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April 19, 2010

Two Top Al Qaeda Leaders in Iraq Die of Suffocation Due to Volcanic Ash and Being Caught in a Spider-Hole By Iraqi Security Forces, But Mostly Iraqi Security Forces

Al-Bagdhadi had been declared dead more times than Saturday Night Live, and then, several years ago, thought to be mythic and fictional by many US analysts.

The bad news? He was real.

The good news? Emphasis on the was.

They also got al-Masri in the same raid -- he was the actual leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, taking over from Zarqawi after we zeroed him in 2006.

...

Both men were found in a hole in the ground.

“The security forces surrounded the hole, and when they got them out they were dead,” Mr. Maliki said at the news conference. Mr. Maliki said computers and letters were found that included communication between the men and Osama bin Laden.

One United States soldier died during the operation in a helicopter crash, which officials said was not caused by enemy fire.

“The death of these terrorists is potentially the most significant blow to Al Qaeda in Iraq since the beginning of the insurgency,” said Gen. Ray Odierno[.]

This time, the US military released a statement confirming the kills, and they've always been the ones to knock down claims of al-Baghdadi's death before.

In related news, there is no Al Qaeda in Iraq.


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