Terrorism knows no religion, no ideology, no nationality and no race, but all religions, all ideologies, all nationalities and all races have sadly been associated with terrorism at one time or another. As such, it is important to separate terrorist attacks committed by self-identified Salafist Muslim fundamentalists from incidents that are false flag attempts to blame an atrocity on Muslims for the purpose of sowing hatred against innocent Islamic communities.
In typical incidents of Islamist attacks, the groups in question are almost always all too proud to readily claim responsibility for the atrocity in question. Such groups typically provide ample gruesome evidence of the attacks to demonstrate their pride in pulling off an atrocity. Such perverse ” jihadist victory videos” are regularly produced by extremist groups operating in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, the Balkans, Indonesia, The Philippines and beyond. Such atrocities are genuine Islamist attacks that are promoted on video by the culprits whilst they are uniformly rejected by all Muslims as well as all other regions of the world.
By contrast, attacks that were not Islamist in their origin (irrespective of whether some Muslim patsies participated at a low level) are typically not credibly claimed by a known Islamist organisation. It is important at this point to differentiate between a well known terror group officially claiming responsibility for an attack versus either a troll or small time extremist taking to the internet to claim responsibility on behalf of a well known group like Daesh. The latter can be instantly discarded as nothing but a sick provocation and/or perverse attempt to grab attention.
When it comes to 9/11, it is crucial to note that no group credibly claimed responsibility for the atrocity in the immediate aftermath of the attack. Osama Bin Laden himself initially denied having anything to do with the 9/11 terrorist atrocity in the United States and it was in fact only in 2004 that he unambiguously claimed responsibility for 9/11. Crucially, by 2004 it was clear that in spite of whatever wealth he maintained, no nation in the world would wilfully give him asylum as in the previous decade both Sudan and Afghanistan had done. Yet his initial denials which were made at a time when he could have reasonably believed that he could expand his al-Qaeda terror network, Bin Laden denied having a hand in the attacks in spite of endorsing the general outcome of the atrocity for self-evident reasons.
Likewise, after the horrific 2008 attacks in Mumbai (also known as Bombay), no single terror group credibly claimed responsibility for the attack even though the Indian authorities and media jumped to blame Islamist groups allegedly based in Pakistan before the fires had even been extinguished.
This week, in the aftermath of the massacres in Sri Lanka, a similar trend has emerged wherein no credible claims of responsibility from a known terror organisation have been made. This however did not stop Indian media in particular from naming obscure Islamist groups as being responsible for the attack, even as the bombs were still exploding throughout Sri Lanka.
When one connects these dots, several trends emerge. Whilst it would be foolish to say that there is no such thing as Islamist terror (this is also Christian terror, secular terror, Hindu terror, Jewish terror and Buddhist terror), the atrocities that known Islamist groups like Daesh and al-Qaeda are typically capable of pulling off include the following: detonating small to medium sized improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in a single location, capturing vulnerable civilian targets through the use of un-uniformed gunmen, using isolated car or truck bombs against both soft and occasionally hard targets, highly unsophisticated car or truck ramming attacks, capturing hostages and beheading them before the cameras, executing legitimate political leaders whose security apparatus has broken down.
Conspicuously absent from this list of atrocities committed and then claimed by Islamist terror groups are the kinds of incredibly coordinated and often technically sophisticated types of multi-target attacks across a wide geographical expanse involving individuals from multiple countries such as that which one is led to believed happen on 9/11 in the United States and during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.
In both of those instances it was alleged by Washington and New Delhi respectively that Islamist terrorists travelled from abroad in a highly coordinated attack which used sophisticated payloads of weaponry (in the case of 9/11 hijacked jetliners flown flawlessly into their targets by alleged Islamists with little flight experience) in the kind of extremely coordinated attacks that in the past could have only been pulled off by state military-intelligence agencies like the CIA, FSB (the KGB’s successor), Mossad, RAW, etc. Such attacks likewise imply that the terrorist have an incredibly profound knowledge of the locations they are targeting, the likes of which could only be attained from a large intelligence network.
And yet, while non-critical minds believe that somehow in the 21st century, Islamist terrorists are able to act in more sophisticated manners than the CIA, FSB, Mossad and RAW, the Islamists themselves don’t seen to think so. The Islamists are proud to revel in sick attacks that require little technical skill such as beheading a defenceless hostage. But when it comes to events like 9/11, 26/11 and this week’s attack in Sri Lanka, there is radio silence from the Islamist organisations that otherwise gleefully congratulate themselves in the aftermath of a terrorist atrocity.
The fact of the matter is that there is no hard evidence which points to the fact that these Islamist organisations are somehow capable of pulling off events that would normally require the skills of a state intelligence agency. There is likewise no forthcoming logical explanation for why such groups are proud when they behead five captives yet are silent when their supposed brethren slaughter hundreds of civilians, including worshippers at the same time in a highly coordinated attack that brought an entire nation to its knees.
Clearly there is a logical disconnect that points to the fact that when it seems impossible to believe that a rag-tag terror group could pull off an atrocity requiring such coordination and technical sophistication and then not even seek to take credit for it, there is clearly a missing piece of the forensic puzzle.
There exists an expression that when it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck – it is a duck. When it comes to understanding actual Islamist terrorism, there is plenty of video evidence to show what Islamists do during and after an attack that is actually of their doing. As such, like 9/11 and 26/11, there is no signs of a proverbial Islamist duck quacking in the aftermath of the Sri Lanka attacks. There is clearly something else at hand.
What is at hand is that which one would assume was at hand prior to the post-9/11 infowar in which people were made to believe that Islamist terrorists are somehow not only more sophisticated and more evil than all other terrorists but that they are somehow more sophisticated than the intelligence agencies they allegedly alluded. Whoever believes that has clearly put a confirmation bias based on crude stereotyping above basic logic.
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