Videotapes Digitally Doctored
by Paul Joseph Watson
Thursday, August 2, 2007
IntelCenter and As-Sahab
logos added at same time, indicating Pentagon linked
"middleman" is directly releasing Al-Qaeda videos
An expert computer analyst has presented evidence that so-called
"Al-Qaeda" tapes are routinely digitally doctored and has also
unwittingly exposed an astounding detail that clearly indicates a
Pentagon affiliated organization in the U.S. is directly responsible
for releasing the videos.
"Neal Krawetz, a researcher and
computer security consultant, gave an interesting presentation
today at the BlackHat security conference in Las Vegas about
analyzing digital photographs and video images for alterations
and enhancements," reports Wired News.
"Using a program he wrote (and provided on the conference
CD-ROM) Krawetz could print out the quantization tables in a
JPEG file (that indicate how the image was compressed) and
determine the last tool that created the image -- that is, the
make and model of the camera if the image is original or the
version of Photoshop that was used to alter and re-save the
Krawetz's most telling discovery comes
in the form of a detail contained in a 2006 Ayman al-Zawahiri tape.
From his analysis he concludes that the As-Sahab logo (the alleged
media arm of Al-Qaeda) and the IntelCenter logo below (a U.S. based
private intelligence organization that "monitors terrorist
activity") were both added to the video at the same time.
This clearly indicates IntelCenter itself is directly creating or at
least doctoring the Al-Qaeda tapes before their release. After all,
why would Al-Qaeda terrorists be interested in branding their videos
with the logo of a U.S. based organization that is run by
individuals with close ties to the military-industrial complex?
In our previous groundbreaking investigation (see following below
article), we exposed IntelCenter,
the middleman between "Al-Qaeda's media arm" and the press, and the
organization that routinely obtains the tapes, as little more than a
Pentagon front group staffed by individuals with close connections
to Donald Rumsfeld and the U.S. war machine.
IntelCenter were also behind the release of the
recent "new" Bin
Laden tape, which in actual fact was old footage filmed in 2001 and
had been released, including by IntelCenter itself, on no less than
two previous occasions spanning back five years.
IntelCenter is run by Ben Venzke, former director of intelligence at
a company called
IDEFENSE, which is a Verisign
company. IDEFENSE is
a web security company that monitors intelligence from middle east
conflicts and focuses on cyber threats among other things.
It is also heavily populated with long serving ex-military
The Director of Threat intelligence, Jim Melnick, served 16 years in
the US army and the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and worked in
From the IDEFENSE website:
Prior to joining iDefense, Mr.
Melnick served with distinction for more than 16 years in the
U.S. Army and the Defense Intelligence Agency. During this
period, Mr. Melnick served in a variety of roles, including
psychological operations, international warning issues with
emphasis on foreign affairs and information operations and
Russian affairs. He also served in active political/military
intelligence roles with an emphasis on foreign affairs. Mr.
Melnick is currently a U.S. Army Reserve Colonel with Military
Intelligence, assigned to the Office of the Secretary of
Mr. Melnick has been published in
numerous military and foreign affairs journals, and has received
numerous military and DIA awards. Mr. Melnick has a Master of
Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S.
Naval War College, a Master of Arts in Russian studies from
Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in
Political Science from Westminster College.
So here we have a company that by its
own admission has ties to a senior military psy-op intelligence
officer who has worked directly for Donald Rumsfeld. As IntelCenter
and Ben Venzke are directly connected to IDEFENSE, this puts
Rumsfeld just three steps away from the Al Qaeda propaganda videos.
The business of releasing Al-Qaeda tapes is also very profitable for
IntelCenter, they charge well over $4,000 dollars a year for
packages aimed at "Intelligence, Military and Federal agencies".
Add to this the fact that IntelCenter are digitally doctoring the
videos and then adding the logo of a purported terrorist group
before their release and the ramifications become clear - elements
within the U.S. are patently editing if not directly creating
"Al-Qaeda" tapes for their own purposes.
Al-Qaeda, or more accurately
IntelCenter, always seem to make a
point of releasing the videos at the most politically expedient
times for the benefit of the Bush administration.
Whether it's to justify a war, win an election or divert from a
scandal, Bin Laden, Al-Zawahiri or their stooges can always be
relied upon to come up with the goods and save Bush's bacon.
As soon as the 6 month wait and see period for the "surge" was up
and right when Bush's last remaining Republican cheerleaders
deserted him on Iraq, Bin Laden popped up to remind us all of the
necessity of "staying the course" and winning the war on terror by
feeding more troops into the meatgrinder.
Both Kerry and Bush attributed the President's 2004 re-election to
Osama Bin Laden's appearance in a video tape just days before the
vote. Veteran newsman Walter Cronkite mused that the whole farce was
a Karl Rove orchestrated set-up.
On the eve of the Iraq war during Colin Powell's infamous
presentation to the UN,
an audio tape in which bin Laden claimed he
was allied with Saddam Hussein surfaced, a gift-wrapped present for
the Neo-Cons who had consistently been proven wrong in their
assertion that there was a connection between Iraq and 9/11.
Ayman Al-Zawahiri appeared right on cue at the exact same time two
years running, days before the State of the Union, to slam Bush as a
"butcher" and a "failure."
His timing is impeccable! Right when Bush
needs to reinforce the fear of the shadowy enemy each January to
mute his critics before the big speech, al-Zawahiri pops up with the
Krawetz's analysis (view in PDF) further concludes that different
objects and green screen backgrounds have been artificially added to
certain videos, including that of probable Mossad double agent Adam
Pearlman, in order to "lend authority and reverence to the video".
The smoking gun remains the fact that the two logos, the As-Sahab
"terrorist" media arm and the IntelCenter organization, were added
at exactly the same time, meaning either that IntelCenter, with its
close ties to the U.S. government and psychological operation, has
terrorists on the payroll or that IntelCenter itself is doctoring
and directly releasing Al-Qaeda propaganda tapes.
Both conclusions are equally disturbing and demand an immediate FBI
investigation of IntelCenter and its owners.
Government Caught Red-Handed Releasing Staged Al-Qaeda Videos
by Paul Joseph Watson
October 5 2006
investigation demanded, media oversight of clear and
deliberate psychological warfare against American
Revelations that the US government had been in possession of footage
released on Sunday depicting alleged Al-Qaeda hijackers and Osama
Bin Laden since 2001 and evidence that the footage itself was filmed
by security agencies, went unquestioned by the media - who blindly
towed the official line that the tape was released by Al-Qaeda.
This is smoking gun proof that the U.S.
government is staging the release of alleged Al-Qaeda tapes and it
demands an immediate Congressional investigation.
Segments of the video that were
interspersed with footage of the "laughing hijackers," Jarrah and
Atta, showing Bin Laden giving a speech to an audience in
Afghanistan on January 8 2000, were culled from what terror experts
describe as surveillance footage taken by a "security agency."
This explains the lack of a soundtrack in the video and the
fact that the tape does not focus solely on Bin Laden but pans
around and shows the attendees in the audience.
Furthermore, film of the Bin Laden speech, reported by the dominant
media as new footage, was previously broadcast in the UK docudrama
The Road to Guantanamo, which was first seen on British
television nearly seven months ago in March.
News reports over the weekend contained the admission that the U.S.
government had been in possession of the footage since 2002, while
others said it was found when the United States invaded Afghanistan
in 2001, and yet it was still bizarrely reported that the tape,
bearing all the hallmarks of having been filmed and edited by
undercover US intelligence and having admittedly been in US
possession for five years, was released over the weekend by
Either Al-Qaeda has been given access to US intelligence
surveillance tapes of its own organization or the tape was released
by the US intelligence apparatus. The evidence provides no other
The fact that the same footage was used in The Road to Guantanamo
is startling because the context of the clip in which it is seen
portrays British and American intelligence agents showing doctored
footage to detainees, whereby their likeness has been edited in with
CGI to the Bin laden rally scene, using it to intimidate them into
confessing to being Al-Qaeda members.
The latest video tape hoax is only the most recent of a dirty
laundry list of past examples where old, re-hashed, or outright
faked footage of Bin Laden and his followers was mysteriously
obtained and released at the most politically expedient time. These
examples are all referenced in our original investigation.
Recall that the Pentagon's stated intention to artificially
magnify Musab Al-Zarqawi's role in Iraq was followed by the
release of a video tape of Al-Zarqawi threatening the infidels.
The target of this leaked propaganda campaign to boost Al-Qaeda's
profile was said to be the "U.S. home audience," and included
planting fake stories in newspapers - one of which was later
splashed on the front page of the New York Times.
The agenda dovetails with the necessity of the torture program -
there are very few real terror cells in existence outside of the
puppet mastery of the U.S. and British intelligence apparatus. To
maintain a state of fear and obedience amongst the target "home
audience," there need to be regular "two minutes of hate" intervals
and the artificial creation of supposed terrorist networks and
The tapes are also a desperate attempt to prop up the official
version of 9/11 as its credibility crumbles globally and a
firestorm of awakening to the fact that
the attack was an inside job rages.
I encourage everyone to fully imbue themselves of our original
investigation and make it a viral story across the Internet. Click
here to get the original story and lobby for mainstream media to pay
We need to demand higher standards from our media starting with a
proper investigation as to who the true source of this tape was and
an immediate skepticism towards all such future alleged "Al-Qaeda"
video tape releases.
A press that lazily dismisses the origins of these tapes as a
side-issue is playing a central role in disseminating unchecked war
propaganda and violating every code of journalistic ethical conduct.
The U.S. government's role in obtaining and carefully stage-managing
the dissemination of these tapes, many of them old footage
re-released over and over again, is now without a doubt manifestly
obvious and demands immediate Congressional investigation as part of
a wider probe into the admitted fake news scandal that has
characterized the Bush White House as the most duplicitous
and manipulative administration in history and befits a regime that
is engaging in psychological warfare against the American people.
Analysis of al Qaeda Images Reveals Surprises
by Kim Zetter
August 02, 2007
Neal Krawetz, a researcher and computer security consultant, gave an
interesting presentation today at the BlackHat security conference
in Las Vegas about analyzing digital photographs and video images
for alterations and enhancements.
Using a program he wrote (and provided on the conference CD-ROM)
Krawetz could print out the quantization tables in a JPEG file (that
indicate how the image was compressed) and determine the last tool
that created the image -- that is, the make and model of the camera
if the image is original or the version of Photoshop that was used
to alter and re-save the image.
Comparing that data to the metadata embedded in the image he could
determine if the photo was original or had been re-saved or altered.
Then, using error level analysis of an image he could determine what
were the last parts of an image that were added or modified.
click above images
Error level analysis involves re-saving an image at a known error
rate (90%, for example), then subtracting the re-saved image from
the original image to see every pixel that changed and the degree to
which it changed. The modified versions will indicate a different
error level than the original image.
You can see the difference in the two pictures (below) of a
bookshelf. Krawetz added some books and a toy dinosaur to the
original image -- both of which show up clearly in the second
picture after he's completed the error level analysis.
But more interesting were the examples
Krawetz gave of al Qaeda
images. Krawetz took an image from a 2006 al Qaeda video of Ayman
al-Zawahiri, a senior member of the terrorist
organization. The image shows al-Zawahiri sitting in front of a desk
and banner with writing on it. But after conducting his error
analysis Krawetz was able to determine that al-Zawahiri's image was
superimposed in front of the background -- and was most likely
videotaped in front of a black sheet.
Krawetz was also able to determine that the writing on the banner
behind al-Zawahiri's head was added to the image afterward. In the
second picture above showing the results of the error level
analysis, the light clusters on the image indicate areas of the
image that were added or changed.
The subtitles and logos in the
upper right and lower left corners (IntelCenter
is an organization
that monitors terrorist activity and As-Sahab is the video
production branch of al Qaeda) were all added at the same time all
have the same error level, while the banner writing was added at a
different time has a different error level, likely around the same
time that al-Zawahiri was added, Krawetz says. (See 2nd update
Even more interesting is the analysis he conducted on another 2006
video image of Azzam al-Amriki showing him in a white room with a
desk, computer and some books in the background. Error level
analysis shows that the books in the lower right-hand corner of the
image have a different error level than the items in the rest of the
image, suggesting they were added later.
In fact the books register
the same error level as the subtitles and As-Sahab logo.
Further analysis also shows that the books have a different color
range than the rest of the image, indicating that they came from an
alternate source. Krawetz wasn't able to determine what the books
were but says if they were religious books, they might have simply
been added to lend authority and reverence to the video.
possible, he says, that such details could be added to a picture to
send a message in code to al Qaeda operatives.
1ST UPDATE: For those of you who
asked for Krawetz's program, you can view the source code
You can also view his BlackHat presentation
here (PDF). For
those of you who think the software is better used to catch
media manipulations of photos and video, Krawetz did present
examples of these in his talk.
And to "Ann" who commented that she doubts al Qaeda would put
subtitles on a video, As-Sahab, the logo in the lower left
corner of the two al Qaeda videos is the production arm of al
the organization has its own media production team.
2ND UPDATE: I quoted Krawetz as
saying that the evidence indicates that the IntelCenter and
logos were added to the al-Zawahiri video at the same time. Ben Venzke of
IntelCenter says his organization didn't add the As-Sahab
logo. He points out that just because the error levels are the
same for two items in an image, that doesn't prove they were
added at the same time, only that the compression was the same
for both items when they were added.
3rd UPDATE: I was finally able to
reach Neal Krawetz at the BlackHat conference to respond to the
questions about the IntelCenter and As-Sahab logos (Krawetz
doesn't have a cell phone on him so finding him at the
conference took a while). He now says that the error levels on
the IntelCenter and As-Sahab logos are different and that the
IntelCenter logo was added after the As-Sahab logo.
a taped interview I conducted with him after his presentation,
he said the logos were the same error levels and that this
indicated they were added at the same time. Additionally, after
I'd written the first blog entry about his presentation, I asked
him to read it to make sure everything was correct. He did so
while sitting next to me and said it was all correct.
apologizes now for the error and the confusion it caused.
Videos May Be Doctored
by Maddy Sauer
August 13, 2007
Media and terrorism experts alike have remarked on the increasing
sophistication of al Qaeda propaganda videos that continue to be
released by the group's media wing, as Sahab.
One computer expert, however, has conducted extensive image analysis
on many of the videos and concluded that in many cases the tapes
were likely doctored to give a false impression of the speaker's
Neal Krawetz, founder of Hacker Factor, a computer security and
consulting firm, created a computer program which he uses to analyze
screen frames from various al Qaeda videos, including those of al
Qaeda No. 2 Ayman al Zawahri and American al Qaeda commander
Adam Gadahn. His software suggests that in many cases the sophisticated
backgrounds were likely added after the video of the speaker was
By looking at the error levels of the different elements in the
still frames, or JPEGs, he can tell which elements are older and
which are newer. In other words, he can tell which areas of the
video were modified more recently.
For example, in one video of Zawahri released in July of last year,
he appears to be seated in a news studio complete with a backdrop of
images of the World Trade Center attacks and hijacker Mohammed Atta.
News commentators at the time remarked on how Zawahri, who many
assumed to be hiding in a cave, was able to record a video message
from a high-tech newsroom.
Krawetz, however, says that background was very likely added after
Zawahri filmed his message.
"That's the fakest one so far," said
Krawetz found six different layers on
one JPEG from that video, implying the various background components
were very likely added after Zawahri recorded his message.
Krawetz says an even more visible clue occurs as the video itself
plays, when there is a subtle shifting of the camera. The image of
Zawahri appears to move side-to-side as if the camera is shaking
while the background remains still.
In another video of Zawahri released in August 2005, the same summer
as the bombing attacks on the London subway system, Zawahri appears
outside of a tent with his trusted Kalashnikov behind him. At the
time, some in the media remarked at the brazen message delivered in
broad daylight just a few weeks after the London attacks.
Krawetz, however, notes that while the sunlight moves against the
backdrop, the light levels on Zawahri's face never change. Once
again, this implies the background could have been added after the
video monologue was recorded. While it may appear he is staring into
the sun because of the reflection in his eyeglasses, Krawetz
speculates he was actually seated in front of a spotlight.
On the eve of the 9/11 anniversary last year, Zawahri and American
al Qaeda leader Adam Gadahn released a video in which Gadahn praised
the hijackers and their mission. On the tape, Gadahn is seen seated
in a white room with a computer and books behind him.
After analyzing the image, Krawetz determined the books were at
different error levels and a different color spectrum than the rest
of the room, implying they were added when the subtitles and as
Sahab logo were added to the video. Whether this was an attempt to
send a message to followers, an attempt to hide something else in
the background or served any purpose at all remains unclear.
What's Behind al Qaeda's Propaganda Tapes