Counter-Terrorism: A Killer Web Site

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November 21, 2005: Indonesian counter-terrorism officials were recently faced with a very real threat on the Internet. A new terrorist web site (www.anshar.net) appeared, that gave very specific instructions for how Indonesian terrorists can carry out terrorist acts. The instruction is very specific, including maps of specific locations in Indonesia, indicating escape routes, and where to set up your attacks for maximum effects. This is something new. Terrorists have, for years, been distributing "how to" manuals for making attacks, but these provide instructions in general terms (how to build a bomb, basic tactics and techniques.)

The principal Indonesian terrorist group, Jemaah Islamiah, has been largely destroyed. But there are still many Indonesians (largely young men) who are keen to carry out terrorist attacks. However, because Jemaah Islamiah has been taken apart, with nearly all of its leaders and technical experts killed or captured, the wannabe jihadis, lack specific direction. Www.anshar.net took care of that, to a degree. The Indonesian government promptly said they would take the web site down, and that took a few days to do. Terrorists have become adept at hosting their web sites in hard to reach, for those intent on legally shutting the site down, locations. Police were able to identify the man who designed the web site (Abdul Aziz), who was already in police custody.

 


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