Al Qaeda Tipsheet on Eluding Drones Found in Mali

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Al Qaeda terrorists in Mali have created a tip sheet to help them avoid deadly drones.

Their plan was discovered on a document left behind by Islamic terrorists as they fled from French troops in Mali last month.

It includes 22 practical tips, like disguising vehicles so they can't be seen from the sky. The Islamic extremists in Mali adapted that idea by stretching grass mats across their cars and painting them with mud. That creates a shield that makes it harder for drones to detect them.

The document was placed on a jihadi forum two years ago. Its presence in Mali shows that al Qaeda chapters are still coordinating their activities.

"This new document... shows we are no longer dealing with an isolated local problem, but with an enemy which is reaching across continents to share advice," said Bruce Riedel, a 30-year veteran of the CIA who is now the director of the Intelligence Project at the Brookings Institution.

In Timbuktu, fighters also hid their cars under trees and disembarked from them in a hurry when they were being chased, in accordance with tip No. 13.

The idea of hiding under trees to avoid drones, which is tip No. 10, appears to be coming from the highest levels of the terror network. Years ago, it was mentioned in a letter written by Osama bin Laden to the head of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, the term for al Qaeda's North African branch.

"I want the brothers in the Islamic Maghreb to know that planting trees helps the mujahedeen and gives them cover," bin Laden wrote. "Trees will give the mujahedeen the freedom to move around especially if the enemy sends spying aircrafts to the area."

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