• ‘Foreign Fighters’ for Israel -
    Les combattants étrangers en Israël

    The Washington Post
    By David Malet July 22

    The deaths on July 20 of two Americans serving in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) provided an opening for critics of Israel to compare them to the foreign fighters of the Islamic State, formerly referred to as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Similar complaints have already called for other governments to criminalize volunteering for Israel to create equivalence to the prosecution of would-be jihadi Islamists. The IDF reports 4,600 foreign “Lone Soldiers” currently serving, over one-third of whom are American (it is unclear how many hold dual citizenship). Are IDF Lone Soldiers comparable to al-Qaeda-inspired jihadis or the volunteer brigades who joined the Spanish Civil War?

    The question hinges on both definitions and connotations of what a foreign fighter is. Consideration of foreign fighters by international security analysts is less than a decade old and, as political scientists inevitably do, researchers employ slightly varied definitions, so there are no universal criteria for identification. Crucially, however, most studies have assumed foreign fighters to be insurgents fighting against the government. Scholar on Islamist militant groups Thomas Hegghammer’s definition of foreign fighters specifically “excludes returning diaspora members,” and this would encompass Lone Soldiers such as Nissim Sean Carmeli, an Israeli-born Texan who was one of the Americans killed. No published academic definitions of foreign fighters would therefore include diaspora Jews fighting in the IDF.

    Beyond definitions, the term “foreign fighter” generally carries an implication of illegitimacy. In late 2001, al-Qaeda’s “foreign fighters” were shipped off to the Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba because they were regarded as both uniquely dangerous and uniquely “unauthorized enemy combatants.” They did not uphold international norms of citizenship and military allegiance, and stated that they in fact wished to destroy the international system itself. They were also not the primarily profit-seeking mercenaries already banned under international law.

    Nearly every academic study has focused exclusively on Sunni jihadis, some incorporating Islamism in their parameters, although counterterrorism and Middle East security expert Daniel Byman has recently examined the substantial number of pro-regime Shiite volunteers who arrived in Syria from elsewhere in the region. The phenomenon is far wider than just Islamists, however. In my book “Foreign Fighters,” I analyze the surprisingly common strategy of armed groups that persuade volunteers abroad that they have a duty to protect fellow members of a transnational group facing a threat to its survival. This approach has been used by ideological affiliations including the Communist International for the International Brigades, and by religious groups like the Catholic foreign fighters on the other side of the Spanish Civil War, who were told their souls would benefit from martyrdom for Christ. It also holds for ethnic groups like the nearly 200 Albanian-Americans who joined the Atlantic Brigades to fight for the Kosovo Liberation Army, and the European volunteers defending fellow White Anglo-Saxon Protestants in the Texas Revolution who outnumbered Texan-born fighters at the Alamo three-to-one. The particular identity of the group does not affect this approach to recruitment. Today it is being used by jihadis for the Islamic State and also pro-Russian fighters for the Orthodox Dawn in eastern Ukraine.

  • Lebanese soldier defects to al-Nusra Front

    A Lebanese army soldier defected to the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front after abandoning his post in the eastern town of #Ersal overnight Tuesday, security sources told Al-Akhbar. Atef Saadeddine left the army to join the jihadi group after making off with three M16 rifles, night vision goggles and a walkie-talkie, the sources said. Saadeddine’s disappearance was initially believed to have been the result of a kidnapping, but it was quickly deduced that he had left voluntarily.

    Rameh Hamieh

    read more


  • Three dead in clash between al-Qaeda gunmen and Yemeni army

    Two Yemeni soldiers and a suspected Al-Qaeda gunman have been killed in a clash following an ambush in the southern province of Shabwa, security and tribal sources said on Friday. The gunmen ambushed an army vehicle late Thursday on the main road in al-Aram, a security official said, adding that the soldiers fired back at the assailants. He said two soldiers were killed in the confrontation and another was wounded. A tribal source, meanwhile, said that one attacker was shot dead in the clash and four were wounded. read more


  • #al-Qaeda gunmen attack police camp, kill two

    Gunmen have killed two Yemeni police in an attack on a camp for anti-riot forces in the central province of Baida, an al-Qaeda stronghold, an official said Thursday. The assailants on board two vehicles fired machine-guns at the camp in the town of Rada late on Wednesday, and on-duty policemen shot back at them, said the regional government official. “Two policemen were killed and a third was wounded” in the clash, he said, adding the assailants fled after failing to storm the camp. The official was unable to say if there were any casualties among the attackers. read more

    #News #Yemen

  • Qaeda gunmen rob Yemeni post office, kill policeman

    Suspected #al-Qaeda militants attacked a post office in #Yemen's southeastern Hadramawt province, killing a policeman and making off with two million riyals (US $10,000), security officials said Wednesday. The policeman was guarding the post office in the town of Hura when attackers late Tuesday killed him and fled with the cash, the officials said. Robberies in Yemen by al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) jihadists are common as the network attempts to finance itself. read more


  • ISIS in control of 60 percent of Syrian oil: sources « ASHARQ AL-AWSAT

    ISIS in control of 60 percent of Syrian oil: sources
    Al-Qaeda-splinter group expanding oil production efforts in Syria

    London, Asharq Al-Awsat—The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is preparing to seize one of the few remaining major oil production centers in Syria not under its control, according to Syrian opposition officials.

    “ISIS is already in control of more than 60 percent of Syria’s oil, with a total production rate of 180, 0000 barrel per day” and now plans to seize facilities in the northern province of Hassakah, an official from the Ministry of Energy in the interim Syrian opposition government, Yamin Al-Shami, told Asharq Al-Awsat.

    Having seized control of the majority of oil fields in Raqqa province, in central Syria, and Deir Ezzor province, along the Iraqi border, ISIS is preparing to mobilize fighters in a new push towards the town of Rmelan, home to the largest oil fields in Hassakah. Rmealn is under the control of Kurdish People’s Protection Units, or YPG.

    Shami warned that oil production constitutes a significant source of revenue for ISIS, adding that the Islamist militant group is able to sell a barrel of crude oil for around 18 US dollars. Brent crude, a global benchmark, currently sells at around 107 US dollars.

    Oil is transported from ISIS-held areas with the help of local and foreign brokers, Shami said.

    Despite its recent advances in Iraq, ISIS has been unable to take control of oil resources comparable to those it holds in Syria, and its recent attempt to capture the key Baiji refinery was successfully deterred by Iraqi forces. But Iraq’s oil infrastructure is far from secure, and there are frequent reports that huge amounts of crude oil are being smuggled out of the country by militants.

    “Militant groups, along with ISIS, are stealing crude oil from fields near the Hamrin mountains” in northeastern Iraq, a local administrative official, Shallal Abdool, told Asharq Al-Awsat.

    “Kurdish Peshmerga forces that control the area have seized more than 50 tankers loaded with stolen crude oil,” he added.

    When asked about the destination to which oil is being taken, Abdool said: “There are many sides inside and outside Iraq that buy crude oil . . . and there are smugglers and brokers in Iraq who buy it for a cheap price in order to sell it abroad.”

    Valerie Marcel, of London-based Chatham House think tank, said: “Fighters from ISIS can sell oil on the black market to buyers from Turkey, the Kurdistan region and Iran.”

    “ISIS’s use of temporary refineries allows them to sell oil more easily.”

    But, pointing to the fact that oil smuggling has been a problem for decades, others played down worries about ISIS’s oil activities.

    “Oil smuggling operations from these sites exist and have been taking place for a long time before ISIS took over Nineveh province,” the governor of Salah Al-Din province, Ahmed Abdullah Al-Jubouri, told Asharq Al-Awsat.

  • #rockets fired from #Lebanon strike Israeli occupied territories

    Three rockets were fired from southern Lebanon towards Israeli occupied territory on Friday and #Israel's army responded with artillery fire, Lebanon’s military said, adding it was unclear who was behind the initial attack. In the past, militants linked to al-Qaeda have claimed such attacks. The rockets were fired from the Marjayoun — Hasbaya area towards occupied Palestinian territories, a statement from Lebanon’s army said. The projectiles were launched in the hours before dawn. read more

    #Abdullah_Azzam_Brigades #Palestine

  • #Iraq PM accuses Kurds of providing cover for militants in Erbil

    Iraqi Prime Minister #Nouri_al-Maliki said on Wednesday the Kurdish-controlled city of Erbil was becoming an operations base for the #Islamic_State militant group that seized swathes of northern and western Iraq last month. Maliki is under pressure as militants, led by the #al-Qaeda offshoot Islamic State, hold large parts of the north and west of the country and have threatened to march on the capital. “We will never be silent about Erbil becoming a base for the operations of the Islamic State and Baathists and al-Qaeda and the terrorists,” Maliki said in his weekly televised address. read more


  • Iraq shelling strikes northern #Saudi_Arabia

    Three mortar bombs landed inside Saudi Arabia on Monday close to its northern border with Iraq, where Islamist militants have grabbed land in a lightning advance, officials said. The mortars caused no casualties but will stoke security fears in Saudi Arabia, which is also facing militants on its southern border with #Yemen, where at least 10 people died in an #al-Qaeda raid into the kingdom on Friday and Saturday. Authorities in Saudi Arabia said they were still looking into who fired Monday’s rounds, which landed near a block of flats outside the northern town of Arar. read more

  • #Yemen air raids kill 70 rebels

    The Yemeni air force bombed fighters north of Sanaa on Saturday in fighting that killed at least 70 people, local officials said, after a truce reached last month between the insurgents and government forces collapsed. The fighting in northern Yemen, which has taken on a sectarian tone, is further destabilising a country struggling to overcome a range of problems including a secessionist movement in its south and the nationwide spread of an al Qaeda insurgency. read more

    #Houthis #Islah_party

  • Six dead in southern Saudi suicide attack: Al Arabiya

    Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television said on Saturday that two suspected al-Qaeda militants who had been surrounded inside a government building in southern #Saudi_Arabia after an attack on a border post with Yemen blew themselves up early on Saturday. The satellite channel gave no further details on casualties from the blast. Saudi security forces had been searching for militants who had fled after the attack, in which six people, including one suicide bomber and two security personnel, were killed. (Reuters)

  • « La faute à Obama » ?, par Serge Halimi (juillet 2014)

    Etait-il imprévoyant, cet élu de l’Illinois qui estimait dès octobre 2002 qu’une invasion de l’Irak ne ferait qu’« attiser les flammes au Proche-Orient, encourager dans le monde arabe les pires impulsions et renforcer le bras recruteur d’Al-Qaida » ? Fut-il plus visionnaire que lui, le vice-président des Etats-Unis qui promit alors que les armées américaines seraient « accueillies en libératrices » ? C’est pourtant le second, M. Richard (« Dick ») Cheney, qui accuse aujourd’hui le premier, M. Barack Obama, d’avoir agi en Irak comme un traître doublé d’un benêt. Et qui conclut avec un culot singulier : « Rarement un président des Etats-Unis se sera autant trompé à propos d’autant de choses au détriment d’autant de gens. »

  • What is the origin of the name #al-Qaida? | Books | The Guardian

    In October last year, an item appeared on an authoritative Russian studies website that soon had the science-fiction community buzzing with speculative excitement. It asserted that #Isaac_Asimov's 1951 classic Foundation was translated into Arabic under the title “al-Qaida”. And it seemed to have the evidence to back up its claims.

    The Arabic word qaida - ordinarily meaning “base” or “foundation” - is also used for “groundwork” and “basis”. It is employed in the sense of a military or naval base, and for chemical formulae and geometry: the base of a pyramid, for example. Lane, the best Arab-English lexicon, gives these senses: foundation, basis of a house; the supporting columns or poles of a structure; the lower parts of clouds extending across a horizon; a universal or general rule or canon. With the coming of the computer age, it has gained the further meaning of “database”: qaida ma’lumat (information base).

    @nidal @alaingresh

  • Israel offers to help “moderate” Arab nations over Iraq crisis - Ahram Online

    Lieberman said Israeli interests were converging with moderate Arab nations “with both sides dealing with the threat of Iran, world jihad and Al-Qaeda, as well as the spill-over of conflicts in Syria and in Iraq to neighbouring countries.”

    “Today, there is a basis for the creation of a new diplomatic-political structure in the Middle East,” his office said in the statement.

  • Suicide bomber kills two soldiers as clashes erupt in Southern #Yemen

    A suicide bomber drove his explosives-laden car into the entrance of an army base in the central Yemeni city of Seiyun, killing two soldiers on Thursday, security officials said. At the same time, soldiers clashed with suspected #Al_Qaeda militants at the city’s nearby airport, the officials told Reuters. Western powers fear al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) could use Yemen as a springboard for future international attacks. read more

  • In devising a plan in Iraq, U.S. looks to its Yemen model,0,4478205.story

    As they plan their response to the crisis in Iraq, President Obama and his top aides are hoping to replicate elements of an often-overlooked and relatively successful U.S. military operation in another war-ravaged Middle East nation: Yemen.


    Obama cited Yemen as a model when he sketched out plans Thursday to send up to 300 military advisors to Iraq to help its struggling security forces beat back Sunni Muslim militants from an Al Qaeda splinter group who have overrun parts of the country.


    “Yemen so far has worked,” said Anthony Cordesman, a former intelligence director at the Pentagon now at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “It’s not stable. It’s not clear what direction it is moving in, but the U.S. has exercised considerable influence there.”

    Yet limits of the Yemen strategy are clear.

    Despite an influx of military aid and nearly 100 drone strikes, plus about a dozen reported attacks with cruise missiles, since Obama took office, the U.S. effort has not eradicated the militant threat in Yemen, only contained it.

    Political changes that might address the root causes of the unrest have been slow and uneven, despite a compliant and cooperative leader.

    It is likely to prove more difficult in Iraq.

    Why the ’Yemen model’ may not work in Iraq — or Yemen | Public Radio International

    Middle East watcher Gregory Johnsen thinks that’s a bad idea; he’s not even sure what Obama is seeing in Yemen should be called success.

    “It just seems that the US doesn’t have a very good grasp of what’s happening on the ground in Yemen or what’s happening on the ground in Iraq, or how to solve either of these problems,” he says.

    Johnsen says the US military strategy used to hunt al-Qaeda members in Yemen has been ineffective, or even counterproductive.

    “About four-and-a-half years ago, when the US started this program of drone strikes, special forces advisors on the ground, al-Qaeda in Yemen numbered about 200 to 300 people. Now today, there are several thousand people. So what the US is doing in Yemen isn’t working.”

    He notes that US drone strikes on al-Qaeda targets, in sparsely populated regions of Yemen, have led to civilian deaths and engendered ill-will among Yemenis. 

    “The problem for the US is that if they can’t even hit the right targets in Yemen, when the targets are isolated, how do they hope to hit the right targets in Iraq, when the targets are sort of cheek-and-jowl with the civilians there,” Johnsen says.

  • Militants attack major Iraqi air base

    Militants attacked one of #Iraq's largest air bases on Wednesday as the first US teams arrived to the country. Two weeks of advances by militants spearheaded by al-Qaeda offshoot the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has threatened to rupture the country 11 years after the US-led invasion shattered Iraq’s stability. Militants including #ISIS and allied tribes battled Iraqi forces in the town of Yathrib, 90 kilometers north of Baghdad, into the early hours of Wednesday, witnesses and the deputy head of the municipality said. Four militants were killed, they said. read more

  • #al-Qaeda affiliates keeping a watchful eye on #ISIS' conquests

    A file image grab taken from a video uploaded on YouTube on August 23, 2013 allegedly shows a member of Ussud Al-Anbar (Anbar Lions), a Jihadist group affiliated to the Islamic State of #Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Al-Qaeda’s front group in Iraq, holding up the trademark black and white Islamist flag at an undisclosed location in Iraq’s Anbar province. (Photo-AFP/Youtube) A file image grab taken from a video uploaded on YouTube on August 23, 2013 allegedly shows a member of Ussud Al-Anbar (Anbar Lions), a Jihadist group affiliated to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Al-Qaeda’s front group in Iraq, holding up the trademark black and white Islamist flag at an undisclosed location in Iraq’s Anbar province. (Photo-AFP/Youtube) (...)

    #Mideast_&_North_Africa #Abu_Bakr_al-Baghdadi #Abudallah_Azzam_Brigades #Al-Nusra_Front #al-Zawahiri #Articles #Ayman #Baghdad #Caliphate #Homs #Lebanon #Mosul #syria

  • Tu te souviens, quand Rumsfeld et les grands médias internationaux ont inventé le bunker secret d’Al Qaeda creusé dans la montagne ?

    Rumsfeld: Oh, you bet. This is serious business. And there’s not one of those. There are many of those. And they have been used very effectively. And I might add, Afghanistan is not the only country that has gone underground. Any number of countries have gone underground.

    Une rumeur largement reprise dans la presse à l’époque fut qu’à Tora Bora se trouvait un gigantesque complexe souterrain. Tout est apparemment parti d’une description faite dans le New York Times des grottes de Zhawar Kili dans la province de Paktiyâ d’après le récit d’un vétéran russe, Viktor Kutsenko, un sapeur chargé de les détruire en 1986. Selon Kutsenko, il y avait 41 grottes, fermées par des portes en acier, où l’électricité était installée, comprenant diverses installations très équipées dont un hôpital avec une machine à ultra-sons, et l’une d’elles contenait même un char T-342. Divers articles de journaux ont ensuite repris la description de cette « forteresse souterraine », en la situant à Tora Bora au lieu de Zhawar Kili, en l’amplifiant en parlant d’une véritable fourmilière creusée à 300 mètres sous la montagne, pouvant accueillir des centaines voire des milliers d’hommes, équipée de systèmes de ventilation, etc., le tout parfois illustré de vues d’artistes spectaculaires3. Finalement, aucun complexe souterrain sophistiqué n’a été trouvé à Tora Bora, mais de nombreuses grottes qui servaient d’abris à personnel, d’hôpital et d’entrepôts à munitions4.

    • Flashback: What Neocons Told Us about Iraq - Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont

      Paul Wolfowitz:
      – “It’s hard to conceive that it would take more forces to provide stability in post-Saddam Iraq than it would take to conduct the war itself and to secure the surrender of Saddam’s security forces and his army. Hard to imagine.” Feb. 27, 2003 (Source)
      – "Peacekeeping requirements in Iraq might be much lower than historical experience in the Balkans suggests. There’s been none of the record in Iraq of ethnic militias fighting one another that produced so much bloodshed and permanent scars in Bosnia along with the requirement for large policing forces to separate those militias.” Feb. 27, 2003 (Source)
      – “These are Arabs, 23 million of the most educated people in the Arab world, who are going to welcome us as liberators.” Feb. 27, 2003 (Source)

  • The Iraq-ISIS Conflict in Maps, Photos and Video -

    De la part de notre copain Jacopo Ottaviani ‏@jackottaviani

    Having occupied crucial sections of Syria over the past year and more recently seizing vast areas of Iraq, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria controls territory greater than many countries and now rivals Al Qaeda as the world’s most powerful jihadist group.

    #irak #syrie #isis #eiil

  • Yemeni gunmen attack medic bus, kill eight

    A suspected #al-Qaeda gunman opened fire on a minibus carrying staff members from a military hospital in #Yemen's main southern city of Aden on Sunday, killing eight people, an army official said, The attacker used an assault rifle to rake the army minibus with gunfire, the official said. Two women were among the dead while 12 other staff members were wounded. “The bus was carrying doctors and nurses working for the military hospital in Aden,” the official said. Among the wounded was “a mother who was with her two children on board” the bus. read more

  • Je ne vois pas comment on peut parler de l’Irak aujourd’hui sans citer The Redirection, de Hersh (mars 2007) :
    Annals of National Security : The Redirection

    The Saudis are driven by their fear that Iran could tilt the balance of power not only in the region but within their own country. Saudi Arabia has a significant Shiite minority in its Eastern Province, a region of major oil fields; sectarian tensions are high in the province. The royal family believes that Iranian operatives, working with local Shiites, have been behind many terrorist attacks inside the kingdom, according to Vali Nasr. “Today, the only army capable of containing Iran”—the Iraqi Army—“has been destroyed by the United States. You’re now dealing with an Iran that could be nuclear-capable and has a standing army of four hundred and fifty thousand soldiers.” (Saudi Arabia has seventy-five thousand troops in its standing army.)

    Nasr went on, “The Saudis have considerable financial means, and have deep relations with the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafis”—Sunni extremists who view Shiites as apostates. “The last time Iran was a threat, the Saudis were able to mobilize the worst kinds of Islamic radicals. Once you get them out of the box, you can’t put them back.”

    The Saudi royal family has been, by turns, both a sponsor and a target of Sunni extremists, who object to the corruption and decadence among the family’s myriad princes. The princes are gambling that they will not be overthrown as long as they continue to support religious schools and charities linked to the extremists. The Administration’s new strategy is heavily dependent on this bargain.

    Nasr compared the current situation to the period in which Al Qaeda first emerged. In the nineteen-eighties and the early nineties, the Saudi government offered to subsidize the covert American C.I.A. proxy war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan. Hundreds of young Saudis were sent into the border areas of Pakistan, where they set up religious schools, training bases, and recruiting facilities. Then, as now, many of the operatives who were paid with Saudi money were Salafis. Among them, of course, were Osama bin Laden and his associates, who founded Al Qaeda, in 1988.

    This time, the U.S. government consultant told me, Bandar and other Saudis have assured the White House that “they will keep a very close eye on the religious fundamentalists. Their message to us was ‘We’ve created this movement, and we can control it.’ It’s not that we don’t want the Salafis to throw bombs; it’s who they throw them at—Hezbollah, Moqtada al-Sadr, Iran, and at the Syrians, if they continue to work with Hezbollah and Iran.”

    • Tout ce passage est, en gros, une citation de Vali Nasr, qui n’est généralement pas considéré comme totalement inculte :-)

      Ici, les frères n’apparaissent pas seuls, mais une unique fois dans « Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafis » ; quand il évoque les relations avec le royaume, il ne parle plus des Frères explicitement, mais sous la forme : « both a sponsor and a target of Sunni extremists ».

      Le seul passage du texte où les Frères sont présentés de manière centrale, c’est au sujet de la Syrie, avec Abdul Halim Khaddam et Joumblatt.

    • Il n’est pas inculte, tu as raison, il est « biaisé »
      un des événements majeurs des dix dernières années est la rupture entre l’Arabie et les Frères, on le voit aujourd’hui en Egypte. Ne pas le prendre en compte, relève d’une analyse biaisée
      Quant aux salutistes, contrairement aux Frères, il relèvent de mille et une tendances et courants qui sont utilisés par les uns et les autres (Y compris Sissi en Egypte, l’Arabie et… Assad)

    • Mais encore une fois : le texte ne parle quasiment pas des Frères, donc les liens entre les Frères et les Séoudiens ne me semblent pas appeler un développement détaillé au-delà de la mention de leur aspect conflictuel dans « both a sponsor and a target of Sunni extremists ».

      Il y a cette évocation rapide par Nasr, dans une partie qui justement est dans la logique d’une perspective historique. Je veux bien que tu trouves ça rapide, mais pas de quoi à mon avis tirer de ce détail précis l’idée d’un gros biais (en revanche, que Hersh fasse des choix politiques qui transparaissent dans cet article, oui évidemment).

      Dans le reste du document de Hersh, la seule fois où les Frères sont expliquement évoqués, c’est dans un long paragraphe sur la Syrie, notamment via Khaddam et Joumblatt. Or, là, les liens entre l’Arabie séoudite, le 14 Mars libanais, Khaddam et les Frères syriens ne sont plus tellement mystérieux désormais : par exemple, on a le célèbre câble des Wikileaks dans lequel Saad Hariri donne des conseils pour un changement de régime en Syrie :

      13. (S/NF) If the regime were to fall in Syria, who would be there to fill in the vacuum? Perplexed that the Alawites, who make up only 7-8 per cent of Syria, could rule so exclusively as “a family business” over a vast Sunni majority, Saad suggested that the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood, in partnership with ex-regime figures like Abdel Halim Khaddam and Hikmet Shehabi (“though he’s still close to the regime”), could step into the void. Saad claimed that the Syrian Brotherhood is similar in character to Turkey’s moderate Islamists. “They would accept a Christian or a woman as President. They accept civil government. It’s like Turkey in Syria. They even support peace with Israel.” Saying that he maintains close contact with Khaddam (in Paris) and Syrian Muslim Brotherhood leader-in-exile Ali Bayanuni (in London), Saad urged us to “talk to Bayanuni. See what he’s like. You will see wonders.”

      Détails intéressant : dans l’introduction de ce câble, l’ambassadeur américain précise que Saad a fait la différence entre les Frères syriens et les Frères égyptiens et le Hamas :

      Saad himself counselled a complete regime change in Syria, with a possible replacement being a hybrid Muslim Brotherhood/ex-Baathist government more in line with the moderate Islamist government in Turkey than with the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood or Hamas.

      Du coup, l’article de Hersh n’évoque réellement les Frères musulmans dans son pourtant très long texte qu’à un seul moment, et c’est dans le cas de la Syrie ; et dans ce cas, on a notoirement des informations sur les liens entre les agents séoudiens au Liban, Khaddam et les Frères syriens.

    • Rumor, je ne vois pas bien le sens de ta question. Les gens (nombreux) qui, comme toi, suspectent que Saad ne connaît pas grand chose aux sujets qu’il aborde, et qui pensent qu’il y forcément quelqu’un qui parle par sa bouche… ces gens ne doutent pas qu’il est le représentant des intérêts séoudiens au Liban.

      De fait, dans le câble (mais c’était un secret de polichinelle), on a bien le représentant des séoudiens qui conseille aux Américains de travailler avec les frères syriens et Khaddam, de rencontrer le merveilleux Bayanuni.

      Donc, c’est bien ce que je dis : Hersh dans son article ne mentionne les Frères précisément que dans un cas : la Syrie. Or, justement, évoquer les liens entre des intérêts séoudiens (le 14 Mars libanais) et les Frères musulmans syriens en 2007 n’est pas du tout une erreur, puisqu’encore en 2006, Saad Hariri met lui-même ces liens en avant quand il rencontre l’ambassadeur américain.

      Pour aller dans le sens de ta remarque : si Saad parlait pour lui-même, son propos ne serait pas intéressant. Mais c’est bien parce que ce sont des intérêts séoudiens qui s’expriment « par sa bouche » que je le cite ici.

    • je n’avais pas « partagé » et donc pas eu ta réponse. « Polichinelle » ou « marionnette » est certainement le terme qui convient pour parler de Saad, et je ne doute pas qu’il soit le plus souvent le polichinelle des saoudiens. Parfois surement aussi des américains, mais s’en aperçoit-il seulement ? Je ne met pas en question la source et son intérêt. Ce que je trouve terrifiant, c’est que son « camp » (mais le terme a t il un sens, une réalité sociologique ou bien n’est ce qu’une ligue géopolitique sans plus de lien concret avec le paysage social du Liban) continue à en faire la bouche qui exprime ses intérêt alors qu’il n’en sort que la voix d’autres acteurs. Mais peut être ces étonnements sont-ils sont ils trop naïfs... Je persiste à penser que son père, tout héraut des Saoudiens qu’il fut aussi, avait plus d’épaisseur, plus d’ancrage, plus de volonté propre que Saad.

  • When will the U.S. send drones to Iraq? The question won’t go away

    The metastasizing security crisis in Iraq is shaking up an old argument in Washington: Instead of taking criticism for using aerial drones to target perceived terrorist threats, the White House is now taking tough questions about why it hasn’t approved their usage in Iraq to help fight a powerful offshoot of al-Qaeda.

    #drones #Irak #USA #Al-Qaïda

  • Jihadists kill Syrian refugee in #Lebanon, kidnap two others

    Suspected jihadists from #Al-Nusra_Front killed a Syrian refugee and kidnapped two others in Lebanon’s eastern #Bekaa Valley Wednesday night, state media reported. Al-Nusra Front, al-Qaeda’s official proxy in #syria which is also active in Lebanon, has been behind a spate of recent killings and kidnappings in Lebanon. Lebanon’s National News Agency said that the attack occurred around 11:00 pm, when the gunmen opened fire on a refugee camp in the Wadi Hamid area, near Ersal, killing Ahmed Mohammed al-Badawi, 31, and injuring Majed al-Badawi. read more

  • Loïc Garnier : « Al-Qaida entraîne des Français pour frapper l’Europe »

    (...) Les services de police risquent-ils d’être débordés face à la menace qui enfle ?

    Non, nous ne sommes pas débordés. Il est clair en revanche que le volume inédit de djihadistes nécessite une approche différente sur le ciblage. Même si nous essayons d’avoir un œil sur tout le monde, nous sommes dans l’obligation de prioriser nos objectifs. Sachant que la surveillance d’une seule personne 24 heures sur 24 suppose un minimum d’une vingtaine de fonctionnaires à renouveler tous les deux jours pour éviter qu’ils se fassent repérer, il est impossible, ni même souhaitable, d’épier tout le monde.

    Inutile de préciser que nous suivons de près ceux qui reviennent fanatisés de Syrie ou encore certains paramètres « visibles » tels que la rupture brutale avec l’environnement familial, les appels à la haine formulés en public ou sur Internet. En creux, il est aussi intéressant de regarder en direction de ceux qui ont tenté de brouiller les pistes avant de revenir en France. Pour l’heure, on dénombre environ 850 djihadistes français potentiels, dont 31 sont décédés et certains ont pris la route du retour. Baignant au départ dans un univers virtuel de jeu vidéo, ces derniers n’avaient pas réalisé que la guerre est une réalité très dure : ils ont été exposés à un niveau de mort qu’ils n’ont pas supporté. D’autres sont revenus malades, blessés, exprimant un sentiment de lassitude.(...)