Winning hearts and minds

Al Qaeda link suspected in Najaf blast arrests

The honeymoon may be over between al Qaeda and “the Arab street” – now that al Qaeda is suspected of bombing a mosque on the Arab street.

Police in Najaf have arrested two Pakistanis they suspect may be linked to al Qaeda in connection with the terror attack at a Shiite mosque, the governor of Najaf said today. The car bombing, which killed at least 126 people, claimed the life of an influential Shiite cleric and prompted anguish across the Muslim world.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out on al Jazeera, and equally interesting to see how neo-isolationist critics spin this massacre as a boon for the cause of Islamist terror.

Why would anyone think this? Shi’ites are already demonstrating in Baghdad and Najaf, and they’re blaming Saddam and the US – the former for the bombing, the latter for not providing enough security. All this bombing’s going to do is make Iraq even more unstable, and the occupying troops are the ones who will actually suffer. It’s only a matter of time before one of these car bombs go off near a US army barracks.

BTW, did you even read your own linked CNN article? Because there are a couple of paragraphs in there that make it pretty clear people aren’t burning their Osama #1 dishdahses just yet:

"The blast at the Imam Ali Mosque and Hakim’s death have outraged Iraq’s Shiites, many of whom said the U.S- led Coalition Provisional Authority has not done enough to increase security in Iraq.

“Mohammed Baker al-Alum, a leading Shiite politician, announced Saturday that he was suspending his membership in the U.S.-appointed Iraq Governing Council in protest of the massacre at the Imam Ali Mosque.”

Also, bin Laden follows Wahhabi teachings. He’s already not much of a fan favorite in Shi’a circles. This bombing might cause problems for the al Qaeda operatives being held in Iran, however. Though I doubt it. The Shi’ites there will still find crazy ways to blame the US and the Jews for this. As will a lot of the Shi’ites in Iraq, come to think of it.

Few seem to realize is that we were ASKED to stay away from the Shi’ite temples for this very reason - They believed our presence would increase the likelihood of an attack in the area.

There weren’t any troops NEAR that mosque, because they didn’t want us there.

They just don’t care. The US invaded, so the US gets the blame.

Why would anyone think this? Shi’ites are already demonstrating in Baghdad and Najaf, and they’re blaming Saddam and the US – the former for the bombing, the latter for not providing enough security. All this bombing’s going to do is make Iraq even more unstable, and the occupying troops are the ones who will actually suffer. It’s only a matter of time before one of these car bombs go off near a US army barracks.

All these targets are being chosen very discriminatingly, because they aren’t being guarded. In fact the UN and the temple were specifically not placed behind strong security because it was felt such a situation would be detrimental. They don’t bomb barracks because they couldn’t get close enough because we guard them very well, with reason. They attack these “soft targets” because they go unguarded, with reason.

It wouldn’t matter. Bin Laden could resurrect Mohammed and skullfuck him in a live broadcast and it would still be America’s Zionist puppetteers at fault.

Short of bombmakers blowing themselves up at home, I don’t think there is a possible scenario where another terrorist attack in Iraq is going to be a good thing for the United States.

Saying this mosque was bombed because they couldn’t bomb Americans is the most ridiculous thing I’ve heard since Albright said there were only a ‘modest’ amount of troops in Iraq. This act only proves that no matter how many troops we send there, it will be impossible to guarantee security to every person and place in Iraq.

They arrested 2 Palestinians? Another example that this is not an insurgence of iraqi nationals, or disgruntles Iraqi citizens, but whako extremists from regions outside of Iraq. With President Bush exclaiming “Bring 'em on!” and Osama and Saddam calling the world to Jihad, it’s very telling that there isn’t a larger wave of opposition to the US forces in the region. Some are just to eager to control or kill their own kind before worrying about infidels.

We’ve introduced the poison and now the bugs are crawling out of the woodwork.

That’s not an attempt at an argument, just a minor factual correction.

thanks, At 4 in the morning, my eyes sometimes lie to me. Irregardless, it shows that at least some of the violence is not from the Iraqi people themselves, but from outside ‘opportunists’.

I’ve heard they’ve arrest something like 18 people at this point in connection with the bombing, and almost all are foreign. I’m assuming that means a mix of Pakistani, Saudi, Iranian, etc. They probably had Iraqi assistence at some level, but no these are Iraqi “freedom fighters”. This the promotion of chaos and perhaps even an attempt to create a world war between the west and Islam.

bmulligan is right, though, we can never “secure” everything. And I don’t believe an international force is a magic bullet solution (something I’ve previously argued with Jason about). We aparently can’t get close to the bombing sight for our own investigation. I think having the Iraqi police investigate themselves is actually a good idea. Let them discover who this is and why they did it and let them tell the world. They are providing computers and sat phones they’ve confiscated to our investigators, so perhaps we will get some good intel as well.