Al Qaeda's Dumbest Terrorists
Mocking al Qaeda serves a tactical as well a comic relief purpose
by Daniel Freedman
September 26, 2011
One of the least publicized things about al Qaeda is that for every cunning terrorist mastermind, there are other members who would merit coverage on a show similar to "America's dumbest criminals."
I present some of my favorite, "dumbest terrorists":
- Jose Padilla and Binyam Mohammed. These two planned to detonate a dirty bomb in a U.S. city – by stealing uranium from a passing truck and then enriching it by swinging it around in a bucket.
- Salman al-Taezi and Walid Ashibi. These Yemenis were part of a cell that plotted to attack embassies in Yemen, including the Cuban embassy – "because of Guantanamo Bay" other cell members later explained to investigators. While the two were preparing a missile, Ashibi trudged across a carpeted room and unwittingly ignited it with the static energy he had created – causing it to fire into Taezi and kill him. Ashibi himself collapsed and died moments later.
- Abu Jaffar al Hada. In 1999, the brother-in-law of 9/11 hijacker Khalid al-Mihdhar decided to fish on Lake Duranta in Afghanistan using electricity. He was electrocuted after one of the al Qaeda members onshore misinterpreted his signal and switched the current on.
- A certain Yemeni explosives trainer. Toward the end of a class at the Banshiri training camp (in Afghanistan) with new Chinese Uigher recruits, this trainer told them "and don't do this" while putting two ends of an explosive wire together – killing himself along with almost everyone else in the class.
- Abu Jandal. Bin Laden's personal bodyguard tried to impress U.S interrogators with his knowledge of history – by reciting the plot of Mel Gibson's Braveheart movie ...
Read the complete original version of this item...
receive the latest by email: subscribe to daniel freedman's free mailing list