Moral Outrage
Whew! God help us!

Occupation of Afghanistan biggest boon for Al-Qaeda

Al-Qaeda strategists believe that foreign occupation of Afghanistan has been the biggest factor in generating Muslim support for uprisings against their governments, according to the just-published book by Syed Saleem Shahzad, “Inside Al-Qaeda and the Taliban”.

Shahzad had been the Pakistan bureau chief for the Hong Kong- based Asia Times, and had unique access to senior Al-Qaeda commanders and cadres, as well as those of the Afghan Taliban and the Pakistani Taliban organizations.

Shahzad summarizes the Al-Qaeda strategy as being to “win the war against the West in Afghanistan” before shifting the struggle to Central Asia and Bangladesh. But his account makes it clear that the real objective of Al- Qaeda in strengthening the Taliban struggle against U.S.-NATO forces in Afghanistan was to continue the U.S.-NATO occupation as an indispensable condition for the success of Al-Qaeda’s global strategy of polarising the Islamic world.

Shahzad makes it clear that the U.S. occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq were the biggest break Al-Qaeda had ever gotten. What Al-Qaeda leaders feared most was any move by the Taliban toward a possible negotiated settlement – even based on the complete withdrawal of U.S. troops.

Shahzad’s account reveals that Osama bin Laden was a “figurehead” for public consumption, and that it was Dr. Ayman Zawahiri who formulated the organization’s ideological line or devised operational plans.

Muslim religious scholars had issued decrees for the defense of Muslim lands against the non-Muslim occupiers on many occasions but once such religious decrees were extended to Afghanistan, Zawahiri could exploit the issue of the U.S. occupation of Muslim lands to organize a worldwide “Muslim insurgency”. That strategy depended on being able to provoke discord within societies by discrediting regimes throughout the Muslim world as not being truly Muslim.

The Shahzad account refutes the official U.S. military rationale for the war in Afghanistan, which is based on the presumption that Al- Qaeda is primarily interested in getting the U.S. and NATO forces out of Afghanistan and that the Taliban and Al-Qaeda are locked in a tight ideological and strategic embrace.

[Excerpts of IPS article by Gareth Porter]

Advertisements

No Responses to “Occupation of Afghanistan biggest boon for Al-Qaeda”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: