Bin Laden to Atiyatallah:
it would be advisable for you and for Shaykh Abu Yahya to write some articles and provide advice to those working in the Jihad media in general to include the author partisans to the Mujahidin on the internet. (SOCOM-2012-0000019-HT)
But he didnt say anything about needing to wear matching outfits, did he??
This is where I will be concentrating my analytical focus over the next several days. I’m in the middle of drafting this report:
The report is an expanded examination of at least these 10 points, which I’m working out with corresponding timelines and thematic comparisons:
- Atiyatallah has emerged in these documents as UBL’s primary confidant, interlocutor and consligiere. He was the man who translated UBL’s strategic messages wishes into reality.
- Religiously, Bin Laden and Atiyatallah were both more vocal than most in al-Qaida to trumpet the need for Shariah-compliant operations. When in doubt, both men would err on the side of not conducting attacks rather than unintentionally getting on the wrong side of God’s rulings.
- Personally, both men painted themselves as humble and merciful servants of God. Shy, reserved, soft-spoken and somewhat awkward in front of a camera, neither of these were the kind of fiery rhetorician of an Ayman al-Zawahiri or an Abu Yahya al-Libi.
- Ideologically, both Atiyatallah and Bin Laden were obsessed with destroying the West. Anywhere they could inflict pain against Western societies and governments, they would.
- Striking the West, in both their minds, was not only Shariah compliant but also practically wise in that it redirected the mujahidin’s unwieldy quest for bloodshed at legitimate targets away from Muslims-centric population centers.
- Strategically, both men believed in organizational centralization and top-down communication. They had a shared belief in the power of perception and intense fear of negative press. Unnecessary killing of Muslims should be avoided at all costs.
- Communication. Communication. Communication. Correspondence and information were the grease the oiled the skids of their campaign. Consultation with others was key.
- The buck stopped with the Senior Leadership: AQ was, at the end of the day, Bin Laden’s and people had to respect his authority.
- Both men seem to honestly view the Arab Spring as being a fundamentally good turn of events for AQ. It loosened up the gears that had been stuck for over half a century.
- Both saw Abu Yahya al-Libi as a master rhetorician and serious religious scholar who could help mobilize the youth.