Thursday, June 08, 2006

A brief History of Abu Musab Al Zarqawi, With Editorial Summary

Council on Foreign Relations Backgrounder, Thumbnail/Relevant Facts:

"Jordanian by birth [Zarqawi was born Ahmed al-Khalayleh in October 1966 sic.]... hard facts about Zarqawi's past are few and far between. Hearsay, on the other hand, abounds."

"In 2003, Colin Powell told the UN Security Council that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was, in his very person, the link between Iraq's Baathist regime and Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network. Zarqawi's dealings, Powell said, proved that Iraq harbored a terrorist network, and mandated preemptive military action against the country. This assertion was later disproved*, but it irreversibly thrust Zarqawi's name into the international spotlight."
*Speculative Assertion

"By his eighteenth birthday, both of Zarqawi's parents were dead. He dropped out of school and soon wound up in prison, not for religiously motivated extremist involvement but for drug possession and sexual assault.

"In early 1989, Zarqawi moved to Afghanistan, hoping to join the fight against Soviet occupation, which by that time was already dwindling significantly. He spent time working in Peshawar, a Pakistani border town known for its illicit black market, and for its bristling Islamic radicalism."

"The most famous attacks connected to Zarqawi are the Amman, Jordan, suicide bombings of November 9, 2005, and the Madrid train bombings of March 11, 2004. He has also claimed credit for the April 24, 2004, suicide attack on the Iraqi port city of Basra, multiple attacks on Shiite worshippers and Shiite mosques in Iraq, and the videotaped and widely publicized beheading of an American businessman, Nicholas Berg, also in Iraq."

"Zarqawi always kept his face hidden in his communiqués. That changed on April 25[2006], when Zarqawi released a video of himself decrying the three-year 'crusader campaign.'"

"Experts say Zarqawi and bin Laden most likely met in Kandahar, in southern Pakistan, in 2000, though it is possible the two met in Peshawar in the early 1990s. Despite their mutual interests, Zarqawi repeatedly refused to join bin Laden's al-Qaeda group, according to widespread accounts."

"Also, though there is no financial paper trail linking Zarqawi to al-Qaeda, bin Laden has at least nominally welcomed "union" with Zarqawi in videotapes broadcast by al-Jazeera—going so far as to call Zarqawi 'the emir of the al-Qaeda organization in the land of the Tigris and the Euphrates.'"

Zarqawi - The insurgent/terrorist:

Zarqawi statement on Nicholas Berg - Thumbnail

"Praise to Allah who honored Islam with His support, humiliated the infidels with His power, controlled everything with His Command, and tricked the infidels. Prayers and peace be upon the one that raised the banner of Islam with his sword."

"As for you, Bush dog of the Christians, we promise you things that will displease you. With Allah’s assistance, hard days are coming to you. You and your soldiers are going to regret the day that you stepped foot in Iraq and dared to violate the Muslims."

"As for you, mothers and wives of the American soldiers, we say to you that we offered the American Administration the chance to exchange this prisoner for some of the prisoners in Abu-Ghraib, but they refused. We say to you, the dignity of the Muslim men and women in the prison of Abu Ghraib and others will be redeemed by blood and souls. You will see nothing from us except corpse after corpse and casket after casket of those slaughtered in this fashion.

'So kill the infidels wherever you see them, take them, sanction them, and await them in every place.'"

Iran ties to Zarqawi:

"Shahwani, the Iraqi intelligence chief, told AFP last week[2004] that he believed Iran, through its embassy in Baghdad, was masterminding an assassination campaign that has seen nearly 20 of his agents killed since the middle of last month.

He said raids on Iranian "safe houses" in Baghdad had uncovered documents linking Iran to plots to kill members of the intelligence service and using the Badr former militia of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq's (SCIRI) as its tool."

Most recent event prior to death - Release of Video: April 25, 2006

End of History

Aggregate editorial insert: He was a violent, ruthless man, for whom no tears should be shed. The world is a better place today. May heaven grant peace to his victims.

Abu Musab Al Zarqawi 1966-2006, No Rest for the Wicked, Killer of Innocent Men, Women and Children, Convicted Drug Dealer and Rapist.

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