Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Abductions May Indicate Change in Tactics By Terrorists

It seems likely that al Qaeda in Iraq and/or Iraqi terrorist insurgents are carrying out a new strategy in Iraq. Twelve people have been abducted since Friday in three separate incidents: Susanne Osthoff, a German archaeologist and her driver were taken, apparently at a dig near the 3,000 year old ruins of Isin; Norman Kember and three unidentified members of Christian Peacemaker Teams, a radical pacifist organization; and four Iranian pilgrims (six were abducted, but the two women were later released) while on a trip to the Shia Muslim shrine in Samarra.

So many abductees in such a short period of time seem to indicate that jihadi terrorists realize the suicide bombings targeting civilians in Iraq and Jordan have been a public relations disaster for them, and a change in tactics is in order. In fact, the attacks on fellow Muslims seem to have stiffened the resolve of many Iraqis to participate in the political process.

Hostages can be kept alive and dangled in front of the Press any time al-Zarqawi feels that he isn't getting enough attention. Their home countries and organizations can be extorted of funds to further the jihad, and of course many of them, like Giuliana Sgrena, will gladly participate actively in outlandish propaganda claims to benefit their captors.

All of the abductees were traveling with minimal security. Now, their arrogance and lack of common sense will endanger Coalition troops and provide funds and propaganda for Iraq's terrorist insurgency.