Who is Behind the Barcelona and Cambrils Attacks? Can We Trust the Official Reports? (Passports, patsies, this ones got the works!)

Who is Behind the Barcelona and Cambrils Attacks? Can We Trust the Official Reports?

Region: Europe
Theme: Terrorism
  
     
 
  

“Three fatal incidents believed to be linked to terrorism occur over a 24-hour period and a 190-mile stretch of north-east Spain” 

“Fourteen people have been confirmed killed in two attacks in Spain on Thursday. Thirteen died when a van was driven in to crowds on Las Ramblas in Barcelona, and one person was killed by a car in Cambrils, a coastal town 75 miles (120km) to the the south. The horrific events appear to have begun the night before, in another town 120 miles south of Barcelona.” (Guardian

Update  

(Friday, 21.15pm local time, 15.15 ET)

According to police sources, the alleged suspect driver of the van Moussa Oukabir, 17 years old (18 in some news reports) in the Las Ramblas attack was shot dead by police on Friday.

It is worth noting that two hours after the Barcelona terror attack, a suspect “was shot dead” after driving through a roadblock in Barcelona. According to police reports, he was killed by mistake: “He is now not believed to be linked to the attack.”

Moussa’s brother Driss Oukabir had initially been identified as a suspect when his ID was found at the scene of the Barcelona attack. Following the press reports concerning his ID, Driss went voluntarily to the police station saying that his ID had been stolen and he was not in any way involved in the attacks.

Was his brother Moussa (a suspect according to police reports) the perpetrator? Did a 17 year old have the required experience in driving a van in an allegedly carefully planned operation. (The minimum age in Spain to obtain a driver’s  licence for a car or a van is 18 years.)

Moussa is dead, dead men do not talk. But his brother is still alive.  Will he live to tell his brother’s real story?

According to the Guardian:

An official with Spain’s police union has backed up earlier reports that the teenager suspected of driving the van into crowds of pedestrians on Las Ramblas was shot dead by police during the shootout in Cambrils on Friday morning. Spanish media reported earlier on Friday that Moussa Oukabir, 17, was among the five men killed by officers after a second vehicle attack. Now, a union official has told AP colleagues in the Civil Guard police force confirmed to him Oukabir was killed in the Cambrils incident. Investigators believe Oukabir was behind the wheel of the van which ploughed into tourists in Barcelona’s city centre on Thursday, killing at least 13 and injuring 100. (Guardian, emphasis added)

(Picture: the van @KevRincon)

Timeline

The following provides a partial timeline of the Barcelona and Cambrils attacks as outlined by the Guardian. We include the Guardian quotes with relevant comments.  The Guardian timeline is indented, Our questions and comments are added beneath the indented quote where applicable (QC). In some cases the evidence is not available, in other cases the timeline provides contradictory and/or misleading information. 

Wednesday night, Alcanar 

“An explosion at a house in the small town of Alcanar, 120 miles south of Barcelona, and the southernmost point of Catalonia, kills one person and wounds 16.

Police say the blast is the result of an accumulation of gas, but do not release further details. Most injuries occur after firefighters and police officers are caught by a second blast while investigating the initial explosion.

Senior police official Josep Lluis Trapero later says the blast was related to the van attack in Barcelona the following day, and that those in the house were attempting to “prepare an explosive device”.”

QC No evidence that this event was related to the Barcelona attack on the following day 

Thursday, 5pm, Barcelona

“A white Fiat van veers off the road and into a crowd outside the Plaça de Catalunya metro station.

The driver continues down the pedestrian boulevard of Las Ramblas, a popular tourist destination, for more than 500 metres before stopping and fleeing on foot.

The smashed van is left at the foot of a mosaic by artist Joan Míro.

The attack kills 13 people and leaves about 100 injured.”

6.30pm, Vic

“In the town of Vic, 50 miles north of Barcelona, police find a second van, presumed to be a getaway vehicle.

Police say the van was hired at the same time as the Fiat used in the attack.

The perpetrator of the Barcelona attack remains at large.

7pm, ‘terrorist protocol’

“Catalan police confirm they are dealing with a terrorist attack. On Twitter they say they have “activated the terrorist attack protocol” for the region.”

QC. What evidence do they have that this is a terrorist attack? 

7.30pm, Sant Just Desvern

A man is killed when he attempts to drive through a police roadblock in the town of Sant Just Desvern, on the outskirts of Barcelona.

Initial reports say he died from police gunfire after running over two officers, leaving one with a broken leg. An official at the time ruled out a connection to the attack on Las Ramblas.

On Friday morning, the Catalan interior minister, Joaquim Forn, contradicts earlier reports, saying the man died of knife wounds not inflicted by police.

He says a connection to the other attacks can no longer be ruled out.

QC  What evidence

8pm, suspect arrested

Police confirm one suspect, Driss Oukabir, has been arrested after turning himself in.

The 28-year old Moroccan-born Spanish resident is identified from documents left at the scene. But Oukabir says his passport and ID were stolen, and that he played no part in the attack.

Oukabir is arrested in the northern Catalan town of Ripoll, 70 miles from Barcelona. He tells police he came forward after he saw his name and image being circulated in the media.

The El País newspaper says Oukabir, or someone with his ID, rented the Fiat van used in the attack.

QC: Here The Guardian report is misleading. While earlier reports by El País  (August 17) stated that the alleged suspect 28-year-old Driss Oukabir, had been arrested by the Police, El Nacional (quoted by the Daily Express) reported that the suspect: “presented himself at a Catalan police station in Ripoll to deny having any involvement in this afternoon’s attack. He claims his ID was stolen and used by the terrorists to rent one of the vans used for the attack. Local sources, confirmed by the town’s mayor, Jordi Munell, have said that the young man, who lives in Ripoll, attended the police station to deny any involvement in the events (Daily Express, August 17, 2017, emphasis added)

It is worth noting that the Daily Express report contradicts its own headlines which state that he was “arrested”, when in fact he presented himself voluntarily at the the Ripoll police station.  The headline is a Lie.

9pm, ISIS speaks out

“Islamic State claims responsibility for the attack.

Using the group’s Amaq news agency, Isis claims the perpetrators of the attack are “soldiers of the Islamic State”, but this has not yet been verified. Claims of responsibility by Isis do not necessarily mean there is a direct connection between attackers and the terrorist group.”

QC:  ISIS was behind the attacks. It was an act of retribution against the West. The media in chorus –quoting authoritative sources– claims that the choice of Las Ramblas was “part of a strategy on the part of ISIS to target popular destinations in major cities across Europe”. “We know these people [ISIS militants] go for trophies; they go for iconic sites,” said Anthony Glees, director of the Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies at the University of Buckingham.” (CBC, August 18, 2017)

Reports state without a shred of evidence that the ISIS claimed responsibility and that the attack in Barcelona was carried out by “soldiers of the Islamic State” against “countries participating in the coalition against the ISIS in Syria and Iraq (CBC, August 18, 2017). An absurd proposition: It was the Syrian government SAA forces with the support of Russia and Iran which drove ISIS rebels out of Syria. And Russia is not the target of acts of retribution led by ISIS.

The US-led counterterrorism operation initiated by Obama in 2014 was not meant to go after the ISIS. Quite the opposite: the coalition was killing civilians while providing covert support including weapons to the ISIS.

What the media fails to acknowledge is that the ISIS is a construct of US intelligence, namely an “intelligence asset”  which is supported, trained and financed covertly by Washington and its allies including Turkey and Saudi Arabia, UK, France and Israel. There is ample documentation on this issue.

The link between the intelligence services of Western governments and Al Qaeda affiliated terror organizations is crucial and cannot be denied.  An understanding of who was behind the attacks must necessarily address the issue of the “State sponsorship” of terrorism.

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