Is this an Al Qaeda campaign? Did Aafia Siddiqui want to get caught?
Hey, why leave the conspiracy theories to the other side?
Millions of Muslims and anti-American leftists around the world are absolutely convinced that Aafia Siddiqui was really Prisoner 650, "The Grey Lady of Bagram." That Aafia has been "continuously raped and tortured for five years" by Americans. That Pakistan's Military Intelligence (MI) handed her over to the U.S. years ago. That the FBI handed over bounty money to Pervez Musharraf's son. Many of the purveyors of these conspiracies seem to be coming from people who are openly sympathetic to Al Qaeda and other Islamic terrorists, like these guys or these guys. Why do millions of Pakistanis and Muslims around the world and here in the US believe them? (Picture below from Getty Images at Daily Life)
Two can play at the conspiracy game. I've got some conspiracy theories myself:
1) Aafia Siddiqui may have been in a Pakistani witness protection program, and she was outed by the "human rights campaigns" in Pakistan for her.
2) This is an Al Qaeda campaign, and Aafia is being sacrificed or made a martyr. They've sacrificing Siddiqui to "rally the troops" and create a poster child for future attacks. The timing of her capture in Afghanistan two weeks after the publicity surrounding "Prisoner 650" from Yvonne Ridley suggests that it was planned. When Siddiqui was arrested, her handbag had all manner of terrorist tools, everything except a shoe bomb and a kitchen sink, it was ridiculous! But not ridiculous if that was intentional, so that the report about her capture would appear far-fetched. The Anarchist's Manual? They must have planted the evidence!
The latter theory is actually from the Jawa Report ("Did Aafia Siddiqui Want to Get Caught?"), and it seems plausible to to me. Aafia is now the poster child for poor, weak Muslim women being brutalized by the evil Americans. I question the provenance of the picture of Aafia in her blue clothes, closed eyes, chapped lips. Who took that picture and when? Where did it come from? The photo descriptor says it was taken in a US court, but articles about the August 11, 2008 court appearance say she was wearing a maroon headscarf. If anyone knows who took it and when, please let me know.
We're in a propaganda war as much as a political and military war, and Al Qaeda has deftly used Western media to put out their propaganda. Aafia could be the new Mohammed al Durah, the iconic image that galvanizes protests and inspires attacks around the world. Who knows what violence will be caused in her name? The US government better get their side of the story out fast. With pictures, please. Given the high illiteracy rates in many Muslims countries, we need pictures not press releases.
"Petitions, Protests and Letters do not stop our Sisters from getting raped by the Americans, their allies and the Murtadeen."
"We must cut off the hands and feet of those who approach our Sisters and show them only the Mighty banner of Jihaad and Istishaad."
I'm happy to see that ABC News had a reasonable in-depth treatment of the Aafia Siddiqui case, you can read about it and see the video here. According to the ABC story, government officials say that the capture of Siddiqui has led to a "potential 'treasure trove' of information on terrorist supporters, sympathizers or 'sleepers' in the United States and overseas." Hmmm, given her activities with the Boston Muslim community groups at MIT and elsewhere, maybe some people here are a bit nervous about that.
MIT reported on its famous alumnus here. Note that in this article, the spokesman for the Bagram airbase explicitly says that Siddiqui was never detained there. She was treated for her gunshot wounds in July after her capture, but she was never held in detainment at Bagram.