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Evan Kohlmann also takes on Finer

Early Friday morning, I wrote in our PrincipalAnalysis section The Importance of Foreign Terrorists to Iraq's Insurgency, and challenged The Washington Post's Jonathan Finer's underestimation of the importance and impact of foreign terrorists on the insurgency in Iraq.

Evan Kohlmann at The Counterterrorism Blog also weighed in (authoritatively) Friday afternoon with:

Washington Post Misses the Mark on Foreign Fighters in Iraq - Counterterrorism Blog

Evan takes a longer view, using far more detail and post-Soviet Afghanistan and the emergence of al Qaeda as the backdrop. He is right on the money. His argument should be considered today's Must Read.

1 Comment

After reading the daily assignment, what struck me was this quote:
"... 'it is our duty to help any Muslim in the world.' He said Muslim scholars agree that when an Islamic country is attacked or invaded by 'the enemies of our religion,' jihad becomes a responsibility. ..."

A personal transNational mutual defense pact, with allah as the guarantor. aQI would have a much more difficult time recruiting if US footprint was diminished.
The homicide bombers are many things, but trainers of terrorists, which was your first postulation, is not, IMO, one of them.
There are different skill levels amongst the foreigners, to be sure, but without indig Insurgents they would afoot.