Thursday, May 18, 2006

Snitch of the Week: 4/23 - 4/29

(Shahawar Matin Siraj, dumbass or terrorist?)

Osama Eldawoody, a 50-year old Egyptian nuclear engineer who became a paid informer for the New York Police Department after 9/11; brought out some controversial aspects of the war against terror(ism) to light in this week.

From the article, or here, if you don't have Times Select,

  • In July 2003, he became a paid informer for the department's Intelligence Division. He described how his police handlers dispatched him to mosques and cafes, telling him ''to keep your eyes and ears open for any radical thing.'' He told how he wrote down the license plate numbers of worshipers, talked to imams, prayed alongside other Muslims and, after each visit, reported back to his detective handler.

    In his opening statement, Mr. Stolar said the evidence would show that Mr. Eldawoody, who was unable to find work as an engineer and struggled, first as an ice cream vendor and cabdriver, and later in real estate and the restaurant business, became an informer for the money. He was paid nearly $100,000 by the department over the course of almost three years, Mr. Stolar said.

    ''We are dealing with a plot that never could have succeeded,'' he said, noting that the backpacks and the bomb were ''to be supplied by the New York City Police Department's confidential informer. So no one was ever in danger and no one was ever going to get hurt because it never could have happened.''

Shit, for $100K I'd through on my kufi and hit record.


  • Shahawar Matin Siraj, a 23-year-old Pakistani immigrant, was secretly recorded over several months in 2004 declaring his hatred for America and talking about a plan to bomb the Herald Square subway station.

It is quite possible that an older Muslim coaxed a confused younger Muslim into a pre-planned plot that he only had to nod and follow along with to incriminate himself, or not.

There are witnesses that say Siraj was discussing some sort of violent attack on America before he met Eldawoody.

And peep some of his rants,

  • Speaking to his driver, he derides a passing policeman: ''Hello, pig. Hi, pig. Bye, pig. Pig, you have a problem?'' Then, ''You, pig, will learn the lesson someday.'' And also sings -- apparently mimicking a song. ''Brooklyn Bridge is falling down. Falling down. Falling down. The black guys used to sing this song, remember?''

    The conversation was one of roughly a dozen played yesterday in Federal District Court in Brooklyn, where Mr. Siraj is on trial, charged with conspiring to blow up the subway station beneath Herald Square in Manhattan. They ranged from the sinister to the more fantastical.

    Among the topics: a discussion on the possibility of attacking the United States Army with nuclear weapons; killing Bill Gates, the co-founder of Microsoft, in order to damage the American economy; stealing nuclear material from reactors or, apparently, from the once top-secret base in Nevada known to U.F.O. buffs as Area 51 (although Mr. Siraj referred to it as Area 52).

Not exactly the Pledge of Allegiance there...

But I'm sure a lot of us wouldn't want our private conversations with supposed friends recorded for various reasons.

But we all know the American government wouldn't spy on its citizens without good reason right?

Anyway, for bringing the delicate rules of good snitching and its evil cousin, entrapment to light, Osama Eldawoody, you are the Snitch of the Week.

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