CBS: Message indicates Zawahiri critically wounded, possibly dead

posted at 7:57 pm on August 1, 2008 by Allahpundit

I e-mailed Bill Roggio about it this afternoon, after the Stratfor rumor started crackling but before this bombshell-if-it’s-true from CBS hit the wires. His verdict: “If he was dead we’d have known by now.” Enter … the note:

CBS News has obtained a copy of an intercepted letter from sources in Pakistan, which urgently requests a doctor to treat Zawahiri. He’s believed to be somewhere in Pakistan’s remote tribal areas of Pakistan…

It is reportedly written by local Taliban leader, Baitullah Mehsud, whose signature and seal are visible on the letter.

The Taliban logo and the Mehsud’s seal have been confirmed by experts as legitimate.

However, CBS News has not been able to confirm the authenticity of Baitullah Mehsud’s signature and seal.

The letter is dated July 29 – one day after a U.S. air strike that killed al Qaeda weapons expert Abu Khabab al-Masri, and five other Arabs in South Waziristan.

Bogus communiques from jihadi home base aren’t unheard of; the classic of the genre is a December 2001 Egyptian “obituary” for Bin Laden featured prominently on any 9/11 conspiracy website worth its salt. But it also wouldn’t be unheard of for a U.S. airstrike like the one that took out Abu Khabab earlier this week to have netted a bigger fish in the process. These guys do get together periodically, which is why speculation continues to swirl that the missile that killed Abu Laith al-Libi in January also killed Adam Gadahn. Nothing to do now but wait and hope, bearing in mind that we’ve tried and failed before to get Zawahiri but also that (a) it’s unusual for two credible sources like CBS and Stratfor to be hearing the same rumor and (b) we’ve had some unusually high-profile successes in targeting these cretins over the past six months or so (Libi and Khabab being the two biggest scores). Just a coincidence? Maybe not. From an L.A. Times piece in May on the airstrike that nailed Abu Sulayman Jazairi:

The increasing success and pace of airstrikes this year indicates that American spy agencies and their allies have made progress in infiltrating Al Qaeda in Pakistan, said Louis Caprioli, a former anti-terrorism chief of France’s DST intelligence agency.

“You have to have good intelligence on the ground to hit a target like that,” Caprioli said. “It requires human as well as technical intelligence. I think the money that the Americans are spreading around is having an effect.

“Also, there are troops in Afghanistan, prisoners being interrogated. This is a long-term effort that is paying off.”

How big was the payoff this week? Stand by for possible glorious updates.


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Can I be skeptical and hopeful at the same time? Yes, I can!

Ed Morrissey on August 1, 2008 at 7:59 PM

Bush Akbar!

elduende on August 1, 2008 at 8:00 PM

AL HAMDU LILAH !!!! Let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope this is for real!!

coldwarrior on August 1, 2008 at 8:00 PM

Can I be skeptical and hopeful at the same time? Yes, I can!
Ed Morrissey on August 1, 2008 at 7:59 PM

Yes, maybe I can.

There. Corrected that to make it logically sound.

Tennman on August 1, 2008 at 8:02 PM

Oh boy.

Immolate on August 1, 2008 at 8:02 PM

If this is true…
Question: Who will take credit first, nObama or AlGore?

Claypigeon on August 1, 2008 at 8:04 PM

Rot in hell Zawhiri. Hopefully you had your man-boy Adam Ghadan with you too.

And if you escaped this time, you must be suffering from whiplash for looking over your shoulder every single moment of your miserable f*cking life. The U.S. military is coming. Yeah. They’re coming for your sorry piece of shit ass.

pistolero on August 1, 2008 at 8:06 PM

Can we question the timing yet?

JammieWearingFool on August 1, 2008 at 8:07 PM

These guys have a habit of dying several times. Let’s hope this one’s for real.

I love the “Bush Akbar!” line. Great stuff.

Sooooo… when you Pakistanis be wantin’ a little air support???

Mojave Mark on August 1, 2008 at 8:07 PM

We’ll if it can’t be confirme, we’ll just have to watch for his video reruns featuring curious repeat backgrounds, lengthy video glitches with unsync’d audio, and creeping loss of currency to the times.

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Good. I hope he was injured in one of the most painful and drawn-out ways known to man, and he languished and suffered until it popped into his feeble mind that his worthless prophet wasn’t going to save his ass.

And then I hope a camel crapped on his corpse.

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Can I be skeptical and hopeful at the same time? Yes, I can!

Ed Morrissey on August 1, 2008 at 7:59 PM

I think that feeling is known as “change we can believe in.” :D

If this is true, then it’s quite fantastic.

MB007 on August 1, 2008 at 8:11 PM

Good. I hope he was injured in one of the most painful and drawn-out ways known to man, and he languished and suffered until it popped into his feeble mind that his worthless prophet wasn’t going to save his ass.

And then I hope a camel crapped on his corpse.

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

+1

FloatingRock on August 1, 2008 at 8:11 PM

And then I hope a camel pack of wild boars crapped on his corpse.

[MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM]

Fixed it for ya.

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 8:11 PM

Now how does CBS intercept a note form
Puck is stan!

I think Pelosi needs to have an investigation
and a fact finding mission as to why all MSM
News organizations know more than the CIA!

Oh boy,wait till Obama hears about the money
being spread around!

I’m sure Hopey will demand that money be
spread around in some American neighborhoods!

I’ve got a brilliant idea,how about re-deploying
St.Bernard dogs from the ski Alps,to Pakistan and
put a collecting gizmo around the dogs neck,and
send the dogs up the mountains for a DNA scraping
mission!haha!

canopfor on August 1, 2008 at 8:11 PM

It was Nancy’s commanding shutting off of the lights today that pushed the military to action.

Chuck Schick on August 1, 2008 at 8:13 PM

Piss Be Upon Him.

Cicero43 on August 1, 2008 at 8:14 PM

Hope, change, but hasn’t this happened before?

tarpon on August 1, 2008 at 8:18 PM

I hope this is true. This is a very very bad man.

Terrye on August 1, 2008 at 8:20 PM

TIN FOIL INTERPREATION:

FIRST IVINS….

NOW ZAWAHIRI…

BUSHITLER IS KILLING HIS COHORTS…

CAN ROVE BE FAR BEHIND…

reliapundit on August 1, 2008 at 8:20 PM

I wonder how Dingy Reid is going to spin this story into an American defeat (providing it pans out). I wonder how fat ass Murtha is going to spin this into another “American soldiers killed innocent civilians” story. I wonder how Lurch Kerry is going to spin this into another “wrong war, wrong time, wrong place, wrong terrorist” story. The list is so long…

I’ll keep my hopes up that this thug has finally reached room temperature. May he be blessed with a slow and painful death.

Keemo on August 1, 2008 at 8:20 PM

“Also, there are troops in Afghanistan, prisoners being interrogated. This is a long-term effort that is paying off.”

Time for another Congressional investigation, obviously.

hillbillyjim on August 1, 2008 at 8:25 PM

Great, now The One can claim that Afghanistan no longer needs any troops in it either.

Dudley Smith on August 1, 2008 at 8:25 PM

Bury him in bacon.

Cicero43 on August 1, 2008 at 8:26 PM

Oh, I forgot. They’re on vacation.

Might as well be, as most of them are out to lunch all day long.

hillbillyjim on August 1, 2008 at 8:27 PM

Let’s hope the Crackhead is dead.

Sekhmet on August 1, 2008 at 8:28 PM

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Dude. I am gonna have ask you to be a little more creative and visual with your posts.

PS… +2

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 8:32 PM

Hey, we already killed his “favorite wife” in an airstrike – time for him to be reunited with her (or does he just get the 72 virgins).

Realist on August 1, 2008 at 8:36 PM

May his grave become a spetic tank.

Zorro on August 1, 2008 at 8:40 PM

While I was flipping through the channels a bit ago, I swear I saw a tourist/travel commercial for Pakistan on CNN. Could I really have seen that? May I say that they made it look perfectly lovely. Very bizarre.

Cindy Munford on August 1, 2008 at 8:44 PM

Dude. I am gonna have ask you to be a little more creative and visual with your posts.

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 8:32 PM

I save that for our midnight phone calls, sugar lips.

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:45 PM

First thought: darn hope we got him.

Second thought: darn our media for disclosing our intel.

Third thought: nice to see the Tiffany Network being patient with documents of unknown sourcing; Lucy Ramirez would be proud.

thirtypundit on August 1, 2008 at 8:50 PM

No to spoil CBS’ and Stratfor’s premise, but what precisely ties the alleged letter with the Predator strike, other than timing of its issuance?

While we don’t have the entire letter, all we know is that he is in “severe pain” and his “injuries are infected.” In rugged country with questionable sanitation, an old man with thinning skin like al-Zawahiri could just as easily be suffering the effects of lacerations affected by a fall on rocky terrain, or other less exotic, non-combat injuries, IF the letter is legit.

CBS isn’t exactly known for the veracity of documents they produce, you know?

Bob Owens on August 1, 2008 at 8:59 PM

This is OT – but I think we broke the Pelosi/democrat-anti drilling-repub revolt thread! I am getting a 404! But at least we hit 1000!!! WOOT!

lsutiger on August 1, 2008 at 9:01 PM

I will not be able to attend his funeral, but I will be sure to send a nice card saying that I approve.
- Mark Twain

MB4 on August 1, 2008 at 9:04 PM

“And then I hope a camel crapped on his corpse.”

I hope it was a pig.

exhelodrvr on August 1, 2008 at 9:09 PM

Hey, we already killed his “favorite wife” in an airstrike – time for him to be reunited with her (or does he just get the 72 virgins Virginians).

Realist on August 1, 2008 at 8:36 PM

Fixed it for ya.

Mooseman on August 1, 2008 at 9:12 PM

Don’t panic folks, because the New York Times will make sure he gets the best aid, and comfort available. /Sarcasm

byteshredder on August 1, 2008 at 9:12 PM

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Dude, you should write children’s books. :)

Great visuals and very descriptive. A+

Claypigeon on August 1, 2008 at 9:21 PM

Some people are having trouble getting to this site and a bunch of others while using IE 7…

MamaAJ on August 1, 2008 at 9:22 PM

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:45 PM

It’s nice to know the romance is still there. Truly.

Wisconsin. None dare call it Minnesota.

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 9:25 PM

Some people are having trouble getting to this site and a bunch of others while using IE 7…

MamaAJ on August 1, 2008 at 9:22 PM

“Some” people need to check into Firefox 3.0. It’s sexy, sleek and classy, just like me.

IE7? Not so much. It’s more like Madison.

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 9:27 PM

But Habeas Corpus!!! He deserves a trial!! Bush is trampling his rights!!

Haunchie on August 1, 2008 at 9:36 PM

Yeh, yeh, yeh. We have at least one thing we use a lot that has to have IE. And the older PC doesn’t have enough memory to have both browsers open and be happy about it.

It’s a bunch of sites and a number of people reporting it, so somebody probably cares!

MamaAJ on August 1, 2008 at 9:40 PM

IE must be under attack. All the conservative blogs I’ve been to have at least one person reporting they are getting the operation aborted message. I switched to Firefox and got on. So far, it is JOM, HA, Michelle’s place, Gateway Pundit, Strata-Sphere, Atlas Shrugs. I thought it was just my problem.

Sue on August 1, 2008 at 9:41 PM

Enlightened, at JOM, says she was able to get into Kos and DU without any problem. Only conservative sites so far. Not sure since I didn’t try them myself.

Sue on August 1, 2008 at 9:43 PM

Let’s hope the maggots have already found their way through the booboo on his forehead. Allahu ahbar!

RedWinged Blackbird on August 1, 2008 at 9:46 PM

Bush Akbar!

elduende on August 1, 2008 at 8:00 PM

Amen

Hening on August 1, 2008 at 9:47 PM

Some people are having trouble getting to this site and a bunch of others while using IE 7…

MamaAJ on August 1, 2008 at 9:22 PM

I took me a while, but I finally installed “Firefox,” with a few add-ons, and now, will never go back to IE. Firefox has better security attributes.

byteshredder on August 1, 2008 at 9:47 PM

My guess is that it’s an ad that’s messed up. Patterico, Beldar, Ace, Instapundit. The fact the pajamasmedia.com is fine but pajamasmedia.com/instatpundit isn’t working is interesting. JMF isn’t working on blogspot, but my personal blog–without ads, on blogspot–is fine.

Could be something totally different, I’m just tossing it out there.

MamaAJ on August 1, 2008 at 9:48 PM

“Some” people need to check into Firefox 3.0. It’s sexy, sleek and classy, just like me.

IE7? Not so much. It’s more like Madison.

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 9:27 PM

Whereas you have Safari or Opera, kind of like Oregon and Washington. They get the job done, but not very well, because they have their heads so far up their exit hatches that actually fixing the problems they have isn’t first on their mind so much as celebrating all the worthless features they have.

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 9:48 PM

….for two credible sources like CBS……

Always have enjoyed your adeptness with sarcasm.

Nonetheless, I greatly hope it is a true story. Zawahiri has always been the more dangerous, even before the long dead Osama bin Laden met his demise.

LegendHasIt on August 1, 2008 at 9:48 PM

“And then I hope a camel crapped on his corpse.”

I hope it was a pig.

I hope it was a WOMAN.

And that he hasn’t been keeping up on his insurance premiums.
Bleeding out painfully would be lovely if we can’t hang him.

tree hugging sister on August 1, 2008 at 10:10 PM

Maybe we did get him…that’s whey we felt the earthquake in California–the Zman had just arrived in hell.

PattyJ on August 1, 2008 at 10:10 PM

I’m assuming everyone knows the subscribe workaround on STRATFOR. If not, hint: Google the title of STRATFOR piece.

ganeshpuri89 on August 1, 2008 at 10:15 PM

I was having a problem also so I am using Firefox right now. The other odd thing was that every time I have been on Hot Air today I get a pop that won’t go away. And it beeps. My pop up blocker is on. I don’t know enough about any of this but several odd things today.

Cindy Munford on August 1, 2008 at 10:24 PM

[Cindy Munford on August 1, 2008 at 10:24 PM]

Do you have Spybot S&D or Adaware to check for malware? If not Dogpile those names, install and run one of them, preferrably both of them.

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 10:35 PM

Part of me hopes that one day, in my lifetime, there will be a movie about Adam Gadahn being a Mole for the US.

That would be awesome. Kind of doubt it though. But him dieing just before we start making some direct kills, it would be cool.

WoosterOh on August 1, 2008 at 10:39 PM

Entropy Change We Can Belive In.

BohicaTwentyTwo on August 1, 2008 at 10:40 PM

Moe at Red State is shouting this:

IF YOUR BLOG IS NOT LOADING IN INTERNET EXPLORER, DISABLE SITEMETER.

IF YOU HAVE SITEMETER ON YOUR BLOG, IT WILL NOT CURRENTLY LOAD IN INTERNET EXPLORER.

Sue on August 1, 2008 at 10:43 PM

No doubt about the bombing of the Indian embassy in Afghanistan

corona on August 1, 2008 at 10:47 PM

Bohica Twenty Two,
Where does your name come from?

exhelodrvr on August 1, 2008 at 10:53 PM

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 10:35 PM

I have Spyware Begone, do you think that will do? If not I will try your recommendations. Thanks. I notice that RedState is saying it is the Sitemeter. My stupid is showing, what is a Sitemeter? Anyway I think I may stick with Firefox because they remember my passwords. Plus it does does spell check when I am on IE I am just hoping for the best.

Cindy Munford on August 1, 2008 at 10:59 PM

I’ll keep my fingers crossed!

becki51758 on August 1, 2008 at 11:02 PM

Note to all who suddenly cannot access this, and many other sites using IE7, with the following error:

“Internet Explorer cannot open the internet site…”

I have just discovered, after having this problem with my own site, that this problem is being caused by Sitemeter’s Javascript code. Sitemeter is a free web traffic monitoring tool that requires the embedding of a small block of code, including a Javascript source file, on the page whose traffic you wish to monitor. It seems Sitemeter made a change to their code that has resulted in this problem.

For the techies: this error is often the result of code in a child element that attempts to alter the contents of its parent element. Apparently, IE7 does not allow such a DOM manipulation.

-phil

phile on August 1, 2008 at 11:06 PM

Now how does CBS intercept a note form
Puck is stan!

I think Pelosi needs to have an investigation
and a fact finding mission as to why all MSM
News organizations know more than the CIA!

Oh boy,wait till Obama hears about the money
being spread around!

I’m sure Hopey will demand that money be
spread around in some American neighborhoods!

I’ve got a brilliant idea,how about re-deploying
St.Bernard dogs from the ski Alps,to Pakistan and
put a collecting gizmo around the dogs neck,and
send the dogs up the mountains for a DNA scraping
mission!haha!

canopfor on August 1, 2008 at 8:11 PM

Have I mentioned lately how much I love reading your comments?

No I don’t think I have.

I love reading your comments!

RushBaby on August 1, 2008 at 11:11 PM

“Some” people need to check into Firefox 3.0.

wccawa on August 1, 2008 at 9:27 PM

That’s the answer. I am typing on an alien PC tonight and kept being kicked out of HA. Few second download/install of the LATEST version of FireFox fixed all.

RushBaby on August 1, 2008 at 11:16 PM

Well, that stinks. Would’ve been cool if we’d actually gotten him.

amerpundit on August 1, 2008 at 11:22 PM

If Dent Head has finally gone on to meet his maker, good. It was long past due.

The religion of peace has lost another peace-maker.

Special Forces Grunt on August 1, 2008 at 11:47 PM

[Cindy Munford on August 1, 2008 at 10:59 PM]

Cindy, I’ve never heard of SpyWare Begone, so I went to the help sites I’ve belonged to for years — Major Geeks and SpywareInfo and it didn’t come up in any search. That doesn’t mean it isn’t good or bad, just that they rely on other stuff.

Those site recommend these two when they help out people with problems. I use the two mentioned and use them in tandem because I rely on them to help me when needed. Thing is I haven’t had problem in years, so I just keep the two updated, along with doing a Hijackthis review every so often.

SpybotS&D has an immunize function which, as I understand it, places fakes malware names in the computer so the real ones can’t be loaded onto my computer. Or something like that. Adaware (by Lavasoft) is really nice, too, and one or the other usually picks up something the other didn’t. I run them about once a month.

phile had a good answer on the sitemeter question. I don’t think that issue relates to your pop-up problem though.

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 11:51 PM

[RushBaby on August 1, 2008 at 11:16 PM]

Firefox 2 has no problem either. What do you think of the FF3 new url window setup in the nav bar?

Dusty on August 1, 2008 at 11:55 PM

“Also, there are troops in Afghanistan, prisoners being interrogated. This is a long-term effort that is paying off.”

Time for another Congressional investigation, obviously.

hillbillyjim on August 1, 2008 at 8:25 PM

I thought the SAME thing upon reading that.

SlimyBill on August 1, 2008 at 11:55 PM

And then I hope a camel crapped on his corpse.

MadisonConservative on August 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM

I hope a camel f***ed him in his a**.

SlimyBill on August 1, 2008 at 11:56 PM

The sad thing is that we probably didn’t read him his rights before we fertilized the sterile soil of Pakistan with him. That means that by now Ramsey Clark and General Harry Reid have arranged transportation and a visa so Zawahiri can testify before a senate committee about the prejudice he has endured being a Muslim who happened to be directing religious aid martyrs in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I wouldn’t be waiting for a letter from Al Qaeda, I’d keep my eyes on the vacationing Democratic leaders. If Zawahiri is dead, you’ll know because that congress will be back in session and an energy bill will be signed and delivered to the press…

Evrviglnt on August 2, 2008 at 12:24 AM

God is great.

CP on August 2, 2008 at 2:23 AM

Sue on August 1, 2008 at 9:41 PM

I get the abort message on one computer, but not on this one. Using IE7 on both.

As far as the topic of the thread, I also hope Zawahiri is croaked or slowly croaking.

But I’m not gonna bet the rent money on it.

soundingboard on August 2, 2008 at 5:51 AM

I hope it’s true.
Fingers crossed but….
Isn’t it CBS that has a bad track record
with documents??

PaKeystoner on August 2, 2008 at 6:59 AM

Libi and Khabab being the two biggest scores

We got Khabab?

Mmmm… I hope that was skewered and wrapped in bacon.

cool breeze on August 2, 2008 at 7:10 AM

it’s unusual for two credible sources like CBS

Would that be, like, cbs with katie couric? The network of dan rather and the forged papers?

Yep, that’s where I go when I want to know the truth.

peacenprosperity on August 2, 2008 at 7:17 AM

This being CBS I’ll wait for some actual proof. Call me a cynic.

dogsoldier on August 2, 2008 at 7:28 AM

“Paging Dr. Kevorkian,
Paging Dr. Kevorkian.”

Hening on August 2, 2008 at 8:20 AM

We got Khabab?

Mmmm… I hope that was skewered and wrapped in bacon.

cool breeze on August 2, 2008 at 7:10 AM

Khabab? Sheesh!

mikeyboss on August 2, 2008 at 8:30 AM

Did CBS run this past Mary Mapes …whoops..nevermind

Wade on August 2, 2008 at 10:22 AM

Wow, here’s hoping. From what I understand Zawahiri is arguably more important to the organization than Bin Laden.

Blacklake on August 2, 2008 at 8:23 PM

I love reading your comments!

RushBaby on Aug 1,2008 at 11:11PM.

RushBaby: Thanks so much,its great when your in zee groove,
so to speak!

Would of responded sooner,however I think the
left sabotaged the rightsphere blogs,and piff
to the alleged SNAFU!

Just to test out my conspiracy theory I went on
HuffPost,and KOS,and shazam,every thing was A-
Okay,ya a glitch alright,it was a fairness
doctrine test alright!

Nice hearing from you,and Mega-Ton ditto’s
RushBaby,:).

canopfor on August 2, 2008 at 8:27 PM

If it would make his stay in hell that much hotter, I’d add an Inshallah!

From Predator’s ears to Hellfiure’s lips.

al-Zippo.

profitsbeard on August 3, 2008 at 3:45 PM