Al Qaeda’s philanthropic moves
Al Qaeda is not known for its philanthropic activities, but this weekend in Somalia the terrorist group appears to have branched into a new business: distributing humanitarian aid. In a surreal scene, a man with a scarf twisted over his face stood in the middle of a camp full of starving people and announced that he had come to Somalia on behalf of Ayman al-Zawahri, Qaeda’s leader, and that Qaeda was eager to help famine victims.
“Our beloved brothers and sisters in Somalia, we are following your situation on a daily basis,” said the man, identified as Abu Abdulla Almuhajir.
According to witnesses and photographs from the event, he was surrounded by masked gunmen wearing clean, white vests like aid workers. Almuhajir presided over mounds of donated grain, in sacks marked “Qaeda campaign on behalf of Bin Laden. Charity for those affected by the drought.”
Stranger still, Almuhajir’s skin was white and he spoke perfect English. He said “brothers in Qaeda” had brought grain, powdered milk and dates for the victims and Zawahri had sent with a message of sympathy for Somalia. “Though we are separated by thousands of kilometers, you are consistently in our thoughts and prayers,” he told the Somalis gathered around him on Friday, and witnesses said a similar scene unfolded on Saturday.
Al Qaeda Should Be Assessed $9.3 Billion For Damage Caused By 9/11 Attacks, New York Judge Recommends
NEW YORK -- A magistrate judge in New York has recommended al-Qaida be assessed $9.3 billion for the damage done to properties and businesses in the Sept. 11 attacks.
Federal Magistrate Judge Frank Maas in a ruling Friday sent the recommendation to a district judge presiding over a lawsuit brought by several insurance companies.
The companies in 2003 sued various defendants, seeking damages for the 2001 terror attacks, which demolished the World Trade Center's twin towers. Al-Qaida never responded to the lawsuit and was found in default in 2006. Maas determined the actual damages and then tripled them as allowed by law.
At this time, the companies were only seeking an assessment of damages against al-Qaida. The organization founded by Osama bin Laden is blamed for orchestrating the terror attacks.