Friday, May 27, 2011

Ratko Mladic can be extradited

LA Times, War crimes suspect Ratko Mladic can be extradited, judge rules, 27 May 2011

Marcus Baram, Huffington Post, Ratko Mladic Arrested: How A War Criminal Spent 16 Years On The Run

Manal al-Sharif: update

Robert Booth and Mona Mahmood, Guardian, YouTube Saudi woman driver faces further 10-day jail term, 26 May 2011 "Eman al-Nafjan, a teacher and PhD student in Riyadh who writes a blog under the name Saudiwoman, told the Guardian that Saudi conservatives and the wealthy were determined to keep women from driving because it blocks anyone who cannot afford a driver from competing for jobs." Good article!

Check Saudiwoman for more updates and comments on this.

If you haven't already seen this:

And this has just come in:

David Leigh, Guardian, US put pressure on Saudi Arabia to let women drive, leaked cables reveal, 27 May 2011 "The Obama administration has been quietly putting pressure on Saudi Arabia to allow women to drive, according to leaked US embassy cables."

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Al-Qaeda has sleeper cells across west Africa: experts

AFP: Al-Qaeda has sleeper cells across west Africa: experts, 26 May 2011 "Al-Qaeda makes use of sleeper cells in several West African countries, security experts said Thursday after a regional meeting on terrorism and trans-border crime in Gambia.

""In countries like Senegal, Guinea-Bissau, across the sub-region, we have Al-Qaeda sleeper cells," said a statement issued after the meeting organised by the African Centre of Terrorism Research, an African Union body, in collaboration with Spain."

See ACRST for basic information on the African Centre of Terrorism Research

'Poverty, al-Qaeda, tribal conflict: Yemen's problems'

Frank Gardner, BBC News - Poverty, al-Qaeda, tribal conflict: Yemen's problems, 26 May 2011

Human Milk 4 Human Babies - Malaysia

The Star, Forming breast milk-sharing network: "Montreal (Canada)-based Emma Kwasnica launched a global milk-sharing network online in October last year. Known as Human Milk 4 Human Babies (HM4HB), the network has 130 chapters spanning over 50 countries. The Facebook groups provide a space where families in need can connect with women who have milk to share. As Kwasnica’s philosophy states, “breast milk is not some sort of scarce commodity; it is a free-flowing resource,” the network doesn’t endorse buying or selling of breast milk.

"In Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur-based Nadine Ghows took the initiative to start the Malaysian chapter in November last year. “We are essentially a network that facilitates mother-to-mother connections for the purpose of providing human milk for human children,” explains Ghows, a breastfeeding and gentle birth advocate.

"As a Muslim, Ghows was also concerned about how the group should handle milk-sharing from an Islamic perspective."

The Malaysian group has used Facebook extensively: Human Milk 4 Human Babies - Malaysia

Turkey: Internet release of intimate videos guts opposition party ahead of election -

AP/The Washington Post, Turkey: Internet release of intimate videos guts opposition party ahead of election, 24 May 2011 "The black-and-white videos are grainy. Sometimes, they flicker. Yet the images are stark and often graphic, appearing to show senior members of a Turkish opposition party in liaisons with women who are not their wives.

"The spies did not just rig hidden cameras. They posted taunting screen text, an eerie soundtrack and even an adults-only rating before slapping the intimate footage on the Internet, unleashing a sex scandal that could benefit the government in elections next month."

'Use modern information media to spread Islam’s message: Al-Asheikh'

P.K. Abdul Ghafour, Arab News, Use modern information media to spread Islam’s message: Al-Asheikh, 26 May 2011 "Islamic Affairs Minister Saleh Al-Asheikh has emphasized the need for utilizing modern information media including the Internet and FM radio stations to spread the message of Islam."

also points to, which has got some interesting features. I'll take a closer look at a later time.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bin Laden and The IT Crowd: Anatomy of a Twitter hoax

BBC News - Bin Laden and The IT Crowd: Anatomy of a Twitter hoax, 24 May 2011 "Rumours circulating on Twitter that Osama Bin Laden was a fan of The IT Crowd sitcom were an elaborate new media hoax. Here comedian Graham Linehan explains how he organised the ruse."

Monday, May 23, 2011

Report: 'Global mapping of technology for transparency and accountability'

Renata Avila, Technology for Transparency: Final Report, 22 May 2011

Get the report (in various versions) here:, Global mapping of technology for transparency and accountability

I haven't read this one yet, but have added it to my reading list. Looks interesting!

KSA: Women, driving and net activism [update], The Rosa Parks of Saudi Arabia: Women Challenging the Ban by Driving | comprehensive coverage relating to women driving in Saudi Arabia. It links to tweets and video. The reader discussion is also interesting.

Follow this on twitter, for example here #Women2Drive.

There's also a Facebook page #Women2Drive

Also see this video on YouTube,

Related coverage:, Saudi woman detained for driving, 22 May 2011

Turks stand up to internet censorship

Jillian York,, Turks stand up to internet censorship, 22 May 2011 "From Ankara to Istanbul, and in numerous cities in between this past Sunday, thousands of citizens took to the streets in protest of proposed new internet filters. In Istanbul's Taksim Square alone, more than 50,000 people, largely organised on social networks, gathered in protest. More than 600,000 people joined a Facebook page called "Internetime Dokunma!" or "Don't Touch My Internet!""

For more information, see Facebook, Internetime Dokunma!

'Broadcasting Martyrdom' op-ed

Brooke Goldstein and Elisa Rojas,, Broadcasting Martyrdom, 23 May 2011 op-ed discussion on broadcasting of Tuyur al-Janna and Lama Nestashed

Yemen telecommunications

I'm closely following #Yemen on Twitter today.

In the midst of all the events in Yemen, the following press release emerges from Saba Net, Telecom sector achieves remarkable advancement in Unity era, 21 May 2011 "Despite the Yemeni revolutions of September and October put the foundation stones for this sector, it was reinforced after the unification of the country in 1990 as Yemen practically reacted with the world development in the area of development and information technology.

"More efforts were exerted during the past period to cause a characteristic leap in this sector in the southern and eastern governorates in accordance with the same progress in the northern and western governorates."


‘Arabizi is destroying the Arabic language’

Just picked up this one up (a little late) via eAraby

Renad Ghanem, ‘Arabizi is destroying the Arabic language’, 19 April 2011

"Most Arab Internet users find this way easier than typing in Arabic. Teachers fear that this will weaken their Arabic language ability or even replace the language in the future. Arabic professional professors from the Arab world consider it a war against the Arabic language to make it disappear in the long run."

Other opinions are also presented in the article.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Online book sales flourish in the Arab world

gulfnews : Online book sales flourish in the Arab world, 23 May 2011 "The increasing number of internet users was also coupled with a shift in many people's attitudes towards the internet and its multiple purposes. Today, more people are turning to the web for the latest news, and more and more are even buying books on the internet."

I'm not sure if the Arabic version of iMuslims (forthcoming) will include an e-book edition. iMuslims English version is available as an e-book - it comes in at $154.97 in the Kindle store USA ...

Friday, May 20, 2011

63rd Nakba op-ed

op-ed, Abdullah al-Ahsan,, 63rd Nakba: Has the Arab Uprising Made a Difference?, 19 May 2011: "Now the question is: why did the internet social network services cooperate with the uprising in various Arab countries but  declined to do the same in the case of Palestine?"

Anonymous and the Arab Uprisings

Anonymous and the Arab Uprisings | Yasmine Ryan | Voices | AllThingsD: "Anonymous’s rapid rise from the depths of geekdom to becoming a catalyst and nerve centre for real-life revolutionaries is one that has taken even some of its own members by surprise"

Wael Ghonim

Guardian, Arab spring: Google's Wael Ghonim on the fall of Mubarak, 18 May 2011 "I don't claim to be a leader. I don't think I am a leader anyway. I was just another guy in the movement," he told Google's Big Tent conference in London on Wednesday.

"Ghonim also played down talk that the Egyptian uprising was a "Facebook revolution"."

Sayf al-’Adl

Vahid Brown, jihadica, Sayf al-’Adl and al-Qa’ida’s Historical Leadership, 18 May 2011 "In light of the widely reported news that Sayf al-‘Adl (also spelled Saif al-Adel) has taken the reins of operational leadership within al-Qa’ida in the wake of the death of Osama bin Laden, I thought it would be useful to Jihadica’s readers to provide a bit of context about this man and about the significance, if any, of these reports (see, e.g., Musharbash and Bergen), all of which rely on the testimony of Noman Benotman, a former leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group"

Bin Laden praised Arab uprising

BBC, Osama Bin Laden: Al-Qaeda releases posthumous message, 19 May 2011

NYT/SMH, Bin Laden praised Arab uprising, 10 May 2011 "In a message to Muslims made public 16 days after his death, Osama bin Laden praised the pro-democracy uprisings that have swept the Arab world."

NTD, Al Qaeda Posthumously Releases Bin Laden Message, 20 May 2011

UAE has 11m mobile phone users

Zawya, UAE has 11m mobile phone users, 19 May 2011: "The UAE had more than 11 million mobile phone subscribers at the end of February, pushing its penetration rate close to 200 per cent, one of the highest rates in the world, official figures showed on Wednesday."

'Inspire' translated into Russian

Reuters, Al Qaeda online magazine translated into Russian, 18 May 2011 "The English-language web journal, Inspire, launched by al Qaeda's Yemeni wing last year to reach out to Muslims living in the West, stoked U.S. and European concerns with articles such as one entitled "make a bomb in your mother's kitchen.""

'UAE online shopping stalled'

The National, UAE online shopping stalled, 17 May 2011 "A lack of online payment providers could be holding back the development of web shopping in the Emirates."

Japan, Muslims and the net

ABC Radio Australia News:Stories:Muslims file lawsuit against Japanese state governments, 17 May 2011: "The lawyers said private information leaked included personal information and details of their actions including visits to mosques and internet habits."

Saif al-Adel and the death of Daniel Pearl

Saif al-Adel and the death of Daniel Pearl - By Asra Q. Nomani | The AfPak Channel, 20 May 2011

Egyptian politics

Al-Masry Al-Youm, Salafis in Cairo aim to establish 'Virtue' political party, 19 May 2011 "The proposed formation of the new party was announced through social networking site Facebook, as well as through a number of internet links carrying the party’s name. The same sources advertise the headquarters of the party as being in Nasr City, and it is there that group members meet daily to prepare the party’s political plans for the parliamentary, Shura Council and presidential elections."

There's also a related piece in the Ian Black, Guardian, Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood poised to prosper in post-Mubarak new era, 20 May 2011,

Monday, May 16, 2011, Live blog: Syria, Live blog: Syria

Border protests

Adrian Blomfield, Telegraph, Israel attacks Palestinian border protests, 15 May 2011 "Inspired by popular revolts elsewhere in the Middle East, activists are believed to have orchestrated the march on Israel's borders in secret by using social networking sites like Facebook."

Emad Drimly, Saud Abu Ramadan, Xinhua, Anti-Israel Arab protests turning point in Mideast conflict: analysts, 16 May 2011 "Palestinian politicians and analysts said on Sunday that the Palestinian and Arab protests, rallies and demonstrations against Israel, which marked 63 years for the Nakba Day, or Catastrophe, might be a turning point in the history of the Israeli-Arab conflict."

Nicholas Blanford, Maroun er Ras, Time, A Third Intifadeh? Deadly Nakba Protests Spark Fears of Israel-Lebanon Border Escalation, 15 May 2011

"South Lebanon Sunday witnessed its deadliest day since the month-long Israel-Hizballah 2006 war when 10 Palestinian demonstrators were reported shot dead and another 112 wounded as Israeli troops opened fire on protests along the border fence."

Edward Yeranian, VOA, Syrian Crackdown in Border Town Enters Second Day, 15 May 2011

MENA Android

Ahmad Al-Shagra, TNW Middle East, Paid Android Apps Available for Some MENA Users: "Android users in the Middle East can finally get their hands on paid apps from the Android Market now that Google has added included the feature for 10 countries from in the region" Seems like a long-overview option - the article notes that some zones can't get the apps yet.

Yasmine Ryan,, Tunisia's dissident blog stays true to form, 13 May 2011: "During the media blackout imposed as the uprising took hold of Tunisia in December and January, [French/Arabic] was one of the most reliable sources of information, offering images and video showing what was happening on Tunisian streets. "

Useful overview of, a significant channel in Tunisia.

'Shop, shop, shop till you drop.', Blog / Mimi Raad: Shop, shop, shop till you drop. But Arab women doing this online?, 13 May 2011: "A growing number of young and not so young Arab women are purchasing almost everything they need on the net. Shoes, bags, house furniture and decoration items, books, babies games and outfits."

'Donkeys Take Over From DSL as Syria Shuts Down Internet'

This puts the (so-called) 'Facebook Revolution' in perspective (certainly in Syria). Great headline too:

Abdullah Omar, The Media Line, Donkeys Take Over From DSL as Syria Shuts Down Internet, 15 May 2011 "To get the news outs, activists have been smuggling videos to Jordan through the desert and across a nearly 80-kilometer border Jordan shares with Syria. Some risk approaching the border with Jordanian cellphones to report to the outside world and send clips. It’s a dangerous task because the Syrian and Jordanian armies traditionally have the area under heavy surveillance to prevent the smuggling of drugs and weapons into the kingdom or further to the Gulf states.

"But desperate Syrians have been using a helping hand from smugglers to cross the border, either by walking or on the backs of donkeys, according to residents from Ramtha. Locals have centuries if not millennia of experience eluding officials."

'The slap that sparked a revolution'

The Observer, The slap that sparked a revolution, 15 May 2011 "The Arab spring was triggered in Tunisia when Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire after claiming he was slapped by policewoman Fedia Hamdi. But as Elizabeth Day discovers, revolutions create their own myths."

Arab spring, Persian winter

Ali Alfoneh, BitterLemons, Arab spring, Persian winter, 15 May 2011 "It is still too early to tell whether the waves of change sweeping over the shores of North Africa and the Middle East will erode the foundations of autocracy or, conversely, whether they will merely substitute secular authoritarianism with Islamist totalitarianism. It is clear, however, that no regional regime is immune to their impact, not even the Islamic Republic of Iran, the self-proclaimed vanguard of the permanent world revolution."

Iranians surf shark-infested, state-controlled web

Robin Pomeroy, Reuters/The Daily Star, Iranians surf shark-infested, state-controlled web, 16 May 2011: "At a Tehran cafe, a young man turns on his laptop to check out the latest gossip on Facebook.The scene could be repeated anywhere in the world, but the difference in Tehran is that he, like countless other Iranian Internet users, is breaking the law." Good overview.

Bin Laden was logged off, but not al-Qaida

The Associated Press: Bin Laden was logged off, but not al-Qaida, 15 May 2011: "Al-Qaida's technological evolution illustrates how much the group has changed since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and why it has flourished despite America's decade-long quest to crush it, using everything from drone strikes in Pakistan to secret prisons in Eastern Europe where bin Laden's lieutenants were interrogated"

'Social sites used for surveillance', Social sites used for surveillance: Expert, 13 May 2011 "While social networking tools have been a useful mechanism in coordinating protests and motivating activists, it is also becoming an instrument used by regimes for surveillance and spreading propaganda, warns an expert."

Taliban Tweets

GMA News Online, Taliban boosts propaganda with English tweets, 13 May 2011 "In a move seen as an expansion of its propaganda's reach beyond the Afghan world, the Taliban has recently started posting messages in English on its Twitter account several months after tweeting only in pure Pashto, one of the Middle Eastern country's official languages." Widely reported

Da'wa in KSA

Abdul Ghafour, Arab News, Tagalog Qur’an translation ready for publication, 12 May 2011 "Kawther [Fuad Kawther, general manager of the Industrial City Dawa Office, Jeddah] believes that socialization is the best way to bring non-Muslims closer to Islam. “We should also present Islam in a scientific and attractive manner using modern information technology. If we simply treat our fellow humans the way Islam instructs, they will open up and show interest to learn about our religion,” he said."

Tracking key terror suspects

Frank Gardner, BBC News - Tracking key terror suspects, 13 May 2011 "The path that led the CIA to Osama Bin Laden's doorstep was a long and complex one."

Google Adds Islamic Prayer Times in Search

ArabCrunch, Google Adds Islamic Prayer Times in Search just picked this one up

"Google shows snippet of movies show times in many countries in its search resluts, today google announced that it launched Islamic Prayer Times in search results highlighted from pages across the web."

Thursday, May 12, 2011

OnIslam opinion: "Can I Convert in Secret?"

Can I Convert in Secret? - New to Islam - counsels - "My advice is that you accept Islam in your heart and do your best to learn and practice the rituals like ablution and Prayers, but not tell your parents yet. The Prayers can be performed in secret in your room; since you live far from a mosque, you do not have to perform them in congregation. And you have almost a year until you have to worry about fasting Ramadan. Even that can be done in secret, though with difficulty.

"Al-hamdu lillah , (all praise to Allah) you now have access to the Internet, via which you can learn the basics of Islam and how to pray and fast."

See the full response by clicking above.

'Al-Qaeda ideologist asks Kyrgyzstan for political asylum', Al-Qaeda ideologist asks Kyrgyzstan for political asylum, 11 May 2011: "“Delo №.” reported, referring to the information released in Internet, that Ali Osman Zor used to issue “Al-Qaeda” magazine, “which could be freely bought in Turkey”. He also was a member of “Great East Islamic Raiders Front” extremist group. According to the newspaper, Ali Osman Zor served a term for attempt to overthrow Turkey’s secular system and later was released under an amnesty."

Women in Turkey

The Economist, Women in Turkey: Behind the veil "The best news is that women are getting organised. Those battling to end restrictions on the headscarf are among the most vocal. Secular women support the campaign to force parties to accept female candidates who cover their heads. “No headscarves, no votes,” is their slogan. Although Mr Erdogan and most of his cabinet are married to veiled women, the AK has nominated only one similarly pious woman, for an unwinnable seat."

al-Shabab on OBL

National Post, Somali terror leader vows revenge for bin Laden, 12 May 2011: "A former Toronto man who is now a commander of the Somali terrorist group Al-Shabab has called for revenge over the killing of Osama bin Laden in a videotape posted on the Internet."

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

CT analysts and aQ

Jarret Brachman, Cronus, Let 1,000 Opinions (U)BLoom [Updated], 9 May 2011 "I hope my fellow CT analysts similarly feel unencumbered to speak their mind about the individuals, dynamics, trends and events they believe need to be addressed in our nation’s dialog about a post UBL al-Qaeda, in spite of any calls for self-censorship or stifling criticism they may encounter in the name of the ‘greater good.’ I implore my colleagues to blog, tweet, Facebook and publish their fannies off, knowing full well that AQ is watching, that you might advance your career or worse yet make some money, and that others might take issue with your assessments, your methods or your even you."

Refers to Leah Farrall (All Things Counter Terrorism) and Will McCants, Jihadica, No New Bin Ladens, 8 May 2011 - both of which are well worth reading as well

'Toward a new Arab media'

Lawrence Pintak, Columibia Journalism Review, Breathing Room: Toward a new Arab media

'Senior Al-Qaeda member warns US of 'worse' attack'

AKI, Bin Laden: Senior Al-Qaeda member warns US of 'worse' attack, 11 May 2011

Kabul madrassa report on CNN

"CNN's Stan Grant takes a rare look into a closed world when he visits a madrassa -- an Islamic religious school -- in a poor Kabul neighborhood. Here, children as young as six are taught to dislike the United States."

OBL media re-evaluated

Baker Atyani,, Osama Bin Laden meets the media, 9 May 2011 "The United States may not find much in Bin Laden’s house except some media and cultural content. The US may have possibly found very little about Al Qaeda, its network ties, strategies and planning.

"As such, it is important to re-consider the US announcement that it found a treasure throve of information about Al Qaeda."

Syria Live Blog - May 11 | Al Jazeera Blogs

Syria Live Blog - May 11 | Al Jazeera Blogs comprehensive coverage

Twitter #libya

Twitter / Search - #libya closely following this feed today.

Also see this in Gloria Goodale, CSM, In Libya, perfecting the art of revolution by Twitter, "Every generation’s revolutionaries have harnessed the latest technology, from patriots pamphleting in 1775 to Egyptians texting in 2011. Thanks to YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook, today’s Libyan rebels are having a dialogue with the globe, not just each other.

"An Egyptian cab driver tells this joke to foreign reporters: President Hosni Mubarak dies and is greeted in the afterlife by former Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser, who asks him how he died. Mr. Mubarak answers, “Death by Twitter.”"

'US warned Pakistan it would come to get Bin Laden: US officials'

–Reuters/The Express Tribune, US warned Pakistan it would come to get Bin Laden: US officials, 11 May 2011 "The United States repeatedly told Pakistan that Washington would send American forces into that country if it had evidence that Osama bin Laden was hiding there, according to current and former US officials."

Yemen video

YouTube - Escelation [sic] in the Yemeni revolution

sourced via: @j

"A compelling video blog by activist/dr @ on plans to escalate protests. Great protest scenes:"

Egypt’s net numbers

ArabCrunch, Egypt’s MCIT: Egypt Has 23.51 Million Internet Users, 71.46 Million Mobile Subscribers & 3972 ICT Companies "Egypt’s Ministry of communications and information technology (MCIT) has released ICT indicators in brief for February of 2011. The report says that there are 71.46 million Mobile subscribers in January growing at 1.13 % from previous month with annual growth at 27.95% while Mobile penetration rate is at 91.32 %."

Mustalahatek: Arabic User Generated Dictionary

ArabCrunch, Mustalahatek: Arabic User Generated Dictionary for Technical Terms, 1 May 2011: "Almost every day there is a new technical term in english, Mustalahatek aims to be the place to provide translations to those terms into Arabic."

still in beta, looks useful

1981 riots

BBC - BBC Radio 2 Programmes - Jeremy Vine, 11 May 2011: "After one o'clock, a special programme looks back thirty years at the riots in Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side."

Jeremy Vine on Radio 2 yesterday had a good section on the Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side Riots of 1981. You can hear it via the BBC iPlayer (it came on after 1 o'clock, so scroll through an hour)

Replacing OBL

CBS News, Choices for Osama bin Laden replacement are many, 10 May 2011 "A week after the death of Osama bin Laden, his longtime deputy is considered the front-runner to succeed the iconic al Qaeda founder. But uprisings in the Middle East and changing dynamics within the group could point to another scenario: a decision not to appoint anyone at all to replace the world's most-wanted terrorist."

German Jihad

Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark, Spiegel Online, German Jihad: Homegrown Terror Takes on New Dimensions, 9 May 2011 "Osama bin Laden may be dead, but al-Qaida is alive and well in Germany. Each month, an average of five Islamists leave the country for terrorist training camps in the Afghanistan-Pakistan border area. Recent arrests in Düsseldorf show just how dangerous homegrown terror has become."

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Kuwait and Twitter

alWatanDaily, Sheikh Khaled denies monitoring Twitter users, 9 May 2011 "The Head of Protocol of the Amiri Diwan Sheikh Khaled Al-Abduallah Al-Sabah denied on Sunday what some twitter posts has been saying, as to monitoring the users and referring them to prosecution."

Tip: Shuji Hosaka

Southeast Asia, social networks and 'jihad'

Maria Ressa, Philippine Daily Inquire,, Spreading the jihadi virus in Southeast Asia, 9 May 2011: "Studies on social networks of al-Qaida and its Southeast Asian arm, Jemaah Islamiyah (JI), show that both organizations continue to spread violent jihadi ideology like a virus ...

" ... “More people are buying into the ideology of JI and its associated groups,” says [Ronan] Gunaratna. “More individuals are politicized, radicalized and mobilized, and a very small number of them will continue to carry out attacks.”

"Add the potent amplifying effect of social media. In mid-April, a jihadist prepared a 23-page guide to “effectively post” on Facebook. (Indonesia is the second largest Facebook nation in the world; the Philippines ranks sixth globally).""

Useful article: "Maria A. Ressa is former CNN Jakarta bureau chief and author of “Seeds of Terror: An Eyewitness Account of Al-Qaeda’s Newest Center of Operations in Southeast Asia.”"

Indonesia and OBL reaction

Sara Schonhardt, Osama's death ripples in Indonesia, 11 May 2011 "The death of Osama bin Laden at the hands of United States Special Forces in Pakistan this month has turned a lens on the sustainability of his al-Qaeda radical offshoots, with analysts weighing the strength of the connections between the group he led and the scores of small jihadi cells that operate across the world."

Egypt’s revolution: 100 days on

Scott Burchill, The Drum Opinion (Australian Broadcasting Corporation), Egypt’s revolution: 100 days on, 10 May 2011,

Monday, May 09, 2011

The Future of Islam in the Age of New Media

The Future of Islam in the Age of New Media: the World's Shortest Conference on Islam Ever "Register now and join 60 speakers comprised of Islamic scholars, new media experts, academics, journalists and activists, along with thousands of participants who will be tuning in for an unprecedented conversation, focused on exploring answers to these pressing questions."

includes 60 seconds from myself

More reaction re OBL

AP, Internet chatter up on bin Laden revenge attacks, 7 May 2011 "Pipe bombs, a targeted car crash, a lone gunman: Western intelligence officials said Friday they are seeing increased Internet and phone chatter about cheap, small-scale terror attacks to avenge the death of 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden."

'Taliban Twitter' II, Taliban embrace information age with Twitter, English websites, 8 May 2011

I have previously blogged and written on this issue.

"Other attempts at expanding the Taliban’s marketing reach have run into obstacles. Its Facebook page was shut down earlier this year after just 20 days. But the Taliban has started sending out its statements as tweets from two Twitter accounts.

"To reach ordinary Afghans – most of whom are illiterate and have no Internet access – it relies on more rudimentary methods. It provides cassettes to compliant or intimidated mosque preachers and tribal elders. It operates radio stations in parts of four provinces where its control is solid. Some of its fighters carry mobile radio equipment consisting of little more than wire strung through tree branches and beat-up antennas held together with electrical tape. They then transmit cassette tapes of songs and religious exhortations."

OBL - net reaction and videos

Aaron Y. Zelin, Foreign Policy, The bin Laden aftermath: The Internet jihadis react, 2 May 2011 "Following President Barack Obama's announcement yesterday of the operation that killed al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, the latter's online grassroots supporters in forums and blogs began quickly to respond. These pronouncements provide key insights into how these activists view Bin Laden as well as their continued commitment to the movement, showing a range of emotions but also the durability of the ideas that bin Laden worked so hard to propagate through propaganda and massive anti-civilian violence."

Also see Aaron Zelin's for some of this reaction.

This in turn links to J.M. Berger,, New Osama bin Laden Videos: More Questions Than Answers [Berger is the author of 'Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam' which is due out soon.

Also see Wired, Danger Room, Watch: Osama’s Blooper Reel, Courtesy of the Navy SEALs, 7 May 2011

[note: no audio!]

Osama bin Laden's data

Collin Greenland, The Gleaner, Examining bin Laden's computer, 8 May 2011 "The information secured from terrorists' computers, therefore, has proven historically to be as important as actually killing them. Clearly, although the intelligence fraternity will be salivating at the "impressive" amount of information that CIA Director Leon Panetta said is being extracted by hundreds of analysts in Pakistan, billions worldwide are now also asking the same question: Can you imagine what's on Osama bin Laden's hard drive? But how will they examine bin Laden's computer?"[Collin Greenland is a forensic accountant; the article usefully links to: US Department of Justice, 'Electronic Crime Scene Investigation: A Guide for First Responders' [pdf]]

Mathew J. Schwartz,, Cracking Bin Laden's Hard Drives, 5 May 2011 "Here's how the process works, said Rob Lee, a director at information security company Mandiant and a fellow at The SANS Institute, in a telephone interview: A military team will secure a location but not touch the computers. Next, computer experts--typically, contractors--traveling with the team come in and do a "clean takedown" of any machines. Little if any "deep dive" data analysis will be performed in the field, except perhaps some quick analysis in search of "low-hanging fruit," for example to note on a captured cell phone any phone numbers that the target recently called, or any recently sent emails. But the true payoff comes when intelligence analysts compare the captured data with "the hundreds of terabytes of data that they've already gathered over many years," for example to see how names, email addresses, and phone numbers match up."

John Hudswon,, Is the U.S. Using Info from Bin Laden's Hard Drive for Drone Attacks?, 6 May 2011 "Days after U.S. Navy SEALs took hard drives, memory sticks and personal computers from Osama bin Laden's hideout, both Pakistan and the U.S. have launched major offensives against suspected Islamic militants. On Friday, a U.S. drone strike reportedly killed 12 militants in Pakistan and another U.S. drone strike in Yemen, the first since 2002, killed two suspected Al Qaeda operatives. And, as reported minutes ago, Pakistani forces have rounded up 40 people in Abbottabad suspected of having connections to bin Laden. Is the massive data trove recovered from bin Laden's compound already paying off?"

refers to this article:

Spencer Ackerman, Wired, First Drone Strikes Since bin Laden Raid Hit Pakistan, Yemen "CIA officials have yet to respond to inquiries from Danger Room about the connection between the drone strikes and the bin Laden compound intelligence. Chances are they won’t confirm anything. But it’s hard to resist making an educated guess. After al-Qaida’s Yemen branch tried to sneak bombs into the U.S. packed into printers, the CIA and the Joint Special Operations Command paired up to create “kill/capture” teams, equipped with drones. And they’re precisely the ones who killed bin Laden and stole his documents."

Saturday, May 07, 2011

OBL, Al-Qaeda Confirms Bin Laden's Death, 6 May 2011 , "Five days after the US announced the killing of Osama bin Laden, Al-Qaeda confirmed on Friday, May 6, the killing of its leader, vowing revenge on the United States and its allies."

Friday, May 06, 2011

"Ex-Taliban fighter in 'jihad recruitment bid'"

BBC News, Ex-Taliban fighter in 'jihad recruitment bid', 5 May 2011 "The court heard how Mr Farooqi and his son used the basement of the family's four-bed terrace house to produce DVDs and CDs about radical Islam."

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

'Bin Laden’s Online Fan Club Fumes at Death Reports'

Adam Rawnsley and Noah Shachtman, Bin Laden’s Online Fan Club Fumes at Death Reports, 2 May 2011 "“As a cover-up to its catalog of failures, the enemy always tries to distract the attention of not only the supporters of the Jihad and the Mujahedeen,” cries Abu Ali Assadiq, one moderator of the Somalia-oriented jihadi forum Al-Qimmah.", Al-Qaeda Internet Message Board Acknowledges Bin Laden's Death, 3 May 2011 "An Internet message board run by the Al-Qaeda leadership has acknowledged Osama bin Laden's death.

"According to the monitoring group SITE on Monday, Asad al-Jihad 2, a prominent member of the online jihadist community, called bin Laden a knight who sacrificed his soul to fight the United States and its allies."

Monday, May 02, 2011

Fisk on OBL

ABC Melbourne, Death of Osama Bin Laden 'pretty irrelevant': Robert Fisk, 2 May 2011 "Veteran journalist Robert Fisk, who interviewed Osama Bin Laden on three occasions, says news of Bin Laden's death is much less important than the popular uprisings happening in the Arab world."

"Bin Laden’s death unlikely to inspire new generation of jihadists" opinion

James M Dorsey,, Bin Laden’s death unlikely to inspire new generation of jihadists, 2 May 2011 opinion piece

"With Al Qaeda marginalized by the wave of anti-government protests sweeping the Middle East and North Africa, the risk of Mr. Bin Laden, the world’s most wanted fugitive, becoming a martyr capable of inspiring jihadists across the globe in death as much as he did while alive has been substantially diminished."

CNN report on OBL

Typo on Fox

Metro, 'Obama bin Laden dead': Fox News typo causes Twitter storm, 2 May 2011 "Every news provider in the world is buzzing today, broadcasting stories on the death of Osama bin Laden. However, an oversight at Fox News' Sacramento affiliate Fox40 News saw the US TV channel use titles onscreen reporting that 'Obama Bin Laden' had died.

Live blog: Osama bin Laden killed by US forces, Live blog: Osama bin Laden killed by US forces, 2 May 2011


Danny Sullivan,, The Death Of Osama Bin Laden, Live Tweeted

"RT @ISuckBigTime: Osama Bin Laden killed in Abbottabad, Pakistan.: ISI has confirmed it << Uh oh, there goes the neighborhood :-/ ReallyVirtual"
6 hours ago

OBL Twitter reacton

Guardian, Twitter first with news of Osama bin Laden's death via ex-Bush staffer, 2 May 2011 "News of Osama bin Laden's death was first leaked on Twitter by Keith Urbahn, the former chief of staff for Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary under President George W Bush."

Osama Bin Laden killed: reaction

BBC News, Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden dead - Barack Obama, 2 May 2011 "Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden has been killed by US forces in Pakistan, President Barack Obama has said."

BBC News, Bin Laden killed: How it happened, 2 May 2011

Times of India, A massive house with no telephone or internet connection led to bin Laden, 2 May 2011 "A large mansion in a massive compound with 12 feet to 18 feet tall walls topped with barbed wire. No telephone or internet connection to the house. And seldom seen residents who burnt their trash rather than dispose it as other neighbors did."

Times of India/Reuters, Obama was found with youngest wife, 2 May 2011 "US forces finally found al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden not in the rugged mountains of Afghanistan's border, but in a million-dollar compound in an upscale suburb of Pakistan's capital, with his youngest wife, US officials said early on Monday."

AFP/Inquirer, Blogger ‘tweets’ attack on Osama bin Laden, 2 May 2011, "An IT consultant in the Pakistan city of Abbottabad was an Internet celebrity on Monday after unwittingly providing a real-time account of the attack that killed Osama bin Laden.

"Sohaib Athar, who tweets under the name "ReallyVirtual," began sending Twitter messages complaining about helicopters hovering in an unusual early morning annoyance."

AP/Inquirer, Bin Laden's death draws cheers, relief, dismay, 2 May 2011 ""Hardline sympathizers of Bin Laden expressed shock and dismay at the news, with many saying it could not be believed until formally confirmed by the terrorist network.

""How, why, when? I don't believe it," said one dazed subscriber, Mullah Faisal, on popular Jihadi website "I ask God to keep his servant safe and keep him away from the eyes of the infidels.""