Posts Tagged ‘Anwar Awlaki’

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Enemy No. 1: Anwar The American

February 9, 2010

Enemy No. 1: Anwar The American

9 Feb. 2010 | IBD

Awlaki in 2008: Why isn't he in the cross hairs of our drones? APAwlaki in 2008: Why isn’t he in the cross hairs of our drones? AP View Enlarged Image

War On Terror: Upstaging Osama Bin Laden as the most dangerous man in the world may be an American recruiter for al-Qaida: Anwar Awlaki. So why’s he talking to Al-Jazeera instead of interrogators?

The radical U.S.-born cleric Anwar Awlaki told the Arab TV network that he supported the failed Christmas Day airliner attack because “the American people have participated in all the crimes of their government.” The turncoat added: “Some 300 Americans are nothing compared to the thousands of Muslims they have killed.”

Awlaki also advised the Fort Hood terrorist, whom he called “a hero.” The two exchanged some 20 e-mails. But he is best known for privately meeting with some of the 9/11 hijackers.

The Christmas crotch-bomber told federal authorities that Awlaki directed him to carry out his airliner attack, which means he has gone operational.

Both U.S. and Yemeni intelligence believe Awlaki met with suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab in Yemen late last year, and may have even helped outfit the bomber. There are also reports that Awlaki, born 38 years ago in New Mexico, has given his blessing to roomsful of blue-eyed, blonde-haired Americans preparing for suicide missions against their own country.

If true, this is chilling stuff. Yet the administration seems hesitant to go after Awlaki, who is holed up in a tribal region of Yemen. Some say that because he’s a U.S. citizen, the CIA cannot target him with a drone-fired missile.

Not so. After 9/11, President Bush gave the CIA, and later the military, authority to kill U.S. citizens abroad if strong evidence existed that an American was involved in organizing or carrying out terrorist actions against the U.S.

In fact, U.S. citizen Kamal Derwish was killed by a CIA missile strike in November 2002. U.S. spooks knew he was in a car with six other al-Qaida operatives driving through the Yemen desert. And they sent a Hellfire missile after them.

The CIA should put Awlaki in the cross hairs of a drone as a wartime imperative. His family is in touch with him and knows his whereabouts. Will Yemeni authorities help us triangulate on his location?

Political pressure is key. His father, a former Yemeni minister and current adviser to the Yemeni president, is well-connected, and recently made an impassioned plea to the U.S. to spare his son’s life. It’s a little too late for that.

White House national security adviser John Brennan recently testified that “we’re very concerned about Mr. Awlaki.”

Really? Then why hasn’t he even been added to the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list, alongside another U.S. citizen — Adam Gadahn, the “American al-Qaida”?

Gadahn’s crime is issuing al-Qaida propaganda from a safe house somewhere inside Pakistan. There is no evidence he is directly involved in terrorist operations.

Yet he was indicted for treason and material support to al-Qaida, and now has a $1 million bounty on his head.

At the very least, the feds could add Awlaki to the Most Wanted list. He should be made Public Enemy No. 1.

Awlaki is the Pied Piper of jihadists, turning up in case after case. Court records cite Awlaki and his jihadi Web site as the source of inspiration for much of the homegrown terror plaguing the country. Awlaki also inspired the Fort Dix Six, who plotted to kill U.S. troops by posing as pizza delivery drivers; and the 20 Minneapolis students who joined al-Qaida’s jihad in Somalia, including the first known American suicide bomber.

Of all the terrorists arrested since 9/11, none poses a greater threat than this bloodthirsty American preacher, who gets hundreds, if not thousands, of young Muslim men jacked up for jihad, making him a lethal force multiplier for the enemy.