British Royal Marines come ashore on Tijuana Beach at Camp Patriot, Kuwait from a Landing Craft Unit (LCU) from the Royal Navy, 3rd Surgical Group members from the 3rd Commando Brigade are in theatre to help Operation Enduring Freedom efforts.

U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 1st Class Arlo K. Abrahamson 2.26.03


Blair Talks to World Youth–Unmasking Terror


MTV–using it’s global arena–tackled today’s hottest topics concerning peace, terror and the war on Iraq by bringing together world youth and British Prime Minister Tony Blair for a debate of sorts where the British leader took tough questions. Even as the Iraqi poison drone and other secret Iraqi weapons activities are being exposed in UN documents, 5 more terrorists were arrested in Spain and attacks were being prevented to save lives in Europe. Yet, the connection in people’s minds is not easily made between terror attacks around the world and a terrorist state like Iraq that had aided in the execution of attacks such as 9-11.

Just days before the MTV challenge, Blair and Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar held a conference where both leaders agreed that standing strong for the protection of their countries may not be popular to some, but it is in fact a matter of ‘life and death’. While talking with youth on MTV, Blair answered their questions and tried to foster understanding about changes that have hit the free world in the last decade and the dangers of Islamic extremists who won’t stop plotting terror simply because we want peace. Blair has said that despite what we prefer to believe, the reality is Islamic radicals want to destroy the free world, through terror and propaganda, so they can enact a Taliban-type government over the world.

Iraq and Al Qaeda: Using the Media to Influence Western Minds

Clockwise: Saddam Hussein, Adolf Hitler, Saladin, Saddam Hussein

Recent media stories tell of Saddam Hussein’s apparent belief that he is the new Saladin who will conquer and rule again and more. Saladin was a 12th century Iraqi muslim that attacked and captured Jerusalem from Christian defenders (including England’s King Richard the Lionheart) but according to a few accounts he had somehow gained a so called nice guy reputation. Saddam reportedly also likens himself to Adolph Hitler, who fooled foreign leaders with his rhetoric, yet invaded European countries, killing 55 million and systematically gassed millions of innocent families, mostly Jews. At least one Iraqi defector says that Saddam’s youth martyrs and his mustache are evidence of his affinity for Hitler.

Mention of the 12th century crusades comes up again, but this time not in Iraq. After the CIA and Pakistani forces successfully captured al Qaeda chief Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, an interview of KSM resurfaced by Al-Jazeera reporter Yosri Fouda. The interview was conducted in April 2002 during which Mohammed gave the Al-Jazeera reporter CD-ROMs and cassettes that were reportedly related to terrorist activities and attacks such as the September 11th hijackings that KSM referred to as part of the "new crusades" and a video of the beheading of the Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed apparently told the reporter that he wanted him to distribute the tapes to Western news agencies in particular to the French media. Perhaps this story illustrates a possible reason there is so much confusion in the media, even after the 9-11 terrorist attacks that killed over 3,000 innocent people.

However, Sunday on MTV, Blair tried to help quell confusion by giving more information and by focusing on questions the group wanted answered about varied aspects of the impending war on Iraq.

Blair also put into perspective the need for stability in the Middle East and its effect on peace in the world and said that although he would accept Saddam and his “immediate entourage” going into exile, he would rather see Saddam tried before the world court for crimes against humanity.

While the case for war is being made by Spain, England, the U.S. and its allies around the world in preparations for a UN vote, efforts in the war on terror continue aggressively to disrupt and prevent planned terror attacks against innocent people, known to Islamic radicals only as “infidels”. Intelligence sources say that to make the most of their propaganda against the war on terror, Islamic radicals are holding out for the free world’s forceful disarmament of Saddam to launch more attacks.

LONDON – A still photo from video tape of an Islamic cleric who says Islam will take over the world. George Thomas, an investigative reporter, looks into the power radical muslims wield in England. In a nation where freedom of speech has been nearly outlawed to appease intolerant political correctness groups, Islamic radicals in contrast are free to speak boldly against people, religions and their host nation. As U.S. and British citizens burn their nation’s flags, the very people they are protecting are the same that want to kill them.
The Islamic cleric pictured above, told reporter George Thomas that the world must follow the laws of Islam and if people don’t submit to Islam they will be killed. "Like it or not, Islam will conquer the U.S. and Islam will conquer Britain."

Click to See Investigative Report (RealVideo):
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Spain Arrests More Islamic Terrorists
Early Friday and Saturday Spanish Civil Guard agents searched offices and homes in Logrono and Valencia–an area heavily populated with muslim immigrants. Aided by authorities in Germany, France, Portugal, Switzerland, Tunisia, and the U.S., officials captured 5 suspected terrorists that authorities believe to be involved in money laundering for al Qaeda cells. "These arrests make absolutely clear the presence throughout Europe and in Spain of members or collaborators of radical Islamic terrorist organizations, and that is a cause for continuing concern," Spanish Interior Minister Angel Acebes said.

Spain says that the money being laundered went to finance safe houses for al Qaeda operatives as well as materials to carry out terrorist plots. Acebes went on to say that it is believed that those arrested may have a connection to the terrorists who bombed the historical El Ghriba synagogue on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The tanker truck, containing cooking gas, killed 21 people, including 14 Germans and a French tourist last April and is believed to have been ordered by Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, al Qaeda operations chief, who was captured last week by Pakistani officials and is now reportedly divulging information that has caused Osama bin Laden to move position.

Spain’s Prime Minister, Jose Maria Aznar, who has been a vocal leader with Britain and the U.S. in the effort to disarm Saddam, sat down with Newsweek to discuss Spain’s role in combating terrorism and Iraq. Though 80 percent of Spaniards oppose war, the Prime Minister is unfazed, saying it is his responsibility to protect his citizens, whether they appreciate it or not.

Aznar: “Spain knows what it means to fight terrorism”
“If terrorism and weapons of mass destruction are ever brought together—which is the great threat of Iraq—I sincerely don’t want to be living in a future that is on its knees, powerless, before terrorists. We have a responsibility to make sure that doesn’t happen. I would never forgive myself for doing nothing. Spain knows what terrorism is and what it means to fight terrorism.”

Aznar went further to clarify Spain’s role on the Iraq issue saying, “Spain is a country in ascendance. I don’t want my country to be standing on the sidelines of history.”

Iraq in Violation – UN Inspectors Discovers Iraqi Drone Capable of Spraying Poisons
As the U.S. and allies amass troops in the Persian Gulf, reports come from Kuwait that some Iraqi troops attempted to surrender this week to British forces, thinking the war had begun, but according to intelligence sources, war may not be as easy as marching in and expecting white flags to appear. And now UN weapons inspectors released a 170 page report to the Security Council that reveals that Saddam has an illegal drone. This finding means unequivocally that Iraq is in violation of 1441 and indicates that there could be many more of these poison spraying drones.

Hans Blix, told reporters that Saddam’s drone can spray biological or chemical agents over a wide area: "Recent inspections have also revealed the existence of a drone with a wingspan of 7.45 meters (24 1/2 feet) that has not been declared by Iraq. Officials at the inspection site stated that the drone had been test flown," Blix said.

Removing the Veil – The Dangers Saddam Poses to the World
The new inspections report describes evidence of new rockets being developed by Saddam Hussein as well as additional biological and chemical agents still unaccounted for. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said the new report is “a shocking indictment of the record of Saddam Hussein’s deception and deceit, but above all, of the danger which he poses to the region and to the world."

The report gives greater credibility for the U.S.-Britain-Spain proposal for action against Iraq, but there is still fear of explosive retaliatory action against western interests by terrorist groups. Fear of such attacks were addressed by British Prime Minister Tony Blair during his MTV forum.

“America didn’t attack Al Qaida. Al Qaida attacked America. Let’s get this the right way round. And I don’t believe, frankly, with these terrorist groups, that it matters what we do. They will still attack us because they detest everything we have and stand for and the freedoms we have. Where I would actually say to you is the real issue, however, for where people have some, in my view, misguided sympathy for terrorists – I think the single thing that is a real issue is the issue to do with the Middle East peace process and the Israeli/ Palestinian issue, and one of the things that I believe passionately is that, irrespective of what happens in Iraq, we have to find a way of restarting that peace process, and, if you want to know, I think that is the cause of more concern in the Arab and Muslim world than a liking for Saddam Hussein because I don’t believe there is such.”

A Palestinian terrorist with a rocket on a street in the northern Gaza Strip, March 6, 2003. Millions of dollars in weapons and cash have reportedly been in Arafat’s hands over the years. As their people suffer in poverty, both Arafat and Saddam have millions in banks outside of their countries. Israeli intelligence works to prevent weapons production and transportation in the Palestinian region. As part of Israel’s war on On Monday March 3rd, Sheik Mohammed Taha – one of 5 original founders of the Hamas terror group – was arrested during an anti-terror operation.

Photo by Ahmed Jadallah
/ Reuters

During the hour long MTV broadcast, Blair and the MTV youth also explored the issues of international terrorism and crisis between Israel and the Palestinians: Jenny Vagan, a 26-year-old Norwegian, says that ”if you look at the conflict you have the American that supports Israel with weapons and you have the Palestinian people with rocks and stone. It’s not a fair conflict. Like you call them terrorists, but they don’t have any weapons, they don’t have any money, they don’t have any support.”

Prime Minister Blair didn’t try to give her the facts on the bombs and weapons terrorists use or the millions of dollars in U.S. aid that have been given to the Palestinians that Arafat apparently doesn’t use for his people. Instead Blair responded saying, “All I can tell you is… We, in Britain, have held a conference here to try and get some political reform on the Palestinian side so they can have a better chance of negotiating. And it’s fair to say that this American President who is the first American President to commit himself to two states, and the reason I think there is a chance of having peace in the Palestinian issue is for the first time I think the Arab world is prepared – it hasn’t yet, but I think it is prepared to recognize Israel explicitly, so that the issue which affects Israelis, which is the idea they’re surrounded by countries who want to destroy them, that issue is taken away. And the other thing is everybody now accepts there should be a viable Palestinian state. I think there is a chance there if we’re prepared to take them. What I’d like to see is as much energy and commitment going to get this peace process started as we’re showing confronting Saddam over weapons of mass destruction.”

Money and War – Reem Elmanan, Swedish, aged 23
Twenty three year old Reem Elmanan wanted to know about the money involved with war: "Throughout history countries have been entering wars to benefit their economies. This is the US and other countries during World War Two because of the Great Depression. Can you convince us that this isn’t the case?"

PM Tony Blair said, "I think it’s always been a mixture of motives. My father fought for my country in World War Two against fascism and against the Nazis.

"I think that there is a link. I think the great thing about today’s world which is shown by the audience here is it is interdependent and that’s one of the reasons why you need strong international institutions today because, in fact, I can’t think of a situation where you could have a serious conflict in one part of the world that doesn’t affect the whole of the world, but the motivation for this is not economic. Frankly, there are worries in the economy in the markets because of the prospect of conflict, so we’re doing it because we think that the security of our people will be put at risk unless we take a stand against this issue now."

Read MTV’s Forum with British Prime Minister Blair