Psychology

Bernard Haykel — Islamic State and Islam — Videos

Posted on February 19, 2015. Filed under: Ammunition, Blogroll, Bomb, Business, Communications, Corruption, Dirty Bomb, Documentary, Drones, Employment, Energy, Ethic Cleansing, Faith, Family, Farming, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, Immigration, Islam, Islam, Language, Law, Legal, liberty, Life, Links, Missiles, Natural Gas, Natural Gas, Oil, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Religion, Resources, Shite, Sunni, Terrorism, War, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

heykel

Bernard Haykel: How Islamic is the Islamic State?

Prof Haykel on the Islamic State and Al Qaeda

IS is a symptom of a deep feeling amongst Sunni Arabs of being disenfranchised. […] It is the same sentiment that led to the emergence of Al-Qaeda.”

Professor Bernard Haykel of Princeton University’s Department of Near Eastern Studies elaborates on the root causes for the rise of the Islamic State, as a movement responding to the systemic disenfranchisement of Sunnis in the region.

Professor Haykel also explains why IS surpassed Al Qaeda in popularity and why the Arabian Peninsula has so vigorously supported U.S.- led airstrikes against IS.

Talking to War and Peace Talk, Professor Haykel responded to questions such as:
Why do people from the West join the Islamic State?
Why do the recruits burn their passports?
Should Western governments withdraw citizenship from jihadis?
What should be done about returning jihadis?
Can they be de-radicalized?

The interview was recorded in Amsterdam on November 14, 2014.

The Folly of Bombing the Islamic State

Killing Al-Baghdadi: the end of the Caliphate or part of the narrative?

SIS Tilting the Chess Board: The Dawn of a New Middle East Balance of Power – H. van Lynden lecture

The Henriette van Lynden lecture ‘ISIS Tilting the Chess Board: The Dawn of a New Middle East Balance of Power’, organised by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was held on Friday, 14 November 2014 in de Rode Hoed, Amsterdam.

The rise of ISIS as a failure of governance & the need for a broader response than CT-policy, by Ms. Mina al-Oraibi [0:6:36]
Links of ISIS ideology to Saudi Arabia’s wahabism and policy options by Prof. Bernard Haykel [0:19:52]
Iran’s interests and vision in the fight against ISIS by Dr. Ali Vaez [0:35:44]
Panel discussion moderated by Ernesto Braam [0:50:20]
Audience Q&A [1:05:25]

Panel:
Ms. Mina al-Oraibi
Born in Iraq, she is the deputy editor-in-chief of prominent Arab newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat. She is an expert on transitions in the Arab region and American military doctrine. She regularly speaks with heads of state in the Middle East.

Prof. Bernard Haykel
Professor of Middle Eastern studies at Princeton University, specialised in Saudi Arabia and the wider Gulf region. In addition, he is an Islam expert who focuses on Salafi movements and the roots of ISIS ideology. Particularly noteworthy is his contribution to the leading bestseller ‘Global Salafism’.

Dr. Ali Vaez
As an expert on Iran at the International Crisis Group in Washington D.C., he is a sought-after speaker on Iran’s influence in the region. He regularly appears on BBC and CNN, and publishes in Foreign Policy and the International Herald Tribune, among others.

Genieve Abdo and Bernard Haykel – “Understanding the Complexities of Sunni — Shi’a Relations”

Rising Sunni-Shiite violence threatens security in Iraq

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 1

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 2

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 3

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 4

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 5

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 6

Clifford Chanin interviews Professor Bernard Haykel part 7

Christiane Amanpour interviews Princeton Professor Bernard Haykel on Yemen

Bernard Haykel: Saudi Arabia’s Royal Family and the State

Bernard Haykel: Saudi Arabia’s Relationship with the U.S.

 Bernard Haykel / Princeton University

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President Obama’s Announces New Strategy To Destroy Islamic State — Three Year Limit and No Enduring Ground Troops — Strategy Will Not Work — Have Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt, Bahrain, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates Destroy The Islamic State With Their Own Military Forces — U.S. Sell These Nations The Arms — Stay Out Of Islamic Religious Sectarian Civil Wars Between The Sunni and Shia Sects of Islam — Videos

Posted on February 12, 2015. Filed under: Ammunition, Blogroll, Bomb, Business, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Communications, Constitution, Corruption, Crisis, Dirty Bomb, Drones, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Islam, Missiles, Narcissism, National Security Agency (NSA_, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Press, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Religion, Rifles, Security, Shite, Strategy, Sunni, Talk Radio, Taxes, Technology, Terrorism, Transportation, Unemployment, Video, War, Water, Wealth, Weapons, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 2: President Obama’s Announces New Strategy To Destroy Islamic State — Three Year Limit and No Enduring Ground Troops — Strategy Will Not Work — Have Saudi Arabia, Turkey,  Jordan, Egypt, Bahrain, Qatar, and United Arab Emirates Destroy The Islamic State With Their Own Military Forces —  U.S. Sell These Nations The Arms — Stay Out Of Islamic Religious Sectarian Civil Wars Between The Sunni and Shia Sects of Islam — Videos

mapmiddleeast

map-muslim-distribution2015-02-02-Control-Zone-Map_hi_80318772_areas_under_is_control_16_01_15_624Mappa-Isis

Letter: Obama Asks Congress for Authorization of Military Action Against ISIS

President Barack Obama sent a message to Congress today with respect to a draft proposal for a war resolution against Islamic State, asking for “limited” use of American force against the militant group operating in Syria and Iraq. Here is the letter:

TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES: The so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) poses a threat to the people and stability of Iraq, Syria, and the broader Middle East, and to U.S. national security. It threatens American personnel and facilities located in the region and is responsible for the deaths of U.S. citizens James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller. If left unchecked, ISIL will pose a threat beyond the Middle East, including to the United States homeland. I have directed a comprehensive and sustained strategy to degrade and defeat ISIL. As part of this strategy, U.S. military forces are conducting a systematic campaign of airstrikes against ISIL in Iraq and Syria. Although existing statutes provide me with the authority I need to take these actions, I have repeatedly expressed my commitment to working with the Congress to pass a bipartisan authorization for the use of military force (AUMF) against ISIL. Consistent with this commitment, I am submitting a draft AUMF that would authorize the continued use of military force to degrade and defeat ISIL.

My Administration’s draft AUMF would not authorize long-term, large-scale ground combat operations like those our Nation conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan. Local forces, rather than U.S. military forces, should be deployed to conduct such operations. The authorization I propose would provide the flexibility to conduct ground combat operations in other, more limited circumstances, such as rescue operations involving U.S. or coalition personnel or the use of special operations forces to take military action against ISIL leadership. It would also authorize the use of U.S. forces in situations where ground combat operations are not expected or intended, such as intelligence collection and sharing, missions to enable kinetic strikes, or the provision of operational planning and other forms of advice and assistance to partner forces.

Although my proposed AUMF does not address the 2001 AUMF, I remain committed to working with the Congress and the American people to refine, and ultimately repeal, the 2001 AUMF. Enacting an AUMF that is specific to the threat posed by ISIL could serve as a model for how we can work together to tailor the authorities granted by the 2001 AUMF.

I can think of no better way for the Congress to join me in supporting our Nation’s security than by enacting this legislation, which would show the world we are united in our resolve to counter the threat posed by ISIL.

BARACK OBAMA

THE WHITE HOUSE,

February 11, 2015.

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2015/02/11/letter-obama-asks-congress-for-authorization-of-military-action-against-isis/

Authorization Of Force Vs ISIS – Pres Obama Sends AUMF Draft To Congress – Special Report All Star

Obama ISIS Speech [FULL] Today on 9/10/2014: ‘Ultimately Destroy’ Militants | The New York

President Obama Statement on U.S.Military Force Against ISIS (FULL) Isis Is Going To Lose”

FULL SPEECH: Obama Delivers Statement on U.S. Military Force Against ISIS
Obama ISIS fight request sent to Congress Not About ‘Another Ground War’ Obama on war powers AUMF request: Islamic State is going to lose, Obama Says ISIS War Powers Request Not About ‘Another Ground War’. President Obama Asking Congress to Troops on the Ground to Fight ISIS
(MSNBC) President Barack Obama said Wednesday that his request for congressional approval to use military force against ISIS is “not the authorization of another ground war like Afghanistan or Iraq.”
The president spoke after sending Congress a request that would limit American military engagement to three years and would prohibit “enduring offensive ground forces.”
Obama, speaking from the White House, said that the war powers authorization “does not call for the deployment of U.S. ground combat forces to Iraq or Syria. It is not the authorization of another ground war like Afghanistan or Iraq.”
“I am convinced that the United States should not get dragged back into another prolonged ground war in the Middle East,” he said.

Still, the request quickly drew skepticism from both parties. House Speaker John Boehner questioned whether Obama’s plan will get the job done, and a leading Democrat in the Senate expressed concern about “a loophole that could lead to another major war.”

The United States has been pounding ISIS from the air since last summer. Obama said in his request that he wanted to work with Congress and show the world a united front.

video footage caught on tape cellphone camera surveillance raw dash cam air live on tv share comment like most popular President Obama Delivers Statement on U.S. Military Force Against ISIS (FULL)

Obama seeks Congress authorisation to fight ISIL

Obama Asks Congress To Declare War On Islamic State | Authorization for Military Force Against ISIS

America needs to lead the world to safety, Obama states in new US security strategy

Obama’s pro-Islamic, anti-American Strategy

Obama Asks Congress to Authorize Three-Year ISIS Fight

The Islamic State (Full Length)

he Islamic State, a hardline Sunni jihadist group that formerly had ties to al Qaeda, has conquered large swathes of Iraq and Syria. Previously known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the group has announced its intention to reestablish the caliphate and has declared its leader, the shadowy Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, as the caliph.

The lightning advances the Islamic State made across Syria and Iraq in June shocked the world. But it’s not just the group’s military victories that have garnered attention — it’s also the pace with which its members have begun to carve out a viable state.

Flush with cash and US weapons seized during its advances in Iraq, the Islamic State’s expansion shows no sign of slowing down. In the first week of August alone, Islamic State fighters have taken over new areas in northern Iraq, encroaching on Kurdish territory and sending Christians and other minorities fleeing as reports of massacres emerged.

VICE News reporter Medyan Dairieh spent three weeks embedded with the Islamic State, gaining unprecedented access to the group in Iraq and Syria as the first and only journalist to document its inner workings.

WHAT’S DRIVING THE ISLAMIC STATE? GLENN BECK HELPS UNDERSTAND

Glenn Beck broke down the history of the Middle East on his television program Thursday, focusing on a nearly 100-year-old agreement that he says is integral to understanding the motivations of the Islamic State: the Sykes-Picot Agreement.

If you do not understand the Sykes-Picot Agreement, Beck said, you cannot fully understand the Islamic State, or why the Israelis and the Palestinians will never reach a two-state solution.

Though many go back to 1948 and the creation of the modern state of Israel when examining the history of Middle Eastern conflicts, Beck said you actually have to go back to 1916 and World War I.

T.E. Lawrence and World War I

The Rise of Islam and Racism – Documentary | ISIS ISIL ISLAMIC STATE

Obama asks Congress to authorize U.S. war on Islamic State

U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday sent Congress his long-awaited formal request to authorize military force against Islamic State, meeting swift resistance from Republicans as well as his fellow Democrats wary of another war in the Middle East.

Republicans, who control Congress and say Obama’s foreign policy is too passive, want stronger measures against the militants than outlined in the plan, which bars any large-scale invasion by U.S. ground troops and covers the next three years.

Obama acknowledged that the military campaign is difficult and will remain so. “But our coalition is on the offensive. ISIL is on the defensive, and ISIL is going to lose,” he said in a televised statement from the White House.

With many of Obama’s fellow Democrats insisting the plan is too broad because it includes no blanket ban on ground troops, it could be difficult for the authorization to pass, even though six months have passed since the campaign began.

Obama consulted with Republicans and Democrats in writing the resolution, and said he would continue to do so. He said the time frame was intended to let Congress revisit the issue when the next president takes office in 2017.

The proposal says Islamic State “has committed despicable acts of violence and mass execution.” Its militants have killed thousands of civilians while seizing territory in Iraq andSyria in an attempt to establish a hub of jihadism in the heart of the Arab world.

They have also generated international outrage by beheading western aid workers and journalists and burning to death a Jordanian pilot.

Obama sent his request to Congress a day after his administration confirmed the death of Kayla Mueller, a 26-year-old aid worker who was the last known American hostage held by the group.

Both the Senate and House of Representatives must approve Obama’s plan. Lawmakers said they would begin hearings quickly as Republicans made clear they thought the plan fell short.

The Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives, John Boehner, told reporters he was sure the plan would change as it moved though Congress. “I’m not sure the strategy that has been outlined will accomplish the mission the president says he wants to accomplish,” he added.

Obama has defended his authority to lead an international coalition against Islamic State since Aug. 8 when U.S. fighter jets began attacks in Iraq. The formal request eased criticism of Obama’s failure to seek the backing of Congress, where some accused him of breaching his constitutional authority.

SEEKING A UNITED FRONT

With Republicans in control of Congress after routing Obama’s Democrats in November elections, the president also wants lawmakers to share responsibility for the campaign against Islamic State and present a united front.

The plan does not authorize “long-term, large-scale ground combat operations” such as those in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Obama said those operations would be left to local forces, but lawmakers worried they would not step up. “What is the role, really, that regional partners are playing in this battle against ISIL?” asked Democratic Senator Tim Kaine.

The draft allows for certain ground combat operations including hostage rescues and the use of special forces. It permits the use of U.S. forces for intelligence collection, targeting operations for drone strikes and planning and giving other assistance to local forces.

Many Democrats, especially liberals in the House, said Obama’s proposal was too broad. They want any authorization to place stricter limits on the use of ground troops and expressed concerns Obama set no geographic limits on the campaign.

“The language … is very broad, very ambiguous,” said Democratic Representative Adam Schiff. “None of us really know what ‘enduring offensive combat operations’ means.”

It was the first formal request for authority to conduct a military operation of Obama’s six years in office. If passed, it would be Congress’ first war authorization since then-President George W. Bush’s 2002 authority to wage the Iraq War.

Obama’s objection as a U.S. senator to that authority helped fuel his successful 2008 campaign for the White House.

Obama’s text includes a repeal of the 2002 Authorization for the Use of Military Force. But it leaves in place an open-ended authorization, passed days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, for a campaign against al Qaeda and affiliates.

Rights groups and many lawmakers said they want the new AUMF to set an end date for the 2001 authorization, which the White House has invoked to carry out drone and missile strikes against suspected al Qaeda militants in Yemen and Somalia.

Obama said he remained committed to working with Congress to “refine, and ultimately repeal” it.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/02/11/us-mideast-crisis-congress-authorization-idUSKBN0LF1KP20150211

Obama Asks Congress to Authorize Three-Year ISIS Fight

If approved, the proposal would be the first time Congress has authorized a president’s use of force since lawmakers voted in 2002 to permit President George W. Bush to invade Iraq. Mr. Obama pulled troops out of Iraq in 2011 but has sent a limited number back as part of his campaign against the Islamic State. His proposed legislation would repeal the 2002 authorization but leave in place separate legislation passed in 2001 allowing force against Al Qaeda and its affiliates.

Mr. Obama, who plans to make a statement at the White House at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday to discuss the matter, repeated in his letter his desire to work with Congress to “refine and ultimately repeal” the 2001 measure and distinguished his limited mission from the wars waged by his predecessor.

“My administration’s draft A.U.M.F.,” or Authorization for Use of Military Force, “would not authorize long-term, large-scale ground combat operations like those our nation conducted in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he wrote. “Local forces, rather than U.S. military forces, should be deployed to conduct such operations.”

Senator Bob Corker, Republican of Tennessee, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he welcomed Mr. Obama’s decision to seek the involvement of Congress in the military campaign. “It also will be important that the president exert leadership, lay out a clear strategy for confronting the threat posed by ISIS, and do the hard work of making the case to the American people why this fight is necessary and one we must win,” he said in a statement.

Mr. Corker said hearings would be scheduled to consider the matter and repeated his support for passage of a force measure. “Voting to authorize the use of military force is one of the most important actions Congress can take,” he said, “and while there will be differences, it is my hope that we will fulfill our constitutional responsibility, and in a bipartisan way, pass an authorization that allows us to confront this serious threat.”

Graphic: The Fates of 23 ISIS Hostages in Syria

Speaker John A. Boehner, Republican of Ohio, said Congress should not limit options. “If we’re going to authorize the use of military force, the president should have all the tools necessary to win the fight that we’re in,” he said at a news conference. “I’m not sure that’s a strategy that’s been outlined to accomplish the mission the president says he wants to accomplish.”

Representative Mo Brooks, Republican of Alabama, said Mr. Obama needed to make clear to the American public that he was genuinely committed to victory. “If the president wants to engage in a halfhearted P.R. effort, to go through the motions to give the appearance that we’re fighting when we’re not doing what is necessary to win, then we should not engage,” he said.

On the other hand, Representative Adam B. Schiff of California, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said he worried that the president’s proposal set no geographic limits to the military campaign and that the definition of associated forces was too elastic. Moreover, he argued that unless it repealed the 2001 measure authorizing force against Al Qaeda and its affiliates or set a timetable for its expiration, the three-year limit on Mr. Obama’s measure was effectively meaningless because the next president could continue the war by claiming the authority of the earlier legislation.

“Additionally,” Mr. Schiff said, “a new authorization should place more specific limits on the use of ground troops to ensure we do not authorize another major ground war without the president coming to Congress to make the case for one.”

Chris Anders, senior legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union, echoed those concerns. “If Congress grants any new authority for the use of military force, the authority must be significantly more limited than the authority the administration has proposed,” he said.

Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky, the majority leader in the upper chamber, offered a cautious, noncommittal response to the president’s request and said the Republican conference would meet later Wednesday for a discussion to be led by Mr. Corker and Senator John McCain of Arizona, the chairman of the Armed Services Committee.

“Individual senators and committees of jurisdiction will review it carefully and they’ll listen closely to the advice of military commanders as they consider the best strategy for defeating ISIL,” Mr. McConnell said.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/12/us/obama-war-authorization-congress.html

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Bernie Goldberg — Bias: A CBS Insider Exposes How The Media Distort News — Videos

Posted on January 28, 2015. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Books, Business, College, Communications, Crisis, Documentary, Economics, Education, Employment, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Freedom, government, government spending, history, Law, liberty, Life, Links, media, Money, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Psychology, Rants, Raves, Video, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

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biasBernard_Goldberg

Bernie Goldberg: Only Way To Stop Media Bias Is For Slanted Reporters To Be ‘Publicly Fired’

Bernie Goldberg rips Benghazi media bias: MSNBC Is White House’s ‘Public Relations Firm’

A Great Conversation Between Bernard Goldberg And David Horowitz On Media Bias

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The Man Who Could Bring Obama Down By Telling What The Central Intelligence Agency Was Doing in Benghazi, Libya, Shipping Arms To Syrian Al-Qaida Islamic Jihadist Terrorists, General David H. Petraeus? — Videos

Posted on January 21, 2015. Filed under: American History, Ammunition, Blogroll, Books, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Communications, Computers, Corruption, Crime, Crisis, Culture, Demographics, Diasters, Documentary, Ethic Cleansing, European History, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, history, Islam, Language, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Missiles, Narcissism, National Security Agency (NSA_, Natural Gas, Non-Fiction, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Press, Psychology, Radio, Raves, Resources, Rifles, Security, Shite, Strategy, Sunni, Talk Radio, Terrorism, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons, Welfare, Wisdom, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Pronk Pops Show 380: December 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 379: November 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 378: November 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 377: November 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 376: November 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 375: November 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 374: November 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 373: November 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 372: November 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 371: November 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 370: November 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 369: November 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 368: November 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 367: November 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 366: November 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 365: November 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 364: November 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 363: November 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 362: November 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 361: October 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 360: October 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 359: October 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 358: October 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 357: October 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 356: October 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 355: October 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 354: October 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 353: October 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 352: October 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 351: October 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 350: October 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 349: October 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 348: October 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 347: October 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 346: October 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 345: October 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 344: October 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 343: October 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 342: October 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 341: October 1, 2014

Story 1: The Man Who Could Bring Obama Down By Telling What The Central Intelligence Agency Was Doing in Benghazi, Libya, Shipping Arms To Syrian Al-Qaida Islamic Jihadist Terrorists, General David H. Petraeus? — Videos

9781594203183_AllIn_JKF.inddpetraeusDavid-Petraeus-Mistress_-Paula-Broadwell-600x450-600x350david-petraeus-paula-broadwellDavid Petraeus Sworn In As CIA Director
petraeus

U.S. prosecutors recommend criminal charges against Petraeus – N.Y. Times

Former CIA Chief David Petraeus may face criminal charges

FBI, D.O.J. Want To File Charges Against Former Gen. Petraeus

Benghazi Gate Blackmail? – FBI Investigation Hanging Over Fmr CIA Dir David Petraeus – Happening Now

Benghazi Gate Blackmail? – FBI Investigation Hanging Over Former CIA Dir David Petraeus – Happening Now
Witness Intimidation?
Is Obama Admin Trying To Silence Petraeus On Benghazi?

Evidence Obama Allowed Americans In Libya To Die To Cover Up Arms Shipment To Syrian Islamist Groups

Published on Oct 28, 2012

Evidence points to Obama alowing Americans in Libya to die to coverup arms shipment through Turkey to Syrian Islamist groups!

Benghazi – TheBlazeTV – The Glenn Beck Program – 2013.05.06

Benghazi-Gate: Connection between CIA and al-Qaeda in Libya and Syria, with Turkey’s Help

Rand Paul asks Hillary Clinton if the US is Shipping Arms from Libya to Turkey

Benghazi Gate – Rand Paul and Hillary Clinton – Question & Answer

Glenn Greenwald: With Calls to Spare Petraeus, Feinstein Plea Shows that Not All Leaks are Equal

US lawmakers react to Petraeus’testimony on Benghazi

Petraeus Affair – FBI Case – FBI Involvement – CIA Director

SYRIA Retired General Suspects A US Covert Operation For Running Libya Arms To Syria

Benghazi Gate – “You Need To Wait” – Ops Say CIA Officer Told Them To Stand Down -North – F&F

Benghazi Whistleblowers Threatened by Obama Administration

LIBYA No US Consulate In Benghazi But CIA Operation, Hired Militia Linked To Extremist

Treason: Benghazi Revelations Could Sink Obama

The Real Reason Petraeus Resigned

The Media Syria Al Nusra John McCain

White House relations with CBS, ABC, NBC – #Benghazi Gun Running

Why Was Gaddafi Overthrown?

Benghazi Attack Cover Up! Obama Armed Al Qaeda?

Stefan Molyneux speaks with Roger Aronoff on the recent findings of the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi, White House lies, the United States selling weapons to Libyan rebels, Muammar Gaddafi’s desire to surrender, the possibility of Obama’s impeachment, Hillary Clinton’s involvement and the impact this could have on the next presidential election.

Wayne Madsen: Benghazi Bombshell Insiders Confirm CIA Sent Missiles to FSA Rebels

Benghazi Attack Was Cover For Al Qaeda Arms Deal

Rooney Questions CIA on Benghazi: How Did They Know When Attack Would End?

During a House Intelligence Committee hearing on the Benghazi terrorist attacks, Rep. Tom Rooney (FL-17) questioned the former CIA Acting Director on why a decision was made not to send a military response, since the Administration could not have known how long the attack would continue. Rooney also focused on how future attacks could be prevented.

Charges eyed for Petraeus in classified leaks to mistress

FBI and Justice prosecutors recommend felony charges against Petraeus

Benghazi Gate Blackmail? – FBI Investigation Hanging Over Fmr CIA Dir David Petraeus – Happening Now

White House ‘Held Affair Over Petraeus’s Head’ For Favorable Testimony On Benghazi

Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer on Tuesday said the White House used David Petraeus’s affair to get the CIA director to give testimony about the attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that was in line with the administration’s position on the matter.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: I think the really shocking news today was that General Petraeus thought and hoped he could keep his job. He thought that it might and it would be kept secret, and that he could stay in his position. I think what that tells us is really important. It meant that he understood that the FBI obviously knew what was going on. He was hoping that those administration officials would not disclose what had happened, and therefore hoping that he would keep his job. And that meant that he understood that his job, his reputation, his legacy, his whole celebrated life was in the hands of the administration, and he expected they would protect him by keeping it quiet.

Peter King, Carl Levin `This Week` Interview: David Petraeus Scandal, Benghazi investigation

Gen. Petraeus knew all about running guns in Bengazi, U.S. in bed with Al Qaeda there (Glenn Beck)

Official: Harassing Emails Led to FBI Probe

CNBC: Benghazi is not about Libya! “It’s An NSC Operation Moving Arms & Fighters Into Syria”

The resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus is not about an extramarital affair with his biographer, reserve Army officer Paula Broadwell. It’s about U.S. policy in the Middle East, the ongoing “color revolutions,” and specifically the operation underway to arm al-Qaeda, the FSA in Syria, and overthrow the al-Assad regime.

Radio talk show host John Baxter told CNBC’s Larry Kudlow the step-down may be part of a deal made by Petraeus to avoid testifying before a closed-door session of the Senate Intelligence Committee next week about the CIA’s role in the September 11 assault on the diplomatic facility and a CIA annex in Benghazi.

The House Intelligence Committee has also scheduled a hearing to grill Petraeus and National Counterterrorism Center Director Matt Olsen.

The chairman of the House committee, Rep. Mike Rogers, has vehemently criticized the Obama administration for its role in the attack that left ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans dead.

“Benghazi is not about Libya, Benghazi is about the policy of the Obama administrtion to involve the United States without clarity to the Americvan people, not only in Libya but throughout the whole of the Arab world now in turmoil,” Baxter told Kudlow. “Benghazi is about the NSC directing an operation that is perhaps shadowy, perhaps a presidential finding, perhaps doesn’t, that takes arms and men and puts them into Syria in the guise of the Free Syria Army (FSA).”

Obama LIED About Benghazi Attack!!! (Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer Interview)

Petraeus affair snares another top General

David Petraeus Scandal: Truth Behind Resignation, Paula Broadwell

Paula Broadwell spilling secret CIA information

David Petraeus Resigns Over Affair With Biographer Paula Broadwell

Alumni Symposium 2012: Paula Broadwell

IRAQ HEARINGS: Sen. Obama Questions Gen. Petraeus

Interesting Benghazi Conspiracy angle – Was there possible involvement with CIA Director Petraeus?

Treason Exposed! Obama Used Benghazi Attack to Cover Up Arms Shipments to Muslim Brotherhood

Patriot Act Used To Spy on CIA Director

OBAMA CONFRONTED ON BENGHAZI – Stutters Through Response

Petraeus is Key Witness to Benghazi Scandal

Prosecutors weigh charges against David Petraeus involving classified information

 

By Sari Horwitz and Adam Goldman January 9
Federal prosecutors have recommended that David H. Petraeus face charges for providing classified documents to his biographer, raising the prospect of criminal proceedings against the retired four-star general and former CIA director.

The recommendation follows a federal probe into how the biographer, Paula Broadwell, apparently obtained classified records several years ago while working on a book about Petraeus. Broadwell was also his mistress, and the documents were discovered by investigators during the scandal that forced Petraeus’s resignation as CIA director in 2012.

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. must decide whether to pursue charges against Petraeus, the former top U.S. commander in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to an official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

The Justice Department and FBI declined to comment, as did Robert B. Barnett, a lawyer for Petraeus.

Both Petraeus and Broadwell have denied in the past that he provided her with classified information. Investigators have previously focused on whether his staff gave her sensitive documents at his instruction.

Prosecutors recommend charges against Petraeus(0:44)
The U.S. federal prosecutors have recommended bringing charges against former CIA chief David Petraeus, raising the prospect of criminal proceedings against him.
The prosecutors’ recommendation was first reported Friday evening on the Web site of the New York Times, which said Petraeus has rejected the possibility of a plea deal.

The FBI has been pushing to resolve several high-profile counterespionage investigations that have lingered for months and in some cases years. In addition to the case involving Petraeus and Broadwell, the bureau wants the Justice Department to decide whether to pursue charges against veteran State Department diplomat Robin Raphel and retired Marine Gen. James E. “Hoss” Cartwright, who until 2011 was vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Cartwright was the target of a Justice Department investigation into the leak of information about the Stuxnet cyberattack against Iran’s nuclear program. The details of Raphel’s case remain murky, but officials have said classified information was found at her home.

FBI agents believe they have strong cases against all four of them, said another U.S. official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity. Each of the cases is considered sensitive given the involvement of high-ranking officials in the U.S. government.
The Justice Department has also faced political pressure to resolve the Petraeus matter. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), now the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, wrote Holder last month expressing concern the case has continued to linger.

“At this critical moment in our nation’s security, Congress and the American people cannot afford to have this voice silenced or curtailed by the shadow of a long-running, unresolved investigation marked by leaks from anonymous sources,” said McCain, adding that he wasn’t seeking action “on behalf of any particular interest — and don’t presume to judge the outcome of any investigation.”

Federal investigators first searched Broadwell’s home in Charlotte in November 2012 and seized dozens of boxes of records as well as computer equipment. Aides to Petraeus have said they were often tasked to provide military records or other documents to Broadwell for her work on her book about him. That book, “All In,” was published in January 2012.

Any classified information investigators discovered could expose both her and Petraeus to charges. It is a crime to remove classified information from secure, government locations as well as to provide that information to others not authorized to receive it.

Petraeus now spends his time teaching and giving speeches; he also serves as chairman of the KKR Global Institute, a part of the private-equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts.

The 2012 investigation into Petraeus was triggered when Broadwell allegedly sent threatening e-mails to another woman who was a friend of Petraeus, Jill Kelley of Tampa. Kelley alerted an FBI agent she knew to seek protection and to help track down whoever had sent the e-mails.

The FBI traced the messages to Broadwell, a married Army reservist, and in the course of its investigation, uncovered explicit e-mails between Broadwell and Petraeus.

Investigators said they were at first concerned about the possibility that Petraeus, then the director of the CIA, had had his e-mail hacked. Further investigation led to the discovery of the affair with Broadwell.
Petraeus had become CIA director a short time earlier, in September 2011. His resignation cut short his time at the agency and also seemed to scuttle long-rumored presidential aspirations.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/prosecutors-weigh-charges-against-david-petraeus-involving-classified-information/2015/01/09/d6b4bb36-9854-11e4-aabd-d0b93ff613d5_story.html

REPORT: David Petraeus May Be Charged With Leaking Classified Information To His Former Mistress

Former General David Petraeus’s 2012 adultery scandal may end up costing him more than just his job as CIA director.

Citing anonymous government officials, the New York Times is reporting that federal prosecutors with the FBI and the Department of Justice have recommended that Petraeus be charged with a felony for providing classified information to his mistress and biographer, Paula Broadwell, who was also an Army Reserve officer.

Petraeus has been under investigation for unauthorized leaks related to the affair and Broadwell’s book since the scandal broke. Holder was supposed to decide on charging Petraeus by the end of last year. But the legal process has unfolded slowly, with the retired general showing “no interest in a plea deal that would spare him an embarrassing trial,” according to the Times.

The charges would represent a stunning turnabout for the celebrated former US commander in Iraq and Afghanistan and one of the military’s major proponents of counter-insurgency doctrine. As the Times puts it, Attorney General Eric Holder now has to decide “whether to seek an indictment that could send the pre-eminent military officer of his generation to prison.”

Petraeus abruptly resigned as CIA director on Nov. 10, 2012 after admitting that he had carried on an extra-marital affair with Broadwell the year before. For someone in a less sensitive position in government, such marital indiscretions aren’t necessarily a career-ender.

But for the director of the US’s top intelligence agency it’s nothing less than a national security risk. The affair could have provided potential blackmail fodder to foreign intelligence agencies while raising the possibility of just the kind of security breach Petraeus may now be charged with. After all, once classified information is in the hands of a single unauthorized individual, it can leak even further, the people beyond the intended recipient. And as CIA director, Petraeus security clearance was virtually limitless.

The Petraeus scandal quickly took on a tawdry aspect as news of the affair broke in the days after President Barack Obama’s re-election. It turns out the adultery was exposed because Jill Kelley, a friend of Petraeus who lived near US Central Command headquarters in Tampa, Florida and was active in local military support circles, had allegedly received threatening emails from a jealous Broadwell that she later reported to the FBI. The resulting investigation uncovered Petraeus’s affair with Broadwell and ended the retired general’s career in government.

But the possible charges shows that there’s a deeply serious side to this soap opera, with a sitting CIA director possibly violating his security clearance, thus proving that the affair had the potential to endanger US national security.

Business Insider reached out to Robert Barnett, the lawyer Petraeus hired in the aftermath of his resignation, for comment. He declined to comment.

http://www.businessinsider.com/new-york-times-reports-david-petraeus-may-be-charged-with-leaking-classified-information-2015-1

 

Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi Reveals Damning New Report

Editor’s Note – The following is the latest interim report from the Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi. The commission is part of Accuracy in Media(AIM) of which MG Paul E. Vallely, CEO of Stand Up America US is a charter member. The following are also members of the commission:

Roger Aronoff  (Editor, Accuracy in Media)Capt. Larry Bailey, (SEAL), USN (Ret.)Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth Benway, U.S. Army Special Forces (Retired)Col. Dick Brauer Jr., USAF (Ret.)Lt. Col. Dennis B. Haney, USAF (Ret.)B/Gen. Charles Jones, USAF (Ret.)Clare Lopez, former CIA officerAdmiral James Lyons (Ret.)General Thomas McInerney (Ret.)Col. Wayne Morris USMC (Ret.)Chet NagleJohn A. ShawKevin Shipp, former CIA officerWayne Simmons, former CIA officerFormer Congressman and Retired Army Lieutenant Colonel Allen West.

The following story was published in the UK in the Daily Mail. Roger Aronoff also posted a letter to the press that you can read here. Roger Cover Letter Interim Report 4-22-14 (2).

Here is the full 30-page Interim Report published by the commission.

Benghazi attack could have been prevented if US hadn’t ‘switched sides in the War on Terror’ and allowed $500 MILLION of weapons to reach al-Qaeda militants, reveals damning report

  • Citizens Committee on Benghazi claims the US government allowed arms to flow to al-Qaeda-linked militants who opposed Muammar Gaddafi
  • Their rise to power, the group says, led to the Benghazi attack in 2012
  • The group claims the strongman Gaddafi offered to abdicate his presidency, but the US refused to broker his peaceful exit
  • The commission, part of the center-right Accuracy In Media group, concluded that the Benghazi attack was a failed kidnapping plot
  • US Ambassador Chris Stevens was to be captured and traded for ‘blind sheikh’ Omar Abdel-Rahman, who hatched the 1993 WTC bombing plot

By DAVID MARTOSKO, U.S. POLITICAL EDITOR

Published at the Citizens’s Commission on Benghazi and cross-posted at the UK’s Daily Mail

The Citizens Commission on Benghazi, a self-selected group of former top military officers, CIA insiders and think-tankers, declared Tuesday in Washington that a seven-month review of the deadly 2012 terrorist attack has determined that it could have been prevented – if the U.S. hadn’t been helping to arm al-Qaeda militias throughout Libya a year earlier.

‘The United States switched sides in the war on terror with what we did in Libya, knowingly facilitating the provision of weapons to known al-Qaeda militias and figures,’ Clare Lopez, a member of the commission and a former CIA officer, told MailOnline.

She blamed the Obama administration for failing to stop half of a $1 billion United Arab Emirates arms shipment from reaching al-Qaeda-linked militants.

‘Remember, these weapons that came into Benghazi were permitted to enter by our armed forces who were blockading the approaches from air and sea,’ Lopez claimed. ‘They were permitted to come in. … [They] knew these weapons were coming in, and that was allowed..

‘The intelligence community was part of that, the Department of State was part of that, and certainly that means that the top leadership of the United States, our national security leadership, and potentially Congress – if they were briefed on this – also knew about this.’

The weapons were intended for Gaddafi but allowed by the U.S. to flow to his Islamist opposition. (See Video Below)

The Citizens Committee on Benghazi released its interim findings on April 22, 2014 in Washington. Pictured are (L-R) Clare Lopez, Admiral (Ret.) Chuck Kubic, Admiral (Ret.) James 'Ace' Lyons, former CIA officer Wayne Simmons and civil rights attorney John Clarke

On September 11, 2012 armed terror-linked militias attacked U.S. diplomatic outposts in Benghazi, Libya, killing four Americans and driving the United States out of that part of the country

‘The White House and senior Congressional members,’ the group wrote in an interim report released Tuesday, ‘deliberately and knowingly pursued a policy that provided material support to terrorist organizations in order to topple a ruler [Muammar Gaddafi] who had been working closely with the West actively to suppress al-Qaeda.’

‘Some look at it as treason,’ said Wayne Simmons, a former CIA officer who participated in the commission’s research.

Retired Rear Admiral Chuck Kubic, another commission member, told reporters Tuesday that those weapons are now ‘all in Syria.’

‘Gaddafi wasn’t a good guy, but he was being marginalized,’ Kubic recalled. ‘Gaddafi actually offered to abdicate’ shortly after the beginning of a 2011 rebellion.

‘But the U.S. ignored his calls for a truce,’ the commission wrote, ultimately backing the horse that would later help kill a U.S. ambassador.

Kubic said that the effort at truce talks fell apart when the White House declined to let the Pentagon pursue it seriously.

‘We had a leader who had won the Nobel Peace Prize,’ Kubic said, ‘but who was unwilling to give peace a chance for 72 hours.’

In March 2011, Kubic said, U.S. Army Africa Commander General Carter told NBC News that the U.S. military was not actively targeting Muammar Gaddafi. That, Kubic revealed, was a signal to the Libyan dictator that there was a chance for a deal.

Gaddafi responded by ‘verifiably … pull[ing] his forces back from key rebel-held cities such as Benghazi and Misrata.’

Christopher Stevens served as the U.S. Ambassador to Libya from June 2012 to September 11, 2012 when he was killed in the attack

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in January 23 that it mattered little why the Benghazi diplomatic compound was attacked: 'What difference, at this point, does it make?'

Gaddafi wanted only two conditions to step down: permission to keeo fighting al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), and the lifting of sactions against him, his family, and those loyal to him.

The Obama administration’s unwillingness to help broker a peaceful exit for the Libyan strongman, ‘led to extensive loss of life (including four Americans)’ when al-Qaeda-linked militants attacked U.S. diplomatic facilities in the city of Benghazi,’ the commission told reporters.

Retired Admiral Chuck Kubic said the White House refused to let the Pentagon pursue a peaceful exit for Muammar Gaddafi: 'We had a leader who had won the Nobel Peace Prize, but who was unwilling to give peace a chance for 72 hours'

The White House and the National Security Staff did not immediately respond to questions about the group’s findings.

‘We don’t claim to have all the answers here,’ said Roger Aronoff, whose center-right group Accuracy in Media sponsored the group and its work.

‘We hope you will, please, pursue this,’ he told reporters. ‘Check it out. Challenge us.’

The commission and AIM filed 85 document requests under the Freedom Of Information Act, hitting the Department of Defense, State Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation and Central Intelligence Agency with demand after demand.

But most of its information has come from insiders with deep knowledge of the flow of weapons in Libya and elsewhere in the African Maghreb.

Admiral James ‘Ace’ Lyons told the group that he believes the raid on the Benghazi compound was intended as a kidnapping exercise, aimed at snatching U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and demanding a prisoner swap for the ‘blind sheikh’ Omar Abdel-Rahman.

Abdel-Rahman is serving a life sentence in federal prison for planning the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center garage in New York City. He also masterminded a plan, later foiled, to blow up the United Nations, both the Lincoln and Holland tunnels, the George Washington Bridge and a federal building where the FBI had a base of operations.

A senior FBI source, Lyons said Tuesday, ‘told me that was the plan.’

The attack, history shows, grew in intensity and resulted in the deaths of Stevens and three other U.S. personnel.

Lyons also said U.S. claims that it lacked the resources to mount a counterattack in time to save lives is false.

‘I’m going to tell you that’s not true,’ he said. ‘We had a 130-man unit of forces at Sigonella [AFB in Italy]. They were ready to go.’

‘The flight time from Sigonella to Benghazi is roughly an hour.’

Killed: An image captured by a cellular phone camera shows the arrest of strongman Muammar Gaddafi in Sirte, Libya on October 20, 2011

Former CIA officer Clare Lopez accused the U.S. government of allowing arms to flow to al-Qaeda militants who opposed Gaddafi in 2011, 'switching sides in the war on terror'

Some of the group’s claims strain credibility, including the assertion that the Obama administration’s early effort to blame the Benghazi attack on a protest against a crude anti-Muslim YouTube video ‘appears to have been well-coordinated with U.S.Muslim Brotherhood organizations as well as Islamic state members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).’

Those groups, the commission noted, ‘all joined in condemnation of the video, and, even more troubling, issued calls for restrictions on Americans’ free speech rights.’

But Simmons, the former CIA officer, criticized the Obama administration on the familiar refrain of then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton exclaiming in a Senate hearing that it mattered little why the Benghazi facilities were struck.

‘They believed they were going to be saved, that they were going to be rescued, but they weren’t,’ Simmons said of the four Americans who died.

‘I know who made the decision, in my heart of hearts, to leave our war fighters there and be blown up. And then to have one of the most powerful politicians in our country sit there and say, “What difference does it make?” – should be an alarm bell for all Americans.

‘It haunts me,’ Simmons said. ‘I play that line over, and over, and over, and over in my mind.’

The group has called for a Select Congressional Committee to investigate the Benghazi episode. A total of 189 House members have signed on to a bill that would create the committee, which would be bipartisan and have sweeping powers to subpoena the executive branch.

House Speaker John Boehner, Lopez said Tuesday, ‘he blocked it. One has to wonder if he and Congress have had some sort of briefing on what happened.’

Kubic insisted that Congress is unable to break logjams in the Obama administration and find out what happened in the days leading up to and following the Benghazi attack without a new committee.

‘If they don’t have strong subpoena power, if they don’t have the ability to do long-term cross examination, it won’t work,’ he said.

 

The Benghazi Scandal Is “Obama’s Watergate” But Worse

This article was first published by Global Research on May 2, 2014.

A trail of emails released Tuesday appears to shed yet more light on the Benghazi cover-up story that continues to nag President Obama and then Secretary of State and current Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton. The latest exposure indicates that both Obama and Clinton knew that UN Secretary Susan Rice’s claim to the press that the attack on the Benghazi compound killing Libyan Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans was due to an anti-Muslim youtube video was a complete lie. This latest piece of incriminating evidence is what Republicans are now calling their “smoking gun” despite months that have stretched into years of the Congressional investigation led by Representative Darrel Issa (R-CA). His so called investigation that was supposed to uncover the truth behind that fateful day of September 11th, 2012 has often been labeled “a witch hunt” by Democrats and supporters of Obama and Hillary Clinton.

This week’s news may be the needed breakthrough that will ultimately lead to the unveiling of what many critics of the Obama administration have been claiming all along. And that is Obama and Hillary purposely withheld the truth from the American public for fear that it would derail Obama’s reelection less than two months after the death of the four Americans in Benghazi. In retrospect now Obama’s rush to war in Syria last September is far better understood when taking a hard look at the 2012 Benghazi embassy attack.

The so called Arab spring uprising revolts in Middle Eastern and North African nations in fact have been the result of covert manipulation by the CIA. After getting rid of our one time allies in Iraq’s Saddam Hussein and Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak, next on the US regime-change hit list came Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi. In 2007 retired General Wesley Clark revealed a neocon plan he became privy to a couple weeks after 9/11 of the ambitious Bush administration agenda to take down seven sovereign governments in the next five years that included Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, Syria and Iran.

With gusto President Obama inherited this same agenda and proceeded to finish the job in removing Libya’s longtime dictator Gaddafi. And so began the NATO air bombardment of Libya killing many innocent victims that softened the resistance to an all out assault on Gaddafi’s military forces largely spearheaded by al Qaeda mercenaries from all over the Middle East as well as native Libyan al Qaeda affiliated militia groups, some from Benghazi.

In the spring of 2011 even prior to Gaddafi’s capture and killing, as an envoy to the rebel coalition the future Libyan Ambassador Christopher Stevens was sent to Benghazi, a city in eastern Libya that has long been a hotbed of Islamic extremism that includes various Al Qaeda affiliated groups and militias. Stevens spoke Arabic and had twenty years of foreign diplomatic service experience when he was selected to become the Ambassador after the fall of the Gaddafi government. The State Department resent him to work back in Benghazi rather than the Libyan capitol Tripoli to assist the area’s transition to the new puppet government the US had installed. But because Benghazi and eastern Libya had a history of resisting national governance, Stevens faced an uphill struggle and near impossible task. Beginning in June of 2012, a full three months prior to the Benghazi embassy compound attack that killed the Ambassador and three other Americans, Stevens’ requests for increased security began falling on deaf ears in Washington. Stevens’ boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, failed to heed any of his increasingly urgent calls. Just days prior to the embassy onslaught, the British consulate had been attacked and all its diplomatic staff were safely evacuated away.

Last year efforts to blame Stevens for irresponsibly turning down security offered in Benghazi were anonymously leaked, insisting that the ambassador twice had turned down offers of increased military security from AFRICOM commander General Ham.

For obvious reasons the now retired general refuses to discuss what he knew or did not know of the events leading up to the Benghazi attack. However, throughout the aftermath of the Americans’ deaths, Stevens’ own deputy ambassador Gregory Hicks in Tripoli has maintained that he never knew of any such alleged offers made to Stevens for more security.

Since the strategy targeting Ambassador Stevens as the sole reason for the lack of security at his embassy compound clearly backfired, a whitewashed report was released last year by the Accountability Review Board. The two men behind this report are Hillary’s buddies Ambassador Pickering and former Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mullens. Thus no surprise that they decided from the outset that it would not be necessary to even bother to interview Hillary, satisfied to blame it on lower level State Department bureaucrats’ error in judgment not to supply adequate security. The alleged failure to authorize proper military security was because the Benghazi compound was relegated to being a temporary outpost. Of course this is just another feeble attempt to shield Queen Hillary who sent Stevens herself to Benghazi fully aware of it being an al Qaeda trouble spot.

But Benghazi under the cover of the State Department was ideal for the covert CIA and Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) needed to coordinate arms smuggling that Obama, Hillary and then CIA Director Petraeus were knee deep in. Stevens ultimately may have felt he was being used as the convenient decoy for the clandestine activity he wanted no part of.

Years earlier as a former Peace Corps volunteer and a seasoned career diplomat, becoming a lookout for an immoral criminal gun running operation may not have been what he had signed on for as the Libyan Ambassador. Thus, he very likely voiced his objection to what his bosses in Washington were misusing him for, and as vindictive and petty as Obama and Hillary are, Stevens was likely punished for not going along with their program. Hence, all his urgent pleas that began as early as June 2012, a full three months prior to the September attack, requesting increased security were ignored, including his desperate cry for help moments before his murder on the night of the 11th. Meanwhile, as he and three other Americans lay dying, back in the States Obama was flying out West to another high brow fundraiser so he could self-servingly get reelected.

What is most certain is that this trouble spot region was the hub of activity for special ops units comprised of special forces and a large number of CIA operatives in conjunction with British MI6. The CIA safely defended annex in Benghazi a mere mile and a half from the embassy compound was the largest CIA station in North Africa. The annex housed 35 CIA personnel responsible for coordinating the large arms smuggling operation to Syria, circumventing Congress by calling the CIA mission a liaison operation.

Two former special ops operatives Brandon Webb and Jack Murphy, authors of ‘Benghazi: The Definitive Report,’ have since claimed that a bureaucratic breakdown in communication between CIA and JSOC caused local Benghazi radicals to attack and kill Americans on 9/11/12. They believe that just days before an assassination carried out by Special Operations of a popular Libyan CIA informant had angered an al Qaeda affiliated militia called Ansar al-Sharia to launch the attack as retribution. The former Special Ops boys, one of whom was friends with one of the killed Americans Glen Doherty, speculated that the root cause of the American embassy deaths was the result of the left hand not knowing what the right hand was doing in the over-compartmentalized, ultra-guarded secrecy of competing clandestine intelligence operations and that this problem commonly serves as a major barrier and significant dysfunction of American foreign policy in general. They believe the Ambassador was probably only peripherally aware of the high presence of CIA and JSOC operations in the area but was never directly involved or looped in.

This claim appears to be a disinformation ploy to again absolve the higher ups Obama and Clinton of any responsibility. It did little to quiet the conjecture surrounding the attack that Stevens knew too much and had become a thorn in the side of the hierarchical status quo.

Though the former special ops authors may have offered small minor details on the Benghazi story, obviously far more was going down than they alluded to. On October 26th, 2012 a mere two weeks prior to the David Petraeus-Paula Broadwell affair broke as the scandalous headlines, Broadwell hyping her ‘All In’ biography of the general spoke at the University of Denver divulging her inside scoop on the Benghazi attack that had taken place a month and a half earlier. She claimed the attack on the compound was probable payback for CIA detaining local members from the same Libyan militia responsible for the assault. Or that the attackers may have been attempting to free their prisoners. Though only one news reporter from Fox paid any attention to Paula at the time, once their tryst was exposed a short time afterwards, much speculation raised the issue that Broadwell unwittingly revealed classified information that could well have been leaked through her intimacy with the then CIA Director. That the mistress was privy to such insider lowdown compromising sensitive US intelligence operations headquartered at the CIA Benghazi annex is a very real possibility, especially since classified documents were later uncovered at her North Carolina home.

In view of the CIA’s fervent denial that any prisoners were detained in Benghazi and Obama’s January 2009 executive order outlawing the CIA business of holding prisoners, Paula shooting her mouth off as an insider know-it-all implicated her lover Petraeus and his CIA as criminals engaging in an unlawful operation. But then that illegal activity amounts to small peanuts in comparison to the much bigger crime being committed by her lover CIA boss Petraeus and his crime bosses Obama and Hillary for using the same Libyan al Qaeda militants who murdered the four Americans on 9/11/12 to smuggle guns from Benghazi across international borders to be used against Assad in Syria.

Despite Ambassador Stevens’ repeated requests for more security, it was never given. So when about 150 members of the local militia Ansar al-Sharia stormed the gates of the compound carrying machine guns and rocket propelled grenades (RPG’s), the handful of unarmed Libyan security contractors instantly fled and soon enough the building was engulfed in flames. The nearby annex in Benghazi where thirty-five CIA operatives worked was called during the crisis to assist those Americans at the embassy. CIA security officer Tyrone Woods convinced his supervisor at the annex with five other security personnel to rush to the embassy’s aid. Both Woods and Glen Doherty were former Navy Seals commandos who died from bullet wounds at the second attack at the annex killed by a mortar after Sean Smith, an information officer, and Ambassador Stevens had already died from smoke inhalation. According to authors Webb and Murphy, due to Woods and Doherty’s heroics along with four other CIA analysts, the remaining embassy staff were apparently able to safely escape the burning compound. An overhead surveillance drone had been dispatched above the compound prior to that second attack that occurred at the annex. President Obama, Secretary of State Clinton and CIA Director Petraeus were all informed of the crisis unfolding during the afternoon local Washington time. Yet they chose to not even bother contacting the Marines stationed in the capital Tripoli, allegedly figuring they would take too long to arrive on the scene in Benghazi. So after ignoring the Ambassador’s pleas urging for more security for three straight months, they coldly refused to order any further military assistance at the time the four Americans lost their lives.

Instead they ordered UN Ambassador Susan Rice to later lie to the American public claiming that the attack was instigated by that anti-Moslem youtube video. Under the increasing pressure of Benghazi questions, suddenly Hillary keeled over with a brain clot to conveniently dodge any more heat. And of course Petraeus was soon engulfed in scandal with his mistress Broadwell, retiring from the CIA and out of sight for months thereafter, conveniently ducking from his hot seat. And then soon enough Clinton was resigning as Secretary of State, evading any further scrutiny as the Ambassador’s boss most responsible for the deaths of the four Americans.

Another piece of incriminating evidence is that the FBI team sent in to investigate the Benghazi murders never even arrived at the crime scene until three weeks after the attack, making sure that vital forensic evidence could be conveniently lost, confiscated or destroyed. Despite having videotape that allowed individual attackers to be identified by name, they all still remain free to this day. Eleven months after the attack the US Justice Department last August in a hollow gesture officially charged the alleged suspects in a sealed indictment. But without them in custody, it means nothing.

Clinton strategically figured she would lay low long enough out of the public spotlight to effectively distance herself from Benghazi to make another run for President in 2016. But while briefly still back on the job and those nagging Benghazi questions weren’t going away fast enough, she completely lost it, screaming, “What difference at this point does it make?” – obviously all the difference in the world to her and her buddy Barrack. On 9/11 the year before last, Obama, Clinton and Petraeus sacrificed four American lives that day to preserve their own careers as powerful evil despots who with blind ambition would stop at nothing to remain in power.

President Obama and Hillary Clinton have both gone to great lengths to make sure that their cover-up concealing the truth never gets exposed. With the attack taking place less than two months prior to Obama’s reelection, they are determined that the truth never sees the light of day. However, big cracks are looming in their wall of defense and their lies are falling like a house of cards. Mounting evidence indicates both Obama and Clinton were engaged in a highly covert and illicit arms smuggling operation moving weapons from Libya through Turkey to the anti-Assad rebels in Syria. And at stake for Obama and Clinton was their future plans to win the presidential election in 2012 and 2016.

On August 2nd, 2013 three full weeks prior to the sarin gas attack in the Damascus suburb killing scores of Syrian civilians including children, UK’s Telegraph reporter Damien McElroy wrote an article asserting that Obama and Hillary are guilty as charged, engaging in a gun-running operation that included surface to air missiles and even chemical weapons speculating that a “false flag operation” might occur as a deceptive ploy to make false accusations against Assad. Again, this article came out three weeks PRIOR to Obama accusing Assad of using chemical weapons. No coincidence in the timing. Since then renowned investigative reporter Seymour Hersh who broke the My Lai massacre story and cover-up during the Vietnam War and a host of other journalists have since provided convincing evidence that the chemical attack last August was committed by US backed al Qaeda rebels.

And those 35 CIA agents stationed at the nearby Benghazi annex, word came out that every month since the event they have been required to undergo polygraph tests just to ensure they keep quiet. One insider even told CNN last year, “You jeopardize your family as well if you talk to anyone about what happened.”

Aside from Obama, Hillary and Petraeus evading accountability at all cost, what is most incriminating is that the very same Al Qaeda jihadists armed, financed and supported with American taxpayer dollars during the Libyan regime-change are the exact same individuals who have gotten away with murdering those four Americans in Benghazi. For more than three years now America and Saudi Arabia have been sponsoring and funding al Qaeda affiliated militia groups from all over the Middle East and North Africa fighting Assad forces in Syria in the latest regime-change war. When the murders went down on 9/11/12, Hillary’s State Department had been acting as a cover supporting al Qaeda elements smuggling arms to Syria to fight in that so called civil war. Much of Gaddafi’s huge stash of arms had been looted, falling into the hands of American-backed rebel forces in Libya, including chemical weapons that were never accounted for. By pure accident, the Benghazi tragedy reveals the ongoing war by proxy that the US, Saudi Arabia and Israel have been waging against Syria and its strongest allies Iran and Russia.

As a side note, ex-CIA Director Petraeus was allowed to retain his full status as a retired four star general at full pay despite committing adultery while still serving as Afghanistan War commander when military personnel of lower rank are customarily demoted and forced to retire at a lower pension rate for the exact same offense of adultery. Mistress Paula Broadwell also suffered no formal consequence regarding her retention rank as major in the US Army Reserves. It seems obvious that Petraeus has been rewarded for his loyal silence on the Benghazi incident. Additionally, several days after Petraeus ducked out of sight in disgrace after resigning as CIA Director, Petraeus’ wife as the victim of his adulterous affair was suddenly being promoted by Obama to a new cushy position made especially for her earning near Petraeus’ retirement pension of $200,000 per year.

Then just over a week after his CIA resignation Petraeus was called in to testify before the House Intelligence Committee but given a free pass in his not having to testify under a sworn oath to disclose the full truth of what he knew. So he proceeded to lie before Congress claiming that he consistently said that an al Qaeda affiliated militia group was behind the attack. In fact Petraeus secretly flew to Libya immediately after the attack and upon his return to the US a couple days later Petraeus held the official administration line they knew to be false that the Benghazi attack was due to the bogus anti-Moslem video. Of course with the scandal causing his own presidential ambitions to be thoroughly shattered, Petraeus more recently has gone on public record stating that Hillary Clinton would make “an excellent president.” Clearly he is towing the line as a good little boy for keeping his mouth shut for Hillary and Barrack.

Obama lied when he promised to ensure that those guilty of the attack would be brought to justice. Now going on two years later not one of the attackers has even been apprehended or arrested. With the murderers in the Benghazi assault still at large, many of the attackers afterwards moved on with the arms they were helping to smuggle to join US-supported rebel forces fighting the Assad government in Syria. They may have been silenced by now, secretly killed by judge, jury and executioner President Obama in his lust to kill his enemies with drone missile attacks. In any event, rest assure none of the perpetrators behind the Benghazi attack will ever be captured alive or prosecuted. They simply know too much. Last 9/11/13 barely a peep was heard from the mainstream media on the very first anniversary of the Benghazi tragedy. The reason is all too obvious.

Many of the family members of the murdered Americans felt that Obama and his administration were responsible for their loved ones deaths. Some complained about Obama’s condolences as brusk, insincere and insensitive. They were disturbed further with Obama’s response on a 60 Minutes segment in late January 2013. Obama and Hillary were answering questions about Benghazi when Obama quoted Defense Secretary Robert Gates, “At this moment somewhere, somehow, somebody in the federal government’s screwing up” as he turned to Hillary laughing at his joke about their Benghazi screw-up that killed four Americans. They also had to be upset hearing the president on another occasion callously dismissing the Benghazi tragedy as “a sideshow.”

Not surprisingly, the US installed puppet government in Libya has been of no assistance in its lack of cooperation with revealing any further details of the attack. Last June the chaos, lawlessness and terror in Benghazi only continued as thirty-one Libyans protesting their grievances against an al Qaeda militia group were brutally massacred outside the al Qaeda headquarters. The entire eastern region of Libya today is still not under control of the national government, which has largely been taken over by US backed al Qaeda affiliates. Libya today is in complete shambles steeped in corruption, instability and violence.

Meanwhile, the two American criminals most responsible for the attack, President Obama and presidential heir-apparent Hilary Clinton need to be held accountable for their crimes along with their other partner-in-crime General Petraeus. With the belated truth behind Benghazi slowly coming out, Obama should be impeached and Hillary must never become president. Ironically the crime of Nixon’s Watergate cover-up that brought down the first and only president in US history forced to resign in disgrace pales in comparison to the crimes committed by the likes of the Obama administration.

Joachim Hagopian is a West Point graduate and former Army officer. His written manuscript based on his military experience examines leadership and national security issues and can be consulted at http://www.redredsea.net/westpointhagopian/. After the military, Joachim earned a masters degree in psychology and became a licensed therapist working in the mental health field for more than a quarter century. He now focuses on writing.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-benghazi-scandal-is-obamas-watergate-but-worse/5380238

 

Jihadism

 

Jihadism (jihadist movement, jihadi movement and variants) is used to refer to contemporary armed jihad in Islamic fundamentalism. The term “jihadism” is coined in the 2000s and mostly used to cover Islamic insurgency and terrorism since that time, but it has also been extended to cover both Mujahideen guerilla warfare and Islamic terrorism with an international scope since it arose in the 1980s, since the 1990s substantially represented by the al-Qaeda network.

Contemporary jihadism ultimately has its roots in the late 19th and early 20th century ideological developments of Islamic revivalism, developed intoQutbism and related ideologies during the mid 20th century. Its rise was re-enforced by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, and has been propagated in various armed conflicts throughout the 1990s and 2000s. A specifically Salafist jihadism has been diagnosed within the Salafi movement of the 1990s by Gilles Kepel.[citation needed][year needed]

Jihadism with an international, Pan-Islamist scope in this sense is also known as Global Jihadism. Generally the term jihadism denotes SunniIslamist armed struggle. Sectarian tensions led to numerous forms of (Salafist and other Islamist) jihadism in opposition of Shia Islam, Sufi Islamand Ahmadi Islam.

Terminology

Further information: Jihad

The term “jihadism” has been in use since about 2000, reportedly at first in the form “jihadist-Salafism“,[1] and soon reduced to “jihadism”, according to Martin Kramer (2003) first in the Indian and Pakistani media. “At present, jihadism is used to refer to the most violent persons and movements in contemporary Islam, including al-Qaeda.” Gilles Kepel is associated with early usage of the term (French djihadisme), and the term has seen wider use in French media since about 2004.[2] Brachman in his Global jihadism (2008) maintains that the term is “clumsy and controversial”.[3][clarification needed]

The term “Jihadist Globalism” is also often used in relation to Jihadism; Steger (2009) maintains that the concept is “globalist” in nature, stating that “‘jihadist Islamism’ — represented by such groups as Al Qaeda, Jemaa Islamiya, Hamas and Hezbollah — is today’s most spectacular manifestation of religious globalism.” [4]

Jihad Cool is a term used by Western security experts[5] concerning the re-branding of militant Jihadism into something fashionable, or “cool”, to younger people through social media, magazines,[6] rap videos,[7] clothing,[8] toys, propaganda videos,[9] and other means.[10] It is a sub-culture mainly applied to individuals in developed nations who are recruited to travel to conflict zones on Jihad. For example Jihadi rap videos make participants look “more MTV than Mosque”, according to NPR, which was the first to report on the phenomenon in 2010.[5][11]

History

Praying Muhjahideen in Kunar Province, Afghanistan (1987).

Precursor movements

When jihadism is specifically motivated by Pan-Islamism, i.e. the ultimate aim of spreading Islam worldwide under a restored Caliphate, it is often called “Global Jihadism”. But jihadism can also be motivated regionally, in an attempt to establish an Islamic state in a specific homeland. Global Jihadism is usually involved with international Islamic terrorism, while regional jihadism takes the form of guerrilla warfare, possibly also paired with terrorist attacks.

While the western term of “jihadism” was coined only in the early 2000s, and in retrospect applied to developments since the end of the Cold War era, this type of Islamist armed uprising against a secular government goes back to the early 19th century. The transition of this form ofguerilla warfare was the decline of the great Muslim empires of the Early Modern period which could wage war on the scale of a great power and did not need to rely on asymmetric warfare (see Ottoman wars in Europe, Russo-Turkish War (1877–78), Dissolution of the Ottoman Empire). Early jihadist conflicts include:

The Fulani jihad states of West Africa, c. 1830

Modern Islamism developed in the 1920s, and there have been a number of armed “jihads” informed by this movement since then.

Rebels from the militant Islamist sectAnsar Dine in Mali

While the “jihads” waged in the 19th and early-to-mid 20th century occasionally did involve western colonial powers, the phenomenon did remain mostly limited to the Middle East and the wider Muslim World. This changed significantly with the foundation of the state of Israel and the beginning of the Arab–Israeli conflict after the end of World War II. (Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine 1981–present, Islamic Jihad Organization 1982-1993,Hamas 1987–present). This sparked the beginning of international Islamic terrorism and put “jihadism” on the global agenda.

Islamic revivalism and Salafism (1990s to present)

Main article: Salafi jihadism

The term jihadism (earlier Salafi jihadism) has arisen in the 2000s to refer to the contemporary jihadi movements, the development of which was in retrospect traced to developments of Salafism paired with the origins of Al-Qaeda in the Soviet war in Afghanistan during the 1990s.

Jihadism has been called an “offshoot” of Islamic revivalism of the 1960s and 1970s. The writings of Sayyid Qutb and Muhammad abd-al-Salam Farajprovide inspiration. The Soviet war in Afghanistan (1979–1989) is said to have “amplified the jihadist tendency from a fringe phenomenon to a major force in the Muslim world.[12] It served to produce foot soldiers, leadership and organization. Abdullah Yusuf Azzam provided propaganda for the Afghan cause. After the war veteran jihadists returned to their home countries and dispersed to other sites of Muslim insurgency such as Algeria,Bosnia and Chechnya creating a “transnational jihadist stream.”[13]

Jihad fi sabilillah

A black flag reportedly used byCaucasian jihadists in 2002 displays the phrase al-jihad fi sabilillah above the takbir and two crossed swords.

According to scholar of Islam and Islamic history Rudoph Peters, Traditionalist Muslims “copy phrases of the classical works on fiqh” in their writings on jihad; Islamic Modernists “emphasize the defensive aspect of jihad, regarding it as tantamount to bellum justum in modern international law; and the fundamentalists (Abul Ala Maududi, Sayyid Qutb, Abdullah Azzam, etc.) view it as a struggle for the expansion of Islam and the realization of Islamic ideals.”[14]

Jihad has been propagated in modern fundamentalism beginning in the late 19th century, an ideology that arose in context of struggles against colonial powers in North Africa in the late 19th century, as in the Mahdist War in Sudan, and notably in the mid-20th century by Islamic revivalistauthors such as Sayyid Qutb and Abul Ala Maududi.[15]

Based on this, the phrase is re-used in modern jihadism. Thus, “Fi Sabilillah” armbands were worn by rebels in Xinjiang when battling Soviet forces,[16]and the phrase has been spotted on flags used by jihadists in Caucasia in the 2000s.

Inter-religious

Against Sikhs

A rebel camp was set up in the early 19th century by Sayyid Ahmed Barelvi after leaving India for Afghanistan. There he set up a rebel camp to launch attacks against the Sikh power which was centered in the Punjab before focusing his attention of the British.[17] Waliullah’s teachings directly inspired jihad against Sikhs between 1826 and 1831.[18]

Against Hindus

The Hindu Kush refers to a region in Northwest India and translates as the slaughter of the Hindus. It refers to an incident when Hindus were transported to Muslim courts.[19] Aurangzebsupervised a book called Fatawa al-Hindiyya which dealth with the subject of Jihad.[20] Jihad was also considered by oSIMI in response to the 2002 Gujarat riots.[21]

Against Buddhists

In 1532, Sultan Said Khan launched a jihad against Tibetan Buddhists. He thought that Lhasa was a direction of prayer for all the Chinese and therefore sought to destroy its main temple. The jihadist expedition was led by Mirza Muhammad Haidar Dughlat.[22]

Against Jews

There are references in some hadiths to jihad being launched against Jews.[23] Ayman al-Zawahiri declared a fatwa of jihad against Jews in 1998. One of the earliest Jihads against Jews occurred in 627 AD against the Jewish Banu Qurayza tribe.[24]

Against Zoroastrians

During the Muslim conquest of Persia, Jihadists caused the fall of the largely Zoroastrian Sasanian Empire. Major battles included the Battle of al-Qādisiyyah and Battle of Nahāvand.[25][26]

Against pagans

During Muhammad’s lifetime, there were many battles fought between Muslims and pagans. Examples of these include the Battle of Badr and Battle of the Trench. however after conquest of Makkah in Hijri 8, Muhammad forgave all the pagan enemies which resulted in most of them converting to Islam.

Against atheists

President Reagan meeting withAfghan Mujahideen leaders in the Oval Office in 1983

During the Soviet-Afghan war in the 1980s, many Muslims received calls for a jihad against atheists.[27] Mujahideen were recruited from various countries including Egypt, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia.[28] The conflict gradually turned from one against occupation to one seen as a jihad.[29]

Against Christians

The European crusaders re-conquered much of the territory seized by the Islamic state, dividing it into four kingdoms, the most important being the state of Jerusalem. The Crusades originally had the goal of recapturing Jerusalem and the Holy Land (former Christian territory) from Muslim rule and were originally launched in response to a call from the Eastern Orthodox Byzantine Empire for help against the expansion of the Muslim Seljuk Turks into Anatolia. There was little drive to retake the lands from the crusaders, save the few attacks made by the Egyptian Fatimids. This changed, however, with the coming of Zangi, ruler of what is today northern Iraq. He took Edessa, which triggered the Second Crusade, which was little more than a 47-year stalemate. The stalemate was ended with the victory of Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi, known in the west as Saladin, over the forces of Jerusalem at the Horns of Hattin in 1187. It was during the course of the stalemate that a great deal of literature regarding Jihad was written.[6] While amassing his armies in Syria, Saladin had to create a doctrine which would unite his forces and make them fight until the bitter end, which would be the only way they could re-conquer the lands taken in the First Crusade. He did this through the creation of Jihad propaganda. It stated that any one who would abandon the Jihad would be committing a sin that could not be washed away by any means. It also put his amirs at the center of power, just under his rule. While this propaganda was successful in uniting his forces for a time, the fervor burned out quickly. Much of Saladin’s teachings were rejected after his death.

Intra-religious

Against Shia

The Syrian Civil War became a focus for Sunni fighters waging jihad on Shia. The al-Nusra Front is the largest jihadist group in Syria.[30] The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has called for jihad against the Syrian government and against that government’s Shi’ite allies.[31] Saudi Arabia backs the jihad against the Shia in Syria using proxies.[32] Sunni jihadi converge in Syria from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Yemen, Kuwait, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Morocco, Jordan, Bosnia, other Arab states, Chechnya, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Western countries.[33]

See also

References

  1. Jump up^ Martin Kramer (Spring 2003). “Coming to Terms: Fundamentalists or Islamists?”. Middle East Quarterly X (2): 65–77. “French academics have put the term into academic circulation as ‘jihadist-Salafism.’ The qualifier of Salafism—an historical reference to the precursor of these movements—will inevitably be stripped away in popular usage. “Jihadist-Salafism” is defined by Gilles Kepel, Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam (Harvard: Harvard University Press, 2002), pp. 219-22; and Guilain Deneoux, “The Forgotten Swamp: Navigating Political Islam,” Middle East Policy, June 2002, pp. 69-71.”
  2. Jump up^ DJIHADISME Une déclaration de guerre contre Moubarak, Courrier International, 14 October 2004;Islamisme radical et djihadisme en ligne Le Monde 28 September 2005.
  3. Jump up^ Brachman 2008, p. 4: “Jihadism is a clumsy and controversial term.”
  4. Jump up^ Steger, Manfred B. Globalization: A Short Introduction. 2009. Oxford University Publishing, p. 127.
  5. ^ Jump up to:a b Laura Italiano (June 20, 2014). “American Muslims flocking to jihadist group”. New York Post. RetrievedAugust 22, 2014.
  6. Jump up^ Steve Emerson (April 15, 2013). “Jihad is Cool: Jihadist Magazines Recruit Young Terrorists”. Family Security Matters. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
  7. Jump up^ J. Dana Stuster (April 29, 2013). “9 Disturbingly Good Jihadi Raps”. Foreign Policy. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
  8. Jump up^ Robert Spencer (August 7, 2014). “India: Imam arrested for distributing Islamic State t-shirts”. Jihad Watch. RetrievedAugust 22, 2014.
  9. Jump up^ Jytte Klausen (2012). “The YouTube Jihadists: A Social Network Analysis of Al-Muhajiroun’s Propaganda Campaign”. Perspectives on Terrorism 6 (1). RetrievedAugust 22, 2014.
  10. Jump up^ Cheryl K. Chumley (June 27, 2014). “Terrorists go ‘Jihad Cool,’ use rap to entice young Americans”. Washington Times. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
  11. Jump up^ Dina Temple-Raston (March 6, 2010). “Jihadi Cool: Terrorist Recruiters’ Latest Weapon”. National Public Radio. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
  12. Jump up^ Commins, David (2009). The Wahhabi Mission and Saudi Arabia. I.B.Tauris. p. 174.
  13. Jump up^ Commins, David (2009). The Wahhabi Mission and Saudi Arabia. I.B.Tauris. pp. 156, 7.
  14. Jump up^ Peters, Rudolph (1996). Jihad in Classical and Modern Islam: A Reader. Princeton: Marcus Wiener. p. 150.
  15. Jump up^ Rudolph Peters, Jihad in modern terms: a reader 2005, p. 107 and note p. 197. John Ralph Willis, “Jihad Fi Sabil Allah”, in: In the path of Allah: the passion of al-Hajj ʻUmar : an essay into the nature of charisma in Islam, Routledge, 1989,ISBN 978-0-7146-3252-0, 29-57. “Gibb [Mohammedanism, 2nd ed. 1953] rightly could conclude that one effect of the renewed emphasis in the nineteenth century on the Qur’an and Sunna in Muslim fundamentalism was to restore to jihad fi sabilillah much of the prominence it held in the early days of Islam. Yet Gibb, for all his perception, did not consider jihad within the context of its alliance to ascetic and revivalist sentiments, nor from the perspectives which left it open to diverse interpretations.” (p. 31)
  16. Jump up^ Andrew D. W. Forbes (1986). Warlords and Muslims in Chinese Central Asia: a political history of Republican Sinkiang 1911-1949. Cambridge, England: CUP Archive. p. 144. ISBN 0-521-25514-7. Retrieved 2010-06-28.
  17. Jump up^ Landscapes of the Jihad: Militancy, Morality, Modernity – Page 36
  18. Jump up^ Partisans of Allah: Jihad in South Asia – Page 57, Ayesha Jalal – 2009
  19. Jump up^ Islamic Economics and the Final Jihad David J. Jonsson – 2006 – Page 87
  20. Jump up^ Understanding Jihad, David Cook – 2005, r 49
  21. Jump up^ Islamism and Democracy in India, p 147, Irfan Ahmad – 2009
  22. Jump up^ Buddhism and Islam on the Silk Road – Page 174, Johan Elverskog – 2011 -
  23. Jump up^ Sahih Muslim 41:6985, Sahih Muslim 41:6981, Sahih Muslim 41:6982
  24. Jump up^ Guillaume, Alfred, The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah. Oxford University Press, 1955
  25. Jump up^ Iranian History and Politics: The Dialectic of State and Society By Homa Katouzian, pg. 25
  26. Jump up^ The Expansion of the Saracens-The East, C.H. Becker, The Cambridge Medieval History:The Rise of the Saracens and the Foundation of the Western Empire, Vol. 2, ed. John Bagnell Bury, (MacMillan Company, 1913), 348.
  27. Jump up^ The Far Enemy: Why Jihad Went Global – Page 68, Fawaz A. Gerges – 2009 -
  28. Jump up^ Aging Early: Collapse of the Oasis of Liberties – Page 47, Mirza Aman – 2009
  29. Jump up^ Withdrawing Under Fire, Joshua L. Gleis – 2011
  30. Jump up^ “Inside Jabhat al Nusra – the most extreme wing of Syria’s struggle”. 2 December 2012.
  31. Jump up^ Maggie Fick (June 14, 2013). “Egypt Brothers backs Syria jihad, slams Shi’ites”. Reuters.
  32. Jump up^ Robert F. Worth (Jan 7, 2014). “Saudis Back Syrian Rebels Despite Risks”. New York Times.
  33. Jump up^ Mark Hosenball (May 1, 2014). “In Iraq and Syria, a resurgence of foreign suicide bombers”. The Economist.
  34. Jump up^ Darion Rhodes, Salafist-Takfiri Jihadism: the Ideology of the Caucasus Emirate, International Institute for Counter-Terrorism, March 2014

Literature

  • Abbas, Tahir (2007). Islamic Political Radicalism: A European Perspective. Edinburgh University Press. ISBN 978-0-7486-2528-4.
  • Akbarzadeh, Shahram (2010). Islam and Political Violence: Muslim Diaspora and Radicalism in the West. I B Tauris & Co Ltd. ISBN 978-1-84511-473-2.
  • Al-Rasheed, Madawi (2009). Dying for Faith: Religiously Motivated Violence in the Contemporary World. I B Tauris & Co Ltd. ISBN 978-1-84511-687-3.
  • Aslan, Reza (2010). Global Jihadism. ISBN 978-3-639-25006-0.
  • Gilles Kepel, Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam (2000, 2002, 2006).
  • Brachman, Jarret (2008). Global jihadism: theory and practice. vol. 10 of Cass series on political violence, Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-415-45241-0.*The Devolution of Jihadism: From Al Qaeda to Wider Movement. Stratfor. 2010. ISBN 978-1-4537-4664-6.
  • Coolsaet, Rik (2008). Jihadi Terrorism and the Radicalisation Challenge in Europe. Ashgate. ISBN 978-0-7546-7217-3.
  • Hegghammer, Thomas (2010). Jihad in Saudi Arabia: Violence and Pan-Islamism since 1979. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-51858-1.
  • Khosrokhavar, Farhad (2009). Inside Jihadism: Understanding Jihadi Movements Worldwide. Paradigm. ISBN 978-1-59451-616-0.
  • Lahoud, Nelly (2010). The Jihadis’ Path to Self-destruction. C Hurst & Co Publishers Ltd. ISBN 978-1-84904-062-4.
  • Lohlker (ed.), Rüdiger (2013). Jihadism: Online Discourses and Representations. Vienna University Press. ISBN 978-3-8471-0068-3.
  • Lohlker (ed.), Rüdiger (2012). New Approaches to the Analysis of Jihadism. Vienna University Press. ISBN 978-3-89971-900-0.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jihadism

 

al-Nusra Front

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
al-Nusra Front
(Arabic: جبهة النصرة لأهل الشام‎)
Participant in the Syrian Civil War, the Syrian Civil War spillover in Lebanon, and the Global War on Terrorism
Flag of the Al-Nusra Front.svg

Flag of the al-Nusra Front
Active 23 January 2012 – present[1]
Ideology Salafist Jihadism[2]
Islamic fundamentalism[3]
Leaders Abu Mohammad al-Julani[4]
Headquarters
Area of operations
Strength 5,115–6,115 (including 50 Khorasan members)[8][9][10]
Part of
Allies
Opponents State opponents
Syria

Lebanon

United States of America

Non-State Opponents

Battles and wars Syrian Civil War

2014 military intervention against ISIL

The al-Nusra Front, or Jabhat al-Nusra, (JN, Arabic: جبهة النصرة لأهل الشامJabhat an-Nuṣrah li-Ahli ash-Shām, “The Support Front for the People of Al-Sham“), sometimes called Tanzim Qa’edat Al-Jihad fi Bilad Al-Sham or al-Qaeda in Syria,[25] is a branch of al-Qaedaoperating in Syria[26] and Lebanon.[27]

The group announced its formation on 23 January 2012, during the Syrian Civil War.[28] Since then, it has been described as both “the most aggressive and successful”[29] and “one of the most effective rebel forces” in Syria.[30] The group has been designated as a terrorist organization by the United Nations,[31] Australia,[32] Canada, New Zealand,[33][34] Russia,[35] Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom,[36] the United States,[37] and Turkey.

Ideology

al-Nusra aims to overthrow the Assad regime and replace it with a Sunni Islamic state. Although the group is affiliated with al-Qaeda, al-Nusra does not emphasize Western targets or global jihad, focusing instead on the “near enemy” of the Syrian state.[38]

This resistance group is generally made up of native Syrian mujahideen who adhere to Sunni Islam.[39][40] Its goal is to overthrow Bashar al-Assad‘s regime in Syria and create an Islamic Emirate under Sharia law.[41][42]

In early 2014, Dr. Sami Al Oraidi, a top Sharia official in the group, acknowledged that his group is influenced by the teachings of Abu Musab al-Suri. The strategies derived from Abu Musab’s guidelines include: providing services to people, avoid being seen as extremists, maintaining strong relationships with communities and other fighting groups, and putting the focus on fighting the regime.[43]

Members of the group are accused of attacking the religious beliefs of non-Sunnis in Syria, including the Alawis.[44] New York Timesjournalist C. J. Chivers cites “some analysts and diplomats” as noting that al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant“can appear less focused on toppling” the al-Assad government than on “establishing a zone of influence spanning Iraq’s Anbar Province and the desert eastern areas of Syria, and eventually establishing an Islamic territory under their administration.”[45]

Members of the group have referred to the United States and Israel as enemies of Islam[44] and warned against Western intervention in Syria.[46] Syrian members of the group claim they are only fighting the Assad government and would not attack Western states.[46] The United States accused it of being affiliated with al-Qaeda in Iraq;[47] in April 2013, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq released an audio statement affirming this connection.[48][49][50]

Analysis

The leader, a self-proclaimed Emir, of al-Nusra goes by the name of Abu Mohammad al-Julani (also transliterated as: Mohammed and al-Jawlani, or: al-Golani), which implies that he is from the Golan Heights (al-Jawlan, in Arabic). Very little is known about him, with even his nationality unclear.[51] However, in an interview with Al Jazeera, he spoke Classical Arabic with a Syrian accent.[52]

On 18 December 2013, he gave his first television interview, to Tayseer Allouni, a journalist originally from Syria, for Al Jazeera.[52]

The structure of the group varies across Syria. In Damascus the organisation operates in an underground clandestine cell system, while in Aleppo, the group is organized along semi-conventional military lines, with units divided into brigades, regiments, and platoons.[51] All potential recruits must undertake a 10-day religious-training course, followed by a 15-to-20-day military-training program.[1]

Al-Nusra contains a hierarchy of religious bodies, with a small Majlis-ash-Shura (Consultative Council) at the top, making national decisions on behalf of the group. Religious personnel also play an important role in the regional JN leadership, with each region having a commander and a sheikh. The sheikh supervises the commander from a religious perspective and is known as dabet al-shar’i (religious commissioner).[51]

An increasing number of Americans have been attempting to join the fighting in Syria, As MD Ahmad Zarkali and Thayer al-atheim and fifty of friends specifically with al-Nusra.[53] Most recently, Sinh Vinh Ngo Nguyen, also known as Hasan Abu Omar Ghannoum, was arrested in California on 11 October 2013, on charges of attempting to travel to join Al Qaeda after reportedly having fought in Syria.[53]As of November 2013 there had also been five additional publicly disclosed cases of Americans fighting in Syria, three of which were linked to al-Nusrah.[54]

All statements and videos by the al-Nusra Front have been released by its media outlet, al-Manarah al-Bayda (The White Minaret), via the leading jihadist webforum Shamoukh al-Islam.[1]

History

Background

The Quilliam Foundation, in a briefing paper, reports that many of the group’s members are Syrians who were part of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi‘s Islamist network fighting the American forces in Iraq. Many of these Syrians remained in Iraq after the withdrawal of American forces, but upon the outbreak of Syrian civil war in 2011, the Islamic State of Iraq sent the Syrian mujahideen and individual Iraqi experts in guerrilla warfare into Syria. A number of meetings were held between October 2011 and January 2012 in Rif Dimashq and Homs where the objectives of the group were determined.[51]

The al-Nusra Front released its first public statement on January 24, 2012, in which they called for armed struggle against the Syrian government. The group claimed responsibility for the2012 Aleppo bombings, the January 2012 al-Midan bombing, the March 2012 Damascus bombings,[28] the murder of journalist Mohammed al-Saeed,[55] and possibly the 10 May 2012 Damascus bombings.[citation needed]

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari has said that al-Qaeda in Iraq members have gone to Syria, where the militants previously received support and weapons, in order to join the al-Nusra Front.[56] They are considered to be the best trained and most experienced fighters among the Syrian rebels.[57] The group has refused calls for a ceasefire in Syria.[58]

US intelligence agencies had originally suspected al-Qaeda in Iraq for the bombings in Aleppo and Damascus.[59] Iraq’s deputy interior minister said early February that weapons and Islamist militants were entering Syria from its country.[60] The Front claimed credit for suicide attacks in the Syrian capital of Damascus al-Zahra al-Zubaydi.[61] A defected diplomat named Nawaf al-Fares stated in an interview with the The Daily Telegraph that jihadis were used by the Syrian government in attacks against civilians so that the government could blame the deaths on Syrian rebels.[62]

Role in the Syrian Civil War

The al-Nusra Front has been a great help to Syrian rebels in the Battle of Aleppo. One rebel said that members of the group “rush to the rescue of rebel lines that come under pressure and hold them […] They know what they are doing and are very disciplined. They are like the special forces of Aleppo.”[58] After the US designated the al-Nusra Front as an al-Qaeda linked terrorist group, several rebel groups defied the US classification and rallied behind the al-Nusra Front, declaring, “We are all Jabhat Al Nusra.”[63] A Free Syrian Army (FSA) leader in Aleppo berated the move, and a FSA spokesman in Aleppo said, “We might not share the same beliefs as Jabhat al-Nusra, but we are fighting the same enemy.”[64] Some FSA fighters defected to the al-Nusra Front.[65]

While some FSA leaders are worried by the al-Nusra Front’s theocratic ideology and plans for Syria’s future, they see foreign extremists as a welcomed boost to the fight against the Assad regime, bringing experience from Iraq and Afghanistan.[46][58] While FSA has consistently stated their disapproval of al-Nusra Front’s use of suicide bombs, they have also thanked them for some suicide operations with strategic benefit, such as the attack on the Menagh Airbase.[58][66] Some disgruntled voices within the FSA accused the al-Nusra Front and others of “hijacking a revolution that began as an uprising to demand a democratic system.”[46] The leader of a rebel group in Idlib Province said “We are not fighting Bashar al-Assad to go from living in an autocratic to a religious prison”.[46] A “senior political official” of the FSA said “Their presence is reducing the popular support that we desperately need in areas where we operate […] I appreciate their motives for coming to Syria. We cannot deny Muslims their right to jihad, but we want them to leave”.[58] In some parts of Syria, “Jihadist and secular rebel groups watch each other’s military bases warily, unclasping the safety catches on their guns as they pass.”[46] Some members of the FSA believe that, after the Assad government has been overthrown, the next war will be between the FSA and the Islamists.[46]

The leader of the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces, Moaz al-Khatib, called on the US to reconsider its decision to list the al-Nusra Front as a foreign terrorist organization; al-Khatib has stated that all rebel forces whose main goal is “the fall of the regime” should be left alone.[67] After the listing of al-Nusra as a terrorist organisation by the US in December 2012, a group of 29 opposition groups, including both fighting units and civilian organizations signed an online petition calling for demonstrations in its support.[68] On 14 December 2012, thousands of Syrians protested against the US move, under the slogan of “There is no terrorism in Syria except that of Assad.”[69]

Split with Islamic State of Iraq

In April 2013, the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, released a recorded audio message on the Internet, in which he announced that Jabhat al-Nusra was an extension of al-Qaeda in Iraq in Syria.[48] Al-Baghdadi said that Abu Mohammad al-Julani, the leader of Jabhat al-Nusra, had been dispatched by the group along with a group of men to Syria to meet with pre-existing cells in the country. Al-Baghdadi said that the ISI had provided Jabhat al-Nusra with the plans and strategy needed for the Syrian Civil War and had been providing them funding on a monthly basis.[70] Al-Baghdadi then declared that the two groups were officially merging under the name, Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham/the Levant (ISIS/ISIL).[70] The next day al-Julani rejected the merger and affirmed the group’s allegiance to Al-Qaeda and its leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri. al-Julani was quoted as saying “We inform you that neither the al-Nusra command nor its consultative council, nor its general manager were aware of this announcement. It reached them via the media and if the speech is authentic, we were not consulted.”[71]

In May 2013, Reuters reported that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of the ISI, had traveled from Iraq to Syria’s Aleppo Governorate province and began recruiting members of al-Nusra. There were media reports that many of al-Nusra’s foreign fighters had left to join al-Baghdadi’s Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS), while many Syrian fighters left the group to join other Islamist brigades.[72][73][74] Sometime in May 2013, Abu Mohammad al-Julani, the leader of al-Nusra, was injured by an airstrike conducted by the Syrian Regime.[75] In June 2013, Al Jazeera reported that it had obtained a letter written by al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri, addressed to both Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and Abu Mohammad al-Julani, in which he ruled against the merger of the two organisations and appointed an emissary to oversee relations between them and put an end to tensions.[76] Later in the same month, an audio message from Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was released in which he rejected al-Zawahiri’s ruling and declared that the merger of the two organizations into the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was going ahead. This sequence of events is said to have caused much confusion and division amongst members of al-Nusra.[72]

Some units of al-Nusra began taking part in clashes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant,[77] and in February 2014, after continued tensions, al-Qaeda publicly disavowed any relations with ISIS.[78] In the same month, al-Julani threatened to go to war with ISIS over their suspected role in the killing of senior Ahrar ash-Sham commander Abu Khaled al-Souri. al-Julani gave ISIS five days to submit evidence that they were innocent in the attack to three imprisoned Jihadist clerics, Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, Abu Qatada al-Falastini, and Suleiman al-Alwan.[79] On 16 April 2014, ISIS killed al-Nusra’s Idlib chief Abu Mohammad al-Ansari together with his family, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported.[80] In May 2014, open fighting soon broke out between ISIS and al-Nusra in Deir ez-Zor Governorate, leaving hundreds dead on both sides.[81] By July 2014, al-Nusra had largely been expelled from the province.[82]

In July 2014, an audio recording attributed to al-Julani appeared online, in which he said that al-Nusra planned to establish an Islamic emirate in the areas of Syria that they have a presence. A statement issued on 12 July 2014 by al-Nusra’s media channel affirmed the authenticity of the recording, but stated that they had not yet declared the establishment of an emirate.[83][84][85][86]

Attacks

During the Syrian Civil War, the group launched many attacks, mostly against targets affiliated with or supportive of the Syrian government. As of June 2013, al-Nusra Front had claimed responsibility for 57 of the 70 suicide attacks in Syria during the conflict.[87]

One of the first bombings which al-Nusra was suspected of and the first suicide attack of the war came on 23 December 2011, when two seemingly coordinated bombings occurred in the Syrian capital of Damascus, killing 44 people and wounding 166.[88]

The al-Midan bombings of January 2012 were allegedly carried out by a fighter named Abu al-Baraa al-Shami. Footage of the destruction caused by the blast was released on a jihadist forum.[59] The video asserts that the “martyrdom-seeking operation” was executed “in revenge for our mother Umm Abdullah—from the city of Homs—against whom the criminals of the regime violated her dignity and threatened to slaughter her son,” SITE reported. The video shows “an excerpt of allegiances, operations, and training of the al-Nusra Front” as well as a fighter “amongst the masses in a public demonstration, advising them to do their prayers and adhere to the rituals of Islam.”[citation needed]

The al-Nusra Front announced the formation of the “Free Ones of the Levant Brigades”, in a YouTube video statement that was released on January 23. In the statement, the group claimed that it attacked the headquarters of security in Idlib province.[89] “To all the free people of Syria, we announce the formation of the Free Ones of the Levant Brigades,” the statement said, according to a translation obtained by The Long War Journal. “We promise Allah, and then we promise you, that we will be a firm shield and a striking hand to repel the attacks of this criminal Al Assad army with all the might we can muster. We promise to protect the lives of civilians and their possessions from security and the Shabiha [pro-government] militia. We are a people who will either gain victory or die.”[89]

The 10 May 2012 Damascus bombings were allegedly claimed by al-Nusra Front in an Internet video,[90] however, on 15 May 2012, someone claiming to be a spokesman for the group denied that the organization was responsible for the attack, saying that it would only release information through jihadist forums.[91]

On 29 May 2012, a mass execution was discovered near the eastern city of Deir ez-Zor. The unidentified corpses of 13 men had been discovered shot to death execution-style.[92] On 5 June 2012, the al-Nusra Front claimed responsibility for the killings, stating that they had captured and interrogated the soldiers in Deir ez-Zor and “justly” punished them with death, after they confessed to crimes.[93]

On 17 June 2012, Walid Ahmad al-Ayesh, described by Syrian authorities as the “right hand” of the al-Nusra Front, was killed when Syrian authorities discovered his hiding place. He was reportedly responsible for the making of car bombs that were used to attack Damascus in the previous months.[94] The Syrian authorities reported the killing of another prominent member of the group, Wael Mohammad al-Majdalawi, killed on 12 August 2012 in an operation conducted in Damascus.[95]

On 27 June 2012, a group of Syrian rebels attacked a pro-government TV station in the town of Drousha, just south of the capital Damascus. The station’s studios were destroyed with explosives. Seven people were killed in the attack on Al-Ikhbariya TV, including four guards and three journalists.[96] Al-Nusra claimed responsibility for the attack and published photos of 11 station employees they kidnapped following the raid.[97]

In mid-July 2012, Mohammed al-Saeed, a well-known government TV news presenter, was kidnapped by the group. On 3 August 2012, al-Nusra published a statement saying that al-Saeed had been executed.[55][98]

The scene at Saadallah Al-Jabiri Square after the attacks on 3 October 2012

On 3 October, three suicide car bombs exploded at the eastern corner of the central Saadallah Al-Jabiri Square killing 48 people,[99] as it was announced by the Ministry of interior. More than 122 people were reported to be heavily injured.[100] Al-Nusra claimed responsibility for the attack.[101]The bombs targeted the Officers’ club and the nearby buildings of the Touristic Hotel and the historic “Jouha Café”. The hotel received major damage while the café was entirely destroyed. A small building within the Officers’ club was ruined as well.[102][103]

The al-Nusra Front also claimed responsibility for attacking numerous Syrian military bases, including:

  • Aleppo district: an air defense base, on: 12 October 2012
  • Aleppo city: the Hanano barracks
  • Raqqah: the Suluq barracks

In the air defense base assault they reportedly destroyed buildings and sabotaged radar and rockets after overrunning the base in cooperation with the al-Fajr Islamic Movement and a group of Chechen fighters. During the storming of the Hanano barracks 11 soldiers were killed and they held the complex for six hours before retreating. They also claimed killing 32 soldiers during the raid on the Raqqah base.[104]

In October 2012, they joined other rebels in an attack on the Wadi Deif base around Maraat al Numan, in a prolonged fighting that turned into a siege of the base.[105] They also led an attack on the Taftanaz Air Base in November 2012, an important and strategic base for the Syrian army, containing up to 48 helicopters.[57]

The group seized three army checkpoints around Saraqeb at the end of October 2012, forcing the Syrian Army to withdraw from the area the next day. In the battle, 28 Syrian soldiers were killed as well as five Nusra fighters. Some of the captured soldiers were summarily executed after being called “Assad dogs”. The video of these executions was widely condemned, with the United Nations referring to them as probable war crimes.[106][107]

Members of the al-Nusra Front carried out two suicide attacks in early November 2012. One occurred in a rural development center in Sahl al-Ghab in Hama province, where a car bomb killed two people; while the other occurred in the Mezzeh neighbourhood of Damascus, where a suicide bomber killed 11 people.[108] The SOHR claimed a total of 50 soldiers were killed in the Sahl al-Ghab attack.[109]

Al Jazeera reported on 23 December 2012 that the al-Nusra Front had declared a “no-fly-zone” over Aleppo, using 23 mm and 57 mm anti-aircraft guns to down planes. This would include commercial flights which al-Nusra believed transported military equipment and troops. In a video sent to Al Jazeera, they warned civilians against boarding commercial flights.[110]

In February 2013, Al Nusra fighters were involved in fighting in Safira with regime reinforcements, preventing these forces from reaching their destination of the city of Aleppo. A monitoring group claims this resulted in more than two hundred casualties over a period of two weeks.[111]

Though it was initially reported that Syrian Catholic priest François Murad was beheaded at a church in Gassanieh, he was actually shot dead.[112]

The group has taken part in military operations with the Free Syrian Army.[113] Abu Haidar, a Syrian FSA co-ordinator in Aleppo‘s Saif al-Dawla district said that al-Nusra Front “have experienced fighters who are like the revolution’s elite commando troops.”[114]

In December 2013, al-Nusra abducted 13 nuns from a Christian monastery in Maaloula. They were held in the town of Yabroud until 9 March 2014, The nuns reported they had not been harassed and could keep religious symbols.[115]

As of July 2013, al-Nusra controls Ash-Shaddadeh, a town of roughly 16,000.[116]

On 28 August 2014, militants from the group kidnapped 45 UN peacekeepers from Fiji from Golan Heights in the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force Zone.[117] The group demanded that it be removed from the UN’s list of terrorist organizations in exchange for the lives of the peacekeepers. In addition to UN personnel, the group routinely captures UN vehicles to use as car bombs.[118] At the same time, two groups of UN peacekeepers from Philippines were trapped under fire in nearby Rwihinah.[119] On 31 August, one group of 32 Filipinos soldiers was rescued and the other group of 40 soldiers escaped.[120] The rescue operation was carried out by Irish peacekeepers.[121] Colonel Ezra Enriquez of the Philippines, who over-saw the operations, resigned over disagreements with Indian Lieutenant General Iqbal Singh Singha. Singha had allegedly ordered the Filipinos peacekeepers to surrender arms to ensure the safe release of the Fijian soldiers.[122] On 8 September, Rodrigo Duterte, the mayor of Davao City, called for Singha’s death after he allegedly called the Filipinos soldiers cowards.[123]On 11 September, the kidnapped Fijian soldiers were released.[124]

In late October 2014, al-Nusra began attacking the Free Syrian Army and other moderate Islamist groups that it was formerly allied with, in a bid to establish its own Islamic state in the cities it controlled in the Idlib Governorate and other neighboring Governorates.[125][126]

External support

At least one Arab government[which?] has accused Qatar of helping al-Nusra.[127] The US Government has been sending weapons to rebels in Syria since at least late 2013, and perhaps as early as 2011, during the begininning phases of the conflict. These weapons have been reportedly falling into hands of extremists, such as al-Nusra and ISIL.[128][129]

al-Nusra has also been materially supported by multiple foreign fighters. Most of these fighters are from Europe and the Middle East, as pipelines to Syria from those locations are better established and navigable.[130] However, as of November 2013, there were also 6 publicly disclosed cases of American citizens and permanent residents who joined or attempted to join al-Nusrah in 2013 alone.[131]

Khorasan

Khorasan, also known as the Khorasan Group, refers to a group of senior al-Qaeda members who operate in Syria.[132] The group is reported to consist of a small number of fighters who are all on terrorist watchlists, and coordinate with the al-Nusra Front, al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria. At an intelligence gathering in Washington, D.C. on 18 September 2014, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper stated that “in terms of threat to the homeland, Khorasan may pose as much of a danger as ISIS.”[133] The term first appeared in news media in September 2014, although the United States had reportedly been keeping track of the group for two years previously.[134]

Weaponry and tactics

The organisation is believed to have used, at various times and in various places, the following tactics: car-bombs, suicide-attacks, targeting of checkpoints, conventional assault of military bases, assassination of political and military figures and members of the shabiha,[51] targeting (destruction/killing) of pro-government media stations and personnel.

By June 2013, there had been apparently 70 suicide-attacks in Syria. Of these, the group denied responsibility for 13 but claimed responsibility for the other 57. In June 2012, the group attacked the pro-government TV station at Drousha, near Damascus. The following month the government-TV presenter Mohammed al-Saeed disappeared; the group later declared him dead.

In June 2014 Human Rights Watch reported that several rebel groups including al-Nusra have enlisted child soldiers into their ranks.[135]

Chemical weapons

A report surfaced in June 2013 of former Iraqi Ba’ath officials supplying the chemical weapon Sarin to the al-Nusra Front through former Iraqi Brig. Gen. Adnan al-Dulaimi. The report detailed how “several former Iraqi military engineers trained the al-Nusra Front on how to use these chemical weapons” adding that all plans in this connection were prepared by al-Dulaimi and staged after Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri’s approval. The sourcing of this report is said to be an aide to al-Douri.[136]

On 30 May, Turkish newspapers reported that Turkish security forces had arrested al-Nusra fighters in the southern provinces of Mersin and Adana near the Syrian border and confiscated 2 kg of sarin gas.[137][138][139] The governor of Adana claimed that the security forces had not found sarin gas but unknown chemicals, without offering further elaboration.[140] The Turkish Ambassador to Moscow later said that tests showed the chemical seized was anti-freeze, not sarin.[141] In September six of those arrested in May were charged with attempting to acquire chemicals which could be used to produce sarin; the indictment said that it was “possible to produce sarin gas by combining the materials in proper conditions.”[142] The indictment said that “The suspects have pleaded not guilty saying that they had not been aware the materials they had tried to obtain could have been used to make sarin gas. Suspects have been consistently providing conflicting and incoherent facts on this matter.” The suspects were said to be linked to al-Nusra and to Ahrar ash-Sham.[143][144]

Designation as a terrorist organization

Countries and organizations below have officially listed the al-Nusra Front as a terrorist organization.

Country Date References
 Australia 28 June 2013 [145]
 Canada 7 November 2013 [146]
 France [147]
 Russia 29 December 2014 [35][148][149]
 Saudi Arabia 7 March 2014 [150]
 Turkey 4 June 2014 [151]
 United Arab Emirates [152]
 United Kingdom 19 July 2013 [153]
 United States 10 December 2012 [154]

See also

References

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  121. Jump up^ “Irish troops evacuate Filipino peacekeepers in Syria”.Irish Times. 30 August 2014. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
  122. Jump up^ “UN official defends Indian general in Syrian peacekeeping controversy”. 4 September 2014. Retrieved 13 September2014.
  123. Jump up^ “Duterte: Shoot Undof chief in the head”. Inquirer. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
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  129. Jump up^ By Ernesto Londoño and Greg Miller (2013-09-11). “CIA begins weapons delivery to Syrian rebels – The Washington Post”. M.washingtonpost.com. Retrieved 2014-08-18.
  130. Jump up^ “American and International Militants Drawn to Syria”. Anti-Defamation League.
  131. Jump up^ “North Carolina Arrest Marks 6th American In 2013 Associated With Al Qaeda In Syria”. Access ADL. Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
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  138. Jump up^ “Report: Police foil al-Nusra bomb attack planned for Adana”. 2013-05-30. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  139. Jump up^ Kenneth R. Timmerman, The Daily Caller, 3 September 2013, Congress must ask the right questions on Syrian chemical weapons use
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  141. Jump up^ “No Chemical Arms Seized from Syrian Militants, Turkish Envoy Says”. Global Security Newswire. 5 July 2013. Retrieved 12 September 2013.
  142. Jump up^ Aydınlık, 12 September 2013, Al-Nusra Linked to Chemical Production in Turkey
  143. Jump up^ Hurriyet Daily News, 12 September 2013, Syrian rebel groups sought to buy materials for chemical weapons, prosecutors say
  144. Jump up^ Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times, 13 September 2013, Syrian rebel groups sought sarin gas material, Turkish prosecutors say
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  146. Jump up^ “About the listing process”. Publicsafety.gc.ca. Retrieved2014-08-18.
  147. Jump up^ http://www.tresor.economie.gouv.fr/File/403630
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  149. Jump up^ “UN threatens sanctions on anyone trading oil with ISIS terrorists — RT News”. Rt.com. 2014-07-29. Retrieved2014-08-18.
  150. Jump up^ “Saudi Arabia lists terrorist groups – Xinhua | English.news.cn”. News.xinhuanet.com. 2014-03-08. Retrieved 2014-08-18.
  151. Jump up^ Dorian Jones (2014-06-04). “Turkey Designates Al-Nusra Front as a Terrorist Organization”. Voanews.com. Retrieved2014-08-18.
  152. Jump up^ “UAE to try nine for recruiting militants to fight in Syria: agency”. Reuters. 2014-05-19. Retrieved 2014-08-18.
  153. Jump up^ List of Proscribed organisations UK government.
  154. Jump up^ http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/11/world/middleeast/us-designates-syrian-al-nusra-front-as-terrorist-group.html?_r=0

External links

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Nusra_Front

 

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Terror attack on French magazine

BREAKING NEWS: 2 Gunment with AK47 & RPG Attack Paris Magazine, ACTIVE SHOOTERS

Terrorist Attack, Paris | Masked Gunmen Kill Police Man | French magazine Charlie Hebdo Shooting

January 2015 Breaking News France Mass shooting ISLAM terror attack France on high alert

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Be on the lookout for people who lack a sense of humor and/or are easily offended. Political correctness kills.

On Wednesday two terrorist gunmen dressed in black with hoods masking their faces, apparently followers of the religion of peace, attacked and killed 12 including 10 employees and contributors of the provocative leftist satirical weekly, Charlie Hebdo, in their Paris headquarter offices and two police officers. Ten others were wounded, five critically. One of the police officers, Ahmed Merabet, pleaded for mercy as he was shot in the head at point-blank range. Most French police officers are unarmed as are French citizens.

Witnesses said the terrorists brandished and fired AK-47 rifles or “Kalashnikovs’ and shouted in fluent French, “We are from al-Qaida in Yemen.” “The Prophet has been avenged.” And “Allahu akbar” – Arabic for “God is great.”

The terrorists shot and killed Charlie Hebdo’s editor-in-chief and cartoonist Stephane Charbonner, aka Charb, deputy editor, economist and writer Bernard Marist, and cartoonists Georges Wolinski, Jean Cabut, aka Cabu, Philippe Honore and Bernard Verlac, aka Tignous, columnist Elsa Cayat, sub-editor Mustapha Qurrad, maintenance man Frederic Boisseau, a visitor Michel Renard,  and Charbonnier’s police bodyguard Franck Brinsolaro.

Charlie Hebdo published cartoons and articles satirizing Islam and its Prophet Muhammad as well as other religions, including Christianity and Judaism. The paper also satirizes politicians, feminism, homeland security and nuclear energy. The Charlie Hebdo offices were firebombed in 2011 with Molotov cocktails and destroyed after it had published satirical cartoons about the Prophet Muhammad. A year later, Charbonnier dismissed repeated threats against his life by stating: “I would rather die standing than live kneeling.”

The terrorists gained access to the Charlie Hebdo offices when cartoonist Corrine Rey, aka Coco, returned with her young daughter from kindergarten and was confronted and brutally threatened by the gunmen. They wanted her to enter the security system digi-code on the interphone so they could enter into the newspaper’s offices. Rey entered the code and then hid under a desk with her daughter. Rey saw the gunmen shoot two other cartoonists, Wolinski and Cabu. Rey said the shooting in the offices lasted about five minutes.

A police witness said the terrorists were asking for editor and cartoonist Charbonnier by name and shouting, “Where is Charb? Where is Charb?” The witness said, “They killed him, then sprayed everyone else.”

The terrorist gunmen exited the building and started shooting in the streets, according to witnesses. They shot and killed a police officer who arrived on the scene on a mountain bike. The gunmen fled in a black car. Police and security forces gave chase, but the gunmen abandoned their car when it was in an accident and escaped with a hijacked car.

The French police subsequently identified the two terrorist gunmen as French nationals and brothers Cherif Kouchi, 32 and Said Kouchi, 34. The brothers came back from Syria last summer. The younger brother was arrested in 2005 and sentenced in 2008 to three years in prison with 18 months suspended, for his involvement in a network sending volunteers to fight in Iraq with an al-Qaida affiliate. A third suspect Hamyd Mourad, 18, surrendered to police at Charleville-Meziers late Wednesday evening.

According to news reports, the brothers went to Syria last year where they were sent by al-Qaida to Yemen for terrorist training. Former White House counter-terrorism adviser Richard Clark said, “This looks like a team that was selected, trained probably over the course of a long period of time and sent in with this particular target in mind.” On Friday according to the Associated Press, a member of al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen said the group directed the attack on the French magazine.

Last Friday morning French security forces killed the Kourchi brothers who fired their weapons as they exited from a printing factory north of Paris. A hostage who had been held by the brothers was released unharmed.

National leaders expressed their reaction and support of France and the French people.

President Barack Obama said, “I want to express my deepest sympathies to the people of Paris and the people of France for the terrible terrorist attack that took place earlier today. … The fact that this was an attack on journalists, an attack on our free press also underscores that these terrorists fear freedom of speech and freedom of the press. The values that we share with the French people – a universal belief in freedom of expression is something that can’t be silence by the senseless violence of a few.”

Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy said, “This is a direct savage attack on one of the principles of the French Republic we hold the most dear: Freedom of expression.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, “Shooting in France is not only an attack on French citizens, but freedoms of press and speech.

British Prime Minister David Cameron in the House of Commons said, “I know this House and this country stands united with the French people in opposition to all forms of terrorism and we stand squarely for free speech and democracy. These people will never take us off these values.”

French President Francois Hollande called for a day of mourning and said, “Our greatest strength is our unity.”

In cities across France, the people are coming out for “Je Suis Charlie” (I am Charlie) rallies.

A similar Islamic terrorist attack took place in the United States on Nov. 5, 2009 at Fort Hood, the nation’s largest Army post. U.S. Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan, 39, M.D., psychiatrist, and practicing Muslim of Palestinian descent, shot and killed 13 people (12 soldiers and one civilian) and wounded 32, mostly uniformed soldiers. A civilian police Sergeant Mark Todd exchanged gunfire with Hasan, who was wounded four times and paralyzed from the waist down. Hasan was subsequently found guilty of 13 counts of premeditated murder in 2013 and was sentenced to death.  Hasan has yet to be executed.

In a memorial service for the Fort Hood victims, Obama refused to acknowledge that Islamic terrorism has a role in the shooting and said, “no faith justifies these murderous and craven acts.” The Obama administration instead considered the slaughter as “workplace violence.” This despite the fact that Hasan was yelling “Allahu Akbar” (God is Great) and had exchanged emails with the American born imam Anwar al-Awlaki, an al-Qaida terrorist leader in Yemen. Obama subsequently authorized in 2011 al-Awlaki’s killing by missiles fired by two Predator drones.

On Sept. 11, 2012, an al-Qaida affiliate, Ansar al-Sharia, attacked and killed four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and wounded 7 Americans, some seriously. Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.S. United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice knew this was a well-planned, organized and executed terrorist attack, yet repeatedly mislead and lied to the American people claiming it was a “spontaneous demonstration” caused by an inflammatory YouTube video.

Obama went to the United Nations on Sept. 25, 2012, and said, “A crude and disgusting video sparked outrage throughout the Muslim world” and “I know there are some who ask why we don’t just ban such a video.  And the answer is enshrined in our laws:  Our Constitution protects the right to practice free speech.” Later in his remarks, he said, “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam. But to be credible, those who condemn that slander must also condemn the hate we see in the images of Jesus Christ that are desecrated, or churches that are destroyed, or the Holocaust that is denied.”

While Obama at least described the latest incident as a terrorist attack, he refuses to describe it as an Islamic jihadist terrorist attack, which all three events clearly were. The aim of those who practice political correctness is not to tell the truth but to limit and ideally stop the free expression and exchange of ideas and opposing points of view. Political correctness lives in the Obama administration. Political correctness kills. Time to tell the whole truth, not half-truths, Mr. President.

Raymond Thomas Pronk is presenter of the Pronk Pops Show on KDUX web radio from 4-5 p.m. Monday -Fridays and author of the companion blog http://www.pronkpops.wordpress.com/

Gunmen Kill At Least 12 In ‘Terrorist Attack’ At French Satirical Newspaper

PARIS (CBS News/CBSDC/AP) — Three masked gunmen stormed the Paris offices of a satirical newspaper Wednesday, killing 12 people, including its editor, before escaping in a car. It was France’s deadliest postwar terrorist attack.

CBS News’ Elaine Cobbe reports that, according to witnesses, two armed and masked men walked into the headquarters of the Charlie Hebdo magazine and opened fire in the entrance hallway, killing people as they saw them. The gunmen reportedly sought out members of the newspaper’s staff by name during the rampage through the 2nd floor office, which lasted between five and 10 minutes, according to witnesses.

Security forces were hunting for the gunmen who spoke flawless, unaccented French in the military-style noon-time attack on the weekly newspaper, located near Paris’ Bastille monument. The publication’s caricatures of the Prophet Muhammed have frequently drawn condemnation from Muslims.

President Francois Hollande called the slayings “a terrorist attack without a doubt,” and said several other attacks have been thwarted in France “in recent weeks.”

France raised its security alert to the highest level and reinforced protective measures at houses of worship, stores, media offices and transportation. Schools closed across Paris, although thousands of people jammed Republique Square near the site of the shooting to honor the victims.

Top government officials held an emergency meeting and Hollande planned a nationally televised address later Wednesday evening.

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There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which also left four people critically wounded, and was condemned by world leaders as an attack on freedom of expression, but praised by supporters of the militant Islamic State group.

Clad all in black with hoods and carrying machine guns, the attackers forced one of the cartoonists arriving at the office building with her young daughter to open the door with a security code.

The staff was in an editorial meeting and the gunmen headed straight for the paper’s editor, Stephane Charbonnier – widely known by his pen name Charb – killing him and his police bodyguard first, said Christophe Crepin, a police union spokesman. Minutes later, two men strolled out to a black car waiting below, calmly firing on a police officer, with one gunman shooting him in the head as he writhed on the ground, according to video.

Ten journalists and two police office were killed, Crepin said, including one assigned as Charb’s bodyguard and another who had arrived on the scene on a mountain bike. Among the dead were Bernard Maris, an economist who a contributor to the newspaper and was heard regularly on French radio, and Georges Wolinski, a celebrated cartoonist who also worked for Paris Match magazine.

“Hey! We avenged the Prophet Muhammad! We killed Charlie Hebdo,” one of the men shouted in French, according to a video shot from a nearby building and broadcast on French TV. Other videoshowed two gunmen in black at a crossroads who appeared to fire down one of the streets. A cry of “Allahu akbar!” – Arabic for “God is great”- could be heard among the gunshots.

The video showed the killers moving deliberately and calmly. One even bent over to toss a fallen shoe back into the small black car before it sped off. The car was later found abandoned in northern Paris, police said.

Luc Poignant of the SBP police union said the attackers switched to another vehicle that had been stolen.

A reporter for Britain’s Telegraph newspaper in Paris told Sky News that the first two officers to arrive, who were apparently unarmed, fled after seeing gunmen armed with automatic weapons and possibly a grenade launcher.

Corinne Rey, the cartoonist who said she was forced to let the gunmen in, said the men spoke fluent French and claimed to be from al Qaeda. In an interview with the newspaper l’Humanite, she said the entire shooting lasted perhaps five minutes.

The Guardian reports a witness in the office building said one of the gunman asked where Charlie Hebdo was located.

“Then someone opened the door to our office and asked where Charlie Hebdo was. He had a rifle. We backed away. Afterwards he left, we heard gunfire. We went to the windows, there were two men running with guns, speaking in bad French … They were shouting outside, and shooting again. Afterwards I saw someone leaving the building with his hands covered in blood,” the unnamed witness said, according to The Guardian.

The security analyst group Stratfor said the gunmen appeared to be well-trained, “from the way they handled their weapons, moved and shot. These attackers conducted a successful attack, using what they knew, instead of attempting to conduct an attack beyond their capability, failing as a result.”

Both al Qaeda and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have repeatedly threatened to attack France. Just minutes before the attack, Charlie Hebdo had tweeted a satirical cartoon of the Islamic State’s leader giving New Year’s wishes:

Charlie Hebdo has been repeatedly threatened for its caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad and other sketches. Its offices were firebombed in 2011 after an issue featured a caricature of the prophet on its cover. Nearly a year later, the publication again published Muhammad caricatures, drawing denunciations from the Muslim world because Islam prohibits the publication of drawings of its founder.

Another cartoon, released in this week’s issue and entitled “Still No Attacks in France,” had a caricature of a jihadi fighter saying “Just wait – we have until the end of January to present our New Year’s wishes.” Charb was the artist.

“This is the darkest day of the history of the French press,” said Christophe DeLoire of Reporters Without Borders.

The last tweet from the magazine came less than an hour before the reports of a shooting. It was a picture depicting Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, with a message wishing him, “Best wishes.”
“The motive here is absolutely clear; trying to shut down a media organization that lampooned the Prophet Mohammad,” CBS News security consultant and former CIA deputy chief Mike Morell told “CBS This Morning co-host Charlie Rose. “What we have to figure out here is the perpetrators and whether they were self-radicalized or whether they were individuals who fought in Syria and Iraq and came back, or whether they were actually directed by ISIS or al Qaeda.”

Morrell added a warning that law enforcement and intelligence agencies would need to “worry about copycat attacks, not only in France but in the rest of the world, and I would even say in the broader world to include the United States.”

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The New York Police Department released a statement, saying it had a detective stationed in Paris and “will continue to closely monitor the situation.”

“There are standing contingency plans in place to adjust police deployments based on any unfolding situation in the world. That includes how we use and where we position and deploy specialized police resources, said Deputy Commissioner Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller.

In the winter 2014 edition of the al Qaeda magazine Inspire, a so-called chief describing where to use a new bomb said: “Of course the first priority and the main focus should be on America, then the United Kingdom, then France and so on.”

In 2013, the magazine specifically threatened Charb and included an article titled “France the Imbecile Invader.”

An al Qaeda tweeter who communicated Wednesday with AP said the group is not claiming responsibility, but called the attack “inspiring.”

CBS News national security analyst Juan Zarate also noted on “CBS This Morning” that “France has been dealing with the problem of French foreign fighters flowing into Syria and Iraq and coming back into France.”

He says it may be more likely, however, that the attack on Charlie Hebdo was carried out by “self-radicalized individuals, individuals who take their prompt from the propaganda of these groups and took it upon themselves, perhaps, to attack.”

Zarate pointed to the attack by young French Muslim man Mohamed Merah, who shot up a Jewish community center in the country’s south in March 2012, as an example of this sort of violence.

“France is not new to this, and the perpetrators could be a wide spectrum of individuals who were inspired to attack fellow French citizens,” said Zarate.

President Obama said he has reached out to Hollande to express his sympathies for the attack in Paris Wednesday. In remarks before a meeting with Secretary Kerry and Vice President Biden, Obama called the shootings “cowardly and evil.”

“The fact that this was an attack on journalists, an attack on our free press, also underscores the degree to which these terrorists fear freedom of speech, freedom of the press,” Obama said.

He continued, “A universal belief in freedom of expression is something that can’t be silenced because of the senseless violence of the few.” The president promised the U.S. would stand with France and said that U.S. counterterrorism was providing assistance to the French to help hunt for those responsible for the shooting.

British Prime Minister David Cameron said his country stood united with France,

“We stand squarely for free speech and democracy. These people will never be able to take us off those values,” Cameron said in the House of Commons.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also condemned the attack as a “cynical crime,” and pledged cooperation in fighting terrorism,

Mohammed Moussaoui, president of the Union of French mosques, condemned the “hateful act,” and urged Muslims and Christians “to intensify their actions to give more strength to this dialogue, to make a united front against extremism.”

On social media, supporters of militant Islamic groups praised the move. One self-described Tunisian loyalist of al Qaeda and the Islamic State group tweeted that the attack was well-deserved revenge against France.

Elsewhere on the Internet, the hashtag #JeSuisCharlie was trending as people expressed support for weekly and for journalistic freedom.

Standing together in defiance, thousands gather across France to show support for 12 people slaughtered by ‘Al Qaeda’ gunmen in attack on Paris magazine as manhunt for terrorists continues

  • Masked gunmen storm Paris headquarters with AK-47s shouting ‘Allahu akbar!’ and ‘the Prophet has been avenged’
  • Stalked building asking for people’s names before killing the editor, three cartoonists and the deputy chief editor
  • Editor Stephane Charbonnier had famously shrugged off threats, saying: ‘I’d rather die standing than live kneeling’
  • Horrific footage shows a police officer begging for his life before being shot in the head at point-blank range
  • Cartoonist Corrine Rey told how she cowered with her young daughter as she watched two colleagues gunned down
  • Killers fled in stolen car across eastern Paris after a ‘mass shoot-out’ with police officers and remain on the loose  
  • Militants believed to be from Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula which was behind plane bomb plots in U.S. and UK
  • Newspaper had earlier posted a picture of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on its Twitter account
  • Publication’s offices were firebombed in 2011 for publishing satirical cartoon of Prophet Mohammed
  • White House had previously criticised Charlie Hebdo in 2012 for publishing its religiously sensitive cartoons

Thousands of people gathered across Europe tonight to show their support to an anti-Islamist newspaper, after its offices in Paris were targeted today by suspected Al Qaeda militants who massacred 12 people.

Among those slaughtered was a police officer as he begged for mercy.

Masked attackers brandishing Kalashnikovs burst into the Charlie Hebdo headquarters, opening fire on staff after seeking out journalists by name in France’s deadliest post-war terrorist attack.

Clad all in black with hoods and speaking flawless French, the militants forced one of the cartoonists – who was at the office with her young daughter – to open the door.

Witnesses said the gunmen were heard shouting ‘we are from the Al Qaeda in Yemen’, ‘the Prophet has been avenged’ and ‘Allahu akbar!’ – Arabic for ‘God is great’ – as they stalked the building.

They headed straight for the paper’s editor and cartoonist, Stephane Charbonnier, killing him and his police bodyguard, who had been recruited to protect him after extremists firebombed the offices in 2011 over a satirical cartoon about the Prophet Mohammed.

A year later, Mr Charbonnier famously dismissed threats against his life, declaring: ‘I would rather die standing than live kneeling.’

The militants also killed three other renowned cartoonists – men who had regularly satirised Islam – and the newspaper’s deputy chief editor.

Despite a shoot-out with armed officers, the gunmen escaped in a hijacked car and remain on the loose this evening, leaving the French capital in virtual lockdown as police and soldiers flooded the streets to join the search.

President Barack Obama offered U.S. help in pursuing the gunmen, saying they had attacked freedom of expression.

But it also emerged that the White House had previously criticised Charlie Hebdo in 2012 over its Prophet Mohammed cartoon, saying the images would be ‘deeply offensive to many and have the potential to be inflammatory.’

Meanwhile, horrific footage emerged showing an injured police officer slumped on the pavement as two gunmen approached him outside the office minutes later.

In an apparent desperate plea for his life, the officer is seen slowly raising his hand towards one of the attackers, who responds by callously shooting him in the head at point-blank range.

Scroll down for videos and audio 

Demonstration: Protesters at the Place de la Republique  in Paris tonight,  following an attack by gunmen on the offices of Charlie Hebdo

Demonstration: Protesters at the Place de la Republique in Paris tonight, following an attack by gunmen on the offices of Charlie Hebdo

Elsewhere: People gather at the Place Royale in Nantes to show their solidarity for the victims of the attack  on the offices of the satirical weekly

Elsewhere: People gather at the Place Royale in Nantes to show their solidarity for the victims of the attack on the offices of the satirical weekly

Brutal execution: A police officer pleads for mercy on the pavement in Paris before being shot in the head by masked gunmen during an attack on the headquarters of the French satirical publication Charlie Hebdo, a notoriously anti-Islamic publication

Brutal execution: A police officer pleads for mercy on the pavement in Paris before being shot in the head by masked gunmen during an attack on the headquarters of the French satirical publication Charlie Hebdo, a notoriously anti-Islamic publication

Gunned down in cold blood: Horrific footage shows the injured police officer slumped on the pavement as two of the gunmen approach. In a desperate plea for his life, the officer slowly raises his hand towards one of the attackers, who callously shoots him at point-blank range

Gunned down in cold blood: Horrific footage shows the injured police officer slumped on the pavement as two of the gunmen approach. In a desperate plea for his life, the officer slowly raises his hand towards one of the attackers, who callously shoots him at point-blank range

'Massacre': The gunmen are seen brandishing Kalashnikovs as they move in on the injured police officer from their vehicle outside the office

‘Massacre': The gunmen are seen brandishing Kalashnikovs as they move in on the injured police officer from their vehicle outside the office

Emergency: Police officers and firefighters gather in front of the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris today after gunmen stormed the building

Emergency: Police officers and firefighters gather in front of the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris today after gunmen stormed the building

Critical: Firefighters carry an injured man on a stretcher in front of the offices of French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo after the shooting

Critical: Firefighters carry an injured man on a stretcher in front of the offices of French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo after the shooting

Despite a fierce firefight with police, the men were able to get away in a hijacked car, and, within an hour of the atrocity, appeared to have disappeared without trace.

France raised its security alert to the highest level and reinforced protective measures at houses of worship, stores, media offices and transportation.

President Francois Hollande described the bloodbath as a ‘barbaric attack against France and against journalists’ and vowed to hunt down those responsible.

Jacques Myard, French MP with opposition party UMP, said: ‘We knew something would happen. The (security) services used to say to us it’s not if but when and where. We know that we are at war. The Western nations – like Britain, France, Germany – we are at war.’

The Queen today sent her ‘sincere condolences to the families of those who have been killed’ in the attack, while Prime Minister David Cameron described the murders as ‘sickening’.

Social media users have responded to the Charlie Hebdo massacre with an outpouring of solidarity using the hashtag #jesuischarlie which is trending on Twitter.

By 4.15pm, nearly five hours after the attack, it had already been tweeted more than 250,000 times, according to one social analytics website.

Thousands of people also jammed Republique Square near the site of the shooting to honor the victims, holding aloft pens and papers reading ‘Je suis Charlie’ – ‘I am Charlie.’

Guy Verhofstadt, the President of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe tweeted: ‘A tragic day for the freedom of speech #jesuischarlie.’

Marches have also been organised through Paris and London in support of journalistic freedom.

As well as the AK47 assault rifles, there were also reports of a rocket-propelled grenade being used in the attack, which took place during the publication’s weekly editorial meeting at around 12pm (11pm GMT), meaning all the journalists would have been present.

A young mother and cartoonist who survived the massacre told how she had let the suspected Al Qaeda killers into the office.

Corrine Rey said she had returned from picking up her young daughter from a kindergarten when she was confronted by two heavily armed men wearing balaclavas.

‘I had gone to pick up my daughter at day care, arriving in front of the building, where two masked and armed men brutally threatened us,’ said Ms Rey, who draws under the name ‘Coco’.

‘They said they wanted to go up to the offices, so I tapped in the code,’ said Ms Rey, referring to the digi-code security system on the interphone.

Ms Rey and her daughter hid under a desk, from where they saw two other cartoonists being executed. ‘They shot Wolinski and Cabu,’ she said. ‘It lasted five minutes. I had taken refuge under a desk.’

Faces of the victims: Among the journalists killed were (l to r) Charlie Hebdo's deputy chief editor  Bernard Maris and cartoonists Georges Wolinski, Jean Cabut, aka Cabu, Stephane Charbonnier, who is also editor-in-chief, and Bernard Verlhac, also known as Tignous

Faces of the victims: Among the journalists killed were (l to r) Charlie Hebdo’s deputy chief editor Bernard Maris and cartoonists Georges Wolinski, Jean Cabut, aka Cabu, Stephane Charbonnier, who is also editor-in-chief, and Bernard Verlhac, also known as Tignous

At large: The gunmen are seen near the offices of the French newspaper Charlie Hebdo before fleeing in a car. They remain on the loose

At large: The gunmen are seen near the offices of the French newspaper Charlie Hebdo before fleeing in a car. They remain on the loose

Forensic experts examine the car believed to have been used as the escape vehicle by gunmen who attacked the Charlie Hebdo office

Forensic experts examine the car believed to have been used as the escape vehicle by gunmen who attacked the Charlie Hebdo office

A truck tows the car apprently used by armed gunmen who stormed the Paris offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people

A truck tows the car apprently used by armed gunmen who stormed the Paris offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people

A police photographer (partially hidden) works with investigators as they examine the impacts from machine gun fire on a police vehicle

A police photographer (partially hidden) works with investigators as they examine the impacts from machine gun fire on a police vehicle

Ms Rey said the men ‘spoke French perfectly’ and ‘claimed they were ‘Al Qaeda terrorists’.

Gunmen reportedly told another witness: ‘You say to the media, it was Al Qaeda in Yemen.’

A police source told the Liberation newspaper the gunmen were asking for the Mr Charbonnier by name, shouting: ‘Where is Charb? Where is Charb?’

The source added: ‘They killed him then sprayed everyone else.’

Mr Charbonnier was included in a 2013 Wanted Dead or Alive for Crimes Against Islam article published by Inspire, the terrorist propaganda magazine published by Al Qaeda.

The latest tweet published by the newspaper’s official Twitter account earlier in the day featured a cartoon of Abu Baghdadi, the leader of Islamic State, who wishes everyone ‘good health’.

Cartoonists Cabu, Tignous and Wolinski were all also reported dead.

Radio France chief executive Mathieu Gilet later announced on Twitter that a contributor, Bernard Maris, was another of the victims.

Meanwhile, there were reports of a car explosion outside a synagogue in Sarcelles, a commune in the northern suburbs of Paris, just hours after the Charlie Hebdo attack.

The blast, which happened at around 1.30pm GMT, is not thought to be connected to the massacre, according to Paris Metro which quoted the mayor of Sarcelles.

Florence Pouvil, a salesperson at Lunas France on Rue Nicolas Appert, opposite the Charlie Hebdo offices, told MailOnline: ‘I saw two people with big guns, like Kalashnikovs outside our office and then we heard firing. We were very confused.’

‘There were two guys who came out of the building and shot everywhere. We hid on the floor, we were terrified.

‘They came from the building opposite with big guns. It has a bunch of different companies inside. Some of our co-workers work there so we were frightened for them.

‘They weren’t just firing inside the Charlie Hebdo offices. They were firing in the street too.

‘We feared for our lives so we hid under our desks so they wouldn’t see us. Both men were dressed in black from head to toe and their faces were covered so I didn’t see them.

‘They were wearing military clothes, it wasn’t common clothing, like they were soldiers.’

According to the New York Times, one journalist at the Charlie Hebdo office, who asked not to be named, texted a friend after the shooting to say: ‘I’m alive. There is death all around me. Yes, I am there. The jihadists spared me.’

A man is carried into an ambulance. Ten people were reportedly in wounded, four critically, in the attack by suspected Al Qaeda militants

A man is carried into an ambulance. Ten people were reportedly in wounded, four critically, in the attack by suspected Al Qaeda militants

Life-threatening: An injured person is evacuated outside the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo's office

Life-threatening: An injured person is evacuated outside the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo’s office

Several people were left critically wounded when terrorists carried out a ‘military-style’ attack on the newspaper office

Several people were left critically wounded when terrorists carried out a ‘military-style’ attack on the newspaper office

Shell-shocked: A woman cries outside the office. Witnesses reported hearing loud gunfire and at least one explosion during the attack

Shell-shocked: A woman cries outside the office. Witnesses reported hearing loud gunfire and at least one explosion during the attack

Trail of destruction: Police inspect the damage after a collision between police cars at the scene during a firefight with Islamic militants

Trail of destruction: Police inspect the damage after a collision between police cars at the scene during a firefight with Islamic militants

ARE PARIS GUNMEN FROM YEMENI AL QAEDA CELL BEHIND PLANE BOMB PLOTS IN THE U.S. AND BRITAIN?

The gunmen being hunted by police over the Charlie Hebdo attack are believed to be from militant group Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The group was established by Yusef al-Ayeri in 2003 in Saudi Arabia, but was forced to flee to Yemen after a series of attacks drove them back.

Yemen’s weak government allowed the group to rally and gain members, though they are only thought to have around 400 troops today.

While their attacks initially focused on targets in the Middle East, such as an attempted suicide attack on Saudi Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, they quickly spread to Western targets.

On Christmas Day in 2009, they were implicated in the underwear bomb plot after Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was discovered on a Detroit-bound plane trying to detonate liquid explosives in his underpants.

The following year AQAP also took responsibility for a plot to blow up two devices hidden inside printer cartridges loaded on to cargo planes travelling from Yemen to the United States.

One device was discovered during a stopover at East Midlands Airport in Britain, while another was uncovered in Dubai.

According to Stanford University the group is currently lead by Yemen-born Nasser al-Wuhayshi, who is an apprentice of Osama Bin Laden and was imprisoned for a time in Yemen, but escaped in 2006 along with 22 others.

The group has a global jihadist agenda. Like ISIS, they aim to create a single Arab caliphate, covering Pakistan Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and the Levant – the area encompassing Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Israel.

If today’s attack is confirmed as coming from AQAP, it will be the first time the group has used lone-wolf style tactics, in which gunmen act alone or in small groups to attack targets.

Officers were involved in a gunfight with the men, who escaped in a hijacked car and sped away from the office towards east Paris

Officers were involved in a gunfight with the men, who escaped in a hijacked car and sped away from the office towards east Paris

On red alert: After the first shots rang out, it is thought that three policemen on bicycles were the first to respond to the atrocity 

On red alert: After the first shots rang out, it is thought that three policemen on bicycles were the first to respond to the atrocity

Benoit Bringer, a journalist with Agence Premiere Ligne, told the iTele network he saw several masked men armed with machine guns

Benoit Bringer, a journalist with Agence Premiere Ligne, told the iTele network he saw several masked men armed with machine guns

Carnage: A police official, Luc Poignant, said he was aware of one journalist dead and several injured, including three police officers

Carnage: A police official, Luc Poignant, said he was aware of one journalist dead and several injured, including three police officers

Terror: In footage filmed from a rooftop, people are seen running for cover as the gunmen rampage through the building

Terror: In footage filmed from a rooftop, people are seen running for cover as the gunmen rampage through the building

A picture posted on Twitter appearing to show people taking refuge on the roof of the Charlie Hebdo office

A picture posted on Twitter appearing to show people taking refuge on the roof of the Charlie Hebdo office

Targeted: A picture posted on Twitter reportedly showing bullets in one of the windows of the Charlie Hebdo offices

Targeted: A picture posted on Twitter reportedly showing bullets in one of the windows of the Charlie Hebdo offices

Another witness, Gilles Boulanger, who works in the same building, told Itele: ‘A neighbour called to warn me that there were armed men in the building and that we had to shut all the doors.

‘And several minutes later, there were several shots heard in the building from automatic weapons firing in all directions. So then we looked out of the window and saw the shooting was on Boulevard Richard-Lenoir, with the police. It was really upsetting. You’d think it was a war zone.’

French journalist, Stefan De Vries, told Sky News: ‘There was protection at the door but they killed the police officers, they executed them and they started shooting in the offices.’

An unnamed eyewitness told the BBC World Service: ‘When I arrived at the scene it was quite disturbing as you can imagine. There were several corpses on the floor.

‘We saw the number of casualties was very high, so we just tried to help as we could – there were a lot of people down on the floor and there was blood everywhere.

‘I’m very traumatised by this attack and everything and now we’re in psychological hell where we’re being attended to by professionals.’

Benoit Bringer, a journalist at the scene who works next door, took refuge on the roof of the building, which is in the 11th arrondissement of Paris.

He said: ‘There were very many people in the building. We evacuated via the roof just next to the office. After around ten minutes we saw two heavily armed, masked men in the street’.

Another witness said: ‘There was a loud gunfire and at least one explosion. When police arrived there was a mass shoot-out. The men got away by car, stealing a car.’

A police official, Luc Poignant, said: ‘It’s carnage.’

After the shooting, hundreds of comments were posted on the Charlie Hebdo Twitter page, with one user, David Rault, writing: ‘A sad day for freedom of expression.’

Charlie Hebdo’s editor-in-chief Gerard Biard escaped the massacre because he was in London.

He told France Inter: ‘I am shocked that people can have attacked a newspaper in France, a secular republic. I don’t understand it.

‘I don’t understand how people can attack a newspaper with heavy weapons. A newspaper is not a weapon of war.’

High alert: French soldiers patrol at the Eiffel Tower after the Charlie Hebdo shooting as the militants are hunted across the city

French soldiers patrol at the Eiffel Tower after a shooting at a French satirical newspaper, in Paris, France, Wednesday, Jan. 7

A French soldier patrols in front of the Eiffel Tower on January 7, 2015 in Paris as the capital was placed under the highest alert status after heavily armed gunmen shouting Islamist slogans stormed French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and shot dead at least 12 people in the deadliest attack in France in four decades. Police launched a massive manhunt for the masked attackers who reportedly hijacked a car and sped off, running over a pedestrian and shooting at officers. AFP PHOTO / JOEL SAGETJOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images

France reinforced security at houses of worship, stores, media offices and transport after masked gunmen stormed the Charlie Hebdo offices

Mr Biard said he did not believe the attack was linked to the newspaper’s latest front page, which featured novelist Michel Houellebecq, who has previously sparked controversy with comments about Islam.

And he said the newspaper had not received threats of violence: ‘Not to my knowledge, and I don’t think anyone had received them as individuals, because they would have talked about it. There was no particular tension at the moment.’

A visibly shocked French President François Hollande, speaking live near the scene of the shooting, said: ‘France is today in shock, in front of a terrorist attack.

‘This newspaper was threatened several rimes in the past and we need to show we are a united country.

‘We have to be firm, and we have to be stand strong with the international community in the coming days and weeks.

‘We are at a very difficult moment following several terrorist attacks. We are threated because we are a country of freedom

‘We will punish the attackers. We will look for the people responsible.’

Defiant: Stephane Charbonnier, known by his pen name Charb, was editor of Charlie Hebdo, and gunned down by men with assault weapons

Defiant: Stephane Charbonnier, known by his pen name Charb, was editor of Charlie Hebdo, and gunned down by men with assault weapons

Mr Charbonnier was named as one of nine men the extreme Islamist group were targetting (pictured centre right). Their photographs were printed alongside the caption ‘a bullet a day keeps the infidel away’

Tragic: Cartoonist Georges Wolinski was named by officials as one of those shot dead at the offices of Charlie Hebdo

Tragic: Cartoonist Georges Wolinski was named by officials as one of those shot dead at the offices of Charlie Hebdo

Cartoonist Cabu

Bernard 'Tignous' Verlhac was gunned down by terrorists today

Lead cartoonist Jean ‘Cabu’ Cabut (left) was among the 12 massacred by terrorists in Paris today, along with Bernard ‘Tignous’ Verlhac (right)

Radio France chief executive Mathieu Gilet announced on Twitter that a contributor, Bernard Maris (above right) was another of the victims

Radio France chief executive Mathieu Gilet announced on Twitter that a contributor, Bernard Maris (above right) was another of the victims

The Queen today sent her ‘sincere condolences to the families of those who have been killed’ in the attack.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister David Cameron described the murders as ‘sickening’.

He added: ‘We stand with the French people in the fight against terror and defending the freedom of the press.’

The British Foreign Office immediately updated is advice for travellers heading to Pairs, warning: ‘There is a high threat from terrorism.’

It added: ‘If you’re in Paris or the Ile de France area take extra care and follow advice of French authorities.’

Luce Lapin and Laurent Leger, who have both worked at Charlie Hebdo, were using Twitter hours before the attack, with the most recent tweet posted by Lapin praising cartoonist Cabu.

It read: ‘Cabu, a great man! And honest, he doesn’t eat foie gras.’

While Leger’s made a political point about taxes.

It said: ‘Macron [French ministry of economy] wants more billionaires in France, the same that use tricks for not paying ISF [solidarity tax on wealth].’

Mohammed Moussaoui, president of the Union of French mosques, condemned the ‘hateful act,’ and urged Muslims and Christians ‘to intensify their actions to give more strength to this dialogue to make a united front against extremism’.

Location: Officers were involved in a gunfight with the men, who escaped in a hijacked car and sped away from the office towards east Paris

Location: Officers were involved in a gunfight with the men, who escaped in a hijacked car and sped away from the office towards east Paris

‘100 LASHES IF YOU DON’T DIE OF LAUGHTER': HOW CHARLIE HEBDO HAS BECOME A BYWORD FOR ANTI-ISLAMISM

Charlie Hebdo has become a byword for offensive statements in France after taking several highly provocative swipes at Islam.

The newspaper once named Prophet Mohammed as its guest editor, published cartoons of the holy figure in the nude, and once renamed itself Sharia Hebdo with the cover slogan ‘100 lashes if you don’t die of laughter’.

The controversy began in 2006 when the publication reprinted now-infamous cartoons of Prophet Mohammed by Danish artist Kurt Westergaard.

When the images originally appeared they lead to days of protests across the Middle East and in Western cities. The decision to reprint the images landed the then-editor in court under anti-terror laws, though he was later acquitted.

The Hebdo offices were burned to the ground in 2011 when attackers used Molotov cocktails to start a blaze early in the morning of November 2.

There was nobody in the building at the time, and the target was instead thought to be the newspaper’s computer system, which was completely destroyed.

Riot police were forced to stand guard outside the building for days following the attack, as the editors took a defiant stance, choosing to reprint the cartoon images multiple times.

In 2012 they again printed cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed as a deliberately provocative gesture while violent protests were taking place across the Middle East.

The following year the newspaper’s office again had to be surrounded by riot officers after they published a cartoon booklet depicting the Prohpet naked as a baby and being pushed in a wheelchair.

On the final page of the booklet there was a note from the editor, Stephane Charbonnier, saying the images were ‘halal’ because Muslims had worked on them, and that they were factually accurate as they had been derived from descriptions in the Koran.

The satirical publication, widely seen as France’s answer to Private Eye, prides itself on a mixture of tongue-in-cheek reporting and investigative journalism.

Hebdo’s current office building has no notices on the door to prevent a repeat of the attacks that have occurred in the past.

In an interview with De Volkskrant in January 2013, Mr Charbonnier revealed he had been placed under constant police protection for four months after one of the cartoon issues was published.

He shrugged off criticism that he was only publishing the images to gain notoriety for Hebdo, and insisted that he was instead defending the right to free speech.

Mr Charbonnier pointed out that the newspaper had poked fun at feminism, nuclear energy and homeland security, but the Islam issues always attracted the most publicity.

The offices of the same newspaper were burnt down in a petrol attack in 2011 after running a magazine cover of the Prophet Mohammed as a cartoon character.

At the time, the editor-in-chief, Stephane Charbonnier, said Islam could not be excluded from freedom of the press.

He said: ‘If we can poke fun at everything in France, if we can talk about anything in France apart from Islam or the consequences of Islamism, that is annoying.’

Mr Charbonnier, also known as Charb, said he did not see the attack on the newspaper as the work of French Muslims, but of what he called ‘idiot extremists’.

'We have to be stand strong with the international community': A visibly shocked French President François Hollande arrives at the scene, where he promised to bring those responsible to justice

‘We have to be stand strong with the international community': A visibly shocked French President François Hollande arrives at the scene, where he promised to bring those responsible to justice

The cover showed Mohammed saying: ‘100 lashes if you are not dying of laughter’.

This week’s Charlie Hebdo also featured the author Houellebecq, whose new novel imagines Muslims taking over the French government in 2022.

Inside, there was an editorial, attributed to the Prophet Muhammad, and more cartoons – one showing the Prophet with a clown’s red nose.

Depiction of the Prophet is strictly prohibited in Islam, but the newspaper denied it was trying to be provocative.

A firebomb attack gutted the headquarters of Charlie Hebdo in November 2011 after it put an image of the Prophet Mohammed on its cover.

http://washington.cbslocal.com/2015/01/07/charlie-hebdo-terror-attack/

HOW ATTACK ON CHARLIE HEBDO HQ UNFOLDED

10.28am – The satirical magazine updates its Twitter page with a cartoon of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. In it, he wishes everyone ‘good health’.

10.57am – The AFP news agency reports shots have been fired at the French weekly magazine, on Boulevard Richard Lenoir.

11.17am – Eyewitness accounts emerge showing the immediate aftermath of the scene.

11.22am – AFP confirms the first death as a result of the shooting. Three minutes later it confirms the death toll has risen to 10.

11.31am – President Francois Hollande is en-route to visit the magazine’s offices shortly, officials say

11.36am – The death toll is increased to 11 and then to 12.

11.46am – Paris is put on maximum alert following the attacks.

11.49am – Prime Minister David Cameron condemns the attack: ‘The murders in Paris are sickening. We stand with the French people in the fight against terror and defending the freedom of the press.’

11.54am – Mr Hollande, in an address near the scene of the massacre, says the shooting was ‘undoubtedly a terrorist attack’. He adds: ‘We fight threats and we will punish the attackers.’

11.59am – The first tweet is posted containing the hashtag £JeSuisCharlie in solidarity with the victims, the magazine and its supporters.

12.26pm – French officials confirm gunmen who carried out the attack are still at large. At least two criminals are believed to be involved.

12.38pm – The White House condemns Paris attack in the ‘strongest possible terms’.

1.30pm – AFP says dead include three cartoonists and editor-in-chief Stephane Charbonnier, known as Charb.

2.13pm - French internal minister Bernard Cazeneuve says ‘three criminals’ were involved in the attack. They remain at large.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2900259/Gunmen-kill-11-Charlie-Hebdo-attack.html

PLAY VIDEO|1:05

Witness Videos of Paris Terror Attack

Witness Videos of Paris Terror Attack

Several videos showing the gunmen outside the office of Charlie Hebdo, a satirical newspaper, have surfaced online. The footage includes scenes of graphic violence.

Video by Natalia V. Osipova on Publish DateJanuary 7, 2015. Photo by Reuters TV.

Continue reading the main storyShare This Page

PARIS — At least two masked gunmen on Wednesday burst into the Paris offices of a satirical newspaper that had drawn threats for lampooning Islam, killing 12 people in a methodical hail of gunfire, fleeing by car as they battled on the street with the police and setting off a wide manhunt for the killers.

There were unconfirmed news reports late Wednesday that the police had arrested three suspects, all French nationals, including two brothers.

The terrorist attack on the newspaper, Charlie Hebdo, was among the deadliest in postwar France, setting the nation on edge, sending shockwaves through Europe and threatening to deepen the distrust of France’s large Muslim population. The attack came at a time when Islamic radicalism has become a central concern of security officials across Europe.

The attack, carried out with automatic weapons, was carried out with an unusual degree of military-style precision. President François Hollande of France calledit a display of extraordinary “barbarism” that was “without a doubt” an act of terrorism. He declared Thursday a national day of mourning.

Continue reading the main story

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He also raised the nationwide terror alert to its highest status, saying several terrorist attacks had been thwarted in recent weeks as security officials here and elsewhere in Europe have grown increasingly wary of the return of young citizens from Syria and Iraq, where they went to wage jihad.

The French authorities put some schools on lockdown for the day, and added security at houses of worship, news media offices and transportation centers, and conducted random searches on the Paris Metro.

The Paris prosecutor, François Molins, said witnesses said the attackers had screamed “Allahu akbar!” or “God is great” during the attack, which the police characterized as a “slaughter.”

Corinne Rey, a cartoonist known as Coco, who was at the newspaper office during the attack, told Le Monde that the attackers spoke fluent French and had said they were part of Al Qaeda.

An amateur video of the assailants’ subsequent gunfight with the police, showed the men shouting, “We have avenged the Prophet Muhammad. We have killed Charlie Hebdo!” The video, the source of which could not be verified, also showed the gunmen killing a police officer as he lay wounded on a nearby street.

Graphic: Paris Newspaper Shooting: The Sequence of Events

The victims at Charlie Hebdo included some of the country’s most revered and iconoclastic cartoonists. The weekly’s editorial director, Stéphane Charbonnier, had already been received light police protection after earlier threats, the police and the prosecutor said. An officer assigned to guard the newspaper’s offices and its top editor was among the victims.

As news of the attack spread, an outpouring of grief mixed with expressions of dismay and demonstrations of solidarity for free speech. By the evening, not far from the site of the attack in the east of Paris, thousands gathered at Place de La République — young and old, and various classes — some chanting, “Charlie! Charlie!” or holding signs reading, “I am Charlie” — the message posted on the newspaper’s website.

Spontaneous vigils of hundreds and thousands formed in other cities around France and elsewhere in Europe.

Mr. Molin, thprosecutor, said that two men armed with AK-47 rifles and wearing black hoods, had forced their way into the weekly’s offices about 11:30 a.m., firing at people in the lobby, before making their way to the newsroom on the second floor, interrupting a news meeting and firing at the assembled journalists.

The attackers then fled outside, where they clashed three times with the police, shooting one officer as he lay on the ground on a nearby street. They then fled in a black Citroen, and headed north on the right bank of Paris. During their escape, prosecutors said, they crashed into another car and injured its female driver, before robbing and abducting a bystander.

Deadly Attack in Paris

Demonstrators with signs reading “I am Charlie” in Paris on Wednesday after an attack on the offices of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo.

The police said the precision with which the assailants handled their weapons suggested that they had received military training. During the attack, which the police said lasted a matter of minutes, several journalists hid under their desks or went to hide on the roof, witnesses said.

Meziani Zina, 32, who works at the reception of an employment center across from the building, said she heard several loud shots ringing from the weekly’s headquarters.

One journalist who was at the weekly during the attack and asked that her name not be used, texted a friend after the shooting: “I’m alive. There is death all around me. Yes, I am there. The jihadists spared me.”

Treasured by many, hated by some, and indiscriminate in its offensiveness, Charlie Hebdo has long reveled in provoking.

In 2011, the office of the weekly was badly damaged by a firebomb after it published a spoof issue “guest edited” by the Prophet Muhammad to salute the victory of an Islamist party in Tunisian elections. It had announced plans to publish a special issue renamed “Charia Hebdo,” a play on the word in French for Shariah law.

Photo

Clockwise from top left, the cartoonists Jean Cabut, known as Cabu; Bernard Verlhac, who used the name Tignous; Georges Wolinski; and Stéphane Charbonnier, known as Charb, who was also the editorial director of Charlie Hebdo.CreditStephane De Sakutin/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Police said the dead included four celebrated cartoonists at the weekly, including its Mr. Charbonnier, known as Charb, Jean Cabut, Georges Wolinski and Bernard Verlhac.

Mr. Charbonnier stoked controversy and earned the ire of the Muslim community in 2006, when he republished satirical cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that had been published in a Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten. His last cartoon for Charlie Hebdo featured an armed man who appeared to be a Muslim fighter with a headline that read: “Still no attacks in France. Wait! We have until the end of January to give our best wishes.”

The police said that an abandoned black Citroen with silvered wing-mirrors, used by the gunmen, was later discovered in the 19th arrondissement of Paris.

A senior United States counterterrorism official said on Wednesday that the American authorities were following the developments in Paris closely, but that they had not yet identified any individuals or groups who might be responsible for the attack.

Michael J. Morell, the former deputy director of the C.I.A. and now a consultant to CBS News, said it was unclear whether the attackers acted on their own or were directed by organized groups.

Photo

The cover of the current issue of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo.

“This is the worst terrorist attack in Europe since the attacks in London in July of 2005,” Mr. Morell said. “The motive here is absolutely clear: trying to shut down a media organization that lampooned the Prophet Muhammad. So, no doubt in my mind that this is terrorism.”

RECENT COMMENTS

This isn’t all about Mohammed. This is because of the political criticism.

He added, “What we have to figure out here is the perpetrators and whether they were self-radicalized or whether they were individuals who fought in Syria and Iraq and came back, or whether they were actually directed by ISIS or Al Qaeda.”

Dalil Boubakeur, the rector of the Grand Mosque in Paris, one of France’s largest, expressed horror at the assault on Charlie Hebdo. “We are shocked and surprised that something like this could happen in the center of Paris. But where are we?” he was quoted as saying by Europe1, a radio broadcaster.

“We strongly condemn these kinds of acts and we expect the authorities to take the most appropriate measures.” He added: “This is a deafening declaration of war. Times have changed, and we are now entering a new era of confrontation.”

The attack comes as thousands of Europeans have gone to join jihadist groups in Iraq and Syria, further fueling concerns about Islamic radicalism and terrorism being imported. Those concerns have been particularly acute in France where fears have grown that militants are seeking to target French citizens in retaliation for the government’s support for the United States-led air campaign against jihadists with the Islamic State group in Syria and Iraq.

Obama on U.S. Solidarity With France

In reaction to the deadly attack on the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, President Obama said the United States would provide France with “every bit of assistance” in fighting terrorism.

Video by AP on Publish DateJanuary 7, 2015. Photo by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press.

Last month, Prime Minister Manuel Valls ordered hundreds of additional military personnel onto the streets to beef up security after a series of attacks across France raised alarm about Islamic terror.

In Dijon and Nantes, a total of 23 people were injured when men drove vehicles into crowds, with one of the drivers shouting an Islamic rallying cry. The authorities depicted both drivers as mentally unstable. The attacks came after violence attributed to lone-wolf attackers in London in 2013, inCanada in October and last month in Sydney, Australia.

In September, fighters in Algeria aligned with the Islamic State beheaded Hervé Gourdel, a 55-year-old mountaineering guide from Nice, and released a video documenting the brutal killing. Mr. Gourdel was kidnapped after the Islamic State called on its supporters to target Europeans to avenge the airstrikes in Iraq and Syria.

President Obama issued a statement condemning the attack. “Time and again, the French people have stood up for the universal values that generations of our people have defended,” he said. “France, and the great city of Paris where this outrageous attack took place, offer the world a timeless example that will endure well beyond the hateful vision of these killers. We are in touch with French officials, and I have directed my administration to provide any assistance needed to help bring these terrorists to justice.”

The former French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, called the assault a “direct and savage attack against one of our most revered republican ideals: the freedom of expression.”

In a condolence letter addressed to President Holland, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany expressed condolences on behalf of the German people.

“This horrible act is not only an attack on the lives of French citizens and the domestic security of France,” Ms. Merkel said. “It also stands as an attack on the freedom of expression and the press, a core element of our free, democratic culture that can in no way be justified.”

Correction: January 7, 2015
An earlier version of this article misstated the location of the abandoned car believed to have been used by the gunmen, using information from the police. It was found in the 19th Arrondissement, not the 20th.
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/08/world/europe/charlie-hebdo-paris-shooting.html?_r=0

Charlie Hebdo

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Charlie Hebdo
Charlie-Hebdo-logo.jpg

Logo of the weekly Charlie Hebdo
Type Weekly satirical
news magazine
Format Magazine
Founded 1970,[1] 1992
Political alignment Left-wing
Headquarters Paris, France
Circulation 45,000
ISSN 1240-0068
Website charliehebdo.fr

Charlie Hebdo (French pronunciation: ​[ʃaʁli ɛbdo]; French for Charlie Weekly) is a French satirical weekly newspaper, featuring cartoons, reports, polemics, and jokes. Irreverent and stridently non-conformist in tone, the publication is strongly antireligious[2] and left-wing, publishing articles on the extreme right, Catholicism, Islam, Judaism, politics,culture, etc. According to its former editor, Charb (Stéphane Charbonnier), the magazine’s editorial viewpoint reflects “all components of left wing pluralism, and even abstainers”.[3]

It first appeared from 1969 to 1981; it folded, but was resurrected in 1992. Charb was the most recent editor, holding the post from 2009 until his death in the attack on the magazine’s offices in 2015. His predecessors were François Cavanna(1969–1981) and Philippe Val (1992–2009).

The magazine is published every Wednesday, with special editions issued on an unscheduled basis.

On 7 January 2015, during the weekly editorial board meeting, suspected Islamic terrorists gunned down and killed 10 journalists and two police officers at the newspaper’s Paris office.[4][5]

History

François Cavanna, one of the founders of Charlie Hebdo

In 1960, Georges “Professeur Choron” Bernier and François Cavanna launched a monthly magazine entitled Hara-Kiri.[6]Choron acted as the director of publication and Cavanna as its editor. Eventually Cavanna gathered together a team which included Roland Topor, Fred, Jean-Marc Reiser, Georges Wolinski, Gébé (fr), and Cabu. After an early reader’s letter accused them of being “dumb and nasty” (“bête et méchant”), the phrase became an official slogan for the magazine and made it into everyday language in France.

1969–1981

In 1969, the Hara-Kiri team decided to produce a weekly publication – on top of the existing monthly magazine – which would focus more on current affairs. This was launched in February as Hara-Kiri Hebdo and renamed L’Hebdo Hara-Kiri in May of the same year.[citation needed] (‘Hebdo’ is short for ‘hebdomadaire’ – ‘weekly’)

In November 1970, the former French president Charles de Gaulle died in his home village of Colombey-les-Deux-Églises, eight days after a disaster in a nightclub, theClub Cinq-Sept fire caused the death of 146 people. The magazine released a cover spoofing the popular press’s coverage of this disaster, headlined “Tragic Ball at Colombey, one dead.”[6] As a result, the journal was once more banned, this time by the Minister of the Interior.

In order to sidestep the ban, the team decided to change its title, and used Charlie Hebdo.[1] The new name was derived from a monthly comics magazine calledCharlie Mensuel (Charlie Monthly), which had been started by Bernier and Delfeil de Ton in 1968. Charlie took its name from Charlie Brown, the lead character ofPeanuts – one of the comics originally published in Charlie Mensuel – and was also an inside joke about Charles de Gaulle.[7] In December 1981, publication ceased.

1992–2010

In 1991, Gébé, Cabu and others were reunited to work for La Grosse Bertha, a new weekly magazine resembling Charlie created in reaction to the First Gulf War and edited by comic singer Philippe Val. However, the following year, Val clashed with the publisher, who wanted apolitical mischief, and was fired. Gébé and Cabu walked out with him and decided to launch their own paper again. The three called upon Cavanna, Delfeil de Ton and Wolinski, requesting their help and input. After much searching for a new name, the obvious idea of resurrecting Charlie-Hebdo was agreed on. The new magazine was owned by Val, Gébé, Cabu and singer Renaud Séchan. Val was editor, Gébé artistic director.

The publication of the new Charlie Hebdo began in July 1992 amidst much publicity. The first issue under the new publication sold 100,000 copies. Choron, who had fallen out with his former colleagues, tried to restart a weekly Hara-Kiri, but its publication was short-lived. Choron died in January 2005.

In 2000, journalist Mona Chollet was sacked after she had protested against a Philippe Val article which called Palestinians “non-civilized”.[8] In 2004, following the death of Gébé, Val succeeded him as director of the publication, while still holding his position as editor.

Controversy arose over the publication’s edition of 9 February 2006. Under the title “Mahomet débordé par les intégristes” (“Muhammad overwhelmed by fundamentalists”), the front page showed a cartoon of a weeping Prophet Muhammad saying “C’est dur d’être aimé par des cons” (“it’s hard being loved by jerks”). The newspaper reprinted the twelve cartoons of the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy and added some of their own. Compared to a regular circulation of 100,000 sold copies, this edition enjoyed great commercial success. 160,000 copies were sold and another 150,000 were in print later that day.

In response, French President Jacques Chirac condemned “overt provocations” which could inflame passions. “Anything that can hurt the convictions of someone else, in particular religious convictions, should be avoided”, Chirac said. The Grand Mosque, the Muslim World League and the Union of French Islamic Organisations(UOIF) sued, claiming the cartoon edition included racist cartoons.[9] A later edition contained a statement by a group of 12 writers warning against Islamism.[10]

The suit by the Grand Mosque and the UOIF reached the courts in February 2007. Publisher Philippe Val contended “It is racist to imagine that they can’t understand a joke” but Francis Szpiner, the lawyer for the Grand Mosque, explained the suit: “Two of those caricatures make a link between Muslims and Muslim terrorists. That has a name and it’s called racism.”[11]

Future president Nicolas Sarkozy sent a letter to be read in court expressing his support for the ancient French tradition of satire.[12] François Bayrou and future president François Hollande also expressed their support for freedom of expression. The French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) criticized the expression of these sentiments, claiming they were politicizing a court case.[13]

On 22 March 2007, executive editor Philippe Val was acquitted by the court.[14] The court followed the state attorney’s reasoning that two of the three cartoons were not an attack on Islam, but on Muslim terrorists, and that the third cartoon with Mohammed with a bomb in his turban should be seen in the context of the magazine in question which attacked religious fundamentalism.

In 2008, controversy broke over a column by veteran cartoonist Siné which led to accusations of antisemitism and Siné’s sacking by Val. Siné sued the newspaper for unfair dismissal and Charlie Hebdo was sentenced to pay him 90,000 in damages.[15] Siné launched a rival paper called Siné Hebdo which later became Siné Mensuel. Charlie Hebdo launched its Internet site, after years of reluctance[citation needed] from Val.

In 2009, Philippe Val resigned after being appointed director of France Inter, a public radio station to which he has contributed since the early 1990s. His functions were split between two cartoonists, Charb (Stéphane Charbonnier) and Riss (Laurent Sourisseau). Val gave away his shares in 2011.[citation needed]

2011–present

The paper’s controversial 3 November 2011 issue, renamed “Charia Hebdo” (a reference to Sharia law) and “guest-edited” by Muhammad, depicted Muhammad saying: “100 lashes of the whip if you don’t die laughing.”

New head office Rue Serpollet (fr) in Paris

Debris outside the paper’s offices following the November 2011 attack

In the early hours of 2 November 2011, the newspaper’s office in the 20th arrondissement[16] was fire-bombed and its websitehacked. The attacks were presumed linked to its decision to rename a special edition “Charia Hebdo”, with the Islamic Prophet Mohammed listed as the “editor-in-chief”.[17] The cover, featuring a cartoon of Mohammed by Luz (Renald Luzier), had circulated on social media for a couple of days.

Charb was quoted by AP stating that the attack might have been carried out by “stupid people who don’t know what Islam is” and that they are “idiots who betray their own religion”. Mohammed Moussaoui, head of the French Council of the Muslim Faith, said his organisation deplores “the very mocking tone of the paper toward Islam and its prophet but reaffirms with force its total opposition to all acts and all forms of violence.”[18] François Fillon, the prime minister, and Claude Guéant, the interior minister, voiced support for Charlie Hebdo,[16] as did feminist writer Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who criticised calls for self-censorship.[19]

In September 2012, the newspaper published a series of satirical cartoons of Muhammed, some of which feature nude caricatures of him.[20][21] Given that this came days after a series of attacks on U.S. embassies in the Middle East, purportedly in response to the anti-Islamic film Innocence of Muslims, the French government decided to increase security at certain French embassies, as well as to close the French embassies, consulates, cultural centers, and international schools in about 20 Muslim countries.[22] In addition, riot police surrounded the offices of the magazine to protect against possible attacks.[21][23][24]

Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius criticised the magazine’s decision, saying, “In France, there is a principle of freedom of expression, which should not be undermined. In the present context, given this absurd video that has been aired, strong emotions have been awakened in many Muslim countries. Is it really sensible or intelligent to pour oil on the fire?”[25] However, the newspaper’s editor defended publication of the cartoons, saying, “We do caricatures of everyone, and above all every week, and when we do it with the Prophet, it’s called provocation.”[26][27]

January 2015 attack

On 7 January 2015, at least two gunmen opened fire at the Paris office of Charlie Hebdo, killing at least 12, and seriously wounding 11.[4][28] Staff cartoonists Charb,Cabu, Honoré, Tignous, and Wolinski[29] along with economist Bernard Maris, and two police officers standing guard at the magazine were all killed.[30][31][32][33]

President François Hollande described it as a “terrorist attack of the most extreme barbarity”.[34]

See also

References

Notes
  1. ^ Jump up to:a b McNab 2006, p. 26: “Georges Bernier, the real name of ‘Professor Choron’, [… was] cofounder and director of the satirical magazine Hara Kiri, whose title was changed (to circumvent a ban, it seems!) to Charlie Hebdo in 1970.”
  2. Jump up^ Charb. “Non, “Charlie Hebdo” n’est pas raciste !”. Le Monde. Retrieved 4 March2014.
  3. Jump up^ «Charlie Hebdo, c’est la gauche plurielle» [archive] sur lecourrier.ch du 9 avril 2010
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b “Deadly attack on office of French magazine Charlie Hebdo”. BBC News.
  5. Jump up^ Bremner, Charles (7 January 2015). “Islamists kill 12 in attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo”. The Times.
  6. ^ Jump up to:a b Lemonnier 2008, p. 50.
  7. Jump up^ Cavanna et “les cons”, Le Monde, 14 February 2014
  8. Jump up^ L’opinion du patron, Les Mots Sont Importants, 4 March 2006.
  9. Jump up^ “Caricatures : Charlie Hebdo relaxé : CFCM Tv – Culte Musulman et Islam de France – HAJJ 2012 – Halal”. Cfcm.tv. 22 March 2007. Retrieved 21 December2011.
  10. Jump up^ “Writers’ statement on cartoons (March 1, 2006)”. BBC News. 1 March 2006. Retrieved 21 December 2011.
  11. Jump up^ Heneghan, Tom, “Cartoon row goes to French court”, IOL, 2 February 2007 at 06:37pm.
  12. Jump up^ e-TF1 (15 December 2011). “Caricatures : Le soutien de Sarkozy à Charlie Hebdo fâche le CFCM – France – TF1 News”. Lci.tf1.fr. Retrieved 21 December 2011.
  13. Jump up^ “Charlie Hebdo : Sarkozy accusé de politiser le procès – L’EXPRESS”. Lexpress.fr. Retrieved 21 December 2011.
  14. Jump up^ “French cartoons editor acquitted”, BBC, 22 March 2007 14:33 GMT.
  15. Jump up^ Charlie Hebdo doit verser 90 000 euros à Siné, Libération, 17 December 2012.
  16. ^ Jump up to:a b Boxel, James (2 November 2011 ). “Firebomb attack on satirical French magazine”. Financial Times. Retrieved 19 September 2012.Check date values in: |date= (help)
  17. Jump up^ “BBC News: Attack on French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo (November 2, 2011)”. Bbc.co.uk. 2 November 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2011.
  18. Jump up^ AP via Google.
  19. Jump up^ Peter Worthington (9 November 2011). “Extremists hurt non-militant Muslims the most”. Toronto Sun. QMI.
  20. Jump up^ “Charlie Hebdo publie des caricatures de Mahomet”. BMFTV (French) Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  21. ^ Jump up to:a b Vinocur, Nicholas (19 September 2012). “Magazine’s nude Mohammad cartoons prompt France to shut embassies, schools in 20 countries”. Reuters. The National Post. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  22. Jump up^ Samuel, Henry (19 September 2012). “France to close schools and embassies fearing Mohammed cartoon reaction”. The Telegraph. Retrieved 20 September2012.
  23. Jump up^ Khazan, Olga (19 September 2012). “Charlie Hebdo cartoons spark debate over free speech and Islamophobia”. The Washington Post. Retrieved 19 September2012.
  24. Jump up^ Keller, Greg; Hinnant, Lori (19 September 2012). “Charlie Charlie Hebdo Mohammed Cartoons: France Ups Embassy Security After Prophet Cartoons”. The Huffington Post. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  25. Jump up^ Clark, Nicola (19 September 2012). “French Magazine Publishes Cartoons Mocking Muhammad”. The New York Times. Retrieved 19 September 2012.
  26. Jump up^ “French leaders sound alarm over planned Mohammad cartoons”. Reuters. 18 September 2012. Retrieved 18 September 2012.
  27. Jump up^ Stefan Simons (20 September 2012). “‘Charlie Hebdo’ Editor in Chief: ‘A Drawing Has Never Killed Anyone'”. Spiegel Online.
  28. Jump up^ Charlie Hebdo attack: What we know so far
  29. Jump up^ “Attentat contre « Charlie Hebdo » : Charb, Cabu, Wolinski et les autres, assassinés dans leur rédaction”. LeMonde.fr (in French).
  30. Jump up^ “EN DIRECT. Massacre chez “Charlie Hebdo” : 12 morts, dont Charb et Cabu”.Le Point.fr (in French).
  31. Jump up^ “Les dessinateurs Charb et Cabu seraient morts”. L’Essentiel (in French) (France: L’Essentiel). 7 January 2015. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  32. Jump up^ Conal Urquhart. “Paris Police Say 12 Dead After Shooting at Charlie Hebdo”.Time. Witnesses said that the gunmen had called out the names of individual from the magazine. French media report that Charb, the Charlie Hebdo cartoonist who was on al Qaeda most wanted list in 2013, was seriously injured.
  33. Jump up^ Victoria Ward. “Murdered Charlie Hebdo cartoonist was on al Qaeda wanted list”. The Telegraph.
  34. Jump up^ Charlie Hebdo shooting: At least 12 killed as shots fired at satirical magazine’s Paris office
Bibliography
  • Lemonnier, Bertrand (2008). “L’entrée en dérision”. Vingtième Siècle: Revue d’histoire 98: 43–55. JSTOR 20475319.
  • McNab, James P. (2006). “Bloc-notes Culturel: l’année 2005″. The French Review 80 (1): 16–29. JSTOR 25480584.

Further reading

External links

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlie_Hebdo

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James Bamford — The Shadow Factory The Ultra Secret NSA from 911 to the Eavesdropping on America — Videos

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The Shadow Factory

James Bamford

V. James Bamford (born September 15, 1946) is an American bestselling author and journalist noted for his writing about United Statesintelligence agencies, especially the National Security Agency (NSA).[1] Bamford has taught at the University of California, Berkeley, as a distinguished visiting professor and has written for The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, Harper’s, and many other publications. In 2006, he won the National Magazine Award for Reporting for his article, “The Man Who Sold The War,” published in Rolling Stone

Biography

Bamford was born on September 15, 1946 and raised in Natick, Massachusetts. During the Vietnam War, he spent three years in the United States Navy as an intelligence analyst. He was assigned to a National Security Agency unit in Hawaii — as part of his three years of active duty in the Navy during the Vietnam War. With the G.I. Bill he would earn his law degree as Juris Doctor, International Law from Suffolk University Law School in Boston, Massachusetts.[2] Then, as a reservist in law school, he blew the whistle on the NSA when he stumbled across a program that involved illegally eavesdropping on US citizens. He testified about the program in a closed hearing before the Church Committee, the congressional investigation that led to sweeping reforms of US intelligence abuses in the 1970s.[3][4]

After graduation, he decided to write his first book about the NSA: The Puzzle Palace in 1982. At several points he was threatened with prosecution under the Espionage Act, a 1917 law. Those threats had no basis and were never carried out. Rather than practice law, he entered the field of journalism, becoming an expert on the then highly secretive NSA. His book was researched through the extensive use of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).[5] As a then super-secret agency, NSA was concerned about its unveiling to the world; accordingly, the government reclassified certain documents in an effort to stop publication.[6][7] The publication of his book resulted in threats of prosecution, when the Department of Justice claimed that he was holding classified documents. His counter argument was that the documents had been given to him under review by the Carter Administration and were declassified when he got them; under an Executive Order in place at the time, documents that had been declassified could not be “reclassified”. President Ronald Reagan later issued a new Executive Order to make it possible to reclassify documents, but that could not be applied against Bamford due to Constitutional prohibition against ex post facto law.[8][9]

He next published Body of Secrets, also about the NSA, in 2001, and A Pretext for War (2004). His 2008 book, The Shadow Factory, became a New York Times best-seller and was named by The Washington Post as one of “The Best Books of 2008.” It was the third book in his NSA trilogy and focused on the NSA involvement in the 9/11 investigations and intelligence failures. The NOVA‘s The Spy Factory[10] was based on this book.

Bamford now lectures nationally in the United States and was a distinguished visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley. He also spent nearly a decade as the Washington investigative producer for ABC‘s World News Tonight. In 2006, he received the National Magazine Award for Reporting, the top prize in magazine writing.

Bamford was also a consultant for the defense of NSA whistle blower Thomas Andrews Drake.[11]

In 2014, Bamford conducted the lengthiest in person interview to date with NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden in Moscow. The interview was published in Wired magazine in August of that year with the title “The Most Wanted Man In the World”.[12]

Publication

Books

Articles

Date Publication Title
8/9/82 Newsday (Viewpoints Section) “The UN: A Gold Mine for U.S. Intelligence”
11/6/82 The Nation “How I Got the NSA Files . . . How Reagan Tried to Get Them Back”
12/82 The New York Times Book Review “On the Trail of a Mole”
9/9/83 The Boston Globe (Op-Ed Section) “Victim of the Long Electronic War”
10/83 Boston Observer “How We Know What We Know About KAL 007″
12/4/83 The Washington Post Magazine “Big Brother is Listening”
1/8/84 The Washington Post Magazine “The Last Flight of KAL 007: How the U.S. Watches The Soviets in the Far East”
1/13/85 The New York Times Magazine “America’s Supersecret Eyes in Space”
4/21/85 Los Angeles Times Book Review “Black Box: KAL 007 and the Superpowers; KAL Flight 007: The Hidden Story”
6/9/85 The Washington Post Book World “Stansfield Turner and the Secrets of the CIA”
4/6/86 The Washington Post Book World “The Spy Plane That Flew Into History”
5/86 Proceedings (U.S. Naval Institute) “Naval Review Issue, The Walker Spy Case: Navy Medicine, Maritime Terrorism”
5/24/86 The Boston Globe (Op-Ed Section) “U.S. Satellite Photos of Plant Should Have Been Released”
7/6/86 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Searching for Security, Casey Fires at the Press”
7/13/86 The New York Times Book Review “Keeping Intelligence Smart”
8/3/86 The New York Times Book Review “When Ideology Was Thicker Than Money”
9/28/86 Los Angeles Times Book Review “Shootdown, The Target is Destroyed”
10/5/86 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “CIA Gets Billing Again in Nicaragua, as Covert Action Becomes the Norm”
11/9/86 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Satellites Show a World of Secrets, to Rival Powers and Now the Press”
1/4/87 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Reagan CIA: Arrogance Instead of Oversight”
1/18/87 The New York Times Magazine “Carlucci And The N.S.C.”
2/8/87 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “An Aspirin for the CIA, But Major Surgery Needed”
2/8/87 The Washington Post Book World “Bankrolling International Murder and Extortion”
6/14/87 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Ghosts of CIA Haunt Hearings”
10/11/87 Los Angeles Times Magazine “They Also Serve Who Watch and Listen”
10/18/87 The Washington Post Book World “The Nugan Hand Affair: Banking on Espionage”
11/29/87 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Carlucci: Big Man About Intelligence”
2/21/88 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “FBI: If It’s Under Cover, It May Be Out of Control”
3/6/88 Los Angeles Times Magazine “Taking on The Mob”
5/29/88 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Fighting the Drug War, Congress Opens Door to Intelligence Misdeeds”
6/88 Proceedings (U.S. Naval Institute) “Book Review, Merchants of Treason”
6/26/88 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “A Pentagon of Impurity”
7/3/88 The Washington Post Book World “Where Secret Armies Clash By Night”
8/7/88 The New York Times Book Review “A Mole Without Portfolio”
9/9/88 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) Reagan’s Done Nothing to Stop the Spies
2/9/92 The New York Times Book Review “Of Cabals and Coups”
1/29/95 The New York Times Book Review “The View From the KGB”
3/3/96 Los Angeles Times (Op-Ed Section) “Has a 30-Year Mystery Unraveled?”
8/20/98 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) “Our Best Spies are in Space”
8/26/99 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) “Spy Stories”
11/14/99 The Washington Post (Sunday Outlook Section) “Loud and Clear: The Most Secret of Secret Agencies Operates Under Outdated Laws”
3/18/01 The New York Times Magazine “My Friend The Spy: Robert Hanssen is Accused of Deceiving the FBI. If so, He Deceived Me Too.”
4/5/01 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) “The Danger of Spy Planes”
4/12/01 USA Today (Op-Ed Section) “Rethink Spy Missions”
8/8/01 The Guardian (London) “Attack on the USS Liberty”
8/9/01 The Guardian (London) “The Cover-Up”
8/28/01 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) “Guard the Secrets, Then Catch the Spies”
9/18/01 The New York Times “Of Atomic Secrets, Loyalty and Bitter Deceit”
12/01 Nieman Reports (Harvard) “Is The Press Up to The Task of Reporting The Stories of September 11?”
1/20/02 The Washington Post Book World “The Wrong Man”
2/7/02 The New York Times “A Former CIA Cowboy and His Disillusioning Ride”
6/2/02 The Washington Post (Sunday Outlook Section) “Intelligence Failures”
7/19/02 USA Today (Op-Ed Section) “Linguist Reserve Corp Answers Terror Need”
8/27/02 The New York Times (Week in Review Section) “Washington Bends The Rules”
8/29/02 USA Today (Op-Ed Section) Bush Wrong to Use Pretext as Excuse to Invade Iraq
9/8/02 The New York Times (Week in Review Section) “War of Secrets”
9/8/02 The Washington Post Book World “Strategic Thinking”
9/14/02 The Guardian (London) “What Big Ears You Have”
9/17/02 USA Today (Op-Ed Section) “Untested Administration Hawks Clamor for War”
10/24/02 USA Today (Op-Ed Section) “Maintain CIA’s Independence”
11/24/02 The New York Times (Week in Review Section) “How To (De-)Centralize Intelligence”
12/15/02 The Washington Post Book World “Shadow Warriors”
3/23/03 Los Angeles Times Book Review “Ike as Spymaster: Secrets on High”
4/27/03 The Washington Post Book World “A Look Over My Shoulder: Richard Helms at the CIA”
7/4/03 The New York Times “The Labyrinthine Morass of Spying in the Cold War”
2/29/04 The Washington Post Book World “Sowing the Whirlwind”
5/9/04 Los Angeles Times Book Review “Secret Warriors: The Great Game”
6/13/04 The New York Times (Op-Ed Section) “This Spy For Rent”
2/20/05 The Washington Post Book World “We’re Watching Them”
3/28/05 The American Conservative “Breeding Terror: The Intelligence Community Analyzes a Counterproductive War”
12/1/05 Rolling Stone “The Man Who Sold The War”
12/25/05 The New York Times (Week in Review Section) “The Agency That Could Be Big Brother”
1/9/06 The New York Times “Where Spying Starts and Stops”
4/1/06 The Atlantic Monthly “Big Brother is Listening”
8/10/06 Rolling Stone “The Next War: Iran”
8/20/06 The New York Times Book Review “Intelligence Test”
12/12/06 The Washington Post ‘Curveball’ And A Slam Dunk
1/31/07 The New York Times Bush Is Not Above the Law
3/15/12 Wired The NSA Is Building the Country’s Biggest Spy Center (Watch What You Say)”
6/12/13 Wired The Secret War
10/2/14 First Look Media The NSA and Me

See also

References

  1. Jump up^ Scott Shane (October 10, 2008). “Decades on the Trail of a Shadowy Agency”. The New York Times. Retrieved 2011-03-08. For 30 years, on a sometimes lonely hunt, James Bamford has pursued that great white whale of American intelligence, the National Security Agency. It has been a jarring ride at times.
  2. Jump up^ “James Bamford”. Random House. Retrieved 2011-03-08. James Bamford was raised in Natick, Massachusetts, and spent three years in the Navy before attending law school in Boston on the G.I Bill. After graduation, intrigued by the machinations of the Watergate scandal, he gravitated toward journalism. However, rather than pursue a newspaper career he decided instead to write a book. …
  3. Jump up^ The Most Wanted Man In the World
  4. Jump up^ Bamford, “The NSA and Me,” The Intercept, 10/02/2014.https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/10/02/the-nsa-and-me/
  5. Jump up^ National Security Agency: “American-Cryptology-during-the-Cold-War-1945-1989-Book-IV-Cryptologic-Rebirth-1981-1989″
  6. Jump up^ “Bamford, J. The Puzzle Palace. 1982″. NameBase. Archived from the original on 2012-01-16. Retrieved 2010-08-12.
  7. Jump up^ “Report on a James Bamford Talk at Berkeley”. Lewrockwell.com. 2002-02-11. Retrieved 2010-08-12.
  8. Jump up^ James Bamford: Inside the NSA’s Largest and Most Expansive Secret Domestic Spy Center 2 of 2 on YouTube, Democracy Now, Bamford interview with Amy Goodman and Nermeen Shaikh. 2012 Mar 12 (via youtube)
  9. Jump up^ [1]|Bamford, “The NSA and Me,” The Intercept, 10/02/2014.
  10. Jump up^ PBS Spy Factory web page
  11. Jump up^ Drake pleads guilty to misdemeanor in NSA espionage case, Tricia Bishop, 6 10 2011
  12. Jump up^ The Most Wanted Man In the World

External links

.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Bamford

 

National Security Agency

The National Security Agency (NSA) is a United States intelligence agency responsible for global monitoring, collection, decoding, translation and analysis of information and data for foreign intelligence and counterintelligence purposes – a discipline known as Signals intelligence (SIGINT). NSA is also charged with protection of U.S. government communications and information systems against penetration and network warfare.[8][9] The agency is authorized to accomplish its mission through clandestine means,[10] among which are bugging electronic systems[11] and allegedly engaging in sabotage through subversive software.[12][13]

Originating as a unit to decipher coded communications in World War II, it was officially formed as the NSA by Harry S. Truman in 1952. Since then, it has become one of the largest of U.S. intelligence organizations in terms of personnel and budget,[6][14] operating as part of the Department of Defense and simultaneously reporting to the Director of National Intelligence.

Unlike the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), both of which specialize primarily in foreignhuman espionage, the NSA has no authority to conduct human-source intelligence gathering, although it is often portrayed doing so in popular culture. Instead, the NSA is entrusted with coordination and deconfliction of SIGINT components of otherwise non-SIGINT government organizations, which are prevented by law from engaging in such activities without the approval of the NSA via the Defense Secretary.[15] As part of these streamlining responsibilities, the agency has a co-located organization called the Central Security Service(CSS), which was created to facilitate cooperation between NSA and other U.S. military cryptanalysis components. Additionally, the NSA Director simultaneously serves as the Commander of the United States Cyber Command and as Chief of the Central Security Service.

NSA surveillance has been a matter of political controversy on several occasions, such as its spying on prominent anti-Vietnam warleaders or economic espionage. In 2013, the extent of the NSA’s secret surveillance programs was revealed to the public by Edward Snowden. According to the leaked documents, the NSA intercepts the communications of over a billion people worldwide and tracks the movement of hundreds of millions of people using cellphones. It has also created or maintained security vulnerabilities in most software and encryption, leaving the majority of the Internet susceptible to cyber attacks from the NSA and other parties. Internationally, in addition to the various data sharing concerns that persist, research has pointed to the NSA’s ability to surveil the domestic internet traffic of foreign countries through “boomerang routing”.[16]

History

Army predecessor

The origins of the National Security Agency can be traced back to April 28, 1917, three weeks after the U.S. Congress declared war on Germany in World War I. A code and cipherdecryption unit was established as the Cable and Telegraph Section which was also known as the Cipher Bureau and Military Intelligence Branch, Section 8 (MI-8). It was headquartered in Washington, D.C. and was part of the war effort under the executive branch without direct Congressional authorization. During the course of the war it was relocated in the army’s organizational chart several times. On July 5, 1917, Herbert O. Yardley was assigned to head the unit. At that point, the unit consisted of Yardley and two civilian clerks. It absorbed the navy’s cryptoanalysis functions in July 1918. World War I ended on November 11, 1918, and MI-8 moved to New York City on May 20, 1919, where it continued intelligence activities as the Code Compilation Company under the direction of Yardley.[17][18]

Black Chamber

Western Union allowed MI-8 to monitor telegraphic communications passing through the company’s wires until 1929.[19]

MI-8 also operated the so-called “Black Chamber“.[20] The Black Chamber was located on East 37th Street in Manhattan. Its purpose was to crack the communications codes of foreign governments. Jointly supported by the State Department and the War Department, the chamber persuadedWestern Union, the largest U.S. telegram company, to allow government officials to monitor private communications passing through the company’s wires.[21]

Other “Black Chambers” were also found in Europe. They were established by the French and British governments to read the letters of targeted individuals, employing a variety of techniques to surreptitiously open, copy, and reseal correspondence before forwarding it to unsuspecting recipients.[22]

Despite the American Black Chamber’s initial successes, it was shut down in 1929 by U.S. Secretary of State Henry L. Stimson, who defended his decision by stating: “Gentlemen do not read each other’s mail”.[19]

World War II and its aftermath

During World War II, the Signal Security Agency (SSA) was created to intercept and decipher the communications of the Axis powers.[23] When the war ended, the SSA was reorganized as the Army Security Agency (ASA), and it was placed under the leadership of the Director of Military Intelligence.[23]

On May 20, 1949, all cryptologic activities were centralized under a national organization called the Armed Forces Security Agency (AFSA).[23] This organization was originally established within the U.S. Department of Defense under the command of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.[24] The AFSA was tasked to direct Department of Defense communications and electronic intelligence activities, except those of U.S. military intelligence units.[24] However, the AFSA was unable to centralize communications intelligence and failed to coordinate with civilian agencies that shared its interests such as the Department of State, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).[24] In December 1951, President Harry S. Trumanordered a panel to investigate how AFSA had failed to achieve its goals. The results of the investigation led to improvements and its redesignation as the National Security Agency.[25]

The agency was formally established by Truman in a memorandum of October 24, 1952, that revised National Security Council Intelligence Directive (NSCID) 9.[26] Since President Truman’s memo was a classified document,[26] the existence of the NSA was not known to the public at that time. Due to its ultra-secrecy the U.S. intelligence community referred to the NSA as “No Such Agency”.[27]

Vietnam War

Main article: Project MINARET

In the 1960s, the NSA played a key role in expanding America’s commitment to the Vietnam War by providing evidence of a North Vietnamese attack on the American destroyerUSS Maddox during the Gulf of Tonkin incident.[28]

A secret operation code-named “MINARET” was set up by the NSA to monitor the phone communications of Senators Frank Church and Howard Baker, as well as major civil rights leaders including Dr. Martin Luther King, and prominent U.S. journalists and athletes who criticized the Vietnam War.[29] However the project turned out to be controversial, and an internal review by the NSA concluded that its Minaret program was “disreputable if not outright illegal.”[29]

Church Committee hearings

Further information: Watergate scandal and Church Committee

In the aftermath of the Watergate Scandal, a congressional hearing in 1975 led by Sen. Frank Church[30] revealed that the NSA, in collaboration with Britain’s SIGINT intelligence agencyGovernment Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), had routinely intercepted the international communications of prominent anti-Vietnam war leaders such as Jane Fonda and Dr. Benjamin Spock.[31] Following the resignation of President Richard Nixon, there were several investigations of suspected misuse of FBI, CIA and NSA facilities.[32] Senator Frank Churchuncovered previously unknown activity,[32] such as a CIA plot (ordered by the administration of President John F. Kennedy) to assassinate Fidel Castro.[33] The investigation also uncovered NSA’s wiretaps on targeted American citizens.[34]

After the Church Committee hearings, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 was passed into law. This was designed to limit the practice of mass surveillance in the United States.[32]

From 1980s to 1990s

In 1986, the NSA intercepted the communications of the Libyan government during the immediate aftermath of the Berlin discotheque bombing. The White House asserted that the NSA interception had provided “irrefutable” evidence that Libya was behind the bombing, which U.S. President Ronald Reagan cited as a justification for the 1986 United States bombing of Libya.[35][36]

In 1999, a multi-year investigation by the European Parliament highlighted the NSA’s role in economic espionage in a report entitled ‘Development of Surveillance Technology and Risk of Abuse of Economic Information’.[37] That year, the NSA founded the NSA Hall of Honor, a memorial at the National Cryptologic Museum in Fort Meade, Maryland.[38] The memorial is a, “tribute to the pioneers and heroes who have made significant and long-lasting contributions to American cryptology”.[38] NSA employees must be retired for more than fifteen years to qualify for the memorial.[38]

War on Terror

After Osama bin Laden moved to Afghanistan in the 1980s, the NSA recorded all of his phone calls via satellite, logging over 2,000 minutes of conversation[39]

In the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, the NSA created new IT systems to deal with the flood of information from new technologies like the internet and cellphones. ThinThread contained advanced data mining capabilities. It also had a ‘privacy mechanism'; surveillance was stored encrypted; decryption required a warrant. The research done under this program may have contributed to the technology used in later systems. ThinThread was cancelled when Michael Hayden chose Trailblazer, which did not include ThinThread’s privacy system.[40]

Trailblazer Project ramped up in 2002. SAIC, Boeing, CSC, IBM, and Litton worked on it. Some NSA whistleblowers complained internally about major problems surrounding Trailblazer. This led to investigations by Congress and the NSA and DoD Inspectors General. The project was cancelled in early 2004; it was late, over budget, and didn’t do what it was supposed to do. The Baltimore Sun ran articles about this in 2006–07. The government then raided the whistleblowers’ houses. One of them, Thomas Drake, was charged with violating 18 U.S.C. § 793(e) in 2010 in an unusual use of espionage law. He and his defenders claim that he was actually being persecuted for challenging the Trailblazer Project. In 2011, all 10 original charges against Drake were dropped.[41][42]

Turbulence started in 2005. It was developed in small, inexpensive ‘test’ pieces rather than one grand plan like Trailblazer. It also included offensive cyber-warfare capabilities, like injecting malware into remote computers. Congress criticized Turbulence in 2007 for having similar bureaucratic problems as Trailblazer.[42] It was to be a realization of information processing at higher speeds in cyberspace.[43]

Global surveillance disclosures

The massive extent of the NSA’s spying, both foreign and domestic, was revealed to the public in a series of detailed disclosures of internal NSA documents beginning in June 2013. Most of the disclosures were leaked by former NSA contractor, Edward Snowden.Main article: Global surveillance disclosures (2013-present)

Scope of surveillance

It was revealed that the NSA intercepts telephone and internet communications of over a billion people worldwide, seeking information on terrorism as well as foreign politics, economics[44] and “commercial secrets”.[45] In a declassified document it was revealed that 17,835 phone lines were on an improperly permitted “alert list” from 2006 to 2009 in breach of compliance, which tagged these phone lines for daily monitoring.[46][47][48] Eleven percent of these monitored phone lines met the agency’s legal standard for “reasonably articulable suspicion”(RAS).[46][49]

A dedicated unit of the NSA locates targets for the CIA for extrajudicial assassination in the Middle East.[50] The NSA has also spied extensively on the European Union, the United Nations and numerous governments including allies and trading partners in Europe, South America and Asia.[51][52]

The NSA tracks the locations of hundreds of millions of cellphones per day, allowing them to map people’s movements and relationships in detail.[53] It reportedly has access to all communications made via Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Yahoo, YouTube, AOL, Skype, Apple and Paltalk,[54] and collects hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal email and instant messaging accounts each year.[55] It has also managed to weaken much of the encryption used on the Internet (by collaborating with, coercing or otherwise infiltrating numerous technology companies), so that the majority of Internet privacy is now vulnerable to the NSA and other attackers.[56][57]

Domestically, the NSA collects and stores metadata records of phone calls,[58] including over 120 million US Verizon subscribers[59] as well as internet communications,[54] relying on a secret interpretation of the Patriot Act whereby the entirety of US communications may be considered “relevant” to a terrorism investigation if it is expected that even a tiny minority may relate to terrorism.[60] The NSA supplies foreign intercepts to the DEA, IRS and other law enforcement agencies, who use these to initiate criminal investigations. Federal agents are then instructed to “recreate” the investigative trail via parallel construction.[61]

The NSA also spies on influential Muslims to obtain information that could be used to discredit them, such as their use of pornography. The targets, both domestic and abroad, are not suspected of any crime but hold religious or political views deemed “radical” by the NSA.[62]

According to a report in The Washington Post in July 2014, relying on information furnished by Snowden, 90% of those placed under surveillance in the U.S. are ordinary Americans, and are not the intended targets. The newspaper said it had examined documents including emails, message texts, and online accounts, that support the claim.[63]

Legal accountability

Despite President Obama’s claims that these programs have congressional oversight, members of Congress were unaware of the existence of these NSA programs or the secret interpretation of the Patriot Act, and have consistently been denied access to basic information about them.[64] Obama has also claimed that there are legal checks in place to prevent inappropriate access of data and that there have been no examples of abuse;[65] however, the secret FISC court charged with regulating the NSA’s activities is, according to its chief judge, incapable of investigating or verifying how often the NSA breaks even its own secret rules.[66] It has since been reported that the NSA violated its own rules on data access thousands of times a year, many of these violations involving large-scale data interceptions;[67] and that NSA officers have even used data intercepts to spy on love interests.[68] The NSA has “generally disregarded the special rules for disseminating United States person information” by illegally sharing its intercepts with other law enforcement agencies.[69] A March 2009 opinion of the FISC court, released by court order, states that protocols restricting data queries had been “so frequently and systemically violated that it can be fairly said that this critical element of the overall … regime has never functioned effectively.”[70][71] In 2011 the same court noted that the “volume and nature” of the NSA’s bulk foreign internet intercepts was “fundamentally different from what the court had been led to believe”.[69] Email contact lists (including those of US citizens) are collected at numerous foreign locations to work around the illegality of doing so on US soil.[55]

Legal opinions on the NSA’s bulk collection program have differed. In mid-December, 2013, U.S. District Court Judge Richard Leon ruled that the “almost-Orwellian” program likely violates the Constitution, and wrote, “I cannot imagine a more ‘indiscriminate’ and ‘arbitrary invasion’ than this systematic and high-tech collection and retention of personal data on virtually every single citizen for purposes of querying and analyzing it without prior judicial approval. Surely, such a program infringes on ‘that degree of privacy’ that the Founders enshrined in the Fourth Amendment. Indeed, I have little doubt that the author of our Constitution, James Madison, who cautioned us to beware ‘the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power,’ would be aghast.”[72]

Later that month, U.S. District Judge William Pauley ruled that the NSA’s collection of telephone records is legal and valuable in the fight against terrorism. In his opinion, he wrote, “a bulk telephony metadata collection program [is] a wide net that could find and isolate gossamer contacts among suspected terrorists in an ocean of seemingly disconnected data” and noted that a similar collection of data prior to 9/11 might have prevented the attack.[73]

An October 2014 United Nations report condemned mass surveillance by the United States and other countries as violating multiple international treaties and conventions that guarantee core privacy rights.[74]

Official responses

On March 20, 2013 the Director of National Intelligence, Lieutenant General James Clapper, testified before Congress that the NSA does not wittingly collect any kind of data on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans, but he retracted this in June after details of the PRISM program were published, and stated instead that meta-data of phone and internet traffic are collected, but no actual message contents.[75] This was corroborated by the NSA Director, General Keith Alexander, before it was revealed that the XKeyscore program collects the contents of millions of emails from US citizens without warrant, as well as “nearly everything a user does on the Internet”. Alexander later admitted that “content” is collected, but stated that it is simply stored and never analyzed or searched unless there is “a nexus to al-Qaida or other terrorist groups”.[65]

Regarding the necessity of these NSA programs, Alexander stated on June 27 that the NSA’s bulk phone and Internet intercepts had been instrumental in preventing 54 terrorist “events”, including 13 in the US, and in all but one of these cases had provided the initial tip to “unravel the threat stream”.[76] On July 31 NSA Deputy Director John Inglis conceded to the Senate that these intercepts had not been vital in stopping any terrorist attacks, but were “close” to vital in identifying and convicting four San Diego men for sending US$8,930 to Al-Shabaab, a militia that conducts terrorism in Somalia.[77][78][79]

The U.S. government has aggressively sought to dismiss and challenge Fourth Amendment cases raised against it, and has granted retroactive immunity to ISPs and telecoms participating in domestic surveillance.[80][81] The U.S. military has acknowledged blocking access to parts of The Guardian website for thousands of defense personnel across the country,[82][83] and blocking the entire Guardian website for personnel stationed throughout Afghanistan, the Middle East, and South Asia.[84]

Organizational structure

Keith B. Alexander, the former director of the National Security Agency

The NSA is led by the Director of the National Security Agency (DIRNSA), who also serves as Chief of the Central Security Service (CHCSS) and Commander of the United States Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM) and is the highest-ranking military official of these organizations. He is assisted by a Deputy Director, who is the highest-ranking civilian within the NSA/CSS.

NSA also has an Inspector General, head of the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), a General Counsel, head of the Office of the General Counsel (OGC) and a Director of Compliance, who is head of the Office of the Director of Compliance (ODOC).[85]

Unlike other intelligence organizations such as CIA or DIA, NSA has always been particularly reticent concerning its internal organizational structure.

As of the mid-1990s, the National Security Agency was organized into five Directorates:

  • The Operations Directorate, which was responsible for SIGINT collection and processing.
  • The Technology and Systems Directorate, which develops new technologies for SIGINT collection and processing.
  • The Information Systems Security Directorate, which was responsible for NSA’s communications and information security missions.
  • The Plans, Policy and Programs Directorate, which provided staff support and general direction for the Agency.
  • The Support Services Directorate, which provided logistical and administrative support activities.[86]

Each of these directorates consisted of several groups or elements, designated by a letter. There were for example the A Group, which was responsible for all SIGINT operations against the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, and G Group, which was responsible for SIGINT related to all non-communist countries. These groups were divided in units designated by an additional number, like unit A5 for breaking Soviet codes, and G6, being the office for the Middle East, North Africa, Cuba, Central and South America.[87][88]

Structure

As of 2013 NSA has about a dozen directorates, which are designated by a letter, although not all of them are publicly known. The directorates are divided in divisions and units starting with the letter of the parent directorate, followed by a number for the division, the sub-unit or a sub-sub-unit. New information about NSA units was revealed in top secret documents leaked byEdward Snowden since June 2013.

The main elements of the organizational structure of the NSA are:[89]

  • F – Directorate only known from unit F6, the Special Collection Service (SCS), which is a joint program created by CIA and NSA in 1978 to facilitate clandestine activities such as buggingcomputers throughout the world, using the expertise of both agencies.[90]
  • G – Directorate only known from unit G112, the office that manages the Senior Span platform, attached to the U2 spy planes.[91]
  • I – Information Assurance Directorate (IAD), which ensures availability, integrity, authentication, confidentiality, and non-repudiation of national security and telecommunications and information systems (national security systems).
  • J – Directorate only known from unit J2, the Cryptologic Intelligence Unit
  • L – Installation and Logistics
  • M – Human Resources
  • Q – Security and Counterintelligence
  • R – Research Directorate, which conducts research on signals intelligence and on information assurance for the U.S. Government.[92]
  • S – Signals Intelligence Directorate (SID), which is responsible for the collection, analysis, production and dissemination of signals intelligence. This directorate is led by a director and a deputy director. The SID consists of the following divisions:
    • S1 – Customer Relations
    • S2 – Analysis and Production Centers, with the following so-called Product Lines:
      • S2A: South Asia, S2B: China and Korea, S2C: International Security, S2E: Middle East/Asia, S2F: International Crime, S2G: Counter-proliferation, S2H: Russia, S2I: Counter-terrorism, S2J: Weapons and Space, S2T: Current Threats
    • S3 – Data Acquisition, with these divisions for the main collection programs:
      • S31 – Cryptanalysis and Exploitation Services (CES)
      • S32 – Tailored Access Operations (TAO), which hacks into foreign computers to conduct cyber-espionage and reportedly is “the largest and arguably the most important component of the NSA’s huge Signal Intelligence (SIGINT) Directorate, consisting of over 1,000 military and civilian computer hackers, intelligence analysts, targeting specialists, computer hardware and software designers, and electrical engineers.”[93]
      • S33 – Global Access Operations (GAO), which is responsible for intercepts from satellites and other international SIGINT platforms.[94] A tool which details and maps the information collected by this unit is code-named Boundless Informant.
      • S34 – Collections Strategies and Requirements Center
      • S35 – Special Source Operations (SSO), which is responsible for domestic and compartmented collection programs, like for example the PRISM program.[94] Special Source Operations is also mentioned in connection to the FAIRVIEW collection program.[95]
  • T – Technical Directorate (TD)
  • Directorate for Education and Training
  • Directorate for Corporate Leadership
  • Foreign Affairs Directorate, which acts as liaison with foreign intelligence services, counter-intelligence centers and the UKUSA-partners.
  • Acquisitions and Procurement Directorate

In the year 2000, a leadership team was formed, consisting of the Director, the Deputy Director and the Directors of the Signals Intelligence (SID), the Information Assurance (IAD) and the Technical Directorate (TD). The chiefs of other main NSA divisions became associate directors of the senior leadership team.[96]

After president George W. Bush initiated the President’s Surveillance Program (PSP) in 2001, the NSA created a 24-hour Metadata Analysis Center (MAC), followed in 2004 by the Advanced Analysis Division (AAD), with the mission of analyzing content, internet metadata and telephone metadata. Both units were part of the Signals Intelligence Directorate.[97]

There’s also an office of Information Sharing Services (ISS), led by a chief and a deputy chief.[98]

Watch centers

The NSA maintains at least two watch centers:

  • National Security Operations Center (NSOC), which is the NSA’s current operations center and focal point for time-sensitive SIGINT reporting for the United States SIGINT System (USSS). This center was established in 1968 as the National SIGINT Watch Center (NSWC) and renamed into National SIGINT Operations Center (NSOC) in 1973. This “nerve center of the NSA” got its current name in 1996.[99]
  • NSA/CSS Threat Operations Center (NTOC), which is the primary NSA/CSS partner for Department of Homeland Security response to cyber incidents. The NTOC establishes real-time network awareness and threat characterization capabilities to forecast, alert, and attribute malicious activity and enable the coordination of Computer Network Operations. The NTOC was established in 2004 as a joint Information Assurance and Signals Intelligence project.[100]

Employees

The number of NSA employees is officially classified[4] but there are several sources providing estimates. In 1961, NSA had 59,000 military and civilian employees, which grew to 93,067 in 1969, of which 19,300 worked at the headquarters at Fort Meade. In the early 1980s NSA had roughly 50,000 military and civilian personnel. By 1989 this number had grown again to 75,000, of which 25,000 worked at the NSA headquarters. Between 1990 and 1995 the NSA’s budget and workforce were cut by one third, which led to a substantial loss of experience.[101]

In 2012, the NSA said more than 30,000 employees worked at Ft. Meade and other facilities.[2] In 2012, John C. Inglis, the deputy director, said that the total number of NSA employees is “somewhere between 37,000 and one billion” as a joke,[4] and stated that the agency is “probably the biggest employer of introverts.”[4] In 2013 Der Spiegel stated that the NSA had 40,000 employees.[5] More widely, it has been described as the world’s largest single employer of mathematicians.[102] Some NSA employees form part of the workforce of the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO), the agency that provides the NSA with satellite signals intelligence.

As of 2013 about 1,000 system administrators work for the NSA.[103]

Security issues

The NSA received criticism early on in 1960 after two agents had defected to the Soviet Union. Investigations by the House Un-American Activities Committee and a special subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee revealed severe cases of ignorance in personnel security regulations, prompting the former personnel director and the director of security to step down and leading to the adoption of stricter security practices.[104] Nonetheless, security breaches reoccurred only a year later when in an issue of Izvestia of July 23, 1963, a former NSA employee published several cryptologic secrets.

The very same day, an NSA clerk-messenger committed suicide as ongoing investigations disclosed that he had sold secret information to the Soviets on a regular basis. The reluctance of Congressional houses to look into these affairs had prompted a journalist to write “If a similar series of tragic blunders occurred in any ordinary agency of Government an aroused public would insist that those responsible be officially censured, demoted, or fired.” David Kahn criticized the NSA’s tactics of concealing its doings as smug and the Congress’ blind faith in the agency’s right-doing as shortsighted, and pointed out the necessity of surveillance by the Congress to prevent abuse of power.[104]

Edward Snowden‘s leaking of PRISM in 2013 caused the NSA to institute a “two-man rule” where two system administrators are required to be present when one accesses certain sensitive information.[103] Snowden claims he suggested such a rule in 2009.[105]

Polygraphing

Defense Security Service(DSS) polygraph brochure given to NSA applicants

The NSA conducts polygraph tests of employees. For new employees, the tests are meant to discover enemy spies who are applying to the NSA and to uncover any information that could make an applicant pliant to coercion.[106] As part of the latter, historically EPQs or “embarrassing personal questions” about sexual behavior had been included in the NSA polygraph.[106] The NSA also conducts five-year periodic reinvestigation polygraphs of employees, focusing on counterintelligence programs. In addition the NSA conducts aperiodic polygraph investigations in order to find spies and leakers; those who refuse to take them may receive “termination of employment”, according to a 1982 memorandum from the director of the NSA.[107]

File:NSApolygraphvideo.webm

NSA-produced video on the polygraph process

There are also “special access examination” polygraphs for employees who wish to work in highly sensitive areas, and those polygraphs cover counterintelligence questions and some questions about behavior.[107] NSA’s brochure states that the average test length is between two and four hours.[108] A 1983 report of the Office of Technology Assessment stated that “It appears that the NSA [National Security Agency] (and possibly CIA) use the polygraph not to determine deception or truthfulness per se, but as a technique of interrogation to encourage admissions.”[109] Sometimes applicants in the polygraph process confess to committing felonies such as murder, rape, and selling of illegal drugs. Between 1974 and 1979, of the 20,511 job applicants who took polygraph tests, 695 (3.4%) confessed to previous felony crimes; almost all of those crimes had been undetected.[106]

In 2010 the NSA produced a video explaining its polygraph process.[110] The video, ten minutes long, is titled “The Truth About the Polygraph” and was posted to the website of the Defense Security Service. Jeff Stein of The Washington Post said that the video portrays “various applicants, or actors playing them — it’s not clear — describing everything bad they had heard about the test, the implication being that none of it is true.”[111] AntiPolygraph.org argues that the NSA-produced video omits some information about the polygraph process; it produced a video responding to the NSA video.[110] George Maschke, the founder of the website, accused the NSA polygraph video of being “Orwellian“.[111]

After Edward Snowden revealed his identity in 2013, the NSA began requiring polygraphing of employees once per quarter.[112]

Arbitrary firing

The number of exemptions from legal requirements has been criticized. When in 1964 the Congress was hearing a bill giving the director of the NSA the power to fire at will any employee, the Washington Post wrote: “This is the very definition of arbitrariness. It means that an employee could be discharged and disgraced on the basis of anonymous allegations without the slightest opportunity to defend himself.” Yet, the bill was accepted by an overwhelming majority.[104]

Insignia and memorials

The heraldic insignia of NSA consists of an eagle inside a circle, grasping a key in its talons.[113] The eagle represents the agency’s national mission.[113] Its breast features a shield with bands of red and white, taken from the Great Seal of the United States and representing Congress.[113] The key is taken from the emblem of Saint Peter and represents security.[113]

When the NSA was created, the agency had no emblem and used that of the Department of Defense.[114] The agency adopted its first of two emblems in 1963.[114] The current NSA insignia has been in use since 1965, when then-Director, LTG Marshall S. Carter (USA) ordered the creation of a device to represent the agency.[115]

The NSA’s flag consists of the agency’s seal on a light blue background.

Crews associated with NSA missions have been involved in a number of dangerous and deadly situations.[116] The USS Liberty incident in 1967 andUSS Pueblo incident in 1968 are examples of the losses endured during the Cold War.[116]

The National Security Agency/Central Security Service Cryptologic Memorial honors and remembers the fallen personnel, both military and civilian, of these intelligence missions.[117] It is made of black granite, and has 171 names (as of 2013) carved into it.[117] It is located at NSA headquarters. A tradition of declassifying the stories of the fallen was begun in 2001.[117]

Facilities

Headquarters

National Security Agency headquarters in Fort Meade, 2013

Headquarters for the National Security Agency is located at 39°6′32″N 76°46′17″W in Fort George G. Meade, Maryland, although it is separate from other compounds and agencies that are based within this same military installation. Ft. Meade is about 20 mi (32 km) southwest of Baltimore,[118] and 25 mi (40 km) northeast of Washington, DC.[119] The NSA has its own exit off Maryland Route 295 South labeled “NSA Employees Only”.[120][121] The exit may only be used by people with the proper clearances, and security vehicles parked along the road guard the entrance.[122]

NSA is the largest employer in the U.S. state of Maryland, and two-thirds of its personnel work at Ft. Meade.[123] Built on 350 acres (140 ha; 0.55 sq mi)[124] of Ft. Meade’s 5,000 acres (2,000 ha; 7.8 sq mi),[125] the site has 1,300 buildings and an estimated 18,000 parking spaces.[119][126]

NSA headquarters building in Fort Meade (left), NSOC (right)

The main NSA headquarters and operations building is what James Bamford, author of Body of Secrets, describes as “a modern boxy structure” that appears similar to “any stylish office building.”[127] The building is covered with one-way dark glass, which is lined with copper shielding in order to prevent espionage by trapping in signals and sounds.[127] It contains 3,000,000 square feet (280,000 m2), or more than 68 acres (28 ha), of floor space; Bamford said that the U.S. Capitol “could easily fit inside it four times over.”[127]

The facility has over 100 watchposts,[128] one of them being the visitor control center, a two-story area that serves as the entrance.[127] At the entrance, a white pentagonal structure,[129] visitor badges are issued to visitors and security clearances of employees are checked.[130] The visitor center includes a painting of the NSA seal.[129]

The OPS2A building, the tallest building in the NSA complex and the location of much of the agency’s operations directorate, is accessible from the visitor center. Bamford described it as a “dark glass Rubik’s Cube“.[131] The facility’s “red corridor” houses non-security operations such as concessions and the drug store. The name refers to the “red badge” which is worn by someone without a security clearance. The NSA headquarters includes a cafeteria, a credit union, ticket counters for airlines and entertainment, a barbershop, and a bank.[129] NSA headquarters has its own post office, fire department, and police force.[132][133][134]

The employees at the NSA headquarters reside in various places in the Baltimore-Washington area, including Annapolis, Baltimore, and Columbia in Maryland and the District of Columbia, including the Georgetown community.[135]

Power consumption

Due to massive amounts of data processing, NSA is the largest electricity consumer in Maryland.[123]

Following a major power outage in 2000, in 2003 and in follow-ups through 2007, The Baltimore Sun reported that the NSA was at risk of electrical overload because of insufficient internal electrical infrastructure at Fort Meade to support the amount of equipment being installed. This problem was apparently recognized in the 1990s but not made a priority, and “now the agency’s ability to keep its operations going is threatened.”[136]

Baltimore Gas & Electric (BGE, now Constellation Energy) provided NSA with 65 to 75 megawatts at Ft. Meade in 2007, and expected that an increase of 10 to 15 megawatts would be needed later that year.[137] In 2011, NSA at Ft. Meade was Maryland’s largest consumer of power.[123] In 2007, as BGE’s largest customer, NSA bought as much electricity as Annapolis, the capital city of Maryland.[136]

One estimate put the potential for power consumption by the new Utah Data Center at $40 million per year.[138]

History of headquarters

Headquarters at Fort Meade circa 1950s

When the agency was established, its headquarters and cryptographic center were in the Naval Security Station in Washington, D.C.. The COMINT functions were located in Arlington Hall in Northern Virginia, which served as the headquarters of the U.S. Army‘s cryptographic operations.[139]Because the Soviet Union had detonated a nuclear bomb and because the facilities were crowded, the federal government wanted to move several agencies, including the AFSA/NSA. A planning committee considered Fort Knox, but Fort Meade, Maryland, was ultimately chosen as NSA headquarters because it was far enough away from Washington, D.C. in case of a nuclear strike and was close enough so its employees would not have to move their families.[140]

Construction of additional buildings began after the agency occupied buildings at Ft. Meade in the late 1950s, which they soon outgrew.[140] In 1963 the new headquarters building, nine stories tall, opened. NSA workers referred to the building as the “Headquarters Building” and since the NSA management occupied the top floor, workers used “Ninth Floor” to refer to their leaders.[141] COMSEC remained in Washington, D.C., until its new building was completed in 1968.[140] In September 1986, the Operations 2A and 2B buildings, both copper-shielded to prevent eavesdropping, opened with a dedication by President Ronald Reagan.[142] The four NSA buildings became known as the “Big Four.”[142] The NSA director moved to 2B when it opened.[142]

Computing

In 1995, The Baltimore Sun reported that the NSA is the owner of the single largest group of supercomputers.[143]

NSA held a groundbreaking ceremony at Ft. Meade in May 2013 for its High Performance Computing Center 2, expected to open in 2016.[144] Called Site M, the center has a 150 megawatt power substation, 14 administrative buildings and 10 parking garages.[132] It cost $3.2 billion and covers 227 acres (92 ha; 0.355 sq mi).[132] The center is 1,800,000 square feet (17 ha; 0.065 sq mi)[132] and initially uses 60 megawatts of electricity.[145]

Increments II and III are expected to be completed by 2030, and would quadruple the space, covering 5,800,000 square feet (54 ha; 0.21 sq mi) with 60 buildings and 40 parking garages.[132] Defense contractors are also establishing or expanding cybersecurity facilities near the NSA and around the Washington metropolitan area.[132]

Other U.S. facilities

Buckley Air Force Base in Colorado

Utah Data Center

As of 2012, NSA collected intelligence from four geostationary satellites.[138] Satellite receivers were at Roaring Creek Station in Catawissa, Pennsylvania and Salt Creek Station in Arbuckle, California.[138] It operated ten to twenty taps on U.S. telecom switches. NSA had installations in several U.S. states and from them observed intercepts from Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, Latin America, and Asia.[138]

NSA had facilities at Friendship Annex (FANX) in Linthicum, Maryland, which is a 20 to 25-minute drive from Ft. Meade;[146] the Aerospace Data Facility at Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora outside Denver, Colorado; NSA Texas in the Texas Cryptology Center at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas; NSA Georgia at Fort Gordon in Augusta, Georgia; NSA Hawaii in Honolulu; the Multiprogram Research Facility in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and elsewhere.[135][138]

On January 6, 2011 a groundbreaking ceremony was held to begin construction on NSA’s first Comprehensive National Cyber-security Initiative (CNCI) Data Center, known as the “Utah Data Center” for short. The $1.5B data center is being built at Camp Williams, Utah, located 25 miles (40 km) south of Salt Lake City, and will help support the agency’s National Cyber-security Initiative.[147] It is expected to be operational by September 2013.[138]

In 2009, to protect its assets and to access more electricity, NSA sought to decentralize and expand its existing facilities in Ft. Meade and Menwith Hill,[148] the latter expansion expected to be completed by 2015.[149]

The Yakima Herald-Republic cited Bamford, saying that many of NSA’s bases for its Echelon program were a legacy system, using outdated, 1990s technology.[150] In 2004, NSA closed its operations at Bad Aibling Station (Field Station 81) in Bad Aibling, Germany.[151] In 2012, NSA began to move some of its operations at Yakima Research Station, Yakima Training Center, in Washington state to Colorado, planning to leave Yakima closed.[152]As of 2013, NSA also intended to close operations at Sugar Grove, West Virginia.[150]

RAF Menwith Hill has the largest NSA presence in the United Kingdom.[149]

International stations

Following the signing in 1946–1956[153] of the UKUSA Agreement between the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, who then cooperated on signals intelligence and Echelon,[154] NSA stations were built at GCHQ Bude in Morwenstow, United Kingdom; Geraldton,Pine Gap and Shoal Bay, Australia; Leitrim and Ottawa, Canada; Misawa, Japan; and Waihopai and Tangimoana,[155] New Zealand.[156]

NSA operates RAF Menwith Hill in North Yorkshire, United Kingdom, which was, according to BBC News in 2007, the largest electronic monitoring station in the world.[157] Planned in 1954, and opened in 1960, the base covered 562 acres (227 ha; 0.878 sq mi) in 1999.[158]

The agency’s European Cryptologic Center (ECC), with 240 employees in 2011, is headquartered at a US military compound in Griesheim, nearFrankfurt in Germany. A 2011 NSA report indicates that the ECC is responsible for the “largest analysis and productivity in Europe” and focusses on various priorities, including Africa, Europe, the Middle East and counterterrorism operations.[159]

In 2013, a new Consolidated Intelligence Center, also to be used by NSA, is being built at the headquarters of the United States Army Europe inWiesbaden, Germany.[160] NSA’s partnership with Bundesnachrichtendienst (BND), the German foreign intelligence service, was confirmed by BND president Gerhard Schindler.[160]

Operations

Mission

NSA’s eavesdropping mission includes radio broadcasting, both from various organizations and individuals, the Internet, telephone calls, and other intercepted forms of communication. Its secure communications mission includes military, diplomatic, and all other sensitive, confidential or secret government communications.[161]

According to the Washington Post, “[e]very day, collection systems at the National Security Agency intercept and store 1.7 billion e-mails, phone calls and other types of communications. The NSA sorts a fraction of those into 70 separate databases.”[162]

Because of its listening task, NSA/CSS has been heavily involved in cryptanalytic research, continuing the work of predecessor agencies which had broken many World War II codes andciphers (see, for instance, Purple, Venona project, and JN-25).

In 2004, NSA Central Security Service and the National Cyber Security Division of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agreed to expand NSA Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education Program.[163]

As part of the National Security Presidential Directive 54/Homeland Security Presidential Directive 23 (NSPD 54), signed on January 8, 2008 by President Bush, the NSA became the lead agency to monitor and protect all of the federal government’s computer networks from cyber-terrorism.[9]

Echelon

Main article: ECHELON

Echelon was created in the incubator of the Cold War.[164] Today it is a legacy system, and several NSA stations are closing.[150]

NSA/CSS, in combination with the equivalent agencies in the United Kingdom (Government Communications Headquarters), Canada (Communications Security Establishment), Australia (Defence Signals Directorate), and New Zealand (Government Communications Security Bureau), otherwise known as the UKUSA group,[165] was reported to be in command of the operation of the so-called Echelon system. Its capabilities were suspected to include the ability to monitor a large proportion of the world’s transmitted civilian telephone, fax and data traffic.[166]

During the early 1970s, the first of what became more than eight large satellite communications dishes were installed at Menwith Hill.[167] Investigative journalist Duncan Campbell reported in 1988 on the Echelon surveillance program, an extension of the UKUSA Agreement on global signals intelligence SIGINT, and detailed how the eavesdropping operations worked.[168] In November 3, 1999 the BBC reported that they had confirmation from the Australian Government of the existence of a powerful “global spying network” code-named Echelon, that could “eavesdrop on every single phone call, fax or e-mail, anywhere on the planet” with Britain and the United States as the chief protagonists. They confirmed that Menwith Hill was “linked directly to the headquarters of the US National Security Agency (NSA) at Fort Meade in Maryland”.[169]

NSA’s United States Signals Intelligence Directive 18 (USSID 18) strictly prohibited the interception or collection of information about “… U.S. persons, entities, corporations or organizations….” without explicit written legal permission from the United States Attorney General when the subject is located abroad, or the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court when within U.S. borders. Alleged Echelon-related activities, including its use for motives other than national security, including political and industrial espionage, received criticism from countries outside the UKUSA alliance.[170][171]

Data mining

Protesters against NSA data mining in Berlin wearing Bradley Manning andEdward Snowden masks.

The Real Time Regional Gateway was a data collection program introduced in 2005 in Iraq by NSA during the Iraq War. It consisted of gathering all Iraqi electronic communication, storing it, then searching and otherwise analyzing it. It was effective in providing information about Iraqi insurgents who had eluded less comprehensive techniques.[172] Glenn Greenwald of The Guardian believes that the “collect it all” strategy introduced by NSA director Alexander shows that “the NSA’s goal is to collect, monitor and store every telephone and internet communication” worldwide.[173] The NSA is also involved in planning to blackmail people with “SEXINT“, intelligence gained about a potential target’s sexual activity and preferences. Those targeted had not committed any apparent crime nor were charged with one.[174]

The NSA began the PRISM electronic surveillance and data mining program in 2007.[175][176] PRISM gathers communications data on foreign targets from nine major U.S. internet-based communication service providers: Microsoft,[177] Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube andApple. Data gathered include email, video and voice chat, videos, photos, VoIP chats such as Skype, and file transfers. Another program, Boundless Informant, employs big data databases, cloud computing technology, and Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) to analyze data collected worldwide by the NSA, including that gathered by way of the PRISM program.[178]

Encryption

In 2013, reporters uncovered a secret memo that claims the NSA created and pushed for the adoption of encryption standards that contained built-in vulnerabilities in 2006 to the United States National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the International Organization for Standardization (aka ISO).[179] This memo appears to give credence to previous speculation by cryptographers at Microsoft Research.[180] Edward Snowden claims that the NSA often bypasses encryption altogether by lifting information before it is encrypted or after it is decrypted.[179]

XKeyscore rules (as specified in a file xkeyscorerules100.txt, sourced by German TV stations NDR and WDR, who claim to have excerpts from its source code) reveal that the NSA tracks users of privacy-enhancing software tools, including Tor, the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and readers of the Linux Journal.[181][182]

Domestic activity

NSA’s mission, as set forth in Executive Order 12333, is to collect information that constitutes “foreign intelligence or counterintelligence” while not “acquiring information concerning the domestic activities of United States persons”. NSA has declared that it relies on the FBI to collect information on foreign intelligence activities within the borders of the United States, while confining its own activities within the United States to the embassies and missions of foreign nations.[citation needed]

NSA’s domestic surveillance activities are limited by the requirements imposed by the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court for example held in October 2011, citing multiple Supreme Court precedents, that the Fourth Amendment prohibitions against unreasonable searches and seizures applies to the contents of all communications, whatever the means, because “a person’s private communications are akin to personal papers.”[183] However, these protections do not apply to non-U.S. persons located outside of U.S. borders, so the NSA’s foreign surveillance efforts are subject to far fewer limitations under U.S. law.[184] The specific requirements for domestic surveillance operations are contained in the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA), which does not extend protection to non-U.S. citizens located outside of U.S. territory.[184]

These activities, especially the publicly acknowledged domestic telephone tapping and call database programs, have prompted questions about the extent of the NSA’s activities and concerns about threats to privacy and the rule of law.[citation needed]

George W. Bush administration

Warrantless wiretaps

On December 16, 2005, The New York Times reported that, under White House pressure and with an executive order from President George W. Bush, the National Security Agency, in an attempt to thwart terrorism, had been tapping phone calls made to persons outside the country, without obtaining warrants from the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, a secret court created for that purpose under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).[185]

One such surveillance program, authorized by the U.S. Signals Intelligence Directive 18 of President George Bush, was the Highlander Project undertaken for the National Security Agency by the U.S. Army 513th Military Intelligence Brigade. NSA relayed telephone (including cell phone) conversations obtained from ground, airborne, and satellite monitoring stations to various U.S. Army Signal Intelligence Officers, including the 201st Military Intelligence Battalion. Conversations of citizens of the U.S. were intercepted, along with those of other nations.[186]

Proponents of the surveillance program claim that the President has executive authority to order such action, arguing that laws such as FISA are overridden by the President’s Constitutional powers. In addition, some argued that FISA was implicitly overridden by a subsequent statute, the Authorization for Use of Military Force, although the Supreme Court’s ruling in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld deprecates this view. In the August 2006 case ACLU v. NSA, U.S. District Court Judge Anna Diggs Taylor concluded that NSA’s warrantless surveillance program was both illegal and unconstitutional. On July 6, 2007 the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the decision on the grounds that the ACLU lacked standing to bring the suit.[187]

On January 17, 2006, the Center for Constitutional Rights filed a lawsuit, CCR v. Bush, against the George W. Bush Presidency. The lawsuit challenged the National Security Agency’s (NSA’s) surveillance of people within the U.S., including the interception of CCR emails without securing a warrant first.[188][189]

In September 2008, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed a class action lawsuit against the NSA and several high-ranking officials of the Bush administration,[190] charging an “illegal and unconstitutional program of dragnet communications surveillance,”[191] based on documentation provided by former AT&T technician Mark Klein.[192]

AT&T Internet monitoring

In May 2006, Mark Klein, a former AT&T employee, alleged that his company had cooperated with NSA in installing Narus hardware to replace the FBI Carnivore program, to monitor network communications including traffic between American citizens.[193]

Data mining

NSA was reported in 2008 to use its computing capability to analyze “transactional” data that it regularly acquires from other government agencies, which gather it under their own jurisdictional authorities. As part of this effort, NSA now monitors huge volumes of records of domestic email data, web addresses from Internet searches, bank transfers, credit-card transactions, travel records, and telephone data, according to current and former intelligence officials interviewed by The Wall Street Journal. The sender, recipient, and subject line of emails can be included, but the content of the messages or of phone calls are not.[194]

A 2013 advisory group for the Obama administration, seeking to reform NSA spying programs following the revelations of documents released by Edward J. Snowden.[195] mentioned in ‘Recommendation 30′ on page 37, “…that the National Security Council staff should manage an interagency process to review on a regular basis the activities of the US Government regarding attacks that exploit a previously unknown vulnerability in a computer application.” Retired cyber security expert Richard A. Clarke was a group member and stated on 11 April that NSA had no advance knowledge of Heartbleed.[196]

Illegally obtained evidence

In August 2013 it was revealed that a 2005 IRS training document showed that NSA intelligence intercepts and wiretaps, both foreign and domestic, were being supplied to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and were illegally used to launch criminal investigations of US citizens. Law enforcement agents were directed to conceal how the investigations began and recreate an apparently legal investigative trail by re-obtaining the same evidence by other means.[197][198]

Domestic surveillance under Barack Obama

In the months leading to April 2009, the NSA intercepted the communications of American citizens, including a Congressman, although the Justice Department believed that the interception was unintentional. The Justice Department then took action to correct the issues and bring the program into compliance with existing laws.[199] United States Attorney General Eric Holderresumed the program according to his understanding of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act amendment of 2008, without explaining what had occurred.[200]

On April 25, 2013, the NSA obtained a court order requiring Verizon‘s Business Network Services to provide metadata on all calls in its system to the NSA “on an ongoing daily basis” for a three-month period, as reported by The Guardian on June 6, 2013. This information includes “the numbers of both parties on a call … location data, call duration, unique identifiers, and the time and duration of all calls” but not “[t]he contents of the conversation itself”. The order relies on the so-called “business records” provision of the Patriot Act.[201][202]

In August 2013, following the Snowden leaks, new details about the NSA’s data mining activity were revealed. Reportedly, the majority of emails into or out of the United States are captured at “selected communications links” and automatically analyzed for keywords or other “selectors”. Emails that do not match are deleted.[203]

In order to support its facial recognition program, the NSA is intercepting “millions of images per day”.[204]

Polling

Polls conducted in June 2013 found divided results among Americans regarding NSA’s secret data collection.[205] Rasmussen Reports found that 59% of Americans disapprove,[206] Gallupfound that 53% disapprove,[207] and Pew found that 56% are in favor of NSA data collection.[208]

Terrorist Attacks prevented by Domestic Surveillance

2009 New York City Subway bomb plot

According to General Keith Alexander, the director of the NSA, in September 2009 the NSA prevented Najibullah Zazi and his friends from carrying out a terrorist attack. The NSA tagged Zazi as a possible threat because he was contacting people affiliated with terrorist activity through emails, which the NSA was able to obtain through one of PRISM’s dragnets. The NSA tipped off the FBI, which began a program called Operation High-Rise. Operation High-Rise discovered that Zazi was planning to suicide bomb the New York City subway. Zazi called off the attacks after receiving a tip about law-enforcement inquiries and was later arrested.[209][210]

International activity

Telecommunication records

Edward Snowden revealed in June 2013 that between 8 February and 8 March 2013 NSA collected about 124.8 billion telephone data items and 97.1 billion computer data items throughout the world, including in Germany, United Kingdom and France. NSA made 70.3 million recordings of French citizens’ telephone data from 10 December 2012 to 8 January 2013.[211]

Software backdoors

Linux kernel

Linus Torvalds, the founder of Linux kernel, joked during a LinuxCon keynote on 18 September 2013 that the NSA, who are the founder of SELinux, wanted a backdoor in the kernel.[212]However later, Linus’ father, a Member of the European Parliament (MEP), revealed that the NSA actually did this.[213]

When my oldest son [Linus Torvalds] was asked the same question: “Has he been approached by the NSA about backdoors?” he said “No”, but at the same time he nodded. Then he was sort of in the legal free. He had given the right answer, [but] everybody understood that the NSA had approached him.

Nils TorvaldsLIBE Committee Inquiry on Electronic Mass Surveillance of EU Citizens – 11th Hearing, 11 November 2013[214]

Microsoft Windows

Main article: _NSAKEY

_NSAKEY was a variable name discovered in Microsoft‘s Windows NT 4 Service Pack 5 (which had been released unstripped of its symbolic debugging data) in August 1999 by Andrew D. Fernandes of Cryptonym Corporation. That variable contained a 1024-bit public key.

IBM Notes

IBM Notes was the first widely adopted software product to use public key cryptography for client–server and server–server authentication and for encryption of data. Until US laws regulating encryption were changed in 2000, IBM and Lotus were prohibited from exporting versions of Notes that supported symmetric encryption keys that were longer than 40 bits. In 1997, Lotus negotiated an agreement with the NSA that allowed export of a version that supported stronger keys with 64 bits, but 24 of the bits were encrypted with a special key and included in the message to provide a “workload reduction factor” for the NSA. This strengthened the protection for users of Notes outside the US against private-sector industrial espionage, but not against spying by the US government.[215][216]

Boomerang routing

While it is assumed that foreign transmissions terminating in the U.S. (such as a non-U.S. citizen accessing a U.S. website) subject non-U.S. citizens to NSA surveillance, recent research into boomerang routing has raised new concerns about the NSA’s ability to surveil the domestic internet traffic of foreign countries.[16] Boomerang routing occurs when an internet transmission that originates and terminates in a single country transits another. Research at the University of Toronto has suggested that approximately 25% of Canadian domestic traffic may be subject to NSA surveillance activities as a result of the boomerang routing of Canadian internet service providers.[16]

Hardware implanting

Intercepted packages are opened carefully by NSA employees
A “load station” implanting a beacon

A document included in NSA files released with Glenn Greenwald’s book No Place to Hide details how the agency’sTailored Access Operations (TAO) and other NSA units gain access to hardware. They intercept routers, servers and other network hardware being shipped to organizations targeted for surveillance and install covert implant firmware onto them before they are delivered. This was described by an NSA manager as “some of the most productive operations in TAO because they preposition access points into hard target networks around the world.”[217]

Role in scientific research and development

NSA has been involved in debates about public policy, both indirectly as a behind-the-scenes adviser to other departments, and directly during and after Vice Admiral Bobby Ray Inman‘s directorship. NSA was a major player in the debates of the 1990s regarding the export of cryptography in the United States. Restrictions on export were reduced but not eliminated in 1996.

Its secure government communications work has involved the NSA in numerous technology areas, including the design of specialized communications hardware and software, production of dedicated semiconductors (at the Ft. Meade chip fabrication plant), and advanced cryptography research. For 50 years, NSA designed and built most of its computer equipment in-house, but from the 1990s until about 2003 (when the U.S. Congress curtailed the practice), the agency contracted with the private sector in the fields of research and equipment.[218]

Data Encryption Standard

FROSTBURG was the NSA’s first supercomputer, used from 1991-97

NSA was embroiled in some minor controversy concerning its involvement in the creation of the Data Encryption Standard (DES), a standard and publicblock cipher algorithm used by the U.S. government and banking community. During the development of DES by IBM in the 1970s, NSA recommended changes to some details of the design. There was suspicion that these changes had weakened the algorithm sufficiently to enable the agency to eavesdrop if required, including speculation that a critical component—the so-called S-boxes—had been altered to insert a “backdoor” and that the reduction in key length might have made it feasible for NSA to discover DES keys using massive computing power. It has since been observed that the S-boxes in DES are particularly resilient against differential cryptanalysis, a technique which was not publicly discovered until the late 1980s, but which was known to the IBM DES team.

The United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence reviewed NSA’s involvement, and concluded that while the agency had provided some assistance, it had not tampered with the design.[219][220] In late 2009 NSA declassified information stating that “NSA worked closely with IBM to strengthen the algorithm against all except brute force attacks and to strengthen substitution tables, called S-boxes. Conversely, NSA tried to convince IBM to reduce the length of the key from 64 to 48 bits. Ultimately they compromised on a 56-bit key.”[221]

Advanced Encryption Standard

The involvement of NSA in the selection of a successor to DES, the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), was limited to hardware performance testing (see AES competition).[222] NSA has subsequently certified AES for protection of classified information (for at most two levels, e.g. SECRET information in an unclassified environment[clarification needed]) when used in NSA-approved systems.[223]

NSA encryption systems

The NSA is responsible for the encryption-related components in these legacy systems:

  • FNBDT Future Narrow Band Digital Terminal[224]
  • KL-7 ADONIS off-line rotor encryption machine (post-WWII – 1980s)[225][226]
  • KW-26 ROMULUS electronic in-line teletypewriter encryptor (1960s–1980s)[227]
  • KW-37 JASON fleet broadcast encryptor (1960s–1990s)[226]

STU-III secure telephones on display at the National Cryptologic Museum

The NSA oversees encyption in following systems which are in use today:

The NSA has specified Suite A and Suite B cryptographic algorithm suites to be used in U.S. government systems; the Suite B algorithms are a subset of those previously specified by NISTand are expected to serve for most information protection purposes, while the Suite A algorithms are secret and are intended for especially high levels of protection.[223]

SHA

The widely used SHA-1 and SHA-2 hash functions were designed by NSA. SHA-1 is a slight modification of the weaker SHA-0 algorithm, also designed by NSA in 1993. This small modification was suggested by NSA two years later, with no justification other than the fact that it provides additional security. An attack for SHA-0 that does not apply to the revised algorithm was indeed found between 1998 and 2005 by academic cryptographers. Because of weaknesses and key length restrictions in SHA-1, NIST deprecates its use for digital signatures, and approves only the newer SHA-2 algorithms for such applications from 2013 on.[233]

A new hash standard, SHA-3, has recently been selected through the competition concluded October 2, 2012 with the selection of Keccak as the algorithm. The process to select SHA-3 was similar to the one held in choosing the AES, but some doubts have been cast over it,[234][235] since fundamental modifications have been made to Keccak in order to turn it into a standard.[236] These changes potentially undermine the cryptanalysis performed during the competition and reduce the security levels of the algorithm.[234]

Dual_EC_DRBG random number generator

Main article: Dual_EC_DRBG

NSA promoted the inclusion of a random number generator called Dual_EC_DRBG in the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology‘s 2007 guidelines. This led to speculation of abackdoor which would allow NSA access to data encrypted by systems using that pseudo random number generator.[237]

This is now deemed to be plausible based on the fact that the output of the next iterations of the PRNG can provably be determined if the relation between two internal elliptic curve points is known.[238][239] Both NIST and RSA are now officially recommending against the use of this PRNG.[240][241]

Clipper chip

Main article: Clipper chip

Because of concerns that widespread use of strong cryptography would hamper government use of wiretaps, NSA proposed the concept of key escrow in 1993 and introduced the Clipper chip that would offer stronger protection than DES but would allow access to encrypted data by authorized law enforcement officials.[242] The proposal was strongly opposed and key escrow requirements ultimately went nowhere.[243] However, NSA’s Fortezza hardware-based encryption cards, created for the Clipper project, are still used within government, and NSA ultimately declassified and published the design of the Skipjack cipher used on the cards.[244][245]

Perfect Citizen

Main article: Perfect Citizen

Perfect Citizen is a program to perform vulnerability assessment by the NSA on U.S. critical infrastructure.[246][247] It was originally reported to be a program to develop a system of sensors to detect cyber attacks on critical infrastructure computer networks in both the private and public sector through a network monitoring system named Einstein.[248][249] It is funded by theComprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative and thus far Raytheon has received a contract for up to $100 million for the initial stage.

Academic research

NSA has invested many millions of dollars in academic research under grant code prefix MDA904, resulting in over 3,000 papers (as of 2007-10-11). NSA/CSS has, at times, attempted to restrict the publication of academic research into cryptography; for example, the Khufu and Khafre block ciphers were voluntarily withheld in response to an NSA request to do so. In response to a FOIA lawsuit, in 2013 the NSA released the 643-page research paper titled, “Untangling the Web: A Guide to Internet Research,[250] ” written and compiled by NSA employees to assist other NSA workers in searching for information of interest to the agency on the public Internet.[251]

Patents

NSA has the ability to file for a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office under gag order. Unlike normal patents, these are not revealed to the public and do not expire. However, if the Patent Office receives an application for an identical patent from a third party, they will reveal NSA’s patent and officially grant it to NSA for the full term on that date.[252]

One of NSA’s published patents describes a method of geographically locating an individual computer site in an Internet-like network, based on the latency of multiple network connections.[253] Although no public patent exists, NSA is reported to have used a similar locating technology called trilateralization that allows real-time tracking of an individual’s location, including altitude from ground level, using data obtained from cellphone towers.[254]

NSANet (NSA’s Intranet)

Behind the Green Door – Secure communications room with separate computer terminals for access toSIPRNET, GWAN, NSANET, andJWICS

NSANet stands for National Security Agency Network and is the official NSA intranet.[255] It is a classified network,[256] for information up to the level ofTS/SCI[257] to support the use and sharing of intelligence data between NSA and the signals intelligence agencies of the four other nations of the Five Eyes partnership. The management of NSANet has been delegated to the Central Security Service Texas (CSSTEXAS).[258]

NSANet is a highly secured computer network consisting of fiber-optic and satellite communication channels which are almost completely separated from the public internet. The network allows NSA personnel and civilian and military intelligence analysts anywhere in the world to have access to the agency’s systems and databases. This access is tightly controlled and monitored. For example, every keystroke is logged, activities are audited at random and downloading and printing of documents from NSANet are recorded.[259]

In 1998, NSANet, along with NIPRNET and SIPRNET, had “significant problems with poor search capabilities, unorganized data and old information”.[260] In 2004, the network was reported to have used over twenty commercial off-the-shelf operating systems.[261] Some universities that do highly sensitive research are allowed to connect to it.[262]

The thousands of Top Secret internal NSA documents that were taken by Edward Snowden in 2013 were stored in “a file-sharing location on the NSA’s intranet site” so they could easily be read online by NSA personnel. Everyone with a TS/SCI-clearance had access to these documents and as a system administrator, Snowden was responsible for moving accidentally misplaced highly sensitive documents to more secure storage locations.[263]

National Computer Security Center

The DoD Computer Security Center was founded in 1981 and renamed the National Computer Security Center (NCSC) in 1985. NCSC was responsible for computer security throughout the federal government.[264] NCSC was part of NSA,[265] and during the late 1980s and the 1990s, NSA and NCSC published Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria in a six-foot highRainbow Series of books that detailed trusted computing and network platform specifications.[266] The Rainbow books were replaced by the Common Criteria, however, in the early 2000s.[266]

On July 18, 2013, Greenwald said that Snowden held “detailed blueprints of how the NSA does what they do”, thereby sparking fresh controversy.[267]

See also

References

Notes

  1. Jump up^ Thomas L. Burns, The Origins of the National Security Agency, p. 97
  2. ^ Jump up to:a b “60 Years of Defending Our Nation” (PDF). National Security Agency. 2012. p. 3. Retrieved July 6, 2013. “On November 4, 2012, the National Security Agency (NSA) celebrates its 60th anniversary of providing critical information to U.S. decision makers and Armed Forces personnel in defense of our Nation. NSA has evolved from a staff of approximately 7,600 military and civilian employees housed in 1952 in a vacated school in Arlington, VA, into a workforce of more than 30,000 demographically diverse men and women located at NSA headquarters in Ft. Meade, MD, in four national Cryptologic Centers, and at sites throughout the world.”
  3. Jump up^ Priest, Dana (July 21, 2013). “NSA growth fueled by need to target terrorists”. The Washington Post. Retrieved July 22, 2013. “Since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, its civilian and military workforce has grown by one-third, to about 33,000, according to the NSA. Its budget has roughly doubled.”
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b c d Introverted? Then NSA wants you.FCW. April 2012. Retrieved July 1, 2013.
  5. ^ Jump up to:a b “Prism Exposed: Data Surveillance with Global Implications”. Spiegel Online International. June 10, 2013. p. 2. “How can an intelligence agency, even one as large and well-staffed as the NSA with its 40,000 employees, work meaningfully with such a flood of information?”
  6. ^ Jump up to:a b Gellman, Barton; Greg Miller (August 29, 2013). “U.S. spy network’s successes, failures and objectives detailed in ‘black budget’ summary”. The Washington Post. p. 3. RetrievedAugust 29, 2013.
  7. Jump up^ Shane, Scott (August 29, 2013). “New Leaked Document Outlines U.S. Spending On Intelligence Agencies”. The New York Times. Retrieved August 29, 2013.
  8. Jump up^ “About NSA: Mission”. National Security Agency. Retrieved September 14, 2014.
  9. ^ Jump up to:a b Ellen Nakashima (January 26, 2008). “Bush Order Expands Network Monitoring: Intelligence Agencies to Track Intrusions”. The Washington Post. Retrieved February 9, 2008.
  10. Jump up^ Executive Order 13470[1] 2008 Amendments to Executive Order 12333], United States Intelligence Activities, July 30, 2008 (PDF)
  11. Jump up^ Malkin, Bonnie. NSA surveillance: US bugged EU offices. The Daily Telegraph, June 30, 2013
  12. Jump up^ Ngak, Chenda. NSA leaker Snowden claimed U.S. and Israel co-wrote Stuxnet virus, CBS, July 9, 2013
  13. Jump up^ Bamford, James. The Secret War, Wired Magazine, June 12, 2013.
  14. Jump up^ Bamford, James. Body of Secrets: Anatomy of the Ultra-Secret National Security Agency,Random House Digital, Inc., December 18, 2007
  15. Jump up^ Executive Order 134702008 Amendments to Executive Order 12333, United States Intelligence Activities, Section C.2, July 30, 2008
  16. ^ Jump up to:a b c Obar, Jonathan A.; Clement, Andrew (2013). “Internet Surveillance and Boomerang Routing: A Call for Canadian Network Sovereignty”. TEM 2013: Proceedings of the Technology & Emerging Media Track – Annual Conference of the Canadian Communication Association (Victoria, June 5–7, 2012). Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  17. Jump up^ “The National Archives, Records of the National Security Agency”. Retrieved November 22,2013.
  18. Jump up^ “The Many Lives of Herbert O. Yardley”. Retrieved December 5, 2013.
  19. ^ Jump up to:a b Hastedt, Glenn P.; Guerrier, Steven W. (2009). Spies, wiretaps, and secret operations: An encyclopedia of American espionage. ABC-CLIO. p. 32. ISBN 1851098070.
  20. Jump up^ Yardley, Herbert O. (1931). The American black chamber. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press.ISBN 1591149894.
  21. Jump up^ James Bamford. “Building America’s secret surveillance state”. Reuters. RetrievedNovember 9, 2013.
  22. Jump up^ “Roman Empire to the NSA: A world history of government spying”. BBC. November 1, 2013. Retrieved November 9, 2013. Across Europe, they established departments called “black chambers” (from the French, cabinet noir) to read the letters of targeted individuals.
  23. ^ Jump up to:a b c “Army Security Agency Established, 15 September 1945″. United States Army. RetrievedNovember 9, 2013.
  24. ^ Jump up to:a b c Burns, Thomas L. “The Origins of the National Security Agency 1940–1952 (U)” (PDF). National Security Agency. p. 60. Retrieved August 11, 2010.
  25. Jump up^ “The Creation of NSA – Part 2 of 3: The Brownell Committee” (PDF). National Security Agency. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
  26. ^ Jump up to:a b Truman, Harry S. (October 24, 1952). “Memorandum” (PDF). National Security Agency. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
  27. Jump up^ Anne Gearan (June 7, 2013). “‘No Such Agency’ spies on the communications of the world”.The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 November 2013.
  28. Jump up^ SCOTT SHANE (October 31, 2005). “Vietnam Study, Casting Doubts, Remains Secret”. The New York Times. The National Security Agency has kept secret since 2001 a finding by an agency historian that during the Tonkin Gulf episode, which helped precipitate the Vietnam War
  29. ^ Jump up to:a b “Declassified NSA Files Show Agency Spied on Muhammad Ali and MLK Operation Minaret Set Up in 1960s to Monitor Anti-Vietnam Critics, Branded ‘Disreputable If Not Outright Illegal’ by NSA Itself” The Guardian, 26 Sept. 2013
  30. Jump up^ Pre-Emption – The Nsa And The Telecoms | Spying On The Home Front | FRONTLINE | PBS
  31. Jump up^ Cohen, Martin. No Holiday: 80 Places You Don’t Want to Visit. New York: Disinformation Company Ltd. ISBN 978-1-932857-29-0. Retrieved March 14, 2014.
  32. ^ Jump up to:a b c Bill Moyers Journal (October 26, 2007). “The Church Committee and FISA”. Public Affairs Television. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
  33. Jump up^ “Book IV, Supplementary Detailed Staff Reports on Foreign and Military Intelligence (94th Congress, Senate report 94-755)” (PDF). United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. April 23, 1976. p. 67 (72). Retrieved June 28, 2013.
  34. Jump up^ “Book II, Intelligence Activities and the Rights of Americans (94th Congress, Senate report 94-755)” (PDF). United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. April 26, 1976. p. 124 (108). Retrieved June 28, 2013.
  35. Jump up^ Seymour M. Hersh (February 22, 1987). “TARGET QADDAFI”. The New York Times. Retrieved January 12, 2014.
  36. Jump up^ David Wise (May 18, 1986). “Espionage Case Pits CIA Against News Media”. The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 12, 2014. the President took an unprecedented step in discussing the content of the Libyan cables. He was, by implication, revealing that NSA had broken the Libyan code.
  37. Jump up^ Peggy Becker (October 1999). DEVELOPMENT OF SURVEILLANCE TECHNOLOGY AND RISK OF ABUSE OF ECONOMIC INFORMATION (Report). STOA, European Parliament. p. 12. Retrieved November 3, 2013.
  38. ^ Jump up to:a b c Staff (June 13, 2003). “NSA honors 4 in the science of codes”. The Baltimore Sun(Tribune Company). Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  39. Jump up^ Tom Carver (8 June 2002). “America’s most powerful spy agency”. BBC. When Osama bin Laden first moved to Afghanistan, the NSA listened in to every phone call he made on his satellite phone. Over the course of two years it is believed they logged more than 2,000 minutes of conversation.
  40. Jump up^ Gorman, Siobhan (May 17, 2006). “NSA killed system that sifted phone data legally”.Baltimore Sun (Tribune Company (Chicago, IL)). Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved March 7, 2008. The privacy protections offered by ThinThread were also abandoned in the post–September 11 push by the president for a faster response to terrorism.
  41. Jump up^ See refs of Thomas Andrews Drake article
  42. ^ Jump up to:a b Bamford, Shadow Factory, pp. 325–340.
  43. Jump up^ <http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/nation-world/bal-nsa050607,0,1517618.story>
  44. Jump up^ Laura Poitras, Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark. “Ally and Target: US Intelligence Watches Germany Closely”. Der Spiegel. Retrieved August 13, 2013.
  45. Jump up^ DeYoung, Karen (August 12, 2013). “Colombia asks Kerry to explain NSA spying”. The Washington Post. Retrieved August 13, 2013.
  46. ^ Jump up to:a b Memorandum of the United States in Response to the Court’s Order Dated January 28, 2009. Washington DC: Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Washington DC. January 28, 2009. p. 11.
  47. Jump up^ Greenberg, Andy. “NSA Secretly Admitted Illegally Tracking Thousands Of ‘Alert List’ Phone Numbers For Years”. Forbes. Retrieved February 25, 2014.
  48. Jump up^ Brandon, Russel. “NSA illegally searched 15,000 suspects’ phone records, according to declassified report”. The Verge. Retrieved February 25, 2014.
  49. Jump up^ Timm, Trevor. “Government Releases NSA Surveillance Docs and Previously Secret FISA Court Opinions In Response to EFF Lawsuit”. Electronic Frontier Foundation. Retrieved February 25,2014.
  50. Jump up^ Greg Miller and Julie Tate, October 17, 2013, “Documents reveal NSA’s extensive involvement in targeted killing program“, The Washington Post. Retrieved October 18, 2013.
  51. Jump up^ Laura Poitras, Marcel Rosenbach, Fidelius Schmid und Holger Stark. “Geheimdokumente: NSA horcht EU-Vertretungen mit Wanzen aus“. Der Spiegel (in German). Retrieved June 29, 2013.
  52. Jump up^ US-Geheimdienst hörte Zentrale der Vereinten Nationen ab“. Der Spiegel (in German). Retrieved August 25, 2013.
  53. Jump up^ Barton Gellman and Ashton Solanti, December 5, 2013, “NSA tracking cellphone locations worldwide, Snowden documents show”, The Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  54. ^ Jump up to:a b Greenwald, Glenn; MacAskill, Ewen (6 June 2013). “NSA Prism program taps in to user data of Apple, Google and others“. The Guardian. Retrieved June 15, 2013.
  55. ^ Jump up to:a b Gellman and Soltani, October 15, 2013 “NSA collects millions of e-mail address books globally“, The Washington Post. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
  56. Jump up^ Perlroth, Larson and Shane, “N.S.A. Able to Foil Basic Safeguards of Privacy on Web“, The New York Times September 5, 2013. Retrieved September 23, 2013.
  57. Jump up^ Arthur, Charles “Academics criticise NSA and GCHQ for weakening online encryption“, The Guardian September 16, 2013. Retrieved September 23, 2013.
  58. Jump up^ “Senators: Limit NSA snooping into US phone records”. Associated Press. RetrievedOctober 15, 2013. “Is it the goal of the NSA to collect the phone records of all Americans?” Udall asked at Thursday’s hearing. “Yes, I believe it is in the nation’s best interest to put all the phone records into a lockbox that we could search when the nation needs to do it. Yes,” Alexander replied.
  59. Jump up^ Glenn Greenwald (6 June 2013). “NSA collecting phone records of millions of Verizon customers daily“. The Guardian. Retrieved September 16, 2013.
  60. Jump up^ Court Reveals ‘Secret Interpretation’ Of The Patriot Act, Allowing NSA To Collect All Phone Call Data, September 17, 2013. Retrieved September 19, 2013.
  61. Jump up^ “Exclusive: U.S. directs agents to cover up program used to investigate Americans”. Reuters. August 5, 2013. Retrieved August 14, 2013.
  62. Jump up^ Glenn Greenwald, Ryan Gallagher & Ryan Grim, November 26, 2013, “Top-Secret Document Reveals NSA Spied On Porn Habits As Part Of Plan To Discredit ‘Radicalizers’“, Huffington Post. Retrieved November 28, 2013.
  63. Jump up^ “Vast majority of NSA spy targets are mistakenly monitored”. Philadelphia News.Net. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  64. Jump up^ Greenwald, Glen, “Members of Congress denied access to basic information about NSA“,The Guardian, August 4, 2013. Retrieved September 23, 2013.
  65. ^ Jump up to:a b Eddlem, T.