Monthly Archives: April 2006

Zarqawi and Task Force 145

The Army Times’ Sean Naylor has a fascinating article on Task Force 145, which has replaced Task Force 626 and 121, and the hunt for Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, which I have summarized below: – Zarqawi was nearly captured in Yusufiyah by Special Operations Forces nine days prior to the release of his videotape. Segments of […]

Sistani Rejects Militias, COIN in Iraq

Resolving Iraq’s militia problem has become a priority for the Iraqi government and the Coalition. The delay in appointing a new government is directly related to the various political party’s fear that former Prime Minister Jaafari was too close to Muqtada al-Sadr and his Mahdi Army militia, and would not reform the police forces believed […]

The Military & Propaganda Messages in Zarqawi’s Tape

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi’s 34 minute long video tape not only includes numerous political messages, as Dr. Walid Phares explains; but also contains information on al Qaeda in Iraq’s propaganda and military capabilities. Several of the military and propaganda aspects are covered below:

Zarqawi Releases Video Tape (Updated)

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, al Qaeda’s commander in Iraq, has released “the first [videotape] to contain a ‘message’… U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News.” The tape is titled A Message to the People. This is his first video without a mask and directly posted on internet, not released through Al Jazeera. Zarqawi “needed” to be seen. […]

Battles in the Afghan Provinces of Helmand and Kandahar

The scene of recent fighting in Helmand and Kandahar Provinces, Click to Enlarge. The fighting continues in the troubled southern provinces of Helmand and Kandahar. Today, CENTCOM reports two separate engagements in Helmand and Kandahar. The CENTCOM press release for the Helmand incident states U.S. air assets were used to strike at a team of […]

Pakistan’s Taliban Insurgency; Four Mid-Level al Qaeda Operatives and Taliban Commanders killed in Past Week

Clashes between Pakistani security forces and al Qaeda and the Taliban continue in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province. Yesterday, the Pakistani Army hit “suspected Taliban hideouts” with artillery barrages and helicopter strikes after security outposts in North Waziristan came under attack from Taliban fighters. Today in North Waziristan, “a paramilitary trooper and three tribesmen were […]

The Taliban Consolidates Power in Pakistan as Violence Increases in Afghanistan

Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier Province and Federally Administered Tribal Areas Yesterday’s rocket attack on the U.S. Embassy and NATO’s International Security Assistance Force compound in Kabul, Afghanistan highlights the increased level of violence throughout the country. Coalition and Afghan troop have seen a marked increase in suicide bombings, IED (roadside bombing) attacks and platoon and company-sized […]

Pakistan Strikes at High Value Target

Yesterday’s helicopter attack in North Waziristan is directed at Mohsin Matawalli Atwa, one of the architechs of the 1998 attacks on the U.S. Embassies in Eastern Africa

Declining Jaafari

Sistani, Talabani and Sunni parties call for an end to the political deadlock for the selection of the Iraqi Prime Minister

al Qaeda Attacks Shiite Mosques

al Qaeda steps up its campaign to destroy the political process and incite a civil war by attacking Shiite mosques; the wider situation in Iraq is virtually being ignored

The Expansion of Talibanistan

Pakistan reacts to Taliban attacks in North Waziristan after a week of fighting on the Afghan/Pakistan border; Taliban active in Tank, Khyber and Peshawar Agencies

Where’s Zarqawi, Redux?

Reports of Zarqawi’s demotion is old news, but provides further insight on al Qaeda’s view of the state of jihad in Iraq

Powerplay III

Pressure on Jaafari to step down mounts, Mahdi calls for Jaafari to “step aside”; Jaafari’s nomination may go to full parliamentary vote

Turning the Screws

A senior representative of SCIRI and confidant of Ayatollah Sistani calls for Jaafari to step down Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani. Click to enlarge. As the political deadlock to form the Iraqi government continues, support for Jaafari within the United Iraqi Alliance continues to wane. Another influential member of the UIA has stepped forward and called for […]

Inside the UIA, Round II

Support for Jaafari within the UIA appears to be crumbling; The Battle for Baghdad is in full swing The support for Ibrahim al-Jaafari, the current Prime Minister and candidate to lead the newly elected Iraqi government, is waning. Reuters reports a large majority of the United Iraqi Alliance no longer backs his candidacy, and a […]