Ayman’s question box is filling up. But as for the question about British Muslims killing British civilians, does anyone know who asked it, where this person is, and what he is doing? Does anyone care?
An update on this story.
“‘Ask Zawahri’ Web forum draws Qaeda-curious,” by Randall Mikkelsen for Reuters (thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist):
WASHINGTON, Jan 25 (Reuters) – A woman frustrated by the lack of opportunities in al Qaeda and a supporter wondering if Muslims should deal in gold instead of dollars are among hundreds who have submitted Internet questions to al Qaeda deputy Ayman al-Zawahri.
“My question: What is the role of women in al Qaeda? … We are the ones who sit with broken hearts and we sit here with nothing to do,” one woman asked, according to the U.S. based terrorism monitoring service SITE Intelligence Group.
The questions were drawn by an offer last month by al Qaeda-linked Web sites that carried an interview with Zawahri, Osama bin Laden’s second-in-command.
The deadline was Jan. 16, and Zawahri’s answers to selected questions are expected within the next several weeks, SITE said. It sampled about 500 questions of the more than 2,000 submitted. Most were in Arabic.
Although Zawahri and other top al Qaeda leaders are believed to be holed up in remote Pakistan, analysts credit the group with being highly Web-savvy. The semi-interactive forum with Zawahri lets him appear accessible, SITE senior analyst Adam Raisman said.
“It allows for a greater feeling of community on these al-Qaeda affiliated forums when members can voice their concerns to the leadership where there may be a possibility he can respond to them. It also allows them to achieve part of their propaganda goal,” he said.
Among the hot topics, questioners wanted to know whether al Qaeda has a presence in Palestinian areas or plans one. It is believed the network wants to establish a foothold, but faces competition for turf from the well-established Hamas.
Many asked about ties between al Qaeda and regional groups, how a local group can sign up with al Qaeda, and the proper role for aspiring militants in their home countries.
“Is the British Muslim allowed to kill British civilians whether they are nonbelievers or Muslims who support the war against Afghanistan, Iraq and others?” asked one questioner….