Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Case of Belal Khazaal and "Essential Provisions in the Rules of Jihad"

I am glad to see that some juries and judges are able to fight the legal jihadis as well as the military tends to do.

Counterterrorism Blog: The Case of Belal Khazaal and "Essential Provisions in the Rules of Jihad": "The Case of Belal Khazaal and "Essential Provisions in the Rules of Jihad"
By Evan Kohlmann

Yesterday, at the Supreme Court of New South Wales (NSW) in Sydney, Australia, former Qantas Airlines baggage handler Belal Khazaal was convicted by a jury of "knowingly making a document connected with assistance in a terrorist act" in violation of S101.5 of the Australian Commonwealth Criminal Code. The charges were filed in relation to a book published by Khazaal under the alias "Abu Mohammed al-Tawhidi" titled "Essential Provisions in the Rules of Jihad." The book, dated September 2003, was written in Arabic and included large sections directly appropriated from the raw writings of known terrorist leaders -- such as Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri's book "Knights Under the Prophet's Banner." According to an introduction to the book signed by "Abu Mohammed al-Tawhidi" (a.k.a. Khazaal):

"This is but a short document I hastily prepared in response to a request from brothers working to support this religion. I was requested to prepare it, in this fashion, to serve as a reference to all brothers or small cells desiring to support this religion. With Allah’s help I set on its compilation and I completed it in few days. I am however convinced that had I sufficient time and had I been settled in my residence I would have produced a better job than this work which has been conceived in haste. However, better 'haste' than never... I seek the Almighty’s reward and I seek martyrdom for his sake. I do so running towards it not away from it. I beseech my brothers who read this message to pray that I may attain martyrdom."

Khazaal's 102-page "master guide" to the "essential provisions in the rules of jihad" included both theoretical and ideological material--as well as detailed, explicit instructions on how best to exterminate "Americans and Jews." The book includes an entire step-by-step manual on conducting assassinations (originally written by Saudi Al-Qaida commander Abu Jandal al-Azdi), as well as directions on "remote control detonation devices", "letters and letter bombs", "booby trapping a car", "detonating a car from a distance", "sniping", "smothering", "hitting with a hammer", and "martyrdom operations." Among other things, the book emphasizes to readers that "small groups can cause havoc among Americans": "Pursuing Americans and Jews is not an impossible task. Killing them with a single shot, a stab or a pack of a popular mix or with an iron rod is not a difficult deed. Neither is burning their properties with a Molotov bottle. Small groups with small available means can cause horror to American and Jew alike."

One of the final sections of Khazaal's book is titled, "Recommendations to the Mujahideen: Examples of Jihad During Weaker Times to Emulate." According to this section:

"The impressive success of the conquest of New York is but a reminder that today’s mujahideen are no less than their forefathers. They are young, very professional men who can fly and maneuver planes. They are so disciplined to follow instructions to the letter and are ready to sacrifice themselves to regain the dignity and glory of the Muslim nation. Friend and foe alike acknowledge that today Mujahideen are technologically-savvy and employ sophisticated communication technology such as satellite telephones and use the Internet through a coded manner including steganography and other forms of technology... Of the unique examples that attracted my attention in the last two decades are legends that need no introduction. But it is the quality of men that needs emphasis. The famous 'Engineer' Yahya Ayyash and another unknown and unrecognized man yet he is no less heroic, Ramzi Yousef... His original plan was to destroy the entire [World Trade Center] inflicting maximum damage and casualties in the vicinity of a quarter of a million as punishment for America‘s frequent bloody interventions in Islamic affairs... I can only imagine his glee in his captivity (may Allah break his chains) as he was listening to the news of the Conquest of New York and the success his comrades were able to carry out what he started."

Khazaal's conviction in what has been a landmark legal case in Australia represents a major victory for the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP). It should also be taken as a stern warning to those--not just in Australia, but around the world--who believe that they can continue to use the Internet to incite the murder of innocent civilians in terrorist acts without facing serious consequences for their own actions. "

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