November 14, 2005

Crapo Releases Intercepted Al Qa'ida Letter

Letter from July highlights al Qaâ??ida strategic terrorist goals in their own words

Washington, DC â?? The office of Idaho Senator Mike Crapo today highlighted a letter regarding the ongoing war against terror. The letter, which was released last month by the office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI), is between two senior al-Qaâ??ida leaders, sent by Ayman Zawahiri to Abu Musab al Zarqawi. It is dated July 9, 2005, and was obtained in the course of counterterrorism operations in Iraq. â??This letter sets out a strategic vision for al Qaâ??idaâ??s direction and I wanted Idahoans to have an opportunity to read it and draw their own conclusions,â?? Crapo said about his decision to post the letter on his Senate website. The letter can be linked at http://crapo.senate.gov/issues/iraq/al_qaeda_letter.cfm. According to the DNI, the text of the letter is as it was prepared by Zawahiri, translated into English, and is not edited. The letter outlines a vision for the direction that al-Qaâ??ida plans for Iraq as well as its global intentions. Crapo wanted Idahoans and others who are interested to have an opportunity to read the document and be fully informed about the enemy our country faces in the war against terrorism. It is significant to note that al-Qaeda's senior officials do not plan to end terrorist operations with an American departure from the Middle East and Iraq. The DNI, which has authenticated the letter, released it to the public only after determining that no intelligence or military operations currently underway would be affected. According to the DNI, the letter contains six main points: The centrality of the war in Iraq for the global jihad. From al Qa'ida's point of view, the war does not end with an American departure. An acknowledgment of the appeal of democracy to the Iraqis. The strategic vision of inevitable conflict, with a tacit recognition of current political dynamics in Iraq; with a call by al-Zawahiri for political action equal to military action. The need to maintain popular support at least until jihadist rule has been established. Admission that more than half the struggle is taking place "in the battlefield of the media."