In a newly launched video – billed as a documentary by Shabaab – the Somali jihadi group claimed that as many as 10 al-Qaeda leaders and figures had been current in the course of the notorious ‘Black Hawk Down’ battle in Mogadishu in 1993.
Lots of the people cited as being current in the course of the battle would go on to assist discovered Shabaab, al-Qaeda within the Arabian Peninsula, and even lead al-Qaeda themselves. The lads had been talked about when Shabaab recounts and particulars the notorious battle, which Shabaab additionally locations in the identical context as the present struggle between Israel and Hamas.
Within the so-called documentary, a senior Shabaab official, Mahad Karate, who serves as a senior official within the group and one among its deputy emirs, states that individuals equivalent to Abu Muhammad al-Masri, Abdulaziz al-Muqrin, Abu al-Hassan al- Sa’idi and Yusuf al-Ayeri had been all current in Mogadishu on the time.
Al-Masri, who was assassinated in Tehran in 2020, would later turn into instrumental in al-Qaeda’s embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998. Abdulaziz al-Muqrin and Yusuf al-Ayeri would each later assist discovered the networks that might turn into al-Qaeda within the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
And al-Sa’idi, who later grew to become a senior al-Qaeda official in Afghanistan, carried out a suicide bombing in opposition to American troops there.
In whole, nevertheless, Karate states that al-Qaeda’s official presence among the many Somali militants within the early Nineties amounted to 10 folks. The Shabaab chief states that the al-Qaeda males had been there to assist prepare and advise the Somali militias and themselves participated in battles in opposition to US and UN troops.
Not talked about by Karate, however others, equivalent to Abu Talha al-Sudani, Fazul Muhammad, Saleh Nabhan, Abu Ziyad al-Iraqi and Sayf al-Adl, have all been cited elsewhere in addition to being current in the course of the battle.
Aaron Zelin, in his e book Your sons are at your service: Tunisia’s missionaries in Jihad, additionally recognized Zakariyya al-Tunisi, as one other al-Qaeda determine current on the time. In all, these are in all probability all the lads that Karate refers to.
Abu Talha al-Sudani, Saleh Nabhan and Fazul Muhammad (often known as Fadil Harun) had been additionally a part of the 1998 embassy bombings and each later helped discovered Shabaab. Shabaab presently has a whole brigade named after Nabhan that conducts a lot of its exterior operations.
Abu Ziyad al-Iraqi later had to work directly below Mohammad Atef, the previous navy emir of al-Qaeda. Al-Tunisi was later killed together with Atef in Afghanistan.
And Sayf al-Adl – maybe the best-known official talked about on this record – is now believed to be main al-Qaeda himself.
This isn’t the primary time that Shabaab, nor al-Qaeda typically, has made these claims. Highlighting and celebrating this presence is certainly a standard chorus for the group to advertise its lengthy historical past in East Africa.
For instance, each AQAP and al-Qaeda’s former community in Saudi Arabia previously hailed Yusuf al-Ayeri and Abdulaziz al-Muqrin and talked about their keep in Somalia as a part of the elegy.
Al-Sa’idi himself described his time in Somalia in a video beforehand launched by al-Sahab, al-Qaeda’s important central media group, which was additionally utilized in Shabaab’s newest video.
Abu Ziyad’s function within the battle was previously described in an official eulogy for the chief who was produced by al-Qaeda. Shabaab itself has additionally beforehand talked about the function of Sayf al-Adl, Abu Talha al-Sudani and Fazul Muhammad within the battle and in training Shabaab’s predecessor groupal-Ittihad al-Islamiyya.
And whereas not essentially al-Qaeda figures on the time, former Shabaab leaders appeared within the video, together with Omar Dheere and Hassan al-Turki, additionally each skilled by al-Qaeda inside Afghanistan within the Nineties. Dheere was killed throughout a Shabaab operation in Ethiopia in 2007; whereas al-Turki died in
Though Shabaab solely formally grew to become a public department of al-Qaeda in 2012 – regardless of years of hiding the connection as ordered by Bin Laden – it’s believed that Shabaab’s narrative of al-Qaeda’s function in ‘Black Hawk Down’- the incident, nevertheless small, ought to as soon as once more spotlight and have fun its lengthy pedigree of al-Qaeda ties.
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