Libyan officials said Wednesday that Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other embassy employees were killed during the mob violence, but U.S. officials now say they are investigating whether the assault was a planned terrorist strike linked to Tuesday’s 11-year anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks. [AP]
THE MAN behind the virulently anti-Muslim film that set Egypt aflame and Libya to explode has been identified by the Associated Press as Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. The name previously given as the filmmaker of “Innocence of Muslims,” Sam Bacile, was traced to the same address as Nakoula, with the AP writing of the possible alias as well, making them one in the same man.
The 2012 al Qaeda 9/11 message is about ideology. Al-Zawahiri acknowledges that al Qaeda can not match the “material power” of the Zionist-Crusader “evil empire.” But, he argues, it is winning the ideological war. Every new martyr gives the “call of jihad new life.” Al Qaeda’s real mission, he claims, is to “incite the ummah” (the Islamic world) to fight the Crusaders. He points to the success of al Qaeda in establishing footholds in Yemen, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Mali, Egypt’s Sinai and elsewhere since the Arab Awakening began in 2011 as signs the movement is winning the ideological struggle. – Al Qaeda’s Libya Vengeance Plot, by Bruce Riedel
As I wrote earlier, it became clear late Wednesday that the anti-Muslim film was the tip, but Ayman al-Zawahiri may have been the spear, because reports are that he called for an attack to avenge the drone strike and kill earlier in 2012 of Abu Yahya al-Libi, who was seen as the number two man in Al Qaeda.
That the Benghazi attack was triggered on 9/11 is typical for Al Qaeda hitting so-called “anniversaries” of prior attacks. This was still developing at the time of this report.
President Obama speaking in the Rose Garden on Wednesday clearly telegraphed that the deaths of the four Americans would be avenged, sending a signal that it wasn’t your average film protester he was talking about hunting down.
No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for. Today we mourn four more Americans who represent the very best of the United States of America. We will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act. And make no mistake, justice will be done.
But we also know that the lives these Americans led stand in stark contrast to those of their attackers. These four Americans stood up for freedom and human dignity. They should give every American great pride in the country that they served, and the hope that our flag represents to people around the globe who also yearn to live in freedom and with dignity.
It’s looking like that in the eleventh year since 9/11, Ayman al-Zawahiri called for an attack and the murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens, along with anyone else that was around, but also included Libyans who came to the aid of the Americans who had helped free their country.