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Al Qaida jitters

The week's news at a glance.

Sydney

Australians are bracing for attacks after al Qaida singled them out as targets in a statement claiming responsibility for a recent bombing. An unsigned al Qaida statement given to Arab TV stations said the Aug. 5 Marriott bombing in Jakarta, believed to have been carried out by the al Qaida–affiliated group Jemaah Islamiyah, was aimed at “the dirty American presence and the discriminatory Australian presence” in Muslim Indonesia. Dennis Richardson, the head of Australian intelligence, said there was no doubt that his country’s “close alliance” with the U.S. in the war on terror had made it vulnerable. The Aussie media exploded in nervous headlines such as “U.S. Ties Make Us a Target” and “Australians Are Next.”

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