Thursday, June 08, 2006


Well, we finally got the Z-man. A lot of stuff out there about it today. For example, Counterterrorism Blog: ABU MUSAB AL-ZARQAWI KILLED IN U.S. BOMBING ATTACK (updated with pictures).

Also, from there, another article today: "The demise of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, courtesy of Task Force 145" with some background on the group that was probably most responsible for this result. My understanding is that they are a combined group of Seals and Delta, with a Ranger company attached for putting up perimiters, and they range throughout Iraq and environs rolling up terrorist cells, and, in particular, aiming at just this - taking out al-Zarqawi and al-Qaeda.

Right now though, I am not sure if it was better from a psychologicial warfare point of view that it was done the way it was by a pair of F-15Es, presumably using JDAMs, or if it have been better if TF 145 had gone in there and done the job personally. Not sure which would have more effect on the "Arab Street".

What really bugs me right now though is that I was reading something yesterday that al-Zarqawi had become an embarrassment to al Qaeda, and that his demise might be in their best interests right now, and, in particular, his martyrdom - and so we might expect some accident, or, maybe even an anonymous tip that would lead to his demise. And, lo, and behold, today we find out that that exact fate befell him. The problem is that I can't find the article anywhere.

Update - found the article at StrategyPage titled: "Zarqawi Scheduled for Martyrdom" thanks to Austin Bay via PowerLine, dated yesterday:
June 7, 2006: The relationship between terrorist leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi and and the mainline al Qaeda leadership continues to deteriorate. Zarqawi's recent audio messages have not only attacked the U.S. and the Shia-dominated government in Iraq, but also Iran. He's even claiming that the U.S., Iran, and Shia in general, are in cahoots to destroy Islam. He has also called for continued attacks against Shia...

Given that Zarqawi has become a loose cannon and that his actions are handicapping Al Qaeda's efforts, it seems reasonable to expect that an accident may befall him at some point in the near future. If handled right it can be made to look like he went out in a blaze of glory fighting American troops or that he was foully murdered. Either way, al Qaeda gets rid of a problem and gains another "martyr."


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