Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Zawahiri Calls Iraq Al Qaeda's Main Effort

Al Qaeda's No. 2, Ayman al Zawahiri, recently issued an audio tape that has now been translated and posted at Iraq Status Report. The speech is notable for several things, among them:

- clearly identifying Iraq as al Qaeda's main effort

- displaying an utter hatred of the Awakening Council phenomena - a diatribe that gives truth to just how threatening this movement is to al Qaeda

- an astute analysis of Iran's goals and the likely effect of a "democrat" attempt to negotiate with Iran.

- a scathing critique of the unstable Sadr

- a call to use mosques and the halls of academia to foment jihad and pursue the radical Islamist goals - which, in fact, seems to be happening in the West.

This translation of Zawahiri's speech from Iraq Status Report:

. . . As for the status of the US invasion of Iraq today and after five years, it is, with God's grace, failure and defeat. [General David] Petraeus went to Congress to request the postponement of the date of the US additional forces' withdrawal by six weeks after the set date of next July, and Bush announced that he will grant Petraeus all the time he needs. A ridiculous farce to cover up the failure in Iraq and to help Bush dodge the decision to withdraw forces, which is considered a declaration of the Crusader invasion of Iraq defeat by transferring the problem to the new president. So where are the Awakening Councils, which Petraeus announced six months ago that they will achieve victory in Iraq? Were not these Awakening Councils supposed to expedite the date of the US forces' withdrawal? Or are they in need of someone to defend and protect them? Bush's administration is deceiving its people so as not to acknowledge failure in Iraq and Afghanistan? Let the soldiers of this Administration go to hell. Petraeus and Bush are trying to convince the Americans that their salvation will begin six weeks from next July. In fact even if Bush keeps all his forces in Iraq until doomsday and until they go to hell, they will face only defeat and incur loss, God willing.

"The impasse in Iraq and Afghanistan is simply that if the US forces withdraw they will lose everything, and if they stay on they will be bleeding to death. This is what Bush has chosen for his army and his people, who elected him twice. Today he is evading this impasse and procrastinating on making a decision to escape from this deadlock.

"As for the Democrats, they are trying to deceive their people by claiming that they will withdraw their forces from Iraq by reaching an understanding with Iran in order to concentrate on Al-Qa'ida and Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Iran's aims are clear; namely, annexing southern Iraq and the eastern part of Al-Jazirah [area between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers] and expanding to establish contacts with its followers in southern Lebanon. If an understating is reached with Iran based on meeting all or some of its aims in exchange for overlooking the US hegemony over the region, this understanding will add fuel to the already flaming fire, will bring the situation to a head in this already explosive region, and will cause an ever increasing Islamic awakening. This awakening will be engendered by the US-Iranian collusion, and it will direct further blows to US interests.

. . . The Americans are being routed. They are fighting in Washington over the date of their withdrawal. The Awakening Councils are being pursued. There, the Mujahidin follow the tradition of Abu-Bakr Al-Siddiq [the first caliph after Muhammad], may God be pleased with him: Either a victorious war or an ignominious peace. The Iranians are in confusion. Their henchmen are fighting each other. In their fighting, they are bombing the domes of Husayn and Al-Abbas, may God be pleased with them.

"Muqtada al-Sadr has become the laughing stock of the world because of his use of Al-Taqiyah [expediencies, Shiite principle]. Sometimes he hands over his weapons and joins the political process. Sometimes he leaves this process, and sometimes he freezes Al-Mahdi Army, and then says he will postpone this freeze. Sometimes he says he will stage a demonstration against the occupation and then he says he will not. Sometimes he says he will sound the religious authorities on dissolving Al-Mahdi Army. Thus, the Iranian intelligence has used this naive boy as a puppet. He claims that he is waging resistance against the occupation, sometimes by handing his weapons over to them and sometimes by demonstrating against them.

"The people of Islam and jihad in Iraq have only to be persistent and remain firm. The signs of victory are now clear and the breakthrough is looming on the horizon. Shortly Iraq will become the fortress of Islam which will become a springboard from which expeditions and troops will leave to liberate the Al-Aqsa Mosque [of Jerusalem], God willing.

"Iraq today is now the most important arena in which our Muslim nation is waging the battle against the forces of the Crusader-Zionist campaign. Therefore, backing the mujahidin in Iraq, led by the Islamic State of Iraq, is the most important task of the Islamic nation today.

. . . "Abu-Bakr Al-Siddiq, may God be please with him, said: 0 people. Read this Koranic verse: "O ye who believe! Guard your own souls: If ye follow (right) guidance, no hurt can come to you from those who stray." [Koranic verse; Al-Ma'idah; 5:105] He said: I heard the messenger of God, may the blessings and peace of God be upon him say: If people recognize the oppressor and fail to punish him, God will punish all of them.

"Those who stole the bread and the means of life of the people are the ones who blocked all means of peaceful change. What happened at the Shura Council elections and then the local elections in Egypt, and before that the Jordanian elections, the Moroccan elections, and the threat to dissolve the Justice Party in Turkey represent the new US policy, now that the method of change through elections has exhausted itself and after the Americans exploited this current by diverting the nation from jihad and serious resistance against the nation's internal and external enemies. When this policy failed to confront the wave of the expanding jihadist awakening, they moved to the current policy; namely, the policy of creating Awakening Councils in Iraq, introducing the constitutional amendments, exercising complete control over the elections, and the document of rationing in Egypt. This is the policy of imposing the ignominious, humiliating, and corrupt reality on the nation by oppression, forgery, repression, and lies.

. . . "Workers, employees, and students must transfer their anger to the streets. They must transform mosques, factories, universities, colleges, and high schools into centers for supporting jihad and resistance. "All must move because the battle is not that of a certain group or organization but that of the entire nation. The Islamic nation must unite, through its mujahidin, men, women, and children; its ulema and shaykhs, its thinkers, leaderships, and masses, to drive out the Crusader and Jewish invaders from the land of Islam and establish the Islamic state that rules by the Islamic sharia, which defends the rights of Muslims, and which punishes the robbers and the plunderers of the wealth of the nation. . . .

Read the entire speech.

(H/T Belmont Club)

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