Al Qaeda Produces… Terrorist Encyclopedias

From DEBKA-Net-Weekly 178 of Oct. 22, 2004
This week, al Qaeda published what passes in jihadist circles for encyclopedias – not one but two. The first is the single-handed handiwork of Abu Musab al Zarqawi, better known for staging mass murders by suicide bombers and hostage beheadings in Iraq. He calls his opus American Hell 2. This story was published exclusively last week for the benefit of DNW subscribers.
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Al Zarqawi’s work came out in print and in an electronic version. It is basically a compilation of the Tawhid and Jihad leader’s spoken and written words, with frames from the video-tapes recording his “operations.” The cover is a composite of photos of Zarqawi himself at different periods of his life. The most authentic portrays a young man dressed in festive white. It was taken from a video clip shot at his sister’s wedding in his Jordanian home town of Zarqa.
Our sources reveal that US intelligence in Iraq has finally obtained and up-to-date photo of the terrorist chief as he looks today. We have obtained this photo and publish it with this article.
The second “encyclopedia”, a 275-page volume, is the first of a series devoted to security and intelligence in the service of a terrorist organization – and structured more like an intelligence manual.
mg class=”picture” src=”/dynmedia/pictures/SaifalAdel.jpg” align=”left” border=”0″>Its author is named on the book’s cover as Seif bin Adel, who is notorious in counter-terror circles as al Qaeda’s intelligence chief (at least, according to the most recent information in the hands of Western intelligence).
From his safe base in Iran, bin Adel set up and orchestrated the large-scale May 2003 suicide attacks against Western housing compounds in Riyadh in which 9 Americans and 16 other nationals died. Later, the Saudis were dragged by Tehran into drawn-out negotiations over his extradition which led nowhere. The present whereabouts of the terrorist in the photo appearing with this article are unknown.
The publishers tried hard to make this volume look like a professionally-produced publication. According to the title page, it is the first volume of an encyclopedia published by “The Abu Zubeida Center for the Promotion of Jihad, Research Department.”
(Abu Zubaida, born to a Palestinian family in Saudi Arabia, was a high-ranking al Qaeda global executive and recruiter, whom the Americans captured in Pakistan two years ago.)
The content of the short foreword, signed by bin Adel, will sound eerily familiar to Americans. “We (namely, al Qaeda) pay too little attention to intelligence for two main reasons: over-confidence and overzealousness to carry out operations. Our jihad fighters therefore neglect the intelligence side of their operations, which causes needless loss of life, squanders resources and leads to avoidable fiascos.”
DEBKA-Net-Weekly‘s counter-terror experts, who have read the work, report chapters dealing with such subjects as recruitment, the activation of fighters and precautions against enemy intelligence agents. The section called “preventive security” deals with ways of getting rid of agents who mean harm to the organization or know enough to give away its secret operations.
A large part of the book is devoted to questions on “How to communicate and relay messages safely on the Internet and by e-mail.” Offered here are instructions on how to use Microsoft’s Word to transmit messages without leaving a trace and how to pirate usernames and passwords unbeknownst to their owners to plant alien content in their computer files. An electronic or telephone notice then goes out to the al Qaeda recipients informing them of the username, password and filename the need to unload the secret message buried in the pirated file.
Another chapter tells the al Qaeda terrorist what disguises he is permitted by religious precepts to assume to conceal his identify as a fundamentalist Muslim.

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