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July 4, 2004
Libyans Finds Al-Qaeda Base, Informs West

Proving again that the Bush approach on Iraq integrates into the wider war on Islamofascist terror, the newly repentant Libya has discovered an al-Qaeda operations base near its border with Chad:

Libyan secret services have found a desert operations camp belonging to an al Qaeda-linked group called the GSPC after "intercepting" members of the group near the border with Chad, a French newspaper said on Sunday.

The paper, Le Journal du Dimanche, said that a source close to the counter-espionage services of a European country told it of the discovery by Libyan agents 10 days ago in the mountainous region of Tibesti that spans Libya's southern border with Chad. ...

The French newspaper said that the GSPC -- the Salafist Group for Preaching and Combat -- was recruiting actively in the Tibesti region and buying arms and vehicles with German ransom money paid for the release of tourists in the Sahara in 2003. The GSPC, whose acronym is based on the French spelling of its name, is a militant group founded in 1998 in Algeria which is now regarded to have eclipsed the renowned Armed Islamic Group (GIA) in Algeria.

Instapundit has often linked to stories regarding Islamofascist activity in North Africa, specifically Algeria. Libya, which joined the West in its war on AQ after Moammar Gaddafi watched Saddam Hussein pulled out of his Tikriti rathole, now has scored an important victory against the terrorists and has demonstrated why taking Saddam out as an object lesson to the other dictators in the region was so important.

People seem to forget the strategic importance of geography in any war, and especially this one. The first phase had to be Afghanistan, to dislodge and disrupt the AQ network and remove the Taliban after their defiance. Toppling Saddam and freeing Iraq cut a huge hole in the transit corridor between Iran and Syria and isolated bothe countries militarily, especially Syria, which is now bordered on three sides by representative democracies (in Iraq, a nascent one). With Libya now acting on behalf of the West in the war, the North African transit corridor is now compromised as well.

Terrorists are running out of territory in North Africa and Southwest Asia and have fewer secure means to relocate when pressured, meaning that eventually they will be easier to spot and to target. In less than three years of war, we've managed to liberate 50 million people and removed three main state supports of Islamofascist terrorism. In case people can't recognize it for all of the silliness of our national media, this is progress.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at July 4, 2004 11:41 AM

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