Logistics: The Secret Terrorist SUV Fleet

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October 24, 2006: The outlawed Baath Party of Iraq recently bought over 400 SUVs. The Iraqi Baath Party, which Saddam Hussein led for three decades, and which has been behind most of the violence in Iraq over the last three years, has lots of money, and support from the 20 percent of Iraqis who are Sunni Arabs. With all the money and terrorist activity, there is a need for transportation.

The deal went down like this. Recently there was a spurt in the purchases of a certain model of four-wheel drive vehicle in a small European country. Over several weeks, about 400 of these were purchased, a number well-above seasonal averages. Almost all the purchases were of a single vehicle, or at most two or three, by apparently legitimate local residents. Almost all were bought in cash, sometimes with checks drawn on foreign banks. Since the purchases were spread out all over the country, individual dealers didn't necessarily notice the anomaly; after all, if you're in the car sales business and you move three more vehicles this month than average, it doesn't necessarily smell suspicious. But someone higher up in the auto business spotted the unusual "bump" in sales. He alerted the national police. An investigation followed.

It appears that the vehicles were all purchased by agents of the Iraqi Baath Party. During their decades in power, Saddam Hussein and his henchmen stashed billions abroad. This money, much of which is controlled by Saddam's daughter Raghdad, is now being used to finance much of the violence in Iraq. Apparently, some of the vehicles were to be used to help ferry personnel, equipment, and money from Europe to Iraq, and evacuate injured terrorists to safe areas outside the country. Other vehicles were to be smuggled into Iraq, to be used in direct support of terrorist acts.

 


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