The Guardian reports on a spat within the ranks of the global jihad. It seems Al-Qaeda has sent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a nasty message, fearful that the Iranian president is denying them credit for what they see as “the greatest special operation of all time.”
In his UN speech on September 22, which sparked a massive walkout, Ahmadinejad launched into an anti-American (and anti-Semitic and anti-Western) tirade and, as part of it, asked:
Who used the mysterious September 11 incident as a pretext to attack Afghanistan and Iraq?…
…By using their imperialistic media network which is under the influence of colonialism they threaten anyone who questions the Holocaust and the September 11 event with sanctions and military action.
Last year, when the need to form a fact-finding team to undertake a thorough investigation concerning the hidden elements involved in [the] September 11 incident was brought up; an idea also endorsed by all independent governments and nations as well as by the majority in the United States, my country and myself came under pressure and threat by the government of the United States.
Instead of assigning a fact-finding team, they killed the main perpetrator and threw his body into the sea.
Would it not have been reasonable to bring to justice and openly bring to trial the main perpetrator of the incident in order to identify the elements behind the safe space provided for the invading aircraft to attack the twin world trade towers?
Why should it not have been allowed to bring him to trial to help recognize those who launched terrorist groups and brought wars and other miseries into the region?
Although Ahmadinejad doesn’t completely discount Al-Qaeda involvement here, his clear implication that someone else was ultimately responsible has ruffled the terror organization’s feathers.
“The Iranian government,” Al-Qaeda complains (as quoted in Iranian media) in the latest issue of its English-language Inspire magazine,
has professed on the tongue of its president Ahmadinejad that it does not believe that al-Qaeda was behind 9⁄11 but rather, the US government. So we may ask the question: why would Iran ascribe to [sic] such a ridiculous belief that stands in the face of all logic and evidence?
One thing that comes to mind here is the Truthers; if Al-Qaeda itself is so eager to take credit, doesn’t their house of cards collapse? Beyond that, Al-Qaeda is upset because, as the Sunni spearhead of the jihad, it doesn’t like to see Iran, the jihad’s main Shiite wellspring, stripping Al-Qaeda of its medals so summarily. (For more on this ongoing quarrel, see MEMRI’s comments.)
Or as Inspire puts it:
For them, al-Qaeda was a competitor for the hearts and minds of the disenfranchised Muslims around the world. Al-Qaeda… succeeded in what Iran couldn’t. Therefore it was necessary for the Iranians to discredit 9⁄11 and what better way to do so? Conspiracy theories.
Blast those conspiracy theories! Though its target is Iran, it’s piquant to see Al-Qaeda here—in effect—discomfit the legions of Western nutcases who see Uncle Sam’s hand behind the Twin Towers attack. In one notable example, a book arguing that thesis was a bestseller in France.
It’s hard to imagine, then, a less edifying dispute: between, on the one hand, an arch-terrorist and “president” of a country who affirms to a cleared-out UN chamber the bon-ton belief that the U.S. commits terror against itself; and, on the other, a perpetrator so proud of mass murder that it rushes to reprove him.
Those who assess that Al-Qaeda has been “severely weakened” by the recent elimination of kingpins like Anwar al-Awlaki and Osama Bin Laden himself might also detect a certain anxiety to safeguard old “achievements”; but time will tell whether such optimism is really warranted. It is, though, another of the many ironies here that Ahmadinejad—no less vicious and, as he closes in on nukes, even more dangerous—spills his anti-American bile unmolested in New York while smaller-scale terrorists are hunted down.
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