Major Truck Bomb Attacks in Baghdad Reveal Iraq’s Vulnerability to Al-Qaeda Terrorists and "The Stolen Cars of Al Qaeda Financing Terrorism" by private investigator Bill Warner.
NYT..Cordinated truck bomb and roadside bombs caused massive explosions near the Iraqi Finance Ministry and in the northern Baghdad neighborhood of Waziriyah. Around 11 a.m., the two truck bombs struck the Foreign Ministry and the Finance Ministry within three minutes, officials said, sending white smoke into the sky.
The second, more powerful blast was so intense that parts of a main highway near the Finance Ministry collapsed, the rubble littered with shrapnel and splotches of blood. It shattered windows inside the nearby Green Zone and shook houses in many parts of the city. At least 60 people were killed at the Foreign Ministry and at least 35 at the Finance Ministry.
The bombings, the worst since American forces handed over security responsibilities to Iraq at the end of June, shook the Iraqi government’s confidence that it was ready and able to secure the nation. Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki called for a reassessment of his security measures, calling the attacks “a vengeful response” to his recent, optimistic order to remove blast walls from the streets of Baghdad.
The explosions, one close to the heavily fortified Green Zone and the other less than three miles away, sent plumes of smoke billowing over the capital, ripped a gaping hole in a compound wall and set cars ablaze, trapping drivers inside. Since the beginning of July, bombings in northern Iraq — for which officials blamed Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia and its affiliate, the Islamic State of Iraq — have killed at least 140 people.
The attacks on Wednesday might have been a message from these groups that they could also assail the capital. In the attack at the Foreign Ministry, a suicide bomber stopped his truck against the ministry compound wall just off the busy intersection, according to an American military officer speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the bombing. The driver then detonated two tons of explosives. More...............
The Stolen Cars of Al Qaeda: How a Private Detective in Florida (Bill Warner) discovered a new global terrorist connection Written by Atty. John Loftus, research and background investigation by Bill Warner WBI Inc Terrorism Research Ctr. www.wbipi.com international analysis by Intelligence Summit.
What if Al Qaeda has found a new method to launder money around the world? In his testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, terrorism expert Steven Emerson made a chilling prophecy. He said that he would not be surprised someday to find an international network of stolen car rings raising money for terrorism,and shipping cars to the Middle East to be made into car bombs.
Emerson did not know that Bill Warner, a Florida Private Investigator had been secretly working on this issue since 2003 as a paid confidential informant (CI) for a federal agency. Warner has uncovered documentary evidence that stolen cars from Florida were being shipped to Al-Qaeda front companies in Dubai, U.A.E., Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Aqqaba, Jordan.
Furthermore, Warner claims that he has provided Federal agencies with a "smoking gun" document; a copy of the bill of lading from a Tampa used car lot shipping a vehicle directly to what appears to be an Al Qaeda front company in Saudi Arabia. Even more embarrassing to the FBI, Warner showed the federal agents that the suspected used car lots in Florida all had a common link: these used car lots were either owned by convicted terrorist Sami Al Arian or run by one of his associates in Tampa, one of whom is currently on the No-Fly list.
Recent history has demonstrated that there are few religious-ideological barriers in the world of international terrorism. The secular Ba'athist regime in Syria works closely with Hizballah, as a secular Ba'athist regime in Iraq has developed ties to al-Qaeda.It would be a mistake to assume that Islamist international terror groups are driven primarily by the religious associations with radical Sunni or radical Shiite Islam.
These groups have their own geopolitical interests in bridging this great Islamic divide - particularly their antipathy for the United States and its allies. Warner’s evidence has been analyzed by an organization of active and retired police, military and intelligence professionals, Intelligence Summit.
Their conclusion is that Warner has indeed uncovered the tip of an international car smuggling ring that finances terrorism worldwide. At first, authorities were incredulous that a terrorist financing network so large could have escaped their attention.
Partly as a result of Warner’s ground breaking discoveries, arrests of Muslim car dealers connected to money laundering for terrorism have now been made in at least twenty five cities around the world, including Salt Lake City Utah, Anaheim CA, Chicago IL, Buffalo NY, Houston TX, St. Louis MO, Toledo OH, Tampa FL, Sarasota Fl, Los Angeles CA, Tustin CA, Arlington VA, Miramar FL, Madrid Spain, Jeddah SA, Medina SA, Jubail SA, Hamburg GR, Niggiat Japan, Dubai UAE, Tangier Morocco, London UK, Amman Jordan, Toronto CN, Ash Shuwaykh Kuwait, and Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Even the skeptics are turning around, and, instead of crediting a private citizen, have intimated that the car connection was one of their own discoveries as part of good police work in the global war against terrorism: Inspector John E. Lewis, deputy assistant director of the FBI for counter terrorism said the origins of the vehicles in question were unearthed by tracing the vehicle identification numbers, or VINs.
Some of the automobiles can be easily identified, specialists said, while others have had their VINs ground down or have been fitted with fake ones. Investigators believe the cars were stolen by local car thieves in US cities, then smuggled to waiting ships at ports…"Black Cars". According to law enforcement surveillance, each car lot could ship an average of five used cars a month to the Middle East, where they have been resold for $30,000 to$45,000 (with some luxury cars selling as high as $75,000).
That could earn as much as a quarter of a million dollars per month, or three million per year per car lot. Just from the few dozen car lots that are know to law enforcement, terrorist groups have the potential to raise close to one hundred million dollars per year yo finance terrorist truck bombings line the one today in Baghdad. Al Qaeda’s car smuggling system has been in operation for more than a decade.
Conservatively, more than a billion dollars from the car connection has gone to the cause of global terrorism in the last ten years. Next to narcotics, the used car connection is possibly the largest source of terrorist funding in the world. Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeldt, author of "Funding Evil" and one of the world’s pre-eminent experts in terrorist money laundering, knows that groups like Al Qaeda have changed their tactics from year to year.
The Car Bomb Connection; Al Qaeda did not invent the stolen car smuggling system;they copied it from the Soviet Union. Saleh Al Oufi was a loyal follower, and in 1994 quickly established a used car dealership in Medina, Saudi Arabia, as his commercial cover for Al-Qaeda.Al Oufi and his clan were familiar with covert operations and were no strangers to terrorism.
One of Al Oufi’scousins, Majid Moqed Al-Oufi, was one of the 9/11 hijackers on the plane that hit the Pentagon.The debate about Warner’s stolen car theory first became an international controversy in November 2005, at the prestigious Wilton Park conference, in Sussex, England. In short, Warner alleged that Muslim car dealers around the world were exporting stolen vehicles to support Jihad. The older cars were usually shipped to Saudi Arabia or Jordan to be driven to Iraq and made into car bombs.
Newer models were sold for cash in Dubai and the proceeds were wired to Karachi, Pakistan and given to Al-Qaeda.When Al Qaeda wanted to support a terrorist operation in a foreign country, they simply opened a used car dealership and shipped them cars stolen from another country to sell. Warner’s thesis was simple: "The Cars Are The Cash." More.....