THE WASHINGTON TIMES: KLA rebels train in terrorist camps

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nikst

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May 5, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/5/99
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Washington Times -- KLA rebels train in terrorist camps
Date: Tue, 4 May 1999 10:55:38 -0400

By Jerry Seper
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
------------------------------------

<Picture: S>ome members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, which has
financed its war effort through the sale of heroin, were trained in
terrorist camps run by international fugitive Osama bin Laden -- who is
wanted in the 1998 bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa that killed
224 persons, including 12 Americans.

═════The KLA members, embraced by the Clinton administration in NATO's
41-day bombing campaign to bring Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic
to the bargaining table, were trained in secret camps in Afghanistan,
Bosnia-Herzegovina and elsewhere, according to newly obtained
intelligence reports.
═════The reports also show that the KLA has enlisted Islamic terrorists
-- members of the Mujahideen --as soldiers in its ongoing conflict
against Serbia, and that many already have been smuggled into Kosovo to
join the fight.
═════Known to its countrymen as the Ushtria Clirimatare e Kosoves, the
KLA has as many as 30,000 members, a number reportedly on the rise as a
result of NATO's continuing bombing campaign. The group's leadership,
including Agim Ceku, a former Croatian army brigadier general, has
rapidly become a political and military force in the Balkans.
═════The intelligence reports document what is described as a "link"
between bin Laden, the fugitive Saudi millionaire, and the KLA
--including a common staging area in Tropoje, Albania, a center for
Islamic terrorists. The reports said bin Laden's organization, known as
al-Qaeda, has both trained and financially supported the KLA.
═════Many border crossings into Kosovo by "foreign fighters" also have
been documented and include veterans of the militant group Islamic
Jihad from Bosnia, Chechnya and Afghanistan. Many of the crossings
originated in neighboring Albania and, according to the reports,
included parties of up to 50 men.
═════Jane's International Defense Review, a highly respected British
Journal, reported in February that documents found last year on the
body of a KLA member showed that he had escorted several volunteers
into Kosovo, including more than a dozen Saudi Arabians. Each volunteer
carried a passport identifying him as a Macedonian Albanian.
═════Bin Laden and his military commander, Mohammed Atef, were named in
a federal indictment handed up in November in New York for the
simultaneous explosions Aug. 7 at the U.S. embassies in Nairobi, Kenya,
and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The indictment accused the two men of
directing the attacks, which injured more than 5,000 people.
═════The indictment said bin Laden, working through al-Qaeda, forged
alliances with government officials in Iran, the National Islamic Front
in the Sudan and an Iranian terrorist organization known as Hezbollah.
He was indicted earlier this year by a federal grand jury in New York
for his suspected terrorist activities.
═════The al-Qaeda is believed to have targeted U.S. embassies and
American soldiers stationed in Saudi Arabia and Somalia. The
organization also is accused of housing and training terrorists, and of
raising money to support their causes.
═════The State Department, along with other federal agencies, offered a
$5 million reward last year for information leading to the arrest and
conviction of the two men. Mr. Clinton ordered a retaliatory attack on
training bases controlled by bin Laden in Afghanistan and a chemical
factory near Khartoum, Sudan, after the bombings.
═════Last year, while State Department officials labeled the KLA a
terrorist organization, saying it bankrolled its operations with
proceeds from the heroin trade and from loans from known terrorists
like bin Laden, the department listed the group as an "insurgency"
organization in its official reports. The officials charged that the
KLA used terrorist tactics to assault Serbian and ethnic Albanian
civilians in a campaign to achieve independence.
═════The KLA's involvement in drug smuggling as a means of raising
funds for weapons is long-standing. Intelligence documents show it has
aligned itself with an extensive organized crime network in Albania
that smuggles heroin to buyers throughout Western Europe and the United
States. Drug agents in five countries believe the cartel is one of the
most powerful heroin smuggling organizations in the world.
═════The documents show heroin and some cocaine is moved over land and
sea from Turkey through Bulgaria, Greece and Yugoslavia to Western
Europe and elsewhere. The circuit has become known as the "Balkan
Route."
═════The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration said in a recent report
that drug smuggling organizations composed of Kosovo's ethnic Albanians
were considered "second only to Turkish gangs as the predominant heroin
smugglers along the Balkan Route."
═════Greek Interpol representatives have called Kosovo's ethnic
Albanians "the primary sources of supply for cocaine and heroin in that
country."
═════France's Geopolitical Observatory of Drugs said the KLA was a key
player in the rapidly expanding drugs-for-arms business and helped
transport $2 billion in drugs a year into Western Europe.
═════German drug agents said $1.5 billion in drug profits is laundered
annually by Kosovo smugglers, through as many as 200 private banks or
currency-exchange offices.
═════Jane's Intelligence Review estimated in March that drug sales
could have netted the KLA profits in the "high tens of millions of
dollars." It said the KLA had rearmed itself for a spring offensive
with the aid of drug money, along with donations from Albanians in
Western Europe and the United States.

**********

Gary Goldberg

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May 6, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/6/99
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In article <00b601be9768$b3082140$3c5b9ac2@nikst>, "nikst"
<ni...@glasnet.ru> wrote:

> Washington Times -- KLA rebels train in terrorist camps
> Date: Tue, 4 May 1999 10:55:38 -0400
>
> By Jerry Seper
> THE WASHINGTON TIMES
> ------------------------------------
>

So much for the "brainwashed"..."monolithic"...US press.

(BTW, a refutation of these articles was carried the day after the
2nd one was published).

Not that it matters. Neither drug-running or method of training is an excuse
for killing unarmed people, raping their women, burning their dwellings,
killing their animals, and driving them from their native land.

--
Illiterate? Write for free help!
(Remove "X" from address to reply)


Jerome Fryer

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May 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/7/99
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Gary Goldberg wrote:
>
> In article <00b601be9768$b3082140$3c5b9ac2@nikst>, "nikst"
> <ni...@glasnet.ru> wrote:
>
> > Washington Times -- KLA rebels train in terrorist camps
> > Date: Tue, 4 May 1999 10:55:38 -0400
> >
> > By Jerry Seper
> > THE WASHINGTON TIMES
> > ------------------------------------
> >
>
> So much for the "brainwashed"..."monolithic"
>...US press.
>
> (BTW, a refutation of these articles was
> carried the day after the 2nd one was published).

A brief interlude of unfortunate misdirected journalism, then. ;)

> Not that it matters. Neither drug-running
> or method of training is an excuse for
> killing unarmed people, raping their women,
> burning their dwellings, killing their animals,
> and driving them from their native land.

Unless they're Colombian, presumably.

Regards,
Jerome 8)


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