May 28, 2005


U.S. Ponders Iraq Fight After Zarqawi: The militant may have suffered grave injuries. If he dies, the insurgency's divisions could widen. (Jeffrey Fleishman, May 28, 2005, LA Times)

Cryptic messages posted on Internet sites reporting that militant leader Abu Musab Zarqawi had been wounded raise questions about the future of a factionalized Iraqi insurgency driven in part by the power of his personality and mercurial strategy against U.S.-led forces.

Sometimes pictured as thin and willowy and other times as pudgy and bearded, Zarqawi is the face of the insurgent movement. If website postings are correct in suggesting that Zarqawi has suffered a bullet wound to a lung, the rebels could lose their fiercest voice in attempting to defeat Washington's designs for a new Iraq.

U.S. military officials say that Zarqawi's passing would not break the insurgency but could trigger a leadership struggle between Al Qaeda-backed foreign fighters on one side and Iraqi Sunni Muslims and others loyal to Saddam Hussein on the other. These groups reportedly are suspicious of each other, and uncertainty about a new leader could deepen dissension while U.S. and Iraqi forces increase their raids on militant strongholds in Baghdad and western Iraq.

"It is difficult to find leaders like Zarqawi," said Mohammed Askari, an Iraqi military analyst. The absence of such a marquee name could hurt the insurgency's recruiting and fundraising abilities, he added.

"Zarqawi is daring, elusive. He has an ability for maneuvering, evading risks and has this talent for sending effective messages to the public…. Who will come after him?"

You'd think it would be helpful if we didn't build up his successor the way we did Zarqawi and Osama.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 28, 2005 9:23 AM

we == leftist msm

Posted by: cjm at May 28, 2005 11:40 AM

Kill the bookkeeper who does payroll for Zarqawi and then we'll find out who the true martyrdom-seeking zealots area.

Posted by: John at May 28, 2005 12:23 PM

This brings to my mind an old riddle.
Q: If the Lone Ranger has only his six-gun and no extra bullets, and is being chased by 10 bad guys, how does he get away?

A: Shoot the one who is in front of the others. Then shoot the new one who is in front. Then the next leader. About now, the remaining bad guys get the idea, and are each going to be busy trying to *not* be the leader.

Posted by: ray at May 28, 2005 12:48 PM

i was reading about sgt. york, and how this squad of germans were running at him. he shot them from back to front so that they wouldn't know what he was doing and take a more advantaqgeous route to get him. he plugged the first (last) one when he was close enough to topple into york's position.

Posted by: cjm at May 28, 2005 1:28 PM