A group linked to al Qaeda has claimed responsibility for the latest London
bombings, as forensic teams examine the rucksack bombs found on a bus and in
The group, Abu Hafs al Masri Brigade, also claimed responsibility for the
explosions on July 7.
The statement's authenticity could not be immediately verified and some
doubt has been cast on the group's previous claims.
Abu Hafs al Masri Brigade was described by the Boston
Globe as a "phantom organization." The same group claimed responsibility
for the Madrid train bombing.
There is no evidence that the group even exists. They have claimed responsibility
for everything from the 2003 blackout to car bombings in Iraq, yet in no case
is there any proof of their involvement.
Ben Venzke, CEO of IntelCenter, a private company that specializes in analyzing
terrorist messages for government agencies, said: "They started claiming
responsibility for just about everything in the world. We've never been able
to determine if it is just one person sitting at a computer having fun or if
it really is a group."
Even Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ian Blair admitted last week, "Al
Qaeda is not an organization. Al Qaeda is a way of working."
So how can Sky News use the headline 'Group Claims Bombings' when the group
doesn't exist or is just one person sitting at a computer? If I went on a random
internet forum and claimed to take responsibility for the bombings on behalf
of the Intergalactic Imperial Reptoids, would that claim have any less credibility
than the Abu Hafs al Masri Brigade claim? No it wouldn't, and yet it would never
make it into the news.
This kind of reporting is an example of crass manipulation and appeals to the
lowest common denominator. The average person will read the headline and go
away with the forever entranched explanation that this bombing was the work
of Al-Qaeda. No questions asked, end of story.