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. Continue reading
BRITAIN faces a growing threat from terrorists at home and abroad and “cannot hope to stop” every plot, the boss of MI5 has warned.
Andrew Parker said Al Qaeda terrorists in Syria were trying to direct atrocities here and planning “mass casualty attacks” against the West.
His chilling warning came as French police continued the hunt for brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, chief suspects in the Paris magazine massacre in which 12 people were shot dead.
Mr Parker, 52, warned that the terrorist threat was growing at the same time as MI5’s ability to track terrorists was being reduced.
Extremists are finding more secretive ways of communicating online and avoiding being tracked by the security services.
Mr Parker said: “If we are to have the best chance of preventing such harm, we need the capability to shine a light into the activities of the worst individuals who pose the gravest threats.
The common thread running through these incidents is that they were all haphazardly planned and executed by ‘lone-wolf’ attackers, who were markedly limited in both resources and skill. But the men implicated in Wednesday’s attack on Charlie Hebdo, which left 12 people dead, were different. The two brothers, Cherif and Said Kouachi, who are said to be the main perpetrators of the assault, are believed to have “returned to France from Syria in the last year”, according to MSNBC. Undoubtedly, the two siblings saw action in the Syrian armed conflict, which is primarily fought in urban settings, and were systematically trained in urban warfare by men with considerable experience in it. Continue reading