Think for a minute about the fact that someone linked to Khalid Sheikh Muhammad and other high-level jihadists was an MIT-trained neuroscientist. What is being done now to make sure that this sort of thing will not happen again? What can be done? Plenty — but no one of influence is even discussing the issue.
WASHINGTON – Five years after her disappearance, an MIT-trained Pakistani neuroscientist accused of belonging to an Al Qaeda cell based in Boston, is alive and in custody in Afghanistan, her family’s attorney said yesterday.
“It has been confirmed by the FBI that Aafia Siddiqui is alive,” said Elaine Whitfield Sharp, a lawyer for Siddiqui’s family, who said she spoke to an FBI official on Thursday. “She is injured but alive, and she is in Afghanistan.”
The news sheds some light on one of the most intriguing local mysteries in the war on terrorism.
Siddiqui, who lived in Roxbury and studied at Brandeis University as well as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, disappeared with her three children while visiting her parents’ home in Karachi, Pakistan, in March 2003, around the same time the FBI announced that it wanted to question her.
For five years, US and Pakistani authorities have denied knowing her whereabouts. But human rights groups and Siddiqui’s relatives have long suspected that she had been captured in Karachi and secretly taken into custody.
If Siddiqui was arrested in Pakistan and turned over to the United States, it would highlight a crucial instance of intelligence cooperation between the two countries during a historic low point in their relations….
Oh, good. Everything is all right now, in that case.
Military documents declassified in recent years suggest that Siddiqui is suspected of having ties to several key terrorism suspects being held at the Guantanamo Bay detention center.
She is believed to have links to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, alleged mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and allegedly arranged travel documents for another suspected terrorist. Papers in Guantanamo Bay also indicate that she married Ali Abd al-Aziz Ali, an alleged Al Qaeda facilitator who intended to blow up gas stations or poison water reservoirs in the United States….