Now wait a minute. Paul Stockton, assistant defense secretary for homeland defense, recently said: “I don’t believe it’s helpful to frame our adversary as Islamic with any set of qualifiers that we might add, because we are not at war with Islam.” Yet al-Qarawi is clearly Islamic. He speaks in Islamic terms about his Muslim brothers, Allah’s will, and the struggle against the Jews.
Here again the State Department entangles itself in a contradiction: the Obama Administration has said that Islam and terrorism have nothing to do with one another, and yet it is designating a clearly pious Muslim as a terrorist. So it goes in the make-believe twilight world of fantasy-based policymaking that prevails in Washington.
“US adds Abdullah Azzam Brigades commander to terrorist list,” by Bill Roggio at the Long War Journal, December 15:
Today under Executive Order 13224, the US State Department added Saleh al Qarawi, a top leader of the Lebanon-based, al Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades, to the list of specially designated global terrorists. The designation allows the US to freeze his assets and prohibits others from engaging in financial transactions with him.
Qarawi is a Saudi citizen and is on the list of 85 most-wanted terrorists that was issued by the Saudi Interior Ministry in 2009. He appears as number 34 on the Saudi list and is identified as Saleh Abdullah Saleh al Qaraawi.
Qarawi has been described as a “field commander” by Flashpoint Intel, which published a translation of an interview that was released in April 2010. According to Qarawi, he fought with former al Qaeda in Iraq leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi in Fallujah (presumably in the two battles in 2004), and was ordered by Zarqawi to form the Abdullah Azam Brigades.
“Allah rewarded me to participate with my brothers in Fallujah, and I came to know the Sheikh Abu Musab al Zarqawi–may Allah have mercy on him–closely, and he assigned me to a job outside of Iraq,” he said.
In the same interview, Qarawi said that the Abdullah Azzam Brigades are tasked not only with striking in Lebanon, but elsewhere.
“[The Abdullah Azzam Brigades] are not confined to Lebanon but there are targets that our fires will reach Allah”willing in the near future…the Brigades are formed of a number of groups that are spread in numerous places…and the groups of ‘Ziad al”Jarrah’ in Lebanon are only some of our groups, and we rushed to create these groups and announced them because of the urgency of the battle with the Jews and the priority of the initiative at the time and the place, but the rest of the groups are outside Lebanon.”
The “Ziad al Jarrah” is one of several battalions in the Abdullah Azzam Brigades. It operates primarily in Lebanon, and is named after Ziad al Jarrah, a Lebanese citizen who was one of the masterminds of the Sept. 11 attacks on the US. He was the pilot of United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed into a field in Shanksville, Penn. after passengers attempted to retake the plane from the terrorist hijackers….
The Abdullah Azzam Brigades, which is named after al Qaeda’s co-founder and Osama bin Laden’s mentor, releases propaganda on a routine basis. Over the past two years, the group has advocated for the overthrow of the Saudi government and called for an uprising in Lebanon, as well as voiced support for Syrian protesters. The terror group also released a statement immediately after the death of al Qaeda emir Osama bin Laden in May 2011.
“May Allah have mercy on Osama, the Sheikh of Jihad, the Imam of Piety, the example of asceticism and the model of patience, the pioneer of glory in this age, and the awakener of the Ummah from its slumber,” the terror group said in a statement translated by the SITE Intelligence Group. The group also said it had been formed “after incitation” by bin Laden.
“We in the Brigades of Abdullah Azzam bear witness that we only went out for jihad after incitation from Sheikh Osama bin Laden, by his words and his actions. He is the one enacted among the people of the time, the tradition to invade infidels in their homes, and created a front to fight the Jews and the Crusaders,” the statement said….