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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
United Nations Unanimously Approves Mideast Resolution; Inside the Encyclopedia of Jihad
Aired August 11, 2006 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening again, everyone.
Two big breaking stories tonight unfolding now: the possible end to a month of fighting in Lebanon; and terror in the sky.
Tonight, with the world still reeling from what could have been a catastrophe, we're starting to get some answers.
ANNOUNCER: Finding the facts, breaking the network -- a picture comes into focus, new revelations about the fiendish plot, the alleged plotters, and the global connections.
Encyclopedia of jihad.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Kill Americans in the sea. Kill Americans on the hill. Kill Americans everywhere.
ANNOUNCER: Who to hate, how to kill -- an exclusive look inside al Qaeda's instruction manual.
And it looks like a breakthrough here, but what about here? Will an agreement at the U.N. put an end to the growing battle on the ground in Lebanon?
ANNOUNCER: This is a special edition of Anderson Cooper 360, "Sky Terror."
Reporting tonight from London, here's Anderson Cooper.
COOPER: And good evening.
We come to you tonight in the shadow of Tower Bridge in this grand old city, a city still on edge today.
And we begin tonight with breaking news in the alleged plot to blow up airliners -- new word tonight on how authorities knew when to make their move, how they had concrete evidence that the plan was entering its final deadly stages, the simple, but terrifying words that told investigators this was for real.
For that, we turn to CNN's Deborah Feyerick -- Deb. DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, an unclassified U.S. security memo shows why British intelligence, MI5, agents moved in when they did. They received an intercept within the last 72 hours.
When they decoded it, the message was frightening. It said -- quote -- "Do your attacks now" -- unquote. There were also other signs, a telephone intercept that made reference to the alleged plot. Plus, two of the men who they had under surveillance simply disappeared -- all of these signs simply too strong to ignore.
FEYERICK (voice-over): With key suspects believed to be in custody, British investigators set about poring over bank accounts, trying to find the money trail, at least one wire transfer originating from Pakistan, sources say.
JOHN REID, BRITISH HOME SECRETARY: We will continue to maintain a vigilance at the highest level.
FEYERICK: The Bank of England froze financial assets of 19 of those arrested, releasing their names, as required by law.
Suspects are between 17 and 35 years old, many of them British, of Pakistani decent. U.S. officials tell CNN, at least one of the suspects recently placed two phone calls to the United States. The calls were investigated, but, at this time, no American-based co- conspirators have been uncovered.
Meantime, in London and its outskirts, authorities continued searching homes, seizing key items, like computers and laptops. A U.S. official tells CNN, an analysis of hard drives reveals virtually every aspect of suspects' lives, including Web site visited, items downloaded, and people contacted.
Authorities are seeking out friends, acquaintances, and anyone else who came in contact with the alleged terrorists.
Crime and Justice Minister John Reid oversees this investigation.
REID: We will go where any further evidence takes us. We will take whatever further action is necessary. We will apprehend anyone else who appears to be linked or connected to this.
FEYERICK: The suspects are accused of plotting to blow up 10 jetliners in a coordinated, almost simultaneous attack.
Glenmore Trenear-Harvey spent 40 years in British security. Had the planes exploded over the water, he says, it's likely all evidence would have been wiped out and lost to investigators.
GLENMORE TRENEAR-HARVEY, INTELLIGENCE ANALYST: When they pick up the pieces, there will be no indication of what caused the explosion. That would have enabled them to repeat this operation time and time again. FEYERICK: Trenear-Harvey says, with U.S. and British policies so closely aligned in Iraq, Afghanistan and Lebanon, the accused terrorists may have been trying to strike both countries in one blow.
TRENEAR-HARVEY: Because the United States is the leader in the global war on terrorism, it also becomes the prime target.
FEYERICK (on camera): So, it really does send a message that these two countries are in it together and they will be attacked as one?
TRENEAR-HARVEY: Very much so.
COOPER: Deb, obviously, investigators are moving on a number of fronts, examining forensic evidence, still gathering that. What about the money trail? Where's that leading?
FEYERICK: Well, interesting question, because we got new details out of that unclassified U.S. security memo.
Apparently, the money trail was very strong to Pakistan, that memo indicating that big sums of money were being wired to two of the suspects here, specifically with the intention of buying those airline tickets. Also, when agents looked at the bank records the -- of some of these young men, what they realized is that they were spending way above what their income allowed -- Anderson.
COOPER: And that money was wired from Pakistan after the -- the alleged plotters, or some of them, actually had visited Pakistan; is that correct?
FEYERICK: That's correct. That's what we understand at this time.
COOPER: All right, Deborah Feyerick, thanks for the latest.
More now on the who -- bank accounts only say so much. They don't say, for example, that three of the suspected plotters were recent converts to Islam or that one had re-dedicated himself to the faith. Many of the suspects prayed at the same mosque. They rooted for the same soccer team.
And, back in their communities, for now, at least, their friends and neighbors seem to be standing by them.
Here's CNN's Jason Carroll.
JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): British police confiscated more items from Ibrahim Savant's home in East London early Friday, the 26-year-old's belongings wrapped up in plastic bags -- several block away, more police stationed in front of the home of 22- year-old Waheed Khan. Ishtiaq Hussein can't understand why any of this is happening. He's friends with both of them,and says neither is capable of terrorism.
ISHTIAQ HUSSEIN, FRIEND OF TWO SUSPECTS: They would never hurt a fly. They never used to talk in anger.
CARROLL: Hussein's friends are two of the 24 arrested in connection with the terrorist plot. Most are of Pakistani descent. Thirteen of them live in East London, an area with a large Pakistani community. Hussein knew Ibrahim through sports.
HUSSEIN: I used to play football with him back in the day, a few years ago, and still contact -- he lives around the corner from me. When I speak to him, he just -- there's no hatred in him. There's no anger. There's no reason for him to be associated in them plots.
CARROLL: He said he knew Waheed Khan from school. They studied biochemistry together at college. Khan was also head of the school's Islamic Council and was studying to be a doctor.
HUSSEIN: He was into Islam, but he wasn't into, like, the extreme side of it, and he -- he used to stay away from the people that were always voicing it.
CARROLL: And then there is Faisal Hussein. He's the father of three boys, Tarik (ph), Umer (ph) and Moran (ph). All are suspects in custody. He says he was too upset to speak in his sons' behalf.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anybody who knows them -- he's a father. I know them. The community that knows them, anybody who knows his three children will -- will swear on the Koran, will -- anything, that -- to say that they're innocent.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I can't read address number four.
CARROLL: They believe police made a serious mistake. In fact, many in the Muslim community feel the same.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can't go around knocking on people's houses, smashing their doors down, you know, causing friction, upsetting people's families. It's not right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's absolute propaganda.
CARROLL (on camera): Do most of you not believe what has -- what has happened in, terms of the arrests on this block?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you believe...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They don't show no proof that, look, we have arrested 21 people. Where is the evidence that -- show us the evidence.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Innocent, until proven guilty. The thing is, right, they will -- they will name all the people. They will name that we caught them. And then, three weeks later, you will find out they're all innocent, and, yet, we get a bad name.
CARROLL (voice-over): And many believe the same as Faisal Hussein.
HUSSEIN: They went to pray. They went to prayer. And that's -- that's -- that's their guilt, because they -- they went to pray.
CARROLL: So, a father and community wait for answers and for authorities to present solid evidence linking those arrested to terrorism. Only then will some here be convinced what happened was justified.
COOPER: And Jason joins us.
Now, the fact that they have released already one of these 24, what kind of impact do you that is going to have in the community where you visited today?
CARROLL: Well, I think what it's going to do is, it is actually going to make people out there even more angry. Some of those that we spoke to our there all day today tell us that they expected people, actually, to be released. The fact that they're releasing one, I think, is just going to make people even more angry.
COOPER: It's going to confirm their -- their belief that the wrong people have been picked up.
COOPER: All right, Jason, thanks.
Accepting that these suspects are simply that, suspects, you still end up asking the larger question: Why does violent jihad exert such an attraction here and elsewhere? We're not looking for excuses here, just an explanation, and, just possibly, a means of defense. To be blunt, why do they hate us? For what we do? For who we are? Or, perhaps, for both?
CNN's Christiane Amanpour investigates.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the same community where several arrests have taken place in the thwarted airline bombing plot, young Muslim men watch videos of Osama bin Laden.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They began to put the -- the Muslims under more pressure.
AMANPOUR: This meeting of now banned extremist groups took place two months ago in Walthamstow, but it is a unique chance to see and hear the anger that drives these young men.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Muslim in this country are living under siege. And Muslim outside this country are under siege.
AMANPOUR: "The British and American governments and people are against us," these speakers claim. "Our community is under attack, and so are Muslims around the world."
The war in Iraq features heavily.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They used this pretext, this concept of a war against terror, and they launched into Iraq.
AMANPOUR: It is the same message you hear on the suicide tapes of the bombers who attacked the London subway last year, killing 52 people. They criticize Britain and America, not for their democracies, but for their policies.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And, until you stop the bombing, gassing, imprisonment, and torture of my people, we not will stop this fight.
AMANPOUR: But, to President Bush, the latest terror plot, just like the rest of them, is more evidence that this is a war against the Western way of life.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: A stark reminder that this nation is at war with Islamic fascists, who will use any means to -- to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation.
AMANPOUR: But President Bush doesn't understand, says this leader of Britain's Muslim community. Sir Iqbal Sacranie denounces the violence of the extremists, but he says that all Muslims of whatever stripe agree that this is not about American freedom; it's about Americans and British foreign policy.
SIR IQBAL SACRANIE, BRITISH MUSLIM LEADER: Where there is a concurrence of the views is the issues of injustices, in terms of the foreign policy, where they talk about the invasion of Iraq.
AMANPOUR: And Afghanistan, and, he says, the current war in the Middle East. He says President Bush is missing that point.
SACRANIE: This, in fact, creates further division. And it's elements like this who capitalize on it, and say, here we have a head of state who simply against the Islam.
AMANPOUR: And, at this meeting in Walthamstow, the videos and the speeches do exploit that, with constant references to President Bush and what they call his Christian crusade against Islam.
COOPER: And Christiane joins us now.
We're getting a lot of new and interesting details about the alleged plotters, and also about how they came to the attention of the authorities.
Well, interestingly, because so much focus is on the British Muslim community, that, apparently, it was a member of the Muslim community and a neighbor of one of these that actually did tip the police off to the imminence of this.
COOPER: After the -- the 7/7 bombings.
AMANPOUR: Yes, and -- and -- oh, no, no -- yes, but -- but after some of the arrests in Pakistan, as well.
COOPER: Oh, OK, OK.
AMANPOUR: And, then, some of them, we're told, are as young as 17. The ages range to about 35. One, according to reports, was a biochemistry student, another, as we have reported before, a worker at Heathrow Airport. And...
COOPER: With -- with a pass to get into all areas.
AMANPOUR: Yes. Yes. And some -- and some were converts, recent converts, to Islam.
New details emerging, really, hour by hour here on this story.
Whether these suspects will be charged remains to be seen. One, of course, has already been released of the 24 arrested yesterday. Britain has made a lot of terror arrests. But many of the suspects have not been indicted. Here's the "Raw Data."
According to the British newspaper "The Times," since 9/11, more than 1,000 people have been arrested under Britain's Terrorism Act. Of those, only 158 have been charged with terrorist offenses. The paper says, about 60 suspects are awaiting trial. Under Britain law, law enforcement can hold suspects for up to 28 days without charging.
The other big story we're following tonight, the peace efforts in the Middle East -- just 90 minutes ago, a resolution approved at the United Nations. So, exactly what does that mean for Israel and for Lebanon and for Hezbollah? We will have some answers coming up.
Plus, the encyclopedia of Jihad. That's right. Believe it or not, al Qaeda has put it in writing -- the chilling details, part of a CNN exclusive report, in the footsteps of bin Laden -- when 360 continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. MOHAMAD CHATAH, SENIOR ADVISER TO LEBANESE PRIME MINISTER: Accident after accident, and -- and -- and mistake after mistake, 1,000 -- more than 1,000 lives already on the Lebanese side, maybe dozens of civilians killed on the Israeli side -- this is not a war. This is a rampage. And we want it stopped.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: A euphoric mood at the United Nations tonight -- about an hour-and-a-half ago, the Security Council unanimously approved a resolution aimed at ending the war in the Middle East.
And that follows a day of urgent diplomacy -- both sides conceding a little bit.
Chief national correspondent John King joins us now live in Washington with details.
John, what's -- how -- how did they get to the plan?
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, they finally had the vote, on day 31 of this confrontation. Many said that, in and of itself, was a crime, that the council should have acted much sooner -- but, as you noted, tonight, finally some hope.
KING (voice-over): The unanimous Security Council vote raised hopes the fighting will end within days.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The draft resolution has been adopted unanimously.
KING: Both Lebanon and Israel intend to ratify the plan, first in Beirut on Saturday, then Jerusalem Sunday.
KOFI ANNAN, U.N. SECRETARY-GENERAL: I will undertake to establish, with both parties, the exact date and time at which the cessation of hostilities will come into effect.
The resolution calls for a full cessation of hostilities and the unconditional release of the two Israeli soldiers, whose kidnapping by Hezbollah a month ago sparked the confrontation.
Every line was subject to tense, weeklong negotiations. And, as Secretary of State Rice joined the talks at end, both Israel and Lebanon were pressured to accept provisions they don't like.
The biggest fight was over the international force that will police the deal. Lebanon wanted just the existing 2,000-strong U.N. force already in the country. Israel preferred a NATO-led force of perhaps 30,000 troops.
The resolution, though, endorses expanding the existing U.N. force to a maximum of 15,000 troops, and gives it broad new powers to take all necessary action to assist the Lebanese army in creating a buffer zone in southern Lebanon, prevent Hezbollah attacks, if necessary, and enforce an embargo against armed shipments to Hezbollah. CONDOLEEZZA RICE, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: This force has a very firm mandate to defend itself and to defend its mandate, in other words, to resist those who would try to keep this force from doing its job.
KING: The plan also calls on Lebanon to enforce existing U.N. resolutions and disarm Hezbollah, a step it has resisted for years.
MICHAEL O'HANLON, SENIOR FELLOW IN FOREIGN POLICY STUDIES, BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: The Lebanese government will not be able to require Hezbollah to do this. There may be some agreement by Hezbollah to at least pretend to do it, or do it partially or temporarily. But it's not going to be lasting.
KING: Lebanon wanted an immediate Israeli troop withdrawal. But the resolution calls for Israeli troops to leave at the earliest and in parallel with the movement of Lebanese troops and the international peacekeepers into the south.
Before the vote, one last round of grievances -- Arabs complained, it took a month for council action and that Israel doesn't have to withdraw immediately.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): The draft resolution failed to adequately take into consideration the interests of Lebanon.
KING: Secretary Rice said Iran and Syria share blame for the bloodshed.
BLITZER: Hezbollah and its sponsors have brought devastation upon the people of Lebanon, dragging them into a war that they did not choose.
KING: And many made clear, this is detente, hardly peace, and just one of many flash points in a neighborhood rife with hatred, war, and nuclear tensions.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A fragile, tense, crisis-ridden region, the Middle East has become, probably now more complex and difficult than ever before.
KING: Now, the goal is, hopefully, an end to the fighting, assuming both governments do adopt this plan, the goal, an end to the fighting by Monday, maybe Tuesday, Anderson, but, then, more diplomacy, and more very difficult diplomacy.
They will negotiate the release of some Hezbollah prisoners now held by Israel. They also want to negotiate the return of a small sliver of land. It's called Shebaa Farms. Israel has it now. Lebanon says it belongs to Lebanon -- Anderson.
COOPER: So, the next step is for both sides, for -- for Lebanon, representing Hezbollah, and for Israel to agree to this; is that correct? KING: That's correct. The two governments have to endorse it. And, then, we have to see if both parties will honor it. And the key question is, will -- from -- at least from Israel and the United States' perspective, will Hezbollah honor it?
COOPER: And -- and how is this going to work? I mean, Israeli troops stay on the ground in south Lebanon until what, until when?
KING: Until the Lebanese army and the beefed-up international force deploys.
Essentially, what the Israelis have agreed to, as the Lebanese army comes south, with the U.N. force essentially a buffer between the Lebanese and the Israelis, Lebanese come south a block, the Israelis move -- move back a block, and so on and so forth, until the Lebanese army deploys to the international border, and then the Israelis would take the final step over the line.
COOPER: It is going to be complex, indeed.
KING: Yes, it is.
COOPER: John King, thanks.
The positive advances at the U.N. follow a day of heavy fighting in the region, rockets raining down on both sides of the border.
CNN's John Roberts is there, and he joins us live next.
Plus, a CNN exclusive: inside the pages of al Qaeda's terror playbook, literally the encyclopedia of jihad, if you can believe it. It has everything from guerrilla warfare and terror tactics, to steps on how to spring a prisoner from jail -- that when 360 continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE SITUATION ROOM")
RICE: The obligation to disarm Hezbollah under Taif and under Resolution 1559 is an obligation of the Lebanese government. They will receive whatever assistance they need.
But let's remember that this force has, first and foremost, an obligation not to allow a return to the status quo ante, which means that armed groups, arms cannot operate again in the south of Lebanon.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: While diplomacy has led to the approval -- while diplomacy has led to the approval of a U.N. draft resolution aimed for peace in the Middle East, the reality is, the conflict still rages on tonight. Israel seems to be making a last push before any cease-fire may take hold.
John Roberts joins us live from the Israeli-Lebanese border.
John, what's going on?
JOHN ROBERTS, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey, good evening to you, Anderson.
Just as that U.N. resolution was about to be put before the Security Council, Israel's prime minister, Ehud Olmert, and the defense minister, Amir Peretz, said that they were going to launch the expansion of the ground campaign, gave the troops authorization to start moving forward.
Just after the sun went down, we saw tanks and troop carriers moving across the border. There was intense activity in the valley behind me. And, then, all of a sudden, it has gone completely quiet, which could be an indication that the troops are pushing further north and they don't really need a lot of fire in this valley.
But it would appear tonight as though Israel is going to take whatever time it has left to try to hit as many Hezbollah positions as possible, because, as we found out today, there is still a serious threat to northern Israel.
ROBERTS (voice-over): Israeli armor rolls toward the border, part of a bigger push into Lebanon, with the order now given by Israeli political leaders to expand the ground war.
Whether through force or diplomacy, Israel is determined to remove the threat from Hezbollah, firing Katyusha rockets at towns and villages. More than 120 fell today, many of them on the border town of Kiryat Shmona. We spent part of the afternoon with the fire department there, chasing Katyushas as they rained down almost constantly.
(on camera): We have been waiting at this fire station for about a half-an-hour now. The firefighters say they had some intelligence that Hezbollah was going to fire Katyusha rockets at about 2:00. It's now five minutes of 2:00, and the air-raid sirens have just now gone off.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're near the border. And the -- the Hezbollah are sitting on the border, and make war with us.
ROBERTS (voice-over): The firefighters wait for the first volley to come in. Within moments, it's time to go.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now it's two Katyushas, they come to Kiryat Shmona.
ROBERTS (on camera): Two Katyushas coming in?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
ROBERTS (voice-over): Reports of a house on fire, they race to their truck, speeding through the streets under continual threat of another attack. They arrive at the scene to find smoke billowing from the home.
(on camera): This latest volley of Hezbollah Katyusha rockets shows just how random they are. The first one landed harmlessly in a field. The second one made a direct hit on this house at the edge of a neighborhood. As you can see, it's -- it has literally torn the entire backside of the house apart.
ROBERTS (voice-over): There were no injuries here. No one was home. Kiryat Shmona is almost a ghost town, and no wonder. The firefighters had not even cleared the scene when the air-raid sirens wailed again.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Very, very, very dangerous here. All the people here is running, running from Kiryat Shmona.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come on. Go.
ROBERTS: And running from the rockets.
(on camera): Yes, there's a shelter here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's get in it.
ROBERTS (voice-over): Another air-raid siren drives us from our vehicle, forcing us to shelter in a hardened bunker nearby.
(on camera): We were just leaving Kiryat Shmona when the air- raid siren went off again. So, we thought that it would be best to take cover. In this area, so many rockets have come in, that it's just not worth taking a chance. They can land literally anywhere.
(voice-over): And it wasn't just us seeking cover. Moments later, the fire captain ducked inside. From the bunker, we can hear the sounds of Katyushas hitting home.
The Israelis fire back with rockets of their own. Then, the air- raid siren sounds again, four times in a half-hour. It's just another typical day for these emergency workers, dodging rockets, dousing fires.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go back -- a danger zone.
ROBERTS: It is stressful work. And it shows in the anger firefighters have for Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hassan is very stupid man...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: ... because make a war about nothing, nothing.
ROBERTS: Israel's prime minister is recommending that his government approve that United Nations resolution. But that won't happen until Sunday, which means that the Israeli army has at least another 24 hours, perhaps as much as 48 hours, to try to hit as many Hezbollah positions as possible.
But the ground campaign and the air campaign have, together, been so ineffective at reducing the number of Katyusha rockets, it's not clear what that extra time is going to do for them -- Anderson.
COOPER: Hmm. All right, John Roberts, thanks.
Farther north of the border into Lebanon, more intense fighting today.
For more on that and reaction to the peace deal, let's go to Beirut right now and CNN's Jim Clancy, who is standing by.
Jim, what's the latest?
JIM CLANCY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, no official reaction, but I had half-expected Lebanon to celebrate. It did not.
I -- I watched here the civil war in Beirut, as well as the siege of the PLO in West Beirut 24 years ago this month. I expected to see something. It didn't come. Certainly, the threat of the Israeli military to continue operations through Sunday has a lot of people concerned today could start off like yesterday.
There were air strikes that pounded the southern suburbs on Friday morning. Those were followed by more attacks on Lebanon's infrastructure. Already at least $2.5 billion in damage to Lebanon's infrastructure in the past month.
And then adding insult to injury, if you will, an evacuation convey that it was leaving out of the south that included UNIFIL for a short time, but Lebanese army troops and civilians trying to get out of the fighting hit by Israeli drones. We understand now that as many as seven people were killed in that.
So this threat to keep fighting has many people on edge. Anderson, Lebanon's not breathing a sigh of relief. It's still holding its breath.
COOPER: All right. Well, let's hope that ends soon. Jim, thanks.
Tonight a bigger picture of the war on terror. Experts say it's one of the most important things that al Qaeda gave to the global jihadist movement. The Encyclopedia of Jihad, an actual play book on terror. An exclusive report about what's in this report from Christiane Amanpour is next.
Plus an American double agent. Training Osama bin Laden's body guards one day, working with American Special Forces the next, when 360 continues.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: We turn now back to the mechanics of the terror plot and how it was uncovered here in Great Britain and in Pakistan. The alleged al Qaeda connection. Again, tonight, Will Geddes, security consultant, counterterrorism expert and managing director of the ICP Group, a global threat managing service.
Welcome back. Thanks for being with us again.
Today we learned a lot more details. What do you think is most interesting about what we learned in the last 24 hours?
WILL GEDDES, SECURITY CONSULTANT: I think one of the most important or critical aspects is how fast and how much advanced we've gotten since even the 7th of the 7th last year with all the various intelligence agencies working together and coordinating and sharing information. Because this was an operation that was running right across the world between the strategic parts of this terror cell through to the tactical elements that are going to implement the attack.
COOPER: But the security services here are still stretched very thin. I mean, allegedly they were surveilling this group closely. And yet at least two of the members seem to have disappeared, and no one seems to know where they went.
GEDDES: Again, that's down to manpower more than anything else. And again, the surveillance officers can only follow these guys for a certain period of time until such time as either indicators show that they could present a clear and present danger if you like.
I note that beyond that they have to reassign and retarget other suspected individuals. And when you think of the size of surveillance teams that's an awful lot of manpower.
COOPER: We also learned today this detail about the alleged plotters were receiving a message from Pakistan, saying basically do the attacks now.
GEDDES: Absolutely. And I think this is what we believed all along. As soon as the arrests were taken, placed in the hall (ph), the facilitators would have communicated down to the actual tactical cell to say, "You've got to go," because as soon as these individuals were taken into custody they would have been interviewed by the security services in Pakistan.
And they would have said, "Right, we need to find out who's connected to you." So before they could actually be caught they'd have to implement the attack.
COOPER: What do you make of the fact that of the 24, one of them has already been released?
GEDDES: That's not uncommon. Quite often what will happen in the first instance, it's a little bit like a fishing net. You throw it net as far and wide as you possibly can around the individuals that you know are attached, or potentially are attached to an attack. And there will be possibly a slow release of individuals, once they've been processed, to find out that they don't necessarily present part of that terrorist plot. However, they could provide useful intelligence.
COOPER: Twenty-eight days, that's what Great Britain has in order to basically bring charges against whoever they're going to end up bringing charges. What do you think authorities are doing right now? They're combing, obviously, through forensic evidence.
GEDDES: Well, they're combing through forensic evidence. As we know, they've frozen bank accounts and assets. And there's going to be an enormous amount of information investigation, and that's trying to trace transactions, withdrawals, activities on those accounts, looking at communications, not only at the current time of when they were captured but also prior to that time and the time leading up. Because all of this is crucial to finding, possibly, not only the size of the network but also maybe even other cells.
COOPER: It's also interesting that people within the Muslim community alerted authorities to their suspicions early on about some of these young men.
GEDDES: And again, this shows fantastic advancement by the intelligence agencies in bringing the communities on site and saying, "Look, at the end of the day, we can only do so much ourselves, but we need you to police your own communities, where we can't ourselves get through."
COOPER: Will Geddes, appreciate it. We'll talk to you in the next hour, as well. Thanks very much, Will.
A lot more to talk about. You know, we've been talking about some of the conditions that really make Great Britain a breeding ground for Muslim discontent. CNN has traveled to four continents, 10 countries to get exclusive access to those who have known the most wanted terrorists on the planet.
It's for a special to air later this month called "CNN PRESENTS: IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF OSAMA BIN LADEN". Tonight on 360 some of the shocking stories that we've uncovered.
There is, in fact, a written play book, if you can believe it, complete with goals, tactics, and religious justification for killing, literally an Encyclopedia of Jihad.
Christiane Amanpour investigates.
CHRISTINE AMANPOUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): May 26, 1998, in this press conference bin Laden goes public with al Qaeda's plans to attack the United States.
While bin Laden believed he had a political justification for killing American civilians, he needed the trappings of clerical legitimacy. That would come in the form of a fatwa, a religious decree from Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman, the blind radical Egyptian cleric, the spiritual guide of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers.
When the fatwa was handed out at bin Laden's press conference, Rahman was already imprisoned in the United States on terrorism charges.
PETER BERGEN, AUTHOR, "THE OSAMA BIN LADEN I KNOW": Neither bin Laden nor Ayman al-Zawahiri, his No. 2, are religious scholars, and they know that. And so they needed this fatwa from Sheikh Rahman to kind of give them clerical cover for this unprecedented thing which was attacking American civilians.
AMANPOUR: This laminated card with its Arabic script outlines with chilling accuracy al Qaeda's terrifying new course. It is seen here on television for the first time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In that fatwa, it was literally kill Americans in the sea, kill Americans in the air, kill Americans everywhere.
AMANPOUR: Rahman's significance to al Qaeda is underscored by its fervent preoccupation with freeing the blind sheik from his American prison cell. Osama bin Laden vowed as much in this video.
OSAMA BIN LADEN, LEADER OF AL QAEDA: (speaking foreign language)
GRAPHIC: We promise to work with all our power to free our brothers everywhere and in any prison, especially in America, like Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman.
AMANPOUR: There's even a training exercise aimed at springing Rahman outlined in the Encyclopedia of Jihad, al Qaeda's massive guide on everything from guerrilla warfare and terrorist tactics to how to recognize a rattlesnake or treat a scorpion sting.
BERGEN: Thousands and thousands of pages. It draws on many sources, including U.S. Army manuals. And it's something that, other than the training camps, I think is the most important thing that al Qaeda gave to the global jihadist movement.
AMANPOUR: The encyclopedia, the years of recruiting, the training camps, al Qaeda's murderous new ideology, all of it culminating in this: Osama bin Laden's official and very public declaration of war on America and Americans.
BIN LADEN: (speaking foreign language)
GRAPHIC: Whoever counts on God, God will grant him victory. And we are giving the good news that we will gain victory over America and the Jews, God willing.
AMANPOUR: So the so called Encyclopedia of Jihad was obviously first written in Arabic, but then it was translated into English, and it is easy so access because it's been distributed on CDs, on DVDs and on the Internet.
COOPER: Unbelievable, that they would write it all out like that. It's just incredible.
Christiane, as we all know, al Qaeda's reach goes even further. Coming up, a dangerous combo of bin Laden follower and a member of the U.S. Army, literally a double agent and his ties to a deadly terrorist attack.
Plus, when bombs explode on planes. The surprising survival rate of passengers. Death may not be the outcome. We'll explain when 360 "Sky Terror" continues.
COOPER: More now from CNN's exclusive documentary, "In the Footsteps of bin Laden", the stories you've never heard from 21 people who knew and know the wanted terrorist leader.
Back in 1998 when two embassies in Africa were bombed, the CIA immediately assumed it was a Hezbollah attack, because the militant group hit U.S. targets before. But the CIA was in for a surprise. We all were, really, when it discovered a double agent with ties to the U.S.
Again, here's CNN's Christiane Amanpour.
AMANPOUR (voice-over): Two American embassies, two truck bombs. Two terrorist attacks just nine minutes apart in neighboring countries along the coast, Kenya and Tanzania. More than 200 dead, more than 4,000 injured. Who was behind this carnage and why?
GARY BERNTSEN, FORMER CIA OFFICER: We get their faces torn off the building. It looks like a tornado has gone through and sucked every piece of furniture out of every room and into the hallways.
AMANPOUR: Within eight days there were leads and suspects, and a stunning realization. Osama bin Laden had lived up to his threat. His al Qaeda terrorists had just struck their first direct blow in their holy war against the United States. The attacks were carefully planned.
ALI MOHAMMED, AL QAEDA OPERATIVE: My name is Ali Mohammed.
AMANPOUR: This man, Ali Mohammed, was no ordinary al Qaeda operative. He married a Californian in 1985 and became an American citizen. He joined the U.S. Army and eventually would help train U.S. Special Forces. He appears here on a military panel.
MOHAMMED: The fundamentalist, it means that the people they try to establish an Islamic state based on the Islamic Sharia.
AMANPOUR: In 1988, still serving in the U.S. Army, Ali Mohammed made an unauthorized trip to Afghanistan. He joined the war against the Russians being fought by Afghan militias and Mujahideen like Osama bin Laden. Yet, the very next year, he received an honorable discharge from the U.S. military.
BERGEN: Ali Mohammed is a very interesting character. He's sort of like a double agent. At the same time that he was a U.S. Army sergeant and actually working at Special Forces headquarters in Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He was also intimately involved with al Qaeda, training Osama bin Laden's bodyguards.
DAN COLEMAN, FORMER FBI AGENT: Ali Mohammed had done what they call casing of the American embassy in Nairobi in December of 1993, a five-year span between casing and operation.
AMANPOUR: And listen to what Ali Mohammed said in a U.S. call.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My surveillance file and photographs were reviewed by Osama bin Laden. Bin Laden looked at the picture of the American embassy and pointed to where a truck could go as a suicide bomber.
AMANPOUR: Ali Mohammed in a plea agreement -- Ali Mohammed in a plea agreement said that he had arranged security for a meeting between the chief of Hezbollah at the time and Osama bin Laden in Sudan when Osama bin Laden lived there in the mid-90s.
COOPER: It is so amazing. I mean, I've never heard of this guy before. And it's amazing how back then it seemed like just about anybody -- or not just anybody -- but a lot of people could just go there and end up meeting Osama bin Laden and sort of being part of the group.
AMANPOUR: It was so much more open. He had so much more access to these people.
COOPER: Yes. And people, really, from around the world who would see him on television and decide to go and follow him.
AMANPOUR: That's right. And we don't like it, but this man did have a charisma that brought people to him.
COOPER: Yes. It's fascinating. Christiane, thanks.
Coming up, we're going to have more insight from Christiane and CNN's terrorism analyst, Peter Bergen, their thoughts on bin Laden's reach and al Qaeda's hatred for the U.S.
Plus Pakistan's connection to the alleged plot foiled here in London. We're tracking the terror web when 360 continues.
COOPER: We've been exploring the roots of terror through the lens of a remarkable documentary, "The Footsteps of Osama bin Laden", the work of CNN's Peter Bergen and Christiane Amanpour. We spoke more about it earlier tonight.
COOPER: Peter, you say this Encyclopedia of Jihad is one of the most important things that al Qaeda contributed to the jihadist movement. Why?
BERGEN: Well, it was basically everything they learned from the Afghan jihad and more, thousands of pages. Everything from how to booby trap a napkin to how to conduct an assassination attempt.
And not only did they write this Encyclopedia of Jihad; then they converted it to DVD form. They put it on the Internet, and it was widely propagated. So in a way, other than the training camps in Afghanistan, I think this was the most important legacy that al Qaeda and Afghanistan gave to the wider jihadi movement.
COOPER: Christiane, this Ali Mohammed is a fascinating character. I never heard of him before. How -- what do you think it was that attracted him to Osama bin Laden?
AMANPOUR: Well, you're right; it is fascinating. And I had never heard of him before. And the fact that he's a double agent looking to be, actually, more interested in working for al Qaeda than for the U.S. Army, which he was part of.
He obviously went to Afghanistan. He fought in the jihadi movement and became attracted to that and then was the link that led and convinced investigators and prosecutors, et cetera, that actually bin Laden was responsible for the 1998 embassy bombings in East Africa.
COOPER: And peter, what's happened to Ali Mohammed?
BERGEN: He's in prison. He's done a plea deal with the U.S. government. He's turned as an expert witness, as Christiane indicated. He -- he's really the principle witness in the embassy bombing case against bin Laden, because he can actually point to bin Laden sending him on a -- on a surveillance trip in 1993 and then bin Laden getting the pictures and saying, "Here, that's where we'll put the suicide truck bomb in the embassy bombing."
So he's easily the person most directly linked to bin Laden to that attack. Obviously, a very useful witness for the U.S. government. He's done some sort of plea bargain. He's at an undisclosed location.
COOPER: Christiane, it's amazing how advanced al Qaeda was. I mean, they were casing the embassies back in 1993.
AMANPOUR: And not only that, Anderson. I think chillingly the piece shows that it took five years between, you know, deciding to do this and then the execution of that attack.
And it makes you realize that it takes a long time for these people to plan, to think of something, and then to execute it. For instance, this airline bombing plot that was thwarted just this week, it had taken them perhaps more than a year to start the planning. And perhaps the seed of that was made -- laid back in 1994 with the original al Qaeda plot, led by Ramzi Yousef and Khalid Shaikh Mohammad over the Pacific.
COOPER: It's fascinating that we're still learning details about al Qaeda even after all of thee years.
Peter Bergen, thanks.
COOPER: Don't miss Christiane and Peter's special two-hour look inside al Qaeda, "In the Footsteps of bin Laden". It airs on the 23rd of this month, 9 p.m. Eastern, right here on CNN.
Still to come tonight, cracking the code. New late breaking developments on how authorities learned they had to move quickly to foil the alleged terror plot here in London, a message from the alleged plotters.
Plus the Mideast peace agreement just reached at the U.N. Does it have what it takes? Will it change things on the ground? Stay tuned.
COOPER: Good evening again from London.
Two global stories breaking as we speak. An agreement reached to end the fighting in Lebanon. But questions about making it stick. And new details on how the plot to blow airliners out of the sky was unraveled.
ANNOUNCER: Tracing the connections, solving the puzzle: new details on the terror plot, the alleged terrorists, and the connections around the globe.
No bottles, no makeup, what's next? Are we going about this all wrong? New calls to focus more on people and less on what they're carrying.
They fell hard for bin Laden.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was a fascination, a love. It was very clear, and I felt the same.
ANNOUNCER: A husband and wife united in jihad. Until death did they part. How al Qaeda seduced a loving husband into loving murder more.
And a month of fighting. How tonight's U.N. resolution aims to stop it. And whether it will work.
This is a special edition of ANDERSON COOPER 360, "Sky Terror". Reporting tonight from London, here's Anderson Cooper.
COOPER: And thanks for joining us. In this hour, we come to you in the shadow of the Tower Bridge, a lovely scene in a city still on edge after the discovery yesterday of this alleged plot to bring down as many as 10 airliners.
We begin with breaking news here in London and four words: "Do your attacks now." That was the message to the men who police say were on the brink of blowing as many as 10 airliners out of the sky.
CNN has learned that this four-word message was intercepted. And that, along with money wired from Pakistan to the alleged ringleaders told authorities that an attack was imminent. We are learning that tonight and a whole lot more.
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