Monday, January 23, 2006

Not What They Had In Mind

Well this is working out well...

Supporters of al-Qa'eda in Iraq have used the elections staged by the United States to gain positions of political power, the American military believes.

According to senior officers based in Anbar province, an insurgent stronghold in western Iraq, al-Qa'eda-linked politicians have gained seats in local elections to provincial assemblies.

[SNIP]

American intelligence has also learnt that not only are some of its supporters now politicians but that a number of its leaders have married into leading local tribes to secure alliances.

Although the organisation, headed by the Jordanian Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, originally consisted primarily of foreign fighters, it now has many Iraqi supporters, with one US official estimating that Iraqis have made up a majority of its active members since the middle of last year.

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