Al Qaeda network, accused of orchestrating the September 11 attacks in 2001, has been the subject matter of abundant literature as of that date. Different authors, journalists and “experts on terrorism”, have written editorials, reports and books. The proliferation of those works has widely contributed to figure out, in people’s minds, the feeling of a real threat to the West and the whole world, which would be incarnated by fanatic Muslims. A quick inventory of the sources used and elements of information provided, leaves hardly no doubt on the origin and lack of credibility.

The origin of the organization is mentioned in various articles from September 11. According to the official version, it was created by Osama Bin Laden in 1988 and developed immediately in Afghanistan to become a world network “that would finance, train and use other groups which range from 35 to 60 countries”. The objective would be “to strike the interests of the United States worldwide [1].

However, experts in Arab culture have a different opinion as to the birth of the movement. “Al Qaeda”, which means “the base” or “database”, would be a file created by Osama Bin Laden during the war in Afghanistan. At that time, the anticommunist millionaire managed the funds for the Saudi services and CIA of the United States to expel the Soviet Red Army out of Afghanistan.

It not only financed the salaries of the Jihadists (fighters or guerrilla) as the security work but also gathered a great amount of information. Once the conflict was over, “the base” would become a tool at the disposal of Saudi Arabia and other Muslim States: when they wanted to carry out an operation, either to send medications, aid programs or political interference, even military, consulted “Al Qaeda” to collect information on the targeted region, and get to know for example, if there were other organizations operating already there.

Under this concept, “Al Qaeda” would not be in any way a hierarchical organization, but simply a great information database for the Muslim countries.

Hence, the issue is easier. It is not necessary to infiltrate that network to control its elements, because it is not a network. It would be enough to put together all the attacks that took place in all parts of the world that were attributed systematically to groups “linked” to Al Qaeda. All documentation or reports about this “organization” are based on the rhetoric of addition: sometimes Bin Laden’s “right-hands” (deputies) are accused, some others certain groups are blamed of being “sympathetic” with such “organization.”

The legal processes embarked in Europe on “sleeping networks” of “Islamic terrorism” were based not only upon material evidences but also upon common intellectual hypothesis: a fundamentalist traveled to Berlin when Mohammed Atta resided there, another one took military training in Afghanistan, etc. Finally, the different records created by the antiterrorist justice did not include charges “related to a terrorist organization”. The courts which have effectively tried terrorists have never admitted that they are linked to an international organization [2].

Actually, the legal objective does not count. It is the details of the instructions what counts, even more than the verdict itself. The alarmist expression of “Islamic threat” allows fabricating a common enemy, which ranges from the Palestinian Hamas to the Indonesian Jamaa Islamiya, including States like Syria or Sudan, to finally cover the whole Muslim world. That ghost nurtures the ideology of “Clash of Civilizations” which justifies the contemporary nature of the Anglo-Saxon imperialism [3].

Far from denouncing such absurd amalgams, different States have taken them into account, running the risk of regretting later. Hence, Vladimir V. Putin has continued fostering the war on global terror to put an end to the criticisms for the bombardments in Grozny, rather than denouncing the poison of this ethnic-religious analysis during the taking of hostages of Beslan.

In France, the said amalgams were used, at the beginning of Jacques Chirac’s term, in order for the antiterrorist authorities to arrest the Algerian opponents, before Jacques Chirac himself became a hero of dialogue between civilizations.

To prove that there is a tentacular and structured terrorist network, Washington had to turn to a well spread figure in the United States, the “repentant”, from the insider which, full of remorse, provided descriptions from within the organization which he was part of. It should be recalled that in the United States and now in many other countries, including France, the “repentant” negotiates its statements against the community. Therefore, he could blame himself and accuse anyone without bearing the consequences. This procedure allowed to dismantle mafia organizations, but also caused all kinds of slanderous denunciations.

In Italy, the judges who were promoted to the Operation “Clean Hands” turned out to be the victims at the end, since the “repentant” accused the judges, one by one, of being the mafia interlocutors.

The first repentant appeared when the attacks against the US Embassies in Nairobi took place on August 7, 1998, and Dar Salaam in February 2001. Jamal al-Fadl, a 38-year-old Sudanese, known up to that time in the FBI records by the nickname of CS1, Confidential Source 1, is one of them. He stated in a court in Manhattan that he had been a member of the central core of Al Qaeda. Although his testimony “could not be verified, of course, and raised a lot of question marks [4],” the FBI would provide protection as of July 1996, date in which was presented “at the visa department of a US Embassy whose location was not disclosed.” The US federal police spent on that objective nearly one million dollars in 5 years.

But what information could Jamal al-Fadl have to justify such interest by the authorities? To answer that question, it is convenient go back to his biography. In his own words, he mentioned that he had lived for two years in Brooklyn and in Southern United States, where he raised funds for the Al Farooq mosque [5], before he joined the Islamic brigades deployed in Afghanistan as instructed by the CIA, and under the leadership of Osama Bin Laden to fight against the Soviet occupation troops.

In 1991, he was taken to an interview with the administrator by then of the database (Al Qaeda) of all radical Islamic groups in the place. When the hardcore of Bin Laden’s structure was transferred to Sudan, Jamal al-Fadl followed the movement and settled down under the protection of the African Islamic regime and National Islamic Front in power [6]. Since 150.000 dollars were deviated from the transactions for Al Qaeda, he suddenly contacted the US authorities almost 3 years later and was taken from Sudan to the US.

The career of the alleged terrorist leads to skepticism. In fact, legally speaking, we could question the reliability of an informer used as a witness by US authorities after having worked for the CIA in Afghanistan, before being recruited in less than five years later by the FBI. More so, when he left the terrorist organization, it was two years before the first attacks attributed to Bin Laden against the US Embassies in Africa. However, he was summoned to testify in the legal process.

Despite such evident reserves, Al-Fadl is considered as “one [of the] key elements” of Al Qaeda, organization that was “in charge of the salaries [7].”

Therefore, he knew all details about the organization and, particularly, its financial sources. On this matter, he testified before a court in Manhattan: he questioned a bank network accomplice of the international terrorist organization, with branches in Sudan, Malaysia, Great Britain, Hong Kong and Dubai. He also described “how the combatants were sent to Chechnya and paid 1.500 dollars per person; how Jihad was financed in Eritrea through contribution of cash; how Bin Laden became the rival of Sudan intelligence services after he was found in Peshawar (Pakistan), etc. Even worse, according to justice, Bin Laden made a commitment several times, since 1992, to buy nuclear devices and vectors.”

Jamal Ahmed al-Fadl, who separated from Al-Qaeda in 1996, mentioned in detail the way in which Bin Laden’s network operated: it is “made up of one leader (Bin laden himself), who rules a consultative council, the Majlis, which is in connection with other four committees in charge of financial, religious, military and media matters. These four committees are the ones that choose the operation commanders and the ones in charge of the special missions. This pyramidal structure, formal, is superimposed by a horizontal division of 24 groups, which is this time an informal division. The communications among cells, through internet, are secured not only by encrypted e-mails but also resonant files with interference.”

The advantage of such description of the terrorist organization, so detailed but impossible to verify, allows the United States to prove the thesis of a tentacular hydra, whose branches are in all parts of the world, especially in the West.

The enemy is everywhere and Bin Laden had even operation centers in New York. Even worse, the assassination of the charismatic leader of Al Qaeda would not bring about the end of his organization, which is structured to resist such coup de grace, thanks to the elements from the “extreme forces and different movements linked to some elements of Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad”, three organizations engaged in an armed struggle against Israel, but known for their disagreement on how to carry out this struggle, even for their antagonism. The “war on terror” is therefore infinite.

The second repentant called to testify in the legal process in Manhattan was a US citizen who was originally from Egypt. His pedigree is also amazing: after having “worn the uniform of the US Special Forces [8], Ali Mohamed had joined Bin Laden in the late 1980s. He was summoned to the New York court, failed to go personally, but allowed the drafting of “an FBI report based on his testimony.”

Ali Mohamed

Mohamed does not happen to be any person. He is a former member of the Egyptian secret services who assured, between 1987 and 1998, the training of Al Qaeda combatants.
At that time, he also taught at the John Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School, “where he trained the members of the most secret networks of influence, the stay-behind and officers of the US Special Forces [9].”

In his written statement, Ali Mohamed mentioned in particular other foreign targets related to the attacks in Africa, “among others the Embassy of France and the French Cultural Center”, which made Roland Jacquard (a) to ascertain that “beyond the interests of the United States, the interests of the West are a target and the threat may be more vague that what it seems [10]”.

The Islamic terrorism has not only as a target the United States and its aggressive foreign policy, particularly in the Middle East, but also “the West” on a more general basis, in order to establish a caliphate (b) worldwide. This has the merit of identifying the limits as expressed then by the US president George W. Bush: “Either you are with us or with the terrorists [11].

The term “repentant” could also be used in an abusive way, as shown in the case of Djamel Beghal. This 38-year-old French-Algerian was arrested in September 2001 in Dubai airport, where he told the local police about a plan to attack the Embassy of the United States in Paris and his links with Al Qaeda. It was a valuable statement for the French justice and DST (Direction de Surveillance du Territoire, French Secret Services) that were trying to prove the real Islamic threat in France.

Unfortunately, back in Paris, he withdrew his statements and denied any involvement in the preparation of the attack. As he said, his statements in Dubai were due to mistreatment: “solitary confinement, total lack of communication, physical abuse, psychological pressure [12], a version that was partially confirmed by a French antiterrorist judge interrogated in the TV channel Europe 1, on October 2, 2001.

In his opinion, the Emiratis officers used “local religious leaders” in order to “brain washing him the way around” for nine months, which would allow him to recover “the fair way of Islam [13].”

Therefore, a religious awareness had convinced Beghal of telling everything he knew about the activities of Al Qaeda in Europe. There was only one small problem: nothing could confirm that the US Embassy in Paris was included in the plan of the attack. The only Islamic people who were charged assured that there were in fact other targets, but none in France [14]. Beghal, at the beginning, confessed to Emiratis investigators everything they wanted to hear before he withdrew his statements later before the French investigators.

Djamel Beghal

Djamel Beghal is therefore not the “good client” needed by the French antiterrorist justice. Yacine Aknouche, arrested in February 2002, would be a better choice. Investigated and officially arrested during the investigation on the plan of attack in Strasbourg in December 2000, this manufacturer of fake credit cards – where the police discovered “suspicious chemical formulas” in his house – suddenly confirmed, during the interrogation, that there is a sleeping terrorist network in Europe, particularly active in France.

Even better, it is shown as a central knot: in a visit to Afghanistan, he met with Richard Reid, the man of the explosives on his shoes on the flight Paris-Miami, with Zacharias Moussaoui, the French kept in secret by the United States for shouting loud and strong that he wanted to learn how to throw planes against buildings, but also with Ahmed Ressam, who was arrested in December 1999 in the Canadian border carrying 50 Kg of explosives.

Yacine Aknouche goes even beyond that: he stated having met Abu Doha, an Islamic detainee in London and alleged head of the Francfort group and who was in contact with “various people involved in the assassination of the commander Massoud in Afghanistan, in September 2001 [15].”

The story of that mythomaniac was a good opportunity for the French investigators. One of them, almost naïve, stated: “This type of report is extraordinary”. The antiterrorist judges based on the fact that he had a machine “to code” the bank cards, that is, a simple way to code the magnetic card that was available for business [16], to make “a compulsory point for financial logistics of the networks.” According to judge Bruguiere, “every machine could generate up to 30.000 Euros per week to their owners, which could assure them a substantial part of the financing [17].”

Finally, it has to be verified that the “repentant” of Al Qaeda are not a legion. Besides, the chosen ones by the responsible of the “war on terror” to enthrone them collapse for not being completely reliable, which makes us question the origin of information pertaining to the “organization of Osama Bin Laden”, taken up by the world media. Do they come from, like the Jihadists who fought against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, directly from Washington?

[1« Les 11 organisations cibles de la guerre antiterroriste américaine », AFP, September 25, 2001.

[2Paul Labarique : « La Justice n’a pas trouvé d’agent d’Al Qaïda en Europe » Voltaire, August 19, 2004.

[3Thierry Meyssan : « The ‘Clash of Civilizations’», Voltaire, June 4, 2004.

[4Alain Campiotti : « L’homme qui a trahi Bin Laden se confesse devant un tribunal de Manhattan », Le Temps, February 15, 2001.

[5Alain Lallemand : « La piste Bin Laden : pourquoi et comment », Le Soir, September 13, 2001.

[6Roland Jacquard : Au nom d’Oussama Bin Laden, Editorial Jean Picollec, 2001.

[7« La piste Bin Laden : pourquoi et comment », op.cit.

[8Michel Moutot : « Devant les jurés de New York, une esquisse du réseau Bin Laden », AFP, October 2, 2001.

[9Binjamin Weiser and James Risen : D’après « The Masking of a Militant », New York Times, December 1st, 1998, quoted in L’Effroyable Imposture, by Thierry Meyssan, Carnot, 2002.

[10Au nom d’Oussama Bin Laden, op.cit.

[11Address to a Joint Session of Congress and the American People, Services of the White House, September 20, 2001.

[12« Fin de l’enquête sur Djamel Beghal, chef présumé d’une cellule islamiste », AFP, August 27, 2004.

[13Patricia Tourancheau : « L’aveu de Djamel Behgal », Libération, October 3, 2001.

[14Paul Labarique : « Justice Did Not Find Al-Qaeda Agents in Europe », Voltaire, August 19, 2004.

[15Christophe Parayre : « L’extraordinaire confession d’un islamiste de la mouvance Ben Laden », AFP, February 9, 2002.

[16These objects which have a relatively simple use and are easily available (, allow one to make different kinds of magnetic cards, cable TV cards, telephone cards, even bank cards. They are made to manufacture the real ones, but also the fake ones.

[17Jean-Marie Leclerc : « Le "comptable" supposé des réseaux en Europe », Le Figaro, February 11, 2002.