September 28, 2007

Senior AQI Leader Reaches Room Temperature

One of the highest-placed leaders of al-Qaeda in Iraq, the man responsible for kidnapping and killing American soldiers, has been killed by American-led forces. Abu Usama al-Tunisi had become the "emir" of Yusufiyah and led foreign terrorists in their campaign against US and Iraqi forces:

U.S.-led forces have killed one of the most important leaders of Al Qaeda in Iraq, a Tunisian believed connected to the kidnapping and killings last summer of American soldiers, a top commander said Friday.

Brig. Gen. Joseph Anderson said the death of the terrorist in a U.S. airstrike Tuesday south of Baghdad, and recent similar operations against Al Qaeda, have left the organization in Iraq fractured.

"Abu Usama al-Tunisi was one of the most senior leaders ... the emir of foreign terrorists in Iraq and part of the inner leadership circle," Anderson said.

Al-Tunisi was a leader in helping bring foreign terrorists into the country and his death "is a key loss" to Al Qaeda leadership there, Anderson told a Pentagon news conference.

Anderson did not name the soldiers al-Tunisi was thought to have killed, but the timeline suggests Pfc. Kristian Menchaca and Pfc. Thomas Tucker. Terrorists captured the two American soldiers in an ambush, and US forces searched desperately for them. Three days later, their mutilated bodies turned up, booby-trapped and showing gruesome signs of torture.

That made al-Tunisi a high-value target to American troops in Iraq. His senior position made him valuable, but his involvement in the Menchaca and Tucker murders has to give the US command a little more bitter satisfaction at his death. The surge meant to drive al-Tunisi's organization into disarray, and his death will make it even less capable of response.

In fact, CENTCOM has made it clear that successes like the operation against al-Tunisi are not coincidental. Aggressive strategy and tactics have driven AQI cells to the border of Iraq, disjointed and unable to coordinate for large-scale attacks. They have returned to single suicide bomber operations instead of the more massive coordinated attacks with small arms and mortars. They hold almost no territory outside of border districts, and American forces have begun denying them those toeholds now.

The flow of foreign fighters into Iraq has been cut in half. It seems that the message has gotten out to would-be jihadis -- the US and Iraq have toughened up, and only pointless suicide awaits in Iraq. If the Americans don't get them, the Iraqis do. That's the kind of success that Petraeus gave Congress and the American people.


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Comments (29)

Posted by Keemo | September 28, 2007 6:25 PM

This story was just reported at Fox News; good news indeed. Iraqi citizens are obviously working with local government officials, as well as American military personnel. General P has brought about a great change in momentum; god bless this warrior and all serving under his leadership.

Once again, this is great news for all Americans. Let's see how the MSM covers this story.

Posted by dhunter | September 28, 2007 6:53 PM

Great news for some Americans, bad news for Dem Anti-Americans, including all Dem Presidential candidates.

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 7:36 PM

ditto. The Kos Kiddies must be cursing these outcomes. And moveon, and the DU, (mechanical I?), and so on.....

Posted by John Wilson | September 28, 2007 7:46 PM

Is there news of the other two missing soldiers? They were taken last year with one kid dead shortly after and their tags found some weeks later. We can't forget. and then there is the young soldier Maupin, long ago taken.

I like the military response a lot. Never forget and payback. God Bless.

Posted by Terry Gain | September 28, 2007 8:14 PM

Let's see how the MSM covers this story.

I suspect they will cover this the way they covered the killing of Zarqawi's successor, the Egypytian al Masri, 4 weeks ago. They will cover this story the same way they covered the killing, within a few days of the event, of the mastermind of the Yazidi massacre.

The MSM will ignore this. They are invested in defeat. The only victory they want is to defeat Bush and the neocons. They will continue to promote the absurdity that there is an endless supply of suicide bombers who will continue to wreak havoc until their hero, Hillary, arrives on the scene and ends the war.

I have great respect for President Bush's resolve and courage but his communications strategy throughout this war has sucked. If he was propaganda aware he would not have allowed Ahmadinejad to use the morons at Columbia as a platform for a propaganda victory back in Iraqn.

Fortunately, it no longer matters. Regardless of what the MSM or Bush say about the war at this point, Al Qaeda's brutality has united Iraqis against al Qaeda and the pacification of Iraq will continue apace. Victory is at hand regardless of what any of us do.

And, as much as General Petraeus deserves great credit for his COIN strategy, 150,000 American soldiers can't pacify Iraq without the cooperation and assistance of Iraqis.

The great lie of the liberation of Iraq- a lie told by Rodham Clinton as much as anyone else- is that Iraqis wouldn't fight for their country. Bullshit. Iraqis have been dying for their country throughout. One of the things that convinced me this mission would be successful were the reports of Iraqis lining up to join their security services the day after their comrades has been killed by a suicide bomber.

The issue throughout has not been whether Iraqis would fight for their country but whether leftists and libertarians would combine with Islamofascists to defeat red state Americans and Iraqis willing to die for democracy.

Posted by Teresa | September 28, 2007 8:14 PM

Think Progress says that people reported last year that this same man was killed:

..."But terrorism analyst Evan Kohlman issued a “global terror alert” last year stating that al-Tunisi had died in July 2006. Kohlman’s report quotes a release from a terrorist group:

“The martyrdom of Abu Usama al-Tunisi [from Tunisia], the commander of [Al-Qaida’s] Aeisha Brigade [tasked with air defense missions]… I announce the news to the Islamic nation regarding the martyrdom of one of its heroes and true men.”

While it’s possible that there could have been two different Abu Usama al-Tunisis, it is the responsibility of news organizations to resolve these kinds of questions and double-check the facts before reporting them.

Wonder why the discrepancy?

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 8:22 PM

I forgot the MSM, whose careers are invested in America's defeat.
Think Progress says jump, you say how high. Do you think its possible Think Progress could be wrong? Maybe Mike Nifong was the DNA analyst that id'ed al-Tunisi last year?

Posted by qrstuv | September 28, 2007 8:34 PM


The press becomes much easier to understand when you realize that they are the PR arm of the Democratic party.

Posted by Carol Herman | September 28, 2007 8:38 PM

We're doing fine in Irak.

It's our Wild West.

And, all the things the Bonkeys said? Lying liars pants on fire.

Petraeus hasn't misjudged opportunities, either.

Baghdad's SHi'a. So what?

The sunnis parlayed themselves into a losing hand;

So they learned the hard way.

You think the Iraqi Sunnis haven't wised up?


As to our military, the learning curve works best when the military is NOT rushed!

And, as these A-Q guys reach room temperature; it just gives the Iraqis a better POLITICAL DEAL.

Here, the Sunnis have finally figured it out.

Maliki? He's the first politician; but not the last.

As to Mookie Sadr; he's stopped playing the "terror squad card," years ago! Because the Americans stayed! And, doubled-up.

As a matter of fact, the "terror" in Irak, these days, comes from their criminal class. Which means? They're getting clobbered.

As a matter of fact, the A-Q in Irak made the same mistakes that were made by the Taliban. That's what happens when the locals, at first, fear ya. And, then they take umbrage at the local slaughter. Beheaded children. Tribal elders.

This was the material that General Petraeus was up against, when the Sunni tribal elders "switched sides. And, joined ours.

The other shoe that dropped? Iran and syria have a mess-o problems. syria's gone as quiet as a bed bug.

While in iran? You think they're gonna get to go nu-cue-lar? I doubt it.

But Bush is a master of slow motion. So, there's a cycle of 90-days that gets to play out.

This is what I mean. So let me "translate." IF the Ahminutjob in iran is still breathing air in 90 days; then, the fireworks start from "without."

If, however, the terrified mullahs, "take care of business" from within? Then, there's a good chance the iranians will be able to toss ths nut, and his family of hangers-on, aside.

While every single day, ahead, is good news for the Iraqis. Who have opted for political solutions.

There is a reason even Mookie's goons are "laying down their arms." Well? Go figure it out. It ain't "good news" for the Bonkeys.

You do know what pelosi has lost so far, don't cha? If not, just check out the public opinion polls. Because they are not kind to congress critters.

And, larry craig's wide stance has not taken the heat off all those senators; who really do prefer prom dresses. And, drag. Nah. I don't care what party they're from.

But I do remember McGovern. A presidential loser; who ushered in the split ticket.

Does it "halp" affirmative action to continue?

Beats me. I ain't the Oracle at Delphi. But stay tuned. Bush has survived the "blame it all on Bush, BDS, sickness that prevailed since 2000.

Like Polk, he's changed the map for the better.

Posted by Terry Gain | September 28, 2007 8:55 PM

Regardless of the facts on the ground, don't give up. We need your blog bites for the campaign.

Think Progress? (think leftard moronism). Funny when I think of progress I think of a democracy in Iraq and leftist morons never again being in power in any country that claims to be civilized.

I'm surpised you didn't reference Media Matters or Sullivan or Olberman, or Kutie Katie or Sally or one of the other nuts. Don't give up. We need you.

Posted by Hugh Beaumont | September 28, 2007 9:19 PM

The left's view of the war will change when Shrill takes command.

As with welfare reform, they will embrace victory and take full credit.

Fear not my fellow Americans, the Democrats are invested in power. The war, children, policies, minorities etc...they're nothing more than props; tools to grab and grow power.

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 9:30 PM

Kinda like the left's view of the Bosnia conflict? Which was okay because Hill/Billy was in charge? Good point.

Posted by Terry Gain | September 28, 2007 9:35 PM


It ain't gonna happen. God may be menopausal but She's not dead. In fact God is taking great delght in this (we are god, pro choice)fanatic licking her lips over all those dead Iraqi bodies who will make her president.

It's down to the wire but there's no way on God's green earth She's going to allow this ethicaly challenged woman to become president.

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 9:47 PM

God as a girl? Sounds like something a womyn would say...

Posted by John Aams | September 28, 2007 9:55 PM

Thank God Abu Usama al-Tunisi was killed by an air strike. Otherwise, the ghastly, cowardly, CentCom General Kearney would have charged the soldiers involved with murder. When are the internet commentators going to get on the case of this miserable excuse for a general officer who actually wears the uniform of our army? This man is beneath contempt. A true scumbag!

Posted by unclesmrgol | September 28, 2007 10:26 PM


We use gender for God only because our Teutonic-structured English language has three gender pronouns, and that language uses the neuter gender only for lesser beings (such as insects).

Hence, the two usable pronouns (he and she) both indicate an honorific when applied to a nonhuman.

In other words, our language does not have the correct honorific pronoun for God, so we limp along using the same ones we attach to humans, dogs, cats, bovines, sheep, orangatangs, fruit bats, breakfast cereals...

Well, let's hope we got the right Usama this time, and that we eventually get the first one who started all this.

Posted by Carol Herman | September 28, 2007 10:27 PM


Over at Charles Johnson's Little Green Footballs is the news from Black Five, that the two accused soldiers have had their cases DISMISSED. In record time.

As to the "how to's" in getting an Al-Kay-Duh guy to room temperature; you've got to realize Petraeus was RIGHT! You get INTELLIGENCE from the LOCALS.

Heck, the Israelis are masters of this technique. And, the first thing you do is guarantee to the locals that it pays to cooperate with the good guys.

Droppig Al-Kay-Duh flies is proof that "to get" a target rich environment isn't done by "hit and miss."

While whatever was going on with the media, and the dorks at the pentagon, there's a new show in town. What? Well, after Beauchamp. After the left's parade; and now Beauchamp'swife has been fired by TNR; there seems to be a new "respect."

Or? The media wizzes are as terrified as the Al-Kay-Duh guys; now that their "fwends" in iran and syria, are licking some mighty serious wounds.

That's why I think Bush isn't through playing cards.

But he's gonna do it in his fashion; so that the news and media shows won't know what hit them!

The best way to do this? It to catch them off guard.

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 10:45 PM

I was teasing Terry. Here'e hoping She/He has a sense of humor, cause I do enjoy Terry's comments.
Per my understanding, since we are unable to "know" the Creator in this existential plane, assigning a gender is grossly inadequate. Yes, man was created in the Creator's image, but I believe a spiritual image, not physical. Both man and women are in/of God's image. Cool? (actually I think we're saying pretty much the same thing, no?)

Posted by Teresa | September 28, 2007 10:48 PM

I love how y'all are so invested in hating Think Progress that you don't bother to investigate the person who they quote as saying that al-Tunisi was killed last year.

Evan Kohlman is such a lefty tool that he is evenpublished by the National Review Online. (

Wow... I guess you're right... that makes him completely untrustworthy as a source.

Posted by Micah | September 28, 2007 10:56 PM

Thanks Teresa,
from now on, any point of contention will be automatically resolved by WHATEVER is published by the National Review site. Brilliant.

Posted by Scrapiron | September 28, 2007 11:13 PM

It doesn't pay to become a terrorist leader in Iraq these days. Most are killed before payday.

Posted by Teresa | September 28, 2007 11:16 PM

Micah -- You were the one who was complaining that Think Progress was a lefty blog and that I should not believe what they wrote. So, now I point out that the original source is someone who is published by conservative magazines and that is not good enough for you either.

I think there is a legitimate question here about whether the government is correct. It would be nice if a reporter asked the government to reconcile these two stories.

And, if they killed him last year or this year, yeah for them.

Posted by arch | September 29, 2007 4:18 AM

There is an interesting subtext that has hit my inbox several times in the last 24 hours. It's an article from the American Thinker:

Seems that President Bush intentionally leaked a plan to hit 24 AQ camps in Pakistan. The intent was to cause UBL & Company to flee to Tora Bora where we were waiting. Earlier this month, the terrorists did empty the camps. This widely reported story was billed as a prelude to another major attack on 9/11. Did we sealed the border behind him?

If true, Senator Obama's foreign policy rant may have contributed to this ruse and it may also account for Hillary's recent change of heart about pulling out of Iraq. Think how embarrassing it would be to be wining about the war being lost when we roll UBL's carcass out of the fridge.


Posted by TyCaptains [TypeKey Profile Page] | September 29, 2007 4:44 AM

Here's the .pdf article from the National Review guy.

Posted by dhunter | September 29, 2007 6:32 AM

Amazing how the Global war on terror has gone in less than just a decade from blowing up Christians in Bosnia, firing million dollar missles at a few camels in the desert, blowing up an aspirin factory, blasting a chinese something or other to actually taking the battle to AlQueda in the middleast and eliminating the terrorist org all over the globe.

Some would say it took 9/11 to make this happen. Some would say 9/11 would not have happened without Jamie Gorelick, Janet Reno, Bill(Monicas' boyfriend) Clintoon and his sidekick Hitlery..

Go W. lets redeploy to the border areas and blast Iran.

Posted by jay | September 29, 2007 6:50 AM

Terry. I went and looked at Thinklosers and like you I did come away with the idea that our military might just be playing a game with the names it releases.

However, unlike you I hope that their game results in more of these guys ending up at room temperature.

Posted by SoldiersMom | September 29, 2007 9:57 AM

arch - Thanks for the link. This especially caught my eye.

"Let me summarize the fantastic work that the Internet Anthropologist has been doing. You may remember a couple of months ago a report that al Qaeda and its' affiliates had abandoned their training camps in Pakistan along the Afghan border. The initial report caused quite a blog storm but soon the mystery was forgotten. According to AI, which links to references for all of this, the US got fed up with not being able to reach al Qaeda inside Pakistan. Then a few months back the US government told the Pakistani government that we had the coordinates for twenty-nine terror training bases and in a week we will be destroying them (perhaps on Cheney's visit this summer). The intent was to drive the terrorists from those camps so we could get to them.

It worked. That's why those camps emptied out.

So the US left the terrorists an escape route into Tora Bora. Once they had detected a large group of al Qaeda at the fortress and the likelihood of High Value Targets as determined by large scale security detachments, the US dropped the curtain on the escape routes back into Pakistan. We have been pounding the hell out of them for weeks in near complete secrecy."


Posted by eaglewings | September 29, 2007 12:36 PM

If that's true Soldier's Mom, that would be sweet. God Bless our armed forces. And for our Jewish lizards a Happy Succoth!

Posted by arch | September 29, 2007 2:24 PM

The taliban wants to negotiate with Karzi and he said he'll talk.

The only way it could get better would be Murdoch buys the NYTimes and cans Pinch.


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