Winning: Blowing Up The Golden Mosque


March 2, 2006: More al Qaeda brass have been biting the dust in Iraq. Since February 24, one senior aide, Abu Asma, was killed during a raid while he was preparing to launch a murder-suicide attack in Iraq, and now, a senior aide to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, bin Laden's choice to lead al-Qaeda in Iraq, has been captured with five associates by Iraqi forces. This is a sign that the Iraqi terror groups are rapidly running out of any local acquiescence whatsoever (never mind support).

The terrorists have certainly earned the hostility of average Iraqis of all stripes. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is one of those commanders who needed a good staff - because Zarqawi has not exactly shown to be a good operational or strategic thinker. His target selection for the first campaign of terrorism pushed the Sunnis into the political process due to their indiscriminate use of suicide bombing. Going after the Golden Mosque has turned out to be a bad decision, because the Shiites now hate him even more - and it nearly got the Sunnis into a lot of trouble. The Americans have earned a reputation for respecting mosques and endeavoring not to hit them. In one video that circulated on the Internet, an AC-130 crew is told of the location of a mosque and told not to fire on it. The terrorists have a reputation for using mosques as arms caches. A number of these were discovered in the effort to clear out Fallujah in 2004.

While the American media was discussing the likelihood of a sectarian civil war in Iraq, and at least one major commentator declared that Iraq was a lost cause, the Iraqi people took a much different course and appear to be on the way to proving them wrong. In some areas, local Shiites guarded Sunni mosques from retaliatory attacks. A Sunni group teamed up with the national government to donate $2.8 million to restore the mosque. These events were not reported in the MSM, but did get coverage from Kuwaiti media, and were reported in the blogosphere.

Short version - what was supposed to cause a civil war has instead pretty much pushed the Iraqis together. In essence, the bombing of the mosque has turned into a major self-inflicted defeat for Zarqawi. As a result, Zarqawi's days are numbered, since he is now losing staff while in increasingly hostile territory. - Harold C. Hutchison (


Article Archive

Winning: Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close