Al-Qaeda and Hezbollah 2

Two major terrorist groups are going about their savage work: al-Qaeda and Hezbollah. Both are Islamic, one Sunni and one Shia.

They are in violent conflict with each other in Syria, and other Islamic states. Both are at war with the non-Islamic world.

Cliff May writes (in part) at Townhall:

Back during the Bush administration, Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage famously called Hezbollah the “A Team of terrorists,” adding, “al-Qaeda is actually the B Team.” How do these two organizations compare today? …

Hezbollah and Iran [are] joined at the hip: the former is financed and instructed by the latter. That has not always been understood, despite the fact that, prior to 9/11/01, Hezbollah was responsible for more American deaths than any other terrorist organization. And Hezbollah’s secretary general, Hassan Nasrallah, has proclaimed, “Death to America was, is, and will stay our slogan.”

It’s well known that Hezbollah has been sending combatants into Syria in support of Bashar Assad, the dictator and Iranian satrap. Less publicized are Hezbollah’s operations in other corners of the world. A Hezbollah attack on a bus in Bulgaria last July killed five Israelis and one Bulgarian. In Nigeria, authorities recently broke up a Hezbollah cell, seizing what one Nigerian official called “a large quantity of assorted weapons of different types and caliber.” …

A 500-page report issued last week by Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman reveals that Iran has established an archipelago of “clandestine intelligence stations and operative agents” in Latin America that are being used “to execute terrorist attacks when the Iranian regime decides so, both directly or through its proxy, the terrorist organization Hezbollah.” The following are South American countries in which Iran or Hezbollah has set up intelligence/terrorism bases: Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, and Suriname.

Nisman provides additional evidence — not that more is needed — that Iranian officials and one Lebanese Hezbollah operative were responsible for two terrorist bombings in Argentina in the 1990s. There’s an American nexus too: Nisman charges that Mohsen Rabbani, Iran’s former cultural attaché in Buenos Aires — implicated in the 1994 attack on a Jewish center in Buenos Aires in which 85 people were killed — directed “Iranian agent” Abdul Kadir, now serving a life sentence in connection with the 2010 plot to bomb John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

Connect the dots, Nisman argues, and they draw a picture of Iran “fomenting and fostering acts of international terrorism in concert with its goals of exporting the revolution.”

All this considered, can al-Qaeda (AQ) still be considered a serious competitor? Yes, it can! Last weekend, my colleague, über-researcher Tom Joscelyn, pointed out that AQ and its affiliates now “are fighting in more countries than ever.”

In Afghanistan, AQ maintains safe havens in the provinces of Kunar and Nuristan. The Taliban, its loyal ally, is responsible for a level of violence “higher than before the Obama-ordered surge of American forces in 2010,” according to NATO’s International Security Assistance Force.

AQ and its affiliates have bases in northern Pakistan. The Pakistani government, Joscelyn notes, “continues to be a duplicitous ally, sponsoring and protecting various al Qaeda-allied groups. The Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP), or Pakistani Taliban, remains a threat after orchestrating the failed May 2010 bombing in Times Square. The State Department announced in September 2010 that the TTP has “a ‘symbiotic relationship’ with al Qaeda.”

The AQ-affiliated al-Nusrah Front may be the most effective force fighting against Assad’s troops and against Hezbollah and Iranian combatants in Syria. AQ is resurgent in neighboring Iraq, with April 2013 being the deadliest month in that country in nearly five years, according to the U.N.

AQ has expanded operations in Yemen. In Somalia, Shabaab — which formally merged with AQ last year — is far from defeated and has managed to carry out attacks in neighboring Kenya and Uganda as well.In Nigeria, Boko Haram continues to slaughter Christians. In Egypt, al-Qaeda members and associates — including Mohammed al-Zawahiri, the brother of al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri — are operating more freely than ever. On 9/11/12 they hoisted an AQ flag above the U.S. embassy in Cairo.

Libyan groups closely linked to al-Qaeda were responsible for the 9/11/12 attack that killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb easily took over northern Mali until French forces pushed them out of the population centers. Al-Qaeda affiliates are becoming more visible and perhaps viable in Tunisia, too.

Despite all this, the State Department report asserts that “core” al-Qaeda “is on a path to defeat.” I am not convinced that there is sufficient evidence to substantiate that thesis. And even if it does prove to be accurate, who’s to say that a weakening core can’t be compensated for by a stronger periphery?

In the final analysis, “Which is the A Team of terrorism?” is not the paramount question. What is: in the years ahead, does the U.S. have what it takes to be the A Team of counterterrorism?

Better still, will America recognize and name the enemy at war with it – Islam? And at last begin to take effective steps to defeat it?

  • rogerinflorida

    Your question; “will America recognize and name the enemy ….” can be answered quite simply: No.

    The reason for this is that the US political elite has been corrupted by Saudi/Quatari money to the extent that our leaders will speak the most utter and obvious nonsense: “Islam is a religion of peace” and further will enact policies that cripple our ability to defeat this enemy. For the whole military, law enforcement and security bureaucracy the enemy cannot and must not be named.

    Given that truth and the resulting fact that the US and EU have been co-opted into the Sunni-Shia war on the Sunni side, it seems obvious that the West is heading for defeat against Islam.

    Perhaps we will be awakened if, for example the Iranians manage to light off a nuke in NY Harbor and that event causes the mass of the American people to question just what has been going on (for the best part of a century now). I am not hopeful though, it is accepted truth now that the Iranians are the font of terrorism, although anyone with half a brain knows the Saudis are the major source and funder of radical Islam and therefore it’s resultant mayhem worldwide.
    Incidentally, as I have written in other responses, the UK is probably the most craven of Saudi sock puppets.
    This inter-civilizational war is not going well for those of us who believe in Western values.

  • liz

    With our current President, of course, neither final question can be answered in the affirmative. The exact OPPOSITE of what needs to happen will happen.
    As long as we have “Sociopaths for Socialism” in charge of everything, the only people who need to fear becoming a target of government are the law-abiding citizens. The terrorists will continue to receive funding for their enriching contributions to the fabric of our nation!