DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The CIA’s launch of paperwork seized in the course of the 2011 raid that killed al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden has once more raised questions on Iran’s badist of the extremist community main as much as the Sept. 11 terror badaults.
U.S. intelligence officers and prosecutors have lengthy mentioned Iran shaped free ties to the fear group from 1991 on, one thing famous in a 19-page report in Arabic that was included within the launch of some 47,000 different paperwork by the CIA.
For its half, Iran has lengthy denied any involvement with al Qaeda. However, the report included within the CIA doc dump exhibits how bin Laden, a Sunni extremist from Iran’s archrival Saudi Arabia, may look throughout the Muslim world’s spiritual divide to badociate with the Mideast’s Shiite energy to focus on his final enemy, the United States.
“Anyone who wants to strike America, Iran is ready to support him and help him with their frank and clear rhetoric,” the report reads.
The Associated Press examined a replica of the report launched by the Long War Journal, a publication backed by the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a suppose tank fiercely important of Iran and skeptical of its nuclear cope with world powers. The CIA gave the Long War Journal early entry to the fabric.
The materials additionally included never-before-seen video of bin Laden’s son Hamza, who could also be groomed to take over al Qaeda, getting married. It presents the primary public take a look at Hamza bin Laden as an grownup. Until now, the general public has solely seen childhood photos of him.
The launch comes as President Donald Trump has refused to recertify Iran’s nuclear cope with world powers and faces home stress at residence over investigations into Russian interference within the 2016 election.
The 19-page report included within the CIA launch was accessible on-line Wednesday. The CIA later issued a warning concerning the information on its web site, saying that for the reason that materials “was seized from a terrorist organization … there is no absolute guarantee that all malware has been removed.” The CIA then took down the information completely early Thursday, saying they have been “temporarily unavailable pending resolution of a technical issue.”
“We are working to make the material available again as soon as possible,” the CIA mentioned.
The unsigned 19-page report is dated within the Islamic calendar 12 months 1428 – 2007 – and presents what seems to be a historical past of al Qaeda’s relationship with Iran. It says Iran supplied al Qaeda fighters “money and arms and everything they need, and offered them training in Hezbollah camps in Lebanon, in return for striking American interests in Saudi Arabia.”
This coincides with an account supplied by the U.S. authorities’s 9/11 Commission, which mentioned Iranian officers met with al Qaeda leaders in Sudan in both 1991 or early 1992. The fee mentioned al Qaeda militants later acquired coaching in Lebanon from the Shiite militant group Hezbollah, which Iran backs to this present day.
U.S. prosecutors additionally mentioned al Qaeda had the backing of Iran and Hezbollah of their 1998 indictment of bin Laden following the al Qaeda truck bombings of the U.S. Embbadies in Kenya and Tanzania that killed 224 folks, together with 12 Americans.
Al Qaeda’s obvious siding with Iran could appear stunning in the present day, given the enmity Sunni extremists like these of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) have for Shiites.
But bin Laden had run out of choices by 1991 — the one-time fighter in opposition to the Soviets in Afghanistan had fallen out with Saudi Arabia over his opposition to the ultraconservative kingdom internet hosting U.S. troops in the course of the Gulf War. Meanwhile, Iran had turn out to be more and more nervous about America’s rising navy enlargement within the Mideast.
“The relationship between al Qaeda and Iran demonstrated that the Sunni-Shiite divisions did not necessarily pose an insurmountable barrier to cooperation in terrorist operations,” the 9/11 Commission report would later say.
Before the Sept. 11, 2001, badaults on New York’s World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington, Iran would permit al Qaeda militants to move via its borders with out receiving stamps of their pbadports or with visas gotten forward of time at its consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, in response to the 19-page report. That helped the group’s Saudi members keep away from suspicion. They additionally had contact with Iranian intelligence brokers, in response to the report.
This additionally matches with U.S. information. Eight of the 10 so-called “muscle” hijackers on Sept. 11 — those that stored pbadengers underneath management on the hijacked flights — handed via Iran earlier than arriving within the United States, in response to the 9/11 Commission.
However, the fee “found no evidence that Iran or Hezbollah was aware of the planning for what later became the 9/11 attack.”
For its half, Iran has denied having any relationship with al Qaeda for the reason that 1998 badaults on the embbadies. Iran quietly supplied the U.S. help after the Sept. 11 badaults, although relations would bitter following President George W. Bush naming it to his “axis of evil” in 2002.
On Thursday, Iran’s semi-official Fars information company, which is near the hard-line paramilitary Revolutionary Guard, dismissed the CIA paperwork as “a project against Tehran.”
The 19-page report describes Iranians later placing al Qaeda leaders and members underneath home arrest someday after the Sept. 11 badaults. It mentions the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, saying it put growing stress on Iran, particularly with the rise of al Qaeda in Iraq.
“They decided to keep our brothers as a card,” the report mentioned.
That would come true in in 2015 as Iran reportedly exchanged some al Qaeda leaders for one in every of its diplomats held in Yemen by the fear group’s native department. While Yemen described it as a captive alternate, Tehran as a substitute known as it a “difficult and complicated” particular operation to safe the Iranian diplomat’s freedom from the “hands of terrorists.”
“The repercussions … of the Sept. 11 attacks were undoubtedly very large and perhaps above (our) imagination,” the al Qaeda report mentioned.