Saturday, January 2, 2010

al Qaeda's Tidy Whities, Iran Foaming at the Mouth

Matthew Yglesias
Kathleen Parker
Dana Milbank

"Iraq was yesterday’s war. Afghanistan is today’s war. If we don’t act preemptively, Yemen will be tomorrow’s war. That’s the danger we face.” - Joe Lieberman
"It’s difficult to argue with those for whom more war is always the answer." - Matthew Yglesias
"As Glenn Beck likes to say: I fear for my country." - Dana Milbank

It's official: President Obama has posted on the White House Web site that al Qaeda was responsible for the underwear bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab: "Meanwhile, the investigation into the Christmas Day incident continues, and we're learning more about the suspect. We know that he traveled to Yemen, a country grappling with crushing poverty and deadly insurgencies. It appears that he joined an affiliate of al Qaeda, and that this group-al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula-trained him, equipped him with those explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America.

This is not the first time this group has targeted us. In recent years, they have bombed Yemeni government facilities and Western hotels, restaurants and embassies-including our embassy in 2008, killing one American. So, as President, I've made it a priority to strengthen our partnership with the Yemeni government-training and equipping their security forces, sharing intelligence and working with them to strike al Qaeda terrorists."
"Al-Qaeda and its affiliate organisations, as well as individual suicide terrorists, have observed our defences and are designing future attacks to circumvent them. These attacks will be even harder to uncover, interpret, and stop."  - Dennis Blair
Formed just over a year ago, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula is: "... the wing of al-Qaeda operating in Saudi Arabia and Yemen, is led by a Yemeni who was once a close aide to Osama bin Laden. The group, which has been gaining strength in recent years, represents units from the two neighbouring countries which merged under the leadership of Nasir Wuhaishi in January... Experts say that al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula comprises several hundred fighters. The group is said to have found sanctuaries among a number of Yemeni tribes, particularly in the eastern provinces."

OK, everybody in the press keeps telling us how important Yemen is, I've been reading it for the last 18 months, yet they seem to be turning out at least one inept terrorist: "Yemen had become the third-largest haven for al-Qaeda, and the group there is perhaps the most stable when compared to units operating in Iraq, North Africa and South Asia.

"The one in Yemen now is really the most comfortable ... its probably the best funded; its not the best trained [and] it doesn't have the best talent - that's why it hasn't been able to mount successful attacks. But it will come around in the coming years, and it will become a major threat."

Meanwhile, the al Qaeda franchise in Somalia, al Shabab, made a public statement that it is ready to send soldiers to Yemen in solidarity against those who oppose Allah, thus widening the range of fronts: "What we are seeing is a pattern of franchises for al-Qaeda opening up," Riad Kahwaji, a Gulf security analyst in Dubai, told Al Jazeera.

"These groups are emerging in these countries, operating on a common strategy which is: to engage the US and its allies in Europe and in the region, to open various fronts simultaneously - or one after the other - in a way to keep the US and their allies off balance," he said.

"It's a war of attrition."

Perhaps fearing what might happen if the US officially launches an operation on its soil, the Yemeni government has said that it can take care of its own problems, and thank you for all of that nifty harware... And the Houthi rebels have said that it is now ready to talk if the government will declare that hostilities are now over, and they are the ones giving shelter to the few hundred al Qaeda fighters...

the final solution...

Still foaming at the mouth from beating up hundreds of its citizens and killing over 17 of them, Iran is taking a tough stance on international brinkmanship, telling us that: "The international community has just one month left to decide" whether or not it will accept Iran's conditions, otherwise "Tehran will enrich uranium to a higher level," Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki was quoted as saying.

"This is an ultimatum," he said.

This really isn't anything more than agreeing to what the IAEC has proposed, with a couple of tweaks in the plan so they can save face and call it their own. The swaps will probably take place in Turkey, and Russia will be the recipient of the uranium, lucky bastards.

The next step in their military theocracy will be to arrest all opposition figures like Mir Hosein Moussavi, and to hang them Either they end up killing over half of their population, like the Cambodians did, or the Revolutionary Guards will have to relinquish control as a failed experiment. In the US, we blithely make comparisons between our government and politicians and Hitler's Germany, but in Iran they are living it. For centuries, Shiites have been treated like second class Muslims and seem to have developed a theological chip on their shoulders; too bad that they are now taking it out on their own, I expect gas chambers to be built, powered by nuclear enrichment, fueled by all opposition members...

and now in a nostalgic moment, let us revisit with John Kennedy, a golden moment in Camelot:

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