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Saad Al Shihri, Saudi citizen, former Guantanamo inmate, deputy leader and founding member of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

Senior U.S. officials are confirming that the No. 2 al-Qaida leader in Yemen has been killed, dealing a major blow to the terror group.

The officials said Saeed al-Shihri was killed, but could not confirm any U.S. involvement in the airstrike Monday that Yemeni leaders say killed the terrorist and five others.

Yemeni officials said the missile that killed al-Shihri, who was a Saudi national, was believed to have been fired by a U.S.-operated, unmanned drone aircraft. The U.S. doesn't usually comment on such attacks although it has used drones in the past to go after al-Qaida members in Yemen.

Two U.S. officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information to the news media.

More info here:

In 2009, al-Shihri appeared in a video with Nasser al Wuhayshi (Bin Laden's former personal aide) to announce that Al Qaeda cells in Saudi Arabia and Yemen were joining to form 'Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.'

More than any other affiliate, AQAP is really an extension of the Al Qaeda Central leadership in Pakistan.  Its leadership composed largely of trained, seasoned Al Qaeda operatives from the pre-9/11 Afghanistan years of the group. The same cannot be said of so-called Al Qaeda affiliates in Iraq, Somalia, North Africa.

Al-Shihri was a terrorist actively at war with the United States.  Four times since 2009 terrorists under his command have attempted to bomb airliners headed for the United States.  Including the underwear bomber and the plot broken up by the CIA in April of this year.

On April 16, 2009...four days after Navy SEALs rescued Captain Richard Phillips from Somali pirates, al-Shihri called upon pirate groups to join Al Qaeda and wage jihad at sea.

His death is significant, as it further reduces Al Qaeda's 'bench' of operatives who had received training in the original Afghan training camps.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (13+ / 0-)

    Follow Me on Twitter!!/ZeddRebel

    by TarantinoDork on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 02:13:09 PM PDT

  •  Too bad this didn't happen (2+ / 2-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt, 2020adam
    Hidden by:
    LakeSuperior, PinHole

    before the convention -- Biden could've displayed his head on a stick.

    •  That's rather gruesome (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SoCalSal, blackjackal, PinHole, MKSinSA

      both the thought and the imagery.  I certainly hope you meant that to be snark and just expressed yourself badly.

      •  from his previous comments, i don't think he (5+ / 0-)

        is being "friendly" here.  i take the poster's hostility toward dems on its face value - it is consistent... and stupid.

        •  Hardly (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Woody, duckhunter, 2020adam

          David is consistent in his hostility to mindlessly violent and unconstitutional policies regardless of who does them.  Calling out the administration for wrong headed policies isn't "hostile to dems" it's hostile to the (Republican) policies enacted by certain Democratic officials.  That's a big difference, and you'd do well to familiarize yourself with the distinction.

          Courtesy Kos. Trying to call on the better angels of our nature.

          by Mindful Nature on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 03:07:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  "you'd do well"? (0+ / 0-)

            Such gentle persuasion to help people see your point.  

            (The next sentence I wrote, was voluntarily deleted out of respect for the manners training from my mother)

            Her mother (a Republican) used to say, "You get more flies with honey, than vinegar."

            •  well (0+ / 0-)

              it beats my own deleted sentence, shall we say.  Sadly, as I am certain you already know, there's a long and tendentious history of attempts to portray any kind of criticism as disloyal.  I apologize for having used rather testy language.  The larger point that there's a difference still stands however.

              Courtesy Kos. Trying to call on the better angels of our nature.

              by Mindful Nature on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:20:57 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  What's wrong with killing Al Queda (0+ / 0-)


            •  nothing, necessarily (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              The issue is attacking any critic of the administration as "hostile to dems" when in fact there's a strong case to be made that it is nothing more than defending Democratic principles at work here. I am stimply taking exception with the attack and attempted silencing of David Mizner.  Long story.

              (To answer your quetion superficially, there are significant issues with killing non-Al Qaeda members overseas, and there are significant issues with extrajudicial executions of US citizens without due process.  Additionally, some would argue that killing Al Qaeda overseas is also not legitimate either, for rather complicated reasons having to do with whether there is a war ongoing or a criminal enforcement action.  It's a long and complicated area, as you know.  )

              Courtesy Kos. Trying to call on the better angels of our nature.

              by Mindful Nature on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 04:26:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Until Lake Superior explains (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I'm going to have to uprate this.  It is certainly a snark (or perhaps a metophorical statement).

      Courtesy Kos. Trying to call on the better angels of our nature.

      by Mindful Nature on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 03:08:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Uprated. Half the theme of the Veep's speech was.. (0+ / 0-)

      gloating over the fact that our military killed a baddie. Not gloating that we are such a great nation that we bring even our enemies to trial. Gloating that we killed an unarmed diabetic and dumped his body in the ocean.

  •  Maybe third time's a charm since he wasn't (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    really killed the other two times he was reported killed in 2009 and 2011.  It's always significant, but then the war on terror just keeps on going and going.

    "The Global War on Terror is a justification for U.S. Imperialism. It must be stopped."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 02:27:29 PM PDT

  •  Some confusion, it seems... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MKinTN, david mizner, Garrett, 2020adam

    I read the AFP piece from this morning attributing al-Shehri's death (and the deaths of five others) to a Yemini military raid. Reuters has a decent summary of the variant stories.

    The Yemeni Ministry of Defense website said Said al-Shehri was killed on Monday, along with six other militants, in what it called a "qualitative operation" by Yemen's army in the remote Hadramout province in eastern Yemen. It gave no further details.

    There were conflicting reports on how Shehri died. A Yemeni security source said Shehri was killed in an operation last Wednesday in the Hadramout that was thought to have been carried out by a U.S. drone, rather than the Yemeni military.

    Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time. (Terry Pratchett)

    by angry marmot on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 02:27:53 PM PDT

    •  Wouldn't be the first time (3+ / 0-)

      there was, uh, confusion over who did the killing in Yemen.

      The Yemeni government covered up US drone strikes against al-Qaeda there and claimed the bombs were its own, according to the WikiLeaks documents.
    •  Yemen government policy is to claim all US action (4+ / 0-)

      Its a joke for sure, but the condition for us being able to interdict terrorist suspects in that it by Marine harrier, predator drone, or SEAL team, is that officially we aren't in Yemen.  All actions are to be, officially speaking, Yemeni Army or Air Force operations. C'est la vie.

      I was a bit dubious of the reports myself...Yemeni officials without a doubt have the worst track record at reporting the death of terrorist leaders.  Worse than Pakistan, Iraq. Even Somalia is more reliable.  (Conversely, Indonesia is brilliant when it comes to this...patiently waiting for DNA and photo confirmation before announcing the death of a big wig terrorist.)

      And yes, this isn't the first time Yemen has reported his death.

      But the late-breaking confirmation by US officials was enough for me to go ahead and put this up.

      Follow Me on Twitter!!/ZeddRebel

      by TarantinoDork on Mon Sep 10, 2012 at 02:37:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Great News. Keep it up. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    •  Amen. Just another year or two before we... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      angry marmot

      make the big catch and bring down the next #2. I can see winning this thing in another couple of decades if we continue the hard work of chopping the head off a headless organization.

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