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Cupcakes spoil launch of al-Qaeda online magazine

by Brad A. Greenberg

June 6, 2011 | 8:08 am

I’ve never been a cupcake guy. Not really into sweets generally, except for cheesecake. But here’s a win for cupcake fans: British intelligence officials used cupcake recipes to sabotage the website for the al-Qaeda English-language magazine Inspire.

Here’s how, via The Guardian:

A pdf file containing fairy cake recipes was inserted into Inspire to garble most of the 67 pages of the online magazine, including instructions on how to “Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom”.

Though the authenticity of claims made about Inspire have been questioned, British security and intelligence sources say they believe the magazine, and the bomb-making instructions, were genuine.

The sabotage took place a year ago, following a dispute between agencies in the US about who should take on the role of attacking the Inspire website.

Publicising the achievement amounted to little more than a propaganda exercise – “just to let them know”, as one British official put it on Thursday.

Yeah, but what kind of cupcake recipes?

I’ve previously written about Inspire. For more on that, click here.

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