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Friday, September 03, 2004

Bollettino

After I wrote the post below, lamenting the lack of attention paid to the connections between the Chechen guerillas and Al Qaeda, I read this dispatch in Liberation:

“Selon l'une des sources d'Itar-Tass, la prise d'otages de Beslan aurait pu être financée par un dignitaire wahhabite, Abou Omar as Seïf, émissaire d'Al Qaïda en Tchétchénie.”

“According to one of Itar-Tass’s sources, the hostage taking in Beslan might have been financed by a wahabi dignitary, Abu Omar as Saif, emissary of Al Qaeda in Chechnya.”

This is the organization that Bush claims to have mightily defeated. Claims, when he can be bothered to speak about the topic at all, to have directed such successful operations against the group that 2/3rds of the leadership has been disabled.

Funny, for a defeated group, they seem to have had a successful week – 2 planes down in Russia, one subway bombing, and now the massacre in Beslan. Further information on the connection between Al Qaida and the Chechen guerillas can be found in this interview Jacques Sapir in Humanite:

“You are talking about people who come from the exterior. Who are they?
Jacques Sapir: There has existed since the beginning of the 20th century a Chechen diaspora in the Middle East. A certain number of the members of this diaspora have been influenced by extremist groups linked to the Al Qaeda network. The disapora Chechens were present at the end of the first Chechen war in the territory of Chechnya. There role, which was then rather feeble up to 1997, has progressively acquired an influence which, while still remaining in the minority, has not stopped growing. The links between these militants and the Jordanian cadre of the Al Qaida leadership could explain the radicalization and the mode of operation of the last terrorist actions.”
(Vous parlez de gens qui viendraient de l’extérieur, qui sont-ils ?
Jacques Sapir. Il existe depuis le début du XXe siècle une diaspora tchétchène au Moyen-Orient. Un certain nombre de membres de cette diaspora ont été influencés par les groupes extrémistes liés à ce qu’on appelle la nébuleuse d’al Qaeda. Ces Tchétchènes diasporiques ont été présents dès la fin de la première guerre de Tchétchénie sur le territoire même de la Tchétchénie. Leur rôle était faible jusqu’en 1997, mais ces groupes ont acquis progressivement une influence qui, tout en restant minoritaire, ne cesse de s’accroître. Le lien entre ces militants et un certain nombres de responsables d’origine jordanienne d’al Qaeda pourraient expliquer la radicalisation et le mode opératoire des dernières actions terroristes.)

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