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Thread: OBL Letters

  1. #1
    Everyday I’m Shufflin Xotica's Avatar
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    OBL Letters

    Combatting Terrorism Center at West Point

    Letters from Abbottabad: Bin Ladin Sidelined?
    May 03, 2012
    Authors: Don Rassler, Gabriel Koehler-Derrick, Liam Collins, Muhammad al-Obaidi, Nelly Lahoud

    This report is a study of 17 de-classified documents captured during the Abbottabad raid and released to the Combating Terrorism Center (CTC). They consist of electronic letters or draft letters, totaling 175 pages in the original Arabic and 197 pages in the English translation. The earliest is dated September 2006 and the latest April 2011. These internal al-Qa`ida communications were authored by several leaders, most prominently Usama bin Ladin. In contrast to his public statements that focused on the injustice of those he believed to be the “enemies” of Muslims, namely corrupt “apostate” Muslim rulers and their Western “overseers,” the focus of Bin Ladin’s private letters is Muslims’ suffering at the hands of his jihadi “brothers”. He is at pain advising them to abort domestic attacks that cause Muslim civilian casualties and focus on the United States, “our desired goal.” Bin Ladin’s frustration with regional jihadi groups and his seeming inability to exercise control over their actions and public statements is the most compelling story to be told on the basis of the 17 de-classified documents. “Letters from Abbottabad” is an initial exploration and contextualization of 17 documents that will be the grist for future academic debate and discussion.
    The 17 declassified OBL documents (either in Arabic or English) are available in PDF format at the link:

    http://www.ctc.usma.edu/posts/letter...adin-sidelined

  2. #2
    Everyday I’m Shufflin Xotica's Avatar
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    From what I understand, portions of the Abbottabad documents (classified) point to an ever widening ideological fracture between Osama and #2 Ayman al-Zawahiri. The final straw appears to be a heated argument over a Zawahiri proposal to impliment suicide bombings in Tahrir Square (Cairo) to derail the grassroots democracy movement. Osama forbade such an operation.

    At Gitmo, a source had identified the Pakistani OBL/Zawahiri courier interface. Zawahiri knew the courier was probably compromised because the courier had been stopped and questioned by Pakistani police. Despite this inside knowledge, Zawahiri continued to use the compromised courier. This grave security breach led the CIA to Abbottabad. On the face of things, it now appears that the split between OBL and Zawahiri was irreversible and ultimately, proved fatal to OBL. Post Abbottabad, Zawahiri has assumed control of al-Queda.

  3. #3
    Robbing the Shalebridge Cradle CptBork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xotica View Post
    Post Abbottabad, Zawahiri has assumed control of al-Queda.
    From the sounds of it, it's probably in the US's best interest to do everything in their power to make sure that bum stays in charge

  4. #4
    Everyday I’m Shufflin Xotica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CptBork View Post
    From the sounds of it, it's probably in the US's best interest to do everything in their power to make sure that bum stays in charge
    I agree. Zawahiri does not possess the imagination or the technical abilities of a KSM. He is certainly not a charismatic personality like OBL. Most who have dealt with Zawahiri first-hand describe him as irascible, rude, and difficult.

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