Friday, June 09, 2006

Zarqawi and other terrorist curiosities

Your blogstress directs her readers to this post at, where devotees can find the text of an NBC story done two years ago by Jim Miklaszewski about how the administration put the kaibosh several times on capturing Zarqawi.

At NPR, Mary Louise Kelly does a fascinating piece on geek-com-terrorism-expert Evan Kohlmann, who monitors jihadi Web sites in his pajamas -- for a living.

On last night's edition of The Daily Show, Jon Stewart did a piece poking fun at the 17 suspected terrorists arrested by our neighbor to the north for issuing a statement on their hatred for Canada because of its role as a U.S. ally in the Afghanistan invasion. "Afghanistan?" said Stewart. "That was so two jihads ago."

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Zarqawi: Bush kills his creation

Amid the blanket coverage of the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the murderous head of al Qaeda in Iraq, by U.S. forces, your blogstress found most interesting this interview by NPR's Robert Seigel of Zarqawi biographer Loretta Napoleoni, who explains how Zarqawi's stature as a terrorist big was virtually created by Colin Powell's infamous lie-riddled presentation to the U.N.

Napoleoni, author of Insurgent Iraq: Al-Zarqawi and al-Qaida's New Generation and Terror Inc.: Tracing the Money Behind GlobalTerrorism, explains how, in the very same speech in which Powell falsely stated that Saddam Hussein had tried to buy aluminum tubes for use in the construction of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), the then-Secretary of State named Zarqawi as the link between al Qaeda and Saddam. The problem with that statement, Napoleoni explains, is that at the time of Powell's speech, Zarqawi had nothing to do with al Qaeda, and al Qaeda wanted nothing to do with Zarqawi, who was regarded as an ignorant, poorly educated street thug. It was Powell who conferred the crown upon Zarqawi's head that ultimately bin Laden had to accept.

Today on the Diane Rehm Show, David Korn, Washington correspondent for The Nation, noted a certain irony in the fact that bin Laden is as likely to be as pleased by the beheader's death as Bush. There are those, of course, who will find no irony in this at all; just an ever-evolving set of common interests.

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