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Alive and Deadly - The workings of al Qaeda's expanding franchise
The American Spectator ^ | October 25, 2012 | George H. Wittman

Posted on 10/25/2012 3:46:25 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

It has become accepted to use the term al Qaeda when referring to any violent Islamic grouping that appears to have a broader organizational connection. To refine that definition there has been added the recognition of at least three so-called "franchises" with a national or regional orientation: al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), and al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). All have an outreach beyond their immediate geographical area. The mistake that is made, however, is to characterize al Qaeda as the overall operational director of the movement.

The theoretical central control organization, al Qaeda, itself – with Ayman al Zawahiri as its post- bin Laden leader – is nonetheless viewed by most Western observers in a headquarters context for broad planning, propaganda, and sometime coordination among the several franchises. To a certain extent, central al Qaeda reportedly has informal elements circulating as mentors among various local popular groups......

Benghazi has been a key jihadist recruiting ground going back even before the American military presence in Afghanistan beginning October 2001. As the center of Cyrenican (eastern province of Libya) resistance against Gaddafi's central government, local insurgent groups eventually formed into varying-sized militias with clan ties. Before that, however, the legends of Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda had encouraged the growth of a development pool of Afghanistan-bound young men. This movement later evolved into several anti-Gaddafi underground nets. One of these assumed the name Ansar al Shariah, which had surfaced originally in Yemen as part of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP)........

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; alzawahiri; ansaralsharia; aq; aqap; aqi; aqim; aymanalzawahiri; benghazi; islamist; jihad; libya; shadowwars; terrorism; threatmatrix; yemen; zawahiri

“.............Four hundred miles away in Benghazi, the Supreme Security Committees have offices but little presence on the streets. Rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons that rebels stole from Kadafi’s stocks during the revolution are for sale in the main market, sometimes by men who look barely old enough to drive.

At Jalaa Hospital, the main emergency trauma center in eastern Libya, the only security for months was provided by Ansar al Sharia. Ten days after the attack, protests forced the group to abandon its installations in Benghazi, including the hospital.

Now the doctors want the group back.

A weaker militia has taken its place, but security has badly deteriorated, with gun battles sometimes spilling into the parking lot and reception areas. After several days of chaos, including one incident where a nurse was assaulted, about 200 doctors, nurses and other staff signed a petition seeking Ansar al Sharia’s return.

“There is a lot of propaganda against them, but we are asking for them,” said Ahmed Abdul Gader, a weary-eyed orthopedic surgeon who was on duty one recent evening. “The government has no control here.” - “Libya militia tensions hampered post-attack U.S. efforts” [October 24, 2012]

1 posted on 10/25/2012 3:46:35 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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"......How many times do we have to hear that some attack by jihadis is a reaction to something we did?

....If you buy the view that the only real enemy in the so-called War on Terror is AQ, a tiny group of crazies in the AfPak mountains who follow some nut named Osama,Obama's policies make total sense.

(1)We should not have been in Iraq;instead,we should have gone after Osama bin Laden and AQ in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

(2)The only problem is AQ and not Saddam,the Taliban,Hamas, Hezb'allah, the Muslim Brotherhood, or anyone not explicitly in AQ.

(3)Killing Osama was all-important, since he was the leader of AQ, our only threat.

(4)We have nothing to fear from the "Arab Spring" because those Muslims are not AQ--just people who want freedom and democracy.

....In short, the "it's all about AQ" theory was a convenient excuse to do nothing other than the occasional drone-kill or SEAL-kill of an identifiable AQ operative and then "Disneyfy" all other Muslim movements as people who yearn only for freedom and democracy--even people who killed Gaddafi by "bayonet stab to the anus"or sexually assaulted Lara Logan.

And here is how much the "it's all about AQ" crowd wanted that worldview to be true. They claimed that killing Osama turned the corner on terrorism.

....In what universe does an increase of attacks indicate "a path of decline"? In the same universe where an attack on a U.S. embassy in a Muslim country on September 11 was motivated by a YouTube video that no one saw.

It was just in July that the State Department said that AQ was on "a path of decline." By September, protesters would be flying AQ's flag over our own embassies in Tunisia, Egypt, Kuwait, and Libya while chanting, "Obama, we are all Osama." And four Americans...would be killed in Libya, after which CNN ran this headline:"Pro-al Qaeda group seen behind deadly Benghazi attack.".... Obama's Fog of War

2 posted on 10/25/2012 3:49:49 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: All
[October 25, 2012] Benghazi: From 'See No Sharia' to Ansar al-Sharia " "........A sizable, ominous Ansar al-Sharia public rally during June 2012 was highlighted in the August 2012 Pentagon report, which also noted the unwillingness of Libya's sharia-supporting central government to contend with these ostensibly "more radical" avatars of sharia supremacism:

>>>In June 2012, Ansar al-Sharia staged a large-scale rally and military show of force involving dozens of military vehicles, with Islamists wearing the Afghan mujahidin's traditional outfit. Some leaders described themselves as Islamists and called for implementation of sharia similar to that which the Taliban had implemented in Afghanistan or al-Qaeda in Somalia and Yemen. The military show of force consisted of a parade in which some 30 battalions from Benghazi, Darnah, Misrata, Al-Nufilyah, Ajdabiyah, and other Libyan towns took part in the first meeting in support of sharia in Benghazi. Islamist leaders pointed out that the aim of the military parade was to terrorize (Arabic: irhab) those who do not want to be judged by God's law. Islamist leaders urged the Transitional National Council to clarify the identity of the state as Islamic or secular. Such a system of local affiliates might use neighborhood mosques as a support infrastructure for a religious and popular movement that could frighten politicians attempting to run on a moderate Islamic platform. ... A weak Islamist-dominated central government is unlikely to confront such a radical movement, at least in the short term. The minister of religious affairs expressed his government's weakness when he lamented the "hijacking" of mosques by extremist imams imposed by militiamen. Two of these local Islamist-oriented militias -- Ansar al-Sharia and al-A'hrar Libya -- are the tip of the iceberg. They broadcast typical al-Qaeda-type propaganda on the Internet, and they have adopted the black flag, which symbolizes commitment to violent jihad promoted by AQSL.<<<

With resigned sobriety, the Pentagon report emphasized how such jihadist/al-Qaeda discourse resonates among a significant swath of the Libyan population:

>>>AQSL's discourse may attract a sizable audience, especially among disenchanted former rebels, insecure tribal leaders, and Salafist clerics that could be turned into a support network and recruiting tool for jihadists. As demonstrated by ongoing rallies of supporters of the implementation of sharia, the Salafist movement is gaining ground in Libya and is most likely to adopt an uncompromising stance with regard to sharia and secularism close to the one typically promoted by al-Qaeda.<<<

The salient features of sharia, Islamic law, and its appeal as demonstrated by recent polling data from Libya's North African Muslim neighbors, Morocco and Egypt, are summarized below.............."

3 posted on 10/25/2012 3:52:51 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: MestaMachine; All

There is no way Obama and Hillary Clinton were caught flat-footed in this “game” they’re playing with American lives.

4 posted on 10/25/2012 3:54:47 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; ...

Thanks Cincinatus’ Wife.

5 posted on 10/25/2012 4:14:58 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (
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To: All
Oct 26, 2012 [Washington Post] After Benghazi attacks, Islamist extremists akin to al-Qaeda stir fear in eastern Libya "DARNA, Libya — Operating from the shadows, armed Islamist extremists are terrorizing the eastern Libyan city of Darna, six weeks after the deadly attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi threw a spotlight on Libya’s growing religious extremism.

A campaign of bombings and death threats aimed at Libyan government targets is being blamed on armed Islamist extremists, including the city’s most powerful militia, the Abu Slim Martyrs Brigade, whose ideology residents say is akin to al-Qaeda’s.

What is unfolding here may be the most extreme example of the confrontation underway across Libya, underscoring just how deeply the fundamentalists have sown their seeds in the security vacuum that has defined Libya since the fall of Moammar Gaddafi last September. . ."

6 posted on 10/27/2012 1:44:13 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: TigerClaws

In June 2012, Ansar al-Sharia staged a large-scale rally and military show of force involving dozens of military .....

7 posted on 11/03/2012 1:03:10 AM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge)
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