Al Qaeda

New York Times disconnects the Benghazi dots

Featured image David Kirkpatrick of the New York Times is trying to salvage some credibility in the aftermath of the refutation, including by the Washington Post, of his revisionist account of the attack in Benghazi. As Tom Joscelyn shows, Kirkpatrick does not succeed. In his initial piece, Kirkpatrick ruled out any meaningful involvement in the attack by ex-Guantanamo detainee Sufian Ben Qumu, who has longstanding ties to al Qaeda and is currently »

Benghazi bombshell — former Gitmo detainee implicated in attack

Featured image According to the Washington Post, U.S. officials suspect that a former Guantanamo Bay detainee played a role in the attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi. The U.S. government is said to be planning to designate the group he leads as a foreign terrorist organization. The terrorist and former Gitmo detainee in question is Abu Sufian bin Qumu, leader of Ansar al-Sharia in the Libyan city of Darnah. Witnesses »

Surprise: U.S. weakness strengthens al Qaeda

Featured image Remember when, during the Bush administration, the left and its MSM supporters insisted that U.S. intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan was causing Muslims to flock to al Qaeda? I wonder what the left and the MSM have to say now that al Qaeda is running rampant following President Obama’s withdrawal from the region? There was never credible evidence to support the left’s self-serving claim that our interventions were boosting al »

David Kirkpatrick doubles down on bogus

Featured image David Kirkpatrick of the New York Times continues to claim that, notwithstanding the reporting of his own newspaper, claims of an al Qaeda connection to the Benghazi attack are “bogus” or, alternatively, “tenuous” (which is it, David?). How does Kirkpatrick square his claim with the Times’ reporting? By mischaracterizing that reporting. He told Anderson Cooper: I think that the reporting in our paper [of involvement by Muhammad Jamal's terrorist group »

Bipartisan U.S. policy leaves Iraq on the brink

Featured image I wrote here and here about the unraveling of Iraq that has followed the withdrawal of American troops and the failure of the Obama administration to negotiate a status of forces agreement with the Maliki government. I also noted that Maliki would be in Washington this week seeking help from President Obama. The U.S. has a clear interest in helping the Maliki government stem the tide of violence and terrorism »

Why raids against terrorists aren’t enough

Featured image Over the weekend, the U.S. conducted two raids in Africa against terrorists. In Libya, we captured Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, alias Abu Anas al-Liby, who is wanted for the bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa in 1998. In Somalia, we targeted a senior leader of the Shabab, the Islamist terrorist group responsible for the massacre at the Westgate mall in Nairobi. We don’t know whether we killed the target. Scott »

The bitter fruit of Obama’s Syrian fecklessness

Featured image The only thing unraveling faster than Syria is President Obama’s Syria policy. There is, of course, a relationship between the two downward spirals. This morning comes word that eleven of the biggest armed factions among the Syrian rebels have repudiated the Western-backed opposition to the Assad regime and formed an alliance dedicated to establishing an Islamic state. Jabhat al-Nusra, an al Qaeda affiliate, is the lead signatory to this new »

Kenya massacre highlights the mistaken focus of Obama’s anti-terror policy

Featured image Earlier this month, I argued that the U.S. is not really winning the war against al Qaeda. Although we have mainly succeeded against al Qaeda groups in Pakistan, at least for the time being, I noted that al Qaeda, having fundamentally shifted its approach, has become a global network. As such, it is arguably stronger today than it was in 2001. Events this weekend, highlighted here by Max Boot, tend »

Al Qaeda in Iraq is resurgent

Featured image Jessica Lewis of the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) was a decorated intelligence officer for the U.S. Army. She performed that role in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Lewis is the author of a new ISW report called “Al Qaeda in Iraq is Resurgent.” It’s always nice when a report gets to the point in the title, even if the point isn’t nice. Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) reached its »

Why Assad is no bulwark against al Qaeda

Featured image One of the strongest-sounding arguments against intervening in Syria is the fear that, by “degrading” Assad’s power, we will increase the odds that jihadist, al Qaeda affiliated rebels will come to power. It was this fear that caused me to suggest last year that a stalemate between Assad and the rebels might be the best outcome. Only after the tide of the civil war seemed to turn in favor of »

The “un-vetted” Syrian opposition

Featured image During the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s hearing on Syria this week, Sen. Corker referred several times to the “vetted opposition” to Bashar al-Assad. Corker had in mind, I gather, the Free Syrian Army which is deemed by Secretary of State Kerry, John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and others to be an effective, non-extremist, and not wholly corrupt rebel fighting force. How seriously should we take the vetting of the Free Syrian »

The Terror Alert: Even the Media Are Starting to Get It

Featured image We’ve noted here before the possibility that Al Qaeda’s current “chatter” is disinformation, or a deliberate manipulation of our current terror protocols.  Whatever happened to, “If we do ‘X,’ the terrorists win”?  Well, we’re cowering around the world right now. The National Journal‘s security correspondent Sara Sorcher takes note of this today, in “Al Qaeda’s Won This Round–So Far“: Not only is it very unusual that a senior, Pakistan-based Qaida »

Obama Epic Fail on Foreign Policy Revisited

Featured image Last week I put up a brief post on how the current terror warning that has seen the U.S. close most of its embassies in the Middle East–based on “chatter”–is peculiar, if not worse.  Every watcher of The Sopranos or The Wire knows that the bad guys are not dumb, and know that we’ll be listening to any conventional communication, which is why I suggested this whole thing might well »

Obama Foreign Policy=Epic Fail

Featured image Never mind the Snowden defection to the Soviet Union Russia (which really is an old-style defection, with a decent interval to fool the American media); how about Obama’s obviously risible claim that “Al Qaeda is on the run.”  Yeah, because one way you keep terrorists on the run is to . . . close 21 embassies.  Riiiighht. This warning is supposedly based on increased “chatter.”  I expect this is true. »

Will Somebody Tell Al-Qaida That the Era of Terrorism Is Over?

Featured image So Obama thinks the problem of terrorism has receded to pre-9/11 levels and we can call the whole thing off.  Won’t be long now before the New York Times re-runs the Larry Johnson article from July 2001, “The Declining Terrorist Threat,” which confidently proclaimed: Americans are bedeviled by fantasies about terrorism. They seem to believe that terrorism is the greatest threat to the United States and that it is becoming »

Obama signals retreat in the fight against terrorism

Featured image President Obama delivered an address today at the National Defense University called “The Future of our Fight Against Terrorism.” Actually, part of the speech was about the past, including much self-congratulation and some shots at President Bush. This part of the speech is revisionist rubbish. As Max Boot explains: Obama said, for example, that after he came into office, “we unequivocally banned torture, affirmed our commitment to civilian courts, worked »

The Chechen, jihadlist, al Qaeda connection

Featured image AEI’s lead Russia scholar, Leon Aron, has this, in part, to say: Islamic radicals have been very active in Chechnya since the early 2000s, when the Chechen independence movement truly radicalized into a fundamentalist movement. Since then, there have been several large attacks in Russia, such as the Beslan school siege in 2004 and the Nord Ost theater attack in 2002. Several Chechens were sent to Guantanamo. . . . »