Iran in the eyes of Arabs, from yesterday to today

ettelaat-newspaper-logo

An opinion piece in Ettela’at daily has studied how Iranians and Arabs have got along together in the course of history.

For years Iran has been one of the most influential players in the flashpoint Middle East region. Recently Iran has – at least from the perspective of regional countries or world powers – turned into a stable country which holds more sway than others in the volatile region, and there is no doubt about it. The region has now woken up to yet another reality: deep hostility toward Iran is growing remarkably [in the region].

Ettela’at daily on April 14 published an opinion piece by Mohammad Masjed-Jamei on the historical friendship and friction between Iran and the Arabs. The following is the translation of the piece:

A cursory look at Arab media – print and broadcast alike – will clearly show such hostility. What matters more are the comments posted by ordinary people, written in articles or expressed in broadcast media which are generally negative, containing hostile content and wording.

Certainly, never in modern times has Iran been as powerful and influential as today, and it has never been the target of suspicion and animosity [by other states]. By and large, what is unfolding in the region is not to the benefit of Iran, its allies and the region which badly needs development on different fronts.

Multiple factors – including historical, political, religious, cultural and tribal – contribute to such animosity. One of the key reasons behind the hostility in question is the way the Arabs look at Iran. Inherently, their look which has grown more negative and hostile over time does not have much to do with ground realities. The point here is that their attitude to Iran since the start of the contemporary times has not been based on what is really happening on the ground.

How do they see Iran and how is their attitude affected by other elements? The factors involved will be briefly explained below. The point is that without developing a proper, conscientious understanding, efforts to ease the mounting hostility and pessimism and set the stage for healthier and more respectful relations will achieve nothing.

1. Iran and the Arabs have experienced the recent history in two different ways, although they have some common points. The experience of Arab nations – when it comes to the modern civilization – is not the same. Countries such as Egypt, Syria and Lebanon have gotten familiar with this civilization from the final years of the 18th century, and Persian Gulf sheikhdoms, Bahrain excluded, have been catapulted from the depth of history into modern times after World War II, particularly in the 1960s. But their experience, especially as far as their identities are concerned, has been inter-affected on different grounds.

Despite different backgrounds, the two different experiences have helped Iran and the Arabs exhibit distinctive characteristics. This is the reason behind the lack of mutual understanding, something which has in recent decades shifted toward divergence. Those – on either side – who call for unity wrongly think that religious beliefs are enough to create convergence. If their appeal [for unity] lacks mutual and keen understanding, it will end up in divergence more than anything else.

The bottom line: we are two different groups with different views on the contemporary world and its realities; on the West, including the US and its characteristics; on regional and international policies and their requirements; on governance and its legitimacy and institutions; on interference in nations’ internal affairs and its examples; on the Islamic history and civilization and the role of Muslim nations in forming such a civilization; and on justice, power and other key concepts. Part of the problem lies with such duality.

We [Iranians] evaluate them [the Arabs] based on our own principles and concepts, and are assessed by them according to their own line of thinking.

2. The Arab and Iranian identities – which have been shaped in modern times – fall into two categories even if we take into account the Islamic identity of the two, because the role Islam has played in the formation of these two identities is different. In one place Islam is viewed as a great heritage which is completely Arabic, and in other place, it is seen as an ideology; in Iran, Islam plays a key role in shaping the national identity and it is part of history, and in the Arab world everything starts with Islam.

Make no mistake, this view’s verity or lack thereof is not the question here. These two different views exist not only among these two groups, but in the ranks of other Muslim and even non-Muslim nations. In addition, the Arab identity applies to all Arabs, even to Christians [living there], whether they have played a part in the formation of the Islamic civilization – such as Egyptians and Syrians – or not – like Qataris and the Emirati people.

The identity carries weight since it is the basis of defining the self, determines the expectations and explains the quality of [our] treatment of others. Given this definition, the Arab homeland spans a vast geographical expanse which – as they put it – does not tolerate any move seen by the Arabs as interference in their internal affairs, especially if Iran is involved in it. After all, it is confrontation with Iran which unifies them, regardless of their affiliation.

3. The way the Arabs view Iran, whether positive or negative, has a historical basis. To them, contemporary Iran is the continuation of Iran under the Achaemenid, Sassanid and Safavid dynasties. A hadith from the Prophet Muhammad which says, “Men from the land of Persia will attain scientific knowledge even if it is as far as the Pleiades” has always stayed in the mind of the elite, and this is an undeniable fact.

This collective memory of nations throughout history can quickly grow in a positive or negative light. In its negative sense which is largely evoked [in the region], Arabs think today’s Iran enjoys and seeks the very features and ambitions of the ancient empires. That’s why they cynically regard anything [Iran does] as being expansionist. They are afraid of Iran’s measures and resort to scare tactics [scaremongering]. This way they prove their good intentions when it comes to serving the Arab ideals.

So any move on Iran’s part, which could be interpreted as an attempt to revive the past empires, will provoke a harsh response.

4. Another question which is more about Iranians, not Arabs, is comprehension of foreign policy issues in an excessively politicized way. The public opinion and mass media in Iran depict any move by regional nations as attempts by foreigners, especially Western countries, to meddle in the country. Many regional problems have regional reasons, but these problems are misused by the Western side because they are externalized by regional players. Our reaction to such problems, which stem from our beliefs, triggers a feedback which is out of touch with realities, and this makes the situation more complicated and unmanageable.

5. Most probably, the conspiracy theory is more popular with the Arabs who see anything Iran does as part of a plot the Westerners have hatched against them in cooperation with the Iranians. When talks between Iran and P5+1 were ongoing in Lausanne, Arab media released articles which highlighted that US Secretary of State John Kerry showed more tendency toward Iranians during the talks, citing his daughter’s engagement to a young Iranian physician, claiming this [engagement] has been used to take revenge on the Arabs.

The use of “Persian Gulf” by John Kerry in his brief Nowruz message to the Iranians was yet another example. This turned into a subject [for the Arab media] to write articles and cite the use of “Persian Gulf” as a reason behind [the West’s] cooperation with Iran to deal a blow to the Arabs. The comments which followed those articles all supported that assumption.

6. A more important factor is the use of concepts and terms by a large number of Arabs when referring to Iran and Iranians. A wave of religious, cultural and political rivalries – especially from the 1960s on – has given rise to racist terms demonstrating vengeful hatred in a bid to satisfy suppressed desires.

Terms such as Ghadesieh [a reference to the Arab conquest of Persia] which was frequently used by Saddam Hossein and is still employed in the media and political literature, Ajam [non-Arab or Persians] and Fors-e Majus [a pejorative term for non-Muslim Iranians] are just a few examples. When it comes to the Iranians however, they have never addressed the Arabs with derogatory terms such as “the ignored, barbaric idolaters”.

It is true that the Iranians were followers of the Zoroastrian faith prior to the advent of the Islamic era, but the faith they practiced was far more virtuous than the systemic idolatry in the Arab world. Back then Iran led a big, honorable civilization which was totally dissimilar to the prevailing ignorance – referred to as a period of paganism in the holy Koran – on the Arabian Peninsula where people would bury their daughters alive and were not civilized.

Unfortunately these terms are usually used by those involved in politics and media work and especially by the clerics or religious figures who have Salafi or [Muslim] Brotherhood-style tendencies. In today’s world, such foul-mouthedness is not used against any nation; religious officials do not describe their opponents this way, even in the toughest conditions, to arouse public sentiments against them. The way they [Arabs] address or talk about Iran is indecent and shameful, and actionable for inciting tribal cynicism and hatred.

Currently, the majority of religious figures across the world call on people to renounce anti-ethnic and anti-tribal views, whereas the Arabs are the ones who promote such viewpoints. Is it something other than social, cultural and intellectual backwardness?

All in all, the elements which shape such a viewpoint are complex, especially at a time when wealthy sheikhdoms on the Persian Gulf have created a giant media network which plays the biggest role in molding the public opinion in the Arab world. What should be done in defiance of the vast propaganda machine is an isolated case which should be dealt with in other articles.

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Extremists infiltrate the Malaysian Army

Arman-Emrooz-newspaper-19-265

Arman Emroz

The Malaysian defense minister said earlier in April that 70 IS sympathizers have been identified in the armed forces.

The following is what Arman daily quoted Abd al-Rahman Saleem, an international affairs expert, as writing about the ominous revelation:

[…]

Some Malaysian officials along with the country’s Department of the Islamic Development (Jakim), run by the defense minister, came under fire after the release of startling revelations about alleged links between over 70 Malaysian military officials and IS and the likelihood of a rise in their ranks in case additional field investigations are conducted.

The infiltration of terrorists into Malaysian military organizations and the arrest of some military officials on charges of involvement in acts of terror have prompted officials to step up oversight of police and military forces.

The shocking disclosure has also cast doubt on the quality of religious courses offered to Army personnel and staff members of state institutions. Malaysian police and armed forces are set to cooperate to identify those within the Malaysian military who are in contact with IS.

Since 2012 Kuala Lumpur has claimed to have apprehended 92 individuals, among them military personnel or employees of state companies, for links to IS terrorists.

The actual number of extremists arrested in the country is bigger than the figures above. Presently, hundreds of people are in custody for conviction on radicalism charges in the Southeast Asian country.

A decade after speculations that militancy in Malaysia has become history, Malaysian officials acknowledge that four militant groups have emerged in the country.

The groups seek to establish a so-called Islamic caliphate: Daulah Islamiah Nusantara in Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, southern Thailand and the southern Philippines.

Southern Thailand and Hudaybiyyah training camp in the southern Philippines are said to be among places where terrorists are trained and sent to different countries, including Iraq and Syria, to carry out terrorist attacks.

[…]

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FBI: Beware ISIS Takeovers of Your Website

FBI: Beware ISIS Takeovers of Your Website.

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FBI: Beware ISIS Takeovers of Your Website

Compiled Reports

Tax season is a dangerous time. Identity thieves can file a fake tax return in your name and tie up your real return. Tax preparers can steal your identity. Any visitor in your home who stumbles across your W2s or finished tax return can get tons of personal information.

Then there are the email phishing scams. Every year, scammers send these out hoping to trick people into clicking a link, downloading an attachment or giving up their information, and they’ve gotten very good at it.

Here’s the email itself:

irsphishing

From: Internet Revenue Service <office@irs.gov>
Subject: Payment confirmation for tax refund request #75991792
To: Me

Dear taxpayer,

You are receiving this notification because your tax refund request has been processed.
Please find attached a copy of the approved 1040A form you have submitted, containing your personal information.
On the last page, you can also find the wire transfer confirmation from the bank.

Transaction type : Tax Refund
Payment method : Wire transfer
Amount : $7592
Status : Processed
Form : 1040A

Additional information regarding tax refunds can be found on our websites: http://www.irs.gov/Refunds.
Please note that IRS will never ask you to disclose personal or payment information in an email.

Regards,

Internal Revenue Service
Address: 111 Constitution Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20224
Website: http://www.irs.gov
Phone: 1-800-829-1040

As you can see, this looks very much like an official email. It has an irs.gov email address, the links are all the correct irs.gov links and it even includes a warning not to give out personal or payment information in an email. Very clever.

So, where does it go wrong?

How you can tell it’s a fake, and more IRS tax scams you need to avoid

The easiest way to know this email is a scam isn’t actually found in the email itself. According to the IRS, “[we do] not contact individuals by email. Therefore, if you received an email claiming to be from the IRS it is a phishing attempt and should be reported to us.”

If you get any email claiming to be from the IRS, forward it immediately to phishing@irs.gov and then delete it. It’s OK if you opened it, just be sure not to click any of the links or download any attachments.

That leads me to another quick way to tell the email is a scam: the attachment. Major companies DO NOT send out emails with attachments. Even if they did, it wouldn’t be a Word document, but a PDF.

The attachment might contain a virus, or instructions that could trick you into giving up personal information or money. In this case, I didn’t bother opening the attachment, so I’m not sure which one this is.

Some other ways you can tell this email is fake is the details. You might not have gotten a refund, the refund amount doesn’t match up, or you used a different payment method. The main ways to pay taxes or receive a refund is either direct deposit, card or paper check. Wire transfers aren’t an option I’ve ever seen.

Phishing emails like this only work when people are so excited or scared that they don’t take a moment to stop and think about what they’re doing. That’s why before you click an email link, download an attachment or do anything in response, you should pause for a few seconds to consider what it is you’re being asked to do and why. Most of the time, just taking a little extra time lets you see through the scam.

This scam isn’t the only danger you’ll face regarding the IRS and scammers.

– Here are the top 12 IRS tax scams you’ll encounter this year (http://www.komando.com/tips/12162/beware-the-dirty-dozen-tax-scams-for-2015)

– Protect your tax return from crooks and hackers (http://www.komando.com/tips/300138/protect-your-tax-return-from-crooks-and-hackers)

– Get your IRS.gov account before thieves do (http://www.komando.com/happening-now/301846/you-better-get-your-irs-gov-account-before-thieves-do)

-Don’t fall for a fake IRS letter (http://www.komando.com/happening-now/303848/do-not-fall-for-this-insane-tax-scam)

-Beware of an IRS phone scam (http://www.komando.com/happening-now/278802/police-warn-of-irs-phone-scam-spreading)

Scams aren’t just delivered through email or dealing with the IRS.

Here are five dangerous Facebook scams you’ll probably run into: 5 dangerous Facebook scams spreading like fire now

Facebook has more than 1.3 billion users, which makes it a hacker’s paradise for posting scams. Even if only 1% of users fall for the scam at first, that’s still 13 million people. And once they fall for the scam, it’s more likely some of their friends will as well, and then those friends’ friends and so on.

Some Facebook scams are harmless; they’re more like hoaxes that just make you look silly. Two popular hoaxes that never seem to die are the news that Facebook will start charging (gasp!) and that useless “legal” notice people post to keep Facebook from “stealing” their information. Unfortunately, some other scams can actually cause serious problems.

The scams I’m talking about today can install apps and programs that steal your information, or trick you into giving it up yourself. You’ve probably seen these in your News Feed and wondered whether to click on them. Now you’ll know.

So, without further ado, here are five scams that you’ll see on Facebook, and some other social media sites, that are scams. Be sure to share this Tip with friends and family too, so they don’t fall for any of these scams either.

1. FREE GIVEAWAYS
The easiest scam to fall for on Facebook is a free giveaway. You’ll see everything from gift cards to free tablets, laptops and smartphones. Right now, there are scams that say you can win the new iPhone 6 Plus. You might also see scams for iPads, or the Xbox One or PlayStation 4. To get the gadget, you just need to fill out your information or take a survey.

This is a variation on a survey scam that might show up in your email. It either tricks you into giving hackers your personal information or it has you download a malicious file. Entering your cellphone number on a scam survey leads to bogus premium charges appearing on your wireless bill. It’s just better to avoid these surveys entirely. It’s very rare for a company to give away something through Facebook. When it does, it’s usually promoted on that company’s Facebook page or website. If you check their page or site and don’t see a giveaway, steer clear.

2. VIRAL VIDEOS
Almost as exciting as winning the latest gadget is seeing the latest viral video, especially if it’s shocking, scandalous or racy. However, many supposedly salacious celebrity “videos” posted on Facebook aren’t videos at all. When you click, they’ll ask you to update your video player before you can watch. When you do, you’ll download and install a virus. It also shares the scam automatically with your friends so the virus spreads. Click here for a recent example of this scam.

This scam is easy enough to avoid. Type the video’s title into a Google search and it should bring up a link to the video on YouTube. If it isn’t on YouTube or a legitimate news site, it’s probably a scam. Also, as a firm rule, if you click any link on Facebook and it asks you to download something, it’s a scam. Always choose “No.”

Don’t risk a scam; watch the latest and greatest handpicked viral videos safely on my site or my Facebook page.

3. CUSTOM PROFILES
Another common scam offers to change your Facebook layout or color. The colors that the scam offers change, but the basics are the same. This scam tries to con you into installing a Facebook app. If you do, you give the scammer access to your personal data and license to spam and scam your friends.

Keep in mind there is no official way to change your Facebook layout. Social Fixer can change the way you see your profile, but nothing will change the way other people see it. You can, however, add your own touch with a custom cover photo. I’ve got free ones in my store that I made just for you  http://shop.komando.com/deals-more/freebies.

4. WHO VIEWED YOUR PROFILE?
Speaking of people seeing your profile, did you know there’s a way to see who visits your profile? OK, I’m kidding. But if you believed me for even a fraction of a second, we need to have a serious talk, because more than 30% of the scam links on Facebook use this tactic.

This old gem has been around almost as long as Facebook itself. Facebook has made it clear several times: There is no way for any app to show you who visits your profile. Any link or download that says differently is either a prank or a virus. Never, ever, ever believe it! The same goes for seeing who deleted you.

5. NIGERIAN SCAM
The 419 “Nigerian” scam isn’t just something you get through mail or email. While it’s rare on Facebook, it does happen, as one Austrian man found out after he lost $38,000 to a fake Prince Harry.

As a rule, most celebrities aren’t going to friend you on Facebook. And if they do, they aren’t going to give you golden money-making opportunities that involve you sending them money first.

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Beware of the ISIS Email Scam

shutterstock_221897308-970x546

Vicky Nanjappa

Apr 18: In the past couple of days there have been two email threats issued by persons claiming to be part of the dreaded ISIS. While one threat email was received by RBI governor, Raghuram Rajan another was sent to the Press Club in Chennai warning of several bomb blasts in the city.

The question now is are these really threats from the ISIS?

The answer is no and this is exactly what Australia had witnessed, following the Sydney siege. These are a bunch of hackers who use the ISIS name to send out emails with the hope that the recipient is fooled to download an attachment part of the mail so that the system compromises.

The ISIS email scam:

Cyber crime officials tell Oneindia that there are two aspects to these emails. There is a steady network of people who are manufacturing these mails under the ISIS name and sending it out to persons. The mails are normally sent with attachments and the recipient is lured into opening the same. The mails have an attachment and if the same is opened it could install a malicious code on the computer thus making it vulnerable. This was probably the case in the Raghuram Rajan incident, an investigator informed. The mail sent to the RBI governor was an attempt to gain access to his system and could well be the handiwork of a hired hacker seeking out information. The ISIS has always taken an extremely brazen approach to its activities. It usually posts plans on the social media. Although it does have a set of professional hackers in its outfit, it has often restrained from targeting high profile individuals.

The Chennai press club mail:

Cyber crime officials tell Oneindia that there are two aspects to these emails. There is a steady network of people who are manufacturing these mails under the ISIS name and sending it out to persons. The mails are normally sent with attachments and the recipient is lured into opening the same. The mails have an attachment and if the same is opened it could install a malicious code on the computer thus making it vulnerable. This was probably the case in the Raghuram Rajan incident, an investigator informed. The mail sent to the RBI governor was an attempt to gain access to his system and could well be the handiwork of a hired hacker seeking out information. The ISIS has always taken an extremely brazen approach to its activities. It usually posts plans on the social media. Although it does have a set of professional hackers in its outfit, it has often restrained from targeting high profile individuals.

The mails that were sent to Rajan and the Chennai Press club appear not to be connected with each other. The mail sent to the Chennai press club warns of bomb blasts and also attacks on Hindu leaders. This was a mail sent locally for some cheap publicity investigators say. Blasts in Chennai and targeting Hindu leaders are a type of Al-Ummah strategy and is not on the immediate scheme of things for the ISIS, the Intelligence Bureau says. These persons are aware that such mails tends to cause panic and the only intention was to scare.

Testing alertness:

Groups such as the Students Islamic Movement of India and the Al-Ummah, which have made India their primary goal often test the waters before planning a huge attack. Investigations into the Press Club mail incident would show that this was an attempt to test the alertness of the police in the city. Chennai has been on the hit list of several groups and they very often test the waters before planning something major. At times terror groups have raised false alarms to check the alertness of the police. The moment such an alarm is sent out the police tends to gear up and this helps terror groups find out the positioning of the security mechanism.

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CYBER BANKING THREATS: Banking industry security protocol falters in third-party vendor contracts

ScMagazine

Nearly a third of banking organizations do not require their third-party vendors to notify them in the event of an information security breach, according to a recent study on the banking sector’s cybersecurity practices.

The New York State Department of Financial Services issued its “Update on Cyber Security in the Banking Sector: Third-Party Service Providers” earlier this month to analyze the “due diligence processes, policies and procedures governing relationships with third-party vendors, protections for safeguarding sensitive data, and protections against loss incurred due to third party information security failures.”

A survey with 40 banking organizations yielded the report’s findings, which indicated that fewer than half of those surveyed conduct any on-site assessments of their third-party vendors. Plus, approximately one in five banks do not require third-party vendors to represent that they have established minimum information security requirements. One-third of banks mandate that those requirements be extended to subcontractors of third-party vendors.

Jamie Wodetzki, founder of Exari, a contract management and document assembly solutions provider, noted the lack of requirements most likely are a result of outdated contracts.

“Five years ago, [a bank] might not have bothered to say that a particular supplier must meet these security levels [in a contract],” he told SCMagazine.com.

Plus, contracts tend to be hefty, making it hard to ensure that all security bases are covered.

Ultimately, Wodetzki said, the report highlights a need for IT security professionals to coordinate with their companies’ legal teams to make sure current needs are being met in years-old contract formats.

“Security teams can also maybe go and look at these vendors,” he said. “They can analyze them and write a report.”

This might help point out lacking protocol that should be written into the contract as a necessity. Furthermore, Wodetzki noted the best contracts are explicit, have unqualified promises and clear timelines about when something needs to be done.

New York State Department of Financial Services

Update Report on: Cyber Security in the Banking Sector: Third Party Service Providers:

FULL REPORT: New York State Department of Financial Services Update on Cyber Security in the Banking Sector: Third Party Service Providers

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Cloud Cybersecurity Report: The Extended Perimeter: Study: Average organization has 4,000 instances of exposed credentials stored in the cloud

Cloud Cybersecurity Report: The Extended Perimeter: Study: Average organization has 4,000 instances of exposed credentials stored in the cloud.

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Cloud Cybersecurity Report: The Extended Perimeter: Study: Average organization has 4,000 instances of exposed credentials stored in the cloud

ScMagazine\Ashly Carman

Companies are moving their data and workflow over to the cloud with increasing fervor, according to new research from CloudLock.

The company’s “Cloud Cybersecurity Report: The Extended Perimeter” analyzed more than 750 million files, 77,500 apps and six million cloud users to find that, on average, every organization has 4,000 instances of exposed credentials.

The credentials were accessible across the entire company, externally, and in some cases, publicly. Furthermore, an average organization has 100,000 files containing sensitive information stored on public cloud applications.

Even with sensitive information possibly up for exploitation, 65 percent of security teams reported looking at what type of sensitive data is exposed in order to form their cloud cyber security strategy. Conversely, 35 percent focused on how and where the data was exposed. More specifically, security professionals who keep the type of data exposed top of mind, mainly worry about intellectual property and confidential information. Some also named credit card data and personal information as their biggest concern.

Ayse Kaya Firat, director of customer insights and analytics at CloudLock, noted in an interview with SCMagazine.com that security professionals need not worry about every document on the cloud.

Instead, she suggested focusing on an intellectual property road map of sorts to keep track of the most sensitive and critical information.

When it comes to third-party cloud apps, the report found a four times increase in the number used from the prior year with an average of 475 per organization. Even still, more than half of third-party apps were banned from enterprises in 2015, primarily due to their inappropriate nature and the vendor being untrustworthy.

With all these findings, CloudLock recommends security professionals focus on training users to ensure their application behavior doesn’t put the company at-risk, as well as keeping track of cloud environments at the application, platform and infrastructure layer.

Q1 2015 Report by CloudLock
The rapid surge of accounts, files, and applications presents increased risk in the form of an extended data perimeter, with substantially heightened accessibility of corporate assets and new entry points into the organization. Download the industry’s first report on the extended corporate perimeter and cybersecurity.

Key findings include:
Nearly one in four users (25%) own data that violates corporate security policy
70% of corporate cloud-based collaboration occurs with non-corporate entities
Over half of third-party apps assessed in 2015 are banned due to security-related concerns

Read Full Report: http://www.cloudlock.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Cloud-Cybersecurity-Report-The-Extended-Perimeter-CloudLock.pdf

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FBI Holds “Special” Meeting in Juárez to Address ISIS, DHS Not Invited

JW
Responding to Judicial Watch’s report (http://www.judicialwatch.org/blog/2015/04/isis-camp-a-few-miles-from-texas-mexican-authorities-confirm/) earlier this week of ISIS activity along the Mexican border, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) supervisors called a “special” meeting at the U.S. Consulate in Ciudad Juárez.

A high-level intelligence source, who must remain anonymous for safety reasons, confirmed that the meeting was convened specifically to address a press strategy to deny Judicial Watch’s accurate reporting and identify who is providing information to JW. FBI supervisory personnel met with Mexican Army officers and Mexican Federal Police officials, according to JW’s intelligence source. The FBI liaison officers regularly assigned to Mexico were not present at the meeting and conspicuously absent were representatives from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It’s not clear why DHS did not participate.

Publicly, U.S. and Mexico have denied that Islamic terrorists are operating in the southern border region, but the rapid deployment of FBI brass in the aftermath of JW’s report seems to indicate otherwise. A Mexican Army field grade officer and a Mexican Federal Police Inspector were among the sources that confirmed to JW that ISIS is operating a camp just a few miles from El Paso, Texas. The base is around eight miles from the U.S. border in an area known as “Anapra” situated just west of Ciudad Juárez in the Mexican state of Chihuahua.

Another ISIS cell to the west of Ciudad Juárez, in Puerto Palomas, targets the New Mexico towns of Columbus and Deming for easy access to the United States, the same knowledgeable sources confirm. During the course of a joint operation last week, Mexican Army and federal law enforcement officials discovered documents in Arabic and Urdu, as well as “plans” of Fort Bliss – the sprawling military installation that houses the US Army’s 1st Armored Division. Muslim prayer rugs were recovered with the documents during the operation.

“Coyotes” engaged in human smuggling – and working for the Juárez Cartel – help move ISIS terrorists through the desert and across the border between Santa Teresa and Sunland Park, New Mexico. To the east of El Paso and Ciudad Juárez, cartel-backed “coyotes” are also smuggling ISIS terrorists through the porous border between Acala and Fort Hancock, Texas. These specific areas were targeted for exploitation by ISIS because of their understaffed municipal and county police forces, and the relative safe-havens the areas provide for the unchecked large-scale drug smuggling that was already ongoing.

Last August JW reported (http://www.judicialwatch.org/blog/2014/08/feds-isis-on-us-border/)that ISIS, operating from Ciudad Juárez, was planning to attack the United States with car bombs or other vehicle borne improvised explosive devices (VBIED). High-level U.S. federal law enforcement, intelligence and other sources confirmed then that a warning bulletin for an imminent terrorist attack on the border had been issued. Agents across a number of Homeland Security, Justice and Defense agencies were placed on alert and instructed to aggressively work all possible leads and sources concerning the imminent terrorist threat.

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Saudi Arabia prepared for ground invasion of Yemen. Houthis threatens war

2 April

Houthis will be forced to attack Saudi Arabia in the event of further strikes on the territory of Yemen, the ringleaders of Shiite sect threatened. Houthis’ statement was widely distributed by Russian news agency RIA News.

Meanwhile, the Saudi army began to dismantle the fence on the border with Yemen, Sky News Arabic reported on April 2. Dismantling the wall is made in the framework of preparations for a ground invasion to fight the pro-Iranian Shiite militants Houthis.

March 26, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states – Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (total 10 countries) – launched a military operation in Yemen in response to the call of the formal Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi to “protect the legitimate authority” in Yemen from the Shiites.

Until now, the Arab coalition only carried out airstrikes on Houthis.

The situation in the Yemen becomes more and more tense day by day. As a representative of Saudi Defense Ministry General Ahmed Asiri announced, Yemeni groups of Sunnis were able to expel the 33 Infantry Brigade, loyal to ex-president Saleh and the gangs of Houthis from Dalva and its environs, and confirmed that it is currently under the control of the “official army of Yemen” and the so-called “people’s committees”.

The Saudi general also said that operation to liberate Shabwa from Houthis is currently underway.

Saudi General denied Houthis’ claims that the Arab coalition forces allegedly bombed a dairy factory in Dalia. In fact, dairy plant was subjected to shellings from mortars and rocket launchers from Houthis themselves. This shelling resulted in casualties.

Ahmed Asiri accused the media of deliberate misinformation:

“Coalition forces are well aware of the role of the media and some retired military who are trying to confuse the Yemeni society, which is generally from the first day support operation aimed at to get Yemen rid of terrorist groups that destroy the state and society”, said the Saudi General.

He also warned that those units of the Yemeni army, which defected to the side of the ex-president Saleh and help Shiites to destroy Yemen, will be attacked.

“We call on Yemeni soldiers to save their lives, to return to their commanders loyal to the legitimate government of Yemen, to protect the population of Yemen against the encroachments of terrorist groups, and never have in common with the gangs of Houthis”.

Saudi military claimed that the military potential of Houthis was undermined as a result of massive air strikes.

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