Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Is al Qaeda on the verge of defeat? - Threat Matrix

Is al Qaeda on the verge of defeat? - Threat Matrix


In the buildup to the one-year anniversary of Osama bin Laden's death, a lot of speculation has emerged on the state of al Qaeda. Most narratives state that al Qaeda's core, based in Pakistan and Afghanistan, has been defeated, and that its so-called loosely tied affiliates now wield most of the terror group's strength. We addressed this issue back in late January, in an article for The Weekly Standard titled Strategic Defeat, and our view is contrary to the conventional wisdom. The article reflects our views on the status of al Qaeda today.
In "Strategic Defeat," we argued that the Obama administration's strategy of pulling back from Afghanistan and switching to a counterterrorism-heavy mission worldwide does not adequately deal with the fact that al Qaeda and its allies still hold ground in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Iraq, Somalia, and North Africa.
We also stated that al Qaeda and the Taliban remain closely linked, and that conducting negotiations with the latter is a fool's errand (something we've noted numerous other times as well at The Long War Journal; see here, for instance). The recent Guardian report that bin Laden, Zawahiri, and Mullah Omar conferred over strategy in Afghanistan merely proves our point.


Read more: http://www.longwarjournal.org/threat-matrix/archives/2012/05/is_al_qaeda_on_the_verge_of_de.php#ixzz1tiXAtYcc

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