Al-Qaeda: Staying Alive

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In line with the false assumption that the current unrest in the Mideast has been secular and pro-democratic in nature, a new video released by two of al-Qaeda’s top leaders offering praise and encouragement for the ongoing rebellions has been dismissed by some as a sign of the terror group’s “desperation.”  However, a careful look at the reality of the region shows that this is anything but the case.

The hour-long tape stars, in separate appearances, al-Qaeda’s number two chieftain, Ayman al-Zawahiri, and Anwar al-Awlaki, the American-born leader of its Yemen affiliate, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

While al-Awlaki’s message was more generic in tone, demonstrating support for the regional unrest and condemning American involvement in the Muslim world in general, al-Zawahiri’s message was far more specific.

Entreating Egypt’s Muslims to create an Islamic state, as well as sounding a clarion call for Arab nations to intercede in the Libyan conflict, al-Zawahiri intoned, “I want to direct the attention of our Muslim brothers in Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, and the rest of the Muslim countries … rise up and fight both the mercenaries of Gaddafi and the rest of NATO.”

The video emerged shortly after ominous comments were made by Mark Giulano, FBI assistant director of counter-terrorism, to an audience at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. According to Giulano, Arab countries were suddenly finding themselves “led by transitional or interim governments, military regimes, or democratic alliances with no established track record on counterterrorism efforts,” and are ripe targets for exploitation from al-Qaeda.

That belief has been echoed by many experts who believe that al-Qaeda must be prevented from exploiting any political void created by the current regional unrest. As one American analyst has pointed out, “Al Qaeda tends to navigate to areas where they sense a vacuum.”

Yet, when the tape of al-Zawahiri and al-Awlaki was released, one US intelligence official disregarded the significance of the video and the presence of al-Qaeda in general: “Al Qaeda must be pretty damn frustrated these days. They’ve been on the wrong side of history — and humanity — for years.”

Of course, that view holds little credibility when compared to the terror organization’s assessment of the situation. As Awlaki himself wrote in Inspire, the group’s English-language online magazine, “The mujahedeen around the world are going through a moment of elation, and I wonder whether the West is aware of the upsurge of mujahedeen activity in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Yemen, Arabia, Algeria and Morocco?”

Unfortunately, al-Awlaki’s boast may indeed ring true, as the current Middle East landscape seems to suggest that whatever setbacks al-Qaeda may have suffered, they were apparently momentary in nature.

In Libya, for example, accounts have surfaced that Gaddafi, while having long-standing connections to secular and Islamic terrorist groups, is selling anti-aircraft missiles, machine guns and other weapons to al-Qaeda.

Specifically, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), North Africa’s largest and best-armed al-Qaeda affiliate, has already been found exploiting the disarray in Libya. According to recent reports, a truck convoy left eastern Libya with a cargo of weapons destined for AQIM forces in northern Mali. The cache included Russian-made shoulder-fired surface-to-air missiles, RPG-7 anti-tank rocket-propelled grenades, Kalashnikov heavy machine guns, Kalashnikov rifles, explosives and ammunition.

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  • Chezwick_mac

    One need not be clairvoyant to see that the Caliphate is destined to be re-constituted. It's an historical inevitability…as the "hangover" of post-colonial secularism is in full retreat throughout the Muslim world.

    Now, one would think that upon such an event, the threat to the infidel world would be crystallized, but don't bet on it. The liberal elites in the West will work with dedication and verve to insure that our distracted, misinformed public will continue imbibing from the well of multicultural fantasy. Their hope is that such a potent elixir will keep us ideologically sedated…and that geo-political realities will then overtake us with such force and rapidity that dhimmitude becomes a fait accompli.

  • davarino

    Evolution is not going to allow these backwoods retards to be the dominant species of the planet. That is if you believe in evolution, otherwise we'll nuke em and let God sort'em out : )

  • jacob

    If PAKISTAN harbors al Quaida, how come the US is still subsidizing it ??

    I'm sure, if the subsidyb is stopped, it will be more than happy to stop harboring
    him and even turn them in…

    And then, what are the supergeniuses in charge of the issue doing about ??


  • BLJ

    The only way to deal with these scumbags is to give them dirt naps. I also trust our so-called Muslim allies (Saudi Arabia, Pakistan) about as much as I trust that Obama is committed to making government smaller.

  • George Jochnowitz

    Speaking of being alive, where is Osama Bin-Laden? Perhaps he is in the Arabic-speaking area that overlaps Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil

  • BLJ

    Bin Laden is a coward and is probably hiding out in a cave either in Afghanistan or Pakistan with dirty diapers on.

    • George Jochnowitz

      If he's a coward, he'd be much safer in Paraguay–no matter how clean his diapers are.

      • BLJ

        You sound like you admire the creep. Of course he is a coward. He ran like a little girl from Tora Bora.