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AL QAEDA TAKES ADVANTAGE ON ARAB REVOLUTIONS

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In a new edition of “Inspire”, the online English magazine of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and edited by Samir-Khan was distributed through the web on Thursday 03/31/2011. The newly released fifth issue of “Inspire” is called “The Tsunami of Change,” and includes the first post-revolution messages from wanted American-born radical cleric Anwar Al-Awlaki and Al Qaeda acring leader Ayman Al Zawahiri.

In the INSPIRE MAGAZINE cover story, Anwar al-Awlaki, now hiding somewhere in Yemen, calls the revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya a boon to al Qaeda and Islamic militants, and dismisses Muammar Gaddafi  as a “lunatic.” Al-Zawahiri’s message lauds the revolts in Egypt and Tunisia, but does not mention Libya. Another story mocks Gaddafi as a “clown” and urges the rebels in Libya onward: “We ask our brothers and sisters in Libya to continue standing up against the regime and to show patience in the face of [Gadhafi’s] tyranny until he falls.”

A full-page poster mocks Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh by showing an unflattering picture of Saleh and asking, “Hey Ali, Mubarak just fell — guess who’s joining the party next?” The bottom of the page says, in small type, “This ad is brought to you by A Cold Diss.”

U.S. government officials and terrorism experts have largely declared the recent Arab revolutions a sign of al Qaeda’s demise, saying the Islamist terror group is unable to garner significant popular support. For months, few, if any messages from al Qaeda leaders have commented on the removal of Arab regimes in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya or the unrest in at least four other Arab nations.

Al-Awlaki’s four-page article, “The Tsunami of Change,” is an effort to spin the recent events as good for Islamic militancy and radicalism (see also – Sada al-Malahim). He quotes U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert Gates in an effort to refute their shared assessment that the uprisings in the Middle East exposed al Qaeda’s lack of relevance.

 

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