Training Terrorists

Made for Channel 4 Dispatches in 1996 it traces, with powerful pictures and access, previous Osama bin Laden linked terrorist attempts in the US. This includes his earlier plan to hit the World Trade Centre and the New York underpass.

Sudan stands accused of providing a breeding ground for Islamic terrorists. The most senior politician to defect from Sudan, Mohammed Al Arabab, supplies the first real evidence that terrorist training camps, sponsored by the Sudanese government, do exist. Paul Bremer, former US Ambassador for Counter Terrorism, believes Sudan is in league with Iran and calls their relationship a “marriage of two evils”.
We uncover previous terrorist plots against the US, including FBI surveillance tape of Islamic terrorists stirring up chemical explosives for a plot to blow bridges and skyscrapers sky high. The terrorists talk of ‘killing the infidels’ in what has become a holy war against the USA in any shape or form. After ten people were sentenced for the failed bombings, America put Sudan on its official blacklist for sponsoring terrorism. The most senior politician to defect from Sudan claims that terrorist training camps, sponsored by the Sudanese government, do exist. We film three of the terrorists who admitted they received their military training on a “farm” in Sudan. Dr. Hassan Abdullah Turabi is the guiding hand behind a religious revolution to create a militant Islamic state. He laughs off accusations by the US State Department that he is exporting Islamic terrorism to both Western and Arab countries. Prime Minister Zenawi of Ethiopia accuses the Sudanese government of wanting to destabilise the entire horn of Africa. Khartoum is blamed for the assassination attempt on the Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. We film the biggest camp known as ‘Merkhiyat’, supposedly a training ground for Sudan’s Popular Defense Force. Al Arabab confirms this is where the hub of terrorist training is carried out. He has even witnessed Dr. Hassan Turabi deliver a secret lecture to the extremists at this very site. Dr. Turabi claims that these charges are part of a Western plot to blacken the name of Islam. But while these camps continue to harbour foreign terrorists they present a potent threat to global security. We gain unprecedented access to powerful footage of terrorists preparing their attack: pointing out targets such as the Brooklyn Tunnel, and mixing explosives in a New York basement. Their dialogue with one another, including talk of “killing the infidels”, is spine-chilling given recent events. However, these individuals are not acting alone; throughout the film, a complex web unravels of extremist Islamic groups, working together in a plot to wage Jihad, or “Holy War” on the West. These groups enjoy the covert backing of the governments of the Islamic states, in particular Sudan, who, it is disclosed, goes so far as to provide “farms” on which the terrorists receive military training. As the world reels from the military precision with which this week’s attacks were carried out, we reveal the high-profile support which has allowed these terrorist groups to wreak such havoc.

A film by Mark Stucke.

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