Fox News reports: “Iraq evidence led feds to Albany mosque.” According to the report:
Information found in Iraq led federal investigators to become suspicious of an Albany, N.Y., mosque leader, FOX News has learned.
Last summer, U.S. troops discovered Yassin Muhhiddin Aref’s name, telephone number and address in a book left behind in a vacated terrorist training camp, a U.S. official told FOX News. The book also revealed that Ansar al-Islam, the group running the camp, had given Aref a title: “the commander.”
Aref, 34, is the Imam of the Masjid As-Salam mosque in Albany, N.Y. He and one other mosque leader were arrested Thursday and charged with helping an undercover informant posing as a weapons dealer who was plotting to buy a shoulder-launched missile that would be used to kill the Pakistani ambassador in New York City.
I’ve been reading news accounts of the Albany arrests for the past half hour; this report is the first I’ve seen with news of the Iraq connection.
HINDROCKET adds: Isn’t this a really, really huge story? Liberals have made it an article of faith that there was no possible connection between Iraq and any terrorists who could possibly threaten us. This has been proved wrong on many levels. But why isn’t this the ultimate refutation?
We’ve known for a while that terrorists associated with al Qaeda in northern Iraq, operating under the protection, if not–we still don’t know–the active direction and collaboration of Saddam’s regime, were supplying ricin for attacks in Europe. We now know something that the Bush administration has apparently known for a year, that the same Iraqi terrorists were working with and, I think it’s fair to assume, supporting and funding Islamofascist terrorists here in the United States. Specifically, Islamofascists in Albany, NY, who were trying to buy shoulder-fired missiles to shoot down aircraft.
Now, someone tell me: Why doesn’t this end any possible debate on the relationship between Saddam’s regime and international terrorism, in its most directly threatening form?