Stratfor and Khemupsorn Sirisukha

Saturday, January 21, 2012
The new Stratfor Security Weekly article is out. Stratfor hasn't responded to my email inquiry about posting articles. Seesh, you would think if they had the choice between responding to a multi-national or responding to the site that's taken on the sacred duty of picking Hot Stratfor Babes for the articles I would have gotten a snappier response, but apparently not. Anyway, I'll just excerpt the beginning of it and link to the full article on their website. 

The article deals with the Hezbollah member who was recently arrested in Thailand and found to have about 10,000 pounds of fertilizer for bomb making. It is thought he was involved in plans for a Mumbai-style terror attack.

Since the article concerns Thailand I decided I would select a Thai for the distinction of being the article's Hot Stratfor Babe. After an exhaustive and careful search I selected Khemupsorn "Cherry" Sirisukha for the honor.

Ms Sirisukha is a popular Thai television, movie and stage actress who is also a model, has worked as a TV presenter and runs her own boutique called Cloud 9. She may also be a singer too, since one of her credits is a music video. It sounds like she has quite a successful career. 

A Hezbollah Threat in Thailand?
By Ben West, January 19,2012

On Jan. 12, Thai authorities arrested a man they say was a member of the Lebanon-based Shiite militant group Hezbollah who was plotting an attack in Bangkok. In uncovering the plot, Thai police cite cooperation with the United States and Israel going back to December 2011. Bangkok is indeed a target-rich environment with a history of terrorist attacks, but today Hezbollah and other militant and criminal groups rely on the city as more of a business hub than anything else. If Hezbollah or some other transnational militant group were to carry out an attack in the city, it would have to be for a compelling reason that outweighed the costs.

The suspect was identified as Hussein Atris, who was born in Lebanon but acquired Swedish citizenship and a passport after marrying a Swedish woman in 1996. Atris was arrested on immigration charges as he was trying to board a plane at Suvarnabhumi airport, Bangkok's main international airport. Police said another suspect is still at large and possibly already out of the country. Atris's arrest on Jan. 12 was followed by a statement the next day from the U.S. Embassy warning U.S. citizens in Bangkok of the potential foreign terrorist threat in the country and encouraging them to avoid tourist areas. Other countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and Israel, issued similar warnings. Thai police have responded by increasing security in tourist areas like Bangkok's Khao San Road and the island of Phuket.

Then, on Jan. 16, some 200 Thai police officers searched a three-story commercial building in a town along the coast 32 kilometers (about 20 miles) southwest of Bangkok. Information on the location and contents of the building was said to have been provided by Atris after two days in custody. On the second floor of the building, officers found 4,380 kilograms (about 10,000 pounds) of urea-based fertilizer and 38 liters (about 10 gallons) of liquid ammonium nitrate -- enough materials to construct several truck bombs comparable to the one detonated at the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad in 2008. Urea fertilizer can be used to manufacture the improvised explosive mixture urea nitrate, which was the main charge used in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. The compound is also frequently used in improvised explosive devices in Iraq and to some extent in Afghanistan. On the ground floor of the same building, police found reams of printing paper and 400 electric table fans in cardboard boxes.

The following day, a Bangkok court charged Atris with illegal possession of explosive materials. As in many other countries, a permit is required for handling such large amounts of fertilizer in Thailand.

(read the rest of A Hezbollah Threat in Thailand?)