Blogs of War

Hizballah Cavalcade

Internet Haganah



Kremlin Trolls

Making Sense of Jihad

Selected Wisdom

Views from the Occident


American Terrorists

Anwar Awlaki

Al Qaeda


American Al Qaeda Members

Inspire Magazine

Revolution Muslim


News, documents and analysis on violent extremism

Sunday, May 16, 2010

AQAP Promises A New 9/11 If Anwar Awlaki Is Killed

UPDATED: 4:57 p.m.

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula threatened a new 9/11 attack on the United States if American forces kill Yemeni-American cleric Anwar Awlaki.

The audio recording in support of Awalki was issued today by AQAP chief Abu Basir Nasir al-Wuhayshi.

"We are enamored with the attacks of September 11," Basir said, pledging to protect Awlaki from U.S. attacks, according to a translation by Reuters. President Barak Obama recently authorized U.S. forces to target and kill Awalki, an American citizen.

The recording, which is in Arabic, provides an interesting window into Awalki's current status among Arabic speaking jihadis.

Until recently, Awlaki might as well have been the invisible man on the Arabic jihadist forums. The reasons for this aren't totally clear to me, but it may have to do with him being perceived as an American first, and a Yemeni second. His releases were almost always in English, and while there is a cottage industry translating jihadist material from Arabic to English, that train doesn't often reverse direction.

When he released a video in Arabic through AQAP's Al Malahim production company, it looked to be a breakthrough for him. But the video appeared on Al Jazeera and the full-length version never surfaced on the forums. And the AJ video wasn't linked from the Arabic forums either, at least not prominently. When the people in charge of the forums like someone, it's hard to miss it -- the moderators post multiple banner ads and giant headlines.

Enter this new audio, a celebrity endorsement of Awalki -- landing before the actual Awlaki video has been posted. This suggests to me that AQAP feels that it needs to prepare the ground for our Anwar.

A banner ad promoting the audio release was posted second from the top by the mods on the Al Fallujah forum as of 5 p.m. ET. Typically about a dozen communiques from various terrorist groups are highlighted with banner ads and headlines at the top of each forum page. Upwards of 20 Al Fallujah posters had replied with positive comments about the video, endorsing the forum's endorsement of Awalki.

The Majahden forum posted the banner at the very top of the page, indicating a strong endorsement. Al-Qimmah, a Somali and Arabic forum, did use the banner but interestingly the English-language Al Ansar had not posted it, as of noon Sunday. By 1 p.m., Shaimkh was playing Awlaki fourth from the top, basically over the fold, but it looks to be a "slow news day."

All of this is probably a pre-show to the actual Awlaki video being released.

This post has been corrected.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Views expressed on INTELWIRE are those of the author alone.



Tweets referencing this post:



", granular analysis..."

ISIS: The State of Terror
"Jessica Stern and J.M. Berger's new book, "ISIS," should be required reading for every politician and policymaker... Their smart, granular analysis is a bracing antidote to both facile dismissals and wild exaggerations... a nuanced and readable account of the ideological and organizational origins of the group." -- Washington Post

More on ISIS: The State of Terror

"...a timely warning..."

Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam:
"At a time when some politicians and pundits blur the line between Islam and terrorism, Berger, who knows this subject far better than the demagogues, sharply cautions against vilifying Muslim Americans. ... It is a timely warning from an expert who has not lost his perspective." -- New York Times

More on Jihad Joe


INTELWIRE is a web site edited by J.M. Berger. a researcher, analyst and consultant covering extremism, with a special focus on extremist activities in the U.S. and extremist use of social media. He is a non-resident fellow with the Brookings Institution, Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, and author of the critically acclaimed Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, the only definitive history of the U.S. jihadist movement, and co-author of ISIS: The State of Terror with Jessica Stern.


Newest posts!

Sneak Preview of CNN's 'American Al Qaeda' Special

New Yorkers Arrested As Al Qaeda Members, Technica...

Faisal Shahzad, Times Square Bomber, Criminal Comp...

Is Revolution Muslim Now Al Qaeda In North America...

The Genius of Radicalism

Mehsud Letter Again Cites Aafia Siddiqi

Times Square: A Dramatic Arrest And A Parcel Of Ne...

Disturbing Thought of the Day

LWJ: Pakistani Taliban Claim "Recent Attack" in US

First Thoughts on Times Square Bomb


New York Pipe Bomb Suspect Linked to Revolution Muslim

The Utility of Lone Wolves

Interview with Online Jihadist Abu Suleiman Al Nasser

A Way Forward for CVE: The Five Ds

How Terrorists Use The Internet: Just Like You

PATCON: The FBI's Secret War on the Militia Movement

Interview About Jihad With Controversial Cleric Bilal Philips

Forgeries on the Jihadist Forums

U.S. Gave Millions To Charity Linked To Al Qaeda, Anwar Awlaki

State Department Secretly Met With Followers of Blind Sheikh

State Department Put 'Political Pressure' On FBI To Deport Brother-in-Law Of Osama Bin Laden In 1995

FBI Records Reveal Details Of Nixon-Era Racial Profiling Program Targeting Arabs

Gaza Flotilla Official Was Foreign Fighter in Bosnia War

U.S. Had 'High Confidence' Of UBL Attack In June 2001

Behind the Handshake: The Rumsfeld-Saddam Meeting