Dear Friends and Colleagues:
I wanted to take this opportunity to call your attention to two important articles out of Australia that may have gotten lost in the holiday shuffle over the past 10 days or so. The Australian media has done a far better job of covering and analyzing Jihad and the threat of Jihadist terrorism than the media in the U.S.
• The first article details cooperation between Iran, specifically the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, and Al Qaeda. It seems that the Revolutionary Guards provided support for a recent Al Qaeda attack on the US embassy in Yemen. The ideological leader of Al Qaeda, Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri, wrote a letter thanking the Iranians for their help in the attack, which killed 16 people. The attack got almost no coverage in the US media and this indication of Iranian involvement has received even less US media exposure. The article appeared on the Australian news web site of The Sydney Morning Herald:
Letter exposes Iran’s assistance to al-Qaeda
November 25, 2008
LINKS between Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and al-Qaeda have emerged after the interception of a letter from the terrorist group’s leadership which hails Tehran’s support for a recent attack on the US embassy in Yemen that killed 16 people.
The letter exposed the growing role of Saad bin Laden, the son of Osama, the al-Qaeda leader, as an intermediary between the organisation and Iran. Saad bin Laden, 29, has been living, apparently under house arrest, in Iran since the fall of the Taliban in Afghanistan in 2001.
The letter, which was signed by Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda’s second in command, was written after the US embassy in Yemen was attacked by simultaneous suicide car bombs in September.
Western security officials said the missive thanked the leadership of the Revolutionary Guards for providing assistance to al-Qaeda to set up its clandestine network in Yemen, which has suffered 10 al-Qaeda-related attacks in the past year, including two bomb attacks against the US embassy.
In the letter, al-Qaeda’s leadership pays tribute to Iran’s generosity, saying that without its “monetary and infrastructure assistance” it would have not been possible for the group to carry out its attacks.
This story was found at: continue reading…. http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2008/11/24/1227491461361.html
The subject of Iranian cooperation with Al Qaeda is not a new one, but it is one about which the media has selective amnesia. I wrote about the link between Iran and Al Qaeda for National Review (http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=OGE0ZWE0MWVjMmI2YjI4NzI1OTg2YzZmMjJjNzMwOGY) some time ago (though folks like Michael Ledeen, Ken Timmerman and Bill Gertz have written much more extensively on this topic as well).
• The second article discusses state sponsorship of terrorism and helps debunk the myth of independent, transnational terrorist organizations operating completely independently and without the support of nation-states. Al Qaeda and its 30-40 affiliates around the globe are certainly not tied to any national movement; they are linked to and through Jihad, but Al Qaeda, like Hezbollah and HAMAS and others, could not exist without the facilitation, cooperation, tolerance and, in some cases, the direct support of the governments of nation-states, such as Iran (but certainly not limited to Iran). So the next time you hear a pundit popping off on TV about how Al Qaeda doesn’t rely upon or benefit from nation-states, don’t believe it…
The dangerous illusion of independent terrorists
Greg Sheridan, Foreign editor | December 06, 2008
Article from: The Australian
WHEN US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was in India this week, all the talk was about “non-state actors” and the challenge they throw up to the international system. The assumption was that the Pakistan-based terrorists responsible for the murders of about 175 people in Mumbai, and the injuries to hundreds more, were non-state actors.
Yet it may be that since the 9/11 attacks in New York, the world has completely misconceived the age of terror.
The radical increase in the lethality, range, political consequence and strategic influence of terrorists comes not from their being non-state actors at all. Instead it comes from their being sponsored by states.
continue reading at….