London Web Threat Not From al Qaeda

By Hoda Osman

Jun 29, 2007 2:31pm

The statement, "London shall be bombed," posted on a jihadi Web site last night and first reported by CBS News is unlikely an official claim of responsibility by an al Qaeda group. While the message was found on a popular password-protected jihadii Internet forum, "al Hesba,"  it was found in the general section not known to be used for a major public statement.  Messages from al Qaeda and other groups are usually posted in the "statements" section of the Web site by its administrators. The message was posted by a frequent writer who has never previously acted as a spokesperson for any al Qaeda group or been the source of al Qaeda material. The user who posted the note identifies himself as "Abu Osama al Hazin," i.e. the sad Abou Osama. According to the Web site’s available information, he joined the forum in November 2005 and has 500 postings. Judging by his previous participations, it’s clear that "Abou Osama" is supportive of terrorist groups, but unlikely that he has direct connections to any. His postings mostly include comments on other current events or message posted by other users. In one message, he asks forum members for technical advice about updating his computer’s Windows operating system. In another, he responds to a message about the Arab news channel al Arabiya showing footage of insurgents infighting in Iraq, by suggesting a car bomb could destroy the station’s buidling. The focus of yesterday’s message was criticizing Britain for awarding author Salman Rushdie knighthood recently.    The message is entitled "Is Britain Longing for al Qaeda’s Explosions?" Towards the end, the writer says, "The question is: Is London longing for al Qaeda’s bombings? We tell Britain: Sheikh Osama bin Laden, the prince of al Qaeda, threatened and carried out his threats in the past. I say, rejoice, by God, London will be hit God willing." This post has been updated.

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