The Strategic Effects of 9/11, Part 5: The Jihadi Domino Theory

Continuing… Why did al-Qaeda attack the U.S.?  Was it to drive the U.S. out of the Middle East?  Or was it to strike the far enemy for the sake of destroying the near enemy (i.e. regimes in the Arab and Islamic world)? Regardless of the intent of al-Qaeda’s leaders, the sequence of events gives weight to the second possibility, which could also be termed the Domino Scenario. According to a 2007 article by George Friedman, Bin Laden saw a rare opportunity after the fall of the USSR to begin re-establishing the worldwide caliphate.  But, says Friedman, armed groups can’t establish empires.  They can, however, seize a state and use it to begin to establish an empire.  UBL realized that Afghanistan wasn’t the ideal place for this because of its geographical position and its weakness. Based on Zawahiri’s pre-9/11 writings, Friedman believes that UBL wanted to topple local regimes and replace

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Saudi Terror Arrests Summary, Government Points Finger at Iran

I’ve been collecting news stories on the terror suspects arrested in Saudi Arabia. Much of the reporting relies on Saudi security personnel and the Interior Ministry’s statement last week, so it should be read with due skepticism. There’s a lot to discuss, but I’ll save my comments for later. For the moment it’s worth noting that, as of today, the Saudis are now injecting a new piece of information into the story: the network was taking orders and receiving money from someone in Iran: The funding for the AQ cells in Saudi came from one of the major countries in the region in the form of Euros. (al-Qabas, “Oil Cell”) Instructions for the cells came from the same major country in the region in which leaders of AQ sought refuge, like the Egyptian Sayf al-Adl who is currently living there. (al-Qabas, “Oil Cell”) Below is my summary of all the

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Al-Qaeda and the Battle for Oil

Algihadya, an Egyptian Jihadi blogger, has posted an essay by Zadi al-Taqwa titled “Al-Qaeda and the Battle for Oil.” I don’t know where Zadi usually hangs his electronic hat, but his essay is making the rounds on the forums. Zadi argues that AQ has focused on attacking U.S. oil interests since its inception in 1998 because it understands that oil is vital to the U.S. economy, which it wants to damage. This is one of the main reasons it went into Iraq, where it could thwart U.S. plains to obtain cheap oil and where it could damage the oil infrastructure of a major oil producer. There is no mention of religious justifications or Prophetic precedents for attacking oil; it’s purely economic in Zadi’s analysis. According to Zadi, the price of oil is sky high today because of a variety of factors (quoting): 1) Reduction of the level of oil production

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