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NEWS: Al-Qaeda's "Big Fish" Capture Case Of Mistaken Identity

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posted on May, 8 2005 @ 01:46 PM
It seems that the "big fish" the Bush administration hailed as a "critical victory in the war on terror" was not quite as critical as first thought. The man captured, originally thought to be Al-Qaeda's 3rd in command, is no one more than a middle of the pack Al-Qaeda member. It seems the man who was captured, Abu Farraj al-Libbi, was confused with another Libyan on the FBI list, Anas al-Liby.
THE capture of a supposed Al-Qaeda kingpin by Pakistani agents last week was hailed by President George W Bush as “a critical victory in the war on terror”. According to European intelligence experts, however, Abu Faraj al-Libbi was not the terrorists’ third in command, as claimed, but a middle-ranker derided by one source as “among the flotsam and jetsam” of the organisation.

Al-Libbi’s arrest in Pakistan, announced last Wednesday, was described in the United States as “a major breakthrough” in the hunt for Osama Bin Laden.

Bush called him a “top general” and “a major facilitator and chief planner for the Al- Qaeda network”. Condoleezza Rice, secretary of state, said he was “a very important figure”. Yet the backslapping in Washington and Islamabad has astonished European terrorism experts, who point out that the Libyan was neither on the FBI’s most wanted list, nor on that of the State Department “rewards for justice” programme.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

I find it strange that none of the American MSM is reporting on this. The only article I found was from the - a UK news site. I wonder if the MSM will bother reporting it or if can we chalk it up as a propaganda victory for the Bush administration. And to think, I got my hopes up that we were actually closing in on Bin Laden.

[edit on 8-5-2005 by Cutwolf]

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 02:35 PM
Still pumping the TV with incorrect intelligence. Bush needs to simmer down his stumping- pretty soon he will have to admit what? Saddam is only a body-double!

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 03:38 PM

THE capture of a supposed Al-Qaeda kingpin by Pakistani agents last week was hailed by President George W Bush as “a critical victory in the war on terror”. According to European intelligence experts, however, Abu Faraj al-Libbi was not the terrorists’ third in command, as claimed, but a middle-ranker derided by one source as “among the flotsam and jetsam” of the organisation.

These captures are really starting to resemble a bad game of stratego. In an interview earlier today Gary Schroen: a 32-year CIA veteran & middle east expert sent to Afghanistan's Panjshir Valley 2 weeks after 9/11 to build up Northern Alliance forces so they could join U.S. troops in the overthrow of the Taleban (and who also has a book out) said some interesting things about Al-Libbi & bin Laden:

MR. RUSSERT: Let me show you this photograph. Here is Abu Faraj Al-Libbi, captured, described as the number-three man in al-Qaeda. How significant was his arrest?

MR. SCHROEN: I think it's significant in two ways, Tim. He is the number-three guy. He replaced Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who was a mastermind of many of the attacks. His arrest will significantly damage the al-Qaeda organization. It's important in a second way because it demonstrates that the Pakistani government and military are willing to go into tribal areas north of Peshawar, where it's most likely that bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahari are hiding.

MR. RUSSERT: Do you think the Pakistanis have a pretty good sense where he(bin Laden) is?

MR. SCHROEN: I think within the military and ISID at a a certain level, they certainly do now where he(bin Laden) is.

MR. RUSSERT: ISID being Pakistani Intelligence...

MR. SCHROEN: Pakistani Intelligence Service.

MR. RUSSERT: Let me show you the map of the border area. It's the border 1,640 miles long, the mountainous region about the size of the country of Ireland. And you think up there in the upper right hand corner?

MR. SCHROEN: Upper right hand corner, there is a little--you know, the little jot out there is where Peshawar is, and north of that is a rugged area. It's traditionally been the most hostile area to any kind of government control. The tribals there have made centuries of living smuggling and it's one of the main drug trafficking routes in and out of the country. And bin Laden is very respected and liked in that area.

MR. RUSSERT: And they're protecting him?

MR. SCHROEN: I think they're protecting him for a number of reasons. He is considered to be a Robin Hood-like figure. He has made a, you know, mockery of our efforts to catch him for all these years, and he probably has a nice checkbook that he is writing sizeable amounts of checks for these people hosting him.

Videotape, May 4, 2005:

MR. TOM BROKAW: Is there a danger for you, personally, and for your government, that if Pakistani troops take down Osama bin Laden in what would probably be a difficult struggle, it would cause an uprising in some of the cities in your country, and in the refugee camps?

GEN. PERVEZ MUSHARRAF: Well, there would be effects, but we shouldn't be so naive as to capture him and then go around telling everyone and going around with him everywhere. I mean, there is a method of dealing with the situation.

MR. BROKAW: But it would be delicate, wouldn't it?

GEN. MUSHARRAF: It would be certainly delicate, not only here but even in the Islamic world.

(End videotape)

MR. RUSSERT: Mr. Musharraf: "It would be delicate here in Pakistan and the Islamic world." Is there a distinct possibility that Mr. Musharraf is afraid of capturing Osama bin Laden because he would fear that his government would be toppled?

MR. SCHROEN: In my opinion, that's a real likelihood, that the Pakistanis have cooperated pretty wholesomely in helping us capture a lot of al-Qaeda officers up to Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, and this-- the capture of Al-Libbi recently is a significant event but to take on bin Laden, there would be an uproar within that country and around the Islamic world that would really cause the foundations of the Pakistani government to be shaken.

MR. RUSSERT: After Al-Libbi was captured, some citizens in the town told NBC News: "If we had known it was him, we would have protected him."

MR. SCHROEN: I think that's probably very accurate. And if we were able to find bin Laden, and identify that to the Pakistanis, I would suspect that there would be a great reluctance and probably a refusal to move forward. That's my opinion.

Meet The Press: Former senior CIA agent Gary Schroen interview

So now this apparent Abu Farraj al-Libbi / Anas al-Liby mistaken identity/rank now being reported is just another mirage emerging from the intel sandstorm in the desert of ignorance. With all these conflicting accounts I think a lot of Americans are starting to consider military intelligence an oxymoron.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 03:44 PM
Thats too funny.

Yesterday I was watching Fox News and they were talking about the wealth of information that was harvested from this number 3 A.Q. biggie.

Oh man. My head and stomach are hurtiing so bad from this uncontrollable laughter.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 03:48 PM
Nice try at negative spin, but all Schroen was doing was trying to push his book.

But first, the war on terrorism through the eyes of CIA veteran, now author, Gary Schroen.

[edit on 5/8/2005 by shots]

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 04:32 PM

Originally posted by Vajrayana (and who also has a book out)

Lately, I think there is already enough spin on the merry-go-round of disinfo, with dizziness approaching nauseousness.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 05:01 PM
Any of you ever consider that the US Intelligence community purposely erred in an effort to flush out the others? You know, disinformation? Confuse & agitate the enemy? It is possible...

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 05:45 PM
Yeah because showing Al-Qaeda that a rank and file member of their organisation has been captured would throw them into disarray

After all Al Qaeda already knew who he was even if the Pakistanis and Americans didnt. They'd dismiss it as nothing more than an inconvenience.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 05:45 PM
Not to hijack the thread, but I'm not ashamed to take credit for authoring this. I've got several "no" votes due to bias. However, the only place I ever take a side is, well, in the opinion section. Perhaps I'm misunderstanding the definition of "your opinion," but I thought thats where I said what I thought.

Anyway, still nothing on the MSM about this.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 05:50 PM
Well I voted "yes" for it.

Dont worry, it seems that threads posted that show any element of America in any negative manner will attract unfounded "No" votes.

Censorship by democracy

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 05:52 PM
I guess, the very fact that you brought this up is supposed to show a bias. I don't know exactly, but all I know is that if its a "no" vote, there is something they don't agree with, either in the way you covered it or in the way your source covered it. Perhaps, the UK Times is considered liberal, and therefore biased?

I don't know man, but don't worry about it, most news stories get such votes on them, from all sides of the spectrum of whatever subject, politics, society, science, art, etc.

[edit on 8-5-2005 by Jamuhn]

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 06:04 PM

Yeah because showing Al-Qaeda that a rank and file member of their organisation has been captured would throw them into disarray

Perhaps not, but it could cause conversations such as: "Hey, did you hear what the stupid American did? They thought they got Al-Zarqawi. Imbeciles, he's sitting in my living room! Ha Ha Ha! Oh, wait, there's somebody at the door..."

A bit simplistic, of course, but contrary to popular opinion, I prefer to think that our intelligence folks know what they are doing.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 06:36 PM
If I was a cynical person, I'd say this 'mistake' was meant to influence the UK elections. Much like the Bin Laden video before the US election.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 09:28 PM
............on the label label label, you will like it like it like it on your table table table.

Our intelligence services seem to have little idea who to look for or where.

They are not sure where they go and they're not sure when they've got them.

They don't know where they flee and yet are always 'just missing' them.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 09:29 PM
Maybe the article wouldn't be getting so many no votes if it would at least pretend not to be biased! You can tell the author of the article is clearly throwing as many shots at the US as is humanly possible in one writing. I've never seen so many quotes dug up for one paragraph of bashing in my entire life.

Did you ever consider that maybe this IS the guy that's 3rd in command? Did you ever think that the US/Pakistan is trying to cover there ass' right now and act like they have no one of any importance? That may give them more time to follow up on leads from interrogations with him or evidence found during the raid. This IS a conspiracy website so I figured I'd throw this out there to stay on topic. Ya never know??

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 09:29 PM
This is a recent picture of the man currently in custody, Abu Faraj al-Libbi:

This is an older picture of Abu Faraj al-Libbi:

This is a picture of Anas Al-Liby:

Side by side:

Based on these photos, I'm convinced the man in custody is Abu Faraj al-Libbi.

To add to Seekerof's subsequent post regarding the role of Abu Faraj al-Libbi and his relationship to bin Laden and al-Qaeda:

Al Qa'eda third in command 'is running terror cells in the UK'
By Massoud Ansari in Karachi
(Filed: 19/09/2004)

A Libyan hunted by Pakistan because of his senior role in the al Qa'eda terrorist network has taken charge of its sleeper cells in Britain and the United States, Pakistani intelligence officials believe.

Abu Faraj al Libbi, said to have taken over as third in command of al Qa'eda when his mentor, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, was captured last year, has sent coded messages to "several" Islamic militants in Britain over the past 10 months, according to Pakistani officials.

Security officers who have interrogated recently captured militants say that Abu Faraj, who is now believed to be al Qa'eda's top operational chief, masterminded and financed assassination attempts against President Pervez Musharraf, the country's military ruler, last December.

They have now revealed that Abu Faraj, who was once Osama bin Laden's personal assistant, is also in frequent contact with al Qa'eda members and supporters abroad, particularly in Britain and America. They have identified two people - both of whom are in British custody - as recipients of coded messages from Abu Faraj.

[edit on 05/5/8 by GradyPhilpott]

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 09:36 PM
I am with you Grady. Look at the hairline. Look at the point of his nose and the outside edges of his eyes that droop down. It is a good match. I'd feel 95% sure it is the right man. As for the man on the bottom... his eyes don't match and neither does the point of his nose nor the shape of his face. Also the man on the bottom has an obvious wrinkle in the skin of his forehead. The man in the very top pic does not.

Pic 1 = Pic 2. Pic 1 does NOT = Pic 3.

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 09:58 PM
From August 18, 2004:

The Libyan, Abu Faraj Al Libbi alias Dr Taufeeq, ranks number three in Al-Qaeda's new generation of operatives, after Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman Al Zawahiri, officials said.

Pakistan offers rewards for information on wanted terror suspects
(scroll down near half page.)

Another source from August 18, 2004:

The Libyan, listed in the advertisement as Abu Faraj Al Libbi alias Dr Taufeeq, ranks number three in Al Qaeda’s new generation of operatives, replacing Khalid Sheikh Mohammed who was captured in March 2003, according to a senior Pakistani security official.

“This Libyan ranks third in the current Al Qaeda hierarchy after Osama bin Laden and his (Egyptian) deputy Ayman Al Zawahiri,” the official told AFP.

Pakistan offers hefty rewards for information on top Al Qaeda suspects

Apparently, those "European intelligence experts" have no clue to what they assert? Obviously they have missed past mentions saying that Abu Faraj Al Libbi was classed as being ranked as the "number three in Al-Qaeda’s new generation of operatives"? They better fix/update those terrorist organization charts, eh?


[edit on 8-5-2005 by Seekerof]

posted on May, 8 2005 @ 11:00 PM
Apparently, the FBI and State department did know about this guy, but not until Pakistan put a bounty on him, perhaps this section of the article is pertinent to bring up.

From the original article:

The only operations in which he is known to have been involved are two attempts to assassinate Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan’s president, in 2003. Last year he was named Pakistan’s most wanted man with a $350,000 (£185,000) price on his head.

No European or American intelligence expert contacted last week had heard of al-Libbi until a Pakistani intelligence report last year claimed he had taken over as head of operations after Khalid Shaikh Mohammad’s arrest. A former close associate of Bin Laden now living in London laughed: “What I remember of him is he used to make the coffee and do the photocopying.”

So, seekerof, it seems they already had the same information you presented to us, but glad you shared. Also in the UK Times article: "One American official tried to explain the absence of al-Libbi’s name on the wanted list by saying: “We did not want him to know he was wanted.”"

If the Americans and Europeans did not want him to think he was wanted, why did Pakistan put a bounty on his head? Maybe there was a lack of communication between the governments? And who's right, Pakistan, Europe/US intelligence, or the guy laughing in London?

posted on May, 9 2005 @ 01:57 AM
Libbi or Liby , at least they caught one of the bad guys...

[edit on 9-5-2005 by Silenus]

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