The World of Mirrors
Munir al-Mawiri sums up this quite nicely in his article for Mareb Press today in which Waq al-waq shares top billing with Sada al-Malahim.
He is referring to the fact that I was quoted in the latest issue of Sada al-Malahim (on page 29 for those of you interested in following along at home.) He takes this to mean that al-Qaeda is following the work of western academics and researchers. I see his point, but I’m not so sure that organization is following the work all that closely. (Although now that this blog is linked in Munir’s article today, who knows what sort of readership we will have.)
The quote that follows my name as well as the quote from Michael Scheuer in the magazine are both taken from articles that were written in 2008, and both were then translated and posted to al-Ikhlas before it was taken off-line. So I think this more indicative of the fact that people in al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula are following the on-line jihadi forums (no surprise there) then that they are following my work. Still, when they start quoting from articles I wrote for other places that haven’t been translated and posted to jihadi forums then I’ll come around to Munir’s point.
The first time I saw my name on al-Iklhas it was a bit of a shock, particularly since as I was reading along with the article in Arabic and agreeing with (nearly) everything the writer was saying and thinking this all sounded very familiar until I got to the bottom and saw that someone had translated something I wrote. Being quoted in Sada al–Malahim is, I guess, a milestone of a different sort.
Munir’s article has some good analysis of the latest issue of Sada al-Malahim, besides just talking about me reading them quoting me (you get the idea), which I will be commenting on soon. His first point, that this journal isn’t being put together by a bunch of guys in the deserts of Marib and al-Jawf is well taken.