Two things. First, AQ in Iraq is obviously coordinating its propaganda releases with the home office. The last tape from al-Muhajer was put out on September 6; As-Sahab released video to Al-Jazeera of Osama meeting with some of the 9/11 planners the next day. Fast forward to yesterday, when As-Sahab announced that a new Zawahiri tape was coming; and now today we’ve got new audio from al-Muhajer. Can’t be a coincidence. Are they working off a preset schedule, I wonder (e.g., a new tape every three weeks), or are there actually lines of communication open between Iraq and Pakistan?
Second, the Counterterrorism Blog has heard the tape and describes it thusly:
In the middle of the speech, Abu Hamza al-Muhajir reminds of the “Blind Sheikh,” Omar Abdul Rahman, and encourages the Mujahideen to capture some of the “Roman dogs” so as to secure his release from the “darkness of his prison, gratitude, loyalty and love.”
Rahman. That would be this handsome fellow here:
He’s currently doing life in Supermax in Colorado after the FBI caught him on tape in New York encouraging his followers to blow up … everything, really.
Why do I mention him? Because ever since the Moussaoui fiasco, it’s been bugging the shinola out of me that some people still think imprisoning these turds renders them useless to the enemy as propaganda in a way that killing them wouldn’t. As Wikipedia notes, Rahman’s imprisonment “has become a rallying point for Islamic militants around the world, including Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.” And if you won’t take Wiki’s word for it, watch the very beginning of this edit of the most recent As-Sahab release. That’s Wail al-Shehri, one of the “muscle” hijackers on Flight 11. Notice whom he prays for.
If you kill them, they’re martyrs. If you lock them up, they’re martyrs. So kill them.
Oh — the world’s most alarmist website says U.S. personnel in the green zone are going to be hit with a WMD attack within two weeks of the election. Among the sources of the tip, they claim, are members of the Iraqi government. Mark your calendars!
Update: Muhajer says 4,000 foreign-born jihadis have been killed in Iraq. Which means the actual number is probably double or triple that, without even accounting for the native-born Iraq mujahedeen.
Update: This is ominous when read together with that NIN post.