As Algeria and the U.S. exchange information on Algerian Islamic
terrorists, they find a common pattern. Many Algerian terrorists, who have
"disappeared" from view in Algeria, are showing up in Iraq (where
they are killed, captured or mentioned by prisoners), in a Western
prison, or under surveillance by Western security agencies. Fewer Algerians are
going ti Iraq, apparently after noting the high probability of getting killed
or captured there. Algerian terrorists are trying to establish themselves in
the West (Europe, Canada, Australia.) The GSPC members share information via
the Internet on how to work the legal and social welfare systems of Western
countries, in order to stay out of jail, and get the local governments to pay
for living expenses. But known GSPC members are closely watched, and know they
will be picked up if they are caught planning an terrorist operations. GSPC
members are also active in Arab countries, but this is more dangerous.
Especially in North Africa, counter-terror operations are very active, and
effective. Morocco and Libya are particularly energetic in hunting, and
catching, Islamic terrorists (who threaten the local governments). Meanwhile,
the GSPC leadership insists that it will carry on the struggle to establish an
Islamic state in North Africa, and, in a telling and pathetic gesture, publicly
calls on Osama bin Laden for "instructions."
2, 2007: Hassan Hattab, one of the founders of the GSPC, and about a hundred of
his followers, have accepted the government amnesty. Hattab was ousted as
leader of the GSPC in 2001, and his successor was killed in 2004, and GSPC has
been shrinking ever since. Hattab has pretty much stayed in the background
since 2001, when more radical members of the GSPC pushed a program of more
violence. This turned most Algerians against the Islamic radicals, and led to
the collapse of the GSPC.
31, 2006: Police arrested two Tunisians, who admitted that they had
entered Algeria, via Libya, with the help of Islamic terrorists, to work with
24, 2006: On the advice of French security officials, next month's
"Dakar Rally" (a vehicle race across the Sahara) will skip Mali.
There is fear that Algerian Islamic terrorists (belonging to GSPC) are in the
area, and might ambush or kidnap some of the racers. American Special Forces
have been training Mali security forces for some time now, but the area where
the GSPC remnants can hide out is vast, and controlled by tribes more congenial
to Islamic radicalism, than to their own government.
22, 2006: A major sweep, some fifty kilometers east of the capital, resulted
in three Islamic terrorists dead, and 14 arrested. Some of the arrested were
also working with criminal gangs, which is a typical method for terrorists to
support themselves, and gain access to goods and services available via the