|Abu Musab al Zarqawi||Abu Musab al Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Arabia||Jordanian||Deceased||20060228||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Ahmed Fadil al-Khalayila||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050609||Link|
|Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050614|
|Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Arabia||20040107|
|Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi||Jund al-Shams||Middle East||20030703|
|Fadel Nazzal Al Khalayleh||Ansar Al-Islam||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||At Large||Big Shot||20040210|
|Real name of Zarqawi|
|Fadel Nazzal Al Khalayleh||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||20040210|
|Fadel Nazzal al-Khalayleh||al Qaeda||Middle East||Jordanian||At Large||Supremo||20030204|
|Real name of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi|
|Abu Musab al- Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq||20051017||Link|
|Abu Mussab Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||20050705|
|Abu Musaab al-Zarqawi||al-Tawhid||Middle East||20050719|
|Abu Musaab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Middle East||Jordanian||At Large||Big Shot||20021215|
|Abu Zarqawi||Ansar al-Islam||Iraq||20040123|
|Abu Musab al Zarqawi||Coalition for Militant Action in the Niger Delta||Africa: Subsaharan||20051027||Link|
|Abu Mussab Al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Iraq-Jordan||Big Shot||20050713|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||Al Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||20050714|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||Ansar al-Islam||Europe||20040520||Link|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Arabia||20050705|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||Tawhid and Jihad||Africa: North||20050704|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||Al-Qaeda in Iraq||Africa: North||20050805|
|Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi||Ansar Al-Islam||Europe||Jordanian||Supremo||20050701|
|Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi||Al-Tawhid||Europe||20030625|
|Abu Mussab al-Zarqawi||al Qaeda||Middle East||20030204|
|Abu Mussab Zarqawi||al-Tawhid||Europe||20030727|
|Abu Mussab al Zarqawi||al Qaeda||Middle East||20030204|
|Abu Mussab al Zarqawi||Ansar al-Islam||Axis of Evil||20030123|
|Abu Mussab al Zarqawi||Al Tawhid||Europe||20030205|
|Abu Mussab al Zarqawi||al-Tawhid||Axis of Evil||20030502|
|Abu Musab Zarqawi||al-Tawhid||Axis of Evil||20030930|
|Abu Musab Zarqawi||Al Tawhid||Terror Networks||20031208|
|Abu Musab Zarqawi||Ansar al-Islam||Europe||20040111|
|Abu Musab Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Axis of Evil||20021005|
|Abu Mussab al Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Arabia||20030207|
|Abu Musab Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Syria-Lebanon-Iran||Jordanian||Deceased||Supremo||20050613|
|Abu Musab al Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||Supremo||20050907|
|Deader than a rock.|
|Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||At Large||20050704|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Omar Corps||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050708|
|Abu Musab Al Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Deceased||20050825|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050716|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Tawhid and Jihad Movement||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20040707||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Europe||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20051205||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Ansar al-Islam||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20051118||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Bayat al-Imam||Central Asia||Jordanian||Deceased||20040606||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Qaida al-Jihad||Iraq||Jordanian||Deceased||20051104||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan||Terror Networks||Jordanian||Deceased||20040524||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Jund al-Shams||Terror Networks||Jordanian||Deceased||20040524||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Beyyiat el-Imam||Terror Networks||Jordanian||Deceased||20040524||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaida in Iraq||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20051028||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Moroccan Combatant Islamic Group||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20040516||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Ansar al-Fath||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20051011||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Iraqi Insurgency||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20040218|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Ansar Al-Islam||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20040210|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Jund al-Sham||Syria-Lebanon-Iran||Jordanian||Deceased||20050707|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Omar Brigade||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050706|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Tawhid||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20030704|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Tawhid wal Jihad||Africa North||Jordanian||Deceased||20060428||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||Tawhid and Jihad||Iraq||Jordanian||Deceased||20060608||Link|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||Supremo||20040210|
|Looking very natural|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||Supremo||20050623|
|Deader than a rock.|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Europe||Jordanian||Deceased||20050815|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050713|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050712|
|Abu Musab al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq-Jordan||Jordanian||Deceased||20050627|
|Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi||al-Qaeda in Iraq||Iraq||Jordanian||Deceased||Supremo||20051022||Link|
|Deader than a rock|
|Iraq security forces arrest the new ISIS leader|
ISIS leader nominated to replace Baghdadi handed over to Iraqi authorities
[ALMASDARNEWS] The Iraqi Intelligence Service announced that the person nominated to succeed the terrorist leader and founder of the (ISIS/ /IS/ ), Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has been handed over to them.
According to the Iraqi News Agency, the Intelligence Service announced that their forces have taken custody Abdel-Nasser Qirdash, noting that he is the candidate to succeed Baghdadi as the leader of the Islamic State terrorist group.
Qirdash is the highest ranking Islamic State officer to ever be taken into custody.
It should be noted that while Qirdash was nominated to replace Baghdadi, the Islamic State ultimately chose to ’Abdul-Rahman al-Mawlah as the leader of the group.
He was first arrested in Syria last year, but was not handed over to the Iraqi authorities until recently.
The former Islamic State leader, Baghdadi, was killed during a special U.S. military operation in northwestern Syria in October of 2019.
Baghdadi was hiding in a jihadist-held town in the northern countryside of the Idlib Governorate; he refused to surrender during the U.S. raid and chose to detonate his own .
Despite Baghdadi’s death in 2019, the Islamic State has remained active in both Syria and Iraq, often carrying out hit-and-run attacks against the Syrian and Iraqi armies, along with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
Iraq claims capture of senior Daesh leader
[ARABNEWS] Iraq claimed on Wednesday it had arrested a leader considered a successor to the terror group’s former chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
The National Intelligence Service told the Iraqi News Agency (INA) it had picked up Abdul Nasser Qardash.
He served as the head of one of the terrorist group’s commissions, INA said, and served under Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who led the group that preceded .
some reports suggested Qardash was captured by US or Kurdish forces in Syria last year and just recently transferred to Iraqi custody.
The US has previously identified Ameer Muhammed Saeed al-Salbi al-Mawla, as the new leader of . He is known within the group as Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi.
Some reports said Qardash was the same person as al-Mawla, despite the photo used by INA of the captured not matching that of al-Mawla.
|Does leadership decapitation lead to the demise of terrorist organizations? Study sez:|
|[MITPressJournals] Does leadership decapitation lead to the demise of terrorist organizations? Can the United States undermine or destroy terrorist organizations such as al-Qaida by arresting or killing their leaders? What explains organizational resilience to leadership targeting? Leadership decapitation, or the killing or capturing of the leaders of terrorist organizations, has become a core feature of U.S. counterterrorism policy. Many scholars and analysts claim that it weakens terrorist organizations and reduces the threat they pose. Unsurprisingly, they saw the killing of Osama bin Laden on May 2, 2011, in Abbottabad, Pakistan, as a major tactical victory for President Barack Obama and for the broader war on terrorism. Despite the success of this operation and subsequent attacks on al-Qaida leaders, decapitation is unlikely to diminish the ability of al-Qaida to continue its activities in the long run. Rather, it may have counterproductive consequences, emboldening or strengthening the organization.|
Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the United States has killed or captured many al-Qaida leaders as part of a general campaign to decapitate the organization. It has employed a variety of military operations to achieve this objective, including raids by Special Operations forces. Both bin Laden and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, leader of al-Qaida in Iraq, were killed as a result of such raids. On October 5, 2012, U.S. forces captured Abu Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaida leader, in a raid in Libya. The United States has also relied heavily on drone strikes to target al-Qaida leaders and other militants in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen.
In June 2012, Abu Yahya al-Libi, then al-Qaida’s deputy leader, was killed in Pakistan in a drone strike coordinated by the Central Intelligence Agency. Highly experienced, al-Libi served an important operational function within the organization. Scholars and policymakers saw his death as a significant blow to an already weakened al-Qaida.2 Nine months earlier, a Hellfire missile fired from a U.S. drone killed Anwar al-Awlaki, a Yemeni-American cleric linked to a number of terrorist plots in the West. On August 22, 2011, Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, believed to be the organization’s second-highest leader, was reportedly killed in a drone strike in Pakistan.3 Rahman served an important communicative function between bin Laden and lower-level operatives. Ilyas Kashmiri, reputed to be a senior member of al-Qaida and the operational commander for Harakat-ul-Jihad al-Islami, was killed in a drone attack in South Waziristan on June 3, 2011.4 These examples illustrate the frequency with which the United States has targeted al-Qaida leaders and operatives over the past few years, speciªcally through the use of drone strikes.5
Despite these and other instances of successful targeting, al-Qaida remains a resilient terrorist organization. Applying a theory of organizational resilience, I examine why targeting al-Qaida’s leadership is not an effective counterterrorism strategy and, indeed, is likely counterproductive. A terrorist group’s ability to withstand attacks is a function of two factors: bureaucratization and communal support. Analyzing both when and why certain terrorist groups are able to survive leadership attacks, this article differs from existing work by providing a more nuanced lens through which to evaluate the effectiveness of counterterrorism policy.
The center of gravity of Islamic terrorism is their grievance that we occupy their countries and kill their people. Stop doing this and their grievance disappears. Attacking their leaders or footsoldiers will never, ever win the war.
|As the 'caliphate' ends, where is its leader Baghdadi?|
|[DAWN] The world's most wanted man who has so far eluded capture, the (IS) group chief has seen his "caliphate" crumble and its last shred of territory in Syria evaporate on Saturday.|
After declaring himself caliph in 2014, Baghdadi held sway over seven million people across swathes of Syria and Iraq, where IS implemented its brutal version of Islamic law.
But that land has been whittled down to disjointed sleeper cells by years of fighting, including a ferocious bombing campaign by the United States-led coalition.
Reclusive even when IS was at the peak of its power, the 47-year-old Iraqi, who suffers from diabetes, has been rumoured to have been or killed several times in the past. And his whereabouts have never been confirmed.
So, with his proto-state gone and a $25-million US bounty on his head, where is Baghdadi?
"He only has three companions: his older brother Jumaa, his driver and bodyguard Abdullatif al-Jubury, whom he has known since childhood, and his courier Saud al-Kurdi," said Hisham al-Hashemi, an Iraqi specialist in IS.
Hashemi said the quartet is likely laying low somewhere in Syria's vast Badia desert, which stretches from the eastern border with Iraq to the sweeping province of Homs.
That is where his son Hudhayfa al-Badri was reportedly killed in July by three Russian guided missiles, he added.
"The Coalition is not holding him nor do we know where he is," US-led coalition Col. Sean Ryan told The .
Mohammed Kheder, co-founder of the Sound and Picture group which documents IS, said the last time al-Baghdadi was spotted in the area was about 15 months ago, citing sources on the ground and the testimony of the people who left the area.
In Twitter posts, Kheder’s group has said it cannot rule out the possibility al-Baghdadi was detained long ago ‐ "especially since many of American airdrops and night operations targeting IS leaders along the Iraqi border have not been disclosed by the coalition."
Iraqi intelligence officials believe al-Baghdadi is hiding somewhere in the desert stretching across the Syrian-Iraqi border, using tunnels to move around.
"He does not use any communication equipment or internet to avoid detection by coalition planes," a senior intelligence official said. "When he wants to see someone from the organization, they are brought to him individually in cars that stop around two hours away from where al-Baghdadi is, and then they are brought to him individually on s."
Another official, a colonel, said the Americans recently targeted some of al-Baghdadi’s closest people, including his personal bodyguard Khaled al-Saudi ‐ known as Khallad ‐ who was killed last week near the area of al-Baaj along the Iraqi-Syrian border.
Khallad’s wife was . Another close aide to al-Baghdadi was also recently killed and his wife captured, the colonel said, adding that the Americans believe such targets will soon lead them to al-Baghdadi. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity to share intelligence information.
Al-Baghdadi was born Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim Ali al-Badri al-Samarrai in 1971 in Samarra, Iraq, and adopted his nom de guerre early on. According to IS-affiliated websites, he was detained by US forces in Iraq and sent to Bucca prison in February 2004 for his anti-US activity.
He was released 10 months later, after which he joined the al-Qaeda branch in Iraq of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. He later assumed control of the group, known at the time as the Islamic State of Iraq.
After Syria’s civil war erupted in 2011, al-Baghdadi dispatched comrades to the neighboring country to create a like-minded Sunni group there. The group, which came to be known as the Nusra Front, initially welcomed moderate Sunni rebels who were part of the uprising against Syrian Over time, more of his fighters and possibly al-Baghdadi himself relocated to Syria, pursuing his plan to restore a medieval Islamic state, or caliphate. In April 2013, al-Baghdadi announced what amounted to a hostile takeover of the Nusra Front, saying he was merging it into a new group known as the . Nusra Front’s leader Abu Mohammad al-Golani refused to accept the takeover ‐ as did al-Qaeda’s central leadership, which broke with al-Baghdadi.
Al-Baghdadi’s fighters went onto to capture a contiguous stretch of territory across Iraq and Syria, including key cities such as Raqqa in Syria and in Iraq. In June 2014, the group announced its own state, or caliphate. al-Baghdadi became the declared caliph of the newly renamed Islamic State group.
The group ruled with a virulently extreme interpretation of Islamic law. The atrocities, massacres and beheadings by al-Baghdadi’s that followed ‐ many broadcast in grisly and macabre video postings on websites ‐ secured IS a spot in some of the darkest, most brutal annals of modern history.
Throughout it all, al-Baghdadi was in the shadows.
His only known public appearance on video was on June 29, 2014, when he appeared as a black-robed figure to deliver a sermon from the pulpit of Mosul’s Great Mosque of al-Nuri in which he urged s around the world to swear allegiance to the caliphate and obey him as its leader.
"It is a burden to accept this responsibility to be in charge of you," he says in the video. "I am not better than you or more virtuous than you. If you see me on the right path, help me. If you see me on the wrong path, advise me and halt me. And obey me as far as I obey God."
Little is known about al-Baghdadi’s family. An ex-wife, Saja al-Dulaimi, and her daughter from al-Baghdadi, were detained in in 2014. She was released a year later as part of a swap with al-Qaeda in exchange for kidnapped Lebanese soldiers and . In July 2018, IS announced that al-Baghdadi’s son, Huthaifa al-Badri, had been killed fighting government forces in central Syria.
None of the subsequent reports of al-Baghdadi being killed or were confirmed. In 2017, Russian officials said there was a "high probability" he had been killed in a Russian on the outskirts of Raqqa, but US officials later said they believed he was still alive.
He resurfaced in late September 2017, calling in an audio message on followers to burn their enemies everywhere. Another audio was posted last August in which al-Baghdadi urges followers to "persevere" in fighting IS’ enemies ‐ the speech was sprinkled with references to current events to show it was recent.
Experts tracking figures said the voice in the recordings was al-Baghdadi’s.
It was the last time he was heard of.
|Three jihadi groups active in Mali announce merger|
The Macina Brigades group, active in central Mali, has also joined the merger.
"It is very particular to see them all together," said Wassim Nasr, 24’s expert on jihadist movements.
ANI distributed a screenshot of the video showing five jihadist leaders seated together, with Iyad Ag Ghaly in the centre.
The four others were identified as the "emirs" of the new movement.
"What they are doing here is also against the in the region, which is gaining in force," Nasr said. "They are confirming their presence there."
The ability of such key players in local terror groups to meet freely is notable. "It shows that it is impossible to monitor this huge region militarily and even with technical means," said Nasr.
In an audio excerpt Iyad Ag Ghaly can be heard swearing allegiance to slain Jordanian jihadist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi ‐ whose Al Qaeda in Iraq group later evolved into the Islamic State group ‐ and Ayman al- , Al Qaeda’s current leader.
He can also be heard praising Al Qaeda founder , who was killed in Pakistain in May 2011.
It was not clear when the video was recorded, though ANI said it was "recent".
All three groups already had ties to Al Qaeda, and were involved in an onslaught that saw northern Mali fall out of government control for nearly a year from spring 2012.
The were later expelled from the region by a French-led international military intervention.
Nonetheless large swathes of northern Mali continue to come under attack from jihadist groups.
The area is also seen by governments battling the jihadist threat as a launchpad for attacks against other countries in the region.
|Syria sends reinforcements to Palmyra to counter Daesh|
|[Iran Press TV] The Syrian army says reinforcements have been deployed to the ancient city of Palmyra in the west-central Homs Province to prevent the from further advancing toward the city.|
The army said in a statement on Saturday that are underway between government forces and the terrorists, who have advanced to the city’s outskirts.
The statement said that the had seized areas to the northwest and southeast of the historic city.
According to the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the terrorist group launched the recent offensive late on Thursday, when it seized grain silos northeast of Palmyra, and has since taken at least partial control of oil and gas fields to the city’s northwest.
The Syrian army, backed by popular forces and a wave of Russian s, retook the ancient city from on March 27 following weeks of military operations.
Syrian army and allied forces are also busy driving the Takfiri from the strategic northwestern city of Aleppo. On Friday, government forces liberated 52 blocks in the eastern parts of the city and are now in control of 93 percent of the whole city, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.
The recent army gains come despite the persistent financial and military support that many foreign states have been providing to the since 2011 to bring about the ouster of .
ISIS enters Palmyra
BEIRUT: Fighters of the Daesh group on Saturday re-entered Syria’s famed ancient desert city of Palmyra from which they were driven out eight months ago, a monitor said.
“IS entered Palmyra on Saturday and now occupies its northwest. There is also fighting with the army in the city center,” said Rami Abdel Rahman of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
The jihadists began an offensive in recent days near the town which is on UNESCO’s world heritage list.
In May last year, Daesh seized several towns in Homs province including Palmyra, where they caused extensive damage to many of its ancient sites.
They were ousted from Palmyra in March by Syrian regime forces backed by Russia.
ISIS captures Palmyra
AMMAN/BEIRUT: Daesh militants on Saturday captured most of the ancient city of Palmyra after penetrating Syrian regime’s army defenses and securing strategic heights around the ancient city in eastern Syria following a surprise assault, a monitoring group and rebels said.
The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said there were fears for the lives and safety of civilians inside the city because many of them were pro-regime.
The opposition and the war monitor said with the exception of the southern parts, most of the city was now in the hands of the militants who had waged an attack on several fronts.
Meanwhile, the regime’s army tightened its grip Saturday on opposition fighters besieged in Aleppo along with thousands of civilians.
Airstrikes pummeled the shrinking opposition enclave in east Aleppo as US Secretary of State John Kerry said the regime’s “indiscriminate bombing” amounted to crimes against humanity.
Western powers meeting in Paris called for peace talks to resume and for civilians to be allowed to leave Aleppo, where tens of thousands have already fled the offensive.
UN Syria envoy Staffan de Mistura said the world is watching “the last steps” in the Aleppo battle and evacuating civilians must be a priority.
Meanwhile, the US-led coalition has killed a key leader of Daesh in Syria, the Pentagon said on Saturday.
“Coalition warplanes targeted and killed Tunisian Boubaker Al-Hakim, in Raqqa, Syria” on Nov. 26, Pentagon spokesman Ben Sakrisson said in a statement.
“Al-Hakim was a Daesh leader and longtime terrorist with deep ties to French and Tunisian radical elements,” he added.
Al-Hakim is also suspected of involvement in extremist attacks against Tunisian political leadership in 2013, Sakrisson said.
“His removal degrades Daesh’s ability to conduct further attacks in the West and denies Daesh a veteran extremist with extensive ties,” he added.
Hakim’s death also “denies Daesh a key figure with extensive historical and current involvement in facilitation and external operations and degrades their ability to conduct terror attacks around the world,” the statement read.
Separately, the Turkish army and its allies on Saturday entered the Daesh bastion of Al-Bab in northern Syria, the observatory said.
“They entered Al-Bab from the northwest after violent clashes with the radicals as Turkish artillery bombarded the town,” the observatory said. Heavy fighting was ongoing late Saturday in the town near the Turkish border, he said.
Soon after the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, el Hakim wound up in a network of French jihadis and fought with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. ISIS began as an al-Qaida affiliate in Iraq led by al-Zarqawi, until Zarqawi was killed in a US airstrike in June 2006.
El Hakim was arrested in Syria and sent to France, where he was convicted in 2008 and sentenced to seven years in prison. He was considered at the time to be among the most radicalized of the network of young extremists from the Paris area, which included the brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi.
Released from prison in early 2011,
El Hakim moved back and forth between Syria and Iraq using networks of smugglers and jihadis, according to court records obtained by The Associated Press. He appeared on French television calling on friends in Paris to join him.
"I am in Iraq, I'm doing jihad. And all my brothers who are there, should come and defend Islam," he said.
|Home Front: WoT|
|US wants Israel to try Gitmo prisoner for 2002 Kenya bombing — report|
|[IsraelTimes] Mohammed Bajabu allegedly confessed to attack at Israeli-owned Mombasa hotel; process said held up by FBI reluctance to share evidence.|
The United States has reportedly asked Israel to accept and prosecute a Kenyan man held at Guantanamo Bay over his alleged involvement in a deadly 2002 bombing at an Israeli-owned hotel in Mombasa.
According to US government documents, Mohammed Abdul Malik Bajabu, 43, has confessed to a role in the terror attack, as well as an unsuccessful attempt to down an Israeli passenger plane that same day, the Miami Herald reported.
Thirteen people -- 10 Kenyans and three Israelis -- were killed and 80 others were when a went off at Mombasa’s Paradise Hotel on November 28, 2002, shortly after a large group of Israeli tourists checked into the beachfront resort. At around the same time, a surface to-air missile targeted but missed an Arkia plane carrying 271 people as it took off from Mombasa airport.
Kenyan authorities Bajabu in Mombasa in 2007, and turned him over to the US. He has been held at the US military prison without charge.
The Herald reported that US officials traveled to Israel in April this year to discuss the possibility of transferring Bajabu to Israel for prosecution over his role in both attacks.
Though Israeli authorities had expressed interest in accepting Bajabu, the transfer has been delayed for months by the FBI refusal to share the prisoner’s confession from his 2007 interrogations.
"The government of Israel has repeatedly asked for information to support their possible prosecution. But, for reasons that are unclear, the FBI has declined to provide the information that has been requested by senior Israeli prosecutors," an unnamed US government official told The Herald. "They want to see the incriminating statements. And that’s where we are stuck -- and have been for many months -- which is frustrating."
The attacks were credited to al-Qaeda’s east Africa affiliate, but Kenyan Judge John Osiemo said state prosecutors were unable to connect the four suspects to the bombing or the terror group.
|Ex-wanted Saudi was Qaeda commander, returned from Iran|
|[ENGLISH.ALARABIYA.NET] Wanted Saudi man Osama Ali Abdullah Damjan -- who surrendered himself to police in early October--was reportedly a senior al-Qaeda commander who likely fled to Iran.|
Damjan left to Afghanistan in 2001 before the September 11 terrorist attacks against the United States, sources speaking to Alarabiya.net revealed.
The sources claimed that Damjan was admitted to al-Qaeda’s Al Farooq training camp near Kandahar, one of 's key bases.
Damjan had been training at the camp during bin Laden’s presence. Bin Laden's successor Ayman al- and Abu Musab al Zarqawi -- the founder of al-Qaeda in Iraq -- also received training in the same place.
After the United States waged war on al-Qaeda camps in Afghanistan, Damjan joined the terrorist group’s commanders who fled to Iran.
In 2003, Damjan -- who was also known under the Islamist alias "Abu Jawahir" -- appeared in Iraq fighting along Al Zarqawi, and was later appointed as the emir of the Iraqi city of Qaem.
Conflicting reports on websites affiliated with al-Qaeda reported that Damjan was killed in 2010 in , Pakistain.
Other websites said he died inside a prison in the ISIS-stronghold Syrian city of Raqqa, which could reflect that the al-Qaeda commander was not on good terms with ISIS.
Damjan was still alive and surrendered himself to police in early October, the Saudi Interior Ministry stated Tuesday.
The ministry said he "had contacted the security authorities in the Kingdom and expressed his wish to return and surrender himself to security authorities," according to a statement published by the Saudi Press Agency.
Damjan arrived in Saudi Arabia on October 4, 2016.
|Turkish-backed Syria fighters advancing on IS-held Dabiq: Erdogan|
|[AlAhram] Turkish-backed opposition fighters were advancing Saturday on the northern Syrian town of Dabiq with the aim of taking it from Islamic State (IS) militants, Turkey's president said.|
"We are now advancing. Where? To Dabiq," President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in televised comments in the Black Sea province of Rize.
Turkey launched an unprecedented operation inside Syria on August 24, helping Syrian rebels to rid its frontier of IS militants and Syrian Kurdish militia.
In the operation's early weeks, Jarabulus and Al-Rai became the first two major settlements to be captured from the IS.
The Syrian rebels, supported by Turkish planes and tanks, are two and a half kilometres (1.5 miles) from Dabiq, according to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
"Two hours ago, the rebels started their attack to control Dabiq. The rebels came from Al-Rai," it said.
Dabiq holds symbolic importance for IS because of a Sunni prophecy that states it will be the site of an end-of-times battle between Christian forces and Muslims.
The town itself has negligible military value compared with the strategic IS-controlled cities of Raqa in Syria and Mosul in Iraq.
Earlier this week, IS tried to downplay the advancing rebel forces in its Al-Naba online pamphlet, saying the major battle for the town was yet to come.
Anti-IS fighters and their Turkish backers "have amassed in Aleppo, announcing Dabiq as their major goal," and thinking they could score "a great moral victory against the Islamic State."
But "the great epic of Dabiq will be preceded by great events and apocalyptic omens," the pamphlet, published Thursday, said.
"These hit-and-run battles in Dabiq and its outskirts -- the lesser Dabiq battle -- will end in the greater Dabiq epic," the group added.
Dabiq is also the name of IS's sleek English-language magazine. Every new edition opens with a quote by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the late leader of IS's precursor, the Islamic State of Iraq.
"The spark has been ignited in Iraq, and its flames will grow until they burn the Crusader armies in Dabiq," he once said.
|Body of Libyan executed in Iraq on terrorism charges repatriated|
|[Libya Herald] The body of Adel Juma Shaalali, the Libyan executed in Iraq last week, arrived at Labraq airport today and was collected by the which in turn handed it over to his family for burial in his hometown of Derna.|
Shaalali, 43, was on death row in Baghdad for four years, having been convicted in August 2012 on terrorism and murder charges. Following protests in December that year by Libyan sympathisers, the Zeidan administration succeeded in persuading the Iraqi government to delay his execution. It was again delayed in April 2014 following legal appeals.
"The possibility that Iraq might execute Shaalali without revealing even basic information about his case highlights grave concerns about Iraq’s justice system," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East and North Africa director at . "The Iraqi government should immediately stay Shaalali’s execution."
Shaalali left Libya for Iraq in 2007 and joined Jamaat al-Tawhid wal-Jihad of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi which later became part of the so-called . He later caught accused of fighting against the US forces there and of being a terrorist.
At least one, possibly two Iraqi citizens were murdered in Derna after Shaalali’s conviction, it is thought in acts of by what was then Derna’s .
|US airstrike kills ISIS 'Emir of Anbar Province' in Iraq|
|[FOXNEWS] A U.S. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the Pentagon announced Monday. on Friday killed four fighters in western Iraq, including a leader who appeared in ISIS execution videos and was considered an heir apparent to terror |
The terror leader, Abu Wahib, was known as the "Emir of Anbar Province." The strike unfolded near al-Rutba, not far from the Syrian border, Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook told s.
Wahib left an Anbar university, where he was studying computer science, to fight U.S. forces entering Iraq, The reported. He an Iraq-run prison in Tikrit in 2012.
Cook said Wahib's death marks another serious blow to ISIS leadership and would "further degrade its ability to operate, especially in Anbar Province."
Iraq had falsely reported Wahib's death in the past, but Cook said, "we're confident that this was a successful strike and I'll leave it at that."
|Syrian army presses ahead with offensive against ISIS|
|Syrian troops and allied militiamen pressed on with an offensive against ISIS in central Syria on Monday, clashing with the extremists around the town of Qaryatain a day after it was captured by pro-government forces.|
The push into Qaryatain took place under the cover of Russian airstrikes and dealt another setback to ISIS in Syria a week after the army retook the historic town of Palmyra from the group. SANA said the army was fighting ISIS militants in areas around Qaryatain Monday, as well as in farms east and north of Palmyra.
The capture of Qaryatain deprives ISIS of a main base in central Syria and could be used by government forces in the future to launch attacks on ISIS-held areas near the Iraqi border.
Qaryatain used to be home to a sizable Christian population and lies midway between Palmyra and the capital, Damascus. Activists said last summer that Qaryatain had a mixed population of around 40,000 Sunni Muslims and Christians, as well as thousands of internally displaced people who had fled from the nearby city of Homs. Many of the Christians fled the town after it came under ISIS attack.
Dozens of Qaryatain's Christians and other residents have been abducted by ISIS. While the town was under Islamic State control, some were released while others were made to sign pledges to pay a tax imposed on non-Muslims.
Meanwhile, monitoring groups said that a senior Al-Qaeda official was killed in air strikes Sunday night that killed at least 21 other militants in Idlib province, a militant stronghold in northern Syria.
The SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors militant websites, said Abu Firas al-Souri died in US strikes. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the jets were thought to belong to the Syrian or Russian Air Forces.
It said they targeted the headquarters of Jund al-Aqsa, an extremist group that fights alongside al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, the Nusra Front.
Al-Souri was the former official spokesman for the Nusra Front, the group reported on social media Monday.
A 2014 biographical video about al-Souri, obtained by SITE, says he used to represent Osama bin Laden in Pakistan after he met the al-Qaeda founder in Afghanistan during the jihad against the Soviet Union in the 1980s.
Al-Souri, born outside Damascus in 1949, followed the path of many Syrian militants. A graduate of the country's military college, he trained militant cells in the country between 1977 and 1980, heading several operations against the authorities for the latter part of that period.
He was expelled from the Syrian military in part because of his Islamist ties in 1979.
He fled to Jordan in 1980 then to Afghanistan in 1981 where he trained militants coming to the war-torn country from across Asia and the Arab world. He became an associate of bin Laden and Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a senior al-Qaeda commander who led the organization’s affiliate in Iraq following the 2003 US invasion.
Al-Souri participated in a number of major military operations in Afghanistan and Pakistan before transferring to Yemen in 2003. In 2013, the al-Qaeda leadership transferred him to Syria to mend the growing rift between the group and ISIS.
A media outlet belonging to the Lebanese militia Hezbollah said al-Souri’s son was also killed in the air strikes.
Hezbollah has sent thousands of its fighters to fight alongside Syrian government forces in the country’s five-year civil war. The group was reported to have lost a dozen soldiers in fierce fighting in northern Syria last weekend as militant groups alongside rebel militias mounted an offensive against several government positions.
|Olde Tyme Religion|
|The Soft Power of Militant Jihad|
|AFTER Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, the predecessor to the Islamic State, reportedly beheaded the American hostage Nicholas Berg in 2004, he became known in jihadi circles as the Slaughterer. Few people in the West are aware that he also went by the nickname He Who Weeps a Lot. Mr. Zarqawi was known for weeping during prayer and when speaking about Muslim women's suffering under occupation.|
(Skipping many paragraphs in the same vein)
As the West comes to terms with a new and growing threat ‐ horrifically evident in the recent attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, Calif. ‐ we are not only confronting organizations and doctrines, but also a highly seductive subculture. This is bad news. Governments are much better equipped to take on the Slaughterer than they are He Who Weeps a Lot.
Without that last paragraph, this would be pure enemy propaganda. It still is. NYT, sympathetic as always.