04 February 2007

Good Muslims vs. Bad Muslims.


The suspects are alleged to have plotted an Iraq style kidnapping of a Muslim serviceman who has recently returned from Iraq or Afghanistan.

The idea was to kill him and post images of his bloody end on the Internet after forcing him to beg for his life and denounce Tony Blair.

Yesterday senior military sources told how they had been alerted to the possible abduction by police several weeks ago after the list of potential victims was narrowed down to just two.

But instead of taking the possible targets into protective custody, the men agreed to act as bait to try to smoke out their would-be attackers.

One insider added: "It was a brave thing to do. Effectively they agreed to act as bait - like tethered goats - without any way of knowing how real the danger was. They had to trust the police."

The 330 Muslims serving in the UK military - including some 250 Army soldiers - have been ordered to take particular care over their own security.

The Mail can also reveal that three of the nine are known to have visited Pakistan in the past year - one spending four months there - and investigators are trying to establish exactly who they met.

British officials have asked the Pakistani authorities for assistance in recent days on the background and movements of four of those now being questioned.

Another suspect is even said to have visited Afghanistan in 2004.

There have been also been claims that videos of beheadings have been found - although police sources were unable to confirm that last night.

Investigators say a "clear pattern" has emerged in the way young disaffected British Muslims linked to UK terror investigations in recent months have travelled to Pakistan where they have met with fundamentalist leaders, clerics and pro-Al Qaeda radicals.


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