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patteeu
08-22-2007, 10:06 AM
Ron Paul supporters aren't going to like this:

In Their Own Words (http://www.victorhanson.com/articles/thornton081907.html)
Newly translated writings of the al Qaeda leadership.
by Bruce Thornton
Private Papers

The Al Qaeda Reader, ed. Raymond Ibrahim, Introduction by Victor Davis Hanson, Doubleday.

Given that war, as both Sun Tzu and Mohammed preached, is deception, it behooves us to understand accurately the enemy’s motivations and not be fooled by his deceiving propaganda. Yet in the current war against Islamic jihad, the West has stubbornly refused to take seriously what the jihadists tell us, believing instead what Thucydides called the “pretexts” with which an enemy rationalizes his aggression. Osama bin Laden and his theorist Aymin al Zawahiri in particular have provided us with numerous texts outlining the Islamic foundations of their war against the West. A few of these pronouncements and manifestoes have long been available, but now thanks to Raymond Ibrahim’s The Al Qaeda Reader, writings previously unavailable in English can be studied and analyzed. Such study will provide powerful evidence that contrary to the deceptions of apologists and the naïve delusions of some Westerners, the bases of the jihadists’ actions lie squarely within Islamic tradition, not in the alleged Western crimes against Islam.

...

The Al Qaeda Reader, simply by letting our enemies speak in their own voices, explodes the popular delusion that Western crimes and policies are responsible for the “distortion” of Islam that al Qaeda represents. As Ibrahim writes, “This volume of translations, taken as whole, prove once and for all that, despite the propaganda of Al Qaeda and its sympathizers, Radical Islam’s war with the West is not finite and limited to political grievances — real or imagined — but is existential, transcending time and space and deeply rooted in faith.” This means that the fight will be long and hard, that leaving Iraq or creating a Palestinian state will not buy peace, and that the side that accurately understands its enemy and has confidence in its own beliefs will ultimately triumph. Thanks to Raymond Ibrahim’s The Al Qaeda Reader, we have the means for achieving that understanding.

Cochise
08-22-2007, 10:10 AM
I predict blowback to this thread. :Poke:

patteeu
08-22-2007, 10:14 AM
I predict blowback to this thread. :Poke:

LMAO

StcChief
08-22-2007, 10:16 AM
even more reason to kill 'em all.

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 10:19 AM
That's being featured on the NeoCon Express and pushed by such. What would one expect? He's wrong. I'll still go with the professionals on this issue....like former CIA counter-terrorism experts with over 20 years experience on the matter.

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 10:23 AM
BTW all one has to read is binLaden's fatwa...says all anyway.

Oh and this thread rokks!
No blowback from me I'm peaceful.

Cochise
08-22-2007, 10:43 AM
He's wrong. I'll still go with the professionals on this issue....

Instead of Al Queda's own writings?

patteeu
08-22-2007, 11:18 AM
Instead of Al Queda's own writings?

It's like old-school Catholicism before Gutenburg and his progeny put a bible on every bookshelf.

Radar Chief
08-22-2007, 12:28 PM
He's wrong. I'll still go with only the professionals I want to believe on this issue....

FYP. ;)

Jenson71
08-22-2007, 12:40 PM
Instead of Al Queda's own writings?

This is Bruce Thorton's interpretation we're dealing with. Just because Thorton's interpretation is different from those that study terrorism and Al-Qaeda doesn't mean the experts were all wrong and Thorton, a Republican professor who doesn't teach that field, is the new chief in this hunt.

Taco John
08-22-2007, 01:01 PM
Instead of Al Queda's own writings?



Who's writings? Who is "Al Queda?"

I'll stick with the professionals as well. Not so much into amateur hour.

I could write a volume on why I don't like my neighbor. But I'm not going to get to excited to do anything about it until they start building their fence on my side of the property line.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 01:37 PM
This is Bruce Thorton's interpretation we're dealing with. Just because Thorton's interpretation is different from those that study terrorism and Al-Qaeda doesn't mean the experts were all wrong and Thorton, a Republican professor who doesn't teach that field, is the new chief in this hunt.

I guess it's a Thorton interpretation in the sense that he's reviewing the book, but the book itself is written by Raymond Ibrahim, who is fluent in Arabic and works as a research librarian at the Library of Congress.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 01:41 PM
All this reliance on "the professionals" who failed to recognize the fall of the Soviet empire, who misread Iraq not once, but twice in the past two decades and who, most relevantly, badly bungled the al Qaeda situation by failing to develop a coherent strategy to prevent it from growing into the global force it has become is impressive. :thumb:

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 02:01 PM
All this reliance on "the professionals" who failed to recognize the fall of the Soviet empire, who misread Iraq not once, but twice in the past two decades and who, most relevantly, badly bungled the al Qaeda situation by failing to develop a coherent strategy to prevent it from growing into the global force it has become is impressive. :thumb:
Ah...you mean the leadership, past and present, who have had their arms twisted to support policy like Tenet? Even Cheney and of all people non-govt peeps like Newt visiting their offices to influence judgment. This was not a first allegedly either. Those CIA members?

Lol it's true the CIA has been taken in by counterintel, particularly during the Soviet era, and as a result got some things wrong but that doesn't mean all of that wasn't from misuse of the agency or that they were/are wrong on the AQ. IIRC, they gave warnings. There was an excellent talk show regarding a new CIA book by a NY Times writer on PBS ( I know its liberal and I thought some of it was a whitewash) where the author said most presidents don't understand the CIA, how it works, so don't know how to use it. The one exception per this author was Bush Sr because he was once head of it.

They WERE RIGHT about Iraq, but Tenet caved to the WH. He was a classic political lackey for them. It's no wonder there were defections and leaks later from the CIA. In fact Bush/Cheney cleaned house so much that there's all inexperienced young agents now. Just the kind one can mold.

Taco John
08-22-2007, 02:40 PM
All this reliance on "the professionals" who failed to recognize the fall of the Soviet empire, who misread Iraq not once, but twice in the past two decades and who, most relevantly, badly bungled the al Qaeda situation by failing to develop a coherent strategy to prevent it from growing into the global force it has become is impressive. :thumb:



ROFL

I don't know what you're talking about, but I have to laugh at you saying that someone else got it wrong on Iraq twice, given your history here. Not to mention the transference of blame on the growth of Al Queda, which has only grown stronger under Bush.

Whatever experts you're relying on, you deserve your money back.

Radar Chief
08-22-2007, 02:50 PM
Ah...you mean the leadership, past and present, who have had their arms twisted to support policy like Tenet? Even Cheney and of all people non-govt peeps like Newt visiting their offices to influence judgment. This was not a first allegedly either. Those CIA members?

Lol it's true the CIA has been taken in by counterintel, particularly during the Soviet era, and as a result got some things wrong but that doesn't mean all of that wasn't from misuse of the agency or that they were/are wrong on the AQ. IIRC, they gave warnings. There was an excellent talk show regarding a new CIA book by a NY Times writer on PBS ( I know its liberal and I thought some of it was a whitewash) where the author said most presidents don't understand the CIA, how it works, so don't know how to use it. The one exception per this author was Bush Sr because he was once head of it.

They WERE RIGHT about Iraq, but Tenet caved to the WH. He was a classic political lackey for them. It's no wonder there were defections and leaks later from the CIA. In fact Bush/Cheney cleaned house so much that there's all inexperienced young agents now. Just the kind one can mold.

No one is ever to blame for their actions, except for those fugg’n NeoCons. :cuss:

Typical. ROFL

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:00 PM
CIA and a Blowback World! (http://www.lewrockwell.com/engelhardt/engelhardt17.html)

When the new Republican administration came into office, it was deeply uninterested in bin Laden and terrorism even though the outgoing national security adviser, Sandy Berger, warned Condoleezza Rice that it would be George W. Bush's most serious foreign policy problem. On August 6, 2001, the CIA delivered its daily briefing to Bush at his ranch in Crawford, Texas, with the headline "Bin Laden determined to strike in U.S.," but the president seemed not to notice. Slightly more than a month later, Osama bin Laden successfully brought off perhaps the most significant example of asymmetric warfare in the history of international relations.

"Blowback" does not refer simply to reactions to historical events but more specifically to reactions to operations carried out by the U.S. government that are kept secret from the American public and from most of their representatives in Congress. This means that when civilians become victims of a retaliatory strike, they are at first unable to put it in context or to understand the sequence of events that led up to it.

Good read but long on how the CIA gets used as a secret presdential army.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 03:15 PM
Ah...you mean the leadership, past and present, who have had their arms twisted to support policy like Tenet? Even Cheney and of all people non-govt peeps like Newt visiting their offices to influence judgment. This was not a first allegedly either. Those CIA members?

Lol it's true the CIA has been taken in by counterintel, particularly during the Soviet era, and as a result got some things wrong but that doesn't mean all of that wasn't from misuse of the agency or that they were/are wrong on the AQ. IIRC, they gave warnings. There was an excellent talk show regarding a new CIA book by a NY Times writer on PBS ( I know its liberal and I thought some of it was a whitewash) where the author said most presidents don't understand the CIA, how it works, so don't know how to use it. The one exception per this author was Bush Sr because he was once head of it.

They WERE RIGHT about Iraq, but Tenet caved to the WH. He was a classic political lackey for them. It's no wonder there were defections and leaks later from the CIA. In fact Bush/Cheney cleaned house so much that there's all inexperienced young agents now. Just the kind one can mold.


If they had been right on Iraq, everyone in the government, democrat and Republican alike, who relied on them wouldn't have been wrong.

There were, no doubt, individuals within the intelligence community who got something right here or there, but in the end the consensus of the community was, by all accounts wrong and afaics there's no indication that any particular set of individuals got it right more than they got it wrong, including your professionals.

The only reason you believe your professionals is because they are saying what you want to hear. I doubt seriously that you have any better basis than anyone else around here to evaluate them objectively (IOW, I don't think you have any basis at all).

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:20 PM
If they had been right on Iraq, everyone in the government, democrat and Republican alike, who relied on them wouldn't have been wrong.

There were, no doubt, individuals within the intelligence community who got something right here or there, but in the end the consensus of the community was, by all accounts wrong and afaics there's no indication that any particular set of individuals got it right more than they got it wrong, including your professionals.
Nope that's patently false. Sheuer wrote a book on it called "Imperial Hubris" under the name anyonomous while still with the CIA. Then there's Ray McGovern, Philip Giralidi and there's one more whose name I can't recall. They got it right and witnessed first hand the arm twisting and cave in by Tenet. In fact there's a public letter written by them to Tenet for lying about his lies when his book came out.

Bush/Cheney relied more on Chalabi, an Iranian because that's what they wanted to hear.

You just believe the Bush Kool-Aid that blames it on the CIA.

The only reason you believe your professionals is because they are saying what you want to hear.
Couldn't the same be said for you?

Sorry, but my sources were impeccabley accurate BEFORE going in.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 03:22 PM
Not to mention the transference of blame on the growth of Al Queda, which has only grown stronger under Bush.

Not true. According to the worst of the estimates, al Qaeda has rebounded from the blow dealt by the US under the Bush administration to recover to it's pre-9/11 strength. Compare that to the growth from almost nothing to a global jihadist network under the watchful eyes of Bill Clinton and BEP's professionals.

And if you read that intelligence estimate a bit more carefully and consider the fact that al Qaeda can no longer operate in the open thanks to the intelligence network we've deployed since 9/11 (notably without the help of BEP's professionals btw) and the interdictions that we continue to execute, I prefer the current state than that of 9/10/01, thank you.

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:27 PM
Well, if you read the above link, you'll see that it shows where and how the CIA contributes to these problems and where it's an administration. But's it's not the counter-terrorism work of analysts like Scheuer.

Another professional, who got it right, was Ritter, who was there during the inspection's process and knows how it really works. SH disarmed. Unfortunately he was smeared and scorned by the NC press for exposing their lies...and that includes Bill Clinton and Hillary...all the liberal hawks. The same scenario is happening right now as regards Iran who we may strike in 6 months.

StcChief
08-22-2007, 03:32 PM
Well, if you read the above link, you'll see that it shows where and how the CIA contributes to these problems and where it's an administration. But's it's not the counter-terrorism work of analysts like Scheuer.

Another professional, who got it right, was Ritter, who was there during the inspection's process and knows how it really works. SH disarmed. Unfortunately he was smeared and scorned by the NC press for exposing their lies...and that includes Bill Clinton and Hillary...all the liberal hawks. The same scenario is happening right now as regards Iran who we may strike in 6 months.

why wait until 2008. Hit 'em now, they've done enough harm to troops, American, UK, Aussies etc.....and to destablizing Iraq providing IEDs, guns, etc.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 03:40 PM
Nope that's patently false. Sheuer wrote a book on it called "Imperial Hubris" under the name anyonomous while still with the CIA. Then there's Ray McGovern, Philip Giralidi and there's one more whose name I can't recall. They got it right and witnessed first hand the arm twisting and cave in by Tenet. In fact there's a public letter written by them to Tenet for lying about his lies when his book came out.

Bush/Cheney relied more on Chalabi, an Iranian because that's what they wanted to hear.

You just believe the Bush Kool-Aid that blames it on the CIA.

Couldn't the same be said for you?

Sorry, but my sources were impeccabley accurate BEFORE going in.

Chalabi isn't an Iranian. If you can't get simple facts like this right, how can we trust your judgement on which professionals to listen to?

Your list of names is unimpressive to me. I'm sure Sheuer's book, which was written after the fact btw, reflects well on Sheuer (big surprise) and I'm even willing to believe that some of the self congratulation may well be deserved, but mentioning his name and the title of his book isn't a very strong defense of his objectivity and trackrecord. Even less so for the others on your list. It's not clear to me what claim of mine you are calling patently false in the first place.

The CIA has been screwed up my entire adult life (and yours too I presume). They've dramatically missed on many high profile assessments. Personally, I think it's because of the top down structure of the organization (all intelligence being filtered through a small group of people at the top before it reaches decision makers), which isn't inconsistent with what you're saying, but where I differ from you is that I don't blame it on overt pressure from politicians. I blame it on groupthink and cya-ing and timidity in the management levels of the organization as well as a probable lack of talent among the analysts who need to think more like the enemy and less like what they would be doing if they were the enemy.

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:47 PM
Oh my bad...he was once pegged an Iranian agent by the CIA...but is a Shi'a Muslim from Iraq who are allied with Iran. Not to far off, just the wrong nationality. A minor fact while some of yours are major.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 03:48 PM
Well, if you read the above link, you'll see that it shows where and how the CIA contributes to these problems and where it's an administration. But's it's not the counter-terrorism work of analysts like Scheuer.

Another professional, who got it right, was Ritter, who was there during the inspection's process and knows how it really works. SH disarmed. Unfortunately he was smeared and scorned by the NC press for exposing their lies...and that includes Bill Clinton and Hillary...all the liberal hawks. The same scenario is happening right now as regards Iran who we may strike in 6 months.

You are insane if you believe that the counter-terrorism analysts all had it right but that the Bush administration and the neocons twisted it or forced Tenet to twist it to suit their purposes. That's not even plausible.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 03:49 PM
Oh my bad...he was once pegged an Iranian agent by the CIA...but is a Shi'a Muslim from Iraq who are allied with Iran. Not to far off, just the wrong nationality. A minor fact while some of yours are major.

For example?

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:50 PM
Oh and Sheuer has witnesses from the CIA.
CIA is screwed up because of its covert operations and gets used secretly like funding AQ in Afghanistan with the Suadi's etc. Even if your claim is 100%, the Bush administration demanded they find something, even Bush. Those guys wanted to go in, and that's in writing before 9/11.

BucEyedPea
08-22-2007, 03:51 PM
Example of what?

dirk digler
08-22-2007, 03:53 PM
I tend to believe that there is multiple reasons, including both political and religious reasons why AQ wants to destroy the USA.

Jenson71
08-22-2007, 03:54 PM
I guess it's a Thorton interpretation in the sense that he's reviewing the book, but the book itself is written by Raymond Ibrahim, who is fluent in Arabic and works as a research librarian at the Library of Congress.

No, he's the editor. The book was written by members of Al Qaeda.

Taco John
08-22-2007, 03:57 PM
Mr. Marvin Al Queda to be specific.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 04:44 PM
Example of what?

My major factual errors.

patteeu
08-22-2007, 04:44 PM
No, he's the editor. The book was written by members of Al Qaeda.

Touche. Good point.

mlyonsd
08-22-2007, 06:20 PM
All this reliance on "the professionals" who failed to recognize the fall of the Soviet empire, who misread Iraq not once, but twice in the past two decades and who, most relevantly, badly bungled the al Qaeda situation by failing to develop a coherent strategy to prevent it from growing into the global force it has become is impressive. :thumb:

Quit being a dumbass.

Until you recognize that you can only quote or side with pundits that are on the opposite page of the Bush administration when it comes to foreign policy, military tactics, the economy, global warming, pet grooming, or about 1000 other issues I haven't mentioned you are just a stupid F in this think tank called the DC Forum.

Get with the program or you'll never earn your wings.

mlyonsd
08-22-2007, 06:23 PM
ROFL

I don't know what you're talking about, but I have to laugh at you saying that someone else got it wrong on Iraq twice, given your history here. Not to mention the transference of blame on the growth of Al Queda, which has only grown stronger under Bush.

Whatever experts you're relying on, you deserve your money back.

Even funnier is you laughing at someone's 'history' here after claiming you were convinced 911 was an inside job. I'm not sure how well pointing fingers works for you.

Adept Havelock
08-22-2007, 06:40 PM
Even funnier is you laughing at someone's 'history' here after claiming you were convinced 911 was an inside job. I'm not sure how well pointing fingers works for you.

:hmmm:

Touche. Good point.

Logical
08-22-2007, 09:01 PM
Not true. According to the worst of the estimates, al Qaeda has rebounded from the blow dealt by the US under the Bush administration to recover to it's pre-9/11 strength. Compare that to the growth from almost nothing to a global jihadist network under the watchful eyes of Bill Clinton and BEP's professionals.

And if you read that intelligence estimate a bit more carefully and consider the fact that al Qaeda can no longer operate in the open thanks to the intelligence network we've deployed since 9/11 (notably without the help of BEP's professionals btw) and the interdictions that we continue to execute, I prefer the current state than that of 9/10/01, thank you.

I find this to be lacking in logic. We only know that our government is willing to admit AQ is now at least as strong as it was pre 9-11, we cannot know that it is not much stronger or how much stronger it presently is based on our released intelligence information.

BucEyedPea
08-23-2007, 05:37 AM
I tend to believe that there is multiple reasons, including both political and religious reasons why AQ wants to destroy the USA.
He want's to destroy the USA?
I thought he wanted the USA off their lands?

Here's one of binLaden's Fatwas issued 2/23/98 to wage jihad against the West and Israel. It is these writings Scheuer refers to when he claims BL states his motives openly and accurately. Hardly, rocket science, unless you're an empire builder and have to obfuscate because you don't want to change your agenda and need to keep the public on your side to do so.

Al Qaeda's Fatwah (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1998.html)

I'll excerpt some points:
No one argues today about three facts that are known to everyone; we will list them, in order to remind everyone:

1First, for over seven years the United States has been occupying the lands of Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian Peninsula, plundering its riches, dictating to its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing its neighbors, and turning its bases in the Peninsula into a spearhead through which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples.

If some people have in the past argued about the fact of the occupation, all the people of the Peninsula have now acknowledged it. The best proof of this is the Americans' continuing aggression against the Iraqi people using the Peninsula as a staging post, even though all its rulers are against their territories being used to that end, but they are helpless.


2Second, despite the great devastation inflicted on the Iraqi people by the crusader-Zionist alliance, and despite the huge number of those killed, which has exceeded 1 million... despite all this, the Americans are once against trying to repeat the horrific massacres, as though they are not content with the protracted blockade imposed after the ferocious war or the fragmentation and devastation.

So here they come to annihilate what is left of this people and to humiliate their Muslim neighbors. 3Third, if the Americans' aims behind these wars are religious and economic, the aim is also to serve the Jews' petty state and divert attention from its occupation of Jerusalem and murder of Muslims there. The best proof of this is their eagerness to destroy Iraq, the strongest neighboring Arab state, and their endeavor to fragment all the states of the region such as Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Sudan into paper statelets and through their disunion and weakness to guarantee Israel's survival and the continuation of the brutal crusade occupation of the Peninsula.

BucEyedPea
08-23-2007, 05:47 AM
I might add:

On that basis, and in compliance with God's order, we issue the following fatwa to all Muslims

The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies--civilians and military--is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it, in order to liberate the al-Aqsa Mosque and the holy mosque from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of Islam, defeated and unable to threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the words of Almighty God, "and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all together," and "fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in God."


He wants to destroy America?

BucEyedPea
08-23-2007, 06:14 AM
"It's not a matter of what is true that counts but a matter of what is perceived to be true." – Henry Kissinger, advsior to Bush and Cheney

Hog Farmer
08-23-2007, 07:31 AM
http://www.newsmaxstore.com/nms/showdetl.cfm?DID=6&Product_ID=2281&s=al&promo_code=38CE-1

Radar Chief
08-23-2007, 07:56 AM
Another professional, who got it right, was Ritter, who was there during the inspection's process and knows how it really works. SH disarmed. Unfortunately he was smeared and scorned by the NC press for exposing their lies...and that includes Bill Clinton and Hillary...all the liberal hawks. The same scenario is happening right now as regards Iran who we may strike in 6 months.

You mean Scott “Bribed by Saddam” Ritter claims “it ain’t so”? Color me shocked.

BucEyedPea
08-23-2007, 08:42 AM
http://www.newsmaxstore.com/nms/showdetl.cfm?DID=6&Product_ID=2281&s=al&promo_code=38CE-1
That doesn't refute Scheuer's points, in fact it adds to them. Since Scheuer has said this IS coming home to America no matter what this current administration says otherwise about our fighting them over Iraq means we won't fight them here. Not to mention another occupation which is what brought this all home to America.

Scheuer says we can either compromise and give in to some of binLaden's requests, about troops on their lands and occupation ( which we didn't do before GWI with permanent bases) or be prepared to duke it out for the long term, which just may destroy us.

This whole thing coming home began under Bush Sr by his leaving troops there and the idea that we should police the world.

patteeu
08-23-2007, 09:13 AM
He want's to destroy the USA?
I thought he wanted the USA off their lands?

Here's one of binLaden's Fatwas issued 2/23/98 to wage jihad against the West and Israel. It is these writings Scheuer refers to when he claims BL states his motives openly and accurately. Hardly, rocket science, unless you're an empire builder and have to obfuscate because you don't want to change your agenda and need to keep the public on your side to do so.

Al Qaeda's Fatwah (http://www.pbs.org/newshour/terrorism/international/fatwa_1998.html)

I'll excerpt some points:

One of the key points of the book reviewed in the OP is that a reading of al Qaeda writings meant for islamist consumption along with those meant for western consumption (including those ostensibly aimed at would-be jihadists) shows that the latter are a propaganda operation. Apparently one that your professionals have been taken in by.

patteeu
08-23-2007, 09:22 AM
I find this to be lacking in logic. We only know that our government is willing to admit AQ is now at least as strong as it was pre 9-11, we cannot know that it is not much stronger or how much stronger it presently is based on our released intelligence information.

Sometimes I'm not sure you understand what "logic" means.

Al Qaeda may have regained it's pre-9/11 strength in terms of numbers of card carrying members and affiliates and in terms of re-establishing a safe haven in the mountainous border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan, but they haven't regained all of their pre-911 capabilities. Where you get the idea that they are "at least as strong" and what you mean by "strong" are not clear to me.

Here is a passage from the most recent NIE (http://www.dni.gov/press_releases/20070717_release.pdf):

We assess that greatly increased worldwide counterterrorism efforts over the past five years have constrained the ability of al-Qa’ida to attack the US Homeland again and have led terrorist groups to perceive the Homeland as a harder target to strike than on 9/11. These measures have helped disrupt known plots against the United States since 9/11.

• We are concerned, however, that this level of international cooperation may wane as 9/11 becomes a more distant memory and perceptions of the threat diverge.

Al-Qa’ida is and will remain the most serious terrorist threat to the Homeland, as its central leadership continues to plan high-impact plots, while pushing others in extremist Sunni communities to mimic its efforts and to supplement its capabilities. We assess the group has protected or regenerated key elements of its Homeland attack capability, including: a safehaven in the Pakistan Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), operational lieutenants, and its top leadership. Although we have discovered only a handful of individuals in the United States with ties to al-Qa’ida senior leadership since 9/11, we judge that al-Qa’ida will intensify its efforts to put operatives here.

• As a result, we judge that the United States currently is in a heightened threat environment.