Update: Since people are linking to this post, I’m moving the friends-only part (the part that really shouldn’t be discussed in public yet) to a separate post. The “this just in” part is probably of sufficient public interest that it should be transmitted broadly; there’s a potential for trouble today, but several factors (including those described in the locked post) may mean that there are surprises in store for both sides today. For those of you not on the locked list, this is the end of a post on various political developments of the past few weeks.
November 25: In the last few hours DEBKAfile counter-terror sources report a heightened volume of traffic over the Arabic Internet forums frequented by al Qaeda and its partisans. Most of the last messages end: “The zero hour has come.”
One particular release was aired three times today, all posted by “ARAMCO boy”. The last one to reach our sources was issued at 12:28 EST, 19:28 IST.
”Today, at 6:20 hours, there will be a surprise program, one of the most beautiful I have ever seen over our Qatari channel. Anyone who knows what I mean must tell no one so as to keep the surprise whose content everyone will love. Only God knows what I mean. The program forced me to write these lines at great speed and I ask God to forgive me and reserve Paradise and not Hell for me. The zero hour has come.”
According to DEBKAfile’s sources, these messages may be red herrings designed to confuse and mislead outside monitors. However, the source who picked up the latest batch was the first to detect and correctly interpret at least two such enigmatic messages in recent months as presaging the re-appearance of Osama bin Laden and his lieutenant Ayman Zuwahri after many months out of sight. They were followed by pre-recorded statements over al Jazeera satellite TV. The timing too is suggestive: Thursday, November 28, is Thanksgiving Day in the United States.
Also worth noting is that while messages over these forums usually draw responses, the one cited here went unanswered.
No immediate estimate on the validity of this, but there are good odds that something may go off in the near future. The omens say watch your ass and keep your eyes open.