According to the U.K.’s Daily Telegraph, Hamas militants are attempting to negotiate an arms deal with North Korea for missiles and communications equipment that will allow them to maintain their offensive against Israel.
Meanwhile, earlier this month, a U.S. federal court ruled that North Korea provided rocket and missile components for Hezbollah to use in its 2006 attacks against Israel.
. . .
Last year, the Cuban regime was caught red-handed smuggling 240 tons of weapons to North Korea. This constituted the largest amount of arms and related materiel interdicted to or from North Korea since the adoption of resolution 1718 (2006).
The interdicted shipment, aboard the Chong Chon Gang, includedsurface-to-air missile systems (that can take down planes), missile components, ammunition, radars and other miscellaneous arms-related materiel.
What if these missile systems had ended up in the hands of Hamas or Hezbollah?
Other Cuban weaponry may have, as there were at least seven otherNorth Korean vessels that made similarly elusive trips (as the Chong Chon Gang) to Cuban in the last few years.
Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is allegedly training a large number of Kuwaitis, Bahrainis and Saudis in a private training camp located in Waheera, a remote area near the borders of Venezuela and Columbia, and intends to use them to carry out terrorist activities within their respective countries and other areas across the world in case Iran is attacked militarily, Al-Seyassah daily quoted a reliable source as saying.
Since the reports come from Arab-language newspapers, I speculate that the location of Waheera is actually Guajira (whose phonetical pronunciation is the same as “Waheera”) in this map,
The article continues,
The trainees are first sent to Venezuelan capital Caracas or Columbian capital Bogota via Damascus and from there, they are sent to the border region in cars, one of the militants who broke away from the Iranian group told the daily.
Reportedly, the training camp is run by some Iranian intelligence officers and others affiliated to the Revolutionary Guard in cooperation with Hezbollah and Hamas. The trainees were given courses in making bombs, carrying out assassinations, kidnapping people and transporting the hostages to other locations.
The operations are financed through the drug trade,
When asked about the financing of this militia, the source said the money Iran makes through drug trafficking and money laundering is equal to the budget of some countries. “For example, Dutch police, in cooperation with security authorities of seven other countries, arrested 17 drug smugglers in 2009 in Korasu and confiscated 2,000 kilos of cocaine from them. The huge quantity was smuggled through tankers from Venezuela to West Africa and then to Holland, Lebanon and Spain. Smugglers also transported cocaine by air from Korasu to Holland, Belgium, Spain and Jordan. The Dutch authorities had then announced that the smuggling network was linked to Hezbollah and Iran,” he added.
These reports have been surfacing recently (including Kuwaiti newspapers), but long-time readers of this blog know about the Iranian and Hezbollah presences in Latin America. Interestingly, now the reports are including Hamas.
Al Qaeda operatives are in Brazil planning attacks, raising money and recruiting followers, a leading news magazine reported Saturday, renewing concerns about the nation serving as a hide-out for Islamic militants.
Operatives from Hamas, Hezbollah, and al Qaida are in Brazil planning attacks, raising money and recruiting followers, a leading Brazilian news magazine reported on Saturday.
Both Yahoo and the JP continue,
Veja magazine, in its online edition, reported that at least 20 people affiliated with al Qaeda as well as the Lebanese Shi’ite Muslim group Hezbollah, the Palestinian group Hamas and two other organizations have been hiding out in the South American country.
The magazine said these operatives have been raising money and working to incite attacks abroad. The magazine cited Brazilian police and U.S. government reports, but did not give details on specific targets or operations.
The United States has said Islamic militants have been operating in the border region between Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. Brazil has denied this, while saying it is aware that some members of Brazil’s Lebanese community legally transferred funds to the Middle East.
In this court filing, provided exclusively here at Pajamas Media, prosecutors admit that Dhakane, who ran a human smuggling ring based in Brazil for the Somali Al-Shabaab terrorist group, transported “violent jihadists” into the country. He stated that “he believed they would fight against the U.S. if the jihad moved from overseas locations to the U.S. mainland.” (p. 7)
Dhakane was charged in March 2010 with lying about his terror ties when he applied for asylum in 2008, specifically omitting information that he had worked for two specially designated global terrorist entities (SDGT). He pleaded guilty earlier this year to lying to the FBI and awaits sentencing next month. Rather than trying him on terror charges, federal prosecutors are asking for terror enhancements on the sentence for lying to the FBI.
Poole, who is scheduled to testify today before the Arizona House Military Affairs and Public Safety Committee on the topic of “Cross-border Terror Threats and Islamic Radicalization in Arizona,” correctly points out
This is far from the first time that Islamic terrorists are known to have attempted to enter the U.S, or actually succeeded. Just last year Homeland Security authorities put out an alert concerning a group of terror-tied Somalis who were attempting to enter the country through Mexico. Then last May anotherterror alert was issued for a known Al-Shabaab official, Mohamed Ali, who was suspected of trying to cross the border from Mexico. And in February 2010, a Virginia convert to Islam who was in contact with Al-Shabaab officials, Anthony Joseph Tracy, was charged for his role in an international smuggling ring that brought at least 200 Somalis into the U.S. on Cuban travel documents.
Other terrorist operatives are known to have successfully crossed the border:
In February 2001, Mahmoud Kourani crossed the border from Tijuana in the trunk of a car, eventually settling in Dearborn, Michigan. Kourani, who federal prosecutors claimed had received training in weapons, intelligence, and spy craft in Iran, bribed a Mexican embassy official in Beirut to obtain a visa. Kourani’s brother is known to be Hezbollah’s security chief in southern Lebanon.
In December 2002, Salim Boughader was arrested for smuggling 200 Lebanese, including Hezbollah operatives, across the border. Boughader had previously worked for Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV satellite network.
In July 2004, Farida Goolam Mohamed Ahmed was arrested at a Texas airport boarding a flight to New York. According to the Washington Post, she was connected to a Pakistani terrorist group. Believed to be ferrying instructions to U.S.-based al-Qaeda operatives, authorities issued a terror alert for Washington D.C., New York, and New Jersey.
In January 2005, two Hamas operatives, Mahmoud Khalil and Ziad Saleh, were arrested as part of a criminal enterprise in Los Angeles. Both had entered the U.S. after paying a smuggler $10,000 each to take them across the border.
Rep. John Culberson said in November 2005 that an Iraqi al-Qaeda operative on the terror watch list was captured living near the Mexico-Texas border.
One of the key players in Sharif El-Gamal’s Mosque near Ground Zero is Egyptian born businessman, Hisham Elzanaty. Fox 5 News has learned exclusively and confirmed with Mr. Elzanaty’s attorney that Elzanaty made a “significant investment” in the development of the mosque near Ground Zero.
Fox 5 has also uncovered Elzanaty has teamed up with El-Gamal on at least two real estate deals: the controversial mosque site and another deal involving a commercial property in the Chelsea section of Manhattan.
In the Chelsea deal, mortgage documents show Elzanaty played a major role signing off as the guarantor on El-Gamal’s $39 million mortgage.
When Fox 5 News reporter Charles Leaf tracked down Elzanaty outside his Long Island home in Roslyn Heights last week Elzanaty avoided the camera and did not answer a single question about his business dealings with El-Gamal.
Fox 5 News has also learned that in 1999 Hisham Elzanaty sent money to an organization that would later be deemed by the U.S. government to be a terrorist group.
The organization was the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, also known as HLF. The now defunct group’s 1999 tax records show Elzanaty contributed more than $6,000 to HLF.
Two years later, in 2001, HLF was shut down by the federal government and designated as a global terrorist. After a mistrial in 2007, in 2008 five HLF leaders were convicted of providing material support to Hamas.
In case you forgot,
In 2001 the HLF was shut down by the U.S. government and designated as a global terrorist. After a mistrial in 2007, in 2008 five HLF leaders were convicted of providing material support to Hamas, a group on the U.S. governments List of Foreign Terrorists.
Hisham Elzanaty donated $6,050 to the HLF in 1999.
The son of one of the founders of Hamas is turning his back not only on the organization that now controls Gaza, but the religion that so animates the followers of the group his father helped create.
Speaking on Wednesday night to the Endowment for Middle East Truth, a pro-Israel organization that focuses on radical Islam in education and media, Mosab Hassan Yousef said, “The god of Islam is the god of hate.”
Mr. Yousef’s father, Sheikh Hassan Yousef, is a leading imam within Hamas, a group that seeks to impose Islamic law throughout the territory it considers Palestine, land that also encompasses the modern state of Israel.
The younger Mr. Yousef came to the United States in 2007, but only sought publicity after the publication of his memoir, “The Son of Hamas,” this year.
His book details the harrowing story of his recruitment by Israel’s Shin Bet, the country’s domestic intelligence and security service. At the dinner, the man who recruited and mentored Mr. Yousef when the Imam’s son was undercover for Israel, revealed his identity to the public for the first time.
About the existence of Israel,
He also said that the greatest problem facing his fellow Palestinians was the religion of Islam.
“They want to destroy Israel while they worship the God that is really their enemy every day,” he said. “There is no denying that they are worshiping their greatest enemy every day while they are looking for enemies.”
He continued, “What would happen if Israel just disappeared from the map? There is no Israel anymore. Would there be peace in the Middle East? Palestinians would kill each other, I guarantee you.”
THE WEEKLY STANDARD has learned that senior Obama administration officials have been telling foreign governments that the administration intends to support an effort next week at the United Nations to set up an independent commission, under UN auspices, to investigate Israel’s behavior in the Gaza flotilla incident. The White House has apparently shrugged off concerns from elsewhere in the U.S. government that a) this is an extraordinary singling out of Israel, since all kinds of much worse incidents happen around the world without spurring UN investigations; b) that the investigation will be one-sided, focusing entirely on Israeli behavior and not on Turkey or on Hamas; and c) that this sets a terrible precedent for outside investigations of incidents involving U.S. troops or intelligence operatives as we conduct our own war on terror.
And who’s responsible for this decision?
While UN Ambassador Susan Rice is reported to have played an important role in pushing for U.S. support of a UN investigation, the decision is, one official stressed, of course the president’s. The government of Israel has been consulting with the U.S. government on its own Israeli investigative panel, to be led by a retired supreme court justice, that would include respected international participants, including one from the U.S. But the Obama administration is reportedly saying that such a “kosher panel” is not good enough to satisfy the international community, or the Obama White House.
Kristol’s report comes just as Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has informed Israel’s representatives the world over that there were never any humanitarian supplies or equipment aboard the Mavi Marmara, where Israeli commandos were ambushed by armed mercenaries posing as peace activists. Of related interest are the videotaped statements of two Mavi Marmara crew members showing that preparations for a violent confrontation with IDF forces were put in motion about two hours before the boarding began, when the Israeli Navy hailed the ship and told it to halt; according to the statements, the atmosphere aboard the Mavi Marmara; IHH operatives on the main deck were cutting the ship’s railings with metal disks they had brought with them into lengths suitable to be used as clubs.
This decision will have repercussions well beyond Israel. Expect a lot of fallout from it – including in our hemisphere.
The response is telling, and not only for its gratuitous nastiness. First, the administration plainly thinks it’s achieved a grand success by toning down the UN resolution and downgrading it to a statement. And it lets on that, once again, some “compromise” is under consideration. Moreover, it only denies that the UN will not debate the resolution “next week.”What is missing is any determination to rule out an international investigation. Indeed, it advances the notion that an Israeli investigation would not be “credible.” No mention is made of, and there seems to be no interest in, investigating Turkey or the terrorists.
As thanks to the international community for supporting Hamas in breaking the Israeli military blockade, Hamas has looted and shut down the offices of international Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) [added: including some affiliated with the U.N.] which provide services to poor and needy Palestinians
The mob that assaulted Israeli special forces on the deck of the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara on Monday was not motivated by peace. On the contrary, the religious extremists embedded among those on board were paid and equipped to attack Israelis — both by their own hands as well as by aiding Hamas — and to destroy any hope of peace.
What the videos don’t show, however, are several curious aspects Israeli authorities are now investigating. First, about 100 of those detained from the boats were carrying immense sums in their pockets — nearly a million euros in total. Second, Israel discovered spent bullet cartridges on the Mavi Marmara that are of a caliber not used by the Israeli commandos, some of whom suffered gunshot wounds. Also found on the boat were propaganda clips showing passengers “injured” by Israeli forces; these videos, however, were filmed during daylight, hours before the nighttime operation occurred.
The investigations of all this evidence will be transparent, in accordance with Israel’s security needs.
There is little doubt as to the real purpose of the Mavi Marmara’s voyage — not to deliver humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza, but to create a provocation that would put international pressure on Israel to drop the Gaza embargo, and thus allow the flow of seaborne military supplies to Hamas. Just as Hamas gunmen hide behind civilians in Gaza, so, too, do their sponsors cower behind shipments of seemingly innocent aid.
This is why the organizers of the flotilla repeatedly rejected Israeli offers to transfer its cargo to Gaza once it was inspected for military contraband. They also rebuffed an Israeli request to earmark some aid packages for Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier held hostage by Hamas for four years.
In the recent past, Israeli forces have diverted nine such flotillas, all without incident, and peacefully boarded five of the ships in this week’s convoy. Their cargoes, after proper inspection, were delivered to non-Hamas institutions in Gaza. Only the Marmara, a vessel too large to be neutralized by technical means such as fouling the propeller, violently resisted. It is no coincidence that the ship was dispatched by Insani Yardim Vakfi (also called the I.H.H.), a supposed charity that Israeli and other intelligence services have linked to Islamic extremists.
The real intent of breaking the embargo is to allow rockets to be transported to Gaza from Hamas’s suppliers in Syria and Iran. Israel has already intercepted several such ships laden with munitions. Since Israel’s disengagement from Gaza in 2005, Hamas has fired more than 10,000 rockets and mortars at our civilian population. This week, two Hamas rockets exploded near Ashkelon, one of Israel’s largest cities.
Set aside the troubling fact that the Jewish state alone gets this routine treatment. Israel should not be immune from criticism. But if the world’s powers unload like this only on relatively small, isolated nations like Israel, then clearly the keepers of the world order find it easier to be blowhards than statesmen. And that means we have a problem.
A problem that is larger than any one of the countries involved: I agree with David Foster, who says,
The worldwide attacks on Israel, in the wake of the Gaza event, are frightening in their venom and irrationality, and I fear that these responses mark a significant turning toward the abandonment of civilization’s ramparts and the appeasement of terrorist and rogue-state barbarism.