Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Al Qaeda''s latest strategic mistake - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page

Perhaps the greatest mistake al Qaeda committed in its short history was attacking US cities on September 11, 2001 . This marked the beginning of a global war on terrorism that engulfed all the major capitals around the world, especially Baghdad and Kabul .

The terrorist operation in London on Thursday is the latest in a series of errors carried out by al Qaeda. It is an operation with no political aim. After all, Britain is not Spain and the government will not give in to the terrorists and withdraw its troops from Iraq . A look at the history of the closest US ally shows that the British government has always stood firm in the international arena. In fact, London ’s reaction to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990 increased the resolve of the US government to act swiftly.

This latest attack only serves US and British interests and encourages those who have been demanding an extensive and bold international effort against terrorism. It weakens considerably the already fragile positions of France and Germany and forces their governments to join forces with any future alliance against fighting terror.

In particular, this week’s attacks have harmed the Islamic presence across Europe , especially in Britain where civil liberties protect those who support terrorism, even turning a blind eye to celebrations of violence and the presence of al Qaeda operatives. As a result, the government of Tony Blair will find it hard to resist calls by different Arab governments to hand over their citizens guilty of promoting terrorism on British soil.

In fact, the one person to benefit from the attacks on London is al Qaeda’s arch enemy, the Prime Minister. The tragic events have proved that Blair was not scaremongering when he warned of the threat of an imminent terrorist attack during his election campaign. In addition, terrorism increases the popularity of US President George W. Bush with the American people, at a time when his ratings were suffering due to mismanagement of the situation in Iraq .

International terrorism faces a real problem. In Iraq , the continuous killing of civilians is encouraging people to reject violence. Globally, the international alliance against terrorism is becoming stronger and previously neutral governments are joining it. Undoubtedly, these developments are not in al Qaeda’s best interests.