Flash back to this report, from September 30:
Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry spokesman, Abdul Basit, said the government was unaware of any such plans.
“Let me reiterate that Pakistan is committed not to allow its territory for terrorist actions anywhere in the world,” he said.
Uh-huh. In any event, the known scope of the current threat to Europe keeps expanding, as does the number of jihadists.
An official quoted below expresses surprise at how educated this batch of “misunderstanders” of Islam are — in other words, surprise at jihad not stemming from poverty or ignorance, but something else.
So one may suppose, as all technical resources are brought to bear against this threat and intelligence gathering seeks all the information it can on the mode of attack, number and origin of jihadists, their sympathizers, and their funding, consideration of the ideology that drives it will, for the most part, be delicately set aside.
“Pakistan: Dozens of Europeans in terror training,” by Kathy Gannon for the Associated Press, October 3:
ISLAMABAD – Dozens of Muslim militants with European citizenship are believed to be hiding out in the lawless tribal area of northwestern Pakistan, Pakistani and Western intelligence officials say, training for missions that could include terror attacks in European capitals.
Officials have used phone intercepts and voice tracking software to track militants with ties to Britain and other European countries to areas along the Afghan border. Al-Qaida would likely turn to such extremists for a European plot because they can move freely in and out of Western cities.
Fear that such an attack is in the planning stage has prompted the U.S. State Department to advise Americans traveling in Europe to be vigilant. American and European security experts have been concerned that terrorists based in Pakistan may be plotting attacks in Europe with assault weapons, similar to the deadly 2008 shooting spree in Mumbai, India. U.S. intelligence officials believe Osama bin Laden is behind the plots.
A senior official of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency, or ISI, told The Associated Press that there are believed to be “several dozen” people with European citizenship – many of Pakistani origin – among the Islamic extremists operating in the lawless border area.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not supposed to talk about classified information to the media, said foreigners in the area also include Chechens, Uzbeks, Arabs and Turks, one of whom was a former F-16 pilot in the Turkish air force.
“That shows you that some of the people who are coming are very well educated,” he said. “It was very surprising for us but they come thinking this is the pure (Islamic) ideology that they are seeking.”
Britain’s communications monitoring agency, the Government Communications Headquarters or GCHQ, estimates there are as many as 20 British-born militants in the border area, especially in the North Waziristan district that has been the focus of recent missile strikes carried out by unmanned aircraft operated by the CIA.
Mobile phone communications have been tracked from the border area to points in Britain, particularly England’s Midlands, where there is a heavy Pakistani immigrant population, according to a British government official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the terror plot investigation is ongoing.
But closed-circuit cameras in the Midlands were an outrage: perhaps they doth protest too much.
And, most definitely, the British apology was unwarranted — all the more in light of this information.
Voice-printing software enables British intelligence to identify and track specific individuals believed connected to terror plots, he said.
In addition, a spokeswoman with Germany’s Federal Criminal Police Office said last week that there is “concrete evidence” that 70 people have traveled from Germany to Pakistan and Afghanistan for paramilitary training, and that about a third of them have returned to Germany.
The presence in the border areas of Islamic militants with Western connections has been known for years.
Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-American who confessed to the May 1 failed car-bombing in New York’s Times Square, said the Pakistani Taliban trained him for the mission. Shahzad is scheduled to be sentenced Tuesday in a U.S. court.
During an operation last year, Pakistani soldiers discovered a passport in the name of Said Bahaji, which matches the name of a member of the Hamburg, Germany, cell that conceived the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the United States. Bahaji is believed to have fled Germany shortly before the attacks in New York and Washington.
A Spanish passport found by the Pakistani military during the same operation bore the name of Raquel Burgos Garcia. Spanish media reported that a woman with the same name was married to Amer Azizi, an alleged al-Qaida member from Morocco suspected in both the 9/11 attacks and the Madrid train bombings in 2004. […]
The plot apparently called for several gunmen to fan out across Germany, Britain and France in hopes of launching attacks similar not only to the Mumbai assault but also to so-called “swarm attacks” that extremists have mounted in Kabul and other Afghan cities. The tactic calls for small teams with automatic rifles, grenade launchers and suicide vests to strike simultaneously at several targets in a city and cause as much havoc as possible before they can be killed or captured….