Saturday, June 18, 2005

Zarqawi being 'betrayed' in Mosul?

According to a story I read this morning on Al-Mada newspaper, it seems that there's a big conflict between the different active armed groups in Mosul.
This conflict originated from the different attitudes of the different groups regarding the issue of targeting civilian "collaborators" (which refers to anyone who works for the government) and it's more likely that this conflict has lead to the appearance of opportunities for a dialogue between some of these groups and the government and this will possibly put an end to a great deal of the violence going on in that area.

It's becoming clearer that most of those groups have begun to doubt the benefits of violence and their reluctance has been taking the shape of an internal conflict with the hard-line groups and I think what supports this theory is the message that came from Al-Qaeda to the Sunnis warning them from the consequences of being involved in the political process and I think that Al-Qaeda wouldn't have threatened its allies in Iraq if Al-Qaeda didn't feel that the carpet was being pulled from under its feet.

Moreover, the claims of the "Takfiri" trend that the whole constitutional process is an American fake started to become unconvincing to the other armed groups.
I think the most important factor that widened the gap between the two wings was the accusations of the "Takfiri" trend (who classically consider everyone else as infidels) to the less radical groups of being traitors and this is supposed to grow even wider after Abu Talha was supposedly handed to the security forces by people from inside their ally groups.

Here's the story that Al-Mada received:

It is believed that that a meeting for the leaders of armed groups in Mosul was planned to be held in the house where Abu Talha was staying and that representatives of the groups that established contacts with the government didn't attend the meeting.

American troops raided the house at the exact time of the meeting and captured Abu Talha.
Sources from Mosul told Al-Mada that on June 9, some person bought a house for 120 million Dinars and then immediately rented the house to a man who works for the education ministry and on Tuesday June 13, a task force from the American army (12 armored vehicles backed by 4 helicopters) raided the same house and arrested Abu Talha and his wife. Not one bullet was fired in the operation.

Abu Talha or Mohammed Khalaf Shkara was born in 1957 in Mosul, traveled to Afghanistan in 1991 and there he joined the Taliban movement and met a lot of Arab fighters and took courses in guerilla war, assassinations and explosives making.
He came back to Iraq in 2001 after the Taliban regime was toppled but he remained in contact with the Arab "Jihadists" and among whom is Zarqawi. They met in Afghanistan, worked together and built strong ties.

After toppling Saddam's regime in 2003, Al-Qaeda formed a higher command to lead anti-American operations in Iraq and Abu Talha was the 1st leader chosen to command the area of Mosul and its surroundings as Zarqawi put a lot of trust in Abu Talha and considered him a strong and loyal ally.

Since then, Abu Talha became the plan maker and main funding source for terror attacks in that area.
With this important arrest, the leadership of the "Takfiri" groups has completely fallen and this will open the doors for more dialogue between the other armed groups and the Iraqi and American administrations and this will eventually facilitate the transformation to political methods in dealing with differences instead of violence.


No comments: