A former Danish motorcycle gangster who joined Al Qaeda, only to become a double agent who claims to have helped the U.S. hunt down one of the terrorist organization’s top leaders, said this week’s attacks in Paris prove that sleeper cells are positioned around the west, ready to carry out fresh attacks.
Morten Storm, who, as an informant for Denmark’s national intelligence agency Security and Intelligence Service (PET), had first-hand dealings with Anwar Al-Awlaki while the U.S.-born cleric was head of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, said western countries must protect themselves by canceling the citizenships of homegrown radicals who travel to the Middle East to fight or train. Once radicalized, homegrown jihadists can easily blend into society until given the signal to strike, he said.
“Deception is their warfare,” Storm said on a conference call facilitated by the New York-based terrorism research group Clarion Project. “One of the things that these groups believe in is that you are allowed to trick someone into believing that you stand for something else when you really have other agendas. They will act as normal members of western society.”
Storm, 38, who co-wrote “Agent Storm: My Life Inside al Qaeda and the CIA,” speculated that the suspects who launched the bloody, commando-style attack on French satire magazine newspaper Charlie Hebdo are likely among many such Islamist terrorists in position and ready to carry out attacks in Europe. The brothers who killed 12 in an attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Abdo had ties to Al Qaeda, and at least one had traveled to Yemen and been in contact with terror camp operators, Fox News has reported. Cherif Kouachi, 32, and Said Kouachi, 34, were killed Friday when police raided a printing plant where they had holed up two days after carrying out the savage attack, mounted in retaliation for the magazine’s publishing of cartoons depicting Prophet Muhammed.
“They were extremely organized,” he said. “Many of those trained were given the chance to join fighters in battle and kill government officers and Shia Muslims.”
He said they also had religious scholars at the facilities to enforce Sharia law as well as informants at airports that could help pass operatives through from Yemen to Europe and other areas, as well as people in charge of foreign operations for the extremist group. Many of those terrorists are now fighting in Syria and Iraq, while others have died in battle. But many, Storm warned, are living among westerners.
“What they are really doing is waiting for the right moment,” he said. “Then these sleeping cells eventually wake up and attack their targets.
“Al Qaeda wants to create a massive division between Muslims and non-Muslims living in Europe,” he added.
Full article: Al Qaeda turncoat who helped US nail Al-Awlaki warns of more sleeper cells (FOX)