Tag Archives: al-Qaeda

US Kills Top Somalia al-Qaeda Leader

The war against al-Qaeda which originated in dealing with their presence in Afghanistan has spread throughout the world. Those who continue supporting Bush policies of a “war against terrorism” might wonder that as this supposed “war” proceeds, it winds up fighting all over the world. Somalia insurgents are furious that American helicopters took out, Saleh Ali Nabhan, a prominent member of al-Qaeda’s leadership. Al-Ahabab, the Somalia branch of al-Qaeda, promised “they(USA) will taste the bitterness of our response. Al-Shabab will continue targeting western countries, especially America.”

US helicopters spotted his car and blasted it. Some reports indicate the helicopters landed and took away bodies. Another leader gone, but does this mean al-Qaeda is weaker? Or does it mean, a bright younger al-Qaeda operative will rise to the occasion and assume leadership?

The never ending, never ceasing fight against “terrorism.” Why not just say, we won, and everyone go home?

Northern Iraq Today, Who Knows Where Later?

General Ray Odierno, top US leader in Iraq, indicated he might deploy American troops into the growing tension occurring in northern Iraq. Such a move would represent a departure from the agreement that has US troops withdrawing from active combat in urban areas. “I think they just all feel more comfortable if we’re there.” Kurdish and Iraq forces increasingly are confronting one another as the Iraq government seeks to impose its authority on Kurdistan while Kurds expect to continue enjoying a semi-autonomous position which enables Kurds to control the region.

For some reason, top level American officials never completely grasped that a dispute between Kurds and Iraqis was simply a matter of time. The area around Mosul is rich with oil and neither side is going to walk away from such a rich opportunity. Of course, al-Qaeda is doing its level best to exacerbate conflict.

Next Civil War In Iraq?

President Obama has emphasized the importance of restoring peace to Iraq in order to allow withdrawal of US forces from the country. However, while his policy focuses mainly on destroying the effectiveness of al-Qaeda and creating a powerful Iraq armed force, there is increasing evidence of a growing conflict brewing between Shiite Iraqis and the semi-official Kurdish state in northern parts of Iraq. The conflict is complicated by bomb attacks from the Sunni Iraqis who hate the Kurds as much as they dislike the Shiites. Bombings have led to the death of dozens of Kurds in recent weeks causing growing feeling on the part of their government to confront terrorism.

At the core of the growing dispute is ownership of oil resources in the region and power as to which group will govern Kurdistan. US General Ray Ordierno is trying to establish dialogue between the competing forces but there are too many vested interests to make for a simple resolution of the conflict. An important factor is the ability of the Maliki Shiite government to reach out to Sunnis in order to establish a united front against al-Qaeda terrorism.

Did Al-Qaeda Attack Pakistan Nuclear Bases?

Professor Shaun Gregory, Director of the Pakistan Security Research Unit at Bradford University, claims that al-Qaeda has on at least three occasions attacked Pakistan nuclear weapons bases in the past two years. He said militants struck a nuclear storage facility at Sargodha in November, 2007; launched a suicide bomb assault on a nuclear air base at Kamra in December, 2007 and set off explosions at the entrances to Wah cantonment, one of Pakistan’s main nuclear assembly plants.

The Pakistan government and military insist these facilities are heavily guarded by trusted soldiers. They also assert no nuclear weapon can be armed without extensive security procedures. However, according to Professor Gregory, “Taliban and al-Qaeda are more than capable of launching terrorist attacks.”

Oh well, just another item in the war against terrorism.

Somalia Clings To Existence As Militants Attack

There are no “good guys” or “bad guys” vying for power in Somalia, just religious fanatics seeking to control the nation. Two years ago, ignorant President George Bush persuaded Christian Ethiopia to intervene in the Somalia civil war. After two years, the Ethiopians left and the result was al-Qaeda and other foreign Islamics flocked to Somalia in order to gain control of the country. Somalian President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed has appealed to the outside world for financial and military support since it becomes evident Islamic fundamentalists with their al-Qaeda supporters will soon be in control of the capital. The African Union has backed the appeal for aid, but there is scant evidence it will do anything other than make a pious comment much as they did in the horror of Zimbabwe. No help is coming.

Somalia will soon be completely under the support of Islamic fundamentalists and al-Qaeda which means it is simply a matter of time before American sponsored groups once again invade and continue the ever ongoing tragedy of Somalia. So many concerned about its future, and so many who don’t give a damn about the people of Somalia.

The Killing Goes On And On In Iraq

Six years ago American troops swept through Iraq and former President George Bush announced to the world the United States was bringing peace and democracy to the backward people of Iraq. But, all Iraqis have endured is six years of killing and bombing and torture and death. On Saturday, Shiite Muslims were leaving a mosque near Kirkuk when the sound of an explosion ripped through the air leaving seventy dead people and over 200 wounded. It was another round in the conflict between Shiites and Sunnis and al-Qaeda and Iraqis. The truck was parked across the street from the mosque and most probably waited until enough people were leaving before being blown up. Shiites are complaining there were not enough guards around the mosque. No one assumed responsibility for the bombing but it had the earmarks of an al-Qaeda operation.

The United States only has ten days left before its troops must evacuate Iraqi cities. Will their departure result in fewer or more such bombings? Is it simply too late to alter this ongoing outburst of hate and violence or must it continue running its course? The future alone knows.

The Pirates Of Somalia –Who Are They?

There most probably has always been piracy off the coast of Africa but it is quite apparent the emergence of Somlian pirates has added a new element to one of the world’s oldest crimes– seizing ships on high seas. The non-existent nation of Somalia has created such turmoil and confusion as well as high rates of unemployment that discovering young men seek to become pirates is no surprise. After all, young men and women in America seek to become Wall Street pirates which may not be that far from Somali men entering piracy and justifying it on grounds that international vessels are intruding on their fishing grounds and dumping toxic waste. Most probably, even without such justification the allure of easy money is as enticing to them as it is to young Americans on Wall Street.

Ironically, the solution to piracy on high seas lies in assisting Somalia to become an actual state with a vibrant economy and a stable government. If the Somalia government could control its own territory there would not be pirates. Perhaps it is time for the American government to cease worrying about Islamic governments in control of Somalia and focus on a government being in control.
Some experts are seeking connections between al-Qaeda and the pirates but these young men are simply modern entrepreneurs and they are making millions. Piracy on high seas invariably is connected to lack of opportunity on land. Few nations in the world match the poverty and madness of life in Somalia so it is no surprise enterprising young men venture out in their speed boats in search of wealthy rewards.

Children Of Al-Qaeda Arrested In Iraq

Iraqi security forces have arrested four children they claim were recruited by al-Qaeda to carry out suicide attacks in and around the city of Kirkuk. General Abdelamir al-Zaidi said; “Special forces units have arrested in organization of children consisting of four individual under the age of 14 who call themselves the Birds of Paradise.” He claimed children are recruited to assist in suicide bombing and help set roadside bombs. The use of children is but one of many examples of how al-Qaeda reaches into the fabric of a society and seizes control of youth. The real question to ask is–why is youth attracted to al-Qaeda? Which aspects of its philosophy of violence appeal to young minds?

In the end, the conflict with al-Qaeda is centered in ideas, not just military action. It is up to Muslim societies to deal with this conflict, not the west.

Violence Escalates In Iraq

During the past several months, the media has been filled with stories concerning how the famous “surge” has resulted in a dramatic “victory” in Iraq. Lost in this euphoria is the reality that al-Qaeda, which arrived in Iraq courtesy of George Bush, is still active and may be laying low awaiting further reductions in US military personnel. Suicide bombers blew themselves up throughout Iraq yesterday as Kurdish areas were hit in anticipation of the arrival of the Turkish president who has led the fight against Kurdish rebels. Al-Qadea may be targeting Kurds because they collaborate with Americans, and there may be Kurdish rebels who are attacking any fellow Kurds who seek to work with Turks. In a word, this is one mess after another.

The situation appears to suggest there might be an escalation in fighting in northern areas of Iraq as both Kurdish rebels and al-Qaeda share a common animosity toward Kurds who collaborate with Americans or with Turkish authorities. Further south in Iraq there were other suicide bombers.

When all is said and done, President Obama has inherited a rather complicated situation and all talk about “victories” may well be a bit premature.

Dick Cheney An Meaning Of Truth And Power

Vice President Dick Cheney is among the unreconstructed advocates that war in Iraq had something to do with al-Qaeda and the September 11th attack. He still believes it was necessary to invade Iraq to destroy al-Qaeda even though Saddam Hussein never allowed any al-Qaeda group to become a force in his nation. Under Saddam, there was one terrorist–his name was Saddam. But, to Dick Cheney, evidence or truth are always strangers who never knock on his door of knowledge. Joe Biden put on his gloves and slammed the vice president for misunderstanding the meaning of power. “The only value of power is the effect, the efficacy of its use. And all the power Cheney had did not result in effective outcomes.”

The history of the Bush administration has yet to be written and future historians will most likely term it the “Bush/Cheney” presidency because bumbling confused George Bush never fully comprehended his own lack of intelligence nor did he realize how his dear friend manipulated and assumed powers no vice president had ever possessed in American history. Historians have used the expression, ‘the imperial presidency” but from now on they will have to add “the imperial vice presidency.”

Ironically, both men assumed they had knowledge, but neither ever grasped how their ignorance of the Middle East or the Muslim religion made them ineffective in formulating successful policies for the region. The further tragedy is their bumbling confusion only helped to exacerbate the mistakes of the Israel government who actually thought George Bush was their friend. With friends like Bush/Cheney, Israel had no need for enemies.