The Internet has become a virtual operations center replacing the Al Qaeda bases in Afghanistan and Bosnia.
By SEBASTIAN ROTELLA
Los Angeles Times
April 16, 2007 – The Scrooge Report Post
SARAJEVO, BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA — They never met face to face, but the two young zealots became brother warriors in the new land of jihad: the Internet.
Investigators say their bond made them central figures in a terrorism network that spanned eight countries, involved more than 30 suspects and hatched plots in Washington, Toronto, London and Sarajevo.
Maximus was the online moniker of Mirsad Bektasevic, a lanky Bosnian refugee with a dark stare and a hunger for action. At 18, he returned from Sweden to this war-scarred city, where he assembled an arsenal for a suicide attack and filmed a “martyrdom” video.
Irhabi007 was Younis Tsouli, a Moroccan living in London with his diplomat father, investigators say. Hunched day and night over his computer, the diminutive 22-year-old allegedly served as a pioneering cyber-operative for Al Qaeda, oversaw Bektasevic’s mission and was at the hub of other plots.
Their case shows that the Internet has become a virtual training camp and operations center replacing the Al Qaeda bases in Afghanistan and Bosnia that produced a legion of fighters, formed them into cells and launched them at targets.