Nytt

Al Qaida har rekruttert et sjikt av nye ledere, som har erstattet de som havnet i det amerikanske nettet. Analytikere må revurdere forestillingen om uavhengige celler.

Det har vært opplest og vedtatt at Al Qaida har gått over fra en å være en organisasjon til å bli en idé, som hvem som helst kunne adoptere, gjerne via internett. Men nå sier amerikansk etterretning at Al Qaida har fått nye operative ledere, til erstatning for folk som Khalid Muhammed, som er kapable til å lede store operasjoner. De mener at den avvergede Heathrow-operasjonen ifjor var styrt av Al Qaida i Pakistan. Det er i grenseområdene mot Afghanistan den nye ledelsen holder til.

The investigation into the airline plot has led officials to conclude that an Egyptian paramilitary commander called Abu Ubaidah al-Masri was the Qaeda operative in Pakistan orchestrating the attack, officials said.

Mr. Masri, a veteran of the wars in Afghanistan, is believed to travel frequently over the rugged border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. He was long thought to be in charge of militia operations in the Kunar Province of Afghanistan, but he emerged as one of Al Qaeda’s senior operatives after the death of Abu Hamza Rabia, another Egyptian who was killed by a missile strike in Pakistan in 2005.

The evidence officials said was accumulating about Mr. Masri and a handful of other Qaeda figures has led to a reassessment within the American intelligence community about the strength of the group’s core in Pakistan’s tribal areas, and its role in some of the most significant terrorism plots of the past two years, including the airline plot and the suicide attacks in London in July 2005 that killed 56.

Den første generasjon Al Qaida-eksekutører var i stor grad egyptere. De nye er fra Maghreb-landene og Pakistan. Pakistan er i det hele tatt blitt senter for det nye Al Qaida.

Officials said other operatives believed to be plotting internationally are Khalid Habib, a Moroccan, and Abdul Hadi al-Iraqi. Mr. Iraqi, a Kurd who served in Saddam Hussein’s army, moved to Afghanistan to fight Soviet occupiers. Officials believe that he was dispatched to Iraq by Mr. bin Laden to deal with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, whose terrorist group allied with Mr. bin Laden. It took the name Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia before Mr. Zarqawi was killed in an American bombing in June of last year. American officials say they believe that Mr. Iraqi is now back operating inside of Pakistan.

Det er fortsatt et skille på Al Qaida i Irak og moderorganisasjonen, men amerikanerne frykter at Irak-krigen vil fostre en ny generasjon kamperfarne ledere.

Et spesialtilfelle er Irans rolle. Det er kjent at Iran har gitt to kjente Al Qaida-ledere husarrest. Men andre Al Qaida-ledere får lov å operere fritt. De reiser mellom Iran og Pakistan.

But officials say they believe that several other important Qaeda figures may be operating in Iran, including an Egyptian known as Abu Jihad al-Masri and a Libyan explosives expert named Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, who is thought to travel between Iran and Pakistan’s tribal areas.

CIA la ifjor ned Alc Station, spesialenheten som har jaktet på det globale Al Qaida. Det kan ha vært forhastet. At det ikke har vært noe stort terrorangrep i Vest på et stykke tid, behøver ikke bety noe som helst. Al Qaida arbeider systematisk og langsiktig.


Qaeda Is Seen as Restoring Leadership