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Al-Qaida making comeback in Iraq, officials say
Associated Press ^ | Oct 9, 2012, 6:06 PM EDT | QASSIM ABDUL-ZAHRA and LARA JAKES

Posted on 10/09/2012 3:53:46 PM PDT by Hunton Peck

Al-Qaida is rebuilding in Iraq and has set up training camps for insurgents in the nation's western deserts as the extremist group seizes on regional instability and government security failures to regain strength, officials say.

Iraq has seen a jump in al-Qaida attacks over the last 10 weeks, and officials believe most of the fighters are former prisoners who have either escaped from jail or were released by Iraqi authorities for lack of evidence after the U.S. military withdrawal last December. Many are said to be Saudi or from Sunni-dominated Gulf states.

During the war and its aftermath, U.S. forces, joined by allied Sunni groups and later by Iraqi counterterror forces, managed to beat back al-Qaida's Iraqi branch.

But now, Iraqi and U.S. officials say, the insurgent group has more than doubled in numbers from a year ago - from about 1,000 to 2,500 fighters. And it is carrying out an average of 140 attacks each week across Iraq, up from 75 attacks each week earlier this year, according to Pentagon data.

"AQI is coming back," U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, a Republican from South Carolina, declared in an interview last month while visiting Baghdad.

The new growth of al-Qaida in Iraq, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq, is not entirely unexpected. Last November, the top U.S. military official in Iraq, Army Gen. Lloyd Austin, predicted "turbulence" ahead for Iraq's security forces. But he doubted Iraq would return to the days of widespread fighting between Shiite militias and Sunni insurgents, including al-Qaida, that brought the Islamic country to the brink of civil war.

While there's no sign of Iraq headed back toward sectarian warfare - mostly because Shiite militias are not retaliating to their deadly attacks - al-Qaida's revival is terrifying to ordinary Iraqis.

Generally, the militant group...

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; gwb; iraq; obama

1 posted on 10/09/2012 3:53:55 PM PDT by Hunton Peck
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To: Hunton Peck

but but but

we only went to war in Iraq because Bush lied and Halliburton wanted to build an oil pipeline for Dick Cheney

oh, I am so confused

2 posted on 10/09/2012 4:35:11 PM PDT by silverleaf (Age Takes a Toll: Please Have Exact Change)
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To: Hunton Peck

And the surprise is what? /sarcasm

3 posted on 10/09/2012 4:36:49 PM PDT by stboz
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To: Hunton Peck

Ryan needs to pummel Slow Joe with


4 posted on 10/09/2012 4:38:37 PM PDT by nascarnation (Defeat Baraq 2012. Deport Baraq 2013)
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To: nascarnation; All

Obama had two goals with his high priority withdrawal of US troops from Iraq and loading them up in Afghanistan:

1) Kill US troops and destroy morale in Afghanistan.

2. Give the green light for his Muslim buddies in Iraq.

The average American will never believe that our first Muslim President is a traitor.

5 posted on 10/09/2012 5:19:34 PM PDT by politicianslie (Obama: Our first Muslim PRESIDENT,destroying America $1 Trillion at a time! And America sleeps)
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