AQI Leader Killed?

That’s right, put a big fat question mark at the end of that sentence, because so far the only source on record for that assertion comes from the Iraqi Interior Ministry, which has a track record of overenthusiasm with kill reports. Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the successor to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, reportedly died in a battle today with other insurgents:

The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri, was killed on Tuesday in an internal fight between insurgents, the Interior Ministry spokesman said, but the U.S. military said it could not confirm the report.
Spokesman Brigadier-General Abdul Kareem Khalaf told Reuters: “We have definite intelligence reports that al Masri was killed today.” He said the battle happened near a bridge in the small town of al-Nibayi, north of Baghdad.
Another source in the ministry said Masri had been killed in what he described as “probably score-settling within al Qaeda itself.”
Both Khalaf and the ministry source said the authorities did not have Masri’s body, but the source added “our people had seen the body.”

They’ve seen the body, but they haven’t performed the DNA check yet. That recalls the situation in February, when the Iraqi Interior Ministry claimed to have captured al-Masri, and later turned out to be wrong. Presumably, someone saw a live “body” that time, too.
When will we know for sure? When the American military announces it, we can rely on the information, and not before. However, if it turns out to be true, it will show just how badly the tables have turned on AQI. We captured the man who would have replaced al-Masri last year, captured 17 of their people just three days ago, and now possibly have found the body of al-Masri himself. The means of his death will send a message to AQI from the Iraqi people, and I guarantee the last word will be Off.
That’s if this is al-Masri. I’m willing to wait for the official scorer to count the goal.

15 thoughts on “AQI Leader Killed?”

  1. I’m posting updates here. Here’s something that I found interesting:

    Tribesmen in the western Anbar province have been fighting al-Qaida for weeks and claim to have killed dozens of them.

    This information isn’t good news for Democrats who say that the war is lost. That obviously isn’t the case if sectarian violence has dropped dramatically and AQI is forced into defending itself inside its ‘sanctuary.’

  2. Put your fingers in your ears
    Close your eyes
    and repeat,
    “The war is lost. The surge isn’t working.”
    “The war is lost. The surge isn’t working.”
    If that doesn’t work, click your heels together and say, “There no place like home. Just leave Iraq and everything will be as peaceful as it was on September 10th, 2001.”
    And continue to dream of a time (1990’s) when all the world was gumdrop trees, rainbow lollipops, and chocolate rivers…when “all the world loved us” (except 19 or so guys who followed UBL in his war against the US-a war that he waged in direct, stated, quoted response to Clinton’s war on Iraq)
    “The war is lost. The surge isn’t working.”
    yeah, ok
    Here’s an idea, read the news, go to a briefing, and don’t just take the word of anti-war groups as legitimate or unspun.
    My apologies to the defeatocrats….not enough coffee today. Will go get more, come back, and play nicer.

  3. Good for you ordi
    The MSM will try to paint this as just another killing arising from the chaos in Iraq but the likelihood is he was killed by Sunni tribesmen, who are part of the Anbar Salvation Council, who are fighting al Qaeda with American assistance, not by insurgents.

  4. Al-Masri Dead?

    From Yahoo News:
    BAGHDAD (Reuters) – The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq was killed on Tuesday in a fight between insurgents north of Baghdad, the Interior Ministry spokesman said, but the U.S. military said it could not confirm the report.
    There has…

  5. Gary Gross
    Good post. The information to which you refer is at least 6 months old and would be above the fold front page news on the NYT if they weren’t so opposed to the mission.
    Roggio has been reporting this news for months..

  6. Say Hello to Zarqawi

    It appears al-Qaida in Iraq leader Abu Ayyub al-Masri has possibly assumed room temperature, which surely will be terrible news for al-Qaida in Washington leader Harry Reid.

  7. I just did some digging into al-Masri. Here’s what I found: His real name is Yussef al-Dardiri & he’s a former member of Gemaa Islamiya. If that terrorist organization sounds a little familiar, it should. Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman, aka the Blind Sheikh, was IG’s spiritual leader.
    I’ve posted several updates on al-Masri so feel free to check them out here:

  8. The Fever Swampers are seething about this news. They’d hoped that today’s news coverage would be wall-to-wall coverage of Mission Accomplished & the Defeatists Act veto.
    I love it when a conspiracy theory comes together.

  9. Al-Qaeda Leader In Iraq Reportedly Killed In Clash

    What will the Democrats in Congress do if the full surge shows even better results? My bet is that they will go and fight U.S. soldiers themselves; it’s the next best thing to surrender.

  10. Pelosi: “Abu Ayyub al-Masri’s Death Is On George Bush’s Hands”

    Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi expressed both profound sorrow and anger this morning upon receiving news of the death of Iraqi Al Qaeda leader Abu Ayyub al-Masri.
    Pelosi, who became fast friends with al-Masri during her recent Middle Eastern visi…

  11. The problem with the pro-war crowd is they take any small measure they can and turn it into a major victory. I am glad this guy is dead, I am glad their is progress … but I am still leary that this war is ever winable … but rejoice in your good times and opportunities to call those who don’t agree with you traitors. Keep repeating … “if only we had stayed in Viet Nam, if only we had stayed in Viet Nam …”

  12. Al-Masri believed dead – Confirmed by Iraqi Minister

    &printerIf true, so sweet!
    “The leader of al Qaeda in Iraq was believed killed in a battle between insurgents north of Baghdad, Iraqi security ministers said on Tuesday, but an al Qaeda-linked group denied the reports.
    The United States amba…

  13. Abu Ayyub al-Masri Dead or Alive?

    If so, al-Qaeda in Iraq has more to worry about than US and Coalition forces, it seems the tribal leaders and even the insurgents are targeting al-Qaeda just as al-Qaeda used to target them. Talk about irony.

  14. Monkei:
    There would be no bloodbath as the Communists liquidated their enemies in the South;
    There would have been no Boat People to die at sea;
    There would have been no communist terror to murder one third of the Cambodian population.
    Yes Monkei, IF ONLY

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