Is American al Qaeda member and indicted traitor Adam Gadahn dead? Shortly after a U.S. Predator drone attack killed Abu Laith al-Libi last month rumors began to circulate on Islamic message board that Gadahn had been one of those killed in the raid. Later, a Pakistani newspaper quoted “sources” saying Gadahn was killed.
NBC News also claimed that it had a source in Pakistan who was friends with Adam Gadahn and that Gadahn had disappeared after the Predator strike. Gadahn’s friends, said the story, were worried about him.
This week a trusted source revealed to me that he was hearing from Pakistan that Gadahn was most likely dead. I asked him if his sources weren’t the same as NBC? No, he replied, he had a different source of information.
Then why hasn’t the U.S. confirmed Gadahn’s demise? Too many body parts, he said. Very little left of any one on the ground. Could take some time, or we may never have confirmation.
How much do I trust the person who told me this? On a scale of 1-10, he’s an 11. It’s more a question of his sources than anything else. His sources seem to believe Gadahn has gone to meet his 72 virgins.
So, is Adam Gadahn dead? I know we’ve been down this road before, and I know a lot of this is wishful thinking, but Magic Eight Ball says outlook good.
In addition to possibly shipping the ex-California slacker of to Virginville, someone else was the target of airstrikes this week.
Pakistani and US intelligence are attempting to sort out the names of the al Qaeda and Taliban operatives killed in yesterday’s airstrike in Azam Warzak, South Waziristan. Initial reports indicated Arabs and fighters from Central Asia were killed in the operation. One report indicates an “al Qaeda fugitive from Egypt” was among those killed, sparking rumors that Ayman al Zawahiri was the target of the strike.
While the identities of those killed in the latest strike in South Waziristan are still being sorted out, the nationality of some of those killed is known. Anywhere from eight to 13 al Qaeda and Taliban were reported killed in the strike. Dawn reported four Arabs, two Turkmen, and two Pakistanis from Punjab province were killed. Local Taliban cordoned the area and immediately buried the bodies, which were said to have been badly burned and mutilated.
The presence of Arab al Qaeda operatives in Azam Warzak has led to speculation that a senior al Qaeda figure may have been killed. “An al Qaeda fugitive from Egypt” was reported to have been among those killed, The Nation reported. This has raised the hopes that Ayman al Zawahiri, the Egyptian-borne second in command of al Qaeda was among present during the strike.
You should really check out the story for more background on possible Al Qaeda targets. It’s a great resource.
Whatever baddie was the target, with a phrase like “badly burned and mutilated” you know it’s good news. Are we ramping things up? It seems like a lot of these mountain boys are getting caught in the cross hairs recently.
Jawa Report has some more details on the possibilities of Ayman al-Zawahiri being the target and some hope tempering.
A lot of speculation and rumor that bits and pieces of Ayman al-Zawahiri’s corpse will be found in the aftermath of a CIA strike against Arab fighters in Pakistan yesterday.
The speculation is probably not true. There are a lot of Arab al Qaeda fighters in Pakistan, but whenever a paper says that one of the casualties of a Predator strike near the Afghanistan border was Egyptian, one can’t help but jump to hope-filled conclusions.
Hot Air picks it up.