Al Qaeda gloats over U.S. election

Saturday, November 11th, 2006 12:07 pm by Neal

(Hat tip: powerline)

Check out this article in today’s Washington Times, “Al Qaeda gloats over U.S. election”

BAGHDAD — The head of al Qaeda’s Iraq operations yesterday gloated in a new audio tape over the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld and praised U.S. voters for punishing President Bush and the Republicans in Tuesday’s midterm elections.

Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, in the first public statement by a senior al Qaeda figure since the vote, said in an Internet-posted recording that his group now had 22,000 armed fighters and reserves in Iraq and taunted Mr. Bush not to copy Mr. Rumsfeld and “flee the battlefield.”

Al-Muhajir, also known as Abu Ayyub al-Masri, urged the United States to stay in Iraq so his group would have more opportunities to kill American troops.

“We haven’t had enough of your blood yet,” he boasted. “We call on the lame duck not to hurry his escape the way the defense secretary did.

“We will not rest from our jihad until … we have blown up the filthiest house — which is called the White House,” al-Muhajir said.

The Egyptian-born al-Muhajir became al Qaeda’s point man in Iraq after Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed in a U.S. air strike in June. The 20-minute recording could not be independently verified and White House spokesman Tony Snow declined to comment on its contents.

U.S. military officials separately announced the deaths of five more servicemen serving in Iraq. A total of 26 American troops have died so far this month.

Calling Mr. Bush a “coward” and the “most stupid president” in history, the al Qaeda leader also said, “The American people have put their feet on the right path by … realizing their president’s betrayal in supporting Israel. So they voted for something reasonable in the last elections.”

In neighboring Iran, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei also expressed satisfaction with the Democratic gains in the U.S. vote, calling them a boon for Tehran.

“The issue in these elections was not a purely domestic issue for America, but it is the defeat of Bush’s hawkish policies in the world,” the Iranian leader said in remarks to the ISNA news agency.

“Since Washington’s hostile and hawkish policies have always been against the Iranian nation, this defeat is actually an obvious victory for the Iranian nation,” the hard-line cleric added.

The rest of the article focuses on the latest news from Iraq. Also, on the topic of terrorists celebrating over the election results, John at has these comments where he disagrees with Captain Ed who thinks it’s time to cut the Democrats some slack.

Fair enough. But isn’t a reasonable starting point for that engagement the fact that the terrorists are delighted that the Dems have won, and are convinced that the Dems’ policies, as the terrorists understand them, will benefit the jihadis? Don’t the Democrats have some obligation to face up to the fact that the prospect of our disengagement from Iraq–and if that isn’t their “new direction,” then what in God’s name is?–is viewed with glee by the enemy?

I join with Ed in hoping that we can prevent the Democrats from delivering Iraq to the jihadis, but my estimate of their good faith is lower than his. The Democrats have staked everything, politically speaking, on the proposition that the Iraq war is a failure and a disaster. They have every interest in ensuring that our effort there does, in fact, fail. I think, in short, that the terrorists are reading the Democrats’ intentions correctly.

I should add that by “the Democrats,” I don’t mean every rank and file member of that party, many of whom no doubt want America to succeed. I’m referring to almost all of the party’s national leadership and the large majority of its elected officials.

I agree with John. The Democrats have demagogued this war ever since they voted for it, and to the extent that they have “stood” for anything, it is that Iraq must end in failure. If terrorists around the world celebrate the Democrat’s victory — including Keith Ellison’s supporters shouting “Allahu Akbar!” for the first Muslim Congressman — it is because the Democrats have earned it.

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