Western intelligence agencies stepped up actions for the capture or elimination of Anwar al-Awlaki, who now has the status of “terrorist number one”. According to experts, he now represents a more serious threat than Osama bin Laden, who after the attacks of 11 September 2001 was forced to withdraw from active work in order to try to save his life, the Voice of Russia reported.
Speaking on Wednesday, the Director of the American National Counter-terrorism Center Michael Leiter said that the American-born Yemeni Islamist Anwar al-Awlaki and his group, Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, was probably a more serious threat inside the United States than Bin Laden’s group.
According to European sources, the 39-year-old Anwar al-Awlaki is now included in the compilation and update of the CIA list of persons who are subject to immediate liquidation, as these are seen as deadliest to society. The Herald Sun reports that Awlaki became the first U.S. citizen added to the CIA kill list.
Born in the USA to a Yemeni family, Al-Awlaki is considered the best skilled radical Islamist to in using the Internet and video equipment for terrorism propaganda, and the mobilization of fanatically minded elements in the struggle with the West. Only in the popular YouTube network, until recently, there were 1.9 thousand video lectures by Anwar al-Awlaki.
At the same time, Bin Laden, Al-Qaeda leader is said to be too weak for a threat. Bin Laden was proclaimed terrorist number one after the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington in 2001.
But the mere existence of Bin Ladin had become a permission, or license, most particularly for the U.S. to enter any country of the world. “Countering terrorism” has become the top national security priority for the United States. An interesting statement was made in the same report issued in 2004 by the National Commission on Terrorist attacks upon the United States:
“In talking with American and foreign government officials and military officers on the front lines fighting terrorists today, we asked them: If you were a terrorist leader today, where would you locate your base? Some of the same places came up again and again on their lists:
- western Pakistan and the Pakistan-Afghanistan border region
- southern or western Afghanistan
- the Arabian Peninsula, especially Saudi Arabia and Yemen, and the nearby Horn of Africa, including Somalia and extending southwest into Kenya
- Southeast Asia, from Thailand to the southern Philippines to Indonesia
- West Africa, including Nigeria and Mali
- European cities with expatriate Muslim communities, especially cities in central and eastern Europe where security forces and border controls are less effective”
Even without looking at the world’s map it is obvious that all the mentioned regions would compose more than a half of all the developing countries. And who knows which place will be proclaimed the next “threat- to- the- country’s- security”.
It seems the United States government follows the list of possible threats. Yemen might become America’s second Afghanistan.
Furthermore, the report states that “In the post-9/11 world, threats are defined more by the fault lines within societies than by the territorial boundaries between them. From terrorism to global disease or environmental degradation, the challenges have become transnational rather than international… In this sense, 9/11 has taught us that terrorism against American interests “over there” should be regarded just as we regard terrorism against America “over here.” In this same sense, the American homeland is the planet.” Terrorism is the license to enter any country of the world. “The goals seem unlimited: Defeat terrorism anywhere in the world.”