May 3, 2007

Al-Baghdadi Reaching Room Temperature (Update: Jabouri?)

The Iraqis have announced another big takedown from al-Qaeda, and this time it looks like the US military will confirm the kill. Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed leader of the Islamic State of Iraq, has gone to meet his 72 virgins, courtesy of a joint US-Iraq operation:

U.S. and Iraqi forces have killed the head of the self-styled Islamic State in Iraq, an al Qaeda-led militant group that has claimed many major attacks in the country, Iraq's deputy interior minister said on Thursday.

Hussein Kamal said Abu Omar al-Baghdadi had been killed in a battle north of Baghdad. He declined to say when but said authorities had recovered Baghdadi's body.

"Abu Omar al-Baghdadi was killed north of Baghdad by Iraqi and American forces. He died as a result of wounds sustained in clashes. The Interior Ministry has his body to carry out further checks," Kamal told Reuters by telephone.

U.S. military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Christopher Garver declined to comment but said a news conference would be held later on Thursday to announce the "success" of an operation against Sunni Islamist al Qaeda.

That goes a lot farther than the US was willing to go earlier this week, when the Iraqis announced that Abu Ayyub al-Masri was really, really dead this time. American commanders have thus far declined to confirm al-Masri's death, which leaves the status of al-Qaeda in Iraq's leadership somewhat murky. AQI claims that al-Masri is alive, but have released no audio or video of him since the Iraqi Interior Ministry claimed he was killed in some internecine insurgent fighting.

Al-Baghdadi, however, would be even better than al-Masri. He had placed himself at the head of an umbrella organization of insurgent groups affiliated with al-Qaeda; al-Masri was his "war minister". Baghdadi wanted to try to organize outside of AQ and create an alliance with other Sunni insurgent groups in order to build strength against the elected government of Iraq and the US forces operating there. One of his main objectives was to mend the rift with native Iraqis over the indiscriminate target selection of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and especially al-Masri.

Now it looks like al-Baghdadi won't get that chance, if US forces confirm his death. It won't end the fighting, but any time we can take out senior leadership of terrorist networks, it helps.

UPDATE: The US will not confirm al-Baghdadi's death, but they announced that Muharib Abdul Latif al-Jubouri, AQI's "senior minister of information", had been killed:

The U.S. military said on Thursday it had killed a senior al Qaeda official in Iraq who it accused of involvement in the kidnapping of Americans Jill Carroll and Tom Fox and other foreigners.

But the military said it had no information to support claims by Iraq's Interior Ministry that Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, another senior al Qaeda figure in Iraq, had been killed.

Chief military spokesman Major-General William Caldwell identified Muharib Abdul Latif al-Jubouri, the "senior minister of information" for al Qaeda in Iraq, as a key figure in the separate abductions of Carroll and Fox.

"We killed him ... west of Taji on the first day of May," Caldwell told a news conference, referring to a town north of the capital Baghdad.

If we got all three of these terrorists, that would be wonderful, but Jabouri would be a victory under any circumstances. The momentum continues to favor the bold and the determined. If AQI leaves its senior officials out in the open like this, the network will eventually fall apart.


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» Ding Dong Abdul Latif al-Jubouri Dead! from The Jawa Report
The man who was responsible for the Kidnapping of Jill Carrol and rumored leader of the Islamic State of Iraq is no more.Via Reuters Via WAPO: BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The U.S. military said on Thursday it had killed a senior... [Read More]

» Al Baghdadi dead, Waiting on Confirmation for Al Masri Death from Noblesse Oblige
Everyone is treading lightly on the reports of Al Masri’s death, but it appears that Iraqi Television is stating that Al Baghdadi is dead. ... [Read More]

Comments (7)

Posted by DaveD [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 7:02 AM

Didn't Pelosi have a meeting scheduled with this guy for next week?

Posted by Keemo [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 7:17 AM

Actually Dave, I think this is one of the guys that bought properties on the strip with Reid...

I read on a milblog, that the government number for "dead" bad guy terrorist thugs is now at 27K.

We have lost some 3K of our finest; the bad guys have lost some 27K of their scum; somehow Reid, Pelosi, & Murtha equate those numbers into an American defeat. One might think that these Democrats have their own version of virgins waiting for them, a reward for their bullshit.

Bravo on this kill..... May many more of these devils find the same fate.

Posted by Mwalimu Daudi [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 7:20 AM

Hmmmm...Al-Baghdadi was not around very long, was he? I mean, the MSM and their Democrat pets didn't get much of a chance to gloat over the murders that Al-Baghdadi instigated and to extol his vast military prowess like they did for Zarqawi.

No, the only honor that they had time to bestow upon him was the beloved title of "insurgent".

Posted by MarkD [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 8:08 AM


I'm not sure about the virgins, but I'd bet there is at least one "D" in the DC madam's black book...

Posted by chsw [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 8:14 AM

May their virgins all look like Yasser Arafat and Helen Thomas.


Posted by NoDonkey [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 8:35 AM

The Democrat National Committee Medal of Freedom will be presented to al-Baghdadi's favorite goat, by Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi and Michael Moore, in a tearful ceremony scheduled for later today.

Black arm bands all around today at the DNC. DNC white flags will be flown at quarter mast in honor of al-Baghdadi, down from their usual half mast.

Robert Byrd has been quoted as saying about al-Baghdadi, "Only the good die young."

Posted by docjim505 [TypeKey Profile Page] | May 3, 2007 2:28 PM

Think about HOW we got this guy. Obviously, SOMEBODY in Iraq is getting good intelligence, and the Iraqi people are cooperating. Odd, wouldn't you say, given that the MSM has assured us on innumerable occasions that the Iraqis hate us and want nothing but for our troops to leave?

A few libs, when they can stop bleating, "It's all Bush's fault!"(TM) long enough to form a semi-coherent thought, say that we can't win this war with military force alone. Actually, I agree. As we learned in Vietnam, having battalions of infantry out pounding the hinterlands (or even the city streets) doesn't do a lot of good. The Big Fish that we REALLY want to catch hear them coming and either lay low or slip away.

You catch the big fish with patience and a carefully-groomed intelligence network, much like cops catch the big fish in organized crime. Somebody in Iraq is doing things right, and that's cause for some quiet satisfaction.