3 July 2006

"The Independent on Sunday" features my new 77 book

My new book, "The London Bombings: An Independent Inquiry", was featured in a special Inside Story report in yesterday's Independent on Sunday (p. 22-25). The report by Francis Elliot, winner of the Political Journalist of the Year British Press Award, and Sophie Goodchild, says that my book "pulls apart the official narrative of 7/7":

..... According to the official Whitehall-authored narrative, the four bombs, three on trains, the last on a bus, were the work of a self-radicalised cell working alone on a budget of £8,000. The bombs were home-made. There was no evidence of a mastermind nor of a network, other than a loose, social nebula of radical Islamists.

This "clean skin" version, published in May, was given an apparent parliamentary rubber stamp by a report from the ISC released at the same time. The ISC effectively cleared the intelligence and security services of any failure, asserting that none of the four bombers had been identified as a potential terrorist and that the attack had happened without warning.

Reassuring these reports may be, but they are wrong, according to the respected terror analyst Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, a tutor in international relations and politics at the University of Sussex. His new book, The London Bombings: An Independent Inquiry, pulls apart the official narrative of 7/7, pointing out its gaps and contradictions. He concludes that the security and intelligence services, with government connivance, downplayed the sophistication of the operation and the size and nature of its support network. Evidence of al-Qa'ida involvement is suppressed, he says, to deflect awkward questions about how a large terror network flourished unchecked in Britain for 10 years.

If he is right, the next wave of attacks to hit London is far closer and more violent than is commonly supposed.

There are some bewildering gaps in the Whitehall account of 7/7; even the nature of the explosives used in the bombing is unclear. The report says only that "it appears" they were home-made, although there is plenty of evidence that the bombs were powered by at least some commercial or military explosive.

"Forensic science ... tends to produce unambiguous answers within a matter of hours and days," Mr Ahmed says. "The idea that continuous examination over many months has failed to finish the job beggars belief."

Furthermore, the substance that the bombers were said to have mixed from household products - TATP - produces neither flame nor heat upon detonation. But eyewitnesses reported both.

Then there is the curious official reticence over proven links between the bombers' ringleader, Mohammed Siddique Khan, and other terrorists, including senior al-Qa'ida lieutenants abroad. Officially, it is admitted only that Khan was on the "periphery" of another terror plot currently the subject of court proceedings. In fact, Khan had been placed on a watchlist in 2004. MI5 had opened a file on him. Mr Ahmed claims the three other bombers were all also known to MI5.
The official narrative baldly states: "The extent to which others may have been involved in indoctrinating the group, have known what they were planning, or been involved in the planning, is unknown at this stage."

The ISC report goes a little further, admitting that Khan and Tanweer probably received "some form of operational training" in Pakistan in the months before the attacks. But Mr Ahmed is amazed that this ignores the telephone traffic between Khan and, among others, Haroon Rashid Aswat, an al-Qa'ida lieutenant previously based in Pakistan, believed by US investigators to be the mastermind of 7/7.

Mr Ahmed's controversial inference is that MI5 is now trying to cover up a tacit understanding with terror groups that operated until 9/11. They were allowed to operate as long as they did not bomb Britain or UK targets abroad. There was, in effect, a "covenant of security", he says.
Radicals such as Omar Bakri and Abu Hamza, who did so much to foment violent Islamism in Britain, were used by intelligence services in a disastrous miscalculation, he contends.
"In systematically downplaying the undeniable role of al-Qa'ida in the London bombings, the official account is attempting to draw public attention from the fact British authorities have tolerated the activities of an entrenched and burgeoning network of radical Islamists with terrorist connections for more than a decade," says the analyst......

In the Independent on Sunday's "leading article", the newspaper (p. 33) further quotes my work in support of its call for an independent inquiry:

One year on from the bomb explosions on the London Tube trains and bus that claimed 52 lives, we still know terrifyingly little about how it happened and how likely it is to happen again. The reports that the security services let Mohammed Siddique Khan, the leader of the 7/7 bombers, slip through their fingers do not inspire confidence. The failure to put Khan under surveillance may not have been particularly culpable - it is impossible to assess how important he might have appeared compared to all the other possible threats. But that is the point. Unless there is an independent inquiry into the performance of the intelligence agencies in relation to 7/7, it will be difficult to know to what extent they failed to act on information as they should have.

So far, as we report today, the authorities seem to be unable to answer many of the most basic questions about the 7/7 bombings. The bland official "narrative" says only that "it appears" that the bombs were home-made, yet this is central to the question of whether the plot was the work of a closed cell or a wider network. Equally, it has taken a study by an academic outsider, Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, to assess the extent of the bombers' international terrorist connections. He believes that they had extensive support from al-Qa'ida in Pakistan and suggests that MI5 knew about it.


  1. 7/7 was a catastrophic intelligence failure. it's strange how before 7/7 noone took the idea of suicide bombers seriously and the suddenly it became a reality.

    it was an evil act of deliberate murder and this seems to get forgotten in the political debate that has arisen from it.

    enjoyed your blog, i will be returning!



  2. Good work, Nafeez!

    I'd love a review copy of your new book! Much is happening in the US with the 9-11 Truth movement, and I hear there will be a major conference in the UK on 7/7/07 looking at "State Sponsored Terrorism." I'm running for Congress on a 9-11 Truth, Impeachment, Peace platform, and we're working on the 9th edition of the Deception Dollar (now have over 6,000,000 in print). In the US about half the people believe the official 9-11 story and half believe that there has been a cover-up. There are major films and tv shows being produced selling the official story, but also many new radical documentaries and other films challenging them. I believe the movement is entering the "take-off" phase.

    I will add links to your site from mine! All the best to you and your family!


    Carol Brouillet

  3. "Unfortunately your not really going to like Nafeez's book i think!, I'm about half way through and he sort of says they where really all part of a European Al Qeada cell. Glad I read it before sending any emails, need them change it a bit now. The official story still doesn't match what really happened, but seems like they were into it, just the authorities let it happen. I'll give you the book to lend if you haven't got it when I'm finished!

    If that's his angle I'd rather use it as toilet paper. These LIHOP casualties cannot be trusted.

  4. obviously shillkilla, you know precisely what happened on 77. you're the expert. you have inside knowledge... if someone doesn't confirm your baseless preconceptions, they must be working for the security services, right?

  5. I don't know what happened on 7/7 but I'm certainly not trying to make money and a name for myself by calling people a murderer where there ain't a shred of evidence to back it up.

  6. and now you're psychic too i see... can see inside people's minds? read their motives? you can tell that people are are up to no good just by, er, imagining it? jeez, you've a great gift.... for paranoia!

  7. and now you're psychic too i see... can see inside people's minds? read their motives? you can tell that people are are up to no good just by, er, imagining it? jeez, you've a great gift.... for paranoia!

  8. sorry for my lack of personal responses to all of you, i've been snowed under past few days. i just wanted to say that some of you who are commenting really need to adhere to some basic guidelines of human-to-human communication based on a basic interpersonal respect for one another as human subjects, which includes no reckless slandering and vacuous accusations, and instead focuses on meaningful argumentation and calm, polite, rational debate. If I'm all for open debate, but if continue to see inflammatory and rude posts, I'll turn on comment moderation and simply block some of the ill-conceived comments -- so if you'd like to keep commenting, please be calm and constructive.

    and very nice to hear from you injured cyclist, and carol!

  9. I don't see any slander but one fairly pertinent question.

    Do you think the four accused are guilty of bombing London on 7/7 Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed?

  10. it doesn't matter what i, you or anyone else "thinks". none of us has any sort of magical insight into the truth of what happened on 77. what i do know is that the government's account is hopelessly inconsistent on two counts; the first is its account of the attacks themselves, including the narrative about the four; the second is its account of the background of the four. neither of these two sets of accounts withstands impartial analytical scrutiny. neither would stand in a court of law. there are a variety of logically possible explanations for this. i've not outlined any particular theory about this in my book, and i won't do it here either. your presumption about my views on this is bizarre, as you clearly haven't read the book. perhaps if you do so and actually come back with some constructice critical observations on the basis of having engaged with my actual writing, it might help.

  11. Why are people from the so called 7/7 movement obsessed with whether or not the four bombers are guilty??? I 'm afarid I really dont understand.

    It seems to me that people go on and on about the 'truth' and blah blah but they are not interested in the truth they are only interested in blowing their own trumpet.

    For goodness sakes do any you remeber the people who died on 7/7? Do any of you think about their families and what they are going through?! Do any of you on your 'stuck in the clouds' soap boxes remeber those who survived 7/7?!! And do any of you have a single shred of understanding of the real trauma that has been inflicted on real people?!!!

    If you do then please be more sensistive, compassionate and curteous in your discussions. Discussions are supposed to further knowledge they are not a game to score points off each other.

    None of you I suspect understand either the anxiety that Muslims now suffer since 7/7. A report by the Institute of Psychiatry found that out of all Londoners Muslims showed hieghtened anxiety and fear post 7/7. This will only serve to fracture our society and socially exclude muslilms and minorities further. Dmamging our much needed social capital.

    I think you all need to take some time out and look at what you are saying before you say it and stop getting stuck on this one point - who the bombers were and whether they did it or not - and whether or Nafeez belives they are guilty or not (I mean for goodnes sake its irrelevant what he thinks - he is not judge and jury is he??? Last time I read his nor is he omnipotent)

    There is a whole wider context here that also needs to be considered.

    Move on people and start having meaningful debates which actually produce something positive and tangible.

    Get out of your conspiracy holes!

    BTW NMA I have only read a few pages of your book but so far I think it is very sensitive and insightful - thank you.

  12. wow, that's original saying people who think the accused are innocent are an insult to the victims.

    In REALITY the government's story and books by people like Milan Rai and Michael Grove are an insult to those that died.


Blog Archive