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The Al Qaeda

The Al Qaeda Structure

Al Qaida is made up of • Al Jihad, headed by Dr. Al Zawahiri of Egypt, who is the brain behind the Al Qaeda and • Al Islamiah, headed by Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman, The Blind Sheikh, now in a US jail, who was involved in WTC Attack in 1993.

The Al Qaida Leaders are:
• Sheikh Taseer Abdullah – Military Commander of Al Qaeda, he has a 5 Million $ award on his head, and
• Sheikh Abdullah Azzam, of MAK, who was killed with TNT possibly by Osama

Modus Operandi and Operations

1. Intelligence team mounts surveillance and reconnaissance operations.

2. Based on facts provided, the attack team rehearses its operations in an Al Qaeda camp.

3. A support team arrives and organises safe-houses, vehicles, weapons & explosives.

4. The Attack teams arrive & withdraw after completing the mission. Suicide missions are the usual preferred tactic.

5. The Al Qaeda’s network follows the cluster model, comprising of many cells whose members do not know one another so that if a cell member is caught, the other cells would not be affected. Cell members do not meet each other.

6. Operatives in the attack follow certain measures to prevent arrest.

• If outward appearances Islamic, then public spots are avoided. • During heightened security by authorities, operatives stay at home. • Operatives are supposed to burn all correspondence after reading. • False identity documents are carried by operatives. • If appearances are non-Islamic, Islamic greetings are avoided. • They avoid the use of phones. • They do not carry the names & addresses of other members .

7. It’s operational commanders avoid excessive spending. For eg. all of the 19 hijackers of 9/11 incident used cheap motels, cars & ate in fast food parlours. But all the hijackers bought business class tickets from Boston to Los Angeles each costing 4500 dollars to be close to the cockpit.

Financing of the Al Qaeda

Al Qaeda needs 36-50 million $ a year to maintain its 3000 member setup all over Afghanistan, and for procuring weapons & infrastructure. They get their finances from

1. Prominent Saudi businessmen, wealthy Arabs from UAE, Kuwait & Qatar sponser the Al Qaida Ops. 2. The sale of narcotics. 3. Osama’s inheritance of 30 million $ from his family.

4. It has an extensive financial front, including businesses like diamond trade, exports, manufacture & transport. 5. Many businesses and banks in the gulf are used as ‘fronts’ enabling Al Qaeda to conduct business under cover.

The Taliban

The Taliban is the strategic reserve of Al Qaeda’s terrorist network providing motivated & experienced fighters for operations as & when required. It is actually the 055 Brigade of The Afghanistan army.

055 Brigade memberships is from Arab countries, SE Asia, Central Asia and the Aghans who fought elsewhere like Kashmir, Tajikstan, etc. (but trained in Afghanistan)

Al Qaeda Training

Basic Training Guerrilla Warfare, Islamic Law (Shariat)
Advanced Training Assassinations, use of explosives, heavy weapons, navigation, communication, use of knives, ropes and poisons to kill.
Specialized Training Surveillance, counter-surveillance, forging identities, vehicle borne suicide attacks.

Al Qaeda’s Military Committee is responsible for recruiting, training, procuring special weapons, transporting and launching military operations. Each training camp trains recruits with basic, advanced & specialised trg and is headed by a deputy emir. The committee appoints agent handlers who manage the network of cells outside Afghanistan.

Al Qaeda Equipment

1. weapons left behind by Soviets

2. Stinger Missiles (surface to air missiles set up by western governments, others by Pakistan, Sudan, etc)

3. weapons given by Taliban and by ISI.

The 055 Brigade

This is Al Qaeda’s secret guerilla team specially trained by the Al Qaeda. From 1997 to 2001, 055 brigade was incorporated into the Afghanistan Army to fight the Northern Alliance. The Talibans shock troops were largely made up of members of this brigade. The brigade was kept aside as a reserve for Al Qaeda’s terrorist network.

In Nov 2001, the Taliban was overthrown by the Northern alliance, along with US support to destroy the Al Qaeda and find Osama Bin laden for his role in the 9/11 attack on the WTC and other terrorist acts on the US and the world. However Osama is missing and his whereabouts are unknown.