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New photos released reported to show al Zarqawi
by sources
Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:36 AM
New pictures believed to be of terrorist mastermind Abu Musab al-Zarqawi have been released, as continued violence in Iraq left at least four dead.

It's not clear how recent the photos are, obtained by CNN.

They appear to show a relaxed Zarqawi, who the U.S. considers to be the most-wanted man in Iraq.
A U.S. counterterrorism official claimed about a week ago that al Qaeda head Osama bin laden recently asked Zarqawi to consider directing his attacks at the U.S.

"There has been communication between bin Laden and Zarqawi with bin Laden suggesting to Zarqawi the U.S. homeland as a target," the official told Reuters. He spoke on condition of anonymity.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said it issued a bulletin informing state homeland security advisers about information on a security threat.

Zarqawi officially became al Qaeda's top leader in Iraq last October, pledging allegiance to bin Laden.

The CIA has claimed "with a high degree of confidence" that Zarqawi personally beheaded U.S. hostage Eugene Armstrong in September.

Al Qaeda in Iraq claimed responsibility for last month's attack in Hillah, Iraq that killed 115 people -- the worst attack since the fall of the old regime in 2003.

Meanwhile, at least four were dead after continued insurgent violence in Iraq.

Militants killed a Turkish driver and an Iraqi Kurdish official in two separate attacks in Mosul, witnesses reported.

According to witness Mohammed Jassim Ali, the assailants yelled that they belonged to al Qaeda in Iraq and shot the driver because he was taking supplies to U.S. forces.

Gunmen killed an Iraqi army officer in Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad, Capt. Akram al-Zubaie told The Associated Press.

Also in Mosul, gunmen killed a Kurdish employee working for the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, a party official confirmed.
§New photos believed to be al-Zarqawi
by sources Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:36 AM
§New photos believed to be al-Zarqawi
by sources Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:36 AM
by more
Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:39 AM
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi (Arabic: ابو مصعب الزرقاوي) (possibly born on October 20, 1966) is a shadowy Jordanian national who is wanted as an international terrorist. He is from the town of Zarqa, a poor and crime-ridden industrial town 30 minutes northeast of Amman. One alias, Ahmad Fadeel al-Nazal al-Khalayleh (Arabic: أحمد فاضل النزال الخلايله), is believed to be his real name. Zarqawi literally translates into 'man from zarqa'.[1] ( ( ( As a suspected Islamist militant, Zarqawi is believed to be violently opposed to the presence of U.S., Israeli and allied military forces in the Islamic world.

In personal accounts Zarqawi is usually described as somber and unintelligent, with a violent temper. He is alleged to be a senior al Qaida associate of Osama bin Laden. U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell described Zarqawi as an "al Qaida operative." Senior U.S. military officials have described him as a "separate jihadist." Zarqawi has allegedly participated in violent actions against the United States military in Iraq and against a U.S. diplomat in Jordan. As a result, the U.S. government is offering a USD$25 million reward for information leading to his capture, the same amount offered for the capture of Osama bin Laden before March 2004. An emerging view holds that Zarqawi now holds significantly more power than bin Laden because of Zarqawi's heightened visibility as a leader of the insurgency against the U.S. military and Iraqi interim government. On October 21, 2004, Zarqawi officially announced his allegiance to Al Qaida; on December 27, 2004, Al-Jazeera broadcast an audiotape of bin Laden calling Zarqawi "the prince of al Qaeda in Iraq" and asked "all our organization brethren to listen to him and obey him in his good deeds." (

Despite the absence of clear evidence, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is widely regarded as the leader of Jama'at al-Tawhid wal Jihad (Monotheism and Holy Struggle Movement), an insurgent network operating in Iraq. There are also reports that he was arrested by the Iranian government, and, together with several other high-level al-Qaida suspects, he was offered to the U.S. government in a deal that was never consummated. ( There are rumors that Zarqawi is dead because no sightings of him have been confirmed since 2001. In one report, the conservative newspaper Daily Telegraph described as myth the claim that Zarqawi was the head of the terrorist network in Iraq. According to a U.S. military intelligence source, the Zarqawi myth resulted from faulty intelligence obtained by the payment of substantial sums of money to unreliable and dishonest sources. The faulty intelligence was accepted, however, because it suited US government political goals, according to an unnamed intelligence officer. ( The Zarqawi myth has also been purported to be the product of U.S. war propaganda designed to promote the image of a demonic enemy figure to help justify continued U.S. military operations in Iraq.

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by rpst
Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:41 AM
The US intelligence apparatus has created it own terrorist organizations. And at the same time, it creates its own terrorist warnings concerning the terrorist organizations which it has itself created. In turn, it has developed a cohesive multibillion dollar counterterrorism program "to go after" these terrorist organizations.

Counterterrorism and war propaganda are intertwined. The propaganda apparatus feeds disinformation into the news chain. The terror warnings must appear to be "genuine". The objective is to present the terror groups as "enemies of America."

The underlying objective is to galvanize public opinion in support of America's war agenda.

The "war on terrorism" requires a humanitarian mandate. The war on terrorism is presented as a "Just War", which is to be fought on moral grounds "to redress a wrong suffered."

The Just War theory defines "good" and "evil." It concretely portrays and personifies the terrorist leaders as "evil individuals".

Several prominent American intellectuals and antiwar activists, who stand firmly opposed to the Bush administration, are nonetheless supporters of the Just War theory: "We are against war in all its forms but we support the campaign against international terrorism."

To reach its foreign policy objectives, the images of terrorism must remain vivid in the minds of the citizens, who are constantly reminded of the terrorist threat.

The propaganda campaign presents the portraits of the leaders behind the terror network. In other words, at the level of what constitutes an "advertising" campaign, "it gives a face to terror." The "war on terrorism" rests on the creation of one or more evil bogeymen, the terror leaders, Osama bin Laden, Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, et al, whose names and photos are presented ad nauseam in daily news reports.
by How US fuelled myth of Zarqawi the mastermin
Saturday Mar 5th, 2005 10:42 AM
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the terrorist leader believed to be responsible for the abduction of Kenneth Bigley, is 'more myth than man', according to American military intelligence agents in Iraq.

Several sources said the importance of Zarqawi, blamed for many of the most spectacular acts of violence in Iraq, has been exaggerated by flawed intelligence and the Bush administration's desire to find "a villain" for the post-invasion mayhem.

US military intelligence agents in Iraq have revealed a series of botched and often tawdry dealings with unreliable sources who, in the words of one source, "told us what we wanted to hear".

"We were basically paying up to $10,000 a time to opportunists, criminals and chancers who passed off fiction and supposition about Zarqawi as cast-iron fact, making him out as the linchpin of just about every attack in Iraq," the agent said.

"Back home this stuff was gratefully received and formed the basis of policy decisions. We needed a villain, someone identifiable for the public to latch on to, and we got one."

The sprawling US intelligence community is in a state of open political warfare amid conflicting pressures from election-year politics, military combat and intelligence analysis. The Bush administration has seized on Zarqawi as the principal leader of the insurgency, mastermind of the country's worst suicide bombings and the man behind the abduction of foreign hostages. He is held up as the most tangible link to Osama bin Laden and proof of the claim that the former Iraqi regime had links to al-Qa'eda.

However, fresh intelligence emerging from around Fallujah, the rebel-held city that is at the heart of the insurgency, suggests that, despite a high degree of fragmentation, the insurgency is led and dominated not by Arab foreigners but by members of Iraq's Sunni minority.

Pentagon estimates have put the number of foreign fighters in the region of 5,000. However, one agent said: "The overwhelming sense from the information we are now getting is that the number of foreign fighters does not exceed several hundred and is perhaps as low as 200. From the information we have gathered we have to conclude that Zarqawi is more myth than man. He isn't in the calibre of what many politicians want to believe he is.

"At some stage, and perhaps even now, he was almost certainly behind some of the kidnappings. But if there is a main leader of the insurgency he would be an Iraqi. The insurgency, though, is not nearly so centralised to talk of a structured leadership."

Military intelligence officials complain that their reports to Washington, are largely being ignored. They accuse the Pentagon of over-reliance on electronic surveillance and aerial and satellite reconnaissance carried out for the CIA.

In recent weeks American military command in Iraq has claimed a series of precision air strikes on targets in Fallujah identified by the CIA as housing known associates of Zarqawi.

It has denied that there were any civilian casualties, despite television footage showing dead and wounded women and children being pulled from the rubble of flattened homes.

Some US military spies maintain that this is evidence of continued dependency on technology over old-fashioned human intelligence.

Both President George W Bush and Tony Blair have, to varying degrees, conceded that intelligence on Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction programme was misleading. But both continue to maintain that the continued violence since Saddam was ousted is because Iraq is now the front line in the war on terrorism.

Yet it now seems that the intelligence on which such claims are based is haphazard, scanty and contradictory.

No concrete proof of the link between Zarqawi and bin Laden was offered until US officials this year trumpeted the discovery of a computer disk, allegedly intercepted by Kurdish peshmerga guerrillas. Among its files was an apparent draft of a letter from Zarqawi to bin Laden.

"We will be your readied soldiers, working under your banner, complying with your orders and indeed swearing fealty to you publicly and in the news media," the letter read.

That seemed proof enough for the US government. "Zarqawi is the best evidence of the connection to al-Qa'eda affiliates and al-Qa'eda," Mr Bush said in June.

But senior diplomats in Baghdad claim that the letter was almost certainly a hoax. They say the two men may have met in Afghanistan but it appeared they never got on and there has been a rift for several years.

One diplomat claimed that there was evidence to suggest that Zarqawi's aides may have passed on information to the Americans that led to the arrest of Ramzi bin al-Shibh, one of the main planners of the September 11 attacks.

The diplomats describe Zarqawi as deeply ambitious. His actions are aimed as much at boosting his position in the Islamic terrorist fraternity as striking at America. He achieved that in April when a grisly and apparently authentic video showing the beheading of the contractor Nick Berg. The footage was released under the title "Sheikh Abu Musab Zarqawi executes an American with his own hands and promises Bush more".

A diplomat commented: "That catapaulted Zarqawi to exactly where he wanted to be - giving Osama a run for his money as US public enemy number one. But, the video apart, intelligence on the Jordanian is thin.

Intelligence reports are contradictory even on whether he is missing a leg.

Initial claims of a Long John Silver character with an artificial leg were disputed by more recent alleged sightings of the 38-year-old apparently fully limbed and looking rather sprightly.
by Iraqi sources: Al Zarqawi arrested
Sunday Mar 6th, 2005 10:10 AM
Iraqi sources have told a Saudi newspaper that al-Qaeda's man in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, has been arrested. Al Watan daily said Sunday that the official announcement on the arrest was delayed until a new Iraqi government is in place. The purported arrest supposedly took place on the Iraqi - Syrian border, the report added. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi

It should be mentioned that CNN aired on Saturday new pictures believed to show al-Zarqawi, who is America's most-wanted man in Iraq.

The Saudi paper said that the arrest of al-Zarqawi was completed ahead the recent visit of US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in Iraq. This visit took place early February.