Letter shows al-Qaida leaders were not happy with their man in Iraq

Letter shows al-Qaida leaders were not happy with their man in Iraq
October 2nd, 2006  
Team Infidel

Topic: Letter shows al-Qaida leaders were not happy with their man in Iraq

Letter shows al-Qaida leaders were not happy with their man in Iraq
Media: The Associated Press
Date: 02 October 2006

CAIRO, Egypt_Six months before the head of al-Qaida in Iraq was killed by a
U.S. airstrike, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi received a letter said to be sent by a
top al-Qaida official who said he was not happy with him and warned that he
would be removed if he did not consult with the terror group's leadership on
major issues.

Sent by an al-Qaida leader named "Atiyah," who said he was in the northwest
Pakistani region of Waziristan, the 11-page letter also praised al-Zarqawi,
saying "you have hurt America, the largest infidel Crusader forces in

The letter provides a glimpse into the weakened leadership of al-Qaida in
Waziristan and shows the rift between the terror group and the leader of its
Iraqi branch.

First revealed by Iraq's National Security Adviser Mouwafak al-Rubaie on
Sept. 18, the Washington Post reported in Monday's editions that the letter
was the first document to emerge from what the U.S. military described as a
"treasure trove" of information uncovered from Iraqi safe houses at the time
of al-Zarqawi's death.

It's dated the 10th of the Muslim month of Zhul Qadah, which was around
mid-December last year and about six months before the Jordian-born
al-Zarqawi was killed in a U.S. airstrike north of Baghdad.

In a warning to al-Zarqawi that he could be removed, the letter said that
"anyone who commits tyranny and aggression upon the people and causes
corruption within the land and drives people away from us and our faith and
our jihad and from the religion and the message that we carry, then he must
be taken to task."

"We must direct him to what is right, just, and for the best. Otherwise, we
would have to push him aside and keep him away from the sphere of influence
and replace him and so forth," Atiyah wrote.

The Iraqi government has identified Atiyah as an Algerian and in the letter
he tells al-Zarqawi how he fought with militants in Algeria in the 1990s.
The Washington Post quoted counterterrorism officials as saying that they
believe he is Atiyah Abd al-Rahman, a 37-year-old Libyan who joined bin
Laden in Afghanistan as a teenager during the 1980s.

Atiyah tells al-Zarqawi that on major issues he should consult with "your
leadership, Sheik Osama (bin Laden) and the doctor (Ayman al-Zawahri) and
their brothers ... as well as your Mujahedeen brothers in Iraq."

Among the issues that Atiyah cautioned al-Zarqawi against was the war he
declared against Shiite Muslims and attacks the Iraqi branch had carried out
in neighboring countries _ an apparent reference to last year's triple
suicide attacks in hotels in the Jordanian capital of Amman that killed

Al-Zarqawi also was asked in the letter to correspond with al-Qaida in
Waziristan through reliable messengers and was told not to attack Sunni
clerics whether in Iraq or abroad in an apparent reference to the Sunni
clerics who were assassinated after calling Iraqis to take part in last
year's general elections.

"The war is long and our road is long. What is important is to keep the good
reputation of yourself, the mujahedeen and especially your group," Atiyah

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