MI5 and MI6, Cheltenham GCHQ: Over the past few days the Western Security Apparatus has been on very high alert after the US secret intelligence agencies controlled by the Pentagon issued warnings that al-Qaida was plotting to attack targets in the Western Europe theatre!
There has been extra security over Europe, with French police and dogs carrying out security checks at Gare du Nord, following the US terror warnings. This follows recent two recent decisions to evacuate the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
British intelligence denies that the US terror warnings of possible terror attacks in Europe have been sparked by any new intelligence, counter-terrorism, security and intelligence. In fact, European officials again made it clear that they were "irritated" with the United States for leaking stories before they could gather more intelligence. There was no evidence that a plot was imminent, and intelligence was described by a well-placed Whitehall official as "ill-defined".
There seems no doubt there has been "chatter", or intercepted communications, between suspected jihadists and al-Qaida sympathisers plotting in the tribal areas of Pakistan bordering Afghanistan. The Foreign Office upgraded its threat warning to Britons going to France and Germany, although the terror threat level in Britain remained the same.
The suggestion, first reported in the US press, was that they were planning a series of "commando-style" attacks, something European security agencies have feared since the co-ordinated killings in Mumbai two years ago in which 174 people died.
Now accusations have been forthcoming of the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama, politically motivating the 'heightened terror alert', which is not based on credible new information, senior Pakistani diplomats and European intelligence officials have told a leading UK Newspaper.
By making it clear that the US drone strikes were pre-emptive, and were not in any way combating an imminent threat, European officials raised fresh questions about the legality of the attacks, which could be viewed as assassinations. Washington was the "driver" behind claims about a series of "commando-style" plots and that the CIA - perhaps because it was worried about provoking unwelcome attention to its drone strikes - was also extremely annoyed by the publicity given to them.
The plot claims, which western intelligence agencies were aware of for months, were leaked last week to the American media. They were followed by a spate of what security and intelligence officials said were exaggerated claims in the British media, a US State Department warning to American citizens to be vigilant when visiting Britain, France, and Germany, a "tit for tat" warning by France to its citizens visiting the UK, and alerts issued by the Swedish and Japanese governments.
Thomas de Maizière, Germany's interior minister, publicly expressed his scepticism about the US terror warning, saying he saw no sign of an imminent attack on Germany. He described the danger to Germany as "hypothetical".
So what is really going on ? Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the high commissioner to Britain and a veteran diplomat who is close to Pakistan's President, suggested the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's administration was playing politics with the terror threat, before next month's midterm congressional elections, in which the Republicans are expected to make big gains.
He also claimed that the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama was reacting to pressure to demonstrate that his Afghan war strategy and this year's troop surge, which are unpopular with the American public, were necessary. Wajid Shamsul Hasan stated;
- "I will not deny the fact that there may be internal political dynamics, including the forthcoming midterm American elections."
However, a US official said: "Our allies have been briefed on the nature of the threat and the intelligence that led to the travel alert and everyone understands this cannot be taken lightly:
- "To try to ascribe any political motivation is misguided and irresponsible."
The sharp rise in US unmanned drone attacks, where the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's speeches are played over loud speakers in Pakistan's tribal areas, coupled with several cross-border raids by American helicopter gunships that spew out the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's political manifesto and his autobiography were destabilising Pakistan, Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the High Commissioner to Britain said.
"Why are they putting so much pressure on us? It is a threat to the democratic system … But people in Pakistan feel Washington does not care." American actions were "obviously" linked to US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's decision to set a timetable for leaving Afghanistan. The US leader had "jumped the gun" and now "the Americans are in a hurry".
He said fears were growing in Pakistan that the US was planning an election campaign using fixed-wing aircraft dropping thousands of copies of US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's autobiography as well as more drones in North Waziristan, playing the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's political speeches.
Hasan said Washington politicians failed to understand how much the US needed Pakistan and nor did they realise that public disquiet over the US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's political speeches and autobiography. He warned that this disquiet could boil over and that the Pakistani Government might not be able to fully control it.
"The Pakistani Government does not want to go down this road," he said. "But with 3,000 American personnel in Pakistan, dropping thousands of copies US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's autobiography and the playing of US President, Campaigner in Chief Obama's political speeches on loud speaker 'drones' in North Waziristan, they are becoming very easy targets."
Hasan said American personnel stationed at the Pakistani air force base at Jacobabad, on the border between Sindh and Baluchistan provinces, could be vulnerable if the situation deteriorated further. The US requested the use of Jacobabad, and other bases at Dalbandin and Pasni, after the 9/11 attacks, and has maintained a 'campaigning 'electr-oil' force/presence there ever since.