Current Events and the Psychology of Politics

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Archive for the 'Terrorism' Category

Summary: A leading specialist on al-Qaida, Noman Benotman, says Saif al-Adel, an Egyptian, is acting as interim operational leader of the terrorist organization pending the expected appointment of deputy chief Ayman al-Zawahiri as successor to Osama bin Laden. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on May 18, 2010, Aubrey Immelman provided his weekly report of U.S. military deaths in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, compiled from U.S. Department of Defense News Releases.

May 7th, 2011

Summary: Radical American-born Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki escaped a U.S. drone attack in Yemen when a missile was fired at a car in southern Yemen, killing two brothers believed to be al-Qaida militants. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on May 7, 2010, Aubrey Immelman reported that alleged links between Faisal Shahzad’s Times Square bombing attempt and the Taliban are adding to perceptions of Pakistan as a global exporter of terror and increasing pressure on its military to crack down on extremists along the Afghanistan border. The Pakistani Taliban — Tehrik-e-Taliban — was hellbent on revenge inside America after a U.S. Predator drone attack killed its leader, Baitullah Mehsud, in August 2009 and more recent strikes that nearly killed Baitullah’s successor, Hakimullah Mehsud, in January 2010.

May 4th, 2011

Summary: In view of the vital national security interests of the U.S. and its allies in the war on terror to accurately conceptualize the leadership role structure (terrorist types) in an organization such as al-Qaida and to interdict future attacks, Aubrey Immelman provides a summary of his analysis of the key leadership roles in global-reach terrorism operations. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on May 4, 2010, Aubrey Immelman provided his weekly report of U.S. military deaths in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Apr 21st, 2011

Summary: As the Taliban spring offensive heats up in Afghanistan, here’s a quick guide to 12 of the most-hunted insurgent commanders on the front lines in the AfPak war. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on April 21, 2010, Aubrey Immelman reported that the two top-ranking leaders of al-Qaida in Iraq, Abu Omar al-Baghdadi and Abu Ayyub al-Masri, were killed in a joint U.S.-Iraqi operation on Sunday, April 18, 2010, in what Vice President Joe Biden called a “potentially devastating blow” to the terrorist operation.

Feb 7th, 2011

Summary: Minnesota Somali gangs known in recent years for armed robberies, burglaries, and even killings of fellow East Africans have evolved into more lucrative criminal enterprises — including sex trafficking and credit card fraud — and are proliferating their crimes from Minneapolis to other parts of the United States. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on February 7, 2010, Aubrey Immelman featured the controversial “Focus on the Family” anti-abortion TV spot featuring football star Tim Tebow and his mother Pam, aired during the 2010 Super Bowl.

Jan 26th, 2011

Summary: While most Americans are focused on legitimate economic concerns, looming threats to our national security are building on the horizon, for example, the regrouping of al-Qaida to mount coordinated attacks on the United States — including Mumbai-style swarm attacks, Beslan-style school massacres, and other low-intensity, low-casualty (but panic-inducing) acts of terror with the potential to inflict serious damage on the U.S. economy. This week’s suicide bombing at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport is a tragedy that could just as easily happen in the United States. One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on January 26, 2010, Aubrey Immelman reported that a new report warned that al-Qaida had not abandoned its goal of attacking the United States with a chemical, biological, or even nuclear weapon and examined al-Qaida’s high-value target list for terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.

Jan 5th, 2011

Summary: The Obama administration has ramped up its secret war on terror groups with a new military targeting center to oversee the growing use of special operations strikes against suspected militants in hot spots around the world. The creation of the center comes as part of the administration’s increasing reliance on clandestine and covert action to hunt terror suspects. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on January 5, 2010, Aubrey Immelman reported that Dr. Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi, the 32-year-old Jordanian physician who struck the CIA’s Camp Chapman forward operating base in Khost province near the Afghan-Pakistan border on December 30, 2009 killing seven Central Intelligence Agency employees, matched the psychological profile of a specific type of suicide bomber.

Dec 28th, 2010

Summary: Fuad Mohamed “Shongole” Qalaf, leader of al-Shabab, Somalia’s al-Qaida-linked Islamist insurgency, is threatening to attack America. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on December 28, 2009, Aubrey Immelman reported that in the midst of two unfinished wars — Afghanistan and Iraq — the United States had quietly opened a third, largely covert, war front against Al Qaeda in Yemen.

Dec 12th, 2010

Summary: Antonio Martinez, a naturalized U.S. citizen who goes by the name Muhammad Hussain after recently converting to Islam, faces charges of attempted murder of federal officers and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction after plotting to blow up a Baltimore-area military recruiting center. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on December 12, 2009, Aubrey Immelman reported that a spike in terrorism cases involving U.S. citizens challenged long-held assumptions that Muslims in Europe are more susceptible to radicalization than their better-assimilated counterparts in the United States. According to several U.S. and international terrorism analysts, immigration trends, the global spread of a militant Islamism, and controversial actions by the United States and its allies since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks increase the probability that U.S. Muslims will carry out a domestic attack.

Dec 11th, 2010

Summary: A car explosion and apparent suicide attack reportedly linked to Sweden’s presence in Afghanistan injured two people, killed the bomber, and caused panic among Christmas shoppers in Stockholm. … One-year retrospective: One year ago today, on December 11, 2009, Aubrey Immelman reported the closure of what may be China’s first megachurch — the most visible sign that the communist government is determined to rein in the rapid spread of Christianity, including a September 2009 crackdown in which hundreds of police and hired thugs descended on the Golden Lamp Church in Linfen, Shanxi province, smashing doors and windows, seizing Bibles, and sending dozens of worshippers to hospitals with serious injuries.