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Archive for Friday, May 2, 2008

US missile strike kills reputed al-Qaida leader in Somalia

May 2, 2008

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— U.S. missiles destroyed the house of the man identified by the U.S. military as the top al-Qaida commander in Somalia, killing him and 10 others Thursday in a pre-dawn attack that analysts warned could torpedo peace talks.

The killing of Aden Hashi Ayro comes amid escalating fighting and a spiraling humanitarian crisis in the Horn of Africa nation.

Islamic fighters have staged a series of attacks on towns in the months leading up to the U.N.-sponsored talks, scheduled to start May 10. The insurgents typically hold the towns for a few hours, free people from jails, then withdraw with captured weapons.

Somali government officials have said Ayro, who was believed to be in his 30s, trained in Afghanistan before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States and headed al-Qaida's cell in Somalia.

Few Somalis had heard of him before 2005, when Ayro desecrated a colonial Italian cemetery in Mogadishu, throwing hundreds of exhumed corpses into the sea. He then built a mosque on the site and began training fighters there - many of whom would be eager to take his place.

An International Crisis Group report linked Ayro to the murders of four foreign aid workers, a British journalist and Somali peace activist Abdulqadir Yahya.

The U.N.-backed talks, which are slated to be more inclusive than previous rounds, offered a slim hope of bringing together the disparate groups in the armed opposition, including some Islamists.

Thursday's attack has damaged the negotiations, said Rashid Abdi, an analyst at the International Crisis Group.

"However much the Americans claim the war on terror is one thing and the peace process is another thing, it's not that clear-cut," Abdi said. "This will definitely have political repercussions."

Capt. Jamie Graybeal, a spokesman for U.S. Central Command, confirmed there was a U.S. airstrike early Thursday in the vicinity of the central Somali town of Dusamareeb. Another U.S. military spokesman, Bob Prucha, said the attack was against a "known al-Qaida target and militia leader in Somalia." Both declined to provide further details.

Another U.S. defense official, who sought anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the record, confirmed the strike targeted Ayro.

The U.S. missiles left a smoldering hole where Ayro's home had stood in Dusamareeb.

"The bodies were beyond recognition, some of them cut into pieces, and those wounded have been severely burned," resident Nur Farah told The Associated Press.

Local elder Ahmed Mumin Jama said the house was "totally destroyed," as were other houses nearby. Of the 11 dead, five bodies were retrieved from Ayro's house, he said, while the rest came from surrounding homes. Four people were being treated for wounds.

Sheik Muqtar Robow, a spokesman for the al-Shabab militia that Ayro led, called Ayro a martyr for the Islamist cause and vowed to carry out retaliatory attacks.

Comments

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

"It's foolish to think that any war can be waged without civilian casualties."Is this your justification for the nearly 3000 deaths on 9-11-2001?

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Agnostick 5 years, 11 months ago

Quite hilarious watching the extremists from both sides with the one-upmanship game..."Yay! They killed a terrorist!""Yeah, but look at all the innocents that were killed, too.""How do you know they were 'innocents?''"How do you know that they weren't?""Intelligence!! Quite obviously, the so-called 'innocents' were terrorist sympathizers, only pretending to be innocent!""But suppose they were pretending against their will*? That would make them victims... innocent victims!""No, it would not! If they lie about being innocent, then they'll lie about anything--so we're better off without them!""Oh, that's rich! Like you've never told a lie!""How would you know, one way or another? If the so-called 'innocents' were terrorist sympathizers, trying to pass themselves off as 'innocent,' then they were obviously lying! Can't be trusted!""But there were children!! Sweet, innocent children--""... with AK-47s! Ready to kill! They start young!""But they're being forced to do that...!""Which brings us back to lying...""But what if they're lying about lying? That makes them innocent!""They're sneaky, these indigenous people of Middle Eastern arid zones! They were probably lying about lying about their lies! That's even worse!""But what if they were lying about their lying about lying about their lies?? Innocent..."Screw you all.We killed a terrorist. One. Within a week, his successor will probably be driving around in Ayro's jeep, living in Ayro's house, eating Ayro's food, screwing Ayro's wife/wives...Sorry about the women and children, but this is a bumbling, staggering, mismanaged, underfunded War on Terrorism. Even if it were a properly-managed war, there would still be civilian casualties. It's foolish to think that any war can be waged without civilian casualties.Yeah, "thousands" were probably saved by Aryo's death: "Thousands" of miles on an Al Qaeda-funded jet that takes these folks up to the Riviera 4-6 times a year, so they can hole up for a weekend in a five-star hotel, eat caviar, watch "Pimp My Ride," Skinemax, and screw hot, blonde Jewish-European hookers, just like the Quran says they should!Allah U Akbar! Shiksa Barbies for everyone!Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go put $110 into the gas tank...--Ag

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

" I guess we had better start killing them first, and all of them.I'm in for a dozen,"You don't even know who any of them are, and you're celebrating. That's just as sick as Al Qaeda, you bloodthirsty hypocrite.

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justfornow 5 years, 11 months ago

"You cannont fight terrorism with terrorism. This is a fact".I wonder what Aden Hashi Ayro thinks about that.

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malcolm_x_obama 5 years, 11 months ago

Bozo,I guess we had better start killing them first, and all of them.I'm in for a dozen,

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

Al Qaeda uses almost the identical line of thinking when justifying the attacks of 9-11, malcom.

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malcolm_x_obama 5 years, 11 months ago

duplenty,Children? or Terrorists in training.Would you rather that the terrorist that was killed had been spared? He could then impose his system upon others resulting in the deaths of many more children than were potentially lost in this attack. Do you disagree with the outcome of WWII? We shouldn't have bombed industrial sites because children were often forced to work at factories. We should have negotiated........right. (rolling my eyes)

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jonas 5 years, 11 months ago

I predict this will be a silly thread. So I'm going to post a silly link to a silly place.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dduI-F...

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duplenty 5 years, 11 months ago

MxO, harderfaster, b3 - if any children were killed (and the Washington Post reports that as many as 30 people were killed), was it worth it?Do you think that if (no clarifications yet from the press) children, women, innocents were killed...do you think their families, friends, neighbors, etc. are more or less inclined to hate/target/take action against the US or its interests?You cannont fight terrorism with terrorism. This is a fact.

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Harderfaster 5 years, 11 months ago

One down many to go.Bush has saved thousands by killing the guy.

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malcolm_x_obama 5 years, 11 months ago

The left is in mourning over the loss of another Islamofacist. Gaia forbid that we stop the spread of terror when a Republican is in the white house. Of course, Clinton would have warned them before bombing a terrorist base so that only the base would be destroyed. The only good terrorist is a dead terrorist.

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screedposter 5 years, 11 months ago

The world was a better place before this happened.I think I speak for all three posters to date.

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duplenty 5 years, 11 months ago

If any civilains were killed, wouldn't you call that "terrorism"?

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

"Of the 11 dead, five bodies were retrieved from Ayro's house, he said, while the rest came from surrounding homes."And it doesn't matter who those other six people were, because BushCo got a good headline out the attack.

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