schwarzkopf, is reportedly against a unilateral US strike against Iraq and says President Bush should not "go it alone".
Al-Qa'ida test weapon gases: CNN has now shown previously unreleased video footage from al-Qa'ida training camps of tests of use of poison gas on dogs. CNN will now be showing a five-part series, Tapes of Terror, based on 64 tapes found in a remote part of Afghanistan. The series will also show footage on production of TNT, training exercises on vehicle hijacking, destruction of bridges and assassination-from-motorbike (Reported 20 August 2002)
Legality vs Regality: In a surprise move, families of victims of the 11 September strikes have "launched a multi-trillion dollar legal counterstrike aimed at financially crippling members of the Saudi royal family, the government of Sudan, some Middle Eastern banks and charities that they claim helped to bankroll al-Qa'ida. A 259-page complaint for damages of between US$1000 billion to US$3000 billion from 99 named organisations or individuals has been filed in a US Federal court by a 600-member group, Families United to Bankrupt Terrorism. A three-four-year legal battle is expected. Leader of the complainants legal team is Ron Motley, a pioneer in tobacco and asbestos class actions. (Some 15 of the 11 September hijackers were citizens of Saudi Arabia.) (Reported in The Weekend Australian newspaper 17-18 August 2002)
Four of the 600 or so claimed terrorists held by the US at Guantanamo Bay have tried lately to commit suicide, officials have acknowledged. (Reported 17 August 2002)
Invasion of Iraq?: Allies of the US are divided, however, on whether President Bush has good grounds for going to war against Iraq. Fears are that any pre-emptive attack on Iraq will worsen existing problems with Afghanistan, the Middle East generally, and Kashmir in India. (Reported 10 August 2002)
Advice from an old soldier: Australian World War I veteran, Ted Smout, now aged 104, (also a republican), is against Australia contributing to a war effort against Iraq. In his view, it would be preposterous to send Australian troops to fight in Iraq. "Australians shouldn't go overseas to fight again. The only fighting should be done here, to defend Australia, " he said. (Reported 10 August 2002)
UK church leaders come out on Iraq: British church leaders including the new Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, have questioned the legality and morality of an American-led assault on Iraq "in a strongly-worded declaration handed to Downing Street", and PM Tony Blair, major ally of the US regarding any possible strike against Hussein's regime. (Reported 8 August 2002)
Israel vows merciless revenge: Israel has warned of reprisals "without mercy" after a terrorist bomb ripped through a bus near a Jewish shrine in north of the country, at Safad, north of Lake Galilee, killing about nine people and wounding 50. Responsibility for the attack as "a martyrdom operation" was taken by Hamas. In a few days, a Palestinian delegation is due to meet US Secretary of State Colin Powell. (Reported 4 August 2002)
3 August 2002: Israel: Cable-TV watchers from November 2002 will no longer receive CNN news broadcasts, as Israeli officials and Jewish groups have accused CNN of slanting its news to the Palestinian side, a charge CNN has denied. Meantime, news outlets taking CNN have applied to let their contracts with CNN lapse, as it is "too expensive". The BBC and Sky news are also regarded by some in Israel as biased to the Palestinian side of present conflicts, now 22-months long.
Invasion of Iraq?: 2 August 2002: Australian prime minister John Howard says he feels that a US conflict with Iraq is now "more probable than not", in which case, Australia will also be involved. (Reported evening TV news)
31 July 2002: US Senate begins to debate in public the question: what should be US' official attitude to Iraq while an invasion of Iraq is still presumably on the agenda.
30 July 2002: Jordan's King Abdullah warns US of its "fixation" with Iraq.
By 30 July 2002, various discrepancies in the US story on the bombing of this wedding party are being discussed in a draft UN report. By 9 September it is reported that a US military investigation has found that the attack was justified as the US aircraft "had been fired on from the ground".
Philippines, Zamboanga: Two suspected Abu Sayyaf Moslem guerrillas blamed for a deadly bomb attack in the Southern Philippines have been arrested. Authorities believe that the arrests have foiled a wave of bomb attacks from Abu Sayyaf allegedly linked to Al-Qa'ida. (Reported in Australia July 2002)
26 July 2002: Palestinian child malnutrition is reportedly rising in the West Bank area of Israel.
26 July 2002: Claimed member of the 11 September hijack team, French citizen Zacarias Moussaoui, in the hands of US authorities, has reversed his former plea of "guilty" and, acting for himself, now pleads not-guilty after being given a chance to do so by the judge of his trial. He now says that although he was a member of al-Qa'ida, he had no advance knowledge of the hijack plan. Jury for his trial will not be selected till 30 September 2002.
26 July 2002: US is reportedly planning to expand its Camp Delta, the high-security jail at the US military base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The jail now holds 564 suspected Al-Qa'ida and Taliban prisoners.
26 July 2002: Concern is rising in the US about a claimed slide to "constitutional dictatorship" and unprecedented applications of martial law. According to a story by investigative journalist Ritt Goldstein rather surprisingly published in Sydney Morning Herald, p. 20, in world news.
North Korea: Political prisoners face starvation, torture and summary execution in prison camps in North Korea, according to statements made by a former inmate to a US Senate inquiry. (Reported 20 July 2002)
The US military campaign in Afghanistan may last as long as the Cold War, partly as more than half the former Taliban leadership is still intact, US deputy defence secretary Paul Wolfowitz has warned. Meanwhile, today's headlines warn that the US Pentagon now considers a secret plan to be capable of making pre-emptive strikes anywhere in the world with use of pilotless aircraft amongst other high-tech weaponry. (Reported 16 July 2002)
16 July 2002: Iraq-Saddam Hussein is "no more than three years away from" developing usable nuclear weapons, according to the latest CIA report.
Afghanistan: President Hamid Karzai has assured his people that the assassination of a key political ally and Pashtun warlord, Abdul Qadir, will not destabilise the country's government. It is thought that Qadir was gotten rid of by drug industry figures, as he was overseeing a Western-backed plan to compensate farmers for destruction of poppy crops, a plan which has gone awry ( a double-cross, say some). The money (US$500 per acre) was not getting to farmers, who had been duly destroying their crops, as Qadir himself was complaining before his death. (Reported 9 July 2002)
On the West Bank, which embraces the old-known lands of Judea and Samaria, near Nablus, "Hardline Israeli settlers in the Palestinian territory see themselves as modern cowboys taming a hostile land". There are about 350,000 Israeli Jews living in 150 settlements hated by the Palestinians, across the West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, all territory captured by Israel in the Six-day War of 1967. (Catherine Taylor writing in Weekend Australian, 6-7 July 2002.
Before 6 July 2002: Yassar Arafat moves to dismiss his West Bank security chief, Colonel Jibril Rajoub, and replace him with the governor of Jenin, Zuheir Manasrah, which Rajoub will do Manasrah's old job. The moves seem designed to stave off a power struggle within the PLO.
3 July 2002: US attack kills Afghan wedding guests. In the Central Afghanistan province of Uruzgan, in Dehrawad district (south-west of Kabul), the traditional firing of guns at a wedding party was mistaken by US forces for an attack, so they sent in a B-52 bomber which killed at least 40 people and injured another 70. (Reported 3 July 2002)
Unemployed Palestinians have been marching on the headquarters of the Palestinian Authority to denounce corruption in Yassar Arafat's administration. (Reported 3 July 2002)
1 July 2002: The end of thousands of years of impunity for ultra-criminals? That is the view of activist against genocide and war crimes, William Case, as more than 70 countries ratify the 1998 treaty establishing an International Criminal Court which could try war criminals. Though the US opposes creation of the court. (Reported after 1 July 2002, Time Magazine. See also critique of the views of the US conservative right on this court, in an article by Paul McGeough in Sydney Morning Herald, 6-7 July 2002, p. 31)
29 June 2002: "Baby Suicide Bomber": The Sydney
Daily Telegraph and The Australian also publish "the
baby suicide bomber picture", a picture of a baby boy with
shoulder straps of bullets and his waistband carrying sticks of
explosives, wearing the headband of the feared Hamas Qassam Brigade.
The picture was allegedly found by Israeli soldiers raiding the house
of a wanted man in Hebron, West Bank. (Is this picture maybe faked by
Israeli propagandists? - Ed) (29 June 2002)
Update: Time Magazine reports that [Palestinian] relatives of the baby said the photo was real, but taken only as "a joke" at a party. (Rather bizarre-morbid, as party jokes go! The baby boy in question is but a toddler! On an adjoining panel this same day is a headline that Palestinians are claiming that Israel is "saboutaging" peace push! An Israeli army bulldozer has been knocking down Palestinian HQ in Hebron. It must have been quite some bizarre "party" when the baby was dressed as a suicide bomber - here, questions rise of basic realism - Ed)
Headlines lately read, "US is accused of trying to snuff out moves to establish a world court" (Reported 29 June 2002)
Surrounding Arafat: Israel is now sealing off Yassar Arafat's compound in the West Bank city of Ramallah, using dozens of tanks, as it conducts a new crackdown on Palestinian militants. (Reported 25 June 2002)
Afghanistan: British marines breaking into a suspicious village compound have come across one of the largest weapons caches yet found in South-eastern Afghanistan - rooms stacked with hundreds of mortars, rockets and heavy weapons. Perhaps left by Taliban or Al-Qa'ida fighters? Including thousands of recoilless rocket rounds and 65,000 rounds of small arms ammunition. (Reported 25 June 2002)
By 18 June 2002, Israel intends to wall itself off from would-be suicide bombers. Next four-six months will see building of 120km of protection, of a total planned of 350km. The wall will cut off Israel from the west bank towns of Jenin, Tulkarm, Qalqilya and Nablus. Some Israeli settlers fear the wall will become the legal border of any future Palestinian state. Palestinians for their part fear that the wall may pre-empt border negotiations between the two parties. An Israeli military historian, Professor Martin van Creveld, is quoted as saying, "I would build a concrete wall so tall that... the people cannot look each other in the face..."
17 June 2002: Israeli plans to build a wall between Israel and Palestine, creating controversy on both sides. It's being said on TV, good neighbours build good walls, bad neighbours build bad walls. (Question of attitude - why not stop squabbling? -Ed)
17 June 2002: Worldwide media reports arise that US President Bush has sent (secret?) orders to CIA to induce "a change of regime" in Iraq. The power vacuum left by any departure of Saddam Hussein will be filled by a democracy. Recent reports on the recent visit of Australian Prime Minister John Howard to Washington gave indications that Australia may assist any such effort - in an unspecified way.
Meanwhile, by 15 June 2002, Afghanistan's new government intends to establish a truth commission to investigate war crimes against its civilian population in more than 23 years of foreign invasion and internal conflict.
Jakarta, Indonesia, 15 June 2002, Indonesian government has chosen a Balinese Hindu, I Wayan Karya, once part of Indonesia's Security Ministry, to head an investigation into three years of bloody clashes between Christians and Moslems on Maluku Islands, to investigate inter-faith violence which has left more than 9000 dead.
8 June 2002: Abu Sayyaf Moslem guerillas in Southern Philippines have killed two hostages, an American missionary, Martin Burnham, and a Filipina nurse, Ediborah Yap. Mr. Burnham's wife Gracia was wounded but freed. A rescue attempt to the town of Siraway on Mindanao Island's Zamboanga peninsula had failed.
8 June 2002: FBI hobbled by poor computers and no email": In a story Lost Worlds can hardly believe, FBI whistleblower Coleen Rowley as part of her criticism of in-house FBI culture and bureaucracy has indicated that FBI staff do not have even basic Internet and email connectivity, nor the kind of computer power many teenagers have on any new computer. (Reported in Sydney Morning Herald, 8 June 2002)
8 June 2002: By now, the role of the FBI in US has been "up-ended" from an agency of law enforcement to a terrorism prevention agency. But predictions on its "marriage" to the CIA are that awkwardness will be the result. (Reported 8 June 2002 in Australia)
7 June 2002: Views from schoolteacher and Moslem cleric, Sheik Abdallah al-Shami, a leader of Islamic Jihad in Palestine: "The Palestinian Authority is broken; its institutions are destroyed. How can the Palestinian Authority [help] assure the security of the Israelis when it cannot even protect its own people?"
7 June 2002: Fresh trouble breaks out in Poso, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, as a bomb explodes in a crowded bus, killing four and wounding 17 people, breaking a Moslem-Christian truce in the area.
7 June 2002: India's military is seeking final authorisation to invade the Pakistani side of divided Kashmir in mid-June to destroy the camps of Islamic militants. India has "quietly asked" US to find if separatist fighters are coming into Kashmir from suspected terrorist camps in Pakistani-controlled territory.
6 June 2002: Yassar Arafat is again under siege as Israel retaliates for latest bombing of a bus carrying soldiers and moves again into Jenin refugee camp.
A massive car bomb attack turns a rush-hour Israeli bus to fire, killing 18 people and wounding dozens. Responsibility is taken by radical Palestinian group, Islamic Jihad. (Israeli PM Sharon has just ordered the construction of a 200km wall/fence to separate Israel from the occupied West Bank.) The usual complaints and threats and counter-complaints and counter-threats of the complainants are duly uttered. (Reported 6 June 2002)
Failure to join up the dots: President G. W. Bush (his father once used to run the CIA) has admitted for the first time that there has been a failure of communications between FBI and CIA in months leading up to 11 September. He admits this just as Congress is launching "a secret investigation" into why the expensive US intelligence effort failed to prevent "the world's worst terrorist attack". G. W. Bush said, "I have seen no evidence to date that we could have prevented the attack." One question is: Did the CIA have information that it did not pass on to the FBI about two of the hijackers, Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhazmi, etc. (Reported 6 June 2002)
Conspiracy theory vaporised: An educator USAF officer -
Lt-Col. Steve Butler has been suspended after he wrote a letter to a
newspaper (Monterey County Herald) suggesting that US
President Bush "allowed" the 11 September attack to happen
"because he needed this war on terrorism" for political
reasons. Butler also happened to observe that President G.W. (Dubya?)
Bush was emplaced not by vote, but by the Supreme Court adjudicating
on the Gore-Bush presidential race tie, itself a matter of
controversy. (Reported 6 June 2002 in The Australian)
Weird situation: Lost Worlds since 11 September 2001 has had a lot of email from the US - some of it quite sickening - about 9/11 problems, and from that email gathers that there is quite some widespread scepticism in US military circles, at about the rank (or educational level) of colonel - about "US motives" (particularly "oil"), the presidency, and US foreign policy in general. It's almost a question arising of the sceptical views of military "hawks of the left". It is not unconnected however, that some of the grosser corruptions of American corporate governance (rather, lack of it) are being reported in the same timeframes, Enron, WorldCom etc. Quite frankly, "US Capitalism" and "US foreign policy" are in quite a mess and worse, there is no one attending the phone, just an answering machine with no wish to reply! - Ed
4 June 2002: The blame the CIA game: Newsweek quotes an unnamed FBI official: "There's not doubt we could have tied all 19 hijackers together". Fresh information arises on the number of FBI intelligence failures and bungles about predicting anything like an 11 September attack. Two of the hijackers - Khalid Almihdhar and Nawaf Alhamazi on the plane bombing the Pentagon - were known to officials from a visit they made to Kuala Lumpur in January 2000 as al-Qa'ida terrorists, but were allowed to continue. One of them had been linked to the bombing of USS Cole in the Middle East. (Reported 4 June 2002)
1 June 2002 End of tradition of Letter to the Editor!: The Internet has made Letters to the Editor of newspapers redundant now that anyone with an opinion can mount a website page, from anywhere in the world. "The world's media is caught in a cross-fire" of criticism of their coverages, and offending news outlets are being targeted by media-watch websites. In a nice irony on the history of journalism in the "Western World", some websites offer detailed background on journalists or news outlet managements, and bias against bias is rampant. honestreporting.com has become a buzzword. (Where will it all end? -Ed) (Reported in Australia 1 June 2002)
May 2002 - August 2000: A claim arises in media that Italian intelligence agents in August 2000 intercept a so-called phone conversation by, with or about al-Qa'ida, re an attack like 11 September, which is not translated till May 2002.
31 May 2002: The last relic of New York's Twin Towers is taken out of the site, a flag-draped 10-metre steel girder. Discussion moves along now on the future of the site.
May 2002: Geneva: The UN Committee Against Torture has criticized Saudi Arabia over amputations and floggings it carries out under Sharia Law. (Time Magazine)
28 May 2002: In a new twist in the blame-game played in the US about non-stoppage of the 11 September 2001 jet-bomb attacks, FBI director Robert Mueller has received "a savage memo" from an FBI staffer, Coleen Rowley, aged 46. Time Magazine has obtained a copy of her memo, which seriously attacks the credibility of senior FBI management. Mainly, she feels that "roadblocks" were put in the way of information travelling through the FBI system about the activities around 16 August, 2001 of the suspected "20th hijacker of 11 September", Zacarias Moussaoui, a French citizen born in Morocco. (Reported 28 May 2002)
May 2002: US President George W. Bush vows to "take out" Iraq's Saddam Hussein. Other areas used for US movements could be Turkey, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman and island Diego Garcia. (Time Magazine of 13 May 2002)
22 May 2002: US: FBI director Robert Mueller yesterday stepped up warnings of another terrorist attack on the US, suggesting that suicide bombings similar to those afflicting Israel will inevitably occur on US soil.
Beirut: A son (Jihad Jibril) and a senior deputy of militant Palestinian leader Ahmad Jibril was killed by his own car, turned into a car bomb. Jibril senior is head of Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, his son was an organiser of military operations. (Reported 21 May 2002)
Vice-President Dick Cheney is reported as saying that the US faces "the near certainty" of another al-Qa'ida attack, possibly with a nuclear weapon. (Reported 21 May 2002)
Suicide bomber kills three including himself in a market in the Israeli coastal town of Netanya. About 40 other people were wounded. In March, a suicide bomber killed 29 people in a hotel in the same town, an attack which "triggered Israel's largest invasion of the West Bank since the 1967 Middle East war". (Reported 20 May 2002)
US debates how FBI failed to connect the dots: Should President Bush be blamed for aspects of the 11 September attacks since he failed to tell the US public of risks after receiving intelligence reports that terrorists might hijack airplanes? It's reported that three weeks before 11 September, the FBI in Minnesota had "vital clues" - but failed to see what was coming. However, intelligence operatives had issued warnings of various sorts of threats in various parts of the world in May 2001, June 26, July 2, 6 August. (Reported 17 May 2002)
14 May 2002: Israeli PM Ariel Sharon defied his Likud Party yesterday by refusing to recant his stated willingness to see the establishment of a Palestinian state. Thus, Sharon risks losing his next political fight to Benjamin Netanyahu. Sharon however has earlier opposed creation of a Palestinian state. At issue is the extent to which any such Palestinian state would then control some 30 per cent water supplies, due to control of the aquifer. (So why doesn't someone build some desalination plants for equal use by both parties? Let's be practical - Ed)
11 May 2002: Assassinated right-wing Dutch politician, flashy and forthright Pim Fortuyn, lately killed by a rabid animal welfare activist, now has his case entered in Europe's growing "identity crisis", (or is that just a Netherlands identity crisis?), and has left behind a quote which may become his legacy - "Christianity and Judaism have gone through the laundromat of humanism... but that is not the case with Islam." (Reported by 11 May 2002)
11 May 2002: French and Pakistani officials say that the suicide bombing in Karachi on Wednesday that killed 14 people, eleven of them French engineers, was in retaliation for the West's war in Afghanistan.
11 May 2002: Hamas leader eggs-on Israelis: Second-in-command of Hamas in Palestine is Dr. Abdel Aziz al-Rantissi. Hamas is the Palestinian terrorist organisation that has launched 56 suicide attacks during a 19-month Intifada, and is suspected of being behind recent attacks. Dr. Al-Rantissi seems unworried by prospects of Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip, saying his people do not have an army, but they do have fighters. (Reported 11-12 2002 in The Weekend Australian).
11 May 2002: US: Intelligence agents are backing off the idea that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with the 11 September attacks. It is now not thought that the hijackers' ringleader, Mohammad Attar, held secret meetings with an Iraqi intelligence agent in Prague in April 2001. Czech agents say Attar was not in Prague at the time.
11 May 2002: "Is America's ability to destroy evil regimes matched by a skill to create better regimes?" Question by Paul Kelly, Editor-at-large for The Australian newspaper, The Weekend Australian, 11-12 May, 2002.
10 May 2002: The 39-day siege of Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity ended yesterday with 13 militants wanted by Israel flown to Cyprus to await exile in various parts of Europe.
7 May 2002: Israel: A deal to end the siege of Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity is edging closer as of last night. But Israelis and Palestinians are still arguing over the number of gunmen to be deported from the West Bank.
30 April 2002: Three Iraqi defectors from military forces claim that from 23 February 2002, weapons from Central Europe are being smuggled from Syria into Iraq as Saddam Hussein builds defences against a threatened attack or invasion from US.
30 April 2002: Israel has answered international pressure by ending siege of HQ of Yassar Arafat but continues military action against Palestinians and arrests some members of Arafat's Fatah faction, and of militant groups, Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
3 May 2002: Afghanistan: Progress of Operation Snipe, which aims to deploy US and British troops against "a new base for terrorists" in south-eastern Afghanistan.
28 April 2002: Witty newspaper headline department: "Anti-opium
campaign comes a cropper": "thousands of kilos of opium
have gone astray", in story in The Australian by Anthony
Lloyd reporting from Ghani Kel in Afghanistan, where the bazaar is
known as "the largest open opium market on the planet". And
yes, anti-Afghani-opium-distribution "international
arrangements" made at Tokyo as long ago as 3 April 2002 have
already gone awry, and are not being audited.
Same issue of same paper on same day on same page, Tokyo correspondent Stephen Lunn reports that "Japan is looking to broaden its security role in Asia, believing it can contribute to the fight against terrorism, piracy and drug smuggling".
(Interesting how seldom piracy in South East Asian waters is ever mentioned as a specific problem! Meantime, don't even start to ask who is winning the war against drugs, the drugs are - Ed)
28 April 2002: A former director of CIA and FBI, William Webster,
also a former Federal Appeals Court judge, who has already made
recommendations on putting foreign terrorism suspects on trial before
specially-created military tribunals, has recommended that truth
serum drug(s) be given to recalcitrant Taliban and al-Qa'ida fighters
held by the US at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. However, a major problem
arises here, despite the known ability of sodium pentothal to reduce
inhibitions about speaking - there is no such thing as a truth serum.
(Sigmund Freud's views on wish fulfillment may be relevant here, perhaps? -Ed)
27 April 2002: Religious Tolerance in Jerusalem: Once again the Israeli Government has refused to recognise Patriarch Irineos, the new Greek Orthodox patriarch of Jerusalem, who would become the custodian of most of the Christian religious sites in the region. "Real estate issues" re key sites are part of problems which earlier dogged the former patriarch, Diodoros I, who died in 2000.
26 April 2002: Headline reads: "Death and an appalling stench hangs in the air around the Church of the Nativity" in Israel. An Israeli sniper sits waiting to spot gun-toting Palestinians taking sanctuary in the church supposed to be the birthplace of Jesus.
26 April 2002: Saudi Arabia is reportedly angry with US President Bush and may retaliate by cutting oil exports, due to US support for Israel's prime minister Ariel Sharon.
Washington: A fresh report from authorities says that US must now regard smallpox as a national security threat, not a public health problem, in view of possible biological terror attacks. It may be necessary for government to offer voluntary vaccinations. (Reported 20 April 2002)
17 April, 20002: Afghanistan: Accident in which two US fighter planes land friendly fire, killing four Canadian soldiers and wounding either others, maybe in "violation of the rules of engagement". US Air Force by 30 June 2002 is reportedly considering disciplinary actions.
Plans arise re the Afghanistan poppy crop, ready to flower soon - for farmers being paid to destroy their crops whether they wanted to or not in an area thought to produce about 90 per cent of the national crop. Meanwhile, US military said that leaflets circulating in eastern Afghanistan offer rewards for the killing of foreigners connected with moves against Taliban and al-Qa'ida fighters. (Reported 6 April 2002)
6 April 2002: The Pope on the Middle East: "It seems that war has been declared on peace."
2 April 2002: Israel-Palestine. Israeli military action against the Palestinians is dragging the region toward all-out war, Islamic foreign ministers meeting in Malaysia warned yesterday. In Israel, PM Ariel Sharon has labelled his old enemy, Yassar Arafat, as "Israel's enemy and the enemy of the free world", but observers are mystified why Israel does not take steps to "remove" Arafat, though the reason given is that if Arafat was removed, he would be replaced by Palestinians further radicalised by recent events.
April 2002: Israeli forces level "at least" 140
buildings in the Palestinian Jenin refugee camp. As later protested
by UN officials and by many other bodies.
Before 2002 in disputed territories of Israel/Palestine: The Right won Israel's election of 1997 and since then the number of Jewish settlers in occupied territories has about trebled to 250,000. The Israeli state has invested 3679 shekels per year per person in the settlements, compared with an average of 2308 in other government-supported areas. Similarly, public finance in disputed areas was 63 per cent higher than for building generally in Israel, and the state built 17.2 sqm of new road per settler, versus 5.3 sqm per capita in Israel. (Information from Le Monde, France, later in world press)
29-30 March 2002: Israel moves to a war footing, moving tanks against Palestinian leader Yassar Arafat's West Bank base, following another suicide bombing the previous Wednesday.
29 March 2002: Iraq's president Saddam Hussein has secured broad support from the Arab world in heading off any US military action against him with the region's leaders declaring that an attack on Iraq would be considered an attack on all Arab states.
Circa 27 March 2002: Intelligence operatives capture and wound al-Qa'ida executive Abu Zubaydah, bin-Laden's chief of operations, a 31-year-old Saudi-born Palestinian, in a villa near Faisalabad, Pakistan. Also captured were about 10,000 pages of documents - and hints from Zubayda of future terror-strikes . By now, about 2000 al-Qa'ida operatives have been apprehended around the world. But another bin-Laden top aide, Ayman al-Zawahiri, is still at large. Since 1995, the CIA has had a unit of 50 people studying bin-Laden. (Reported in Time Magazine, 8 July 2002)
23 March 2002: Nigeria says Islamic law violates constitution: "Moslem scholars have reacted angrily and Christian leaders expressed relief after Nigerian Government declares the application of strict Islamic law in 12 northern states to be unconstitutional. The decision may threaten the balance between Nigeria's Christian south and Islamic north. The sticking point is Section 42 of the constitution, which forbids discrimination on the grounds of religion or sex.
23 March 2002: Wealthy nations are warned: terror feeds on poverty: World leaders have implored wealthy nations at a conference in Monterey, Mexico, to give far more aid to the world's poor, warning that grinding poverty converts needy countries into incubators for terrorism and chaos. UN secretary-general Kofi Annan calls poverty and inequality the greatest threats to world peace. About 50 presidents and prime ministers attended the conference. (See Sydney Morning Herald of this date, p. 17)
23 March 2002: Taking terrorism seriously: oh, really? US: Washington: Bush administration officials say they have no immediate plans to bring detainees from the Afghan War to trial before special military tribunals, suggesting hundreds of prisoners could be held for years without charge. (Earlier reported by The Boston Globe)
19 March 2002: Israeli and Palestinian field commanders in the West Bank and Gaza strip held surprise talks yesterday in a sign that US envoy Anthony Zinni is making progress with a ceasefire mission.
19 March 2002: Lawyers for accused Australian "al-Qa'ida terrorist" David Hicks now hope to start US court action next month to free the Adelaide man from Camp X-ray in Cuba.
19 March 2002: Australian soldiers are chronically short of ammunition, sufficient to put their own lives and those of their allies at risk, according to an in-house report asked for by Chief of Army. Lt-General Peter Cosgrove. (By June 2002 promoted to chief of defence forces)
16 March 2002: Indian police say they have arrested 10,000 people in the western state of Maharashtra to prevent an outbreak of religious violence over plans by Hindu hardliners to hold prayers for a temple they want to build on the site of a razed mosque in Ayodhya. Leader of the Hindus is 93-year-old holy man, Ramchandra Das Paramhans. Destruction of the 16th-Century Babri mosque (in Ayodhya) in 1992 led to riots in which 3000 people died. Further, Hindus consider the site the birthplace of the god Ram, and say the Mogul emperor Babar destroyed a temple to make way for a mosque. The mosque was ordered razed allegedly on orders of Hindu nationalist Home Minister Lal Krishna Advani, according to his daughter-in-law, a solicitor now in London and divorced from the minister's son.
16 March 2002: Afghan commanders cast doubt on the success of the US-led military operations in the mountains as they admit that hundreds of al-Qa'ida and Taliban fighters have escaped during the 12-day assault.
16 March 2002: Saudi Arabia: Religious police stand to be accused of preventing the rescue of 14 girls who died in a stampede following a fire, because an effort to save them would have meant men entering a girls school in Mecca, or girls leaving the school without wearing a veil, as is obligatory. The "police" in question are from The Department of Female Education (headed by Ali al-Morshed)), known as "mutawa", and enforce a strict Islamic moral code. Fourteen girls died in the stampede and 50 more were injured. (Reported 16-17 March, 2002 in Sydney Morning Herald)
12 March 2002: An "ugly dispute" over the possible rebuilding of the destroyed New York World Trade Centre arises as New Yorkers unveil a lighted memorial to victims of the 11 September attacks.
11 March 2002: Release-broadcast in Australia of 11 September 2001 attack damage, new footage, since two French filmmakers were working at the time; their crew followed firefighters into the towers before the towers faltered.
Circa 9 March 2002: Video footage is taken of bin-Laden discussing plans for a new jihad or holy war, and threatening allies of the US and Israel, says a British Islamic news agency. It seems, bin-Laden survived the heavy bombing of the Tora Bora mountains in Afghanistan (although later reports suggest his left shoulder was wounded badly). There is about now (March-May 2002), intense debate about the failure of intelligence agencies to stave off the 11 September attacks, or anything like them. (Reported in The Australian, 20 May 2002 )
8 March 2002: Israeli troops shoot dead commander of Palestinian security forces for southern Gaza strip, Major-General Ahmed Mefrej. West Bank chief of Arafat's Fatah organisation, Marwan Barghouti, says, "We have reached the point of no return." Meanwhile, Professor Martin van Creveld, an Israeli patriot, noted military historian of Hebrew University of Jerusalem, predicts that the Israeli Defence Force will lose its war with Palestinian terrorists, and will also have its morale sapped as it is already engaging in reprisals against civilians and/or the innocent. He suggests building a great wall to separate the contenders (as was broadcast one late night ABC TV session in Australia). Creveld believes that cruelty corrupts armies.
7 March 2002: Ten Palestinians die as Israelis renew assaults. Palestinian gunman kills five Israeli students in Gaza Jewish settlement. Yassar Arafat has his Ramallah compound bombed as he meets with a European Union delegate.
6 March 2002: Eleven Palestinians die as Israeli planes and helicopters strafe security positions and soldiers invade five areas of Gaza strip.
5 March 2002: Jewish vigilantes bomb an Arab school in Jerusalem in response to Beit Israel attack.
5 March 2002: Afghanistan's mountain retreats: US bombers continue to pound al-Qa'ida and Taliban positions in the eastern mountains of the country... with little reportable result to date.
4 March 2002: Israeli tanks kill 17 Palestinians while attacking a truck owned by a suspected militant.
2 March 2002: Thirty Palestinians killed in Israeli raids on refugee camps at Balata and Jenin. Some 22 Israelis killed including nine by a suicide bomber.
2 March 2002: Virtual war on terror: Police in NSW, Australia are reportedly training with a high-tech simulator called HYDRA to combat organised crime and terrorism. Strategic decisions are made about "real-life scenarios".
2 March 2002: "Scant action following two massacres has human rights groups asking if the UN has blood on its hands"... This followed two claimed massacres in the northern Afghanistan city of Mazar-e-Sharif. After a failed Taliban assault on the city early in 1997, Northern Alliance forces are said to have killed 3000 Taliban prisoners, many suffocated after being locked in shipping containers. Some 15 months later, more than 2000 civilians are said to have been killed by Taliban machine-gunners on trucks. Commenting is advocacy director at Human Rights Watch, Reed Broady. At stake is credibility of Mary Robinson of UN High Commission for Human Rights. (Reported by Paul McGeough for Sydney Morning Herald)
2 March 2002: Australian Democrats party says Adelaide-born al-Qa'ida fighter David Hicks should be released from a US military camp in Cuba regardless of whether he faces prosecution in Australia. The party's law and justice spokesman, Brian Greig, said, "The US military commissions are without rules of evidence or rights of appeal and can sentence to death on a lower standard of proof than beyond reasonable doubt."
26 February 2002: Afghanistan has been warned that rival warlords are now posing the most serious threat to stability, and that if trouble begins to spiral, the US may widen its military involvement.
21 February 2001: Afghanistan: More than 1000 people watch as two women convicted of prostitution are hanged in southern Khandahar, headquarters of the Taliban.
Middle East closer to abyss of war: "The Middle East risks 'sliding toward full-fledged war' unless Western powers intervene in the conflict, UN secretary-general Kofi Annan has warned the security council in "unusually blunt language". (23-24 February 2002 in Sydney Morning Herald, p. 16)
"Growing evidence arises and suggests that the US have struck many Afghan targets of questionable military significance". (23-24 February 2002 in Sydney Morning Herald) Meanwhile, visitation is becoming frequent to a cemetery for 80 or more al-Qa'ida fighters in Kandahar. The cemetery has become a pilgrimage place for Taliban supporters who already believe the graves have magical healing properties.
23-24 February 2002: Pakistan: Last Wednesday-Thursday, proof by
way of videotape arises about the murder of US journalist in Pakistan
for Wall Street Journal, Daniel Pearl. The videotape, undated, is now
with FBI after being handed over the Pakistani officials, and shows
Pearl being stabbed to death.
On 23 January 2002, Pearl, 38, rings his pregnant wife Mariane on a mobile phone. He has finally found an interview with an Islamic leader he's been seeking for weeks. Pearl soon went from a meeting with a Pakistan official to the Village Restaurant in heart of Karachi. His driver then was the last person to see Pearl alive. Pearl was kidnapped about half an hour later. He had been planning to meet a cleric, Pir Mubarrak Ali Gillani, who in the 1990s allegedly headed a group that landed on a US list of terrorist organisations. It now appears that Pearl's disappearance was orchestrated by Ahmad Omar Saeed Sheikh, aged 27, who has admitted complicity, say police, and posed as a man named Bashir who would help Pearl meet Gillani. There is a "confusing gap" in the dates for the handling of Sheikh after he surrendered on 3 February, and 12 February, when Karachi police became aware he had surrendered.
A Pakistani news service has said that the videotape of Pearl's last minutes shows his head suddenly being lifted back and his throat slit. Daniel Pearl was regarded by his friends as "a musician, a writer, a story-teller, a bridge-builder, a walking sunshine of truth, humour, friendship and compassion". His kidnappers had demanded release of Pakistani prisoners in Guantanamo Bay or he would be killed on 31 January.
Update of 16 March 2002: A man has been indicted by a US Federal grand jury for the kidnapping and murder of Pearl. He is a British-born Moslem, Omar Saeed Sheikh, aged 28, now in Pakistan, and possibly to be tried there.
July 2002: A Pakistani court has now sentenced British-born Islamic militant Sheikh Omar to death for abduction and murder of US journalist Daniel Pearl, while Omar's three accomplices will get jail for life.
16 February 2002: Afghanistan: Government minister Abdul Rahman killed by assassins. It is not, as in earlier reports, that he'd been killed by angry pilgrims unable to properly organise their pilgrimage to Mecca.
Reported 16 February 2002: As it was first thought, the Afghan interim minister for aviation and tourism, Abdul Rahman, died early 15th after being beaten up by a mob of "hundreds" of angry pilgrims (haj pilgrims) to Mecca already delayed for two days at Kabul airport. Kabul then due for a visit from British Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw. Rahman had then been bound for Delhi. Kabul at the time had freezing temperatures.
12 February 2002: World first for world justice?: Strongman Slobodan Milosevic is now in the dock at The Hague, the first world leader to be tried for alleged crimes against humanity. The trial may last up to two years and will hear 66 charges. Milosevic does not recognise the authority of the court holding him. A prosecutor speaks of the "medieval savagery" of the alleged crimes in question.
12 February 2002: FBI/US issues warnings that it fears potential attackers against its interests, possibly in Yemen. A list of up-to-17 named possible-attackers is issued. (Early-evening TV news report in Australia). Nothing serious eventuated.
10 February 2002: Numbers of ex-Taliban fighters are freed by new government of Afghanistan. The former Taliban foreign minister, once in Pakistan, has given himself up and may be tried by US for crimes against humanity. Meantime, Taliban leader Mullah Omar is not heard of lately.
9 February 2002: Australian David Hicks, allegedly a fighter in Afghanistan for al-Qa'ida, and captured by US forces, has written to his family apologising. Meantime, his legal status has yet to be clarified in US or Australian terms.
7 February 2002: CIA suspect that Osama bin-Laden may be killed in a US attack on a plane, an attack which evidently kills a senior al-Qa'ida figure. Or, is there a bin-Laden look-alike system being used?
The al-Qa'ida terrorist network (A Sunni Moslem organization) seems to be trying to move its base of operations to Lebanon, western intelligence sources suspect, via links to Hezbollah (a Shia organization), which in turn has links to Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Another Sunni-influenced hardline group is Usbat al-Ansar, which has links with al-Qa'ida. Other hardline Islamic groups as lately named include Armed Islamic Group in Algeria, Harakat-al-Mujaheddin in Pakistan and Abu Sayyaf in The Philippines. US President Bush is meantime standing firm on his remarks about "the axis of evil". (Reported 2 February 2002)
2 February 2002: Afghanistan: As warlords tend to fight it out, it is said by Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah that after 23 years of civil war, at least 700,000 people bear arms in Afghanistan. (Reported in Australia by 2 February 2002)
2 February 2002: A deadline for threats to harm US journalist Daniel Pearl has been extended from 31 January. His kidnappers are linked to a Pakistani group, National Movement for the Restoration of Pakistani Sovereignty. The man Pearl was intending to interview when he was kidnapped was Mubarak Ali Shah Gilani, leader of a little-known militant group, Tanzeemul Fuqra.
2 February 2002: Soon after President Bush has identified his "axis of evil", Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has termed Bush "a man thirsty for human blood" and the US as "the most-hated Satanic power of the world". (Reported by 2 February 2002)
1 February 2002: News surfaces on "a bin-Laden confession", on a videotape made last October, not long before bin-Laden is reportedly on the run.
1 February 2002: A US journalist (Daniel Pearl, for Wall St. Journal?) about eight days ago in Pakistan is kidnapped, hostaged, in return for Cuban-held men re events of late 2001.
1 February 2002: News of the latest bin-Laden video interview, with a journalist from Arab TV , al-Jazeera. Bin-Laden is equivocal it seems re admitting any involvement in 11 September attacks.
30 January 2002: Reports in Australia that in Indonesia, the people-smuggling business is in disarray, with asylum-seekers now refusing to pay the asked-for $10,000 for a boat-trip to Australia.
29 January 2002: Afghanistan's interim leader Hamid Karzai now believes that world-wide, promises of aid for his country now total US$4.5 billion. He promises there will be no loss of the value of the aid due to corruption.
28 January 2002: Khandahar, Six al-Qa'ida men holed-up in a hospital fight to death with US marines.
26 January 2002: The Indonesian government is being encouraged to crack down on a fundamentalist movement, Jemaah Islamiah Movement, which has allegedly been linked to al-Qa'ida and terrorist raids across south-east Asia. The movement is led by clerk Abu Bakar Bashir, aged 64, who feels bin-Laden is "a true Islamic warrior", and that the 11 September attacks were even engineered by Israeli interests. The US is "a horse ridden by Jews", and the attacks were "a warning from God" against US arrogance. In the Philippines, police seem worried about an Indonesian activist with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Fathur Rohman al Ghozi.
26 January 2002: Reports had been published in Asian Age newspaper of 14-12-2001 that Islamic terrorists are training women to carry out suicide attacks on the capital of India on Republic Day, next 26 January.
January 2002: Assassination of Elie Hobeika, a Christian militia leader of the 1975-1990 civil war in Lebanon, a man who made enemies on all sides. Claiming responsibility are an anti-Syrian Lebanese group. He had lately threatened to bring international legal proceedings against Israel's prime minister, Ariel Sharon. Hobeika allegedly helped massacre hundreds of Palestinian refugees in Sabra and Shatila camps during Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon. (Reported 23-24 January 2002)
19 January 2002: The US finds it has no precedent in military law for dealing with the 110 prisoners now held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (which base is leased), and have not yet charged or formally identified the men, amongst whom is Australian fighter for the Taliban, David Hicks, from Adelaide. It is not yet clear if Hicks will be tried in the US or in Australia, under which laws of either country. A team from International Red Cross is to evaluate if the US military is violating the rights of more than 100-120 such prisoners. A US corporal helping guard the prisoners has commented on the size of the prisoners - "pretty small" and their age - most seem to be in their 20 or 30s.
18 January 2002: Israeli aircraft destroy the Palestinian security headquarters.
17 January 2002: Reports surface that British troops may be deployed in "stiletto attacks" in Yemen in "a lawless mountain region" where sympathisers of bin-Laden/al-Qa'ida are reported as staying. Evidently, President of Yemen, Hassan Abshir Farah, has agreed to such use of foreign forces.
15 January 2002: World TV reports: Further concerns rise due to discovery in Afghanistan of terrorism training videos (from al-Qa'ida?) with material on tactics for high-rise building destruction/invasion, multiple choice question on how to bring down a plane, assassination tactics, etc.
By 12 January 2002: Kabul is ruined by 23 years of war. Questions
arise as to whether difficulties in finding Mullah Omar and Osama
bin-Laden are due to the sympathies of some Afghani warlords.
At this time, a warlord of Kabul is Abdul Rasul Sayyaf. On a most-wanted list of Taliban is Mulla Hadji Obaidullah Akhund, minister of defence, and Mullah Nooruddom Turabi, justice minister, founder of Ministry for the Enforcement of Virtue and Suppression of Vice, author of many dreaded edicts on behaviour.
Concerned about issues: try this website - Islam denounces
New leader of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, has pledged to rid his country of drug trafficking but says it would be a difficult task to do so without aid for the country's devastated agricultural economy. (Most Afghanis live on US$1 per day.) He also estimates the number of hardcore Taliban or al-Qa'ida fighters still needing to be caught at 30-35.) (Reported 8 January 2002)
Palestine: Israeli leaders tell the US envoy to their region, Anthony Zinni, that the area is "like a volcano threatening to explode". (Reported 5 January 2002).
The Taliban former foreign minister working in Pakistan, Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef, an unsuccessful claimant for political asylum, is now in Pakistani police custody but his leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, seemed last night "tantalisingly close" to capture, as Afghan and US fighters surround a village where he is thought to be hiding. The hunt for Mullah Omar has verged on farce at times, the situation made more vigorous by warlords competing for the large reward the US has offered for Omar. At this point, the Taliban commander is Abdul Ahad (known as Rayes Baghran). The Afghan Minister for Reconstruction is Amin Farhang. Meantime, visitors to Madame Tussaud's waxworks museum in London are being polled, and the finding is that Osama bin-Laden is now the world's most hated man, topping the poll's view of Adolf Hitler. (5 January 2002)
5 January 2002: For the first time, US officials have revealed their thoughts on the number of Taliban and al-Qa'ida leaders they feel it most necessary to find - 10 to 15 men in either organisation, although some are already dead. At this time, it is thought that Mullah Omar is being protected by some local tribal leaders and about 1500 Taliban troops, possibly at Baghran, 160km northwest of Kandahar.
3 January 2002: Reports unconfirmed arise that former Taliban leader Mullah Omar is captured by an Afghan warlord. Within days it is thought Omar escaped on a motorcycle.
1 January 2002: Kandahar: US Marines chase Taliban leader Mullah Omar.
30 December 2001: British troops patrol the streets of Kabul, keeping peace and on the hunt for Osama bin-Laden.
29 December 2001: Malaysia: The Malaysian High Court has sentenced three members of a Moslem sect to death by hanging for planning a jihad to topple prime minister Mahatir Mohamad and set up an Islamic state. Another 16 sect members were given life sentences. In the Philippines, a Jordanian man thought to be a member of al-Qa'ida has been arrested and bomb-making materials seized from his apartment. He is Hadji Yousef Alghoul, 35, arrested in Balanga City in Bataan province west of Manila, after he was under surveillance for three months. (Reported 29 December 2001)
29 December 2001: The alleged "shoe-bomber", Richard Reid, a British-born convert to Islam, now held in the US, visited seven countries in the months before his attempt to blow-up an American Airlines flight from Paris last weekend. His travels included a 10-day stay in Israel, and trips to Egypt, Jerusalem, Turkey, Pakistan, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris and maybe Afghanistan, since June 2001. (Reported 29 December 2001)
17 December 2001: Reports surface from UK that at Kandahar, a notebook has been found indicating plans to leave a remote-controlled van-bomb in London's financial district.
The Australian Government expects that the Northern Alliance will soon hand over captured Australian al-Qa'ida fighter David Hicks to US forces, but it is unknown if Hicks will face US or Australian justice. "There is great confusion about how the legal process will proceed". (Reported 15 December 2001)
Various writers are now part of a chorus saying that politically, Yassar Arafat is now staring irrelevance in the face. (15 December 2001)
15 December 2001: US has obtained DNA samples from the bin-Laden family in order to be able to identify Osama if he is killed. He is one of 54 children and is said to have look-alikes travelling with him. At this point, a top aide of bin-Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri, an Egyptian, has sent faxes and spoken by telephone to a London-based magazine, al-Majalla. (Reported 15 December 2001)
Moves against Yassar Arafat: Trying to influence Palestinian leader Yassar Arafat to arrest Islamic militants responsible for recent suicide bombings, Israeli war planes have blasted the Palestinian Authority's main police headquarters, wounding about 18 people. Earlier, Arafat's men have put Hamas spiritual leader, Sheik Ahmed Yassin, under house arrest. (Reported 7 December 2001)
14 December 2001: Philippines: Supporters of Moslem separatist Nur Misuari attack a town hall in southern island of Jolo but are repulsed by police.
3 December 2001: In Palestine, Yassar Arafat declares a state of emergency and arrests dozens of militants to try to stave off Israeli retaliation for Palestinian attacks on Israelis which lately kills 25.
1 December 2001: Israel: US peace mission falters after a suicide
bomber sat in a bus near the city of Hadera in Central Israel and
blew himself up in the middle of the journey, killing three Israelis
and wounding nine others.
Note: Radical-action Islamic group Hamas was formed on 14 December 1987, at a time of Palestinian uprising against Israel. By December 2001 the spiritual leader of the group is Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. Tactics of suicide attacks began anew in 1993, and to 29 September, 2000, Hamas supporters had provided 43 Palestinian terrorists, with 38 dying in separate suicide attacks. More recently, 39 suicide-bombers have died in 36 attacks.
In the context of President Bush's new "military orders" for the US, the following is from Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Democrat Senator Patrick Leahy, "We end up looking like some of the things we're fighting against." (Reported 1 December 2001) Or as a break-out in The Australian newspaper has it, "George W. Bush has set up a star chamber to secretly try and execute terrorists". Such terrorists are regarded as "unlawful combatants" by the Bush administration. Meantime, fears arise in the Arab world that Iraq might soon be added to the US' list of military targets. In Afghanistan, the Northern Alliance is closing in on the last major Taliban-controlled city, Kandahar. A tribal commander of the Alliance forces is a Pashtun, Mohammad Jalal Khan.
1 December 2001: Northern Alliance has captured an al-Qa'ida guerrilla trainer, Ahmed Omar Abdel Rahman, son of Moslem cleric Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman. Meantime, the Taliban's Mullah Omar has offered a bounty of US$50,000 to any Afghan gunman who kills a Western journalist.
Early December 2001: Bin-Laden and one of his top aides have escaped by sea after leaving Afghanistan. (As suggested by 15 January 2002, when the facts are still cloudy).
Note: By September 2000: Lost
Worlds' had made the following comment:
In too many places around the world, are claims that Moslem separatists want to set up many separate states. Has anyone interviewed these separatists about the following:
(1) What do they want, and why?
(2) What are their theories of sovereignty and of government?
(3) What are their views on the (non-Koranic) rule of law?
(4) Who pays for their food and weaponry?
If the UN is not asking such questions, why not? Also, is the CIA interested at all?
24 November 2001: Taliban tithe the opium crop: It is an Islamic tradition that 10 per cent of crops are taken by "the community". And so the Taliban used to take 10 per cent of Afghanistan's poppy crop, worth about US$35 million two years ago. Finally, and after some international pressure, Mullah Omar issued a religious decree banning poppy cultivation. It is now thought that farmers are again planting poppies since the bombing began on 7 October.
18 November 2001: Attif is dead, Khandahar, in an 80-sq km area near Khandahar, Osama bin-Laden is reportedly surrounded as reported by British Sunday Telegraph, and Laura Bush, wife of President George W. Bush has broken with protocol and called for an International women's group to help oppressed Afghani women.
Disquiet of conscience in the USA: 16 November 2001 - The following "moment of silence" message came the way of Lost Worlds from Texas via Milwaukee and via Voter@yahoogroups.com ... and it speaks for itself...
A repost: Minute of Silence For Everyone?
If you are still shaken by the horrifying scenes of 11 September, please observe a moment of silence for the 5,000 civilian lives lost in the New York, Washington, DC and Pennsylvania attacks.
While we're at it, let's have 13 minutes of silence for the 130,000 Iraqi civilians killed in 1991 by order of President Bush Sr. Take another moment to remember how Americans celebrated and cheered in the streets.
Now another 20 minutes of silence for the 200,000 Iranians killed by Iraqi soldiers using weapons and money provided to young Saddam Hussein by the American government before the great eagle turned all its power against Iraq.
Another 15 minutes of silence for the Russians and 150,000 Afghans killed by troops supported and trained by the CIA.
Plus ten minutes of silence for 100,000 Japanese killed in Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the atomic bombs dropped by the USA.
We've just kept quiet for one hour: one minute for the Americans killed in NY, DC, and Pennsylvania, 59 minutes for their victims throughout the world.
If you are still in awe, let's have another hour of silence for all those killed in Vietnam, which is not something Americans like to admit.
Or for the massacre in Panama in 1989, where American troops
attacked poor villagers, leaving 20,000 Panamanians homeless and
thousands more dead.
(By the way, a documentary on this 1989 Panama matter has been screened in Australia, conveying also that screening of the documentary was banned in the US - so much for press freedom in the US! -Ed)
Or for the millions of children who have died because of the USA embargoes on Iraq and Cuba.
Or the hundreds of thousands brutally murdered throughout the world by USA-sponsored civil wars and coups d'etat (Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Bolivia, Guatemala, El Salvador to name a few).
Maybe, and although the memory of Americans claims otherwise, someone may remember the USA attack on Baghdad where 18,000 civilians were killed. Did someone see it on CNN? Was justice ever served? Or was there even any retaliation?
We hope that Americans finally begin to understand their vulnerability and the cowardly attacks and other tragedies that they have caused around the world.
The dead in other places hurt as much as the dead of the New York Towers, even more!
Now, let's talk about terrorism, shall we?
This message came to Lost Worlds unsigned, but this hardly matters -Ed
Webcam for New York's groundzero: http://earthcam.com/usa/newyork/groundzero/
16 December, 2001, The end of Ramadan, the month of fasting in the Islamic world.
The US now feels that from inspection of a lately-acquired, hour-long video of bin-Laden, (dated 9 November), possibly filmed in Kandahar, it seems that bin-Laden knew of a plan, which became the 11 September attack, a year previous. He knew exact timing details on 6 September. Bin-Laden, whose family is in the construction business, thought that the main damage of any such jet-attack would be the three-four floors above the impact areas only. It had not been expected to fully collapse the towers. Bin-Laden named Mohammad Attar as one of the attackers involved in the attacks, which united two teams of men who did not have full details of the overall attack plan. It is also suspected that bin-Laden, aged 44, is suffering weight loss due to kidney problems. In the video, bin-Laden calls on Moslems to make further attacks on a precarious US economy. (As reported in Australia by 15 December 2001)
15 December 2001: Another boatload of asylum seekers appears near Australia's Ashmore Island and are turned back to Indonesia.
14 December 2001: Four Palestinians killed in an Israeli attack.
14 December 2001: Israel continues to systematically attack Palestinian institutions answering to Yassar Arafat and attempts to isolate his influence. Will extremists fill Arafat's place? Israel describes Arafat as now "irrelevant" and has his HQ ringed with tanks.
14 December 2001: TV news: "After much deliberation" over 14 days, US releases video made 9th November, of bin-Laden's "terror confession", and his alleged rejoicing of the destruction in New York, more havoc than he anticipated. Many hijackers involved had no idea of the scale of the plan, or that they would die executing it. CIA has done "forensic work" and used four independent translators. Moslem world divided by US release of latest video of bin-Laden. Have the tapes been doctored? Are they a fabrication? bin-Laden meantime is believed to be cornered (again?) in the Tora Bora complex area, and has not escaped to Pakistan or elsewhere. Cave-to-cave fighting goes on in this sector. US has placed a US$10 million reward for information leading to capture of Taliban leader Mullah Omar.
13 December 2001: Did Osama bin-Laden escape to Pakistan by 3-4 December?
12 December 2001: Four Palestinians killed and about 17 wounded in helicopter missile attacks.
12 December 2001: A South Australian man aged about 26 is found in Afghanistan fighting for al-Qa'ida, captured by anti-Taliban forces; he had been fighting on a Moslem side in Kosovo during 1999 and reportedly had converted to Islam. TV news scenes of the amazing opulence of the mansion of Afghanistan's Taliban leader Mullah Omar, complete with a bizarre statue which is difficult to interpret. Alliance soldiers take pictures of each other lying with their guns on Omar's bed.
11 December 2001: A victorious Alliance commander, resting in Kabul, says how pleased he is to see children going to school again, now that the Taliban is gone.
11 December 2001: Afghanistan: bin-Laden's possible escape routes are cut off by US as Tora Bora mountain sector is again heavily bombed. Israel, two Palestinian children killed by a helicopter attack.
10 December 2001: US claims it has bin-Laden cornered in the area of the Tora Bora cave complex, which has been heavily bombed in recent days. Claims arise that new video evidence is found of further links between bin-Laden and 11 September attacks. Fears arise that dissemination of the video may provide coded clues to members of al-Qa'ida network. US now considers situations with Iraq's stocks of weapons of mass destruction. In Israel, eight Israelis are wounded by a suicide bomber.
9 December 2001: Afghanistan: Scuffles break out as UN distributes food supplies in Kabul. Up to 200,000 households will be seeking aid.
8 December 2001: 15 Palestinians are wounded in an Israeli jet attack.
8 December 2001: Afghanistan, Mullah Omar reported captured (mid-evening eastern Australian time). Presumably in or near Kandahar. bin-Laden still at large. In Palestine, position of Yassar Arafat is even more insecure. Taliban have fled Kandahar and also lose control of cave complex Tora Bora near Kandahar; bombing effort to entomb US enemies in that cave complex. Capture of Arab members of al-Qa'ida. Mullah Omar is said to be out of Kandahar and on the run.
8 December 2001: Rumours arise from India to Australia that Australia should seal its borders to prevent escape by "20 terrorism suspects" maybe planning to fly a plane into Melbourne's tallest building, the Rialto. (Reported 8 December 2001)
By 8 December 2001: One of the leaders of the anti-Taliban forces moving into Kandahar is former mujaheddin commander Mullah Naqeebullah. Forces loyal to former area governor Gul Agha have reportedly taken over a main airport south of Kandahar.
7 December 2001: Scepticism and also amazement arises in Australia
with reports of a 26-year-old Middle Eastern man, apprehended in
India by 6 December, who allegedly plotted terror attacks on
Australia, to take out tallest buildings, such as Melbourne's Rialto
Towers (55 stories); also maybe Parliament House in Canberra. Also,
targets in UK and India. He had taken flight training in Australia at
Melbourne's Morabbin airport. Report from South Australia that a
block-training application from 50 men there had been rejected by
suspicious flight trainers.
US says it wishes to prosecute Mullah Omar (whether he is constrained to renounce/denounce terrorism or not). Omar has agreed to surrender Kandahar, the spiritual home of his Taliban organisation. Yassar Arafat now reported on world radio as "all but a spent force" after repeated Israeli attacks on his organisation and HQ.
7 December 2001: An Israeli jet ends a ceasefire and destroys the Palestinian police HQ.
6 December 2001: Palestinian police try to arrest militant Hamas founder Sheik Ahmed Yassin, and find they have to meet protesters.
3 December 2001: Kabul, Afghanistan: Taliban religious police seem to have destroyed hundreds/thousands of artefacts once housed in Kabul Museum. World fears once again of a Middle East war.
3 December 2001: Haifa, a bus bomb blast kills 15-16 people and wounds about 40, about 12 hours after earlier terror attack in Jerusalem. Meanwhile, Israel bombs a building near Arafat's office and Sharon declares a "war on terrorism".
2 December 2001: Northern Alliance and US disagree about where bin-Laden is now hiding; Alliance says, still near Kandahar. Jerusalem Massacre: Several suicide explosions, two suicide bombers and one car bomb, organised by Islamic Jihad. Some 180 injured and 12 dead, with most victims being young Israelis. Arafat is under further international pressure to manage situations. In Afghanistan, Northern Alliance agrees to a new, UN-backed government for their country.
1 December 2001: TV report, At Kandahar, Taliban leader Mullah Omar offers to surrender in return for his own safety - while his troops fight to the death. US rejects such offer. It is estimated it will take five years to rebuild Kabul. Five people are killed after a suicide bus bombing, outside an army base in Haifa. Some members of the Israeli cabinet call for "the toppling of the Palestinian Authority".
30 November 2001: Two bombings in Jerusalem kill at least 12 people and wound more than 170.
29 November 2001: A Palestinian suicide bomber kills three Israelis and himself on a bus in northern Israel. Arafat issues a statement urging Palestinians to respect a cease-fire.
28 November 2001: US President Bush has demanded that Saddam Hussein should allow international weapons inspectors back into Iraq to show that he is not developing weapons of mass destruction.
28 November 2001: Afghanistan: US President George W. Bush has
warned his country to expect casualties as hundreds of US ground
troops move in against targets such as a Taliban armoured column near
Kandahar, the last city under Taliban control, in Operation Swift
Freedom. Moscow, however, surprises Western observers by landing 12
transport aircraft near Kabul, to establish "a humanitarian
centre". (Is it correct, that the US is not the only large power
hoping to be able to throw oil pipelines through Afghanistan? That
Russia is also interested, presumably because of its Caspian Sea oil
"The Taliban clung to the dusty smuggler's paradise of Spin Boldak yesterday", begins one report. Taliban have vowed to fight to the death. So far, eight journalists have been killed while covering conflict in Afghanistan, the latest a Swedish cameraman. Five US troops have been injured during a siege to capture a major arsenal, protected by al-Qa'ida fighters, the Qala-I-Jangi fort ("fort of war", built in the nineteenth century) west of Mazar-e-Sharif, the HQ of warlord of Mazar-e-Sharif, (General) Abdul Rahid Dostum. Dostum has reportedly made a deal to hand over the al-Qa'ida men as prisoners of war to the US. Meantime, the al-Qa'ida second-in-command, Mohammad Atef, was killed by a US strike two weeks ago. Other US enemies killed include two wanted Egyptians, Tareq Anwar and Nasr Fahmi. Hafs al-Masri, a military chief for al-Qa'ida, has also been killed. But Osama bin-Laden and his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, continue to elude the US. Captured material now indicates that al-Qa'ida members tend to spend their time studying religion, maths, Arabic, English, military tactics, terrorism and intelligence. bin-Laden's book, The Clear War Against The Americans Who Are In The Holy Lands are required reading.
The US has also warned Iraq and North Korea that their "reported developments" of weapons of mass destruction may mean conflict with US. Iraq, says Bush, must allow UN weapons inspectors ejected in 1998 to return to Iraq to continue work. Fourteen people have been detained in Belgium and France as part of an international investigation into the assassination of Afghan opposition commander Ahmed Shad Massood killed by 9 September 2001 by a two-man suicide bombing attack on his home. Charged in connection with Massood's murder, which is believed planned by Osama bin-Laden as a diversionary tactic, is an Egyptian citizen, Yasser al-Siri, charged by 30 October. Al-Siri ran the Islamic Observation Centre in London. The arrests follow an international warrant being issued by a judge in Belgium. (Reported 28 November 2001)
28 November 2001: Moslem unrest in Philippines: Philippines troops have killed about 25 Moslem gunmen in southern city of Zamboanga (a mostly-Christian city), after pre-dawn clashes. Those killed are loyal to rebellious area governor, Nur Misauri, and have about 40 civilian hostages. (Reported 28 November 2001). Misauri has influence in the mysteriously-named area, Autonomous Region in Moslem Mindanao (ARMM). Note: By 8 December, about Isabela, Philippines, government troops have killed eleven members of a Moslem guerrilla group, Abu Sayyaf, which is holding hostage a US couple on a southern island.
By 28 November 2001, it is reported from US (Los Angeles Times) that "the US has been experimenting with germ warfare for almost 50 years", with "Operation Whitecoat" and the co-operation of members of the health-concerned Seventh Day Adventist Church. Some 153 tests were conducted between 1954-1973, when the tests were abandoned. Most tests were conducted in a huge spherical chamber at Fort Detrick, so that problem-material was not let into the atmosphere.
Rebels use families as human shields in Philippines: Rebels loyal to former governor Nur Misuari yesterday took dozens of hostages in defiance of a government order to surrender, shattering hopes for a peaceful transition to a new administration in the autonomous region of Moslem Mindanao. (28 November 2001)
Identified by 28 November 2001 is an "unofficial spokesperson" for the Taliban in the West, Laili Helms, an Afghan-American women married to a nephew of a former CIA director, Richard Helms. Laili Helms now has a mixed press as a woman with sympathies for women in Afghanistan, living under the Taliban regime, as an American, for her actions as a liaison-link with the Taliban, which began before the Taliban were perceived as a threat by the US. Apologists for Mrs Helms say she tried to explain UN attitudes to Afghani women, and otherwise helped now-opposed sides to communicate and to understand each other.
28 November 2001: Taloqan, Northern Afghanistan: Gunmen have broken into a house and shot dead a Swedish cameraman, Ulf Stromberg, 42, from Sweden's TV4 Channel. The gunmen later made off with a satellite telephone and several thousand dollars.
27 November 2001: "Operation Swift Freedom", with helicopter gunships" dramatic new phase in Afghanistan as US marines take a Kandahar airport near a Taliban posting, actually "a small-scale invasion". Northern Alliance pre-advised of strategics. Meanwhile, last Sunday, in the northern Afghan city of Mazar-e-Sharif, pro-Taliban prisoner-fighters took control of guns and ammunition from the HQ of regional warlord General Rashid Dostum and a five-hour firefight ensued, leaving hundreds dead. As well, a number of pro-Taliban men committed mass suicide by blowing themselves up with hand grenades. It is suggested that the prisoners revolted after being approached by an unnamed British reporter and a Western woman approached them in a fort. This mass suicide was the second in two days, designed to kill nearby enemies also.
27 November 2001: The British Government has succeeded with a vote 323 to 79 with passing emergency legislation in the House of Commons to allow suspected terrorists to be detained indefinitely without trial. Also on 27th, in Bonn, Germany, more than 30 Afghan leaders (but no Taliban representatives) have sat to plan for their country's future, with a multi-ethnic government. There is of course, some dispute about who is represented, and who not, particularly a lack of ethnic Pashtuns from the south of Afghanistan, and making up about 40 per cent of the population. Parties at the Bonn meeting include: Northern Alliance, Yunus Qanuni, interior minister; Pakistan-based Afghan groups and the monarchist Pir Sayed Ahmad Gailani; representatives of deposed king, Zahir Shah; envoys from UK, US, Russia and Pakistan; and possibly some Pashtun leaders formerly pro-Taliban.
27 November 2001: Mindanao, Philippines, TV news, Rebel Moslem demands arise, with some threats to shoot captives.
27 November 2001: Plans for UN Development program, World Bank and Asian Development Bank to meet in Pakistan. Hundreds of representatives will be present, a third of them being Afghans, says New York Times.
27 November 2001: Peace talks re Afghanistan held in Bonn, Germany. Re these talks, the UN-recognised head of the Afghanistan government, Burhanuddin Rabbani (a professor of Islamic Law, Alliance-based 1993-1996), says he is willing to step down or aside if necessary (for the exiled 87-year-old king, Zahir Shah?), and has no personal ambitions. About now, about 100,000 people are living in tents in the Kandahar area.
27 November 2001: Reports arise of a 30-year effort in Afghanistan to dig 30 caves on the western outskirts of Quetta for storage of old copies of the Koran, copies of which may not be thrown away or burned. Behind the program is Afghan religious leader Mullah Sultan Mohammed.
27 November 2001: US envoys arrive in Israel to promote peace deals. Israel announces arrest of 15 West Bank Palestinians saying they are members of an Iraqi-sponsored militant cell. Palestinian gunmen kill six people in Israel and Gaza.
26 November 2001: A revolt against Northern Alliance by captured Taliban is suppressed, situation a bloodbath/slaughterhouse. Much gunfire in hills about Kunduz. Some 400 men loyal to bin-Laden die in a "mass suicide" mission. At Kandahar, US troops (1600 marines?) take a key airport.
26 November 2001: US attorney-general John Ashcroft has said he believes from intelligence reports that Osama bin-Laden has ordered attacks on US supplies of natural gas if he or Taliban leader Mullah Omar are killed or captured.
26 November 2001: Meanwhile, French and Belgian police have detained 14 men with suspected links to bin-Laden, names possibly arising due to international investigation of the murder of anti-Taliban leader, Ahmad Shad Massoud.
26 November 2001: Some 73 intellectuals from 18 Arab nations are gathering in Cairo to discuss ways of countering "a defamation campaign" against Arabs in Western media, and will produce an action plan to present to their leaders who are meeting in Beirut in March 2002.
26 November 2001: More than 25,000 US paratroopers plus British troops prepare to move on the Taliban's "spiritual home", Kandahar (where 6000 al-Qa'ida and Taliban troops may fight to the death). Western leaders prefer Kandahar falls to an international force rather than to the Northern Alliance. British officials urge restraint with handling of any Taliban prisoners captured at Kunduz. (Commenting on US attitudes is Adam Roberts, professor of International Relations at Oxford University, editor of Documents on the Laws of War. A 1997 protocol of the Geneva conventions makes it illegal "to order that there shall be no survivors..."). Preparations also underway for taking of last northern Taliban stronghold at Kunduz; at Kunduz, some 2000 Taliban surrender, up to 15,000 more may surrender. Over 1500 Taliban fighters surrender at Maidan Shahr. bin-Laden is reportedly hiding in eastern Afghanistan (near Jalalabad/Tora Bora). US bombers work at caves/tunnels maybe being used by al-Qa'ida. Commentator Anthony Lewis in The New York Times discusses views on the morality of the war in Afghanistan (mostly a just war he says), but says a problem with putting any terrorists on trial is with discovering if they actually are terrorists. Critics of the war are more numerous in UK than in US. The development of "an alternative justice situation" (use of US military tribunals) is causing concern in the US and so arises concern about the use of "the dreaded f-word" - Fascism (?). Protests also rise re Japan sending some naval logistical support for the Afghanistan war, Japan's first such overseas deployment of military forces in 55 years.
26 November 2001: Israeli helicopters attack Palestinian targets on Gaza Strip. Israeli soldiers shoot dead a Palestinian boy engaged in a rock-throwing protest, Khifah Obeid.
25 November 2001: Kunduz falls after a two-week siege and fears that there will be a grave humanitarian disaster for the city's trapped 300,000 civilians. Taliban militia verges on collapse. A senior Taliban commander talks of defection/peace. Some 2000 hardline foreigners of the Taliban will fight to the death. US says (in unconfirmed report) that captured men could be held at Guam, American Samoa or the Northern Mariana Islands. A women's organisation "widely admired" for its work, Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan, is not exactly thrilled by the return to influence of the Northern Alliance, and feels it might be "dreadful and shocking".
24 November 2001: Appearance in US of one of a rash of new 11 September products, a book by San Antonio evangelist, John Hagee, Attack on America: New York, Jerusalem and the Role of Terror in the Last Days. In UK, two in three British Moslems oppose US-led strikes in Afghanistan. Some 400-600 dead bodies have been found in northern Afghanistan town of Mazar-el-Sharif, now captured by Northern Alliance, but Red Cross cannot tell if these people are killed in fighting or executed. About Kandahar, Taliban had invited in about 100 journalists but now expels them as their grip loosens on the city after six weeks of air raids.
24 November 2001: Israel assassinates top Hamas militant, Mahmoud Abu Hanoud, who is blamed for assisting several suicide bombings.
23 November 2001: Pakistan keeps its borders shut. Prisoner-of-war camps in Afghanistan now crowded. "Collapse of surrender talks". It is agreed that foreigner fighters for the Taliban be later tried, though al-Qa'ida associates prefer to become martyrs.
23 November 2001: Israeli helicopter attack kills Mahmoud Abu Hanoud, a Hamas leader in Palestine.
22 November 2001: Idea arises that bin-Laden is on a ship off the Pakistan coast (?). Taliban surrenders at Kunduz.
21 November 2001: Israel: A booby trap has been intended to protect a Jewish settlement but it kills five Palestinian schoolchildren aged six to 14, as they move in a scrub land on their way to school.
20 November 2001: Japan and US have invited governments to meet in Washington today to discuss a reconstruction program for Afghanistan.
20 November 2001: Reported death of bin-Laden's right hand military man, Juma Namangani (aged 32, an Uzbeck warrior general), as Taliban defend their last strongholds. Also lately killed is Mohammed Atef, one of the brains behind al-Qa'ida network and up to seven other Taliban leaders. In various places, up to 60 Chechen fighters are said to have jumped into the River Amu to die, rather than be taken alive. Maybe 25 Taliban shot themselves rather than surrender. Surrender talks go on between the Alliance's Daoud Khan and his Taliban opposite number, Mullah Dadullah, a senior Taliban commander. Taliban reportedly has now abandoned its "guest", bin-Laden.
20 November 2001: Claims arise that because of US HQ's desire to limit civilian casualties, US warplanes have about ten times had senior people of al-Qa'ida and Taliban in their sights, but cannot find permission quickly enough to terminate them. Reports from refugees from Kunduz also indicate that the city has slipped into a frenzy, with mass murder, beatings, mutilations, civilians forced to dance across minefields by Taliban, young men dragged into streets and shot for no apparent reason, up to 350 people massacred. Worst excesses are claimed to come from the "foreign tourists" of the Taliban, non-Afghanis called khareji, many of them trained by al-Qa'ida.
20 November 2001: CONCERNS WITH PROPHECY
Greetings, We found you (Lost Worlds) on the Internet at...
Prophecy -- what does it mean to you? Does it mean the prediction
of momentous events, even dire events like catastrophic earthquakes
and murderous acts of terrorism? Does it also mean the alternative
predictions of a brilliant new golden age of peace, astounding
innovation and high culture?
On Tuesday, 20 November, 2001 from 7 - 9 p.m. (CST) you can hear and participate in a free interactive worldwide internet broadcast called: PROPHECY FOR THE 21ST CENTURY: TURNING TERROR INTO TRIUMPH.
This talk -- unlike any you have
probably heard before -- covers all these aspects of prophecy for our
times and many more. For example, in this address you will hear a
review of the dramatic prophecies of Nostradamus, Edgar Cayce, Saint
Germain, Mother Mary and others explained and compared.
Far from a doomsday message, this address will cover the key idea of how to mitigate and transform dire predictions into positive new eras of history.
To learn more about this event and how you can hear the FREE interactive Internet broadcast, visit: http://www.icmerlin.com/prophecy/
To send a message: email email@example.com.]
20 November 2001: Taliban forces said to be cornered and even willing to surrender Kunduz. Four international journalists including an Australian working for Reuters, Harry Burton, are killed by a Taliban ambush.
20 November 2001: Kunduz: The last city held by Taliban, now surrounded by Northern Alliance.
19 November 2001, Headline (very premature): bin-Laden trapped as US closes in. Taliban ambassador to Pakistan, Mulla Abdul Salam Zaeef, confirms that bin-Laden is no longer in a Taliban-controlled area. At this time, acting interior minister of Northern Alliance is Younis Qanooni, says bin-Laden is hiding 130km east of Kandahar in caves. US claims it has killed a bin-Laden's right-hand man, Muhammad Atef, during an air attack on Kabul last week. Atef (also an in-law of bin-Laden) was a member of the al-Qa'ida ruling shura council. Taliban leadership rejects efforts to negotiate on surrender of Kandahar. Reports arise that at Kunduz, Taliban leadership has been seized by "foreigners"; Arabs, Pakistanis and Chechens; who are hanging any Taliban commanders talking of surrender. Infighting and power-jostling arises amongst Afghani warlords. One such warlord is a Pashtun leader, Gulbuddin Hemmatyar, notable about Kabul. At this time, leader of the Northern Alliance is Barhanuddin Rabbani. A notable recent death last Saturday has been that of bin-Laden's right-hand man, Uzbek general, Juma Namangani.
19 November 2001: Question in the media: Does bin-Laden die
as a martyr or live a life on the run? From Germany, it seems that
soon after 11 September, German officials quickly traced three
terrorist ringleaders (including Mohammed Attar, and perhaps also
"the missing 20th hijacker", Yemeni Ramzi bin al-Sibh
[alias Ramzi Omar?]) to a flat in Hamburg. Marienstrasse 54,
an address under surveillance earlier in 1998 and 1999 because of
links suspected to an operative for bin-Laden. Possibly also involved
here was logistical-brains, Said Bahaji; and Zacarias Moussaoui, who
has been detained in Minnesota. In Spain, a judge has jailed eight
suspected Islamic terrorists said to be directly linked to planning
and execution of the 11 September attacks in US. Some of the man are
said to be linked to terrorist training camps in Indonesia.
Washington now thinks that Europe is now home to "hundreds of
al-Qa'ida sleeper agents" waiting for orders to make fresh
Note: By 23 November it is thought that perhaps the suspected leader of the 11 September attacks, Mohamed Attar, visited Madrid, Spain, about 8-19 July 2001 as "a vital step" in planning the attacks, meeting a cell of al-Qa'ida men in Madrid.
19 November, 2001: Anthrax letter-attacks in US now thought to be result of internal US matters alone. In London, 10,000 protesters march through centre of the city calling for an end to the war in Afghanistan. Time magazine lately reports that Jordan has lately stymied two planned al-Qa'ida plots to blow up US, UK and Jordanian embassies in Beirut.
19 November 2001: Guardian newspaper in UK reports that US vice-president Dick Cheney warns that after the Afghanistan troubles are over, US may move on as many as 50 states thought to be harbouring terrorists, with Somalia high on that list as a haven for al-Qa'ida supporters. Guardian also reports that near Jalalabad, evidence arises of an al-Qa'ida attempt to develop "secret toxins" and explosives for war use; evidence also found of international money transfers. It is said that now roaming Afghanistan are ten bin-Laden look-a-likes. (Shades of how many Hollywood movies there? - Ed)
19 November 2001: UK and US are considering spending millions of dollars to try to end Afghanistan's heroin trade. To buy this year's entire opium harvest at black-market prices on condition that farmers plough their ground and re-plant something different? It is said that Northern Alliance warlords have connived at new planting of poppy fields. Some 83 per cent of the 1999 crop was worth about Aust$100 million. Farmers are paid about Aust$700 per kilogram of product. Production of raw opium fell by 94 per cent after it was outlawed by the Taliban.
19 November 2001: Northern Alliance agrees to attend in a neutral place in Europe, a meeting concerning any new government for Afghanistan which represents all ethnic groups. Kabul TV is back on the air with a new transmitter after five years of Taliban-enforced invisibility and silence.
18 November 2001: Bin-Laden is said to be surrounded in an area about 80km square (narrowing later to 48km square), near Kandahar, first reported by UK's Sunday Telegraph quoting defence sources. Breaking with protocol, wife Laura of President George W. Bush has spoken out angrily on TV about Taliban's oppression and suppression of women in Afghanistan - here a call for women to act internationally.
18-19 November 2001: Close associate of bin-Laden for up to ten years, Muhammad Atef has been killed, it is claimed. (Alias Sheikh Taseer Abdullah or Abu Hafs al-Masri, had a price put on his head by FBI of US$5 million. Did Atef plan, or help plan, the 11 September attack?)
17 November 2001: By now, US has released to public the sound tapes of cockpit struggles as hijackers take control of planes on morning of 11 September.
17 November 2001: Israeli foreign minister Shimon Peres has told the UN that most Israelis currently favour the establishment of an independent Palestinian state - to be non-military but economically viable.
17 November 2001: Up to 6000 foreign fighters loyal to the Taliban are now in Kunduz, Afghanistan, as alliance forces surround the city with orders to shoot them all.
17 November 2001: A journalist from The Times of London, rummaging through an abandoned house used till lately as a terrorist training camp in Kabul, has found details of an al-Qa'ida plan to use a biological poison, rycin (which was used by secret police to kill the Bulgarian Georgi Markov in 1978). Meantime, Mullah Omar has told British journalists (BBC), "The plan is going ahead... it is a huge task that is beyond the comprehension of human beings ... the real matter is the extinction of America". The use of rycin was considered by the British during World War Two for a "W bomb", but never used. (Reported by 17 November 2001)
17 November 2001: Denmark around 17 November is also reported embarrassed at its population's attitude hardening against asylum-seekers and refugees. A Danish People's Party has been campaigning on an anti-Moslem, anti-foreigner platform.
17 November 2001: Overly creative Islamic Justice?: Lagos, Nigeria, Report that an Islamic Court has ordered that a convicted murderer be stabbed with the same knife used [that he used?] to kill a woman and her two children.
17-18 November 2001: US now believes it has killed a top military aide of bin-Laden, the man who planned the 11 September attacks. Atef? Role of British soldiers in Afghanistan is described on radio as "mired in confusion". Taliban prepares to leave Kandahar. More al-Qa'ida training camps are occupied. In Israel, Shimon Perez supports a Palestinian state and is criticised for such views.
17 November 2001: US operatives believe they are closing in on bin-Laden. It is also seen as important that no new civil war begins in Afghanistan; and Australians may be asked to prevent tendencies to "a return to warlordism". Law and order has supposedly broken down in northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif, recently taken by Northern Alliance forces. The Taliban still controls Kandahar in the south and Kunduz in the north. It is feared bin-Laden will escape through Turkmenistan and head for Chechnya. Or, to the north-west tribal areas of Pakistan. Australian journalist Paul McGeough, who has almost killed by a Taliban ambush, writes of Afghanistan, "Almost a quarter of a century of conflict, made worse by a dreadful drought in the last three years, as deformed any sense of humanity or decency in this country. And now there is a dangerous power vacuum. Power is all, undertakings count for nothing and honour has little or no value. ... The cruelty is shocking, the barbarity that of animals, not men." Meanwhile, leader of the Northern Alliance, President Burhanuddin Rabbani, has said that the former king of Afghanistan can return only as a private citizen.
17 November 2001, Investigators think they may have identified a 20th 11 September terrorist, a Yemeni who was deflected from his mission by US visa problems. He is Ramzi Binalsibh, (or Ramzi Omar), once based in Hamburg, and subject of an intense manhunt. The suspected ringleader of the plan hijackers, Mohamed Attar, tried three times to get Binalsibh into the US, it is claimed. However, another man has been suspected as the 20th hijacker. Binalsibh had studied in Germany from 1997, at Hamburg Technical University. In Hamburg, Binalsibh met with later-hijacker Marwan Al-Shehhi; and with Ziad Samir Jarrah (who was on the 11 September Philadelphia crash plane).
17 November 2001, In Kabul, Northern Alliance captures Taliban leaders. British and US special operations troops arrive in Kabul. In Khandahar, US destroys a mosque and a foreign ministry building. Opposition warlord Ismail Khan vows to march on Kandahar. In Jalalabad, a former governor of Nangarhar province, Haji Qadeer, seems to have taken over from the Taliban. At Herat, forces loyal to Ismail Khan push south from that city. Correspondent Christopher Kremmer after touring near Kandahar in 2000 writes that he found provincial administration "moribund" and failing to cope with "the worst drought in living memory". Taliban officials lazed over big lunches as whole villages starved. The last Taliban holdout is now Kunduz in northern Afghanistan, where about 20,000 Taliban and al-Qa'ida fighters seem doomed to a bloodbath. About 8000 of these men are Pakistanis or Arab volunteers with "nowhere to go". Northern Alliance's General Mohammed Dawood promises little mercy to the foreigners. bin-Laden promises that he has by now helped to "spread a war all over the world".
17 November 2001, It is now estimated that New York will lose about US$83 billion during the next three years due to the 11 September attacks. Some 50,000 employees (of a total of about 180,000 finance workers) of stock-exchange linked businesses have had to be placed in new workplaces. If New York's economy falters too much, the cost could blow out to US$100 billion. Will New York remain the world's financial centre? At least 79,000 jobs disappeared in October 2001.
By 17 November 2001: Outspoken Malaysian prime minister Mahatir Mohamad has lately slammed Ariel Sharon of Israel in the context of world terrorism, for his attitude to Palestinians.
17 November 2001, Further high-alert warnings issued in the US as in Afghanistan, the noose tightens around The Taliban, bin-Laden and the al-Qa'ida network. Tom Ridge, director of the new US Office of Homeland Security, plays down reports on the information an al-Qa'ida safe house had in Kabul, on designs for missiles, bombs and nuclear weapons, and said it was old-hat, and some could be found on the Internet.
16-17 November 2001: Beginning of Ramadan, Islamic month of fasting for spiritual purity.
16 November 2001: The Taliban deputy interior minister, Haji Mullah Khaksar, reportedly has switched sides. In 1996 he apparently helped set up the Taliban's intelligence operation, and it is thought he knows the present whereabouts of Mullah Omar and bin-Laden. Radio intercepts indicate that al-Qa'ida men are angry at Taliban retreats of late. However, Taliban fighters, especially about Kunduz, swear "to fight with the last drop of our blood". Alliance leaders indicate they have given orders that foreign-born fighters on the Taliban side are to be shot. If the foreign-born fighters are Arabs working for Al-Qa'ida, they are reported feared by the Taliban and loathed by local Afghani tribesmen. Also, various Afghani warlords who have been living in exile are on the move to stake their claims for life in a re-born Afghanistan. (Reported 16-18 November 2001)
16 November 2001: Will two Australian aid workers held by the Taliban be used as human shields, or be rescued, and are they now being taken to Kandahar?
16 November 2001, US efforts now centre around "the spiritual centre of the Taliban", Kandahar. Dramatic air rescue of eight Taliban-held aid workers by British. Bin-Laden and followers are being "chased from cave to cave" but still threaten to destroy the US.
16 November 2001: Taliban says it is down but not out. Via a satellite phone call to BBC, Taliban's Mullah Omar warns of a severe counter attack on the US - "the destruction of the US". He says: "keep in mind this prediction". Now it seems, al-Qa'ida has manuals in Arabic on details for construction of nuclear weapons or materials.
15 November 2001: Midnight, BBC reports that the situation of Kabul and with military operations is "frightening, confused and in flux".
15 November, 2001, US B-52 bombers and fighter jets attack Taliban positions around Kunduz, evidently not-so-effectively.
15 November 2001: Newspaper columnists warn that there is also a war in Afghanistan against drought, agricultural collapse, famine, disease and misery. Relief agencies were warning of humanitarian disasters for Afghanistan for this winter even before 11 September. US is reportedly buying millions of tonnes of wheat to keep Afghanis from starving this winter, and Secretary of State Colin Powell speaks of Afghanistan representing "a terrible situation facing the world". Northern Alliance commanders are said to be stealing aid already given. Commander of the US forces in Afghanistan is General Tommy Franks.
15 November 2001, The Taliban says Osama bin-Laden and their leader, Mullah Omar, are both still alive and safe.
14 November 2001: Kabul taken with little resistance. Headlines in Australia: Taliban head for the hills and abandon Kabul. UN still recognises the Northern Alliance as legitimate government of Afghanistan. The Taliban had forced the Northern Alliance politicians from Kabul in 1996. (Northern Alliance held Kabul 1992-1996, during which time faction fights disturbed life and up to 50,000 people died). It is said in the Kabul money market of the old city that departing Taliban men had stopped in front of money-changing shops and simply taken goods and cash. Northern Alliance solders have meantime plundered former Taliban resources and killed captured Taliban men by summary execution. It had earlier been feared that events were moving too slowly, now there is fear they are moving far too fast, and diplomats cannot cope.
28 October 2001, prior to: Australia: About 170 Iraqi asylum-seekers have hijacked an Indonesian ship, KM Sinar Bontang, and are forcing it to sail to Australia. The previous Monday, a boat carrying Middle Easterners hoping to find refuge in Australia has sunk with the drowning of more than 350 people. (Reported 28 October 2001)
13 October 2001: President Bush in US warns nation that more terror attacks may be imminent and offers the Taliban regime another chance to end air attacks in Afghanistan if they will hand over bin-Laden.
13 October 2001: Claims arise in US that clamp-downs on news/propaganda will now rob US of much of its cherished press freedom. Oddly enough, it is said that the US has asked the Emir of Qatar (earlier reported as funding al-Jazeera TV station), to crack down on al-Jazeera's broadcasts since authorities of Qatar said they were powerless to interfere with press freedom. Kabul it is said by now is as dysfunctional a city as Mogadishu in Somalia; and in both Somalia and Afghanistan, problems arise with a sick economy, warlords, and religious-motivated terrorism. New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman fulminates: bin-Laden is a man whose only vision is hate, his impact in history will be like a footprint in sand. Bin-Laden is a hijacker of Islam and other people's technology; etc.
13 November, 2001: bin-Laden denies knowledge of matters connected to anthrax contamination in US. One of the Northern Alliance leaders/warlords is General Rashid Dostum, active at the now-fallen city of Mazar-e-Sharif. A top-level meeting has been conducted in Beverly Hills, Hollywood, California, between movie industry executives and US government advisers on propaganda themes which could be used in future productions to boost US morale both at home and overseas.
13 November 2001: Kabul, The Arabic TV station of Doha, Qatar, recipient of videos from bin-Laden and associates, al-Jazeera, finds its Kabul office hit by four US bombs, after 38 days of safety, and despite the TV station having given its precise location to US forces, to avoid being hit. Al-Jazeera is easing off its relationship with CNN in the US. (Reported in Australia by 2 February 2002)
13 November, 2001, Northern Alliance Forces take Kabul, rather quickly. Taliban slipped away in the night, evidently taking with them eight aid workers including two Australians.
11 November 2001, A British newspaper reports that Osama bin-Laden admits responsibility for 11 September attacks. A major new US and Northern Alliance offensive on Taliban in the north of Afghanistan; fear of tribal alliances may mean Northern Alliance is not encouraged to enter Kabul.
10 November 2001: Controversy continues internally in Australia re
government policy on the handling of boat-travelling asylum seekers
to north-western Australia, the views of Australian naval officers
dealing with the asylum seekers, and the truth of allegations
concerning the boat named Sumber Lestari. Naval men complain
about unprecedented government restrictions on their speaking to the
media. ("The role that sickens our loyal sailors").
Meantime, Indonesia's chief political and security minister, Susilo
Bambang Yudhoyono, pledges his government will end people-smuggling.
As for Australia's existing detention centres for asylum-seekers, according to a prisons-watchdog organisation in Western Australia, the nation's detention centres are appalling, a disgrace, and any riots are due to bad conditions.
Note: For statistics relevant to the argument about Australia's willingness or not to accept asylum-seekers, see Sydney Morning Herald, 27-28 October 2001, pages 34-35. (All this, by the way, is as if Australians have entirely forgotten, or never knew, that for Europeans, Australia" began as a not-particularly-happy dumping ground for convicts transported from Britain in, of all things, ships!! Convicts then to be guarded! - Ed)
10 November 2001: US foreign policy-makers lash out at Yassar Arafat for doing too little to stop terrorism in the Palestine-Israeli wrangle. In this context, the Saudi-Arabian government is reportedly "angrily frustrated" that the US will not begin a promised new peace initiative in the Middle East, nor meet Arafat. In the Palestine-Israel area, Israel suggests it has uncovered a plot for the assassination of Israeli Cabinet minister Danny Naveh and his family.
10 November 2001: TV news: bin-Laden admits he has nuclear and chemical weapons and is prepared to use them. Northern Alliance moving south achieves some breaks in Taliban lines. Views arise in US that mail-based anthrax attacks arise within US only. Further anti-war protests are held in Pakistan. In Canada, the nation's second largest airline bails out of airline business and founders, another casualty of massive troubles for airlines world-wide.
9 November 2001: One day before an Australian Federal elections, controversy erupts over the truth of earlier allegations that Middle Eastern asylum-seekers had thrown themselves or their children into the water to gain attention. Fresh (and confused) reports by 6-9 November arise that about 100 Afghani/Iraqi asylum-seekers on a different boat yet again, heading for Ashmore Reef, have set their vessel on fire and/or disabled their engine to possibly intimidate Australian naval officers.
7 November 2001: In Australia, politicians and naval officers continue to wrangle about the truth of video and other reports that asylum-seekers threw their children into sea water to get the attention of officials. Even a senior consultant psychiatrist to the navy has been moved to offer his opinions!
7 November 2001: UN officials believe that at least 100,000 Afghanis have fled their country since 11 September, while "millions" of Afghanis seem destined to suffer in the current troubles. UN officials are arguing with the government of Pakistan.
100BC: -7 November 2001: The 2100-year-old treasure, The
Gold/Treasure of Bactria, may be under threat due to the current
troubles in Afghanistan, art experts warn. The treasure is held in a
concrete-walled vault under the presidential palace in Kabul and may
be "melted down" by the Taliban. The treasure consists of
20,000 or more items including gold statues, necklaces and ornaments,
adorned plaques, winged goddesses, fantastic beasts, other jewellery.
The treasure, dating back to 100BC(?) was excavated in 1978 from a royal burial site (for nomadic royalty) at Tillya-tepe in northern Afghanistan by a Soviet team during Soviet occupation. The treasure was officially sighted and noted in 1993 to dispel rumours it had been or would be interfered with or sold. Russian professor excavating the treasure was Victor Sarianidi (who with one "single find, changed art history". ). An expert commenting on Afghan art and cultural history is Carla Grissman, of Society for the Preservation of Afghanistan's Cultural Heritage.
7 November 2001: Three Indonesian nationals have appeared in court in Perth, charged with trying to smuggle some 434 boat people (rescued by Norwegian ship, Tampa). They will appear again in court on 30 November. They are Bastian Disun (32), Nordames Nordin (31) and Aldo Benjamin (21). Those rescued ended up on Pacific Island, Nauru.
7 November 2001: Atrocity stories about Taliban behaviour are beginning to seep into reports of the experiences of Afghani refugees - such as the story of an 85-year-old man, and an old woman, pushed head-first into a baker's oven fire, so that the dogs later pulled at what was left of their bodies.
7 November 2001: US is now dropping seven-tonne Daisy Cutter bombs on Afghani targets. The bombs are the size of a Volkswagen Beetle, and need to be dropped from a Hercules cargo plane. They have earlier been used in Vietnam, where they were used to create helicopter landing areas the size of five football fields, and in Iraq. But the bombs do not seem to be useful against troops holed up in caves.
7 November, 2001, World Trade Organisation meeting scheduled for Qatar. The Archbishop of Canterbury (Most Rev. George Carey), who happens to be visiting Qatar, has appeared on al-Jazeera TV to assure the Moslem world that there is no war on Islam, but a war on terrorism.
6 November 2001: Preparations underway for storming of Taliban-held Kabul.
By 6 November 2001 in The Australian newspaper, journalist Ian Stewart, familiar with Malaysia, is increasingly concerned about the influence of bin-Laden's reputation in Indonesia and Malaya, and bin-Laden's animosity now to Australia. Also, thousands of Christians have already been killed in the Maluku province of Indonesia. In Malaya is surfacing the Islamic Warriors Group - Kumpalan Mujahideen Malaysia, supposedly inspired by bin-Laden; which has some members linked to Parti Islam se-Malaysia (PAS), the largest opposition party in Malaya. Also active is Keadilan, a National Justice Party said to be interested in overthrowing the government following mosque-based agitations. (Keadilan was formed by supporters of the now-jailed former deputy prime minister of Malaya, Anwar Ibrahim. Active are Ibrahim's wife Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and his political secretary (now arrested), Mohamad Ezam). Ibrahim is said to be an advocate of an Islamic state. PAS's spiritual adviser is Nik Aziz Nik Mat. Ultimately, any such Islamic state might embrace Malaysia, Mindanao and Indonesia.
5 November 2001: bin-Laden accuses Australia of crusading against Islam.
4 November 2001: Item -
Dear Friends, In just a few days from now I will be launching a new web site for the 'war on terrorism' in Afghanistan - lots of great links to The Taliban, what they do to women,The CIA, how they have conducted their world-wide business over the past 50 years, weather reports on Afghanistan, what opinion-makers are saying: John Pilger, Noam Chomsky, Ahmed Rashid, Arundhati Roy, Greens Senator Bob Brown, former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, The Catholic Workers and other non-violence activists. Where?
Remember: if you are voting in Australia, there is only one party totally opposed to this war - The Greens. Regards Willy Bach
Is the United States Carpet-Bombing Afghanistan?
According to the Courier Mail Insight Team, front page, Saturday 3 November ..."US jets intensified carpet-bombing across Afghanistan". Not only are US jets "carpet-bombing" - they have intensified and it is "across Afghanistan". Not only is this very inflammatory language, but there remains a question as to whether this information is really 'Insightful' and factually correct.
If it is true then we have some more disturbing problems. We were originally told this war was a war on terrorism ; that Osama Bin Laden and his cohorts would be "brought to justice" for their crimes. We were told there would be surgical strikes by USAF.. "to smoke the terrorists out of their holes"... (George W. Bush).
Then we discovered that there was a wider agenda to change the government of Afghanistan and that civilians were being hit, even a clearly-marked Red Cross food warehouse. Now they are 'carpet bombing'. They should remember what that did to Cambodia, how it brought the Khmer Rouge to power. Anyway, 'carpet-bombing is a war crime and crime against humanity. It is totally destructive and indiscriminate. So, are they carpet-bombing? Give us an 'insight'. Willy Bach -4/11/01
This matter will be subject of a complaint to the Press Council. Please keep a close eye on all Rupert Murdoch's media outlets for similar examples of sloppy journalism and report them on this web site. - Willy Bach
4 November 2001: bin-Laden on Arab TV lashes out at US, UN and some of his own people, saying UN is conducting crimes against Islamic organisation. He condemns Moslems who support US action against Taliban, calling for a rising-up of all Moslems to defend Afghanistan. In Sydney, a Peace Rally bursts into violence when someone brings along a US flag.
3 November 2001: Taliban has tried to close down the influence of a key opposition figure, Pashtun (Popolzai) tribal leader Hamid Karzai, who attended a meeting of anti-Taliban elders held in the mountainous central province of Uruzgan. Karzai is close to the exiled king of Afghanistan.
3 November 2001: Perhaps the only amusing news item to come out of Afghanistan of late? Despite the anti-music and anti-joy regulations of the Taliban, the Taliban is nevertheless confronted by and fearful of radio fans of a BBC radio soap opera which is broadcast three times per week. About 70 per cent of the population, including many Taliban soldiers, are addicted to the radio show. The show is based on a British country folk show, The Archers, and its remake is known as Naway Kor, Naway Jwand, or, New Home, New Life. Topics treated include forced marriages, blood feuds, landmines and opium addiction. (The Archers was devised in the 1950s to alert British rural folk to new farming methods - the Afghani remake is also "anti-ignorance" in artistic intent).
3 November 2001: Hacking away at terrorists: A German named Kim Schmitz who had two friends killed in the 11 September New York attacks, a computer-hacker turned businessman, has set up a group of hackers to try to undermine the computer-based operations of people linked to Osama bin-Laden. (Group is named YIHAT, or, Young Intelligent Hackers Against Terrorism). Schmitz has also posted a US$10 million reward for information leading to the capture of bin-Laden. YIHAT will target financial operators it suspects are funnelling money to bin-Laden's network, and will forward its information to the FBI.
3 November 2001: Pakistan has reportedly given up hope of uniting rival Afghani groups for any newly-planned government and shifted it view to more support for US bombing as the "best way to topple the Taliban", which has an army of about 50,000 and an intact arsenal. Western fears exist that non-Afghani ground forces will have to be used strenuously to shift the Taliban, as air strikes are insufficiently effective. By 3 November, some resistance to the Taliban grows in the Pashtun south of Afghanistan, where a friend of the exiled former king (Mohammed Zahir Shah), a Pashtun leader, Hamid Karzai, has survived a Taliban attack on men attending a meeting Karzai had called. Reports surface that bin-Laden's terrorist network has "reaped millions of dollars" for three years past from the illicit sale of diamonds mined by rebels in Sierra Leone, who sell at low prices. Efforts to find up to six different political alternatives to the rule of the Taliban in Afghanistan are dissolving in baths of disagreement, including competing views of foreign countries. An expert commenting is a Pakistani political analyst who has written a book on the Taliban, Ahmed Rashid.
Special update 2 November 2001: News: Guardian Unlimited Special
reports al-Qa'ida is winning war, allies warned
The eminent military historian
Professor Sir Michael Howard launched a scathing attack yesterday on
the continued bombardment of Afghanistan, comparing it to "trying
to eradicate cancer cells with a blow torch".
It had put the al-Qa'ida network in a "win-win situation", he told the conference, and could escalate into an ongoing confrontation that would shatter our own [British] multicultural societies.
2 November 2001, President of Indonesia Megawati Sukarnoputri calls for cessation of strikes in Afghanistan during Ramadan.
2 November 2001: bin-Laden is vocal against Pakistan for supporting US-led attacks. Some Moslem leaders in Australia reject Taliban calls for a jihad against Australia. Fear in San Francisco arises 2-7 November of threats received to blow up a major suspension bridge at rush hour. In Afghanistan, more US carpet bombings prepare way for a ground war.
1 November 2001: Australian ABC TV news, 7pm: Taliban (Mullah Abuld Salam Zaeef, Taliban ambassador to Pakistan, when asked a question by an Australian journalist) declares a jihad against Australia for supporting US-led attacks. "Appropriate security measures have been put in place". In Australia, a Moslem spokesman suggests that the Taliban do not have the relevant authority to call for a jihad against Australia. It is also said that the Taliban spokesman might not have said what he said, if a journalist had not asked him a certain question. By 3 November the Islamic Council of NSW has felt moved to suggest that there is no support for violence in Australia.
At a nuclear security conference in Vienna, held by International Atomic Energy Commission, a Russian safety regulator, Yuri Volodin, that "someone" had stolen nuclear material that could be used for making a bomb. (Reported 31 October 2001)
31 October 2001: UK will now issue identity cards with photographs and encoded with fingerprint data to asylum-seekers as part of a crack-down on illegal immigration. Blair in UK warns British Moslems against travelling to Afghanistan to fight for the Taliban. In this context is mentioned Al-Muhajiroun, an international Islamic group promoting an "Islamic renaissance" and the establishment of a true Islamic state.
31 October 2001: Northern Alliance is soon expected to make a major push to take Kabul. British prime minister Tony Blair visits Syria and then Saudi Arabia, according to BBC Radio. In Australia, the combined effects on tourism industry of the world situation plus collapse of a domestic airline (unrelated) means Federal government will now subsidise some holiday-takers, to help prop up tourism industry. In Australia, attitudes are reportedly hardening against taking further asylum-seekers moving to north-western Australia, despite earlier reported mass drownings (353 people). Also, about 66 per cent of Australians approve of helping the war against terrorism. Some confusion results re military plans when a commander of British commandos reportedly says that his men may not be used till next year. America is being warned against lulled into "a false sense of indifference" to the risks of further attacks. Reportedly, a growing number of British Moslems are considering of going to fight in Afghanistan, due to a feeling that what the West is doing is as bad as terrorism.
The terrorism problem: 31 October 2001: In US bookstores, titles on germ warfare or the Taliban in Afghanistan are becoming bestsellers.
The terrorism problem: 31 October 2001: Predictions from multiple sources of new terrorist attacks on US in next 7-14 days. US government issues concerned warnings.
The terrorism problem: Late October, 2001: Taliban execute in Kabul as a possible rebel against them, one of their former executives, Abdul Haq.
The terrorism problem: 30 October 2001: Despite warnings of disquiet in Moslem countries, US is reported to decide to continue attacks during the Moslem holy month of Ramadan.
29 October 2001: More to come
28 October 2001: More to come
27 October, TV reports, 200 asylum-seekers hijack an Indonesian fishing vessel and head for Australia. Desperate search for them by Indonesian navy ensues.
27 October 2001: Sydney, Anglican Archbishop Dr Peter Jensen defends what he terms "classic Christianity" against fundamentalism of all kinds and modern secularism, saying also that from 11 September is the "death of post-modernism" due to the need to readmit a phrase into use such as "absolutely evil". Meantime, 45 days after 11 September fires hitting 500 degrees Celsius still burn at the World Trade Centre site.
27 October 2001: An unnamed London publisher says that his operation has been approached by Ayman al-Zawahri, a senior official in the al-Qa'ida network and one of the world's most wanted men. The book in Arabic is entitled The Knights Under the Prophet's Banner.
26 October 2001: Two Indonesian policemen with rank of brigadier have been detained over allegations that on 18 October, asylum-seekers were forced at gunpoint to get on a boat that later sank on its way to Australia, on 19 October, with only 45 of 400 people surviving. Meanwhile, Australians are still arguing over claims that other asylum-seekers on a doomed boat had thrown themselves and/or their children into sea water to gain sympathetic attention. (Controversy on the truth of such claims is still raging in Australia by early March 2002)
26 October, 2001: Taliban education minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, asks international human rights groups to intervene to stop US cluster bombing attacks. (About ten per cent of the bomblets in cluster bombs fail to explode, posing a lasting risk to people as much as unexploded land mines do.)
26 October, 2001: Taliban captures a key general of the Northern Alliance opposition, Abdul Haq (aged 43). US had vainly tried to save Haq with use of helicopters. Haq had been intending to plan a new anti-Taliban attack to take Kabul. (Haq lost his right foot to a land mine in 1987 while opposing the Russians). Reports suggest that western intelligence sources suggest that bin-Laden and al-Qa'ida have possibly acquired nuclear weapons materials. It is suggested that in 2000, CIA director George Tenet told a Senate Intelligence Committee that bin-Laden was trying to obtain nuclear materials.
26 October 2001: Australian media entrepreneur Kerry Stokes (chairman of Seven TV network) speaking at the annual Andrew Olle Memorial Lecture to many of Australia's leading journalists warns that national and international media agendas or biases may remove focus on local, regional and/or grassroots issues. He also warned against "shrinking" of diversity of opinion. Stokes recommended media pluralism and maximum community involvement in debates. (Lost Worlds suspects that Australia is not the only country which runs such risks on many fronts from media agendas, world-wide).
26 October 2001: Fears arise that Kashmir, India, may become world's next flashpoint.
25 October 2001: Indonesia calls for an international summit on refugees and people-smuggling.
25 October 2001: Office of former US president Bill Clinton is said to have received a salmonella virus by mail. Clinton on a visit to Rome declines to comment. Concern arises that in Afghanistan, Taliban is prepared to poison food rations dropped by US. A British newspaper reports that operatives linked to bin-Laden bought anthrax from Indonesian sources some years ago (?). TV reports indicate that another boatload of 200 smuggled asylum-seekers is found by Australian navy near Ashmore Reef.
25 October 2001: Australian boxer Anthony Mundine is suspended indefinitely by US-based World Boxing Council (WBC).
24 October 2001: In most poignant words, as reported from West Java, while 353 people from an overloaded asylum-seekers boat drown, a drifting five-year old-girl says to her helpless father, "If I die in the sea, don't leave me alone here." She was not seen again.
24 October 2001: As reported in world press: Paradox of wealth and religion?: Bihar in India is a poor state and claimed to be riddled with corruption, but soon it may house the world's tallest statue - of a throne-seated Buddha (Tibetan-style) in the middle of a landscaped 16 hectare site. A 152-metre, bronze-clad Maitreya Buddha costing about US$159 million - three times the height of the US' Statue of Liberty, which was created in France. One activist behind the scheme is Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche, with a global network of Buddhist centres, Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition. Some 55 Tibetan scholars have petitioned against the project.
The terrorism problem: 24 October 2001: Anti-globalisation moves?: In Australia, SBS TV screens a special news documentary by Nick Lazaredes attacking US views on free trade, and revisions of such ideas in the "food security" aftermath of the WTC bombing: Free Trade: An American Myth, on US-Australian trade relationships.
23 October 2001: Australia: Anthony Mundine, Australian Aboriginal
champion boxer (a convert to Islam), apologises on national TV for
earlier suggesting that the US may have brought the 11 September
attacks on itself. Controversy earlier erupted, and Mundine's view is
attacked on segments programmed by Australian radio talkback king,
John Laws. World Boxing Council protests so vigorously about
Mundine's remarks, it is questioned if his career is destroyed?
23 October 2001: A high-ranking Moslem leader in Australia, Amjad Ali Mehboob, chief executive of Australian Council of Islamic Organisations, has come to Mundine's defence, saying he is not a terrorist sympathiser and has simply spoken of the underlying causes behind the rise of Osama bin-Laden et al.
23 October 2001: Leader of Russia Vladimir Putin now decides to back acknowledged leader of the Afghanistan government, Rabbani.
The terrorism problem: 23 October, 2001: Taliban laughs at Australia's military involvements in the Afghanistan campaign. US warships anchor near or dock at Darwin, Australia. Two anthrax deaths in eastern US.
October 2001: Afghanistan, Operation Enduring Freedom, with US and UK as coalition with up to 50,000 troops on standby versus 40,000-60,000 Taliban troops and 5000-6000 al-Qa'ida men.
22 October 2001: Malaysia is now under pressure to do more to stop terrorists funnelling money through its financial institutions. Regional ministers attending Asia-Pacific Economic Co-Operation summit in Shanghai) (APEC) are concerned about this, as well as security for airports, aircraft and ports, countering any supply disruptions.
The terrorism problem: 22 October 2001: Israel moves more forcefully into Palestine, insisting that Palestinian terrorism must cease. President Bush in US enhances budget for war against terrorism. Reports arise that a 10-year-old son of Taliban leader (Mulla Mohhamad Omar) has been injured/killed by a US strike on the leader's house.
22 October 2001: Claims arise that with their bombing raids, the US is taking pains not to alienate an Afghan warlord, Jaluddin Haqqani, who controls Khost and is an ally of the ruling Taliban. Haqqani has control over well-organised training camps "burrowed into a mountain".
21 October 2001: US does not yet admit it has plans to deploy "large conventional forces" in Afghanistan, leaving media commenting on "small insertions" of US special forces.
The terrorism problem: 20 October 2001: In Afghanistan, US-led ground war begins on search and destroy missions. In UK: Makers of jet engines, Rolls Royce, lays off 5000 workers due to falling demand for product. Near Christmas Island (Australia) appears another boat of presumably illegal immigrants from Middle East, on an Indonesian boat.
20 October 2001: In New York, four members of al-Qa'ida are now sentenced to life in prison for participation in the 1998 bombing of two US embassies in East Africa that left 224 dead and 4000 injured. The men are from Tanzania, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Lebanon, named in Sydney Morning Herald of this date. One concern of jury members was turning any of the men into martyrs, or not, by executing them.
20 October 2001: Financial analysts at Lombard Street Research in London now estimate that since 11 September, the world economy has lost US$240 billion due to slowdown.
20 October, 2001: In New York, the FBI feels it may have a lead on an anthrax-using letter-terrorist working a small mail run in Trenton, New Jersey. Meantime, an anthrax letter from Atlanta has lately frightened people at a UN Centre in Nairobi, Kenya, Africa.
20 October, 2001: Prime minister of Australia, John Howard, feels that if bin-Laden is caught, and convicted of various crimes, he should then be executed. (Reported in The Weekend Australian, 20-21 October 2001.
19 October, 2001: Confused reports: With later-seen pictures of a distraught Sondos Ismail, who lost three daughters in this tragedy, reports arise of an overcrowded vessel carrying mostly Iraqi asylum-seekers from Sumatra at 3pm foundering in a heavy sea of Sunda Strait; 353 drown and only 45 are rescued. On 17 October, pictures are seen of little girls in princess dresses who have died. Footage is shown of friends and relatives in grief. Thirty of these refugees had been officially classified by UN as genuine cases.
The terrorism problem: 19 October 2001: Leader of Taliban suggests to Northern Alliance that they join the Taliban against the Americans, an idea turned down flat.
19-23 October 2001: Confused or delayed reports: Sinking of an overcrowded boat full of Middle Eastern (Iraqi) refugees on Indonesian coast off Java. The boat had been heading for Christmas Island-Australia. About 350-370 people drowned, about 21 rescued. TV reports in Australia suggest that Indonesian police sent these people onto their boat at gunpoint.
The terrorism problem: 18 October 2001: US unprecedented situation, US Congress is now closed to the public due to anthrax scares.
18 October 2001: Regional TV news in Australia: Killers of Israeli government minister confess on video (?). US president Bush visits China, as do leaders of Indonesia and Australia. By now, about 31 Washington workers are exposed to anthrax risks, although it appears none will die. Israel warns Arafat to turn over the killers of their government minister or face retaliation. Arafat has condemned the killing and fears a vicious cycle of violence.
17 October 2001: Newspaper report from Germany-Europe: Moslem militants have been plotting a poison chemical attack on Europe designed to suffocate people.
The terrorism problem: 17 October 2001: 1500 Australian troops join ground forces in Afghanistan to fight Taliban, which is reportedly now losing heart for the fight (?). In Israel, report of a successful assassination attempt on an extreme-right, anti-Arab minister of government of Israel; the tourism minister, Rehavam Zeevi. Yassar Arafat is deemed responsible by Israel, BBC reports.
17 October 2001: Report in Australia that in 2002, international post-graduate students will be able to study on counter-terrorism at Australian National University.
16 October 2001: Panicky reports arise of Australia being "gripped" by fear of anthrax mail contamination, in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Townsville and a few country areas; most cases being hoaxes by idiots. In US is an inability to decide if anthrax attacks are conducted by foreign terrorists or not.
16 October 2001: US reportedly frustrated at too little information coming to them from Pakistan's spy agency. Pakistan meantime warns US against helping Northern Alliance to storm into Kabul. Reportedly, a strategic genius and a key bin-Laden associate is a former member of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Ayman al Zawahiri, who is said to have helped assassinate president of Egypt Anwar Sadat in 1981. Zawhahiri joined bin-Laden's network in the late 1990s; he was born in 1951 in Egypt, and has had extensive medical training.
16 October 2001: In US, with fears of chemical or biological warfare, FBI is now tracking/tracing up to 30 Arabian men who are said to have taken out licences to transport hazardous materials in trucks. In Afghanistan, Taliban begins to show proof that civilians are being killed in US-led attacks. Israel meantime pulls its tanks out of Hebron. In Indonesia, concerned about Moslem views on US-led attacks, president Megawati Sukarnoputri says, "blood cannot be cleansed by blood", "No individual, group or government has the right to try to catch terrorist perpetrators by attacking the territory of another country".
The terrorism problem: 16 October 2001: President of Pakistan now wishes leader of Taliban Mullah Omar "to be taken out". (TV news headlines in Australia).
15 October 2001: Meeting of drug-surveillance chiefs from 60 countries in Australia to consider what will happen world-wide with the current Afghani/Taliban stockpile of cheap, high-grade opium/heroin being released. What would be the knock-on effects in the South East Asia and South American drug trades? And in major cities around the world?
15 October 2001: Sydney's international airport is gripped by anthrax-powder fears. Similar fear spreads through Sydney via mail centres. Riots in Nigeria re protests against US attacks; troops ordered to shoot troublemakers. A TV report suggests that on Night 1 of bombing in Afghanistan, US air forces had bin-Laden in their sights but a hit on him is not authorised.
The terrorism problem: 15 October 2001: Taliban offers to hand over bin-Laden to an independent third country, if sufficient evidence against him is presented on his involvements, if US stops bombing Afghanistan.
The terrorism problem: 14 October 2001: Nigeria: Twelve people dead in Christian vs Moslem conflict re US-led attacks. Protests in New York, London and Berlin as peace-marchers call for end to US-led strikes against Afghanistan; al-Qa'ida warns US that it can expect more suicide hijacked-jet attacks. Threat of major confrontations between authorities and protesters in Pakistan.
13 October, 2001: Chinese government is reportedly co-operating in "war against terrorism" and is concerned about an Islamic separatist movement in the western "autonomous region", Xinjiang (sometimes called East Turkestan, which borders eight central Asian republics including Afghanistan and Pakistan). Amnesty International feels that any efforts to suppress this movement will only inflame tensions with and among Moslems. The people of the largest ethnic minority in western China (East Turkestan) are the Uighurs. China has tried to suppress these separatists for many years.
13 October 2001: US president George Bush offers a truce to Taliban: "hand over bin-Laden and his terrorists and we'll stop the bombing". Bush also confirms that "perhaps", terrorists linked to bin-Laden considered using crop-duster planes to spread biological or chemical weapons. Officials now shut-down the crop-dusting industry. Bush also says that US aid to Afghanistan will be improved from US$170 million earlier to US$330 million this year. Bush also says that there ought to be a Palestinian state with the borders negotiated by the parties, as long as such a state respects the right of Israel to exist.
13 October 2001: In New York, risks of cancer and lung disease from asbestos fibre are being faced by recovery workers at WTC. Advising is asbestos expert Philip Landigan, chairman of dept. of community and preventive medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in Manhattan. Asbestos fibres can be 10,000 times thinner than a human year, and while use of asbestos in buildings was banned in 1971, some was used on WTC tower 1 to the 39th floor. Asbestos fibres from the disaster site (where fires are still burning) have been found in buildings up to three blocks away but the general public runs little risk.
13 October 2001: Computer specialists in the US now fear a wave of terrorist "cyberattacks" (or "infowar") on military assets, electricity grids, transport systems and other infrastructure. The White House has appointed terrorism specialist Richard Clarke to work on cyberspace security.
13 October 2001: Reports say that India supports the Northern Alliance in India. In the Pakistan army, Intelligence chief Lt-General Mehmood Ahmed has been sacked by Musharraf for complex reasons. Headlines various include: Guns and technology collide in a strange and dusty land. The Northern Alliance is said to partly fund its war against the Taliban by "selling emeralds and printing money". The emeralds might fetch Aust$120 million per year, according to Northern Alliance commander, General Baryalai. The money ("the afghani") is printed in Russia.
13 October 2001: US has released alleged "most wanted terrorist", Abdul Rahman Yasi, eight years ago, after he is questioned re possible involvement in 1993 World Trade Centre attack. A Jordanian charged and convicted with the 1993 WTC bombing is Mohammed Salameh.
The terrorism problem: 13 October 2001: Millions of Afghani civilians are now at risk of starvation in coming months, aid agencies warn. In Islamabad, news surfaces that al-Qa'ida has offered a reward of Aust$100,000 for the capture of any US soldier in Afghanistan. US policies of sanctions against Iran are said by UN sources to have contributed to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. In Saudi Arabia, the royal family refuses to freeze assets of bin-Laden due to fear of an Islamic uprising.
13 October 2001: Big belief-in-dance opportunity: World-wide, about 200,000 dancers are to attend a global dance party to be held simultaneously in 100 cities. They will unite by singing the same song, a dance track, Prayer for Peace. Dancers will hold hands in a circle and focus their energy into the Earth, which represents a concentration on environmental concerns. This annual event was founded in 1997 by British DJ Chris Decker and a group of international party promoters, artists and musicians. Such parties can last from one-three days. (Sydney's dancers were organised by Leah Boucher.)
13 October 2001: In Africa, the uncared-for continent: Situations in Sudan are worsening. The UN is pulling out of the country's south after three days of government air raids. Food distribution to about 20,000 people has been interrupted. Oil companies operating in the country are being urged to work for peace; the claimed contradiction being that if they give funds to the government, this makes conflict worse. (The US bans American firms from operating in Sudan). Conflict in Sudan has cost about two million lives. It is said that in British colonial times, to 1956, the British believed that Sudan had the potential, apart from its oil reserves, to be the food bowl of Africa.
12 October 2001: Clarification: By now, six mosques and/or churches are burned or threatened in south-west Sydney. Groups of bin-Laden supporters are said to be found in Sydney.
12 October 2001: Another load of 200 asylum-seekers on a fishing boat sail into Australian north-western waters, the fourth such boat in seven weeks.
12 October 2001: Claims arise that bin-Laden has a network of shops (two in Yemen) selling honey, much-prized in the Middle East, as fronts for his activities, which may include moving money, income, drugs, weapons and agents. One of his top associates is said to be Palestinian director of al-Qa'ida operations for Palestine, Abu Zubeidah. Another associate may be a Palestinian-American, Khalil al-Deek. It is claimed that the Egyptian Islamic Jihad has also used honey shops similarly. Another al-Qa'ida spokesman is Sleiman Abou-Gheith.
12 October 2001: Saudi royal prince Alwaleed binb Talal in New York offers a $10 million donation, to find it refused by mayor Giuliani when the prince suggested that US foreign policies in the Middle East needed revision, particularly regarding Palestine. Also on the propaganda front, British prime minister Tony Blair, visiting the Middle East, has realised that the UK needs to "upgrade" its media and public opinion work in the Arab and Moslem world. Australian art critic in the US, Robert Hughes, says, "This is not something from which America will soon recover - if at all. America has never suffered the kind of humiliation and partial destruction of identity that goes with invasion and mortification of government," as journalists canvas the opinions of psychologists and psychiatrists on how people are coping. Meanwhile, Britain's military chief, Admiral Michael Boyce, feels confident that an Afghani with inside knowledge will finally betray bin-Laden, even if bin-Laden is "hiding in some cave". A South Asia expert at Georgetown University in Washington DC, Patricia Grossman, reportedly says, many Afghans remain fearful about the prospect of a return of the Northern Alliance." There are views that the Alliance is not free of war crime, human rights abuses and drug trafficking. Does the Alliance present a credible alternative to the Taliban, who from 1992 when they took over Kabul entered on a life-and-death civil war with the Alliance (National Islamic Front for the Salvation of Afghanistan). A recognised head of an ousted Afghanistan government is Bahuraddin Rabanni. The Taliban is mostly Pashtun people, of a majority, the Alliance is composed of ethnic Tajiks and Uzbeks.
Note: Claims are made that the Taliban does not truly represent
Afghanis, as it is made up of Pashtun Afghans from the south,
Pakistani militants and Arab followers of bin-Laden.
In 2000: The Taliban in Afghanistan banned opium cultivation in areas under its control after a record 1999 crop of 4600 tonnes. In 2000, the UN says that Alliance territory produced 150 tonnes of opium (to be sold in Europe?) while Taliban territory produced 50 tonnes. (Item, The Weekend Australian, 13-14 October, 2001).
12 October 2001: Concerns about usual press freedom in the US arise due to conflict with possible security considerations, after US National Security adviser Condoleeza Rice and others warn that broadcast of bin-Laden's latest video, and other messages from the Taliban, might distribute new coded messages in their scripts to terrorists still lying in wait.
12 October 2001: The Yugoslav War Crimes Tribunal may not have enough money or manpower to finish its work before its mandate from the UN runs out.
12 October 2001: Prague: Police in Central Europe have acted on a people-smuggling ring led by Afghans that has moved tens of thousands of Afghans into the European Union.
12 October 2001: US is to send military advisers to Philippines as part of its war against terrorism, to deal with extremist Islamic groups in Asia-Pacific region. Fears now exist of further terrorism from Islamic fundamentalist groups in Indonesia, Philippines and Malaysia, possibly co-organised by al-Qa'ida.
The terrorism problem: 12 October 2001: Sydney is said to be scene of a heroin drought which has had effect since Christmas 2000. NSW Premier Bob Carr said that one reason for the drought was low rainfall in Burma, which as part of the Golden Triangle helps produce about 80 per cent of Australia's heroin supply. Reports by now are that the Taliban in Afghanistan has stockpiled up to 300 tonnes of heroin, which it may use to flood the world market with cheap product.
11 October 2001: Day Four of Operations: US prepares for ground war in Afghanistan. Is bin-Laden now in US sights? Pakistan: Protesters are urged to conduct jihad against US and its allies. In UK is a Moslem call (not reported a second time?) for Blair to be assassinated. Fighting moves into trench-warfare mode between Northern Alliance and Taliban. About 2000 men are claimed to defect from Taliban. Taliban says bin-Laden is alive, well and free to wage holy war. Third case of anthrax in Florida.
The terrorism problem: 11 October 2001: On TV news, an Australian woman farewelling her military husband sent to the Gulf, says, "Stay away from Americans, they're accident-prone".
10 October 2001: Considerations for the future? The seeds of some of today's situations?: Claim that Islamic societies are less productive than today's Western societies partly due to the view(s) taken of the role(s) of women, in an article by David Landes and Richard A. Landes. David S. Landes is Professor of Economic History at Harvard University now preparing a book on financial dynasties. Richard A. Landes is Professor of Medieval History at Boston University now preparing a book on demotic religiosity and origins of civil society in the West. Item from article, The Australian newspaper, 10 October 2001, p. 31, on decline from 14th Century of Islamic world and centuries later, resentment of the dominant west, etc.
10 October 2001, was World Mental Health Day. (What a pity it wasn't better observed - Ed)
10 October 2001: Concern rises in US over state of research on ways to combat various sorts of anthrax pestilence. Various aid agencies say US relief operation for Afghanistan is "dangerous and cynical". It is now being reported that even if bin-Laden was caught (and found guilty), the US will still remain interested in a "general war on terrorism".
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Australian business confidence is "shattered" by the 11 September attack on New York. "Corporate confidence dives after September turmoil".
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Syria, not noted for friendship to the US, wins a seat on the UN security council, which can place it on that council's new anti-terrorism committee. The US backed Syria's candidacy for such a role. Current president of Syria is Bashar Assad.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: The international
aid-agency Doctors Without Borders (Medecins Sans Frontiers),
has announced it will refuse aid from any government engaged in the
military alliance against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, in order
to preserve its neutrality. The MSF executive director in Australia
is David Curtis.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Anti-American protests are seen in Jakarta, Indonesia; Pakistan, Egypt (20,000 students protesting), and the Gulf state of Oman.
By 10 October, it is thought that the Taliban might be reinforced by volunteers from Pakistan, some Chechens, and members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Leaders of India and Pakistan resolve to try to reduce tensions in light of current situations. This situation has deteriorated by 17 October.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Foreign ministers and other diplomats from 56 Islamic nations (Organisation for the Islamic Conference representing 1.2 billion Moslems) meet in Dohar, capital of Qatar, and decry "brutal acts of terror", which "oppose the tolerant and divine message of Islam", but also calling for the UN, not the US, to drive any reaction against terrorism. The kingdom of Saudi Arabia (or, the Saudi royal family) is reportedly very worried. The Iraqi minister attending is Naji al-Hadithi. The supreme leader of the Shi'ite state of Iran is Ayatollah Ali Khamenei; his foreign minister is Kamal Kharrazi.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Re TV news channel al-Jazeera Arab news ("the CNN of Arabia"), in Dohar, Qatar, which uses three satellites and unusually for journalism in the Middle East, broadcasts what it likes, to the embarrassment of the US and some Middle Eastern governments. News and publicity blackouts in the Middle East are now a thing of the past. Al-Jazeera has an audience world-wide of about 35 million. It retains broadcasting independence, was begun in 1996 by the liberal emir of Qatar, Sheik Hamad bin-Khalifa al-Thani and receives state funding annually of about Aust$60 million. The station's name means "peninsula" in Arabic.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001, Jakarta, tear gas and water cannon used to disperse protesters. Qatar sees an emergency meeting of Arabic/Islamic leaders, who apart from other things are worried about decline in their ability to control publicity seen by their populations. US declares air superiority over Afghanistan. Pakistan has a rising death toll due to protest violence.
The terrorism problem: 10 October 2001: Third night of
US-led bombings. Strikes will now be by day as well as night. Taliban
air bases are knocked out. Second case of anthrax in Florida is at
office of newspaper National Inquirer which had been notably
critical of Osama bin-Laden. More terror attacks are proposed on
Arabian TV by a bin-Laden associate.
Re anthrax: The usual incubation period for anthrax is three-five days, but in 1979 due to "an accidental release" at Sverdlovsk in the then-Soviet Union, it was found that symptoms may take 30-35 days to develop.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Defiant bin-Laden
issues calls to arms. Claimed quotes from bin-Laden (videotape handed
in at Kabul and provided by al-Jazeera Arabian TV news channel in
Qatar)): "God Almighty hit the US at its most vulnerable spot.
He destroyed its greatest buildings. Praise be to God. It was filled
with terror from its north to its south. Praise be to God."
"I swear neither the US nor he who lives in the US will enjoy security before we see it as a reality in Palestine and all infidel armies leave the land of Mohammed." Over 8-9 October, the Taliban Defence Ministry in Kabul is said to be ablaze. Violent protests are seen in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Islamabad. Australia is on a heightened security alert after the beginning of strikes in Afghanistan. Aid workers in Afghanistan brace as Afghanistan's larger cities "empty" as attacks begin, and the country already has 2.1 million Afghan refugees. bin-Laden is said to be celebrating the union of his al-Qa'ida movement with Egyptian Islamic Jihad.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: As the night sky of Kabul reigns fire from US planes, British prime minister Blair says: "They were given the choice of siding with justice, or siding with terror. They chose terror." President of Iraq Saddam Hussein says: "The true believers cannot but condemn this act, not because it has been committed by America against a Moslem people but because it is an aggression perpetrated outside international law." A consul-general of the Taliban, Rehmatullah Kakazada, says, "We are ready for jihad." From Islamabad, John Zubrzycki a western correspondent complains that the US has nothing in place on the Pakistani border to care for "expected flood" of refugees. He feels that the Taliban was born when the international community abandoned Afghanistan after the Soviet withdrawal in 1989.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: US has brokered an agreement between exiled king of Afghanistan Zahir Shah, and Northern Alliance to form some kind of new government once Taliban is defeated. The former king was deposed in 1973 and has now offered to lead "a government of national unity" with a national council of 120 delegates, of whom 60 would be his own representatives, 50 would come from the alliance and 10 from the Taliban. Follows some facts on The Tribes of Afghanistan. Pashtun people (12,936,700) are Sunni Moslems, speak Pakhtu. Turkmen (673,000) are Moslem-Hanafites and speak Turkmence. Hazara are Moslems-Ithna-Asharis and speak Hazaragi. Tajiks (4,774,600) are Moslem-Hanafites and speak Dari Persian. Uzbeks (1,640,000) are Muslim Hanafites and speak Uzbek. Uzbeks are said to descend from the hordes of Genghis Khan.
9 October 2001: Comment arises on current views on and in the
Islamic world in an Australian newspaper from Francis Fukuyama,
professor of International Political Economy at Johns Hopkins
University, School of advanced international studies. Fukuyama in
1989, as the Berlin Wall fell, in a magazine article in, The
National Interest, felt moved to comment on "the end of
history", a phrase which became title of his book, and,
Since 1989, Fukuyama has had to spend much time explaining what he meant with such an absurd set of words. What he meant was that more of the world was being brought to "modernity", and we (in "the West") could not expect to "evolve" ourselves much further. Fukuyama was an opponent of a "clash of civilizations" view. Fukuyama currently wonders why Islam is the only cultural system which produces people who "routinely reject modernity". Is it possible that Fukuyama's view of "modernity" is a dash simplistic, if not also a tad complacent about "democracy"... After all, he lives in a nation, the US, where a great many eligible voters happen to refrain from voting. Do these non-voters also reject "modernity"?
Francis Fukuyama (a sociologist) is by 2002 author also of Trust: The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity, The Great Disruption: Human Nature and the Reconstitution of the Social Order, (1999) and Our Posthuman Future: Consequences of the Biotechnology Revolution. Profile Book, 2002, 400pp.
Fukuyama in Sydney Morning Herald of 12 October 2001 wrote
further: "A stream of commentators have been asserting that the
tragedy of 11 September proves I was utterly wrong to have said, more
than a decade ago, that we had reached the end of history. But the
way in which I used the world "history" was different: it
referred to the progress over the centuries towards modernity,
characterised by institutions such as democracy and capitalism. My
observation, made in 1989 on the eve of the collapse of communism,
was that this evolutionary process did seem to be bringing ever
larger parts of the world towards modernity. ... there was nothing
else towards which we could expect to evolve - hence the end of
history. ... [following the] discrediting of socialism, monarchy,
fascism and other types of authoritarianism."
(Note: Some of this is versus the views of Harvard political scientist, Samuel Huntingdon, who argues not for a single, global system, but a "clash of civilizations" in which six-seven major cultural groups will co-exist without converging, and represent the fracture lines of future global conflict(s).)
Lost Worlds suspects that history will not end till about eight minutes after the sun stops shining, whenever that happens. In which case, neither political nor religious systems of thought will tend to matter... end of story.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Fresh reports: Afghanistan: Four UN landmine-clearing workers, local Afghanis, killed in attacks by debris from bombings. US have attacked communication and transport facilities with Attack 2, up to 31 targets sought. Palestinians turn on one another, as Arafat cracks down on anti-US protests. Warnings issued: US-led attacks on terrorist bases may spread from Afghanistan to other countries. Jakarta: attempted storming of US embassy, evidently led by group named Front for Defenders of Islam (one leader of which is Muhammad Rizieq, who insists Americans and other foreigners leave Indonesia). Sydney in Australia: Up to six Christian Church in western-southwestern Sydney are torched; a mosque in Brisbane had some days previous been burned to the ground. Bangladesh: Protests of a jihad persuasion against US-led attacks. In US are fears of more attacks, and US is on highest alert ever, with a second case of anthrax identified.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Australia is on heightened security alert. In world news, prime minister Blair tells British parliamentarians that bin-Laden's network is not the only one to be confronted, world-wide. In the US, a second case of anthrax arises in Florida; traces of the disease are found on a computer keyboard in a workplace at a publishing operation connected with National Inquirer. From Islamabad, In Pakistan, protest levels vary, but are expected to widen, and be orchestrated by anti-Western interests. More violent protests against US attacks is expected in Pakistan, and curfews may be imposed. Riots have earlier broken out. A UN-run orphanage is attacked. Fears arise of civil war in Pakistan. Pakistani president Pervez Mushharraf has removed two pro-Taliban generals. Politics and protest in Palestine become complicated as Palestinians reportedly shoot Palestinians. Yassar Arafat (partly due to his public statements against terrorism soon after 11 September?) is in "a politically complex situation". Israelis are shown on TV applying gas marks.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Islamic leaders in Australia are stepping-up security around their mosques.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Second wave of US-led attacks in Afghanistan. Targets include pre-selected Taliban targets not yet hit. US may inform UN Security Council that it will seek terrorists' bases anywhere in the world it may suspect them. In Afghanistan, Northern Alliance says many Taliban military commanders will defect to their side.
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: it is expected that soon, the Northern Alliance will move on Taliban facilities, and face about 10,000 Taliban troops being sent north. A spokesman for Northern Alliance is Abdullah Abdullah. It appears now that the number of displaced Afghani people (who need humanitarian aid) is more than seven million.
8 October 2001: A man said to be involved in people-smuggling on the Indonesia-Australian run is Kais Asfoor (a Palestinian born in Iraq in 1970), one of the principals of the most successful Indonesia-based syndicate working. He is last heard of in a cell in Perth, possibly facing a 20-year sentence. He has been charged with illegally bringing 1698 people in 17 boats to Australia between June 1999 and March 2001. He has at times used a false Turkish passport in name of Iman Dogan. Two of his associates are said to be: Ahmed Aloung ("Ahmed the Indonesian") and Majid Mahmood (an Iraqi born in 1958). Asfor married Aloung's sister. (See article, The Australian, 8 October, 2001, p. 11.)
8 October 2001: A close associate of bin-Laden for up to ten
years, Muhammad Atef (killed by 18-19 November 2001), (or, Sheikh
Taseer Abdullah or Abu Hafs al-Masri) is now said to have a price put
on his head by FBI of US$5 million. Did Atef plan, or help plan, the
11 September attack? In Germany, Der Spiegel has been
commenting on such matters, which the British feel is too sensitive
to discuss. Atef is regarded as the planner of the bomb attack on US
embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998 which killed 224 people and
injured thousands more. Atef is said to be a former policeman in
Egypt. Atef's daughter has married bin-Laden's eldest son.
(Reported by The Sunday Times by 8 October 2001)
The terrorism problem: 8 October, 2001, At Salonika in Greece, an international symposium on prostitution has resolved to set up a centre for sex trade victims in south-eastern Europe. There could be as many as 300,000 women to be regarded as such victims.
The terrorism problem: 8 October 2001: In Pakistan, calls for jihad and qualifications regarding evidence against bin-Laden come from head of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islami religious party, Maulana Fazlur Rehman, who lives in a Pakistan northwestern frontier town, Dera Ismail Khan. Rehman has been detained and placed under house arrest. He runs many madrassa (religious schools).
The terrorism problem: 9 October 2001: Defiant bin-Laden
issues calls to arms. Claimed quotes from bin-Laden (videotape handed
in at Kabul and provided by al-Jazeera Arabian TV news channel in
Qatar)): "God Almighty hit the US at its most vulnerable spot.
He destroyed its greatest buildings. Praise be to God. It was filled
with terror from its north to its south. Praise be to God."
"I swear neither the US nor he who lives in the US will enjoy security before we see it as a reality in Palestine and all infidel armies leave the land of Mohammed." Over 8-9 October, the Taliban Defence Ministry in Kabul is said to be ablaze. Violent protests are seen in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Rawalpindi, Islamabad. Australia is on a heightened security alert after the beginning of strikes in Afghanistan. Aid workers in Afghanistan brace as Afghanistan's larger cities "empty" as attacks begin, and the country already has 2.1 million Afghan refugees. bin-Laden is said to be celebrating the union of his al-Qa'ida movement with Egyptian Islamic Jihad.
The terrorism problem: 8-9 October 2001: Further reports in Australia of the strange case where asylum-seekers on way to Australian waters threw some of their children overboard. The people-smugglers in control of the boat (with 186 Iraqis aboard) said to have disabled the boat's steering (or sabotaged its engine(?)), and adults jumped overboard. HMAS Adelaide had fired some warning shots.
The terrorism problem: 8 October 2001: By now, the term "warlord" is being used more often to denote rival military allegiances in and near Afghanistan. Claims are that made the bin-Laden's bigger plan involves fomenting a civil war in Saudi Arabia. Former political science teacher at Kabul University, Professor Rasool Amin, quoted in newspapers as saying: "The Taliban are stupid, ignorant and obstructionist. They are dragging my country back into the Stone Age. It is said that the Taliban are exploiting old Afghan traditions of resisting external threats, buy off former enemies and splitting opposition. "Much of the Taliban's strategic planning takes place in desert tents, mud brick huts and tunnels carved into mountainsides. Meanwhile the director of the Afghan Islamic Press is Muhammad Yagoub Sharafat. A once-powerful mujaheddin leader, Gulbeddin Heckmatyar has sided with the Taliban but the only Pashtun leader in the opposition Northern Alliance, Abdul Rasul Sayyaf, has not sided with the Taliban. Leader of the Northern Alliance is Burhanuddin Rabani. In London, a leader of Movement for Islamic Reform in Arabia is Saas Alfagih. Concern is expressed in Australia re jailed Australian aid workers, Peter Bunch and Diana Thomas. In US, President Bush has offered an extra US$40 million to help protect visitors to the Winter Olympics at Salt Lake City, Utah, in February 2002.
The terrorism problem: 7-8 October, 2001: Strikes on seven Afghani cities, from about 8.57pm Kabul time. Including F-14 and F-15 strike planes and B-1, B-52 and B-2 (Stealth bombers) also used. (Stealth or B2 bombers will drop 2500kg laser-guided "bunker-buster" bombs.) Australia, Canada, France, Germany ("unreserved backing") Italy and Russia are ready to provide military assistance. Russia has 18,000 troops in Tajikistan, which has a 1200km border with Afghanistan. Italian security forces are on heightened alert. Taliban claims it has shot down one if not four aircraft. US troops are now stationed at former Soviet bases in Uzbekistan. 7-8 October, Afghan news media reported that at least 20 people died due to the first Operation Enduring Freedom attack. The Taliban Defence Ministry said to be ablaze. A radio station off the air. Reportedly in the Islamic world, many ordinary people side with bin-Laden, who declares the world is now divided into two ("a struggle between good and evil"?). Vocal in Egypt are a professor, Ashraf El-Bayoumi (ex-Michigan State University), an activist who led anti-US demonstration, and a strong critic of US foreign policy. Iraq views the British-US bombings as "treacherous aggression" and Iran sees them as "unacceptable". The US hopes that the Taliban government will "implode". The Northern Alliance, as it is known in the West, which is expected to aid anti-Taliban operations, calls itself "the United Front" in Afghanistan.
The terrorism problem: 7-8 October, 2001: bin-Laden quotes: "I swear neither the US nor he who lives in the US will enjoy security before we see it as a reality in Palestine and all infidel armies leave the land of Mohammed." "America is today tasting what we have tasted for decades." Osama bin-Laden, in a video sent to a news channel in Dohar, Qatar, al-Jazeera Arab news. A 30-second video shot in an Afghani mountain stronghold showing bin-Laden and his aides.
The terrorism problem: 8 October 2001: About 2.30am-3am Eastern Australia time, US and Britain attack Taliban bases in Afghanistan. About 50 cruise missiles are launched from British submarines and ships. US strike jets are used. Two B2s (Stealth bombers) fly from Missouri in the US. Attacks are later followed by humanitarian aid/food drops. Leaflet drops explain to Afghanis that the air strikes are not against the Afghanistan population, nor the Islamic faith, but against terrorists. By now, bin-Laden has distributed a video displaying him warning Americans that they will feel no more safe than Palestinians do, calling for a holy war, and implying an admission of responsibility for 11 September attacks.
7 October 2001: In a bizarre twist to the dilemmas to Australian officialdom posed by illegal migrants (some from Afghanistan, funnelled through Indonesia) arriving to the north-west areas of Australia (eg, Christmas Island, Ashmore Reef), some illegals, wearing lifejackets, have thrown themselves and some children (wearing lifejackets) into the water in an effort to coerce Australian officials into displaying more sympathy for their situation. Later they allegedly saboutaged/sunk their boat to gain the attention of officials and were taken aboard an Australian naval ship. (It might be noted that these people-smuggling incidents are unique in Australian maritime history since before 1788! - Ed)
The terrorism problem: 7 October 2001: Pakistan arrests Maulana Fazlur Rehman, a senior religious leader critical of imminent US attacks on the Taliban in Afghanistan. By the 8th, angry students in Pakistan protest US attack; while in Jakarta, Indonesia, are calls to "millions of Moslems" to protest outside US embassy there.
Concern exists by 7 October 2001 that the eight aid workers including two Australians (Peter Bunch and Diana Thomas, with Christian-based Shelter Now organisation) scheduled for trial in Afghanistan for preaching Christianity will be hostaged as a "human shield" by a Taliban fearful of American attack. A Pakistani lawyer acting for the aid workers is Atif Ali Khan. Australia's consul in Pakistan is Alistair Adams.
The terrorism problem: 7 October 2001: "I tell them that these events have divided the world into two camps, the camp of the faithful and the camp of the infidels." Osama bin-Laden in a broadcast. bin-Laden has also said, "America has been filled with fear from north to south and east to west, and thanks be to God."
6 October, 2001: Newspaper illustration of poster on Osama bin-Laden, "The great mujahid of Islam". Slogan: "Jihad is our mission. As a Moslem This is my Aim, to spread Islam throughout in the world by Love or Power." British government is said to have dossiered a case against bin-Laden more comprehensively than any other government. By now, mullahs in Iran are said to be dismayed at seeing a gathering of forces deployed by US and its allies. Fears are expressed in US of more attacks on US soil, or soil of some of its allies.
6 October 2001: Newspaper headlines: "The terrorist attack on the US has devastated the world's airlines. Planes are being mothballed, routes slashed and staff sacked as fear of flying keeps passengers away." (For the stats, see Sydney Morning Herald, 6-7 October 2001, p. 54).
The terrorism problem: 6 October 2001: In Australia, views arise that there will be a 20 per cent drop in global travel in next twelve months. Also, a sombre mood grips international fashion industry, with major players slashing profit forecasts.
The terrorism problem: 6 October: In US at Camp David, US government officials decide on attack strategy against Taliban-controlled targets, and reject a proposal from Taliban to put bin-Laden on trial before an Islamic Court in Afghanistan. In US, sales of gas masks, chemical-proof suits and anthrax antidotes have boomed. Belief exists that more terror attacks must soon come to the US and perhaps other countries. Also expected by US officialdom are strong anti-US and retaliatory actions against US and its interests world-wide.
The terrorism problem: 5 October, 2001: Pakistan: Osama bin-Laden now loses support of all nations except Afghanistan, since Pakistan now withdraws any support for him and says there is enough evidence collected for an indictment under law. The US has meantime launched an Aust$640 million humanitarian aid package for the Afghani population.
30 September 2001: Afghanistan: Management of Priorities and
Ideas on Good Government in general: Two Australian aid workers
(and six others from other countries) go on trial before the Taliban
for allegedly preaching Christianity in Afghanistan as up to eight
million Afghani refugees scatter across borders to avoid the risks of
starvation and outright war.
Reported SBS TV Australia on 30 September 2001.
Meantime, by 2 October 2001, an urban Afghani doctor said simply this: "We have no way really of knowing how many children are dying, but if you go to the cemetery you will see that for every adult grave there are ten or 15 small graves of children."
The terrorism problem: 2 October 2001: Elite US/UK troops reportedly being inserted to bases along Pakistani border, readying for action, some defence analysts think.
29 September 2001: Signs of division appear within the Taliban as some of them admit they have made contact with bin-Laden, and some Moslem clerics from Pakistan visit them and ask for the surrender of bin-Laden.
September 2001: Pope John Paul II visits Armenia to celebrate 1700 years of Christianity there.
By 28 September 2001: Morbid humour has already started to circulate on the Net about "the current world situation". On Osama bin-Laden, (broken link?) see: http://policehumour.com/osama/
Disaster deathrates: Consider the lack of world publicity and concern here: Manila, Philippines: About 3000 people have died as fire destroys more than 600 shanty huts in a Manila slum called "Happy Land". (Reported 28 September 2001)
The terrorism problem: 26 September 2001: Russia to hold military talks with former Soviet republics in aftermath of WTC bombing in New York.
The terrorism problem: 26 September 2001: About now, special forces from the international anti-terrorist coalition are moving into Afghanistan from bases along the Pakistani border, according to an aide of Pakistani president Pervez Mushharraf, a defence expert, Rifaat Hussain, of Quaid-I-Azam University. Missions include the disabling of Taliban resources which impede the work of the Northern Alliance in the north of Afghanistan.
Lost Worlds 23 September, 2001:
REMARKS following the 11 September New York World Trade Centre bombing:
In the town in which Lost Worlds is produced lives an old man, Donald Beaton, who as an Australian soldier was stationed in Japan after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in Hiroshima Prefecture.
On day ten after the attack, I asked him his reaction to the situation following the New York bombings. All he would say is this: "Terrorism is a weapon for poor people."
Coming from post-atomic Japan, this remark threw many things into a perspective. Especially, that a major factor in world affairs, too-little-mentioned in the world news coverage of the 11 September bombings, and related matters, is world poverty.
However, to mention local or regional poverty, or world poverty, or, in some countries, "poverty in an Islamic world", is also to refer to a great many other matters (where Islam or its critics are influential); including attitudes to various sorts of modernity, the institutions of liberal democracies, and tolerance in religious life - matters affecting all people involved including non-Moslems.
While any sort of war ensues, including any sort of jihad, or Holy War, comment and concern about world poverty is likely to be sidelined even further as a serious issue. This will be doubly unfortunate.
It also seems safe to say, that to speak too strongly about
alleviating world poverty will be counter-productive, as to speak too
strongly would disturb the balance of human virtues which need to be
applied to the relevant work, including suitable education.
(So there will be no strong words spoken here by this website, which is anyway mostly concerned with the human past.)
However, I have since 11 September received a great deal of email which is equivocal, uncertain, possibly misleading, about the current world situation. Also, some email which is highly sceptical or cynical about the financial machinations used, or not, by the planners of the New York attack, and the suicidal hijackers involved. None of that email makes for comfortable thoughts about anything.
Deep within all religions abide timeless ideas about how to live a well-rounded human life that leaves a respectable mark when a person dies. These ideas can relate also to some alleviation of world poverty.
World-wide, these ideas need much closer attention from the world media, from economists and financiers, from governments and from religious leaders.
For one new reason: because as so many people after the New York attack, from around the world, remarked quite accurately: the world has changed.
So is there any connection - should there be any connection? - between the current aim of the US, the rooting out of terrorism, and the rooting out of world poverty?
If any such connections exist, matters need further exploration, particularly by the wealthy of the entire world.
This website carries various information about the bloody and unfortunate Crusades which preceded the Renaissance of Western Europe. Which information it is hoped will be of interest about any current risks faced by adherents of religion today.
The world does not need any new Crusades, or conflict between Islam and adherents of any other religions. What the world needs now, more than anger with damage to wealth or pride, is less poverty.
And so, the wealthy and the poor need to sit down, and talk, and share.
In fact, as an unpleasant truth, poverty is much more easily-shared-out than wealth. This may be an essential problem the world is now asking itself to face more realistically.
If this is the case, what is now most important is to ask the right questions. The world seems to be in such a state that many of the better questions will be deflected.
One of Lost Worlds' conclusions from studying the world's first wave of Crusades is that the questions asked by those Crusades were not the best questions, nor the most realistic.
A second, Crusading visitation of non-realistic questions will be disastrous, and will not help alleviate problems in places of poverty. It will merely prolong our evident problems.
Meetings of financiers and the leaders of the world's religions - all religions - almost never happen. So they can never be reported in the world press.
In the interests of realism, we now need to ask: why is this so? Why do financiers and religious leaders have so many motives to avoid each other's company so continually?
It is about time some such meetings were scheduled, regularly, and media-reported, until some decent ideals about future human life can be spoken about seriously, and believably, in the world's media, and by ordinary people.
For if there was one word over-used in the world's media concerning the New York attack, it was the world "unbelievable". Did the over-use of that word speak for itself, or not?
Now, the challenge for the world media is to draw back enough curtains, so that the word "believable" can be used much more often, with much more confidence, by ordinary people, and especially by presently poorer people.
Otherwise, we may all oblige ourselves to continue to live with things "unbelievable". Which will remain painful.
Dan Byrnes, Editor, Lost Worlds
View on world issue of 22 September 2001: On the issue of the rise of Islamic supremacy - "The global conflict against terrorism will be a battle for the hearts and minds of Islam, torn between the allure of modernism and the myth of fundamentalism"... (David Price Jones in his article in The Australian newspaper, 22 September 2001. Historian David Pryce Jones has published books including The Face of Defeat, on Palestinians, and The Closed Circle: An Interpretation of the Arabs.)
22 September 2001: Australia: Financial commentator Stephen
Bartholomeusz writes that terrorism has now weakened the foundations
of globalisation. "Globalisation of financial markets and
services and corporations has been largely driven by the private
sector, with governments struggling to keep up and adapt to the new
linkages, flows, relationships and tensions the process has
(Sydney Morning Herald, 22-23 September 2001)
(Which might all be a good, succinct way of putting it, but who manages the managers of globalisation? Like, nobody? -Ed)
22 September, 2001: Yassar Arafat in Palestine reportedly has threatened to sack police commanders if they do not stop on attacks against Israelis.
The terrorism problem: 21 September 2001: State-run Radio Damascus in Syria suggests that Israel could have been responsible for recent attacks on New York and Washington.
The terrorism problem: 17 September 2001: Following its closure on 11 September, New York Stock Exchange re-opens after its longest forced closure since after World War One. Singing of God Bless America. Within a day, shares plunge. Great damage to airline stocks in particular. About $1 trillion is wiped off the market.
Time of 11 September 2001: See also - Yvonne Ridley, In the Hands of the Taliban. Robson Books, 2002. (Testimony of a Christian missionary)
11 September, 2001: About US$6.2 billion of IT infrastructure had
to be replaced after the World Trade Centre attack. (Reported by 28
May 2002 in IT pages of The Australian newspaper)
Clean-up cost of the New York Trade Centre bombing is estimated at $1.4 billion, with 1.8 million tonnes of rubble and steel cleared.
11 September 2001: Soon after 11 September, and his TV threats to get Osama bin-Laden "dead or alive", George W. Bush was mocked for his remarks even by his wife Laura, and privately Bush acknowledged his tone was too bellicose, as Newsweek had discovered by 28 November 2001.
11 September 2001: US National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice, at the White House says she feels now she felt with the events of 11 September, "a blur", that with what happened immediately around her, including with the bombing of the Pentagon, it all "happened to somebody else", not herself, as she coped and gave necessary orders. She had something of a "floating out of body experience, watching all this" and was ordered into an underground bunker. She does not currently (a year later) know if bin-Laden is alive or dead. (Reported on ABC TV Australia on 11 September 2002, interview with Kerry O'Brien)
11 September 2001: Before the Twin Towers fell, fireproofing, sprinkler systems and water supply for hoses were all disabled due to a blaze so intense it generated heat equal to the energy output of a nuclear power plant (about one gigawatt, the fires were equivalent to an output of about 3-5 gigawatts). The plane's jet fuel drove temperatures to almost 1100 degrees centigrade, breaking through structural defences of the buildings. (American Society of Civil Engineers has been looking at the issues for a report not issued till April-May 2002.) The impact of the planes did little actual structural damage, and the fireballs seen on TV consumed only about a third of the 44,000 litres of fuel aboard each plane. The remaining fuel burned within minutes, lighting furniture, computers (the stench of burned computers and components was often noticed later that day as very peculiar), paper files, plane cargo, over multiple floors.
11 September 2001: It is reported by 28 November 2001 that when
plane 1 hit the World Trade Centre North Tower, it registered 0.9 on
the Richter scale, the second plane registered 0.7. The collapse of
the South Tower at 9.40am local time registered 2.1, and 29 minutes
later the collapse of the North Tower registered 2.3 (as far away as
425km). The explosive force of the fuel in the two planes collected
to about the equivalent of 240 tonnes of TNT. The force of the
collapses was amazing, as it is reported that what were once 20
floors of one building were now compressed to a height of only three
metres. Yet in a Commuter Café five levels below the Trade
Centre's plaza, almost everything is intact, and bottles stand eerily
intact on shelves, while nearby is remarkable destruction.
Updates: North Tower, impact at 8.46am local time, collapse at 10.28am. South Tower, impact at 9.02am, collapse at 9.59am.
North Tower: At 8.46am on floors 106-107 are 171 people. By 9.05am the ceilings are falling and floors buckling. By 15 minutes from impact, people are finding it hard to breathe. None survive above Floor 91, which housed the American Bureau of Shipping. Some 1344 people died from Floor 91 and above, below 91, only 84.
South Tower: Doors to the roof seem locked. At 9.15am, there are about 20 people on Floor 105. On Floor 98, a woman near a window as first plane hits North Tower says it feels like an oven door. The South Tower impact point houses Euro Brokers, where about 50 employees die with impact. Above Floor 77, 602 die, below only 18.
Total death toll by 1 June 2002, count by New York Times, believed to be 2823, with 1944 on upper floors. About 1100 or more people in or above impact zones or above.
11 September 2001: Re attacks, by 22 September, a Washington-based journalist, Roy Eccleston, writing on security failures, comments ..."the US is an open society, historically distant from attack, fat from a decade of strong economic growth, and complacent after victory in the Cold War."
11 September 2001: Discussion of a major terrorist attack on the
US began in 1991, according to feared terrorist, Carlos the Jackal
(Ilich Ramirez Sanchez, born in Venezuela). Carlos states he attended
a 1991 meeting of "several anti-imperialist organisations with
differing ideologies". One agenda item was revenge for the 1991
aerial bombings of Iraq. Carlos, who is serving a life sentence in a
French prison for triple murder in 1975, has lately been interviewed
by the Caracas daily, El Universal. (See The Australian,
23 October 2001)
See Yossef Bodansky, Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America. Century, 2001. (Detailed investigation of bin-Laden by a terrorism expert.)
9/11 Books etc: A short listing:
Rohan Gunaratna, Inside Al Qaeda, Global Network of Terror. New York, Columbia University Press, 2002. ISBN 0231126921
John Carroll, Terror: A Meditation on the Meaning of September 11. Scribe Publications, 2002. 105pp.
Tariq Ali, The Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads and Modernity. Verso, 2002, 342pp.
Bernard Lewis, What Went Wrong? The Clash between Islam and Modernity in the Middle East. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2002, 180pp.
Tony Coady and Michael O'Keefe, (Eds.), Terrorism and Justice: Moral Argument in a Threatened World. Melbourne University Press, 2002, 144pp. (A view from Australia)
M. J. Akbar, The Shade of Swords: Jihad and the Conflict between Islam and Christianity. nd? Publisher?
Samantha Power, A Problem From Hell. 2001. (An anti-Hussein treatment by a Harvard academic)
See Website: "terrorising the American occupier [of the lands
of Mecca/the Prophet] is a religious and a logical obligation"...
- bin-Laden talks to young Australian Islam:
Other views from Australian journalist John Pilger:
Some views of this ilk on the Internet tend to suggest that the world's leading terrorist state is the US; beware what you read and what you think! - Eg, if the US is the world's worst terrorist, what do you do next? - Ed
11 September 2001: The terrorist attacks mean "history has
changed", according to later remarks from historian Michael
Stoff, history professor at University of Texas. Stoff has been
writing a history textbook for eighth-graders and he and his
publishers now have deadline problems for text completion. One
problem is how to write something quickly that will stand the test of
time, as history.
Reported 2 October 2001: Quote from writer Walter Laqueur: "Terrorism is not based on commonsense and elementary logic, and neither is effective counter-terrorism." See Walter Laqueur, The New Terrorism: Fanaticism and Weapons of Mass Destruction. nd?
The terrorism problem: 11 September 2001: After the
attack on New York: Some world news headlines arising: 8.45am 11
September 2001: the moment the world changed. Suicidal fanatics now
have a global reach. Wall Street's biggest shock. Reign of Terror.
New hijack fear. bin-Laden named. Heat on Taliban. How the world has
changed (forever). "The Third World War" (against
terrorism). Phone records link terrorists to Australia. CIA arms
fuelled international jihad. New York loses air of invincibility as
new reality dawns. Catastrophe pushes Japan's wobbly economy closer
to the brink. (Unemployment in Japan is soaring as jobs based on
seniority and tenure become a thing of the past)
Insurance experts brace for bills that will hit the billions. How US intelligence blundered. The hatred that drives a zealot (on Osama bin-Laden who apparently gave his last interview to the West in 1996). Signs of bin-Laden's tentacles spreading. Attack should be treated as an international crime. Crime scene a giant forensic lab. DNA may be crucial in identifying New York dead. (And by now, it is thought that the New York attack could have been planned for the past five years.) Mystery grows as Afghan guerrilla leader is replaced (that is, Ahmad Shad Massoud). In Sleptovsk, Russia, 24 Russian soldiers died yesterday during fighting in north-west Chechnya. And from an Australian finance writer: "Globalisation will be the victim of this week's attack on America".
(World reactions by 15 September 2001) (Note: The Taliban preach a purist form of Sunni Islam - the world now has one billion adherents to the faith of Islam.) Leader of the Taliban is the reclusive Mullah Mohammed Omar.
15 September 2001: Kashmir, India: A militant Moslem group in
Kashmir has intensified its opposition to infractions of the Islamic
dress code, and threatens to shoot women who refuse to wear a
(Reported 15 September 2001)
After 11 September 2001: About US$6.2 billion of IT infrastructure had to be replaced after the attack on the World Trade Centre. (The Australian newspaper, IT pages, 28 May 2002)
The terrorism problem: 2001, 14 September: US authorities
confirm that exiled Saudi dissident Osama bin-Laden, now living in
Afghanistan, is chief suspect in the World Trade Centre bombings.
This day also, US fears rise of further terrorist attacks, and up to
10 possible suspects are detained. In Germany, possible terrorist
cells linked to the New York disaster are discovered. US reopens it
air space. US being advised that 50,000 military reservists be
called-up. US' congressional leaders make available $US40 billion for
an emergency program. (TV world news)
Note: Osama was a friend of the Prophet Mohammed, who memorised the Koran and was a battle commander by age 18.
The terrorism problem: 2001, 14 September: US gives
ultimatum to leader of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, to co-operate in
the finding of New York bombing main suspect, Osama bin-Laden. By
2001, the Taliban of Afghanistan control 80-90 per cent of their
For some information on bin-Laden; check websites as follows: On bin Laden business groups:
One loss to history from the 11 September attacks was a collection of 40,000 negatives held in a bank vault, photographs of President John Kennedy taken by his personal photographer, Jacques Lowe.
The terrorism problem: 11 September 2001: A suspected hijacker is reportedly a bin-Laden associate, Khalid al-Midhar. Amongst leaders of the Taliban are: Leader Mulla Mohhamad Omar. Education Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi.
11 September 2001:
Re suicide jet-bomber attacks on New York, and later "war on terrorism", etc. See Yossef Bodansky, Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America. Century, 2001. (Detailed investigation of bin-Laden by a terrorism expert).
11 September 2001: A newspaper reader later finds that it is not so that no predictions could have been made on such an attack, since in 1988, British-based Islamic expert John Laffin in his book, Holy Wars - Islam Fights, (Grafton Books) wrote: "Islamic leaders plan to use kamikazi suicide aircraft bombers and their time cannot be far off". (Column by D. D. McNicoll in Weekend Australian, 8-9 June 2002)
11 September 2001: Views on life, death and on causes of
terrorist attacks?: Novelist John Le Carre may feel that a
messianic Islamic leader has appeared, bin-Laden, exploiting real
discontent from the dispossessed of the Islamic world, the situation
being that Islam as a world faith, and amid widespread youth
unemployment, has reached a climactic point in its history, and
responds partly by its people turning inward and also feeling
besieged by Western liberalism and permissiveness.
The West also shares views on a post-Enlightenment God, and the West simply cannot understand how even moves to jihad can be connected with phenomena such as suicide bombing missions. (One might recall that during WWII in the Pacific, US forces particularly resented and feared Japanese suicide pilots). Whereas today, suicide bombers are relatively common, working from Palestine against Israel.
See views otherwise: Kanan Makiya, Cruelty and Silence: War, Tyranny, Uprising and the Arab World. Norton-Cape, 2001.
The Arab and Moslem world are facing a civilisational challenge not faced since the break-up of the Ottoman Empire. Western view might be: even given admission of US or Western mistakes made in the Middle East in foreign policy terms, or about the Islamic World, the Islamic World has too much a sense of victimhood, paranoia and frustration. Problems will not evaporate if bin-Laden et al are brought to book, or not. Nevertheless, the real meaning of jihad is to spiritually attack the enemies within; that is, within ourselves as humans. Current agendas are deflecting attention from this renewing meaning of jihad.
Incidentally, by 22 September, newspapers relate that bin-Laden had decided to blast the cross-over to the New Millennium, 31 December 1999-1 January, 2000, with something like an attack on Los Angles airport, and/or bombing the Radisson Hotel in Amman, Jordan, which would be booked-out by Christian pilgrims. Meantime, Israel-Jordan border crossing used by pilgrims might be bombed, plus various sites holy to Christians. An analyst with a Rand Corporation think tank speaks of bin-Laden's "terrorism internationale".
(Some issues here as discussed by columnist Angela Shanahan, The Australian, 23 October 2001.
The terrorism problem: 11 September 2001: 10.10am, United
Airlines Flight 93, a Boeing 757, is hijacked as a jet-bomber, but
passengers attack the hijackers, the plane crashes into a rural area
of Pennsylvania, south-east of Pittsburgh. All 45 passengers and crew
are killed. (It is reported by 17 October that this aircraft would
have been shot down by US fighter pilots (three F-16s of the Air
National Guard), but it crashed before any such thing could happen,
before the F-16s arrived).
Update: 11 September 2001: On United Airlines Flight 93... The four terrorist hijackers (of the fourth plane) deliberately flew the jet into the ground as they argued amongst themselves how to stop a courageous group of passengers from bombarding them with crockery and metal plates and almost regaining control of the cockpit. Four of the male passengers, who had earlier spoken to loved ones via mobile phones or seat telephones, before trying to attack the hijackers, were Mark Bingham, Jeremy Logan Glick, Todd Beamer and Thomas E. Burnett Jr. There had been about an eight-minute struggle for control of the aircraft. Hijacker Ziad Samir Jarrah (a trained pilot) realised he and his three men were outnumbered and wanted their plane crashed into the ground rather than risk capture. His was the last voice recorded at 10.06am.
Less than one hour earlier, by 9.15am, Flight UA93 (Captain Jason Dahl, 43 and Leroy Homer, 36 the first officer, both murdered by hijackers) had been warned by an air traffic controller in Chicago that other planes have been hijacked. "Beware, cockpit intrusion". The Flight UA93 hijack team were one man short as he had been denied a visa, the man who would have been in charge of the hijack. The other three hijackers were Ahmed Ibrahim al-Haznawi (acting as co-pilot), Saeed Alghamdi and Ahmed Alnami, all aged in their 20s. The plane also carried 33 passengers and surviving crew. The passengers evidently began to attack their hijackers from 9.57am, but the hijackers never revealed if their target had been Camp David, Three Mile Island (a nuclear reactor station) or anywhere in Washington.
The terrorism problem: 11 September 2001: 9.43am, New York time, American Airlines Flight 77, hijacked, crashes into the Pentagon, killing all 64 passengers and crew.
The terrorism problem: 2001, 11 September, 9.03am, New York time, United Airlines Flight 175, hijacked, strikes World Trade Centre (WTC), south tower. (WTC is a 16-acre site.) All 65 passengers and crew on board are killed.
Collapse of the World Trade Centre: http://www.civil.usyd.edu.au/wtc.htm/
The terrorism problem: 2001, 11 September, 8.45-8.48am New
York time, first jet-bomb (American Airlines Flight 11) slams into
the World Trade Centre, north tower, killing 90 passengers and crew.
The tower burns and video-coverage begins, later broadcast worldwide.
See Angus Kress Gillespie, Twin Towers: The Life of New York City's World Trade Center. Rutgers, 2001.
The architect of the World Trade Centre is a second-generation Japanese-American, Minoru Yamasaki (died 1986), the building completed in 1973. Yamasaki was born in Seattle in 1912. He first worked for the architects of the Empire State Building.
See Peter L. Bergen, Holy War Inc. Allen and Unwin, 2001.
11 September 2001: "May God accept
Words of one of the WTC north tower plane bombers from a tape released before 14 Sep. 2002, just before the attack. (Reported 27 July 2002)
The following question arrives to Lost Worlds on 3 June
Hello, Do you/did you have any premonitions of the 9/11 attacks on the WTC at your website? Here's what I painted:
Charles Burwell (artist)
" I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country. "
--Thomas Jefferson, 3rd US president 1801-1809
" Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of State and corporate power."
--Benito Mussolini (1883-1945), Fascist Dictator of Italy
All very eerie - Ed
Following is an edited extract (in order to give you the
hyperlinks) from an article sceptical about official US positions
concerning the 11 September 2001 jet-bomb attacks, the below...
Original Message was from Michael C. Ruppert, sent to/from The Wilderness ("a US vehicle of opinion") by Thursday 16 May 2002
Subject: The Lie Won't Stand - Copyright Statement Included -- Please Distribute Widely
THE LIE WON'T STAND: Bush Administration Explanations for Pre-9-11 Warnings Fail the Smell Test: Warnings Received From Heads of State, Allied Intelligence Services Specifically Warned of Suicide Attacks by Hijackers - Insider Trading Also Clearly Warned of Attacks - By Michael C. Ruppert - [© Copyright 2002, From The Wilderness Publications, www.copvcia.com. All Rights Reserved.]
See a May 16 story in The New York Times...
Claim is made in Ruppert's story: According to a 14 September 2001 report in the Internet newswire online.ie, German police, monitoring the phone calls of a jailed Iranian man, learned the man was telephoning U.S. intelligence agencies last summer to warn of an imminent attack on the World Trade Center in the week of Sept. 9. German officials confirmed the calls to the U.S. government for the story but refused to discuss additional details. And according to a story in Izvestia on Sept. 12, Russian intelligence warned the U.S. last summer that as many as 25 suicide pilots were training for suicide missions involving the crashing of airliners into important targets.
Many other direct warnings were received by the U.S. government and have been documented in FTW's 9-11 timeline located at:
Claim also: That in 1996 -- as reported
by the German paper Die Welt on 6 December (2001?) and by
Agence France Presse on 7 December... - Western intelligence
services, including the CIA, learned after arrests in the Philippines
that al-Qa'ida operatives had planned to crash commercial airliners
into the Twin Towers. Details of the plan, as reported by a number of
American press outlets, were found on a computer seized during the
arrests. The plan was called "Operation Bojinka." Details
of the plot were disclosed publicly in 1997 in the New York trial of
Ramsi Youssef for his involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center
As reported by New York Times, CNN and Washington Post (among others), re ... disclosure of FBI memoranda originated by field agents in Arizona and Minnesota that warned of a possible hijack attempt by bin Laden's followers. In both cases the suspects were taking flight lessons... According to Newsweek and New York Times, FBI agents in Phoenix submitted a classified memorandum in July  naming Osama bin Laden and tracking the activities of possible Middle Eastern terrorist suspects who had enrolled in local flight schools. The memo, according to the Times, stated bin Laden's followers "could use the schools to train for terror operations."
See views of researchers such as Jared Israel at: http://www.tenc.net/
Re: INSIDER TRADING: "FTW has spent months on this important story that proves foreknowledge of the attacks by people who also profited from them."
Such insider trading is pointed to by... the placement of large numbers of "put" options on stocks of companies directly affected by the 11 September attacks. They include: United Air Lines, American Air Lines, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, AXA Reinsurance, Munich Reinsurance and Swiss Reinsurance. Put options are a leveraged bet that a stock's price will fall dramatically. As CBS news noted on 26 September 2001, the peak of trading activity occurred just before the attacks. There was a jump in United Air Line's put options 90 times (not 90 percent) above normal between 6-10 September, and 285 times higher-than-average on 6 September... It is uncontested that only United and American stocks had this level of put buying before the attacks. No other airlines were affected.
Note: FTW has undertaken a more detailed investigation of this trading activity and hopes to have a more comprehensive report within 4-6 weeks - say, by the third week of June 2002.
See comments on levels of coincidence, from Dylan Ratigan of Bloomberg Business News, interviewed 20 September on Good Morning Texas. Also from John Kinnucan, principal of Broadband Research, as quoted in San Francisco Chronicle, and Montreal Gazette on 19 September... To quote 60 Minutes from 19 September, "Sources tell CBS News that the afternoon before the attack, alarm bells were sounding over unusual trading in the US stock options market."
For more information on so-called 9-11 insider trading, visit: http://www.copvcia.com
Brief history of a website: [Item arriving to Lost Worlds by 4 June 2002]
Not long after the 11 September attacks, Tom Flocco in Philadelphia began researching the insider trading alleged in connection... but found publication difficult.
Tom's series was finally published with Mike Ruppert of From the Wilderness (FTW), one of the publications and websites to break through corporate media fog on the issues. Kyle Hence of Rhode Island read Tom's work and offered to help research the insider trading issues.
Tom and Kyle realized the need for broader cooperation between researchers and investigators in the search for extra truth about the attacks. Kyle began fleshing out ideas for an edited compilation of the finest work on the subject. Frustrated with the unanswered questions surrounding the attacks that were not being addressed by the government or corporate media, they decided to bring together investigators, researchers, and victims and their attorneys for an event at the (US) National Press Club . This event would raise those questions, and seek answers and accountability.
Tom then called Catherine Austin Fitts , an investment banker in Hickory Valley, Tennessee. Catherine expressed concern that not only were we not getting answers, but that the response [to the attacks] was harming our [US] national and financial security. Is the War on Terrorism making us less safe in the US and abroad, not more? Are our tax dollars rewarding failure as opposed to investing in safety?
It was necessary to develop a flow of investigation that avoided
traditional dead ends... [and since]... there is a growing and
powerful free press of news, radio and video that has grown up around
the internet ... [can a media free of corporate influence and control
shift power back to the forces of democracy?] ...
Catherine knew Miles Thompson, a New Zealander software developer living in New York. Miles' brother, Alastair, is editor of Scoop Media in New Zealand, and has been a leader in publishing MalContentX and other unanswered questions on 11 September. (Miles was one of those who escaped through the dust a few blocks away from the impact zone.)
Miles agreed to lead volunteers to build a website that would create a voice and picture for many unanswered questions flowing in from throughout the world. New Zealanders and some people from Indymedia NYC helped out.
From: Catherine Austin Fitts, Former Assistant Secretary, HUD (1st Bush Administration), President, solari.com
See also: http://www.scoop.co.nz/mason/stories/HL0202/S00014.htm/
Scoop has also republished articles by Linda Minor: (Whose articles are recommended - Ed)
Meanwhile, it is not just the SEC and FBI that are still mired in the alleged 11 September profiteering probe. Japan, Germany, the UK, France, Luxembourg, Hong Kong, Switzerland and Spain have their own investigations running, but as with their U.S. counterparts, nothing has been forthcoming. A rare break in the silence has been the apparent impromptu courtroom outburst of assistant U.S. attorney Kenneth Breen, who recently accused Amr Ibrahim Elgindy, an Egyptian-born stockbroker on trial in San Diego, with knowing in advance about the attacks and capitalizing on 10 September 2001.
10 September 2001: One of Osama bin-Laden's four wives reports that in days before the US is attacked, he is irritable, lonely and in kidney and stomach pain, tired, and taking sedatives to sleep.
"An Ohio truck driver who assisted Osama bin-Laden in
Afghanistan had helped devise a plan to destroy New York's Brooklyn
Bridge (with gas cutters, called in Australia, oxy-acetylene torches)
and other US targets.... He is allegedly Lyman Faris, 34, of
Columbus, Ohio, who met bin-Laden in 2000 at an al-Qa'ida training
camp. Faris may have been asked to help plan a second wave of attacks
after 11 September 2001. Faris has been talking with US legal
authorities since 1 May if not earlier, about helping the US delve
into al-Qa'ida operations. Originally from Kashmir, he first arrived
in the US in 1994, and later married. He had meeting in 2000, 2001
and early 2002 about such plans. (Reported in The Weekend
Australian, 21-22 June, 2003)
It was reported 17 June 2003 and earlier by Newsweek that the same plan to blow the Brooklyn Bridge was also revealed by captured Al-Qa'ida operations chief Khalid Sheik Mohammed, who also spoke of plans to blow up grounded airlines and to derail passenger trains.
Before 11 September: Some plans began in the early 1990s, when seven Islamic men came together as students, and linked to bin-Laden's al-Qa'ida network. It is said they shared the same religious convictions, an Islamic lifestyle, a feeling of being out of place in unfamiliar cultural surroundings in the West, along with a hatred of the US and World Jewry. They began planning as "a terror cell" from the mid-1990s, some in Hamburg, Germany, some in London. One of them in Hamburg, a Moroccan-born engineering student, Mounir el-Motassadeq, who knew Mohamed Attar, has been charged (by August 2002, arrested the previous November), with helping to murder some 3116 victims of the 11 September attacks. He acted as a banker and quartermaster for the cell. In Hamburg, one of the actual suicide pilots, Marwan al-Shehhi, allegedly boasted to a Hamburg librarian that he was going to kill thousands and even mentioned a New York target. The seven members of this cell attended some training camps in Afghanistan, flight schools in the US and meetings across Europe. (Reported 31 August-1 September 2002 in The Weekend Australian. See also The Australian of 30 August 2002 for other stories on al-Qa'ida activists in the US and Holland) (Reported 16-17 March, 2002 in Sydney Morning Herald)
9 September 2001: Two Arab suicide-bombers, posing as journalists, kill anti-Taliban Afghan guerrilla commander Ahmed Shah Massood after concealing explosives in their video equipment. By 7 November it is being recalled that they had earlier tried to gain access to a leadership meeting of the entire council for the Northern Alliance/United Front. Those killing Massood had earlier spent up to three weeks in Taliban-controlled territory before going into Northern Alliance territory. (Reported 7 November 2001 in Sydney Morning Herald).
Update: 9 September 2001: Kabul, Afghanistan: When Afghanistan's Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah Massood was killed on 9 September, orders for the killing had been issued by Osama bin-Laden, a senior ex-Taliban official (former dep-interior minister, Mullah Mohammed Khaksar) has said. Massood was killed at his office in Khodja Bahauddin, Takhar province. Bin-Laden had diverted the assassins (who used possibly-stolen Belgian passports) from a trip to Indonesia. Khaksar has claimed that al-Qa'ida bankrolled the Taliban. (Reported 16 August 2002 in The Weekend Australian)
Lead-up to 9 September 2001: On 24 April 2002, US writer Gore Vidal spoke to website journal Salon from his home in Los Angeles, about his new book on 9/11/01 issues, Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: How We Got to Be So Hated. Recommended is a visit to salon.com to see the story on Vidal's new book - Ed
8 September 2001: "The Taliban are secretive, dictatorial,
inaccessible and paranoid. They know nothing about running a
Remarks about the Taliban, published by 8 September 2001, from Australian journalist Paul McGeough in Sydney Morning Herald.
(We later discover, the Taliban regarded English as "the language of infidels" - Ed)
By 1-8-2002, it is alleged that before 11 September, al-Qa'ida hijacker team was telephoning contacts in Australia. (Reported by Herald-Sun, Australia, 1 August 2002)
4 September 2001: Concern rises in Indonesia and elsewhere, particularly the US (FBI and CIA), that "notorious international terrorist Osama bin-Laden" is looking to Indonesia as a "potential springboard" for further terrorist operations. US interests in Indonesia were given a security alert in early August this year. (Reported in The Australian newspaper.)
Week ending 1 September 2001: Durban, Africa: UN's World Conference Against Racism, with threats of veto, walkouts, boycotts.
27 August 2001: Jerusalem: Israeli experts fear that a wall on the Temple Mount may fall, and possibly trigger a Moslem-Jewish war. Any wall collapse could damage Islamic shrines. The site has been home to the first and second Jewish temples, and then the Dome of the Rock (Islamic) and al-Aqsa mosques, the third most sacred shrine in Islam.
23 August 2001: US: CIA asks Immigration and Naturalization Service to put Khalid al-Midhar and Mawaf al-Hazmi on a watch list.
20 August 2001: Israeli interests are becoming increasingly worried that Palestinians are winning a world propaganda war and may mount a propaganda counter-attack to cost Aust$22 million.
20 August 2001: Aceh, Indonesia: Both sides - security forces and rebels - have been accused of human rights violations in Aceh. Perpetrators are simply not being punished. About 1500 people have been killed since January 2001.
18 August 2001, Israel is on heightened security alert due to warnings about further Palestinian bomb attacks. US pleads with Israel to "end the violence".
18 August 2001: Philippines and police brilliance: "The kidnapping industry": Finding that Filipino-Chinese people, maybe one per cent of the population, but who own about half the country's large corporations and medium-sized companies, are being targeted for violence from crims based in "metropolitan Manila". During 2000, 219 people are kidnapped, ransoms worth 212 millions pesos are paid, police crack only six cases. To mid-2001, 118 kidnappings and 125 million pesos paid in ransom.
18 August 2001: Newspaper headlines: Israeli military officials predict five years of carnage: Israeli military planners predict that conflict with Palestinians may last for years and may escalate into a Middle Eastern War involving Israel, Lebanon, Syria. Say, to 2006? Views here of Israel's military top commander, General Shaul Mofa. See Hebrew newspaper, Ha'arets. View that Yassar Arafat may not be able to exercise sufficient control over anything.
16 August, 2001: In a new twist in the blame-game played in the US about non-stoppage of the 11 September 2001 jet-bomb attacks by US intelligence agencies, FBI director Robert Mueller has received "a savage memo" from an FBI staffer, Coleen Rowley, aged 46. Time Magazine has obtained a copy of her memo, which seriously attacks the credibility of senior FBI management. Mainly, she feels that "roadblocks" were put in the way of information travelling through the FBI system about the activities around 16 August, 2001 of the suspected "20th hijacker of 11 September", Zacarias Moussaoui, a French citizen born in Morocco. (Reported 28 May 2002)
15 August 2001: A flight school in Minneapolis reports Zaccarias Moussaoui to FBI. He is arrested but FBI HQ rejects requests from local agents to search his laptop computer and other belongings. He is later accused of being part of 11 September conspiracy.
14 August 2001: Tensions grow within the Taliban movement in Afghanistan, partly due to issues surrounding the detainment of eight foreign aid workers accused of preaching Christianity in a strict Moslem state. Within the Taliban, moderates versus hardliners are at odds on the case. Schism exists within the Taliban's ruling body, the shura. Most of the recent Taliban edicts - and the destruction of a statue of Buddha at Bamiyan - seem designed to illustrate the power of the hard-liners and Mullar Omar. Presciently (as it turns out), assassination, or civil war, or something bloody, is predicted by a journalist to come out of the schism.
14 August 2001: Newspapers emphasise "The Middle East Crisis". Shimon Peres hopes to re-open ceasefire talks with Palestinian officials. Recent suicide attacks are commented. "No turning back for suicide bombers on martyr-strewn path to paradise - Impressionable young Palestinians are killing themselves and Israeli civilians in an explosion of hate and religious fervour, leaving their unsuspecting families buffeted by grief and pride." Former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says: "Arafat must be isolated and condemned by the international community". By 11 August, a Palestinian suicide attack killed 16 people including six children. Israel sent in planes. War-weary Israelis civilians say, "We are used to terror." Reportedly, the current levels of violence in the Middle East are giving US foreign policy-makers severe heartburn - "US struggles to stay out of the mess". Democrats (eg, Senator Tom Daschle) have meantime accused the Bush administration of "forfeiting US leadership in the world". Comment from Jerusalem mentions "the scenarios that frighten Ariel Sharon".
11 August 2001, A "grisly cycle of bloodshed" continues in the rebellious province of Aceh, Sumatra (its northern tip), Indonesia, as 30 people including a five-year-old child have been killed. Police and rebels blame each other. The victims were plantation workers lined-up to receive their wages.
6 August 2001: US: President Bush receives CIA briefing with warning that al-Qa'ida might consider hijacking US aircraft.
31 July 2001: US Federal Aviation Administration warns US airlines that "terror groups are known to be planning and training for hijackings".
31 July 2001: Headlines: US shapes up to strike at Hussein: US has issued a clear warning that it is planning a military strike at Iraq, after Iraq came close to downing a US spy plane. Also on 31 July 2001, the Pentagon is studying ways of converting spacecraft into strategic bombers than can precision-hit targets from an altitude of about 100km.
The terrorism problem: Suicidals in Indonesia, maybe?:
Based in Surabaya, East Java, a group of supporters of Indonesian
president, Abdurrahman Wahid, have begun calling themselves The Do or
Die force. They believe they are assisted to invulnerability by
prayers and holy water, and wish to become suicide warriors. But they
attacked nothing. These aspiring warriors might be members of a
Moslem organisation, Nahdlatul Ulama. (Revival of Religious
(Reported 29 July 2001)
India: New Delhi: Indian police yesterday arrested a prime suspect in the murder of India's famed "bandit queen", Phoolan Devi. (Reported 28 July 2001)
The terrorism problem: Suicidals in Indonesia, maybe?: Based in Surabaya, East Java, a group of supporters of Indonesian president, Abdurrahman Wahid, have begun calling themselves The Do or Die force. They believe they are assisted to invulnerability by prayers and holy water, and wish to become suicide warriors. But they attacked nothing. These aspiring warriors might be members of a Moslem organisation, Nahdlatul Ulama. (Revival of Religious Scholars). (Reported 29 July 2001)
Israel: "Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon has hired a
lawyer to defend him against possible war crimes charges in the
From The Weekend Australian newspaper. (Reported by 28 July 2001)
July 2001: Lahore: Afghanistan's Taliban militia leader, Mullah
Mohammed Omar, has issued a ban on lipstick, chessboards and playing
cards. Other Taliban-forbidden items include: dish antennae, musical
instruments, cassette tapes, computers, videos, TV sets and films or
film-making equipment. Also, games equipment.
(Reported 21 July 2001 from The Telegraph, London)
14 July 2001: "Two ringleaders of the biggest
Indonesian-based people-smuggling syndicates have been captured after
a long-running Cambodian police surveillance operation. They appear
to be Pakistani Hasan Ayoub (who handles people from Afghanistan and
Pakistan), and Indonesian Abraham Louhanapessy (from Ambon).
(Reported in Weekend Australian)
10 July 2001: FBI agent Ken Williams sends memo to FBI's Washington HQ speculating that Middle Eastern students an Arizona flight school could be al-Qa'ida agents training for hijacking action. Urges national investigation of flight schools. Memo not acted on.
5 July 2001: President Bush asks US national security council to find out what agencies are doing with intelligence regarding al-Qa'ida threats.
2 July 2001: FBI warns law enforcement agencies of possible al-Qa'ida attacks. "There are threats to be worried about overseas. While we cannot foresee attacks domestically, we cannot rule them out."
2001: The Taliban controls almost 85 per cent of Afghanistan. Northern Alliance leader Ahmad Shah Massood is killed in a bomb attack.
4 June 2001: Palestinian president Yassar Arafat and his security forces announce steps for a ceasefire after previous Friday's suicide bombing in Tel Aviv. (Reported in world press)
4 June 2001: Nepal in shock (grief, confusion, anger), due to gunning down in Kathmandu of its royal family by Crown Prince Dipendra (aged 29), a militarist-minded drug-user and gun-freak earlier educated in Britain; maybe because of his family's objections to his choice of wife (?). Dipendra shot himself after killing his parents and various relatives. Nepal meanwhile needs to cope with a serious-minded, determined group of leftist-rebels of a Maoist persuasion. Quote from Nepalese deputy prime minister, Ram Chandra Paudel: "This is the most shocking event in the history of the royal family." Conflicting official reports are issued in Nepal that many in Nepal, (and including this website) find it difficult if not impossible to believe.
4 June 2001 and previous: Philippines: Abu Sayyaf Moslem guerillas kill two Filipino hostages and behead one of them, near or in village Bulanting on southern island, Basilian.
28 May 2001: Indonesia: President Wahid, threatened with censure by parliament, warns of a rising state of emergency. He threatens a state of emergency again on 6 July.
December 2000: US intelligence sources get "increased interceptions about terrorist attacks".
2001: The Taliban controls almost 85 per cent of Afghanistan. Ahmad Shah Masood is killed in a bomb attack.
Rome: October 2000: US embassy staff/FBI meet with Italian police re a probable nine-man al-Qa'ida cell uncovered in Milan, and work together for a year, using phone taps, etc. Italian investigators suspect the cell was linked to like activists in Germany and providing logical support to al-Qa'ida in Europe. A relevant "Milan document" has been marked "secret". One named activist is Abdelkader Mahmoud Es Sayed (an Egyptian). Allegedly, hints were given regarding something like an 11 September 2001 strike. (Reported 1-2 June 2002 in Sydney Morning Herald per Washington Post)
22 June 2001: US Federal Aviation Administration sends yet another warning to US airlines.
30 May 2001: Four men are convicted of bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. Witnesses testify that Osama bin-Laden is sending al-Qa'ida agents to US flight schools.
April 2001: US Federal Aviation Administration sends another warning to US airlines that Middle Eastern terrorists may try to hijack/blow up a plane. During April-May, intelligence sources record more information on specific threats of possible al-Qa'ida attacks against US targets.
March 2001: In US, Federal Aviation Administration informs some airlines of threats from suspected terrorists in Middle Eastern nations.
February 2001: CIA director George Tenet tells Congress, "bin-Laden and his global network ... remain the most immediate and serious threat" to US security.
2001: People Power in the Philippines: People power isolates President Joseph Estrada, who goes quietly. What happens next? Where will he go? (Reported 20 January 2001)
January 2000: Two of the 9/11 hijackers on American Airlines Flight 77 hitting the Pentagon, Khalid al-Mihar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, are caught on a surveillance tape at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur, meeting with Tawfiq al-Atash, whom US suspects was involved in bombing of USS Cole in 2000. CIA did not put an alert on the two first-named till August 2000.
December 1999: Moslem militants take over an Indian Airlines
flight from Kathmandu to Delhi, displaying considerable
sophistication in use of weapons to psychological manipulation of the
passengers. The plane was taken to Afghanistan and the hijackers
disappeared after arranging the freedom of some Islamic militants
from Indian jails.
Note: Other notes on Moslem activism or Moslem views of various sorts are part of other files on other timeframes on Lost Worlds website.
September 1999: US National Intelligence Council raises possibility of an 11 September-style attack by al-Qa'ida.
1999: In exile in Quetta, Pakistan, Abdul Ahad Karzai, a Pashtun, a former legislator of Afghanistan, is walking home from evening prayers and assassinated. The killing is attributed to The Taliban. The victim was the father of the present (15 June 2002) leader of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, who with his father had been campaigning against the Taliban after becoming disillusioned with them.
19 April 1995: Only weeks before Timothy McVeigh bombed the Oklahoma City federal building (the Murrah building), allegations by June 2002 suggest that authorities had received several warnings that Islamic terrorists would strike on American soil, likely targets being government buildings. The information was not however linked to McVeigh. A spokesperson for the US General Services Administration received an FBI warning and was told that a fatwa had been issued threatening to target federal buildings. (Reported 22 June 2002 in Daily Telegraph, Sydney)
January 1995: Philippine police shut down terrorist cell allegedly plotting to hijack planes to crash into targets including CIA HQ in US, Pentagon, World Trade Centre. One of the plotters was Ramzi Yousef, convicted in 1998 of masterminding the 1993 bombing of World Trade Centre.
1994: French foil attempt by Algerian hijackers to crash plane into Eiffel tower.
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From TV documentary on Australian ABC TV screened on 7-12-2004, by mid-October 2001, US authorities were worried by fears of a nuclear attack (from a 10-kiloton bomb) on New York itself by terrorists emboldened by their massive success just a month previous.
How did Americans remember 9/11 this year? The Capital Times, from Madison, Wisconsin, says "the date recalls a moment of extreme sorrow, anger and genuine fear". (Reported Sydney Morning Herald 14 September 2004) Backdate to 2001
Militant Islam means 'holy warriors', kidnappers in Asean - Bangkok: Southeast Asia knows what havoc militant Islam can create. With mass kidnappings in the Philippines, "holy warriors" in Indonesia and armed cells in Malaysia, governments have learned they can never relax." Are these militants receiving increased support from militants in Middle East? In a different article, same issue, it is reported from Washington/New York Times, "President George W. Bush demanded Thursday night that Afghanistan's leaders immediately deliver Osama bin-Laden and his network and close down every terrorist camp in the country or face military attack by the United States... The Taliban must act and act immediately." (Reported 22 September 2001 in Today, from Manila, Makati, Philippines, by Seth Mydans/New York Times)
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