June 8, 2006

"Abu Musab al-Zarqawi killed in air raid"

Carroll Andrew Morse

Associated Press story here...

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, al-Qaida's leader in Iraq who led a bloody campaign of suicide bombings and kidnappings, has been killed in an airstrike, U.S. and Iraqi officials said Thursday. It was a long-sought victory in the war in Iraq.

Al-Zarqawi and seven aides were killed Wednesday evening in a remote area 30 miles northeast of Baghdad in the volatile province of Diyala, just east of the provincial capital of Baqouba, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. said.

Al-Qaida confirms here (h/t Kathryn Jean Lopez) taking the concept of declaring victory, no matter the circumstance, to a whole new level...
"We want to give you the joyous news of the martyrdom of the mujahed sheik Abu Musab al-Zarqawi," said the statement, signed by "Abu Abdel- Rahman al-Iraqi," identified as the deputy "emir" or leader of al- Qaida in Iraq.

"The death of our leaders is life for us. It will only increase our persistence in continuing holy war so that the word of God will be supreme," it said.

President Bush's statement here...
Now Zarqawi has met his end, and this violent man will never murder again. Iraqis can be justly proud of their new government and its early steps to improve their security. And Americans can be enormously proud of the men and women of our armed forces, who worked tirelessly with their Iraqi counterparts to track down this brutal terrorist and put him out of business.

The operation against Zarqawi was conducted with courage and professionalism by the finest military in the world. Coalition and Iraqi forces persevered through years of near misses and false leads, and they never gave up. Last night their persistence and determination were rewarded. On behalf of all Americans, I congratulate our troops on this remarkable achievement.

AND the Iraqi government has filled the posts of interior minister, defense minister, and national security minister. Details here.

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Liberal pretty boy reporter David Gregory was on Imus this morning talking about how this doesn't change anything and is as insignificant as the capture of Hussein, which also didn't change anything.

Good to see the liberal talking points outgoing fax machine isn't bring serviced on this all-important day.

Posted by: Greg at June 8, 2006 8:31 AM

The real story here isn't the death of Zarqawi, but how he got killed. Either al-Qaeda has been infiltrated or local Iraqis are providing information.

The killing will continue, but this is a huge step forward.

Posted by: Anthony at June 8, 2006 1:05 PM

They say since Zarqawi was a foriegner killing Iraqi's (and Sunni's I guess) the Sunni's were more than happy to report to the to the US any thing they heard about his location.

This victory, while significant, needs to be followed up or else it will not have a lasting effect.

Posted by: George at June 8, 2006 1:48 PM

al Zarqawi was the portrait of pure evil on this earth. Despite the musings of TV pretty boy and all around nobody David Gregory, Zarqawi's death is a very meaningful and important event.

Posted by: Tim at June 9, 2006 7:06 AM