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Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|US government main sponsor of Al-Qaeda|
|10/22/02 at 10:01:46|
Many errors in Dr Gunaratna's book, says political scientist
Kuala Lumpur, Oct 19, IRNA -- The book "Inside Al-Qaeda, Global Network
of Terror," authored by Dr Rohan Gunaratna, is heavily based on extracts
of newspaper reports, features articles, government and other documents
on Al-Qaeda. The rest are the author's views.Malaysian political
scientist and human rights activist Dr FarishA. Noor said the first part
of the book has a lot of research on Al-Qaeda.
"Gunaratna also fingered the US government as the main sponsor and
benefactor of Al-Qaeda and had used the group in numerous covert
operations in Afghanistan, Central Asia and Eastern Europe as
Washington's dirty proxy war against the Soviets (during the latter's
occupation of Afghanistan)," Dr Farish told the Malaysia's afternoon
tabloid, the Malay Mail, on Saturday.
But, he said, the other half of the book had the author trying to weave
an elaborate narrative on Al-Qaeda's alleged linkages with other Islamic
organizations and movements worldwide.
Farish said that there is a dubious political message imbedded within
the book and a lack of historical understanding of why Muslim-US
relations have gone sour.
"The other major failure of the book is its attempt to construct an
international network when there isn't any," he said. Farish said
Gunaratna described Malaysia as "a victim of its own geo-politics and
the operational base for Al-Qaeda in South-East Asia."
"Among the `radical' and `militant' organizations that he lists as
parts of this nebulous and decentralised network are the Malaysian
Islamic Youth Movement (ABIM) and Malaysia's main opposition, Parti
Islam Se Malaysia (PAS).
"One of the organizations he cited is Angkatan Perpaduan Ummahor Muslim
Unity Front (APU) which does not exist anymore." Farish said Gunaratna
simply strings together Islamic movements that share similar concerns
and causes. "He notes that PAS and ABIM had expressed sympathy for the
Moro liberation struggle in the southern Philippines, led by groups like
the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and the Moro Islamic
Liberation Front (MILF)," said Farish."As Al-Qaeda is alleged to have
links to MILF, he then links it with PAS and ABIM and the so-called
"global network" arises instantlyas if by magic."
Farish also charged that Gunaratna failed to understand the various
movements and organizations he cited in his book.
On Thursday, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi
condemned the false allegations in the book which were used by the
United Nations Security Council report implicating the Malaysian ruling
coaltion Barisan Nasional (BN) with the Al-Qaeda terrorist movement.
Malaysia has lodged a protest with the UN Security Council over a UN
monitoring group report linking the BN to the Al-Qaeda terrorist
Abdullah said it was totally unacceptable for the group to include the
allegation, taken from a chart in Gunaratna's book, in their report to
He had said that "whoever wrote this book is irresponsible and totally
ignorant of the situation in Malaysia. For the UN monitoring group to
include this chart...is very much regrettable." Gunaratna is a senior
fellow of the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and also the
Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence at the
University of St Andrews in Scotland. He is a frequent guest on CNN.
Meanwhile, Gunaratna, who hails from Sri Lanka, in an interview with the
Malay Mail declined to say how and where he had got the documents.
He said he will hand the documents in his possession to the Malaysian
government. However, he declined to say when or how he will do it.
"The documents are basically from another government," he told The
Malay Mail in Singapore where he was a speaker at a terrorism seminar on
However, on page 197 of his book, Gunaratna has a footnote indicating
that he obtained the document entitled `MILF Linkages with Domestic and
Foreign Non-Government and People's Organizations' from the directorate
for intelligence of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other
In an interview with a Singapore television station on Friday,
Gunaratna denied he had linked BN to the MILF, but said he mentioned the
phrase "between MILF operatives and a few individuals in the Barisan
Nasional parties." Gunaratna asked the Malaysian government to examine
the issue to see if the mainstream political party has been infiltrated
by the extremist Al-Qaeda organization.
"I believe Malaysian and Indonesian political parties have been
infiltrated by the extremist organization," he claimed. He said the
facts in his book were based on "regional documents." "I have cited it
(the sources) in my book. It is up to the Malaysian government to
request to the government (from where the documents came) to examine it
and take steps to protect the national security as there has been a
growing trend of terrorist activities in this region," said Gunaratna.
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