Experts on Al Qaeda?

by H. Thomas Hayden on February 28, 2011

One opinion:

“Despite nearly a decade of war, al Qaeda is stronger today than when it carried out the 9/11 attacks since fleeing Afghanistan to Pakistan’s tribal areas in late 2001, al Qaeda has founded a regional branch in the Arabian Peninsula and acquired franchises in Iraq and the Maghreb. Today, it has more members, greater geographic reach, and a level of ideological sophistication and influence it lacked ten years ago.”

Another opinion:

“Despite Qaddafi’s claim that al Qaida is behind the protests in Libya, the jihadi organization has had little to do with the revolutions spreading throughout the Arab world, and they don’t like being excluded from the
spotlight. In fact, Der Spiegelopines, the unrest has put al-Qaida in a tricky position: while they’ve called for the overthrow of secular leaders, many of the revolutions-like the one in Egypt-occurred “because the regime
was only outwardly democratic,” not because it was too democratic. So al-Qaida leaders are scrambling to put the right spin on things.”

So, who’s right?

Al Qaeda wantabes who have taken the name Al Qaeda are not the same as the original Osama bin Laden organization. Anyone can start a new terrorist organization and call themselves Al Qaeda of Brooklyn or anything else.

TV news and print media pundits have no idea if bin laden is alive or dead but they continue to give him and his organization copy only because his name evokes concern around the halls of Washington D.C., and sells copy.

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