08 November, 2006

Dhiren Barot: fantasist or al Qaeda terrorist?

Barot's book is here, not where Google has been sending searchers.

Blairwatch does not think Dhiren Barot was a senior al Qaeda figure. Rather, they argue, he "was a glory-seeking Muslim convert who thought he was James al-Bond but was actually a Muppet" and "should have been laughed at and given five years". It is a view which is gathering some support on the further shores of the left.

The widely respected Counter-terrorism Blog takes a different view, as do the American authorities. CTB notes that Barot has been indicted in the US and provides a link to a Federal Indictment alleging that he "served as a lead instructor in a jihad training camp in Afghanistan where recruits were taught to use weapons and received other paramilitary training."

Moreover, CTB links to the Centre for Defence Inormation article which has details of US surveillance of Barot, or al Hindi as he was sometimes known:

While not revealed by British or U.S. authorities, CNN reported in 2004 that two U.S. officials indicated Barot was a senior al-Qaida figure also known as Esa al-Hindi, believed to have worked with the reputed al-Qaida computer expert Mohammed Naeem Noor Khan. Khan was arrested in Pakistan in 2004. According to The Economist, reports from Pakistan indicated al-Hindi was the head of al-Qaida in Britain and answered directly to Osama bin-Laden.
Who are we to believe: conspiracy theorists or the combined evidence of the Pakistani, UK and US security services?

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