Did ISIS Have Foreknowledge Of The Charlie Hebdo Attack? Britain’s Chief Of MI-5 Warns al-Qaeda Planning ‘Spectacular,’ ‘Mass Casualty’ Attacks On The U.K.
According to TheDailyMailOnline, “cryptic tweets suggests that ISIS may have known the Charlie Hebdo offices were going to be attacked prior to Wednesday’s bloody massacre in Paris that left 12 dead.” Corey Charlton, writing for the publication, “a jihadi fighter within ISIS-controlled territory in Iraq and Syria, posted a tweet hinting at the killing — a day prior to the attack. The fighter, who operates under the handle — ‘PaladinofJihad,’ tweeted: ‘Snail-earing people,’ and an emoji picturing a face crying with laughter on Tuesday. ‘You heard it here first. #SnailEaters ate lead.’
Meanwhile, the Islamic State has posted a message on the Internet, claiming “We did Paris — ‘Tomorrow Will Be In Britain and America.’ The Director of Britain’s MI-5 Intelligence Service, Andrew Parker, last night, warned that “al Qaeda was plotting ‘spectacular, mass casualty’ attacks on the United Kingdom. Mr. Parker all but conceded that an “attack in Britain [by ISIS, or al Qaeda] was almost inevitable.” Mr. Parker added that “al Qaeda was directing British-based fanatics from overseas to carry out attacks on airlines; or, a Mumbai-style gun and bomb atrocities.”
“In a rare public speech,” TheDailyMialOnline wrote, the Head of MI-5 warned, “although we and our partners try our utmost. we know that they cannot stop everything.” Mr. Parker went on to warn that, “the U.K. was facing a ‘string of ‘complex, and ambitious plots,’ against the likes of transport networks, and major landmarks.”
Former Foreign Secretary Sir Malcolm Rifkind, the Chairman of Britain’s Joint Intelligence Committee, said the Security Services “must have the power to intercept communications; in order to try and prevent events of this kind.” Sir Rifkind added, “What is emerging in Paris, is that two individuals responsible for this terrible massacre at Charlie Hebdo — may have been linked to al Qaeda in Yemen. The highly important objective is to enable intelligence agencies in Britain, France, and other democracies to be able to get ahold of these communications — to try and prevent incidents of this kind.”
Since the Edward Snowden leaks, al Qaeda, the Islamic State, and other terrorist groups have taken significant measures to upgrade their encryption technology and altered their communications techniques, tactics, and procedures — making it more difficult for law enforcement and intelligence agencies to intercept the kind of communications that is needed — in order to ferret out, and hopefully prevent these kind of barbaric acts. This has been one of the important, but negative by-products of the Snowden leaks.
It would also not be all that surprising if the attackers; and/or, ‘higher headquarters’ in al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and/or ISIS, were listening to official police communications while this event was unfolding. This is something that will need to looked at very carefully.
It is also clear that at least one of the brothers sought guidance and training from al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula — in Yemen — three years before this attack. It is unfortunate that the two brothers had to be killed in the attempted rescue — and, I’m sure French authorities did everything they could to take at least one of them alive. We need critical intelligence about this attack — is part of a larger ‘Christmas Spectacular?” How many other plots are underway as I write this note. It is also a reminder of how important Guantanamo Bay Prison is. Instead, this administration is quickly trying to close it — and, droning/targeted killing — instead of capturing and interrogating. Dead men tell no tales.
Vive la France. V/R, RCP