Monday, January 30, 2006

Al-Qaeda in Lebanon

'Hazim Al-Amin does some fine reporting on Al-Qaeda’s operations (specifically the Zarqawi franchise) in Lebanon through two pieces published in Al-Hayat Newspaper on January 26 and 27. Although I believe, as Amin himself suggests towards the very end, that he has only managed to scratch the surface, I was fascinated by the new information he brings to light on “Abu Muhammad Al-Lubnani,” who became one of Zarqawi’s chief aides in Iraq and was subsequently killed in late summer 2005.

What caught my interest was that Al-Lubnani, whose real name is Mustafa Ramadhan, is actually an ethnic Kurd from Beirut, with a past as a drunkard and hoodlum. He had married a lady from the conservative Sunni enclave of Mejdel ‘Anjar in Lebanon’s far north in the late 1980s, and immigrated to Denmark. Lubnani returned three years ago in the garb of a zealous Salafist, and advocated for jihad, according to Amin’s reporting. He managed to win over some recruits in Mejdel Anjar, and went off to Iraq with his 16 year-old son, Muhammad, who was killed shortly before his father expired."
Talisman Gate


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