Saturday, January 2, 2010

Anwar al-Awlaki still unaccounted for

After years of nursing the self-pity and grandiosity of his anglophone gutter audience, Anwar al-Awlaki's career took an abrupt turn on 24 December 2009 when an airstrike was delivered to his al-Qa'ida friends in spite of the chance of killing al-Awlaki in the process. The "martyrdom" that he encourages other Islamists to pursue, he himself nearly received and is now in line for, assuming that he is still alive. If I understand that cult leader, and I think I do, he will be deeply shocked -- shocked into silence, temporarily, and shocked into hiding, possibly at Eman University in Sana'a (a cult compound run by terrorism financier and gun-runner Abdul-Majid az-Zindani).

At present the facts available about al-Awlaki are mostly negative ones. No terrorist cleric or terrorist financier, nor any of the Londonistani al-Qa'ida people, has jumped up to protest the Shabwah raid and make dire imprecations about a forthcoming AQ response. The raid in Shabwah is getting relative little enemy discussion and no reliable reporting in the internet forums, presumably because (1) it was a disaster for al-Qa'ida, and (2) not many enemy in that location lived to tell about what happened, and those who did are on the run.

If al-Awlaki was privy to the Christmas Day airliner plot, then he must be in a state of consternation to know Abdulmutallab is still alive and in American custody. That wasn't in the script. Al-Awlaki wants all his followers dead, not only because he never saw a corpse he didn't love, but also because dead terrorists tell no tales.

Update: CNN is now looking at Eman University and Zindani.

Update: Fox too.

If al-Awlaki reaches the safety of Zindani's bizarre "university", he will be able to communicate on the internet. If he does so communicate, then his words may well be shaped to ingratiate himself with Zindani. Specifically, if al-Awlaki goes out of his way to make excuses for Hamas, then it can be taken as evidence that he is in Eman U. That is because, although Hamas has been in al-Qa'ida's bad books since August 2009 when they killed off the AQ startup group called Jund Ansar Allah, Hamas still has the firm support of Zindani's money and his weapons-smuggling apparatus.

Don't go the website of Eman University unless you have reliable security software running.