According to NST : Instead of giving credit US President George Bush reveals, several years ago, a young Malaysian engineer was tapped by the al-Qaeda for a top-secret mission — to crash a plane into the tallest skyscraper in Los Angeles.
His handlers in the militant group gave him RM750, 000 and asked him to find a flying school for himself and two others in the region. However, the carnage caused by the Sept 11 attacks in 2001 in New York and Washington prompted Zaini Zakaria to have a change of mind.
He was arrested in December 2002 by the Special Branch and believed to have played a major role in the purchase of the ammonia nitrate used in the Bali bombing on Oct 12, 2002.The 38-year-old is still being detained under the Internal Security Act at Kamunting detention centre. His role in the planned assault on the 310-metre high US Bank Tower would have been unknown if not for a speech by US President George W. Bush yesterday.
Bush said that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, thought to be one of the masterminds of the 2001 attacks, planned to hijack a plane and fly the jet into the building, also known as the Library Tower. The US leader said that instead of using Arab hijackers, as in the attacks on the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon, the plot called for "young men from Southeast Asia whom he believed would not arouse as much suspicion".
Senior Malaysian police officials today confirmed that Zaini was among three men that were picked by al-Qaeda to take part in the attack. The others were identified as Zacarias Moussaoui and Abderraouf Jdey.
Zaini was sent to the group’s camp in Afghanistan in 1999. It was here that he met Hambali, a top incubator of terror in the region who was arrested in August 2003 in Thailand.
When Zaini returned to Malaysia, he obtained a licence to fly a small plane, and was to have started learning how to fly a jet in Australia.
He was based in Lukmanul Hakiem, a religious school in Ulu Tiram, Johor. The school was raided and shutdown by the police after it was found to be a cadre-recruiting centre for Jemaah Islamiyah.
A reasonable and sensible person fully aware of his strategy. It was nothing else but Bush way of demonizing Malaysia! He belittled Malaysian capability. He is building a case against Malaysia.
However, he preteds to forget what a US citizen did to Malaysia; George Soros was responsible to plunge Malaysian economy into crisis in 1997! Millions of people became poor.If look into the value we lost we can built another 25 Putrajayas. This does not preclude what had happened to the Indonesian and Thais.
Did the US government arrested Soros? In US he is philantropist. This is the so- called US President George Bush.