Wednesday, January 02, 2013

  • Wednesday, January 02, 2013
  • Challah Hu Akbar
Guest post by Challah Hu Akbar, aka Challah & CHA


The following are excerpts from Israeli Intelligence and al-Qaeda by Shlomo Shpiro.
Analysis of all al-Qaeda cells arrested in Israel so far shows four common characteristics which made them vulnerable to Israeli intelligence detection and interception: their young age; the influence of Internet propaganda and their reliance on Internet communication; their financial and technical limitations; and their separation from mainstream secular Palestinian terror groups. Almost all members of the various cells were young men in their twenties, who had become increasingly religious, and were known as extremists within their communities. Most were very influenced by al-Qaeda’s online Internet propaganda and spent much time online, reading the preachings of radical clerics, and accumulating knowledge about bombmaking. But their enthusiasm for terrorism was not matched by technical or financial abilities. Most cells did not possess the financial means of acquiring arms or explosives on the black market, and thus expended much of their energies improvising weapons and primitive bombs. They received no support, whether money or weapons, from the secular Palestinian terror groups, which reject al-Qaeda’s ideology and the independence of its cells. These vulnerabilities gave the Israeli intelligence community powerful tools to use in preventing al-Qaeda attacks inside Israel. Through the use of human sources within Arab communities and extensive monitoring of Internet activities, some cells were discovered and their members arrested. Faced with Israeli intelligence successes, and unable to carry out effective attacks inside Israel, al-Qaeda operatives increasingly turned to launching cross-border attacks into Israel from the neighboring Arab states, where they enjoyed a wider operational freedom.
Three lessons can be learned from a decade of confrontation between Israeli intelligence and al-Qaeda, lessons which are applicable to many other countries as well. The first is the vulnerability of local al-Qaeda cells due to their reliance on the Internet and other forms of digital communication. Extensive intelligence monitoring of radical jihadist Websites and communications is a powerful tool in the counterterrorism arsenal against al-Qaeda. The second lesson is the crucial importance of ‘‘tactical’’ intelligence cooperation between countries, not only in sharing information but also in ensuring that such an exchange of information is rapid enough to be relevant. The al-Qaeda threats can be managed only by constant and effective intelligence exchange, which must be adapted to fit the changes in threat levels and types. Rapid information exchange enables the prevention of terror attacks, while slower exchange often brings only outdated information of little operational value. The third lesson is the growing danger of home-grown al-Qaeda cells, young people who are attracted by al-Qaeda’s online propaganda to such an extent that they form small, independent cells and are willing to commit terror attacks. While effective intelligence work can often intercept and prevent large attacks, preventing the formation of such small cells with little or no active footprint until they actually begin violent action is almost impossible. But, over time, increased Internet monitoring and human sources inside Muslim religious communities do provide effective, though imperfect, solutions to this threat.  
Political changes in Egypt and the ousting of the Mubarak regime in early 2011 resulted in a general weakening of the Egyptian government’s authority in the Sinai Peninsula. Bedouin tribes in this lawless region, already making millions of dollars from smuggling weapons across the border into Gaza, have now become arms suppliers of the whole region. In the Sinai, the black market in arms is expanding rapidly and the weapons offered for sale include not only assault rifles and ammunition but also heavy rockets, explosives, anti-tank weapons, mortars, and even ground-to-air missiles which disappeared from Libya during the anti-Gaddafi revolution. In July 2011, the former Head of the Shabak, Avi Dichter, warned that the Sinai had turned from a region of arms smuggling to a region of arms transfers, since the lack of any effective Egyptian police presence makes it unnecessary for the Bedouins to even bother hiding the shipments of heavy weapons being sold to any terror group with enough cash and a truck to carry them out. Israeli intelligence has been able to monitor some of the arms smuggled out of Libya and warn the Egyptians. In late August 2011, Egyptian border guards intercepted a large shipment of heavy weapons near the border with Libya, which may have included SA-7 anti-aircraft missiles. In the hands of an al-Qaeda cell, such missiles would create a severe threat to Israeli civilian and military aircraft flying over the entire region. This threat prompted the Israeli government to speed up the construction of a border fence with Egypt along the entire Israeli–Egyptian border. That border remains the most vulnerable region for future al-Qaeda attacks against Israel. How the revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya, and the uprising in Syria, will impact the presence and activities of al-Qaeda in the Middle East and on the level of support they gain within the populations of the region remains to be seen.

EoZTV Podcast

Podcast URL

Subscribe in podnovaSubscribe with FeedlyAdd to netvibes
addtomyyahoo4Subscribe with SubToMe

search eoz




follow me

Follow by Email


Elder: elder -at- elderofziyon dot com
Mrs. Elder: mrs.elder -at-



For $18 donation

Sample Text

EoZ's Most Popular Posts Ever


Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


Donate to fight for Israel!

Monthly subscription:
Payment options

One time donation:

subscribe via email

Follow EoZ on Twitter!



The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

Omri: "Elder is one of the best established and most respected members of the jblogosphere..."
Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

Interesting Blogs


Abbas liar Academic fraud administrivia al-Qaeda algeria American Jews Amnesty analysis anti-semitism apartheid arab refugees Arafat archaeology art ASHREI B'tselem bahrain bbc BDS BDSFail Bedouin Beitunia beoz book review breaking the silence Cardozo Chanukah Christians conspiracy theories Cyprus Daphne Anson Davis report DCI-P double standards Egypt Elder gets results ElderToons Electronic Intifada EoZNews eoztv Erekat EU Euro-Mid Observer Fake Civilians 2014 Fatah featured Features fisking flotilla Forest Rain free gaza freedom of press palestinian style future martyr Gary Spedding gaza Gaza Platform George Galloway George Soros gideon levy gilad shalit gisha Goldstone Report Good news Grapel Guardian gunness Haaretz hamas Hamas war crimes hasbara Hasby 2014 Hasby 2016 Hebron helen thomas hezbollah history Hizballah Holocaust denial honor killing HRW Human Rights Humanitarian crisis humor Hypocrisy ICRC Ilan Pappe impossible peace incitement Indonesia international law intransigence iran Iraq Islamic Judeophobia Islamism Israel Loves America Israeli culture Israeli high-tech J Street jabalya jeremy bowen Jerusalem jewish fiction Jewish Voice for Peace jihad jimmy carter John Kerry jokes jonathan cook Jordan Juan Cole Judaism Judea-Samaria Kairos Karl Vick ken roth khalid amayreh Khaybar Lebanon leftists Linkdump lumish mahmoud zahar Malaysia max blumenthal McGraw-Hill media bias Methodist Miftah Mohammed Assaf Mondoweiss moonbats Morocco music Muslim Brotherhood Nakba Natural gas Nazi News nftp NGO NIF norpac NYT Occupation offbeat Omar Barghouti Opinion oxfam PA corruption PalArab lies Palestine Papers pallywood pchr PCUSA Peter Beinart Petra MB poll Poster Preoccupied Prisoners propaganda Proud to be Zionist purimshpiel Qaradawi Qassam calendar Rafah Ray Hanania real liberals reference Richard Falk rogel alpher roger cohen roger waters Saudi Arabia saudi vice self-death self-death palestinians sex crimes SFSU shechita sheikh tamimi Shujaiyeh Simona Sharoni SodaStream South Africa Speech stamps Syria Tarabin Temple Mount Terrorism This is Zionism Thomas Friedman Tunisia Turkey UCI UK UN UNDP unesco unhrc United Arab Emirates Unity unrwa UNRWA hate unrwa reports UNRWA-USA Varda Vic Rosenthal Washington wikileaks work accident X-washing Yemen zahran zionist attack zoo Zvi

Blog Archive