Ayman Al Zawahiri and Osama Bin Laden are beginning to feel a pinch. They are now declaring war on Pakistan. Make no mistake in this – even though they state it’s a war on Musharraf, these “unholy warriors” will be killing hundreds to thousands of devout Muslims in their attacks; hundreds of Pakistani Army troops have died in the frontiers of Pakistan fighting their evil.
This comes on the heals of 18 captive Army soldiers being murdered and mutilated in North Waziristan two days ago. From the UK Times:
Osama bin Laden is to declare “war” on President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan in a new message, expected to be released in the next 72 hours, according to an Islamist website.
It would be the first time that the al-Qaeda leader has made such an explicit threat personally against General Musharraf, raising fears of an upsurge in violence in the midst of Pakistan’s political crisis.
The threat emerged as the Pakistan election commission set October 6 as the date for a presidential election in which General Musharraf will run in his uniform, despite opposition calls for him to step down.
It followed a series of soldiers’ abductions and increasingly bold attacks on troops in tribal areas of Pakistan, where bin Laden and other al-Qaeda leaders are believed to be hiding.
The AQ strategy of focusing efforts on Pakistan has been discussed here a while, in reality they have been at war with assassination attempts on the government, hundreds of civilians dead in staged religious uprisings (Lal Masjid,) and hundreds dead in suicide bombings. They continue to burn out the markets in the frontiers, and commerce there has ground to a halt.
UPDATE: In earlier stories I’ve pointed out the clear ties between Al Zawahiri and the Al Qaeda orchestrated storming of Lal Masjid, in the latest tape that connection is proven again. See the Daily Times.
UPDATE: Al Qaeda calls for reconquering Spain and Portugal
Al-Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri has called for Iberia to be restored to the Islamic world, saying the first step needs to be the ‘cleansing’ of Spaniards and French from the Maghreb.
Zawahiri was speaking in an 81-minute documentary-style video entitled “The Power of Truth” made public on Thursday by the US-based SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors Islamist websites.
“O our Muslim Ummah (community) in the Maghreb of ribat and jihad (land of resistance and holy war): restoring Al-Andalus is a trust on the shoulders of the Ummah in general and on your shoulders in particular,” he said.
“You will not be able to do that without first cleansing the Maghreb of Islam of the children of France and Spain.”
One thing this does speak of: The refocus and realignment speaks of their failures in Afghanistan and Iraq. Now Al Qaeda is down to defending the original base. I will be posting updates through the day, President Bush is expected to make a speech at 9:35 this morning EDT.
NOTE TO John Edwards: This is not a bumper-sticker.
Reuters has a good summary of the recent tape release chronologies here.