Iraq to 'outsource' counterattacks

Baghdad is using embassies to forge ties with extremist groups to attack US facilities, say Filipino officials. Starting in October of last year, Iraq began preparing for war with the US by instructing agents in its embassies worldwide to organize terrorist-type attacks on American and allied targets, Filipino and US intelligence officials say.

Barzan Ibrahim El Hasan al Tikriti, a former head of Iraq’s intelligence agency and senior adviser to Saddam Hussein, hatched a plan to dispatch a mole to Indonesia; suicide bombers to Amman, Jordan; and a woman agent to help with planned attacks in the Philippines, according to an Iraqi defector interviewed by US intelligence. Iraqi officials also mulled suicide attacks on US ships in the Persian Gulf, according to the defector. If true, analysts say, the plans probably represent wishful thinking, since Iraq has rarely succeeded with such attempts in the past and has not been known to use suicide bombers. But there is evidence that Iraq may be outsourcing. Intelligence officials are concerned that Iraq is seeking out Islamic militant groups that have little ideologically in common with Iraq’s secular Baath regime, but find common cause against the US. Full Story

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