"While dictators rage and statesmen talk, all Europe dances — to The Lambeth Walk."

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Former Guantanamo Detainee Responsible for Yemen Massacre?

I wrote previously about the group of Westerners who went missing in Yemen whilst on a picnic.

The group consisted of a German doctor, his wife and three children, a British engineer and his South Korean wife, and two German nurses. All worked for a Dutch charity in a hospital in Sadaa.

The bodies of three females were found mutilated soon afterwards, and were identified as the Korean lady and the two German nurses, Rita Stumpp and Anita Gruenwald (below).

The Yemeni government is still searching for the other six, and they are presumed dead.

Terrorism experts think that the man responsible may be Said Ali al-Shihri (above), a deputy leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian peninsula, and former prisoner in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

From Fox:

But terrorism experts say their abductors and killers are almost certainly not a mystery. They say the crimes bear the mark of Al Qaeda, and they fear they are the handiwork of the international terror organization's No. 2 man in the Arabian Peninsula: Said Ali al-Shihri, an Islamic extremist who once was in American custody — but who was released from the U.S. detention center in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

And if al-Shihri is behind the gruesome murders and abductions, they say, it raises grave concerns that the scheduled January 2010 closing of the Guantanamo prison and the release of most of its prisoners to foreign countries will galvanize Al Qaeda and compromise American national security.

The nine foreigners — four German adults, three small German children, a British man and a South Korean woman — were abducted on June 12 after they ventured outside the city of Saada without their required police escorts, according to a spokesman from the Yemeni Embassy in Washington. Days later the bodies of Rita Stumpp and Anita Gruenwald, German nurses in training, and Eom Young-sun of South Korea were found shot execution style in the Noshour Valley in the province of Saada, an area known to be a hotbed of Al Qaeda activity.

No one has claimed responsibility for the abductions and murders, but experts say killing women and children is considered off-limits among many jihadist groups — though not to al-Shihri, a Saudi national who was released from Guantanamo in November 2007 and sent to a Saudi Arabian "rehabilitation" program for jihadists. It wasn't long before a "cured" al-Shihri was released from the program, crossed into Yemen and rejoined Al Qaeda, with whom he quickly rose to deputy commander.

In addition to last week's kidnappings, he is believed to have been behind the September attacks that left 16 dead at the U.S. Embassy in the Yemeni capital of San'a.

“This bears the marks of al-Shihri’s activity and bears the signs of his beliefs and assumptions of his behavior that are not viewed by other jihadists,” said Robert Spencer, terror expert and director of Jihad Watch, referring to the killing of women and presumed killing of the three small children.

Defense officials said that "while there is suspicion that Said Ali al-Shihri is involved in these latest attacks, we can't confirm it."

“There is great presumption of his involvement, but it’s not open and shut,” Spencer said.

“If he believed that these people picnicking in Yemen were aiding in the war against Islam, then he can justify these killings as legitimate — it’s this kind of perspective that this guy holds to, that it’s right to kill people who would normally be considered off-limits,” Spencer said.

“Christians aren’t allowed to proselytize in the Muslim world, and if that’s what was going on here ... well then, there you go."

1 comment:

Dr.D said...

The world thought Gitmo was just a horror, something to be greatly ashamed of. So now, the world, all of us unfortunately, are going to have to deal with these creatures turned loose and at large again. It is totally insane, but the US has yielded to world opinion on this, I am ashamed to say. Now we turn them loose so that they can continue on their merry way, carrying on with the mission we so rudely interrupted all those years ago. They will be killing folks all over the world. This is just the beginning. Fantasy is just fantastic!