Ekhlaas member moutagha asks “What is the reason that Usama mentioned Mauritania in his latest speech?” He notes that it was well after al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb attacked the Israeli embassy in Mauritania in February 2008 and after Jihadis killed four French tourists in December 2007.
Although moutagha does not receive any good responses to his query, his question did remind me of something strange I noticed when reading Zawahiri’s Exoneration. In it, Zawahiri goes on at some length about the large numbers of Mauritanian scholars and seminary students who have come to visit Bin Laden and support his cause. I don’t know enough about North Africa or Jihadi-Salafism in Mauritania to understand this dynamic, so I’m left with moutagha’s question: why Mauritania?
Document (Arabic): 5-29-08-ekhlaas-why-mauritania