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Report: Slain Afghan Opposition Leader Tried to Warn US About Terror Attacks
VOA News
07 Nov 2003, 19:46 UTC


A newly declassified cable from the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) shows that the assassinated Afghan opposition leader, Ahmed Shah Massoud, tried to warn the West of planned terrorist attacks against the United States.

The cable, written in November, 2001, was obtained by the National Security Archive at George Washington University in the U.S. capital, through a request under the Freedom of Information Act.

According to the heavily edited document, Mr. Massoud had "limited knowledge" of al-Qaida plans to perform a terrorist act against the United States on a scale larger than the 1998 bombing of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

The DIA cable says he gained the information through intelligence efforts of his Northern Alliance. The cable says Mr. Massoud warned the West about the intentions of Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaida network in a speech to the European Parliament in April, 2001.

Mr. Massoud was assassinated later that year, two days before the September 11 hijacked airliner attacks against the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Two al-Qaida operatives posing as journalists killed him using a bomb hidden inside a video camera.

The DIA cable said the Afghan commander was not a threat to al-Qaida, even though his forces were fighting the Taleban for control of Afghanistan.